16VISX vr MAK16SEa

Olddog8

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May 13, 2012
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I've read all the threads I could find on the VISX reels and, while there is mention of the MAK in comparison, I found nothing that really compares the two reels real world.

Has anyone had the chance to use both reels?

I need a new 80/100lb castable reel (want a lot, do not need anything) and these two are my front runners. Of course a new reel will ultimately lead to "I need a new Centaur 76 because..." it's a vicious circle.
 

Yellowtail Dan

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Apr 10, 2006
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All I can say is I just bought a new Mark 16sea and filled it with 100lb hollow and a short 80lb too shot for my trip in Dec. I heard a lot of good things about the new Penns but I wanted to complete my set of Maks.

I don't think you can go wrong either way
 

Bill W

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Jan 12, 2006
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As much as I like my Mak 16 the one thing I do not like is the ultra low gear. I believe Okuma quotes 11” per crank. My style works best at 15” per crank.

Penn advertises the 16 VISX as 14” per crank.
 

ReelDealAngler-

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Jul 27, 2017
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16VSIX just came out so you won't get any "real world" on the water input for awhile. Penn did a complete overhaul on them and according to reports and Penn published specs they are indeed lighter in weight than previous International models.

I own a have used 2 Mak 16SEa reels and they are excellent reels IMO... the real key factor for me with regards to a 16 size reel is the weight of the spool as I'm primarily using a 16 size reel for that stealth (cow) or heavy Guadalupe 80lb fly line sardine application where casting your live fin bait further out away from the boat is often your best bet in getting bit on that slower "pick bite" situation. The Mak 16SEa has good quality spool bearings that are lubed at the factory with a fine synthetic oil, the aluminum spool is light in weight but still very strong (excellent free spool, especially when considering the light weight spool that is spinning!), the drag system is 2nd to none IMO... Tiburon designed "pull bar" that is very smooth even at higher drag settings. So far NO complaints on the Mak 16SEa for me other than low gear is a bit lower than I would like considering the diameter of the spool.

G
 
Sep 18, 2015
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Don Amboyer
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I took a 20VISX to Guadalupe. I fished both 80 and 100# on it - only 80# got bit. Landed two YFT on that rig: 80-something and 121#. Lost one to taxman. Reel was fantastic - felt in control of the fight.

Also fished a Torque 40 with 60#. Landed a YFT at 112# and lost two more to sharks. Was a longer fight and a lot more effort/time.
 

bob1825

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Apr 11, 2007
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I got my 16visx last week. And though I haven't used it yet, the freespool is incredible.
Joe and I will be on the Island Tackle trip in a few weeks. I have a MAK 16SEA and he has the 16VISX. Looks like we'll have to swap set ups for a comparison.
 

lkatdpelicanfly

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Jun 23, 2009
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The regular Mak SE series has a higher lower gear ratio from what I understand. It might be better to compare the new Penn w. the older Mak 16 SE...because they would have more of a similar gear ratio I would think. I had a Mak 16 sea on order since labor day but it was back-ordered and Okuma wasnt scheduled to deliver to retailers until mid October I was told after waiting for my reel to arrive for 3 weeks ... so I just got a refund. I like the idea of the lower low gear ratio on the Mak, but may have to check out the new Penn especially if the freespool is as good as others are saying.
 

Bill W

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Jan 12, 2006
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11.8 inches per crank. The difference is they came out with both models at the same time and did not retool for another gear.
 

Bill W

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The gold model has sealed bearings. I have the gold model.
 

Yellowtail Dan

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Apr 10, 2006
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The regular Mak SE series has a higher lower gear ratio from what I understand. It might be better to compare the new Penn w. the older Mak 16 SE...because they would have more of a similar gear ratio I would think. I had a Mak 16 sea on order since labor day but it was back-ordered and Okuma wasnt scheduled to deliver to retailers until mid October I was told after waiting for my reel to arrive for 3 weeks ... so I just got a refund. I like the idea of the lower low gear ratio on the Mak, but may have to check out the new Penn especially if the freespool is as good as others are saying.
Charkbait has them in. I just got mine from them on a two day turnaround
 

ReelDealAngler-

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Jul 27, 2017
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All I know is that the Mak 16SAe right out of the box (no mods needed just spool it up) can cast a pen cured sardine further than any 16 size lever drag big game I've ever owned, and I've owned a few including Cal modified Penn reels.

But to be fair, I will give the new Penn VISX reels a chance to prove themselves (and Steve Carson (Penn Ambassador) who knows his gear well, and who I fully trust when it comes to anything to do with west coast sport fishing stated that Penn has shaved down the spool weight as well as the overall weight on the new VISX reels). One thing for sure you can count on with Penn is durability, and I also like that they are made right here in the USA, but for now I remain a fan of the Okuma Makaira reels because they flat out preform well... and I've had zero issues on the 7 that I personally own... plus they were designed by my friends at Tiburon located right here in So Cal.

G
 
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JohnTFT

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Feb 11, 2007
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A nice feature on the 16VISX is you can change the stock handle to one of the larger models.

The 20 handle is a direct replacement. It has a larger knob area. For those with bigger hands its a great option.

Only issue is all the the handles are going to fill orders right now. The 20 handles will be available for resale around the mid to end of December time frame.

The MAK is a great reel. It redefined what a 16 sized reel's capabilities should be.

The VISX is another choice for anglers. And for all of the points made previously it becomes a matter of preference as IMO the two reels are very close in performance.
 

ReelDealAngler-

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Jul 27, 2017
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Time on the water will tell all... be interesting to me to actually see (via on the water testing vs. opinions) if "casting" performance and "drag" performance are similar (those are two key factors for me when fishing a 16 size reel for the larger grade tuna). Then of course you have line capacity which is another story based on who you ask (especially here on the SD LR forum where there is a bunch of marketing hype and some magical "mystery" (out of the norm) line winding going on in some tackle shops).

G
 
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Yellowtail Dan

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Apr 10, 2006
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Roseville Ca
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Dan
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Excel, American Angler
Time on the water will tell all... be interesting to me to actually see (via on the water testing vs. opinions) if "casting" performance and "drag" performance are similar (those are two key factors for me when fishing a 16 size reel for the larger grade tuna). Then of course you have line capacity which is another story based on who you ask (especially here on the SD LR forum where there is a bunch of marketing hype and some magical "mystery" (out of the norm) line winding going on in some tackle shops).

G
I know I got 400yrds of 100b TT hollow on mine with a short top shot of 80lb. The first 300 yards were free and then they only billed me for another 100 yards
 

ifish42na

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Oct 23, 2004
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625 yards of 100lb industry standard made in USA hollow spectra fills that reel all day long. TT 100lb is the wrong line for that reel (and just about every reel for that matter), fishing on the west coast, unless of course you're giving it away for free in which case it's a great choice.
 

Let em eat 74

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Jul 12, 2016
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Basil- I have my 16visx and I'm going to spool it with 100# solid. Would Berkley pro spec be a good choice? If not, what solid do you recommend?