Sonik recently released their lineup of “Pro” series reels. The reels come in two different versions, one with a free spool function and one without. I recently purchased a set of three 12′ rods this year and needed some reels to match.
Needless to say, the price point was bang on for the much-needed upgrade that many Canadians are looking for with the recent rule change of being able to use three rods to target carp instead of being restricted to one.
I put these reels to the test this past year and am now able to write up an accurate review of their quality and performance. They are great reels for the money but there are a few things you should know if looking to purchase a set yourself.
Sonik Vader X Pro FRS 10000 Series Reel Features
We will start with a basic overview of the features of the Sonik Vader X Pro FRS 10,000 Reels:
- Wormshaft Gear System
- Floating Rotor Line Guard
- Independent Free Spool Rear Drag
- Quick-Torque Drag System
- Twin Spring-Loaded Captive Line Clips
- Graphite Body and Rotor
- Sleek Matte Black Finish
- Instant Anti-Reverse
- Oversized TwistFree Line Roller
- Gear Ratio 4.6:1
- 6 + 1 Ball Bearings
- Micro Line Lay Adjustment Washer
- Anodized Aluminum Handle & Wood Knob
- Weight – 640g
As you can see these reels tick the box of almost every feature that you would look for in a quality carp fishing reel. So how is it that Sonik can offer them for such an entry-level reel price?
Who Should Buy the Vader X Pro FRS 10000 Reels?
In my opinion, these beginner-level reels are priced perfectly for anglers just getting into carp fishing. The option of having both “Quick Torque” and “Freespool” drags in one reel is an amazing option for those without any experience with either style. It allows an angler to test out both methods simultaneously while remaining within their budget.
What Rods Pair Well with Sonik VaderX Pro 10000 Reels?
These reels are quite large. Their size allows them to hold a lot of line, cast far distances and handle big fish quickly and efficiently. I put them on my VaderX 3lb 10ft rods and they were a bit too big. I also have a set of VaderX 3lb 12 ft Cork Handled Rods which balance these reels perfectly. I bought them together and am very pleased with how one compliments the other so well.
What’s So “Pro” About the Sonik Vader X Pro Reels?
This is one of the first questions I asked myself when I took these reels out of the box. I suppose they have all the “Pro” features that a higher model reel would have but the quality of the components and construction is not up to “Pro” standards. This is expected though for a reel that is priced for beginners or anglers on a budget.
There are three issues with these reels that I wish I would’ve known before I purchased them. These aren’t “make or break” problems but just lower-quality parts of the reels that could cause frustration for some.
Line Slipping Behind the Spool
The biggest problem is that the round piece directly below the spool that is supposed to keep the line from slipping in behind just doesn’t work. If you have any sort of twist and let it go slack for a second, the line will quickly loop in underneath the spool and wrap itself around the main shaft.
I found this to be more of an issue with a higher-diameter mono line. If you use a braid or low diameter mono that is less likely to twist this shouldn’t be a problem.
Size and Quality of the Handles
A second point is the quality and size of the handles on these reels. It’s nice to have a large handle that gives a lot of torque and power when handling big fish but this handle seems a little too big and not balanced as well as most other reels I’ve had my hands on.
Since the handles are so large they need to be folded to fit in the Sonik SK-Tek Rod Sleeve. With the quality of the thumbscrews on the opposite side, I could see it becoming an issue in the future of having them strip or break altogether. From my experience using them this season, it was somewhat cumbersome when folding and unfolding the handles each session.
Sub Par Freespool Mechanism
I’m used to using Shimano Baitrunners with a smooth drag and engagement. I was a bit surprised when I first used the Sonik Vader X Pro Freespool Feature. I found that the reel handle had to be in a certain position for the free spool to engage and disengage properly.
I found the Quick Torque Drag on the front of the reel to work perfectly. Smooth and allowing an angler to pinpoint that perfect setting within a few clicks of the dial. I was quite impressed with the reels but it almost seemed like the free spool function and FRS models were put together hastily to provide an added bonus to the reel.
Would I buy the Sonik Vader X Pro FRS Reels Again?
Yes, they do the job for my larger rod/reel setup, I mainly use them on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River when I have to reach far distances. There are a few quirks that need getting used to as listed above. When you figure out how to deal with them these reels are a bargain for the price. They’ve been used and abused for a year with no major faults and I will continue to test and use these reels for the years to come.
Where to Buy the Sonik Vader X Pro FRS 10,000 Carp Fishing Reel?
For current pricing on the Sonik Vader X Pro Carp Fishing Reels feel free to check out the links below:
Johnson Ross Tackle – Sonik Vader X Pro 10000 Reel
Angling Direct – Sonk VaderX Pro FRS 10000 Reel
If you’re still unsure what Carp Fishing Reel is best for you, check out our Recommended Carp Fishing Reels Page.