The Twinpower XD C3000HG is solid, light, and powerful, and offers quality for the price you pay.
Shimano Twin Power XD C3000HG
Shimano Glossary of Terminology
I wasn’t sure it was fair for me to do this review after having such a committed relationship to the early Shimano Twinpower models. It started 6 or 7 years ago with the 10,000 sized Twinpower: it has become a favourite reel after being scraped on the rocks, squashed at the bottom of my backpack and punished by kingfish and dogtooth tuna.
Now I had the chance to test a smaller inshore model, the 3000 XD. XD stands for extra durable; HG means high gearing (6:1 retrieve). I was advised the technology around waterproofing once found on the larger models has found its way into the smaller sizes.
I’m going to skip any lengthy description on the looks, because for the money you’ll spend on this reel, you’re paying for years of hard wearing service rather than cosmetic countenance. But yes, it looks modern, edgy and cool.
Next up, how did it perform?
I got to test it on two trips, and both times I was fishing lures: with softbaits, inchikus and slow pitch jigs on the other end of the line. For softbaiting it was excellent – the casting technology meant I could make consistently long casts. The pick-up of the bail arm was never clunky. With some reels you’ll find there’s a sticking point – where turning the handle and flicking the bail arm sometimes meets with resistance. This was never the case with the TP (Twinpower) – smooth every time.
While fishing jigs the reel was equally impressive – although I have to admit I prefer overheads for jig duty, simply because ergonomics seem to suit the smooth measured drop of the jig and quick detection and engagement if there is a bite as the lure descends. But that’s just me. Shimano matched the reel to a 160 Spin Jig Energy Concept rod, rated for jigs to 160g. This was a perfect match and I could flick 90g jigs upwind of the drift with ease, without fearing a tip-snapping embarrassment with an underhand cast.
Once hooked up, the reel took over. I purposely went hard on the pump and winds on several occasions, usually with stroppy kahawai that had to be controlled, side by side on a party boat where multiple hook-ups might well have resulted in long delays in untangling later. I found that I couldn’t get the reel to flex or shudder or show any sign of loosening at any time or at any point. It was rock solid. Most of us will pause in our winding as we lift the rod, but I continued to pour on the pressure, to see if I could detect any play or looseness in the gearing or handle or body.
It was impressively flawless. Putting my old Thunnus reel through the same punishment, I could get a little flex out of the light CI4 body, which uses the same material the 3000 TP is made out of.
There was no back play in the anti-reverse, no vibration in the gearing and no hesitation to speak of in the handle; over the course of both trips it became obvious that the Twinpower is engineered to a very high standard. I managed to catch fat kahawai to about 2kg and snapper up to a chunky 5kg. When playing the snapper, I backed off the drag a little as it was obvious what it was and I was fearful that my small hooks might pull.
The drag was smooth throughout – at light or heavy settings. Another fisherman who uses the TP for multiple purposes (including squid fishing) reported that even at very light settings there is no wobble in the spool. Under heavy settings, the drag performed as expected, releasing line exactly when it was supposed to for the setting it was on. There were many instances where there was a gradual release of line when a fish turned side-on, giving gradual resistance. It was measure for measure when releasing line, and was silky smooth.
The modest round EVA grip was comfortable. Some people gripe about the grip and prefer a paddle design. It’s a matter of taste – but for me, I never slipped or failed to grab the grip when the pressure was on.
There was a feature which was not put to the test - the waterproofing technology which that has been incorporated. Superior seals and a labyrinth internal structure (a series of chambers and spray that make it all but impossible for water to ingress) keep water outside, where it should be. Judging from the tight tolerances of the components of the reel, I have no reason to doubt that this feature does what it is supposed to do.
So, it is clearly a reel of high performance. But is it a reel of value, for the money you cough up to attain it? The TP is a serious reel and it costs accordingly. It’s the kind of reel the average fisherman would buy because they’re going to pick it up every time they go fishing, and want something powerful, reliable and useful for several types of fishing, to replace 2 or more other reels. In terms of purchase price against payback, yes, it hits the mark. I would not advocate skipping the necessary maintenance, but if I compared it to models further down the line, I’d be willing to bet the reel will need servicing less often than cheaper models simply because of the design features, materials and craftsmanship. The caveat of course is that you’d have to look after it to get the best return on your investment.
The Twinpower 3000XD is solid, light, and powerful, and offers quality for the price you pay.
I’ve never given any reel a 10 out of 10 mark, but this would have to come close. Let’s say 9.5 out of 10 – and I think plenty of fishers would indeed rate it a 10 out of 10.