I've all but retired from fresh water (and the gear I have is more than sufficient for anything and everything I'd ever want to do in freshwater anyway) over the past few years and my limited fishing time has been pushed solely to saltwater. Now 100% shorebound since I've sold both my boats and while I have a desire to be a boat owner again, I don't have the desire to be a boat driver-arounder or cleaner
Spotted bay bass typically being the target for those familiar with Socal/San Diego fishing.
With that in mind, the only 2 rods I fish now are my NRX 842C and 893C with Met MGL (feel free to check out my other recent thread for advice on how not to maintain your MGL reels as a saltwater angler) depending on where I am planning to fish on any given day.
842C loads up wonderfully on both the cast and when fish take the bait, but suffers from a slight lack of power on hooksets. Specifically, in areas with heavy eel grass, I feel like while I'm driving the hook home, the fish have too much time to bolt into the grass, and often times this results in the fish being lost. In lighter grass areas it's not a big deal, but in deeper areas with thicker grass, it's not uncommon for me to have half my fish get stuck in grass and come off.
893C handles every fish it's ever seen like a boss (and is the only bottom contact rod I ever want to use for the rest of my life on the rare occasion I fish freshwater), but the action is just a bit too fast for what I'm doing (typically 1/4 oz t-rigged swimbaits fished with a steady retrieve). The typical SBB is not very large and I feel like the stiffer tip makes it much easier to just crank the bait out of a fish's mouth instead of loading up nicely like the 842C does. The tip is also stiffer than I'd like for casting, but the extra 5 inches on the rod probably makes up for the little bit of distance that would otherwise be lost.
Long story short, what Conquest rods would you consider the best middle ground between these two sticks and more in line with what I'm looking for? I have my eye mostly on the 903C (I wish there was a 902C, I'd probably just buy it without making this post) just because my main gripe with 893C is that the action is too fast, and since I'm stuck on shore, I'm happy to have as much length as I can get over the 842C. From reading this thread it sounds like the Conquest 842C has a bit more power than the NRX, so it has my attention as well. The 3rd one I'm considering is the 843C, but given that the NRX 842C is just a little bit short of the power I am looking for, it seems like the Conquest 843C might be a bit too much and I might just be wanting the NRX 843C (or Conquest 842C)
Any help with my decision paralysis is appreciated