Power Pole's long dominance of the crab-like shallow water anchor market has come to an end with the introduction of the Minn Kota Raptor in the Summer of 2020. This move by Minn Kota has left customer scratching their head asking "If the Talons were so much better, why make a copy of Power Pole's design?"
While there has been no official answer, the rumor mills indicate Power Pole's patent ran out at the beginning of 2020 so Minn Kota may have been planning this for a while. Customers should be delighted though because more competition creates breeds better products. The only question is: Which is better the Power Poles or the Minn Kota Raptor?
30 Second Summary: Minn Kota Raptor vs Power Pole
We prefer Minn Kota's Raptor over Power Pole's best, the Blade. Minn Kota's utilize technology in a superior way that makes use of its product easier.
To make a long conversation brief, our analysis concluded that the Power Pole Blade and Minn Kota Raptor are actually incredibly similar. The difference are only apparent in a few key places:
Integration with other products - The Raptor works seamlessly with other Minn Kota electronics as a part of the One Boat Network. Power Pole can't offer this.
Anchoring Sensory - The Raptor automatically senses it's hold and adjusts based on changing currents or winds. Power Pole anchoring is completely manual.
Hydraulic Pump - A big drawback to the Minn Kota Raptor is that it needs a hydraulic pump for each anchor pole. The Power Pole only uses a single pump, which means less overall weight.
Mounting Brackets - The Minn Kota line of shallow water anchors offers multiple bracket types for different boat styles.
Noise - The Power Pole Blade features Soft Close technology that uses a cylinder pump to muffle the vibration given off from the hydraulic pump. The Raptor has no such thing making it slightly louder.
|Automatic anchor hold adjustments, superior integration into other accessories, heavier||Key Differences||Only needs one hydraulic pump, quieter operation|
|10 speed settings||Speed||3 speed settings|
|8 or 10 ft||Lengths||8 or 10 ft|
|27.5 lbs.||Weight on Transom||28.7 lbs.|
|44 lbs.||Total Weight||38.9 lbs.|
5-year warranty for all parts,
Lifetime warranty on anchor spike
2-year warranty - electrical & hydraulics
5-year warranty - mechanical partsLifetime warranty - Everflex spike
Raptor vs Power Pole: Feature by Feature
The table above does the best job of explaining the key differences of the Minn Kota Raptor vs the Power Pole Blade. Below we cover those same differences but in more detail.
Related Reading: The Minnkota Talon Vs Power Pole - Electronic vs Hydraulic Anchors
Integration with Other Products
One of the main perks for the Minn Kota Raptor is the connectivity with existing boat accessories. If you are a Minn Kota guy then you will be able to control all of your devices from a central remote or app on your smart phone. This makes boat operation easy and convenient.
Now if you don't have any Minn Kota products, then this integration is less useful to you. Kind of like choosing Dewalt or Craftsman for tools, you will benefit from choosing a single family of products and sticking to it.
As a consumer, you expect your products to the job their designed to do. Both products will anchor effectively, but only the Raptor will adapt its anchoring power if wind or current change. The Raptor constantly monitors the anchors hold in the ground and adjusts accordingly. This feature does not exist on an Power Pole anchor.
The Raptor is the new generation of "smart" shallow water anchors. While I expect this sort of functionality to be integrated on Power Poles products in the future, they have no answer currently.
The Raptor and Power Pole are part of the same category of shallow water anchor known as Hydraulic powered anchors. They fundamentally function in the exact same way, but with different designs.
When Power Poles first patented the crab-like deployment system, they efficiently designed their hydraulic system to operate both poles off a single pump. Minn Kota was not able to replicate this and opted for one small pump to power each arm.
Minn Kota's system is less efficient, heavier, and eats up from back deck space on your boat. The father of the shallow water anchor, Power Pole, gets the nod in this category.
Related Reading: Power Pole Blade vs Pro II
We all have experiences spotting the perfect fishing nook. It is in the corner of the lake with reeds perfectly placed to conceal a monster fish. You so delicately try to creep the boat to open up the perfect cast, but the engine is just too loud. The fish spooks and you lose your next wall mount.
Long story short, fish hate noise so you want a quiet anchor. Neither of these anchors is dangerously loud, but the power pole Blade offers the ideal blend of deployment speed and stealth. Thanks to Soft Close technology a cylcinder in the hydraulic pump offsets the load and greatly reduced vibration. It is the quietest spider-like deployment on the market.
Value according to us judges the "bang for your buck"of the product. It doesn't mean the cheapest, just the hammer that best fits the nail.
We believe the best value is the Minn Kota Raptor, between these two options. It simply does more with less at a very similar price point. Compared to traditional anchors, both will be a massive improvement to your boating experience. You honestly cannot go wrong with either, it just comes down to preference at the end of the day.
Related Reading: Power Pole Pro II vs Sportsman II