My Derek Brown 10/11 came in about two weeks ago. To say it is heavy is an understatement. Not only that, as Bubb pointed out it is very tip heavy. It seems to be even more tip heavy than Mike Maxwell's rods. Is this what is necessary to create an automatic D-Loop? Suffice to say that after 30 minutes of practice casting I was exhausted. Keeping that tip out of the water during the drift will wear heavily on one's wrist and forearm. The solution, of course, is to use a reel which will balance the rod between the hands, but that will take a reel of over 16oz. Combine that pound with the 14.5oz of the rod and the weight of the line and backing and your total swing weight is over two pounds. No thanks. Don't get me wrong, the rod casts beautifully and unlike Bubb I really liked the narrow handle. It allows you to feel the blank working during casting. Also, the rod is drop dead gorgeous. One should also be aware of the fact that the price was increased to $895.00 for all four sizes. I suspect the newly announced 7/8 weight might end up being the most popular because it shouldn't be as tip heavy.
Though I love Derek's video, I found his presentation at the Fly Tackle Retailers' Show a dissappointment. He seemed totally unenthused about doing it and was nowhere near as informative (or entertaining) as Simon Gawesworth.
If you need a 15' 5-piece check out the Thomas & Thomas model. It is considerably lighter and less taxing to cast and casts almost as well. If a 4-pice will work, look to the new Loop Blue 15' 10/11. It is much lighter than either of the others and is really a launcher.