Current "best" PvE Spec?

Hunter
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Hey all, I never played hunter prior to focus...I lvled him 58-80 starting a couple weeks ago, so in a way I guess I don't know what I've been missing.

It sounds like I picked the "worst time ever" to play a hunter, but I still enjoy the class very much and have faith that blizzard will fix things. Having played a mage, priest, and rogue all of WoTLK, it's a fresh and unique experience, one which I plan on continuing in Cata.

So, rather than cry about how weak our DPS is in respect to say a mage (lol 4stack ABlast spam 30k dps), what are you guys finding the current best DPS spec?

Right now I'm playing as MM and all I hear is how weak MM is...on most fights I manage to average anywhere from 8-12k dps depending how much moving around I have to do.

Does one spec stand out more than the others, or are they all relatively the same DPS-wise with not much variation in the types of numbers you put out?
According to numbers Zeherah crunched on beta pre-4.0.1, MM came out on top.
You'll see people finding better results with SV. It's really with what you are comfortable with at this point. The dps differences are beyond huge.
I prefer SV spec for AoE and 5man instances. I like MM for longer boss fights. But that's just me.
Most of the number crunching you'll find is for level 85.
In short, we can tell you to go one spec, but it won't do you any good if you are not comfortable with it.
The current highest parse for a Hunter on Heroic Saurfang is 22k as MM, so there's your answer. SV looks to be relatively close, but still consistently behind MM.
Thanks for the replies. MM just feels the smoothest to me on boss fights, granted it's AoE kinda blows, but that doesn't bother me so much. I tried BM, but it felt relatively weak...SV is too reliant on Lock and Load procs imo. While I don't even really care too much which is best as Cata is so soon, I just thought it'd be fun to see how much I can actually do with the gear I've obtained the past couple weeks. So, I suppose I'll stick with MM now, it also seems like it's going to trump BM for 80-85 leveling anyways. :)
MM/BM will be easiest to use at low levels of haste, surv suffers from focus starvation of sorts.
MM/BM will be easiest to use at low levels of haste, surv suffers from focus starvation of sorts.


It only seems like SV is more focus starved because we have to refresh the serpent sting. Once we get Cobra Shot, it will extend the sting, making it constantly up on the target.
Survival has an easier rotation than Marksmanship, so it may be better for players who aren't good at keeping up ISS and managing focus. It has a much better AoE so it may be better on fights with multiple targets (like 25 LK Val'kyr and vile spirits) and of course it's better on trash. The shorter cooldown on traps along with Wyvern Sting give the spec good CC that will be used in Cataclysm heroics and raids.

In Cataclysm you will no longer have to refresh Serpent Sting, and Mastery will be better since Cobra Shot is magic damage, so it may pass Marksmanship in dps.

Personally I've been playing it since I find it more fun. If Marksmanship stays on top, I'll use it for raiding in Cataclysm, but if they are even I will definitely be Survival in Cataclysm.

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