I own both. I have trip 300xs's on the cc and trip 2.5's on the cat... Two completely different animals... What boat are they going on and how is that boat going to be used?
As to your last question the 2.5 is extremely reliable. In 3 years of abuse, I have only blown one powerhead. My only complaint on the 2.5 is the dam gear case housing. I have to replace them every 12 to 18 months due to cracking them under the ventilation plate. It is really annoying. I guess you got to pay to play.