Just discovered Phalcon and really loving it. I hesitated at first to try it because of the need to install Phalcon as a PHP extension. But that process took me under 30-minutes, and well worth it. I’d been trying to craft up a fully custom PHP application for our ProblemPath.com domain when I realized at the very least some help with routing would be nice. My first thought was CodeIgniter, the tried and trusted name in MVC. And the one I last used, it’s been awhile in the CMS world for me so I haven’t experienced Laravel, Symfony etc. aside from using some Symfony components in the C5 CMS.
What I’m liking about Phalcon is the simplicity of the models, the flexibility in structure. Phalcon does not impose a directory structure, you can load up a fairly standard set of folders for m/v/c but you can also vary away from it. Your main bootstrap file defines these, so you could for instance have multiple model directories perhaps because you wanted to use a kind of modular approach.
I’m finding the Phalcon docs are quite good. The writing is clear, to the point. The examples work. There is an example app, Invo which I’m trying now and it’s on GitHub at https://github.com/phalcon/invo
To anybody shopping around for a framework I’d say Phalcon is worth a look. Especially if you’re really into speed, it’s claim to fame is that as a C compiled PHP extension it’s the fastest PHP framework available.