Business or hobby – whatever fishing means to you, you won’t ever want it to be a bad experience. Depending on some factors, a fishing session can turn into a superb experience, or just a couple of hours wasted. With no wonder, selection of the top fishing reels is one of those factors.
And at the end of the research, I found a good set of best fishing reels that keep their promises and works fabulously!
Therefore, today I’m going to talk about the all the pinpoints of the fishing reel. Also, we will have an insight of the top rated fishing reels I have found on my research. By the end of this article, you will get all possible answers you have in mind about buying a quality fishing reel.
So, let’s get started.
Best Fishing Reels Comparison Chart
|Product||Bearings||Max Drag||Gear Ratio||Interested?|
|Penn Battle 4000 Reel (Editors Choice)||5+1||15 lbs||6.2:1|
|Shimano Stradic Ci4+|
|Kastking Royale Legend Fishing Reel||11+1||17.5 lbs||7.0:1|
|Daiwa BG Spinning Reels||6+1||22 lbs||5.7:1|
|Shimano Nasci Compact||4+1||7 lbs||5.0:1|
|Abu Garcia Silver Max Low Profile||5+1||18 lbs||6.4:1|
|Lew's Tournament MB||9BB+1RB||20 lbs||5.6:1|
|Pflueger Supreme XT||10||10 lbs||6.2:1|
|Abu Garcia REVO Rocket||10+1||18 lbs||10.1:1|
|Okuma Fishing Tackle Helios||9+1||13 lbs||5.0:1|
Top 5 Cheap Fishing Reels Under $100
If you are looking for cheap fishing real, here are 5 reels you can check. Remember, cheap means not bad. Our Fishing Angler choose these 5 fishing reels very carefully. So you can rely on these reels without any hesitation.
#01 Penn Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel – Simply UNBEATABLE
- Gears Ratio: 6.2:1
- Bearings: 5+1
- Dragging: HT-100 carbon fiber drag system
- Max Drag: 15 lbs
- Braid Capacity (yd/lb) : 360/15; 260/20; 185/30
The penn battle 2 4000 Spinning Fishing Reel is both good at performance and its visuals. It features a new line management system. It allows backing knots of the reel. This helps for good line management. This provides powerful engineering to the reel.
The gear ratio makes it smoother and easy to control. Besides that, it helps to retrieve the reel faster. There are 6 bearings. 5 bearings are ball bearings which made of stainless steel. Another one is reverse bearing. These bearings help the reel to be smooth and fast.
The HT-100 carbon fiber drag system is another important feature of this product. It provides powerful drag. The dragging of the reel feels comfortable for using the carbon drag. The spinning is made out of airfoil carbon. The airfoil carbon is tough and at the same time light. So it makes the reel more durable but also lightweight.
It is extremely durable, high-range spinning reel. This product is ideal for conquering Giant saltwater gamefish. All these features come with some reasonable price for you. So in order to get a great choice of the stylish fishing reel, you can choose the penn battle 2 4000 Spinning Fishing Reel.
#02 KastKing Royale Legend Fishing Reel – Best Baitcasting Reel Under 50
For more investigation, below are specifications and overview of this product-
- Bearings: 11 + 1 bearings
- Gear Ratio: 7.0:1
- Weight: 7.5 Oz
- Drag Power: 17.5 Lbs
- IPT (inch per turn): 31.5 inch
- Series: Royale Legend
This baitcasting fishing Reel is recognized as the best cheap baitcasting reel. It has a gear ratio of 7.0:1. This is good for a large range of finesse.
It has a 12-bearing system. Which can make your reel really smooth. For using aluminum as body metal the body is lightweight. So all the moving parts of your reel will be in perfect alignment. The four-disc drag system keeps the reel smooth while working with it in its range.
The brass drag creates serious power to pull back the fish on the boat. Every reel has a speed lube. This helps to give an uninterrupted performance. Although the weight is 7.5 Oz it feels light as aluminum is used as the raw material. Also, the knob is made out of aluminum. So you will feel comfortable while lifting the reel.
Also, high strength C40 carbon is on this reel. So the reel is more durable. If you want to save some money but also want a faster reel then KastKing Royale Legend Fishing Reel is for you.Again, don’t forget that it is the best baitcasting reel under 50. So grab your favorite one.
#03 Daiwa BG Spinning Reels – Affordable Fishing Reel
- Weight: 2.4 Pounds
- Bearings: 6+1 Bearings
- Gear Ratio: 5.7:1
- Dimensions: 5.8 x 7.5 x 6.8 inches
The Daiwa BG Spinning Reels are manufactured with high-quality materials. The first Daiwa reel was created in 1955. So you can see that people have been using these products for a long time. And for the quality with a reasonable price The Daiwa BG Spinning Reels have earned the trust of the customers.
The Daiwa BG Spinning Reels created reels for freshwater as well as saltwater. You can choose one according to your need. This product has a “Hard Bodyz” body and side cover. The body is made of aluminum. The cover provides strength. Also, it helps to have internal stability.
The aluminum will not peel off the body of the reel because the ionization process is very good. And it helps with better adhesion. It has the largest drive gear. Furthermore, it helps to increase the gear-tooth contact points. So the reel becomes smoother.
The Daiwa BG Spinning Reels is lightweight and is well dimensioned. It has 6+1 bearings. So the bearings allow the reel to be moderately smooth and flexible. Also, the gear ratio is good enough. So to have a reel that has good performance with a low price you can choose The Daiwa BG Spinning Reels without a doubt.
#04 Shimano Nasci Compact – Fishing Reel for Professionals
- Bearings: 4+1 Bearings
- Gear: Metal Hagane
- Gear Ratio: 5:1
- Weight: 7.6 Oz
- Line Retrieve: 29 inch
For a stronger gear, The Shimano Nasci Compact Spinning Reel has a years-long reputation. This reel uses metal hagane gear technology.So, It increases the strength of the gear as well as the smoothness of the reel. So you can use it for heavy duty work as well.
Also, The Shimano Nasci Compact Spinning Reel uses X-Ship technology is another feature of it. Because of the presence of this, it increases the winding efficiency of the reel. So reel becomes suitable for all freshwater situation. The GFree is another technology that makes the center of gravity of the reel get close to the rod.
There are 4 steel bearings and they are stainless and shielded. Also, there is one roller bearing. These bearings help to keep the performance ongoing under pressure. And the Shimano Nasci Compact Spinning Reel is also available in different sizes.
Different sizes make it easier for you to choose the one you feel most comfortable with. You can choose the larger ones because they are suitable for long time fishing or professional fishing big catch. For hobby or irregular fishing, you can choose the medium size.
The gear ratio of this product is designed for better performance. Although the line retrieves is moderate but 29 inch is quite enough for fishing on the freshwater. The body uses metal that is lightweight so it is easy for you to carry. So in order to have a strong gear in your reel, you can definitely choose The Shimano Nasci Compact Spinning Reel.
- Bearings: 5 stainless steel ball bearings + 1 roller bearings
- Gear: Right Handed
- Braking System: MagTrax
- Weight: 10.6 ounces
The Abu Garcia Silver Max Low Profile Reels have cutting edge design so it offers serious performance. It has 5 stainless steel ball bearings and an anti-reverse bearing. The anti-reverse bearing can be very helpful for you if you want to stop fishing instantly. Also, these bearings provide smoothness so operating the reel feels very comfortable.
The product has the Rocket line management system. This is one of the most advanced management systems in this generation. There is also an “Everlast bail system”. This system gives the reel durability and strength.
The body is made out of the aluminum spool. This helps the Abu Garcia Silver Max Low Profile Reels to be lightweight but at the same time stronger. The product also contains slow oscillation process. This will help you to have even lines laying with different types of line.
There is also the Rocket line management system. This system is very helpful. Because it will give you better control over the lines of your reel. The product also features rocket spool lip. The lines coming out off the spool can be controlled better with the help of this feature.
The size of the reel is 5 meaning that it may take some time to retrieve the reel back. But that is not a problem when you get a nice cutting edge reel with a reasonable price. So for to have a nice cutting edge on your reel you can choose this product.
In together, this product can still be counted as a great choice.
Top Rated Fishing Reels Over $100
If you don’t want to compromise on price here are Top 5 fishing reels. These 5 fishing reels are really good and there is no doubt about it. These are premium quality products you love. So if you have no problem with the budget, our Fishing Anglers suggested you purchase any one fishing reels from the below list.
#01 Shimano Stradic Ci4+ – Highly Recommended For Its Long-Lasting Lifespan
So, let’s see what we have in the specifications and benefits of this one-
- Bearings: 6+1 Bearings
- Retrieve Range: 31″-39″
- Weight Range: 5.6-8.1 Oz
- Dragging: Front Dragging
For its construction, some strong Material had been used in Shimano Stradic Ci4+ Spinning Reel. It is made of lightweight fluorocarbon. Hence, the stradic CI4+ is very light in weight. It is capable of drop shootings and has shaky heads. You can use it roughly as it is very durable. Also, the Shimano Stradic Ci4+ Spinning Reel is one of the smoothest ones I have ever seen.
The 6+1 bearings are helpful for the reel to be smoother. A smoother reel is always very easy to use and easy to handle for you. The Shimano Stradic Ci4+ Spinning Reel also comes a wide retrieve range of 31 inches to 39 inches. It is important for fishing from a long distance. Obviously, it is one of the best features of this product.
Also, the front dragging allows you to catch fish easily. Also, you can use it in salt water. Many fishing reels can get damaged if used in salt water. But The Shimano Stradic Ci4+ Spinning Reel is made of such materials that prevent the saltwater damage. So without any doubt, this is one of the top rated fishing reels.
#02 Lew’s Tournament MB – Best Baitcasting Reel Under 200
- Bearings: 9BB + 1RB
- Gear Ratio: 5.6:1
- Weight: 6.7 Oz
- Line Capacity: 12/120
The Lew’s Tournament MB is very durable and long-lasting. It has a double anodized aluminum spool. The spool has holes in it. It also has Zirconia line guide. This makes it stronger and more durable in order to go for heavy duty fishing.
The spool of this product has a larger diameter. It will help you to last longer. So you can catch fish from a further distance. Also, the line retrieves The Lew’s Tournament MB is very fast. This allows you to pull back the reel faster or quicker.
The product has 10 steel bearing system. So the reel will feel very smooth and comfortable while you use it. The 10 bearing system makes this product a multi-purpose fishing reel.
Moreover, It has both a magnetic cast control and centrifugal braking system. It has a multi-setting brake system which is very helpful while fishing. These characteristics make this product really stunning. It also considered the Best Baitcasting Reel Under 200.
The gear ratio of the product is very moderate. So when you use it you will see the line retrieve is good and the spin of the gear will feel smoother. Also, it’s come with a one-piece lightweight graphite frame and side-plates, which reducing weight, but, the durability of this product makes it one of the good fishing reels. If you are looking for a stronger reel with a reasonable price then this is the perfect product for you.
#03 Pflueger Supreme XT Review – User-Friendly Comfortable Fishing Reel
- Bearings: 10 bearing system with steel ball bearings
- Gears: Slow oscillation gearing
- Dragging: Sealed carbon drag
- Knob: High-density EVA knob
- Dimensions: 5 x 5 x 4 inches
First of all, what attracted me most about this reel is, it’s a classy fishing reel. With a promise of years of high performance. Its body is made out of magnesium. So it is lightweight. It has aluminum spool which is braided read. And the dragging is sealed with carbon fiber. So this is a perfect reel combo for inshore or freshwater fishing.
The EVA knob and carbon fiber handle are very comfortable to use. Because the carbon handle is 21% lighter than aluminum. This reel contains both the materials. So this reel is very user-friendly. The bearing system is steel ball bearing. So the bearing is more durable and smoother. Also, the motions are faster. The bearing is also stainless.
You can choose this product for its EVA knob feature. The knob allows you to feel comfortable while holding the reel. Also, the reel is very lightweight as it is smaller than most other reels. So to have a comfortable grab on your reel choose The Pflueger Supreme XT.
#04 Abu Garcia Revo Rocket Review – The Low Profile Fishing Reel
Let’s find out more about its features-
- Bearings: 10 HPCR + 1 RB bearings
- Gears: D2 gear
- Gear Ratio: Rocket gear ratio
- Dragging: Carbon matrix system
- Knobs: Large EVA knobs
- Weight: 6.75 Oz
If you are looking for a reel that retrieves faster, then The Abu Garcia REVO Rocket Low Profile Reel is perfect for you. It can retrieve up to 37 inches per turn. This feature makes The REVO Rocket Low Profile Reel one of the fastest reels.
It has 10 HPCR bearings and they are stainless. There is also one roller bearing. It provides high corrosion protection. The gear ratio is 9:1 that is rocket fast gear ratio. This gives the reel to have faster retrieve ability and it can retrieve up to 37 inches in one turn.
The REVO Rocket Low Profile Reel has carbon matrix dragging system. So the reel feels smoother. Also, the drag pressure is very consistent. The D2 gear is there in the reel that gives the reel a bent carbon handle. This helps to increase the cracking power.
You can have a better grip on the reel because of the large EVA knob. The spool capacity of this reel is 12Ibs/145yds for mono. For braid this capacity is 30Ibs/140yds. So you can see that The REVO Rocket Low Profile Reel is good for you if you want a faster reel.
#05 Okuma Helios Spinning Reel – The Most Lightweight Spinning Reel
- Dragging: Multi Disc Carbonate
- Bearings: 9HPB + 1RB Bearings
- Gears: Main gear-precision AlumiLite alloy and oscillating gears
- Gear Ratio: 5:1
- Weight: 8.4 Oz
The Okuma Fishing Tackle Helios Spincast Reel is ultra-light and at the same time, ultra-powerful. It has a brand new carbon fiber technology known as C-40X. This is a quite long strand. It also has brass and aluminum gear system. This reel can be up to 25% lighter at the same time 50% stronger.
The connections between the carbon fibers are greatly enhanced. As a result, the reel is stronger. But as the amount of fiber is less and because of less resin, the reel is 25% lighter.
The dragging system of the reel is Multi-disc carbonite allowing the reel to be more flexible. The bearings are 9+1 and so the reel feels smoother. Also, the weight is very user-friendly. The main gear of this reel is made of Alumilite alloy. Besides that, it has oscillating gears as well.
The Okuma Fishing Tackle Helios Spincast Reel is of the high-quality fishing reels as it uses the C-40X carbon fiber. The fiber makes it more durable and at the time lighter. So using this reel will make you feel more comfortable while fishing big catch.
The reel has a handle made of soft foam. So it is easier and more comfortable for you to hold. Though the handle has a slightly bad odor after using a while this can be considered.
What is a Fishing Reel?
A fishing reel is a device that is connected to a fishing rod. Generally, it is used to pull the line rope which is used for fishing.
Onesimus Ustonson is the one who created the fishing reel for the first time. He lived in London because he had a business there. Because of having products that were fishing related, he created the fishing reel around the 1760s. Modern designs of the fishing reels were created at the end of 18th century in England.
A Fishing Reel has Certain Features:
- It contains some bearings that help it to be a good cast reel and pull the line rope. The smoother the bearings are the more you will enjoy while fishing.
- The gears are important for a fishing reel as well. The gear ratio will help you to know which reels are better for you. Because the gear ratio will let you know how much rope you can pull in one turn.
- Another important feature of a fishing reel is its drag mechanism. The drag mechanism will indicate the pressure you use to pull the rope. A better drag system is better for heavier works.
- The knob is also an important part of a fishing reel. You can’t enjoy fishing if you can’t hold your reel comfortably.
The fishing reel was actually created for fishing as a hobby. Because a reel is not sufficient for a fisherman to catch and sell fishes. But eventually, it turned out to be a popular fishing kit, even for professionals.
How to Choose a Reel For Fishing?
Choosing a fishing reel can lead you into several confusions, especially at the first time. But you don’t have to worry about that. Go through this entire section and you can find it very easy to choose a fishing reel-
Types of Fishing Reels
Usually, you will find 4 styles of reels for fishing but you can use them in different ways for different types of fishing. There are some other specialized reels but they are for some specific purposes only.
- Fixed Spool Reels
The fixed spool reel is a style of the reel that is very easy to use. It has different configurations, colors, and sizes so you can choose one according to your need. The fixed spool reel has different drags and single or multi handles as well. The most important part of the fixed spool reel is that you can lock the mechanism. So when fishing the reel won’t circle around backward. This is why you can rely on the fixed spool reel.
- Free Spool Reels
Next, comes the free spool reels. This is a modified version of the fixed spool reels. Because it offers an extra drag system. This extra drag system will help you to know when a fish takes your bait and runs with it. This is larger than the fixed spool reels. The free spool reels are used for catching heavy fishes.
- Centerpin Reels
Another type of reel you will find is the Centerpin reel. This is very useful while fishing in flowing water. Because the reel will rotate exactly to the flow of the water so you can identify if the fishes had your bait. If you can master using this reel you will master fishing for sure.
- Closed Face Reels
The final reel you will find is the closed face reels. These reels are easy to hold as they are extremely light. They are easier to use as a cast reel than the Center pin reels. So these reels are perfect for beginners.
The drag system is used either on the front or the back of the reel. So, the reel where the drag is used in the front is a front drag reel and the other one is a rear drag reel.
Though the drugs are different, they have the same objective. They loosen or tighten the moving of the spool. If you keep the drag loose, the fish will take your bait and can move easily with it. Else the fish will be stuck with the bait. But the normal way to use the drag system is to keep it tight.
In the case of performance front drag system is better than the rear drag system. Because it is fitted at the end of the reel. So it doesn’t have to run through the entire reel. It makes the drag system to go easier than the rear drag system.
Bearings for Smoothness
The bearings of a reel will help to have a smooth experience. The better the bearings the smoother your reel will be. The bearings will also help you to keep your reel last long. Because it controls the mechanism of pulling or casting the line rope.
Line Lay & Line Clips
It is better to have flatter line lays on your reel. It will make you cast further. Also, you will be more accurate while casting the line rope if you have a flatter line lay.
The line clip will help you to fix a target position. If you think that a specific spot is best for you to catch fish then you can mark that spot. Then use the line clip to set your cast reel at that point. Then when you use it as a cast reel to cast your line rope you will be able to hit the right spot.
The Retrieve Ratio
This is to identify how fast your reel will retrieve the rope. When you turn your handle once the spool may rotate 5 times more. In that case, the ratio is 5:1. The more ratio you have the more benefit you will get while catching bigger fishes. Because it will be easier for you to pull.
Benefits of Having a Fishing Reel
As mentioned before, the benefits of having a quality fishing reel are beyond description. But if you are still likely to know what they are, here you go-
- Sometimes the wind is very annoying in case of throwing the bait. But if you use the fishing reel the wind is not a problem. Without a reel, the wind may change your target point. But having a reel will make you hit exactly where you want.
- If you use a fishing reel then you can fish even without any baits. But of course, you have to practice more and more to be as good as that.
- The reel will make your bait sink straight into the water. Without the reel, the bait may not sink properly. So it will be difficult for you to catch fish.
- It is often difficult for left-handed people to fish than the right-handed people. But a reel can be used for both types. Because a reel is available for both left and right-handed people.
- One more major benefit is that a reel will help you to adjust the drag. So when you catch a big fish you can use the drag to hold on to that fish. Without the drag, it is difficult to catch larger or bigger fishes. So the drag of a reel is very helpful for you.
Things to Look Out For
Buying a fishing reel can be challenging. There are some things you must be aware of before you buy one. Let’s see what to look out for.
- Firstly check the gears properly because sometimes the gears may be jammed.
- Look out for any unusual sounds that the reel may make because it will resemble a defect.
- Check if the drag is working properly because without a goof drag the reel is useless.
- The joint of the knob is very sensitive. So check if it is loose or tight.
- You can have reels of the same configuration but at different prices. So choose smartly.
So these are the things you can look out for while you buy a fishing reel.
You can find different fishing reels with many advantages or benefits. But you cannot buy them all. So always choose the best one for you. Think about what you are actually looking for. Are you looking for regular fishing? Or are you going to buy one as a hobby? Choose accordingly before buying.
If you are not a professional then buy the one that will help you as a beginner. Don’t waste your money buying the one that is made for professional fishing. Also keep an eye on your budget and the quality of the product as well. If you can get a better one by adding a small amount to your budget then don’t hesitate.
So now you know the basics of a fishing reel. We hope it will help you to choose and buy the perfect one for you.
Common FAQ’s About Fishing Reels
Question: How much gear ratio is necessary for effective fishing?
Answer: It varies according to the reel type. However, a ratio of 5-7:1 holds quite good.
Question: Are common reels suitable for bowfishing?
Answer: The reels may be used for bowfishing if your weight lifting doesn’t exceed 20 pounds.
Question: What is the main difference between the C models and others?
Answer: C models come in a plastic clamshell whereas the others come in boxes.
Question: What should be the drag force for a standard reel?
Answer: Though there is no specific value, it needs to be around 15 pounds.
Question: Is there any flipping switch available?
Answer: It depends on the model. But most of the reels don’t have any.
Question: Do the reels come with included line?
Answer: No, the reels don’t include any line. You have to purchase it separately.
Question: Is it possible to use a left-handed reel for a right-handed person?
Answer: For a right-handed person, the left-handed reel may hold quite well according to some users. It results in a quicker reeling than the left-handed ones.
Question: Do the package includes any extra spool?
Answer: No extra spool is available for the reel package.
Question: Are the reels saltwater approved?
Answer: In general, reels are designed for freshwater fishing. But fishing at medium saltwater can be possible.
Question: Is it possible to set up for left and right hand retrieve?
Answer: There are interchangeable reels which come with this feature.
Question: What is the best-suited size for saltwater fishing?
Answer: Approximately 2500-3000 sized reels are quite suitable for medium saltwater fishing.
There are a lot of products on the market for you to choose from. But there is a risk that you might make a wrong investment. We don’t mean to confuse you but this is the truth.
But as you have read the full guide; now you know what works and what not. All the reels that I have presented here are the best fishing reels for specific purposes, is combined with a good fishing rod. Now it’s your turn to choose that matches with your requirement.
Finally, I wish this guide will help you to find out the best one for your fishing purpose. Happy fishing.