A lot of anglers prefer to use a baitcaster because time and again it has proven to be effective. But this only holds true if you have the best baitcasting reel. But how do you determine if it is any good or not? We know how difficult it can be to choose one, so we rounded up the top baitcasters available. The Abu Garcia Black Max Reel is ideal if you’re looking for a lightweight reel that produces a smooth drag and reliable performance.
The Abu Garcia Revo SX is suited for anglers who need more torque to pull in aggressive fish. If you want a baitcaster with a low profile design and reduced vibration, check out the Shimano Curado I. The Daiwa Tatula is for anglers who want a more rigid but comfortable reel. The Abu Garcia Revo STX could be what you’re looking for if lightweight and comfort are your main concerns.
If you’re having trouble with small adjusting knobs, you may want to check the Abu Garcia REVO Rocket as it has extra-large knobs. If you prefer a baitcaster that’s suited for saltwater and freshwater, the KastKing Rover Round Baitcasting Reel may be to your liking. Lastly, Lew’s Fishing Tournament MB Baitcast Reel is for those who use crankbaits and prefer slower retrievals.
Table of Contents
- Comparison of 9 Best Baitcasting Reels in 2021
- Top 9 Best Baitcasting Reel Reviews in 2021
- 1. Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Reel
- 2. Abu Garcia Baitcasting Fishing Reel
- 3. KastKing Rover Round Baitcasting Reel
- 4. Sougayilang Fishing Baitcasting Reel
- 5. SOOLF Baitcasting Fishing Reel
- 6. Akataka Baitcasting Fishing Reel
- 7. Abu Garcia Revo STX Fishing Reel
- 8. Daiwa Tatula Elite Baitcasting Reel
- 9. Cadence CB8 Baitcasting Reel
- Features to Look for in a Baitcasting Reel
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Relevant Resources
Comparison of 9 Best Baitcasting Reels in 2021
|Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Reel||Check Price|
|Abu Garcia Baitcasting Fishing Reel||Check Price|
|KastKing Rover Baitcasting Reel||Check Price|
|Sougayilang Fishing Reels||Check Price|
|SOOLF Baitcasting Fishing Reel||Check Price|
|Akataka Baitcasting Fishing Reels||Check Price|
|Abu Garcia Revo STX Fishing Reel||Check Price|
|Daiwa Tatula Baitcasting Reels||Check Price|
|Cadence CB8 Baitcasting Reels||Check Price|
Top 9 Best Baitcasting Reel Reviews in 2021
1. Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Reel
Are you tired of buying cheap baitcasting reels that don’t perform well but also don’t have the funds to splurge on a high-end model? Piscifun is here to rescue you! It’s incredibly affordable, yet you get every penny’s worth out of the surprisingly capable reel.
The Torrent is very similar to the Phantom X from the same manufacturer. If you’re a pro, I’d suggest you pick Phantom X. On the other hand, if you’re learning the ropes on baitcasting, then the Torrent is a perfect reel for you. The gear ratio for this reel is 7:1:1, and the gears are made of industrial-strength, climate-resistant brass.
That means you can even take this reel out for some saltwater baitcasting. Make sure to care for it, and you wouldn’t see any corrosion. The Torrent reel is also very quiet, which I appreciate a lot. It helps to get fish out without any hassle. The users noticed that there was minimal backlash. All these features ended up endearing this cheap baitcasting reel to the customers.
- Subtle and quiet baitcasting reel
- Great reel for beginners
- Minimal backlash
- Unique side-plate oil port
- Has some durability issues
2. Abu Garcia Baitcasting Fishing Reel
Baitcasting reel reviews have given the Black Max or BMax good feedback and that is understandable given its features. Its side plates and frame are graphite for durability, and its stainless ball bearings simplify retrieval and operation.
The BMax has a Power Disk System which smoothens the drag action across the entire drag range. The reel also has the MagTrax brake system which allows it to work with different lures.
The BMax has high levels of castability and the recessed foot gives you an ergonomic grip. The handle is bent and compact so it is more convenient to hold. The Bmax also has an aluminum spool so you remain comfortable even when fishing the whole day.
Brake pressure is on a consistent level so there is superior cast accuracy and range. The Black Max also has Duragear brass gear so the casting reel is going to last longer than most. Anglers who have used the Bmax say it is one of the best baitcasting reels under 50 dollars. They say the Bmax makes it easy to pull lures and offers great value. Set up is also quick and convenient.
- Consistent operation
- Reel handle catches if not used properly
- Packaging could use improvement
3. KastKing Rover Round Baitcasting Reel
The KastKing is equipped with stainless steel ball bearings for smooth and consistent results. Its anti-reverse adds to the smooth movement, making this one of the best baitcasting reels under $100. The T handle is designed to reduce fatigue and the 3:6:1 gear ratio gives you optimum control.
With its Star Drag System, you get stopping power of up to 20lb/9kg, and its centrifugal braking system provides steady pressure. The side plates are made of fortified aluminum. The KastKing is approved for saltwater use so the parts won’t corrode. The spool is constructed from quality aluminum and the rest of the components have been precision machined for superior performance.
The KastKing is comparable to the best Shimano baitcasting reel in terms of performance as per the comments of users. Most of them like the solid spool, and it’s also got good feedback for the all-metal level wind assembly. Anglers also like its steel ball bearings and say it’s good at reeling in catfish and other fish. Some have even switched from other brands to this one due to its performance.
- High-quality gears
- Easy to cast
- Doesn’t induce fatigue
- A bit on the heavy side
- Drag adjustment needed to maintain the line
4. Sougayilang Fishing Baitcasting Reel
For the price, it’s an excellent baitcasting reel. It’s not very sensitive, but the reel makes up for it by being exceptionally strong. Its various characteristics also mean that it isn’t a good choice for beginners.
The reel has a reinforced metal body and a one-piece reel seat. The line guide inserts are Zirconium, and the ball bearings are premium shielded stainless steel. All in all, you can expect this reel to give you a solid performance.
There are quite a few features that enhance the performance of this versatile reel. It’s got a line-out clicker alarm, dual anti-reverse, and offers smooth drag pressure. If you prefer using braided lines on your spin, this one is perfect.
- Oversized handle knobs with non-slip grip
- Line-out clicker alarm
- Premium shielded stainless steel ball bearings
- Smooth and consistent drag pressure
- Reinforced metal body
- Zirconium line guide inserts
- Not for beginners
- Not very sensitive
Also Read: Best Fishing Reels For Bass – Reviews to Buy
5. SOOLF Baitcasting Fishing Reel
The gorgeous purple finish on this baitcaster is undoubtedly an eye-catcher. It’s also a very capable baitcaster. Customers that used this reel claimed that it’s suitable for both freshwater and saltwater fishing.
The one-piece aluminum body is very lightweight, but it’s still solid. The combination of 3 sets of drag washers can tackle drag power up to 17.5 lbs. The 25 point adjustable magnetic brakes also help to fight against large fish.
Cast and retrieve are both very smooth with the baitcasting reel. Everyone knows that reels can’t wholly be devoid of friction, but the friction on this reel is very low, thanks to the CNC machined aluminum spool and reinforced brass gears. Additionally, it also allows precision throwing for more pro anglers. I also like that the retrieve is silent and quick. Overall, if you’re going out with the reel, you’ll have a delightful day fishing.
- Aluminum and graphite body
- Ambidextrous use
- One-piece aluminum alloy body
- Soft EVA handle
- Smooth on both cast and retrieve
- Brake is a little hard to adjust
6. Akataka Baitcasting Fishing Reel
The biggest perk of this Akataka reel is that it’s lightweight. It’s so light that you wouldn’t have to worry about which rod to set this up with, as it goes with virtually any baitcasting rod. All the components in this reel are built with care and with top-grade material.
I like that the handle is also forged aluminum, with custom EVA knobs. This feature helps to exert a high level of control over the reel. Just keep in mind that this isn’t a saltwater baitcasting rod. Limit its use to freshwater fishing, and it will stay durable for a long time.
The 5+1 double shielded bearings are generally corrosion-resistant but should still be kept away from salt water for optimal performance. If you end up using it for saltwater fishing anyway, make sure you give the reel some extra care. Clean it after each use, and lubricate it properly so corrosion can’t set in.
- The aluminum star-shaped drag knob
- Three-disc carbon fiber drag volume
- Oval-shaped ceramic line guide
- Durable performance
- Smooth casting and retrieve
- Not suitable for saltwater fishing
7. Abu Garcia Revo STX Fishing Reel
The Revo STX is equipped with 10 stainless steel ball bearings and a roller, and this leads to smoother casts. The alloy frame uses the X2-Craftic design so it can handle corrosion much better than other fishing reels. As you might expect from one of the best bass baitcasting reels, the STX has quality C6 carbon side plates, providing weight reduction.
The weight loss doesn’t compromise its performance, as it remains durable. The STX has D2 Gear Design for more efficient performance and at the same time increases versatility. The reel is also equipped with the Infini brake system, giving you the means to make quick adjustments on the fly. The STX is light and casting is easy even for beginners.
It doesn’t make any screeching sound the way other reels do, and casting is smooth. Lastly, the instructions are clear and easy to follow. Anglers who use the STX say it is quiet and casts smoothly. Many also say this is the best cheap baitcasting reel because it is easy to set up and feels light. Anglers also like the fact the STX needs very little maintenance.
- Stainless steel ball bearings
- Doesn’t corrode easily
- Easy to adjust
- The frame doesn’t look durable
- Made in Korea
Also Read: Best Spincast Reels – the Equipment You Need
8. Daiwa Tatula Elite Baitcasting Reel
If pitching and flipping is your style of fishing, then this is the equipment you need. It looks subtle and lightweight at first sight. However, the design derives optimal performance when you’re out there fishing.
Sure, this is a bit of a pricey reel. But as you most definitely know by now, pitching in a bit more money means your fishing experience would get a whole lot better. That’s true for this reel; you’ll be wondering how you fished all this time without its help.
This Daiwa baitcasting reel casts smooth as butter. You’ll feel the difference between this and your previous reels at the first cast. You can pitch farther and much more comfortably, and you’ll be getting bigger and better catches in no time at all.
- Optimizes pitching and flipping
- Re-engineered Magforce system
- T-wing system and Zero adjuster
- It comes in both right-hand and left-hand versions
- Reduced backlash
9. Cadence CB8 Baitcasting Reel
Another budget baitcasting reel, the Cadence CB6 is an excellent choice if you’re after a reel that can cast far out. In this price range, this is the reel capable of casting the farthest, and it also is built well to fish comfortably.
This reel is ergonomically designed and very compact, weighing only 6.7 oz. The frame is durable carbon fiber, while the main gear and crankshaft are made of aviation class aluminum, so it is lighter than reels that use a lot of brass.
The BB system on this reel uses nine shielded stainless steel ball bearings and one instant anti-reverse bearing. The corrosion-resistant ball bearings make sure the entire operation of this reel feels very smooth. The system also reduces casting effort and noise.
The magnetic brakes of the CB8 are externally adjustable, so they work well to avoid backlashes. Users of this reel stated that any backlash that happened while using this was purely the angler’s fault and not the reel’s. The gear ratio on this reel is 7.3:1, but it’s also available in two other variations. It can support a maximum drag of 20 lbs, so you wouldn’t have to worry about the reel breaking while you’re fighting a hefty bass.
- Ergonomic and compact design
- Durable carbon fiber frame
- Bearings are all corrosion-resistant
- Externally adjustable magnetic brakes
- Simple spool tension adjustment
- Casts quite far
- The drag tensioner has a slight bit of wobble
Also Read: How To Spool A Baitcaster – with Easy Steps
Features to Look for in a Baitcasting Reel
Whether you’re looking for the best baitcasting reel under 150 or the best that money can buy, there are factors which you should always look into.
The gear ratio determines the speed of your retrievals, and it tells you how many times the spool is going to turn over once you rotate the handle. The ratio is either listed on the reel, or you can check it on the product description. A 5:1 ratio means the spool makes five turns in a single-handle rotation, so the higher the number the quicker the retrieval. The 5:1 ratio is considered the norm while 4:1 is slow. 6:1 and above is fast. Faster isn’t always better as the kind of lures you use have a direct effect.
- For spinnerbaits and diving crankbaits, a low retrieve is ideal, i.e. 4:1 or 3:1
- For soft plastic, jigs, and Texas rigs, 5:1 will do
- For buzzbaits and fast action lures, you’ll want 6:1 or 7:1
What Is the Right Spool Size?
The best baitcasting rod and reel combo are only going to work with the right spool, but “right” depends on what fish you’re going after.
- The stronger and larger the fish, the heavier the line must be, and that’s going to use a lot of spool space. In these instances, you should go with a deep spool that has a large line capacity.
- An extra line comes in handy when you’re dealing with large fish.
- A 12-pound test or lighter line should suffice for bass and similar fish.
- If you’re going to use a small spool, it shouldn’t sacrifice versatility or accuracy for size.
Line capacity isn’t that important with freshwater fish, except for muskie, salmon, steelhead, and the big northern. This is connected to the reel spool, with high-profile reels having greater capacity. Low profile reels have smaller line capacities because of their smaller spools. For most occasions, however, low profile line capacity is not really going to be an issue when fishing for panfish, walleye, or bass.
Comfort and Ease of Use
A well-made baitcaster reel is well-balanced and comfortable to hold. The grip should be ergonomic so you don’t tire out even if you cast dozens or hundreds of times. Everyone has their own level of comfort, so only you can determine what is comfortable for you. The important thing is to keep testing until you find one that is right. Make sure also to read the instructions, as the discomfort could be due to improper use.
Other Buying Tips
Any manufacturer can claim they have the low-profile best baitcasting reel but you don’t have to take their word for it. Test the reel to determine if you’re comfortable with it. Take advantage of the return policy to test the reel. Try different lures, fish in different locations, and change the settings.
If you’re not happy with it, simply return the product. Buy from a quality brand. It is better to spend money on a baitcaster from a known brand than gamble on an unknown without any guarantee of quality or customer support.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: Why Does My Baitcaster Keep Backlashing?
A: When your lure slows down during or after a cast, your spool might still keep spinning and result in a messy tangle of line. To prevent this bird’s nest caused by backlashing, you should pick a modern baitcaster with a more updated braking system and an anti-backlash feature.
Q: What Does the Dial on the Side of a Baitcaster Do?
A: If you’re using a newer model of a baitcaster, you’ll notice there’s a dial on the outside of the reel side plate. You can use it to adjust the brake strength. Depending on which brand and model you’re using the dial can either be changed from MIN to MAX, or 1 to 10.
Q: Why Does My Baitcaster Not Reel in?
A: Sometimes if you have adjusted the spool tension too tight, your baitcaster may have this problem. To solve this, hold the rod at a 45° angle and depress the spool release button/bar. Now you’ll be required to adjust it, making sure the lure descends very slowly. Every time you’re changing a lure, make sure to complete this adjustment.
Q: Should I Use a Braid on My Baitcaster?
A: A braided line has many advantages, even more so when you’re using it with a baitcasting reel. Despite being more expensive, it will be more durable, long-lasting, and more sensitive than other reels like monofilament or fluorocarbon.
Each of these reels has its unique features, but you have to pay special attention to pick out the best baitcasting reel when it comes to performance. You can’t miss out on a baitcaster that’s easy to set up and easy to grip. Additionally, look for one that has a light yet durable build. Lastly, make sure your baitcasting reel is compatible with a variety of lines.