Best Baitcasting Reel

How To Choose The Best Baitcaster – Buying Guide

Everyone needs to take time and patience to master their first fishing reel. Here are the things you should know when buying the best baitcasting reel

Consider Your Budget

The first thing you need to do before getting your first baitcaster or anything else is setting a budget. Since fishing reel prices can vary dramatically, you should know how much you are willing to spend beforehand.

After you have a considerable price in mind, you can now figure out how to get the best reel for your money. Keep in mind that lower price baitcasters aren’t normally packed with good, long-lasting features, so you should avoid them.

Choose The Right Gear Ratio

Every fishing reel has a gear ratio; it is also a factor that affects the retrieve rate. The gear ratio describes how many times the pool turns over and the retrieve speed.

The most common gear ratios are 5.4:1, 6.4:1, and 7.2:1. The higher the first number, the faster the speed of the reel. So correspondingly, the slow speed is the 3:1 ratio, and 7:1 can be considered the fastest.

Depending on how you like the moving presentation, you can choose the suitable gear ratio. However, the ones with higher numbers are more likely to be used in small fishing areas.

Consider The Braking System

Many baitcasters these days feature magnetic braking systems that can help users to master their equipment. The brake system can help you control and adjust the pool’s rotation during casting.

Suppose your first baitcasting reel should offer a reliable drag strength. A great braking system will allow you to keep up the pressure without slipping. It will also stop you from breaking the line.

A little tip is that you should also opt for a multifunctional fishing reel instead of something made for a single purpose. The good news is all of today’s reels are designed for multitasking.

Spool Size

Another feature that many people often miss out when choosing their first baitcaster is the spool size. However, this is a very important detail, especially if you will deal with large fish.

If you want to catch up with bigger fish, you will need stronger lines. It will also take up more room on the spool. In that case, look out for a large, deep spool that can hold all of your lines. 

On the other hand, if you are interested in bass fishing, a lighter line will be your best friend. It will give you enough strength without reducing the casting control. As a result, you can always get away with using a smaller spool.


Most baitcasting reels on the market nowadays are available in aluminum and graphite. Either material has its advantages and disadvantages for you to consider. 

While graphite is more lightweight and less expensive, it is not as durable as aluminum. The frames from high-end brands tend to be one-piece to keep you out of trouble while putting them together.

Ball Bearings

A lot of people think that ball bearings are not necessary. Yet, they will truly show a difference when put in work. It is the reason why most brands included this feature in all of their products.

If you are looking for your first baitcaster ever, go for the ones with “shielded,” “double-shielded,” or “sealed bearings.” These are game-changing features. 

Comfort Is The Key Factor

Above all, keep in mind that your comfort is essential. You won’t have a pleasant fishing adventure if your baitcasting does not feel comfortable in your hand.

That is why you need to find a balanced reel that ensures a secure grip and more accuracy even after long hours of fishing.

Best Baitcasting Reel For Beginners

Product images Product names Editor's rating Price
Amazon best-selling product B085ZL3BKW KastKing Royale Legend GT Best Overall

Amazon best-selling product B07ZTG9TFW Piscifun Torrent Best For Budget

Amazon best-selling product B0894R3MNT KastKing Spartacus II Best For Line Control

Amazon best-selling product B011LV0Q96 Abu Garcia Black Max & Max X Low Profile Best For All-Day Comfort

Amazon best-selling product B07VWHDJ3T KastKing Royale Legend II Best For Durability

Amazon best-selling product B011LV0H4A Abu Garcia Pro Max & Max Pro Low Profile Best For High-Speed Retrieves

Abu Garcia Pro Max Fishing Reel

If you are new to fishing, Abu Garcia Pro Max definitely won’t disappoint you. Not only do we receive advanced performance with Pro Max, but it also has a reasonable price.

The Abu Garcia Pro Max comes with a gear ratio of 7.1:1 instead of 4.8:1 or 5.2:1, so we are blessed with high-speed retrieves. It offers a handle’s retrieval rate of 29″ that is perfect for fishing in rogue waves.

Apart from that, ProMax has the Duragear brass gear that helps maintain smoothness while retrieving. This model also remains an overall balance because it is so lightweight that it almost feels like a one-piece gear. You’d better start your fishing journey with a light reel to enjoy all day without fatigue.

Abu Garcia Pro Max Fishing Reel

Because Pro Max has a co-molded, high-density handle, it is adjustable and provides a steady grip in rough conditions. It won’t tire you out even after a long day of fishing.

Another hype feature of the Abu Garcia Pro Max is its MagTrax brake system. It will reduce the pressure onto our thumb and help us make quick adjustments.

This brake will ease the pain if you are not used to holding the reel for a long time. Also, as a stranger to fishing, you might not be skillful enough to make exact casts. Don’t worry, the brake will take care of that part.

However, since the Pro Max has a gear ratio of 7.1:1, it will decrease the amount of power. But don’t you worry, it can still be generated!


  • Lightweight
  • Offers high-speed and smooth retrieves
  • Powerful brake system
  • Steady co-molded handle


  • Low power

See more details:

Top 6 Best Baitcasting Reel For Beginners Review in 2021

Best Baitcaster Under $100

Product images Product names Editor's rating Price
Amazon best-selling product B074TYG2CL Abu Garcia Revo X Low Profile Baitcasting Fishing Reel Best Overall

Amazon best-selling product B07H4S6MD2 SHIMANO SLX Baitcasting Reels Best For Budget

Amazon best-selling product B07WT2V672 KastKing Crixus ArmorX Baitcasting Reels Best For Line Control

Amazon best-selling product B074V7PDZ9 Piscifun Phantom Baitcasting Reel Best For All-Day Comfort

Amazon best-selling product B07FMZYR1F KastKing MegaJaws Baitcasting Reel Best For Durability

Amazon best-selling product B011LV0H4A Abu Garcia Pro Max Baitcast Fishing Reel Best For High-Speed Retrieves

SHIMANO SLX Baitcasting Reels

This is Shimano’s finest baitcasting reel line.  And it’s also one of the best on the market today. This coil is always rated high quality and easy to use with one thumb. Performance is excellent, thanks to a ceramic liner on the current guide rod to reduce friction during reel pulling and retrieval.

Moreover, the handle has an aluminium design. So you can easily hold it for a long time without fear of hand fatigue. They have a maximum pull of up to 11 pounds. This is what makes them suitable for most freshwater spin fishing applications.

Overall, this Shimano product is ideal for engaging in your favorite hobby. Shimano SLX is precisely what you’re searching for if you want reliable, budget-friendly gear with a modern appearance.


  • A high-quality clutch designed a comfortable thumb rest
  • Two high-speed gear options for choose: Gear ratios of 6:3:1 and 7:2:1
  • The handle is user-friendly and ergonomic.
  • Design that is both stylish and athletic.


The side button sometimes broke off to close the side plate.

See more details:

Best Baitcaster Under $100: Top 6

Baitcasting Reel For Saltwater

Product images Product names Editor's rating Price
Amazon best-selling product B07453C64P SHIMANO Curado K Baitcasting Reel 5

Amazon best-selling product B01DDKDE9W KastKing Rover Round Baitcasting Reel 4.9

Amazon best-selling product B011LV0H4A Abu Garcia Pro Max Low Profile Baitcast Fishing Reel 4.85

Amazon best-selling product B015L58RFI Daiwa Coastal TW Casting Reel 4.8

Amazon best-selling product B00EUWZ7V6 Abu Garcia Ambassadeur S Round Baitcast Fishing Reel 4.75

Amazon best-selling product B07PMJYD5T Piscifun Alijoz Baitcasting Reels 4.7

SHIMANO Curado K Baitcasting Reel

Taking engineering cues from its predecessors, this Curado K version works like magic.

Fortified with the unique MicroModule gearing, this reel delivers a smooth and reliable operative system. In addition, its SVS Infinity brake system is super manageable.

Its spool is also unwaveringly consistent. These desirable attributes guarantee precise casting, robust retrieval and promise a fruitful fishing expedition.

Furthermore, this innovative item employs the X-Ship technology. As a result, it can increase reels’ longevity significantly. This product can also double as a freshwater reel.

On the flip side, newcomers often find it hard to close the spool’s cover.


  • Ensure smooth, strong, and consistent retrieval
  • Long-lasting performance


  • The spool is notoriously tricky to use

See more details:

6 Best Baitcasting Reel For Saltwater (Recommended By Experts)

Best Baitcasting Reel For Frog Fishing

Product images Product names Editor's rating Price
Amazon best-selling product B07149KWVR Piscifun Torrent  5

Amazon best-selling product B07C8FVG4Y Daiwa Tatula 150 4.9

Amazon best-selling product B07JNRJK7S KastKing Bassinator Elite 4.85

Amazon best-selling product B07H1M93HG Daiwa Tatula 100 4.8

Amazon best-selling product B07FN7PFZ3 Shimano Curado DC 4.75

Amazon best-selling product B083ZV1836 Shimano Exsence DC SS 4.7

Daiwa Tatula 150 

This is an excellent baitcasting reel from the reputable brand Daiwa. It converges all of the most desirable attributes of a fishing reel.

The reel’s aluminum body is lightweight but durable, which works with a T-Wing line management system to give competitive anglers the best experience. You no longer have to worry about restrictive line flow. As a result, there is minimal friction, noise, and backlash as well.

Thanks to its oversized spool, you can use this reel for any techniques, including deep cranking, flipping, frogging, swimbaits, umbrella rigs, and topwater lures. In detail, it can accommodate up to 150 yards of a 14-pound test. So you can fit plenty of lines in and never worry about running out halfway through your catch.

When handling long casts and heavyweights, you can count on this reel’s optimal performance of its 100mm non-slip swept handle and magnetic brakes with 20 adjustment ranges. Thanks to all these features, the Daiwa Tatula 150 is, without a doubt, a reliable companion on the water.

See more details:

Best Baitcasting Reel For Frog Fishing: 6 Top Picks

Best Baitcaster For Flipping And Pitching

Product images Product names Editor's rating Price
Amazon best-selling product B07CTQLJD2 KastKing MegaJaws Best Overall

Amazon best-selling product B07FFK2VD2 Arden Apex Best For Reducing Arm Stress

Amazon best-selling product B07LCTMG4K Enigma Fishing IPPON IPF100 Best For Budget

Amazon best-selling product B075MXZ9NQ Lew's SuperDuty G Speed Spool Best For Flipping

Amazon best-selling product B07C6S2BVY KastKing Royale Legend Best For Beginners

KastKing MegaJaws – Best Overall

This Kastking model has essential shark features that represent the strength and efficiency that most anglers seek.

Its design features a shark tooth hood with a shark fin side and sturdy metal components. These characteristics constantly persuade you of your mastery and accomplish confidence while fishing.

The product has a wide range of applications. Beginners and professional anglers use it frequently because of its extensive feature set. However, this product needs some practice to be more appropriate for experienced anglers with a firm grasp of the sport.


  • Because KastKing constructs this item of graphite, it is super light.
  • Stainless steel material helps it last longer and is durable by the time.
  • Carbon fiber drag systems withstand high pressure.
  • Anglers may recognize the needed gear-related approaches for particular fishing circumstances using a color-coded customized gear system.


  • The gears wear out rapidly.
  • The construction materials are not of excellent grade.

See more details:

Best Baitcaster For Flipping And Pitching (Top 5 Buying Guide)

Best Shimano Baitcaster

Product images Product names Editor's rating Price
Amazon best-selling product B07GL9WNYF Shimano Metanium DC Low Profile Reels Best Overall

Amazon best-selling product B08DJ91XMK Shimano Curado MGL 70 K Low Profile Baitcast Reel Best For Budget

Amazon best-selling product B07KGHNC71 Shimano Calcutta Conquest 300-400 Round Reels Best For Line Control

Amazon best-selling product B07FN55P8L Shimano Curado DC Fishing Reel Best For All-Day Comfort

Amazon best-selling product B0714MJN3S Shimano Chronarch G SW Baitcasting Fishing Reel Best For Durability

Amazon best-selling product B08DJ7ZGKB Shimano SLX MGL 70 Low Profile Baitcast Reel Best For High-Speed Retrieves

Shimano Metanium DC Low Profile Reels

This model is the apex of Shimano DC versions for its excellent baitcasting performance. However, a few anglers consider it expensive, while others who aspire to the sport top-level think it is worth it.

Featuring a Shimano Hagane body, the reel uses CI4+ for its side plates, making the model ultra-light and highly durable. This feature speaks of how comfortable it feels in your palm and how lightweight it is, around 6.7 to 6.9 ounces.

Metanium DC gear ratio falls in the high-speed baitcasting category, going from 7.4:1 to 8.5:1. As a result, people often use the reel for freshwater and saltwater fishing. With its outstanding gear ratio, your casts will not be tiring during the course.

Next, the reel possesses a significantly superior digital controlled system – I-DC Gearing. The gearing adjusts resistance while you cast by using a micro-computer. Selecting lure weights ranging from 5 to 30 grams and users’ favorite fishing line type on the inside of the reel helps minimize the backlash and keeps the cast longer and further.

Besides, you can also expect this premium Shimano reel for the consistency in its drag system with a max drag of 11 pounds or the S3D spool design that creates a smooth and balanced retrieving and casting, or the powerful gearing featured by the 9+1 bearing system.


  • Non-exhausting casts without backlash
  • Super smooth Bearings: 9BB + 1RB
  • The advanced I-DC5 braking system
  • Superior cast management system
  • Ultimate micro-computer auto mode


  • Pretty expensive
  • Not offer actual anti-reverse lever

See more details:

Best Shimano Baitcaster: 6 Premium Models

FAQs About Baitcasting Reel

Are Baitcasting Reels Hard To Use?

When people just start learning to play or participate in a certain sport, they often choose the latest technologies to make their game more complete. However, it’s not the case for fishing because using baitcasting reels will cause a lot of trouble for beginners.

To put it simply, a baitcasting reel is a type of roller that is capable of spinning around it smoothly. However, unlike a regular reel, the position that the reel attaches to is above your fishing rod. This design inadvertently makes it difficult for anglers to control them.

Without a doubt, baitcasting reels are difficult to use, which should take you a long time to control competently.

To make good use of baitcasting reels, users need to have a basic experience of using simpler types of reels. Not only that but controlling this device also requires stable strength to hold the coil firmly in a certain position.

In addition, if you don’t practice regularly, you won’t manage to find out how to adjust it properly and avoid unfortunate injuries.

Read more:

Are Baitcasting Reels Hard To Use? (Beginner Guide)

Baitcasting Reel Sizes

The baitcasting reel size can be varied on the market because of the shortage of a standardized sizing system. However, many manufacturers like Shimano, Daiwa, and KastKing share the same sizing convention from 100 to 400.

Baitcaster reel size Weight Line capacity (pound/yard) Retrieve rate (inches per turn) Max drag Suggested use
50 5 ounces 12/65 23 inches to 29 inches 10 pounds Ultralight tackle bass fishing
70 6 ounces 12/85 23 inches to 32 inches 10  pounds Finesse bass fishing
100 7 ounces 12/120 26 inches to 34 inches 11  pounds Almost bass fishing technique
200 8 ounces 12/200 26 inches to 36 inches 12  pounds Heavy bass casting applications
300 11 ounces 12/260 26 inches to 36 inches 22 pounds Inshore saltwater fishing
400 12 ounces 12/330 26 inches to 38 inches 25 pounds Inshore saltwater fishing

Read more:

Baitcasting Reel Sizes – Easy Guide To Choose The Right

Baitcaster Gear Ratio Explained

The term “baitcasting gear ratio” indicates a three-digit number that speaks of its pool’s rotation frequency for the handle’s every single turn. For instance, a baitcasting reel gear has a 6.5:1 ratio. This number indicates that the spool rotates 6.5 times every time you turn the handle once.

So, the gear featuring a higher ratio retrieves a faster speed of its reel. But, overall, spinning reels are not so fast as baitcasting reels whose gear ratio starts from 5.5:1 up to 9.3:1. Meanwhile, the spinning reel gear usually goes from 5.1:1 to 6.5:1.

Read more:

Baitcaster Gear Ratio Explained: Essential Facts For Beginners

What Lures To Throw On A Baitcaster?

Overall, we recommend combining bait caster with lures that feature a total weight of more than ⅛ of an ounce. Specifically, there are 7 typical types of fishing lures you can use with bait casters: Topwater, soft plastic, spinnerbait, crankbait, buzzbait, swim jig, and large swimbait

Read more:

What Lures To Throw On A Baitcaster? (Beginner’s Guide)

Should You Put Braid On A Baitcaster?

Generally speaking, yes. With all of the notable strength of braided lines, it’s safe to say that they are an all-around performer that works exceptionally well in most cases. Braided lines may not be a good fit for beginners. If you fall into this category, we suggest that you should purchase a monofilament fishing line instead. Constructed from only 1 fiber of plastic, this option is more reasonably priced. What’s more, this user-friendly alternative allows casual anglers to tie knots much more quickly.

Read more:

Should You Put Braid On A Baitcaster? (Explained In Detail)

What Kind Of Rod Do You Need For A Baitcaster?

Despite the vast array of fishing rods, they are often classified into two main groups: spinning and casting rods. As the name suggests, spinning rods are specifically designed to pair well with spinning reels, whereas casting rods are great companions to bait casters.

It is advisable to use casting rods in conjunction with baitcasters due to their durable and resilient essence.

At first glance, spinning rods bear striking similarities to casting rods, to the point that novice anglers often mistake one for the other. What’s more, they are usually under the impression that these two types can be used interchangeably without any negative impact on their fishing experience.

Unfortunately, this is not the case. Spinning rods’ specifications and construction make them ill-suited to bait casters. Below are the benefits that explain why casting rods are the undisputed champion.

Read more:

What Kind Of Rod Do You Need For A Baitcaster? (Fishing Guide)

Baitcasting Reel Part – What Are Their Functions?

Baitcasting reel consists of 9 parts:

  1. Foot And Seat
  2. Thumb Bar
  3. Reel Brake
  4. Drag
  5. Pawl
  6. Handle
  7. Spool Tension
  8. Line Alarm or Bait Clicker
  9. Line Guide

Each reel has different parts, and they perform separate functions. They work together seamlessly and responsively to provide maximum support to the anglers. Therefore, anglers had better take care of their baitcasting reel and understand exactly how it works.

On top of that, understanding each baitcaster reel part usage is very vital to choose and use it efficiently. There are dedicated baitcasting combos on the market today for you to pick from, and each reel combo has its specification. However, you must comprehend all the parts function to choose the combo that fits your demand most.

Read more:

Baitcasting Reel Part – What Are Their Functions?

How to Spool a Baitcaster for Beginners

  1. Ensure that your reel is clean by wiping it down with a soft, wet rag or sponge.
  2. Pull the spool out and in, rotating it anti-clockwise, so that a few coils of the line are exposed on one side.
  3. Get your lure ready by placing the hook eye over the spool’s eye before wrapping the line around the spool clockwise.
  4. Once you have placed your lure on top of the spool, wrap your line with two or three turns, depending on your reel’s size and the species of fish you want to catch (larger reels will require more line).
  5. Continue tightening your line until the lure and spool are snugs against each other.
  6. Some baitcasters have a black ring or blue ring on the spool’s side. This is to keep your line from coming off and tangling with itself while you cast.
  7. Spin your reel handle clockwise to the “on” position, and then take a few practice casts if you wish.

Before you go out into the water, make sure that you have the following:

  1. Your Reel
  2. Your Rod
  3. Your Lure
  4. Velcro Hooks (make sure they are the correct size for your lure)
  5. Jelly Worms (if you are going to use them as bait)

How to Spool Braided Line

  1. Remove the line from the box.
  2. Insert or attach the braid to a spool by feeding the end through the eye of the spool. Repeat for additional braids if applying more than one braid, then tie a knot on the backside of the spool (do not cut off excess).
  3. Attach strong but light-weight material, such as rubber bands or velcro hooks, to the back of lure and/or bait to secure line on either side of bait (one on each side).
  4. Attach one strong but lightweight material to the back of the lure attached to your reel or baitcasting spool, and then attach a second to the trap line.
  5. Attach the line to your rod in a manner you feel is comfortable and effective, depending on what type of fishing you are doing and how you will be using your baitcaster (example: if you are stapling the double hook system mentioned above, a reel slide clip is recommended).

Many baitcasting reels are designed to work with two line sizes in the same reel. Line sizes are marked on the body of the reel and or on the spool.

Use a baitcaster that is designed for your line size. If you choose to use a braided line, use a braided spool for that size (see above). If using monofilament, get a spool with a braid for your line size.

Read more:

How to Spool a Baitcaster for Beginners: Step-by-Step

How To Prevent Baitcaster Birds Nest?

Backlash is the most common reason why individuals avoid using a baitcasting reel. However, there are several advantages to utilizing a baitcaster rather than a spinning reel, including casting with more precision and control. Below are several points that you can do to prevent baitcaster backlash!

Baitcaster Birds Nest Must-know Tips To Remove It Quickly 1

Adjust spool tension

First of all, make sure you know the most crucial baitcaster reel components and properly spool a baitcaster (which is quite different from spooling a spinning reel). This step is necessary to avoid introducing line twisting during the spooling process, which can cause birds nest.

Accordingly, you have to make sure that the spool tension is precisely appropriate. You want your lure to drop at a moderate speed, not too fast or too slow. There is no one-size-fits-all solution, so experiment to find what works best for you.

Adjust braking system

With the same level of importance as spool tension’s adjustment, anglers should also set the brake system to its highest level. This helps you practice with better control and less movement. As you gain confidence, you can gradually drop the tension to accommodate longer baits.

Baitcaster brakes come in two varieties: centrifugal and magnetic. Some baitcasters have only one of them, but most latest models include both, which is better for preventing backlash. Both types of braking devices are necessary for decreasing spool spinning throughout the casting process.

Cast your lure away from the wind

Cast your lure with the wind rather than against it when you first start. Moreover, using the wind to your advantage might aid in casting accuracy by propelling the bait forward. If you can’t find a position with the wind at your back, you might want to try a few test casts on dry land. When casting against the wind, your lure will slow down, but your reel will not, resulting in backlash. You can start casting into the wind as you get more comfortable with your reel and gain experience.

Read more:

Baitcaster Birds Nest: Must-know Tips To Remove It Quickly


And that concludes with all we have to say about how to find the best baitcasting reel. With our buying guide in mind, we hope that you can now find the right equipment, depending on your fishing needs.

It can take a lot of time and practice to master your fishing reel. Still, with the proper gear in hand, we know that you will surely have the best fishing adventure ever.