Best Baitcasting Reels For 2017 Reviewed – Ultimate Buyers Guide

By Nick Simpson | Reels

Baitcasting reels

Baitcasting reels are an essential tool for any fisherman, especially for angling. These reels are durable enough to handle heavier fishing line and lures and provide a greater degree of control for casting and reeling in. Their compact construction allows for increased control in the palm of your hand, making baitcasting reels incredibly valuable for beginners and professionals alike.

5 Best Baitcasting Reels Compared

To find the best baitcasting reels, a valuable tool is to use customer reviews as a source for inspiration and direction. Baitcasting reel reviews from current customers can help pinpoint which baitcasting reels are worth investing in, and which baitcasting reels are not. The following list is a compilation of the top-rated baitcasting reel reviews to help you pinpoint the best baitcasting reel for you.

  • Shimano 200IHG Curado RH
  • PV power handle grips
  • Shimano Stable Spool design
  • X-Ship gearing system
  • SVS Infinity braking system
  • Daiwa Tatula-R100XS
  • Durable, lightweight aluminum frame
  • 8 bearing system
  • Ultimate Tournament Carbon Drag UTD
  • T-Wing system
  • Abu Garcia Revo STX
  • Aluminum and carbon fiber construction
  • 11 bearing system
  • Carbon Matrix Drag system
  • Magnetic braking system
  • KastKing Rover Round Reel
  • Stainless steel ball bearings
  • EVA grips
  • Carbon fiber drag system
  • Centrifugal brake system
  • Abu Garcia Revo Rocket Reel
  • Enhanced gear ratio of 9.0:1
  • D2 gear design
  • Carbon Matrix drag system
  • Infini II spool design

1. Shimano 200IHG Curado RH Baitcast Reel

Nearly a century ago, founder Shozaburo Shimano aimed to create the best fishing products first in Japan, hoping to spread throughout the entire world eventually. The Curado series by Shimano does just that. With the X-Ship gearing system, the Shimano 200IHG Curado boasts improved alignment and durability. Gears stay put and maintain precision, even under heavy loads.

For anglers after bigger fish, the Shimano 200IHG is a great option, as it is well-equipped to handle fish up to 12 lbs.The SVS Infinity braking system is perhaps the most impressive element of the Curado I series. The brake weights utilize internal friction to increase spool control and brake force.

This results in a seamless precisely controlled cast. When combined with the X-Ship gearing system, SVS Infinity braking provides an enhanced level of control over speed, distance, and weight that not many baitcasting reels can match.

Baitcasting reel reviews for the Shimano 200IHG Curado have been overwhelmingly positive. Customers report love being able to use this baitcasting reel in freshwater and saltwater. The 7.2:1 gear ratio allows for genuinely smooth casts and drags. Baitcasting reel reviews also praise the Shimano for its lightweight qualities, enabling anglers to comfortably fish all day without wearing their arms out.

2. Daiwa Tatula Baitcasting Reel TATULA-R100XS

Daiwa’s product features, designs, and materials have helped to form industry standards since 1966. Their Tatula model has brought in waves of positive baitcasting reel reviews, with professional and amateurs alike raving about the precision and unmistakable quality of this baitcasting reel. With each handle turn bringing in 33.9”, the Daiwa Tatula R100XS is efficient enough for professional and recreational use.

The gear ratio of 8.1:1 brings precision and unmistakable quality with each spin of the handle.Unique to Daiwa, the T-Wing system allows for casts to stretch up to a mile and a half with ease. This patented system changes the design of the line guide, nearly eliminating friction and obstruction while casting. 

The T-Wings flip up during the cast and flip back in place while reeling in. Though it may take some getting used to, baitcasting reel reviews rave over the T-Wing design.

At one lb., the Tatula R100XS is a bit heavier than other models, but its aluminum frame ensures ultimate lasting durability. Additionally, the increased line capacity allows for maximized fish catching ability while out on the water. For anglers looking for a professional grade baitcasting reel at an affordable price, the Daiwa Tatula R100XS is a perfect choice.

3. Abu Garcia Revo STX Right Hand

With its compact design and innovative materials, this model from Abu Garcia is an incredibly competitive baitcasting reel. At only 6.35 ounces, this model is 29% lighter than its predecessor, making for a baitcasting reel designed for prolonged use and comfort. Its lightweight nature comes from the C6 carbon sideplates, which allow for less weight without lowering durability standards.

As far as the inner workings of a baitcasting reel are concerned, Abu Garcia has employed some impressive technology. The 8.0:1 gear ratio boasts incredible speed, turning 33” in a single turn of the handle.

Abu Garcia uses a D2 gear design system for their baitcasting reels, resulting in superior efficiency and durability. Ten stainless steel ball bearings and one additional roller bearing ensure smooth operation of the baitcasting reel.

The magnetic braking system allows for nearly limitless adjustability to adapt and handle every fishing situation. Baitcasting reel reviews praise this reel’s ability to distribute control and increase precision, both when casting and when retrieving.

4. KastKing Rover Round

The KastKing is one of the most affordable baitcasting reels that manage to provide a high level of value without draining your budget. The stainless steel ball bearings and shaft protect against corrosion, making the KastKing Rover Round suitable for saltwater and freshwater use. Trolling and bottom fishing can easily be accomplished with this round baitcasting fishing reel.

The carbon fiber drag system delivers powerful performance that outmatches all similar baitcasting reels. The non-slip handles help ensure that control and power will remain, even in the most soaked situations.

Baitcasting reel reviews love that the KastKing comes with a bait clicker to help alert fishermen to baits and runs. Another attractive feature is the impressive stopping power that comes with the centrifugal brake system. For an affordable baitcasting reel that doesn’t sacrifice value, the KastKing Rover Round baitcasting reel is a phenomenal option.

5. Abu Garcia Revo Rocket Low Profile

For fishermen who want increased speed with increased performance, Abu Garcia has provided the perfect solution. The Revo Rocket is one of the quickest baitcasting reels available, and with a gear ratio of 9.0:1, it isn’t hard to see why. For spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, or crankbaits, the Revo Rocket promises a lightning-fast retrieve.

The Revo Rocket is just as much designed for durability as it is for speed. This baitcasting reel is made with the highest quality components, with metal alloy frame and sideplates to protect against corrosion. A winning combination of the Infini spool design and the Infini brake system ensure that casts are extended, durable, and precise.

Fishermen who want maximum speed and precision in their casts and their retrieves will find that the Abu Garcia Revo Rocket is ideally suited for both.

While the art of using a baitcasting reel may be initially difficult to master, professional anglers swear by the ability to use advanced techniques and increased precision through their baitcasting reels. By nature, baitcasters tend to offer enhanced control and precision when compared to other reels. With time and practice, it is entirely possible to control both speed and distance of a cast when using a baitcasting reel.

Advantages to Baitcasting Reels

Although baitcasting reels and spinning reels are important tools for any angler, there are some fundamental differences between the two. When compared to spinning reels, baitcasting reels offer unique benefits and advantages. There are three marked benefits to using baitcasting reels:

Heavier Lines and Heavier Lures

By nature, baitcasting reels are much more durable, and can manage a lot more weight. For that reason, heavier lines and lures are perfectly suited for use with a baitcasting reel.

Increased Power

As a result of their spool layout and gear design, baitcasting reels also have greater power and torque than spinning reels. The spool lies directly in line alongside the handle and gears, making reeling much easier.

Braking System

Most baitcasting reels come equipped with a braking handle right on the outside of the reel, allowing the rotation of the spool to be adjusted during a cast. Being able to brake the fishing line can be a great help, especially when dealing with larger fish.

Increased Control

Baitcasting reels allow for greater control when casting, allowing you to manage speed, distance, and accuracy.

Reduced Line Twist

The design of casting reels will naturally help any fisherman avoid the frustration of having a line twist and tangle.

Versatility requires using both spinning and baitcasting reels, although knowing when to use each reel can make a huge difference. For anglers looking for increased power, control, and durability through heavier weight, baitcasting reels are the best choice.

Baitcasting Reels - Buyers Guide

There are a few key things to look for when finding a top quality baitcasting reel. The best baitcasting reels will come with a few advantages that are specific to their general design. When looking for baitcasting reels, keep the following design components in mind:


This may not be terribly important when looking to fish for shorter periods of time, but for anglers who plan on fishing for extended periods of time, weight will be a significant consideration. Baitcasting reels are typically going to be larger than other reels, and can potentially add a lot of weight. When looking for a baitcasting reel, make sure that the weight will not inhibit your ability to fish over an extended period of time.

Gear ratio

The gear ratio measures how many times the spool revolves during one spin of the handle. Higher gear ratios mean that more line is retrieved in a shorter amount of time. Lower gear ratios are suitable for reeling bait in slowly, and they will produce more torque. Conversely, higher gear ratios are all about speed. If you need to reduce slack and bring the line back quickly, you'll want to look for higher gear ratios.

Brake system

Having an efficient brake system can drastically increase your ability to cast precise lines. Brakes are especially useful when casting directly into the wind, as this causes the spool to spin faster than the bait.


Baitcasting reels are an invaluable tool for any fisherman, especially when looking to manage heavier lines and heavier baits. When looking for a baitcasting reel, keep in mind the key characteristics of the best baitcasting reels, listed above.

Looking at baitcasting reviews can provide essential insight into the process of purchasing a baitcasting reel. Models that have the highest baitcasting reel reviews tend to excel in innovative approaches to weight, gear ratios, and braking systems.

By analyzing the top-rated baitcasting reel reviews and keeping the essential qualities of baitcasting reels in mind, any fisherman can find themselves with enough information to make an informed purchase.

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About the Author

Nick is the youngest member of the team and he's very passionate about angling. He is the member that spends most of the time fishing at different locations around the world. His main focus is to simplify the techniques as much as possible and break them down so young anglers can catch up quickly. Nick loves the great outdoors and he's a proud owner of a vast collection of customized fishing equipment.

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