This article will look at the best baitcasting reels available for the angler with a desire to expand their fishing gear and possibly to update what they have. What follows are the top of the line models for the specific brands, and the price reflects that fact.
These reels are the best for the professional angler or the budding professional angler. The expense of the reel can be justified easily by the technology. Some of the prices are not for the faint of heart, but these are the best baitcasting reels on the market – hands down.
Shimano makes nice reels, but the nice reel comes at a very steep price. The old adage, “You get what you pay for,” rings true with Shimano products.
The Calais line of Shimano are the pinnacle of the company’s product line. This reel features digital braking systems that have 32 settings for the lightest possible lures to the heaviest pork and jig combinations. An incredibly fast 7:1 ratio means lightening fast retrieves for burning crankbaits or working buzzbaits on the surface.
The Calais holds a respectable 120 yds. Of 12 lb. test line, and the reel will handle freshwater as well as inshore saltwater equally well.
All these features come at a price, however. The base price for the reel is $649.99.
Shimano’s next in line reel is the Calcutta. Unlike the low profile of the Calais, the Calcutta is a round body reel similar to the original baitcasting reels. It too has the digital control braking system, a 5.0:1 retrieve ratio and packs on 135 yds. of 10 lb. test line.
The Calcutta is priced a bit less than the Calais at $549.99.
Hailing from Sweden, Abu Garcia started as a watch making company, but later expanded into the fishing arena. The fine details of expert watchmaking made the Abu Garcia company a leader in the fishing industry, and they have the pedigree with tournament wins to match.
Abu Garcia’s recent top of the line reel, the Mörrum, turns heads because of the design. Featuring the same elements that have made Abu Garcia great, the Mörrum has a Carbon Matrix drag system, titanium line guide and a 6.3:1 retrieve ratio.
The Mörrum holds 125 yds. of 12 lb. test line, and the reel comes directly from Sweden. Staying with the traditional design, the Mörrum has barrel shape that most think of when they think Abu Garcia.
The Mörrum retails for $499.99. Since the reel ships directly from Sweden, it will take a bit longer to arrive than some other products ordered from Amazon.com.
Abu Garcia does not make many low-profile reels, but the low-profiles they do make are some of the best in the world. The Revo MGXtreme has the same Carbon Matrix drag system as the Mörrum, but the external braking system features 28 different positions.
The sideplates on the reel are made from carbon fiber, meaning the toughness of aluminum but light enough to cast all day and not fatigue the angler.
The Revo MGXtreme will hold 115 yds. of 12 lb. test monofilament, but will take 130 yds. of braided line just as easily. The 7.1:1 retrieve ratio is the second highest of the best baitcasting reels selected, and the sleek design makes for an interesting conversation on the water.
The Revo MGXtreme retails at $499.99 and ships from Amazon.com.
The Steez of Daiwa is the best of its line, and the magnesium body frame likely has much to do with that fact. Designed for a hard day of casting, retrieving and fighting fish, this lightweight reel will more than suffice for a solid experience on the water.
The Steez’ highlight is the retrieve ratio, an industry leading 7.9:1 and a matching 100mm handle to boost the retrieve. This means each crank of the handle returns almost a full yard of line onto the reel spool, so even the heaviest buzzbaits will sing across the surface of the water.
The spool holds 120 yds. of 14 lb. test line, so this reel will more than match the best bass fishing needs up to the largest muskies of the North. The reel will also laugh heartily at inshore saltwater, so do not be afraid to put it in the boat when hitting the flats.
The Steez retails for $499.99.
The PX Type-R will cast even the smallest baits with relative ease and then fight the toughest fish that bites. The drag is whisper smooth and the magnesium body is perfect for a full day on the water. The 6.8:1 retrieve ratio is perfect for covering lots of water with fast moving baits such as spinnerbaits and low profile crankbaits.
The reel holds 95 yds. of 6 lb. test line, making this reel perfect for clear water conditions and spooky fish. Those who find the walleye to be the fish of choice will be more than satisfied with the quality of this reel to meet their specific needs.
The PX Type-R retails at $499.99.
These reels mentioned will certainly put a serious dent in even the deepest wallets, but the quality, technology and craftsmanship will certainly make up for the price.
If you are serious about your fishing, are looking to turn professional or simply want something that will make a fine family heirloom, then one of the reels mentioned in this article will certainly match and exceed your desires and standards. These are the best baitcasting reels on the market today and are likely to stay that way even with additional advancements in technology.