Spinning reels – Buying guide, Reviews and Comparison


If you want to find the best fishing gear, but you don’t have time to go through the buying tips and reviews prepared by our research team, this short paragraph should tell you everything you need to know about the best spinning reel. After analyzing a lot of feedback coming from both amateur and professional fishermen, we have concluded that the Penn Battle II  is the best because it comes with  5+1 bearings that provide excellent performance, while the 5.2:1  gear ratio allows you to manage the retrieve and keep control of fighting fish. In addition, this Penn model can be had in a variety of sizes so you can find just the right model for your needs and preferences. If the Penn Battle II is not available, you should consider the Okuma Trio High Speed as it is a reliable alternative both in terms of performance and quality.



Comparison table




Our top choices


Penn Battle II


2.Penn Battle II Spinning ReelThe Penn Battle II Spinning Reel is one of the models with consistent stellar reviews from users that you should take into account when shopping around for a medium speed model. The particular design of the model includes the company’s HT-100 Versa-Drag washers attached to the spool in such a manner that both sides can be used for better drag. In case you are looking for a model capable of offering you consistent higher drag, a longer range and smoothness on par with much more expensive models, than you will find everything you need in this spinning reel.

As far as bearings are concerned, this model comes with a 5 + 1 configuration that offers enough stability and smoothness on casting. Since the minimum recommended for ball bearings is 4, this spinning reel is a good choice even for more pretentious anglers.

The gear ratio of this model is 5.2:1, which makes the Penn Battle II Spinning Reel fall in the category of medium speed reels. Your style of fishing should always have the last word when you are shopping for a good quality reel, and it is always good to know a bit about specifications, so you can choose the best possible model for your needs. A recommended course of action for those who do not know whether they will need a high speed reel or a slow one is to simply go for a medium speed model that will work just fine regardless of the situation you may find yourself in.

Another aspect that must be mentioned about this particular model is that its signature washers are greased with the proprietary manufacturer’s grease that adds to its longevity. Scoring high in anglers’ preferences, the Penn Battle II Spinning Reel is the type of fishing gear that will serve you well, regardless of your style of fishing. Because of its superior versatility, many anglers prefer it, even if just as a backup to their favorite spinning reel.


This fishing reel is equipped with remarkable aesthetics that make it an awesome addition to any fishing gear collection. The two-tone construction makes this fishing reel look impressive in any setting.

The five sealed stainless steel ball bearings impart a high level of durability while ensuring smooth cranking every time. The instant anti-reverse bearing ensures effortless line release without the ugly bird’s nests inside the Superline spool.

Thanks to the reel’s rotor and metal body sideplate construction, precise gear alignment is maintained even under the most demanding fishing situations. The carbon fiber drag washers deliver dependable performance every time. The rotor is designed to enable smooth retrieves.

To keep the Superline from slipping, this fishing reel comes with a rubber gasket. This element also ensures effortless control and handling.


The size and weight of this fishing reel make it unsuitable for beginners. It is too bulky and weighty for beginners to manage effectively.



Buy from Amazon.com for ($84.26)





Okuma Trio High Speed


1.Okuma Trio High Speed Spinning ReelIn case you are looking for a spinning reel with a unique design, the Okuma Trio High Speed Spinning Reel fits the bill quite nicely. Its crossover construction combines the sturdiness and reliability of aluminum with the advantages presented by graphite, a lightweight material often used for making high quality reels. Basically, this spinning reel is a mix of power and convenience, as it does not put unnecessary strain on your wrist and forearm during casting, without sacrificing durability.

Another aspect that you may be much interested in having in your spinning reel is smoothness. Because the spool of this particular model has an aluminum chamber for the drag system, you will have the best experience when casting the line. The special build of the spinning reel adds stability, as well, which means that the Okuma Trio High Speed Spinning Reel is a good choice for casual anglers, as well.

The spool design is what you should look into when shopping for a new spinning reel. In this case, the spool is a hybrid between a graphite arbor and an aluminum lip. The special Precision Dual Force Drag System employed on the model maximizes pressure, while increasing overall efficiency.

The presence of 9 BB and 1 RB bearings made of stainless steel is another great advantage offered by this spinning reel. Ball bearings are important for smoothness and stability and the more you have, the better your experience when you go fishing it will be. Seasoned anglers recommend having at least four ball bearings and this particular model comes with 10. The quick anti-reverse roller bearing is another important benefit of the particular construction of this spinning reel from Okuma.

Last, but not least, the attractive pricing of this spinning reel is a selling point that many of those who have tried it mention. For the build quality and the superior drag offered, you will feel hard pressed to find another model that can compete on the same footing with this one.


Made with a hybrid spool design, this fishing reel ensures smooth line release and retrieves because of its advanced spool features. The spool has an aluminum lip and a graphite arbor that promote easy cranking and easy release of the fishing line from the spool while preventing knots or tangling.

The reel comes with a crossover aluminum and graphite hybrid body plus a revolutionary rotor design for protection against chipping and corrosion due to water exposure. The graphite body is lightweight and is also protected from corrosion for lasting use.

The reel is equipped with a Precision Dual Force Drag System (DFD), which utilizes both aspects of the spool to make the most of the top-rated drag pressure for efficient functionality and total smoothness.

This model comes with 9 ball bearings plus 1 anti-reverse bearing, all made of stainless steel to withstand water exposure without rusting over or chipping, for perpetually smooth cranking.


The angler has to be careful at cranking the unit to prevent the handle from getting bent too easily.



Buy from Amazon.com for ($70.58)




Shimano FX


3.Shimano Fx Spinning ReelThe Shimano Fx Spinning Reel combines the benefits of high quality materials, with perfect drag and smoothness, all for a more than affordable price. In the world of anglers, it is well known that aluminum should be your choice in regards to the material used for your spinning reel, but this durable metal has the downside of being heavier than other materials used in making this type of fishing equipment. Graphite is a common alternative, but it is not as durable as aluminum, although it is very lightweight and you will not feel the fatigue that usually comes with manipulating gear that is too hard on your wrist and forearm.

The model presented here combines the benefits of both materials, the manufacturer cleverly using aluminum and graphite for the components of this spinning reel. On top of the advantages offered by this type of construction, special technologies like Varispeed and Dyna-Balance are employed, in order to provide the user with superior performance. Graphite is used for the frame, the sideplate and the rotor, while the spool is made of diecast aluminum.

Consistent speed is very important for any angler and it is important to know that this is exactly what this spinning reel offers. The fact that superior technology like Varispeed is present on this model contributes to the great reputation the Shimano Fx Spinning Reel enjoys among anglers. Counter-balancing your rotor during retrieval can be a tricky thing, which is why the manufacturer thought of using Dyna-Balance for this model. What this technology foes is that it manages to eliminate the wobbling usually associated with retrieving, so you can enjoy the perfect smoothness and stability of this spinning reel.

Many anglers who have bought the Shimano Fx Spinning Reel praise its very smooth drag, as well as its very attractive pricing. For what it offers, this spinning reel can be compared with higher end models, and the great news is that you do not have to spend a lot of money to enjoy its great features.


Made with a graphite frame, this model is also equipped with a graphite rotor and sideplate for a lightweight structure and remarkable sensitivity. The material makes the reel resistant to corrosion and chipping due to frequent exposure to water.

The diecast aluminum spool is strong and durable. It is also light and easy to handle, which is crucial when you have to do battle with the fish. To enable accurate, long-distance casting, this fishing reel comes with a Varispeed feature.

The Dyna-Balance feature promotes smooth operations and ease of use so every turn of the handle offers solidity and smoothness.

The 4.6:1 gear ratio enables you to quickly work the lure back to your boat or to get rapid line gain when a fish starts charging toward your watercraft. The fast retrieve offers a quicker reaction time plus timely responsiveness.


The reverse cranking may not be as smooth as some anglers prefer but this reel still does what it is designed to do for fishing.



Buy from Amazon.com for ($24.48)





Thousands of years ago the only way to catch a fish was with your bare hands or by using a net or primitive fishing pole. While there are still people who enjoy the challenge these methods present, most anglers prefer using a rod with an attached reel. In this buying guide you will find all of the information you need to confidently choose the best spinning reel to manage your line and catch your targeted fish.


A. Spinning reel


What is Spin Fishing?


Spin fishing is a popular method used by novice and experienced anglers to catch rainbow trout and other freshwater fish, and the only gear that is needed is a rod, reel, fishing line and some small lures. This method of fishing is also referred to as “threadlining”, since the lures attached to the line are designed to imitate small bait in hopes of encouraging the fish to bite.

The rods used in spin fishing generally range in length from 1.80 meters to 2.40m, and most experienced anglers recommend using a monofilament line. When it is time to choose the reel, there are a few aspects you will want to consider.



Choosing the Right Spinning Reel


Choosing the right type of spinning reel is critical for a successful fishing trip. Most spinning reels are designed for casting in fresh water and there are two types to choose from.


Ultra Light Spinning Reels

These compact reels are designed to work with 2 to 6 pound lines and are an excellent choice when you are fishing in small streams.



Light-Medium Spinning Reels

Generally preferred by experienced anglers, these versatile reels are ideal for fishing in streams, lakes, and rivers. The reels are capable of holding 8 to 15 pound lines, and can smoothly bring in anything from trout to catfish and bass.

There are also heavy spinning reels that are designed for saltwater fishing, and it is best to speak with an expert before you make a decision.


Spinning Lures

Lures are another important consideration, and the right one for you will often depend on the type of fish you are trying to catch. Some of the commonly used spinning lures are generally constructed from metal, rubber, plastic, feathers, or wood, and all have the ability to turn, float, and hopefully entice a fish to bite. While some lures will work better in certain situations, finding the right one often comes down to simple “trial and error”.



Spinning Reels Described


Spinning or open-faced reels consist of a body, spool, handle, bail, gears, and adjustments for the drag. All spinning reels are able to be attached to a rod, which can vary in length and width. Most experts recommend using a spinning reel for fresh water, though it is important to consider the size of the fish you are chasing. Lightweight spinning reels are ideal for perch, trout and other small game fish, while heavy duty models are recommended for larger species.

The best fishing reel reviews state that while the size will often be determined by the type of fish you are casting for, the characteristics you want to look for in a reel will remain the same.





The materials used in the body will often depend on the price of the reel, though it should be noted that this can affect its performance. Spinning reels constructed from cast aluminum and graphite materials are generally lightweight, durable, and often resistant to rust and corrosion.



Spools are generally constructed from sturdy aluminum or graphite, and it is the part of the reel that keeps your fishing line neatly wound. The spool spins to release or wind in the line, and it can be found in varying sizes. The size of the spool will determine the amount of line it can hold, and there are some that are designed specifically for longer casts.



One of the most important features to look for on a handle is its anti reverse capabilities. If the handle cannot be locked quickly and easily in place after you’ve cast the line and closed the bail, you should consider a different reel. Anti reverse spinning reel handles prevent the line from running out and keep it taut, along with ensuring your hook is securely set in the fish. Handles should also be durable and comfortable to grip.



Almost all spinning reels feature a bail, which prevents the line from continuously running through the spool after you have cast. It should be easy to snap open and closed, and durable enough to withstand frequent use.



The gears allow the reel to spin, and help the line wrap smoothly around the spool to prevent snarling. The number of gears in a spinning reel often depends on its price, and experts recommend choosing one with a higher number. You also want the gears to be constructed from durable metal to prevent stripping.



Another important aspect to consider is drag resistance, and this is often determined by the type of fish. You want the line to be able to smoothly play out when a fish is hooked, and easily wind back in without breaking and losing your catch. The best spinning reel will feature minimal drag resistance so you can easily go after large and small game fish.



Ball bearings ensure the reel operates smoothly, and you will always want to choose a rig that uses 4 or more. Stainless steel ball bearings are generally preferred over bushings, and will provide you with a smooth cast and return every time.




The right spinning reel is one that features a durable construction and is able to offer a smooth performance. The number of ball bearings and the gear ratio should be carefully considered, and it is extremely important to ensure that it features anti reverse capabilities. Where and what you are angling for will also affect your decision, along with how comfortable the reel is to use. If it quickly becomes part of your “go to” fishing gear, you’ll know that you’ve found the right spinning reel.



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