5 Best Downriggers Compared & Reviewed

Last Updated: 20.10.19

 

Best Downrigger Review – Top Rated Models with Buying Guide

 

The success of one’s fishing sessions depends on a variety of factors including the gear used; therefore, if you need to renew your equipment and you’re on the lookout for the best downrigger, this paragraph might be of help. To help you make a more informed decision, our team has examined some of the most popular products available and concluded that the first downrigger to consider is the Scotty Depthpower Electric 60-Inch. Designed to last, this product comes with a boom that collapses so you can easily store it and telescopes to ensure extra reach. The stainless steel used for its various parts promise to keep up with extended use. Furthermore, the speed is adjustable, so you can opt for the one that best suits your needs. Should you be unable to find this product, a reliable alternative in terms of quality is the Scotty Laketroller Manual Downrigger.

 

 

Comparison table

 

The Good
The Bad
Verdict
Price

 

 

5 Best Downriggers (Updated Reviews) in 2019

 

 

Finding an affordable downrigger that will cover your fishing needs for a long time and do its job properly might not be that easy, considering the many products in this line. To make it easier for you, we have compiled below a list of downrigger reviews. Check it out before making your final decision.

 

 

1. Scotty Depthpower Electric 60-Inch

 

The downrigger fishing requires needs to be not only durable and keep up even with more aggressive fishing sessions but also easy to use and even store and transport. At least that’s what Scotty had in mind when building this unit. This electric downrigger is an option you might want to consider if you often engage in this activity and you want a product you can rely on.

Designed as a “big boat” downrigger, this item features a telescoping boom that will give you extra reach whenever needed as it can extend up to 60 inches. Furthermore, the boom collapses, so you can easily store and transport it.

The marine-grade stainless steel used for the boom is committed to lasting; therefore, you can rest assured that this unit will cover your fishing needs for a long time. What’s more, the tilt-up mounting bracket will enable you to tilt and lock the downrigger in an upright position.

The adjustable speed will further help you enjoy a more personalized experience whereas the adjustable rod holder will make sure you can employ it with different rods. The Scotty downrigger has been appreciated by users for delivering great performance and being durable.

Pros

Built with “big boat” fishing in mind, this unit is committed to enhancing your fishing experience and meeting your needs for a long time.

To enable you to cater to various fishing needs, the item comes with a boom that telescopes up to 60 inches, so you can enjoy extra reach.

Both the boom and the cable feature stainless steel, which translates into enhanced durability.

The swivel pedestal mount has 16 positions and the product sports a tilt-up mounting bracket that will help you tilt and lock the downrigger in an upright position.

The boom was also designed to collapse, which makes the unit easy to store and transport.

The speed and rod holder are adjustable for a more comfortable and personalized experience and the product was built to ensure a lower amperage draw.

Cons

According to one buyer, the drive belt needed some adjustments as it was a bit loose from the factory.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($497.37)

 

 

 

2. Scotty Laketroller Manual Downrigger

 

If you’re more into old-school sort of things even when it comes to downriggers and you’re thus on the lookout for a manual model, this unit from Scotty is worth adding to your list of options. The product promises to take your fishing experience to the next level while keeping the entire experience comfortable.

The post-mount downrigger was designed with both performance and ease of use in mind. It thus comes with a mounting bracket that will allow you to mount the unit on the side of a transom or gunnel or a flat surface.

Thanks to the mounting design, you will get to enjoy a 360-degree rotation. The unit also comes with a line release and a mini power grip. As is the case with manual downriggers, this model weighs only 2.40 pounds and measures 6.2 x 7.5 x 17.5 inches, which renders it both lightweight and compact.

Its dimensions and weight make it a great option if you’re interested in a downrigger that is easy to operate and that can be mounted on smaller boats. Moreover, since this is a manual unit, no batteries are required.

Pros

Ideal for anglers interested in a lightweight, compact, and easy-to-operate downrigger, this unit comes with features that will boost your fishing experience without breaking your budget.

Thanks to the mounting bracket it comes with, the product can be easily mounted on a flat deck surface and even on the side of a transom or gunnel.

The mounting design ensures 360-degree rotation, which will add to the comfort and ease of use you get to enjoy when employing this item.

Unlike electric models that are usually heavier, this manual downrigger is lightweight and small as it weighs only 2.40 pounds and measures 6.2 x 7.5 x 17.5 inches.

Since it is a manual downrigger, the product requires no batteries, so you don’t have to worry that you will go out of power.

Cons

A few buyers found the product to be a bit difficult to operate and too small for deep water fishing.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($70.69)

 

 

 

3. Scotty 1060 Depthking

 

Whether you’re new to fishing or you’ve already gained some experience in this field, this downrigger should not go unchecked before you make your final decision. The unit sports features that will up your game and help you easily and comfortably engage in many fishing sessions.

Featuring a high-speed 2-foot per turn spool as well as an extension handle to provide you with additional leverage with heavy weights, this manual downrigger is compact and easy to operate. It comes with an automatic brake and a 23-inch long-¾-inch diameter boom to take your experience one step further.

The stainless steel used for the boom promises to make durability one of the main features you will benefit from when employing this item. Furthermore, the product sports an adjustable rod holder as well as a deck mounting bracket.

To help you cover your fishing needs, the unit boasts 200-foot of 150-pound cable. The cable is also made from stainless steel to keep up with extended use and heavy weights. Even if the downrigger comes with such remarkable characteristics, it is lightweight as it weighs only 2.20 pounds, which will boost your comfort when using it.

Pros

Committed to lasting and boosting your fishing experience, this downrigger is worth adding to your list of options if what you want is a durable, lightweight, and compact unit.

Thanks to the extension handle featured, you can enjoy extra leverage for heavy weights and, thus, employ the unit for various fishing needs.

The stainless steel boom featured has a ¾-inch diameter and is 23-inch long and the unit comes with an adjustable rod holder, which means it can suit different needs and fishing styles.

The pack also includes a 200-foot of 150-pound cable that is also made from stainless steel in order to keep up with frequent fishing sessions.

Despite such features, the product weighs only 2.20 pounds, so you can use it for a long time without your comfort being affected.

Cons

Since it is a manual downrigger, the unit might require harder one-man operation, although buyers who tried it have no complaints regarding this aspect.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($177.6)

 

 

 

4. Scotty 1050 Depthmaster Manual

 

If your old downrigger no longer does its job properly and you need a new one, this manual model from Scotty might be right up your alley. Durability, ease of use, and enhanced performance are the benefits it promises to deliver.

To make sure it won’t break or fail to work anytime soon, the product features quality materials that allow for extended use. You will thus get a stainless steel boom with a length of 23 inches and a diameter of ¾ inches. Furthermore, the unit sports an automatic brake and comes with an extension handle that ensures additional leverage.

The rod holders are fully adjustable and so is the descent speed as it ranges between 5 ft/min to over 300 ft/min. In order for you to up your comfort when using this unit, the 1-foot per turn spool was designed in such a way to allow for one-hand operation. You can even operate it from a sitting position.

Given its manual design, the downrigger weighs only 2.2 pounds and measures 28.5 x 9.6 x 6.5 inches. This means that using it for a long time won’t affect your comfort and you can easily add it to your fishing gear.

Pros

Lightweight and durable, this downrigger is an option you might want to take into account whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned angler.

The 23-foot boom has a ¾-inch diameter and features stainless steel, a material that ensures durability.

To provide you with extra leverage when needed, the unit comes with an extension handle and also features an automatic brake.

The rod holder is fully adjustable for a more personalized experience whereas the 1-foot per turn spool allows for one-hand operation.

Since fishing sessions can stretch over hours, the item was built with your comfort in mind and, therefore, features a lightweight build that weighs only 2.2 pounds.

The unit is also easy to add to your fishing gear and transport, considering its dimensions and weight.

Cons

At least one user says that controlling the drop speed using only the brake might be a bit difficult.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($153.24)

 

 

 

5. Cannon Magnum 10 STX

 

Fishing might seem a leisure experience yet it might easily turn into a challenging activity. The quality of the gear you use counts a lot when it comes to the success of your fishing sessions as well as to how much comfort you get to enjoy when fishing. This downrigger from Cannon was built to up your fishing game while keeping the entire experience comfortable.

With a 20-lb weight capacity as well as a 250-foot per minute retrieval rate, the unit promises to make your fishing experience easier and more enjoyable as it will allow you to rapidly and comfortably retrieve the weight by simply pushing the button it comes with.

To further boost your experience and cater to your various fishing sessions, the product boasts a boom that extends from 24 inches to 53 inches. Moreover, the downrigger offers five retrieve and deploy speeds that can easily be adjusted.

The spool and boom are made from stainless steel, which means you will get to use the item for a long time before it fails to work. The Magnum 10 STX also comes with a 360-degree swivel base that can only add to your overall fishing experience and performance.

Pros

Sporting quality materials and a thoughtful design, this downrigger should not be ignored before you place your order as its features are committed to boosting your fishing experience.

The boom and spool are made from stainless steel, which means that you will get to employ the unit for a long time.

To cover a variety of fishing needs, the boom extends from 24 inches to 53 inches and the unit comes with five adjustable deploy and retrieve speeds.

This electric downrigger has also been appreciated for its 20-lb weight capacity and 250-foot per minute retrieval rate.

Thanks to the preset depths, you can easily store up to five depths you often use and thus be able to get your bait back to the area of your interest.

Cons

Given the fact that this unit is an electric model, it weighs 25 pounds, which some users might find to be a bit uncomfortable.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($515.62)

 

 

 

Our Comprehensive Buying Guide

 

The fishing gear you use has a lot to say when it comes to the success of your fishing sessions and to how comfortable your activity is. If you’ve already purchased most of the gear you need to go out there for your catch and the only thing left is the downrigger, this buying guide might be of help.

What is a downrigger rod? How do you use Scotty downriggers? And what should you look for if you decide to buy one? To help you find the product you need with greater ease, we will try to go through these questions and the product features that require attention below.

 

 

How do downriggers work?

Although they might seem complicated, especially if you’re a beginner, downriggers are actually simple devices that will lower or raise the heavy weight you’ve attached to the steel cable and measure with great accuracy the depth while the cable is being paid out. When used for trolling, the downrigger will help you run lures at certain depths.

These items are mounted to the gunwale of the boat and basic models consist of a spool of steel cable, a clutch for descent controlling, a weight, a rod holder, a release clip, and a boom.

 

Manual vs. electric downriggers

What are the best downriggers? The answer to this question depends on your particular needs, the budget you have at disposal, and what the money can buy when limited by a certain budget. The market offers manual and electric downriggers and your fishing style and goals will help you choose between these two types.

Both manual and electric downriggers come with advantages and disadvantages. The manual models are lighter, compact, and more cost-effective. Given their construction, they are easier to use and most of them work on most boat sizes. Plus, they require no batteries since they are manual.

Thanks to the many models available these days, you can even use a manual model as a Kayak downrigger. However, such downriggers are slower to retrieve and thus might require harder one-man operation.

Electric downriggers cost more yet deliver benefits many anglers appreciate. They are faster, which counts a lot when it comes to fishing. A few minutes can make a significant difference. Morever, they allow for single-handed operation and they usually come with all the features needed for you to use them right away.

The downside is that they are heavier and larger and require constant power. Furthermore, they might not be ideal for small boats.

 

Materials used

Whether you’re interested in getting a cheap downrigger or your budget allows you to purchase more expensive models, there is one thing you should always pay attention to and that is the quality of the materials used.

All the parts of a downrigger are important but special attention should be paid to the cable and the boom it comes with. These parts are usually made of stainless steel, which is appreciated for keeping up with extended use.

A stainless steel cable is stronger and has a greater resistance to corrosion yet it is also noisier and tougher on hands. You will also find synthetic braided cables that ensure higher tensile strength and are easier to tie. Plus, such cables are quieter and create less blowback. Still, synthetic braided cables are relatively expensive and tough on your hands as well.

Even if you cannot afford to buy the best electric downrigger, you still need to take into account the durability of the model you want to purchase since fishing can get really tough at times. Durability is thus one of the main benefits to consider before ordering. Don’t forget about ease of operation, the mounting system type featured, and the unit weight as they all contribute to your performance and comfort.

 

 

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