7 Best Baitcasting Reels For Beginner ( Top Picks for 2021)

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When going out to fish, every angler intends to come back with several catches. To make sure this happens, it’s essential to get a baitcasting reel. A baitcaster will help ensure your accuracy and give you better control of the line. Getting the ideal baitcasting reel, especially for a beginner, can be challenging. Most people insist that baitcasters are hard to use, so you need to get a reel that will not make fishing more complicated. Baitcasting reels for beginners are gaining popularity, and before making a purchase, you need to consider their size, weight, and durability.

Top 7 Baitcasting reels for beginners ( comparison Table)

ImageProductFeaturesButtons
Best Overall Reel
Abu Garcia Black Max & Max X
Abu Garcia Black Max & Max X
  • Weight (oz) : 7.4
  • Gear Ratio : 6.4:1
  • Ball Bearings : 4+1
  • Max Drag (lbs) : 15
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KastKing Royale Legend GTKastKing Royale Legend GT
  • Weight (oz) : 7.2
  • Gear Ratio : 7.2:1
  • Ball Bearings : 5+1
  • Max Drag (lbs) : 17.64
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Best Premium Choice Reel
SHIMANO SLX DC
SHIMANO SLX DC
  • Weight (oz) : 7.6
  • Gear Ratio : 6.3:1-8.2:1
  • Ball Bearings : 4+1
  • Max Drag (lbs) : 12
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Best Budget Friendly Reel
Piscifun Torrent
Piscifun Torrent
  • Weight (oz) : 8
  • Gear Ratio : 5.3:1, 7.1:1
  • Ball Bearings : 5+1
  • Max Drag (lbs) : 18
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Cadence CB5Cadence CB5
  • Weight (oz) : 7.5
  • Gear Ratio : 6.6:1
  • Ball Bearings : 7+1
  • Max Drag (lbs) : 20
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Pflueger President XTPflueger President XT
  • Weight (oz) : 7.7
  • Gear Ratio : 7.3:1
  • Ball Bearings : 9
  • Max Drag (lbs) : 12
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RUNCL Baitcasting Reel MercedRUNCL Baitcasting Reel Merced
  • Weight (oz) : 7.76
  • Gear Ratio : 7.1:1
  • Ball Bearings : 10+1
  • Max Drag (lbs) : 17.6
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1. Abu Garcia Black Max & Max X Low Profile Baitcast Fishing Reel

As a beginner, you need a baitcasting reel that is easy to handle. The  Abu Garcia Max & Max X Low Profile reel will be the perfect choice due to its lightweight design. It features a one-piece graphite frame and side plate’s construction. In addition to the low-profile design, the reel features a recessed reel foot that offers a relaxed feel.

Every beginner will enjoy the four stainless steel ball bearings that make casting easier.  The power disk system and Magtrax brake system boosts your casting accuracy by exerting consistent brake pressure. On the other hand, the drag is powerful and provides the smoothest feel even when dealing with hard-pulling fish.

Key Features

  • Machined aluminum spool
  • MagTrax brake system
  • Compact bent handle and star
  • Large PVC knobs
  • Recessed Reel Foot
  • Power Disc drag system
  • Lightweight and super comfortable
  • Enhances great accuracy
  • Perfect for every level angler
  • Braking System Magnetic

2. KastKing Royale Legend GT Baitcasting Reel

If you are fishing for the first time, build up your confidence with this reel built with the angler’s needs in mind. Featuring a low profile design, beginners will be assured of its lightness. You will also enjoy using this reel due to the incredible synthetic soft-grip handles that offer the most comfortable grip popularly known as the “Grand Touch.”

Experience the smoothest cast and retrieve with this reel as the gear ratio stands at 7.2:1  plus six ball bearings. Additionally, you will experience incredible casting control due to the eight crossfire magnets. On the other hand, the drag consists of a quadruple disc carbon drag that delivers up to 17.6lbs of drag.  Every beginner will enjoy the reel’s durability due to the precision brass main gear and the microclick tension adjustment knob that makes it easy to fine-tune your spool tension.

Key Features

  • Audible, Micro click Tension Adjustment
  • Eight cross-fire magnets for improved braking efficiency
  • Hamai Precision cut brass main gear and pinion gear
  • Red Anodized aluminum spool
  • Incredible performance
  • Lightweight and Smooth
  • Comfortable and ergonomic handle
  • Inches per Turn 29.8
  • Brake system Magnetic

3. Shimano SLX DC

With the Shimano SLX DC baitcasting reel, you will be enjoying quality at its best. The construction of the reel consists of a HAGANE metal body that is highly rigid. Additionally, it features Shimano’s newest innovation of the Intelligent Digital Control braking system that is easy to use as it comes with four settings, so even beginners will not have a hard time even on their first day. Also, there is the S3D spool technology that reduces spool vibration.

Its lightweight feature makes the reel perfect for different level anglers. The drag on the other hand, is  powerful and extra smooth, even when dealing with hard-pulling fish. The gear ratios of the Shimano SLX DC are 6.3:1 to 8.2:1 so, you can choose your most preferred reel depending on your retrieve speed.  Moreover, the bearings count of 4+1 ensures smoothness for any level angler and ensures you experience the smoothest casts.

Key Features

  • A HAGANE body construction
  • Shimano Stable S3D Spool design
  • Intelligent Digital Control Braking System
  • Super Free Spool
  • Sturdy Construction
  • Zero friction
  • Powerful and smooth drag

4. Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Reel

The reel are available in right-hand and left-hand orientations so; you can choose the reel that works best for you. The low-profile design makes it perfect for all-level anglers and especially for beginners. With the 7.1:1 and 5.3:1 gear ratios, you can target fish that require high-speed and medium-speed retrievals and be sure of a catch at the end of the day. The smoothness of this reel is unmatched due to the six ball bearings that let you fish in any condition.

With the five strategically placed magnets, you can forget about backlashes completely. Additionally, the  powerful construction ensures you enjoy unparalleled performance plus a powerful drag that lets you deal even with hard-pulling fish.

Key Features

  • Engineered and Precision-cut gears
  • Four Customer fit carbon fiber drag washers
  • Five strategically placed magnets
  • Double line winding shafts
  • Reduces tangles and bird nests
  • Powerful and smooth drag
  • Top-quality gears
  • Brake system Magnetic brake

5. Cadence Fishing CB5 Baitcasting Reels

Get the Cadence CB5 baitcasting reel and enjoy superior performance. You also get to enjoy a 90-day risk-free trial to test its efficiency. The frame and side plates consist of a graphite construction that maintains the reels lightweight and strength. The palm-sized reel will give you the most comfortable experience making it the perfect choice for beginners.

You can be assured of unmatched smoothness following the seven ball bearings and an instant anti-reverse bearing. The 6.6:1 gear ratio will also give you the confidence to try out different fishing applications. There is also an aluminum spool and spool tension knob, hard brass main gear, and pinion gears to increase durability.

Key Features

  • Carbon Fiber Drag system
  • External adjustable magnetic brakes
  • Machined aluminum spool and an aluminum adjustable spool tension knob
  • Hard brass main gear and pinion gear
  • Palm compact design
  • Highly affordable
  • Lightweight construction
  • Fast Retrieves
  • Inches Per Turn 25inches

6. Pflueger President XT Low Profile Reel 

Every beginner will enjoy working with this reel due to its lightweight design, making it comfortable to hold them even for long hours.  Their handle also ensures super comfort as it consists of aircraft-grade aluminum construction, and it features soft-touch rubber knobs for excellent grips.

The nine ball bearings will ensure you enjoy the smoothest casts. Additionally, you can be assured of incredible durability due to the magnetic braking system that controls spool rotation and backlash. The reel also gives you a chance to achieve fast retrieves due to the 7.3:1 gear ratio. Additionally, it has a powerful drag so that you can deal with hard-pulling fish.

Key Features

  • Nine bearing system
  • C30 side plates
  • Lightweight and sturdy
  • Super comfortable handle
  • Incredible durability
  • Magnetic braking system
  • Recovery Rate 31 inches
  • Ergonomic aluminum handle with soft-touch knobs

7. RUNCL Baitcasting Reel Merced Baitcaster

There is nothing not to love about this low-profile baitcasting reel, built for all level anglers. Beginners and veterans will have quite an easy time working with it since it is durable and high-quality. You will find the right-hand oriented and left-hand oriented reel to choose the best product for you. It’s also quite comfortable due to the 10cm long ergonomic handle that gives you leverage when dealing with different species.

You will enjoy smoothness at its best with the 10+1 ball bearing system. The sealed drag system of four premium carbon fiber washers maintains its durability and provides a powerful drag of 17.6 drags.  Additionally, the 2-tone aluminum alloy spool reduces the reel’s weight and  aligning the line is made easy due to the anti-slip metal grip on the spool. The braking system on the other hand, consists of 10 magnetic beans that provide a smooth operation while casting.

Key Features

  • Precision magnetic brake system
  • Sealed drag system
  • Premium ceramic line guide
  • Compact and palm-size
  • Hollow out handle and TPR knob
  • Ergonomic handle
  • Powerful and smooth drag
  • Lightweight
  • Inch per Turn 29.8inches
  • Handle length 4inches/10cm
  • Carbon fiber washers 4

Best Beginner Baitcasting Combo

Beginners usually have a hard time choosing the right baitcasting reel and combo. When purchasing your combo, make sure you heed these products’ weight, comfort, and quality. Low-profile combos are the most preferred baitcasting combos, especially for beginners, as they are lighter and more comfortable so that you can use them for long hours of fishing.

Benefits of Low Profile combos

  • They are compact and easy to handle
  • Low profile combos are comfortable
  • They are lightweight

Drawbacks

  • Some of them are not always durable

KastKing Crixus Fishing Rod and Reel Combo

KastKing Combos, just like other KastKing products, do not disappoint. With these products, you will enjoy impressive casting and precision at its best.

The rod, to start with, ensures maximum sensitivity and lightness without giving away its strength due to the IM6 graphite blank construction. Offering power ratings from light to medium-heavy, you will have the confidence to deal with different fish species like Panfish, Walleye, and Bass.

The reels, on the other hand, are made with the angler’s needs in mind. Their construction consists of carbon frames and aluminum spools, and these materials ensure the durability and strength of the reel. The baitcasting reels come with 7+1 ball bearings so that you can be assured of the smoothest casts. They are also super comfortable as the SuperPolymwer handles offer an exceptional grip and excellent leverage. The stainless-steel guide frames with Zirconium oxide rings, gives you the power to deal with grown fish and hard-pulling species. .

Key Features

  • Rod’s Power Ratings from light to medium-heavy
  • Rod’s lengths range from 5’6″ to 6’6″
  • 7+1 stainless steel bearings
  • Super polymer Handles
  • Stainless Steel Guide Frames with Zirconium oxide rings

What to Look for while Buying an Entry Level Baitcasting Reel

Gear Ratio

The reels gear ratio will help determine your retrieval speed. As an entry-level buyer, you need to ensure that you get the best product. A gear ratio of 6.4:1 will work perfectly; it lets you excel in both slow and fast applications. It will allow you to deal with varying fish species, including panfish, walleye, and trout. However, you can get higher gear ratios or lower gear ratios depending on your intended retrieves.

Weight

Your reel’s weight determines how well you can handle it. As a beginner, it’s advised not to go for very heavy reels as they limit your handling. Low-profile reels are the most recommended for beginners; they are lightweight, and most of them still maintain their strengths despite their lightness.

Ball Bearings

As a beginner, you need to ensure you maintain maximum smoothness during your casts. Therefore, a high bearing count will help get rid of tangles and bird nests.  Five ball bearings and above will work perfectly and ensure you have an easy time fishing. Some people will choose to get bearings as high as 10, and it all comes down to what works best for you.

Comfort

As new anglers, you need to ensure you are comfortable at all times. The comfort will depend on the size of your reel and the handle you choose. When purchasing a baitcasting reel for the first time, make sure the handle is ergonomic and slip-resistant. This will help you get rid of exhaustion. Also, the size of your reel will determine how comfortable you are. As a beginner, get the smaller-sized reels as they are easier to handle and use.

Drag

When you are going to fish, you are often uncertain of the species or size of fish you will be dealing with. Therefore, it is essential that you get a reel with a powerful drag so that you can deal with every species you encounter. As a beginner, make sure you get a reel with a drag to handle hard-pulling and vigorous fish.

Best Beginner Baitcaster Setup

To ensure your success, you need to ensure you have the right baitcaster setup for a beginner. The right setup will help you deal with different species and enhance a successful fishing experience.

Firstly, for a successful setup, you need to ensure you have the right tools. These tools include,

  • Baitcaster
  • Bait
  • Rod
  • Line

With the tools now, you can start the setup.

  • First, locate the braking system. If you are using a centrifugal baitcaster, you can find the brake by removing the side plate on the opposite side of the reel’s handle. If the baitcaster is magnetic, you just need to adjust the knob.
  • Secondly, adjust the brakes. To do this, you can push the inward levers to the center or disengage the brakes by pressing the braking levers away from the center.
  • Next, adjust the tension knob this way; you can increase the spool tension.
  • After adjusting the tension, test it. You hold the rod tip and disengage it by pressing the button meant for spool release. Keep on making this adjustment as the bait gently falls to the ground.
  • Then, ensure you have a  firm grip on the baitcaster.
  • After you have secured a firm grip, let the line go. For beginners, let an 8 inch to 12-inch line go. The length line is measured from the rod tip to the bait.
  • Lastly, release the spool and cast. To do this, click on the spool release switch. Once the spool is released, place your thumb on the spool.

Baitcasting Reel Tips for Beginners

Most people have a hard time using baitcasters for the first time, and most of the time, they experience bird nests and tangles. To avoid these problems, you can use the following tips.

  • First, it’s important to note that baitcasting reels work best with heavier lines. So when starting, make sure you have a heavy line mainly in the range of 14-17lbs. The large diameter of the line does not allow it to come off the spool, and a monofilament line will be an ideal choice for beginners.
  • Secondly, monitor the movement of the lure to test the brake adjustments. Your lure should gradually fall to the ground. If it does not, loosen the brake adjustment dial on the side of the reel. If it falls too quickly and makes the spool overrun, tighten the brake adjustment dial. This adjustment should be made every time you change your lure.
  • After the setup, make sure you control the spool with your thumb. Press the release button and hold your thumb on the line to prevent the spool from turning.
  • When casting, remove the pressure from the line and allow it to come off the spool. The thumb should still be in light contact. At the end of the cast, you should apply increasing pressure until the spool stops rotating.
  • Ensure you get a baitcasting reel with a magnetic drag control as it makes it easier to use the baitcasters, especially for beginners. While learning to cast, set the magnetic drag high as it helps reduce backlash, but the casing distance is reduced.
  • Finally, it’s important to note that casting a baitcasting reel is not about how much force you use, and the secret lies in the technique and timing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Baitcasters Good For Beginners?

Previously, baitcasters were not prevalent among beginners since people insisted they were hard to use and heavier. However, in recent years with new technologies, manufacturers have come up with baitcasters ideal for beginners. These baitcasters will help you deal with a wide variety of fish, and most anglers prefer them as they handle heavier lines and lures. Baitcasters for beginners come with high durability and quality so; you don’t have to worry about them failing you. Therefore, if you are wondering whether baitcasters are good for beginners, then the answer is yes.

What Is The Easiest Baitcasting Reel To Use?

People insist that spinning reels are the easiest reels to use, especially for beginners. However, with a little practice and care, you will find that baitcasting reels are also easy to use. The easiest baitcasting reel to use is a lightweight baitcasting reel with technologies like the super free spool, Intelligent Digital Control braking system, Audible, Micro Click Tension Adjustments, and S3D spool. The more advanced a reel is, the easier it is to use.

What Gear Ratio Is Good For An Entry-Level Baitcasting Reel?

The different gear ratios work perfectly for different applications. When looking for a baitcasting reel for fast retrieves, a high gear ratio will work perfectly, and when looking for slow retrieves, you can go for lower gear ratios. A gear ratio of 6.4:1 will work perfectly for a beginner as they offer medium speed giving you the chance to explore all possibilities.

What Size Baitcaster Is Good For Beginners?

Baitcasting reels come in sizes ranging from size 100 to 400. However, it is important to note that the baitcasters sizes are not standardized, and every manufacturer rates their baitcasters differently. For a beginner, a small baitcasting reel will give you the confidence to start fishing. That’s low profile baitcasting reels excel when used by beginners. They are comfortable, easy to handle, and they will not leave you exhausted.

Final Thoughts

Beginners will have it rough the first days using a baitcaster. Especially if they are not careful when purchasing the reel. However, with the right reel, you can get rid of bird nests, tangles and backlashes in a few days. The right baitcasting reel for beginners is determined by their size, weight, gear ratio, ball bearings and overall strength. In this article, we will help you determine the best baitcasting reel for a beginner.

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