Best Spinning Reels For Bass Fishing in 2023

best spinning reels for bass

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Congratulations on your decision to replace your ever-disappointing spinning reel. Being here is the first step to finding the best spinning reel for bass fishing. Like you, I was disappointed and equally frustrated after buying countless spinning reels only to end up with substandard fishing tools. That’s why I took my time to test many spinning reels and write this guide to help you avoid making the same mistakes I did. 

Before spending your hard-earned dollars on a good spinning reel you hardly know about, please read this guide entirely to learn the best spinning reels for bass fishing and why we like them. 

Ernest Grey

I love to test new fishing gadgets and share my opinion.

Top 3 Best Spinning Reels for Bass Fishing - Our Favorites

Best Overall Spinning Reel for Bass
Abu Garcia Revo SX

Abu Garcia Revo SX

Most Popular Bass Fishing Reel
Pflueger President

Pflueger President

Best Bass Fishing Reel on a Budget
Okuma Ceymar

Okuma Ceymar

Table of Contents

Best Spinning Reels for Bass Fishing In 2023 - We Tested It

1. Abu Garcia Revo SX – Best Overall Spinning Reels For Bass
2. Pflueger President – Most Popular Spinning Reels For Bass
3. Okuma Ceymar – Best Budget Spinning Reels For Bass
4. Penn Battle III – Best Versatility Spinning Reels For Bass
5. Pflueger Supreme – Best Smoothness Spinning Reels For Bass
6. Daiwa BG – Best Durability Spinning Reels For Bass
7. Cadence CS8 – Best Bass Spinning Reels For Big Fish
8. KastKing Sharky III  – Best Inshore Spinning Reels for Bass
9. Shimano Vanford – Best Bass Spinning Reels For Saltwater
10. Lew’s Team Lew’s HyperMag Speed Spool – Best Spinning Reels for Advanced Angler


Best Overall Spinning Reel

Abu Garcia Revo SX

Abu Garcia Revo SX

WHY WE LIKE IT: Abu Garcia Revo SX is renowned for durability and top-notch performance. The Infini brake system and Carbon Matrix drag are the additional advanced features that enhance its versatility and accuracy. The high-strength aluminum alloy frame provides an exceptional build quality that guarantees longevity under heavy use, making it a wonderful spinning reel for bass in its class.

  • Gear Ratio: 6.6:1
  • Weight: 1 lb.
  • Max Drag: 24lbs
  • Ball Bearings: 9+1
  • Line Capacity(lb./yd): 12/145



OVERVIEW: The ability to customize and adjust the spinning reel to fit different fishing conditions is one of the reasons I believe you should consider purchasing the Revo SX spinning reel. In my opinion, the high-quality and durable construction of this reel guarantees longevity, allowing you to use it for years with regular maintenance. When making a decision, I suggest taking into account your budget, fishing preferences, and style, as well as the specific fishing conditions you usually encounter. By choosing the Revo SX, I believe you can fulfill all these conditions and gain a competitive advantage over other anglers.

FEATURES: Revo SX’s specs are at par or superior to those of the competition, explaining why many serious anglers prefer this fishing reel. The impressive features, new technology, and regular updates by the manufacturer make it a top-performing spinning reel for bass fishing in its class.


Most Popular Spinning Reel

Pflueger President

Pflueger President

WHY WE LIKE IT: Pflueger President spinning reel is an incredible fishing gear renowned for its lightweight construction and smooth drag system. Stainless steel bearings combine with the aluminum spool and corrosion-resistant body to provide a durable and versatile quality spinning reel. The slow oscillation gearing system reduces the risk of tangles by ensuring even line lay to improve control, accuracy, and casting. 

  • Reel Size: 30
  • Braid Line Capacity (lb/yd): 10/250, 18/185, 20/130
  • Mono Line Capacity (lb/yd): 6/200, 8/140, 10/120
  • Retrieve Rate: 31.4 inches per turn
  • Gear Ratio: 5.2:1
  • Weight: 0.52lbs
  • Max Drag: 10 lbs



OVERVIEW: The corrosion-resistant body and lightweight construction make the Pflueger President spinning reel a great option for a serious angler. The smooth drag system ensures you reel in the catch without risking the lines or wasting too much energy. I found Pflueger President easy to use and requires little maintenance effort. It’s great for light fishing since the limited 10 lbs maximum drag is inefficient for large fish species. 

FEATURES: Pflueger President has good specifications compared to competitors in its price range. The corrosion-resistant graphite body makes it versatile for freshwater and saltwater fishing. It’s easy to use and doesn’t require much maintenance work. 


Best Budget Spinning Reel

Okuma Ceymar

Okuma Ceymar

WHY WE LIKE IT: Okuma Ceymar spinning reel has an excellent elliptical gearing system that aids in retrieving and fighting the fish. The corrosion-resistant graphite rotor and body make the reel versatile for freshwater and saltwater use. 

  • Gear Ratio: 5.0:1
  • Max Drag: 8 lbs
  • Weight: 0.375 lbs
  • Line Capacity (braid) lb/yd: 6/200, 8/160, 10/110
  • Line Capacity (mono) lb/yd: 2/270, 4/140, 6/110
  • Bearings: 6+1



OVERVIEW: Okuma Ceymar represents an affordable but efficient spinning reel you can rely on to perform. It’s suited for light fishing and is very easy to maintain. After using Okuma Ceymar, I was impressed by the smooth drag system that allowed me to reel the catch without putting in too much effort. I also found it relatively quiet, allowing me to focus on the catch. 

FEATURES: Although Okuma Ceymar lacks behind in terms of maximum drag system or line capacity compared to the competition, it still beats them in terms of price. Its versatility is also another benefit to consider. 


Best Versatility

Penn Battle III

Penn Battle III

WHY WE LIKE IT: One of the reasons we like Penn Battle III is its ability to withstand saltwater fishing. The full-metal body, side plates, and rotor construction offer protection from corrosion and improve longevity. The HT-100 carbon fiber drag system offers consistent and smooth drag performance, allowing you to battle a huge catch in heavy surf. The high-speed gear ratio enables fast retrieval, providing optimal surf fishing reel performance.

  • Gear ratio: 6.2:1
  • Retrieve Rate: 41 inches per turn
  • Ball bearings: 5+1
  • Line Capacity (Braid )lb/yd: 360/15, 185/30, 260/20
  • Line Capacity (Mono) lb/yd: 240/10, 210/12, 180/15
  • Max Drag: 30 Lbs
  • Weight: 0.551 lbs



OVERVIEW: One key reason to buy Penn Battle III is its reliability and durability. The construction materials withstand harsh fishing conditions, including heavy use and exposure to saltwater. It requires little maintenance to perform optimally. Consider factors like the type of fishing technique you’ll be doing, as it’s equipped for offshore, inshore, pier, and surf fishing. Your experience level also comes in handy, as you may require the best surf fishing rod with a strong drag system to reel in bigger fish. 

FEATURES: Penn Battle III goes toe-to-toe with some of the best spinning reels for bass in the market. Some of its specs are at par or exceed those of the competition. For instance, the Carbon Fiber Drag System offers a maximum drag of 40 lbs, which is perfect for targeting large fish. The full metal body, side plate, and rotor protect the delicate internal components while keeping salt water away. Penn Battle III offers a perfect fishing reel choice for its price point. 


Best Smoothness

Pflueger Supreme

Pflueger Supreme

WHY WE LIKE IT: The Pflueger Supreme is renowned for its unparalleled smoothness caused by its anti-twist line roller and ten stainless steel ball bearings. The lightweight magnesium rotor and body are perfect for extended fishing without experiencing fatigue. The carbon drag system is reliable as it provides consistent drag pressure capable of reeling in a big catch. The smoothness favors anglers who prefer a seamless fishing experience. 

  • Anti-twist line roller
  • Braid ready spool
  • Ten stainless steel ball bearings
  • Slow oscillation gearing
  • The sealed carbon drag system
  • Retrieve rate: 25.6-35.7 inches per turn
  • Soft touch knob



OVERVIEW: One reason you should consider buying a Pflueger Supreme is its smoothness. In my opinion, the smooth reeling experience offered by this reel is truly exceptional. The sealed carbon drag system, anti-twist line roller, and ten stainless steel ball bearings combine to provide an incredibly smooth operation that can greatly enhance your fishing experience. This feature is perfect not only for fatigued anglers who fish for extended periods, but also for those who have recently injured their arms, as it reduces strain and allows for comfortable and effortless reeling.

FEATURES: Pflueger Supreme stands out from the competition due to its smoothness caused by ten ball bearings. Thanks to the anti-twist line roller, it also has one of the best-stopping power. A carbon fiber drag system helps improve its durability. The mid-range price is perfect for someone who doesn’t wish to break the bank. 


Best Durability

Daiwa BG

Daiwa BG

WHY WE LIKE IT: The Daiwa BG spinning reel has a ‘Hard Bodyz’ aluminum housing, providing durability and increased strength without additional weight. The waterproof drag system combines with the oversize ‘Digigear’ system for added smoothness to help you reel in even the biggest and most stubborn fish. 

  • Ball bearings: 6+1 stainless steel
  • Max Drag: 22 lbs
  • Line Retrieval: 47.4 inches per crank
  • Drag System: Waterproof Carbon ATD
  • Gear Ratio: 5.6:1
  • Weight: 1.4 lbs
  • Line Roller: Twist Buster II



OVERVIEW: In my opinion, Daiwa BG stands out for its incredible strength. Personally, I believe that the air rotor and screw-in handle are game-changers for saltwater spinning reels, as they allow me to effortlessly tackle and reel in even the most stubborn and massive catches without worrying about the line breaking. Another aspect that I truly appreciate is the waterproof drag system, which ensures that the gearbox remains protected from any potential water damage. Moreover, the versatility of the Daiwa BG impresses me, as it performs equally well in both freshwater and saltwater fishing scenarios. You might also like to read our guide for saltwater fishing rods.

FEATURES: Daiwa BG has some impressive specs that rival most of its competition. For a mid-range spinning reel, it has some high-end features like an air rotor and a solid screw-in handle that would only find in expensive spinning reels. It offers value for money and competes well with other reels in its class.


Best For Big Fish

Cadence CS8

Cadence CS8

WHY WE LIKE IT: Cadence CS8’s carbon fiber drag system ensures a precise retrieve, even when reeling in a larger fish, without damaging the lines. The reel has a corrosion-resistant, durable magnesium side plate and frame for strength and efficiency. 

  • Weight: 0.4lbs
  • Max Drag: 20lbs
  • Handle: Carbon Fiber Handle
  • Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
  • Number of Bearings: 9+1
  • Line Capacity (Braid) lb/yd: 20/220, 30/165, 40/120
  • Line Capacity (Mono) lb/yd: 8/220, 10/165, 12/120



OVERVIEW: The value for money is one of the reasons why you should buy Cadence CS8. It has high-quality features like a magnesium frame and a carbon fiber drag system that you only find in high-end spinning reels. The CS8 is one of the best budget reels with high-end features I’ve had a chance to use. It’s simple to use, making it easy for a novice angler.

FEATURES: Considering the price point, it’s safe to say that Cadence CS8 stands out from its competition, given that price point. It offers an excellent balance of affordability and quality, making it perfect for anglers looking for a versatile reel. 


Best Inshore

KastKing Sharky III

KastKing Sharky III

WHY WE LIKE IT: KastKing Sharky III is durable and has an impressive smooth performance, especially in inshore fishing. The water-resistant features protect the reel from corrosion, prolonging its lifespan. The reel has a great drag system to ease reeling in the catch with inshore fishing rod.

  • Gear Ratio: 5.2:1
  • Bearing: 10+1
  • Weight: 0.575 lbs
  • Max Drag: 39.5 lbs
  • Line Capacity (braid) lb/yd: 20/260, 30/180, 40/140
  • Line Capacity (mono) lb/yd: 6/260, 8/220, 10/165



OVERVIEW: The corrosion-resistant materials and high-quality construction of KastKing Sharky III are reasons to buy this product. The features make it suitable for inshore saltwater fishing and long-term use without needing to replace it. After using KastKing Sharky III, I found it durable and highly reliable, especially in saltwater fishing. The powerful drag system allowed me to fight and keep large catches effortlessly, especially pairing it with saltwater fishing rod.

FEATURES: KastKing Sharky III’s brass gear and main shaft are made of stainless steel, which stands up to saltwater and is corrosion-resistant. The powerful drag system allows for reeling in and fighting large fish species. 


Best Saltwater

Shimano Vanford

Shimano Vanford

WHY WE LIKE IT: Shimano Vanford is ideal for saltwater spinning reels should be mentioned since it’s made of Ci4+ material that is corrosion-resistant and strong to withstand harsh fishing environments. Additionally, it has advanced technology like MicroModule Gear II systems providing a smooth operation, especially when reeling in the catch. 

  • Bearings: 7+1
  • Weight: 0.5 lbs
  • Line Capacity (braid) lb/yd: 20/360, 40/255, 50/185
  • Line Capacity (mono) lb/yd: 12/270, 20/220, 40/150
  • Maximum Drag: 24 lbs
  • Gear Ratio: 6.0:1



OVERVIEW: Shimano Vanford is built to withstand harsh saltwater fishing environments without compromising quality. The advanced features provide smooth dragging and allow you to fish in salt waters for extended periods. From my experience using Shimano Vanford, I loved the long-distance casting capabilities, as I could target more fish than anglers using most spinning reels. It’s easy to use and maintain. 

FEATURES: Shimano Vanford has competitive specifications, which places it at the top of spinning reels in its class. The corrosion-resistant, precise, smooth drag enhances its performance, ensuring a premium spinning reel. 


Best For Advanced

Lew's Team Lew's HyperMag Speed Spool

Lew's Team Lew's HyperMag Speed Spool

WHY WE LIKE IT: Lew’s Team Lew’s HyperMag Speed Spool has a unique, powerful drag system, light magnesium side plates and body, and an 11-bearing system to enhance performance. The Speed Keeper hook keeper makes storing lures quickly without requiring additional accessories. 

  • Weight: 0.34 lbs
  • Gear Ratios: 7.5:1
  • Bearings: 10+1
  • Line Capacity (lb/yd) 12/110
  • Max Drag: 20 lbs
  • Infini II spool



OVERVIEW: The HyperMag Speed Spool has a strong, durable magnesium body and side plates. The smooth and precise retrieve allows accurate casting and reeling in the catch. That’s why HyperMag Speed Spool is among the best baitcasting reels for an experienced angler. As a bass angler using HyperMag Speed Spool, I found the reel durable and able to withstand harsh fishing conditions. The smooth and accurate drag helped me fight huge and stubborn fish. However, they could improve the line capacity, making it perfect for deep-water fishing. 

FEATURES: The HyperMag Speed Spool is built for high performance, including excellent casting distance, the magnesium body, and a smooth and precise retrieval system. 

Things To Consider Before Buying A Spinning Reel For Bass

Construction Materials

The best spinning reel should have corrosion-resistant construction materials like carbon fiber or aluminium. Additionally, the magnesium body is perfect for durability. Additionally, you should consider the rotor material as it helps to retrieve the line. Aluminium rotors are perfect as they’re stronger and more durable.

The bail material is equally important since it aids in retrieving the line. Stainless steel and aluminum bail materials are optimal.

Reel Size

For bass fishing, an optimal reel size of 2500 to 4000 is optimal since it can hold an optimal line while remaining light for extended fishing. 

Reel size affects the overal weight, drag system power, and line capacity. 


Anglers prefer a lighter spinning reel as it’s easy to handle without experiencing fatigue after prolonged use. An ideal weight for a reel is 0.05 lbs. Injuries like blisters or twisting wrists rarely occur when using a light spinning reel. 

A lighter spinning reel is also sensitive, ensuring you notice activities happening underwater, like subtle bites. 

Lighter spinning reels tend to balance better, which improves your fishing experience. 


A great spool should be made of lighter construction materials like aluminum. It should also be large to allow longer casts and smooth for a consistent drag system. 

The spool design is also crucial, as a tapered design improves casting design distance and accuracy by preventing line twists. 

Also, a good spool system should have proper line management, like an anti-twist roller that prevents line tangle and snarls. 

Line Capacity

A line capacity of 6 to 12 lbs when bass fishing will do. However, fishing in deep waters requires a higher line capacity. 

The bass fishing techniques you use will also determine the line capacity. For example, fishing under heavy cover like thick weeds or brush requires a higher line capacity than clear waters. 

Line type is also crucial, as Braided lines are thinner than monofilament lines. As such, you’d need a smaller line capacity if you’re fishing with braided lines than you would for monofilament lines. 

Gear Ratio

A gear ratio determines the retrieve speed, allowing you to reel in the catch quickly. For optimal bass fishing, you’d need a gear ratio of 6:1.

The gear ratio is the number of times the spool rotates every time you turn the reel handle. 

A higher hear ratio means the spool rotates faster, which increases the retrieve speed. It comes in handy when you’re fishing aggressive bass. 

A higher gear ratio also comes in handy when you’re using fast-moving lures requiring fast retrieval. 

Power and torque influence the type of gear ratio a reel has. A higher gear ratio has lower power and torque than a lower gear ratio. 

Bearing System

A bearing system determines the fishing reel’s efficiency and performance and prevents lines from breaking when fighting a bass. You’d need a reel with at least four stainless steel or ceramic bearings. 

The bearings’ quality is worth considering, as high-quality ones provide a smoother and more durable reel. 

As for construction materials, stainless steel and ceramic ones tend to have a longer lifespan and can withstand harsh fishing conditions. 

Sealed bearings are great as they prevent debris and dirt from entering the reel. Doing so protects the reel from unnecessary damage, especially when fishing in dirty waters. 

Drag System

The drag system helps anglers fight and tire their catch, allowing for an easy reel. Choose a reel with an adjustable drag system to help you deal with different fishing needs. 

The construction material is equally important, and a carbon fiber drag system is more ideal for bass fishing. 

A drag capacity provides more control and prevents the line from breaking.

Anti-Reverse System

The anti-reverse system makes it possible to fight the fish by preventing the handle from turning backward when fighting the fish. A great anti-reverse system should engage quickly and lock in place. 

The anti-reverse system a reel uses are very crucial. Currently, there are two types – mechanical and instant. The mechanical uses a lever or dog to engage the anti-reverse, with instant using a one-way bearing to activate the anti-reverse feature and prevent the handle from turning back.

Spinning reels with a great anti-reverse system should also prevent backlash when casting, which causes the line to tangle and loop. 

The reel handle design determines how quickly and efficiently you engage the anti-reverse. Some reels have the anti-reverse trigger close to the handle, making it easier to operate it. 

Retrieve Speed

Retrieve speed determines how fast you reel in a catch. A great retrieving speed is beneficial when hunting fast bass or in open water. Bass fishing spinning reels with a high retrieve speed improves your chances of catching active bass species. A slow retrieve speed is perfect for enclosed fishing or targeting slow-moving bass. 

Price & Value

High-end spinning reels are costly and offer more advanced features and performances. However, the price point is not affordable for anglers on a budget. It’s crucial to balance price and performance and choose the one that gives the most value for money. Cheaper spinning reels don’t usually have premium features you’d find on high-end ones.

Frequently Asked Questions

You can use monofilament, braided, or fluorocarbon lines on your spinning reel. However, the line you choose will depend on your fishing needs. The braided line is strong, the monofilament line is affordable and versatile, and the fluorocarbon line is sensitive and nearly invincible.

A drag system of 10-12 lbs. is enough for bass fishing. However, it’s best to know the size of your target bass. It also depends on whether you’re fishing under heavy cover or a stronger current, as these conditions would require a lower drag setting. A spinning reel for bass fishing should have at least 14 lbs. drag system.

You’ll find a size spinning reel of 2000-3000 optimal for freshwater bass fishing. However, having a larger spinning reel is best if you’re targeting aggressive bass. They offer enough line capacity to fish in deep waters and under heavy covers. These spinning reels are lighter despite their physical appearances.

For bass fishing, you should choose a gear ratio of 6.2:1 – 7.1:1. Such a gear ratio allows you to target large bass due to the increased torque and power. It also makes it easy to reel in the catch, which is perfect for aggressive bass fishing. A spinning reel with a lower gear ratio is not ideal for active bass species.

Spinning reels are perfect for bass fishing as they’re easy to use, versatile for different fishing conditions, and can hold various fishing lines. They’re also lighter, suiting bass anglers who prefer extended fishing periods. The higher retrieve speed and adjustable gear ratio make reeling in the catch easily. A bass spinning reel is easy to maintain and one of the easiest spinning reels to maintain.

A 2500 spinning reel is sufficient for bass fishing as it has an excellent balance of casting distance and line capacity, which many bass anglers prefer. It’s perfect for small and medium-sized bass and can handle a 6-10 pound test range. 

A 3000 spinning reel is great for bass, providing a faster retrieve speed and balancing distance or line capacity. Its higher line capacity allows you to fish in deep waters and increase the casting distance. It comes in handy when fishing under heavy cover and can handle up to 8-12 pound test range. It has a higher drag system, making it ideal for medium and large bass.