10 Best Trout Spinning Reels of 2023 (Before You Buy)

Best Trout Spinning Reels - Top Choices

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After spending hundreds of dollars buying different trout spinning reels and ending up disappointed all the time, I decided to take matters into my hands. First, I realized there wasn’t enough information online regarding the best trout spinning reels, making it hard for anglers like you and me to choose the right fishing gear. That’s why I took my time to test different trout reels and review them in this guide to help trout anglers purchase the best spinning reels

Read this entire guide to differentiate between a substandard and a good spinning reel before spending your hard-earned money. 

Ernest Grey

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

Top 3 Trout Spinning Reels - Our Absolute Favorites

Best Overall Trout Spinning Reel

Abu Garcia Revo SX

Abu Garcia Revo SX

Best Trout Spinning Reel For Entry Level

Piscifun Flame

Piscifun Flame

Best Premium Trout Spinning Reel

Shimano Vanford

Shimano Vanford

10 Best Trout Spinning Reels in 2023: We Tested Them So You Don't Have To

1. Abu Garcia Revo SX – Best Overall Spinning Reel for Trout
2. Piscifun Flame – Best Entry Level Spinning Reel for Trout
3. Shimano Vanford – Best Premium Spinning Reel for Trout
4. Pflueger President – Best Rated Spinning Reel for Trout
5. Daiwa BG – Best Heavy-Duty Spinning Reel for Trout
6. Shimano Sedona – Best Lightweight Spinning Reel for Trout
7. KastKing Sharky III – Best Inshore Spinning Reel for Trout
8. Pflueger Trion – Best Freshwater Spinning Reel for Trout
9. Okuma Ceymar – Best Budget Lightness Spinning Reel for Trout
10. Penn Pursuit II & III – Best Big Catchies Spinning Reel for Trout


Best Overall Trout Spinning Reel

Abu Garcia Revo SX

Abu Garcia Revo SX

WHY WE LIKE IT: Abu Garcia Revo SX stands out due to its versatility, durability, and exceptional performance. It’s one of the best baitcasting trout reels for accurate casting and control, allowing you to reel in the catch quickly. Its lightweight construction ensures you fish for extended hours without fatigue. The D2 Gear Design improves the gear performance, reducing the workload when pulling the catch. 

  • Gear Ration: 6.6:1
  • Ball Bearings: 9 + 1
  • Mono Capacity (yd/lb): 145/12
  • Braid Capacity (yd/lb): 140/30
  • Line Capacity (yd/lb): 12/145
  • Weight: o.48 lbs. 
  • Braking System: Magnetic and Centrifugal



OVERVIEW: One key reason to buy the Abu Garcia Revo SX is its versatility and excellent performance, allowing you to catch different fish species. Factors like fishing skill levels and price points should influence your buying decision. The Revo SX is suitable for all skill levels and is one of our most expensive and one of the best reels for trout fishing. I had a great experience using the reel in saltwater fishing.

FEATURES: The reel’s smooth drag system, lightweight and durable construction, and dual braking system make Abu Garcia Revo SX one of the best trout reels in the market. 


Best Entry-Level Trout Spinning Reel

Piscifun Flame

Piscifun Flame

WHY WE LIKE IT: The combination of affordability and performance is why we like Piscifun Flame. As an entry-level trout reel, Piscifun Flame has an impressive lightweight graphite body, a triple-disc carbon fiber drag system, and precision-machined brass gears makes it worth consideration.

  • Gear Ratio: 5.2:1
  • Maximum Drag: 17.6 lbs.
  • Bearings: 9+1
  • Line Capacity (monofilament) (lb/yd): 6/220
  • Weight: 0.55 lbs.



OVERVIEW: The budget-friendly and high performance are reasons to buy Piscifun Flame. It’s easy to use, making it perfect for beginners. Factors like price point and performance should influence your purchasing decision. Piscifun Flame is affordable and perfect for a variety of fish species. I appreciated the drag system and the lightweight construction when I used the reel. It feels even better when it’s used together with ultralight fishing rod.

FEATURES: Piscifun Flame offers a great balance of affordability and quality, making it the best reel for trout for novice anglers. The solid reel is an excellent contender in the entry-level reel category. Features like a triple-disc carbon drag fiber drag system and a lightweight graphite body make it stand out from its competitors. We also think that this is one of the best trout spinning reels for the money.


Best Premium Trout Spinning Reel

Shimano Vanford

Shimano Vanford

WHY WE LIKE IT: Shimano Vanford stands out as the best premium trout reel due to its advanced features and an innovative design. The SilentDrive system minimizes vibration and noise, offering a comfortable trout fishing experience. The Micromodule Gear II system offers an efficient and smooth gear train. The G-Free Body design helps to shift the gravity closer to your hand to improve balance and reduce fatigue for trout anglers who fish for long hours. Therefore this are one of the best trout spinning reels for anglers, who prefer ligthness.

  • Gear Ratio: 6.0:1
  • Line Retreat Per Crank: 31 inches
  • Maximum Drag: 7 lbs. 
  • Mono Line Capacity (lbs/yds): 6/165
  • Weight: – 0.378 lbs.
  • Ball Bearings: 7+1
  • PowerPro Line Capacity (lbs/yds): 10/150



OVERVIEW: The carbon fiber-reinforced polymer is one of the reasons why you should buy Shimano Vanford. The machine aluminum handle is durable and can withstand wear and tear. The reel’s versatility and durability should be the determining factors when purchasing Shimano Vanford. It’s expensive and unsuitable for anglers on a budget, but it balances that with impressive performance. I enjoyed this ultralight spinning reel’s weight, allowing me to fish for hours. 

FEATURES: The lightweight and durable construction sets Shimano Vanford apart from other reels. The Cross Carbon Drag system ensures you reel in the catch effortlessly without putting in too much energy. It’s good trout spinning reel for anglers who prefer comfort and efficiency while fishing for long hours. 


Best Rated

Pflueger President

Pflueger President

WHY WE LIKE IT: Anglers looking for the best ultralight spinning reel that is affordable and high-quality have preferred Pflueger President spinning reel. The reel has a corrosion-resistant construction, allowing you to fish in saltwater. The smooth drag system ensures you reel in the catch effortlessly, and a comfortable handle makes it easy to use for extended hours. The sealed drag system prevents water and debris from damaging the reel, making it durable and reliable. 

  • Model: PRESSP30X
  • Bearings: 10+1
  • Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
  • Line Capacity (mono) (lb/yd): 6/145, 8/130, 10/90
  • Line Capacity (braid) (lb/yd): 10/170, 15/145, 20/120
  • Weight: 0.518 lbs.
  • Max Drag 10 lbs. 
  • Retrieve Rate: 31 inches per turn



OVERVIEW: The exceptional drag performance allowing anglers to reel in even the biggest catch is one of the reasons you should buy Pflueger President. The lightweight, corrosion-resistant, and durable construction are some of the factors to influence your purchasing decision. I found the reel smooth to operate, allowing me to fish for extended hours in saltwater. 

FEATURES: Pflueger President offers a competitive and well-rounded set of features compared to other reels in its class. It’s a high-end and good trout spinning reels with durable construction. However, the higher price point is not ideal for anglers operating within a budget. 


Best Heavy-Duty

Daiwa BG Spinning Reel

Daiwa BG

WHY WE LIKE IT: The heavy-duty Daiwa BG is perfect for saltwater use and targeting large fish species. The Hard Bodyz construction, consisting of a solid screw-in handle and a machined aluminum housing, makes Daiwa BG make it the best spinning reel in terms of heavy duty. Additionally, the air bail system and air rotor make the reel lighter, allowing you to use it for hours without fatigue. 

  • Model: BG5000
  • Line Retrieve: 47.4”
  • Max Drag: 22 lbs.
  • Gear Ratio: 5.7:1
  • Twist Buster II line roller
  • Weight: 1.375 lbs.
  • Bearings: 6+1
  • Line Capacity (lbs/yds): 20/370, 25/310, 30/260



OVERVIEW: The Hard Bodyz construction, made of machined aluminum housing able to withstand saltwater trout fishing, is one of the reasons you should consider buying the Daiwa BG. It’s durable, ensuring you use it for years with minimal wear and tear. The ability to target large fish species is one factor to consider when buying Daiwa BG. I loved the smooth drag system and overal performance when I tried out Daiwa BG. 

FEATURES: The max drag capacity of 22 lbs and Carbon ATD drag system make it perfect for large fish species. The rotor and bail system helps to reduce the weight, allowing you to fish for extended periods. The aluminum construction withstands saltwater fishing which can be corrosive over time. 


Best Lightweight

Shimano Spinning Reel 17 Sedona 2500

Shimano Sedona

WHY WE LIKE IT: Shimano Sedona is known for its durability and lightweight, thanks to the Hagane Gear technology that adds strength and precision to the reel. The cold-forged aluminum spool adds to its durability and strength. The G-Free Body design helps to enhance comfort and reduce fatigue, allowing long fishing hours. 

  • Model: 17 Sedona 2500
  • Max Drag: 20 lbs.
  • Ball Bearings: 3+1
  • Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
  • Weight: 0.53 lbs.
  • Mono line capacity (lbs/yds): 6/200, 8/140, 10/120
  • PowerPro line capacity(lbs/yds): 10/150, 15/145, 30/100
  • Line Retrieve: 36 inches per turn



OVERVIEW: The strong and durable constriction is one of the reasons you should consider buying the Shimano Sedona. The construction can withstand harsh fishing conditions and is priced reasonably for anglers on a budget. Key factors to consider when buying Shimano Sedona is the balance of durability, affordability, and performance. I was impressed by the reel’s ability to handle large fish species. 

FEATURES: The max drag, line retrieve per crank, and ball bearings are similar to many spinning reels in its class. However, it’s unique due to advanced features like Propulsion Line Management System and Dyna-Balance system that add to its performance and efficiency. The spinning reel is an excellent choice for novice and professional anglers due to its ease of use. 


Best Inshore

KastKing Sharky III Spinning Reel

KastKing Sharky III

WHY WE LIKE IT: KastKing Sharky III stands out as one of the best inshore spinning reels for trout, thanks to the triple-disc carbon fiber drag system, which adds to its strength, allowing it to reel in big fish. The Intrusion Shield System keeps the water and debris away from the spinning reel, improving its lifespan and performance. It’s versatile to handle different inshore fishing conditions and is perfect for novice and experienced anglers. 

  • Weight: 0.575 lbs. 
  • Gear Ratio: 5.2:1
  • Max Drag: 33 lbs.
  • Ball Bearings: 10+1
  • Line Capacity (mono) (lbs/yds): 8/220, 10/165, 12/120
  • Line Capacity (braid) (lbs/yds): 20/220, 30/130, 40/100
  • CNC aluminum spool



OVERVIEW: Although KastKing Sharky III is affordable, it has features like durable constructions, smooth operation, and max drag that you would find in expensive reels. You should consider factors like your budget, fishing techniques, and target species when purchasing KastKing Sharky III. I found the reel’s max drag of 33 lbs perfect for large fish species. I also loved the sealed drag system keeping the reel dry and safe from debris.

FEATURES: KastKing Sharky III offers competitive features for a spinning reel of its price point. It’s easy to use, allowing you to reel in stubborn trout effortlessly. The durable concentration can withstand harsh fishing conditions, with a comfortable handle allowing longer fishing hours. 


Best Freshwater

Pflueger Trion Spinning Reel

Pflueger Trion

WHY WE LIKE IT: The smooth performance and quality build of Pflueger Trion spinning reel makes it a great contender in the freshwater spinning reel category. The combination of the aluminum spool, lightweight graphite frame, and rotor, and an oil felt/stainless steel drag system sets this spinning reel apart from its competitors. Anglers can make quick and accurate retrieves thanks to the instant anti-reverse feature and an ergonomic design. 

  • Gear Ratio: 5.2:1
  • Weight: 0.469 lbs.
  • Bearings: 6+1
  • Line Capacity (lbs/yds): 2/220, 4/110, 6/90
  • Max Drag: 6 lbs. 
  • Aluminum spool



OVERVIEW: The durable construction made of graphite body and smooth operation should convince you to purchase Pflueger Trion. Your budget, target species, and fishing techniques are some factors to consider with Pflueger Trion. As someone who has used this spinning reel, I was impressed by its powerful drag and durable construction, which is able to withstand harsh fishing environments. I also liked combining this reel with freshwater lures.

FEATURES: Pflueger Trion is perfect for freshwater trout anglers who prefer lightweight reels with durable construction. The corrosion-resistant feature improves its lifespan, making it perfect for light saltwater fishing. Its higher price point is unfortunate for anglers operating within a budget. 


Best Budget

Okuma Ceymar Graphite

Okuma Ceymar

WHY WE LIKE IT: Okuma Ceymar spinning reel is an incredible and best trout spinning reel thanks to advanced features like the precision elliptical gearing system, an oiled felt drag system, and durable aluminum construction. The high-end spinning reel provides a smooth and powerful fishing experience. It’s perfect for anglers looking for luxury fishing. 

  • Model: C-10
  • Gear Ratio: 5.0:1
  • Weight: 0.375 lbs.
  • Bearings: 7+1
  • Line Capacity (lbs/yds): 2/110, 4/90, 6/60
  • Max Drag: 5 lbs. 



OVERVIEW: Okuma Ceymar’s comfortable and easy-to-use design combines with a powerful drag system to make it perfect for serious anglers. The reel’s budget is one key deciding factor to consider when purchasing it. Advanced features and exceptional performance justify the higher price point. I was impressed by the balance of great performance and durability when using Okuma Ceymar spinning reel. 

FEATURES: The lightweight design and corrosion-resistant construction make it one of the best spinning reels in its class. The comfortable handle ensures you fish for extended hours without fatigue or injuring your arm. It’s a good trout spinning reel for anglers looking for advanced features without minding the higher price tag. 


Best For Big Catches

Best Reel for Catching Lake Trouts - Penn Pursuit II & III

Penn Pursuit II & III

WHY WE LIKE IT: Penn Pursuit II & III  is equipped with features allowing you to catch big trouts like the Techno-balanced rotor design for a smooth retrieve. The corrosion-resistant construction makes it ideal for long hours of fishing in saltwater, making it durable and reliable. The anti-twist line roller and a high line capacity ensure you cast the line with minimal line entanglement, allowing you to target large fish species. 

  • Gear Ratio: 5.2:1 Pursuit II and 6.2:1 Pursuit III
  • Bearings: 4+1
  • Line Retrieve Per Crank: Pursuit II 22 inches, Pursuit III 33 inches
  • Weight: Pursuit II 0.525-1.24 lbs, Pursuit III 0.55-1.83 lbs.
  • Max Drag: Pursuit II 12 lbs, Pursuit III 12-25 lbs.
  • Line Capacity (mono) (lbs/yds): 2/180, 4/110, 6/85
  • Line Capacity (braid) (lbs/yds): 8/250, 10/220, 15/160



OVERVIEW: If you’re an angler interested in large fish species, then Penn Pursuit II & III is something you must consider. The durable construction makes the reels great to catch trout of different sizes. Line capacity, drag power, and construction quality should influence your decision when considering Penn Pursuit II & III. I found the reels easy to handle with smooth drags allowing me to reel in even stubborn catches. 

FEATURES: Penn Pursuit II & III offer a great combination of value and performance, making them ideal for anglers looking for high-quality reels without overspending. The reels are versatile for saltwater and freshwater fishing thanks to their corrosion-resistant construction. The smooth drag allows you to reel in big fish species effortlessly. 

Read This Before You Buy Trout Spinning Reel (Buyer's Guide)

Quality Craftsmanship – Construction Materials

Construction materials are very crucial when purchasing trout spinning reels. Choosing reels made of carbon fiber, magnesium, or aluminum materials is crucial as they’re durable and can withstand harsh fishing environments like saltwater. The stainless steel bearings are perfect in terms of durability and performance. 


Ensure you choose a trout spinning reel with an optimal size that you can handle. A huge reel is not ideal for longer fishing periods. It’s also inconvenient to carry and store, especially for anglers who are mostly on the road. Also, check the size of the fishing rod, as it should correspond to the size of the reel. A light rod works well with a smaller reel, and the opposite is true. 

Weight Of The Reel

A great fishing reel needs to be lightweight for extended periods of fishing. It’s also easier to reel in bigger fish species with a lighter reel than a heavier one. It should also be well-balanced to ensure no fatigue or injuring your arm or shoulder. 


The spool holds and releases the fishing line, making it one of the most important components in a trout reel. Ensure you choose a reel with aluminum or carbon fiber materials since they are durable, strong, and lightweight.

Line Capacity

The line capacity of any trout spinning reel determines the amount of fishing line it can hold. Choosing a reel with a line capacity that suits your fishing style is best, with 100 yards being the optimal length for streams and other shallow water bodies. However, 200 yards are preferred for deeper waters and targeting large fish species. Consider the casting distance, as it allows you to target fish from a distance. 

Gear Ratio

A reel’s gear ratio is crucial as it determines the spool’s turning speed in relation to the handle. A gear ratio of 6:1 or higher is perfect for quick retrieval when fishing in creeks or streams. However, a gear ratio of 4:1 or lower is perfect when you want more power to reel in bigger fish or when fishing in large water bodies with stronger currents. 

Sensitivity of the Reel

The reel’s sensitivity refers to the vibrations sent to the handle from the fishing lines when there’s a bite. Choose a spinning reel with a lightweight construction like carbon fiber or graphite, as they have the best vibration transmission. 

Bearing System

The bearings determine the reel’s smooth operation, allowing you to retrieve the catch effortlessly. However, instead of concentrating on the number of bearings, it’s crucial to consider the quality. Bearings should be made of materials like ceramic or stainless steel for optimal performance. A sealant is also important to keep water and debris away from the bearings. 

Drag System

 An optimal drag system ensures an angler tires the catch with minimal effort. Drag materials like carbon fiber are preferred as they’re strong and are unlikely to break or overheat. A drag strength of 5-10 lbs is perfect for trout fishing. 

Anti-Reverse System

The anti-reverse system prevents the fish from pulling the line when retrieving it. An instant anti-reverse is perfect for trout fishing reels compared to no anti-reverse. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Trout fishing doesn’t require an expensive spinning reel, as a lower-priced trout spinning reel can still work. However, a higher-end spinning reel for trout has more advanced features and durability, allowing you to catch different varieties of fish. 

A spinning reel for trout of size 1000 to 2500 is optimal as it has the drag power and other advanced features suitable for trout fishing. However, you should consider the trout size and fishing conditions before choosing any particular size. 

You can use spinning gear for trout fishing anywhere, provided the gear is appropriate for the fishing conditions and trout size. Trouts are common in ponds, lakes, rivers, or streams, and you can deploy different fishing techniques like jigging, trolling, or casting. River and lake trout fishing require a simple spinning gear and casting technique.

Although it’s hard to know the exact drag needed for trout reels due to varying trout sizes, you should always set the drag to at least one-third of the line’s breaking strength. Doing so provides enough resistance to tire out the fish. Lake trout fishing would require at least 2 lbs of drag power.

A 2500 reel is good for trout fishing under many conditions. It has enough line capacity for different trout fishing environments and is perfect for light or medium-light rods.