Since the late 1800s, bass fishing has steadily evolved to become a multi-billion-dollar industry. Bass is one of the most sought-after fish in the United States. A wide range of rods, reels, lures, and electronic equipment for finding bass are offered for sale as a result. However, the most popular tool for bass fishing is by far the spinning reel.
So, what’s the best spinning reel for bass fishing? Let’s explore some of the top-rated options, so you can choose one that suits your needs.
- Our Top Pick
- Top-rated Spinning Reels for Bass Fishing Reviewed
- Shimano Stradic Ci4 – Overall Best Spinning Reel for Bass Fishing
- Shimano Spirex FG – Best Value Spinning Reel for Bass
- Abu Garcia Revo Rocket – Best High-Speed Spinning Reel for Bass
- Daiwa Fuego – Best Lightweight Reel for Bass Fishing
- Daiwa Bg4000
- KastKing Royale Legend – Best Budget Spinning Reel for Bass Fishing
- Buying Guide What to Look for in a Budget Spinning Reel
- Final Thoughts
Our Top Pick
If we were to make a choice, we would put our money on the Shimano Stradic Ci4. This reel offers all the features you would ever need in a bass fishing reel. It is lightweight, comfortable to handle, waterproof, and durable. Above all, it offers a high-speed drag and smooth operation.
Top-rated Spinning Reels for Bass Fishing Reviewed
Shimano is a frontrunner in the fishing industry, and the Shimano Stradic Ci4 is one of their best-selling models. The ‘Ci’ denotes Carbon Infusion, an exclusive reinforced carbon from Shimano, for increased durability.
- Bearings 6+1
- Magnumlite rotor
- Retrieve Per Crank 31-39 inches
- Maximum Drag 24 lbs.
- Weight 8.1 ounces
- Mono Line Capacity (pounds/yards) 8/240, 10/200, 12/160
- Braided Line Capacity (pounds/yards) 15/280, 30/170, 50/150
- Carbon fiber body
What sets the Stradic Ci4 apart from its competitors is that its carbon body retains strength, while weighing about 25 percent less than its competitors. The reel is completely corrosion resistant as it doesn’t have any metal components.
This spinning real also comes equipped with X-Ship gear, which offers support and maintains proper alignment of the gears even under heavy loads. This helps to promote optimal performance and minimizes wear and tear.
Another remarkable feature is the Paladin gear system, which encompasses a tough brass pinion gear and a cold-forged aluminum drive gear. The system ensures you’ll get the smoothest operation possible for many years to come. The reel also boasts a high line capacity, which can work with both mono and braid, making it suitable for handling any bass that comes your way.
It is also lightweight, so you can use it for prolonged periods comfortably and without unbearable fatigue. The major downside of this spinning reel is its price tag. It may not be a great choice if you have a tight budget.
- Impressively fast drag
- Waterproof design
- Lightweight and portable
- Excellent line management
- Quite expensive compared to competitors
Overall, the Shimano Stradic Ci4 is an excellent option for anyone looking for a super-lightweight reel that packs enough power to handle virtually any size of bass. It is durable, waterproof, and offers smooth operation. We only wish it was a bit cheaper so that more anglers can afford it.
Overall Rating 4.8/5.0
The Shimano Spirex FG is incredibly priced while offering some of the features you would expect to find only in the higher-end Shimano spinning reels.
- Five stainless-steel ball bearings
- Varispeed oscillation system
- Quick Fire II self-centering bail
- Fluidrive II gearing system
- Propulsion line management system and spool lip
- Graphite frame, side plate, and rotor
- S Concept S-Rotor, S-Guard, S-Arm Cam
Featuring a graphite frame, rotor, and side plate, the Spirex FG is a lightweight yet impressively strong. It also comes with a braid-ready aluminum spool, allowing you to use different line sizes. What’s more, this piece of gear features a single-handed QuickFire II casting system for effective line management and enhanced precision.
Moreover, the Fluid Drive and Varispeed Oscillation systems work together to ensure you always get the smoothest retrieve possible. The Spirex FG has a gear ratio of 621, which is quite fast but has a drag of up to 7 pounds, which is quite limited. This reel can retrieve 28 inches of line with every crank.
- Ideal for both fresh and saltwater fishing
- Lightweight and portable
- Durable components
- Competitively priced
- Superb rear-drag system
- Not suitable for beginners
- Maximum drag isn’t very promising
The Shimano Spirex FG is a smart option for anyone who’s been fishing with a bait-casting reel and wants to switch to a spinning reel. It is a solid reel for light fishing tasks. It offers many valuable features despite its pocket-friendly price. However, it’s maximum drag is limited.
Overall Rating 4.7/5.0
If you are looking for a high-speed, fast-retrieve reel for your bass fishing, you might want to consider investing in the Abu Garcia Revo Rocket spinning reel.
- Rocket Gear Ratio
- Eleven stainless steel bearings
- X2-Cräftic™ alloy frame and side plate
- D2 Gear system
- Infini II™ spool
- Duragear™ brass gear
- Infini™ brake system
- Gull Wing™ side plate design
- Lube port
The Revo Rocket has a gear ratio of 7.01 and a retrieve rate of 37 to 44 inches per handle turn. You’ll rarely get a freshwater spinning reel that offers this kind of speed— with the Revo Rocket you’ve got a fantastic tool for your bass angling.
This reel comes with a Rocket Line management system and combined with the Rocket lip on the spool helps to eliminate line twist and spools the line back steadily. The management system, coupled with the Rocket lip, come in very handy when the line take-up is high.
Weighing in at about 8 ounces, the spool is lightweight and comfortable to handle. Other valuable features include the machined-braided spool and EVA paddle knobs. The drag performance is impressive, thanks to the Carbon Matrix design, which engages smoothly, particularly on the hook set and when fish surge.
- Outstanding speed
- Lightweight and highly portable
- Excellent corrosion resistance
- External and internal brake adjustment
- Adjusting the centrifugal brakes can be time-consuming since you have to remove the side plate
Overall, the Abu Garcia Revo Rocket is a top-notch spinning reel that could be just what you’re looking for in speed and versatility. It comes with valuable features to help you meet your bass fishing needs.
Overall Rating 4.6/5.0
Daiwa Fuego reels are some of the lightest spinning reels you can find on the market today. They feature HardBodyz body design, which makes them strong and durable. Their air rotor design, which is lightweight and highly sensitive is also highly sought. With Corrosion Resistant Ball Bearings (CRBB), these reels are ideal for both freshwater and saltwater fishing.
- Nine Bearing System (1CRBB + 7BB + 1RB)
- “HardBodyz” body design
- Hollow stainless steel Air Bail®
- Digigear™ digital gear design
- Air Rotor for enhanced lightness and sensitivity
- ABS aluminum spool
- Machine cut aluminum handle
- EVA custom handle knob
With the ABS spool design, the Daiwa Fuego boasts enhanced line lay and impressively long cast distance. The Fuego has smooth retrieves and can extend to as much as 35.6 inches per crank. Additionally, it has a gear ratio of 6.01, which can be very fast and has the capacity to drag as much as 8.8 pounds.
Another outstanding feature of this reel is the air rotor design, which increases sensitivity and minimizes weight by up to 15 percent. Adding to the reel’s lightness is an Air Bail that uses hollow stainless steel.
The nine-bearing system contains seven ball bearings, one CRBB, and a roller bearing—all are working together to deliver exceptionally smooth operation. Also worthy of note are its machine-cut aluminum handle and EVA custom handle knobs, which ensure you have a firm grip of your reel. One setback with the Fuego is that the accuracy of this reel falls short when compared to other reels in its class.
- Excellent drag system
- Impressively smooth reel
- Accuracy is not so up to par
- The line occasionally bunches up at the top of the spool
The Daiwa Fuego is a great option for bass anglers looking for a light or ultralight spinning reel. Despite some setbacks that might arise due to the average quality of the device, it delivers an excellent combination of performance and affordability.
Overall Rating 4.5/5.0
Here’s another fantastic, lightweight reel for bass fishing. The Daiwa Bg4000 is exceptionally easy to work with, thanks to its lightweight design.
- “Hard Bodyz” Body & Side Cover
- Digigear™ System
- Solid screw-in handle
- Dynamic-cut aluminum ABS spool
- Waterproof drag system
- Braided-line ready spool
- Air rotor
- Manual return bail
- Carbon ATD
- 6BB+1RB bearing system
- Infinite anti-reverse system
- Gear Ratio 5.71
- Line per handle turn 39.9 inches
- Weight 14.3 ounces
- Maximum drag 17.6 lbs.
The Bg4000 features corrosion-resistant, precision-machined aluminum construction making it a perfect reel for offshore fishing. A big plus is that it comes equipped with a Digigear drive system featuring precision cutting techniques which deliver unparalleled smooth performance.
Another valuable feature is the ATD drag system, which offers solid support off the spool. This helps to minimize spool twist under intense stress and leads to a smoother drag from the original hook up.
Moreover, the Bg4000 features an air rotor— an impressively strong yet lightweight rotor design that promotes strength and nibble sensitivity. Additionally, this design is effective in dispersing pressure to the lower parts of the rotors, significantly minimizing weight.
Also worthy of note is that the DG4000 comes with three plastic washers so you can adjust the height of the spool. This feature comes in handy when the reel gets out of balance, and you want to even it out. The only notable disadvantage of this reel is that its foot can be somewhat larger for some reel seats.
- Smooth and powerful
- Durable construction
- Casts impressively smooth
- The foot can be larger than some reel seats
Overall, the Daiwa Bg4000 is a very smooth spinning reel that is sure to deliver terrific results for the long term. If you want a lightweight, durable reel that won’t let you down at the most critical time, you can bet on this reel.
Overall Rating 4.4/5.0
If you want a silky smooth and consistent performance without breaking a bank, you should consider investing in the KastKing Royale Legend spinning reel. With the Royale Legend, you can fish all day without undue fatigue, thanks to its over-sized EVA foam soft grip handle. The handle minimizes fatigue and offers a soft, nonslip grip even in wet conditions.
- Maximum Drag 17.5 lbs.
- Centrifugal and magnetic braking system
- 11 +1 shielded bearings
- Gear ratio 7.01
- Precision-cut brass gears
- 5 inches of line retrieved per turn
- Aluminum whiffle spool
- Weight 7.5 ounces
The Royale Legend features a magnetic and centrifugal dual-brake system, which is easily adjustable and minimizes backlash. Weighing 7.5 ounces, it can drag up to 17.5 pounds. This can be credited to its superb carbon fiber drag system.
Sporting a gear ratio of 7.01, which promotes high-speed performance, this piece of gear comes equipped with twelve noise-free, corrosion-resistant ball bearings, for silent and smooth operation. It also has a ceramic line guide, which can work with both a braided fishing line and a monofilament line, delivering high-speed performance in both cases.
While this Royale Legend is most appropriate for freshwater fishing, you can also use it in saltwater environments provided it gets proper care. In fact, it is important always to give this reel proper maintenance if you want it to serve you efficiently for many years.
- Reasonably priced
- Silent and smooth operation
- Carbon fiber drag system
- Precision-cut bass gear design
- Requires constant maintenance to maintain reliable performance
The KastKing Royale Legend is an excellent reel for beginners. It can also be a great investment for veterans looking for a less expensive spinning reel. With this reel, you’ll have an exciting bass fishing experience and hardly feel the financial investment.
Overall Rating 4.3/5.0
Buying Guide What to Look for in a Budget Spinning Reel
We consider the basic factors below vital to consider when shopping for a bass fishing spinning reel. You can also take a look at some of the other popular and widely used types of spinning reels available to the angler.
- Drag System – For successful bass fishing, you need a sturdy, yet smooth, drag system. With a strong, tight drag, you can exert some force into setting the hook if there’s a need. A smooth engagement minimizes the risk of breaking your fishing line on the hook set up or when handling a hard-fighting bass.
- Spool Size – While spinning reels come in different spool sizes, the middle two sizes are the best for bass fishing. These sizes are the most effective in handling 8- and 10-pound test line. They are lightweight and easy to work with regardless of your fishing skills.
- Sensitivity – Ability to detect nibbles plays an integral role in your success when it comes to catching bass with spinning equipment. It’s advisable to invest in a spinning reel with a carbon or aluminum frame, as they are great at transmitting feel from the line and lure to your fingers and hands.
- Cost – High-quality reels for bass fishing normally cost between $120 and $200. Reels in this price range are more refined and deliver great results. However, you can still get some good spinning reels for under $100.
When shopping for a bass fishing reel, you need to ensure the reel is the right size. If a reel feels bulky in your hands, then it is too big. Other factors to consider are the drag system, spool size, and sensitivity when matching it up with the bass size and weight you want to fish. We hope the above reviews will help you find the best spinning for bass fishing based on your needs and budget.