Top 2017 Baitcasters

Fishing Tackle / January 31, 2017

A fishing reel is only good as the fisherman using it and the best reels are only as good as the purpose to which they are used. Allow us to share with you the Top Baitcasters of 2017.

Bait casting, spinning, fly, and spin casting reels come in many shapes and sizes and not all reels are created equal. Bait casting reels are tough reels meant to battle big fish. The wench type mechanic, compared to the spin mechanic, decrease any twist in the lines. Bait casters are more accurate and better suited to certain techniques like drop shots.

Bait casting reels are considered the most advanced reel compared to spinners and spin casters. The threat of bird-nesting is much more present in bait caster reels if you’re not careful, but advanced anglers will be more successful with a bait caster.

Top Baitcasting Reels of 2017

Abu Garcia Black Max Low Profile Reel

The  Abu Garcia Black Max Low Profile Reel is an upper mid-range low profile bait caster reel.

This bait caster has a 10-1 bearing system to ensure a smooth cast and retrieve. While higher quality bearings result in a smoother overall reel, they can be a bit unruly for the beginning angler.

High quality bearings can sometimes result in birds-nest if not properly controlled. With a comfortable medium sized handle, the intermediate and better angler shouldn’t have a problem controlling such a high quality reel.

Despite these things, the Black Max  is an ideal choice for novice anglers and seasoned pros alike. The Abu Garcia BMAX3 Black Max Low-Profile Baitcast Fishing Reel delivers maximum performance at an exceptional value. This stylish baitcast reel packs cutting-edge features into a lightweight, low-profile graphite frame that provides strength without adding excess weight to your rod. Equipped with a MagTrax brake system, the reel delivers accurate castability across a wide range of casting conditions and accommodates a variety of lures.

Its Power Disk drag system delivers the smooth, reliable drag needed to tame a variety of hard-pulling fish species. And with its compact bent handle, star wheel, and recessed reel foot, this low-profile baitcast fishing reel offers an ergonomic feel that provides comfort during all-day fishing trips.

Lew’s Fishing Tournament MB Baitcast Reel

Lew’s Fishing Tournament MB Baitcast Reel has smooth large paddle handles with a normal profile. It has a left handed and right handed option. The MB Baitcaster is works great with both fluorocarbon and braid.

Light and compact,  Lews reels are fine reels with easy tuning for all conditions. The LFS platform means the MB series gets Lew’s® smaller profile and reduced weight design; the reel weighs only 6.7 ounces. It also gets Lew’s® innovative dual-braking MSB (Multi-Setting Brake) system, featuring both a magnetic cast control and a centrifugal braking system. The combination of centrifugal and magnetic casting brake system allows for long casts with low chance of birdsnest.

Features include:

  • One-piece aluminum frame
  • Easily removable palming graphite sideplate
  • Rugged carbon fiber star drag system (20 lbs. of drag power)
  • Audible click, bowed, anodized aluminum star drag
  • Zirconia line guide
  • TS1SMB, TS1SMBL features high capacity spool and a longer 95MM power crank handle

Whether your crankbaiting or flipping, Lews MB Reel is a solid performer.

Abu Garcia REVO Rocket Low Profile Reel

The Abu Garcia REVO Rocket Low Profile Reel is great higher end bait casting reel. Small handles and a 9-1 bearing ration presents a slick and fast reel. Alloy frame and side plated promise strength and durability.

Improved spool design allows for large line loads of any kind. The Revo is one of the fastest low profile reels in the Abu Garcia line up and is great for any occasion. Rocket fast retrieve with smooth performance. An impressive 37 inches of line retrieve per turn of the crank handle makes the new Rocket low profile baitcast reel the fastest low profile in the Revo lineup. Whether you are walking-the-dog with topwater lures or burning up spinnerbaits, buzzbaits or crankbaits, the Revo Rocket delivers the ultimate package for techniques requiring a quick retrieve.

For top water, spinners, buzzes and cranks, the Abu Garcia Revo Rocket is a phenomenal reel, especially for its price.

HaiBo Smart Baitcaster

The HaiBo Baitcaster is a new addition to the TackleReports gear radar. Its had a lot of success recently and producing great fish and reviews all around. Haibo fishing gear was found in 1994, own more than Twenty years professional creating and advanced technology, mainly focus on top grade fishing gear reel and comprehensive improve fishing reel goods value, especially on metal gear development and Anti-corrosive marine and so on technology filed. Samrt with a more powerful Dual-braking System, provides enhanced smooth drag when on the water. and carbon fiber drag washers ensures smooth, consistent drag pressure when hooked into the hardest fighting fish. Apply to bass, trout etc. other types of freshwater fishing. It is braided fishing line friendly. Whether you’re fishing the pre-spawn, fishing for sunnies on a sunny day, or dropping a line down the hole for ice fishing, baitcasters handles them all!

This is also the only bait caster we have listed that designed with kayak fishing in mind.

Daiwa Lexa-HD

The Daiwa Lexa-HD is one of the higher quality reels on our list. The Lexa differs from many bait casters by adopting a singular reel grip rather than the common double paddle handle.

Daiwas popular low profile LEXA 300 & 400 sized reels are now available in Type-HD for Heavy Duty extreme inshore action Now even tougher with stainless steel drive and pinion gears and a whopping six corrosion resistant ball bearings CRBB Available in 711 and new Xtra Hyper Speed 811 gear ratios Custom EVA power handle knobs to help you crank in tough adversaries in comfort Massive UTD Carbon drag gives maximum fish stopping power wider adjustment range Daiwa Lexa reels offer the extra capacity for heavy lines heavy fish And the drag max to take advantage of it Daiwa Lexa HD Reels Feature Stainless Steel Drive Gear & Pinion Gear 7 Bearing System 6CRBB +1RB EVA Custom Handle Knob Extra line capacity for strong lines powerful fish Ultimate Tournament carbon drag UTD with 132 lbs of drag Swept Handle with weight-reducing cutouts Handle length 300 size 100mm 400 size 120mm Aluminum frame and side plate gear side Magforce Cast Control Infinite Anti-Reverse Dual Stopper

Its singular handle is large and easy to control. Not as low a profile as other reels, the Daiwa Lexa-HD has high quality steel gears resulting in about 25lbs of drag.

This is a bait caster for the trophy fish, easily handling 60 to 70-pound fish. This reel is useful in both freshwater and salt water. The Daiwa Lexa-HD may come with a bit of a price tag but it’s worth it when the Daiwa Lexa-HD keeps you from losing that trophy fish you always wanted.

Daiwa Lexa Baitcast Reel

TheDaiwa Lexa High Capacity Low-Profile 7.1:1 Baitcast Reel comes in power handle or paddle handle options. It also comes in both right and left hand models and can be ordered with multiple high speed capacities like 6:3:1 or 7.1:1.

Key Features of the Daiwa Lexa High Capactity Fishing Reel:

  • Aluminum frame and side plate (gear side)
  • 7 Bearing System (2CRBB, 4BB +1RB)
  • Magforce® Cast Control
  • Infinite Anti-Reverse
  • Swept Handle with weight-reducing cutouts
  • Counter balanced Power Handle on “P” Models
  • Super-leverage 120mm handle on 400 size models
  • A7075 Aluminum spool, super lightweight—extra strong (100 size)
  • Extra line capacity for strong lines, powerful fish
  • Ultimate Tournament carbon drag (UTD)


Sporting a black aluminum shell, this durable 7 bearing system provides one of the highest quality reels at the best price. Whether you’re throwing large swimbaits to small anchovies, the Diawa Lexa HC is a fine piece of craftsmanship, worth the purchase.

Daiwa Tatula Baitcast Fishing Reel

The Daiwa Tatula Baitcast Fishing Reel is sharp. Shiny black lightweight aluminum frame introduces a slick modern reed meant to turn heads of all kinds.

Designed to meet the durability and performance requirements of the pro angler, TATULA offers a rugged gear train, fully supported within a rigid aluminum housing. Up front, a unique, hybrid-design levelwind combines the durability of a standard levelwind with the casting performance of Daiwa’s T-Wing aperture.

Key Features include:

  • Rugged, lightweight aluminum frame and side plate (gear side)
  • Air Rotation
  • Ultimate Tournament Carbon Drag UTD
  • 5.4:1, 6.3:1, 7.3:1 & 8.1:1 gear ratios
  • 8 Bearing System
  • Infinite Anti-reverse
  • Corrosion resistant clutch mechanism
  • Large, 90mm swept power handle with cutouts for reduced weight

There is plenty of room for line. The Tatula baitcaster will hold anywhere from 175 to 200 yards of lighter lines like 8-17 lbs though it can hold heavier lines.

Only limited models have the red accent painting that is included in the relevant picture due to high demand.

Daiwa Zillion HSL Fishing reel

Zillion Type HD is now Magsealed to make it more resistant to saltwater for inshore fishing. Zillion Type HD also has a stronger drag 15.4 two more pounds of drag to help you fight those stronger fish. The handle has been increased to a 100 mm Swept Handle to give you more leverage. And the handle now has an EVA custom handle knob. The new Zillion Type HD is the right reel to handle the saltwater and brackish water environment.

The Daiwa Zillion HSL Fishing reel is light weight with a large power handle with cut outs in order to reduce weight. This comes with Daiwa’s custom handle knob in a lightweight aluminum frame while a free-floating frame promises long casts and spooling faster.

While the Daiwa Zillion HSL comes with a hefty price tag for many, its slick and efficient design coupled with high quality materials and a trust worthy brand means and angler will be pleased with such a fine piece of fishing machinery.

Final Thoughts:

Finding the perfect baitcasting reel is a matter of personal preference and style. However, the ability to have a reel which allows space for line with a great ratio for reeling in those big fish is a must. Hopefully we’ve helped you narrow down all your choices with some of our favorite.

Make sure to check out the other articles we have on fishing kayaks, Rod and Reel basics, top fishing rods, and out other fishing tips for muskie, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, or catfish.

Happy Fishing!


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