best spinning reels under 100 dollars

The 9 Best Spinning Reel Under $100 in 2020 | Reviews and Guides

​Generally, a more high performing fishing reel indeed tends to be pricier.

However, as a beginner, you don’t have to spend a fortune on a good spinning reel.

A budget spinning reel priced under a $100 can get you everything from performance to fighting power to durability most weekend anglers need.

In this article, you’ll find:

  • Reviews of the best spinning reels under $100 in 2020.
  • ​Things you can expect from a budget reel.

Read on​; if you want to find a top-rated spinning reel without going through the frustrating research.

​Best Spinning Reels Under $100 | Comparison

Best Spinning Reel Combo Under $100
01. ​Cadence CC6 Spinning Combo
  • ​Excellent casting distance
  • ​Performance and durability ensured
  • ​Performance and durability ensured
Best ​Ultralight Under $100
0​2. ​​Shimano NASCI FB
  • ​Budget-friendly reel
  • ​Small and lightweight
  • ​Silky smooth performance
Best ​​Bass Reel Under $100
0​​3. Okuma Inspira
  • ​Progressive drag provides fine control
  • ​Lightweight design
  • ​Wallet-friendly price tag
Best ​​​Trout Reel Under $100
0​4. ​KastKing Sharky 3
  • ​Low gear ratio for the hard fighting species
  • ​Extremely smooth retrieval
  • ​Excellent stopping power
Best ​​​​Walleye Reel Under $100
0​​5. ​​Penn Fierce 3 Live Liner
  • ​Excellent casting distance
  • ​High line retrieval rate
  • ​ Smooth drag & a live baitfeeder
Best ​​​​​​​Catfish Spinning Reel Under $100
0​​​​​6. ​​​​​Okuma Avenger ABF B
  • ​Sealed gear system
  • ​One-handed bait feeding system
  • ​Smooth retrieve
Best ​​​​​Ice Fishing Reel Under $100
0​​​​7. ​​​Okuma Ceymar
  • ​Extremely lightweight
  • ​Handle cold conditions well
  • ​Flawless performance
Best ​​​​​​Surf Spinning Reel Under $100
0​​​​​8. ​​​​Daiwa BG
  • ​Extremely lightweight
  • ​Handle cold conditions well
  • ​Flawless performance
Best ​​​​​​​Crankbait Reel Under $100
0​​​​​​9. Penn Battle 2
  • ​Can cast longer distances
  • ​High line retrieval per crank
  • ​Built like a tank

​Best Spin Reels Under 100 Dollars | Reviews

Best ​Spinning ​Combo Under 100 Dollars
Cadence CC6 Spinning Combo

01. ​Cadence CC6

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Excellent casting distance
  • ​Performance and durability ensured
  • ​Very affordable (under 50 dollars)
Reasons To Buy
  • ​Not completely sealed
  • ​Not designed for saltwater conditions

​As a beginner, finding and selecting a good quality spinning reel that is affordable is already difficult on its own. And when you add the hustle of pairing the perfect rod to match the reel, it becomes way taxing and time-consuming.

If you are in the same situation as me, then take a look at the Shakespeare Ugly Stick GX2 combo. A top of the line spinning rod and reel setup that performs well is durable and will save you a ton the research time.

Why We Recommend It

​The combo comes with a rod constructed out of graphite and fiberglass that provides the strength when fighting larger freshwater monsters. This medium-action rod is a single-piece construction which adds to the overall strength and increases sensitivity.

The rod also features a Clear Tip design that helps increase responsiveness and strength.

The combo comes with a lightweight but sturdy spinning reel that is designed with performance in mind. The line capacity is on higher-end and can reel in pretty quick.

With this rig on your boat, you can safely battle most small to medium freshwater species without any worry.

​Overall, the Ugli Stick combo is an excellent performer that is ideal for anglers looking for high-quality setup at an affordable price.

Keep In Mind

​The reel is not completely sealed and may malfunction if not taken care of. Additionally, avoid using the reel for saltwater fishing applications.

What Buyer's Say

​"You can never go wrong with Ugly Stick products and this is the best example. Having been fishing with it for quite some time now with no complaints. Works great even with little lures." - Kevin D.

Additional Specs:

Model#: USSP661MH/40CB0
Rod Length (ft): 6’6”
Rod Power: Medium-Heavy
Number Of Pieces: 1
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 8/240, 10/210, 12/175
Gear Ratio: 5.2:1
Ball Bearings: 3+1


Best Ultralight ​Spinning ​​Reel Under $100
SHIMANO NASCI Compact Spinning Reel

0​2. ​​Shimano NASCI FB

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Budget-friendly reel
  • ​Small and lightweight
  • ​Silky smooth performance
Reasons To Buy
  • ​Not fully sealed
  • ​The spool is not braid ready

​Ultralight spinning reels are for anglers who spend long hours on the water, travel to various fishing locations or like to chase perch, panfish and other smaller species.

If you’re one of them, then consider adding Shimano NASCI to your lightweight fishing tackle setup.

Why We Recommend It

​The 1000FB is the smallest model of the NASCI family which is excellent for ultralight, finesse, ice, and freshwater fishing applications.

The reel G-Free Body design moves the center of gravity closer to the rod giving you the perfect balance on every cast. Additionally, you’ll feel the fish strike better and have less wrist fatigue after a long day on the water.

The reel is made water and weatherproof thanks to the Coreprotect technology. This also increases the working life of the reel drastically with a little bit of care.

The Hagane cold-forged gearing along with X-SHIP technology makes the reel exceptionally smooth and strong even under load. With a gear ratio of 5.0:1 you can crank in about 26 inches of line per turn of the handle.

The carbon drag produces about 7 lb stopping power which is impressive for a lightweight reel. You can easily stop most small freshwater species and add the thrill of fighting larger species.

Overall, it is a budget-friendly reel, performs well and most importantly is extremely lightweight.

Keep In Mind

​This model is not fully sealed and may clog if dunked in saltwater or sand. Use it for lightweight fishing applications.

The spool is not braid ready thus will require mono or tape backing to prevent line slippage.

What Buyer's Say

"The reel is a solid performer which helped me hook in some decent sized snook and redfish. At a 100 dollar price point, you will get a high-quality spinning reel without any doubt." - Michael Klein

Additional Specs:

​Model#: NAS1000FB
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 2/270, 4/140, 6/110
Braid Line Capacity (lb/yds): 10/95, 15/85, 20/65
Max Drag (lbs): 7
Gear Ratio: 5.0:1
Line Retrieve Per Crank (Inches): 26”
Ball Bearings: 4+1
Weight (OZ): 7.6


Best ​Bass ​Spinning ​​Reel Under $100
Okuma Inspira Carbon Frame Lightweight Spinning Reel

0​​3. ​​​Okuma Inspira

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Progressive drag provides fine control
  • ​Lightweight design
  • ​Wallet-friendly price tag
Reasons To Buy
  • ​The spool is not braid ready

​When it comes to bass fishing, most anglers will agree that a spinning reel is the best option for beginners.

Not just any spinning reel, but a reel that is specially designed to hook and stop those hard fighting creatures.

Enter: The Okuma Inspira

An excellent beginner bass fishing reel that comes with good stopping power, line capacity and is wallet-friendly.

Why We Recommend It

​The reel (frame and side plate) is constructed out of lightweight C-40X carbon fiber. This makes it stronger and lighter which makes casting easier for a beginner.

Additionally, the C-40X technology makes the reel corrosion-resistant allowing you to fish in saltwater conditions.

The reel uses Torsion Control Armor design that eliminates reel twists under heavy loads. This allows the internal parts to be inline for smoother retrieves and extends the work-life of the reel.

The carbon fiber drag can produce up to 13 pounds of smooth stopping power. This will help you tackle most medium to large bass species that put up a fight.

The reel can hold up to 215 yards of 30 lb braid. This allows you to reach deeper points in the water and provide more running space for the large trophy bass and tire easily.

The gear ratio is at 5.0:1, providing the perfect balance between power and speed making it fit for all the species of bass. The 8+1 stainless steel ball bearings make line retrieve smooth and the Quick-Set anti-reverse ensures instant hoot set.

Overall, The Okuma Inspira is an excellent reel for bass fishing that is both high-performing and priced below 100 dollar range.

Keep In Mind

​The Model 40B is also fit to fish the inshore, however, the reel isn’t completely sealed and may malfunction if submerged for a long time.

What Buyer's Say

​"It is rare to find a reel with the performance of this reel under $100 price range. The reel is very smooth retrieve, great drag, and built sturdy. Love the performance for the price." - Curtis Yip

Additional Specs:

​Model#: ISX-40B
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 8/270, 10/190, 12/170
Braid Line Capacity (lb/yds): 30/215, 40/150
Max Drag (lbs): 13.2
Gear Ratio: 5.0:1
Line Retrieve Per Crank (Inches): 30”
Ball Bearings: 8+1
Weight (OZ): 9.4


Best ​​Trout ​Spinning ​​Reel Under $100
KastKing Sharky III Fishing Reel

0​​​4. ​​​​KastKing Sharky 3

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Low gear ratio for the hard fighting species
  • ​Extremely smooth retrieval
  • ​Excellent stopping power
Reasons To Buy
  • ​Not recommended for saltwater

​Apart from the significant taste, trouts are loved by anglers for the challenges they put forward when fishing for them.

If you’re looking to increase your chances of reeling in a boatload, you need a fishing reel that works flawlessly with your fishing rod and lures.

However, as a beginner, you don’t need the most expensive reel.

A spinning reel below $100 like the KastKing Sharky 3 will help you find and reel in your target species.

Why We Recommend It

​The Sharky 3 spin reel is an upgraded version of the Sharky 2 which brings the perfect package of power and performance at an affordable price.

At 9.2 ounces, it makes a perfect lightweight reel that is ready to cast a very light line and lure in order to chase those rainbow trouts.

The high efficient carbon fiber drag system can produce up to 33 pounds of stopping power. Providing the peace of mind that you can fight the biggest size trout swimming in the river.

Once you have your prize fish hooked, the 10+1 shielded stainless steel ball bearings ensure a butter-smooth and effortless retrieve.

Moreover, with a gear ratio of 5.2:1 you get super-fast line retrieve up to 27.5 inches per turn of the handle. The high-density EVA handle helps add power when reeling in and prevents hand slips.

The reel comes with a pretty high line capacity (20 lbs/200 yds of braid). This will ensure you have enough lines for hard fights and lengthy runs.

Additionally, the spool is braid ready which prevents braid fishing line slippage and the need for backing.

We recommend the 2000 size reel for trout fishing, spooled with 20 lbs braid and paired with fast to moderate action rod depending on your lure for the best results.

Keep In Mind

​Though the reel is rated for saltwater use, I highly recommend it for light saltwater application and not to submerge the reel. Once you’re done rinse with freshwater and dry the reel before storing.

What Buyer's Say

​"A spectacular looking reel that performs flawlessly, especially the drag. I now have 4 of them and use them for trout, finesse bass, and crappie fishing. Best bang for your buck." - Chris McVey

Additional Specs:

​Model#: 2000
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 6/220, 8/190, 10/140
Braid Line Capacity (lb/yds): 20/200, 30/105, 40/85
Max Drag (lbs): 33
Gear Ratio: 5.2:1
Line Retrieve Per Crank (Inches): 27.5”
Ball Bearings: 10+1
Weight (OZ): 9.2


Best ​​​Walleye ​Spinning ​​Reel Under $100
PENN Fierce Live Liner Spinning Fishing Reel

0​​​​5. ​​​​​Penn Fierce 3 Live Liner

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Excellent casting distance
  • ​High line retrieval rate
  • ​Smooth drag
Reasons To Buy
  • ​Not recommended for saltwater

​Fishing for walleyes doesn’t require the most expensive reel you can get your hands on. An inexpensive reel will do the trick.

As a beginner, you need to look for a spinning reel that is lightweight, has a higher retrieve rate, comes with a smooth drag and is in your budget.

Why We Recommend It

​To begin with, when active walleyes are lightening fast swimmers and slow when inactive. The reels high gear ratio (6.2:1) enables you to get strikes in both situations by helping you vary your retrieval speed depending on the situation.

This is one of the most important features to consider when shopping for a walleye reel.

At 12.3 ounces the reel will feel very light which helps with balance and prevents tiredness after a long day.

The Fierce 3 is known for its ability to cast a light line and lure. Moreover, the lighter lure and line increase strike sensitivity allowing you to feel the lightest bites.

The high line capacity enables you to reach far and deep. A carbon fiber drag system provides smooth stopping power and helps prevent line snaps.

Overall the Penn Fierce 3 Live Liner is an excellent walleye reel that comes with a price tag of below 100 Dollars.

For beginners, we recommend spooling the reel with 6-8 lb mono paired with a 6 feet Medium Light, Fast Action spinning rod for jig or rig live bait.

However, the reels 4000 sizes coupled with a 6-7 feet medium power rod will make it a versatile combo to fish most walleye fishing techniques.

Keep In Mind

​Avoid fishing with this reel on water bodies that are known for big walleyes. This reel is designed to catch and fight smaller species.

The reel should be rinsed with freshwater if used for saltwater application. However, we don’t recommend saltwater use.

What Buyer's Say

​"This is one of the best reels I have ever owned. Jigging using light bait is extremely fun with this reel. Would suggest it for weekend anglers." - Mark Larry

Additional Specs:

​Model#: FRCIII2500LL
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 6/255, 8/175, 10/140
Braid Line Capacity (lb/yds): 10/240, 15/220, 20/160
Max Drag (lbs): 12
Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
Line Retrieve Per Crank (Inches): 33”
Ball Bearings: 4+1
Weight (OZ): 12.3


Best Catfish ​Spinning ​​Reel Under $100
Okuma Avenger ABF

0​​​​6. ​​​​​Okuma Avenger ABF B

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Sealed gear system
  • ​One-handed bait feeding system
  • ​Smooth ​retrieve
Reasons To Buy
  • The bait feeder is not loud enough
  • The spool is not braid ready

​Catfish are very notorious and put a lot of stress on your rod and reel when fishing for them. Apart from the specialized catfish gear, you need an appropriate fishing reel to stand a fighting chance.

As a beginner, you may not have to spend a lot on a good catfish reel. A budget spinning reel like the Okuma Avenger ABF B is all you need.

Why We Recommend It

​The body and rotor is graphite construction reducing weight and adding strength. This makes it rigid for fighting most medium to large catfish species.

The oiled soaked drag washers in the drag system provide smooth resistance as the line is pulled off the spool. Thus you don’t have to worry about your line snapping due to drag malfunction.

The 6 ball bearing makes line retrieve extremely smooth and the single anti-reverse bearing ensures ZERO rotor back play enabling instant hook set.

With a good line capacity and reliable bait feeder system, you can relax on the bank allowing the fish to grab the bait and run with minimum resistance.

Overall, the Okuma ABF-B is a top of the line reel that is well suited for a variety of freshwater fishing and most importantly great value for chasing the catfishes.

Pair it with a medium-heavy rod and you will be surprised at the size of fish you can reel in.

Keep In Mind

​The spool isn’t braid ready, thus you need backing if you’re planning to fish with braid line.

We found the bait feeder clicking isn’t loud enough. This may be a problem if you’re fishing in a noisy place.

What Buyer's Say

​"A high-quality fishing reel that is must-have for any freshwater fishing application. I love to reel in bass, catfish, and walleye and this reel make it so easy." - Roberto Carlos

Additional Specs:

​Model#: ABF-40B
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 8/270, 10/190, 12/170
Max Drag (lbs): 13
Gear Ratio: 4.5:1
Line Retrieve Per Crank (Inches): 29”
Ball Bearings: 6+1
Weight (OZ): 11.3


Best ​Ice Fishing ​​Reel Under $100
Okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel

0​​​​​7. ​​​​​Okuma Avenger ABF B

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Extremely lightweight
  • ​Handle cold conditions well
  • ​Flawless performance
Reasons To Buy
  • ​Designed to handle small species

​Anyone who has a bit of ice fishing experience will agree that the freezing temperatures are the most taxing on your fishing reels.

Fishing reels have moving parts, and the low temperature tends to obstruct their mobility.

Enter: Okuma Ceymar

While the Okuma Ceymar isn’t specifically designed for ice fishing, however, it performs exceptionally well in such cold conditions and doesn’t lock up.

Why We Recommend It

​Weighing in at 5.9 ounces, its an extremely lightweight ice fishing reel. The low weight ensures great balance, less fatigue thus allowing you to fish all day long.

The line capacity of this ultralight reel is pretty impressive. It can hold up to 210 yards of a 2-pound line. With such light line, you’re guaranteed to feel the lightest strike from the tiniest of the species.

The multi-disk oiled felt drag system is smooth and performs really well. The brass pinion gear, on the other hand, provides the perfect balance between power and speed.

The aluminum anodized spool adds to the overall strength. The heavy-duty bail wire coupled with a large line roller prevents line twist and damage. Additionally, the EVA foam handle is supremely comfortable to use even in the icy conditions.

Overall, the Okuma Ceymar is a great ice fishing spinning reel not by design but by performance and is a wallet-friendly option for beginners.

Pair it with any inexpensive ultralight ice fishing spinning rod and you are an ice fishing superstar.

Keep In Mind

​This C-10 is an ultralight model that is designed to catch small species like panfish, small perch, and bluegill. Targeting bigger species may d​amage the reel’s overall performance.

What Buyer's Say

​"A very affordable reel that will surely fit all your ice fishing needs." - Zach Vang

Additional Specs:

​Model#: C-10
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 2/210, 4/110, 6/70
Max Drag (lbs): 6.6
Gear Ratio: 5.0:1
Line Retrieve Per Crank (Inches): 21.8”
Ball Bearings: 6+1
Weight (OZ): 5.9


Best ​​Surf Fishing ​​Reel Under $100
Daiwa BG Spinning Reels

0​​​​​​8. ​​​​​​Daiwa BG

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Extremely lightweight
  • ​Handle cold conditions well
  • ​Flawless performance
Reasons To Buy
  • ​Designed to handle small species

​As a novice, the most important factor when selecting a surf reel is the price of the reel. You don’t have to spend several hundred dollars to buy a top of the line reel.

A spinning reel with an under $100 price tag that comes with high line capacity, waterproof and durability is all you want.

Why We Recommend It

​To begin with, the Daiwa BG comes with machined aluminum housing. This provides the strength to handle the torture bought on by the big saltwater species.

Moreover, the reels body and side cover are black anodized which makes it corrosion and scratch-resistant.

The huge spool diameter on this reel allows free line flow and eliminates line memory. The line can be spooled to the edge of the lip and it won’t tangle. Moreover, the ABS design reduces line friction thus helping increase casting distance.

With 550 yards of 50 lbs braid, you can cast deeper into the surf and reel in some big fishes without worrying about running out of line ever again.

The drag system on the BG is very impressive. It is very smooth and can produce enough fighting power to land good size beach monsters. Additionally, the system is sealed which prevents saltwater and sand from disrupting the reel function.

The Daiwa BG comes with the largest drive gear that provides smooth performance and extends the gear life as well. Additionally, it helps transfer more power and added torque which helps fight big saltwater species.

Overall, the Daiwa BG is an excellent surf spinning reel for beginner anglers who are looking for a budget-friendly option. It is a sturdy saltwater reel that can help you reel in small to medium fishes.

Pair this reel with 7-9 foot medium heavy surf rod and reel in some bluefish, spotted seatrout, or pompano.

Keep In Mind

​The reel comes with an extremely strong bail wire and roller bearing. However, the models 4500 and above lacks an automatic bail trip. Make it a habit to trip the bail manually to increase durability.

What Buyer's Say

​"I just started out surf fishing and this reel already helped me get in some nice catch. Really smooth performs well and very reasonably priced. Highly recommend for anyone looking for a quality saltwater reel." - Tucker

Additional Specs:

​Model#: BG6500
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 20/370, 25/310
Braid Line Capacity (lb/yds): 50/550, 65/440
Max Drag (lbs): 33
Gear Ratio: 5.3:1
Line Retrieve Per Crank (Inches): 48.7”
Ball Bearings: 6+1
Weight (OZ): 29.5


Best ​​​Crankbait ​​Reel Under $100
Penn Battle II

0​​​​​​​9. ​​​​​​​Penn Battle 2

Reasons To Buy
  • ​Can cast longer distances
  • ​High line retrieval per crank
  • ​Built like a tank
Reasons To Buy
  • ​Not fully sealed

​Fishing lures like crankbaits are very popular among professional fishermen as they look and swim like live bait. To make the bait dive to its designed depth where your target species are, you need a reel that is designed for it.

The Penn Battle 2 is one such reel. It comes with the perfect balance of speed and torque that can cast yards out into the water and a price tag under $100.

Why We Recommend It

​Weighing in at 10.3 ounces, the reel is pretty lightweight compared to the load it can handle. With high line capacity, you can confidently use it with a shallow, medium or deep-diving crankbait.

The gear ratio is at the sweet spot to produce perfect torque and speed. It can draw in 33 inches of line on every crank which is important to reach the perfect depth.

The reel casts like a dream even with light lures. The braid ready spool allows the line to flow freely and the line capacity rings let you keep track of the available line.

The drag is very powerful but extremely smooth. The reels metal body and aluminum bail wire allow it to take a lot of beating and ensures exceptional durability.

Overall, the Penn Battle 2 is an excellent crankbait reel that will work well for bass, crappie, walleye, and trout. It is extremely durable, performs exceptionally well and comes with a beginner-friendly price tag.

A medium-power spinning rod will work just fine, however, to ensure good casting distance look for a medium-heavy crankbait rod.

Keep In Mind

​The model 2500 is not completely sealed and should not be submerged for longer periods. Additionally, keep in mind to rinse it with freshwater after every fishing trip to extend its working life.

What Buyer's Say

​"My friend recommended this reel and its the best purchase in terms of a fishing reel. Outstanding performance, very smooth for such a small price." - Andrew Ma

Additional Specs:

​Model#: BTLII2500
Mono Line Capacity (lb/yds): 6/255, 8/175, 10/140
Braid Line Capacity (lb/yds): 10/240, 15/220, 20/160
Max Drag (lbs): 12
Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
Line Retrieve Per Crank (Inches): 33”
Ball Bearings: 6+1
Weight (OZ): 10.3


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