10 Best Spinning Reels Under $50: Reviewed & Compared

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Spinning reels are like London buses, there’s always another one coming. The problem, however, is that with this sheer variety of options, it can be difficult to settle on one, accurate option. But if you’re reading this review of the best spinning reel under 50, you needn't worry because we have laid bare all the facts for you.

Some of the reels featured below have the following qualities:

  • Aluminum spindles
  • Stainless steel bearings
  • Corrosion-resistant graphite body
  • Balanced rotor designs
  • And so forth.

In other words, you need to stick around – and sure enough, there’s something for everyone!

So, we have compiled the latest list of the top spinning reels that are also extremely cheap. Use this table for a quick run-down of the options at your disposal.

Ranking

Image

Model

Primary Material

Weight

Check Price

1

Shimano Sienna 500FD; Freshwater Spinning...

SHIMANO Sienna FE

Graphite & Aluminum

6.4 ounces

2

Okuma TU-1002-80 Tundra Spin Combo 10'...

Okuma TU-1002-80 Tundra

Glass Fiber & Graphite 

15.7 ounces

3

Daiwa Revros 2500H Spinning Fishing Reel...

Daiwa Revros 2500H

Aluminum 

9.3 ounces

4

Okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel Size 10 - 5Lb Max...

Okuma Ceymar

Aluminum 

8 ounces 

5

PLUSINNO Fishing Rod and Reel Combos Carbon...

PLUSINNO Carbon Fiber

Stainless Steel & Carbon Fiber 

27.2 ounces

6

Mitchell  Fishing            300 -...

Mitchell Fishing 300

Aluminum & Polymeric 

12.8 ounces

7

Penn Pursuit II Spinning Fishing Reel

Penn Pursuit II

Aluminum & Graphite

23.2 ounces

8

Shimano FX1000FB Spinning Reel - 8 lb./240...

Shimano FX

Aluminum & Graphite

13.6 ounces

9

Rose Kuli Stainless Steel Ball Bearings,...

ROSE KULI

Stainless Steel & Aluminum 

10.6 ounces

10

Shakespeare Crusader Spinning Reel

Shakespeare Crusader

Aluminum 

29 ounces


10 Best spinning reels under $50 ​Reviewed

1. ​SHIMANO Sienna FE

Shimano Sienna 500FD; Freshwater Spinning...
341 Customer Reviews
Shimano Sienna 500FD; Freshwater Spinning...
  • Perfectly suited for everything from...
  • Encased in a new M-Compact Body that...
  • Equipped with a Propulsion Line...
  • Utilizing Super Stopper II technology...

Shimano-FE sienna is an upgraded reel manufactured by Shimano, a firm with over 80 years of experience in this industry. The reel is innovatively designed to be balanced, reliable, easy to operate and affordable. The reel comes in an M-Compact Body which makes the oscillation gear move closer to the rod. This feature gives the reel great balance while minimizing angler operation fatigue. You can, therefore, fish for long hours with it.

It is also designed with a Dyna-Balance system which balances the rotor, reducing swaying during retrieval. Further, the reel has an improved line management system called Propulsion Line Management enabling longer casting distances and also preventing backlashes and wind knots from forming. In addition, it has a Super Stopper II technology which is an instant anti-reverse no back play system.

It is a perfect gear for freshwater fishing, but it can also be used for saltwater fishing. If used in salty waters, it has to be well cared for to avert corroding. There are four reel sizes to choose from ideal for catching small to medium sized fish, all offered at the same price but with slightly different features. The four reels have different gear ratios, ball bearings among other features.

It is, therefore, not best suited for fishing big-sized fishes as its design is quite flimsy. That said, it does a stellar job on medium and tiny-sized fish species.

Pros
  • Very affordable
  • Causes less angler fatigue
  • Better line management system
  • More balanced
  • Instant anti-reverse with back plays
Cons
  • Not ideal for fishing big-sized fish
  • fishing rod has to be purchased separately

2. Okuma TU-1002-80 Tundra

Okuma TU-1002-80 Tundra Spin Combo 10'...
383 Customer Reviews
Okuma TU-1002-80 Tundra Spin Combo 10'...
  • 1BB ball bearing drive for smoothness
  • Corrosion resistant graphite spool
  • Multi-disc oiled-felt drag System
  • Multi-disc oiled felt drag system

Okuma Fishing Combo is an excellent package to consider. The reel is matched with an equally performing rod and coming at a great price of under $50. Their rods and reel are tested for quality and reliability.

Such a package a package comes with conveniences of saving shopping time and money. You have four different reels and rods to choose from with slightly different features and pricing. The rods are different lengths while the reel has different ball bearing numbers among other features. Choose a combo depending on what kind of fish you hope to hook.

The reel features a multi-disc oiled felt drag system for efficiency, making the reel smooth. The reel is made from the highest quality materials. The grips on the reel are EVA form to provide you with a comfortable angling experience, for extended periods of time. The rods are heavy-duty glass fiber rods. They have a blank construction with ceramic inserts. Unfortunately, there have been a few customer complaints about the quality of the reel.

Pros
  • Four different sizes on offer to suit different fishing needs
  • Very affordable, two items, reel and rod at under $50.
  • Comes as a combo offer, of a reel and rod. You won’t need to buy the rod separately.
  • The combo is made from the highest quality materials
  • Some of the combos can handle big fishes
  • A smooth dragging system
Cons
  • Some customers have complained about some components being poor quality.

3. ​Daiwa Revros 2500

Daiwa Revros 2500H Spinning Fishing Reel...
158 Customer Reviews
Daiwa Revros 2500H Spinning Fishing Reel...
  • Hefty winding power
  • Optimized speed and durability
  • Unique shape reduces unnecessary weight

Daiwa-Revros reel is a great fishing gear with great features to suit freshwater angling. The reel can be adjusted to work either in left or right hand retrieve. Its body is made from two materials, aluminum, and stainless steel. Though the drag system is plastic, it comes with the advantage of being light.

The reel is designed with a unique air rotor shape to help reduce its weight and to increase its sensitivity. The rotor weighs 15% less than standard rotor systems. In addition, the reel has an ABS aluminum spool to provide better line management by preventing the line from twisting. The Digigear gears are constructed with durability, extraordinary smooth running, and small resistance.

The reel has an eight bearing system of seven stainless steel ball bearings and one roller bearing. The reel weighs 8.3 oz. and has a gear ratio of 5.6:1. The drag system and the ball bearing system make this reel ultra smooth. The gear ratio makes it perfect for catching fast fishes. The reel comes at a very affordable price.

Pros
  • Very affordable
  • Great ball bearing system
  • Lightweight
  • Digigear system
  • Durable
  • It is great for freshwater fishing
  • 7BB+1RB
  • It has a standard gear ratio
  • Light air rotor
Cons
  • Not so good at saltwater fishing
  • Drag system is made out of plastic
  • It has to be matched with a good rod

4. Okuma-Ceymar C-55​

On Sale Today
Okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel Size 10 - 5Lb Max...
607 Customer Reviews
Okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel Size 10 - 5Lb Max...
  • Multi-disc, oiled felt drag system, Max...
  • Quick-set anti-reverse roller bearing
  • Precision machine cut brass pinion gear
  • Machined aluminum, 2-tone anodized spool

Okuma-Ceymar reel is an angling innovation geared towards making fishing more efficient in extreme conditions at an affordable price. The reel boasts many features. The manufacturer has designed five different reels to suit different fishing needs. Each has slightly different features and different pricing. Four of the models are priced under $50. You will love the features of all the models but let’s narrow in on the C-55, 240yd-15lb reel.

Okuma-Ceymar C-55, 240yd-15lb reel is an under $50 reel. The reel is constructed from durable and lightweight materials. The lightweight design makes carrying the reel more comfortable. The reel is both a left hand and right-hand retrieve (ambidextrous). It has a bearing system of 7BB+1RB and a gear ratio of 5.0:1.

The reel uses the Elliptical Gearing System which makes fishing smooth and easier through the casting and drag system. The reel is fitted with a multi-disc, oiled felt drag system for efficiency in casting and smooth retrieving. The reel has forged aluminum handle arms for a good grip. In addition, it has a Quick-Set anti-reverse system. Because this is not a combo offer, you need to match this reel with a good rod.

Pros
  • Lightweight, making the reel portable
  • Very affordable
  • Five reels to choose from, four models are priced under $50
  • Anti-reverse system
  • Elliptical Gearing system
  • Multi-disc, oiled felt drag system
Cons
  • Warranty information is not clear
  • The rod has to be purchased separately.

5. Plusinno ​Combo

PLUSINNO Fishing Rod and Reel Combos Carbon...
1,141 Customer Reviews
PLUSINNO Fishing Rod and Reel Combos Carbon...
  • 🎣 It's the best gift to send father,...
  • 🎣 Perfect elasticity, high density...
  • 🎣 Stainless Steel Hooded Reel Seat is...
  • 🎣 Instant anti-reverse; Power drive...

Plusinno Fishing Combo Kit-1.8M 5.91FT comes with the convenience of giving you the fishing gear you need to start fishing. You get a fishing rod and a reel at a very affordable price. And to make the offer even more incredible, the combo is backed by a one year manufacturer’s warranty.

The rod is telescopic, made from a hybrid of high-density Carbon fiber and fiberglass for durability. It is constructed light. Therefore it is easy to handle during fishing causing less operator fatigue. In addition, it is also easy to carry it.

The reel is a 12 ball bearing system, for smooth retrieves with a gear ratio of 5.2:1. The reel can be adjusted to either left or right hand retrieve. The reel seat is anti-sea water corrosion. The reel has EVA Fore Grip for comfortable fishing. It also has an instant anti-reverse system and a high strength gear. In addition, it has a deep aluminum spool.

The two items are shipped separately, and the good thing is assembling them is quite a breeze. Such an offer is mainly suitable for mainly newbie anglers. You have six combo offers to choose from.

Pros
  • Both the rod and reel are priced under $50.
  • Buying a combo is convenient, you buy two items at once.
  • You have six combo offers to choose from. Four of the combos are priced at under $50.
  • Carbon fiber telescopic fishing rod
  • Lightweight and durable rod
Cons
  • Combo offers are mainly suitable for newbie anglers who need a starter kit.

6. Mitchell Fishing 300

Mitchell  Fishing            300 -...
253 Customer Reviews
Mitchell Fishing 300 -...
  • Durable yet lightweight spinning fishing...
  • Innovative Bail Halo design greatly...
  • 8 bearing reels with instant...
  • Multi-disk drag system delivers...

Did you know that the first spinning reel was made in 1948 by Mitchell? Well, they are still in the business of producing innovative reels, 70 years later. A lot has gone into the construction of each component of the reel and also the different systems working together, including line management, gear, ball bearings and handle. Whether you are a newbie angler or seasoned one, you will appreciate the unique features incorporated in the design of Mitchell 300.

The reel comes with eight bearings in addition to having an anti-reverse feature. Giving you smooth retrieves. It comes with a superior line management system. In addition, the rotor has a unique design called Bail Halo for added strength. The innovative bail halo design prevents the bail arms from rubbing the spool and stops the line from going under the spool.

The reel uses the multi-disk drag system, providing excellent drag pressure for light and heavy loads. The body and rotor of the reel are made from advanced polymeric. The reel has an aluminum handle and spool. The result is a reliable and durable reel. The reel has an anti-reverse system to put you in control of your fishing. For excellent fishing, all your fishing gear has to be of immaculate quality. Therefore, for this reel, you have to pair it up with other good fishing gears, including a rod.

Pros
  • Affordable
  • Strong body, rotor, handle and spool for durability
  • Light
  • Innovative Bail Halo design
  • Eight bearing system
  • Anti-reverse
  • It can handle light, medium and heavy loads
Cons
  • If you don’t have a fishing kit, you need to find a nice matching fishing rod.

7. Penn-Pursuit II

Penn Pursuit II Spinning Fishing Reel
923 Customer Reviews
Penn Pursuit II Spinning Fishing Reel
  • Spinning fishing reel delivers premium...
  • Durable construction with graphite body,...
  • Oiled felt drag system offers...
  • Fluid cranking with 4 shielded stainless...

Penn-Pursuit I & II has a lot to offer newbie and seasoned anglers alike. With over twenty reels to choose from in total in the Penn Pursuit II and Penn Pursuit III series. Penn Pursuit II reel is designed with a smooth gear system. The reel has 4+1 stainless steel ball bearings for a smooth retrieve. In addition, the body and rotor are constructed from corrosion resistant graphite for a lightweight and durable reel. The reel uses an oiled-felt drag system, for reliability.

It also has an efficient instant anti-reverse system. Therefore there is no chance of the rotor back playing. Other features of this reel include a metal side plate, a machined-aluminum spool, and an ergonomic handle. The features of Penn Pursuit III, on the other hand, are not so different from Penn Pursuit II reels. However, Penn Pursuit III reels have line capacity rings in addition to having a different and equally powerful drag system called HT-100 drag system.

Though the reels meet different fishing needs, it is quite overwhelming to make a choice from twenty reels. On the other hand, if you are looking for a fishing reel that is under $50, then your choice narrows down to about 14 models.

Pros
  • Many models to suit varying fishing conditions
  • The reels are perfect for saltwater fishing
  • All the components are constructed for durability
  • They are very affordable
  • Many choices to suit different fishing needs
Cons
  • If you don’t have a rod, you have to buy one that is good to match your reel.
  • It is quite confusing to make a choice from about twenty-four models. This is mainly for newbie anglers.

8. ​Shimano FX​

Shimano FX1000FB Spinning Reel - 8 lb./240...
78 Customer Reviews
Shimano FX1000FB Spinning Reel - 8 lb./240...
  • Graphite frame, sideplate and rotor
  • Diecast aluminum spool
  • Varispeed provides consistent spool...
  • Line Capacity: 2/270, 4/140, 6/110

Shimano FX Fishing reel combines many features in its components to give you an efficient reel at a very affordable price. They have incorporated new technologies in the manufacture of this reel called Varispeed technology, Dyna-Balance technology, Power Roller II and Super Stopper to give you a superior unit.

They have three reels to choose from, only two of the reels are currently retailing at under $20. The reel has a gear ratio of 4.6:1 and only one ball bearing. The frame, rotor and side plate are made from graphite which is lightweight and strong. The spool is made from die-cast aluminum.

The VariSpeed technology makes the reel operate fast and more accurately while the Dyna-balance technology provides a more natural environment to fishes in the water by minimizing noise and wobbling. Power Roller technology reduces line twisting while Super Stopper works by eliminating back play in the rotor’s anti-reverse one-bearing system. Unfortunately, the anti-reverse process is not instant.

Pros
  • State of the art technology
  • Perfect units for both freshwater and saltwater fishing
  • Three models to choose from to suit your varying fishing needs
  • Most affordable, retailing at under $30
  • Strong and lightweight, therefore less operator fatigueCons
  • Though the reel has an anti-reverse, it is not instant
  • Strong and lightweight, therefore less operator fatigue
Cons
  • Though the reel has an anti-reverse, it is not instant

9. Rose Kuli Saltwater

Rose Kuli Stainless Steel Ball Bearings,...
102 Customer Reviews
Rose Kuli Stainless Steel Ball Bearings,...
  • Position: Ocean boat fishing, ocean rock...
  • Instant anti-reverse, power drive gear...
  • S-curve oscillation system for very good...
  • Gear ratio: 5.2:1

Rose kuli reel is among the best yet cheapest reels in the market retailing at well under $20 mark. The manufacturer has three reel models on offer. All the components of the reel are corrosion resistant and strong to manage saltwater fishing. The body of the reel is sealed to prevent it from being damaged by salty waters. It is also waterproof and dustproof. The hand retrieval handle is interchangeable between left and right hands.

The reel is lightweight. It has a 12+ 1 Ball bearings that are stainless and saltwater compatible. The gears are brass for durability. It has a gear ratio of 5.2:1 with a high-tensile gear on the aluminum engineered spool. It also has an instant anti-reverse system. In addition, it uses an S-curve oscillation system which makes it a strong reel with a good line winding system.

If you don’t have other fishing gears, then you have to continue shopping for a suitable rod to match this reel.

Pros
  • Very affordable, retailing at under $20
  • The reel is quiet
  • Three models to choose from
  • Smooth line casting, thanks to the S-curve oscillation system
  • It is both a left hand and right-hand retrieve
  • Instant anti-reverse
  • 12+1 Ball bearings
  • Perfect features for saltwater fishing
  • It can be used in both saltwater and freshwater fishing
Cons
  • It is not a combo offer. You have to find a matching rod to use with it that is equally good.

10. Shakespeare Crusader

Shakespeare Crusader Spinning Reel
24 Customer Reviews
Shakespeare Crusader Spinning Reel
  • Ball bearing
  • Cold forged aluminum spool for added...
  • Smooth multi-disc drag System
  • Left/right convertible handle

Shakespeare has over 100 years of experience in the manufacturer of fishing gear and is a popular brand. This reel is constructed with many features providing anglers with a great fishing gear.

You have a choice between four different reel models. You will choose a reel to suit your fishing needs. The Shakespeare reel comes at a very affordable price. The reel is both a left hand and right hand retrieve because they are interchangeable.

All the components of the Shakespeare Crusader reel are made from high-quality materials for durability. It is a one-only ball bearing reel. The reel uses a multi-disc drag System for smooth fishing. You also get a reel with a cold forged aluminum spool for enhanced strength and ported lightweight spool. Its gear ratio is 5.5:1. In addition, it uses a switch to handle anti-reverse.

Pros
  • It is a product of Shakespeare
  • Highly affordable
  • Interchangeable left hand and right hand retrieve
  • Cold forged aluminum spool
  • It is a smooth reel
  • Anti-reverse switch
  • Four different models to choose from
Cons
  • Not suitable for hunting big fishes. It handles small and medium-sized fish.
  • Not built for saltwater fishing

The Buying Guide - Spinning Reels Under $50

Size

The first highly important factor to consider is the size of the reel. Generally, we recommend sizes ranging from 500 to 1000 for anglers targeting smaller fish. However, for medium to larger fish, a 3000 and above size would work best.

Construction

Much as you’re looking for a cheap reel, you need to be on the lookout for anything that might be below par in terms of quality. So, only go for a reel that has the fewest parts possible made of plastic material. The more the graphite and aluminum material quantity, the better.

Gears & Bearings

Steer clear of anything that has plastic gears and bearings. Above all, the gears and bearings should be well-designed to particularly deliver a smooth action.


Which One Is The Best?

With this detailed criterion in mind, we settled for the Okuma Fishing Tundra Surf Spinning as the best ahead of the rest. We particularly fell in love with its graphite spool which is pretty authentic and smooth. That’s in addition to the fact that it comes with ceramic guide inserts and comfortable EVA foam grips.


Final Thoughts

Settling for a budget-friendly spinning doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to settle for less. Fortunately, the review provided above is meant to make sure you’re not taking shots in the dark at any time!