5 Best Spinning Reels Under $100 + Buying Guide [2022 Update]


Updated on September 9, 2022 by

Tired of expensive Spinning reels that don’t perform? Looking for great quality at a modest price? Well, then this best spinning reels under 100 dollars buying guide will be helpful for you.

In this article, I have selected some top spinning reels under $100. Each of the reels on our list has been entered for their great functionality. Rather than their premium features, they have been selected because they are in a reasonable price range.

I discuss these products with a comprehensive comparison that will help you to recognize key points and much more. I have added the buying guide to consider the factors to look for before buying.

I have spent decades angling with all kinds of spinning reels and have personally tested all 5 reels in this list. They have been thoroughly tested for performance, durability, and value for money. If you are interested in more information, then I have also conducted an individual review of each reel if you want to learn more.

So let’s start.

Quick Summary – Best Spinning Reels Under $100

Preview
okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel Size 10 - 5Lb Max Drag Pressure
PENN 1338215 Battle II 1000 Spinning Fishing Reel
Pflueger PRESSP20B President Spinning Fishing Reel
Bearings
7+1
5+1
9+1
Gear Ratio
5.0:1
6.2:1
5.2:1
Max Drag
4-25 lbs
9-30 lbs
10-14 lbs
Product
Preview
okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel Size 10 - 5Lb Max Drag Pressure
Bearings
7+1
Gear Ratio
5.0:1
Max Drag
4-25 lbs
More Info
Best Overall
Product
Preview
PENN 1338215 Battle II 1000 Spinning Fishing Reel
Bearings
5+1
Gear Ratio
6.2:1
Max Drag
9-30 lbs
More Info
Preview
Pflueger PRESSP20B President Spinning Fishing Reel
Bearings
9+1
Gear Ratio
5.2:1
Max Drag
10-14 lbs
More Info

What is a Spinning Reel?

In simple terms, a spinning reel is a machine or cylindrical device that is connected to a rod for the reason of fishing. These reels were first invented in 1948 by a company named Mitchell. A great-designed spinning reel is the best weapon of a successful angler. Spinning reels are easy to use as well as easy to maintain. You only have to flip the bail, cast, close the bail and crank the reel to retrieve. 

I strongly recommend spinning reels for beginner anglers or people just getting started. They are extremely versatile and can be used in anything from casting lures/dropping baits, inshore/offshore, freshwater/saltwater species, and everything in between. If you intend on fishing in a lot of different environments for a variety of species then certainly go for a spinning reel.

You will also get a longer casting distance from a spinning reel compared with a spincast or conventional reel design.

What to Expect From Best Spinning Reels Under $100
10 Best Spinning Reels + Buying Gui...
10 Best Spinning Reels + Buying Guide (Tried & Tested) [2022 Update]

Reel Weight

As manufacturers don’t use costly materials to create cheaper Spinning Reels the weight can’t be optimized. So if you expect a lightweight spinning reel under $100, you will be disappointed. But keep in mind that heavier reels are not always bad if you know how to adjust with your wrists.

This is especially true of larger-sized models, especially as you move into the offshore saltwater-sized options.

More Plastic Elements

like the reel, the manufacturer can’t invest a huge amount for any advanced component. So they try to use more plastic materials to save on the production cost. As a result, these reels come with fewer metal components. You won’t find many solid metal bodies, precision-engineered gearing, or the latest corrosion-resistant materials.

Unsealed Bearings and Drags Systems

To save some money, the drag systems will not be sealed on these reels. The bearing count is often also cut down to reduce the price, which also results in a drop in performance. You can certainly still find high-performing entry-level spinning reels, but I would strongly recommend flushing your feels in fresh water after use to remove any salt or sand from the internals.

5 Best Spinning Reels Under $100

The spinning reel is a weapon that is designed to catch more fish easier, and smarter. So carefully pick the one that is cost-effective for you. Here are our recommended 5 Best Spinning Reels Under $100 for you. 

1. Penn Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel – Best Overall

  • Durable, high range spinning reel ideal for conquering big saltwater gamefish
  • Full metal body, side plate, rotor, and heavy-duty aluminum bail wire offer exceptional durability
  • HT 100 carbon fiber drag system provides powerful drag without sacrificing smoothness

Penn Battle Spinning Reel

Penn batlle spinning reel
  • Wide Range of Sizes Available
  • High Speed Options Available
  • HT-100 Drag Washers
  • Extremely Durable Materials

Are you a novice angler? Penn Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel will perform flawlessly. Whenever it comes to picking the best-in-class spinning reel, Penn comes to the forefront of innovation and elegant design. The best thing is they come at a reasonable price.

The Penn Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel is one of them. It comes in the first position on our best spinning reels list because of its reliable design and versatility. So arm yourself to fight the battle of saltwater fish with a Penn Battle II Spinning Reel.

This model from Penn comes in several versions from 1000 to 8000. The gear ratio of 2500, 3000, and 4000 is 6:2:1. On the other hand, other versions like 5000 and 6000 have come with a gear ratio of 5:6:1. Only 8000 version has a 5:3:1 gear ratio. All of them have six bearings.

Penn Battle ModelGear RatioMax DragMono Line Capacity
II10006.2:19 lb105 yards of 6 lb
II25006.2:112 lb255 yards of 6 lb
II30006.2:115 lb165 yards of 10 lb
II40006.2:115 lb220 yards of 10 lb
II50005.6:125 lb135 yards of 20 lb
II60005.6:125 lb230 yards of 20 lb
II80005.3:130 lb340 yards of 20 lb
Penn Battle II Key Specifications

Why I Like It:

  • The corrosion resistance Penn II will give protection against all chemicals and saltwater sprays. The previous version Penn doesn’t have this feature. This was one of the limitations of the last version.
  • It now has six ball bearing – This extra ball bearing makes it sturdy and durable by preventing damage in saltwater. The bearings are made from stainless steel.
  • The Penn Battle II, Spinning Fishing Reel, has come with 20% extra drag. 
  • More than anything, it comes with a large Line Capacity Ring. It’s surely an added value because it works fine for hooking big fat fish.

Pros:

  • The Drag System Is So Smooth
  • Solid Reel As Well Build Quality
  • It Comes With Anti-Reverse System
  • Enough Spool Capacity With Braid-Ready

Cons:

  • The very low weight makes it difficult to cast in windy conditions
Penn Battle II Before Bench Testing
Penn Battle II Before Bench Testing

2. Penn Fierce II Spinning Reel – Best Heavy Duty

  • This spinning fishing reel offers premium performance and durability at an exceptional value
  • Durable construction with full metal body and side plates plus heavy-duty aluminum bail wire
  • Fluid cranking with 4 shielded stainless steel ball bearings and instant anti-reverse bearing

Penn Fierce Spinning Reel

Penn Fierce Spinning Reel
  • 4 Stainless Steel Ball Bearings
  • Versatile Sized Model Range
  • Line Capacity Rings
  • Premium Performance and Durability

Finding the right Spinning Fishing Reel under $100 seems a big challenge, right? But Penn paved the way for another great reel. Penn undoubtedly presents some great spinning reels at a very reasonable cost. Rather than its low cost, you will get the entire required features you expect on a quality reel. 

Penn Fierce II Spinning Fishing Reel is one of them. That’s why we have selected this reel for our best spinning reels lists. Though Penn has produced spinning reels for saltwater for decades, this model was launched in 2005 in the fall.

It has got multiple versions starting from 1000 to 8000. The features and specifications are very close to each other. The price range starts from $49-$89. So if you want a solid reel for less than 100 dollars, this Penn Fierce II Spinning Fishing Reel is worth considering.

Why I Like It:

  • First of all, the full metal body is made from aluminum. On the other hand, the side plate gives better gear control under heavy pressure. So it is durable and has a long lifespan.
  • Like other Penn reels, it has also got quality paint. That protects against chemicals and saltwater spray and works well against corrosion.
  • Being Techno-Balanced™, Penn Fierce II Spinning Fishing Reel is far better than the other reels on the market in this price range. It is a trademark design of Penn spinning reel. At the same time, 4+1 ball bearing gives a silky smooth feeling. The bearings are made from stainless steel. As a result, it will be durable.
  • It has an anti-reverse system that gives a solid retrieve and avoids slippage.
  • This reel has a bail wire of heavy-duty aluminum. This aluminum fights back the test of time and survives for long periods.
  • It is made with more than enough spool line capacity. The mono capacity is also impressive for each model.

Pros:

  • It is Enclosed By The Full Metal Body
  • Affordable Price Range
  • It Has an Upgraded Corrosion Resistance System

Cons:

  • Weight is slightly high
  • The anti-reverse function can put extra pressure on the gear system

3. Okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel – Best Lightweight

  • Gear Ratio: 5.0:1, Precision Elliptical Gearing system
  • 7BB + 1RB bearing system, Quick-Set anti-reverse roller bearing
  • Multi-disc, oiled felt drag system
  • Ambidextrous

Okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel

Okuma Ceymar Spinning Reel
  • Good Value for Money
  • 7+1 Ball Bearings
  • Multi-disc Drag System
  • Very Lightweight Design

Are you an enthusiast angler?

Then you know how important it is to choose the right reels for freshwater. For a devoted person like you, Okuma Ceymar Lightweight Spinning Reel will be a great choice.

Well, we know picking the best spinning reels under 100 Dollars is a daunting task. But Okuma has managed to win people’s hearts within just a few years. Their motto is to offer more than fishing gear but motivate and inspire the fishing. As you can see from the name of the reel, most of the Okuma spinning reels are lightweight.

This Okuma Ceymar Lightweight Spinning Reel comes in five different models. The price range is very reasonable and there are five different models of this Okuma spinning reel.

These models are- C10, C30, C40, C55, and C65. The entire model comes with 7BB + 1RB bearing system and a gear ratio of 5.0:1.

Okuma Ceymar ModelsGear RatioMax DragMono Line Capacity
C105.0:14 lb110 yards of 4 lb
C305.0:18 lb145 yards of 8 lb
C405.0:110 lb160 yards of 12 lb
C554.5:115 lb200 yards of 18 lb
C654.8:125 lb260 yards of 20 lb
Okuma Ceymar Key Specifications

More than anything Okuma produces each model specifically for different reasons and purposes. Have a look.

C-10 Ceymar Reel for small fish:

The smallest fishing reel is perfect for small fish like 2 to 6 pounds. It is designed especially for fishing trout, bluegill, crappie, sunfish, or small perch as well as an outfit for small ice fish.

C-30 and C-40: Versatile Freshwater spinning:

This medium size is suitable for walleye, carp fishing, steelhead, bass, catfish, and more. The C30 model is great for fish within 6 to 8 pounds. On the other hand, C-40 got a large capacity for bigger fish around the 10 to 12 pounds size range.

C-55: For Inshore Saltwater Fishing:

C-55 size reel offers a versatile reel in inshore saltwater fishing. It is designed for snook, shallow water fish, and redfish.

C-65: Jetty, Pier & Big Water Fishing:

This C-65 model is equipped with Ergo Grip. It is made for big water fishing like a pier, jetty where a large number capacity is required. More than anything, it can cover the vast area of lakes or big rivers.

Why I Like It:

  • Quick Anti-Reverse Roller
  • Fine cut brass pinion gear
  • Double-Tone Anodized Spool
  • 7+1 Ball Bearings.
  • Large mono capacity
  • The aluminum bail wires are solid and heavy duty

Pros:

  • These reels are Reliable and durable at an affordable price
  • Retrieving line is quite smooth
  • It comes with a dynamic design

Cons:

  • There are different reels for different scenarios which can cause confusion

4. Pflueger President Spinning Reel – Best Saltwater

  • 9 Stainless Steel Ball Bearings; 6920 has 6 ball bearings
  • On/Off instant anti-reverse bearing
  • Lightweight graphite body and rotor

Pflueger President Spinning Reel

Pflueger President Spinning Reel
  • 9+1 Stainless Steel Ball Bearings
  • Extremely Lightweight
  • Corrosion Resistant
  • Built to Last

Looking for a superior quality spinning reel at a modest price? Well, then Pflueger President Spinning Reel will be the right choice for you.

Fishing can be both fun family time and a competitive sport. But you have to choose the right equipment. We know finding the best spinning reels under $100 is quite a tough task. But this Pflueger President Spinning Reel will not disappoint you.

Like other Pflueger spinning reels, this one is also enclosed with a graphite body and aluminum spool that makes it durable and light. It has a Sure-Click bail that gives a loud indicator. There are two styles of Pflueger President Spinning Reel including – Box and Clam. Both have three different models. Those are 30, 35, and 40. The entire model has got a gear ratio 5.2:1 and ten ball bearings.

Pflueger President SpecificationsGear RatioMax DragMono Line Capacity
PPS305.2:110 lb130 yards of 8 lb
PPS355.2:112 lb175 yards of 8 lb
PPS405.2:114 lb285 yards of 8 lb
Pflueger President Key Specifications

Why I Like It:

  • 10 corrosion-resistant stainless steel ball bearings
  • Smooth haul drag adjustment with oil-coated washers
  • The clutch is one-way as well as anti-reverse which is instantaneous.
  • This reel comes with a single braid-ready spool
  • The best feature of this Pflueger spinning reel is its Graphite body. At the same time, the rotor is also made from Graphite. As a result, the reel is pretty lightweight.
  • Slow Oscillation Gearing
  • The knob is made from rubber and is quite soft. So it gives comfort and excellent grip. 

Pros:

  • Easy Casting and Durable
  • Smooth Reeling and Drag System
  • It’s a very Reliable spinning reel

Cons:

  • Lower casting distance than some of the other options
Penn Spinfisher Reel

5. Shimano IX Rear Drag Spinning Reel – Best Freshwater

  • Line Capacity: 6/170, 8/120, 10/100
  • Max Drag: 7lbs
  • Gear Ratio: 4.1:1

Shimano IX Spinning Reel

Shimano IX Spinning Reel
  • Solid Aluminum Frame and Handle
  • Propulsion Line Management System
  • Shielded Ball Bearings
  • Rear Drag

SSR 1:

  • Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Gear Ratio: 4.1:1
  • Max Drag: 7 Ibs
  • Line Capacity: 6/170, 8/120, 10/100

SSR 2:

  •  Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Gear Ratio: 4.1:1
  • Max Drag: 15 Ibs
  • Line Capacity: 8/240, 10/200, 12/160

Shimano has finally released a spinning model that most anglers or professionals can afford in the Shimano IX. It is very popular among freshwater anglers.

The first thing you will notice first is its sleek blackish look thanks to its stunning mechanical design and excellent drag system. This Shimano Spinning Reel is not only a great spinning reel for the angler but also at a modest price.

Why I Like It:

  • The frame and handle are constructed of solid aluminum. The combination of graphite and solid aluminum makes it extra durable.
  • Shimano designed this reel for saltwater. To survive and protect against damage all graphite material like side plate, frame, spool, rotor. So it will be the best choice for saltwater fishing.
  • More than anything, these spinning reels are light. One of them is 9.6 ounces, and another is 1.5 pounds. So you will not be getting fatigued to hold it.
  • The handles are made as traditional T-shaped. At the same time, paddle-shaped depending on which size you prefer.
  • This reel is an easy casting and level winding reel. The Propulsion Line Management System allows flowing off the spool gently. It ensures a longer cast, without making huge backlashes.
  • The S A-RB bearings come shielded on each side and protect from dirt.

Pros:

  • This Spinning Reel Is Quite Lightweight
  • Rear Drag
  • It Gives Effortless Casting

Cons:

  • Can have trouble casting in rough weather
  • Take care of the graphite

Specification Comparison

This table shows the difference in the key specifications for each of the products in this list, which is based on the 3000 sized model:

ProductBall BearingsWeightGear RatioMax Drag
Penn Battle5+112.3 oz6.2:115 lb
Penn Fierce4+111.7 oz6.2:110 lb
Okuma Ceymar7+18.2 oz5.0:115 lb
Pflueger President9+17.6 oz6.2:110 lb
Shimano IX013.5 oz4.8:115 lb
Specification Comparison Table

My Top Selection

We know finding the Best Spinning Reels under 100 is a tough task. But we carefully selected top-quality performer spinning reel. We highly recommended Penn Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel for its amazing features and elegant design. On the other hand, Penn is so far one of the exceptional spinning reel manufacturers on the market and a reliable brand in the fishing industry.

Final Thoughts

To wrap the Best Spinning Reels under $100 reviews up, we try to cover up the top 5 best spinning reels in your budget. Each one on this list is amazing with their superb benefit and specification plus we added the things we didn’t like about the item. 

There are also some other reels that just missed out on this list such as the KastKing Megatron that you might find interesting.

So enjoy portable fishing with these top qualities spinning reels. Thanks for being with us.

Last update on 2022-09-09 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Photo of author

Captain Russ Egan

Captain Russ is an avid fisherman. He has fished all over the world for more than two decades, primarily for saltwater game fish but also for local trophy fish. Russ writes reviews for all of his fishing gear to help others achieve their own fishing goals. His favorite reel is a Shimano Curado Baitcaster. His dream is to catch a Black Marlin.