Top 7 Best Shimano Spinning Reel Reviewed for 2023

Video best shimano spinning reel for the money

Shimano has been in the business of making fishing reels since 1978.

With close to 50 years of practice making them, it’s no surprise that the best Shimano spinning reels are some of the top reels in the world.

I’ve used Shimano spinning reels to battle some of the largest fish on the planet from 700lb marlin to 150lb dogtooth tuna and let me tell you, the best Shimano spinning reels don’t fail in these moments, they give you the upper hand by being so tough and reliable.

If you don’t own a Shimano reel, I highly recommend you try them.

Keep on reading below to find the best Shimano spinning reel of 2023.

The Best From The Review

Here’s a quick peek at the top 3 products from the lineup…

Our Best Shimano Spinning Reels

Now let’s proceed to the full reviews of all the top products…

Who Is Shimano?

Shimano is based out of Sakai in Osaka, Japan.

They first started by making bicycles but in 1978 they released their first fishing reel, the Bantam baitcasting reel, at the American Fishing Manufacturers Show.

The Bantam was the best reel in its class and was the starting point for Shimano’s rise to building some of the best fishing gear the world has ever seen like the Tiagara or Stella reels.

Why Choose A Shimano Spinning Reel?

Shimano is one of the most popular fishing manufacturers out there because of their commitment to constantly improving their product’s quality through innovation, design, and technology.


The best Shimano spinning reels are not only made with quality materials but include extra features that help make your day of fishing as good as it can be.

Their propulsion line management system gives you a better casting distance and reduces tangles, their drag system doesn’t fail, and little thoughtful touches like the g-free body makes your rod and reel balance like never before.

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Is Buying A Shimano Reel Worth It?

I’d pick a Shimano spin reel every time, but I’m biased as hell because I’ve grown to love them thanks to the fish they have helped me catch.

Why should you buy a Shimano reel?

Well, for a lot of reasons, but mainly because they’re awesome, they last, and when you hook that fish you’ve been dreaming out, the Shimano reel in your hand will be there to make sure you land it.


The materials and design quality of a Shimano spinning fishing reel are excellent.

Every component from the handle, to the gears, is made of durable, long-lasting materials and is put together to provide the best performance you can get.

Check the Shimano Vanford in action below…

The Shimano Vanford Might Be The Best Reel On The Market! – Flats Class YouTube


When you look at what kind of technology is in a spinning reel Shimano makes, it’s quite astounding.

All their gear, particularly their high-end reels are loaded with clever little pieces of innovative technology that come together to give you an all-around better fishing experience.

They make casting easier, reduce tangles, give you a smoother drag, a faster retrieve, and even improve great efficiency.


Every rod or fishing reel Shimano makes comes with a two-year warranty as standard. If anything goes wrong due to a manufacturer defect, they are there to fix or replace whatever has happened to your fishing reel.

They have authorized service centers all around the globe to help you get your spinning fishing reel fixed up and back on the water.

Customer Service

Shimano’s customer service is pretty awesome thanks to their model of having authorized service centers dotted around the world, your local fishing shop could even be one.

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This means whether you need your Shimano spinning reel serviced or repaired inside or outside of warranty, there are pros close by to ensure it gets done properly before your next fishing trip.

Things To Consider When Buying A Spinning Reel

Target Species

Before you even start looking for a spin reel to buy, you’ve got to pin down what size fish you’re going after and where.

Do you want a light freshwater reel for trout and crappie?

A medium-sized spin reel that can handle bass and the likes of redfish and bonefish when you’re inshore fishing?

Or are you solely looking for an offshore spinning reel that’ll catch anything from a 300lb yellowfin tuna to a 600lb marlin?


Once you know what you’re after, picking the right and the best spinning reel to match is a lot easier. The size of the fish you’re looking to catch dictates the size of the reel, and you need and will whittle down your options to 50 reels instead of 1000.


Quality and price go hand in hand when it comes to Shimano spinning reels and the more you require from your reel the more you’ll need to cough up at the end of the day.

This relates to the features you want and directly to your target catch too.


You can find a basic Shimano spinning reel for a price everyone can afford, but when you start adding more features, those numbers next to the dollar sign start increasing.


A reel made for hauling out giants offshore is going to be a lot more expensive than a light freshwater reel, simply because it needs to be bigger and stronger in every way to handle 500lb marlin and saltwater instead of 2lb trout and freshwater.

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Winding Up

Thanks for reading my article about the best Shimano spinning reels, and hopefully you love Shimano reels more than ever because of it.

Each reel truly is a work of art and you can’t really go wrong with them. If you can’t quite make your mind up about which one to go for, here are my suggestions.

Top Pick

The Vanford is ideal for anyone who doesn’t mind spending a bit and wants the most out of their money.

It’s one of the best Shimano reels and it is an incredibly light, durable, and versatile reel that can be fished anywhere, plus it’s incredibly well made and will last a lifetime with care.

Best Value

When your budget is the driving factor, the Sedona Fi can’t be beaten.

It’s affordable for all and you can rely on it to perform as you utilize its versatility and take it from the flats to the great lakes.

Editor’s Choice

If it was me and money was no object, the Stella FJ is the one I’d buy.

It outperforms all the others bar the SW C in terms of quality, design, build, materials, and overall performance. But, unlike the SW C reel, it’s small enough to be used in every aspect of fishing, rather than just for heavy offshore.

I hope you enjoyed the article, and please share it with your fishing community. We also have some other reviews that you might enjoy like the best portable fish finder that’ll help take your catch stats to the next level.

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Ethan Smith is a seasoned marine veteran, professional blogger, witty and edgy writer, and an avid hunter. He spent a great deal of his childhood years around the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in Arizona. Watching active hunters practise their craft initiated him into the world of hunting and rubrics of outdoor life. He also honed his writing skills by sharing his outdoor experiences with fellow schoolmates through their high school’s magazine. Further along the way, the US Marine Corps got wind of his excellent combination of skills and sought to put them into good use by employing him as a combat correspondent. He now shares his income from this prestigious job with his wife and one kid. Read more >>