The best gear, reviews and advice ... from people who fish

Find Proven Fishing Spots Now with the World's #1 Fishing App

Best Baitcaster Combo

We break down the BEST baitcaster combos for a range of different situations.

Baitcaster reel and rod combinations can really help anglers when it comes to shopping for a new rod and reel setup. Combo packages eliminate the need to search for both a reel and rod, saving the angler in time and hassle by purchasing a setup that’s ready to fish when it arrives at their door. The companies offering our best baitcaster combo packages also pair up the best reel for the rod, so that you as an angler have the best setup for whatever tactic or species you wish to pursue.

Best freshwater baitcaster combo

Lew’s Mach Smash SLP


This sweet looking combo has some serious features at a very affordable price point. It won the award for best combo package at the ICAST show in 2019

Best saltwater baitcaster combo

Penn Warfare combo


The Penn Warfare combo is made to tackle and wrestle with big fish. This rod comes with some great features at an amazingly affordable price.

Best budget baitcaster combo

Quantum Pulse Combo


Quantum is a trusted and established name in the fishing world, but they also produce quality products and in this case a stellar price to boot.

What to look for in a Baitcasting combo package

While most of the rods listed in this article were all picked to be able to provide great fishing all around with every presentation, some combo setups are tailored towards a specific presentation. Some are great for saltwater presentations for large fish, like the saltwater combo by Penn that we have listed in this article. Others are tailored towards presentations suited to higher speed gear ratios, like jerkbaits or crankbaits. The build of the rod will typically compliment the reel and be heavy or have a different length that suits the reel and presentations that it works best with. These are all things to consider when looking for the best baitcaster combo.

RELATED POSTS: Best baitcasting rods for bassBest baitcasting reels

Best Freshwater Baitcaster Combo

best baitcaster combo

Lew’s Mach Smash SLP Combo

This combo by Lew’s has some of the coolest aesthetics around, not only does it make a fashion statement though, this combo has some serious features at a very affordable price point. The Mach Smash won the award for the best combo package at the International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades or  (ICAST) show in 2019. So this combo has that title as proof to its offerings.


The reel is a one-piece super low profile reel that is very lightweight and made of graphite, along with 3 drain ports as well as graphite side ports. The reel also has a magnetic drag system and solid brass gears that a precision CNC machined. To top it off the reel features 8 stainless steel double shield bearings, a zero reverse clutch, graphite drag star, awesome griped and textured paddles and thumb bar, and a machined all aluminum spool.


The rod is constructed from premium IM6 high modulus graphite. The rod seat is the Lew’s famous skeletal reel seat, giving the angler a light weight rod. The grips are WINN Dri-tac Grips with a split grip setup featuring an EVA butt. And last but not least we have stainless steel line guys with stainless steel inserts for a great high quality rod setup.

RELATED POSTS: Best braided lineBest mono fishing lineBest fluorocarbon fishing line

Best Saltwater Baitcaster Combo

best beginner baitcaster combo

Penn Warfare 30LW

The Penn Warfare series is our top pick for best saltwater combo package. It’s made to tackle and wrestle with big fish. This rod comes with some great features at an amazingly affordable price, let’s take a look at some of the features that come with this rod and reel.


The level wind reel is constructed with a lightweight graphite frame and side plates, as well as a forged and machined aluminum spool, HT-100 carbon fiber drag system, and machined brass pinion and main gears.


The rod is a hollow tubular glass blank with a solid glass tip which gives great sensitivity and bite detection. The rod also features stainless steel line guides with aluminum oxide inserts, triangle EVA grip for exceptional control and comfort, and a heavy duty graphite reel seat.

Best Baitcaster Combo for Bass

best baitcaster combo for bass

Abu Garcia Black Max

The Abu Garcia Black Max is our pick for best Baitcasting combo for bass, it has a stellar price point, being affordable for the casual angler, and it has the features normally found on a rod and reel at a much higher price point. Let’s take a look at this rod and reel setup.


The reel features 4 stainless steel bearing and 1 roller bearing, alongside a machined aluminum spool, Abu Garcia’s Power Disk drag system, MagTrax drag system, compact reel foot, graphite side plates to give the reel a lighter weight and ease of handling, and the famous Duragear brass gear, all staples that anglers know and love when it comes to Abu Garcia reels.


The rod is made from 24 ton graphite construction into a one piece blank. These rods utilize stainless steel guides and use ultra smooth and reliable titanium oxide inserts. Solid EVA foam grips are used to give the angler good grip and comfort in all weather conditions. The rod also comes in two sizes from 6’6” to 7’0.

Best Budget Baitcaster Combo

best budget baitcaster

Quantum Pulse

The Quantum Pulse is our pick for best budget baitcaster combo. We look at the price and the features offered for that price, and to be honest, this one’s kind of hard to beat. Quantum has been around for a long time, and is a trusted and established name in the fishing world, but they also produce quality products and in this case a stellar price to boot.


The reel that comes with the Quantum Pulse combo has some great features, like 6+1 bearings, interchangeability with the reel handle, being able to switch to right or left handed retrieves. On top of that the reel also features all metal gears, 19 inches or line per handle crank, 3 times pickup ceramic pins that are ultra reliable. The reel is also super smooth casting as well.


The rod included in the package is a one piece rod coming in at 6’6”. The rod also features a split grip design with EVA grips, IM8 graphite blanks for a durable and reliably constructed rod, and dynaflow aluminum oxide guides.

Best Beginner Baitcaster Combo

Quantum Throttle

And our best and final combo is the Quantum Throttle. This is our pick for best beginner rod. While the rod still has great features, we tried to pick a rod and reel combo that matched both quality and price together, while still giving features to help beginner baitcast setup users.


The reel is middle of the road so to speak with a gear ratio of 7.3:1 giving the angler a good middle ground when it comes to speed, and cranking power. The reel also has 7+1 bearing and an incredible 31 inches or line retrieve per crank. It also has a large capacity spool, capable of carrying 170 yards of 30 pound braid, or 135 yards of 12 pound Monofilament line.


The rod is constructed of IM8 graphite to a length of 6.75 inches. Coming with a very stylish split grip design consisting of EVA foam, as well as dynaflow Aluminum oxide guides, and a built in hook keeping to prevent foul hooking and tangling of line.


Rod Combinations are great for avid anglers and beginners alike. They fill a great role, helping anglers by giving them one good matching package of a rod and reel, versus making the angler search for both. Searching for a rod and reel individually is great if you know exactly what you want in a rod and reel setup, but it isn’t always necessary. We covered some great products in this article and we hope it helps you in your choice in choosing a combo package, and works well for you on the water.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email
Share on print
Share on facebook

TackLe selections from the pros for $15.99!

SIGN UP FOR America's most popular fishing BOX

Get the best bass tackle from top brands including  Mustad, Primitive, Senshi, Big Mouth Baits and more each month through a Lucky Tackle Box subscription. Boxes are tailored to your target species and chosen by pros so you always have the right baits and tackle to catch big fish.