The Abu Garcia Pro Max 2+ Year Review

by Dalvin
Abu Garcia Pro Max Reel

The Abu Garcia Max Pro was a Christmas present in 2020. In the time that has followed, I have thoroughly worked this reel and have some strong opinions about its value, when and where it works best, and why I believe it is a great buy.

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Gear Ratio – Abu Garcia Pro Max

The gear ratio of the Abu Garcia Pro Max is 7.1:1. Which places it in the fairly high category.

It is the perfect speed for topwater, soft-plastics, jerk-baits, and flat-sided crankbaits. Its high speed allows you to quickly pick up the slack in the line and catch up quickly when moving the bait with the rod.

This is especially important when fishing soft plastics like Texas-rigged worms. Once you have fished the lure through the cover, the high-speed reel ratio gets you back to the boat quickly. This allows us to make more casts which also means we get more bites.

This high-speed reel fishes smoothly and cleanly.

Casting with the Abu Garcia Pro Max

Casting the Pro Max is absolutely my favorite thing about this reel. Perhaps it is because I am still using older equipment but wow…technology has made a HUGE difference.

The Pro Max casts more cleanly than a spinning reel. I can take very light lures 1/16 or less and cast them a country mile without backlash. Walker and I are both able to cast Zman TRD weightless with ease. This reel is a casting machine.

I do worry a little about the Max Pro’s ability to handle lures 3/4 ounce and larger. When I first got the lure, I was throwing a River2Sea Whopper Plopper across a cove at a lake. I let it fly and to my surprise, it went nearly across the cove, a 50+ yard cast. Unfortunately, the gear system also made a grinding sound. It scared me as I thought I might have burnt up the bearings on my brand-new reel. However, I reeled in and cast again and again with no issues. I simply made sure I didn’t really torque the rod on the cast. My casts were still easily 35 yards and I never heard the ‘stripping’ noise again.

2 Years later, this reel is still casting flawlessly. I prefer to use it with lures under 3/4 of an ounce.


For over two years I have fished almost exclusively on the Pro Max. To this date, it has caught 1,000s of bass and held its own in hot and cold conditions. It still casts and fishes as smoothly as it did the day after Christmas 2020.

Great for Newcomers to Baitcasters

While Walker has been fishing for a while, the baitcaster is new to him. Nevertheless, he was able to learn and thrive while fishing the Pro Max including one day fishing a 1/15 oz ned rig in a creek with long, accurate casts and over 50 bass caught. If you are learning or teaching a young angler the ability to fine-tune and adjust the cast settings is crucial. The Abu Garcia Pro Max has that in spades.

Our Budget Reel of Choice

In a world of house payments, new drivers, college students, and athletes; I cannot afford to even think about high-end reels. Fortunately, with the Abu Garcia Pro Max around, I don’t have to. Walker and I both love the Pro Max. I believe it is the best budget reel on the market. We plan to add a second to our fishing arsenal along with a new rod over the summer.

To learn why the Pro Max is thePerfectCombo for topwater baits check out this article:

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