Best Fishing Line of 2019 Complete Reviews with Comparisons
Fishing is all about finding the right balance with your gear. Because it’s such a complex activity, no one piece of gear is above all others. This is why, for every technique, rod, and situation, there’s usually a fishing line that can help you go home with a bountiful catch.
That doesn’t mean that there aren’t fishing lines that are more versatile and suitable for a number of occasions and scenarios. As you’re about to learn, fishing lines come in many types and styles. And, as far as expert anglers are concerned, sometimes you have to think outside the box in order to succeed. Let's look at some of the best fishing line options.
Best Fishing Lines Reviews
KastKing SuperPower Braided Fishing Line
KastKing’s SuperPower superline fishing line can help you to catch just about anything. It comes in all sizes, colors, and a few specialty variants. Whether you’re fishing in saltwater, freshwater, or on a frozen lake, this is arguably the best fishing line available if you want to reel in a prize worthy catch.
This superline comes in sizes ranging from 6 to 150 lbs. It has superior knot strength due to the dynamically incorporated strands. Another thing that sets the SuperPower line apart is its proprietary line treatment, which is non-wax-based and improves the action.
As all other superlines that are slowly but surely taking over the market, the SuperPower line has low memory and very limited stretch. You can expect to get a maximum of 5% stretch.
The diameter is small, at least when compared to other those of the same ratings and made by other top manufacturers. Even so, its abrasion resistance is very good.
Also worth pointing out is that you can also get the KastKing SuperPower in low-visibility, ocean blue, moss green, and even multicolor. The multicolor will probably be your best bet for trolling.
What's to like about the KastKing SuperPower Braided Fishing Line
The smooth action and remarkable strength are the two properties that set the SuperPower fishing line apart. However, this is to be expected as most superlines tend to outclass traditional monofilament and braided fishing lines.
What's not to like about the KastKing SuperPower Braided Fishing Line
If there’s one thing that the superline fishing line doesn’t excel at, it’s the colorfast property. The color seems to fade quicker when compared to other top brands.
Berkley Trilene Big Game Monofilament Fishing Line
Berkley’s Trilene Big Game monofilament line is characterized by its good shock resistance and even better knot strength. It comes with a custom spool and usually offers more length than competitor lines regardless of the stress rating.
The smallest line, in terms of stress testing, comes at 8 lbs. It has a length of 1,700 yards, which is nothing short of impressive as a long-term investment. The strongest line is rated at 130 lbs., and has a length upwards of 1,350 yards.
There are of course longer and shorter lines in between the stress limits. This is one area in which the Berkley Trilene Big Game fishing line excels – variety.
When it comes to stretch, this fishing line is not like other monofilament lines. The stretch is controlled and doesn’t come close to the usual 20% threshold of most traditional fishing lines.
The line is quite abrasion-resistant, which makes it a good choice for fishing in muddy or high vegetation water. You can also use the line if you need to be stealthy as it has two variants ideal for clear water fishing: clear and ultra-clear.
What's to like about the Berkley Trilene Big Game Monofilament Fishing Line
Berkley’s Big Game monofilament line caters to anglers that are in need of serious yardage. Even the least strong lines come in a generous length, which makes this model one of the most cost-effective long-term investments.
What's not to like about the Berkley Trilene Big Game Monofilament Fishing Line
If you want to use this line for trolling, you might be slightly disappointed. Although the line is strong and can handle the difficulties posed by side casting off the side of a moving boat, it doesn’t feature multicolor coding that allows you to monitor the depth of the lure.
PowerPro Super8Slick Spectra Fiber Braided Fishing Line
PowerPro is a well-respected brand for anglers of all ages. Its fishing lines can be used by amateurs and professional fishermen alike due to their characteristic smooth action, control, and off-the-charts durability.
The use of spectra fiber makes for a sensitive fishing line. It comes in varying diameters so that you can tackle small fish and large feisty fish alike. The line also varies in length and you can get up to 3,000 yards. However, the 150 yd. lines seem to be the most popular across all weight limits.
Speaking of weight, there’s not as much variety as with other brands. You’ll find the Super8Slick fishing line at 15-, 20-, 30-, 40-, 50-, and 80-lb. stress ratings. However, what this fishing line lacks in weight variety it makes up for in color variety.
You have options for clear or high-visibility yellow. There’s also moss green that works great in high vegetation areas, vermillion red, and even multicolor. The latter is usually preferred by anglers that side cast off moving boats or those that need extra visual help with monitoring the lure’s depth.
What's to like about the PowerPro Super8Slick Spectra Fiber Braided Fishing Line
The minimal stretch of the Super8Slick fishing line is perhaps the main highlight. With close to 0% stretch, this may be the best fishing line for those interested in deep sea fishing. The minimal stretch also guarantees smoother casting and reeling.
What's not to like about the PowerPro Super8Slick Spectra Fiber Braided Fishing Line
Although this is an environmentally-friendly fishing line with no lead core, it’s unfortunately not ideal for trolling. Its sink rate would make it challenging for this type of fishing.
SpiderWire Stealth Superline
SpiderWire’s stealth fishing line comes with Teflon-treated microfibers, a good color variety, and very smooth action that makes casting almost silent. It may just be the best fishing line for baiting and reeling in the more anxious species of fish.
The smallest model can help you to reel in up to a 4-lb. fish with no issues. The line’s diameter is generally thinner than most monofilament lines, but that doesn’t affect the superior break strength in any way. On the contrary, pound for pound stress tests puts the SpiderWire Stealth superline miles ahead of any monofilament.
There are two aspects that make this a stealthy wire. First of all, the Teflon treatment improves the smoothness of the cast in such a way that it flies virtually silent through the guides. Not only that, but this line is also easier to cast further with less effort.
The second aspect is the color variety and colorfast dye. The translucent line will be your best bet for most clear water fishing scenarios. The blue camo model gives you some visual cues while being less visible to fish.
If you want, you can also find this line in a high-visibility color, the High-Vis Yellow which is ideal for nighttime fishing.
What's to like about the SpiderWire Stealth Superline
The smoothness of the SpiderWire Stealth superline makes this a very forgiving line for amateur and beginner fishermen. That’s because achieving long casts is a lot easier with this fishing line, even if you don’t have the best technique.
What's not to like about the SpiderWire Stealth Superline
While most lines with smooth action tend to balance casting and reeling, it seems that this superline excels at casting but is only above average when you’re trying to reel in. There’s a risk of tangling, even though it has high abrasion resistance.
Piscifun Braided Superline
If you’re a beginner or if you’re fishing with budget gear then this Piscifun fishing line will definitely save you money upfront and in the long run. And, it’s not just considered by many the best fishing line in the budget section, but it also has amazing variety in lengths and break limits.
All Piscifun braided superlines are made from four strands with the exception of the 65 to 150 lb. lines which have double the strands. They can hold a very tight knot and have decent abrasion resistance. The roundness of the line is fairly consistent, which improves the sink rate even though it doesn’t have a lead core.
Minimal stretch is almost a given. And, even though it can’t compare against some of the more expensive models in this regard, the Piscifun superline still handles shock really well. It also has good sensitivity which should let you control various species in different waters and weather conditions.
The line comes in a few color options, including multicolor and ocean blue.
What's to like about the Piscifun Braided Superline
It’s often hard to find a good trolling fishing line that meets both the color and strength requirements. Although the Piscifun doesn’t go overboard with the yardage, everything else about this affordable line makes it strong enough, even optimum for fishing off the side of a moving boat.
What's not to like about the Piscifun Braided Superline
The ocean blue color may not be stealthy enough for stealth fishing in calm, clean waters. Not having a clear low-visibility option limits the versatility and usefulness of the Piscifun braided superline.
Types of Fishing Line
Monofilament lines have been the go-to fishing line for decades. The characteristics include good stretch that absorbs shocks and prevents damage to the guide. They’re also rather soft compared to other lines so they can be easier to cut when you want to change lures.
There’s also amazing size, weight, and color availability. As such, monofilament fishing lines are still popular with many experienced anglers and perhaps ideal for undecided fishermen.
Braided fishing lines are among the strongest options for anglers. They have little to no stretch, which makes them amazing for smooth casting. On the other hand, because they’re so tough, they need to be used with very durable and powerful fishing rods.
They are sometimes used by old-school anglers for deep sea fishing because of their toughness and because thinner diameter than other lines such as fluorocarbon and mono lines. This type of line is made by braiding individual fibers together.
Trolling lines are mostly used to fish trout, walleye, salmon, and other fish that have a tendency to stay in deep waters. The reason these lines work best in these situations is that they’re often made with a heavy core, such as lead.
This enables trolling lines to sink at a controlled rate and maintain the desired depth with ease. To make things even easier, most trolling lines are also color-coded. This helps to keep track of the lure’s depth.
Fluorocarbon lines are probably the best fishing line in terms of UV resistance and stealth. This type of line has a faster sink rate than classic monofilament lines and also less stretch.
The most common applications include ice fishing and fishing in very clear water. Due to their light-refractive index, which is close to that of water, fluorocarbon fishing lines can be almost invisible to fish.
Fishing Line Weight
When discussing fishing line weight, it’s not about the actual weight. Fishing line weight and strength are somewhat interchangeable terms. The strength is measured in pounds and the value indicates how much stress the line can handle before its breaking point.
The weight indicates that of the fish you intend to catch. For example, with most bass being between 8 and 12 lbs., the ideal fishing line would also be in that range. Going higher in weight and strength is not as bad as going under the limit.
Exactly how much weight (stress test result) you will need is hard to say. It’s best to go by the fish you’re trying to catch or at the very least, the type of water you’re fishing in.
Most anglers look at abrasion resistance and see a number or designation that indicates how durable the line is; how well it will fare against harsh weather; feisty fish, rocks, trees, and other submerged obstacles.
Expert anglers look at abrasion resistance and see two things. This property doesn’t just indicate how strong and durable a line is. It also indicates how thick the line might be. Generally speaking, the thinner the line, the lower the abrasion resistance.
Therefore, it’s important to find the right balance between the two properties, depending on the fish you’re after and the fishing techniques you’ll be using.
Visibility and Color
Line visibility is very important, as is the color. Fish can become alarmed by the sight of fishing lines. Therefore, low-visibility lines are preferred, especially when fishing in clear calm water. Fishing lines can be near invisible to fish, provided they are thin enough and have a refractive index similar to that of water.
However, using low-visibility lines is a Catch 22. Anglers also need to see the line in order to monitor the depth and line movement. Therefore, some will often use high-visibility fishing lines regardless, especially in low-light conditions.
The color matters less. And yet, there are fishing lines that have different colors to indicate the depth of the lure. Of course, when you need high-visibility lines, gold is a preferred color for nighttime fishing.
Other times, colors like green and brown may also be good choices for catching elusive fish. Both are colors that blend with muddy waters or areas of high vegetation.
The diameter of a fishing line can tell you many things. For one, it can indicate how visible or invisible the line is. The color and materials matter too, but usually thicker lines are easier to spot.
It also indicates what type of fishing rod you should use in regard to length, power, action, reel, guides, etc.
Finally, the diameter is a good indicator of castability too. Some use stiffness to describe potential castability. But lines that are thicker in diameter are usually stiffer too, which means they are harder to cast. Line strength can also be associated with how thick or thin the line is. However, the design and materials used also play a considerable role in this.
What is fishing line made of?
Fishing lines are usually made of polyethylene, nylon, Dacron, or Dyneema. They can be cofilament, monofilament, braided, thermally fused, and sometimes both braided and fused, a technique that results in what’s known as superlines.
What is braided fishing line?
Braided fishing lines are arguably the best fishing line when it comes to durability. In this type of fishing line, the fibers are braided or weaved. The end result will still be a single strand of line.
This line is opaque and very strong. It has high abrasion resistance and may even pose difficulties when cutting. Fortunately, this also means that fish are unlikely to break the line.
On the other hand, the opaque nature of the braided fishing line poses some issues. The high degree of visibility makes it difficult to catch fish if you’re not using a monofilament at the end that can lead and divert attention from the line.
What weight fishing line to use?
Since the weight of the fishing line depends on the weight of your catch, you have to know exactly what you’re trying to catch and how big the species can get in that area.
You can also approximate it if you look at freshwater versus saltwater fishing. Freshwater fish like trout and other panfish are generally small. Meaning that you might get away with a thin 2lbs line. But, you can also expect to catch 20-lb. catfish or pikes.
If you’re gearing up for saltwater fishing, you will need stronger lines. Sea bass and sea trout can weigh as little as 8 lbs. or as high as 25 lbs. Other fish like tuna or marlin can easily exceed 30 lbs. In comparison, it is unlikely that you’ll need a 30-lb. line in freshwater fishing applications.
How long does braided fishing line last?
In terms of appearance, braided fishing lines don’t last any longer than other types of fishing line. The color of the dye eventually fades.
In regard to how long the line lasts and maintains its strength, elasticity, and abrasion resistance, it really depends on the brand and model, the diameter, and the materials used. Some braided lines can last upwards of six or eight years.
That being said, many anglers change their braided lines every one or two seasons. Just because the line is still strong doesn’t mean that it’s performing at optimum levels. If you notice fraying or chipping, you might want to change it just so you don’t run into surprises.
How to choose fishing line
Choosing a fishing line can be done by factoring in multiple properties, technique preferences, the size of the fish, the type of rod, the type of fishing, and so on. However, it’s usually best to start with your fishing line before deciding on a rod. Knowing beforehand what you’re trying to catch will also make it easier to pick the right fishing rod for the job.
Ideally, you would want to start out with the weight. Having the correct weight of the fish you’re trying to catch is more important than other factors such as visibility or abrasion resistance. Why? Because without the right amount of weight (stress test strength) you risk losing the fish while reeling it in.
After that, you want to think about the actual type of fishing line. Are you doing freshwater or saltwater fishing? Ice fishing? Clear water fishing? Nighttime fishing? Answering these questions will point you to the best fishing line for your needs.
By now you’ve probably figured out what’s the best fishing line to pair with your gear and preferred techniques. If you’re leaning towards KastKing’s superline, clearly you understand its superiority in many areas, as we did.
That being said, the other lines presented in this article are great alternatives. Some of them may even be superior for specific applications. Ultimately, as long as you know what type of species you’re after, the decision should be simple enough.