Shimano Curado DC Review

Over the last decade we’ve seen an incredible advance in the technology of fishing reels. From freshwater to inshore to blue-water fishing, things have come a long way in what feels like a hurry. From faster speeds, to stronger components, to lighter materials and a combination of all three, fisherman across our great country have been blessed with an opportunity to see their dollar go in a great direction lately. Regardless of these advances we all know and most can agree that what we work for is precious and we all want the confidence that it’s going to take care of us when needed most and for as long as possible.  

Shimano has been an industry leader in this area for a long time now and at the tip of the sword with these recent technological advances. One of their highlights as of late has been the incorporation of DC (Digital Control) technology into 2018 reels that are already incorporating the latest and greatest of materials, components and speeds. For those who have yet to experience DC technology, that brings an interesting new component that few others have replicated especially in the U.S. domestic market. The DC cast control systems make use of a combination of three primary components, a PCB which provides a platform for all the components, the magnetic braking system, and the microprocessor that controls the entire system. The DC system doesn’t require any batteries to be replaced and is powered by the very casts that it helps manage.The models that Shimano has chosen to incorporate this feature into are the enthusiast driven Metanium and the ever popular work horse Curado

The Curado DC with the signature DC Stamp on the side-plate

The Curado DC with the signature DC Stamp on the side-plate


I’ve recently become an owner of the Curado DC that was released in the spring of 2018 and instantly became both intrigued and impressed by it’s performance. I quickly paired this reel with 7’2” MH Shimano Zodias rod, spooled it up with 15lb. Seagaur InvisX Flurocarbon and prepared for a thanksgiving week trip to Lake Guntersville. The first thing I noticed when I began slinging any lure around on the Curado DC is it’s interesting sound, which is a result of the DC gear doing it’s thing. Most will call this sound “buzzing’’ or “zinging”, but rest assured it’s normal in reels with this technology. The second thing I quickly noticed as my 3/8oz. chatterbait was flew across ole’ G-ville is the casting distance capable of this reel. Because of the DC technology being engineered to manage the spool speed based on the speed of the lure, you can really rare back and let a cast rip with this reel. With the set up I had in hand, I noticed a minimum of another 5-10 yards of casting distance. I think the 6.2 gear ratio version will become very applicable to the deep crankbait fisherman out there who are looking for more distance to create more depth. I also see the HG (7.2) or XG (8.2) versions applying to those skipping docks and laydowns who are looking to be more efficient with that presentations. One can simply put the reel setting on number 4, and then have little to no fear of backlashes as the skip dock to dock or tree to tree

Applicable to all levels

What brought this thought to mind was my 4-year-old boy. Every time he sees me messing with my equipment, he’s in my back pocket wanting to do the same. I then started imagining how it easy it would be to teach him the usage of a bait casting reel with little to zero fear of causing a backlash. Which brings me to the fact that this reel is applicable for the youngin’ in the backyard trying to learn, to the tournament top-gun trying to earn a check each weekend. For me, this was another concept that gave me confidence in my 249.99 going to a product that’s well spent. When you consider the components and engineering that went into this reel, combined with the versatility in it’s application, it’s just about a no-brainer for anglers who target this price range for reels

Strong and Protected

Another thing I liked about this reel is that it carries that long standing work horse feel that the Curado has a strong history of. The DC component is fully protected and sealed by the side plate that isn’t built for removal. With a computer driven, digital breaking system, gone is the need to remove a side plate and adjust magnetic or centrifugal breaks. This brings some assurance the strength and security of this reels feature component.




Though this reel is not one of the lightest out there (7.8oz), it’s still not what most would consider heavy. When combining the reel weight, strength, features, and capability, it’s very easy to see why this one has garnered so much recent attention. I see this reel really fitting well in any application where normal to long casts with normal to larger sized lures come into play. As I mentioned earlier, I think the standard model (6.2 ratio) will be a great pick for all the cranking fanatics out there and especially the deep cranking gurus. The HG (7.4 ratio) will be very applicable to all bottom contact presentations and moving bait presentations and the XG (8.4 ratio) will be applicable to the same along with topwater presentations. After using my HG model on the last few trips I’ve made this month, I can already tell I’ll be picking up another one of these. I think it’s a very well made product with great features that’s applicable to anyone who enjoys bombing one out there.

To all my fellow anglers out there, I hope everyone experiences some great wintertime fishing this month

-Josh Courtney