Almost nothing is as important when fishing as the right line. No fishing without line and hook! In this test I have tested 9 braided lines from cheap to expensive and tell you which ones you can rely on and which ones are better off your reel. Both 4x and 8x braided lines were tested. All lines were in the range of 0.14-0.17 mm and it should be possible to draw conclusions about the properties and reliability of other strengths of the same line. But I bought all lines in similar strengths to have a comparison between the lines tested here. I have chosen the diameter of the lines in such a way, because the range is typical for fishing for pike and zander and is one of the more popular line thicknesses. Even the all-round angler will usually put such a line thickness on the spool to be prepared for almost every situation and fish. It is generally known that the manufacturers, especially in Europe, massively exaggerate with their specifications, while in the USA the wet knot strength is given in lb, here in Germany a purely theoretical value is given. The only line with American specifications even held much more than stated in this test.
This is a test independent from the manufacturers and all lines were bought by myself. The results only reflect my opinion.
4X or 8x braided advantages and disadvantages
In my test, the advantages and disadvantages of the respective braid also came out again. The first point that stands out is the price, because quadruple braided lines are sold quite cheap nowadays, while eightfold braided lines now cost what a normal 4x braided one cost a few years ago. In most cases this is twice as much, while the brand new twelve-plait lines are really expensive again. That’s why I don’t have a twelve-plait braid in the test yet. Probably one will follow soon.
The next point is the round plaiting of 8x plaited compared to 4x plaited. The rounder the line, the less drag it has and flies much further. In terms of casting distance, 8x braided ones are slightly ahead. But the most important point in my eyes is the reduced volume of 8x braided lines. The noise in the rod rings is also transmitted into the water and some fish in our busy waters know the noise and become suspicious. Therefore, multiple braided lines have a less frightening effect.
The carrying capacity suffers due to higher braiding, at least according to the manufacturers. In practice I measured the exact opposite and so the 8x braided by Balzer was clearly ahead of the 4x braided by the same manufacturer!
In the test the abrasion resistance had little to do with how the lines were braided. Much more important is the coating, so it was clearly shown that stronger coated lines have a higher resistance against abrasion. This is important for all anglers who mainly fish in rocky waters
Both types of line are strongly influenced by the softness of the line. The softer the line, the less it will simply jump off the reel and cause wigs. However, soft lines are also less coated and therefore less resistant to abrasion.
The 4x braided ones in the comparison table
The 8x braided ones in the comparison table
* So was tested>> here will follow soon material and methods of testing.
** Measured under practical conditions.
All tests were repeated several times and repeatability of the test methods was ensured.
The test winner – Climax Mig8
The test winner is clearer than expected, the Climax Mig8 was able to beat all other lines in every point and is clearly the best fishing line in the test. Not only did it have the highest load capacity and a small diameter braided for an 8x, but it also had the highest abrasion resistance. Due to the 8x braiding it also flies far and makes little noise in the rings. An absolutely recommendable line, which did not disappoint with the hard facts. The line is soft in the middle range and is very tightly braided. Only the carrying capacity is a bit overdone, which is a pity.
In practice I have been fishing with the line for four days on the Oder River and was quite taken with the line. When casting or hauling in under pressure the line is absolutely quiet, which in my opinion is an advantage especially in heavily fished waters. When spooling up the line gives off almost no colour, so it has a high colour stability. Nevertheless, a slight discolouration was noticeable after four days of fishing.
I was always able to release hooks and turn over smaller stones well. I only had two breaks in the time, because my leader was too short and sharp stones cut the main line. I didn’t have a single wig, although I often put it on it and took much too light bait under little tension.
Conclusion for the Climax Mig8
Quality made in Germany beats all other lines and convinced me absolutely. There are hardly better lines on the market. In this test the line clearly beat all other candidates.
The price/performance tip – Spiderwire Durabraid
Even for little money you can get a good braided line and don’t even have to dig deep into your pocket. The Spiderwire 4x braided one is available for very little money. The third strongest line in the test was actually convincing everywhere. Also the absolute carrying capacity after the confrontation with the sandpaper was still very high, even if it was a bit lower in percentage. The line is very soft but not as tightly braided as my next price performance tip.
The second price/performance tip 2 – Kastking Superpower
This line is one of the cheapest in the test and I have been fishing it on different reels for 4 years. I have never been disappointed with the Kastking line from the Chinese manufacturer. Especially in terms of wig formation and abrasion resistance the line is top. In terms of performance it is inferior to the Spiderwire line, but it is still recommendable especially for the money. The specified load capacity was even exceeded in the test. This is clearly a big bonus point, because honesty is my top priority. My tip: The line is also available directly from China on Aliexpress >> there it costs only a fraction and is therefore unbeatable in price.
Fireline Ultra 8 carrier
Next to the Kastking line it is the only one that at least nearly delivers what it promises! The very stiff line is characterized by a high abrasion resistance. Nevertheless it is one of the thicker lines in the test and therefore the high load capacity is not surprising.
Shimano Kairiki SX 8
The Shimano line is one of the tightest braided lines in the test. When I took it in my hand for the first time, I thought of the 8x braided line as a monofilament. It is advertised with a high colour fastness and good casting characteristics. The second one will show up soon, I believe it, but I already like it to be as round as it feels. The manufacturing process really seems to be something new, because under the microscope you can see that there are no windings of the single threads and therefore the line has a constant thickness. The abrasion resistance still seems to be OK. Conclusion: A new interesting line and the first one I will continue to test in practice, even if it was the thickest line in the test.
Iron Line spin Balzer
I have to test this line again, because the material I tested was already influenced by a field test. Therefore the results of this line should be treated with caution. Nevertheless I can already say something about the colour stability. This is by far the worst I have ever seen on a braided line. After spooling and handling the new line my fingers were completely yellow and also the rod rings after a few casts. One positive thing I could measure anyway: the line casts with the same reel, filled up to the same height, cast with the same rod and the same weight a good 20% further (25 reps each) than the cheapest line in the test the Corastrong. As it has almost the same diameter as the Cormoran line, this can only be due to its higher stiffness and rounding.
Iron Line 8 Balzer
Again, the 8x braided line of the same company is much thicker than the 4x braided one (Iron line spin). Under the microscope the line is not as evenly thick as the other 8x braided ones. The line is priced below the more expensive ones in this test and therefore I would have expected more than the second thickest line in the test, which also has a rather poor abrasion resistance. Nevertheless, practice has shown: the casting characteristics of the line are absolutely excellent. Because of this, I can give the line a good overall rating and recommend it.
DAM Effzett 8braid
I was a bit disappointed with this line, because I expected more from the most expensive line in the test and so the line is in the middle of the field with all values. The line is advertised as being very soft and it is. Nevertheless it remains a solid line with a clean finish. Under the microscope the line still looks extremely even. A braid is hardly noticeable.
The cheapest line in the test. With this line I have also done casting tests and I quickly had one wig after the other. The very soft line did not convince me in any way. The braid is also one of the widest and most uneven of all lines in the test. For occasional anglers and the occasional hide the line might be good. For spin fishing it doesn’t get on the reel anymore.
Price does play a role in the quality you get. Nevertheless there are big differences and the most expensive line was not the best. So should one buy a line according to criteria such as the actual load capacity? Not necessarily, because abrasion resistance, knot strength and casting characteristics also play a role. Under practical conditions on an obstacle and stony waters you will soon reach the point where abrasion resistance plays a role. Made in Germany beat all of them and convinced me completely.
Furthermore the load capacity in kg is far exaggerated as well as the diameter understated. Actually, I would be in favour of the same system of load capacity specifications as in America. There is no wrong mm indication on the package, but only a realistic load capacity indication. Also on the rods there is often a guideline, which line thickness is suitable for this rod.
Further insights from the test
Here are some more insights from the data of the test and what I have learned by doing the test.
- All 8x braided ones are much thicker in the actual diameter than the 4x braided ones (exception of the test winners the Climax Mig8)
The test is not yet completely finished, because there will be a practical part, but I would like to have fished each line at least 3-4x each and that takes time.