The Daiwa Tatula Elite may just be the best Tatula to date. With so many Tatula models and options, to say that people were skeptical of the Tatula Elite would be an enormous understatement. However, we are happy to report that the reel is (in our humble opinion), the best Tatula yet. Buttery smooth, a compact frame and casts a country mile with ease; not to mention the reels aesthetics are crisp and super clean; this Daiwa Tatula Elite review will be sure to grab your attention. 

Table of Contents

Under the code name Project T in 2013, Daiwa released the first Daiwa Tatula. Incorporated into the reel was the two year old T-Wing system that at the time was met with much criticism. Fast forward to 2019 and Daiwa releases the new Tatula Elite. After somewhat of a let down with the compact 100 size of the Daiwa Tatula 100, the Tatula Elite had to make up for this shortcoming and did so in a BIG way. The Elite is arguably the best Tatula to date for certain applications and is chock full of some of the best technologies Daiwa has to offer. 

What is the Daiwa Tatula Elite?

The Tatula Elite is a 100 size framed reel designed with long distance casting in mind and includes many features to compliment that intent of design. The ever popular A7075 aluminum spool decreases spool weight and with added holes drilled out, you are able to achieve the same spool weight as the coveted SV spool with the added line capacity. This deeper spool will be necessary because with the highly tuned magnetic Magforce braking system, this reel will cast a mile. The way this is achieved is the decreased spool weight coupled with the super tuned braking system allows for a lower startup inertia and makes long casting much more effortless. Other technologies included in the reel such as the ZERO Adjust and the always popular T-Wing System, set this reel above the competition. The reel comes available in three right and left hand models: a 6.3:1, 7.1:1 and a high speed 8.1:1 to meet any of your needs, whether cold water cranking or summer morning buzzbaiting. 

Who is the Daiwa Tatula Elite for?

The Daiwa Tatula Elite was designed for anglers who are looking to minimize frame size and overall reel weight while maximizing casting distance. If you are looking for a reel that you need to bomb long casts and get the bait away from the boat, such as clear water situations or situations where your success is equal to the amount of water covered with each cast, then this may be a reel worth your consideration. Another angler interested in this reel would be anyone looking to minimize the effort required to make normally otherwise difficult or unachievable casting distances, with ease. As aforementioned, the unique and highly tuned Magforce braking coupled with the improved, lightweight spool (13 grams) makes casting a breeze. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a pro either with the ZERO Adjuster system, you simply set your brakes on the side plate with the adjustable dial and once your spool tensioner knob is set, its set and there is no need for additional adjustment since the reel comes with a  20 point adjustable braking dial. 

What We Liked About It

We paired this reel with a Revelation Custom Rods Zoltar which is a 7’ MH all-purpose rod to give us the best variety of techniques to test the reel through. The most noticeable attribute as advertised is the distance of the casts and the ease required to do so. Using a 1/2oz lure, the reel casted upwards of 70 yards. The second characteristic that was noted was just how smooth the reel is. The old adage is “smoother than a baby’s bottom” and this reel fits that perfectly. Whether cranking or casting the reel just feels solid, smooth and is eerily quiet. Last worth mentioning is the compact 100 size frame; which palms wonderfully in the hand, especially if you are a younger angler with smaller hands or an adult angler with small hands, similar to the guy in the Burger King Whopper commercial from a few years back. Joking aside, the reel is extremely slick, both performance-wise and its sharp, eye-grabbing looks. 

The Daiwa Tatula Elite vs. The Daiwa Tatula SV TW103

Many have asked and we are ready to answer, “how does the Elite compare to the new SV TW103?” The reels have very similar specs when you look at the numbers on paper. Both reels weigh in at 6.7oz and each spool (though the SV boasts the SV spool of its namesake) weighs in at 13 grams or about 0.45oz for us AMERICANS. Both reels utilize a 7+1 bearing system, UTD system (ultimate tournament drag) with a listed max drag of 11lbs, aluminum frame, 90mm swept handle, T-Wing, and the ZERO Adjuster spool. With so many similarities on paper, we had to crack each reel open to look at the guts and to see the differences. Noticeable is the difference in the spools. Despite the same spool weight, the line capacity for each varies to where the Elite can carry about 20% more line. The other noticeable difference is the IPT or inches per turn for each reel that can vary in favor of the Elite by 1.5’-2” more per turn compared to the SV TW103. This is due to the depth of each spool since the width of both are the same. So is the $40 price difference warranted between the two reels? The Tatula Elite utilizes the Magforce Braking System that has been specifically adjusted to maximize casting distance while the Tatula SV TW103 uses the Airbrake technology which is more designed to maximize control of the spool such as when skipping lures or casting very lightweight baits when backlashing is most common. That all being said, is there really a NOTICEABLE difference equating to a $40 increase in cost? In our humble opinion, though there are differences, these do not equate to a $40 increase in cost based on the overall performance. 

Suggested Improvements

Although a great reel, we did note some improvements that could be made. One area we see room for improvement is the handle. The reel comes out of the box with a swept 90mm handle and although comfortable, for a very miniscule increase in overall weight, it is our opinion that a 95mm handle would better fit the reel for its intended purpose. Focused on maximizing casting distance,the reel generally is designed to throw baits that one works far from the boat such as the case with many reaction baits. When covering water and getting distance between the bait and the boat, we see an advantage when winding a lot with a 95mm handle over a 90mm.

Closing Remarks

If you are in the market for a mid to high end reel and are specifically interested in a reel that will give you maximum casting distance with minimal effort, the Daiwa Tatula Elite may be an option for you. If line capacity and casting distance aren’t as big of a concern for you, another great (and cheaper) option would be the Daiwa Tatula SW TW103. However, for its intended design, the Elite is a great reel that delivers on max casting distance, buttery smoothness and an aesthetic that may not make you fish better, but you will look better trying.

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