Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod Review

Last Updated on 25 January 2024 by James Bevan

Daiwa-Infinity-X45 Review

With a variety of test curves and lengths to choose from, the Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod is one of the more popular rods on the carp scene.

It’s classed as a budget rod, but does it perform like one?

In this in-depth Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod Review, I put this rod through its paces and test it against the key attributes of a decent carp rod.

With the help of some experts, this rod is rated, scored and compared against its competitors. So without further ado, let’s get straight into how it performed.

Overall Review Ratings

Casting & Feel7
Playing Fish7
Value For Money9.5

Compare Prices

2 new from £52.99
as of 16 April 2024 23:13

Comparison To Similar Rods

NameOverall RatingPrice
Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod7.6from £36.99
Sonik Vader X Carp Rod7.6from £49.99
Sonik Xtractor Recon7.3from £54.99
Fox EOS Pro Carp Rod7.2from £54.99
Sonik Xtractor7.3from £39.99
Wychwood Riot Carp Rod7from £39.99

How The Rod Compares To The Averages

Black Widow G507.6
All Carp Rods8.3
All Budget Carp Rods7.3

Quick Summary

In summary, the Black Widow is easily one of the most reliable and versatile budget-friendly carp rods out there scoring an overall rating of 7.6 which is better than the average entry-level carp rod.

Despite Daiwa being best-known for making elite angling rods, the Black Widow features good build quality and decent performance across the board. Available in a variety of test curves and lengths, this is a very dependable carping rod that is suited to fishing an array of venues.
While the Black Widow doesn’t exactly excel in terms of how it feels in the hand, looks, or performs compared to Daiwa’s elite models, it’s nearly impossible to beat in terms of sheer value for money.

Pros & Cons

After testing the rod over a number of sessions and also researching what other experts have said about the rod, here are its advantages and disadvantages…


  • Versatile thanks to different test curves available
  • Reliable budget-friendly carp rod, represents great value for money
  • The carbon blank is nice and lightweight
  • Reasonably powerful, especially in 3.5lb test curve version
  • Still made with quality materials despite its low price-point
  • Absorbs fish lunges really well under the rod-tip


  • Lacks a degree of subtleness you get with more premium models
  • While respectable, this rod’s performance overall is decent at best, but it’s hard to complain given its price

A Bit About The Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod

Originally founded as a reel maker in Japan in the 1950s, Daiwa Sports has since grown significantly and is now regarded as one of the world’s leading carp and game fishing manufacturers.

Created as Daiwa’s answer to anglers looking for a reliable, budget-friendly carp rod, the Black Widow range consists of two different rod lengths and four test curves. The standard model is called the G50 and is available in 10 and 12 feet lengths with test curves of 2.75, 3, 3.25 and 3.5 lbs.

There is also an extendable version called the EXT which is available in 9 and 10-foot lengths with test curves of 2.75 and 3lb respectively.

Additionally, the Black Widow line features a spod rod with a 4.5lb test curve.

Who’s it ideal for

The Daiwa Black Widow is just about ideal for any angler looking for a carp rod that won’t break the bank. This model comes in at a fraction of the price of many of the high-performance rods out there on the market but still offers more than reasonable performance.

For instance, the Black Widow would be an excellent starting rod for anyone just getting into carping. It would also make a great choice for anglers looking to experiment with carp fishing for the first time.

The Different Versions Of The Black Widow Carp Rod

As previously mentioned, there are two lengths and four test curves on the G50 and the EXT version comes in 9 and 10-foot lengths. The newer, XT version is available in a 13-foot version as well.

You can check out the different versions of these rods in the following table:

Length Test Curve Ideal For Max Cast Distance
9 ft (EXT version only) 2.75lb Smaller venues, close range fishing and stalking 60 yds
10 ft 3lb Smaller venues, close range fishing and stalking 90 yds
12 ft 2.75lb Small to medium venues or close range work 110 yds
12 ft 3lb Small to medium venues. Good all-round rod 130 yds
12 ft 3.25lb Medium to Large venuew. Good all-round rod 140 yds
12 ft 3.5lb Medium to Larger venue where distance casting is required 150 yds
12 ft (Spod) 4.5lb Spod Rod 160 yds
13 ft (Newer XT version only) 3.5lb Large venues where long casting distances are required 160 yds

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The 5 Attributes The Rod Was Tested Against

As mentioned previously in the article, there are 5 key elements that carp anglers look for in the best rods. These are as follows:

  • Features
  • Appearance
  • Casting & Feel
  • Playing Fish
  • Value For Money

For more detail on the review process please visit the designated review explanation page that outlines how products are reviewed on eTackle.

The Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod Review

So having set the scene with where the rod came from and what criteria the rod was tested against let’s now get into how it performed.

First off, let’s see how the experts have rated this rod…

"This rod is a great bit of kit if you are looking at starting up carp fishing and don't want to spend a fortune"
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"The Black Widow name has been around for a few years now producing really good budget carp rods of all lengths and sizes"
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The Key Attributes Scrutinised

Features & Specifications

Features Rating7.5

The handle

Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod Handle

The Black Widow comes with a full shrink handle which boasts a slick aluminium butt cap. This handle is balanced in the hand and is grippy without feeling abrasive, as well as being easy to hold while wet.

The reel seat

Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod Reel Seat

Featuring a sturdy, reliable, screw-in reel seat, the Black Widow does a great job at keeping your reel locked into place.

The eyes/guides

Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod Eyes

Most versions of the Black Widow boast 50mm LS ceramic guides, which are great for casting and protecting the line. The 10 foot ‘Stalker’ versions of the Black Widow come with the same guides in a 40mm build.

The blank

Daiwa Black Widow Carp Rod Blank

The Black Widow comes with a lightweight HMC+ carbon fibre blank. While not especially responsive, the rod still felt good when playing fish and the blank itself is nice and balanced.

Features & Specifications Summary

  • Available in 10 and 12-foot lengths
  • Test curves available include 2.75lb, 3lb, 3.25lb and 3.5lb
  • Screw-type reel seat
  • Full shrink handle
  • LS ceramic rings with 50mm butt ring
  • Lightweight carbon blank
  • Aluminium butt cap

Here’s what the experts said about the rods features:

"A simple rod with 50mm butt guides and a DPS-style reel seat"
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"All versions have a carbon blank they all have a DPS reel seat a nice slim full shrink handle with an aluminium end cap"
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True to its name, the Black Widow features predominantly black hardware with red and white detailing on the blank and butt cap.

The blank itself boasts a matte black finish, while the guides and reel seat has a nice sheen to them. I think that the Black Widow has a sleek, professional air to it and certainly doesn’t look cheap, which plenty of budget rods have a tendency to do.

Here’s what the experts said about the Black Widows’ appearance:

"A simple matte black blank, with a simple logo, a full shrink-grip handle and an aluminium butt cap"
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"A simple-looking rod in an all-black design"
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Casting & Feel

Casting & Feel7

Most iterations of the Daiwa Black Widow use 50mm guides, and these rods cast especially well. As you’d expect, the 12 and 13-foot models are particularly powerful, though the 10-foot version is no slouch and can easily cast well enough for most carp venues in the UK.

Overall, the Black Widow felt reasonably balanced when casting both close range and further out. The blank is nice and light which helps with the rod’s action and the rod itself feels comfortable in the hand, though I felt it could do with offering more feedback when playing fish.

This is what the experts said about how the rod casts and feels when handled:

"The rod allows for high power and casting accuracy so if you need to whack out solid bags or heavy leads it can easily cope with this"
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"The 50mm butt guides really help in getting those extra few yards on the cast"
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Playing Fish

Playing Fish7

The Black Widow’s lightest test curves are, as you’d expect, the most responsive. While the heavier test curves provide less feedback to the angler, this is still a passable rod for playing fish overall. Being as balanced as it is across its entire length means that the Black Widow feels consistent in the hand, at least.

So, while you won’t feel each and every movement and nibble from the fish at the end of your line, the Black Widow is far from feeling like a broomstick.

Here are some quotes from the experts on how the rod performs when playing fish:

"The rod loads across its whole length when playing fish, which results in a good cushion for hook holds and enables the rod to absorb any sudden lunges under the rod tip when you’re about to net"
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"The action is nicely balanced but the shorter rods can feel a bit stiffer than the 12ft version"
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Value For Money

Value For Money9.5

I’d say that the Black Widow’s greatest strength is the incredible value for money this rod represents. Daiwa is known for making some of the most elite carp rods out there, and the attention to detail and passion that makes this possible shows through in the Black Widow, too.

Despite costing a fraction of the price of most other carp rods on the market today, this is a rod that is clearly made to last. It performs respectably across the board and features decent build quality and materials.

Thanks to the variety of test curves and lengths available, the Black Widow is also a model that is suited to just about any carping venue or application, provided that you aren’t looking for top-of-the-line performance or elite build quality.

So, whether you’re in the market for a budget-friendly first carp rod or are looking for something of a beater that you won’t get too attached to, it’s hard to look past Daiwa’s Black Widow range.

Here’s how the experts scored the rod on value for money:

"The prices may not be so high but it certainly isn't budget quality"
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"As with the rest of the black widow range they are budget beating"
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Final Thoughts & Conclusions

What really makes the Black Widow stand out from the crowd is the incredible value for money that it represents. That a rod of this quality is available for the price it’s sold at is a testament to how far rod-making technology has come and how competitive the angling market is today.

It’s true that the Black Widow’s features and performance are far from remarkable. However, for its price, I don’t feel you could ask for much more. The Black Widow is a decent carp rod across the board and costs little more than dinner and a drink at your local pub. This is still a respectable, versatile offering that any beginner carper will likely be able to get plenty of mileage out of.

Thanks for reading.

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