Abu Garcia designed the Winch Gen 4 with something called the Power Stack Carbon Matrix Drag System. I could give you a bunch of brochure talk on all of this but I’ll spare you. In my personal experience, this particular drag system has proven itself to be not only powerful but also smooth when it needs to be.
A lot of drag systems tend to be very sensitive, especially when you’re deep cranking. One click too tight and it won’t release enough line if your fish takes a quick, boat-side run. One click too lose and when a 6-pounder loads up on your crankbait, the drag will slip as you lean into the fish. I’ve found this to be an all-too-common issue when testing low gear ratio reels.
I’m happy to say that this reel doesn’t seem to have those issues. It has a very strong drag when necessary but it can also be adjusted very precisely, which allows the drag to dispense line like butter. Casting reels can be known for their drag “surging” when fighting a fish but this reel will not do that. Whenever a fish takes a deep dive, this drag system immediately responds and keeps you in control of the fight at all times.