The 10 Best Ping Pong Paddles 2018: Options for Beginners, Speed, & Control

Best Ping Pong Paddle Reviews

Ping-pong can be a fast-paced, exciting game that doesn’t necessarily require much practice in order to participate. After getting a table, the next step is to find the right Ping-Pong paddle for you. From a distance, it may look as though anyone could use any paddle, but that is simply not the case. What most Ping-Pong rookies don’t realize is that there is much more of a science to a Ping-Pong paddle and how you use one. How much money you’re trying to spend, if you frequently play, and the type of handle you are looking for are only a few options you must consider before making that final purchase.

Top Ping Pong Paddle Comparison Chart

The Three Parts of a Ping-Pong Paddle

There are three sections of the average Ping-Pong paddle: sponge, rubber, and the blade/handle.

Blade

The blade is essentially the skeleton of the Ping-Pong paddle. A paddle’s blade is the wood that shapes the handle and extends into the rest of the flat surface used for hitting the Ping-Pong ball. There are two different types of blades that are commonly used by serious Ping-Pong players, and they are distinguished by the way a player holds the paddle. One is the Penhold style, which has been historically known to be used by Asian players. Those who utilize the Penhold grip style hold the handle between their thumb and their index finger. Other players use the Western-style blade, which is when the player holds the blade handle with the palm of their hand.

Handle

An extension of the blade, the handle is made in different forms. The type of handle you choose ultimately comes down to how comfortable you are with the particular form and your playing style. The most commonly used handles are the rounded flare handle, the flat handle and the rounded handle that is straighter than the former. The handle is very important, especially for the western-style players, because they rely on that part of the paddle for their grip and stability. Having a paddle with a solid grip will benefit the player tremendously.

Rubber

Rubber is placed on each side of the blade to maintain ball control and traction. One side of the paddle is red while the other side is black. This is for one player to distinguish what type of spin the other player is using. The rubber typically has different textures that are used for either defensive or offensive play. Whatever paddle you decide to use, you are going to want something with a durable rubber applied to it. This will assure you that your paddle will be able to absorb and deliver impact from and towards the Ping-Pong ball.

There are different styles of rubber, such as the Pimple Style rubbers. These include the most popular: inverted pimples or “pimples in.” Pimples in is known best for players looking to improve their control compared to pimpled rubber, which better suits experienced players searching for a particular playing style.

Sponge

The sponge is meant to add a layer of padding between the blade and the rubber. The thickness of the sponge can affect the speed, spin, and control of the Ping-Pong ball. The thicker the sponge, the faster the ball will go once you hit it. You must also consider that the faster the ball goes, the less likely you are to have full control of it. In this case, the thickness of the sponge on your own paddles will be based on your playing style preference. The thicker the sponge, the more likely you are to have a paddle that works best for offensive gameplay.

Best Ping Pong Paddle Reviews

Duplex Six Star Ping Pong Paddle

The Duplex brand introduces a lightweight paddle that offers a strong blade, high-quality rubber, and a good price. The Six Star Ping-Pong paddle has a unique weight balanced design that enhances the player’s precision and recovery time. The handle looks like it’s made of a durable wood, which is a good sign for the player who likes to grip the handle. This paddle is equipped with a durable rubber that is considered to be high performance. The rubber will be able to keep up with a rigorous game schedule and ultimately have a longer lifespan compared to the average paddle. Duplex provides their customers peace of mind with a money back guarantee. If the buyer isn’t satisfied with the quality or performance if this product for whatever reason, they have the opportunity to either exchange it for a new paddle set or a refund. This factor will keep the buyer from thinking twice prior to their Duplex purchase.

The downfall to the Duplex paddle is that the feedback regarding durability isn’t as they had initially advertised. While some buyers are ecstatic about the quality of the Six Star paddle, others have reported that their paddles wore down rather quickly. This “risk” is something to consider when weighing your options. Your paddle is going to wear down regardless of what brand, but it all comes down to how fast, and based off of reviews it looks like the Duplex paddle has an average lifespan at best.

Pros

  • Made of durable rubber
  • Duplex offers money back guarantee
  • Weight is evenly distributed for an efficient experience
  • Good for players at any level

Cons

  • Not as durable as advertised
  • Takes a while to get used to

 

Franklin Sports Performance Paddle

Franklin was able to take its exclusive technology and apply it into the Ping-Pong niche for players of the most competitive levels. Their Ping-Pong paddle can provide a fast spin while keeping the player comfortable throughout their series. The blade and handle sports the Franklin logo laminated vertically and is made with a thick 5-ply wood material for a tight grip. One of the eye-opening features of this paddle is the very inexpensive price. For the price listed, you will get a paddle made with high quality material that is meant to help you excel at your game. The 1.5-millimeter sponge underneath the rubber is average and slightly takes away from the spin of the paddle. The rubber is essentially used to absorb the impact from the ball and distribute that energy towards speed, but with a lack of padding it might be best for a hard-hitter looking to power the ball past their opponent.

There were a handful of users who complained about the rubber on their paddles. Some users said that the rubber on their paddle didn’t have enough padding to gain a competitive spin. It was also reported that the paddle isn’t as durable as other paddles in the Ping-Pong market. “You get what you pay for” best describes the Franklin Ping-Pong paddle. One thing that takes away from the true game of Ping-Pong is the colors. Naturally, one side of the paddle is red and the other side is black. This paddle has one red side, and one grey side. This might not be such a large difference, but it could become vexing to the experienced Ping-Pong player.

Pros

  • Durable blade
  • Lightweight feel
  • Low price

Cons

  • The rubber material tends to wear off
  • Not enough padding on the blade to accurately hit the ball

 

MAPOL Table Tennis Paddle

This paddle encourages control, comfort, and strength. MAPOL’s Table Tennis paddle feels heavier than usual due to the 7-ply wood used in the blade and the two-millimeter sponge. This surplus of surface area can increase the likelihood of hitting the ball and creating an effective spin. How well you perform with this increased weight depends on your preference. Some people play better with light paddles whereas others enjoy the heavier sets. The two carrying cases that come with these paddles separate the product from others. This add-on will be very useful for players who are frequently on the move and looking to protect their items. This MAPOL paddle clearly has one of the better values within this list. This particular set comes in a two-pack, and based off of the price listed, it is a cheap price per paddle.

Pros

  • Handles are comfortable
  • Blade is strong
  • Sponge has two millimeters of padding

Cons

  • Heavier than the average paddle
  • Quality is average at best

 

Butterfly 401 Table Tennis Paddle

Butterfly’s Table Tennis paddles can offer a high spin with the heavily tacky Yuki rubber and 2.1-millimeter sponge applied on both sides of the item. The tacky rubber enhances the contact between the Ping-Pong ball and the paddle, while the sponge layer provides a springboard-like experience for the player. The blade is a 2-ply wood and the handle extension is much thicker; with enough surface area to grip tight onto. The Butterfly 401 has a high price compared to other paddles, which has potential to deter potential buyers on a budget. The signature material used in this product demands a higher price, although some buyers question its quality. One good thing is that the set comes with paddle covers, so essentially the extra money you are investing is going towards the carrying protection.

Pros

  • Yuki rubber delivers a high spin
  • Sponge is absorbent
  • Handle is thick enough for a tight grip

Cons

  • High price
  • Performs too slow for offensive players
  • Users believe paddle is made with cheap quality material

 

Stiga Titan Table Tennis Paddle

Ping-Pong players that thrive from speed will surely appreciate this paddle set from the Stiga brand. The Stiga Titan table tennis paddle has a variety of unique features, including the 5-ply blade. The Crystal Technology used in this paddle makes the blade harder, which increases its speed. In addition to this technology, Stiga also equips this paddle with their lightweight Balsa technology. Balsa is a super lightweight wood center-ply that increases speed and helps with reaction time.

Another beneficial feature of the Stiga Titan is the WRB; a combination of weight balance, rate of recovery, and ball sensitivity. The blade’s balance shifts to wherever the player makes contact with the ball. This increases the power and energy that the paddle contributes to the ball; consequently taking the ball a lot further than average. The lack of weight in the blade assists the rate of recovery after each hit of the ball. You will be able to freely swing your paddle without the hassle of feeling weighed down. The last part is ball sensitivity. There is recess strategically positioned within the Italian composite handle for extra sensitivity, a plus for the average Ping-Pong player.

Pros

  • Crystal Technology increases speed
  • Highly accurate
  • Superior weight balance

Cons

  • Average quality sponge
  • Subpar quality

 

Gambler Professional Table Tennis Paddle

Take a gamble with this high quality paddle. The blade is constructed with a 5 ply Limba and two layers of carbon. The excess of carbon enhances the stabilization and speed of the paddle, in addition to providing a sweet spot that will send a Ping-Pong ball flying in the direction the offensive player sent it! The Gambler brand has a long-term vision. They want their consumers to continue using their product even after it reaches it peak. Gambler has the rubber professionally glued onto the blade for sturdiness, and expects them to be replaced when the time comes. Surprisingly enough, replacement rubber surfaces are currently available for purchase. You will be able to use the Gambler paddle to it’s full potential without the worry of wearing it down to the point of no return. This paddle has a Aces rubber, which is a sticky material that will create a lot of traction between the paddle and the ball. This price of this paddle is set at an average price; but based off of the paddle quality you receive in addition to the blue dragon “Competitor” by Gambler paddle cover, you will be getting a good deal in this product.

Pros

  • Glued by professionals for increased durability
  • Soft carbon enhances speed

Cons

  • Subpar durability
  • Short handle decreases the comfortability of the paddle

 

Stiga Supreme

Another high performance paddle from Stiga, the Supreme edition features the signature Stiga ACS that enhances the speed and control. ACS is a bunch of different air-capsules inside a special rubber that stretch very well; increasing speed and control. The Stiga Supreme paddle is made with superior Stiga technology in its entirety. Starting with the handle, Stiga applied their “Tube” technology. The blade consists of “microchannels” that sit on top of each other and filled with different materials depending on the type of paddle. The price of the Stiga Supreme is considered high in comparison to other paddles. If you are a consistent and serious Ping-Pong player, this paddle can give you the advantage every competitor desires.

Pros

  • Stiga technology provides a unique experience
  • Creates a solid spin upon contact

Cons

  • Material doesn’t hold up very long
  • Slightly expensive price

DHS Hurricane II Ping Pong Paddle

Easily the most expensive paddle on the list, the DHS Hurricane II is expected to have the essentials of a Ping-Pong paddle, and then some. Well some people might be wondering: “why is it so expensive?” Upon purchasing the DHS Hurricane II, the buyer will receive one paddle, two Ping-Pong balls, and a zip up carrying case. While this bundle provides more than other paddles, it is up for debate if these items are valued at the price listed. Both the red and black side of the paddle has rubber that is pimples in, so it will be better with control and speed. The Hurricane II has a long Chinese Shakehand handle, a feature that could improve stability and comfort of using this paddle. Despite the perks that come with the DHS Hurricane II, this paddle is quite overpriced. One possible reason of the high price is that this paddle is recommended for top Ping-Pong players. Unless you are at a high playing level, I wouldn’t suggest making such an expensive investment.

Pros

  • Excellent defense
  • Comfortable handle
  • Assists player with control

Cons

  • Very expensive
  • Quality doesn’t match the price

 

Slyspin Rapture Ping-Pong Paddle

The Rapture Ping-Pong paddle from Slyspin brings all the essentials to the table. The six-millimeter blade has carbon technology attached and extends a smooth handle made with a strong poplar wood. This type of handle doesn’t provide any tread for a superior grip but is still a well made handle and projected to be most beneficial to players who use the penhold style. The sponge placed over the blade is measured at approximately 2 millimeters. This measurement is just enough thickness to absorb an incoming Ping-Pong ball and send it back with force. It may even have more absorption that other high quality brands in the current market. Buyers are mostly conflicted with the carrying case. They feel as though it is a good addition but could be better in quality. Overall, it is at most an accessory and doesn’t reflect the true quality of the paddle itself. In regards to the price, it seems as though the price is at a decent value. There are cheaper paddles that have below average quality, and paddles way more expensive with the same quality as the Rapture, so that’s something to consider before buying. The biggest issue users have is durability. While the materials used in this paddle are superior compared to other brands, the Rapture paddle does wear down after significant use.

Pros

  • Handle is made with a high quality poplar wood
  • Comes with a carrying case
  • Average price
  • Provides top quality spin and control

Cons

  • Durability is questionable
  • Feels heavier than the average paddle
  • Carrying case could be made with better quality

 

Killerspin JET600

The JET600 is a balanced paddle that offers an extraordinary playing experience for people at the intermediate and advanced levels. Killerspin’s primary goal when manufacturing the JET600 was to enhance the experience of the Ping-Pong player by providing the materials necessary to dominate the competition. The rubber used in the JET600 has a soft feel to it yet provides enough spring for the hard-hitting Ping-Pong players to excel at their game. The JET600 has a performance blade made with a durable 5-ply wood. This wood is extremely dense, so one should expect their paddle to feel light and thin; helping the player increase the power and precision in their shots. The price of the JET600 is up there but not substantially high to the point where the price exceeds the value. This paddle will serve the experienced Ping-Pong player quite well as they strive for excellence.

Pros

  • Equipped with materials that will benefit the advanced player
  • Creates a dominant spin
  • High tech rubber enhances play

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with a carrying case
  • Excludes beginner level

 

Conclusion & Recommendations


No matter what style you use, or what experience level you are, choosing a Ping-Pong paddle takes a lot of thought and effort. These ten paddles offer the best combination of quality and price. So far, we have encountered paddles with different levels of rubber, sponge, blade, and price range. The JET600 is at the top of this list because it embodies all the characteristics needed to succeed in the game of Ping-Pong. This paddle is best for competitive players that have experience. Not only are the features of this paddle of high quality, but also the price is well above average, so it would only be right for a committed player to invest in this paddle opposed to the rookie who is unsure of their commitment level to the game.

If you’re on a tight budget, it is best to sacrifice quality for price and go for a brand such as Franklin or Duplex. Regardless of what direction you go with, these ten paddles cater to a variety of players, from the budget buyer to the experience/pro Ping-Pong player. If money isn’t an issue and you’re a Ping-Pong enthusiast, the JET600 has the features that will take you to the top. Other brands such as the Stiga Supreme, the Slyspin Rapture, and the Gambler paddle serve a similar purpose. The Butterfly 401 and the DHS Hurricane II have good characteristics but may break the bank too much.

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