You will never enjoy a game enough until you find the most compatible weapon to play with. Apparently, most players are introduced to table tennis at clubs or at someone’s house that features a generic hard paddle. People who have no interest in the game lose their interest even more after they play with these once. They are so hard to control and totally not fun to play with. Others who are interested get demotivated to play harder because they think they cannot do any better than what they initially do with such a paddle.
In fact, when you go out to buy a paddle for yourself, you should never settle for what everyone settles for. You should buy the best table tennis paddle for yourself. The best ping pong paddle with its compatible style and in-built quality will definitely help to bring out your true skills in this game. However, something so crucial and sensitive will definitely not be an easy thing to buy. You have to consider each of its parts and your own style while buying it. In order to make this daunting task less daunting, we have prepared a buying guide and chosen the top-rated table tennis paddles to review. Now, let’s fill your brain with all the knowledge you need!
Alright, enough of the history lesson. No wait. Before we dive into the best ping pong paddle guide, let's check out the winner.
Table of Contents
- Our Winner After 22+ Hours of Ping Pong Paddle Research
- Our Top Picks
- Killerspin JET800 Speed N1
- Stiga Pro Carbon
- STIGA Supreme
- Killerspin JET600
- DHS HURRICANE-II
- Stiga Evolution
- Killerspin JET200
- Butterfly Balsa Carbo X5
- Palio Expert 2
- STIGA Apex
- What to Consider When Buying a Ping Pong Paddle
- Benefits of Buying the Best Ping Pong Paddle Out There
- How do you maintain a table tennis paddle?
- Final Words
Our Winner After 22+ Hours of Ping Pong Paddle Research
Our Hard Games Rating
Our Top Picks
Killerspin JET800 Speed N1
If you are confident and want to make your opponent exhausted from playing against you then the Killerspin JET800 is what you are looking for. In fact, it has a power rating of 9.5 (whew!) so your opponent will definitely be panting while returning your shots.
Apparently, this paddle has a seven-ply build with two layers of carbon fiber between the woods. Therefore, it is able to absorb less power and be lightweight. So, when your opponent will be asking for water, you will be waiting to finish the game off victoriously without a single ache in your hand. To make things worse for your opponent, this paddle also has a spin rating of 9.
You will need to build your skills up a lot as the control rating is at 8. However, that will make the victories worth it, won’t it? The rubber is Nitrx-4Z which is approved by ITTF. Apart from that, the handle is quite comfortable as well with its flared design that will prevent the paddle from slipping.
Although this paddle costs a bit more than others, it is surely worth it for quality and durability. The rubber does seem to get scratched if handled aggressively on a hard surface but you won’t do that, right? Apart from that, this is not for the novice or defensive players as it does have a difficult learning curve. But, the results you get from the difficulty will surely make you love this paddle.
You can also read our detailed Killerspin Jet800 guide here.
- Very powerful for the offensive players.
- Good spin.
- Moderate control.
- Good-quality builds and absorbs less power.
- Comfortable grip.
- ITTF Approved.
- Suitable for both gripping styles.
- Good choice for professionals.
- Replaceable rubber.
- Difficult to muster.
- A bit pricey.
- The rubber gets easily damaged against hard tables.
Stiga Pro Carbon
Just starting to get serious about table tennis with a tight budget but an offensive playing style? Then, the STIGA Pro Carbon is the best table tennis paddle available for you.
Firstly, you do not expect an intermediate level paddle at this price point! Well, yes, it does have some drawbacks but those are quite negligible compared to what it provides. Firstly, have you check out the power and spin rating? They are 99 and 100 respectively! You will surely give your opponents a hard time! Apparently, you owe the offensive advantage to the good quality construction of this paddle. In fact, it has used carbon technology in its build to make the wood harder for better spin. Furthermore, it is lightweight as well to not exhaust you too soon when you play.
The control rating, however, is at 80. Therefore, this paddle is not for beginners and whoever used it must have the skills to use it right and must practice hard. Apparently, it features a handle that is only suitable for the shaking hand style of holding. Also, the rubber used is not very durable. While it keeps performing well until it dies, it does seem to die too soon. Then again, you have the option to replace the rubber only. So, for the price, this is not that bad. Another fact that you might not like is that the weight is more towards the blade rather than the handle.
Overall, this is a nice and affordable paddle for aspiring intermediate-level offensive players to buy for the short term intense practices.
- Great for intermediate-level offensive players with a tight budget.
- Good power and spin rating will make the opponents pant.
- Clever design using carbon technology for better performance.
- Comfortable grip.
- Speed and spin remain same till the end.
- Replaceable rubber.
- Not for beginners as the control is not easily achievable.
- Rubber wears out too soon.
- The blade weighs more than the handle.
Are you a beginner getting serious about table tennis and want to give up the cheap practice paddles that do not help your skills? Then, the STIGA Supreme is for you. Apparently, it is built with defensive players in mind. At this level of skills, you will not be comfortable with an offensive paddle anyway. So, the Stiga supreme has a clever build with 6 ply blade and Tube and Crystal Tech Technology. These help it to be lightweight so you won’t feel any fatigue even if you play for hours. Furthermore, the sponge used in its build makes it a bit soft compared to the hard ones that are difficult to control.
Therefore, you get a control rating of 89 and this paddle is super fun to control. Although the power rating is 90, the paddle does not do very well in the power aspect for various reasons. However, it does offer a good spin with a rating of 92. It is best for people with shake-hand gripping style. Apart from that, while the STIGA Supreme proved its durability in many cases, a few customers complained about the rubber not lasting long enough and also the paddle breaking into two parts. In conclusion, for the money, this is a great paddle to have and develop your skills with.
- Great for beginners who are getting serious about table tennis.
- Suitable for defensive players.
- Offers great grip on the ball.
- Easier to control.
- Comfortable to use thanks to its gripping style, handle and lightweight.
- Quite affordable.
- Not good considering the power aspect.
- Questionable durability.
- Not for professionals, or serious intermediate players.
If you play moderately well and have ample skills but need development to become a serious advanced player but do not have the professional budget, then the Killerspin JET600 is made for you. Apparently, this is a paddle for intermediate and advanced players. Firstly, what will amaze you most is the good quality rubber it has on it.
Apparently, this rubber will provide you with good control over the ball and also a nice spin for your enemies to tackle. Although some people did complain that the spin was a bit heavier and not good enough, it still has a spin rating of 9. The 5-ply good quality construction provides you with a lightweight paddle that is super fun to control. In fact, it has a control rating of 8.5, need I say more?
It features a flared handle so it won’t slip easily and you feel comfortable using it for hours. However, in order to get the best results from this paddle, you will need to continuously develop your skills and adjust your style to it. This might be difficult but it is also a great upward leap for your skills. Apart from all that, although most people loved this paddle, there are some complaints about it not being able to handle abuse and falling apart. Apparently, the high-quality rubber also came loose in some cases. But, as long as you receive a first-hand, non-defective product, there is nothing to worry about.
- High-quality rubber with good properties used and it is ITTF certified.
- It provides a good level of control with the lightweight.
- The spin is good too.
- Comfortable to hold.
- Great for intermediate and advanced players for developing skills.
- Quite affordable for the level.
- Tough learning curve.
- Might not be the most durable.
- A few customers received used products.
- Power is not that great.
Want to leave your opponents panting from returning your shots or not being able to return them despite their speed? Then, the DHS Hurricane is what you need. Apparently, it offers you an insane level of spin that will definitely make you win against better players than you when you actually learn the skills to use the spin.
Yes, the learning curve might be a bit tough but once you are done with it, you won’t ever look back. So, this paddle is from a Chinese company and as expected it is more suitable for those with a shake-hand style of gripping. The paddle is quite lightweight, so you won’t get tired too soon but you may miss a bit of the feeling most people look for.
Apart from that, you can use both offensive playing techniques and defensive playing techniques with it. The red side mainly supports offensive forearm techniques while the black one is for the defensive technique. But, with its high level of control, this paddle is extremely suitable for the defensive. You will need to take care of it well to keep it going at its best. Apart from that, you will probably not like the carrying case as it feels a bit too fragile and inefficient. You do not expect such an unappealing case at this price point. While this is a great focused paddle for developing defensive skills and provides a great spin, it might not be as durable as it costs. Because a few (a very few but still) complained about its durability.
- Excellent quality spin.
- Lightweight makes it suitable for use for a long time.
- Provides good control over the ball with its surface.
- Mainly great for the defensive style but supports offensive too some extent too.
- Helps to improve.
- Great for the serious players.
- The carrying case is not at all efficient.
- Requires maintenance.
- Might smell.
- Not the most durable.
This is a paddle that will allow you to have as much as you wish to have. Apparently, it is built keeping in mind the players who want more accuracy and depend on well-placed shots. As you would expect from STIGA, this paddle has a good-quality, innovative build with Shock Dispersion Technology. What this tech does is absorbs the vibration from the contact between the ball and the paddle and transfers it out of the handle.
Due to this, you will enjoy a more comfortable and better grip and feel which will provide you with better control, spin and speed. While this paddle does great on the control aspect, it does not fall behind on the spin either. In fact, it has a control rating of 90 and a spin of 94. Although it has a speed of 96, you give most of the speed up for the control. So, it is not for those offensive players who are looking for speed.
As for the handle, the inside of the handle is hollow making the whole paddle quite lightweight. While the lightweight handle reduces fatigue, it does create an imbalance in the overall weight and many do not prefer the weight focused more on the blade. The blade and rubber are of great quality too but you might not find the rubber as tacky as you want it to be. But, overall they provide a good feel. This paddle is ITTF approved and will definitely improve the skills of serious, intermediate level defensive players.
- It provides great control.
- The spin is great too and will really challenge the opponents.
- The lightweight handles prevent fatigue.
- Great for defensive serious players for developing control and accuracy.
- Good-quality durable builds.
- The lightweight handle focuses weight more on the blades which many players do not like.
- The increased control cuts the power short
If you are tired of missing shots with the cheap paddles that you get your hand on at the office or club then it is time for you to get serious and play better. The Killerspin JET200 is one such entry-level paddle that will help you transition from the beginner stage to the intermediate stage easily with all its focused support.
At the beginning of your table tennis craze, accuracy and control are more important than the speed and spin. And, this paddle provides you with exactly that with its 5-ply blade and a fresh rubber coating. The rubber provides you with a good grip on the ball and lets you make accurate shots that go where you want them to go. Furthermore, you do have to beat your opponent and the decent spin this paddle provides helps you in that aspect.
The handle will be super comfortable to use as it is flared and gives you ample protection against slipping. As for the quality of the overall builds, it is good as not many people complained about it wearing out. However, it does feel a bit heavy and might need some getting used to, to the weight. Overall, it is a paddle that provides the same functionality and quality that many others provide at a much higher price.
- Great for beginners who are getting serious.
- It helps to improve accuracy skills.
- Provides better control over the ball and direction.
- Comfortable flared handle that does not slip.
- The good quality rubber used.
- Decent spin.
- Not much power.
- Not all parts are always durable.
- A bit heavy
Butterfly Balsa Carbo X5
For those who do not want to give up control totally to enjoy power, this is a racket that will provide you with a nice balance among everything. Firstly, it features a Balsa core which keeps this racket lightweight and thereby keeps a good level of control in your hands. Then, there are the carbon fiber layers of the blade that keep adding power.
Now, can you expect all three of them as perfectly combined as possible? Yes! In fact, the final rubber layer provides you with a good spin as well. Therefore, you can enjoy controlling the racket easily all while giving your enemies a very hard time. However, this racket is not suitable for a beginner as it does not offer as much easy control a beginner would need. However, if you are at the professional or intermediate level then you can totally consider buying this racket.
The handle will help you with a shake-hand grip so people who hold the rackets like a pen will need some getting used to. So, you get a speed rating of 100 (Need you to expect any more?), a Spin rating of 95 and a control rating of 80, and this is close to perfect. However, the price is a bit pricey. And, for the price, you won’t expect any defect in the build but a few customers complained about the paddle not being glued together properly. Overall, it is a nice professional level racket to buy to enjoy power, spin, and control through one given that the product you receive is top-notch and flawless.
- Very powerful with its carbon fiber blade.
- The Balsa core and the rubber surface makes it soft and lightweight enough to be easy to control.
- It offers a good spin as well.
- Great for professionals and intermediate players.
- May have some defects.
Palio Expert 2
Looking for a paddle that will make a beginner’s journey less difficult? Then, the Palio Expert 2 is the one for you. Apparently, it fits a beginner’s budget and then it fits their needs. Firstly, it provides you with a high level of control and you can guess that from its control rating of 10. The control mainly comes from the type of material this racket uses in its build.
It, in fact, has a good quality tacky rubber that has a soft sponge-like feel which provides you with a good level of control. You will be able to hit the ball at the exact point of the table you want to hit it. Secondly, you will also tire out your enemies and make it difficult for them to return your ball with the spin of the balls. The top layer of the rubber supports any kind of spin you want to hit the ball with and will create a good level of it. In fact, the racket has a spin rating of 9.
As a beginner, you will not focus on power much and neither does this racket. So, it has a low power rating of 6, but it could definitely be better. The quality of the build is really great with wood. You will feel comfortable using the flared handle as well. However, the paddle did receive a number of complaints about its durability and quality. In a few cases it broke in half, in others, the rubber came off. Apparently, the build was so messed up in one case that the rubber was not even sticky enough to provide the control it promised to provide. Unless you receive such a defective product, the racket does well for a beginner at its price.
- A great choice for beginners to develop their skills at an affordable price.
- Provides a huge amount of control and accuracy.
- Offers offensive advantage with its high-quality spin as well.
- Quality build in general.
- Comfortable to hold.
- Low power.
- Might not be durable enough.
- The rubber might not be sticky enough in a few cases
Here is yet another racket from STIGA on our list. And, this should give you a clear idea of the quality and delicacy STIGA puts in its products. Apparently, the STUGA Apex is the cheapest among the other rackets it offers and it is made with the beginners in mind. In fact, this racket has a five-layer construction of extra light plywood which makes it very easy to move and control. It will improve your placement of the ball and shot accuracy manifold the moment you stop using those cheap paddles and hold it. Well, you might need to practice a bit too.
The racket’s performance falls a bit short in case of speed and spin. In fact, it almost provides you with no speed but does allow you to send a faster return. As for spin, it just provides you with what you need to have to face an opponent.
The handle is flared so it will not slip easily and your beginner hands will find It comfortable as well. Apart from that, the quality of the build and the rubber is good. However, there are a few complaints about the durability of the racket. But, this is far less than the number of satisfied people so you just have to select your one with careful speculation.
- Provides beginners with great control and accuracy.
- Develops skills.
- Comfortably and easier to handle.
- Decent spin to handle opponents.
- Very affordable.
- Very slow.
- Not much power at all.
- Might have defects or durability issues
What to Consider When Buying a Ping Pong Paddle
Here are a number of things which if you do not consider will leave you with maybe a good paddle but not the most suitable for you:
The Style you Play in
The first and foremost consideration, in this case, is your playing style. Firstly, how do you hold the paddle? Do you use the pen-hold or the handshake style to hold it? Apparently, the pen-hold style is just how you hold a pen while writing. It is not very widely used but mostly used in Asia. Apparently, it makes backshots a bit difficult. On the other hand, the handshake holding method is how you hold a person’s hand when shaking his hand. This is more widely used all over the world. Therefore, depending on this you have to choose the correct grip and paddle.
Then, there is the method you use. Are you a defensive player or an offensive one? Apparently, a defensive player focuses on returning the ball mostly. They prefer to have better control over the ball. On the other hand, offensive players try and hit in a way that the opponent will miss the shot. Offensive players require more skills than defensive ones. Therefore, most of the novice players are defensive players.
If you are a beginner finding your styles out won’t be easy. So, you can start with a middle of the road paddle and then figure your style out. Or, you could practice with your friend’s paddles and determine which style you mostly play in.
The Size Requirements of a Paddle
If you want to play professionally or just properly following the rules you need to use a size that is accepted by the rules. Apparently. There is no hard and fast rule about the size of a paddle. It can be big or small according to the needs of the player. However, the blade must be thin and rigid but they usually measure six inches in diameter with a four-inch handle. Also, there must be 85% wood in the paddle. The rest 15% can be made with any other combination of materials.
However,r if remembering and finding these out is too hard for you, you can always choose an ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) approved paddle as it will have the perfect composition and build.
The Materials Used in the Builds
You do not really have to think too hard about the materials as the paddles will wear out sooner or later if you use it regularly. However, to make sure it does not wear out too soon you should check the reputation of the brand you are buying from and be sure that the materials used are of good quality. As mentioned earlier, the paddle will have 85% wood in it and the other parts can be made form any combination or material like carbon fiber or glass fiber. It will also have a rubber covering and you will have to check the quality of the rubber and its attachment as well. The paddle will not be of much use if the rubber comes off, right?
You may have already noticed that one side of the table tennis paddle is red while the other is black. This is actually a requirement for the table tennis paddles as they give the opponent an idea about what kind of shot you will be using.
The Power of the Paddle and its Rating
The power of a paddle means how much energy the paddle will absorb. Apparently, the lesser energy it absorbs the faster and stronger you can deliver the ball to the opponent. The rating is usually within 10 or 100 and the higher the rating, greater the power. This means that that the paddle absorbs less energy and delivers more to the ball. In fact, offensive players who want to make it hard for their opponents prefer more power. However, this will weigh heavy on the control of the ball, as a higher power will make it difficult to control the ball. But, the higher difficulty if dealt with skillfully will make a player win.
If you want more power you should definitely check the rating but may also check the composition. Apparently, the use of carbon fiber or glass fiber as an adhesive alongside wood glue makes the paddle lightweight and absorbs less energy.
The Control you will Enjoy
This is important for novice and defensive players. In fact, the control mostly depends on the quality, the thickness of the rubber used and its texture. If the rubber padding has texture on it, you will have greater control. Now, these textures can be of two types-inward and outward. Outward dimples increase the resistance and thus, provides you with a better grip on the ball. Therefore, you will enjoy more control. On the other hand, inward dimples provide a smoother surface that does not offer much resistance and thus lesser control. With more control, you will be able to hit the ball with better accuracy in any direction you want.
The Spin you Want
The spin is something that will make it difficult for your opponents to return the ball. Apparently, your preference for the spin does not depend on your style of playing. Both offensive and defensive players may want more spin to give their opponents a hard time. However, inward dimples (reverse dimples) on the rubber because of its smoothness will increase the spin of the ball. Therefore, control may be sacrificed to some extent. Fortunately, you will find high spin in paddles that have a high control rating as well. You just have to look hard enough.
The Handle you Need
No matter how good the blade and rubber are, it will be a shame if you do not feel your best when you hold the paddle. Apparently, you will find three different styles of handles to choose from. Firstly, there are the straight handles which means what it sounds like- it has the same width throughout its length. The problem with this is that it might slip but it is cheaper. Secondly, you have the flared handle which is wider at the free end. So, it won’t slip easily and it provides a good grip too. Lastly, you can choose the anatomic handle which has a nice curve that makes it super comfortable to hold.
It completely depends on your preference which handles you like most. So, it’s better if you check each out practically.
Considerations About the Rubber
The rubber padding is the main surface that will come in contact with the ball and affect your game most. Therefore, you have to choose it very carefully depending on your styles. As we already mentioned you will find various kinds of textures on the rubber. The inward dimples (pimple rubbers) provide a smoother surface for the power play and less control. On the other hand, outward dimples (reverse rubber) provide a better grip on the balls and improves control which is more suitable for defensive players. Therefore, choose the rubber-based on what you need. However, make sure it is ITTF approved.
Durability and Quality
You do not want to give your paddle up too soon after buying it. It will be a shame if you buy after so much careful consideration only to find out that the paddle does not hold on together. You cannot manually judge the quality of the materials but you can judge the brand from its previous performances. Check out reviews and the brand’s reputation before you purchase to be super sure that the paddle will provide what it promises to provide.
If you are a really very serious player or a professional, you can make a custom paddle for yourself. However, it will be a very tedious and tough task as you will have to consider each of the parts and know everything about it. Furthermore, it will definitely be expensive. Therefore, you can choose from the already existing as they are quite good.
Let's watch a video about choosing your first ping pong paddle:
Benefits of Buying the Best Ping Pong Paddle Out There
If there were no benefits of buying the best paddle then you could depend on the office/club’s ones forever. But, there are and that’s why people buy them. So, the reasons you should buy it are:
- Less waiting, more playing: With your own table tennis paddle, you do not have to go to clubs or other places and wait to find a paddle to start playing. You can play whenever you want. Apparently, if you do not find a table you can totally start practicing against a wall.
- A more compatible paddle for your style: The general paddles in the clubs are meant for all. When you buy a paddle for yourself, you take into consideration your own style and preferences. When you do that, you will be able to get support form your paddle in your already strong sides and also on the weak side.
- Develops skills: Depending on your style, table tennis rackets with their specifications and qualities make you perform better. In fact, when you start with a new paddle, you won’t play that well. But, as you learn and keep playing, you will get over the learning curve and perform the way your paddle requires you to. And, this increases your skills.
How do you maintain a table tennis paddle?
Apparently, your table tennis racket does require maintenance to keep living with the quality and durability it is meant to even though you might not think so. However, it is not at all a difficult task to maintain a table tennis racket. You can just use normal soap and water to wipe off the dirt and other things from it.
Apart from that, you will just need to replace the worn out rubber after certain periods on the replaceable paddles.
One of the main reasons, people give up playing table tennis is because they find the game is initially very noisy and rough for no reason. Apparently, this is due to the superhard table tennis paddles of the clubs that provide a very dissatisfying feel and sound to the players so they fail to catch the real essence of the game.
However, once players are introduced to good-quality rackets for their style, they find it hard to look back to life without table tennis. It is not just in the beginning that the racket matters. Throughout the table tennis life, the features of the rackets will keep developing and changing your skills. Therefore, considering how hugely the quality and build of the racket affects the game you must find the best ping pong paddle for yourself to keep excelling in the table tennis world.
Once you have selected your paddle you can go for -