Joseph works as an editor in one of the magazines dedicated to video games. Here, at RecRoomPick, he’s given the opportunity to enjoy the reverse of the medal – the no less engaging world of offline games.
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A ping pong table can be an incredibly fun addition to your home. It can help to keep you fit and playing ping pong is a great way to spend time with friends and family. Choosing the best ping pong table isn’t easy though. It depends what your own needs are and how much space you have, as well as how serious you are about playing. There are home ping pong tables for casual players and children, or ping pong tables for professionals and aspiring pros. Consider your needs carefully before buying.
Here, we’ve collected the very best options on the market for a variety of different needs. We’ve looked at the features which will matter to you, such as whether they are for indoor or outdoor usage, whether they are suitable for professional play, the thickness and dimensions as well as how much they weigh. Also, whether they are assembled or not plays a big part. We’ve reviewed all of this as well as the warranty and consumer protection. Our editor’s choice after careful consideration is the JOOLA Rally TL Professional MDF Indoor Table Tennis Table.
Top 12 Ping Pong Tables Review 2020
Our team have spent a long time researching these tables and which are best for different scenarios, which is why we have given the products nominations based on which purpose they are best for. Our info is presented as a simple to view table, in-detail reviews of all of the products, and a buying guide to help you understand what to look for in a ping pong table.
JOOLA manufactures a lot of the top models of ping pong tables and their products range from professional to value ping pong tables. This, the JOOLA Rally TL Professional MDF Indoor Table Tennis Table, is definitely on the professional side of things, and has been nominated as our editor’s choice product for its exceptional features.
It has been approved by the USATT due to the exceptional playability. This means it is suitable for professionals as certified by USA Table Tennis. It has a huge level of stability and is made out of only the very best materials.
In terms of its playability, it is “tournament quality” and has been made with table tennis regulations in mind, meaning that it can be used in professional tournaments, for instance.
This makes a great practice table, too. It folds up into the playback position easily and this allows you to play on your own in order to practice your skills without any opposition.
The JOOLA Rally can be easily moved around, too. It has 2 halves which boast 4″ lockable wheels and casters that mean you can store it or roll into another position when it isn’t being used. Great for safe storage.
The net and posts clamp on with ease, and after purchase this takes just 10 minutes to set up and start playing. It is an indoor table as it has been designed with competitive tournament use in mind.
Exceptionally easy to move into different positions including being ready for solo playing
Easy to set up when you first purchase.
Tournament standard table for professional levels of practice
Can be folded up and stowed away for safe storage and use when you next need it
No outdoor usage due to being a tournament style table
Quite an expensive table, more suited to pros than hobbyists
The STIGA Advantage Competition-Ready Indoor Table Tennis Table is another product which has been designed with professional use in mind, rather than just being for hobbyists. It is almost as impressive as the JOOLA table, and is great for those who are serious about their table tennis hobby.
The brand advertises this table as being shipped to the customer 95% assembled. This means that the assembly that will be required takes just 10 minutes.
Another reason we are happy to recommend this so highly is just how flexible it is. It has self-opening legs, lockable casters for easy rolling around and three different positions which it is super easy to switch between. You can have this in the standard mode for competitive play, the upright mode for solo play and even into a fully-folded mode which makes it far easier to store away in your garage somewhere. It even has an added safety latch, which means that this table doesn’t fold out of its own accord when you want it to stay in the stored position.
The table is marketed as competition-ready, and this is because it has the size and finish of a competitive table tennis table. The 5/8” thick table top has a roller coat finish to give the professional feel off the surface.
The only point that this table really loses out is the warranty. It has a 90 day warranty whereas some of the other options from JOOLA offer a full year.
Easy to store, folds into a very flat design taking up less space
Can be used in playback position for simple practice
Legs fold out on their own making it easy to assemble
A much shorter warranty period than some of the others, such as JOOLA
Table tennis tables are a large item, and for people who are looking to get one for their home, they may be too large to fit indoors. Thankfully, there are some outdoor options. The very best of these outdoor ping pong tables is also made by JOOLA, who produce our editor’s pick product, too. The JOOLA NOVA Outdoor Table Tennis Table is designed to withstand the conditions of being outdoors and make it possible to have a table that you utilize outdoor space for.
Like the other tables above, this has a playback option so it can be folded into a position where you can practice on your own.
The table coating is designed to be weatherproof, so you can play in a variety of different conditions, or just not have to worry if it starts raining a bit. The wheels and casters have been designed to match too, with JOOLA describing them as ‘all-terrain’. This means you can roll the table to wherever you need to play.
To suit the fact you won’t be playing on flat surfaces all the time, this also has adjustable levers on the legs to level out the table.
Like many of the other table tennis tables features, this folds into an upright position so that it is compact and easier to store in a garage, for instance. This takes a little more effort than some others as it is divided into two separate halves.
Resistant to weather conditions for playing outside
Casters are designed to be taken anywhere, are rugged and hard-wearing
Assembly only takes 10 minutes as most of this table is pre-assembled when you purchase it
Can be more difficult to fold up as the two halves are not attached
The Centerfold 25 Rollaway Table Tennis Table is a slightly different offering to some of the products above. It is still made with competition play in mind and has ITTF approval for use in tournaments and practicing to a professional level. In this regard, it is similar to the top rated choices, but it does have some key differences which, for some, are advantages.
Firstly, the warranty on offer from Butterfly is exceptional. Five-years of protection back up your purchase if you choose to buy the Centerfold 25. Additionally, this requires absolutely no construction. It is shipped to the customer completely ready to go and use in tournaments or for practicing.
The table also comes in either blue or green which is usually just a superficial choice, but a nice one to have.
Storage is relatively simple due to the folding design of this table. It also offers casters to allow you to wheel it to where you need to go. These features are very useful, as is the fact that you can adjust each leg individually to level out the surface. If you are playing on a slightly uneven floor, such as in a basement or garage, this is very handy.
The only significant criticisms or downsides are the fact that this doesn’t have a playback mode. This means that solo practice is more difficult. This is only a problem if you plan to use the table on your own, this is still more than capable of tournament or competitive play.
Choice of colors
Exceptional warranty on offer from the manufacturers
Delivered to the customer completely constructed
Comes with a professional net set
Folds up for storage and has casters for wheeling around
If you’re looking for the best ping pong table under $500, then this might be for you. The STIGA XTR Outdoor Table Tennis Table is very affordable, and for this reason, it is a very popular table. It is primarily an outdoor table and has a few differences in design to some of the other options listed above.
For instance, it has smaller wheels than many of the others at 3-inches, but they are still functional and lock to keep the table in position, for instance, when it is being stored.
The table comes mainly installed, which means that you don’t have to do much of the process yourself. The manufacturer claims this takes just 10 minutes, and we found this to be a fair estimation.
It has a playback position so you can practice on you own, and of course, being an outdoor model it needs to be weather resistant. We were very surprised at the aluminum composite coating which makes this suitable for use and storage in all kinds of weather.
The self-opening legs make it easy to flip this into an upright position, the STIGA XTR Outdoor Table Tennis Table is in two separate parts, both of which can be stored back to back in order for compact storage in a garage.
Coming in two separate pieces can be seen as a disadvantage, but the manufacturers even claim you can use these as separate tables and not run the risk of any damage.
It isn’t quite as durable as some of the more tournament-ready, professional tables, but for the price, this cheap ping pong table is hard to argue with.
Great value for money
Folds up to a compact size
Not quite as sturdy as some of the more expensive, professional models
German engineering tends to work its way into pretty much every marketplace, and table tennis is no different. The Kettler Champ 5.0 Outdoor Table Tennis Table is manufactured in Germany and comes with some impressive features and a whole heap of durability, making this one of the top choices for anyone looking for a durable table tennis table.
As well as the immense durability, it has some patented technology. There is a dual-locking feature which is designed to stop the table from unfolding whenever it is stored, this is something which can become a surprisingly common issue when it comes to table tennis tables.
The Kettler Champ has some impressive little additions. It comes with accessories including ping pong paddles and balls, obviously comes with the net and even has clever features like an inbuilt holder for the paddles. It also has a cover included for keeping it safe from the elements and anything that could cause damage.
This is a hefty table which weighs a fair amount, and is designed to have a professional feel and bounce.
It folds easily to a storage position, and also has a playback position.
The manufacturers are so sure of the quality that they have given a five-year residential use warranty on this model. Used in a commercial setting this drops to one-year, which is reasonable!
Comes with accessories and a cover
Generous warranty included by the manufacturer
More affordable than some of the other tournament tables
Some users have explained that the instructions leave a little to be desired
Being able to obtain many of the benefits of a JOOLA ping pong table without having to spend a huge amount of money is a very big positive for casual players or those who are just setting out. To be able to purchase such an affordable product which is still full-sized and has the ability to help you learn how to play table tennis is a big plus point.
This is USATT approved and has a lot of the features of more expensive models, so why is this more affordable? A lot of it is due to the quality of the components and the thickness of the surface. This has a much thinner MDF surface than many of the ping pong tables on this list. This gives it a bit less of a professional feel and can impact how long-lasting and hard-wearing a table is. However, this model is perfect for home use.
It has locking caster wheels for transporting it around and the 1.5-inch steel legs are not as sturdy as some options, but are still pretty good quality. A safety latch is included to keep this table in position, and it is relatively simple to alter between its different setups.
The independent halves have pros and cons. While they make it possible to use the table in playback mode, they’re also a little bit tough to get to lock into position.
It is no doubt an entry-level table from JOOLA and lacks a lot of the sturdiness of their more expensive models, but for the price, you will struggle to find a better value option. This is arguably the best ping pong table for the money.
Playback mode possible
Easy to store with casters and simple folding
Value for money
Not as sturdy and durable as some competing options
We’ve also included some options which are designed more specifically for children rather than being full-sized adult tables. The Butterfly Junior Ping Pong Table is one of the best ping pong tables under $300. At ¾ of the original size of a ping pong table, it has been designed with kids and younger adolescents in mind.
This table is available in green or blue depending on your preference and the color of the room you’re in.
The Butterfly Junior comes fully assembled so you don’t have to worry about doing any awkward construction work. It is easy to fold down and as it is smaller and has a different leg design to any of the models we’ve already discussed, it can fold to a very compact size. This process is immensely simple.
It has casters, too, which mean you can wheel around the two individual pieces of the table.
The table has been designed to be multi-purpose and can even double up as a table to play cards on, for instance.
It comes with a net included, though this is a little flimsy in comparison to some of the others on this list, it is fine for children and practice use.
A very generous warranty of three years tops off this good offering for a kids table tennis table.
Great value at less than $300
Easy to fold into other positions and move to store wherever you wish
Comes totally constructed so you don’t have to do any awkward assembly
Not the thickest MDF surface
Legs aren’t as sturdy as some other ping pong tables on this list
Could do with a way to play in playback mode which is not currently available with this ping pong table
Getting the best table tennis table for you is all about making a decision based on your own unique needs. If you would like to purchase a table to help you win adult tournaments, the Fat Cat Original 3-in-1, 6-Foot Flip Game Table isn’t for you! However, as an affordable ping pong table for kids with the functionality of lots of other games being included, this is a wonderful choice.
To help your children stay active and include a lot of the different games that they will enjoy, you can opt for a table which adjusts to be suitable for many different games. In this case, the table is suitable for Air Hockey, Billiards and Table Tennis.
Naturally, the ping pong table is not going to be made to be a professional model, it is more for playing to have a little fun and also for children to get their first taste of the game.
This table is six-foot-long which makes it good for putting in spare rooms, basements or other freely available spaces within the home.
This shifts relatively easily between its three modes so you can use it with ease, and gives plenty of options to ensure you children don’t get bored. It comes with all the accessories you need to play any of the three sports it supports.
If you plan to purchase one and are expecting it to be an amazing quality, this isn’t the case. It is a decent, sturdy and most importantly very flexible table for kids.
Great for including three different games
Comes with all the accessories you need
Easy to change between the different surfaces for different games
You’re probably spotting a pattern with JOOLA tables! The brand became big in the 50s and have manufactured so many ping pong tables since. Our budget pick on this list is the JOOLA Midsize Sport.
As you may have guessed from the name, this isn’t quite full sized. It is a decent representation of a table tennis table and is designed to be the same height, but the size means it can be suitable for use in an apartment or smaller space.
On top of the fact that it is small in size, it saves space by being able to double up as a table for other purposes. JOOLA encourage you to use this as a desk space or poker table, for instance. Obviously, it is still designed to be a ping pong table first and foremost and it comes with a good quality net.
The legs totally fold down, which means it can be stowed away, and take up very little space within your home, which is a big bonus.
If you are looking for a cheap ping pong table, you can’t really go wrong with this purchase. For under $200, it isn’t tournament quality and there is a compromise to be made on the size, but the JOOLA midsize is still a very good option.
This table folds easily, and it is also designed to collapse in a few seconds once you get used to the design. It comes completely assembled so there’s no need to do any awkward construction. Once this table comes you’ll be ready to go.
Extremely easy to set up and use
Exceptional value, it is a very cheap ping pong table made by a great brand
Not as professionally designed as other JOOLA tables
We’ve included quite a few affordable ping pong tables on this list, but not all of them are full size. If you need a table which has the full 108 inches of size, then it is likely that you will want to get one which is affordable. This table is the best cheap ping pong table with full size design and if you want cheap, but relatively sturdy, then the EastPoint Sports Dominator Table Tennis Table could be worth considering.
The locking wheels allow you to transport this with ease, and like a lot of the other models on this list it is foldable so it doesn’t take up a huge amount of space. This model has a playback mode which is perfect for solo practice.
The table also has corner caps and a rust-resistant frame. While we’d be lying we said that the quality was up there with our editor’s choice product or any of the very elite products on the list, for one of the products which can be bought under $500, this is impressive.
A decent quality net is included and there is even a clever holder for the paddle and balls to be stored ready for when you next play.
Assembly isn’t too difficult but you might need some strong people involved as there is some lifting to get this assembled correctly. It doesn’t come with any of the accessories needed to play so you need to purchase these separately.
All-in-all, you probably won’t see this table used for any professional tournaments, but for a good home option, the EastPoint Sports Dominator Table Tennis Table has plenty to like.
Easy to set up and no assembly required when you purchase
This model is not the sturdiest option we’ve come across. It can be a little lacking in some areas, but the MD Sports Table Tennis Set is exceptionally cheap for what it is and comes in a lot of different design options, and with a lot of accessories including the net, paddles and balls. If you are looking to spend the least amount possible to still get an acceptable table, this could be for you. It is the only ping pong table on our list to cost less than $150.
This ping pong table is foldable, and in-fact, it offers the solo playback option that some of the more expensive options do not. Moreover, it is a perfect choice to practice with ping pong robots. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come fully assembled and there is quite a bit to do once it arrives, this is perhaps one of the reasons that the MD table tennis table is one of the more affordable options.
It folds to a relatively small size, which is a positive if you are looking to save space. Casters mean you can wheel it to where you wish to store it.
Unfortunately, it isn’t all positive with this option and there are some downsides. The need to assemble is one. Also, it is not exactly the best option if you are looking for thickness and reliable bounce. The construction also means there is a seam which can be awkward when playing.
This is a case of getting what you pay for in some respects. While it is a decent table, there are better options out there if you are able to pay more.
Easy to store away
Has a solo, playback mode which not all competing models offer
Comes with accessories
Not as durable as competing options
Requires more construction than many of the other tables listed
As you can see, different ping pong tables are more suited to certain needs than others. If you are looking to just get something that you can casually use around the home, then you may opt for something very different to if you are looking for a ping pong table for professional use or learning how to play to a professional standard. Our buying guide is designed to discuss features and help you to decide what it is that is most important to you when buying a table tennis table. Also, we’ve explained the features and what many of them mean.
Benefits of having your very own ping pong table at home
There are a lot of reasons to have you own ping pong table, and it is a far better table to have in your home or garden than many other sports. For instance, snooker and pool tables won’t be suitable for outside and the very best ones tend not to fold and be easy to store so you need a lot of space. Ping pong tables can do exactly that. All of the models on our list except for a couple have the ability to be folded to a smaller size. This means they can be packed away into the garage, for instance, ready for you to use whenever you need.
Some can even live outdoors due to the fact they are designed to withstand all weather conditions.
Ping pong is also one of the few sports which you can actually effectively practice on your own, too. The solo play option from folding a table into the playback position gives you the chance to practice independently.
Features to consider when choosing a table tennis table
The following are the features which we’ve identified as being the most important when choosing a table tennis table. These are all things you will see in product descriptions and might even be confused by when you’re first looking. This is especially true if you aren’t a seasoned ping pong player.
Table top thickness
Most of the tables out there will advertise their thickness. This is a very crucial factor, especially if you are looking to buy a table which has professional standards and replicates the bounce of tournament play. Generally speaking, thicker surfaces are better. However, it greatly impacts the price. Our editor’s choice, the JOOLA Rally TL Professional MDF Indoor Table Tennis Table, has a very thick table top but this is also the reason it is pretty expensive.
More affordable options tend to be thinner and this can impact the bounce and how the table plays.
If you are looking for an experience as close as possible to tournament play or how it would be when playing on a professional table, then pay close attention to this thickness.
Naturally, the table tennis table will have some regulations regarding dimensions. For a full sized table, you will be getting a model which is nine feet long, or 108 inches. Think carefully about whether this is likely to fit in the space you have in mind.
Other factors to consider are the dimensions when it is folded. It may not be practical to keep the table out in its unfolded position all the time, but think about whether the fact it is smaller when folded will make this a more viable option. If you are short on space, something like the more compact JOOLA Midsize Sport can be better for your home.
Table surface materials
Surface materials tend to be some form of specifically made MDF which can make the table bounce in a specific way. The quality and density of these materials tend to be higher depending upon how much you spend on your table. The surface materials are sometimes coated, and this is especially true for outdoor tables such as the STIGA XTR Outdoor Table Tennis Table.
Legs and wheels
The legs of the table need to give strong support to the body. There is no point in having a table which is going to be wobbly, for instance. Also, the table is likely to be wheeled around a fair amount. This means that it might get a fair amount of wear and tear over the time you have it. The sturdier the wheels, casters and legs are, the better.
Like the Champ 5.0, the wheels of whichever ping pong table you buy should lock in place. This means that it won’t roll around and will stay put where you want it to. The wheels should also be quite robust, especially on outdoor ping pong tables.
This is quite self-explanatory. Extra accessories are things that you wouldn’t ordinarily expect to be included (or some that it just makes sense to have included). While all of the best ping pong tables come with a net, not many come with much else. Some include paddles and balls, and this can be helpful when you’re just getting started and don’t have this other equipment ready to go.
How dangerous can a ping pong table really be? Well, the answer might surprise you. Historically, some tables which have been moved into the folded position could come off their latch at different times. This could make it far more likely that one half would randomly crash down to its horizontal position and cause breakage or even injury. Safety features such as secure latches are in place to keep this from happening. Most modern tables include these.
Also, look out for corner caps, especially if you’re getting a ping pong table for kids.
Certain tables come with certifications which are provided by table tennis organizations to say that they are suitable for tournaments and meet the regulations. ITTF is one such organization, and they have run the rule over some of the tables on this list. The Butterfly Centerfold 25 Rollaway Table Tennis Table is one of the ping pong tables they are happy to certify as one of the best on the market and suitable for tournament play.
This is one of the few sports where you can effectively practice against yourself. Picture Forrest Gump in his army gear! Playback mode is when one half of the table can stay in an upright position and simply deflect the ball back towards you so you can practice your reflexes and keep going with long rallies, against yourself!
A lot of good ping pong tables include this option. It is great if you don’t always have a buddy to practice with, and means you can learn some of the skills yourself, even if your opposition isn’t the most challenging.
Weight can vary a lot depending on which model you purchase. Some of the smaller models can be well under 100 lbs. However, if you are looking to buy a sturdy ping pong table with a lot of professional features, getting one with a bit of weight to it may be inevitable. Some models are very heavy. The Butterfly Centerfold 25 Rollaway Table Tennis Table has a professional feel and a sturdy design, but it does weight 280 lbs. This makes it very difficult to move around without multiple people, but does mean it is better built and has the potential to last many years.
The price is another area which varies a huge amount depending which ping pong table you are looking for.
Some of the models on this list are over $2000. That’s a big investment if you aren’t sure how much use your table is going to get.
We only recommend spending that much if you are truly serious about the sport. However, there are some good budget options that make good home ping pong tables, which can cost relatively little. For instance, the JOOLA Midsize Sport, our budget pick option, is one of the best ping pong tables under $200. It doesn’t prepare you for tournament play, but it is a good choice for playing at home as a hobby. Furthermore, you might want to get an affordable table tennis conversion top, which will allow you to turn your table into a playfield.
Warranties range from 90 days up to five years depending on which model. Some, such as the Kettler option mentioned above, have a shorter warranty based on whether they are being used for residential or commercial use. The Butterfly Centerfold 25 Rollaway Table Tennis Table is an example of one with a generous five-year warranty. Having this protection as a consumer is very appealing, and means that if your table turns out to be flimsy, you should get a repair or a replacement.
Assembly shouldn’t be too difficult. There’s no real need for it to be, and the majority of these products come between 90% and 100% ready to go! No construction required. The only real exception to this is our cheapest ping pong table, the MD Sports Table Tennis Set, which takes a fair amount of putting together and requires tools.
Some of the products on the list come completely ready to play, just unfold them and you’re good to go! Assembly shouldn’t be too taxing for the majority of purchases.
Assuming it isn’t one of the products which may take a little longer, like the MD Sports Table Tennis Set, it should be set up in around 10-15 minutes. You don’t have to be particularly handy in order to put it together, either.
This depends on whether you plan to play at a competitive level of build-up to playing in tournaments. If you don’t then it doesn’t really matter if it is regulation size or not. It is about what will fit in the space you have available.
The dynamics of our editor’s choice are pretty standard, 108 x 60 x 30 inches. However, remember that you will need a few feet either side of this so that you can play in comfort. Check the dimensions of the table and then measure around it to ensure you have space.
The JOOLA NOVA Outdoor Table Tennis Table is third on our list of the best ping pong tables. It has a rating of 9.7/10 and is perfect for outdoor play as it is weather-resistant and has sturdy wheels which are perfect for transporting the table.