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Last updated: March 20, 2021
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Playing pool requires mental agility and physical adeptness. Plus, it provides the perfect opportunity for families to come together for hours of fun. So deciding to get a pool table for your home can be an exciting venture. However, you want to make sure that you get the best pool table out there; one that will fit into your allotted space and won’t burn a hole in your wallet either.
While pool table costs can pile up easily, we have compiled the best pool tables under $1000 for anyone looking to have fun yet in an affordable manner. After all, paying more for a bigger or better table may not seem a good investment until you consider the possibility of owning it for a few decades at least. We take a close look at important pool table features like size, weight, surface material and warranty information so that you know what to look for in a quality, yet modestly priced piece.
Our experts have brought together the finest pool tables under $1000 so you can make an informed decision about your purchase. Start off by taking a look at our tabular comparison to see which table type you want to opt for. Then scroll down to read detailed product reviews about each of our recommendations and conclude with our pool table buying guide so you find out everything there is to buying the best pool table for your home.
The Fat Cat Tuscon MMXI billiard table is a stylish model from GLD Products that comes at a great value for its price and makes a sleek addition to any game room.
This model is designed for recreational use at home. It comes with a standard 7-foot surface and sports a uniquely vivid blue polyester cloth that offers both smooth movement and style. The modern, arcade style of this table was designed to give the feel of a real pool hall in your own living space.
The table surface also has rubber bumpers that make rebounds quick and allow for more accurate banked shots.
One of the more notable features of the Fat Cat Tucson MMXI is its rather convenient ball return system. Once potted, the pool balls will all roll to one area under the surface and can be retrieved with the press of a button.
Instead of a traditional four-legged table, this model possesses two wide legs on each side, nearly the same width as the table. These legs give the table great stability and end with four rubber feet that can be adjusted to level on uneven surfaces.
While many reviewers can agree that the table is very stylish and can be easily assembled (even by one person), the table is relatively heavy and may be difficult to move.
Overall, the Fat Cat Tucson is a great value model and its performance along with style are why we nominate it our Editor’s Choice for pool tables under $1000.
The Hartford table by Playcraft is a great small-scale pool table for any player, and offers quality you won’t find in many other pool tables under $1000.
The feature that distinguishes the Hartford from other tables is its 15 mm slate surface, covered in a light blue felt. This slate surface gives the table a professional edge, providing stability and an authentic ball roll.
Designed for bumper pool, this table has a smaller surface and build than traditional tables.
It includes color-coordinated posts equipped with bumpers, making the playing surface an obstacle course for the more skilled player. The frame is made up of MDF and plywood, making it a very stable, solid design. Though the table comes mostly assembled, you’ll need to attach the legs yourself. Moving this table may be an issue once assembled: at 225 lbs, this is the heaviest pool table on this list.
Other features of this table include a carpeted ball return system. Not only can the pool balls be easily retrieved, but the noise will be minimal as they are potted.
The table includes all the basic playing equipment to start: two 48” billiard cues, pool balls, a tabletop brush, and chalk.
This product is backed up with a 1-year warranty for a worry-free purchase.
Overall, the Playcraft Hartford pool table is a fitting addition for the game room of any pool player. It offers both a small surface for starters and a professional build for the experienced player, all for reasonable pricing. These qualities are why we nominate this table the best slate pool table under $1000.
This mini pool table from Sunnydaze Décor is great for a game room tight on space or playing pool as a family.
This model has been designed with family recreation in mind. With a 7-foot long surface and a height of 32”, the table is very beginner friendly and kids can easily learn to play at this table.
The frame of this table is constructed with MDF laminated in PVC, making it durable, stable, and resistant to warping. The surface is lined with a traditional green woolen cloth and rubber bumper rails which are easy to replace and maintain overall.
The table also features a very basic ball return system, making retrieval easy and convenient.
At the bottom of the wooden legs are levelling feet for a flat surface and accurate gameplay.
This table comes as a value set with sturdy resin pool balls, a plastic triangle rack, two cues, and chalk. For easy maintenance and cleaning, you also get a brush included within the box.
While consumers have enjoyed this table, critical reviews mention that upon assembly the instructions included are vague and slightly difficult to follow. What was estimated to take 90 minutes to assemble (with 2 people) took customers from 2 to 4 hours to complete assembly. Luckily, an assembly video is available online and the table ends up very sturdy when completed.
Sunnydaze backs up all its products with a one-year warranty so there’s no worry if something happens to your pool table. So you can go ahead and enjoy the best mini pool table under $1000 recommended by our experts.
The Bello Games New York deluxe portable pool table is the perfect choice for limited spaces that cannot accommodate a full-sized professional table. Its unique folding feature gives it an edge over other similar products, making it easier to store when not in use. It’s sturdy yet lightweight, and can be moved easily.
This pool table is constructed with a hardwood frame and surfaced with green woolen blend cloth. The pockets are simple nets made with bright yellow string. However, some feel the pocket construction is not the most attractive and takes away from the aesthetics of the piece.
The table’s surface is 44” long, making it large for a foldable table, yet small for a standard professional one. It has been designed for casual playing.
The setup for this table is simple as there is no assembly required. Simply put it in your game room and you’re good to go.
The table includes all the standard accessories, including a complete set of genuine pool balls, 2 cues, a triangle rack, chalk, and a table brush.
Customers have been pleasantly surprised to find that this foldable model is much sturdier than expected and offers effective gameplay.
While this table offers good value for the money, customers feel the one missing component is the lack of levelling feet/options, which may be an issue if the ground is not even.
Overall, this foldable table from Bello Games stands out and offers more than other tables of its kind, and for this we nominate it the best foldable pool table under $1000.
The Hathaway Fairmont pool table is our list’s budget pick for many reasons. For a table of its price and size, it offers numerous features and a quality comparable to bigger, pricier pool tables.
Built with a 6’ frame, this table was designed for smaller spaces and bringing on the go. At a height of only 32”, it makes a great table for family recreation. It’s built with a ½” MDF surface lined with a stylish blue woolen blend fabric, offering smooth movement and performance. This table is made with well-valued quality and no assembly is required.
The table also sports foldable steel legs, making it both very sturdy and easy to store when not in use. It is rather heavy, however, and at a weight of 190 lbs., it’s not likely that the table is going anywhere easily with one person. The legs are equipped with leg levelers for stable gameplay.
The Fairmont comes with the standard equipment – 2 two-piece cues, a set of standard pool balls, a racking triangle, chalk, and a surface brush. For easier moving and storage, the table also includes a rip-resistant nylon carry bag.
Customers do have a few varied complaints regarding the equipment’s quality. Some have said that the cues are not the sturdiest, and that standard sized pool balls may be too large for a 6’ table surface. If that is the case, a new purchase for both may be necessary.
Overall, this table serves great for recreational purposes and offers a quality that other products in this price range may lack.
What we liked:
Foldable and portable design
Sturdy construction, leveling option included
Carry bag included
What could be better:
Equipment is not high quality
Standard balls too big
Heavy for a foldable table
Things to Consider
Buying a pool table is a major investment with prices running anywhere between $800 and $5000. But when you are looking for something under the $1000 mark, you want to make sure that you don’t compromise on its quality or performance level at the expense of a price tag. That’s why we’ve compiled this guide to help you get the right pool table that offers you the best of both deals.
Should a billiard table cost more?
A lot goes into crafting a quality pool table. For instance, factors like the materials used add to the cost. A solid wood table costs more than a wood veneer or laminate. Plus, the type of wood used, the thickness of the slate and the quality of hardware are all important factors. Pool table can also be customized with options such as wood stain finishes, leg options, and types of pockets all adding to the cost. In comparison, mass produced tables will cost much less.
Types of pool tables goes into the price factor
Slate tables will likely be the most expensive type as this material is used in most high-end tables. Slate lends the smoothest surface to a pool table and is used in professional-grade tables. The next best option is a wood table, but it should be one made from hardwood for optimal performance and durability.
For players who like to keep their pool table outdoors, metal is a good option making the table more resistant to wear and tear. Other types include aluminum and rubber tables and will be less costly options than slate and wood.
Pool table maintenance tips
In general, pool tables should be kept away from direct sunlight, in well ventilated areas to prevent moisture damage, and protected with a cover when not in use.
Take care when chalking the cues so that you don’t let the chalk dust fall and collect on the table surface. Likewise, avoid taking shots that present the chance of digging straight into the cloth making it more susceptible to tearing and ripping. Only use a specially designed pool table brush to clean off the surface driving the dirt to the pockets where it’s easier to clean from. For more frequently used pool tables, it may not be a bad idea to vacuum the surface after a few uses.
Other parts and accessories like the frame and balls should be cleaned regularly with a soft, lint-free cloth and any leather components conditioned with specially designed oil-based products.
Taking care on all these fronts will add to the lifespan of your pool table.
Features to consider while buying the perfect billiard table
In order to evaluate the quality of the pool table, you need to consider its key components, each of which are discussed in detail below. You also need to look at some other factors when shopping for the perfect pool table such as the size of the room you’ll place the table in. Think about the type of use your table will get. Will you use it as an heirloom piece or is it where you teach your kids how to play pool?
Another important aspect to consider is installation. Most pool tables, unless they are foldable models, will require assembly. So either you should be very sure of your installation skills, or be willing to get help with the assembly.
Pool tables can range anywhere from 6 ft. to 12 ft. long. The size you choose will not only need to fit into the room but also allow for space around the table to play. The size of the table should also take into consideration the size of the cues you plan on using. Also keep in mind if you plan on putting a rack or cabinet to store additional accessories. If you want a version of a pool table to play mini billiard game, you should consider the Sunnydaze Decor Pool Table.
The frame lends stability to the structure of the pool table. The lack of a supportive frame can cause the slate to crack, sag and become uneven. A quality pool table comes with a slate framed with wood glued to its bottom. It will also come with cross beams to add support.
Legs on a pool table can vary from simple taper legs to ornately carved ones. But aesthetics aside, the legs should supply adequate support. Since 90% of the entire weight is supported by the pool table cabinet, it needs to be standing on solid support.
Typically pool tables will feature two types of legs. Of these, “post” or “perfect” legs are manufactured from solid wood pieces all the way down from the slate to the feet. The other type, or “industry standard legs” are attached to the cabinet with an anchor system of some sort. There is the option of either a single anchor system using a single nut and bolt combination. However, this isn’t the sturdiest choice and can loosen over time. The second is the quad anchor system using four nut and bolt systems and yielding greater security.
Slate offers the smoothest experience and accuracy among pool table surfaces. Slate used on pool tables is categorized according to thickness with standard sizes ranging between ¾ “, 1 “and 1 ¼ “. Most manufacturers consider the 1” scale to be the most accurate. The ideal option for slate pool gamers would be the Playcraft Hartford.
The cloth used on the pool table to cover the slate is a wool/nylon blend coated in Teflon which allows for protective features against spills. The blended material also offers better resilience and makes for easier cleaning. To make for smooth speed during play, the cloth is made from combed wool fibers before spinning and yields greater accuracy to shots.
The cushions or rails on a pool table are made from natural gum, gum blends or synthetic materials.
The purpose of these rails is to provide a predictable bounce during play. The best types are made from natural gum bolted through the slate and down into the frame. Quality tables will have each rail bolted to the slate and frame in three places per rail giving it maximum security and preventing vibration or wobbling during play.
Pocket placement on a pool table catches the balls with many tables using a ball return system. This mechanism channels the balls to a compartment for easy collection.
Pocket materials can use either, plastic, rubber or leather.
Your pool table will come with some accessories included while you may need to buy some others separately. Pool cues, billiard balls, cue chalk, and a triangular rack are standard playing equipment that come with pool tables. Others like bridge sticks, table brushes or table covers, or pool table lights are some that warrant additional investment.
Your pool table is a significant investment so always get one that comes with a warranty. The warranty should cover things like free from defect cloth, materials and workmanship.
What to check in a pool table annually?
A year’s use of your pool table warrants an inspection by a professional billiard mechanic. You can get a reference from your table dealer and the mechanic should check for issues like table stability and the slate’s level. Check for the attachment of the cushions, any signs of wear and tear on the cloth, and the tightness of the cabinet. Also have your mechanic check for any cracks on the surface to preserve the integrity of your investment.
For any size pool table, the best space would allow for five feet of room on every side of the table. This open space allows players to properly use their cues, which are usually nearly five feet long.
The straight answer for that is no. Unless it is truly required for you to make a shot, sitting on the pool table can eventually alter the levelling of the surface and impact gameplay. Standing will absolutely ruin the table surface. Too much weight on the surface will make slate seams come loose and create irregularities on the surface, which will require re-levelling to fix.
Yes. In humid conditions the balls will play slower due to increased resistance and will affect the accuracy of your shots. The cloth covering may also be influenced impacting ball play.
Wrapping It Up
The Fat Cat Tucson MMXI is the right choice if you’re looking for a pool table that’s both great in quality and a stylish addition to your game room. You’ll definitely be getting your money’s worth with this recreational table that gives the modern feel of a real billiards hall.
For all levels, we recommend the Hartford pool table by Playcraft. It’s a great quality bumper pool table that provides a fun challenge for everyone. Anyone can enjoy testing and improving their pool skills on a professional surface that comes at a generally low price.
For the most budget-friendly product on this list of the best pool tables under $1000, consider the Fairmont pool table by Hathaway. This table offers the quality and performance of other recreational pool tables, all in a portable and foldable design that doesn’t need to be assembled.