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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Last updated: July 12, 2021
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When you think about a pool table, the odds are that you think they are way too expensive for your budget, right? That couldn’t be farther from the truth, however. While the best pool tables under $500 won’t be as large or as sturdy as more expensive models, they can still provide you and your friends with tons of fun.
We have found some outstanding pool tables for less than $500 for our listing. When we first started putting it together, the first thing we made sure that each model was made from high-quality and durable materials. That way, you can rest assured that they will last for a good long time. Next, we also tried to look for a pool table that is extraordinarily stable, despite its lightweight design. That way, the table can withstand lots of games without falling over. We also looked to see if any of the tables were collapsible since that will make storage a whole lot easier.
This folding style table has a large playing surface. This makes it feel almost as large as a standard pool table. It features locking legs that help to keep it in place and makes it feel very sturdy.
This model is made with a maple wood frame for durability. It is covered with nylon cloth. Along with the table, you will also get everything that you need to start playing right away.
Why is it special? This is, by far, our favorite pool table for under $500. It comes with everything that you need to play right away, including cues, balls, triangles, and chalk. Even if this is the first pool table you have ever bought, you shouldn’t have any issue at all setting it up and getting started playing right away.
Speaking of setup, this table couldn’t be much easier. All you have to do is unfold it and use the locks on the legs to secure them in place. From there, you simply level the legs and get started. This setup should only take you about 15 minutes total, which is outstanding.
Thanks to the leg locks and levelers, as well as the sturdy design of this table, this thing is solid as a rock. It has a large playing surface for a foldable table and should provide plenty of stability as you play.
What are the flaws? This table is an amazing value. It is easy to set up, fun to play on, and built to last. The cues, unfortunately, are not built to the same manners. These cues are quite flimsy, which will limit their usefulness. You should probably just get a replacement set to utilize right off the bat. That way, you can enjoy this exceptional table without having to worry about bad shots.
This table has a slightly smaller playing surface, which makes it a great option for anyone that has a smaller rec room. It is also lightweight and has folding legs, which makes it easy to move out of the way when it is not in use.
This model is made with MDF lumber and steel legs for stability. This table is covered in regulation green felt, which makes the balls move extremely smoothly across its surface.
What are our favorite features? The best thing about this table has got to be its price. Though all of the models on our list are relatively inexpensive, this is the most budget-friendly on the market. Even though it is designed to save you money, it is still a high-quality product. It is compact and lightweight, which makes it highly portable. Even if you need to move this model into different rooms in your house, you shouldn’t have any problem doing so.
This model also comes fully assembled, which is a big time saver. The regulation felt gives it a durable feel and also allows the balls to roll smoothly. This table also comes with everything that you need to play right away, adding to its value.
What could be better? This is the lightest table on our list. This makes it extremely portable and easy to maneuver into position when you are ready to play. This smaller than average design does reduce the size of the playing surface by quite a bit, however. This smaller than average playing surface might make take a bit of getting used to for experienced players, though it should work perfectly well for anyone that is just learning the game.
This table is heavier than most and also has a large playing surface. The legs are very easy to level, thanks to the screwable feet.
This table is covered in polyester cloth that causes the balls to roll very smoothly. It is crafted from manufactured wood and features a metal frame, which adds to its durability and solid feel.
Why did it make our list? If you are someone that is looking to get a pool table for under $500 but still get the largest playing surface that you can, then this is the table for you. This model has an expansive surface for this price, making it almost feel like you are playing on a regulation size pool table.
Another great feature that really stands out for this model is its durable design. The frame for this table is nice and thick, which makes it extra sturdy. The easy to level legs are also a very nice touch since they add to the sturdiness of the table. This table is also backed up with a great warranty, which makes it an awesome value.
What is not ideal about it? This table is extremely durable and sturdy. It is made with high-quality materials, which makes it a great buy. The biggest downside, however, is that these exceptional materials make it extremely heavy. Even when you are just setting it up for the first time, you will need to make sure that you have someone to help you lift it into place. Even though this model can be folded up, you probably will want to avoid that as much as possible due to its heavy design.
This table features a large playing surface, as well as a durable and sturdy design. It can be utilized as either a pool table or a ping pong table. This makes it extremely versatile.
This table is made with manufactured wood and metal. The covering is made with polyester, which allows the balls to move quickly.
What do we love it for? The thing that really stands out for this model is the fact that it can pull double duty. Not only is this a fantastic pool table, but it can also be used as a ping pong table as well. This makes it an awesome option for a rec room since it will help to keep both your kids and guests entertained for hours on end.
Another high point for this model is that, once it is set up, it is extremely durable. The thick frame and sturdy legs make it a great choice for anyone that is used to standard pool tables. The easy-to-use levelers help to make it even sturdier.
What were we disappointed with? The fact that this table can be used as both a pool table and for table tennis is a great value. This will, however, add a whole lot of time to the assembly process. Since you need to make sure that everything is set up correctly so that you can quickly switch between the two playing surfaces, you can expect that you will spend a lot longer to get this table ready than others on our list.
This table is made to be portable. It is foldable and comes with a carrying case. It is also built to be quite sturdy and easy to set up and take down. The legs are also quite easy to level.
This model is made with manufactured wood and an alloy steel frame for durability. It also features wool cloth, which makes it very durable compared to other materials.
Why is it special? One of the biggest issues with tables that are foldable is that they are not always the sturdiest or the most durable. That is, thankfully, not the case with this model. Thanks to its steel alloy frame, this model should stand up to the test of time without too many issues. The wool felt is also quite durable, which allows the balls to travel smoothly.
That is not to say, however, that this model is not highly portable. Of all the different tables on our list, this is perhaps the most durable. It folds up completely and even comes with a nylon carrying bag. This bag makes it that much easier to cart it from place to place, which is great if you don’t have a dedicated rec room.
What are the flaws? While it is really nice that this table comes with everything that you need, you will want to get yourself a different set of cues as soon as possible. The ones that come along with the table are flimsy and unresponsive, which will not allow you to make accurate shots while you are playing. Of course, if you are just getting this table for your kids, the cues will probably work just fine.
This table is made to be extremely sturdy and durable. It features thick legs that are very easy to level and a smaller than average playing surface.
This model is crafted with manufactured wood and covered in regulation wool cloth. It also has rubber cushions on its bumpers, which make bank shots much easier.
What makes it special? The best thing about this model is that, despite its smaller than average size, it is extremely sturdy. The legs are designed to hold the table in place and keep it from shifting on you while you are playing. The rubber cushions along the side are nice and thick, which will allow them to keep from breaking down too quickly. They are also quite responsive, which means that they will offer plenty of bank shot opportunities.
To go along with this sturdy design, the company also offers a lifetime warranty. While you will hopefully not need to use it, it is nice to know that the company stands behind its product.
What cons did we find? There is a lot to like about this table. It is sturdy and fun to play on. The biggest issue we found with it is the size of its playing surface. While it certainly is big enough for younger players or anyone that isn’t a serious pool enthusiast, it will really hamper the playing style of experienced players. It is much shorter and thinner than a regular table, which will take some getting used to for anyone with a lot of experience.
Things to Consider
In this section, we will go through everything that you need to know to find the best pool table for under $500. We have also taken the time to answer several frequently asked questions, so be sure to read through those as well if you need any further information.
Features to consider when choosing a pool table under $500
As you can imagine, there are a lot of factors that play into finding the right pool table for under $500. In this section, we will go through each of these features in detail so that you can buy your new table with confidence.
The first thing that you need to consider is the overall size of your table. You should carefully measure both the length and the width of the space that you intend to put your new table. That way, you will have a better understanding of whether or not you have enough space for a larger table or need to stick with a smaller one. Remember, you need to have room to move around the table and maneuver into the correct position to make your shots, so you should avoid getting a table that just fits into your preferred space.
If you are looking for the largest table for your money, then the GLD Products Fat Cat Trueshot is going to be your best bet. This table is quite large for a model that can be collapsed, making it an ideal choice. Of course, if you are looking for something for a smaller area, the RACK Stark might be the right choice, thanks to its overall compact design.
Another important consideration that you need to keep in mind is how much you would like your new table to weigh. The heavier the table, the more difficult it will be to get into place. On the other hand, if you get a heavier table, it should be sturdier and more durable than a more lightweight option.
If you are looking for a sturdy option, then the GoSports Billiards Table would be a good choice. This model weighs in at 120 pounds, which makes it the heaviest on our list. Its durable and thick design makes it a great choice for anyone looking to keep their table up all of the time. If, however, you are looking for a lightweight option that has a higher level of maneuverability, then the Rack Crucis might work well. This table only weighs 82 pounds, which makes it light enough for one or two people to move in and out of the playing area with ease.
Construction and materials used
Something else that will influence the overall durability of the table that you choose will be the design, construction, and materials used. The heavier duty the materials, the more durable the table is going to be. Any table that uses real wood instead of composite will usually offer more durability. Metal frames are another way that these cheaper tables provide a higher level of stability as well. This is also true for how it is constructed.
Any table that is designed to be folded up is usually not going to be as durable or sturdy as one that is made to be a permanent piece in a room.
The Hathaway Spartan is a good example of a sturdy table made with a combination of wood and metal that provides exceptional durability to its users. The GLD Products Fat Cat Trueshot also offers exceptional durability thanks to its thicker than average MDF framing.
As anyone that has played pool for a long time can attest, there are several things that you are going to need aside from a table in order to play the game correctly. These could include cues, balls, triangles, chalk, and brushes. It might also come along with carrying bags or different types of ball pockets, so keep in mind what you need so that you can start playing right after you set up your tale.
The GLD Products Fat Cat Trueshot is a good option in this case since it comes with everything that you would need so that you can start playing the second it’s set up. This is a great table for a new player since it will give you all the equipment necessary. The Hathaway Spartan is a really versatile option that can be converted into a ping pong table, which doubles the fun and usefulness of the table.
Ease of assembly
One of the biggest advantages of this style of table is how easy they are to assemble. There are two distinct styles of tables at this price point, which include foldable and non-foldable tables.
The non-foldable will take you a bit more time to assemble but only require simple hand tools to get the job done. Foldable or collapsible, tables are much easier to assemble.
Since these tables are designed to be taken down and put back up again, they are usually very simple to assemble.
Whenever you are making a big purchase, it is always a good idea to look for a model that comes with a good warranty. That way, you will be covered should anything break or fail through normal use. Of course, you need to make sure that you read the fine print in any agreement very carefully.
Many companies, even reputable ones like those on our listing, will claim to offer a long and comprehensive warranty but actually only cover a certain set of parts. By reading through the fine print of your warranty agreement, you will have a better idea of what is and what isn’t covered by the company in the event of damage or failure.
Of all the different tables that are on our list, the three that come fully assembled are the GLD Products Fat Cat Trueshot, Rack Crucis, and the Hathaway Fairmont. These tables can be played pretty much right out of the box, making them exceptionally excellent for anyone that wants to get started right away. The only thing that you will have to do is unfold the table, snap the legs into place, and add the pockets to catch the balls. After that, you will be good to go to have a ton of fun.
The very best thing that you can do to help make sure that your table is sturdy and stable is to use it on a level surface. Some tables, like the GoSports Billiards Table, have built-in leg levelers that will help to keep the table from wobbling because it is not level. You also want to make sure that the table is on a solid surface, rather than a carpet or rug that might slip and slide when you are playing.
To clean the playing surface of your pool table, you need to do a couple of different things. To remove excess dust or chalk from the felt, you can either vacuum it up or use the brush that comes with the table. This brush will also remove any excess lint to keep the surface smooth. If anything gets spilled on the table, use warm soapy water to spot clean the stains as quickly as possible. Make sure that you allow the table to dry thoroughly before your play again.
Wrapping It Up
If you are in the market for the best overall pool table for under $500, then we highly recommend that you select the GLD Products Fat Cat Trueshot. This table is durable, sturdy, and has a large playing surface. It also comes with everything that you need to get started playing right away, making it a great option for anyone that has never owned a pool table before.
The Rack Crucis is a great table if you have a smaller rec room. It is made to be compact and is also lightweight enough that you could move it in and out of the center of the room as you choose.
The GoSports Billiards Table is a good option if you think that durability is the most important factor in the best pool table under $500. This model is quite large and made to last, making it a sound investment for someone that has a larger rec room.