The iPong V300 Robot is our best ping pong robot, which has a good level of consistency and it can dispense up to 100 balls at a time. It uses standard 40 mm balls and can be a great learning tool for when no one is there to spar with you when training for table tennis.
Our step-up pick is the Newgy Robo-Pong 2040 and this machine is a great companion for training alone or with friends with its various settings. It has the ability to make different kinds of spins such as combinations, side spins, backspins, top spins and the like. It has analog controls so it is very easy to operate.
The budget pick is the JOOLA iPong V100 and you can also create topspin with this table tennis ping pong robot for practice. It can also simulate situations to train you for forehand and backhand strokes to get you ready in any game. As an affordable ping pong training solution, it can be setup in no time.
A Little Background
A ping pong robot is a type of robot that automatically dispenses and throws ping pong balls or table tennis balls to the player for practice purposes. This is the purpose of a ping pong robot or table tennis training robot.
Acting much like a baseball pitching machine, the ping pong robot can throw ping pong balls to the player to practice hitting them. This is important if you do not have the skills to accurately hit the ping pong ball yet.
One of the best advantages of the ping pong robot is that you do not have to call upon someone to practice on your hitting skills. A battery operated ping pong robot is all you need when it comes down to practicing on your paddle. A ping pong robot can be placed anywhere and can simulate a real person playing the game with you.
There are two kinds of ping pong robots out there: the portable one and the mechanical one. The portable one is battery operated and stands like a standing flashlight and dispenses balls for you to hit at a certain rhythm or speed. These are good for small spaces and those who have limited budget.
On the other hand, the ones that have an arm or mechanical design are ones that tend to be bulkier and are intended for large practice areas like gymnasiums or sports centers. Gyms of schools or teams can benefit from this kind of ping pong robot despite the price.
How We Picked
For the best ping pong robot, you need the following criteria:
Ease of control: the ping pong robot should be simple to operate in its switches, speed, power source and all other things. It should not be over complicated and should have easily accessible buttons and the like for you to practice at your pace and level in a simple manner.
Battery life: most ping pong robots are portable and are battery powered. Make sure that the battery power of the robot is not too hasty or low quality. It may be best for one that depends on a high power battery that does not lose charge easily.
Portability: a good ping pong robot is one that is portable. These are usually the table top or battery operated ones. However, the mechanical ones are okay too, provided that you have enough space to keep them. A portable ping pong robot also makes it easier to operate and maintain due to its small size.
Speed options: an ideal ping pong robot would be one that had many speed options for you to customize so that it will be helpful for a more realistic training experience. In addition to that, different skill levels and player ages can be able to play with the ping pong robot due to this option.
The iPong V300 Robot is our best ping pong robot that has a good accuracy and frequency that is adjustable from 12 to 70 balls each minute. It has a wireless remote for easily setting it up while far away and the digital display makes setup a breeze.
It has good oscillation properties and is capable of backspin, topspin and various adjustable features. There is also a memory feature to keep your preferences.
Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
While not a deal breaker, the iPong V300 Robot may not be as realistic as the expensive ones, but for those who just want something to serve balls for you to train, this is a good option for you.
The Newgy Robo-Pong 2040 is our step-up pick, which is capable of fast loops, lobs, counters, serving, chopping and pushing the ball. It is very portable despite its size and is easy to take apart when you want to use it elsewhere.
You can also adjust the speed of the ball with this machine and it accepts any standard sized ping pong ball and can be situated on any ping pong table.
The JOOLA iPong V100 is our budget pick and is battery operated, using only 6 AA batteries. It is capable of being setup with the remote control and can be easily loaded with standard 40 mm practice balls or real balls. Its settings allow you to adjust the spin of the ball and the power.
The machine holds up to 110 balls and has easy adjustability. You can use it while playing or practicing ping pong with friends and family and can be simply folded to store when not in use.
Best Ping Pong Robot with an LCD Screen
The Paddle Palace H2W has an LCD screen for you to see your settings easily. It can be programmed and setup in a breeze and is capable of throwing all kinds of balls and different kinds of serves and throws. It is easy to put together and can have a variety of landing spots and spins for you to customize.
Best Ping Pong Robot for Spins Training
The HUI PANG-07 is a serving robot that can spin 36 types of spins for your ping pong ball. It can also hold up to 110 table tennis balls and can be easy to set up for training purposes. It has a remote control that allows you to configure its settings in a breeze.
Best Ping Pong Robot for Professional Use
The Robot Oukei TW-2700 is ideal for professional use and has a random mode for a more realistic way of training yourself with a robot with various landings spins and range of service. It can go for either short range or long range balls.
Best Ping Pong Robot for Topspin Training
The iPong Topspin Robot is ideal for topspin training and is also powered by 6 AA batteries. It can hold standard 40 mm balls and can go as fast as 70 balls per minute. It can hold a total of 110 balls in its compartment and comes with other accessories as well.
Best Ping Pong Robot with a Table Clamp
The Y&T A9 Robot can be easily clamped under your ping pong table and it is capable of speeds up to 95 balls per minute. It has many landing spot options and has a speed of up to 50 meters per second. You can choose from 9 various spins for this training robot.
Best Ping Pong Robot that is Portable
The iPong Expert Robot can go as fast as up to 30 balls per minute and accepts 4 AA batteries to power it up. It has many accessories included and has the ability to hold up to 25 balls at once, being a portable robot. You can have a consistent pace and trajectory for the balls with this robot.
Best Ping Pong Robot that holds Many Balls
The Newgy Robo-Pong 1040+ is capable of holding up to 200 balls, which is ideal for larger areas and more practice time. It is easy to setup and can be able to make spins such as combinations, left and right side spins, backspin and topspin, and can also chop, make fast loops, serve, push, lob and other moves.
Other ping pong robots were not in our list because they were having difficulties in terms of setup and speed options. They were also not very reliable when it comes down to durability.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What do speed, control and feel of a blade mean in table tennis?
A: Table tennis or ping pong, has different metric for you to consider when choosing a paddle as well as when playing the game. The three most important ones are speed, control and feel of the blade, which will be discussed below:
The speed refers to the speed of the blade or the paddle pad so that you can easily return serves or hits and keep your reflexes and rhythm in sync with the other player. Speed can change depending on the type of paddle that you have. Most wood types have their own class of speed so it is important that you test out your paddle first to get a feel of its speed when hitting the ball in this case.
The control refers to how much you are able to control the ball’s spinning when it approaches your side of the table. Control is very important and a basic skill that all beginner players should know, and this is why they need to have a paddle that is easy to control the ball with and doesn’t make it hard for you to handle the ping pong ball. Slower blades are the best to control the ball with.
The feel of the blade means that the blade or pad has a certain bounce or reflex towards the ball, either generating more spin or generating less spin. Harder blades will be harder to make spins for the ball while softer blades for generating more spin. When you are in doubt, you can go for a medium feel blade or pad instead for your paddle so that you can adapt to the situation and your style of the game.
In addition to these terms, there are certain blades that are meant for either offense or defense, and these are important to make the shot or return easier:
|Main Category||Sub Category||Definition and Uses|
|Offensive||OFF||If you need speed, spin and power that goes directly to the opponent then this is the type of offensive grade for your paddle.|
|OFF+||For those who need a full-fledged offensive game play with their paddle then this is the ping pong racket to choose.|
|OFF-||If you want an offensive game play style but want it on a medium scale then this is a good paddle type to pick.|
|All-around||ALL||This paddle type is ideal for those who want an all-around style and can be good for rallies. You can either control shots or attack.|
|ALL+||This is similar to the all-around table tennis paddle but you get more consistency and accuracy for the ball when it comes down to any distance, giving you more control of the ball.|
|Defensive||DEF||The defensive paddle is ideal for really defending yourself with a distant chop and giving more control to the ball as well.|
Q: What is a ping pong robot? How does it help players?
A: The ping pong robot is a type of robot that acts like a baseball or softball pitching machine and automatically serves you ping pong balls to practice hitting them. Here are some of its benefits:
A ping pong robot is beneficial for table tennis clubs, gyms and sports centers. When you have a ping pong robot in your gym or practice area, your players can benefit from it because they can train with ease. It also adds attraction to the area and is good for table tennis clubs in general. Most ping pong robots are easy to operate so you can let people use them as well.
Most of them can be portable and easily put away when not in use. The size of a ping pong robot is usually not that large compared to that of a pitching machine that pitches baseball or softball or even volleyball in some cases. The portability of a ping pong robot makes it ideal even for smaller practice areas and you can even add more to the place for more fun.
They can train players without the need of a sparring partner. You do not have to bother someone such as a coach or expert player to train you in ping pong or table tennis. You can do the training yourself with a ping pong robot – it’s that easy! The ping pong robot can serve as your sparring partner when you are alone in a practice area so that you can hone your skills and reflexes while alone.
Most of them are easy to control and to load balls with. Because of the simple mechanism of most ping pong robots today, they can be dependable for those who just need a good practice for ping pong or table tennis. Provided with the user instructions, you can easily operate a ping pong robot without much help from others.
It can help you develop techniques in no time. The fact that a ping pong robot is fast paced and does not get tired unless its batteries run out (or if it’s plugged in, a power interruption happens) so you can practice nonstop anytime and anywhere with the ping pong robot. If you do not have a lot of time to practice your reflex skills and want to train yourself then the ping pong robot is a good solution.
Q: How do you score points in table tennis?
A: Table tennis or ping pong scores work like this:
• First, you need to score up to 11 points against the opponent.
• Whoever scores 11 points first wins that game.
• An entire session of table tennis can be up to 5 games, and you should win 3 out of 5.
• A deuce happens when both of you score 10 points.
• When the deuce happens, you need to score 2 points ahead to win that game.
Q: What are the common table sizes that are used in competitions? How about in hobby rooms?
A: Table tennis can have different table sizes to choose from, but these are the most common sizes:
|Table Size||Table classification|
|2,740 mm||1,525 mm||760 mm||Regulation sized table, as approved by the ITTF|
|1,360 mm||760 mm||650 mm||Mini sized table, good for hobbyists and rec rooms|
In addition to these sizes, you need to allow a certain clearance (approximate value, depending on your table size) for the tables to allow more room and mobility for the players, such as the following:
• 0.6 meters on both wide sides
• 1.2 meters on both table ends
Q: What are the different kinds of table tennis rubbers and how do they affect my shots?
A: The table tennis rubber can be classified by the following types:
The inverted type of rubber is the most ideal and popular of all because it can be used by all-around players who both play offensive and defensive. It is good for chopping as well as attacking the opponent with shots. Most ping pong paddles have this kind of rubber anyway and it is characterized by a surface with good tackiness. If you are looking for versatility and easy spinning for a paddle then the inverted rubber is for you.
The long pip rubber is good for making tricks for the opponent and causing the other player to potentially make mistakes in hitting. It can easily reverse the spin so that your opponent will not easily know what kind of spin will come next. This is ideal if you want to put a little trick to your game. They have long indentions in the rubber’s texture.
The short pip rubber is much like the long pip, only shorter. They are great for those who want to focus on attacking or an offensive style of play. They are great for returning your opponent’s serves and can really work up power even with any kind of spin that your opponent throws at you. It may not give you a lot of spin, but it is good at making attacks and aggressive plays.
The sponge-less type of rubber is a kind of rubber that absolutely reduces the spin rate of your ball. It is ideal for advanced and expert players and are good for keeping the ball spin slower in case your opponent likes to spin balls really fast. They also usually have short pip rubber on the top but does not have the sponge. They are also ideal for those who like slow and concise movements.
The anti-spin rubber is another spin stopping or spin reducing rubber pad that you can have for your ping pong paddle. It uses a dead sponge layer that is good for backside game play. It is ideal for making attacks and makes it easier to slow the rotation of the ball, mostly to trick the other player and leaving him or her open to attacks and offensive charges.
Q: In a ping pong game, how many serves do I make?
A: The serving system of ping pong or table tennis goes like this:
• Both players get to have 2 serves until the serve switches to the other player. This is done alternately.
• The only chance that the serve count becomes 1 serve per player is when a deuce happens (see above).
Q: How do ping pong tables differ when it comes down to price range?
A: The ping pong table that has a higher price may have the following features:
Accessory storage – you can store various accessories such as balls, paddles, the net and the like. This is handy for when you want to use the ping pong table often.
Leg assembly – the higher end ping pong table can have a sturdier assembly so that you can even place a ping pong robot on it without falling over.
Thicker playing area – this is also ideal if you want to use a table top ping pong robot on it so that it does not easily topple down or fall over. This also means that when you train with the ping pong table either with a player or a ping pong robot, it gives off more bounce.
Intended use – most higher end tables can be used commercially for table tennis clubs, parks, gymnasiums, schools, sports centers, training centers, athletic teams, national teams and even for outdoor use.
Net adjustment – some ping pong tables also have better net adjustment options for you to easily adapt to your preferences.
Q: How do you properly serve a ball in table tennis?
A: Serving the ping pong ball in table tennis can be tricky for beginners, but here are some guidelines for you to know first:
First, serve with an open hand. Do not cup your hands or hold the ball while serving. It should rest on the palm of your hand so that the ball is resting just fine without any restriction.
Tossing the ball should be at the right height. It should not be too high from the paddle. In the same way, the paddle should not be behind your dominant hand where the ball is. You should toss the ball with the paddle slightly in front of your dominant hand or ball-holding hand.
Serving is done diagonally much like with regular tennis, whether in singles or in doubles. It should touch the part of the court of your opponent, and the same is true for doubles.
The ball, when serving, should be far off from the table and away from the end line and right on top of the playing surface.
Q: How do I return different kinds of serves in ping pong?
A: Returning the serve in table tennis or ping pong can be tricky, but here are the different serves and how to return them effectively:
Side spin serves can be returned using an attack or you can also use the backhand technique. If you do use the forehand side, you can make returns with a forehand flip. Short serves can be returned with forehands but most will easily return it with a backhand for its easy technique. The return should have a good angle nonetheless. Chop blocking is also a good strategy for a side spin serve.
Long serves can be returned by using an attack or offensive charge as well. You can also add a chop in the middle of the attacks but generally, it should be an all-offensive return for this kind of serve. Usually, this kind of move should be done far away from the table so that you can have more time to prepare for an attack. Going defensive will only lead your opponent to attacking you instead.
No-spin or short backspin serves can be tricky, but you can practice flipping and going for a long push or sometimes a short push depending on the position. This is because people can learn how to block the attacks. Short pushing can be harder to learn and long pushing can be easier to learn, but you can practice it as well.
In addition to the push technique for the backspin serve, flipping the ball can also be hard for beginners but the target is the weak spot of your opponent and should emphasize the placement of your paddle rather than how fast it is.
Q: How do I improve my serve returns in ping pong?
A: While returning a serve can vary depending on the type of serve, here are some tips and tricks on how to improve your serve returns in a game of ping pong or table tennis:
Always observe the ball, whether you are practicing or playing. You should keep an eye on the ball and watch for any kind of tricky moves that your opponent might have. You can take note of the flight of the ball, the type of spin and many other factors. It can be tricky if you’re a beginner but with constant practice, you can determine which serve will have a no-spin ball and which would have a lot of spin.
Keep practicing on returning serves, whether with an opponent or with a ping pong robot. It can help you know what you are doing wrong when you return the serve and so you can address it accordingly. Practicing constantly lets you know your mistakes more because it will be a good basis for you to improve your playing style. Practice games are very important as well as using a ping pong robot when you have no one to spar with.
You don’t have to expect a completely perfect serve return overnight. You can leave some room for margin of error at first and then try to control the ball better next time. Drop shots can be a challenge for you if you are a beginner at table tennis so don’t stress out and learn by practicing and watching the ball just a little more until you get it right.
Always stay alert for fast serves because they can easily make the opponent score and drop your momentum and overall confidence. Be wary of the type of attack or serve that your opponent could make and always find time to think quickly. While short serves can make it easy to react, long serves can be tricky so the best way is to attack quickly, as mentioned above.
You can also improve your footwork with service returns. This makes it easier for you to find the right angle and the right weak spot of your opponent.
Making last-minute decisions when returning the serve can be a good way to deceive the opponent. Some professional players can read your actions and know what you might be up to. This is why you need to decide in the last few seconds before you return the serve so that you do not give away your plan for the opponent.
Practicing on how to read the serve of the opponent as well as his or her actions can help you determine what to do next. Expert players have keen eyes not just on the ball but also on the opponent’s ball, so it pays to practice and observe as much as you can.
Q: How do you maintain a good ready position before you hit a serve and return it?
A: To return a serve more accurately, you need to have a good ready position, by doing the following:
• First, you need to prepare a good stance so that your position will be just right for hitting the ball.
• Next, make sure that your feet are aligned and balanced to the ground to avoid getting strained.
• Striking the ball should be done as accurately as possible depending on the position, and depending on the type of serve.
• Go back to the ready position and repeat all of the above until the end of the rally.
Q: What ping pong skills can a ping pong robot enhance in a player?
A: A table tennis player can greatly benefit from a ping pong robot by developing the following skills:
Backhand skills can be improved because you can practice both of the backspin and top spin moves for hours until it feels very natural to you. If you can’t really master backhand skills at first then a ping pong robot would do the job for you.
If you are having trouble keeping up with long and fast rallies then a robot can train you for one. Keeping up with the ping pong robot can help you practice the width of your strokes and how to easily recover from the opponent’s attacks to stay in the rally.
Footwork while playing is another thing that can get practiced when you play ping pong with a robot. This is something that most players forget to do but is important because footwork can help you score better due to the position of your feet being more balanced to allow you to look for an opportunity to strike back at the opponent. Some robots can also give you a footwork drill for practice purposes.
You can also improve your service skills with a ping pong robot if it has a ball collector. This is useful if you are still struggling with your service and if you are trying to do some new kinds of legal serves that you haven’t tried before.
A flicking practice can also be done with a ping pong robot because of the backspin serve that it can do. Flicking is also one of the most important skills to learn in ping pong or table tennis and the ping pong robot can do just that.
If you are having trouble with receiving the serve then the ping pong robot can help you with that. While this may not be true on portable robots, those with arms can be more realistic in helping you read a player’s arm movement in terms of getting ready to receive a serve.
You can also enhance your skills in reading the spin of your opponent’s ball. This is a key skill to learn in table tennis so that you can prepare to hit the ball based on the type of spin it has. Different kinds of hitting positions are required depending on the ball’s spin type.
Combination moves such as backspin and top spin can be practiced on higher end robots that have more moving parts than your usual ping pong robot. This is an advanced trick that ace players can get their hands on if they want to train by themselves with a ping pong robot.
Q: How do I make my robot more realistic and less prone to malfunctions?
A: A ping pong robot can be rid of malfunctions with the following tips:
• Make sure all of the balls don’t get dirt once you load them. You can check this by serving each of the balls back to the robot.
• Always make sure to use balls that are applicable with the ping pong robot so that they don’t ruin the robot’s quality and mechanisms.
In terms of making the robot more realistic in serving, even if you don’t have a robot that has inconsistent or realistic timing, here’s what you can do:
• Prepare a mix of old and new balls with slightly different weights, but are applicable to the robot’s mechanisms.
• When the robot throws the balls, there will be some variation in speed because of the different weights, making the ping pong robot more realistic and less monotonous in speed and spinning.
Q: What are the different kinds of ping pong balls based on their purpose and other properties?
A: A Different ping pong balls all serve different purposes and may even have a star rating. Some are for professional use while others are for casual or training use. Below is a chart comparing the different kinds of ping pong balls and their uses and properties:
|Type of Ball||Where to use them / who can use them||Colors available||Durability|
|One star ball||You will find most one star balls in schools, tennis clubs for the youth and mostly for practice purposes.||They are usually in white or orange but some can come in a variety of colors as well.||One star balls are soft and are meant for practice purposes and for schools. If you hit them hard, these balls could break.|
|Two star ball||The two star ball is good for a ping pong robot and also ideal for practice purposes. If you are in a tournament and you run out of tournament quality balls, they can be good replacements.||Usually white, orange but there are also other colors available.||Slightly more durable than the one star ball but not as durable as the three star ball.|
|Three star ball||This is what you will use in official tournaments and is often sanctioned and approved by the ITTF.||Only legal colors such as white or orange.||Very durable, can take a beating, and either made of celluloid or hard plastic.|
|Novelty ball||The novelty ball is found on children’s toys or some practice gear. Novelty balls can be used for fun and recreation.||They come in a wide variety of colors other than white and orange.||They can be either soft or hard, but not as durable as starred balls.|
|Practice ball||The practice or training ball is used for what it is – for practice purposes. They can also be used by children who play ping pong or table tennis.||They are usually white but some other colors are available as well.||They are not very durable either, much like the one star ball.|
Q: How do you choose a good ping pong ball for your game (and your robot)?
A: The ping pong ball can have many properties and you should choose a good ping pong ball based on the following criteria:
The type of ball material should be considered when you want to choose a good ping pong ball. You can choose from either plastic or celluloid. However, plastic or polystyrene balls are more recommended today because they are more eco-friendly than celluloid. They are also good with professional players who want to use a durable ad competition grade ball.
The quality of the ball should be considered. As discussed earlier, table tennis balls can fall into one star, two star or three star. The higher rank means that it is more durable and it can last longer for more games to follow.
Color choice is also important when you consider the right balls to have for your ping pong game. White and orange are the only legal colors allowed, so make sure you choose these colors if you want a tournament legal ball. Otherwise, you can choose any color you want for practice for as long as you can see it (e.g. yellow or light colors).
Storage of the balls is also important so that the balls do not warp, get dents or lose their colors. They should be kept in place when they are not in use and should not be left on the floor to avoid accidents, so it’s important to invest in a ball storage.
Q: How realistic can a ping pong robot get?
A: The ping pong robot today can be more realistic than the ones before because of the many moving parts that almost significantly mimics the arm movements of a person so that you can train with better precision and realism with a ping pong robot.
Q: Is ping pong better than having a pool table in a rec room?
A: If you need to set up a rec room and can’t decide between a pool table and a ping pong table, here are some pros and cons of each:
|Size and mobility||Ping pong tables are easier to setup and to lift||Pool tables can be heavier than ping pong tables|
|Price||Ping pong tables can be cheaper||Pool tables can be more expensive|
|Physical benefits||Ping pong gets you more active than pool||Pool is a more laid-back game than ping pong|
Q: How does ping pong compare with foosball?
A: When comparing ping pong to foosball or table tennis to table football, here are some criteria you need to consider:
|Doubles game||Ping pong can be played as doubles, but rarely||Foosball doubles are more played than ping pong doubles|
|Physical benefits||Ping pong involves more physical movements than foosball||Foosball also requires fast reflexes but not as much movement as ping pong|
|Style of game||Ping pong is more on fast reflexes and reaction||Foosball is also on reactions but more on strategies|
Q: Is it okay to begin an office rec room with a ping pong table?
A: The ping pong table can be a good initial rec room sport for your office, but there are some considerations you should know:
• Ping pong tables need four times more than the size of the table for a playing room, since you will be moving about much like in real tennis.
• Ping pong paddles can easily wear out if you often play with them, so it’s best to get durable ones for your tale.
• Ping pong is a sport that can really get you physically involved, so it’s a good exercise as compared to foosball.
Q: How does table tennis benefit children?
A: Table tennis or ping pong can greatly benefit children in many ways such as the following:
• Children can learn the values of perseverance and striving hard to reach their success.
• Kids will also develop good fitness habits at a younger age, which they can carry throughout their lifetime.
• The fast reflexes and mental sharpness/alertness that a child needs to develop in the sport of ping pong can help them later in life.
• At a young age, your child can learn how to handle pressure and conflict, and stay calm and focused in the game.
• If your child aspires to be a professional athlete someday, they can learn the basics at a young age.
Wrapping It Up
The iPong V300 Robot is our best ping pong robot that can hold up to 100 balls at a time, can make backspins and topspins and has many adjustable features.