The best ping pong robots give as much as they get… and more.
Are you avoiding the next big match up? Afraid to play with your ping pong partner at the club? Do you sweat at the thought of your cousin schooling you again at the next family reunion? Is it your backspin? Maybe it’s your footwork? Or is it your speed?
No need to fear the next round of ping pong. A small investment in a ping pong robot will be sure to sharpen your game. So, the next time you show up, you can show off too. We’ll give tips on what to look for in a table tennis robot. And, we’ll offer up our Top Ten Ping Pong Robot picks too.
How to Choose the Perfect Table Tennis Robot
Choosing a table tennis robot may be more complicated than you think. That’s because the choices are numerous. But, with a little investigation, you’ll see that the major differences between robots match up with differences in player ability and experience.
With that said, the very first thing you need to do before you start shopping for the ultimate ping pong robot is to assess and envision. What do we mean?
By assess we mean assessing your current skill level.
Where do you fit on the spectrum between fun loving novice and tournament level ping pong pounding monster? If you miss more shots than you make, or if you are more concerned about holding your beer in one hand while playing, then you’re probably a novice.
If you can’t play a game without going into kill mode, even when your opponent is a five year old, then you’re probably approaching tournament level. If you end up winning most matches, and have started playing at local clubs, then you’re somewhere in between.
By envision we mean setting goals regarding where you’d like to be in a month, six months, or even a year.
What level do you ultimately envision reaching? If you’re just looking to not embarrass yourself at the next barbeque down at the neighbor’s house, chances are you just need a basic table tennis robot. But if you’re working hard practicing regularly at the club, but still need a challenge, then the higher end robots will serve you well.
Basic ping pong robots provide a way to practice basic moves and footwork free from intimidation at a low price point. Basic machines will usually hold up to 100 balls in a top load basket. They’ll be controlled with either a wired or wireless remote control. And the customization of the delivery, such as speed, frequency, spin will be limited.
Most basic machines are not computerized. Although most are made from a majority of plastic parts, they should last a while if the intended user is a novice.
Advanced table tennis robots offer the most variability in speed, spin, and frequency; and all these settings can be synced via computerized programming. These kinds of machines will spit out about 100 balls per minute at max speed, and they feature a recycle function so that you never need to pick up balls and refill.
In between these two ends of the spectrum are machines that offer some variability, but not so much that you feel overwhelmed by the delivery. Many of these machines offer a recycle option, but some also just have larger basket capacity. When you choose a machine, think about how often you’ll be using it, how specifically you’d like to improve, and how much money you want to spend.
Top Models on the Market
|10||iPong Mini ||9.5||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|9||iPong Original||9.4||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|8||iPong V300||9.6||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|7||HP-07||9.7||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|6||Newgy Robo Pong 540||9.1||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|5||Newgy Robo Pong 1040+||9.9||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|4||Newgy Robo Pong 2050+||9.2||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|3||Butterfly Amicus Basic||9.0||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|2||Butterfly Amicus Advance||9.4||Check Price on Amazon.com|
|1||Butterfly Amicus Professional||9.8||Check Price on Amazon.com|
Our Top Ten Ping Pong Robots for the Money
10. The iPong Mini Ping Pong Robot
If you’re looking for the basics, this machine will do it. And, we’re talking the most basic of the basics. The iPong Mini table tennis robot is a small, lightweight, plastic cylinder of sorts that may be mistaken for a flower vase due to its resemblance. Luckily, it’s see-through so the bright orange balls inside will tip you off.
At under $50, the iPong Mini will do right by any novice age 3 to 83, looking for a partner to rally with. This ping pong robot operates with just a simple flip of a switch. Within 15 seconds it will start spitting balls out at a relaxed pace and speed, about 30 balls per minute. So, a beginner can practice returning the hit without feeling overwhelmed.
There is no adjustability to this machine beyond tilting the machine, setting it up higher, or moving it closer to the net. That’s it. Like we said, this baby is strictly for beginners, if you’re not one you’ll get bored quickly. The iPong mini is very lightweight, portable, and runs on just 4 AA batteries. So it’s an easy party addition you can take with you anywhere.
9. The iPong Original Ping Pong Robot
If you connect with a casually lobbed ball more often than not, then the possibility of being bored to tears with the iPong Mini is real. Consider the iPong original if you’re still a beginner, but need a slight challenge.
The iPong Original will dispatch balls in something that resembles an underspin, topspin, and heavy topspin. We say “resembles” because although it does a good job of spinning the ball for such a moderately priced machine, the delivery will not be quite the same as an actual opponent.
Ball capacity is greatly improved with the iPong original. It can hold around 100 balls at a time, and it can spit them out at a rate ranging between 12 and 70 per minute depending on your preference. This adjustable frequency allows many players at varying levels of novice-dom to increase the challenge as they improve.
This table tennis robot comes with a wired remote control to change frequency and spin control. It does not offer variability in speed or a wide range of spin types. It also does not oscillate or contain any memory.
8. The iPong V300 Ping Pong Robot
Now we’re talking. The iPong V300, the top of its class of ping pong robots, will start to give the improving beginner a challenge. That’s because not only can you set the frequency; but hallelujah, you can adjust the topspin and backspin speed too up to nine settings. And, it oscillates. So you won’t be hitting the ball in the exact same place for one hundred iterations.
The remote control is wireless. Slip this one in your pocket and your machine won’t be flying with you next time you lunge for a wide shot.
The iPong manufacturer not only upgraded the remote control, they renovated the insides too. The motor and shooting wheels have been improved in the V300. Plus, a single memory button will save your favorite ball frequency, oscillation, and spin speed setting.
While the iPong V300 is more expensive than the iPong Original and the iPong Mini, it’s still affordable for the recreational player looking to improve their game but not go tournament level anytime soon. And, like its little cousins it’s a very lightweight machine that’s incredibly easy to assemble.
7. The HP-07 Ping Pong Robot
True, this is a lesser known manufacturer of ping pong robots, but it delivers what the iPong does, and then some. Of course you’ll deliver a little more cash as well to get it. Its design is downright ugly, but it holds as much as the iPong V300 and it offers more variability for customization thanks to its rotating head. And it’s still small and easy to install, like the iPong.
The HP-07 provides a remote with which to control four different settings: frequency, oscillation, topspin, and lower rotation. This machine is a bit faster, allowing between 40 and 70 balls per minute, so you’ll need to be good enough to keep up. But, the increased variability allows work on all types of hits with different combinations of spins.
Other settings that come with the HP-07 include 7 angle arc adjustment, 4-40 m/s ball speed, and short vs. long ball delivery. At about $100 more than the iPong V300, the increased variability will do more for improving your level of play, if you’re up for the hike in price.
6. The Newgy Robo Pong 540 Table Tennis Robot
An intermediate level player might have an easy time with all versions of the iPong and the HP-07. But, they may start noticing more of a challenge in the Newgy series of ping pong robots, beginning with the Newgy Robo Pong 540, the most basic in the Robo Pong line.
It may be the most basic, but the 540’s spins aren’t. It offers five spins to choose from. There is topspin, backspin, left sidespin, right sidespin, and combo spin available. The 540 also offers shot selections of push, chop, serve, counter, lob, and fast loop.
Its remote control is much more intuitive than the HP-07. It is corded, so best to sit it on the robo pong side of the table. On the control panel unit you can adjust frequency and speed. On the actual machine, by rotating the head, you can adjust the other settings such as spin.
What the HP-07 has that this one doesn’t is oscillation. So, keep that in mind when considering your purchase. It is also slower than the HP-07, maxing out at a top frequency of 60 balls every minute.
But, because of the increased variability in spin, and the better established Newgy name, we are ranking this machine above the HP-07.
5. The Newgy Robo Pong 1040+ Table Tennis Robot
Good news… the Newgy Robo Pong 1040+ oscillates! And, it does everything else the 540 does, and then some. The design of the Robo Pong 1040+ is the same as the 540, but it does have increased capacity thanks to an extra-extended cage that holds approximately 200 balls.
The Newgy Robo Pong 1040+ is a wonderful choice for intermediate practice levels. Yes, it can be used for a beginner, but if that beginner is young, the options on the Robo Pong 1040+ may be a bit overwhelming at first. And if the beginner isn’t serious about improvement… say they just want to be good enough not to be embarrassing, then the Robo Pong is more robot than you would need.
The analog control panel unit allows you to adjust frequency, speed, and oscillation. On the rotatable head you can adjust for top-spin, back-spin, left side-spin, right side-spin, and combo spin. Shot selections can be push, chop, serve, counter, lob, and fast loop. You can also adjust the head angle from low to high, (serves and lobs, basically).
4. The Newgy Robo Pong 2050+ Digital Table Tennis Robot
Designed for players at the upper end of the intermediate ability level, Newgy offers the Robo Pong 2050+. The 2050+ features everything its more basic versions do, plus 64 detailed pre-programmed practice rounds and randomization in delivery. Plus it features a recycling net system.
The pre-programmed practice rounds allow any player serious about improving to develop footwork, transitions, train strokes, and other focused areas of concentration. Randomization settings allow the player to work on improving reaction to unpredictable hits. A player can choose between manual control, random mode, and drill mode.
A particularly wonderful aspect of this machine, especially at its mid-range price point, is the recycling feature. Now, instead of collecting all the balls when you’ve exhausted the basket’s supply, used balls just go back into the feeder, thanks to the recycle net.
The Newgy Robo Pong 2050+ is the first in the line to offer a digital display in several languages so that custom practice rounds can be created and programmed easily.
3. The Butterfly Amicus Basic Table Tennis Robot
The Amicus gives the tournament level player all the specificity they need to practice and improve their skills. If you’re really looking to up your game to the next level of competitiveness, then take a hard look at this piece of work.
The Amicus can throw out a speedy 100 balls per minute with unique ejection due to its multiple head design. Practicing at speeds of up to 100 balls per minute means a great deal of contact with the ball. Increased contact working with a robot means more opportunity to drill down on precision and technique.
The Amicus basic will deliver any one spin type to up to six locations on the table so that you don’t get burned out or zoned into any particular type of muscle memory. The Butterfly Amicus basic is a great starter machine for any serious player who needs or wants extra practice on specific moves outside the time they already spend at their local table tennis club.
2. The Butterfly Amicus Advance Table Tennis Robot
Just about as close as you can get to a live opponent, Butterfly has gone all out in realism with its Amicus Advance. Built identically to the Amicus Basic, but with a different menu board, the Amicus Advanced features added customizability and intricacy for advanced training.
The Butterfly Amicus Advance uses Automatic Frequency Control (AFC) to adjust the interval between shots with varying speed and all spin options. With this functionality, the player cannot predict what kind of shot will come next. So, it quite literally keeps even the most advanced player off their heels.
Ten pre-programmed practice rounds come installed in the Amicus Advance. Plus, you’re able to program an additional 22 practice rounds of your own, up to six balls each. This means you can work until your heart’s content on any number of specific moves with specific spins over and over again in exactly the same way day after day.
And, with its netted ball recycle system, you can train as long as you need to without stopping to refill baskets. Like the basic, The Amicus Advance comes with a two year warranty, and its menu board is upgradable.
1.The Butterfly Amicus Professional Table Tennis Robot
The Butterfly Amicus Professional doesn’t get any more professional than this. Used by countless tournament level champions, the Amicus Professional provides the biggest programming capacity for intense, professional level training.
In most other ways the Butterfly Amicus Professional is similar to the Advance. But instead of a memory capacity for 22 practice rounds, it offers the player the ability to store 99 practice rounds up to 8 balls each. And, the speed tops out at 120 balls per minute. So if you’re a tournament level player and you need some intense training at or outside the club, the Butterfly Amicus Professional has got you covered.
A great thing about all models of the Butterfly Amicus is that it comes with a two year warranty, and it’s built by a company who’s had its shirt in the game for a very long time. Butterfly is known for quality built ping pong tables, robots, and accessories. Because of their reputation and expertise, they have served as sponsors for countless tournaments worldwide.
Final Verdict - Best Ping Pong Robot
The Newgy Robo Pong 1040+ Table Tennis Robot is our top pick because of its functionality relative to price. It’s perfect for intermediate players, but suitable for most beginners too. And, for the price, you’re provided with ample customizability. The Newgy Robo Pong allows you to play around with spin, speed, and frequency. And, if you’re new to ping pong, you can slow it down, and have it deliver the ball with no spin at all.
Most of us ping pong junkies aren’t tournament level, but we’re still not half bad either. And when we’re looking for a quality robot, we may not want to break the bank. At below $600, the Robo Pong 1040+ is best in affordability and functionality. That’s why the Newgy Robo Pong 1040+ is our top pick.