There are a lot of very good quality 3-star competition table tennis balls available to buy.
But which is the best ball?
Here is my top 10 list.
There is no scientific testing behind this list. It is entirely subjective, based upon my personal experience of using these balls and feedback from other players at my club. So whilst there is no science behind this list, it is based upon hours and hours and hours of play.
I start the list with my top three balls (in order), followed by the remaining seven balls (in no particular order).
Which balls should you buy? Well the top three are my personal favourite, so you should start with these. But honestly, all of the balls on the list are good quality. You could buy a few different brands, try them out and then make your own decision.
You may also want to look at my list of popular table tennis balls purchased by readers of this website.
On with my list…
Nittaku Premium 40+
For me, the Nittaku Premium 40+ is the best table tennis ball available. When it first became available in 2014/2015 it was by far the best of the new 40+ plastic/poly balls.
It has very good durability, roundness, and consistency. For those of us who were used to the old celluloid balls, the Nittaku Premium 40+ really didn’t seem that different.
I have been using this ball since 2016 and I really can’t recall many occasions when the ball has cracked. The balls really do seem to last a long time.
The other thing I really like about the ball is the consistency of the trajectory and bounce. The ball behaves in a way you would expect, which allows you to concentrate on the game / your strokes. It’s always a pleasure to play with this ball.
It has been used in many major tournaments around the world, including the 2017 World Table Tennis Championships.
Xushaofa 40+ 3-star
The XuShaoFa 40+ 3-star is a seamless ball, which means it is created as a single unit, not by fusing parts together. In theory, this means the ball should have perfect roundness and be less prone to cracking.
And in reality, it pretty much lives up to this! It is a very reliable ball from my experience. Again I really can’t recall too many breakages.
The main difference between this ball and the Nittaku Premium 40+ is that it feels a little harder and has a slightly higher bounce. So it’s probably better suited to attacking play, but it doesn’t take much time to adjust to how the ball bounces.
Double Fish V40+
You may not have heard about or seen this ball yet. It’s quite new and only been available to buy for a few months.
This ball was used for the 2018 Team World Cup in London. I managed to get a few of the balls and I have been impressed.
It’s a really good ball, similar to Nittaku Premium 40+. Good durability (so far) and consistency. If anything, the surface seems to be a little rougher than the Nittaku ball and maybe a tiny bit less spinny, but there really isn’t much difference.
I expect this ball will become more popular over the next year.
7 other good balls to consider
Stiga Perform 40+ (buy in UK)
Tibhar 40+ SL (buy in UK)
I have provided links above to where you can buy balls (mainly Amazon), but you can also buy table tennis balls from any dedicated table tennis shop. Take a look at my list of table tennis shops to find a shop near you…
Author: Tom Lodziak | Article updated: 03 April 2018
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