For a ping pong player, their paddle is an extremely important tool. The right paddle can be the difference between victory or defeat, especially when it comes to high-level play. Every component of the paddle contributes to the overall performance and feel when it is in your hands. You don’t want a paddle with an awkward handle, made from cheap materials.
Then, there’s the rubber of the paddle, perhaps the most important part. The rubber heavily influences how the ball behaves when you hit it and there are tons of different rubber options out there for ping pong paddles. That’s why we’ve compiled and reviewed the best ones so that you can pick the best rubber for your paddle and playstyle! All of these paddle rubbers can be conveniently found on Amazon. Also, all of these paddle rubbers are International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) approved.
In a hurry? Here’s the test winner after 17 hours of research:
10 Best Ping Pong Rubbers Reviewed in 2021 – Overview
Here are the top 5 picks (keep scrolling for more details and picks 6-10).
1. Butterfly Tenergy 05
- The first in the Tenergy line, with both Spring Sponge and High Tension technologies
This list starts off strong with the Tenergy 05 by Butterfly, a reputable Japanese brand that’s well-known for its top-quality ping pong products.
The Tenergy 05 is no different from their other ping pong accessories and is considered one of the best rubbers that money and is favored by world-class ping pong players. It is made with revolutionary spring sponge technology that allows you to easily put a lot more speed and spin on your ball. No other brand has been able to match this technology.
Additionally, it is made with high tension technology. What this means is that the rubber topsheet will not deform as the tension is retained throughout the entirety of the rubber. This technology will ensure all the energy from your swing will be transferred into the ball and not lost due to striking a deformed spot on the rubber.
While this rubber may seem intimidating, as world-class professionals use it, it is actually quite an accessible ping pong rubber and can be used by amateur and advanced players of many different playing styles. Overall, it is an all-round rubber that can be used on forehand or backhand swings that gives a lot of control over your ball.
- Extremely high-quality
- Well-rounded and allows for excellent speed and spin
- Made with high tension and spring sponge technology
This table tennis rubber is one of the most used in the world. It was first introduced to the world in the 1971 World Championships for ping pong and has since been a staple for both amateur and professional players alike.
This rubber comes in a variety of thicknesses allowing for a lot of customizability. A thinner rubber is great for less experienced players and will give you more control over the ball, while a thicker rubber will give you that extra power. However, it will come at the cost of control and thus should be used by more serious players
This rubber also provides a strong balance between spin and speed due to the blend of natural and synthetic materials within it. This is an excellent rubber to use for offensive play and is a great starting point for those looking to make a custom paddle.
The Yasaka Mark V is also renowned for its durability and can provide many hours of play before becoming too damaged.
- Excellent durability
- Comes in a variety of thicknesses
- Perfect for players of all skill levels
- Only comes with one side
3. DHS NEO Hurricane 3
This rubber by the DHS brand is an excellent choice for a relatively low price. It is a Chinese-made piece and is an excellent piece for those looking for a rubber that gives the ball a lot of speed. This particular rubber is made with a combination of the NEO sponge and Hurricane 3 rubber sheet, making it have certain jelly-like properties.
With such an interesting combination, this paddle rubber will give your balls a stable and high-speed arc with every volley. For those wondering how well this rubber can control the spin of the ball, this rubber is made with its pimples on the inside. This means that you’ll have good control over the ball and its spin.
With all of these factors, the NEO Hurricane 3 is an excellent choice for players who are looking for a rubber that will allow them to stay on the attack and keep the pressure on their opponents with a lot of speed and spin. The lack of control may not be the best choice for inexperienced players.
- A perfect pick for offensive players
- The combination of NEO and Hurricane 3 components create a uniquely designed rubber
- Pimples inside the rubber allow for better control over the ball
- Not the best choice for new players
- Butterfly's most successful rubber since its introduction in 1967
Next up is another rubber that is made by the Butterfly brand and this time it is one that is designed for offensive, all-around players. This particular rubber is Butterfly’s most successful one. It has been a big hit since its debut in 1967 and has seen use in over 20 World Championships, with 70 European Championship titles being claimed by users of this rubber.
The surface of this rubber is hard and tacky, allowing you to generate more spin each time your paddle comes in contact with the ball. Additionally, the hard sponge is flexible and allows you to generate more power and speed when the ball bounces off the paddle, excellent for backspins. This rubber also comes with a lot of different thickness options to cater to different playstyles.
- Wide variety of thicknesses
- Hard sponge for extra power behind shots
- A world-renowned rubber
- May be harder to control for less-experienced players
- RAKZA 7 is the newly developed rubber by YASAKA, using mainly natural rubber gum for the top sheet.
For the next spot on our list, we have another rubber by Yasaka. The Rakza 7 is a newly developed rubber that uses a special natural rubber gum for its top sheet. This new technology for a rubber allows it to grip the ball better and thus drastically increasing the amount of spin on the ball. Not to mention that the increased grip allows for better accuracy of your shots.
Additionally, the top sheet has been reinforced with a new “power sponge.” This makes any paddle that has this rubber on it a force to be reckoned with as responding to serves will be easy with how much power you’ll be able to generate with this rubber.
This rubber only comes in thicker sizes, meaning that it is meant for powerful shots. This does mean that newer players may have some trouble controlling the ball.
- Natural rubber gum gives the top sheet more grip
- Reinforced power sponge
- Excellent at generating powerful shots
- Inexperienced players may have trouble with this rubber
- Tenergy 80 is the ideal balance between spin and speed, utilizing both High Tension and Spring Sponge technologies
Once more, we see another Butterfly brand rubber. This is unsurprising as the brand makes a lot of different types of rubbers for all sorts of playstyles and skill levels. This particular rubber has been made for players that are looking for the perfect balance of spin and speed. It is made with a mix of high tension and spring sponge technologies, features that have been seen in other rubbers of this brand earlier in the list.
This rubber also allows the ball to proceed at a lower throw angle when you strike it. The pimples of the rubber are inverted, allowing you to stay in control of the ball, even with the extra speed and spin you’ll be producing. In terms of playstyle, this rubber is definitely made for those who are looking for something based around topspin play. It allows you to easily stay on the attack and make the ball as spinny as you’d like.
- The perfect balance of speed and spin
- Inverted pimples give better control over the ball
- High tension top sheet and spring sponge technologies
- This version confers the highest dynamic and thus makes MX-P the fastest rubber of the EVOLUTION rubber family. Thanks to the perfect adjustment of the pimple geometry we managed to produce a rubber...
This ping pong rubber is a thing of beauty. It is the fastest rubber out of the Evolution family of rubbers made by Tibhar due to a perfect adjustment of pimple geometry. When we say this is a fast rubber, we really mean it. The only thing that it can compare to on this list is the Butterfly Tenergy. With this rubber, you’ll be putting tons of power and spin into every shot that you make.
However, this is a paddle rubber that won’t be too overwhelming to use. Thanks to the technology presented within the rubber, it can adapt very well to almost anyone’s playstyle. You should seriously consider this paddle rubber if you’re looking for something that will give you a lot of speed, like the Butterfly Tenergy, but don’t have the budget for the more expensive options. You’re still getting a very solid option that is well worth the money.
- A very fast paddle rubber
- Adjusted pimple geometry allows for flexible strikes
- Less durable than other high-end options
- Rozena employs the rose-dyed Spring Sponge technology as its name suggests, as well as High Tension technology
Once more, we see another premium rubber by Buttefly on this list. This time, in the form of the Rozena, a rubber is designed to create a sense of stability within its user. This rubber features spring sponge and high tension technology like the other rubbers by Butterfly. What’s special about this rubber is that it is built to help compensate for subtle racket angles and directional swing errors.
With this in mind, it would be an excellent choice for beginners who need a little extra edge to make up for their mistakes. This rubber is also very fast. It is just as fast as the Tenergy 05 mentioned earlier in the list. However, do not let that intimidate or discourage you, this paddle rubber is much more forgiving than the Tenergy, even with the immense speed.
This rubber also has plenty of spin, more so than some of Butterfly’s rubbers that are designed with high spin in mind. Like most of the other rubbers on this list, it comes in with inverted pimples on the top sheet.
- Designed to compensate for directional swing errors and subtle racket angles
- High speed and spin but more forgiving than other paddles
- Excellent for beginners
- Only comes in thicker sizes
Next on the list is this rubber made by Xiom. This is a fairly unique paddle rubber that has intermediate players in mind, rather than professionals or beginners. For starters, it is a very durable rubber for an affordable price. It will likely outlast most of the other rubbers that are on this list, even the more high-end ones. It can stand up to the most intense competitions or the longest of training sessions. Besides being incredibly durable, this rubber also comes with a special black carbo-sponge beneath the top sheet.
The resilient tensile structure of the sponge is what helps with not just the durability but also maximizes the dynamic energy of the rubber to generate extra power behind every swing. It is perfect for players who consider themselves excellent loopers. With this rubber, you’ll be able to crush the ball on the forehand and really take the upper hand when you and your opponent are volleying back and forth.
- Extremely durable
- Black carbo-sponge gives the rubber extra power
- Excellente for intermediate players
- Not as much speed as other rubbers
- The newest Butterfly sponge and rubber technology, resulting in superior performance and feel
Ending this list we have the most expensive rubber that is available right now. As you can obviously see by the title, it should not surprise that this rubber comes from the Butterfly brand. But what makes this paddle so much better than the other rubbers from the brand’s already impressive lineup?
This particular rubber uses only the newest sponge and rubber technology available to Butterfly and its performance reflects that. It forms a perfect balance between tackiness and elasticity. You will experience superior performance and feel like a professional from the moment you glue this rubber to your paddle blade.
Statistically speaking, balls that come into contact with this rubber experience 22% more arc and 3.4% more power than the next best rubber by Butterfly, the Tenergy 05. Additionally, the balls will have increased dwell time compared to the Tenergy 05 due to the spring sponge technology and improved rubber composition.
- The newest sponge and rubber technology makes this a durable product
- Better than even the Tenergy 05
- The most superior performance from a ping pong rubber
- Very expensive for a ping pong rubber
When it comes to the best table tennis rubber, the clear winner is the Butterfly Tenergy 05. The reason that this rubber beats out all of its competitors is for a few reasons. For starters, it is an excellent all-around paddle in terms of performance. Because of this, the paddle is extremely accessible and can be used by almost all table tennis players.
You will be able to easily generate power and spin with this paddle as it is made with a spring sponge and high tension technology. Having this rubber on your paddle will easily have you looping your opponent.
Overall, it really is just an excellent paddle rubber. Though it is rather expensive, you should absolutely see about getting it. Your game will likely improve immensely and if you’re going to make your own custom paddle, you should only look for the best components to ensure durability and consistent gameplay.
Ping Pong Rubber FAQ
1. “What are ping pong rubbers even for?”
The ping pong rubber is the black or red surface that is glued on either side of your table tennis blade. This is what you’ll be bouncing the ball off of as you volley back and forth with your opponent so it is a very integral part of your paddle.
Additionally, the ping pong rubber is crucial to controlling the spin and speed of a ping pong ball. Depending on how thick the rubber is, it will determine how much force can be absorbed to slow down the ball.
2. “What are the different parts of a rubber?”
A ping pong rubber consists of three parts: the rubber top sheet, the pimples, and the sponge.
The rubber top sheet is the first layer, this is where balls will bounce off of as you play. It will usually be black or red in color.
The pimples are directly under the top sheet and they are responsible for reducing the amount of surface area that the ball comes in contact with, should the pimples be facing outward. Many paddles will have their pimple facing inward, especially on paddles and rubbers meant for competitions.
Beneath the pimples lies the sponge. The sponge is probably the most important part of the rubber as it is responsible for giving the returning ball its speed. Specifically, the speed of the ball is determined by how thick or thin the sponge layer is.
The thicker a sponge layer is, the more speed you will have when hitting the ball. However, you will be sacrificing control for the extra speed. This is why rubbers with a thin sponge layer are recommended for beginner players.
Also, the hardness of the sponge can generate extra power. A hard sponge will give the ball more speed, while a soft sponge will help to slow down the ball.