Billiards is a game that makes people happy. I think it is very difficult to easily find the best pool cues in the world. Because for every player, the best pool cue is the most suitable cue. Especially when you are a beginner, it will be very difficult to pick the best pool cue.
Nowadays, there are many billiard brands, and it is difficult for players to choose a good cue. As a player who wants to play a good game or to improve his skills, a good pool cue is very important. The quality of the players playing billiards depends largely on the quality of the pool stick. The performance of the pool cue depends largely on your shaft.
We discussed some differences between snooker cues and pool cues before. To put it simply, snooker’s cue has a thin taper and a small tip, which is suitable for snooker’s smaller cue ball and higher accuracy. A pool cue has a thicker taper and a larger tip. The cue is usually made of maple wood and weighs 19 ounces (generally weigh 17 to 22 ounces). Many cues consist of butt and shaft, and they are connected by a joint.
I want to recommend 10 very popular pool cue brands, so they may be the best pool cues. You can find the best pool cue under 100 dollars and the best pool cues under 200 dollars.
What are the best pool cues brands?
|Viking Valhalla 2 Piece Pool Cue Stick||Viking||See On Amazon|
|AB Earth 2-Piece 58 Inches Pool Cue||Scorpion||See On Amazon|
|CUESOUL SOOCOO Series 58" 19oz Maple Pool Cue||Cuesoul||See On Amazon|
|Viper Revolution Spider 58" 2-Piece Billiard/Pool Cue||Viper||See On Amazon|
|Trademark Gameroom University of Kentucky Cue Rack with Mirror||Trademark||See On Amazon|
|Set of 4 Valley House Bar Pool Cue Sticks||Valley House||See On Amazon|
|Players Technology Series HXT15 Two-Piece Pool Cue||Players||See On Amazon|
|Lucasi Cue - LZSP2||Lucasi||See On Amazon|
|Predator 314 3rd Generation Uni-Loc Thin Black Collar Shaft||Predator||See On Amazon|
|Meucci M12 18oz - 21oz||Meucci||See On Amazon|
As ordinary players, the pool cue we use may not perfectly fit ourselves. The well-known pool cue used by Ron Dooley and Alex Pagulaya is excellent in performance and quality.
If you don’t know how to buy the best pool cues, then I recommend that you refer to other players’ choices. The following table is an evaluation of the top-selling pool cues on Amazon in 2020 (Top Rated Pool Cues on Amazon 2020, #CommissionsEarned), I hope to help you:
|Billiard Cue Stick||See On Amazon|
|Set of 4 Pool Cues New 58" Billiard House Bar Pool Cue Sticks||See On Amazon|
|AB Earth Hand-Painted Series 2-Piece Billiard Pool Cue Stick with Irish Linen Wrap||See On Amazon|
|Viper Commercial/House 1-Piece Canadian Maple Billiard/Pool Cue||See On Amazon|
|Viking Valhalla 2 Piece Pool Cue Stick||See On Amazon|
|Viking Valhalla 2 Piece Pool Cue Stick with Irish Linen Wrap||See On Amazon|
|Viking Valhalla 200 Series Pool Cue 58" Billiards Stick Pick Your Design||See On Amazon|
I think you don’t want to suffer financial loss and time loss due to the purchase of inappropriate pool cues. Therefore, you need to check all the points that need attention before buying the best pool sticks. It is the best pool cue on a budget.
Below I list the aspects that buyers need to consider before buying the best pool cue sticks. This will help you buy the best pool cue.
Most of the billiard cue performance comes from the shaft, and the first six inches are the most important. The first six inches have a diameter of 9.5-10mm.
The ferrule and tip –
Ferrule-ferrule is a small white piece located below the tip. The ferrule can protect the taper. This is also the thinnest part.
The other function is to facilitate the installation of the tip. The traditional American ferrule is milky white, while black is more popular in Canada. Generally, the length of the ferrule is about 0.5 inches to 1.25 inches.
The material of ferrule –
The types of ferrule materials include antler, ivory, reinforced plastic, synthetic resin, synthetic fiber, melamine, etc. Considering the cost, most of the low-cost ferrules such as synthetic fibers or resins often appear in mass-produced cues.
As for other high-cost materials such as ivory, you can often see them on high-priced custom cues. Ferrules made of ivory are the least likely to be stained with cue chalk, but they are also the most likely to crack and break.
Besides, due to the high water content of ivory, there will be thermal expansion and contraction (the same is true for the ivory joint).
Some cue manufacturers will install a thin black fiber pad between the cue tip and the ivory ferrule to protect the ivory ferrule. Many hand-made cue stick masters insist on using ivory ferrule as their standard equipment.
The style of ferrule –
Ferrules are available in both capped and capless types. Those who can’t see the shaft wood are the cap type. On the contrary, it is the capless type.
Most cue manufacturers believe that sticking the tip directly to the capless ferrule, direct contact of the tip with the shaft will increase the shot strength and feel. As for the capped ferrule, its advantages and disadvantages have been debated for a long time in the industry.
Some people think that the wood of the shaft (the wood inside the ferrule) will expand or shrink due to changes in climate temperature and humidity, which may affect the power transmission between the wood shaft and the tip.
And those who like to use ivory ferrule believe that the capped ferrule can prevent the ivory ferrule from cracking and breaking.
A tip is a small part where the pool cue directly contacts your cue ball. The size of the cue tip is 11-14 mm. I recommend beginners to use sizes between 12 and 13 mm. The type of tip you choose depends on how you feel when you hit the cue ball.
The tip is mostly made of leather. According to the density of leather, it is generally divided into three levels: S (Soft), M (Medium), H (Hard), and so on. Some manufacturers classify the grades finely, such as MH (Medium Hard) with tip density between M and H or 2H, 3H, etc.
We need to repair the swollen part of the soft tip and re-grind the flattened tip soon after playing. The soft tip is not long-lived, and the player need to replace it with a new.
However, soft tips also have advantages. The soft tip hits the cue ball for a longer time (compared to the hard tip), which can enhance the rotation of the cue ball. The greater rotation of the cue ball controls the range of movement.
But one thing to note is that when doing strong strikes, the soft tip will be more prone to dents.
Hard tips don’t, and you don’t need to replace the tips often (it’s normal for a hard tip to keep excellent half a year to a year), but hard tips are uneasy to chalk. After hitting the cue ball, the rotation speed of the cue ball is not as good as when you use a soft tip.
In general, the softer tip can increase the feeling of hitting the cue ball, while we can use the harder tip for a longer time and maintain the shape well.
Suggestion on cue tip of your best pool cues
It is worth mentioning that most professional billiard players use hard tips. General players prefer to use MH ~ H pool tips. The reason is that the tip is not easily deformed and can maintain the consistency of the contact angle with the cue ball.
The diameter of the tip is 11mm to 14mm. I prefer a 13mm tip. Some players use small pool cue tips intentionally. The reason is that they believe that reducing the contact area will increase the accuracy of hitting the cue ball.
The tip on the cue is considered to be one of the most important factors when making a cue stick.
From a batting point of view, the good tip is better than expensive custom-made cues carved with ivory, rare jewelry, and complicated patterns.
This is because many customers have no need for custom-made cues. This blog is on the best pool cues for beginners and advanced players.
For the best pool cues, ferrule and tip width are important measures. Ferrule and tip width are the most basic items you need to check when buying the best pool cue.
The shaft affect the best pool cues –
We call the first 12 inches of the billiard cue as shaft. The best pool cue stick consists of three parts – ferrule, shaft, and tip. The shaft of the cue is composed of a tip, ferrule, and wood.
In general, the head of a maple stick is softer than that of an oak stick. The denser the general decorative patterns, the harder the pool cue. The quality of the cue shaft determines the hitting ability and quality of a cue stick.
Many factors affect the shaft performance.
For example the hardness of the tip, the material of the ferrule, the origin of the wood itself, the density of the wood, the hardness of the cue, the toughness of the cue wood, the weight of the cue, the manufacturing process of the shaft, the thickness of the shaft, shaft width (click here to understand the processing of the shaft) and so on.
The pool cue tip needs to be fixed on the shaft, and the ferrule must be close to the tip.
The following figure is a schematic diagram of the cue stick, we can see where the cue shaft is.
All the accessories are glued to the stick. If you see the glue on any part of the cue, it means that this is not a good tip. In the best pool cues, no glue can be seen, which is what makes ordinary cues excellent.
The tip also needs to be perfectly connected to the cue ferrule to ensure that the cue has a good smoothness.
You also need to check the shape of the tip. The tip of a perfect pool cue should have a dome shape. If you see all these things in perfect condition, then you can call them the best pool cues.
Finally, I want to talk about the method of determining whether the ferrule is tightly connected to the shaft and the tip.
If you can see there is a gap in the joint part, or there is glue overflow, and the ferrule is not tight enough with the shaft … etc. It is not a good pool cue.
Generally speaking, three reasons affect the performance of front interception: Spin, Deflection, and Squirt.
Spin (cue ball spin) –
The rotation strength of the cue ball is considered to be related to the hardness of the shaft. When using skills like backspin, the cue ball will spin.
How much spin is generated when the cue ball is hit? It depends on the degree of bending of the shaft after hitting the cue ball. Sometimes the greater rotation, the more deflection when the cue ball moves.
A taper is also an important factor in determining the cue ball rotation value. Generally speaking, the long acceleration shaft will make the cue ball rotate less. The greater rotation, the more deflection when the cue ball moves.
The dense and heavy shaft will provide more rotation value and less deflection. Therefore, players can make full use of the shaft wood and taper to show their pool skills.
Deflection (bending deflection as the cue ball moves) –
When the shaft hits the cue ball, the shaft must be bent (the cue is instantly arched). This is also considered by many players to cause the cue ball to deviate from the original course when playing backspin.
Another important factor that affects this phenomenon is the player’s stroke habits. The stroke style, aiming, strike speed, strength, the distance between the cue ball and the target ball, etc. The intensity of cue ball rotation is also an important factor.
Squirt (the moment the cue ball shifts when players put backspin on the ball) –
The phenomenon of instantaneous deviation when hitting backspin is called squirt.
According to Robert Byrne’s Byrne ‘s Standard Book of Pool and Billiards and Byrne ‘s Advanced Technique in Pool and Billiards, two very popular books on fancy billiards. It mentions about squirt: when using backspin, the cue ball moves away from the original aiming path.
When players strike the right, the cue ball will momentarily deviate to the left, and vice versa to the right. So, you should correct the aiming point when play billiards.
Another factor that affects the squirt is the taper.
Taper refers to the magnitude of shaft change. That is the diameter gradually widens from the cue tip to the butt. Generally speaking, there are only two types: Billiard Taper and Pro Taper.
Pro Taper now accounts for the majority of the market. The Pro Taper, diameter will not gradually increase until down the cue shaft eight to fourteen inches (usually 8 inches).
Only a few people know Pro Taper can be divided into short acceleration type (the diameter will increase after about 6 ~ 8 inches) and long acceleration type (the diameter will increase after about 10 ~ 14 inches).
To maintain a uniform striking strength at the front end, most cues are designed with smaller taper.
Butt of the best pool cues –
Butt attracts the most attention from others. The shaft determines the overall performance of the cue, but the butt determines the style of the pool stick. Of course, the butt also has an impact on the performance of the stick.
The butt contains forewrap (forearm), wrap (grip), and afterwrap. The part from warp to bumper is called afterwrap (sleeve, butt cap, and bumper). The bottom bumper keeps the butt cap away from damage.
Although the pool tip and shaft determine the performance of your cue stick, the cue butt is still an important part for you.
If you are a beginner or sweat easily, the wrap may help. The wrap is a butt accessory for the cue, which prevents the cue from slipping out of your hand. Of course, some sticks have no wraps.
Generally, the material of wrap is nylon, Irish linen, leather, or similar cork. But among these materials, only Irish linen is recognized as the best wrap material.
Irish linen wrap will provide a smooth feel without any interference. Of course, if you sweat a lot, you can also choose a leather wrap. Pool cue with leather wrap must be smooth.
We need to fix the wrap of the best pool cues smoothly and neatly on the pool cues butt. The best thing about Irish linen wrap is that your wrap can be very firmly attached to the cue.
If you buy a pool stick with rubber wrap, then you need to check whether the wrap is greasy. Because greasy wraps will be slippery, this is not good.
The length of the wrap is generally fixed. However, there are exceptions. For example, cue master Thomas Wayne once deliberately shorten the length of his cue grip (wrap) part to increase the space of the forearm. This makes players get the unusual performance of the cue stick.
Quality of the best pool cues –
Another need to consider before buying the best pool cue is its quality.
The quality of the pool stick is related to the type and the birthplace of cue wood. Normally, pool cues are made of maple, and snooker cues are made of ash.
The quality of the maple is the key to the shaft. Generally speaking, the softer shaft will have more flexibility. Of course, sometimes pool cue is plastic or metallic. However, it is important to note that high-quality pool cues will not be painted.
The cue sticks are usually spliced by hand or machine, so you also need to check the joint. You can check the smoothness by simply rubbing the joint.
When you are willing to buy a pool cue, be sure to check the quality. On high-quality pool cues, you will not see any glue or stains.
You can check the smoothness by simply rubbing the cue stick. Then you can make sure it is a good cue. If you feel bad on the cue stick, the quality of the cue is not good.
For the cue wood, some friends think that maple is elastic and has better performance than ash. Ash has good toughness, stability, and is not easily deformed. However, maple is more elastic than ash in some ways.
The weather is important for maple cue. The performance of maple cues will fluctuate in different temperatures and humidity. This is bad for the player’s billiard game. Therefore, you may need a pool cue case.
Straightness is another major factor you need to consider before buying the best pool cue. A curved pool cue will affect your level. This may make you lose every game.
You want to buy a straight billiard cue. Now you buy a new pool cue, it comes straight. But the cue will bend over your use.
You can take some measures to prevent the pool cue from bending. Keep your cue away from high temperatures and humidity. This is not to say that you should put it in the refrigerator. Normal temperature is the best choice. Don’t rely it on the wall. Putting it in the pool cue case may be a better choice.
It is easy to check whether the stick is straight. You just need to hold the back end and look down. You will immediately see if the stick is bent. When checking the straightness of the stick, you need to hold back end in hand. After holding it like a shotgun, you need to close one eye. Then you can observe the straightness of the stick.
The straightness of a new cue depends on the good finishing of the cue at the manufacture. Never buy such cues.
Size of your best pool cues –
Standard pool cue sizes are usually between 57 and 61 inches. Most billiard cue height is 59 inches. Choose the right cue based on your height, arm length, and cue weight preference. I prefer universal 57-inch because I can choose the holding position.
Due to the appropriate weight and body type, the short cue may be a good choice for children and women who are just beginning to play the billiard game. You can also choose a short cue, which is ideal for small rooms.
If you choose a short one, you may need a cue rack. For a long cue stick, sometimes the stability of the stroke cannot be improved. The long cue can even reduce stability.
However, ordinary brands don’t provide cues with special specifications. You may need a custom cue, but custom cues are expensive. I think the above pool cues are the best pool cues for beginners and average players, even advanced players.
Pool cues are usually between 18 and 21 ounces. There are no strict rules because what suits you is the best cue stick. There is only one criterion for measuring whether the weight of the cue is right, and that is when you pick up the cue and want to play billiard games.
According to data from the International Billiards Association, the weight of a beginner pool cue should be 18 ounces. But if you are purchasing a pool cue for the first time, I recommend using a 19-ounce cue. This is common to most players.
However, it depends on personal preference. For example, women and children prefer lighter cue sticks.
The weight of the cue does increase the feeling of hitting. But the strength of the rotation depends more on the aiming, the integrity of the force, and the penetration force.
Overweight cues are sometimes difficult to control and can affect the stability of your stroke. If you want to hit the cue ball slightly, an overweight cue may make you troubled.
When the force is applied, an overweight cue will affect the stability of your hand. Therefore, the pool cue is too heavy, you may suffer miss cue. So I generally choose a lighter cue.
You need to check the weight of the pool cue at the time of purchase. I recommend a lighter cue. The light pool cues are also easy to control.