Pool tables are great. From getting in practice to playing pool with your friends any time you want, there’s really no limit to the possibilities. If you’re thinking about buying a pool table, you’re likely also concerned about buying the right one. So many factors can influence what kind of pool table you might want to buy- from aesthetic considerations to quality of materials, all the way to what might be included in your pool table’s package. It really can get daunting.
I have done all the leg work and brought you the 5 best pool tables that are perfect for home use!
By best, i mean the best, all slate tables that play as a pro would expect.
- Buying the Best Pool Table
- Buyer's guide and key features to pick the best pool table
- FAQs: Best Pool Tables for Home Use
- All in All
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Buying the Best Pool Table
You may be wondering: is it really even worth it to buy a pool table? They are, after all, expensive as all get out. Could it be that you’re better off just going to the pool hall to get your practice in? Well, we’re here to say, if you want to get better at pool, having your own table is the only way.
In this article, we’ll look at five best pool tables you can buy and talk about who they might be best for, what kinds of living rooms they would look best in, as well as what kinds of accessories come with them. By the time you’re finished reading it, you should have all the information you need to make an educated purchase. A pool table is a big investment, so make sure to thoroughly consider your options and think about how a new pool table will affect the space you want to put it in.
So, without further ado, let’s look at five pool tables that will make for a truly excellent investment. We’ll include some details about their construction but will mostly stick to the aesthetics since we’ve chosen not to consider pool tables made from poor or cheap materials. Let’s jump right into it with number one- the Brunswick classic.
You may be interested in some accessories
If you are going all out and getting a fantastic table for you home then you may be interested in some of these items that are commonly bought with these tables.
The Brunswick Classic
The Brunswick Classic is an 8-foot pool table with a classic, pool-hall design that will really pop. If you’re looking for something that will remind you of the smoky bars of your grandfather’s day, this table is a must-have.
Keep in mind, if the space you’re looking to put your table in is more casual, it may look out of place. You’ll want to surround this pool table with nice-looking furniture, tables, maybe even a few bottles of whiskey or wine.
This table has a 1-inch thick slate base- the standard for tables featured in this article- and comes with everything you need to play the game of pool- from the cues all the way down to the balls.
With this setup, you’ll be able to get to practicing pretty much as soon as you buy it. The leather braided pockets give for an awesome classic look that will really lend to the atmosphere. Meanwhile-, the beautifully finished wood will stay shiny and beautiful for a long time after purchase. This table is sturdy and durable- and investment that’s sure to last.
If you’re not looking for something a little more classic-vintage, you probably won’t like this table. It brings a lot to the, well, table, but if you’re a modern person with a modern-looking space, you’d be smart to look elsewhere. This table is for people who want that good old bar-room feeling right in their living rooms.
What’s more, this table comes with a wide variety of options when it comes to felt-color. The choices you have are Green, Regatta Blue, Merlot, and Sahara. Doesn’t seem like much, but it’s actually a lot for a more classic-looking table like this. We recommend merlot, merely because it brings out the classiness of the table in a way that blue just can’t do. Sahara, however, might also be a good choice because of its uniqueness.
- 1-inch thick slate
- Sturdy legs
- Finished wood.
- Carved edges.
- May be a little too vintage for some.
- Has the tendency to show-up the room.
The Brunswick Black Wolf
The Brunswick Black Wolf is a great table for people who loved the feel of retro 1980s rec rooms and bars. It’s got a sleek, modern look which lends value to the surrounding area. It looks casual enough to go in almost any space and plays to the needs of any kind of pool player. With this table, you’ll be having a great time playing any time of day or night. Not to mention, you’ll look stylish doing it.
That’s not to say the look of this table is good for everyone. Some people may be put off by what they consider to be a ‘low-quality’ look. Rest assured, this is a quality, sturdy table. Still, the sleek, black body reminds some people of the look of a cheap plastic table, which might not fly for people looking to build up a regal-looking rec room.
This table comes outfitted with a 1-inch slate and a full play set so you can start practicing right away. Not to mention, Brunswick tables come with a lifetime warranty. Now, we’re no expert on how you feel, but we know that when we’ve got a lifetime warranty on our tables, we feel a whole lot safer.
If you’re looking for a casual table that will fit in most any rec room, you’re looking for the Black Wolf. It may be too casual for a more affluent-looking space- but don’t let its looks fool you. It’s sturdy, long-lasting, and will make for a beautiful, long-lasting addition to any room, no matter how posh.
To make matters even better, Brunswick offers delivery and installation. Presumably, they know their customers don’t want to go fiddling around with their brand-new, expensive tables. That’s why they offer a professional team of installers who can get your table up and ready-to-use in a matter of hours. And, if you aren’t satisfied with what you find sitting in your rec room when all’s said and done, you can even get a full refund!
- Sleek, retro style.
- Lifetime warranty.
- Refunds offered.
- Maybe a little too casual for some spaces.
- Sleek black body may look low-quality to some.
Playcraft Brazos River
This table takes advantage of every possible edge it can get to deliver the smoothest play possible. If you’re looking for a thoroughly modern table to complement the style of a modern home, this is the table for you. Not to mention, the cross-bar leg style makes it an incredibly sturdy product that will hold up over years of sitting, laying, and leaning while playing. Never fear for this product- it’ll go the distance.
The Playcraft Brazos has a micro-honed one-inch slate, designed to fit your table perfectly. The naked eye won’t be able to perceive any imperfections in this playing surface. With the power of high-tech fitting practices on your side, you’ll be able to practice in perfect conditions and really hone your talents.
This table’s both modern and old-fashioned. The cross-bar legs harken back to barn-style and medieval dinner tables and deliver a really powerful advantage in terms of longevity. With this sturdy design, you won’t ever have to worry about your table falling down or collapsing.
The only downside to this table would be installation. No special installation methods are listed on the Amazon site- the only information is that professional installation is required. So you might have to hire your own team of installers.
- Durable construction.
- Modern look.
- High-tech manufacturing.
- No playing set included.
The Mizerak Donovan II
The Mizerak Donovan II is really the last word in quality construction. True, you don’t get the cross-bar sturdiness you got out of the Playcraft, but the solid construction on this table is nothing to scoff at. Trust us, you won’t have to worry about longevity with a table like this. The Mizerak Donovan will be accompanying you throughout your whole pool-playing career, guiding you through various skill-levels and helping you climb the ladder at your local pool hall.
The Mizerak is 8 feet long- standard for most American pool tables. For those who just can’t stand an uneven surface, it comes outfitted with chrome, disk-style levelers. This means you won’t ever have to suffer an uneven playing top.
The 1-inch standard slate is sure to last you a lifetime. Plus, it comes in 3 pieces to allow for optimum ease-of-construction. Smooth-shots. Level surface. Sturdy construction- what’s not to love?
The biggest con with this model goes back to its style. Just like with our second choice, some people might look down on it for its more blocky style. It’s casual and looks great, but some people want something more affluent and refined-looking.
- Sturdy construction.
- Casual style.
- Long-lasting structure.
- Too casual for some spaces.
- Heavy slate for construction.
The Empire USA
We’re capping our list off with a truly casual, easy-going table that will fit in almost any room. Unless you’ve dressed your space up with hardwood floors, varnished wood bookcases, and crystal bourbon bottles, the Empire USA will find a place there. Don’t let the table’s illustrious name fool you. It’s great for average joes who just want a place to play in private and with their friends.
The one-inch framed slate delivers a professional playing experience, so you can practice all the shots you’ve been afraid to make at the pool hall. Not to mention, the Champion felt surface comes with an astounding 18-color array of choices! This means you can customize your table to fit your space no matter what the style.
The Empire is another one of those tables that comes outfitted with a playing set- although, what’s in it? We’re not so sure. The Amazon site doesn’t go into specifics.
So, if you want something easy-going and causal to pass the hours on with a few bank-shots, the Empire is your go-to table.
- Casual style.
- Flat, level playing surface.
- Huge color selection.
- Basic style.
Buyer’s guide and key features to pick the best pool table
When buying a pool table, there are any number of factors you should be considering. First and foremost is sturdiness. Buying a pool table that will go the distance will put you at an advantage because you won’t have to be constantly calling for repairs.
Consider slate size. If the slate size on your table is any less than one inch, it’s a no-go. The status of your table’s slate will also affect how smoothly your construction phase goes over. The quicker your construction, the quicker you can get to playing. Look for pool tables with slates that come in two or three pieces to decrease the amount of weight you have to carry in one go.
You should also consider leg-strength. Take a look at the legs on the table you’re going to be buying, and ask yourself: will those legs last me a long time? Would I lean on that table? In general, legs with supporting frames and thick construction will be better. Long, thin legs will likely give out after too much use.
If you want the best pool table then it needs to have some of the best felt. Worsted table felt is considered the best. The alternative is woolen or a wool blend which can also be a great felt.
Tournaments use worsted felt like Simonis’ felt as it plays faster and smoother.
Have an Installation Team Ready
And whatever you do, make sure you have an installation team. You can install tables yourself, but just in case, you should have an installation team that can help you. Some people find that they severely underestimated the weight of the slate, and can barely get it up the stairs. It’s great to have an extra hand or two at the ready to give you some help in your time of need. Plus, an installation team will be able to level the table like a dream.
Long story short, do your research, look for strength and stability. After that, considerations of style, color, and materials are up to you. You should look for a table that will build a warm, welcoming atmosphere.
And don’t ever, ever skim for costs. You want quality- pay for quality.
FAQs: Best Pool Tables for Home Use
To give you a better idea about what other people are asking when they are considering the best pool table for their home, i have listed a few common questions below.
How much clearance do you need for an 8ft pool table?
This will depend on the length of the cue you use. 58 inch is the standard length for a pool cue, and most are this length. You can buy smaller cues that may be suited for shorter players or in smaller rooms.
To allow enough room for cueing, a comfortable recommendation for the room size would be:
Width: 13ft 6inches ( 4.1 Meters)
Length: 17ft (5.1 Meters)
How much space do I need for a pool table?
usually, you’re going to want an extra five and a half feet on top of the length of your pool table’s length to accommodate for optimum range-of-movement and ensure that you’ll be able to make quality shots. When in doubt a larger room is always better. Make sure you have substantial space in your rec room. Squeezing in to make a shot is no one’s idea of a good time.
Should you place a rug under the table?
We would recommend placing a rug under your pool table. This dulls the sound of falling pool balls and can even prevent them from cracking if they fall too hard. Not to mention, the pool table-rug combination looks just spectacular. Some people even say they can get better footing on a rug. However, it’s up to your personal preference.
Why is slate so important?
Slate might as well be a requirement for prospective pool table buyers. If you need a long-lasting pool table that will give you a quality play experience, you need a slate base. Its natural properties make it the best contender for anyone looking to optimize their pool experience.
All in All
- Brunswick classic- beautiful classic table with high-quality and affluent-looking construction.
- Brunswick Black Wolf- nice, retro look with a bit of modern flair. Sturdy slate and an installation guarantee plus a warranty.
- Playcraft Bezos- Extremely sturdy construction. Great, modern, Ikea-look. Will fit in perfectly with a chique rec room.
- Mizerak Donovan II- Good table with a 3-piece slate base for ease-of-construction.
- Empire USA- Spectacular casual-looking table with a wide range of color choices.
Rob is an avid player and fan of all cue sports, particularly 8-ball, and snooker. He has competed in a few local 8-ball tournaments and although he is not a professional, he can compete with the best of them.