Choosing the best 3-star Ping Pong ball can be challenging due to the wide variety available. What makes them the best depends on whether they will be training or official match balls. Training balls wear out faster because they suffer more use, whereas match balls are typically used for one tournament. Official match balls are all ITTF approved, so the quality is assured, but the price tag is higher than other balls.
ITTF-approved balls have the best quality and are used in official matches. The best match-quality balls are the Nittaku Premium 40+ Poly balls which are ITTF-approved. On the other hand, the best 3-star Ping Pong ball for training is the Joola Advanced ABS ball, which offers quality at a low price.
Whether you’re training or playing a match, the quality of the ball you’re using is important. ITTF-approved balls are used in official matches due to their quality assurance tests. Because of this, these ball’s price tags are higher, and they are not an ideal choice with which to practice. We have listed our top pick for the best match 3-star ball and the best 3-star training ball.
What Are The Best 3-Star Ping Pong Balls?
Ping Pong balls have star ratings depending on their quality. However, there is no standard rating system; instead, the manufacturers set their own standards.
Using the manufacturer’s standards could mean that if the print on the ball says it is three stars, the quality may not be what you might expect from an ITTF-approved 3-star ball. Fortunately, the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) has strict standards when testing ball quality.
For a ball to become ITTF-approved, it must pass the ITTF’s strict tests. They test the roundness of the ball to ensure that it is even on all sides. They test the ball’s roundness because slight defects can cause it to change direction on the bounce. They also check the diameter and weight of the ball to ensure that it’s 39.5 to 40.4mm wide and weighs between 2.69 and 2.76g.
Other tests they perform include measuring ball hardness, consistency of the ball wall’s thickness, and bounce consistency. Altogether, these tests allow the ITTF to give their approval to a ball that everybody respects. ITTF-approved balls are the only balls permitted in official ITTF matches. Many organizations only permit these balls due to the high standard.
Ping Pong balls are given a rating out of three stars. If you see a ball with a higher star rating than three, it’s probably a ploy to entice customers, and the quality may be lacking. In 2014, the ITTF ruled that all tournament balls must be of non-flammable plastic. Before this, the material Ping Pong balls consisted of was celluloid. Celluloid balls allowed the balls to move faster and spin more, with slightly less bounce.
When choosing the best 3-star ping pong balls, looking at what players will use them for is essential. The bottom line is that not all 3-star balls are ITTF-approved, but all ITTF-approved balls are rated 3-star. ITTF-approved balls are all match quality and are more expensive than those without ITTF approval. And players need a large number of balls for training, so the price can add up using ITTF-approved balls.
There are Ping Pong balls without ITTF approval that are of excellent quality without the increased price tag. These are best used for practicing, while ITTF balls have standardized quality assurance. To give you an idea of what to look for, we’ve provided an option for the best 3-star training ball and the best 3-star match ball.
Best For Training: Joola Advanced Training ABS 3-Star
Training, especially for avid tournament, and professional players, means going through quite a few ping pong balls in a short period. Training balls are typically not as durable as match-quality balls. Players use them more often, meaning they’ll break or wear out regularly. Because of this, training balls need to be less expensive than tournament balls so they don’t put a dent in your wallet.
Our recommendation for the best 3-star training ball is the Joola Advanced Training ABS 3-star ball. This ball does not have ITTF approval meaning players can’t use it in official tournaments. However, it is among the market’s best 3-star ping pong training balls. Lily Zhang, one of the top professionals, uses it for training. Its quality is excellent, and the price tag is lower than other balls of the same quality.
Joola is one of the world’s top ping pong balls and also has ITTF-approved balls. Joola performs strict tests on their balls to ensure quality and has been around for over 60 years. These training balls come in bulk and smaller packs, so it’s an excellent option for the best 3-star training ball.
- Excellent quality
- Very inexpensive
- Match quality despite not having ITTF approval
- Bulk packs available
- Durable for longer use
Best For Matches: Nittaku 3-Star Premium 40+
ITTF official matches must use balls that have acquired ITTF approval. Our top pick for the best 3-star Ping Pong ball for official matches is the Nittaku 3-star Premium 40+ ball (Available on Amazon below). The price may seem slightly high, but these balls are put through rigorous tests by the ITTF to ensure the highest quality.
Because the Nittaku 3-star Premium balls have been ITTF approved, it is evident that they have shown consistent high quality over the years. They are incredibly durable and hard, meaning they will last much longer than other balls and won’t move unexpectedly upon contact with a racket or the table. They also have better bounce than a lot of other match-quality balls.
These balls are extremely popular with many professional players who praise them for their consistency, roundness, and durability. They were released in 2014 when the rules changed, and only plastic balls were allowed. Since then, players have enjoyed using them because of their high quality.
They are made from high-quality poly plastic, unique to Nittaku in Japan. This material gives the balls their perfect roundness, high durability, and hardness. It makes them one of the best ITTF-approved plastic balls in the world.
- Perfect roundness
- Extremely durable
- ITTF approved
- Excellent consistency
- Unique, high-quality poly plastic
When searching for the best 3-star Ping Pong ball, deciding whether you want to use them for matches or simply for training is an important aspect to consider. Our pick for the best 3-star training ball is the Joola Advanced ABS ball, which comes in bulk packs. It has excellent quality for a non-ITTF-approved ball, and the price is a bargain.
The Nittaku 3-Star Premium ball is our top pick for the best match-quality Ping Pong ball on the market. It has been ITTF-approved since the rule change in 2014 and is made from a highly durable poly plastic that gives players consistent shots every time.