Best Pool Cues for Beginners 2020 + Recommendations

Getting yourself involved in one of the highly competitive sports out there may not be as easy as it looks like. If you are just embarking on billiard or pool games, you will know that there are a lot of techniques and tricks to learn before becoming a professional one. 

And for this reason, you will need some equipment to be ready for your first game.  One thing you will probably start looking to invest in is getting yourself one of the best pool cues for beginners.

A lot of pool enthusiasts who want to get into this kind of sports believe that the equipment themselves are quite expensive which is not the case. As most of the pool cues that we will be talking about today range between less than a $100 to $200 in price which is affordable considering the quality and the performance of these cues. 

One thing you should keep in mind that these pool cues should be basic, easy to handle and have a solid hit.

However, with the sheer number of pool cues available on the market, purchasing the one that best fits with your needs and preferences can be a daunting job. This is why in this review; we have compiled together 6 best pool cues for beginners out here on the market. 

Our research is based on the different materials used to create these cues, their wrap materials besides some other important features that need to be taken into consideration including the length, weight, and more. The findings are organized into a comprehensive review that includes a buyer guide as well to help you better understand how to choose a pool cue for a beginner.

Check out the best 6 pool cues for beginners available on the market in 2020!

The 6 Best Pool Cues for Beginners 2020

1. Players C-960 Classic Birds-Eye Maple

If you’re looking to enhance your pool game but don’t want to withdraw a bucket of money on a high-end stick, Players C-960 is a fantastic option and it can save you hundreds of dollars.

This pool cue is certainly one of the best that you can invest in if you are a beginner and looking to embark on the pool gaming journey. 

It’s affordably rated if we were to compare it to other similar cues available on the market and that offers almost the same high quality and playability performance as this one. It has a great playability due to its enhanced design that offers great pool shooting skills.

The Pool cue is constructed with high quality 100% premium maple hardwood that is treated with Nelsonite. Thanks to encased shielding of the Nelsonite coating, the cue is protected from any climatic circumstances. The coating is done for durability and firmness purposes.  

The linen wrap applied on this pool cue appears in a black shade that suits the faux wood fabric composition almost perfectly and enables you to perform more long-drawn matches without your grips slipping off the stick. The cue wrap offers a solid grip that is made to enhance the strength of the hit and its accuracy. 

On the other hand, the 13mmm tip is made of hard oak leather and offers great control over the cue. The tip is made to last and it will hold its shape for a long time offering a consistent performance

Furthermore, the joint collar is made of stainless steel and incorporates silver ring sets. It ensures the durability of the cue and its carrying support. Besides, the cue features an external UV polish which assists in avoiding potential warping or any kind of defects including moisture.

To make it the best of the best cues out there, the shaft is encased in a French cue wax to ensure that it will not crack or fade away easily with time and usage.

This is surely one of the best and most affordable pool cues available on the market that offers both quality and great playability.

Pros

  • A classic hardwood design
  • A durable and hard oak tip 
  • UV coating for further protection

Cons

  • If not handled and maintained carefully, it can warp easily

2. Viking Valhalla

The Viking Valhalla 2 Piece Pool Cue Stick with Irish Linen Wrap is a magnificent cue if learning the game perks is exactly what you need to work on. With a highlight to all of the best features for a powerful shot, you’ll love the 58″ length Viking Valhalla 2 Piece Pool Cue Stick with Irish Linen Wrap for your first best hit. 
 

This beginner pool cue has the performance advantages of high-quality materials. Not only it offers you a strong hit, but it is ultimately easy to handle and comfortable in your hands.

This leads us to the design wise of this pool cue.

When it comes to the design, the Viking Valhalla’s shaft is made from Canadian Maple and a tip made of premium leather. The handle highlights an Irish linen wrap. 

The UV arched finish of the Viking is made of urethane with provides great protection while keeping that authentic true radiance of the wood. Thanks to the solid wooden core, the cue can avoid catching various defects like dings, scratches or warping.

This pool cue is available in over four weights range that comprises 18 ounces, 19 ounces, 20 ounces, and 21-ounce performer load options. The cue is also available in 7 color finishes.

The butt of the cue has an Irish linen wrap that allows you for a firmer and stronger grip. This will help you to grip the cue better. The butt is adaptable to any weight ranging from 18-21oz. 

The Viking Valhalla features a 13mm leather tip that is perfectly shaped and sharped adequately to win the game. This standard deflection cue also features a great collision ferrule that assures that contact will always be stimulating and brisk. 

Pros

  • Attractive designs
  • Has a great playability that will suit beginners

Cons

  • The tip could be better

3. Players HXT15

For beginners, the Players HXT15 Two-Piece Pool Cue is one of the top pool cues in the industry. Available in different weights, this pool cue is under $200, making it an affordable yet an excellent option for those who want to embark in the billiard industry. You will be blown away by its quality, performance and its unique design appearance.

 

I would definitely love to put it as the #1 option in this list, but I understand that most beginners that are looking for their first ever cue are probably looking for sub $100 pool cues. But if you’re looking for a low-deflection cue with an affordable price point, then the HXT15 is for you.

Now, I want to talk about the design, the Players HXT15 features conventional classic styling black spots and white accents, on a dusky walnut-stained Birds-eye Maple polished forearm that surely impress. This cue is crafted with a high level of 100 % premium North American hard rock maple.

Not only is it beautiful but it also incorporates a low deflection shaft which help in improving and enhancing the cue ball control. The Players HXT15 can provide you the most precise balls shot.

The HXT15 incorporates an Irish linen wrap which guarantees no slipping or gliding and more importantly you won’t have to worry about moisture. Moisture can be quite irritating sometimes.

The HXT15 features an outstanding 12.75mm Kamul black tip for the ultimate grip and durability. The Kamul Blacktip is prevalent in advanced levels. The tip on the hand has 10 layers of pigskin. This eventually helps in creating that perfect accurate shot and more importantly the pigskin is much more finely opposed to standard leather.

Furthermore, the Technology Series HXT15 comes in a two-piece cue. This makes it easier for you to store it or transport it with you when needed. The most satisfying part is that it highlights a stainless steel joint that attaches the pair pieces ideally.

To sum it all, this is a high-end pool cue that is a highly recommended choice for beginners as well as for players of advanced levels. Most importantly it is affordable and worth the investment.

Pros

  • High-end performance
  • Well-balanced and accurate

Cons 

  • You may need some time to get use to it

4. McDermott Classic Pool Cue Kit

 

As MC Dermott’s classic pool cue kit proposes the finest affordable cues for beginners, it makes sense that our budget selection would include their large compilation of cues. This cue is made from Michigan Maple and the kit also includes a soft case, chalk holder, a tip shaper and 2 billiard chalks.  It has everything you need to start playing.

It has a timeless design but the color combination is not for everyone. Those who are looking for flashy or fancy design may have to look somewhere else.

 

When it comes to creating its pool cues, the McDermott put quality and performance as high priorities. They use a whole dedicated method that is composed of at least 150 proceeds to construct and create each one of their pool cues. This makes them among the top-quality cues on the market that comes in two-piece cues and made in the USA.

To prolong the life and durability of the pool stick, this brand makes a 3 elements butt construction. The inlays and rings glued manually to ensure a definite fit. 

And thanks to these high-quality standards and criteria, a prolonged warranty is given to face any kind of potential warping and deficiencies.

This wrapless cue features a 13mm high-quality tip that can handle any kind of blast. Moreover, it can softly knock those close professional hollow shots without hassle. Besides that, the standard deflection will help you get a better shot when it comes to playing.

To sum it all up, the McDermott Classic Pool Cue Kit has everything you need to learn the basics of playing, to step up your game and to move slowly to the next level at an affordable price! 

You get a reliable, classic white and blue McDermott pool cue with a free light case and accessories to help you in your journey. 

Pros

  • Affordable price
  • Comes with a soft case and other accessories

Cons

  • The joint is not all metal and can affect the balance

5. Predator Sport 2 Ice Sport Wrap w/Z-3 Shaft

Combining functionality, endurance, and elegant design, the Predator Sport 2 Pool Cue  is another top graded pool cue from Predator. I can recommend this is you have money to burn and itching for a great looking cue with great playability.

This pool cue is great for beginners to intermediate players.

The Predator Sport 2 high-performance pool cue is constructed to the demanding standards and criteria. This model comes paired with a world notable Predator Z-3 low-deflection shaft to level up your game to the next level.

Every hit is really precise. It is also a well-balanced cue and the 4-piece hard maple construction makes it pretty durable.

This is one of the most inexpensive options to enjoy the Predator technology within the palm of your hands. With the 3rd-generation Z shaft, this pool cue is definitely for serious players.

This model features a Victory tip and a Uni-Loc quick release pin. The SportII grip offers a great grip for maximum control over your pool shots enabling you to deliver unusual accuracy and exactness in your hits.

To sum it all, this is a comparatively affordable, high-quality choice for beginners who are looking for a starting cue to begin their journey. 

Pros

  • Predator winning tip 
  • A Uni-Loc quick release pin

Cons

  • Expensive but well worth it

6. AB Earth 2-pc Pool Cue

The AB Earth is a great option for total beginners who doesn’t like to spend more than $40 for their first cue. This is one of the most basic and standard cues that can be easily handled by a beginner who is looking to learn basic techniques.

It features a sheer number of weight from which you can choose depending on your preferences. It is also available in different styles, offering you a variety of choices from which you can select the one that fits with your needs.

The AB Earth’s tip features a relatively quite large tip. However, as we have mentioned previously, this can be ideal for beginners who want to enhance their gaming skills and learn more about how to control and shoot balls.

And while this standard deflection cue incorporates a ferrule that is high in density yet not the best out there, it is still a good option that will allow a player at a beginner level to learn things much faster and better.

Another thing you will like about this pool cue model is the Irish linen grip. This pool cue is gorgeous and definitely an eye-catcher.

Pros

  • Affordable 
  • Shots are consistent

Cons

  • A basic cue with basic playability

How to Choose a Pool Cue for Beginners

In this brief buyer guideline, we will help you better understand the different features each buyer should be taken into consideration when purchasing the best pool cue for beginners. These different features matter as they can either help you improve your gaming skills or will continuously putting yours in a stacked position.

Now before we even start, you should know that tat all starts with how you to choose a pool cue:

Generally, the best cue tools should be flawless to one’s touch. The first thing you will probably need to check when you are looking for a pool cue is any signs of glue. The glue indicates horrible craftsmanship and the cue probably won’t last as much as you think. Any scratches or defects should also be checked. You definitely don’t want to have an unplayable pool cue!

Now elaborating on the features of the cues which play an important role in determining the quality and the performance level of your game, here are some that we can briefly discuss:

Size and weight

This comes down to your personal needs and preferences. Some are more comfortable with heavy cues while others prefer light ones for better grip and control. Therefore, if depends on your playing style and shooting forces, you can choose the one that fits with your needs. However, the average weight for a cue ranges somewhere between 18 to 22 ounces. Whereas size wise, it is usually somewhere 55 and 60 inches.

Material

Simply put, the harder the material was, the more powerful the shot will be. Usually, maple is the commonly used material when it comes to pool cues and especially for beginners. The maple woods provide better control and power at the same time. Materials used also plays a big role in terms of durability.

Tip

 

 

This is one of the most important parts of the whole cue. This is due to the fact the harder the tip, the more impact it has on the strike. Usually, the tips are made of leather material. However, it all depends on how hard the leather is. Make sure to check the degree of its hardness. You can use oil to make the leather tip softer.

Wrap

Again, the wrap also depends on the preference of the player and his/her budget. For example, the most expensive wraps are usually made of genuine leather and they have a soft grip. Some believe that this kind of wraps can be sweaty once you start playing due to its softness. 

Whereas the Leatherette is cheaper material that can be used for a wrap, but again it also promotes sweat. The best wrap that we can suggest is the Irish linen; it is one of the most popular and most preferred wraps for billiards players. 

Joint 

When it comes to the joint, it should be made flat to the cue wood when they are twisted together. The pin must be ideally centered within the butt level. It should not be glued or unpolished. 

Shaft

This is one of the important features that need to be taken into consideration when looking to purchase a pool cue for beginners. The shaft is what will determine the performance of the stick.

It is so important in defining the aim of your pool shots and its flexibility.

A cue with standard deflection shaft plays better than house cues. You can control the ball better but most probably, you can’t do the most extreme shots and spin.

While a low-deflection shaft is the choice of mostly all pro-players out there because of their capability to perform those extreme shots and you can control the cue ball more precisely.

Balance point

Commonly placed in the center of the cue and just several inches apart from the wrap edge. Make sure to locate the balance point that will best work for you.

Warranty 

When choosing a warranty, make sure to choose one that will guarantee the protection of your purchase and its worth. The warranty depends majorly on the cue you purchased. Usually, for cues that cost over $100, you should have at least a 3 years warranty that covers any kind of defects.

Conclusion

With a sheer number of pool cues available on the market, it can be challenging to decide on which one to go.

With so many options for the best beginner pool cues, it can certainly be challenging to make the final decision. The six pool cues for beginners presented here in this article are an excellent place to begin. The only things that you are attentive to when it comes to cue are your personal style of playing and preferences.

Finally, we like to leave our readers with the best nomination based on budget, quality, and overall performance. 

Our selection for this review is the Players Pool Cue C-960. This cue has a great playability and at the same time, inexpensive.

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