Graphite Vs Composite Pickleball Paddles – Know the Differences

Are you looking to compare graphite vs composite Pickleball paddles?

As the names suggest – one is made solely from graphite and the other is a composite of different materials.

Which is better?  That’s like asking…which is better – an apple or an orange?

They each have their own qualities.  We will go into detail about these qualities and which may suit your needs better.

Pickleball is a sport that is rapidly gaining popularity, not just across the United States but across the world.  If you are planning to get into the sport, be assured that knowing about the equipment is the first step towards a successful playing experience.

Here are the major differences between the graphite and the composite Pickleball paddles…

Composite vs. Graphite Pickleball Paddles – Our Comparison

Although a first look at the graphite and composite Pickleball paddles will make them seem similar, don’t be surprised when you hold them and play with them that you see stark differences.

They do come with a range of differences, not just in terms of the construction and the playing experience but also the accessory features.

Varying costs

If you are a beginner who doesn’t want to invest a lot of money at the beginning on Pickleball equipment, we’d recommend going for a composite paddle.  These can easily cost under $50.

The graphite pickleball paddle is more to cater to the needs of intermediate to advanced players, so it isn’t surprising that they are comparably more expensive.

However, a low-end graphite paddle can cost you as low as around $60.  You need to pick one based on your budget.  Ideally, we’d recommend choosing the quality over the price.

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Material

You probably understand that the composite and graphite paddles do come with a lot of differences when it comes to the material.  Here’s a quick comparison of the two…

Composite paddle

Composite itself is not one material like graphite. Instead, composite Pickleball paddles are made with a combination of materials.

They are a hybrid of different materials.  The paddles are then constructed with a mesh and molding construction that offers the paddle more structure and girth.

The cores of the composite paddles are typically made with materials like polymer, aluminum or Nomex.

The combination of all these materials contributes to the durability, high-end quality, shape and texture of the paddle. It also leaves the paddle with a foam-like body that is easier and more ergonomic to play with.

Graphite paddle

As the name suggests, graphite is a single material construction.

This is one of the reasons why it is more expensive compared to composite.  However, one similarity between both the paddles is that the cores are made with similar components of aluminum, Nomex or polymer.

It is just the surface material that differs in both of these paddles.

The graphite Pickleball paddles are comparatively lighter and a lot easier to play with.

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Weight

Moving ahead to the weight of these two paddles, we can vouch for the graphite Pickleball paddles to be lighter. The graphite ones can be about one or more ounces lighter than the composite ones.  This is primarily due to the construction and the build of the paddle.

Generally, the graphite paddles weigh around 7.5 oz while the composite paddles can weigh somewhere around 8.0 oz.  So, if you are buying one for professional tournaments, we’d recommend sticking to the graphite paddles.

The graphite Pickleball paddles also feature a staple honeycomb core design which further contributes to durability and comfort. The touch and feel of the paddle contributes to a comfortable hit back to the opponent.

Durability

Last on the list of comparisons between graphite vs composite Pickleball paddles is durability.

Generally, if you had to choose a paddle for its overall durability, the composite paddle probably is better.

Pros and Cons – Composite vs. Graphite

With the basic description and comparisons out of the way, let’s focus on the individual pros and cons of these paddles.

Pros and Cons for Composite Paddles

Pros

  • Has a sleek and modern design and construction
  • If you like to add spin to your shot, this is your best bet
  • If you are into aggressive shots, this is great
  • They have a wide body and blade shape
  • They have a textured surface
  • Provides accurate baseline power to the shot

Cons

  • Doesn’t provide accurate dink shots
  • Soft control shots aren’t that great with composite paddles

Pros and Cons for Graphite Paddles

Pros

  • They have a light and rigid construction
  • Has a more textured surface
  • Ideal for playing in the kitchen zone
  • Ideal for dink shots and more control shots

Cons

  • Very lightweight and not ideal for aggressive hits
  • Generally more expensive than composite

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Conclusion

If you are still confused between graphite vs composite Pickleball paddles, we’d recommend starting the journey with a composite paddle.

These are more durable and support a variety of shots.  We’d recommend sticking to quality brands that have a good name and buy the best paddle you can afford.