Updated: May 29, 2015

Best Ping Pong Training Device - Newgy Robo Pong 2050:

Ping pong is a great recreational game played around the world. Many of us are just that, 'recreational players'. Some of us, however, aspire to become better than average and need a good training partner. We don't always have access to someone in our local area that is better than us, so turning to table tennis training devices is what we are left with. Sure one on one experience is invaluable, but being able to consistently practice certain shots is very important for consistency and overall improvement. In the past players would simple fold up the other end of the table and hit against the 'wall' as we called it. Not the best, but sufficient at least in forcing yourself to keep the ball in play. With technology came training devices such as the iPong and ReturnBoard - both popular in their own right. The iPong retails for $100 and gets reasonable reviews online but it's limited and doesn't give you enough variety. The ReturnBoard ($600) is good for the advanced players, but may be lacking for those that are intermediate in skill and want to get to the next level. That is where the Newgy Robo Pong products come into the scene. There are 5 models to choose from ranging from $200 to $650. Yes, some are expensive, but owner reviews are more than positive in regards to what the Robo Pong product offers.
ping pong robot

Which Newgy Table Tennis Robot is Right for You - The latest Newgy is the Robo-Pong 2050 and at $650 it is the most expensive. The digital controls are a huge improvement over the previous models and certainly worth a look. The 2040 system includes the netting which I say is essential to not having to chase down all the balls once you hit them over the table to the other side. The only real difference between the 2040 and 2050 is that the 2050 now features the digital controls. A few owners commented in online posts that the balls got stuck/jammed in the device. That is something we have not seen in the 2050, so perhaps they have solved that problem. The 1040 holds up to 200 balls and fits on all standard ping pong tables or conversion top game tables. There is no assembly or tools required so setup is easy and quick. Some people mention they believe the 1040 is better than the 2040 - they say the net assembly on the 2040 is time consuming. Other feedback on the 1040 says the balls do get stuck, but washing them (per Newgy) will alleviate the issue. The 1050 is similar to the 1040, except again that is features the digital controls. If you need to order more of the balls designed for the machines, you can get the Newgy Robo-Balls Here.

Newgy Robo-Pong 2050:

RECOMMENDED - Let's start with the Newgy Robo-Pong 2050 - Table Tennis Robot which sells for $650. You may think that is too high a cost for your needs. Think again on this one. If you are serious about improving your ping pong game, then the 2050 is the perfect product. With 64 pre-programmed drills available to you and digital controls for ball speeds, oscillation, and frequency, this table tennis ball machine will get you advanced in no time. Available spins include topspin, backspin, combo spin, and left or right topspin. I have played ping pong for 35+ years and to get better I know that you need to get experience with all the different spins that other players hit. The shot selections are fast loop, lob, counter, push, serve, and chop. Again, opponents will throw all sorts of variety at you and being able to handle it will vastly improve your game. I use the Robo-Pong 2050 just to stay sharp in my game. I still prefer to play with an actual oppponent, but nothing beats relentless practicing. The nets help keep most of the balls on or near the table. Setup and take down are easy on our table. Reviews show that the product is 'worth the investment' and it will 'improve your game in just a few weeks'. There was a recent episode on the Kardashians where Bruce Jenner worked on his skills using one of these machines. I never had the chance to try the 2040, but owners of both say the 2050 is easier to program and control.

Robo-Pong 540:

RECOMMENDED - For those less serious about becoming Olympic ping pong athletes, the Newgy Robo-Pong 540 is still a great choice. At less than $200 you will get hours of fun and exercise with this unit. It features analog controls for frequency and ball speed. The 540 will hold roughly 120 balls - that's a good number since you will get tired hitting that many. My son started on this machine when he was 5 and now 2 years later his game is pretty solid. The Robo-Pong 540 is the perfect solution for those that don't always have a hitting partner. Practicing all the different types of shots and spins will surely get your game going. I do agree with some of the reviews online that note that the backspin shot that comes from the machine is a bit odd. Definitely not the same a pure slice that I would hit. Overall a good value and great learning device when trying to improve your ping pong skills.