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How To Choose a Pool Cue: Top 10 Pool & Snooker Cues and Buying Guide!
Last updated 25th November, 2020

With so many pool and snooker cues out there it’s no surprise that finding the right one to suit your game play can be one of the best purchases you can make to take your cueing to the next level. As a player progresses they’ll always remember their first cue stick, what they liked about it and what they didn’t, and with each new cue you get a little closer to perfection. Every pool cue (often misspelled pool queue) really is unique, from the length and weight to the size of cue tip and the material of the ferrule, what it’s made from whether it’s Ash, Maple or graphite, and of course the wide range of accessories they come with.

We’ve searched high and low to find and review the best pool and snooker cues out there for our top 10. Below that you’ll find our detailed buying guide where we’ve explained what each of the parts of a cue are, what they’re for, and how to choose a pool cue.

But before we go any further, let’s answer one of the questions we get asked most often for people thinking about what cue to go for…

What is the difference between a pool cue and a snooker cue?

There are a few differences between typical pool and snooker cues, both in terms of size and the material used to make them. The difference comes down to the size of ball used when playing: English pool is played with the smallest balls, and so pool cues should have smaller tips at around 8-9.5mm, followed by snooker with slightly larger balls and therefore larger tips at around 9-10.5mm, and finally American pool with cue tips at 12-13mm. American pool sticks are also made from maple wood, whilst English pool or snooker cues are made from ash wood. It ultimately comes down to personal preference, so don’t be put off by a snooker cue if you’re more into pool or the other way round, choose what feels right for you.

Top 10 pool and snooker cue reviews

1. BCE Mark Selby Graphite Snooker & Pool Cue (57”)

This modern simulated graphite cue stick has a very stylish look whilst achieving high playing quality from its graphite build, a very different option to the more traditional ash or maple cues. Designed and made by BCE, a market leader for good value pool and snooker cues, it comes with a wrap handle that helps to prolong the life of the cue.

Key features:

  • Length: 57”
  • Weight: Medium - 17oz-18oz (Medium or Heavy available on request)
  • Cue tip: 9.5mm leather stick on tip with brass ferrule
  • Shaft material: Simulated black graphite
  • Pieces: Two piece
  • Wrap: Yes (black ‘Supagrip’ handle)
  • Price range: Under £50

2. Powerglide Chevron Two-Piece Pool Cue (57”)

The Powerglide Chevron is made from high quality maple for consistent shot making and designed for British pool. It also comes with a standard cue tip, steel rings and a ramin butt, though is a very low cost option for the quality of cue on offer. The linen grip is a fantastic touch and helps to soak up any moisture and protect the cue from damage.

Key features:

  • Length: 57”
  • Weight: Medium - 16oz-19oz
  • Cue tip: 10mm British tip with brass ferrule
  • Shaft material: Maple
  • Pieces: Two piece
  • Wrap: Yes (linen)
  • Price range: Under £50

3. BCE Mark Selby Cream Flash Ash Pool Snooker Cue (57.5”)

A fantastic option for players looking to really develop their game, this option from BCE who are a well known pool and snooker cue supplier is made with Grade A North American Ash along with a protective rubber bumper at the butt of the cue. It comes in a stylish cream veneer design with decals on the butt. Order from a small range of weights to suit you.

Key features:

  • Length: 57.5”
  • Weight: Various (Medium to Heavy, request via message)
  • Cue tip: 9.5mm leather stick on tip with brass ferrule
  • Shaft material: Ash
  • Pieces: Two piece
  • Wrap: None
  • Price range: Under £50

4. Regent One Piece Pool Cue (54”)

The 54” pool cue from Regent is our budget option at a fraction of the cost of some of the better quality, stylish pool and snooker cues on offer. This cue stick is great for players just starting out and young players alike, with a wider cue tip and with it being shorter in length. It’s a great cue for a folding pool table or as a spare for guests.

Key features:

  • Length: 54”
  • Weight: Light - 15oz-18oz
  • Cue tip: 11mm brass screw on tip
  • Shaft material: Ramin
  • Pieces: One piece
  • Wrap: None
  • Price range: Under £50

5. CUESOUL Jointed Maple Billiard Pool Cue (58”)

This cue from CUESOUL is at the larger end of the spectrum at 58”, with a wider cue tip for great cue ball control making it a great option for American pool though versatile enough for snooker or even English pool with its adjustable weight. Made with 10-year old Canadian Maple wood it’s a great quality cue stick that comes very well reviewed and approved.

Key features:

  • Length: 58”
  • Weight: Medium - 19oz ½ (adjustable)
  • Cue tip: 13mm leather tip with fibre ferrule
  • Shaft material: Maple
  • Pieces: Two piece (with extensions)
  • Wrap: Yes (linen)
  • Price range: Under £50

6. Grand-Handmade Black Ebony Pool & Snooker Cue with Case (58”)

A fantastic snooker cue for players interested in tournament play with its case and multiple extensions, made with a Maple veneer, a hand spliced butt and Canadian Ash shaft - it’s a high quality cue stick at exceptional value with its low price tag. This cue is long and heavy so a great choice for snooker or American pool.

Key features:

  • Length: 58”
  • Weight: Heavy - 18oz-20oz
  • Cue tip: 9.5mm with brass ferrule
  • Shaft material: Maple & Ash
  • Pieces: Two piece (with extensions)
  • Wrap: None
  • Price range: Under £100

7. CUESOUL Handcraft Jointed Pool & Snooker Cue with Butt End Extension and Case

CUESOUL is an expert manufacturer of billiards products and with this cue they do not disappoint. This cue stick is designed for snooker but is great for pool too, and it really comes with all the accessories including a 6” butt extension, aluminum telescopic extension, towel, globes, joint protector and a premium aluminum case. You won’t find this range of accessories at this price elsewhere.

Key features:

  • Length: 57”
  • Weight: Medium - 18oz
  • Cue tip: 9.5mm glue on tip
  • Shaft material: Ash
  • Pieces: Two piece (with extensions)
  • Wrap: None
  • Price range: Under £100

8. Peradon Flare 3-Piece 8 Ball Pool Cue (57”)

The clear benefit of the Peradon Flare is the superior quality of its build, with a premium North American Ash shaft and quick action brass rings. This cue stick is also one of few that’s smartly broken down into three pieces for ease of carrying, storing, and versatility of length to suit more players. The focus of this cue is on performance but its elegant red and yellow veneer makes it a highly stylish option too.

Key features:

  • Length: 57”
  • Weight: Light - 15oz-18oz
  • Cue tip: 8-8.5mm glue on tip
  • Shaft material: Ash
  • Pieces: Three piece
  • Wrap: None
  • Price range: Under £150

9. Cue Craft P8P3 8 Ball Pool Cue (55”)

This professional pool stick from Cue Craft is designed for English pool due to its slightly smaller cue tip and lightweight build. As with many of the more premium pool cues on the market this one has tulip-spliced wedges and is styled with the iconic black decor on the butt. It’s easy to store, transport and put together on the go, so along with its hand-selected Ash build you really can’t fault it.

Key features:

  • Length: 55”
  • Weight: Light - 15oz-18oz
  • Cue tip: 8.5mm glue on tip
  • Shaft material: Ash
  • Pieces: Two pieces
  • Wrap: None
  • Price range: Under £150

10. Britannia Steel Viper Snooker & Pool Cue (58”)

It’s hard to compete with the Britannia Steel Viper for style or quality; the joint and ferrule are made with aerospace-grade stainless steel and the cue stick is decorated with a premium blend of exotic woods. This gives it an elegant and glossy finish. If that’s not enough, it comes with a free 6” mini butt too. If you’re an intermediate or advanced player that’s been playing for a while and wants to take their game to the next level, this pool and snooker cue is for you. It really is one of the best pool cues out there.

Key features:

  • Length: 58”
  • Weight: Heavy - 19oz-21oz
  • Cue tip: 10mm leather tip with stainless ferrule
  • Shaft material: Ash
  • Pieces: Two pieces
  • Wrap: None
  • Price range: Under £250

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Buying guide

If you do your research up front, buying a good quality pool cue that suits your playing style, height, and where you like to play can save you money in the long run and take your game to the next level. With so much terminology around pool and snooker cues, and a range of different options, choosing the right cue can be confusing.

We’ve created a straightforward buying guide to help you understand the different features of a cue stick and why they matter, as well as the questions to ask before making your choice so that you end up with a cue that’s the right style and size for you.

The parts of a pool cue and what they’re for

Cue tip

Perhaps the most important part of the whole cue, the tip is what strikes the ball so the size of it and how hard it is matters for achieving a smooth shot. Most cue tips are leather and purposefully rough to allow the chalk to take hold and avoid miscuing. You can easily buy new cue tips on their own to replace your old ones, so try a few soft tips, medium tips and hard tips until you feel you’re on the money. Just avoid plastic tips if you want consistency in your play

Ferrule

This small part of the cue is often overlooked, the ferrule connects the cue tip to the shaft and acts as a shock absorber. If you feel an unwanted vibration in the cue when taking shots it’s likely that the ferrule is not firmly planted against the tip, and so all you need to do is tighten it.

Ring

Pool cues that are of a higher quality and longer, are likely to have two rings in them, though it’s not uncommon just to have one ring at the top of the cue. These are to reinforce the strength of the cue as they’re most often made using metal.

Wrap

For some players, the wrap can feel like an important part of the cue though it’s worth noting that not all pool or snooker cues have one. This is towards the butt of the cue and provides the player with added grip for shot consistency. If you’re getting too much moisture from you hands and it’s interfering with your play, it’s worth buying a cue with a wrap or buying a wrap separately as they can prolong the life of the cue.

Shaft material

Cue sticks can and do come in different materials so it’s worth knowing the options out there to choose from. Most commonly you’ll see pool cues made from maple wood and snooker cues made from ash wood, though more and more are made with fibreglass too. Price can vary as the quality of material changes, with maple typically being the cheaper alternative. What matters is buying a cue stick that’s smooth to the touch, no rough or jagged edges and no visible glue.

Choosing the type of pool cue

Just starting out or experienced player

If you’re just starting out and getting used to playing pool or snooker a bit more regularly, it’s ok to go for a slightly cheaper cue stick before working out what you’re playing style is like and the type of cue you might prefer. However, even for beginners it’s important to find a cue that’s really straight (so look to maple, ash or fibreglass for this), is the right weight and length for you, and is built with a good quality cue tip and ferrule with no rattling when you strike the ball and no visible glue.

At home or in clubs

When you’re only ever playing at home your options of pool cues are a little broader, but if you’re interested in bringing your own cue to clubs or to play in tournaments, make sure you find a two piece cue with a case. Cues that are better quality or longer tend to come in two parts, with metal screws keeping them together. Most of these joints are brass which is a good marker of quality too.

Choosing the size of pool cue

What length pool cue should I use?

The most common sizes of cue are 48”, 54”, and 57”, though it’s possible to find smaller ones (often for kids), or a few sizes in between too. There are two things to consider when choosing your cue length: your height, and the space you have. If you’re taller than average, consider a 54” or even a 57”, and if you’re shorter than average go for a 54”. The 48” cues are great for being shared with other family members or if space either side of your pool table is tight. Look at our Pool Table Size Chart and Room Dimensions write-up to know how cue size impacts space required.

What weight pool cue should I use?

Pool cue weights are typically in ounces, and they range from 18oz to 21oz. Finding the right weight of cue depends on your ability and the type of pool or snooker you’re playing. For English pool, or if you’re just starting out, it’s best to stick to a lighter weight so between 18 to 19 ounces. With a 21oz cue the object ball will go into the pocket faster but the cue ball will be less responsive and so more control is needed.

Buying a custom pool cue

With so many features to think about one option for the more experienced players who know their style of play well is to look at getting a pool cue custom made to your preferences. There are a few different services that offer this like Green Baize in the UK and Cue Creator in the US, but of course these come at a premium so it’s worth spending some time getting to know what parts of your play you want to improve and understanding how a bespoke cue might help with that.

Conclusion

Now you’re up to speed with what all the parts of a cue stick are and you know what you’re looking for, it’s time to make your choice. Investing in a high quality pool or snooker cue is worthwhile as they won’t get worn down or warped quickly, and you’ll want time with the same cue to work out all its quirks. If you’re fairly new to pool or snooker we’d recommend the BCE Mark Selby Cream Flash as it’s great value for the quality it offers. But if you’ve been playing for a while and want to purchase your new pride of joy to improve your game we’d suggest the Cue Craft P8P3 at 55” as it’s perfect for 8 ball pool, or the fantastic quality of the Britannia Steel Viper. We hope you enjoy playing with your new cue for years to come!

Affiliate disclaimer: on some or all of the products above, we receive a small commission if you make a purchase via our site. This does not impact the price you pay, but it allows us to keep helping people by writing these reviews, so thank you!


Tom
Co-founder at Mancaves HQ

A true man cave enthusiast. When he isn't trawling through Instagram looking for new ideas, you can find him navigating through the streets of London.