Buying a pickleball paddle and missing out on Onix? Impossible! 75% of the US courts are full of players equipped with Onix pickleball paddles and what’s surprising is, “They always Win”! A few back, during the 2021 Grand Rapids BEER CITY OPEN Pickleball Championships, we tested Onix Paddles and several of them intrigued us and our co-players with their magical power, swing, and accuracy.
Onix has been in the scene since 2005, when Escalade sports decided to spin-off their brand for pickleball. For 17 years, it’s solely manufacturing pickleball gears and accessories only, i.e., pickleballs, nets, T-shirts, and much more. Having Z5, evoke, and voyager in their lineup gave a dramatic rise to Onix to become No.1 most trusted and quality pickleball brand.
Apart from the Brand history, it has pickleball paddles for everyone! It doesn’t matter which type of player you are. Pro, advanced, defensive, aggressive, young, hobbyist. Surprisingly, Onix has paddles for you with perfectly balanced specifications in core, shape, handle, weight, and edge to suit your demands and it’s flexible in terms of budget, too.
Onix Graphite Z5 – widest sweet spot
A beginner to intermediate level paddle with the widest body and medium-heavy weight in both graphite and composite faces.
Onix Evoke Premier – best paddle shape
Comes with the best paddle shape to complement spinners with its DF composite surface.
ONIX Summit C1 – best elongated
Elongated paddle with a mix of power, spin, and control through its composite surface.
Onix React Pickleball Paddle – dual core technology
Features two best cores to give you best of both worlds.
Onix Outbreak – best surface
Constantly backs the players up with its “top-heavy” structure based on TeXtreme technology.
ONIX Voyager Pro Pickleball Paddle – control-oriented power paddle
A control-oriented pro-level paddle to give aggressive touch to shots while keeping the game soft.
ONIX Stryker 4 Composite – lightweight
The most lightweight paddle manufactured for recreational, aged players, and children.
7 CHOICES FOR THE BEST ONIX PICKLEBALL PADDLE
From Z5 to Evoke Premier, Onix has the paddle lineup in all ranges. Their ranges include graphite, aluminum, and composite–in the material ranges. Wide-body, oversize, tear drop, impact, elongated, and blocker comes in the “shape” type.
They’ve two paddles in the standard size, and as the trend is boring now, Onix has discontinued them with some new shapes to set the game to the next level.
1. Onix Z5 – Widest Sweet Spot
It’s the Z5 (again) winning for the best Onix pickleball paddles, in 2019, 2020, 2021, and jeez! The paddle’s selling trend is telling, it’s gonna break the records again and that “Z5” is a master at it.
What’s so special about it?
Z5 is tailored with Onix’s most valuable technologies, featuring a Nomex Honeycomb and Graphite surface. They showcase a generous sweet spot through its wider body, making the paddle more like a blocking weapon for incoming overheads.
In the Z5, Onix has featured two models, i.e., graphite and composite. The composite paddle is more for an intermediate player with its extra weight. However, it’s the graphite model that dominates the courts with its extra swing ability and lighter feel and touch.
Graphite Z5 comes with more pop ability and the surface, despite being plain, can provide little spin–making your game a little more unpredictable for the opposite side.
Its handles are less tacky than the rest of the lineup and it’s a bit lose for the larger hands. Although, over-grip might help. We recommend going with the brand’s grip as they go well with the handles pretty well and complement the current design.
- Extended body shape
- Soft Sweet spot
- Extended handle for better maneuverability
- Graphite face for enhanced touch and feel
- The paint on the handle might come off, so an overgrip is needed
Z5 graphite is in aerodynamic design, giving you an edge for playing under the heavy wind while maintaining the accuracy. While the graphite surface takes down the vibration to zero, its pop feeling still feels beautiful to ears, thanks to the screen printing done on the surface. Even though 95% of the players playing this have cured their tennis elbow and, simultaneously, improved their ratings up to 2 levels.
Z5 graphite surely provides a perfect combo of control and maneuverability with a pinch of spin to ace your rallies and volleys. However, for the lob shots, you need to swing a bit harder and that’s where the composite version comes to rescue.
Its 8.4 – 9.2 oz. makes the paddle hit powerful shots with little effort. The volleys and lobs are a cakewalk to this paddle. 5” elongated handles further make this version attractive for the tennis player who is learning the game’s ins and outs, while reducing some freak-out boundary rules.
2. Onix Evoke Premier – Best Paddle Shape
Z5 got enough popularity, but the power factor was still lacking. To address that, Onix collaborated with Matt Wright and Lucy Kovalova–the two most renowned National champions and launched this powerhouse “Evoke Premier” to change the course of the game within seconds.
Its surface possesses excellent ball-biting abilities. The DF composite surface lets the ball stay on the surface, averaging between 2-3 seconds.
The improvement also includes incorporation of Atomic13 Edge Technology that lets you roll your ball more precisely, while not getting its power and accuracy go in vain. Its delivery is faster than the Z5 and Evoke XL combined, giving the lobs an extra fast height.
Although, if you were previously used to Evoke XL, this paddle would be a blessing for you as it provides a greater sweet spot in a bigger length. The hotspot of this paddle also reacts differently than the XL and teardrop version of the same series.
- Widebody shape + elongated
- Powerful & responsive
- Provides both power and spin
- Allows transition between sift plates and hard-hitting strokes
- Provides little control
Evoke premier is basically for the aggressive-playing style. The shots are completely soundproof, plus the vibration goes into the ball and that lands with a good pace and power on the other side. If you want something “control-oriented” in the same skin, Evoke teardrop paddle is your go.
Every 5+ paddle can provide that. What makes us love this one “specifically”?
Well, the “paddle size”! The paddle goes beyond providing a good mix of power and spin. But the 16” length gives you an edge to handle kitchen volleys and staying in limits. Plus, the 8” is an ice on cake for blocking the overheads, so you’re in complete control of your side, whether you play near or far from the nets.
Its delivery of soft shots, besides the hard-strokes with the play! We’ve usually come around players with this paddle, speaking of how it makes a quick transition between shots from the powerful volley and overheads to a slower winning dink! Even Kris Anderson, a power hitter, uses this paddle that made her win Senior Open Mixed Doubles gold at the 2018 Margaritaville USA Pickleball National Championships.
3. Onix Summit C1 – Best Elongated
Summit C1 is an upgraded version of Summit that the brand has discontinued. Though Summit took Onix to enter the “elongated paddle world”. Summit C1, following the same size, offers a composite surface for generating more power and spin.
The paddle’ face gives a soft touch to the ball. We like how easy it is to swing the paddle using a western grip, without getting that weird sound on the wrist (it hurts later though). Besides, its polypropylene core backs you up with control and accuracy.
Although the manufacturers claim to give tennis handles in this paddle, it somehow feels like the traditional ones with 4” length. Players with longer hands also can place their thumb on the surface.
The 7.8-8.2 oz is perfect for any hitter who expects an extra force out of their paddle. We may recommend getting the highest weight in this, as the surface is more lethal in heavier versions. It’s a serious addiction getting the drives, spins, and touch shots be played so smoothly, with Summit C1.
- Elongated paddle
- Accurate shot placement
- Great mix of finesse and spin
- Composite face provides excellent touch and feel
- Handles are not powerful enough
At medium circumference, the handles further create fitting difficulties. Besides being lightweight, these are not as powerful as the Onix or Evoke’ handles are. Although the composite surface also covers you here for generating required power, still it can be improved with an over grip.
Well, its sweet spot can be a challenge too, for the beginners. But, the surface area of 12.375” x 7.5” is mighty enough for leading from nets in singles play. It easily blocks shots nicely and its edge guard further disperses the vibration and shock quite effectively, though.
Onix has created Summit Outbreak–merging the technologies of Outbreak in the length and shape of C1. It addresses additional power issues and softens the ball often, with its graphite face. The surface additionally gives delightful spins. Lastly, it possesses greater ball bouncing ability with an extra 4Mph, without incurring any faults.
On an endnote, the Onix summit C1 is the paddle that will provide you with an extra sweet spot and no missed shots. The table tennis handle will be a hit if you’re a spinner, and the heavyweight will give more drive.
4. Onix React Pickleball Paddle – Dual Core Technology
Onix React is the most innovative paddle in the lineup, that comes combined with two of the sturdiest cores in a single paddle. It features a Nomex core embedded on the polypropylene base that collectively delivers immense power, pop, and control. Onix calls this mix a “fusion core” and since 2016, it remains the only paddle having dual core technology.
For the power Onix React provides, it’s legitimately a pinch left to beat the Soviet Union’s Big Ivan hydrogen bomb, and destroy whoever’s on the other side.
While playing the volleys with this, we could finally see the handles working extra-ordinarily. It’s powerful and controls the surface for sewing and slicing so decently that you don’t have to stretch yourself even a bit. The 4.8” length is enough to place an entire hand on it, not to mention it’s a treat for the tennis players.
If you’re transitioning from a heavier paddle, then this one is the bliss that takes your shot placement, keeps the movements of paddles in control, and brings power and pace to let the ball go and win!
- Excellent pop and touch
- Dual core built-in
- Well-spread weight
- Generous sweet spot
- A bit heavy on the price tag for beginners
Consideration for buying: Well, there are two colors in this paddle, i.e. black and green. The green color often fades, giving it a “yellow” look, which 90% hides the ball–making several court authorities question it. Some don’t even allow it. So, if you’re settled with this paddle, make sure you choose the black one.
5. Onix Outbreak– Best Surface
Outbreak was the paddle that took Onix to partner with TeXtreme, a Sweden-based company. They both, in collaboration, created a type of carbon fiber that weighs so little and has strength so high!
Using the TeXtreme technology for the surface makes the paddle weight 30 percent less than the other carbon composite surfaces. Its core has wider cells, making the carbon fuse dramatically to result in a softer surface. It pretty much feels like you’re playing with the sponge, but with more pace and power.
Outbreak is a “top-heavy” paddle. Meaning that its handles are lightweight while the surface carries overall weight. It makes you swing the paddle less while letting the surface place the ball with the required speed.
Its ball-biting textured surface gives an edge to the spin shots. We’ve also compared the indoor and outdoor performance of the paddle, which makes us conclude the paddle to be a great outdoor weapon. It doesn’t mean the perks get zero indoors, but we’d have Voyager Pro in the same shape and power for the indoor. That deals with the ball effectively with the contracted court dimensions.
- Controlled and accurate spin
- A brilliant mix of power and finesse
- Tennis-shape rectangular handles
- Comparatively lightweight
- They can improve handle’ material
Its traditional shape makes it a splendid choice for the intermediate players moving from the Z5. Well, its catering goes beyond serving the pro players, providing them with an edge for high lobs, drink rallies, and hard-hitting baseline volleys–all alike!
Identical paddle: Onix Vertex shares the same shape as the Outbreak. The difference is the composite face that delivers 80% of the power and control as the outbreak in 2/3rd of its price. Both the paddles almost feel similar with the vertex being 2 oz heavy. Its blocking surface shape helps every skill-level player–be it beginner or advanced!
6. Onix Voyager Pro | Control-Oriented Power Paddle
Voyager Pro is a twin of Onix Outbreak, being more tilted towards the control side. In the company’s term, it’s the upgraded version of Voyager original, which previously got significant attention due to its identical shape to the Z5.
Its premium coated face sets them apart in the entire graphite paddles lineup of the Onix. It feels amazing when playing soft games, plus the heavier weight is the cherry on top that gets your short-ball land rigorously!
It’s not a blocker though, but the surface stretching to 8.25″ x 10.25” does the job perfectly of dealing the shots targeted at your body. It makes a good sweet spot through its dimension as well, making your dinks go a bit nicely, while allowing you to feel more connected to it, through its touch and feel.
- Widebody shape
- Precision-cut polypropylene
- Premium coated graphite
- Soft handles, cushioned & perforated
- To handed players might find it difficult to play with.
Improvements? Spin Shots! The paddle’s surface can be a bit more tacky to provide a good spin. The thickness of the paddle’s core also gets in between for slicing–making the situation even harder for a backhand spin.
Then why is it the best? It’s powerful for volleys, and its generous sweet spot creates the feeling that no other Onix Paddle could provide collectively. This control-oriented paddle is paired with the right amount of weight to give finesse, power, and pace, with reduced faults.
7. ONIX Stryker 4 Composite – Lightweight
Stryker 4 is the only lightweight pickleball paddle in the Onix lineup. Besides being lightweight, it’s the most underrated pickleball paddle and never got enough spotlight compared to others.
Its previous, though, was quite familiar in the pickleball community for its lightweight, generous sweet spot, and durability. Stryker 4 allowed the same specs. Although the construction was upgraded. However, during that time, it launched a bunch of its other paddles, which ate up the recognition Stryker 4 deserved.
The weight ranges between 6-9 to 7.3, having 7.1 as an average. Like Onix, it features two models, i.e. graphite and composite. And, of course, the composite one carries 3 more pounces with increased pop, power, and touch.
Graphite paddle is the best for agile players. It’s easy to swing and responds nicely to the dink paddles. Its traditional shape further makes it play groundstrokes effectively. The polypropylene enhances the control and touch of the paddle.
- Extremely Lightweight
- Cure tennis elbow and strain
- Provides consistency through control, touch and finesse
- Not for power-hitting
Above all, it has 5” larger handles, that’s why the majority of the former tennis players (the aged ones) could go for this any day! In the compromised power, it’s a fun-to-play “well-budget” paddle that keeps your cholesterol, calories, and other health-related issues in check!
WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN SELECTING THE BEST ONIX PICKLEBALL PADDLE:
- Marcus Luke
- Bonnie Williams
- Kris Anderson
- Steve Cole
- Mason Ford
- Erik Gertler
- Wes Gabrielsen
- Bryon Freso
Well, Onix also partnered with players to create the paddle most suited to them. For instance, it once collaborated with Matt Wright and Lucy Kovalova, which resulted in the manufacturing of Onix Evoke Premier–one of the classiest paddles to exist! It also runs an ambassador program for the pro players to aid them in their game, through their gears while keeping them on a budget.
Onix paddle lineup and discontinuation:
One thing about Onix is, it always keeps its lineup “fresh”. Whenever a new model is arriving, of the similar series, it discontinues the previous one. A few may include
- Voyager pro replacing voyager
- Stryker 4 replacing Stryker (both composite and graphite)
- Summit C1 replacing summit
You may wonder why this trend didn’t apply to the Evoke paddles, as they’re still in the game, despite having a teardrop, XL, and premier model.
Well, it’s because three of these paddles have different shapes. Onix only discontinues paddles in the similar shape while upgrading their technologies. It also discontinues those that don’t meet the current needs of the players, as it did with the Slammer, Inferno, and Recruit 3.0.
That’s enough of the Onix paddles. Let’s move to the specification, technologies, and features to consider getting the right one for you. We’ve made a checklist for you to look at before getting yourself a pickleball paddle. This list will help you ensure which feature will suit you.
When selecting a paddle, you must be precise about the weight as the weight plays an important role in the court and as well as in your life.
The weight tells how you will take the ball and what type of shots you’ll play on the court. If you have chronic pain or any type of the previous injury so you must choose a paddle with lightweight ranging from 6.5-7.8oz. But still, it completely depends on your physical fitness and preference.
Well, 90% of the Onix paddles are in the mid-weight range, from 7 oz to 8.5, or even 9 oz. It’s the reason most of the Onix paddles are a choice between the pro players or the intermediate ones.
A paddle that is heavier will provide you with the drive when hitting the ball. But it’ll give you less control because it can cause drowsiness and tennis elbow. In heavy paddles, Onix has the following paddles; Z5, Stryker, Vertex, Voyager, recruit 3.0.
Similarly, a paddle light will give you more control and less drive. It can be hard to handle in your hand. Onix has a range of lightweight paddles, i.e.; Evoke Graphite, Evoke Composite, Evoke XL series, Stryker 4 series.
The basic structure of the pickleball paddle depends on the core. The core is a honeycomb structure that we cannot see because it is covered with the paddle face and the edge guard.
The word composite might have popped up while we discussed paddles. A composite paddle means that the paddle is made up of different materials. I.e. the face, the edge guard and the handle, etc.
When we discuss core materials, we have 3 options in the Onix paddle: Nomex, Aluminum, and polypropylene.
- NOMEX is a dense material and hard but extremely light. This paddle may provide you with immense strength but lacks control due to its density.
- ALUMINUM is not a material used that much in paddles but still, you can get these paddles in the market. Aluminum paddles will make your shot weaker than any other material. People with arm limitations can use aluminum paddles. If you want to get an Aluminum paddle, Onix Recruit 3.0 is the best option.
- POLYPROPYLENE is a flexible, durable, and strong material. You will feel power and control with this paddle. Every strike with a polypropylene paddle will hit differently. This paddle will last you a very long time.
Onix further broke the trend, creating a mix of two cores in one paddle. We’ve already discussed that above, but it’s worth talking about that again. Its Fusion core that Onix featured in the Onix React combining Nomex and polypropylene core.
Similar to that, it has a Ribtec core in its edgeless paddle “Sub-Zero”. Though it mostly stays out of the stock, so we’re not going into the details for that.
- EDGE GUARD is a material that is used to cover the edges of the pickleball paddle. Edge guard increases “Guardbility” and saves the paddle from getting wear and tear. The shots can get missed if they hit the edge guard. Onix offers two edgeless paddles; Inferno & Sub Zero.
- EDGELESS PADDLES will give you more surface area with an extra sweet spot and no dud balls. The edgeless paddles are a good pick for those who want more control on their hits, with enhanced mobility, and will prevent you from having pain in your arm. Most Onix paddles have high-quality edge guards.
Handle Length & Grip:
The most important feature for selecting the best pickleball paddle is the handle length and grip. The key to selecting the perfect size is to select the smaller one because you can increase the grip size by adding an over-grip as per your preference, but you cannot reduce the size of the already large grip.
But do not use a paddle with a small grip deliberately because it can cause tennis elbow. And not do not use a grip that is largely because it won’t allow mobility of your wrist. So find the balance and opt for that option.
If you have big hands or you play with both of your hands, then choose a handle length above 5 inches. Or otherwise, 4-5 inches handle length is good and works for everyone.
Just like the core, the face of the paddle is also a concern you have to look at. The material will affect the shots you’ll play. Let’s consider the available options for paddle face;
- FIBERGLASS is a common material used on the surface of the paddles. Because of its cheap rates, it will not cost you much in terms of quality; fiberglass produces energy to hit the ball surface. These paddles are also known as composite paddles. If you want to choose composite paddles, you can go for Onix; Evoke teardrop, Evoke pro, Evoke XL, Z5, Stryker.
- GRAPHITE is a term used interchangeably with carbon fiber. It’s a very famous material in paddles, as it is light and stronger and more durable. Graphite provides extreme power while remaining lighter.
For the graphite, Onix incorporates TeXtreme technology, which increases strength and stiffness. Many professional players prefer graphite paddle as it gives them more control plus extra hitting power. If you want to choose composite paddles, you can pick Onix; Summit, Voyager, Outbreak.
Together we’ve gone through the list of the best Onix pickleball paddles. I’ve updated you with the topmost trending paddles Onix is offering. since it’s the most popular brand in the pickleball game you can trust this brand by its name.
The top three picks of the day will not disappoint you in terms of quality, weight, handle length, and material. These paddles will ensure your next win.
- ONIX Graphite Z5-excellent material choice and weight.
- Onix Graphite Evoke-good balance of every feature.
- ONIX Summit C1- the best choice for spinners.
Spin it, to win it.
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