Here is a quick comparison of two popular pickleball paddles, the Engage Pursuit MX 6.0 (Thick Core) and the Ben Johns Hyperion CFS 16 based on my personal experience as a 3.5 rated player.
Joola or Engage Pickleball Paddle?
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A Comparison of The Engage Pursuit MX 6.0 vs Joola Hyperion CFS 16mm
Both are excellent paddles and you can’t go wrong. However, here are a few differences between the two paddles that may sway your decision.
The Joola has a raw carbon fiber surface that feels rough to the touch while the Engage has a graphite skin face that is smoother to the touch. Both have about the same length handle, providing enough space for a two handed backhand.
Power and Control
The paddles both play very similarly. In fact, I am able to switch between the two paddles without much adjustment. Both paddles are very stable and do a great job of absorbing and resetting hard drives from opponents, while dinks hit with both paddles are precise. The Joola does makes a higher pitched sound when contacting the ball. The Engage is very balanced all around paddle which is great for singles or doubles play. The Joola is heavier in the head. The head heaviness helps to give the Joola the edge in generating more power on drives. However, it also slows you down at the net. The Joola is better suited for singles play.
Hands down, I am able to generate noticeably more spin with the Joola. It is satisfying to hit both forehand and backhand drives over the net with generous topspin. You will need to clear the net with a little more height on drives with the extra topspin generated. Effective topspin lobs are also a joy to hit with the Joola as well.
Overall, I find the Joola more fun to play with as I like to stay at the baseline and hit the ball hard!
Note that Engage has since come out with the Engage Pursuit Ultra. I compare it against the original Engage Pursuit MX here. JOOLA has also followed up with the new Ben Johns Perseus Pickleball Paddle.