Gearbox Pickleball Paddles Review

Gearbox pickleball paddles are manufactured using an innovative composite technology that is a major step forward in paddle design and all of their paddles are constructed in one piece and are edgeless. We highlight a variety of their paddles in this Gearbox pickleball paddles review.

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The top pick in our Gearbox Pickleball Paddles review is the Gearbox GX5 Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle control version at 8.5 ounces and here’s why:

The GX5 paddle feels more secure when dinking and blocking while power strokes are where the paddle really shines and the slim aerodynamic frame has less air drag allowing players to move the paddle in a fast and responsive way.

The longer grip and large sweet spot ensure that the paddle contacts the ball perfectly and players report getting more topspin on the ball. Smaller and less advanced players may find the paddle a little too big and heavy, in which case they should consider our runner-up paddle instead. 

Our other top pick is the CX14H

The runner-up Gearbox CX14H Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle is a great transition paddle. It’s aimed at players moving from traditional polymer paddles to carbon fiber. The CX14H is perfect for experienced players who are looking for a paddle that suits a softer, slower game, while still being able to hit powerful ground strokes when the need arises.

The goal of this Gearbox pickleball paddle review is to help you decide, with ease and understanding, which Gearbox pickleball paddle will work best for you and help you win more games.

Gearbox Pickleball Paddles Review

Gearbox GX5 Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle

SPECS:

  • Weight: 7.8 oz & 8.5 oz
  • Core: Carbon Fiber
  • Paddle face: Carbon Fiber
  • Grip length: 4-3/4″
  • Grip size: 3 5/8″ & 3 15/16′
  • Total length: 15-7/8″
  • Width: 8″

PROS:

  • Massive sweet spot
  • Excellent feel
  • Great spin control
  • Durable, long-lasting construction
  • Slim aerodynamic frame for less air drag

CONS:

  • Can take time to get used to the paddle
  • Higher initial cost than other entry-level paddles

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The new GX5 comes with upgraded patented Solid Span Technology (SST). This makes use of unidirectional carbon fiber which is laid by hand to exact tolerances. The paddles’ longevity and unique feel are the results of this innovative manufacturing process.

While the paddle takes a little getting used to, its solid feel and exquisite control are evident from the first shot. If you’re used to a noisy paddle then you’ll be happily surprised by the softer, more neutral sound that is the hallmark of this Gearbox line. The lower noise levels will satisfy even the most sensitive neighbors.

The frame is designed to provide a lower drag coefficient.

This gives you a faster, more responsive paddle. It’s optimized for balance, with players at all levels enjoying its stable, controllable design.

The slimmer structure, allows players to reposition the paddle quickly and effectively making it highly maneuverable and perfect for imparting maximum spin.

Have a look at the GX5 on Amazon.

The absence of a raised edge around the face gives players a larger hitting surface. You may want to use some Gearbox Protective Tape to protect the top-edge surface as it’s prone to scuffing and tearing. 

While the sweet spot is much bigger than some of its competitors’ paddles, there is a tendency for the ball to die a little when striking the outer edges of the paddle.

You’ll see reduced mishits when playing with the GX5, but players must exercise caution to avoid the ball hitting the extreme edges of the paddle.

Shot accuracy is optimized with the larger sweet spot. You’ll find that there’s plenty of power when returning shots.

With longer use, the GX5 helps to improve performance consistency. The Hyper Bite Spin Technology built into the paddle surface offers players added spin and controllability. For a larger grip size, try Gearbox Smooth Wrap.

Gearbox GX6 Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle

SPECS:

  • Weight: 7.8oz and 8.5oz
  • Core: Carbon Fibre
  • Surface face: Carbon Fiber
  • Grip size: 3 5/8″ and 3 15/16 (almost 4″)
  • Grip length: 5-5/8″
  • Total length: 16-5/8″
  • Width: 7-3/8″
  • Colors: Red, Green, Neon Yellow, Blue

PROS:

  • Large sweet spot
  • Bigger hitting area
  • Longer handle (ideal for double-handed backhands)
  • Long-lasting construction
  • Well priced

CONS:

  • It may be a bit light for some players
  • Extra length is a little awkward for smaller players

CHECK AMAZON

The GX6 is best suited to the more advanced player who can get the most out of its advanced design features. With a similar construction to the GX5, the GX6 sounds awesome, with a soft yet solid pitch that is slightly higher than other paddles on the market.

The 8.5-ounce version of the GX6 may be a little on the heavy side for smaller players, but the 7.8 ounce is much more manageable even with the slightly longer grip and the slim aerodynamic design more than makes up for the slight loss of maneuverability.

Power shots are effortless with lower drag and an excellent feel.

Perfect vibration control and dampening built into the frame makes this paddle a pleasure to use, especially when controlling power shots from your opposition. It’s relatively easy to control after you get used to the extra length and it imparts a high level of spin.

The edgeless paddle frame is quite forgiving, allowing you to not only reach shots that you perhaps would not make with a smaller playable surface area but reducing the number of mishits by an appreciable margin. To help protect the edges, try Gearbox Protective Tape to protect the top-edge surface from scuffing and tearing. 

If you enjoy a power game, then this paddle is built for you.

Check out the GX6 on Amazon.

The large sweet spot, huge playing area, and lack of a raised edge all translate into a dependable, consistent game. And, shot accuracy is improved even when putting more power in.

The sweet spot extends down towards the handle, which makes shots more controllable. And if you feel like you need a slightly larger grip, try applying Gearbox Smooth Wrap.

The paddle is very thin when compared to its competitors. This gives it a more nimble feel and the aerodynamic efficiency together with its spin characteristics makes it the perfect paddle when you move up from being a beginner to a more advanced player.

The ball bites more on the surface, giving you great spin control when you want it.

If you like the GX6 but feel you might need a larger grip, try adding Gearbox Smooth Wrap to get a bit

Gearbox CP7 Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle

SPECS:

  • Weight: 7.8 – 8.5 oz
  • Core: Polypropylene (PPE) Honeycomb
  • Surface face: Carbon Fiber
  • Grip length: 5.5″
  • Total length: 16.5″
  • Width: 7.38″

PROS:

  • Great spin characteristics
  • Plenty of power
  • Great balance
  • Improved consistency
  • Price

CONS:

  • Not as durable as the 100% fiberglass models
  • Not suitable for playing a soft game.

CHECK AMAZON

The CP7 is Gearbox’s first paddle that is non-fiberglass and uses poly core technology in keeping with its competitors. They are reasonably priced at somewhere around $100.

The paddle is quite thin at 0.5-inches, giving it more power characteristics than control. By combining the poly core with a carbon fiber face, you get the best of both materials.

There’s plenty of power but it’s restrained by the more giving PPE core.

The paddle includes Hyperbite Spin Technology, which improves the spin characteristics and control.

Adding a 5.5-inch handle gives the paddle added reach. This may not suit everyone as the paddle can feel a little unwieldy, especially in the kitchen where maneuverability is key.

However, the longer handle allows two-handed backhands, which offer power advantages to players who prefer to hit with both hands. The longer handle comes with an elongated face which is great for extended reach, but beginners may struggle a bit with contacting the ball so far away from their hands.

See the CP7 on Amazon.

This is a paddle for the intermediate to the more advanced players who may derive a little extra power by adding Tourna Pickleball Lead Tape to the top edge.

The paddle suits an attacking game with drives and high put-away shots being the paddle’s preferred modus operandi. You can generate plenty of power with the paddle while still producing an impressive amount of topspin.

Unexpectedly, dinking is fairly easy with the CP7. You will have to spend some time getting accustomed to the paddle to bring off good drop shots, but the time spent drilling with the paddle will bear fruit. 

If you enjoy a power game, then this paddle is built for you. The large sweet spot, huge playing area, and lack of a raised edge all translate into a dependable, consistent game. Shot accuracy is improved, even when putting more power into each shot.

The paddle is very thin when compared to its competitors. This gives it a more nimble feel. This, together with its spin characteristics, make it the perfect paddle when you move up from being a beginner to a more advanced player. The ball bites more on the surface, giving you great spin control when you want it.

Gearbox CX11E Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle

SPECS:

  • Weight: 7.8 oz or 8.5 oz
  • Core: Carbon Fiber
  • Surface face: Carbon Fiber
  • Grip length: 5-5/8″
  • Grip size: 3-5/8″ and 3-15/16″
  • Total length: 16-5/8″
  • Width: 7-3/8″

PROS:

  • Excellent control
  • Great spin
  • Thin and aerodynamic
  • Big sweet spot

CONS:

  • Higher price

CHECK AMAZON

The Gearbox CX11E Elongated Power Pickleball Paddle is a maneuverable paddle, despite its length. The T-700 graphite chambers are designed to give the paddle additional power characteristics, which ensure that your ground strokes are powerful while using less effort. This also helps you to control your shot placement. 

The paddle is extremely tough and durable, which translates into fewer dead spots on the face, even with a prolonged period of hard use. The extra-long face and grip provide a lot of reach, making it easier to cover the whole court with ease.

If you enjoy double-handed backhands, then this is the perfect paddle for you. At 5-5/8-inches, the grip provides plenty of space even for players with large hands.

The paddle comes with two grip sizes, 3-5/8″ and 3-15/16″.

This helps to accommodate those players with smaller hands, while the addition of grip tape will help to keep your paddle secure, even in very humid conditions.

Given the extended length of the CX11E, it might result in hitting and scraping the paddle edges on the ground more often. Consider wrapping the edges with either Gearbox Edge Tape or Guard Head protection tape.

Learn more about the Gearbox CX11E Elongated Pickleball Paddle on Amazon.

The CX11E has a very slim profile of almost 11/16″ (11mm). This makes the paddle extremely agile, so responding quickly at the net is much easier.

The 3K Woven Carbon Fiber face produces a softer paddle without reducing its ability to provide power for groundstrokes. Dinks are also a pleasure with the paddle providing a great feel.

This paddle is well balanced with the option of either a 7.8-ounce or 8.5-ounce paddle available to suit most players’ needs. While the paddle is a bit pricier than the model it replaces, the longer life span more than makes up the difference.

Gearbox CX14H Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle

SPECS:

  • Weight: 8.0 oz
  • Core: Carbon Fiber
  • Surface face: Carbon Fiber
  • Grip length: 5-5/8″
  • Grip size:
  • Total length: 15-5/8″
  • Width: 8″

PROS:

  • Extremely durable
  • Excellent quality
  • Exceptional spin characteristics
  • Visually appealing

CONS:

  • Takes time to adjust to the paddle
  • Pricey

CHECK AMAZON

The CX14H are newly designed paddles that add depth to the already impressive range of Gearbox paddles. At 14mm thick, they are thinner than their rivals by a fair margin, but they are the thickest paddles manufactured by Gearbox. The CX range of paddles tips the scales at 8 ounces, so these are paddles that may not fit your style of play or strength. 

Unlike the other Gearbox ranges, the CX range does not have a power and control option. They do come with longer handles, which suits those players with larger hands or if you prefer to play two-handed backhands. 

The paddle feels solid but dinks will require plenty of practice before you can rely on them during your game. The paddle is focused on control, and blocks and resets are extremely satisfying once you’ve got used to the way it takes speed off the ball.

You will be able to hit the ball a lot harder than you might imagine without over-hitting the ball. The sweet spot is larger than in previous Gearbox paddles. There’s a lot more pop off the face which increases your chance of winning points at the net.

The CX14H has a more traditional face shape which will suit players who are comfortable with the reduced reach and prefer to hit the ball closer to their hand. This makes for a more dependable paddle without worrying about mishits from the slightly longer, elongated model. These paddles are great for players transitioning from a thicker polymer paddle. If you’re looking for an incredibly soft paddle with awesome spin characteristics, then the CX14H is well worth trying out.

Gearbox CX14E Carbon Fiber Pickleball Paddle

SPECS:

  • Weight: 8.0 oz
  • Core: Carbon Fiber
  • Surface face: Carbon Fiber
  • Grip length: 5-5/8″
  • Grip size:
  • Total length: 16-5/8″
  • Width: 7-3/8″

PROS:

  • Great control
  • Extended reach
  • Great spin
  • Accuracy

CONS:

  • Takes time to get used to 
  • Price

CHECK AMAZON

The CX14E is a soft paddle with an elongated face.

The purpose of the CX14 range is to provide a transition paddle for those players moving away from polymer-core paddles. The CX14E is 14mm thick, which is at least 5mm thinner than the closest polymer paddle.

While the paddle is thinner, it does not sacrifice control and is perfect for players who enjoy the extra reach that a longer face and handle offers. 

You may struggle a little with the narrower face, but your ability to hit two-handed backhands and the ability to reach shots that may have been out of reach before more than makes up for that.

This is a great option as a singles paddle. The paddle takes some getting used to, as you will find that you can hit the ball much harder than you might think and still maintain pinpoint accuracy and control.

Have a look at the CX14E on Amazon.

Players report that on first using the paddle they missed dinks due to not putting enough power into the shot.

Once you’ve adjusted to the way the paddle plays, your confidence will soar as you put away shots with confidence. No honeycomb core means that the paddle lasts longer and you won’t lose the sweet spot.

Gearbox Pickleball Paddles Review – FAQ

Is Gearbox a good paddle?

Yes, Gearbox is a good paddle due to its innovative use of carbon fiber technology. The paddles provide an excellent combination of control, spin, and power together with industry-leading durability.

What is the difference between the Gearbox GX5 paddle and the GX6 paddle?

The difference between the Gearbox GX5 and Gearbox GX6 is that the gearbox GX6 paddle is slightly longer and a bit narrower. The GX6 also has a longer handle. This makes the GX5 more suitable for beginner to intermediate players, while the GX6 is better suited to more advanced players.

How long do Gearbox paddles last?

Gearbox paddles will last a few years. When compared to traditional polymer core paddles that need replacement after about 6 months of regular play, Gearbox paddles offer great value for money.

What are Gearbox pickleball paddles made of?

Gearbox pickleball paddles are made of woven carbon fiber as well as carbon fiber tubes. Some of their paddles include a combination of a polymer core and a carbon fiber face and handle. All are made of a single piece molded construction.

Where are Gearbox pickleball paddles manufactured?

Gearbox pickleball paddles are manufactured in China.

What is Gearbox patented solid span technology (SST)?

Gearbox patented solid span technology (SST) uses an advanced proprietary molding process utilizing high-strength unidirectional carbon fiber that is meticulously hand-laid and arranged at very precise angles. As a result, a one-piece paddle with no delamination, no soft spots, excellent performance and unmatched durability is manufactured.

According to Gearbox, the angle configuration of the carbon fiber is critical and directly related to the paddle’s overall durability and playability.

Gearbox solid span technology (SST) paddles are constructed from the core out and the patented Solid Span Core is carefully handcrafted, consisting of various graphite chambers. Each chamber is hand-laid and organized section by section for optimum performance.

The entire structure (frame, face, handle) is placed into a mold to cure the resin with high internal pressure and heat. The structure then cools, yielding a superbly crafted one-piece molded construction.
Four key sections of the paddle are unified during this molding process:

– The Patented Solid Span Core
– The Surface of Paddle (front and back face)
– The Perimeter Frame of Paddle
– The Handle

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