Onix Pickleball Paddles Review [2022]

Onix is arguably one of the most successful pickleball paddle manufacturers in the sport.

The Nomex core, graphite and composite faces are rugged, hard-wearing materials that provide the paddles with both awesome power and control.

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These characteristics are carried through to the rest of the range, with the Evoke Pro being a great example of what can be achieved through innovation and the use of the latest materials and technology.

The range is split into categories for beginners to professional-level players.

ADV.INTER.BEG.
Evoke ProEvoke XLStryker 4 Graphite
Evoke PremierOnix Z5 GraphiteStryker 4 Composite
VoyagerOnix Z5 Fiberglass

Top Pick Advanced – Onix Evoke Pro

This paddle is targeted at the advanced professional player. It’s a durable power paddle with plenty of pop and power for smashing both groundstrokes and volleys to all areas of the court.

Top Pick Intermediate – Onix Z5

With the Onix Z5, you’ll get a good mix of a high level of technology, well-tested, traditional widebody design, and an affordable price.

Top Pick Beginner – Stryker 4

Paddles aimed at beginners will always be a bit of a compromise and this is true of both the graphite and fiberglass. There’s not much difference between them other than the composite feels a bit more solid and weighty with a bit more power but easier to spin with the graphite.

Onix Pickleball Paddles for Advanced Players

Onix Evoke Pro

SPECS:

  • Weight: 7.8 – 8.2 oz
  • Core: Polymer honeycomb
  • Paddle face: Fiberglass
  • Grip length: 5 inches
  • Grip size: 4-1/4 inches
  • Total length: 15-1/2 inches
  • Width: 8-1/16 inch

PROS:

  • A wide face and large sweet spot
  • Good control
  • Provide great spin
  • Lots of power

CONS:

  • The paddle can wear out quickly when used hard
  • The flared handle is not to everyone’s taste

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Paddle At A Glance

This paddle is squarely aimed at the advanced professional player. It’s a durable power paddle with plenty of pop and power for smashing both groundstrokes and volleys to all areas of the court.

It offers lots of control with the polymer core that can absorb your opponents’ power shots with ease and return them with accuracy.

Paddle Surface & Core

The polymer core is the heart of this paddle with the latest technology ensuring that the paddle can perform well both when delivering power shots and when finessing shots across the net around the kitchen.

Dinks and lobs can be executed with ease once you’ve got used to the idiosyncrasies of the fiberglass face. The paddle has a soft touch that is complimented by the available power when you need it.

Have a look on Amazon.

Hitting

Professional players absolutely love this paddle with it playing a part in many championship wins. It offers the advanced player accurate power shots while, at the same time, being able to control opponents’ balls comfortably.

The core and face are forgiving enough to absorb vibration, while the face has sufficient texture to impart impressive spin.

Fit & Look

The grip is somewhat different in that it takes its lead from tennis racquets, having a bit of a bump at the bottom. This takes some getting used to and can cause players a bit of discomfort before they adapt to it.

The paddle is fairly wide with a large sweet spot. For accurate, powerful ground shots, you need to place the ball accurately in the middle of the paddle as it does run out of steam a little if the ball is too far off-center.

The paddle comes in an array of designs with 13 different patterns and color combinations to choose from.

Onix Evoke Premier

SPECS:

  • Weight: 7.8 – 8.2 oz
  • Core: Polypropylene Honeycomb
  • Paddle face: Composite
  • Grip length: 5 inches
  • Grip size: 4¼
  • Total length: 16 inches
  • Width: 8 inches

PROS:

  • Solid feel
  • Excellent control
  • Lots of power
  • Good reach

CONS:

  • Dead spots develop over time
  • Not as durable as expected

CHECK AMAZON

Paddle At A Glance

The aim was to design the perfect paddle that provided power and control. The composite paddle face has a minimal surface covering that softens contact with the ball and helps to develop spin.

It also provides plenty of pop that everyone is looking for. Power comes from the polypropylene core.

The paddle also offers a good touch, allowing players to control the speed off the face very effectively. The face is 8 inches across, which translates into a huge sweet spot that inspires confidence.

Paddle Surface & Core

The DF composite fiberglass face has a thin coating to maximize the fiberglass texture.

This benefits its spin characteristics and allows for a consistent feel on all strokes. The edge guard is aerodynamically efficient, which helps in reducing the amount of drag generated by the air on each shot.

It aids in dispersing the shock across the face as the ball contacts the paddle, making for a much more even feel when blocking hard shots from your opponents.

Have a look on Amazon.

Hitting

The polypropylene core is slightly thicker than the other paddles in the range, offering enhanced touch and additional power, especially on driven ground strokes. The hard-hitting power of the paddle does not, however, compromise its ability to control and finesse shots across the net.

Fit & Look

The heavier construction adds to the paddle’s power and feel and is what sets it apart from the other paddles in the Onix stable. This is a big paddle stretching to 16 inches long with a wide 8-inch face.

The size gives players a distinct advantage, especially when reaching for overhead shots or when you’re sitting back on the baseline.

The handle is long and very similar to a tennis handle, providing excellent grip and space for two-handed play.

This is a distinctive, championship-winning paddle with an excellent balance between power and control. It isn’t really suitable for beginners, but intermediate to advanced players will be able to maximize its features to improve their game.

Onix Voyager

SPECS:

  • Weight: 8 oz
  • Core: Polypropylene
  • Paddle face: Graphite
  • Grip length: 5 inches
  • Grip size: 4-1/4 inches
  • Total length: 15-1/4 inches
  • Width:8-1/4 inches

PROS:

  • Accurate shot placement
  • Plenty of power
  • Absorbs vibration well
  • Lots of control

CONS:

  • Irritating grip design
  • The balance takes a bit of getting used to

CHECK AMAZON

Paddle At A Glance

Aimed at the intermediate to advanced player, the thicker core and great all-around performance make this a superb power paddle. Of all the paddles in the Onix range, this is the one that offers, in our opinion, the best value for money. 

Paddle Surface & Core

The graphite coating provides great control, imparting impressive amounts of spin and offering players great control. This comes with the added benefit of a small but responsive sweet spot that the Onix range is known for.

Have a look on Amazon.

Hitting

While the paddle is designed to hit hard, you’re going to have to be very accurate with it as the sweet spot is not as large as you might be used to with Onix paddles. The heaviness of the paddle is great for controlling spin and absorbs the power of incoming shots with ease. The grip masks the vibration well and you can develop a great feel after spending a little while with it on the court.

Fit & Look

The one aspect of this paddle that gets the most attention is the grip. You either love it or hate it as the stubby grip nub can irritate your hand if you are used to a straight smooth end. Some players develop blisters after long periods of play, so it may not be to everyone’s taste. Until you get used to it, this is not going to be the most accurate paddle you’ve played with. However, once you’ve developed a knack for playing with this paddle, it’s going to be hard to change to another model.

Onix Pickleball Paddles for Intermediate Players

Onix Evoke XL

SPECS:

  • Weight: 7.2 – 7.5 oz
  • Core: Polypropylene
  • Paddle face: Composite
  • Grip length:  5-1/4 inches
  • Grip size: 4-1/4 inches
  • Total length: 15-3/8 inches
  • Width: 7-5/8 inches

PROS:

  • Large sweet spot
  • Reasonable power
  • Great feel
  • Value for money

CONS:

  • A bit too light for some players
  • Uncomfortable grip

CHECK AMAZON

Paddle At A Glance

This paddle is designed for beginners. It’s forgiving, with a large sweet spot and the light weight makes it easy to use around the kitchen. The paddle balances power and feel with the polypropylene core, absorbing vibration while assisting the composite fiberglass face to transfer oodles of power on groundstrokes and overhead smashes. The XL helps build consistency, with beginners gaining confidence after a short time practicing with this paddle.

Paddle Surface & Core

The honeycomb polypropylene core is a hallmark of Onix paddles. While there are more exotic core materials available, the Onix design is tried and tested with a consistent feel and great power characteristics. The wide paddle face is useful for newer players who may not be as accurate or quick around the court.

Take a look on Amazon.

Hitting

This paddle is designed to offer a middle ground between power and control. This it does admirably by offering a large sweet spot and accurate shot placement. The composite face does an excellent job of concentrating the force on the ball but doesn’t sacrifice the feel and touch needed for playing the gentle game at the net. Dinks and gentle lobs are possible due to the great character of the playing area. The wide face is forgiving when it comes to mis-hit shots. Newcomers to the sport are given a confidence boost when their marginal shots come off successfully.

Fit & Look

This wide-faced paddle comes with a slightly longer handle, making it perfect for players with bigger hands. If you favor two-handed backstrokes, then there’s room for both hands to comfortably grip the paddle. The larger face helps with consistency when reaching for balls around the non-volley zone and off the baseline. The paddle comes with a funky face design with alternating edge guard colors and a selection of over 13 different color and pattern combinations.

Onix Z5 Graphite Pickleball Paddle

SPECS:

  • Weight: 7.5 – 8.2 oz
  • Core: Nomex
  • Paddle face: Graphite
  • Grip length: 5 inches
  • Grip size: 4¼ inches
  • Total length: 15½ inches
  • Width: 8-7/10 inches
  • Edge guard: Yes

PROS:

  • Widebody shape with a large sweet spot
  • Lots of power
  • Grip is comfortable 
  • Very affordable

CONS:

  • A bit too heavy for smaller players
  • Lots of vibration felt through the grip
  • Some players might struggle with ball control

CHECK AMAZON

Paddle At A Glance

This is a widebody paddle, making it perfect for beginners to hit accurately and with power. At over 8 ounces, it’s not quite as heavy as the composite paddle, but it is still a solid paddle that can be a bit heavy for smaller players. But, with its wide sweet spot, and wide face, miss-hits are reduced.

You’ll be able to generate plenty of power from the traditional Nomex core, with the graphite face providing a stiff surface that is responsive and long-lasting.

Paddle Surface & Core

The graphite face is solid with plenty of roughness. This makes it ideal for those who like to put lots of spin on their shots. The Nomex core provides plenty of rigidity, giving the paddle plenty of “pop”.

The core is set up to provide plenty of power. Nomex is a cardboard-like material that is dipped in resin to give it rigidity. With the large hitting area and huge sweet spot, it’s hard not to hit well with this paddle. This is why it has such wide appeal amongst new and intermediate players. It provides plenty of accuracy, allowing players to not only place their shot but to do so with a lot of punch.

The core is exceedingly durable, so it will put up with plenty of abuse and not develop flat spots which plague some other paddles.

Have a look at the Onix Z5 Graphite Paddle on Amazon.

Hitting

The combination of a firm core and graphite face provides the paddle with a great feel. Players report that both hard and softer shots are easily dealt with. 

The ability to vary the pace on the ball and impart spin when needed give players plenty of options.

The honeycomb core is able to provide a very durable and strong base on which to layer the graphite face. The two materials complement each other by reducing the weight for ease of handling and feel while still offering players enough pop to be dangerous.

Graphite is lighter than fiberglass while still providing a rigid, high-performance paddle. 

Fit & Look

The grip is not particularly long, but it is quite skinny. Even players with small hands may need to adjust the grip by adding a bit of tape to beef it up.

The wide face gives plenty of contact area, allowing you to reach most returns with ease. Its traditional shape makes this a paddle that is easy to play with, which accounts for its broad appeal.

It comes in a variety of colors and designs, so there’s something for everyone’s taste. You can order a paddle in a traditional black with blue graphic or one of the other more exotic designs in purple, yellow, orange, pink, green, white, or yellow.

Onix Z5 Fiberglass Pickleball Paddle 

SPECS:

  • Weight: 8.4-9.2 oz
  • Core: Nomex
  • Paddle face: Fiberglass composite
  • Grip length: 5 inches
  • Grip size: 4¼ inches
  • Total length: 15½ inches
  • Width: 8-3/10 inches
  • Edge guard: Yes

PROS:

  • Lots of power
  • Good control
  • Wide face with a big sweet spot
  • Price

CONS:

  • A bit heavier for smaller players
  • Grip needs adjustment
  • Beginner players might lack ball control

Paddle At A Glance

The traditional wide-body shape and large sweet spot are the determining features of this old-school paddle. It’s not hard to miss the large Z-graphic on the face, with even some professional players opting to wield these paddles in tournaments.

The paddle is a couple of ounces heavier than the graphite model and this is put to good use when players need extra power in overhead smashes or when playing off the baseline. When you need that little bit of extra bite to help with control and finesse around the non-volley zone, this is the paddle that you want in your hand.

Paddle Surface & Core

The fiberglass face and Nomex core are a little heavier than the graphite model and you can feel it. The paddle feels more substantial with bigger players enjoying the extra power they get from the weight advantage.

The time-tested core provides a rigid paddle with the fiberglass providing a large sweet spot. It is both durable and responsive while providing plenty of feedback. The composite finish provides enough roughness to give your shots the spin you require. 

Some players prefer the extra roughness that graphite gives the face, but the fiberglass paddle’s spin characteristics are top-notch and there’s little to tell the two apart when it comes to applying spin.

Hitting

Players love the power and accuracy they get from the paddle. The Z5 is known for its solid feel and this comes through loud and clear when you hear the ball hitting the surface. It’s not the quietest paddle, but it is not billed as such.

The paddle doesn’t provide quite as much spin as the graphite finish, but it’s still controllable. 

While there are now many elongated and other unusual shapes on the market, the traditional, wide face of the Onix Z5 provides a simple and elegant paddle that offers a large sweet spot and excellent control characteristics.

The paddle is not so long that it becomes unwieldy when reacting to shots around the kitchen. Players appreciate the balanced feel and ability to adjust their position no matter how quickly they need to respond.

Fit & Look

This is a distinctive paddle that has been around for many years. There are plenty of design options and more than 10 different colors to choose from, so finding the right one is a certainty.

While the handle is not overly long, it is adequate if a little too thin for most players. This is easily fixed with the application of some tape though. 

The paddle design is traditional without the use of elongated and exotic shapes. This seems to work well with beginners and intermediate players sticking with the tried and tested design. 

Onix Pickleball Paddles for Beginners

Onix Stryker 4 Graphite Paddle and 

Onix Stryker 4 Composite Paddle

SPECS:

  • Weight: 6.7 – 7.4 oz and 6.9 – 7.4 oz
  • Core: Polypropylene
  • Paddle face: Graphite and Composite
  • Grip length: 5 inches
  • Grip size: 4-1/4 inches
  • Total length: 15-1/2 inches
  • Width: 7-5/8 inches

PROS:

  • A wide face and large sweet spot
  • A reasonable level of power
  • Nimble and easy to position
  • Great feel

CONS:

  • The grip is a bit awkward
  • Pricey

CHECK AMAZON

Paddle At A Glance

Paddles aimed at beginners will always be a bit of a compromise and this is true of both these paddles. There’s not much difference between them other than the composite feels a bit more solid and weighty.

It feels like there’s a little more power from the composite paddle while the graphite paddle edges ahead with its ability to impart spin. These paddles are both excellent value for money, coming well below $100 each.

Paddle Surface & Core

Both paddles enjoy a polypropylene core that is responsive and gives both these paddles a large sweet spot. This is important for beginners as it helps to build confidence if shots are miss-hit slightly, yet still, go where you intended.

The graphite face is slightly more textured than the composite paddle, which enhances its spin ability. Dinks and drop shots are also consistently good with both paddles, providing great feedback.

Hitting

Players enjoy the ability to really smack the ball with these paddles while still retaining lots of control. The polypropylene core offers a good balance of power and feel with the composite edging ahead in the power stakes, while the graphite model seems to do better when finessing the ball.

Have a look on Amazon.

Fit & Look

As with all the Onix paddles that come with the tennis-racquet style grip, it takes time to get used to it. As it is quite short, your palm tends to ride up against the raised portion, resulting in tenderness and even blisters if played with for a long time.

Despite this, the grip deals well with moisture and absorbs vibration very well. The paddles come in a few different pastel shades with yellow, blue, black, and purple designs.

Surprisingly, these are quite muted compared to Onix’s usually zany designs.

Onix Pickleball Balls & Accessories

Onix is well known for its pickleball balls. In fact, the Onix G2 is very popular and is used for both indoor and outdoor play.

In addition, the Onix Pure 2 outdoor pickleball ball is widely liked and used. It’s been around for years. Read more about the Onix pickleball balls and other balls on the market.

Onix has some fantastic, durable pickleball bags. You can read our detailed review.

Onix Pickleball Paddles Review – FAQs

Is Onix a good pickleball paddle brand?

Yes, Onix is a good pickleball. Onix pickleball paddles are a long-standing part of the pickleball scene. They are a tried and tested high-quality paddle at a reasonable price. Everyone from beginners to professional players uses Onix paddles, and for a very good reason, they’re good to play with, with plenty of power, pop and control.

Who makes Onix pickleball paddles?

Escalade sports make Onix pickleball paddles.

They’re headquartered in Evansville, Indiana, a publicly traded (NASDAQ: ESCA) manufacturer of consumer sporting goods and recreational products.

The company’s involvement in sporting goods spans nearly 100 years since its founding in 1927 as Indian Archery and Toy Company.

What’s better fiberglass or graphite pickleball paddles?

Fiberglass paddles are better if you’re looking for a paddle that has more power. Typically you’ll find more power playing with a fiberglass pickleball paddle. If you want a pickleball paddle that allows you to play with more control and fitness, then try a graphite pickleball paddle.

What core materials does Onix use to make their pickleball paddles?

Onix makes pickleball paddles with an aluminum, Nomex, and Polypropylene core. The Recruit 3.0 has an aluminum core

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