Best Volleyball Reviews 2018

Any memorable volleyball game has more to do with the ball than any other thing. If you’re a professional, you can’t afford to pick a ball that doesn’t provide a firm grip and is redirected by the wind. As an enthusiast or amateur, you want to build your interest while steadily enjoying the game. All these desires can only materialize when you make the right choice of ball and that is a challenging task when you consider the sheer number of options available in the market. But hey, as your buddies, we’ve done the sampling and came up with five of the best volleyballs from five trusted brands.
Overview
PROS
CONS
SPECS
Design
Use
Colors
Surface
Material
Our Top Choice
Baden Perfection® Leather Volleyball
Established in 1979, Baden has been true to its mission to anticipate customer needs and satisfy them with superior-quality and innovative sports products.
Made with high-quality leather. Soft valve. Made with a special adhesive. AVCA’s official court ball. NFHS-approved.
A bit expensive, but then, the ball is elite-quality.
3-color stripes
Indoor; outdoor
19 colors available
Smooth
Leather
Best Value
Tachikara Sensi-Tec Composite Volleyball
For over a century, Tachikara has been manufacturing sports balls tailored to how the game is played in order to improve player performance and adaptability.
Professional-grade. Regulation size. Attractive appearance. Patented design. Official approval. Great warranty.
Might not last too long if used often by heavy hitters.
2-color stripes
Indoor
58 colors available
Smooth
Micro-fiber; composite leather
Molten FLISTATEC Volleyball
With over 57 years of experience in the manufacture of sports balls and accessories, Molten has earned itself a revered reputation as the official NCAA game ball maker.
Superior-quality. Official match ball standard. Innovative design technology. Made with durable materials. Great accuracy and control.
A bit too bouncy, so rookies might not adjust well to it.
3-color waves
Indoor
Red/white/blue; red/white/green
Rough
Micro-fiber
Mikasa Sports Official FIVB Game Ball
Mikasa specializes in making sports balls to the highest of standards with a focus on quality and performance, which improves player quality and the overall experience.
Official standard ball. Aerodynamic design. Dimpled surface. Wound nylon core. Soft microfiber cover.
Quite hard to hit.
8 panel
Indoor
Blue/yellow
Embossed
Micro-fiber
Spalding Extreme Pro Wave Volleyball
With over a century’s experience, Spalding manufactures sports balls and systems to bring out the best experience of the game and increase the performance of the players.
Machine-stitched. Wave panel design. Soft surface. Official weight and size. TPE-covered.
Some complaints about air retention abilities.
Wave panel
Indoor; outdoor
3 color combos; white
Smooth
Stitched TPE

(Updated )
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How Do I Choose the Best Volleyball?

Let’s take a little trip back in time, shall we? Mintonette—you’re right, that’s what volleyball was called—was first played in 1895 in Holyoke, Massachusetts. It was created by YMCA director of physical education William G. Morgan, and it was designed to be an indoor game. Snap back to reality, and after several refinements and upgrades, mintonette has now become what we know as volleyball today. Volleyball made its debut in the Olympics in 1964.

The current highest governing body for volleyball is the Fédération Internationale de Volleyball which was founded in 1947. Now to the juiciest part, the ball! FIVB’s regulation standard for volleyballs is that they must be made with leather or synthetic leather, and of course, must be spherical. They must also weigh in at 260-280 grams (9.2-9.9 ounces) with a circumference of 65-67 centimeters (25.6-26.4 inches) with an air pressure of 0.3-0.325 kg/cm2. The best volleyballs are as close to regulation standards as possible. So, you now have a great benchmark to help you. You’re welcome.

Not everybody wants a regulation standard volleyball and that’s why some brands make volleyballs for practice and recreation. These balls are often soft to the touch and do not require you to be a pro-level player to handle them well. Some balls are designed for indoors, grass, the beach, etc., and you will find some that can be played on any surface. If you want to be able to play volleyball on outing trips, it’s a good idea to go for one of those all-inclusive volleyball net systems. These packages often contain all you need to play a game of volleyball and badminton since the difference in the net is just height. That way, you don’t just have access to two sports, and you can save money on a badminton racket. Some of these net systems even come with a carrying bag which can almost pass for a gym bag.

As you read on, you will have a better understanding of how to choose the best volleyball for your needs.
Price
Just like most other things, not all volleyballs are the same. The material used, approval, and the technology involved are some of the important factors that affect the pricing of a volleyball. A FIVB-approved official game ball replica can cost almost $100, while one that’s designed just for recreational play with little or no patented technology involved can be gotten for around $25.

Be careful of the cheap volleyballs though; the price is not necessarily a way of identifying them. These types of balls are made with inferior materials and won’t last you long enough.
Features
To choose the right volleyball, you need to consider who is playing, where, and when. These are important factors to help you make the right choice. Here are features to look out for to make the best choice of volleyball:
  • Design
  • Use
  • Size
  • Surface
  • Material
The following sections will help you understand how these features influence the efficacy of volleyballs.
Construction and Design
Design

The ideal volleyball for you depends on the factors stated earlier. For example, while a volleyball must be spherical, different technological innovations have been adapted to achieve this while guaranteeing exceptional user experience. Some brands sew from 8 –18 panels together to create a spherical outer shell that improves contact on the surface area. Some use a micro-fiber cover to enhance overhand passing and sets, while some use vibrant colors and patterns to increase visibility.

Use

Volleyballs are designed for different purposes. A ball meant to be played indoors on hard and smooth surfaces won’t do well on the beach. This is why it’s important to be sure of how you intend using the ball. If you’re not so certain, perhaps you’ll be better off going with one of those volleyballs that are made for all surfaces. Further, some balls are shipped deflated, so, you can pressurize them as you desire; while you will want the ball to be firm, you should consider the ball’s effects on your arms and wrists.

Size

Volleyball balls come in a standard size, though there are smaller and softer balls compatible for kids, as they often can’t handle the weight of the ball and it can be a turn-off during play. The standard weight of a volleyball is between 9.2 ounces to 9.9 ounces, but an ideal one for kids will weigh less. Oftentimes, the junior ball has a non-string cover which encourages the player to develop at his/her own pace.

Material

A lot of volleyballs are made of all-weather materials that make them perform optimally on the grass, on the beach, or on a concrete or wooden floor come rain or shine. These materials range from real leather to synthetic leather with polyurethane lines, bladder, and valve. All these make for a more-effective spin, sharper spikes, and better serves.
Performance and Ease of Use
In a game of volleyball, the ball is as important as the player in determining how enjoyable the game turns out to be. With many of these balls gaining worldwide popularity and meeting international standards, you can be sure your interest has been noticed and your satisfaction guaranteed. With bladders that have been carefully crafted to retain air, valve systems that are adjustable to increase accuracy and enhance firm grip, quality materials that ensure flight stability, and the durability of all parts of the ball, you can be sure you’re in for a swell time from the time you make your purchase and for years to come.

We hope this guide will help you decide on what you want from a volleyball concerning how you intend to use it. Once you’re done deciding, you can proceed to the review to choose the best volleyball for you.

What is the Best Volleyball?

We hope by now you have been able to decide on what you expect from an ideal volleyball. You can now proceed to read our review on individual brands/products. We hope you will find it easy to choose the best volleyball for you.
Our Top Choice
The Baden Perfection® Leather Volleyball features the Recessed Stealth Soft-Valve System™ which gives the ball a consistent feel with no sting so every contact results in an accurate play. If you’d love a soft volleyball at a lesser price, get the Baden Lexum Composite Game Volleyball. It also features the sting-free valve and is NFHS-approved.
Baden Perfection® Leather Volleyball – Available in 13 Colors

Baden Volleyball VX5E-00-F – White


Features
Baden was founded in 1979 in Renton, Washington, and is an innovative and trusted brand that manufactures quality softballs, soccer balls, basketballs, volleyballs, etc. No wonder it produced the first women’s basketball which was adopted by NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association), barely 5 years after its inception. Baden balls not only get approval from regulating bodies, but are also the official game ball for some tournaments.

The Baden Perfection® Volleyball is covered with top-quality, full-grain leather which gives it a soft feel while delivering the required impact for a perfect hit. This volleyball is highly durable, light, and delivers optimal response to produce the desired outcome with every hit.

A valve regulates the flow of air and it’s made with materials thicker than the entire ball to help it control air effectively. Sometimes, the player hits the valve which could really hurt; this is negative feedback, which often affects the quality of a player’s performance and consequently demoralizes the player. The Perfection® Volleyball has a patented recessed valve design that locates the valve below the ball’s surface so there’s no chance of getting stung from hitting the valve. That way, players can focus on their game with no fear or pain.

The Baden Perfection® Volleyball has the lightest butyl bladder ever used for volleyball and this creates an optimum ball weight and performance. It also sports a blended cotton wrap which ensures that the ball retains its shape throughout its lifespan. There’s a special type of adhesive used in the construction of this ball as well, and it is largely responsible for the great feel of the ball and it also prevents the panels from peeling.

The quality of this volleyball speaks for itself, which is apparently loud enough as it’s endorsed by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) and National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS). The NFHS writes most sports rules for high school competitions. Baden is also the official court ball maker for AVCA, which further proves its level of quality.

Here are other volleyballs by Baden you may like:
  • Baden Light Microfiber Training Volleyball – Advanced microfiber composite cover with butyl bladder
  • Baden SkilCoach Synthetic Training Volleyball – Official-size lightweight training ball with synthetic nylon cover
  • Baden Lexum Composite Volleyball – Recessed sting-free valve with soft-touch feel and butyl bladder
Best Value
The Tachikara Sensi-Tec Composite High-Performance Volleyball uses the Sensi-Tec microfiber composite leather and it adopts the loose bladder design for greater balance and in-flight stability. If you’d like a white official volleyball, go for the Tachikara Indoor Composite Volleyball which also has the loose bladder construction and is available in 5 colors.
Tachikara Sensi Tec Composite High-Performance Volleyball – Available in a Variety of Colors

Tachikara Volleyball SV5WSC.PWSL – Purple/White/Silver Gray


Features
Tachikara is a Japanese brand founded in Tokyo in 1915. Since its inception, it has relied on creativity and innovation for manufacturing high-quality sports balls. It collaborates with sports players to create balls that not only improve their performance, but are also tailored for how the balls are used. This attention to detail is what has earned this brand the status of official maker of match balls for top sporting tournaments including the Olympics. The creativity of this brand shows in how it adds colors to its products. If you’re looking for a colorful basketball, Tachikara is a brand you can turn to. Further, its beautiful volleyballs are a good example of its innovation.

The Tachikara SV5WSC Composite Volleyball has the Sensi-Tec microfiber composite construction with a resin fiber cover. This attractively-colored ball is regulation size and has the approval of the National Federation of State High School Association (NFHS). This particular variant has a host of lovely color combinations, and it will almost be impossible for you not to find one you’ll love.

This volleyball is designed with the patented loose bladder method which allows air flow between the inner bladder of the ball and the blend of cotton canvas and leather on the outside cover. This makes the ball well-balanced and gives it better stability in-flight, which in turn gives players greater control and better handling of the ball. This innovative design was made popular by, you guessed right, yours truly, Tachikara.

This ball will easily pass for a match ball as it’s made to professional standards and is regulation size. Ideal for indoor use and intended for all ages, it will suit recreation centers and school gyms. The manufacturer offers a 2-year warranty on this ball which spells confidence—two years is a long time to find out if the ball isn’t good enough.
Get your professional game on with the Molten NCAA® FLISTATEC Volleyball which sports the Flight Stability Technology which enhances ball control and accuracy. If you’d like a recreational variant, go for the Molten Recreational Volleyball which is covered in ultra-soft PU and is available in 18 colors.
Molten NCAA® FLISTATEC Volleyball – Available in 3 Colors, All Officially Approved

Molten Volleyball V5M5000-3N – NCAA Official - Red, White, Blue


Features
Molten is a large manufacturer of sports balls, sports equipment, and coaching accessories. With a mission to help athletes maximize their potential, it focuses on the details that affect how the game is played to design its products. This dedication and consistency is what earned it the status of official game ball maker for NCAA, and got the approval of FIVB and USAV. With relentless efforts towards innovation, craftsmanship, and technology, Molten will continue to create products with unparalleled quality and superior performance.

If you want to play like the pros you watch on TV and express the sage-like control they have on the ball, the Molten FLISTATEC Volleyball is your best bet to achieve that. The reason is simple: it’s the same ball they use. This ball is the official volleyball of the NCAA Men’s Championship. It sports the Flight Stability Technology (FLISTATEC) design, which boosts your ball control making your overhand passes a lot more accurate.

Still on the unique ball design technology, this official game ball replica has superior in-flight stability because it optimizes its surrounding air current. It’s nylon-wound and is covered with premium micro-fiber composite making it ideal for indoor use. Due to its official approvals and regulation size and weight, this ball is ideal for school gyms, sports complexes, and anywhere else volleyball is taken seriously.

The following are some more professional-standard products available from the stables of Molten:
  • Molten Official NORCECA Volleyball – Microfiber composite-covered and is equipped with the FLISTATEC
  • Molten Light Touch Volleyball – Has soft polyurethane cover and is ideal for players under age 12
  • Molten Super Touch Volleyball – Covered with premium Japanese leather and is the official NCAA ball for women
  • Molten Pro Touch Volleyball – Nylon-wound, is the official USAV volleyball, and is NFHS-approved
Relive the Olympic experience with the Mikasa Official FIVB Indoor Volleyball which has a dimpled surface that creates turbulence in the air around it so it can travel with less resistance and more stability. If you’d like a volleyball with a softer cover, go for the Mikasa Squish No-Sting Pillow Cover Volleyball which is also official-size and waterproof.
Mikasa Sports MVA200 Official FIVB Indoor Volleyball

Mikasa Sports Volleyball 61164


Features
Mikasa started off in Hiroshima over 89 years ago with so much passion and a focus to create the perfect game ball. Mikasa manufactures sports balls to the highest standards, meeting the toughest requirements and knowing only the best can qualify as an official game ball. It makes balls for sports including football, soccer, basketball, dodgeball, and many others. Regardless of the sport in question, excellence is always its aim and this is what made its volleyball the official Olympic game ball.

The Mikasa MVA200 is one of the most widely acclaimed volleyballs among professional players and official tournaments. This ball was the official game ball for the 2008, 2012, and 2016 Olympic volleyball games. If you have your doubts about this ball, the fact that it’s used at the highest level of volleyball tournaments will alleviate them. Further, the blue and yellow color pattern on the ball enhances its visibility which helps with the player’s reaction time.

This ball features a unique 8-panel swirl design which provides more contact areas on the ball’s surface. It also sports an aerodynamic embossed and dimpled surface, which creates turbulence in the air around it so the ball can move through the air with less resistance. This improves strike and pass accuracy and lets the ball travel further and faster with less effort. That way, players can conserve energy and have more-precise control of the ball.

This championship series ball is a size 5, which is the official regulation size. It has a nylon-wound core and an exclusive soft microfiber cover which gives the ball a great feel and an even greater in-flight stability. Being the FIVB official game ball, it has its approval as well as that of many nations’ official volleyball organizations. This game ball’s cemented seams allow air to flow between the ball’s cover and the carcass, which gives it its soft feel but still retains the explosiveness that brings the action into the game.
If you’re looking for a volleyball that’s designed for recreational play, the Spalding Extreme Pro Wave Volleyball is an ideal choice. It’s machine-stitched and covered with TPE. If you’d like an official beach tour volleyball, go for the Spalding King of the Beach Official Tour Volleyball which is hand-stitched and covered with all-weather composite.
Spalding Extreme Pro Wave Volleyball – Available in 4 Colors

Spalding Volleyball 72198 – Blue/Orange


Features
Spalding has over a century of experience manufacturing sports products that enhance the playability of the sport as well as the players’ performance in the game. It has been the official manufacturer of NBA’s game day basketball and backboard, the Rucker League, Arena Football League, NCAA, and Euroleague. Its dedication to excellence and commitment to never-ending improvement is what has taken this brand to great heights. Its Extreme Pro Volleyball is a good example of Spalding’s dedication to excellent products.

The Spalding Extreme Pro Wave Volleyball is designed for recreational play, and is also ideal for practicing as it is the official weight and size. It sports a machine-stitched TPE cover with WAVE panel design which gives you more surface area to make contact with. This gives you improved ball control and handling, letting you aim your spikes where your opponent won’t reach.

It has a soft-touch surface, allowing you to hit the ball as hard as you want without concerns of negative feedback on your palm. It’s not too heavy, but has enough weight to be controlled and glides through the air in just the direction you want it to go. It’s also not so light that its direction can be changed by the wind. This colorful ball is available in Blue/Orange, Pink/Green, Pink/Purple, and Solid White so you can choose whichever suits your game style.

The following are some other quality volleyballs available from Spalding:
  • Spalding VB3 Indoor Volleyball – Composite leather cover with two-ply butyl bladder for air retention
  • Spalding TF-VB5 NFHS Competition Volleyball – V-seam construction with floating butyl bladder; NFHS-approved
  • Spalding King of the Beach Never Flat Volleyball – Ideal for outdoor play with soft-touch composite cover

Get the Best Volleyball of 2018!

Now that you’re equipped with handy information to decide on the best volleyball for your needs, go ahead, make the purchase, and start having some “spiking” fun. But keep in mind these brands have other volleyballs apart from the ones we featured in case you’d like to check them out.

Our Top Choice
Baden Perfection® Leather Volleyball
Best Value
Tachikara Sensi-Tec Composite Volleyball
Molten FLISTATEC Volleyball
Mikasa Sports Official FIVB Game Ball
Spalding Extreme Pro Wave Volleyball