We see the Cornilleau outdoor ping pong tables in more places around the world than any other brand. You’ll see them on cruise ships, at resorts, in parks, at community centers, in office game rooms, and in backyards. The Cornilleau 500M Outdoor table is their most popular model and one that is hard to find any fault in except the price – which is $1650. Cornilleau is a French manufacturer of ping pong tables and their outdoor lineup ranges from the Cornilleau 250S to the Cornilleau 510 Outdoor. The designs and features on the tables are slightly different – the main thing to look for is the thickness of the playing surface. You will find a 7mm resin laminate top with a MATTOP Finish on the 500M and it comes in either a blue or gray color. Why are Cornilleau tables so expensive? Quality craftsmanship, long term durability, great safety record, and ease of assembly are just a few reasons why they are rated so high.
Frame/Design – The arched leg design not only makes the table sturdy on all surfaces, it adds a sense of style not found on other outdoor ping pong tables. The frame was built so it could hold up the 170 pound Cornilleau 500M – the legs have a steel insert that reinforces them. The result is solid support and a table that holds up well in outdoor conditions. The legs have adjustable feet so you can raise or lower one section of the table if you need to get it on a level playing surface. We all know that outdoor conditions aren’t the same as you may find indoors – think about grass, dirt, pebbles, etc. Other tables like the Butterfly Outdoor Playback Rollaway and the Kettler Topstar XL don’t offer leg levelers, so keep that in mind when shopping around. If you plan on putting the table on fairly flat pavement, that’s one thing, but placing it on uneven grass or dirt is another. Cornilleau thinks of everything for their tables. New Cornilleau 600X HERE!!
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Playing Surface – The thickness of the top makes a massive difference when it comes to ‘True’ ball bounce and the ability to have your shots rebound from the table authentically. If you are a player that hits with topspin or underspin (slice), then you’ll want an outdoor ping pong table with superior bounce like the Cornilleau 500M. With the 7mm resin laminate top, you are guaranteed to get the best bounce of any outdoor table. Cornilleau offers the 250S with a 5mm resin laminate tabletop which sells for $500 less. The 400M from Cornilleau is right in between with a 6mm top thickness. We’ve played on all 3 Cornilleau ping pong tables and the 500M is the top performer, but if you’re looking to save a little money, the 250S does an excellent job at around $1000. The MATTOP Finish is another feature on the Cornilleau we absolutely love. When playing outdoors, the glare of the sun can be a hindrance so Cornilleau added the anti-glare finish which also helps with the proper ball adherence. The 250S from Cornilleau provides a new SoftMat coating finish which is slightly different although still very playable. The 500M comes in either gray or blue tabletop colors (we have photos of the blue option below). The playing surface is completely weatherproof – the table doesn’t absorb the water, just wipe it off and play.
Safety Features – The DSI Locking System is the best in the industry – another reason why the tables are so much more expensive than the competition. The table will be fully locked in storage or playing positions – safe for all the kids that might be around the outdoor table. There are actually 16 locking points with the 500M. The corner protection pads are also what parents appreciate on an outdoor table. We all know kids tend to run around when outdoors and having those pads on the corners means they are protected if they happen to hit that section of the Cornilleau 500M.
Assembly – We hear it all the time with ping pong tables – they take too long to assemble. The Cornilleau 500M is not quite as fast to put together as say the Killerspin or JOOLA brands, but expect to spend about 90 minutes getting it all together and ready to play on. There is roughly 10 minutes or so where having a 2nd pair of hands is required as you need to lift the table panels into position. Otherwise, the instructions are very good and we have provided an excellent video to the right which shows the entire assembly process from the first step to the last. Watch the video if you are having any difficulties at all. We have assembled this exact model several times for clients and it now only takes us 1 hour.
Moving/Storage – There are 4 sets of double wheels (2 have brakes). Easily roll the table to where you want to go and secure in place with the brake system. We have found the wheels to be heavy duty enough to roll across grass, dirt, and rocks. In the photo below you will notice the upside down U-shaped handle that Cornilleau put on the table between the wheels. This helps you get leverage to maneuver and lift the table over or around obstacles like steps, doorways, shrubs, etc. The weatherproof net on the Cornilleau 500M is both adjustable for height and tension. Another feature of the net that is unique to these tables is that the net is retractable. The net will retract between the two panels when going into storage mode. That way the table can fit into tighter spaces with nothing hanging off the edge. To put the table into storage mode, simply reach down below the table and grab the orange handle and pull. It’s a one man job and very safe to use.
Other Features – There is storage on the side of the table (above the wheels and below the net) for 4 ping pong paddles and 8 ping pong balls. We also like the ball dispensers that are placed right below the end of the table where a player can quickly and easily grab a new ball and put it into play and not have to chase a ball every time it goes off the table. Again, the little things that Cornilleau includes with their tables makes all the difference when you are looking for the best ping pong table.
Positives – The Cornilleau 500M has exceptional ball bounce and overall durability as compared to the competition. The tabletops come with a 10 year warranty – that is reason enough to buy the table and know you are getting a superior product. The one handed central release system allows you to open or close the table effortlessly. The frame is well designed and the legs are reinforced for added stability. Leg levelers allow you to play on uneven surfaces. The net retracts for compact storage position. The MATTOP Finish lets you play in the sun without dealing with glare from the sun coming off the tabletop. Easy to put together compared to Kettler and Butterfly models.
Drawbacks – There are only a few with the table and it’s hard to say that price should be an issue, but we know it is for many of you. At $1650 the 500M from Cornilleau is expensive. The Cornilleau 400M has really only one major difference with the 500M and that is the 400M features a 6mm resin top versus the 7mm you find on the 500M. At a few hundred less in price, it’s worth a look if you want to save a little money.
Final comments – Overall we give the Cornilleau 500M a 5 out of 5 Stars because of all the features, the 7mm playing surface, and the ease of assembly. If you need an industrial strength ping pong table meant for outdoor use that is completely weatherproof, go with the Cornilleau. It’s perfect for recreational use at home, in churches, schools, resorts, game rooms at work, etc.
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