Product: Lobster Pickleball Machine Review
Where to Buy: Amazon
Shipping: Free Shipping UPS Ground
Guarantee: 2 years
Where is it Manufactured? U.S.
Weight: 35 lbs.
Ball Capacity: 135
Rating: No Customer Reviews
Pickleball Lobster Machine
After reviewing the Pickleball Tutor ball machine, I decided to take a look at another popular ball machine called the Lobster Pickleball machine. A close friend of mine has one so I was lucky enough to see it in action. The Lobster is an excellent pickleball training aid, and like a tennis ball machine it can be very helpful in practicing your pickleball shots and performing a variety of drills.
Lobster Pickleball Machine Features
Like the Pickleball Tutor, the Lobster Pickleball machine is very easy to use. Features include:
- Oscillation: random horizontal
- Speed 10-60 seconds
- Feed Rate: 2-12 seconds
- Spin: topspin and backspin
- Elevation: 0-50 degrees
How long does the battery last? How long do you have to recharge it for?
The battery lasts 2 to 4 hours of court time. Depending on usage, the typical charging time will range from 18-24 hours with the basic charger. You can purchase option fast charger that will reduce charge time to 9-18 hours depending on battery level.
Can this machine drop shots in the kitchen?
Absolutely. Incredible drill that only the Lobster is capable of: Place the Lobster at the no-volley line, tilt to maximum elevation, turn speed to about 15, and you can add topspin to 2.5 and oscillate. Ball will barely clear the net and land in the kitchen right in that awkward zone where beginner and intermediate players struggle.
Here is a video demonstrating how the Lobster Pickleball Machine works:
Comparing the Lobster to the Tutor
According to the manufacturer, the Lobster Pickleball Machine is a full-featured pickleball machine that outperforms all others on the market. The Lobster throws balls up to 60 mph, whereas, the Tutor throws up to 50 mph. For me this is not a real advantage because you would never really need to have the ball thrown at you over 50 mph.
A real advantage that the Lobster has over the Tutor is that it comes with the ability to throw the ball with heavy topspin and backspin. We all know how hard it is to return shots with spin so having the capability of throwing these spin shots for you to return is a significant plus. With the Lobster you now have a training partner who can hit spin shot after spin to you for you to return.
Pickleball Lobster Machine Controls
Another difference between the two machines is that the Pickleball Tutor holds 125 balls, whereas, the Lobster Pickleball Machine holds 135 balls. No meaningful difference here. 125 balls is plenty.
- The Lobster has 2 to 4 hours per charge, whereas, the Tutor has only a one-hour battery life.
- The Lobster comes with random oscillation, whereas, the basic Tutor model does not oscillate; rather, it feeds the ball to one location on the court. You would have to upgrade the Tutor in order to get the oscillating model. This is truly a major difference. Having a random oscillation feature provides better practice because it will force you to hit the ball while moving, and of course it provides good exercise. Moving around the court while hitting balls will also help you with your footwork, which is very important in pickleball.
- The weight of the Tutor is less than the weight of the Lobster by as much as 5 lbs. This makes the Tutor easier to move from storage to court and from one position to another on the court.
I believe both the Pickleball Lobster machine and the Pickleball Tutor are excellent training partners and can help you improve your pickleball game. Each machine allows you to practice almost every shot in pickleball except the serve. For several reasons, though, the Lobster is the better buy.
First of all, the Lobster, which costs $899 for the basic model at Amazon, is much less expensive than the Pickleball Tutor after you add the feature of oscillation to the Tutor. It does not make sense to buy a ball machine for pickleball that does not oscillate. You also have to factor in the longer battery life and the important feature that the Lobster can throw topspin and backspin shots to you.
The fact that the Lobster is 5 lbs. heavier is not a real factor since it has wheels to roll around the court. You just need to be able to lift it out of the trunk of a car or out of wherever it is being stored.
I think if you are serious about playing pickleball and have the time and willingness to put in the practice time these machines are invaluable. I would love to see our club, which has 80+ members, buy one of them. In the end I would opt for the Lobster, but I don’t think you could go wrong with either machine.
Please let me know what you think about this article – whether it has been helpful. Actually, I’d love to hear anything you have to share about your experiences playing pickleball.