Best Dartboard Reviews (2018): Good Brands & Professional Bristle Ratings
No gameroom is complete without a dartboard! Darts take up practically no space in your gameroom, but they offer hours and hours of fun competition. The key is to get yourself a decent board, so you’re not constantly dealing with dropped darts or questionable hits.
For this guide, we’ve rounded up all our favorite dartboards at various price points. In our reviews, we explain why we’ve chosen these models over the competition and give you some practical advice for choosing the best one for your gameroom!
Read on to see all our top-rated dartboards!
|Picture||Product Name||Key Features||Cost|
|Winmau Diamond Plus Dartboard||$|
|Winmau Blade 5 Dual-Core Bristle Dartboard||$$|
|Unicorn Eclipse Pro 2 Dartboard||$$$|
Best Dartboard Reviews (2018)
Winmau is one of the leading dart/dartboard manufacturers on the market, and has been for some time. The Diamond Plus is a great way to get in on their innovative construction techniques and competition-ready designs for a low price. It doesn’t cost much more than the cheap knock-off models but it’s certified by the British Darts Association and is the real deal.
Unlike most others in the budget range, the Diamond Plus is made from real sisal bristle in Kenya. It has all the key features we look for on a dartboard: wire dividers to direct shots properly, a removable number ring (which lets you rotate the board and stretch out its usable life) and a staple-free bullseye. Overall, it’s ideal for the beginning darts thrower or the casual player who wants something inexpensive without cutting corners.
Winmau’s Blade 5 is our recommendation to the average thrower. It’s a lot more sophisticated than the Diamond Plus, without running up an exorbitant price tag. The biggest improvement in this model is the dual-core construction. The outer layer is soft, so darts land properly. The inner layer is harder which helps preserve the board. We can definitely attest to the fact that the Blade 5 lasts longer than single-core models!
There are also some minor changes, such as harder and thinner angle wires, which help deflect more shots into the scoring area. You’ll definitely notice a difference if you play often! It also has a larger scoring area and a much more secure mounting system than any budget model.
On the whole, the Blade 5 is as nice as most players will ever need. Unless you’re super ambitious, we don’t see any reason to pay more.
For the most advanced, passionate players, there’s no substitute for a Unicorn! These dartboards are standard across England and remain the gold standard for competitive play. The Eclipse Pro 2 is the nicest dartboard we’ve ever reviewed. We don’t think the average player needs to pay this much, but if you know you’re going to get your money’s worth from it, go for it!
What’s so great about the Eclipse Pro 2? It has the best wiring system, for one. That makes for the best scoring area, and the fewest bounce-outs. It lasts as long as any Winmau, and the bristle is absolutely stellar. Will the average player notice much of a difference in playability? No. Experienced players? Definitely.
Which of these dartboards should you buy for your gameroom?
The Winmau Diamond Plus is our recommendation to anyone on a tight budget, or for folks looking to buy their first dartboard. It’s the cheapest here but still meets all the criteria of a great board.
The Winmau Blade 5 costs more, but will last significantly longer thanks to its dual-core construction. We recommend this one to the average player who wants something high-quality without spending a lot of money on the Unicorn.
Finally, the Unicorn Eclipse Pro is our suggestion to the most passionate throwers who want the best of the best. It looks the best of the three, should last the longest, and is truly professional-grade.
For this guide, we’ve focused on traditional dartboards. If you’re looking to go super modern and get an electronic dartboard, you’ll enjoy our guide to the best ones here!
Cheap dartboards can be appealing, but they’re not worth the savings they offer. You’ll end up having to replace a $20 dartboard after just a few nights of serious throwing. Our advice is to avoid any of the cheap imported models from off-brands. They wear out too quickly, and they barely hold darts out of the box.
Don’t spend less than $50 on your new dartboard, unless you want to plan on replacing it in a matter of weeks. We strongly advise even casual players to invest in something with a decent sisal bristle material and a rugged backing that can stand up to lots and lots of play.
Choose A Reputable Brand
You’ll find that there are dozens of knockoff dartboards out there, which look practically identical to the models we recommend from reputable brands. Steer clear of them! They’re usually made with really crappy bristle and will stink up your gameroom with the chemicals used to make them seem nicer than they are. It’s worth the extra cost to buy something that won’t fall apart or reek right out of the box.
Darts is a highly competitive game, so it doesn’t make sense to get something for your gameroom that isn’t competition-worthy! Your home board should be as close to the ones used competitively as possible. We only recommend models that are endorsed by the British Darts Association for that reason.
You can find more of our expert reviews and recommendations on our homepage! That’s the easiest place to find links to all our latest buying guides. Looking for some high-quality darts to match your new board? Check out our guide to the best darts!