Electronic vs Bristle (Traditional) Dartboard: Which is Better?

Electronic vs Bristle (Traditional) Dartboard: Which is Better?

7 minutes read
Oct 11th, 2023


  • Electronic vs Bristle Dartboard: Which is Better for You?
  • What Is an Electronic Dartboard?
  • Electronic vs Bristle Dartboard: The Main Differences
  • Electronic vs Bristle Dartboard: Which You Should Buy

Electronic vs Bristle Dartboard: Which is Better for You?

Electronic and bristle are the two most popular types of dartboards. While the bristle boards provide unreplaceable traditional playing experiences, electronic boards make your darts games much easier to play.

This blog will explain the main differences between electronic and bristle dartboards. You will know which is better to buy for your current needs.

What Is an Electronic Dartboard?

An electronic dartboard is a modern version of the traditional dartboard, equipped with sensors that can detect where the darts land on the surface. It can automatically track and display players’ scores, along with many other electronic features that greatly reduce your efforts during gameplay and enhance the playing experience.

Electronic vs Bristle Dartboard: The Main Differences

Let’s dive deep into the key differences between the two dartboard types to help you understand and pick the right one for your needs.

Materials and Durability

In terms of durability, a bristle dartboard is generally considered to be more durable than an electronic dartboard.

Bristle dartboards are typically made from compressed sisal fibers, which are extremely resilient and can withstand repeated use without showing significant wear and tear. As a result, bristle dartboards can last for several years if they are well-maintained.

On the other hand, electronic dartboards are made of various materials (the most common types are plastic or composite materials). They also include many electronic components, which can be more prone to damage or malfunction.

That said, in recent years, many modern electronic dartboards have been designed to be more durable and long-lasting, which can nearly withstand the same level of wear and tear as traditional boards.


Bristle dartboards mostly use steel-tip darts while electronic boards use only soft-tip darts. This makes the latter become much safer to play with, especially when your house has kids or elders. Also, soft-tip darts hardly leave damage on your walls or on your floor when they drop.

Bounce outs

High-quality bristle boards can minimize the chances of bounce-outs since many brands have successfully made the spider’s design very thin and staple-free. This also increases scoring potential and makes the gameplay become more enjoyable. No darts players like bounce-outs!

For electronic boards, some latest models have seen a significant improvement in terms of better design and reduced bounce-outs. But if we have to compare, bristle boards still do quite a better job at minimizing bounce-outs.

Sound when darts hit the board

There’s nothing to discuss the sound of steel-tip darts hitting a bristle dartboard’s surface. “Thud, thud, thud.” We all love that sound. Very satisfying.

When soft-tip darts hit an electronic dartboard, the sound is louder. If you have someone in the house who cannot stand loud noise or difficult neighbors, this type of dartboard may not be ideal for regular plays.

Score tracking

Different darts games have different scoring and calculation mechanisms. If you play with a bristle board, you will need to know and do the score tracking and calculation manually on a paper or a scoreboard.

Almost all electronic boards have an automatic score display section which automatically keeps track and calculates players’ scores. Some high-quality boards even have 4 separate score sections that can display up to 8 players’ scores. Some even have a dedicated section for X/O tracking specifically designed for Cricket games. You only need to play and throw.


Besides the traditional playing value, bristle dartboards can hardly provide you with any further convenience.

Electronic boards, on the other hand, make use of electronic features to add more entertainment to your games. For example, the latest Arachnid Pro Cricket boards have sound effects and the Heckler feature which calls out players for bad throws and compliments on impressive scores.

Another example is the Gran Board 3s dartboard allows you to connect to a mobile darts app and play online. Tons of games and playing modes are being updated regularly and you can play with players all over the world. You can also see how you’re performing over time through metrics like points per dart and marks per round.

Professional use

Bristle dartboards are used in many pro tournaments officially hosted by national darts organizations. If you want to practice professionally, this type of board is the one to go.

Electronic dartboards are still used for competitions but mainly in self-hosted tournaments in bars, pubs, and game centers.


Both high-quality bristle and electronic dartboards can be long-lasting. The former typically has a self-healing ability that heals the holes when darts are pulled out of the surface. You will only need to rotate the board regularly to ensure different scoring segments get even hits, hence, extending the board’s lifespan.

The latter, electronic boards, also don’t require much maintenance effort. Whether a board can last long or not will depend heavily on the material. You only need to clean it regularly and maybe store it somewhere when it’s not regularly used.

>> Learn how to maintain a dartboard.


When choosing a dartboard, it’s always good to invest in a quality option, whether it’s a bristle or electronic board.

A quality bristle board ranges from $60 – $150 while an excellent electronic board ranges from $100 – $300. These prices can be greatly reduced when there’s a discount.

Electronic vs Bristle Dartboard: Which You Should Buy

Now you know the differences, we will summarize the reasons why you should buy each type.

 Bristle dartboardElectronic dartboard
Why buy?– Professional practice
– Traditional playing experience
– Minimal bounce-outs
– Affordable price
– Great durability with minimal maintenance
– Safety due to soft tip darts
– Automic score tracking
– Tons of other convenient features to reduce playing effort
– Minimal maintenance
 Check our top bristle dartboardsCheck our top electronic dartboards

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