There are basically two types of cloth fitted to snooker and pool tables. Either napped or directional cloth (like dralon – smooth one way with resistance the other way) or nappless cloth often referred to as “speed cloth”. Snooker tables are normally fitted with a napped cloth whereas pool tables can be fitted with either napped or nappless cloth.
Napped cloths allow more control of the cue ball due to the extra grip, whereas nappless cloths are faster but offer less cue ball control.
American pool tables are usually covered with speed cloth. Napped cloths are available in several different grades for heavy duty use, through to superfine finish competition grades. There are not nearly so many grades in speed cloths.