Prince to release grommeted racquets again in 2013

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by CaptinStiff, Aug 28, 2012.

  1. CaptinStiff

    CaptinStiff New User

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    #1
  2. Racketdesign

    Racketdesign Rookie

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    Great, the new owners have already mastered the art of spurious claims in racket tech.
     
    #2
  3. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    The O-Port, Speedport frames were actually very successful (at least for a while) and many people liked frames in those lines (including myself).

    But, clearly they weren't for everyone, so I always wondered why Prince didn't produce new regular grommeted frames as well and sell them side by side with the "holes" frames. They have such a long history of producing great, basic frames, that I thought it was odd that they'd give it up completely.
     
    #3
  4. robbo1970

    robbo1970 Hall of Fame

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    Did they not have standard grommets that you could switch into the Exo frames anyway?

    I don't know, I'm asking the question.
     
    #4
  5. tinyman

    tinyman Rookie

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    I'm not extensively versed with Prince (well, I'm not extensively versed with anything, really) - but when I used the EXO3 Tour, you could indeed swap out the port holes for standard grommets. I think there were, at least in some versions of them doing it, problems with the standard grommets 'breaking' off from their mount if strung less than awesomely? I'm not so sure about that...
     
    #5
  6. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    Oh snap! 30% spin increase! I wonder how many gear heads are going to flock to these racquets because it advertises 30% spin increase.
     
    #6
  7. Power Player

    Power Player Talk Tennis Guru

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    I like Prince. They make some real nice, flexible sticks, and that is a nice thing in terms of feel and comfort. It separates them from the other companies who's main focus is the stiff racquets it seems.

    Whomever can make a modern specced stick with that nice classic feel (like the prince OG) will sell some racquets.
     
    #7
  8. Vlad_C

    Vlad_C Semi-Pro

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    Wow, 30%...
    All of a sudden my interest in generating topspin has just jumped from 0% to 0.1%
     
    #8
  9. sansaephanh

    sansaephanh Professional

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    Yes they do/did. It actually made quite a huge difference. The normal grommets made prince rackets hit like most other traditional rackets, but the ports really opened up the sweatspot and added that signature "prince" feel.

    Which I personally enjoyed.

    Prince called it the Prince Racket Tuning System.

    I did an experiment on my rebels. same rackets, same tension, same strings, different grommets.

    Results were quite simple.

    Ports: Less feel, more power, more comfort, open sweetspot, more spin, less control.
    Grommets: The opposite of above
    2012 Thermoplastic Grommets: Hard to tell the difference from original grommets, but it's supposed to be stiffer and give a tighter response.
     
    #9
  10. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    Prince's decline had very little to do with its product and its technological innovation is run out of Italy.

    Obviously the new owners want to herald their arrival with a change of product line, which is good, but the old product line was hardly responsible for their decline.
     
    #10
  11. USS Tang

    USS Tang Rookie

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    Over the past 45 years I have played with all kinds of rackets from Dunlop, Wilson, Head, PDP, etc. Now I play with an open-port Prince. I can say unequivocally that I hardly notice the difference.
     
    #11
  12. Mateo

    Mateo Rookie

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    Shame, ports are ok, I only hope that new owners would stay in that prince feel of racquets...if not...i will buy 10x tour's 100 and forget about them.
     
    #12
  13. BlueB

    BlueB Hall of Fame

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    I hope they still keep the ports on some models... Otherwise I'll just go back to POGs.
     
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  14. Torres

    Torres Banned

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    Those 'O' ports were a bit too wacky for the market to take, as well as being a pain to string.
     
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  15. 000KFACTOR90000

    000KFACTOR90000 Professional

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    The o ports were good sticks but they should have come with the boomerang tool for stringing. I've got a feeling they were the most mis-strung racquet on the market.
     
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  16. rlau

    rlau Professional

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    I heard even Rafa is considering a switch... :shock:
     
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  17. martini1

    martini1 Hall of Fame

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    I didn't like how poly would have a harder time to snap back based on my own exp. And the feel on the exo was a little bit better than the speed port. The pj are a lot nicer, only yonex can equal that.

    The reason they didn't sell is because of Marsha was out but they were still paying her. Double dipped there. And prince doesn't have another super stars. They should have got a few more good looking faces.
     
    #17
  18. Automatix

    Automatix Hall of Fame

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    First of all there is no mention that Prince will completely cease to use O-ports in frames.

    However if it would be true the only question I've got is: Why so "take it or leave it" policy?

    Wouldn't it be better if Prince would analyse their sales and kept the best selling O-port frames which they'd continue to update in the future?

    Why can't they just release "grommeted racquets" and O-port frames?

    I know, I know... the same problem as with the 2x different pattern Tecnifibre frames.

    However look what Dunlop did/does with the new collection. They introduce a new head shape and beam design frames in the new line, while they still offer some models in "classic" version.
     
    #18
  19. El Diablo

    El Diablo Hall of Fame

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    Prince did fairly well by leading the market, first with oversize racquets, then with things like elongated racquets, comfort gimmicks, and finally string ports. Building a racquet with a spin gimmick is hardly a revelation in the current market and one wonders if it will be enough for them.
     
    #19
  20. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    "Take it or leave it" was the exact attitude displayed by the Prince rep who answered questions from TW members some time ago.
     
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  21. PrincessAdam

    PrincessAdam Rookie

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    I thought Prince racquets were getting more and more popular now? I play junior tennis and at tournaments the most seen ractuet is the exo3 tour, which I use as well. I think it'd be a bad idea to stop the port and hole designs.
     
    #21
  22. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    As others have said, why does it have to be one or the other? Make some traditional grommeted frames, make some o-port frames.
     
    #22
  23. TennezSport

    TennezSport Hall of Fame

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    Well.......

    What I heard from the few reps that are left is that Prince will keep 3 or 4 Speed Port racquets in the lineup and add regular grommet racquets for variety. The Rebel, Tour, Warrior and maybe one more will stay and they will add something like the CTS or Triple Threat type racquets to the lineup; updated of course. Have to wait and see as I don't think they know for sure themselves.

    Cheers, TennezSport :cool:
     
    #23
  24. CaptinStiff

    CaptinStiff New User

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    Yeah I think you're right. They'll probably keep a limited line of exo port racquets, and add a limited line of more traditional grommeted racquest to satisfy that unmet need.

    I think not having enough variety of frame tech over the years, and missing out on signing one of the big 3 men's superstars has hurt them the most. Oh yeah and that whole economy thing too.
     
    #24
  25. Automatix

    Automatix Hall of Fame

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    And that seems to be the most logical way of getting back to the "grommeted frames" biz.

    Still as Scotus mentioned...
    ... when some TT members advised/asked about introducing at least 1 or 2 models with traditional grommets the guy from Prince was like "What do you know?!". I guess the $$$ balance is the only thing that gets through to these guys.
     
    #25
  26. Racquet Daddy

    Racquet Daddy Rookie

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    My only hitting experience with port holes was with the Speed Port Tour. Strings moved too much - didn't like it - but it sounded awesome when you swung it through the air. Put some grommet holes in it, and got a much more consistent feel. My stringing experience was with the Rebel (and my Speed Port), and I hated stringing port inserts. The grommet inserts on the Rebel split in half on the crosses on more than one occasion. Felt cheaply made. If you're going to use some tech in a racquet, go all the way. I don't think building a frame as a "hybrid" makes sense. Maybe money sense.
     
    #26
  27. louis netman

    louis netman Hall of Fame

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    Indeed, the ports had some positive qualities, however they rendered the frame devoid of feel. The concept worked for a generation of players who all played the same way. Players nowadays are evolving and may be discovering how ball "feel" enters the equation. IMO, the grommet inserts were a half-hearted attempt at creating an option with minimal tooling expense. Unfortunately, (I don't think) they were in direct contact with the frame--this kept me from checking them out. Perhaps the new frames will be worth examining...
     
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  28. Power Player

    Power Player Talk Tennis Guru

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    Yep. The ports were the way to go, but the ball feel was not there. Yonex has that same large sweetspot, but their grommets are much better and the ball feel is as well.

    The ports were just a pain to string,I could never get the tension right on certain strings.
     
    #28
  29. louis netman

    louis netman Hall of Fame

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    Oh yes. I forgot to mention what a PITA they were to string...
     
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  30. Harry_Wild

    Harry_Wild Professional

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    Wow! Rafa would be super tough if he switch racket companies and went with Prince technology. 30% more spin for Rafa would be curtains for all opponents.
     
    #30
  31. robbo1970

    robbo1970 Hall of Fame

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    I must say I'm very pleased that it looks like the Prince brand will be continuing. With its history it would be a shame to see it disappear and its also good news that they are looking to release some standard grommet rackets. Maybe using the Exo3 system for their top end racket range was a little restrictive and narrow minded.

    However, some of the stories I read about re-stringing the Exo3 port rackets does seriously concern me. I use my Exo3 Graphite 93 about once a week and its a pleasure to play with, but I am very worried that if a string goes then the racket will be useless and there does not appear to be a like for like replacement model.
     
    #31
  32. all-court-loser

    all-court-loser New User

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    +++++++ sorry ++++++++
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2012
    #32
  33. max

    max Hall of Fame

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    Yeah, I got a kick out of that.
     
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  34. Power Player

    Power Player Talk Tennis Guru

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    30% more spin is too much for me. All my shots would divebomb into the net..lol.
     
    #34
  35. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    If you break a string, the racquet is useless? Even after re-stringing????

    Btw, I own two Graphite 93, they are ok but the feel is lacking compared to the i.Radical or i.Prestige, PK Redondo.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2012
    #35
  36. robbo1970

    robbo1970 Hall of Fame

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    I meant that from what I have read in other threads about re-stringing the Exo3's, most peoples experience seems to be that most stringers don't know how to re-string them properly and they just make a pigs ear of it, not getting the tensions right and just generally stringing them incorrectly.
     
    #36
  37. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Never heard that they could not get the tension right again. Yes, they are a PITA to string, even with a brake. Strung a few, child's play compared to those Wilson Roller racquets from BITD.
     
    #37
  38. PrincessAdam

    PrincessAdam Rookie

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    I know what you mean, I've strung almost nothing but them now so I'm used to it, I guess you could say, but at tournaments when I need mine restrung, people usually string them wayyy too high or really low. There are certain differences in stringing them as compared to more traditional racquets.
     
    #38
  39. robbo1970

    robbo1970 Hall of Fame

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    Well I have two of them, one is still in its plastic bag.

    They are pre-strung, I think with Duraflex Synth Gut so hopefully they will last. I'm not a huge hitter of the ball so fingers crossed I don't need to re-string in a hurry.

    FYI I'm not a serious enough player to need to re-string unless I break one.

    But.....maybe the 'new' Prince will have something of similar spec for me when that eventually happens!
     
    #39
  40. michaelkoren

    michaelkoren New User

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    The grommet-less technology produced racquets that whistled in the air and, for the most part, lacked the 'fee'l of Prince's earlier racquets. The EXO line was an improvement but most players felt Prince racquets were 'tricked out'. I've been demoing them for a while now trying to replace my old Precision Response 660. Am excited that Prince will be building grommeted frames again. If a product manager at the 'new' company reads this, please make something that closely resembles that frame again. Control, solidness, spin and yes, precision.
     
    #40
  41. Top Jimmy

    Top Jimmy Semi-Pro

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    I'd like a re-issue of the Reponse 90. One of my favorite rackets I ever owned. Think the string pattern was 16/20 and how can you not like a flexible bridge to pocket the ball.
     
    #41
  42. floide

    floide Rookie

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    Good! I'm a fan of Prince, since the old Prince CTS Approach was my first racquet. Also a fan of thouse classic 80/90's frames, and still got my Graphite Comp Classic II (sometimes I take it to the court, and it plays real well).

    Never hit with a "holed" frame, though.
     
    #42
  43. PrincessAdam

    PrincessAdam Rookie

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    Bring back the old Mono! My dad would FLIP OUT. He used it on tour. Wooooooo!
     
    #43
  44. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    The Precision series including the Mono was nearly perfect. Used the Precision Graphite 640 and 700. 700 OS was the best racquet Prince ever made IMHO.
     
    #44
  45. nyc

    nyc Hall of Fame

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    Bull *cough* S#!t *cough*

    Another pseudo scientific marketing claim. Getting tired.
     
    #45
  46. PrincessAdam

    PrincessAdam Rookie

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    Also make a modern version of the woody! Its still one of those racquets that you hit with and forget how old it is, and that you're hitting with a wood racquet! Feels so good
     
    #46
  47. nalvarado

    nalvarado Semi-Pro

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    Oh god I bought one for a few bucks when I started stringing to practice on. Never again. Promptly sold it.
     
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  48. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Sorry to hear you sold your stringer after stringing either of those racquets. Maybe Wilson will bring back shared holes to chase away more stringers.
     
    #48
  49. wolfinsignia

    wolfinsignia New User

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    from a business standpoint, you say that the o ports are a revelation, but yet you still stick to grommets. especially if the sales on the grommets outrake the o ports.

    the o port has great advantages and are not infrerior to any other racquet outside of opinion but its new, but from a smaller company to do it is a horrible business point anyways. but they had to seperate themselves from the rest to stay top of the line.

    so yea business is the reason.
     
    #49
  50. zapvor

    zapvor Legend

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    i hope they keep the O port technology
     
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