PT57E vs. TGK238.1 vs. MG Prestige MP

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by dr325i, Jul 13, 2009.

  1. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    PT57E vs. TGK238.1 vs. MG Prestige MP vs. PT57A

    Today, I received my PT57E and two of the TGK238.1 that belonged to Volandri.
    I am 37 yo, play 4.0-4.5 level, all court, Western FH top spin, 2HBH. Love the volleys. My serve is my biggest weapon, first is fairly flat, second has a decent kick.

    RACKETS:

    The PT57E (MGP MP PJ). This is definitely the PT630 mold, though definitely different layup, stiffer. TW Leather. Weight strung + Overgrip + Dampener = 355g (12.5 oz). Balance = 31.7 cm.
    Strung with the LUX Rough at 55 lbs.

    The TGK238.1. Head Calfskin Leather. Weight strung (7g of lead in the handle, 6g in the head) + Overgrip + Dampener = 348g (12.3 oz). Balance = 31.5 cm.
    Strung with the Gamma Professional 17g @ 57 mains Genesis SpinX 17g crosses at 54 lbs.

    The Retail MGP MP. Head Calfskin Leather. Weight strung (6g of lead in the head) + Overgrip + Dampener = 350g (12.35 oz). Balance = 32 cm.
    Strung with the Genesis SpinX mains at 54, Gamma Professional crosses at 57 lbs.

    ------> Aug 20
    The PT57A (Flexpoint Prestige PJ). This is definitely the PT630 mold, though definitely different layup, still stiffer than the PT630s I used. Head Finest Calfskin Leather Grip. Weight strung + Overgrip + Dampener = 355g (12.5 oz). Balance = 31.7 cm. Standard Length (27")
    Completely Custom molded handle, extended for the 2HBH, Grip Size 4 3/8. Handle filled with Silicone.
    Strung with the LUX Rough at 53 lbs.


    THE FEEL:
    The PT57E just feels perfectly balanced and I have not tried a racket that feels the same way. It is a very rich feel but with a great feedback. It is a tad more flexy than what I expected from the "E" layup, but again, just perfectly balanced. There is no lead anywhere on the racket, just a natural full rich feel. Very similar to the PT280. Great power and awesome control stick. Ah, and the sound it makes is just...different...

    The TGK238.1 also felt great, definitely STIFFER than the Retail or the PT57E. I like stiff rackets, I would say that the TGK was probably in the upper 60's. I have almost 20g of lead on the racket to match it with the PT. Feels pretty good now, rich feel, but not quite as the PT57. Less feedback than wth the PT57E, probably due to the strings and its stiffness. Still, definitely not the same racket as the Retail.

    The retail stick now feels a bit hollow (as compared to the other two), although still fits my game nicely. The flex fits somewhere between the PT57 and the TGK sticks, I'd say closer to the PT57.

    ------> Aug 20
    Similarly to the PT57E that I owned, the PT57A stick is just perfectly balanced, and the feel is great. I was pleasently surprised with the stiffness of the racket. Definitely more flexy than the "E" layup, but NOT by much! Definitely stiffer than the PT630s I used before. Maybe the silicone in the handle and completely custom molded Handle (no pallets) helps the feel of stiffness. Great feeling stick. There is some lead unde the bumper, not sure how much...

    GROUND STROKES:
    I was a bit concerned with the weight and especially the SW of the setup, however, pleasently surprised...

    The PT57E was amazing. Everything was going in and felt easier to return very heavy shots from my opponent. Previously, playing with the Retail stick and with the iPrestige MP, I had some issues returning his flat, heavy shots. With the PT57E, I felt more confident and it felt like my timing was improved. Great access to the spin, which I very much liked. The power is definitely above the Retail stick.

    The TGK238.1 was equally impressive, although, I played with it already a bit tired -- an hour into the game. At first, it took me a few rallies to adjust -- it is hard to "go back" from the great and unique feel of the PT. It felt that my shots were a tad shorter with the TGK, but I contribute that to a different string set up and higher tension (as expected). Toward the end of the session, the tension loosened up a bit and it felt better.
    Aug 1:
    I believe I found the weight and balance of the stick that fits my game -- 348g, 31.5cm. That brings it to about SW of <330. The strokes feel very comfortable with a great balance of control and power.

    The MGP MPwas definitely a stick that fit my game nicely. I used it for about a month now and found that the SpinX in the mains + Gamma Professional in the crosses is probably an ideal set up for my game. It was just a little bit underpowered to my liking, definitely so as compared to the other two sticks.

    My FH, my weakest shot is definitely more solid and consistent. With the PT and the TGK, it is penetrating deep and with a great pace, so it may become my weapon down the line.
    My BH was solid, again, a little more pace with the PT and TGK as compared with the Retail. Still, the PT57E felt the most comfortable hitting the BH spins.
    The BH Slice is probably the area where I accelerated the most playing with these three sticks (as compared to the iPrestige, KB98, KBT and all the rest I tried previously). Very nice control and deep slice shots.
    Aug 1:
    My FH has dramatically improved and I feel very comfortable with the TGK. My BH went from more Flat (and potent) to more spin BH and more control, less pace. I am adjusting to this. The BH Slice is definitely great.

    One areat that needs attention is returning the slices that stay close to the ground or returning the flat, heavy paced shots that remain low to the ground. With these heavy sticks and my SW/W FH, this area will need a lot of work.

    ------> Aug 20
    Again, just like with the PT57E, the PT57A works for you. What is up with those sticks??? It feels so easy to return some flat bombs that I would not be able to put back with any other stick. the stability of these is just awesome.
    The Spin access is great, just like with the PT57E. Power is noticable, yet very much controlled. I am just so impressed with the PT57s and they are so different (both layups) from any other sticks I've tried...

    SERVES:
    Tried a few serves with the PT57E tonight. The power was NOT there, but I was extremely tired tonight. However, I noticed that slightly wider string spacing as compared to the Retail/TGK definitely emphasized the spin/kick on my second serve. Probably LUX Rough added to it, but my kick was amazing. will continue trying to tune my first serve.

    Very solid serves with the TGK238.1. I was able to hit nicely paced flat first serves consistently (I'd say at 100-110 mph). On top of that, directional control was great. Second serve (spin, kick) was solid and comfortable to control (direction). I believe that it will further improve with a different string setup.

    I found my serves to be very comfortable and solid with the MGP MP. My second serve was less consistent than with the iPrestige, however, I could never get a kick on my second with the iPrestige. The directional control is good.

    Aug 1:
    I have not practiced my serves enough lately and it is visible :( . My first serve is a struggle now, however I contribute it to my toss that has been Ivanovic-like lately. When tossed properly, my first serve can be a true challenge for the 5.0+ player...

    My second has a decent pace, good (and desired) placement, but less kick that I wanted, still tweaking that and will pay more attention to it. I have noticed that a player of a 4.5 and higher level can easily attack my second serve - especially a Lefty! I am dealing mych better with the RH players due to the Second Serve placement (deuce side to the "T", Ad side out wide).

    ---->
    Must be different SW from the PT57E, but I had absolutely NO trouble putting in impressive first flat serves and very nice kickers (6+ ft kicks off the ground). The control on the serves was there too.

    SERVE RETURNS:
    Have not tried any with the PT57E, yet.

    The FH returns were suprisingly OK with the TGK. This is THE worst aspect of my game -- the FH return, never mastered it and usually stuck with the Mauresmo-like slice/push back FH return. With the TGK, I was able to put back some serious returns.
    My BH returns, where I felt comfortable with all of my previous sticks, SUCKED last night, not sure why. Will update...

    Aug 1:
    OK, so the previous comment on the Serve return was purely contributed from the serve itself -- still have a tough time returning 4.5/5.0 heavy spin serves that take you out of the court, but that has nothing to do with the racket performance. My level (4.0/4.5) serve returns are solid.

    The Serve returns felt OK with the Retail MGP MP. The BH returns were stable and comfortable.

    VOLLEYS:
    Got some NET play tonight.

    Ah, the PT57E. Miracle stick :) as someone previously mentioned (in one of the previous reviews) -- this racket does it all at the net. Excellent control and feel at the net. Also, feels so manuverable for its SW. I was able to return some super tough shots. However, the SW (over 350 on this stick) caught up with me. After about 15 minutes, it started to feel "heavy" and I was getting tired.

    I also got some time with the TGK238.1 at the net. Also great response, great control, but definitely feels stiffer at the net and my returns were not as deep and sharp (controlled) as with the PT. What really shone (is that the correct word???) is the OVERHEADS!!! I was never consistent with the overheads at the net -- with the TGK, I am 10/10.

    ------> Aug 20
    And just like with the PT57E, the PT57A does it for you on the volleys -- very stable, ecellent feel, depth... Feels very much manuverable at the net. Did not tire me out, therefore, I assume the SW of this stick is lower than the PT57E I used to have...
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2009
    #1
  2. jetlee2k

    jetlee2k Banned

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    the PT75E is it standard length or 27.5" ?? made in Austria? I have 2 in 27.5" with the old pro tour butt cap.. it's hefty though..
     
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  3. Mdubb23

    Mdubb23 Hall of Fame

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    Looking forward to it!
     
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  4. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    All rackets are 27" (standard) length. As you probably know, the PT57 is indeed a hefty stick (the SW is around 350 on mine), however, the feel is just different from anything else I played with (including the Volandri TGKs).

    Will do the write-up in a few days...
     
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  5. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    added a few things in the review...
     
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  6. tribunal4555

    tribunal4555 Semi-Pro

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    Really nice review! Can't wait until volleys update- major part of my game :twisted:
     
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  7. Mdubb23

    Mdubb23 Hall of Fame

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    Great, great review. I really appreciate you taking the time to do this (I'm a top 25 all court/serve and volleying junior in the country with 4 TGK238.1s, and I want to know if it's worth it to burn some cash on some PT57E's), and I can't wait for the volley part.
     
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  8. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    Very different sticks. I am not sure if all PT57E's are matched, or individually built for the Pros, that could be an issue.
    I like the flexibility of the TGK for customization. The PT came at 350g (12.4 oz), not much room to customize it. Luckily, the weight and balance fit me great.

    If you ever get a chance to try the PT57E, you must do so. Three of the PT630's I had -- had that feel, but were much more flexy then the "E".
     
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  9. Mdubb23

    Mdubb23 Hall of Fame

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    I love heavy racquets though; my TGK238.1s are 350g unstrung (12.8-12.9 oz strung).
     
    #9
  10. ipitythefool

    ipitythefool Semi-Pro

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    Are there no lead strips under the bumper of the PT57E?
    Imo there has to be. Because as far as I know, these racquets are much lighter than stock PT630s, to allow room for customization.
    I have a 27.5 inch Gilles Simon PT57A and can clearly see the strips right at 12pm through the tiny gap where two bumpers meet (and silicone in handle through the tiny hole under the black head sticker at buttcap)
    This racquet has the best balance ever among tons of racqs I have. Also have an MIA PT630. Aside from the mold/looks, PT57A has nothing to do with PT630. They play completely different. (of course, every pro has a different set-up)
     
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  11. ronalditop

    ronalditop Hall of Fame

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    one question: what exactly do you mean when you say that that racquet has "the best balance"?
     
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  12. jetlee2k

    jetlee2k Banned

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    My PT57E felt almost identical to a I.Prestige MIDPLUS.. it's stiffer than a Protour 630.. I don't think I like it that stiff actually.. I love the weight and balance on it.. It is custom 350g & 355g... It does not have a retangular head pallet though.. it felt more like a Wilson mold.. Mine is 27.5 (or 27.25") long with a longer pallet for a 2handers.. The grip is 4 3/8 which is alittle bit big for me so I play it barely with no overgrip.. very very nice feel actually but I think for $400USD plus I would go for 2 Protour 630.. !!
     
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  13. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    No Lead anywhere.
     
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  14. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    My (3) iPrestiges were way stiffer than the PT57E. The PT630 was way too flexy for me, did not like that.
    WHy would you pay $400+ for any racket? :)
     
    #14
  15. ipitythefool

    ipitythefool Semi-Pro

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    Well I consider this racquet to have the best balance in comparison to my other racquets. To try and explain, my PT57A is lighter in static weight compared to my PT630 (I believed it weighed 370gr), but a substantial amount of weight is at 10-2 area, due to lead strips under bumper. So, even though it is a long racquet (it may be 27.25 or 27inch didnt measure perfectly) it is perfectly maneuverable, yet it will definitely hold its own against hard hit shots, due to add'l weight in upper head. Basically, if this racquet had slightly heavier SW and/or weight, I would consider it sluggish. If it was any slightly on the lighter side, it would be unstable. Just right, this is what I mean.
     
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  16. ronalditop

    ronalditop Hall of Fame

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    Ok thanks very much for the explanation.
     
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  17. hrstrat57

    hrstrat57 Hall of Fame

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    Great thread, thanks...looking forward to reading more!

    Have 2 i prestige mp's and mia i radical mp...but always looking for a pt57 or 630/280
     
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  18. PED

    PED Legend

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    That surprises me as well. There was a thread around last christmas time by PSP2 that was really good. From what I've read on these boards by people like VS Babolat, I was under the impression that all the PT's were lighter at stock to leave room for lead and or silicone. That's one of the things I love about the Prestiges - I can hide my lead at 3 and 9.

    Either way, you've done a great review, the TGK's sound like the way to go. They were pretty accessible at **** when the MG Prestige came out in Jan 08 but the supply dried up quickly. I guess I'll keep my eyes open next year when the Youtek Prestige comes out. Thanks for the nice work on the reviews :)



    Here's the link to PSP2's review last year:

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=235893

    I thought about taking the MP off of your hands in the sale section but I ilke the Head grip shape better than the wilson ;)
     
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  19. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    Added the VOLLEYS Details. THe PT57 is really exceptional at the net if you can handle the SW. The ideal SW for me is about 330-335. The PT57E that I have is about 355 which can drain me...
     
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  20. klementine

    klementine Hall of Fame

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    I'm extremely, insatiably, unsuitably JEALOUS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
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  21. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    You can have the retail one cheap -- see the For Sale Section :)
     
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  22. klementine

    klementine Hall of Fame

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    Sure, I'll just inject it with more microgel so it won't feel like PVC tubing at impact. ;)

    That's why I decided to go with the mids, to avoid that complete hollow, plastic, tinny mess.

    I don't know if you've mentioned this, but is there any way you can measure the beam widths of the PT57E and TGK238, or at least compare them to width of the retail Mid+ ?
     
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  23. ipitythefool

    ipitythefool Semi-Pro

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    I think, there is nothing to be jealous about. Playing with a PT57A-E racquet will not make the racquet holder a Volandri or Gilles Simon :)
     
    #23
  24. PED

    PED Legend

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    Dr, since your ideal SW is in the above range, will you end up taking off some lead from the TGK's to bring down the SW into your range or will you try to adapt?
     
    #24
  25. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    I did: The TGK238.1. Head Calfskin Leather. Weight strung (8g of lead in the handle, 5g in the head) + Overgrip + Dampener = 349g (12.3 oz). Balance = 31.5 cm. SW = ~330
    Strung with the Genesis Spin X 17g @ 54 mains, Gamma Professional 17g crosses at 57 lbs.
     
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  26. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    I did not measure it, but the beam looks the same on all of them (21 mm). Maybe I should do that...
    One thing for sure is the frame width (looking at the string bed directly) of the PT57 is wider than the others (different mold).

    A few shots:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2009
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  27. PED

    PED Legend

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    Got it, I saw that 11g in the head in the first post.

    That sounds about perfect, my Pres Pro's weigh 345g with an sw of 329 and that works out just about right in the balance between sheer grunt and also being able to get it around in time. The TGK's must come a bit lighter stock to have the leather and lead added and only weigh 349 but I guess the regular MP is also a bit lighter than the Pro.
     
    #27
  28. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    yep, the TGK comes lighter than the stock MGPMP and the balance is different.
     
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  29. Lefty78

    Lefty78 Professional

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    Dan,
    You up for some more playtesting Mon eve at Patchreef?
     
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  30. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    HAH, will be in Canada whole next week, maybe Friday?

    BTW, you can also add to my impressions about the rackets. Felt like my game was up with the PT57E...until I got tired :(
     
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  31. Lefty78

    Lefty78 Professional

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    So you're dodging me until Friday, eh? Hope the trip goes well.

    As your testing has involved several sessions, I can only speak for the parts of your game that I saw.


    From the other side of the net, your pace, depth, and consistency were the best I have seen them.

    I'll try not to tire you out so much next time. :) Very little drop off with the TGK.

    The best I have seen you serve, no doubt.

    Was totally mystified by your BH returns with the TGK, you're telling it straight.

    From what I have seen and read, the SW of the PT57E might be a touch high for you, especially on serve, which is a shame because the frame is so addictive. As you were kind enough to offer me a hit with it, I can verify that it's a true pleasure to swing. The feel was great, and comfy, even with a full Lux job. And that sound, it felt like... quality. Had to put it down before I got too used to it. The PT has definitely earned its reputation, but the SW isn't for everyone.

    My verdict is that with a little tweaking on the setup, the pair of TGK's should probably become your weapons of choice.
     
    #31
  32. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    THanks man!
    I will text you on my way back :)
    I am still experimenting with the weight/balance/SW of the TGKs...that is the beauty of them -- a lot of room to experiment...
     
    #32
  33. PED

    PED Legend

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    I wanted to add a little more feedback to this thread. After buying the MGMP from dr325(and glad I did), I've been experimenting with it.

    I used a hydrosorb grip and an OG plus 6g of lead at 3 and 9 and used the original hybrid string job. I liked the stick but felt it didn't have the heft of my Prestige Pros and wasn't as stable either. The static weight with this setup was 341 g and it felt quite soft but the hybrid might have something to do with that so I made a few changes.

    I went back to my usual full poly (pl2) and went with 7g total at 3 & 9. The static weight moved up to 345 and it feels much more substantial now. I put it on the RDC and there is where I was really surprised-even with full poly and all that lead-the SW was only 319. No wonder it felt a bit lightweight compared with the TGK or especially the PT57 :) This setup feels much better overall and you can put alot more hurt on the ball as well. I was really surprised the SW was so low. My Pro's with 4g of lead at 3 and 9 measure 328 on the RDC so this particular MGMP must be really HL as it's supposed to measure 319 SW at stock specs.

    Either way, it plays great now and I'm glad I got it. Thanks again DR :)
     
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  34. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    My pleasure!!!
    I added a few extra comments in my OP
     
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  35. PJN

    PJN Guest

    Sorry, but what is a 'PT57E' ?
    which brand??
     
    #35
  36. PED

    PED Legend

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    It's basically a "pro's only" version made by Head. Quite heavy with a roughly 350 SW but quite nice by all accounts. Used by many of the top guys in either E or A form: Simon, Soderling, etc.
     
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  37. TennisPassion5

    TennisPassion5 Rookie

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    Which of these three rackets had the most control?
     
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  38. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    Overall, I would say the PT57E if you can handle it... It also has the most spin due to slightly more separation between the mains...
     
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  39. psp2

    psp2 Banned

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    I had few PT57E frames and their stiffness on a Babolat RDC machine came out to around 67 unstrung.
     
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  40. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    is that PT or the TGK??? TGK is definitely stiffer, but I doubt it is over 70...
     
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  41. psp2

    psp2 Banned

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    I had few PT57E frames and their stiffness on a Babolat RDC machine came out to around 67 unstrung.
     
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  42. eyeball

    eyeball New User

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    great review dr325i. I plan to add some weight to my MGP MP, leather grip and some lead tape in the head. did you place the lead tape under the CAP grommets? do you know if it is difficult to remove the CAP grommets and then but them back on or would I need to get new CAP grommets?
     
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  43. PED

    PED Legend

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    Whatever you do, don't take off the CAP's after you've strung the MP intially. The ends flair out and it's hard to get them all back in. I speak from experience ;)

    You can use your fingernails or a small screwdriver to peel up the CAP and slide the lead underneath and it's quite easy. I've gotten good at it and after a few times it's no big deal. I ended up doing 7g under the CAPs at 3 &9 and another 1.5g at the top of the hoop.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2009
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  44. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    I agree with PED on that, however, my latest TGK238.1 came from the top 100 pro (can't give the name) and had some lead tape under the CAP. I removed it and put it back. It took me good 20 minutes to put back the top 20-ish holes...
    I had to use the ice pick, screwdriver and a lot of sweat to get it back in...
    All of my lead is still inside the hoop as I am still experimenting.

    Right now, my TGKs are with about 4g in the handle and 8g spread at 9, 12 and 3 o'clock. Strung + overgrip + dampener, they are at 348g and balance is at 31.8 cm (~ 8 pt HL). As I play in Florida, this balance moves significantly with the sweating... I measured as much as 11g weight difference before and after the play on some humid nights!
     
    #44
  45. PED

    PED Legend

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    NICE!!

    You even anticipated my next question on what the specs are :)

    Any idea what the SW will be strung? That's going to produce a really heavy ball:twisted:
     
    #45
  46. PED

    PED Legend

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    #46
  47. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    sweet!!!!!
     
    #47
  48. Mdubb23

    Mdubb23 Hall of Fame

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    ~355. As a rule of thumb, the swingweight of a frame increases by thirty KGxCM^2 after it is strung.
     
    #48
  49. Mdubb23

    Mdubb23 Hall of Fame

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    #49
  50. Mdubb23

    Mdubb23 Hall of Fame

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    Thanks, man. Them and the PT57E will make a sweet combo for sure. ;)
     
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