Softest String Under $12?

Discussion in 'Strings' started by TripleB, Dec 21, 2009.

  1. TripleB

    TripleB Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Messages:
    3,742
    Location:
    North Carolina
    I was thinking of putting a poly/natural gut hybrid in my racquets. I ordered some Gaucho Natural Gut strings because I decided that I don't want to put more than $7 into my cross strings.

    After receiving the string it seems a little 'brittle' compared to other natural gut strings I've felt in the past.

    If this natural gut doesn't work out I'll obviously have to move to something other than gut.

    So, in your opinion, what is the softest (and best) string for under $12.00 a set?

    After a quick look at what's available in that price range and got positive reviews, here's what I found:
    - Babolat Addiction 16
    - Gamma TNT 2 16
    - Tecnifibre Multi-Feel 16

    Slightly out of the price range:
    - Tecnifibre TGV 16
    - Tecnifibre X-One Biphase 16
    - WeissCannon Explosive 1.30

    Thanks.

    TripleB
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
    #1
  2. Valjean

    Valjean Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Messages:
    4,729
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
    #2
  3. old coach

    old coach Rookie

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Messages:
    219
    #3
  4. Valjean

    Valjean Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Messages:
    4,729
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Your later inclusion of this list looks like you've answered yourself. Do you want more said, too?
     
    #4
  5. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    Both Prince Synthetic Gut Multifilament and Wilson Hollow Core are two of the softest strings I have ever used. The PSGM is only $7.50 a set and outperforms many strings double or triple its price. The Hollow Core is $13.00 so it's a dollar more than your asking price but it's worth a try. It uses Air technology as the core is filled with air. Think of it as Nike Max Air cushioning for your arm. :)
     
    #5
  6. scotus

    scotus Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2005
    Messages:
    7,707
    Isospeed Professional & Control.
    Pro Supex Maxim Touch
     
    #6
  7. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    I haven't tried the Isospeed strings but I hear they are really soft. However, I found Maxim Touch to feel much stiffer than either PSGM or Hollow Core.
     
    #7
  8. BigServer1

    BigServer1 Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2006
    Messages:
    5,037
    Location:
    Scottsdale, AZ
    The new Hollow Core Pro is even better than the original, but it's only 17 gauge and I'm not sure about the pricing yet.

    Seriously though, I've been really impressed with that stuff.
     
    #8
  9. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2008
    Messages:
    19,811
    Location:
    Central Florida
    Just ordered some Maxim Touch. Never used a really soft string before but my elbow has made it mandatory now.
     
    #9
  10. tennis4josh

    tennis4josh Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Messages:
    348
    Yonex Tour Super 850

    I am really impressed by this string. I have tried expensive multis like NXT, X1 and Volkl Powefibre II, but yonex tour super 850 beats them all. It is very very soft and has great feel. It costs only $9 and lasts lot longer than the ones I mentioned above. You should give it a try.

    But it comes in 16 gauge only and I have never tried it in a hybrid.

    -Josh
     
    #10
  11. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    So you've tried the new Hollow Core Pro 17g? How and where did you get it? I'd like to try it but I recently stocked up the 16g because I didn't think they were going to make a 17g (usually string makers release both a 16g and 17g at the same time), because I thought maybe it was too hard to manufacture an air-filled core in such a thin gauge.

    So in what ways is the HC Pro 17 better than the original 16g? How do the two compare? Thanks.
     
    #11
  12. Booyah

    Booyah Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    Messages:
    680
    Softest string? Isospeed control is the best I've tried. Really nice feel and easy on the arm.

    Looking for a soft poly? Isospeed Pulse.
     
    #12
  13. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    I found the Yonex Tour Super 850 to be very similar to Maxim Touch, and I found both to feel and play stiffer than PSGM and Hollow Core.
     
    #13
  14. TripleB

    TripleB Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Messages:
    3,742
    Location:
    North Carolina
    That's great info....I've been using Yonex 850 as my cross (with Lux ALU BB) since it came out. Going to give Addiction and Gaucho Gut it's shot to take the 850's place next week.

    Of course it will be comparing apples to oranges because at the same time I'm trying Black Code and Scorpion mains.

    Would love to hear your input about tension: http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=303112

    TripleB
     
    #14
  15. tribunal4555

    tribunal4555 Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2009
    Messages:
    453
    I vote HEAD RIP Control 17, and Prince Lightning XX. RIP Control felt extremely soft, but with a unique feel that's hard to describe. Both gauges of Prince Lightning XX are soft, although 16 is softer, but I prefer the playability of 17.

    BTW, the infant in your avatar is really cute :)
     
    #15
  16. scotus

    scotus Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2005
    Messages:
    7,707
    Did you try the thinnest gauge?
     
    #16
  17. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    I tried the 17g of the Maxim Touch and I found both the 16g of PGSM and 16g of Hollow Core to feel softer, more resilient, and more powerful. There was really nothing about Maxim Touch that stood out for me. It felt like an average, lower-end multi (which I guess it is). I would be just as happy (maybe even happier) using Gosen OG Sheep Micro as Maxim Touch.
     
    #17
  18. BigServer1

    BigServer1 Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2006
    Messages:
    5,037
    Location:
    Scottsdale, AZ
    I got a few advanced samples from a Wilson sales rep, along with the newer Luxilon string (which i didn't care for all that much).

    This string is soft and comfortable like Hollow Core 16, but the Pro 17 has a very plush feel and has a great sound off the stringbed, with minimal ping and vibration. Like you'd expect from a 17 gauge, it's more playable than it's 16 gauge counterpart. If I remember correctly, the air pocket is a different shape in the 17 than it is in the 16...Can't totally remember for sure though, it's been a month or so since I got the samples.

    Overall it's great, and I strung up my YT Prestige Mid seeding sample with it and LOVED it. It's been strung for a few weeks now and is still playing very well, holding tension pretty well.
     
    #18
  19. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    Thanks. I'll have to give the Hollow Core Pro 17g a try when it's released to the public. :)
     
    #19
  20. Valjean

    Valjean Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Messages:
    4,729
    Location:
    North Carolina
    The real kick lies in comparing these two, Prince's Premier LT and Wilson's Hollow Core, which are reviewed in March and April of this year, and cost roughly the same:

    http://www.racquetsportsindustry.com/articles/2009/03/10_prince_premier_lt.html

    http://www.racquetsportsindustry.com/articles/2009/04/19_wilson_hollow_core_16.html

    See their ratings, then go test them back-to-back.
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2009
    #20
  21. royfrombigd

    royfrombigd Rookie

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2009
    Messages:
    184
    If you're okay spending $1 more, TW sells Tech NRG2 for $13. I've suffered a lot from TE and wrist problems and I found this to be the almost next best thing to nat gut. Plus, I use the 18G and have found it to be surprisingly durable. I'm not a string breaker and I like the extra spin the thinner string gives. Hope that helps.
     
    #21
  22. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    One should never read reviews/ratings of a string or racquet before playtesting them because it could prejudice your thinking and cloud your judgement. It's better to keep a completely open mind and let the string speak for itself.
     
    #22
  23. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Messages:
    12,764
    Location:
    Bierlandt
    Are any of these under $12? maybe the Pro Supex?

    Pro Kennex IQ Element Z 17 Zyex 1.21 137
    Prince More Feel 16 Nylon/Softflex 1.31 138
    Pro Kennex IQ Comfort 17 Polyolefin 1.27 142
    Gamma Professional 18 Nylon/Zyex 1.22 144
    PowerAngle Duo Color TNT Fat Core 17 Nylon 1.26 145
    Pro Kennex IQ Element 2 16 Zyex 1.30 145
    Alpha Gut 2000 18 Nylon 1.21 146
    Ashaway Dynamite 17 Zyex/Nylon 1.24 147
    Gamma Asterisk 17 Nylon 1.26 150
    Isospeed Professional 17 Polyolefin 1.25 151
    Isospeed Professional 17 (Classic) Polyolefin 1.27 152
    Pro Supex Maxim Touch 1.25 Nylon 1.25 153
     
    #23
  24. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2008
    Messages:
    19,811
    Location:
    Central Florida

    Pro Supex Maxim Touch is. Your posts where you list these strings always come up when I did a search on it for reviews!
     
    #24
  25. BigT

    BigT Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Messages:
    1,220
    Head ETS 16 or 17g.
     
    #25
  26. jhp49

    jhp49 Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2006
    Messages:
    175
    Alpha Gut 2000 18g

    Alpha Gut 2000 18g is $6 a pack on TW. It has a stiffness rating of about 140. I have shoulder problems and I found it easier on my shoulder than Global Gut. It does't show a lot of wear, but it just breaks when worn out. I managed to get 6 weeks out of it in a Head FP Radical OS. Great soft string for the money. In my opinion, it's better than Global Gut as far as softness and control.
     
    #26
  27. Net Wizard

    Net Wizard New User

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2009
    Messages:
    8
    MANTIS Comfort Synthetic or Comfort Poly depending on which string you normally use.
    Not found anything better in terms of comfort and value.
     
    #27
  28. Valjean

    Valjean Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Messages:
    4,729
    Location:
    North Carolina
    10 characters
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2009
    #28
  29. Six.One.Tour.90FAN

    Six.One.Tour.90FAN Professional

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2009
    Messages:
    1,030
    Location:
    wiltshire, uk
    HEAD RiP Control is so soft you can engrave your name in it
     
    #29
  30. meowmix

    meowmix Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    Messages:
    3,852
    Location:
    Hanover, NH
    ^Really? I thought it was a really weird string when I tried it. Not really soft, but not exactly stiff either. Didn't seem to suffer from extreme tension loss, and was playable until the end. Weird because it had a weird, indescribable feel to it. A unique string, to be sure.
     
    #30
  31. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    #31
  32. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    #32
  33. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    have you ever played with it? its softer than most synguts. i have used all sorts of multi's: livewire, asterix, rip control, rip perfect control, superspin, fibergel, tnt2, revelation, og sheep micro ect. and this is softer than all of those. maybe if you actually tried it before you juged it you would agree with me...
     
    #33
  34. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    No, I have not tried it but I have tried other supposedly extremely soft polys such as Kirschbaum ProLine II, Luxilon M2 Pro, and SPPP, and I found all of them to be much stiffer than any syn gut I have ever used. I just don't think it's possible for any poly to be softer than multis or syn guts. If it were, it would lose all the advantages of being a poly and play more like a syn gut. It's the stiffness of poly that gives it its playing characteristics, e.g., spin, bite, control, minimal movement, etc. Then you might as well just use a $2 syn gut. It'll even last longer before it goes dead, which polys do very quickly.

    Are you sure the Isospeed Baseline didn't just lose tension extremely fast, as polys tend to do, so that it felt softer to you compared to the other strings you've used at the same tension? Or maybe you strung the Baseline at a lower tension to begin with?

    BTW, have you tried either PSG Multifilament or Hollow Core? Both of those are very soft.
     
    #34
  35. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    it doesn't lose tension rather quickly, infact it barely drops at all for me, and i can get atleast 20-25 hours out of it. the only way i could see it dropping so much would be if someone left their racket in a corner for a couple of months than went and played with it...
    as for hollow core, no i have not tried it, as i tend to stay away frow wilson products, as they dont last me very long. i have tried psg, and it broke in less time than it took for me to string it, which was about 30 minutes...
     
    #35
  36. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    I just did a search for the Isospeed Baseline here and many people mentioned how stiff it was and that it gave them elbow problems so I doubt it's softer than most multis or syn guts.

    If you can break PSG in only 30 minutes then you are a very hard hitter so a stiffer string would work much better for you than a softer string. Thus, if you like using Baseline then the odds are that it's on the stiffer side.

    BTW, many people also mentioned that Baseline loses a tremendous amount of tension very quickly, like in a day.
     
    #36
  37. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    i understand what you are saying, and yes, i am a heavy hitter. On a good day, i can get over 100 mph on my serves, and i can hit forehands and backhands close to 80 mph.
    However, look at this link:http://www.racquetsportsindustry.com/issues/200809/200809allstrings.html
    scroll down to the isospeed strings, look at the poly's/ polyolefin, which is what baseline is.
    all of these strings are super soft. baseline isn't on there, but i know from meowmix, that baseline spin is at 193 lbs. and baseline speed iks around 195 lbs.
     
    #37
  38. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    Those USRSA ratings don't mean anything. What matters is how stiff it actually feels when you play with it and how your elbow feels afterwards.

    The USRSA rates Wilson K-Gut Pro as very soft at 182 but I when I played with it, it felt stiffer than some polys that I've tried and felt more like barbed wire than a soft multi. But because of the low USRSA stiffness rating and because it's advertised as being comfortable and arm-friendly, I continued to use it for 2 weeks instead of cutting it out in 10 minutes as I normally do with stiff strings. Well, as a result I got tennis elbow and I haven't been able to pick up a racquet in over 2 months. It'll be maybe another month or two before I'll be able to play again. :(
     
    #38
  39. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    well thats your opinion, i am an isopeed worshiper, and im going to see if i can get a sponsorship from them, but from my experience, all of their strings are soft and i have not gotten TE from it, unlike luxilon strings...
     
    #39
  40. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    Do string companies sponsor juniors? Because I know that Luxilon doesn't even sponsor pros and most of them have to buy the strings themselves.
     
    #40
  41. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    yes if you go to their website they have a junior application. i doubt i'll get it though, the only real success i have is in the ohio state high school tournament...
    Luxilon does sponsor some pro's. look at harel levy, guga, anyone with the luxilon stencil on their racket is sponsored by them...
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2009
    #41
  42. meowmix

    meowmix Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    Messages:
    3,852
    Location:
    Hanover, NH
    Yes, string companies sponser juniors. My friend has a contract with Kirschbaum, and got a few hundred sets of Competition 1.30. He used to have a contract with Babolat before that, and had a couple dozen sets of PH.
     
    #42
  43. stanfordtennis alum

    stanfordtennis alum Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Messages:
    1,821
    Location:
    on a tennis court
    isospeed baseline is pretty soft
     
    #43
  44. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    thank you for agreeing with me :) it seems like everyone here other than break point thinks so...
     
    #44
  45. stanfordtennis alum

    stanfordtennis alum Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Messages:
    1,821
    Location:
    on a tennis court
    it's soft for a poly but not soft compared to syn guts or multis...
     
    #45
  46. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    Yes, that was the point I was trying to make. Soft for a poly does not mean softest string of any type. Most syn guts and multis are softer than almost any poly.
     
    #46
  47. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    i bet you i could find 15-20 syn guts that are stiffer than isospeed baseline
     
    #47
  48. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    Is Isospeed Baseline softer than both Isospeed Professional or Isospeed Classic? I don't think so. Thus, it can't be the softest string under $12, can it?

    I'd also bet you can find 150-200 syn guts and multis that are softer than Isospeed Baseline. :shock:
     
    #48
  49. Kick Serve 14

    Kick Serve 14 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,021
    no... its not the softest out there, i never said it was. i reccomended it because it is incredibly arm friendly, and compared to all other isospeed strings it is incredibly cheap at $40 a reel...
     
    #49
  50. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,672
    But the OP is asking for the softest string under $12:
    Oh, and there's a reason why Baseline is so cheap. It's a mono poly so it's very cheap to manufacture.
     
    #50

Share This Page