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Old 07-13-2011, 07:01 PM   #1043
pvaudio
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Join Date: Jul 2009
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Discho Black Mamba 1.23





Stringing: Without question this is one of the most stubborn, stiff and recalcitrant strings that I've ever dealt with. Honestly, it's second only to Alien Black Diamond in terms of diabolical stringability. Nonetheless, the Alien stuff is truly a great poly even though it's deadly to string up, so I'm not basing anything off of this. Anyone thinking that this stuff is the same as SP Hyperion or Genesis Black Magic......you've got to be kidding me. Strung at 47/47.

Groundstrokes: This string plays how it feels and strings, but only from a power and feel standpoint. It is not a harsh string at all, but it's not soft. I would say that Hyperion is slightly softer, but not by much. It's about as soft as maybe Cyberflash, but without the other qualities. It has very little power anywhere in the court. You really need to work the racquet to get your shots to work how you want them to. There is a very strange feeling to it, something that I have only experienced with X-1. It honestly feels as though the racquet is strung at different tensions all across the string bed. if you hit the ball a bit lower in the stringbed to get a sharper angle, there is no power. If you hit it a bit above the sweet spot, there is a bit more power, but not by much. The string really takes the sweetspot of even the deadest polys and shrinks it. To put it another way, the strings just feel dead right from the get go. Normally, I would say that there is a type of player that would like this, but no play style would benefit from the way it played for me.
Overall: 7/10

Serves: Same as the groundstrokes. This is not a server's string as there is no help whatsoever on a power or spin standpoint. It's simply just a dead feeling string and seems to take away pace that you already would have had even with a syn gut. Since I rely heavily on my serve, this is a definite no.
Overall: 6/10

Volleys: Too stiff. There is no feel from the stringbed. The same applies here about the "uneven" stringbed. You have absolutely no way of knowing whether or not your volley is going to go where you want it. Now, I know I play with gut crosses in my go-to setup, but even then, mushy Black Magic is more reliable.
Overall: 6/10

Durability: It may be too early to tell since not enough time has passed, but this seems to be a rather durable poly. There is no notching whatsoever, but honestly, after feeling it, that's not surprising. The crosses were sliding all over the place though. Either way, the strings felt dead even after they broke in, so I really can't imagine what it will be like once they die.
Overall: Too early.

I don't believe in reviewing something and not being honest, so I won't be doing that. This is not a string for me. I'm not going to use any hyperbole here, so I'm just relaying exactly what I think. I know that some people like it, but for groundstrokes this reminds me from a feel standpoint of Signum Pro Hyperion. Similar spin off of both wings as well. The difference is, Hyperion is easy to string, doesn't move about and is very playable at the net and on serves. For groundstrokes though, it's very similar. Not that soft, stiff feeling and very low powered. In all other aspects, it isn't even close. It doesn't feel plasticky like Black Code, but it plays just as poorly.

Overall: 6.5/10
UPDATE: After ordering my Iontec, I forgot that I never updated this review with the lower tension/frame. Sorry Ray!!

I tried this out a few weeks ago at 45/45, but didn't update it having used it in my new frame. I took Ray's original suggestions and applied them to the 4D200T. This string, while I must be honest, is not quite Iontec, is still tremendous. The higher tension in the lighter frame was just a combination made in hell. The lower tension in the heavier frame and the pocketing was simply diabolically good. Spin is about the same as Iontec, and it's still definitely stiffer. Feel at the net was average, but serving muahahahaha! That delicious explosion sound that Tour Bite makes? Yep, it's got it.

I still didn't like stringing it up either, have to be honest about that too. Not sure why it was so finicky for me, but who knows. Regardless, BM shows two key things to consider in strings:

1. Frame

2. Tension

I remember when I did B5E/gut in my 4D200T for the first time and it was eye opening as to what that combination could do. Same thing here. The AG100 is just too tinny/light to get the most out of this string. That, plus having changed my forehand since I last reviewed it...and switching to a 2HBH led to some much different results. The sweetspot is actually enormous compared to what I felt before. I knew that something was likely up since Iontec is one of my all time faves and this is the lowest rated string in here. Didn't make sense. Now though, it gets its proper due.


Overall: 9.25/10

Last edited by pvaudio : 05-03-2012 at 09:08 AM.
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