Frame: YouTek Prestige Pro
String: Still In Black Select 1.30
The string is actually a navy blue
Yet another playtest from the generous people over at StringForum. Jens felt that I'd be better off with the 1.30 to test the durability of the string but it also comes in 1.25. This new line consists of:
Select 1.25 1.30: a co-poly focusing on "power, ball control, durability, spin potential and tension maintenance."
Booster 1.25 1.30: a copoly focusing on a "perfect balance between elasticity and stiffness. Offering a lot of Power and control while providing comfort. Wear resistant"
Resistretch 1.20 1.25 1.30 1.35: a copoly focusing on "comfort due to elasticity, octagonal profile, and power in and arm friendly feel."
Reacturn:1.20 1.25 1.30 A copoly focussing on "exceptional access to spin due to a twisted octagonal profile"
While the packaging is awesome (it's a mini-reel) I also HATE it. It supercoils the string, which if you choose to pull it apart instead of unwinding it, explodes all over the place in a horrific nest of vipers. The propensity for coiling on this string is UNREAL. It gets stuck on, turns, and twists at every chance. The closest I could compare it to is those stupid Babolat packages of PHT where it took you longer to unravel the string than to string the mains. Aside from that wicked, wicked, characteristic, the string is perfectly normal and easy to work with.
I finally had a chance to hit with this stuff after my match tonight for a good 15-20 mins. It's what I'd like to refer to as a 60% poly. Control oriented with very slightly above average power for a control string. By this reference, I'm thinking silverstring; It does everything fairly well but slightly better than a string that would just be another meh poly. (Note: silverstring is in a class of it's own because it does everything at that "decent" level for a looong time). I found topspin to be much more effective/ better feeling than flat strokes. The ability to hit a penetrating ball is there as well as the ability to loop the ball high and deep in the court. My hitting partner happens to be a veritable backboard so that didn't really bother him too much but it was nice to have the ability to change up strokes. Overall, I'd say the strings play a bit on the stiff side. Since this frame sat around for almost 2 weeks I'm sure the strings "settled" but I'd still like to see them loosen up a bit more with some hitting. If not, I would have definitely strung a lb or two looser to bring it closer to my preferred B7 comfort level. For a string that plays this stiff, I'd expect a bit more spin...we'll see how it progresses. Interestingly enough, volleys benefit from this stiffness; they are pretty sharp and responsive.
I think my first impressions were pretty on-target. The string plays very stiff yet doesn't do anything fantastic which drops it to the "mediocre" poly category for me. For a string this stiff (even at 4
, I expect a lot more in either energy return or the spin department. I don't see either. At first the string does what you want it to fairly well. If you relax and hit your shots appropriately you can get a variation of topspin but nothing is "free" here. The spin comes from the technique, and not from any inherent properties of the string itself. After getting used to playing with B7, the feel of this string is just pah. Jarring and uncomfortable would be the two terms I'd use towards the end of the play. In my last playtest, I had fresh and dead-->pop beds of B7 to compare it to and hands down the B7 won. Frankly, I feel a bit sore hitting with this stuff.
Again, "meh" is a good term to use. No freebies here although I was able to hit one truly inexplicable slice serve. No clue where it came from but that sucker moved. Short of hitting the absolute perfect sweet spot, flat serves hurt my arm (I traditionally hit just above it). Spin serves also take on a sense of mediocrity. The lack of pop is also astounding and if you don't kick in the RHS, the ball will die into the net
The only category where I found this string to be above average. Snap volleys in place and the string reacts nicely. The stiffness lends a nice zip to shots and yet is dead enough to take something off if you need it.
Not terrible. The string held up decently in terms of overall tension but the feel just took a dive. My first play was stiff but decent. Second play was already somewhat uncomfortable and the last was just downright cut-worthy.
Durability:Lil more than 6 hours? If this weren't a playtest, I would have cut it out much sooner. The feel is just not for me.
I'm really curious to see how much this string costs. It's not terrible for a budget poly but I'd be sorely tempted to laugh if it's a 12.00+ string. Perhaps it's just not for me but I really couldn't find anything special about this string. It simply didn't play to my strengths and was uncomfortable on my arm. For future tests, I'd drop the tension to 45-46 to try and mitigate some of the issues I came across.