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Old 05-10-2013, 12:53 PM   #87
pvaudio
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 7,544
Default Ashaway Monogut ZX Pro 1.22

For the first time, I will actually use the TW prescribed format instead of my usual playtest format

String, gauge, & color received
I received the ZX Pro 1.22mm in tan color.


Tension used for playtest
50.5/50.5lbs, CP, no prestretch

Regular string set up
WeissCANNON Black5Edge / Babolat Nvy 16g, 47/50.5lbs CP

Racquet brand and model used for test

Head Youtek IG Prestige Pro

Power of test string

This string had a moderate amount of power. It is very difficult for me to not call this a poly since that is what it feels like to me. The level of power was on par with thinner gauge polys. In particular, this reminded me almost exactly of Head Sonic Pro 17 black or Isospeed Baseline Spin. It has that same "crunchy" feeling to it when the ball hits the strings, and then gets launched away. It's not a sprayer either, but I would not say that it lacks for power for sure. I'll put it like this: I see no reason to hybrid it in order to get more juice.

Feel

Very disappointed in this here. The packaging states gut-like playability, and I found very little. It is a responsive string in that it gives good feedback about what sort of ball you just hit, but there is little feel. It's rather hard to explain, but it's better than the majority of poly strings, but still less than even a synthetic gut. Perhaps this was the purpose of the string, but WC Mosquito Bite and Silverstring, and Discho Iontec all are leagues better in terms of feel.


Spin
Definitely not the hallmark. It has a full-poly sort of spin to it, and that's about it. I would say below average for the reasons I will get to in Durability. In short, this is not intended for the guy or girl who takes enormous cuts at the ball hoping that spin will save the day. You're just going to save your opponent effort by making an error.

Comfort
Tricky one, this. I don't have elbow problems, so poly has never affected me in any way. My definition of comfort is more along the lines of how soft vs. how stiff a stringbed feels. Note that this does not always correlate to TE users data. For example, WC Silverstring to me is not a plush string. It has a very firm feeling to it, but is no way a huge problem for TE sufferers. Solinco Tour Bite, however, does not feel as stiff. It feels like there is more give, but TE sufferers almost unanimously agree that it's awful for your elbow. Swings and roundabouts I guess. What I can say is that it doesn't strike me as being particularly comfortable, but it's not harsh like high tension Lux ALU or any tension Pro Supex Blue Gear.

Durability & Playability Duration

This is where I feel that the unique material shows itself. After just an hour, the strings were notching. Not just that, but they were creaking as though the tension across the stringbed shot up (obviously impossible, so let me explain). When hitting with synthetics, after about an hour or so, you start to pick the strings back into place because they're moving around. That sound is one that almost all tennis players know. I found myself doing that with this monofilament after an hour. Couple that with the notching, and you get strings that feel as though they're absolutely stuck in place, but are out of place regularly. When you go to pick them back into their strung position, the string fights you and almost squeals like you're rubbing two smooth surfaces against one another but under high force. The notching for sure lowered the spin the more that I hit with it. I would imagine that I would break these (unless they have something up their sleeve) around 5 hours, and I hardly ever break poly.

Control
Typically low powered strings are put int he category of control strings. I think this is a bit wrong since low powered strings can simply be so devoid of feel that you have no idea where the ball is going to go. These are, again, smack in the middle. My go-to control string, Scorpion 1.22, is in a different league. For FHs with this Ashaway, if you hit something cross court, you end up hoping it will dive in at the last second because it happened to go a bit wider than you expected. By you I mean myself, obviously, but either way, it doesn't improve much on the BH. My BH is flatter which means I like to have a very good sense of what the ball is going to do. This control level was about that of a synthetic gut. Won't get you into trouble by spraying balls, but it's not going to help you either.


Compare to the string you use most often

Compared to my WC/Bab hybrid, this falls short in every aspect. For me, full poly gives me confidence over hybrids when rallying from the baseline. However, I prefer to play an all-court game, so they're not as useful at the net or when serving. This string was a slice from the middle in all categories, whereas I feel as though my go-to is above average in all categories.

Tension recommendations (after hitting it, would you recommend a different tension? Why?)

Wouldn't change it. I think I guessed right the first time, as I typically use 47 for poly. 3.5lbs up seemed to give me a similar type of feel. I would not go less for fear of losing control, and would not go higher for fear of losing yet more power.

Overall: 8.5/10
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