|01-05-2008, 03:10 AM||#1|
Nickb's Poly Reviews
Please check post 11 for more as I have reached the text limit for this post..and post no 9 for my "about poly" section.
Luxilon Big Banger ALU Power 16L
This was the first poly I used and boy was I impressed!...power, control, spin are amazing. I can see why so many pro's refuse to use anything else. The ball just seems to drop in...it gives you the feeling you cant miss. Touch is better than big Big Banger Original but not up there with Ace. Fresh there is no better string out there....it does go dead fast but to counter this let it sit for 24 hours before play.
Luxilon Big Banger Original 1.30
Big power and big control. This stuff is addictive. For a 1.30 poly the feel is great. I use this as my main string as a full job. Again like ALU Power it gives me the feeling that I cant miss...I just seem to play better with Luxilon. Spin is about as good as it gets...much more than Blue Gear for me. LOVE it!
Luxilon Big Banger ACE 18
WOW what a string. The best feel from a poly I have ever felt. You feel very connected to the ball with this stuff. Spin is great, control good but not very durable as its very very thin. If you never break strings and like poly use this. If you want something low priced check out big ace micro below.
Luxilon TiMo 1.22
Tecnifibre Pro Redcode 17
I see many posters on here calling Pro Reedcode soft...but im not sure why. I found redcode very stiff and harsh. If you arm can handle it redcode is a nice low powered poly which offers lots of spin and control. In my experience this string is better as a hybrid with a softer cross like natural gut. It holds tension better than luxilon but I found luxilon to play better even after the "golden hours". I think most people use this string because it looks cool! (in tecnifibre sticks, ncodes etc).
Tecnifibre PolySpin 16
I have 1 customer who uses this stuff...IMO its the worst poly out there. It might have a low price but that cant make up for the complete lack of playability. This string drops tension like nothing ive ever played with...it starts off stiff then becomes a fishing net within 2 hours.
Topspin Cyberpower 1.20
This string really has some power but with it comes control, spin and touch. Great from the baseline AND at net. Cyberpower holds tension well and has very good durability for the thin gauge.
Summary: This is a very special string...its more like a syn gut than a poly. If you are looking to try poly for the first time this string is a good place to start.
Topspin Poly Polar 17
I used a reel of this string back in 2006...very soft (imo the softest poly on the market). Tension maintenance is not a strong point but for the price I could string it up fresh every 3 days. This is a poly which offers comfort, power and spin....very good if you dont like a stiff feel but want more durability than syn gut. I moved away from Poly Polar because it didnt offer the control I was looking for from the baseline and the spin I get on serve from BB ALU Power. Really nice touch at net!
Topspin CyberFlash 17
Cyberflash is stiffer than both CyberPower and Polar Polar. It gets alot of love on TT and I can see why. This string has been called a poor mans luxilon. It plays well for 15+ hours and holds tension well. When it first came out Cyberflash was called soft....it feels on the stiffer side now with all these newer comfort polys but is still a great string. Spin, control, power and feel are all great. Give it a try if you like Luxilon but cant stand the price.
Pro Supex Big Ace 1.22/1.25
Big Ace is simply an amazing string. Top of my list for spin, power, tension retention and a surprising amount of feel. Very soft for a poly…I can volley with this stuff! I have been surprised at how long I could play with Big Ace without feeling the need to cut it out. This string is the next big step in softer more comfort orientated poly’s. This string has impressed many of my customers and ive never seen them so interested in a string! (players with ncode’s and other red rackets also love the colour lol). Great value...this string is one of the best polys around right now.
Blue Gear 1.25
The amount of spin that can be produced with this string is INSANE…I found much more spin the BB ALU power, Big Ace and many others. The ridges do wear off after a while but then it just performs like a regular poly. This string does feel on the stiff side after using Big Ace and loses a bit more tension. Some of my customers have switched over to Blue Gear from BB ALU power…they love the spin and also the price! The main problem with this string for ME was the complete lack of feel…I felt very detached from the ball when hitting with Blue Gear and found it horrible at net. This string is perfect for baseline players that run around hitting topspin all day and like long rallys. I found that dropping the tension adds some more feel...very interesting and unique string.
Pro Supex Premier Ace 1.25
Stiff string and the stiffest in the pro supex family. Pretty unique as well. Very low powered, lots of control but a bit plastic feeling. Holds tension well and good value for money. I think Big Ace is a better string overall but if you like a stiff poly its worth a try. I strung it too tight at 54...50 might have been better. Edit: just used this string again and it really works wonders at low tension...control is top notch and spin good as any poly I have used...very good value!
Pro Supex Big Ace Micro 1.15
Really good string...amazing feel for a poly. Just a little less feel than Luxilon Ace. Durability is really bad (less than 1.30 hrs for me). Spin good but not up there with luxilon. Holds tension pretty well...very crisp and makes great sound at contact. This is fantastic for the price...if you like thin strings try it! A lot of string for the money...
Signum Pro Poly Plasma Hextrme 17
Signum Pro Poly Plasma 1.18
Very good poly. I would use this string but it A breaks too quick B feels very muted. Good overall string, average spin for a poly, good feel and holds tension very well. Not soft like Big Ace but still soft all the same. Many posters on here have reported the string breaking on the machine and during play...I have never had that problem. Good all-round poly with a muted feel.
Signum Pro Poly Plasma 1.23
Same feel as the 1.18 but with much better control and better spin. Holds tension very well (one of the best). Durability is excellent...I have a few hard hitting customers who get more play out of this than CyberFlash (very durable). Dont string this too tight as it will take hours to break in. Good string.
Babolat Pro Hurricane 1.25
Babolat Pro Hurricane Tour 1.25
Good softer poly. Goes dead faster than Luxilon IMO and can get very mushy. However when fresh it players very well with excellent pop, feel, power and spin. A good all round poly but nothing special...I prefer cyberflash. The hex shape does not really add any spin IMO. The feel of this string is very unique...I really like the ball feel you get with PHT...very different. This string is hard to replace if you like it as the feel is unique and very hard to find in another string....its one of the better polys for touch stuff at net.
Babolat Tour Duralast 1.30
Nadals string!...Very, very harsh!....no comfort, no feel and a very stiff stringbed. This stuff is like barbed wire. Tension drops by about 10 pounds in the first 3 hours play...horrible stuf ...NOT reccomended (unless you like very stiff polys and like to re-string every set).
Kirschbaum P2 17
Takes a while to break in and can feel very boardy in 18x20 rackets. Low powered, very good spin and good control. Pretty comfortable but not what I was expecting. After a break in the string has much more power and feels great. Plays like SPPP but a bit less muted. Less power than Luxilon but more comfort. For a few $ less get Cyberflash or Big Ace.
WeissCanon Silverstring 1.25
Wilson Enduro Pro 1.25
Older poly string which is at a great price. Very durable and stiff. Feels a bit like Babolat Duralast and Tecnifibre Polyspin...an "old" school first gen poly. Drops tension fast but has a load of control and spin. Very good if you are a hard hitter who does nothing but run about on the baseline hitting heavy spin...horrible at net! Nadal sort of string
Head Sonic Pro 1.25
Ashaway Monofire XL 1.30
Like Euduro and Duralast this string drops tension fast but is very crisp and good from the baseline. Its dirt cheap over here in the UK...I can see why..I liked it for the first hour but after that it was useless. Heavy spin players will like it mostly because of the price to durability ratio. Colour is nice!
Please check back soon for more reviews!
Last edited by nickb : 07-14-2008 at 08:55 AM.
|01-05-2008, 04:30 AM||#2|
Join Date: Feb 2004
Thanks for putting this all together in one place.
I have been searching for a less expensive, longer lasting Lux, also. I think that BB Ace is the best string for the first two hours, average for a few more hours and I cut it out by 6 hours. ALU is almost the same, but I get a bit more spin with Ace. I have used them in hybrids, and all I've gotten is a little lower cost. Still too expensive for me to cut out after only one day.
Today, I will be trying a Big Ace 1.22 / Titan 1.25 hybrid. I wouldn't have even known about Pro Supex, except what you and others have contributed to this list. Thanks for that, too.
|01-05-2008, 04:31 AM||#3|
Hall Of Fame
Join Date: Aug 2006
yo, nick, this is great!!! maybe invite others to send reviews to you and then post...ala jdeloach style reviews...
keep 'em coming, this looks great, like the format, easy to read, very informative!
Pro Staff 6.1's from now on, should have never left in the first place!!
|01-05-2008, 05:54 AM||#4|
Join Date: Sep 2007
|01-05-2008, 10:23 AM||#5|
Hall Of Fame
Join Date: Jul 2007
i wonder how long it took you to brainstorm and right up that whole thing. Good going though.
Head Microgel Prestige Midsize strung with Genesis Typhoon at 57 lbs.
Favorite player is Roger Federer.
|01-05-2008, 01:22 PM||#9|
About Poly Strings!
Polyester strings are usually stiff. They were intended for use by frequent string breakers because of their high durability. However, due to their low power players are able to put more spin on the ball by swinging harder (which increases control). These properties make polyester extremely popular on the Pro Tour. The most used polyester string on the tour is Luxilon. About 65% of male tour players use Luxilon.
Polys have a fairy simple structure : they consist of a single polyester fibre with a thin coating. This type of construction is known as "monofilament". During the past few years great effort has been put into the advancement of monofilament strings. Companies have attempted to eliminate their major weaknesses (tennis loss, stiffness and feel) thus creating co-polys. These are polyester blends mixed with materials like PEEK and carbon fibres.
For me poly adds a sense of control and confidence that I just cant find with another string (even natural gut). However polyesters are not for everybody. Players with less extreme grips, serve and volley players and players with sensitive arms might be better of with a softer string.
There is no deniying that polyesters have taken over tennis and changed the game. Don't use poly because the pro's do. Take a look at your game. Do you really need to use poly? This thread is about polys....I love them but they are not for everyone. Choose wisely!
Advantages of polyester strings:
- Great durability
- More spin by allowing the user to swing faster
- Increased sense of control
- Little to no string movement (depends on the player)
- Lack the feel of softer strings
- Lose tension quickly
- Can cause arm/shoulder problems (stiffness)
- More difficult to string
- Go dead quickly
Hybird stringing consists of using different strings in the mains and crosses. This type of stringing is gaining popularity fast as more players are looking for a blend of 2 strings. By selecting 2 different string types you can play around with the playability, durability, comfort and control. An example is Luxilon ALU Power as a main string and natural gut for a cross string. The Luxilon provides spin and control. The natural gut adds comfort, power and feel.
The main string dominates the feel and overall playability of the 2 strings. If you are looking for durability put the most durable string in the mains. For added playability try a thinner main string. For more durability try something thicker.
You will not get the full benefit of the crosses playing characteristics but the overall string bed feel and power will be affected. An example is using a soft cross to add comfort, power and feel to a stiff main string like Luxilon.
There is no right and wrong when it comes to tension. With polyester it is recommended to drop your normal tension (synthetic gut, multi or natural gut) 5-10%. Luxilon recommend 10%, other companies recommend something different. Getting your tension right might take 3-4 stringjobs. Its very important to get the tension right with polyester strings as they are often very stiff. Newer "co-poly" strings have more power and may require an increase in tension compared to Luxilon. In hybrids most players string the softer string (usually the crosses) tighter. Some string the mains tighter to create a more even tension (mains are longer and don't hold tension as well). Try out different set-ups, find what works for you.
Here are my rankings for different categories..please note this is my opinion:
Top 5 for Comfort
1) Topspin Poly Polar
2) Polyfibre TCS
3) Topspin CyberPower
4) Pro Supex Big Ace
5) Signum Pro Poly Plasma
Top 5 for Feel
1) Luxilon Big Banger ACE 18
2) Luxilon TiMo 1.10
3) Pro Supex Big Ace Micro
4) Topspin CyberPower 1.20
5) Luxilon Big Banger ALU Power 1.25
Top 5 for Durability
Top 5 for Power
Top 5 for Control
1) Luxilon Big Banger Original
2) Luxilon ALU Power
3) Topspin CyberFlash
4) Pro Supex Premier Ace
5) Pro Supex Blue Gear
Best Overall Polys
Last edited by nickb : 06-17-2008 at 01:37 PM.
|01-05-2008, 01:43 PM||#11|
Added from first post:
Toaslon CyberBlade Tour Thermaxe 1.30
I find this string very similar to Luxilon Big Banger Original. It really is a top quality string and its a shame more people dont know about it. It's one of the few strings (luxilon) that gives you the feeling you cant miss. Control is pin-point with this string. When using a full job I felt added consistency in my game similar to when I use the luxilon line. Spin potential is great...again similar to Original...it seems to grip the ball so well. At net this poly has a really good feel to it...nice and crisp but not harsh. I found good touch around net and I could place volleys really well. At net this string is great...I actually like polys more at net because im used them...with synthetics I dont feel the same control. I found a little more string movement than I am used to with this string but nothing that really annoyed me! Thermaxe holds tension VERY well and keeps playing great right until it breaks. A fantastic string and very good value. Try it!
If you want a softer string, even more feel and a tad more power try the thinner 1.23 thermaxe. The durability is much less than 1.30 but its still a very durable string. I found more spin with the above but this is also great.
Last edited by nickb : 07-07-2008 at 05:53 AM.
|01-05-2008, 02:12 PM||#12|
Join Date: Oct 2007
Thanks for the reviews! Really helpful for someone like me who wants to try a poly but has no idea what to go for.
Wilson nBlade MP @ 338g - Rip Control @ 58lbs
|01-05-2008, 04:11 PM||#14|
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: In your house
Good quick to the point review.
|01-07-2008, 07:12 PM||#16|
Join Date: Feb 2007
Do you think blue gear is low powered like timo? or higher powered like alu power rough?
reason is, I am using Timo, but balls land short, it is very very low powered, I would like something with more power and more spin generation and I think blue gear would be a great fit if that is the case.
if it has more power than Timo, then Im sold
thanks for your time !
|01-08-2008, 01:42 AM||#17|
Join Date: Nov 2007
mate u should also review msv hex. To me this is the most underrated string going. Everyone makes the same mistake of stringing it too tight!!!. String it up at 52lbs and let the magic happen. There is no better string out there at the moment unless u can affort to cut out alu power every time u play.
|01-08-2008, 02:09 AM||#18|
|01-08-2008, 07:04 AM||#20|
Hall Of Fame
Join Date: Nov 2007
Nick, i was wondering whether you could add Tecnifibre Multifeel to the list?
Im looking for a string that is really good as 1 piece as well as with Big Ace. Any ideas??