2020 Prostaff update

dunno

Rookie
Just got mine(ps97), upgrading from the old Donnay Pro one TW midplus to this. Strung with Tourna BHS 16 in the mains, and Gosen OG sheep micro 17 in the crosses, both at 45. Plenty of pop for me, decent spin, directional control seems really good, and stability returning hard shots was also impressive. My playing went up a notch and I think it's due to the confidence I'm getting from the directional control and stability, pretty happy with my purchase!
 
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Vertiz

Rookie
Just came back from my first hit with PS 97s (~11.9oz). Strung VS mains at 55lbs, RPM Blast at 53lbs. Racket swings much differently through the air than my current frame (Head Youtek Speed 16x19 from '09 custom ~12.4oz) so there was a brief adjustment period.
26-year-old male, semi-western forehand, Eastern OHBH, USTA 4.5 ex-collegiate, if that helps.

Pros:
- Extremely comfortable racket, butter. Much more muted than my current racket (reminder my current frames are 2009 models). Thought it felt way better without a vibration dampener.
- Great dwell time, felt extremely connected to every ball.
- The best spin potential I've had out of a frame in awhile. Curious how much spin I can get out of a full bed of something like HyperG. Reckon it's going to be insane.
- Solid power but only when you hit the sweetspot (or somewhere near it).
- Stock form I felt already had enough plow and stability to hang with the big boys.
- For me, it shined on every stroke. Volleys and overheads included. Maybe the best serving racket I've ever used, and one of the best rackets for my OHBH. Would probably still put the IG Prestige MP above it for the OHBH.

Cons (kinda):
- Basically the only con is it's a demanding racket. Below is just me elaborating.
- I felt the sweetspot was plenty but not generous.
- Launch angle was a bit higher than I'm used to. Found it helpful when I caught the backhand late. Would have liked the forehand to be lower, more penetrating.
- You'll be dropping balls short and slow if your footwork and technique aren't up there, especially against bigger hitters.
- Didn't feel the racket gave much "free power", sweetspot or not. You'll have to take full strokes which the racket rewards.
- For whatever reason, I wasn't able to find consistent depth on my slice today. Was dropping them short and long. Probably just an adjustment period thing.

Conclusion:
- Overall, sick racket. One of the best I've tried and I'm switching to it full-time. Might try a leather grip on it but I could also totally live with stock form.
- Rewarding, but not generous. That means, your footwork, fitness, and technique will determine how much spin, power, control you get. Doesn't gift much for free.
- Pretty demanding over 3 sets. If you tend to fade late in matches you're probably going to have a tough time winning with this frame.
- I recommend it for true 4.0+. I feel there are better rackets for lower levels.


Disclaimer: Impressions are from one 90 minute session and one string setup. Would probably rate my physical level a 7/10 today. That said, it's a really awesome performance frame. Must demo if you're an advanced player (4.0+ IMO).
Note: I've tried so many frames over the last 7 years and really just end up sticking with the early Speeds (Youtek,IG), IG Prestige, or 2013 black and silver Wilson Blades. This is the first frame I've really liked since those '13 blades.
 
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SlvrDragon50

Semi-Pro
Really wanna grab one now... but I can't justify it! Maybe if one pops up used. I'd love to hear a comparison of the PS97 against the RF97 if someone happens to have both.
 

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
Played another session with the new PS97 today. It feels more like a 68 RA frame. Will be curious to see the RA rating when TW has it available. Very powerful based on the frame I am coming from. Swings through the air easy, but as I mentioned before, it does not give you any free spin. If you like to hit flat balls though, woah nelly.
 

Regord

New User
I’m seeing that the racquets from the new Wilson Pro Staff 97 line (regular, RF, L and UL) are available for purchase on MidwestSports now. Regular pro staff on there is RA 66, 6 points HL strung, 11.6 oz strung, and 325 SW strung
 

TennisManiac

Hall of Fame
I’m seeing that the racquets from the new Wilson Pro Staff 97 line (regular, RF, L and UL) are available for purchase on MidwestSports now. Regular pro staff on there is RA 66, 6 points HL strung, 11.6 oz strung, and 325 SW strung
(y)
 
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Regord

New User
They are available for pre-order on TW Now. For each one of them it says: “This racquet is available for pre-sale. Ships 9/28/20.”. Not available for demo yet.
 

Regord

New User
Played another session with the new PS97 today. It feels more like a 68 RA frame. Will be curious to see the RA rating when TW has it available. Very powerful based on the frame I am coming from. Swings through the air easy, but as I mentioned before, it does not give you any free spin. If you like to hit flat balls though, woah nelly.
RA is up on TW now.
 
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axnthn

New User
Interesting. Makes sense that it comes in at 66, but it feels stiffer than that to me.
Which racquet were you coming from if you don't mind me asking? Considering picking this up and I'm coming from a v7 18x20 blade. Ideally looking for something with a bit more spin and power.
 

axnthn

New User
Question for all of you guys.. Would the pro staff 97 be easier to swing compared to a blade 18x20 because it has less swingweight? Or does the static weight matter more when it comes to how demanding a racquet is.
 
Currently using a Blade v7 18x20 and the previous prostaff 97 didn't work for me.

The sweet spot was much smaller than the Blade and felt much stiffer.

Anyone can comment whether the new Pro Staff 97 address the smaller sweet spot of the older Pro Staff and stiffness?
 

Rob2D

New User
Aw man. I stayed up past 1am last night waiting for the pre orders to go live on TW Europe. But there was nothing. Came into work this morning and saw they were up. Ordered, but pretty sure I missed the free gift (bag??) for the first 50. Anyone know what time the pre order actually went up last night?
 
Too pricey for me right now 269 euro RF97 and 249- PS97...I'll play my next tennis tournament with Yonex HD. Why should I buy RF97 when I sell 3 pieces of RF97 (2015 edition) with the same sum?!
 
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DJTaurus

Hall of Fame
Currently using a Blade v7 18x20 and the previous prostaff 97 didn't work for me.

The sweet spot was much smaller than the Blade and felt much stiffer.

Anyone can comment whether the new Pro Staff 97 address the smaller sweet spot of the older Pro Staff and stiffness?
I have the same experience and i am interested as well..... black/red PS97 had decent clean feel and lots of power but not the forgiving SS of a 98inch stick.
 

AA7

Hall of Fame
Currently using a Blade v7 18x20 and the previous prostaff 97 didn't work for me.

The sweet spot was much smaller than the Blade and felt much stiffer.

Anyone can comment whether the new Pro Staff 97 address the smaller sweet spot of the older Pro Staff and stiffness?
I may be able to comment on this later this week. Racquet being strung right now.. these are my 2 worries as well. Blade v7 feel is pretty addictive to me. Even though there have been other sticks I liked, v7 feel/comfort is so unique. Add to that great blend of control and power and v7 is very tough to beat for me. I dont expect prostaff to replace my blade but it could be a good addition to collection.
 

Bal

New User
Phoned Wilson UK today to follow-up my e-mail to them where I complained that grip size 4 wasn't available to order for the PS97 v13 when using the Insider email link. I checked before I made the call that it was still the case and it was. Their response was that I'll have to wait until the 28/09 and will miss out on the free case :mad:. So, I tried again 10 minutes after I put the phone down and it was mysteriously available o_O. So I placed my order in a hurry and upon checking my basket and I had two items in there. The other item was the free retro-case so I guess if you're one of the first 70 orders, you will get the case automatically added to your basket. Any recommendations on string and what tension I should go for? Will report back upon arrival of the racket with some pictures. Hope some of you have had success in ordering.
Just got mine with the retro case. Looks like Wilson QC is getting better. 315g unstrung with the plastic on the handle (y)
 

Bal

New User
I may be able to comment on this later this week. Racquet being strung right now.. these are my 2 worries as well. Blade v7 feel is pretty addictive to me. Even though there have been other sticks I liked, v7 feel/comfort is so unique. Add to that great blend of control and power and v7 is very tough to beat for me. I dont expect prostaff to replace my blade but it could be a good addition to collection.
In the same boat as you. I play with an 18x20 Blade v7, and found my OHBH yesterday with it but will probably be torn between the two! My PS97 should be strung by next week.
 
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cknobman

Legend
The TW video review is up now!
Global review too, really enjoy hearing from people around the world.
And man do some of these players look good!!

Excited for this racquet as I'm looking for something more controlled to play with.
Might have to pick one up!
 

MasterZeb

Hall of Fame
Has anyone here that’s tried this but also has tried the blade 98 16x19 able to comment on the pro staffs launch angle? The blades was too low for me so I’m wondering if this tighter 16x19 that they’ve updated would be similar to not. I much prefer the RF97s 16x19
 

time_fly

Hall of Fame
Interesting that most of the reviewers dwelled on the “low power.” I played the first edition of the Pro Staff 97 for quite a while and didn’t find it to be especially low powered; it was similar to frames like the Ai98 and Pure Strike at the time. It had perhaps a bit thinner beam and more mass but the end results were comparable. Since it’s a 315g racquet and most of the natural competition is 300g or 305g, the key is just to leverage the extra mass.
 

Fxanimator1

Hall of Fame
Has anyone here that’s tried this but also has tried the blade 98 16x19 able to comment on the pro staffs launch angle? The blades was too low for me so I’m wondering if this tighter 16x19 that they’ve updated would be similar to not. I much prefer the RF97s 16x19
Let you know in a few days when I get it out.
 

TennisManiac

Hall of Fame
Interesting that most of the reviewers dwelled on the “low power.”
Chris and the second guy from TW Australia both said that they thought the racket generated easy power and depth. And all you need to do to the Pro Staff is add a few grams of lead to the tip and the swing weight jumps up quite a bit and gives you more power.
 

time_fly

Hall of Fame
Seems like the tw reviewers weren't too enthusiastic with the new pro staff 97.
I recall some reviewers of the original version criticizing the "erratic stringbed." Nobody mentioned that this time around. Does this mean they think it's fixed, or did these reviewers not have an issue with the original's stringbed behavior either? The gist I got from most of the reviews is that it plays like the previous version but feels better.
 

JoaoN

Semi-Pro
I recall some reviewers of the original version criticizing the "erratic stringbed." Nobody mentioned that this time around. Does this mean they think it's fixed, or did these reviewers not have an issue with the original's stringbed behavior either? The gist I got from most of the reviews is that it plays like the previous version but feels better.
Wilson changed the string bed for the PS97 v13, so it seems they solved this issue.
 

cknobman

Legend
I recall some reviewers of the original version criticizing the "erratic stringbed." Nobody mentioned that this time around. Does this mean they think it's fixed, or did these reviewers not have an issue with the original's stringbed behavior either? The gist I got from most of the reviews is that it plays like the previous version but feels better.
I think you need to take in consideration who was doing the review and their playstyles.
I've been watching TW reviews for so many years I know the reviewers well enough to take that into consideration when I hear their opinions.
 

Fxanimator1

Hall of Fame
So mine came in at 314gm and 11.5 points head light with the card gone and the handle wrapper gone, so completely stock and unstrung.
 
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Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
Interesting that most of the reviewers dwelled on the “low power.” I played the first edition of the Pro Staff 97 for quite a while and didn’t find it to be especially low powered; it was similar to frames like the Ai98 and Pure Strike at the time. It had perhaps a bit thinner beam and more mass but the end results were comparable. Since it’s a 315g racquet and most of the natural competition is 300g or 305g, the key is just to leverage the extra mass.
I found that unusual also. However, I suppose the perception of “power” depends on what frame you are coming from. The Prostaff 97 v13 is a moderately heavy racquet with a 66 RA. Hard to say it is low powered by any means, particularly if you are coming from a Prestige, Phantom, or Gravity type of frame. Interestingly, the players on the global review saying it is low powered all normally play a Pure Drive or something similar.
 

Vicious49

Hall of Fame
I think you need to take in consideration who was doing the review and their playstyles.
I've been watching TW reviews for so many years I know the reviewers well enough to take that into consideration when I hear their opinions.
I wish they had Michelle on this review as her normal racquet is the RF97 and she likes racquets that allow her to swing big.
 

AA7

Hall of Fame
So mine came in at 314gm and 11.5 points head light with the card gone and the handle wrapper gone, so completely stock and unstrung.
Oh wow. Yeah mine weight was also right there but different balance.. mine was 8hl... i am guessing mine will have higher SW. The TW sw is 321 but tennisnerds racquet was 329 or something. Keep in mind how playtesters can have quite different experience for 10SW pts difference.
With regards to low power... really depends on the playtester. Jason said low power but he really likes powerful racquets. Chris said plenty of power. I think SW is low enough that couple of grams at the tip would do the trick if people wanted to boost power. I still havent hit with mine. My biggest concern is comfort.. hopefully its not too stiff.
 

PhxRacket

Hall of Fame
Which racquet were you coming from if you don't mind me asking? Considering picking this up and I'm coming from a v7 18x20 blade. Ideally looking for something with a bit more spin and power.
How are you not getting power from the Blade v7?
 

Fxanimator1

Hall of Fame
Has anyone here that’s tried this but also has tried the blade 98 16x19 able to comment on the pro staffs launch angle? The blades was too low for me so I’m wondering if this tighter 16x19 that they’ve updated would be similar to not. I much prefer the RF97s 16x19
I took it out today for the first time. I am currently using the Pro Staff 97 CV. The new one has a lower launch angle than either the previous version 97 or the Blade V7 16x19. It has slightly less power than either of those two as well. it offers a bit more control than those two. It is comfortable to hit with and accurate, not totally convinced that I'll move to it though. I am one of the few that likes the countervail Pro Staff's. I feel more ball pocketing with both the 97 CV and the Blade V7 than I did today with the new 97.
 

Bal

New User
I was wondering the same thing. I had no issues with power from the v7 18x20.
Same here, I play with one of these and find it has ample power. I've strung mine with Wilson syn gut at 53lbs, which has probably dropped now into the high 40s. I find you need to hit with an eastern forehand and flat backhand with early prep on both sides with a long follow through, so big cuts. Anything less and, yes it will feel underpowered. Have you strung it at too high a tension?
 
I took it out today for the first time. I am currently using the Pro Staff 97 CV. The new one has a lower launch angle than either the previous version 97 or the Blade V7 16x19. It has slightly less power than either of those two as well. it offers a bit more control than those two. It is comfortable to hit with and accurate, not totally convinced that I'll move to it though. I am one of the few that likes the countervail Pro Staff's. I feel more ball pocketing with both the 97 CV and the Blade V7 than I did today with the new 97.
I'm also part of the few who like the CV. Mine were recently stolen and I'm having trouble finding replacements, I've ordered the new PS 97 and it should be coming in tomorrow. Thanks for this comparison, it sounds like I might have to keep searching for PS 97 CVs though.
 

Fxanimator1

Hall of Fame
I'm also part of the few who like the CV. Mine were recently stolen and I'm having trouble finding replacements, I've ordered the new PS 97 and it should be coming in tomorrow. Thanks for this comparison, it sounds like I might have to keep searching for PS 97 CVs though.
I would be curious as to your thoughts on it, compared to the CV. Please post again when you hit with it.
 

JOSHL

Hall of Fame
Took mine out today as well and like @Fxanimator1 and @RadicalEdward23 I actually liked the CV Pro Staff. Agree that the launch angle is lower and there’s more control. Also there is feel like everyone said in the review, not muted like the CV. This is a crispy boi. I felt power was about equal to the CV and maybe a tad more. People that are saying that it’s low powered but I don’t think it is. Is it a pure drive? No, but it’s not weak sauce either. If anything it’s weaker at the top of the hoop but what racquet isn’t. Not sure if it will stay in the bag yet but I played quite well with it.
 
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