Favourite hard court balls?

Which are your favourite hard court balls?

  • Babolat FO All court

    Votes: 3 8.3%
  • Babolat Team

    Votes: 2 5.6%
  • Dunlop ATP

    Votes: 8 22.2%
  • Dunlop Fort

    Votes: 4 11.1%
  • Head Championship (red tube)

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Head Pro (blue tube)

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Head Tour (orange tube)

    Votes: 3 8.3%
  • Tecnifibre Club

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Tecnifibre XOne

    Votes: 1 2.8%
  • Wilson US Open XD

    Votes: 15 41.7%

  • Total voters
    36

Pitti

Rookie
Do they sell these Pro Penn balls in Europe? Some years ago you would find Penn balls, but now they have almost disappeared.
 

speedysteve

Legend
Several of us at our club like Babolat Academy pressureless.
They last well (don't go flat in your bag) bounce well and take spin well.
As they last so well they are more environmentally sound, I would have thought.
Pressure balls were just an invention to sell more balls.
 

Cashman

Hall of Fame
Several of us at our club like Babolat Academy pressureless.
They last well (don't go flat in your bag) bounce well and take spin well.
As they last so well they are more environmentally sound, I would have thought.
Pressure balls were just an invention to sell more balls.
My preferred pressureless balls are Tretorn MicroX.

Whether pressureless balls are a better buy than pressured balls depends a lot on how often you hit and what sort of surface you hit on. Bounce longevity doesn't really matter if you play so frequently on hardcourt that you're tearing the felt to shreds within a few weeks.

Even if the economics stack up, the best pressureless balls still play differently to pressured balls. They feel a little more dead and a little more heavy on the racquet. You still need to practice with pressured balls if you are going to be playing in leagues and tournaments.

I have a bucket of pressureless balls that I use for drills, because I train on low-wear carpet and they can just be shoved in the corner of the garage for weeks on end. But for day-to-day hitting, my go-to is still regular balls. With a pressurised container like Tennis Ball Saver, their longevity isn't too bad.
 

1HBHfanatic

Legend
Penn Tour, formerly Penn ATP. They last three sets
do you know if the penn.atp is being replaced/renamed???
this is by far my favorite ball, not too hard and not to soft
definitely lasts longer than regular penn balls.. and not as hard as penn.marathon
penn.atp "black" letter for hardcourts
penn.atp "red" letter for softcourts
 

WestboroChe

Hall of Fame
My preferred pressureless balls are Tretorn MicroX.

Whether pressureless balls are a better buy than pressured balls depends a lot on how often you hit and what sort of surface you hit on. Bounce longevity doesn't really matter if you play so frequently on hardcourt that you're tearing the felt to shreds within a few weeks.

Even if the economics stack up, the best pressureless balls still play differently to pressured balls. They feel a little more dead and a little more heavy on the racquet. You still need to practice with pressured balls if you are going to be playing in leagues and tournaments.

I have a bucket of pressureless balls that I use for drills, because I train on low-wear carpet and they can just be shoved in the corner of the garage for weeks on end. But for day-to-day hitting, my go-to is still regular balls. With a pressurised container like Tennis Ball Saver, their longevity isn't too bad.
I always wondered if those tennis ball savers really help.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Loved the Slazenger Wimbledon balls. Brightest ball on the market and had a great bounce. Performed fine on HC even tho designed for grass. Dunlop Fort not common in this area. Love the Dunlop Grand Prix balls. And the Dunlop ATP balls seem ok -- but not hit with them very much.

Over here, Head balls are sold under the Penn name. Liked the old Penn ATP ball a lot (which was replaced by the Dunlop ATP ball on the tour). These have been rebranded as Penn Tour balls, I believe.

Prince Tour XD balls where my favorite. No longer available here. How about where you are?
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
do you know if the penn.atp is being replaced/renamed???
this is by far my favorite ball, not too hard and not to soft
definitely lasts longer than regular penn balls.. and not as hard as penn.marathon
penn.atp "black" letter for hardcourts
penn.atp "red" letter for softcourts
Since the ATP tour switched from Penn/Head to Dunlop ATP, Penn/Head had to change name of their ATP ball. It is now the Penn Tour (or Head Tour) ball. Black lettering is XD while red lettering is Regular duty felt (for clay). The WTA has started using the red label version of Penn Tour for HC events recently. I imagine they also use the red Head Tour ball as well for many events.

For the US Open, the men use the XD version of the US Open ball while the women use the RD (SD) version.
 

1HBHfanatic

Legend
Since the ATP tour switched from Penn/Head to Dunlop ATP, Penn/Head had to change name of their ATP ball. It is now the Penn Tour (or Head Tour) ball. Black lettering is XD while red lettering is Regular duty felt (for clay). The WTA has started using the red label version of Penn Tour for HC events recently. I imagine they also use the red Head Tour ball as well for many events.

For the US Open, the men use the XD version of the US Open ball while the women use the RD (SD) version.
yeah, tnx for the info
one other poster sent me a DM and informed me of the change
but thanks for the info
it is my favorite ball!, ill be looking for it..
 

Cashman

Hall of Fame
I always wondered if those tennis ball savers really help.
I find it makes a significant difference in terms of maintaining bounce if you are storing them under pressure.

The claim that they will restore bounce in dead balls is mostly (if not totally) bunk.
 

WestboroChe

Hall of Fame
I find it makes a significant difference in terms of maintaining bounce if you are storing them under pressure.

The claim that they will restore bounce in dead balls is mostly (if not totally) bunk.
Yeah I never even gave that a consideration. I never bothered buying one of those because I find that a can of balls is only good for one match. You usually lose one and then they start to get worn out. But if I ever play regularly on clay again I will consider getting one.
 

tennis347

Professional
Dunlop ATP Championship XD is good all around ball with excellent comfort. They are softer and lighter than Penn or Wilson Championship. They are premium balls that may be more durable but I don’t like using balls more than once.
 

Pitti

Rookie
Thank you everyone for replying. I’ve recently also tried the FO all court balls, and I’ve found them lively and bouncy. They are also a bit harder than Wilson US open...
 

red rook

Semi-Pro
Just this year myself and two friends have literally went through a case each of Dunlop ATP (plus 6 more cans), Penn Tour, ProPenn Marathon, and 2 cases of us open. My fav are the penn’s. The marathon is a little lively for me but very nice. Penn Tour is kind of the sweet spot for speed. Dunlop’s are slower, doesn’t suit my game as much personally. Us opens are solid, tiny bit heavier, consistent.
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
Pro Penn Marathon XD.

J
Agree, but some say that ball is bit fast out of the can and flies a bit when new. but I think it is longest lasting ball in the market. Even after 2 hours of heavy hitting, my serves were still pretty fast which means balls were still bouncing pretty good.
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
Which are your favourite hard court balls, and what do you like about them?
how do you guys feel about that new Dunlop ATP tour balls ?? 1000 events use them. ATP changed balls this year mainly due to money reasons. Penn ATP tour balls were very nice balls
 

Robert F

Semi-Pro
Another vote for Pro Penn Marathon XD.
Great right out of the can. Have a lively but solid feel. Retain brightness well and don't fuzz up very much.

We used to use Wilson US Open (still a great ball but for play only great for 2-3 hours), but would have to use new balls for every practice session. With the Pro Penn Marathons XD we can use them for practice for a good 6 hours before they start to feel dead. Yeah they lose some bounce, but not a lot. I wouldn't use them for match play for 6 hours, but a set with 2 hours of play in them would still probably be better than many of the lower grade balls such as the dreaded Costco Penns.

For filling hoppers they are great too. I'm amazed how long they last for just serving a bucket of serves.

I sometimes wonder if Penn broke some hidden tennis ball company collusion rule "Let's all agree, never make a ball that lasts more than 2 hours so we can sell millions of balls a year."
 

speedysteve

Legend
Played with Head balls for match yesterday. Can't remember the name (not the yuck cheapie ones though).
They were like bullets.
Didn't fluff up much and bounced high. Higher even than Babolat Academy or Gold's..
Did not like those Head balls at all.
 

Pitti

Rookie
I will let my avatar speak for itself. Which, BTW, is not a choice listed on the poll.
I can’t seem to find these balls in my country (I live in Southern Europe), and therefore, I just listed the most common balls you can find here. In any case I’ll definitely try the ProPenn if I can find them, since there are lots of people mentioning them!
 

Readers

Professional
Since the ATP tour switched from Penn/Head to Dunlop ATP, Penn/Head had to change name of their ATP ball. It is now the Penn Tour (or Head Tour) ball. Black lettering is XD while red lettering is Regular duty felt (for clay). The WTA has started using the red label version of Penn Tour for HC events recently. I imagine they also use the red Head Tour ball as well for many events.

For the US Open, the men use the XD version of the US Open ball while the women use the RD (SD) version.
So, are they the same ball? There were a few post on this board saying they play very different, and that made me opt to buy some old Penn ATP stock instead of the new Penn tour. But it now seems some are saying they are the exact same balls...
 

JSeba11

New User
When I watched Madison Keys’ match against Kutznetsova, at one point Keys noticed that they were hitting XD Penn Tour balls with black ink. Kutznetsova held serve with the wrong balls. They switched to Regular Duty once Keys noticed, I wonder if that affected play at all?
 

red rook

Semi-Pro
When I watched Madison Keys’ match against Kutznetsova, at one point Keys noticed that they were hitting XD Penn Tour balls with black ink. Kutznetsova held serve with the wrong balls. They switched to Regular Duty once Keys noticed, I wonder if that affected play at all?
I saw that. How does that happen during a wta premier final...and Cincinnati at that? Saw Penn Tour balls, you could see them in their hands. The girls normally play regular duty. Lighter and faster through the air.
 

JSeba11

New User
I saw that. How does that happen during a wta premier final...and Cincinnati at that? Saw Penn Tour balls, you could see them in their hands. The girls normally play regular duty. Lighter and faster through the air.
Pretty bad mistake by the tournament. Keys hits so hard so the heavier balls definitely didn’t help her. They get the new balls from a cardboard box near the umpires chair. They shouldn’t even have cans of Extra Duty in there when the women are playing.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
When I watched Madison Keys’ match against Kutznetsova, at one point Keys noticed that they were hitting XD Penn Tour balls with black ink. Kutznetsova held serve with the wrong balls. They switched to Regular Duty once Keys noticed, I wonder if that affected play at all?
Less air drag (friction) with RD vs XD. Should be very little (or no) difference for court contact and string contact. But RD balls don't slow down quite as much as XD when flying thru the air.

I saw that. How does that happen during a wta premier final...and Cincinnati at that? Saw Penn Tour balls, you could see them in their hands. The girls normally play regular duty. Lighter and faster through the air.
Even worse, it has happened at a slam event = the US Open. I recall Roddick informing the chair that the were given the women's (red logo) US Open balls rather then the XD balls. But this might have happened during a match warmup rather than during the match itself.

Curious that the WTA is using Penn Tour for US Open Series events, like Cincy. Noticed the same thing at the Silicon Valley Classic (San Jose SU). They were using red label Penn Tour balls there as well. Would think that they would use US Open balls for US Open Series events. Any idea what the ATP was using at Atlanta, DC and Cincy?

Is the Rogers Cup part of the US Open Series for the WTA and ATP? I think they might be.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Played with Head balls for match yesterday. Can't remember the name (not the yuck cheapie ones though).
They were like bullets.
Didn't fluff up much and bounced high. Higher even than Babolat Academy or Gold's..
Did not like those Head balls at all.
Standard duty felt rather than XD? That would make them fly faster. Head Tour or Championship balls? Are the yucky cheapie balls Championships, Court One or something else?

I can’t seem to find these balls in my country (I live in Southern Europe), and therefore, I just listed the most common balls you can find here. In any case I’ll definitely try the ProPenn if I can find them, since there are lots of people mentioning them!
Head/Penn balls are sold under the Penn name in the US. Elsewhere, usually under the Head name. Don't know if ProPenn (Marathon) balls are sold under the Head name at all.

Another vote for Pro Penn Marathon XD.
Great right out of the can. Have a lively but solid feel. Retain brightness well and don't fuzz up very much.

We used to use Wilson US Open (still a great ball but for play only great for 2-3 hours), but would have to use new balls for every practice session. With the Pro Penn Marathons XD we can use them for practice for a good 6 hours before they start to feel dead. Yeah they lose some bounce, but not a lot. I wouldn't use them for match play for 6 hours, but a set with 2 hours of play in them would still probably be better than many of the lower grade balls such as the dreaded Costco Penns.

For filling hoppers they are great too. I'm amazed how long they last for just serving a bucket of serves.

I sometimes wonder if Penn broke some hidden tennis ball company collusion rule "Let's all agree, never make a ball that lasts more than 2 hours so we can sell millions of balls a year."
Penn Champs certainly comply with that collusion rule. Noticeable reduction in bounce by the 2nd set. Perhaps the Marathon XD balls were developed to compete with pressureless balls for use ball machines, ball hoppers and teaching baskets. Not used in pro tournaments TMK. Developed for rec market and teaching market, no doubt.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
So, are they the same ball? There were a few post on this board saying they play very different, and that made me opt to buy some old Penn ATP stock instead of the new Penn tour. But it now seems some are saying they are the exact same balls...
The word that I got from several tennis shops is that the Penn Tour ball is the very same as the old Penn ATP. (Don't recall if the Penn ATP ball was even available in a std duty version). The ball description on Penn's website for the new Tour XD ball appears to be the same as the old description for Penn ATP ball (as best as I recall). On TW's site, it states that the Tour XD "Replaces the Penn ATP Extra Duty balls".

https://www.tennis-warehouse.com/Penn_Tour_Extra_Duty_Tennis_Balls_24_Can_Case/descpageHEAD-TOUXDC.html

http://www.pennracquet.com/tour.html
 

darkhorse

Semi-Pro
Curious that the WTA is using Penn Tour for US Open Series events, like Cincy. Noticed the same thing at the Silicon Valley Classic (San Jose SU). They were using red label Penn Tour balls there as well. Would think that they would use US Open balls for US Open Series events. Any idea what the ATP was using at Atlanta, DC and Cincy?

Is the Rogers Cup part of the US Open Series for the WTA and ATP? I think they might be.
Individual tournaments can have their own ball provider, Dunlop is the new "official" ATP ball but for most of the summer hardcourt events they use the Penn Tour ball. US Open obviously uses the Wilson ball. This always comes up around the US Open and players complain but it is what it is.
 

brt

New User
Slazenger are my favourite. I'm surprised I haven't heard more about them, I'm guessing they are less popular/available in the US? They were always the competition ball we used where I played in Australia.
 

Pitti

Rookie
Slazenger are my favourite. I'm surprised I haven't heard more about them, I'm guessing they are less popular/available in the US? They were always the competition ball we used where I played in Australia.
In my country I can’t find the Slazengers, but there are some websites with some good offers on them, shipping included, that may be worth thinking of. My father says that you could find them... in the 70s.
 

brt

New User
In my country I can’t find the Slazengers, but there are some websites with some good offers on them, shipping included, that may be worth thinking of. My father says that you could find them... in the 70s.
I'd say it's definitely worth a try for the wimbledon ones if you can get some good deals (send me the links if you can). They are the most expensive can on the tennis warehouse Australia (tennisonly) site.
 

BallBag

Semi-Pro
I'm on the last 2 cans of the Costco Penn special and I wont be buying more. They feel fine for one match but then turn weird after a few days in my bag. I think I'll get a case of the ProPenn Extra Duty next. How do they compare against the Penn Tour? Penn Tour is $10 cheaper for the case but I haven't played with them much.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Slazenger are my favourite. I'm surprised I haven't heard more about them, I'm guessing they are less popular/available in the US? They were always the competition ball we used where I played in Australia.
Love the Salzenger balls but they are not easy to get in the US. Some shops here special order a limited quantity in the late Spring or early Summer -- prior to Wimbeldon. Often in 4-ball cans; sometimes in 3-ball cans.

If you shop around, you can often find them available online from lo domestic or offshore sources. Many sources are very, very pricey though. If you find a decently priced domestic source, please send me a PM. (Or any reasonable source for that matter).

In 2002, Slazenger came out with a white, 100-year anniversary ball. It was actually a super-white Ultra-Vis ball. It supposedly shifted and reflected a bit of the near UV according to the manufacturer. Under full spectrum lighting, you could actually see a bit of a purple hue in the whiteness of the ball.

Both the white and optic yellow versions of that Ultra-Vis Wimbledon ball are the brightest balls that I have ever played with, bar none.
 
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