Official Pro Staff 97 S Club

SpinToWin

Talk Tennis Guru
Soooo I've been seeing a fair bit of discussion on this frame all over the place (and seeing that the likelihood of me switching to it too is high)... And I thought why not converge the discussion about great setups and customizations with this rather unique HH player's racquet into one handy thread for all to access? :)

If the thread gets too long and hard to follow for new posters/readers (I don't think it will though :D) I will do something similar to my gut/poly thread and link up reviews/customizations/setups in this first post to make it easier to find exactly what you're looking for.

Well... Nothing left to say I suppose :)

 

SpinToWin

Talk Tennis Guru
Have you hit with the regular PS97 (not RF))and if so could you compare and contrast please?
What I recall from others' comparisons:

97s: lower powered, lower launch angle, better control, more traditional pro staff feel (along the lines of pro staff 95), more flexy feeling

97: crisper, more powerful, more maneuverable
 

smirker

Hall of Fame
What I recall from others' comparisons:

97s: lower powered, lower launch angle, better control, more traditional pro staff feel (along the lines of pro staff 95), more flexy feeling

97: crisper, more powerful, more maneuverable
Thanks. I guess tail weighting one would be an option. I do prefer a head light frame for serve & volley.
 

o0lunatik

Professional
IMO, the 97S is the best feeling of all the 97 series. I currently tailweighted my 97S' in the buttcap with 1/4 oz fishing weights and added two overgrips to bring the total strung weight to 12.5oz. Plays like a beast at 4.5 HL that's more maneuverable than the rf97 with better feel and knife-like characteristic on slices. Stability of the hoop when swinging these babies through the air is impressive. My ohbh is definitely benefiting from the stability.

My previous racquet of choice was the Textreme 95, and I'm now torn between the two. More power on 97S, classic pro staff plush feel and sexy thin frame.

Having come from a more even balanced racquets, Blx tour 95, I don't mind the more even balanced frames any bit.
 

hobl4

Rookie
Just bought this frame today! Really excited about it, playtest was promising. Can't wait to get it stringed and ready for play.
 

Surion

Hall of Fame
So, I could play 2.5 hours of singles and doubles today and I totally love this one.
The best 97 of Wilson in my opinion, soft yet stable feel, good connection to the ball, no plastic feel.
Way more spin than I thought, the ball just dropped into the court in the last second, really nice feel, the demo was strung with the String Effect hybrid.
The only downside is the speed through the air, I had a hard time at net to react to heavy shots, due to the headheavy balance, but that's a small issue.
The best stick for attacking players I've used to far.
I will try it again to see, if it's just honeymoon. I couldn't believe that my elbow didn't bother me, because EVERY other stick besides my Prince Tour 100 causes serious pain.

Damn, I wanted to hate this frame, because it is so expensive.
 

osutennis24

Semi-Pro
I just hit with it for the first time on Saturday, it was awesome. Need to hit with it more to see if I wanna go to it (currently have the blade 98 16x19)
 

rh310

Hall of Fame
The pro shop at Christopher Morley Tennis (Rosyln NY) modifies these to be ~ 350g and 10 pts HL strung and says he can't keep them in stock selling them that way. He's also switched to that layup as his own personal frame. I'll try to demo one of them.

I did demo a stock 97S that I put 13g of lead on (upper half of the grip, near the throat), but while I liked the feel of it a lot that clearly wasn't the best location for changing the balance.
 

o0lunatik

Professional
The pro shop at Christopher Morley Tennis (Rosyln NY) modifies these to be ~ 350g and 10 pts HL strung and says he can't keep them in stock selling them that way. He's also switched to that layup as his own personal frame. I'll try to demo one of them.

I did demo a stock 97S that I put 13g of lead on (upper half of the grip, near the throat), but while I liked the feel of it a lot that clearly wasn't the best location for changing the balance.
Wow 10 pts HL? I am getting 4.5 pts HL strung on my three frames, and they are approx 355g. Could it be that they're picking out head lighter frames? Maybe you could play detective and inform the community on how CMT is achieving those specs? ;)
 

LiquidWhip

Rookie
What I recall from others' comparisons:

97s: lower powered, lower launch angle, better control, more traditional pro staff feel (along the lines of pro staff 95), more flexy feeling

97: crisper, more powerful, more maneuverable
The other thing I'd add is that I feel that the 97S feels more stable and has better plowthrough than the 97.
 

rh310

Hall of Fame
Wow 10 pts HL? I am getting 4.5 pts HL strung on my three frames, and they are approx 355g. Could it be that they're picking out head lighter frames? Maybe you could play detective and inform the community on how CMT is achieving those specs? ;)
Yes, and then how accurate the 10pts HL actually is. ;) ;)

Plus, it's always possible I heard him wrong. I'll confirm and correct if need be.
 
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rh310

Hall of Fame
The other thing I'd add is that I feel that the 97S feels more stable and has better plowthrough than the 97.
I thought the 97S was extremely stable as well -- I'll take out the one decent RF97 I have (out of three -- gee, thanks Wilson) later this week and see how I think it compares.

I also hit last night with a VCORE 330 Tour G and VCORE 330 Tour. Put the G down after 20 minutes. At 360g (!!!) with Kimony leather grip, Wilson OG, and a dampener, I just wasn't feeling it. But the 330 Tour (also with Kimony grip) was good enough to stick with for the night.

Volleys and slice are definitely improved with the 97S, and either of the VCOREs, over the leaded-up TF 315 Ltd 16 I normally use.
 
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cjo128

Rookie
Have 2 matched 97S, unstrung 10.9oz, 298sw and 5.5HL. and a 3rd one strung ; 11.8oz, 330sw ~2HL.

I added 3gr each at 9 and 3 o'clock to the lighter frames to match the feel and pop of the heavier one.
 

o0lunatik

Professional
rh310... I received two new 97S today. They both came in under spec at 10.7oz unstung and 4pts HL (matching requested). Fully dressed and modified as mentioned above to 12.5oz, and these came in at approx 7pts HL. Not quite 10pt HL, but close enough. Ha! Now I am talking...what a world of a difference from the 4.5HL 12.5oz on my other stick! I'll take the 7pts HL ones for a spin tomorrow. They already feel much whipper than my 4.5pt HL. Stability and plow through might take a minute hit, but I believe at 12.5oz & 7pts HL is ideal for this spin effect racquet.

Referring to my 4.5HL 12.5oz racquet, I am getting excellent power that's just shy of my previous RF97. It is not cumbersome to haul around, and I can play 3-4 hours of quality, power tennis without feeling fatigue as I did with my RF97 after 3-4 hours. RF97 does have more power, but it takes a bit more to get that racquet going. The 97S plays heavier than its weight indicates, b/c it's a more balanced racquet as we know. You can do some damage with the 97S and the spin its able to create. I am noticing much more spin and dipping balls with the 97S than the RF97. And when you want to flatten out to hit a laser shot, the 97S delivers. The feel and response from the 97S is the best out of the PS97 series IMO.

I would like Wilson a lot more if they can get their act right and have some standardization and better quality control. Much to say about other companies too. Kudos to Pacific in this category with their zero tolerance production process.
 

o0lunatik

Professional
In addition and in the handle, two racquets are foam filled, two are foam and silicone filled in both channels, and one is foam on one side and silicone in the other. The silicone injections are surrounded by foam, so it looks like I am able to pull the silicone right out if preferred. I will eventually silicone fill all racquets to match the feel and specs. Once again, Wilson QC at its best.
 

o0lunatik

Professional
Reporting back after a nice hitting session with the 97S. 7pt HL was definitely whippier, but as expected, it lacks the plow and stability of my 4.5HL racquets. However, it was awesome on topspin and kick serves where I was able to get some quick brushes on the ball. Well, I have some leading up to do to make them head heavier and have it play as intended. Also, the racquets with silcone had much better feel and comfort due to the elimination of much of the unwanted vibration coming from this frame. So, I have some silicone to add.
 

rh310

Hall of Fame
o0lunatik -- thank you. Maybe there's a sweet spot around 6pts HL, or something. I'm buying one to mess with, but I'll try it stock first. No idea what spec I'll actually wind up with. Wilson QC is the main reason I don't use their frames any more.
 

Tombhoneb

Rookie
I demoed the 97s and at its current spec feels so close to being my new racket. If one were to customise it to a heavier, more HL racket - do you have more options with getting the weight/balance right starting with a light or heavy original spec? thanks
 

jklos

Professional
I added 13g of lead to the handle to get it to 6 pts HL. Started from about 2" from the handle up to about 6".
 

o0lunatik

Professional
I demoed the 97s and at its current spec feels so close to being my new racket. If one were to customise it to a heavier, more HL racket - do you have more options with getting the weight/balance right starting with a light or heavy original spec? thanks
Starting with lighter spec will allow you to customize it a bit more to get it exactly to the spec that you would like. If it happens to come in heavier either more HL or HH than spec, then you'll run into the risk of a heavier racquet to achieve the balance that you would like.
 

jklos

Professional
Starting with lighter spec will allow you to customize it a bit more to get it exactly to the spec that you would like. If it happens to come in heavier either more HL or HH than spec, then you'll run into the risk of a heavier racquet to achieve the balance that you would like.
Do you like it more than your Textreme Tour 95?
 

o0lunatik

Professional
Do you like it more than your Textreme Tour 95?
I find the TT95 to be more of a complete racquet. It has speed, it has pop, it has spin, it has touch and feel, you get excellent pocketing, you can go flat or topspin with precision, it serves very well, and on and on. Power level is slightly lower but explosive when you get the head speed up to par. It's somewhat magical. I have mines leaded up to 12.5oz at 11pts HL. Plays like a charm.

Both the PS97S and TT95 play very well that I've settled by having both in my bag. What I enjoy most about the PS97S are the knife-like feel on slices, extra power, more topspin, loopier shots, very controlled power like tt95, a bit more plow, classic plush pro staff feel, and some others.

PS97S has higher swing weight, not as comfortable (a Lil more unwanted vibration after shots but more silicone may help with that). That's about the only two things that would consider to be dislikes. Overall it's a great frame. I guess the balanced specs may deter some folks from this racquet, but this spin effect is prob favorite one Wilson has come out with thus far, and I've tried almost all. Second fav would be the 6.1 95S.

I sucks at reviewing racquets btw, bc I am very scattered with my thoughts. I can find a couple things good about a racquet and make it work. So, to answer your question I do like the TT95 a little bit more than the PS97S. Let's say like 55/45%, just bc I am getting better serves percentages with the TT95 and shot accuracy and lower unforced errors.
 

o0lunatik

Professional
Let me take another jab, I really dislike Wilson QC, the 97S I have came in with specs that are like 0.3oz and 3pts off bone dry. Prince has their flaws with qc as well but more prominent in Wilson frames I found over the years.
 

jklos

Professional
I find the TT95 to be more of a complete racquet. It has speed, it has pop, it has spin, it has touch and feel, you get excellent pocketing, you can go flat or topspin with precision, it serves very well, and on and on. Power level is slightly lower but explosive when you get the head speed up to par. It's somewhat magical. I have mines leaded up to 12.5oz at 11pts HL. Plays like a charm.

Both the PS97S and TT95 play very well that I've settled by having both in my bag. What I enjoy most about the PS97S are the knife-like feel on slices, extra power, more topspin, loopier shots, very controlled power like tt95, a bit more plow, classic plush pro staff feel, and some others.

PS97S has higher swing weight, not as comfortable (a Lil more unwanted vibration after shots but more silicone may help with that). That's about the only two things that would consider to be dislikes. Overall it's a great frame. I guess the balanced specs may deter some folks from this racquet, but this spin effect is prob favorite one Wilson has come out with thus far, and I've tried almost all. Second fav would be the 6.1 95S.

I sucks at reviewing racquets btw, bc I am very scattered with my thoughts. I can find a couple things good about a racquet and make it work. So, to answer your question I do like the TT95 a little bit more than the PS97S. Let's say like 55/45%, just bc I am getting better serves percentages with the TT95 and shot accuracy and lower unforced errors.
Thanks,

I liked the PS97S as well. Demoed it for about a week. Felt the same as you about it, especially on the slice BH. I seem to like the Pure Control Tour a little bit more though but it is lacking the power that the PS had. I think a little lead in the PCT will help give it some more plow. I would like to demo the TT95 but it's hard to find here in Vancouver. No dealers are carrying it. I'll be in the US for a tennis camp in December so hopefully I can try one then. I'm wanting to try the Burn FST as well so hopefully my dealer gets them soon.
 

cjo128

Rookie
rh310... I received two new 97S today. They both came in under spec at 10.7oz unstung and 4pts HL (matching requested). Fully dressed and modified as mentioned above to 12.5oz, and these came in at approx 7pts HL. Not quite 10pt HL, but close enough. Ha! Now I am talking...what a world of a difference from the 4.5HL 12.5oz on my other stick! I'll take the 7pts HL ones for a spin tomorrow. They already feel much whipper than my 4.5pt HL. Stability and plow through might take a minute hit, but I believe at 12.5oz & 7pts HL is ideal for this spin effect racquet.

Referring to my 4.5HL 12.5oz racquet, I am getting excellent power that's just shy of my previous RF97. It is not cumbersome to haul around, and I can play 3-4 hours of quality, power tennis without feeling fatigue as I did with my RF97 after 3-4 hours. RF97 does have more power, but it takes a bit more to get that racquet going. The 97S plays heavier than its weight indicates, b/c it's a more balanced racquet as we know. You can do some damage with the 97S and the spin its able to create. I am noticing much more spin and dipping balls with the 97S than the RF97. And when you want to flatten out to hit a laser shot, the 97S delivers. The feel and response from the 97S is the best out of the PS97 series IMO.

I would like Wilson a lot more if they can get their act right and have some standardization and better quality control. Much to say about other companies too. Kudos to Pacific in this category with their zero tolerance production process.
Based on your trials, what would estimate the power difference to be between the TT95 and 97S? I like the specs of the TT95 but was concerned about the lack of power.
 

Surion

Hall of Fame
I also tried both and the difference in power is definitely noticeable.

The 97S got more free power, probably due to more mass in the head, way more HH and produces a lot more spin. I was actually surprised by the amount of spin I could get.

But the TXT95 is also a very sweet racquet, just for a different player. Headlight, smaller head, more control oriented.
 
I am looking forward to trying the 97 S.

I am looking for a racquet that has touch, is good on volleys, and the ability to flatten out the ball like a Pro Staff 90 combined with the ability to play defense and hit good topspin backhands like the RF 97.

Is the 97 S that racquet?

Also, do you think the 97 S is better at defense than the RF97?

Definitely would consider adding weight to handle.

Thanks!!
 

chizzle

Rookie
To me ... this is a much easier racquet to play then both the RF97 and the PS97 in my opinion (and I'd imagine this comes as no surprise to most). Both serve big and volleyed well, but the heft of the RF and the sweetspot of the PS97 limited my ability to use those sticks from the baseline or on defense. I'll also say that the 97S also rewards on big serves.

The first thing I noticed is that it's much more forgiving. Full Swings are rewarded with good strokes and stroke results. As many have noted, this one slices really well (especially responding to a slice). I don't notice the balance being (even) either, it still feels HL. That's something that I couldn't imagine getting used to - until now. Volleys are excellent as well.

I played with Solinco 17, which is a decent feeling poly. 4G (in the one I demo'd before buying) also felt good. I'll probably go with a 16g or a 15L at some point.

Just my quick thoughts.
 

BLACKOUT

Rookie
I have a couple of these. I customized one for a client to have the same unstrung balance as a PS 97. Basically added something close to 28g of lead to the handle to achieve that.
 

BLACKOUT

Rookie
I also had @Geoff customize a pair for me. I went 355g and 29.5cm balance on mines and they play like a dream. Super solid and super maneuverable for me. Testing out a couple of string setups as well
 

rh310

Hall of Fame
I've been playing with one in stock form for a couple of days, strung with RPM 17 @ 54x51. Feeling pretty good stock, actually, although it's still way too easy to serve everything about one foot out.
 

asifallasleep

Hall of Fame
So my local shop says they can't keep the 97S in stock. They are blowing out the door. Who's made the switch to this stick? I haven't seen too many threads on here about it.
 

Matt_May

New User
Been on it for exactly one month. Got my two from TW, racket-matched. Previous racket regular PS97.

Specs:

TW leather grip (22m x 1.5mm thick)

Wilson pro over grip

MSV focus hex 1.18 (53.5lbs)

Sampras O dampener

Weight/balance:
338.6g
4 pts head light

Main difference for me coming from the PS97 (weighted to 349g and 8 pts headlight) after getting used to balance was slightly better, heavier/longer returns, "knifier" bh slice. Still dialing in serves.
(4.5 player)

It's a keeper.
 

hobl4

Rookie
Love, love, love this racquet! Added 6 grams of lead to the top of the handle and it's just about perfect.
The only downside so far is that thing eats strings. I strung it with Luxilon 4G Soft at 23 kg (51 pounds) and the strings went dead after about 4-5 hours.
 
I've been using this frame since it came out. It's hands down my favorite frame I've ever used! I switched from the PS95, a frame I never thought I'd quit using.
 

Surion

Hall of Fame
Just made the switch, awesome frame.

Got one, that was a tad too headlight, which I appreciated.

Strung:

33.4 cm
326 g

I've played with HL frames my whole life, around 31-32 cm, but this one is just amazing, try it.
 

o0lunatik

Professional
Just made the switch, awesome frame.

Got one, that was a tad too headlight, which I appreciated.

Strung:

33.4 cm
326 g

I've played with HL frames my whole life, around 31-32 cm, but this one is just amazing, try it.
Balance could vary from one frame to another if not matched. I've had 5 of these frames and balance points were 2-3 points apart, which is huge. I did lean towards the HL'er one, but found plow and stability was lacking, so I leaded them to all match specs. Great frames.
 

chizzle

Rookie
Been on it for exactly one month. Got my two from TW, racket-matched. Previous racket regular PS97.

Specs:

TW leather grip (22m x 1.5mm thick)

Wilson pro over grip

MSV focus hex 1.18 (53.5lbs)

Sampras O dampener

Weight/balance:
338.6g
4 pts head light

Main difference for me coming from the PS97 (weighted to 349g and 8 pts headlight) after getting used to balance was slightly better, heavier/longer returns, "knifier" bh slice. Still dialing in serves.
(4.5 player)

It's a keeper.
So you replaced the Wilson leather with the TW leather? Just like the feel or size of it better ?

Definitely a keeper. So much softer and less harsh than the 90 or either 97. I liked the 95 but it was like bringing a chopstick to a baseball bat fight. Heavier and more rich feeling than the 95S too.

I have tried Solinco 17 which I like, RPM team 16 which I like more. I have a ALU Power and RPM combo to try next (an interesting suggestion from someone).
 

Matt_May

New User
So you replaced the Wilson leather with the TW leather? Just like the feel or size of it better ?
Yes and the version I use (TW has four options for length, width, thickness) is a good bit heavier which is at least half the reason. 27-30g. I weigh and cut to ensure unstrung/gripped rackets are as identical as I can make them.
 

Surion

Hall of Fame
Yes and the version I use (TW has four options for length, width, thickness) is a good bit heavier which is at least half the reason. 27-30g. I weigh and cut to ensure unstrung/gripped rackets are as identical as I can make them.
Do you know how much more it weighs compared to the Wilson leather?
 

o0lunatik

Professional
I, too, got away from the leather grip. Using Wilson Shock Shield and find it cut down the vibration from the fluttering frame on off center hits.
 
I, too, got away from the leather grip. Using Wilson Shock Shield and find it cut down the vibration from the fluttering frame on off center hits.
It's an awesome grip. Have used it for years on all my frames. It's extremely cushy if you overlap it a little more.
Mine are overlapped enough to create bevels for my fingers. I love it.
 
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