Tennis Warehouse: Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed playtest!!

TW Staff

Administrator
Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed Playtest

The sign-up period for this has ended. The selected playtesters have been notified by email.

The strings will ship starting early next week.

Due Date: Tuesday August 20

Include the following in your review:
  • Tension(s) used for playtest
  • Regular string set up
  • Racquet used for test
  • Control/Power of test string
  • Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?)
  • Spin
  • Durability
  • Playability Duration
  • Tension findings (if you installed this string again, would you select the same tension? Explain answer.)
  • List any additional thoughts (optional)
 
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SteveI

Legend

TW review is up. Hopefully I will get the tension right this time. I did not with Tourna Deuce 17G. Many play-testers had the same result. Nice review. Looks to be a nice softer co-poly. Might also do a pre-stretch this time. Enjoy the play test for those that got the call. I am excited to give this one a ride. 5 - sided that plays soft and with control. Easy on the arm.. :).
 

jwocky

Rookie
Thanks for the video link - I for one will avoid it until after the play test.

It will be interesting to test the Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed (and the Kirschbaum Xplosive Control - in the future?).

Fresh off the Tourna BH Silver 7 Tour play test, this profiled/shaped Kirschbaum offering should provide a good comparison. I have been happy with the Kirschbaum strings (co-poly, multi, syn gut) that I have tried over the years. I wonder why the KSG is not available from TW or its known US tennis supply competitors any more - it is available elsewhere as a search reveals.

Space below for the review.
___
 

gazz1

Rookie
Good to see that 2 of the 3 play testers were using Prince rackets.
I play with the TT310 also after people on this forum recommending it to me.
What a find!
 
I did watch the video and have been selected to be a playtester. It sounds a lot like the previous playtest string, the Tourna Silver 7 Tour, which has become my go-to string. I'm anxiously awaiting my sample to show up.
 

SteveI

Legend
I did watch the video and have been selected to be a playtester. It sounds a lot like the previous playtest string, the Tourna Silver 7 Tour, which has become my go-to string. I'm anxiously awaiting my sample to show up.
I don't think watching the video will taint my review. Been doing this for many years. I am more concerned about getting a starting tension correct. Otherwise.. like my Tourna Deuce play test.. I strung too low.
 

JOSHL

Hall of Fame
I did watch the video and have been selected to be a playtester. It sounds a lot like the previous playtest string, the Tourna Silver 7 Tour, which has become my go-to string. I'm anxiously awaiting my sample to show up.
I strung mine up yesterday and it is much slicker than the Tourna silver 7 and the profile is not sharp at all. Also it stretches a lot when stringing. Reminds me a lot of Prince Vortex, like they could be the same string.
 
I strung mine up yesterday and it is much slicker than the Tourna silver 7 and the profile is not sharp at all. Also it stretches a lot when stringing. Reminds me a lot of Prince Vortex, like they could be the same string.
Do you recommend going up 5-10% in tension due to the elasticity? That is about how much I increased tension with the very stretchy Volkl strings.
 

JOSHL

Hall of Fame
Do you recommend going up 5-10% in tension due to the elasticity? That is about how much I increased tension with the very stretchy Volkl strings.
I kept my tension the same so I can compare to other set ups with the same tension but yes it stretches like VSquare for sure so you may want to increase or do as the play testers and pre stretch. I am surprised that it still stretches because KB strings are already factory pre stretched.
 
I kept my tension the same so I can compare to other set ups with the same tension but yes it stretches like VSquare for sure so you may want to increase or do as the play testers and pre stretch. I am surprised that it still stretches because KB strings are already factory pre stretched.
Thanks, @JOSHL I will string it up at the same tension I used for the Volkl strings. I hope it shows up today. I have one week to test the Xplosive Speed and then I'll be putting down the racquet for three weeks. I also can't wait to cut out the V-Torque Tour...

Like you, I thought a defining characteristic of the Kirschbaum strings was their tension stability. Will be interesting to see if that applies to this new, more elastic material.
 
I don't think watching the video will taint my review. Been doing this for many years. I am more concerned about getting a starting tension correct. Otherwise.. like my Tourna Deuce play test.. I strung too low.
Are you going to increase the tension or are you going to do a prestretch (or would that be a re-stretch of the factory prestretch), or both?
 
I got the string today, just in time as my V-Torque Tour snapped on me during my hitting session. It came in a plastic demo bag, not like cardboard packaging shown in the first post.



I strung it up and agree with @JOSHL - it is only very mildly profiled and is very stretchy, just like Volkl V-Square. I have the length measurements precisely for my racquet, and after tensioning had an extra 8-9 inches on the short side, and an extra foot and a half for the remainder of the once piece stringjob. Minimal coil memory, no problems weaving crosses, and the knots seem to cinch up really tightly. It weighs exactly the same as the V-Torque Tour that it replaced, and is a couple of grams lighter, and feels thinner, than Solinco Revolution 1.20 in my other racquet.



Will be hitting 90 minutes tomorrow morning indoors and 90 minutes tomorrow afternoon outdoors. I only have one week before I'm heading out on vacation so hope to get a good 10-12 hours in before that time.

EDIT: Totally forgot to say that I strung it up at 53/47 in the center mains and crosses, same as I strung up V-Square and tighter than the 51/46 I used for Solinco Revolution (and Tourna Silver 7 Tour).
 
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mogo

Rookie
I strung Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed @ 57 pds. on the Clash Tour.
I have been using this stick with Hyper G 17g at 57pds.

First off as everyone has stated, when stringing Kirschbaum Explosive Speed it is very very elastic almost felt like a synthetic gut stretching. It feels very soft and easy on the fingers, no complaints at all.

Took it out for an hour hit and first impression was Trampoline!!!! You can feel the ball absorb into the stringbed off the first ball. I was sailing a couple balls until I adjusted to the feel. You can really take big cuts and slice had a lot more spin than Hyper G, which I attribute to the soft string and the dwell time it creates. It does leave black line marks on the balls as the string starts off shiny and dulls as you hit over time. Not a knock on the string but an observation. I have not served yet but on ground stokes this string really has great control. Noticed that going up the line was really a plus and had confidence to rip it due to the feel of the sting. More to come as I get more time on court.

 

wings56

Hall of Fame
Got mine in the mail yesterday... Been using Cyclone 17 @ 54 lbs... looks like its a little softer.... think I should do the same tension?
 

SteveI

Legend
Got mine in the mail yesterday... Been using Cyclone 17 @ 54 lbs... looks like its a little softer.... think I should do the same tension?
Hi... Just got mine. If you are using the Cyclone 17G in black which is a deader offering.. You might consider going up a few pounds based on what has been reported from the TW Review.. posted above and the feedback so far. Some folks are also doing a pre-stretch as some of the TW play-testers did also. This offering is factory pre-stretched. Depends on your game... swing speed and frame of course. I used 52/50 with most polys.. I am going 54/52. with this one and maybe the pre-stretch since we are in our hottest part of the outdoor season and the balls are flying.
 

wings56

Hall of Fame
Hi... Just got mine. If you are using the Cyclone 17G in black which is a deader offering.. You might consider going up a few pounds based on what has been reported from the TW Review.. posted above and the feedback so far. Some folks are also doing a pre-stretch as some of the TW play-testers did also. This offering is factory pre-stretched. Depends on your game... swing speed and frame of course. I used 52/50 with most polys.. I am going 54/52. with this one and maybe the pre-stretch since we are in our hottest part of the outdoor season and the balls are flying.
Thanks for the input.
 
Got mine in the mail yesterday... Been using Cyclone 17 @ 54 lbs... looks like its a little softer.... think I should do the same tension?
My son uses Cyclone 17 gauge in black as his go-to string so I have lots of experience playing with and stringing it. Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed is **way** more elastic in the same way that the newer Volkl offerings like V-Square are. I also double-pulled tension with my lockout crank stringer and found that after about ten seconds, the string would relax by nearly a quarter inch on the center mains. This string doesn't seem to have the typical Kirschbaum stiffness nor tension maintenance. I'd suggest somewhere around a 5% increase in the tension you use for the Cyclone.
 

SteveI

Legend
My son uses Cyclone 17 gauge in black as his go-to string so I have lots of experience playing with and stringing it. Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed is **way** more elastic in the same way that the newer Volkl offerings like V-Square are. I also double-pulled tension with my lockout crank stringer and found that after about ten seconds, the string would relax by nearly a quarter inch on the center mains. This string doesn't seem to have the typical Kirschbaum stiffness nor tension maintenance. I'd suggest somewhere around a 5% increase in the tension you use for the Cyclone.
That is the kind of feedback one needs when they have only one test set of strings. Thanks so much!!!
 

wings56

Hall of Fame
My son uses Cyclone 17 gauge in black as his go-to string so I have lots of experience playing with and stringing it. Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed is **way** more elastic in the same way that the newer Volkl offerings like V-Square are. I also double-pulled tension with my lockout crank stringer and found that after about ten seconds, the string would relax by nearly a quarter inch on the center mains. This string doesn't seem to have the typical Kirschbaum stiffness nor tension maintenance. I'd suggest somewhere around a 5% increase in the tension you use for the Cyclone.
That is the kind of feedback one needs when they have only one test set of strings. Thanks so much!!!
No kidding. Thank you!
 

Faris

Professional
Got mine on Tuesday and I strung it up using my cheap Gamma drop weight stringer. As everyone has mentioned, it stretches quite a lot. I play and string with Cyclone and this was a lot more stretchy and slick to touch.

Anyway, I have about 12 hours on mine and I will be cutting mine out today since I think mine are dead. Review will be up shortly!
 
Got in a solid 90 minute hit this morning. Considering how elastic it was when pulling tension, it has surprisingly low power levels. It has less pop on the ball than V-Square, and is very similar in power level to the Solinco big three of Hyper-G, Tour Bite, and Revolution.

It does have a decent pocketing feel with some springiness on top of it, kind of like black Cyclone but with a bit more muted crispness and a little less power. Spin capability is good but not great. It doesn't have the same bite on the ball as any of the strings I've mentioned, but it is better than a round poly. Launch angle is medium, not really any different than Revolution that I have on my other racquet. Comfort is above average - mis-hits are less jarring than average and don't generate any buzzing stringbed vibrations.

I think I got the tension pretty close. I wouldn't like it to be any more springy than it is considering the pocketing feel it gives. I think someone who likes the feel of Cyclone could probably use it at a bit lower tension.

I'm hitting with my son tonight, and will have more impressions after that.
 

JOSHL

Hall of Fame
Got out for a hit today with @mad dog1. Strung this up in one of my Pro Staff 97CVs. I did not think I was going to like this string because of how much it stretched during stringing but I was pleasantly surprised and I actually really enjoyed it. Great pocketing feel, soft, somewhat muted but I still felt connected to the ball because of the pocketing. Little notching but not too bad. Overall good first impressions.
 
Hit outside in some awesome Pacific NW summer weather. We don't hit outside much and the center court in our club has some pretty tough shadows. Because of that I was trying to hit the ball flatter so I wouldn't mis-hit as much and could have a bit better tolerance for mis-timing the swing. With that flatter swingpath, Xplosive Speed works much better. Flatter swings give a better pocketing feel and the stringbed feels plush. There seems to be a bit more than the normal drop off in ball velocity when trying to hit moderate or greater amounts of topspin, and definitely the strings don't give the feel of a good grip on the ball. Underspin shots were particularly challenging - the way I hit them tended to make them float and land short whereas with my go-to string, there's a considerably greater amount of ball speed and spin. That again feels like it comes down to how much the stringbed can grip the ball.

Hitting a flatter ball, it feels like a plusher, slightly more powerful version of Diadem Flash or Proline Evo. The many mis-hits were well dampened. Sensitivity to incoming spin is minimal, so volleying a heavy underspin doesn't require an unusual amount of adjustment. Control and consistency are very good. There continues to be a little bit more tension loss but playability hasn't been affected.

After three hours of tennis today, the strings are about a third of the way notched through, even though this 90 minutes was hitting predominantly pretty flat and not that hard as I was pretty tired. The surface of the strings have worn smooth, and as someone mentioned earlier, there is quite a bit of material transfer onto the ball, more than the average poly string. I'm back indoors for a 100% effort practice session Sunday morning and I give it a 50/50 chance the strings will break by the end of that session. Today's hitting was about 70% and we were goofing around seeing who could hit the most netcords or hit balls that were laying on the court.

On another note, I continue to be amazed at how well the pros can play when there are shadows on the court. I absolutely lose depth perception when the ball enters or leaves a shadow, and must be developing cataracts as well. The sun was shining in from the side and at some angles, the light creates a fog that envelopes the vision in my right eye. Overheads outdoors are a whiff on about every other one. Where we live, it is mandatory indoors tennis for seven or eight months of the year and playing outdoors feels like an entirely different game. I'm envious of those who can play outdoors well.

Two raw videos of our hitting. First one right after switching sides and trying to get used to the conditions. Second one was a few minutes later after we got a bit more acclimated.


 

wings56

Hall of Fame
Got out for a hit today with @mad dog1. Strung this up in one of my Pro Staff 97CVs. I did not think I was going to like this string because of how much it stretched during stringing but I was pleasantly surprised and I actually really enjoyed it. Great pocketing feel, soft, somewhat muted but I still felt connected to the ball because of the pocketing. Little notching but not too bad. Overall good first impressions.
Pre stretch or no?
 

JOSHL

Hall of Fame
Ok, 2hrs total and my playtest is done. The string was hitting awesome and I was really liking the pocketing and pace. Sad that it broke, but thanks to Kirschbaum and TW for the opportunity. Here are some after pics, the last one has the flash on. Will be posting my official review later tonight.

Damn that clash eats strings for breakfast.
 

Faris

Professional
Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed Playtest



Tension(s) used for playtest 55 lbs

Regular string set up Volkl Cyclone 16 strung up at 52 lbs

Racquet used for test Head Graphene 360 Speed MP

Control/Power of test string Low powered. Not dead or completely low power but these strings were towards lower power. I strung it at 55 lbs because the string felt stretchy and I did not want a trampoline effect. But I am guessing if I went a couple of pounds lower, the power level would be right in my wheelhouse.

Control was great from the first hit. I had good depth control on both forehand and backhand. Serves had good spin and kick. I had excellent dwell time and I felt that helped in directing all my strokes. Launch angle was normal, nothing worth noting that I saw...

Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?) Very comfortable for a poly. It was somewhat muted but I did not feel any sort of vagueness or disconnect with ball upon contact with stringbed. Off center hits were not jarring. This was the feature I liked the most in this string. Kirschbaum strings usually feel stiff to me at these tensions but not this one.

Spin Decent enough spin but not like the spin I get from my usual Volkl Cyclone. When I was stringing this up, I realised how stiffer the Cyclone is compared to this and I was in a way ready to be disappointed, but not the case. I still think you can generate decent enough spin. I do feel that it lacked the ball bite considerably, something that I am used to with Volkl Cyclone.

Durability Durability was okay but not great. Even though I am at 12 hour mark, I know for a fact that the string will snap on my next hitting session. I could see notching beginning at the one hour mark. I hit big usually and this would have snapped sooner if I wasn't stuck for the last week and coming few weeks hitting with lower level players who don't hit back hard (since all my hitting buddies are traveling the world this summer having fun and I'm broke with college loans to pay off and bills to take care of lol)...

By comparison, Volkl Cyclone in same gauge, I have to cut out after it is dead and I see minimal notching with it.

Playability Duration To be honest, after the initial tension drop off from stringer and strings settling in, I have not seen any change in playability duration. Balls are coming off string bed with same consistency and I am not struggling with not spraying or deadness. So playability gets good marks from me.

Tension findings (if you installed this string again, would you select the same tension? Explain answer.) I strung it up about 3 pounds tighter because I felt it was stretchy and I would lose control but in all honesty I feel that in doing that I lost a little bit of power. If I had kept it at 52 lbs, my usual tension, it would given me the perfect blend of power control and feel I am used to. The string is arm friendly and even at 55 lbs my arms were happy so that is a plus.

List any additional thoughts (optional) I was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable weaving crosses was. I also liked that there was zero coil memory issues so I had no problems. I am not exactly an expert stringer and I almost always string 2 piece. Coil memory is a big factor for me.

The string also left marks on the balls, like a few other playtesters mentioned. No big deal for me but just an observation.

Finally, a big thank you to Tennis Warehouse @TW Staff for giving me this opportunity. I really appreciate it.

Faris
 

tennisgurl

Rookie
Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed Playtest



Tension(s) used for playtest 55 lbs

Regular string set up Volkl Cyclone 16 strung up at 52 lbs

Racquet used for test Head Graphene 360 Speed MP

Control/Power of test string Low powered. Not dead or completely low power but these strings were towards lower power. I strung it at 55 lbs because the string felt stretchy and I did not want a trampoline effect. But I am guessing if I went a couple of pounds lower, the power level would be right in my wheelhouse.

Control was great from the first hit. I had good depth control on both forehand and backhand. Serves had good spin and kick. I had excellent dwell time and I felt that helped in directing all my strokes. Launch angle was normal, nothing worth noting that I saw...

Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?) Very comfortable for a poly. It was somewhat muted but I did not feel any sort of vagueness or disconnect with ball upon contact with stringbed. Off center hits were not jarring. This was the feature I liked the most in this string. Kirschbaum strings usually feel stiff to me at these tensions but not this one.

Spin Decent enough spin but not like the spin I get from my usual Volkl Cyclone. When I was stringing this up, I realised how stiffer the Cyclone is compared to this and I was in a way ready to be disappointed, but not the case. I still think you can generate decent enough spin. I do feel that it lacked the ball bite considerably, something that I am used to with Volkl Cyclone.

Durability Durability was okay but not great. Even though I am at 12 hour mark, I know for a fact that the string will snap on my next hitting session. I could see notching beginning at the one hour mark. I hit big usually and this would have snapped sooner if I wasn't stuck for the last week and coming few weeks hitting with lower level players who don't hit back hard (since all my hitting buddies are traveling the world this summer having fun and I'm broke with college loans to pay off and bills to take care of lol)...

By comparison, Volkl Cyclone in same gauge, I have to cut out after it is dead and I see minimal notching with it.

Playability Duration To be honest, after the initial tension drop off from stringer and strings settling in, I have not seen any change in playability duration. Balls are coming off string bed with same consistency and I am not struggling with not spraying or deadness. So playability gets good marks from me.

Tension findings (if you installed this string again, would you select the same tension? Explain answer.) I strung it up about 3 pounds tighter because I felt it was stretchy and I would lose control but in all honesty I feel that in doing that I lost a little bit of power. If I had kept it at 52 lbs, my usual tension, it would given me the perfect blend of power control and feel I am used to. The string is arm friendly and even at 55 lbs my arms were happy so that is a plus.

List any additional thoughts (optional) I was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable weaving crosses was. I also liked that there was zero coil memory issues so I had no problems. I am not exactly an expert stringer and I almost always string 2 piece. Coil memory is a big factor for me.

The string also left marks on the balls, like a few other playtesters mentioned. No big deal for me but just an observation.

Finally, a big thank you to Tennis Warehouse @TW Staff for giving me this opportunity. I really appreciate it.

Faris
Great review Faris. I had my set strung up in Graphene 360 Pro on Tuesday as well when I received the string. I noticed you used G360 MP. I went with my usual tension of 52 pounds and did not go up in tension and think that was a good decision because of the denser string pattern in the pro. I am also finalizing my thoughts and hopefully I can post my final review here in a few days.
 

mogo

Rookie
Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed Playtest

This maybe a little short and sweet, but I didn't get much time with the string. 2hrs total, but on the plus side I loved every minute!! Thanks to Kirschbaum and TW!!
  • Tension(s) used for playtest: 57pds
  • Regular string set up: Solinco Hyper G 17g
  • Racquet used for test: Wilson Clash Tour 100
  • Control/Power of test string: Control was an 8 and power was an 8. I had no issues with change of direction or handling pace from my hitting partners. I just felt like I could grip and rip without any downside.
  • Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?): Felt very soft and trampoline like. It pockets the ball and you can feel the dwell time. This was the best part of the playtest for me. I really enjoyed the feel, it gave me confidence to swing out.
  • Spin: Spin was about a 6. Average but I felt the control shined with this string.
  • Durability: Well that would be a 1 for me, it could be the Clash racquet but I think an 18x20 pattern would give a couple more hours of durability for me.
  • Playability Duration: Well it was short, but It played great until the end. I didn't notice any drop off in play throughout my hitting.
  • Tension findings (if you installed this string again, would you select the same tension? Explain answer.) I would try Kirschbaum Xplosive @ 60pds, Just because of the elasticity when stringing really was a lot and I would like to see if it would make a big difference in control. But very easy to string up and easy on the arm.
  • List any additional thoughts (optional) Overall, I loved this string, I could really feel the ball into the string bed. Control was awesome and feel was great. The durability would be my only knock, but If I buy a reel at least I will have fresh strings every couple of days and its easy to string up. I am most likely to try a couple more sets because it felt great, I could rip a ball and feel the pocketing at 57pds which is high in todays world of stringing tensions.
 

wings56

Hall of Fame
Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed Playtest

This maybe a little short and sweet, but I didn't get much time with the string. 2hrs total, but on the plus side I loved every minute!! Thanks to Kirschbaum and TW!!
  • Tension(s) used for playtest: 57pds
  • Regular string set up: Solinco Hyper G 17g
  • Racquet used for test: Wilson Clash Tour 100
  • Control/Power of test string: Control was an 8 and power was an 8. I had no issues with change of direction or handling pace from my hitting partners. I just felt like I could grip and rip without any downside.
  • Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?): Felt very soft and trampoline like. It pockets the ball and you can feel the dwell time. This was the best part of the playtest for me. I really enjoyed the feel, it gave me confidence to swing out.
  • Spin: Spin was about a 6. Average but I felt the control shined with this string.
  • Durability: Well that would be a 1 for me, it could be the Clash racquet but I think an 18x20 pattern would give a couple more hours of durability for me.
  • Playability Duration: Well it was short, but It played great until the end. I didn't notice any drop off in play throughout my hitting.
  • Tension findings (if you installed this string again, would you select the same tension? Explain answer.) I would try Kirschbaum Xplosive @ 60pds, Just because of the elasticity when stringing really was a lot and I would like to see if it would make a big difference in control. But very easy to string up and easy on the arm.
  • List any additional thoughts (optional) Overall, I loved this string, I could really feel the ball into the string bed. Control was awesome and feel was great. The durability would be my only knock, but If I buy a reel at least I will have fresh strings every couple of days and its easy to string up. I am most likely to try a couple more sets because it felt great, I could rip a ball and feel the pocketing at 57pds which is high in todays world of stringing tensions.
So did they break for you?
 

wings56

Hall of Fame
Ok, 2hrs total and my playtest is done. The string was hitting awesome and I was really liking the pocketing and pace. Sad that it broke, but thanks to Kirschbaum and TW for the opportunity. Here are some after pics, the last one has the flash on. Will be posting my official review later tonight.

I see this now
 

GripItNRipIt

New User
Short story: great string that might unseat Hyper-G after I try it in 18g. In this review, I'll be comparing the two strings directly. Unfortunately, only got 4 hours of good playtime in, but twisted my knee and need to lay off for a bit.

  • Tension(s) used for playtest: 45 lb
  • Regular string set up: Solinco Hyper G 18g at 45lb
  • Racquet used for test: Prince Phantom Pro 93P. I have two, so the reference racquet was strung with 18g Hyper-G at 45lb. Play time was 4 hours, first was a practice match against a 4.5 former D2 player, second (where I twisted my knee on the third point of the match, ugh, but gimped my way to the bitter end) was a 4.0 tournament match, so pretty good workouts for this 3.5'er.
  • Control/Power of test string: Power felt higher than Hyper-G and control felt lower. The 4.5 commented on the pace and heaviness of the ball, and I felt like I was putting more smack on it than normal. I did notice that a lot of shots were going just slightly long, which I'm going to attribute to the string gauge, spin level, and tension (see Spin section.)
  • Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?): The feel was GREAT. Almost multi-like. I have a sensitive elbow and felt I could use this string exclusively, and probably at a higher tension for more control. Off-center hits were also muted and not clangy like a lot of polys.
  • Spin: Agree with other reviews, spin was average: not too bad, but not as good as Hyper-G. I think most of those long shots would have dropped in with Hyper-G spin levels. However, I can generate plenty of my own spin, even with the 93P, and I do like the flatter trajectory that's there with the Kirshbaum when I need it. A true direct comparison needs to include 18g Kirshbaum, so I'm planning to try that next to see if I can still drive through it with enough drop-in for control.
  • Durability: Still felt great after 4 hours, and a lot of that was pretty hard hitting to keep up (somewhat) with those guys.
  • Playability Duration: Again, no issues with playability. I honestly think this string is what I've been looking for on defense; the Hyper-G sometimes lets me down on desperation shots because it just doesn't seem to carry far enough, but the Kirshbaum made it pretty easy to stab or flick at the ball and still get some pace/depth.
  • Tension findings (if you installed this string again, would you select the same tension? Explain answer.) I plan to try 18g next at 45lb just for reference, but if control is still an issue, I wouldn't hesitate to go up to around 48lb in the 93P. It's that comfortable.
  • List any additional thoughts (optional) It's going to be a close call between this and Hyper-G. The green of Hyper-G looks great in the Prince, and the Kirshbaum is a couple of dollars more expensive. But, the comfort and power might be enough to give the nod to Kirshbaum. Also, as a number of others have mentioned, it is very elastic on the stringer.
Thanks to Kirschbaum and TW for the playtest, this was a really good string that I wouldn't hesitate recommending to anyone looking for a soft co-poly that has a little extra power.
 

SteveI

Legend
Just got mine today and strung it up. Very easy to string and it feels very soft. This string does not appear from my inspection and stringing that this offering is going to be super durable for a heavy hitter. On the other hand, looks like a great string for someone coming from multis or an aging poly player. I will have it on the courts when the rains allows. I went up two pounds... . When stringing it was very stretchy.. Sort of like Head Sonic Pro 17G
 

tennisgurl

Rookie
Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed Playtest Review by tennisgurl

Tension used for playtest:
52 lbs

Regular string set up:
Solinco Hyper-G 17 strung at 52 lbs

Racquet used for test:
Head Speed Pro (Graphene 360)

Control/Power of test string:
This is a very soft and comfortable string which offers great point and shoot sort of control for me. I am a 4.0 female with relatively flatter ground game and slice serve as my go-to weapon. I felt groundstrokes were deep and had enough net clearance on them as I like. The serves were hitting targets well too. I really liked that I could feel the ball on my stringbed upon contact dig in more than some stiffer strings out there and that helped in directing balls as well.

Power was very similar level to Solinco Hyper G for me, perhaps even a little bit more. I have every polyester string strung up at same tension to keep things consistent and I wasn't hitting long (or in the net for that matter) a lot with this setup.

Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?):
The feel for this string is very soft and arm friendly. It is a very comfortable polyester offering. I always felt connected to my strokes. Mishits weren't uncomfortable for me and even off center hits were not hurting my arm or sending vibrations.

Spin:
I am a more of a flat hitter normally although I do use spin sometimes. I got good spin out of these strings when I took full swings at the ball with low to high swing motion. Any decent spin player can generate spin with these. Compared to Hyper-G though even my normal strokes get more spin whereas my ball was coming out more flat with this one. Serves too were accurate but with less zing on fast slice serves.

Durability:
I am not a string breaker and durability is something I never worry about. For me durability was good all throughout the playtest. I let the teaching pro at my club hit with my racquet a couple of times and I really believe that whatever notching I have right now is due to that (he is a big hitter). But for me, this stringbed will last a few weeks.

Playability Duration:
The playability duration was impressive for me. The stringbed plays just like it did at the beginning of the playtest. I don't have a way to record tensions maintenance but after the first few pounds droppage, I don't feel like strings have lost any tension. I am hitting consistent strokes, stringbed isn't erratic or dead etc, and whatever errors I make are because of my own fault, not the string.

Tension findings (if you installed this string again, would you select the same tension? Explain answer):
I would keep it at the same tension. I got the stringbed to play the way I wanted and I am used to this tension.

List any additional thoughts (optional):
My stringer echoed the same sentiments as everyone else here; that it was easy to string and it was elastic and stretchy for a polyester string.

I think this is a great string for someone looking to start playing with polyester strings. It is soft, comfortable and has enough power to help transition from multi or gut hybrid setup users. I will highly recommend everyone to give this a shot and try for yourself.

I will end this playtest feedback by saying a big thank you to @TW Staff I really enjoyed this playtest.

Thanks
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster

TW review is up. Hopefully I will get the tension right this time. I did not with Tourna Deuce 17G. Many play-testers had the same result. Nice review. Looks to be a nice softer co-poly. Might also do a pre-stretch this time. Enjoy the play test for those that got the call. I am excited to give this one a ride. 5 - sided that plays soft and with control. Easy on the arm.. :).
I really love those stencil. where can I get one ?
 

fjcamry

Semi-Pro
Dear tw staff I have not received my playtest sample . I was on vacation last week and upon returning checked my mail and don’t see the package . I responded to the email as explained.

Thank you


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
I broke a main today at about 7 hours of play - it had notched through and broke on an attempted hard and flat putaway shot. Playability remained consistent until string breakage, and though I am prone to breaking strings, seven hours in an 18X19 pattern is definitely on the quicker end.

No tennis now for three weeks for me while I'm traveling, so I'll post a full review when I get to my destination.
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
I broke a main today at about 7 hours of play - it had notched through and broke on an attempted hard and flat putaway shot. Playability remained consistent until string breakage, and though I am prone to breaking strings, seven hours in an 18X19 pattern is definitely on the quicker end.

No tennis now for three weeks for me while I'm traveling, so I'll post a full review when I get to my destination.
How does the Spin potential compare to Luxilon alu power in similar gauge ? Thanks
 

SteveI

Legend
How does the Spin potential compare to Luxilon alu power in similar gauge ? Thanks
This string is not a spin monster. Compared to ALU Power 16L... I would say... This Play Test string is better... by 10%.. regarding my game and experience. ALU Power to me is more for a drive the ball through the court offering. This string was not Tourna BHB7 17G.. but was not bad. I also was testing this string side by side... same frame but the other frame was strung with Volkl Cyclone 19G. The Cyclone 19G is a 10.. the play test string about a 6.. ALU Power 16L.. a 5.. for my game and frame.
 
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How does the Spin potential compare to Luxilon alu power in similar gauge ? Thanks
It has been a long while since I've used Alu Power but I do remember the impression that it was a very springy feeling string at first, though that springy characteristic seems to die away fairly quickly. For some reason, I feel disconnected trying to hit a lot of spin with springy strings. Deader strings just feel to me like they consistently grab the ball better even if they actually do not. Maybe that's a function of dwell time or maybe it is just totally in my head. In any case, I tend to agree with @Stevel in that Alu Power feels better when hitting flatter.

In my mind, there is a sizeable confidence difference between a string that is springy feeling, versus an equally powerful string that provides that firm pocketing feel. In the second case, there is a sensation of the ball flattening against the strings, whereas in the first case it feels like the stringbed deforms more and flings the ball.
 

SteveI

Legend
Kirschbaum Xplosive Speed Playtest: Steve I


Tension(s) used for play-test:
I strung this up at 54 / 52 on a constant pull machine. This is a few pounds over my 52 / 50. The string was easy to work with for sure. Coil memory was not an issue. The 5 sided profile was not that bad on my fingers like say Tourna BHB7 17G. Knots very snug and tight. Soft and elastic when stringing. I used the TW review and feedback from this thread to guide my tension selection. This is our warmest tennis time of the year and the balls are flying so I wanted to make sure I had the tension correct.

Regular string set up: Hard to say what that might be since I do a bit of play testing and I am not a regular tourney player.. so I always seem to have a new string to test. In most cases I am with a softer co-poly in a full bed 52 / 50. I have been using LF Vorso 17G, LF Native Tour and Volkl Cyclone 19G. My go to frame that I tested along side this one was strung with Volkl Cyclone 19G at 52 / 50.

Racquet used for test: Volkl Quantum Scorcher (Modified). 102 Head Size, 16 x 19, Big Grommet System, Lead at 3 & 9 and 12. Weight under the butt cap. Weight strung with overgrip and Volkl vibration dampener 11.6 oz, 7 points HL. The Volkl Quantum Scorcher has a flex of 60 and I used this frame as nice platform for my mods and of course to get it to my target spec.. Poor man's ProStock.. :) .

Control/Power of test string: At the tension I selected I was very happy with the control / power ratio. This string was very much point and shoot. My control was excellent and had just enough free power to tap into when needed. This string was about 10 % better than my Cyclone 19G frame. I could feel that nice ball pocketing and then the ball exploding off the strings with still very good control. Very happy with this aspect of this string.

Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?): Great on my arm and body. The string was soft and muted but touch shots and droppers could still be executed with ease. Touch and Feel is better with this string than the Cyclone 19G. Again, the ball pocketing was evident and I had a great feeling of being connected to the string bed. I was just swinging out and going for small targets due to my high confidence in this very stable string-bed. No hot spots!!!! TWU stiffness is 186..

Spin: This string is not a spin monster. Compared to ALU Power 16L... I would say... This Play Test string is better... by 10%.. regarding my game and experience. ALU Power to me is more for a drive the ball through the court offering. This string was not Tourna BHB7 17G.. but was not bad. I also was testing this string side by side... same frame but the other frame was strung with Volkl Cyclone 19G. The Cyclone 19G is a 10.. the play test string about a 6.. ALU Power 16L.. a 5.. for my game and frame. The spin potential was good but not out of this world. My spin serves did not quite the bite and hop as with Cyclone 19G. I found with this string.. I was not using spin as much to obtain control.. I was hitting a tighter, flat spin ball that was going through the court better. Launch angle was lower than with Cyclone 19G.

Durability: I am not a string breaker. In the frame I am using, Volkl even with a 16 x 19 patter and 102 head size uses a pattern than the mains are closer together in the center of the frame. My brain can't come up with their name for this pattern. The bottom line is the control is better.. less string movement and less string breakage. I have about 20 hours on these string and they are still going strong for me. While I hit with a fair amount of spin, I am not what you would call a big hitter. These would last a good long time for me. This string would be a great price / performer for me... even at it price point.

Playability Duration: After 20 hours... I am still picking this frame up when I am playing matches and points over the Cyclone 19G. I am seeing some notching and the snap back is not quite as good as when fresh. The tension maintenance has been wonderful.

Tension findings (if you installed this string again, would you select the same tension?). I pretty explained it above. I went a few pounds higher than normal. Loved what I did with this play test. With the help of the TW review and this thread I got it correct for my game and frame.

List any additional thoughts: Really solid offering, stable soft and long lasting string. I would buy a reel when they / if it is offered. Loved it!!

I also compared this string to Volkl Cyclone 19G using the TWU tool: Very close.. it is no wonder I enjoyed the testing of this offering.
 
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Tennis_Monk

Hall of Fame
What string did you receive? Xplosive Speed 1.25 mm
Tension(s) used for playtest 57
Regular string set up Alu Power Rough
Racquet used for test Babolat Pure Aero
Power/Control of test string High power
Feel (Stiff? Mushy? Muted? Crisp? Comfortable?) Soft and Comfortable
Spin Average
Durability Good
Playability Duration 12 sets and counting
Tension Recommendations (would you string it differently next time - why) Hybrid it with a control string or pair it in a Control stick or less powerful racquet
List any additional thoughts (optional)


Looks wise there isn't anything distinctive about the strings. The String is super stretchy to string and required multiple pulls on drop weight but easy to string. Tension retention is good and I didn’t notice any big drops overnight after stringing.

I have played with this setup in multiple doubles matches and some singles practice sets. Here are my observations.
The strings are too powerful off the gate and it took me an hour of hitting to get used to. However the good news is that I was able to get the similar results without having to stress too much. In my estimation, I only needed 60-70% of energy to get the same power as Ultracable or Alu Power or Alpha. I wasn’t expecting much spin from the strings as I am used to rough and shaped polys and the spin level of these strings is average.
The biggest benefit I had was on my backhand, my weaker stroke. The power level of strings made my backhand shots a bit deeper and very effective. Forehand shots needed some tweaking for me and I wasn’t able to go big confidently—largely due to my stroke mechanics not necessarily the strings. Normally I would flag this as a disadvantage but I appreciated the fact that I didn’t have to expend too much energy in 100 degree summer and still be effective. I also didn’t have to worry about putting the ball in play back when on defense or on the run.

Volleys and Touch shots worked well. Serve has been a challenge as I almost always went long on flat first serves. Kick serves are effective for me – I didn’t get the bite action but I got a foot or so extra bounce which helped me get many points. My friend, who is a more accomplished player, borrowed my racquet and he had no trouble ripping big serves , or crazy spinners off both wings –makes me believe that these will work for higher level players.

The strings are very durable and they are still good after many sets and practice hits. There is no discomfort whatsoever.

In summary, Xplosive speed is about power , comfort and feel and perfect complement to a control racquet. Hybrid with a spin string is another option.

Thank you to TW , Kirschbaum and TW members for the opportunity to review.
 
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