Tennis Warehouse Playtest: Babolat Pure Strike 100

TennisHound

Legend
They didn't tell us anything about the layup of the frame and how it compares to the older version. All they talked about was the color of the racket and what "white" meant to them. :rolleyes:
I hate when people do that crap. Tell you nothing about the product and expect you to purchase it based on what it looks like. Typical sales dept.
“Happy, as a hippo,” lol
 

djkahn86

Rookie
they all didn't complain of lack of plow or power. Maybe some digs at weak serving. 100 sq in with control and it maneuverable, sounds good to me. Strung up my playtester and hitting the courts the next 4 days. We shall see?
 

MixedMaster

Semi-Pro
I wasn't paying attention and missed the signup for the play test. I'm so anxious to hear about the play test as I've used a PS 100 since the first version came out. I've love my original and I'm excited to demo the new version.
 

TW Staff

Administrator
To answer a couple questions,

The Babolat Pure Strike family launches on our site in mid August (no official date yet). With Babolat brandography week, we decided to post the review a little early to give you guys our thoughts.

No Playsight data on this review. We were having some technical difficulties on our end but it should be back up and running shortly.

Thanks,
Brittany, TW
 

TennisHound

Legend
To answer a couple questions,

The Babolat Pure Strike family launches on our site in mid August (no official date yet). With Babolat brandography week, we decided to post the review a little early to give you guys our thoughts.

No Playsight data on this review. We were having some technical difficulties on our end but it should be back up and running shortly.

Thanks,
Brittany, TW
I thought it was a good review. There was enough info to get an idea of how its going to hit, and if its worth a demo or not. Sounds like it is.
 

djkahn86

Rookie
played USTA match today. Serve had less dwell time but no pain in arm and groundstrokes, approach shots and volleys felt great. So far, so good.
 

haqq777

Legend
Have put quite a few solid hours on the playtest racquet by now. I had it strung twice with different polys as well. Just gathering my thoughts now and trying to organize all notes. My final review will be coming shortly in a day or two.
 

haqq777

Legend
Tennis Warehouse Playtest: Babolat Pure Strike 100
by @haqq777



Ladies and Gentlemen, here is my final review of the Babolat Pure Strike 100. But before I continue, I would first of all like to thank @TW Staff Tennis Warehouse and @Babolat Official Babolat for this opportunity. Much appreciated. You guys are always spoiling us tennis nerds/geeks with these awesome opportunities.

Because of the character limit, I could not post this whole review in one post so I will be breaking it down in two posts. This is part-I.

Let me start by giving the specs for my racquet so everyone has a better idea of my play test racquet and specs. Racquet was taken to my nearest pro shop which has a Babolat RDC. Took both strung and unstrung specs. Play test over the course was performed stock (just added an overgrip).

Unstrung:
Static weight: 299g
Flex: 71RA
Swing weight: 285
Balance: 321mm

Strung (With OG):
The overgrip used was Wilson Pro. Did not use dampener.

Static weight: 319g
Flex: 68 RA
Swing weight: 313
Balance: 329mm

Racquet Received:
Babolat Pure Strike 100

String and tension used for test:
I used RS Lyon at 50 lbs for this play test. I really appreciate Tennis Warehouse sending a set each of RPM Rough Red 17 and Xcel Black 17 for play testers to use if we wanted. But I wanted to eliminate the string variable and play with a string that I am used to and know the response of. That way I can judge the racquet better and provide better insight on the racquet itself. But I definitely appreciate receiving the string sets.

Tennis experience/background:
I’m a former NCAA Div II college player currently in my mid thirties. I regularly play with local college team players. Have a diversified background when it comes to my history of racquets ranging from Babolats to Princes and beyond.

Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley):
I consider myself an aggressive baseliner. Even though my serves are not extremely huge, I have decent groundies with ample (if not excessive) spin. Mostly rely on well-placed flatter 1st big serve and can generally get away with a well-placed but slower slice 2nd serve setting up a put-away forehand. I am consistent, and rate my forehand as my weapon.. Have a one handed backhand which I tend to shy away from at times. It will always be a work in progress. My favorite shot is inside-out forehand which rarely lets me down. Not a big volleyer at all and rarely come to the net but net play just does not come naturally to me.

Current racquet/string setups:
I carry multiple racquet setups in my bag. If I were to open my bag right now, you will find a Prince Phantom 93P, multiple TC97 18x20, HEAD G360 Speed Pro and this new Babolat Pure Strike 100 so I am kind of all over the place at the moment. I played with 16x19 pattern for over a decade but recently find myself liking denser patterns. Go to racquet these days is the TC97 18x20. As for strings, I am using RS Lyon strung at around 50lbs mark.

How many hours did you play with the racquet?
So far, I have put in close to 16 hours including drills, serves, ground strokes and general play. Cut out RS Lyon at 10 hour mark and replaced with Babolat Rough Red which was provided with the racquet.

Racquet performance:

Groundstrokes-
To give the readers a better idea, I play tested the racquet indoors on fast hard court. Our outdoor slower hard courts are being renovated and I would have loved to try this racquet on those but was not meant to be since the deadline for review is fast approaching. Anyway, indoor conditions were a temp controlled 60-65F. Not very humid. I will break down the ground strokes below:

Stability: Since I am used to slightly heavier racquets and play with college kids who hit hard, I found the racquet a bit lacking here. It was light and whippy on groundstrokes. The groundstrokes were crisp but I did not feel any jarring sensation or vibrations on ball impact out of sweet spot. Very smooth and no pinging like the first generation Pure Strike 100 I played with a few years back. Given the low static and swing-weight this racquet has room for customization and a little bit of weight in the hoop will change greatly how the racquet faces heavy incoming balls.

Spin: I would say above average. I was able to whip the ball and light weight made me swing racquet faster and easier, which in turn put more spin on the ball. The ball launch angle was also higher than I am used to but that can be adjust with adjusting string tensions.

Control: this also took a little bit getting used to. The racquet being light weight got my timing messed up in the beginning. But when I got it down and was able to set up right, I got my strokes right. I still lacked depth however and that 'zing' on the ball probably due to lack of weight. Slices were not nasty as I used to with heavier denser patterns and ball was floating more on my back hand side. I did start getting depth once I adjusted and was taking full swings on my forehand side.

Feel: As far as feel goes, if you are a Babolat person, you will love it. Having said that, if have never liked Babolat feedback, chances are you will not like the feedback on this Pure Strike 100 as well. Old schoolers might describe it as hollow and tinny. I grew up on Babolats so I am used to it and don't mind it. But this is no plush player's frame, or a feel and touch kind of racquet. It is in fact your typical Babolat feeling/playing racquet, which by the way, most modern players actually prefer. I did not notice any flex like how I clearly do with softer racquets. I must say here though that in comparison with previous generation PS100 racquets this feels smoother. Also I had no buzzing whatsoever. No arm discomfort after hits as well.

Continued - next post.
 

haqq777

Legend
Tennis Warehouse Playtest: Babolat Pure Strike 100
Part-II

Serves:
I have mixed feelings about the serves with this racquet. It was definitely light enough that I could swing it fast easily but I was having trouble generating pace on first flatter serves. Had to swing hard every time if I wanted pace I am used to - and I am not a huge server. Rely more on placement really but first serve is definitely more pace than second.

For the accuracy and precision part, I was happy. I found I was able to hit my targets with ease and it rewarded both flat and spin deliveries. Was happy with second serves as I was getting a lot of spin whenever I hit a slice or a kicker. When I did play a points tie breaker with the guy I usually hit with, I actually toned down the pace on my first serves and started going for angles and spin on my first and second serves both. Every now and then I would give a sitter and my opponent would tee off so I did not find the consistent string bed response I am used to all the time, but it was fine and I think that was more of an adjustment thing.

I would rate serving as above average for accuracy and very average for power generation.

Volleys:
I am admittedly not a great volleyer. But whenever I made it to the net I found that keeping things simple worked. A simple punch in an open target turned into an easy putaway. Now keep in mind, the touch and feel that you might find from a more traditional racquet, say like a Prince Phantom 93P, was missing. 100sq in head was very forgiving and biggest things I noticed was the easy maneuverability. In stock form it did lack the stability at net to absorb pace. But that can be fixed with a little bit of weight.

Serve Returns:
This is one area where the lack of weight was really evident with this racquet. Whenever I knifed a slice back, it had a tendency to float and sit up. When I had time to set up my return I was rewarded with good depth and pace and ball reaching closer to the opponent's baseline. In other words, if I had time to take full swings I was fine.

I also felt the racquet flutter a bit on heavy serves. When I was trying to block back or chip return with the racquet that I notice that the racquet twisting in my hand often. All of these are things though that a little bit of weight can easily fix, in my humble opinion.

General reaction/comments on overall performance:
A few observation noted below:
  1. First the aesthetics: this is one good looking racquet. I was a huge fan of the P17 scheme (the one this is replacing) so in all honesty, I wasn't sure about it till I had the racquet in hand. The racquet looks gorgeous in person and received a lot of curiosity, followed by compliments, on the courts. Everyone wanted to try it.
  2. This is also a very easy to use racquet and lots of room for customization for the modern player. I would recommend gently bumping up the weight for this and then seeing it transform.
  3. Regarding specs, the cardboard in the racquet head mentions unstrung swingweight to be 295. When I had it tested on my local pro shop RDC it came out full 10 points less at 285 unstrung. It also had a strung swing weight of 313 whereas TW video I saw puts it at 319. I do believe there was some manufacturing variance issue there.
  4. In terms of what this racquets compares to, I would say that the newest Speed MP and Beast 100 - both racquets I have played with recently - and both these I felt play with somewhat similar attributes. The Speed has more control, but less power. The Beast has more power but somewhat less control. So this Pure Strike would sit in the middle.
Conclusion:
For those looking for a good combination of power, spin, predictability and maneuverability without getting a thick beamed racquet, this is the racquet to look at for sure. It also has room to customize plenty and so you can add weight and bring it up to your specs as well if you feel it isn't as stable as you would like. I would not hesitate to call this a racquet something that falls in between a traditional player's stick and a tweener. Add this to your demo list if these attributes seem up your alley. If you ask me, I will tell everyone to demo this and see if they find their sweet spot.

Once again, I would like to end this play test review by thanks @TW Staff for this opportunity. I really enjoyed this play test. If anyone has any questions pertaining to this review, any questions please feel free to contact me and I will reply to the best of my abilities.

Cheers.
 

TennisHound

Legend
Tennis Warehouse Playtest: Babolat Pure Strike 100
Part-II

Serves:
I have mixed feelings about the serves with this racquet. It was definitely light enough that I could swing it fast easily but I was having trouble generating pace on first flatter serves. Had to swing hard every time if I wanted pace I am used to - and I am not a huge server. Rely more on placement really but first serve is definitely more pace than second.

For the accuracy and precision part, I was happy. I found I was able to hit my targets with ease and it rewarded both flat and spin deliveries. Was happy with second serves as I was getting a lot of spin whenever I hit a slice or a kicker. When I did play a points tie breaker with the guy I usually hit with, I actually toned down the pace on my first serves and started going for angles and spin on my first and second serves both. Every now and then I would give a sitter and my opponent would tee off so I did not find the consistent string bed response I am used to all the time, but it was fine and I think that was more of an adjustment thing.

I would rate serving as above average for accuracy and very average for power generation.

Volleys:
I am admittedly not a great volleyer. But whenever I made it to the net I found that keeping things simple worked. A simple punch in an open target turned into an easy putaway. Now keep in mind, the touch and feel that you might find from a more traditional racquet, say like a Prince Phantom 93P, was missing. 100sq in head was very forgiving and biggest things I noticed was the easy maneuverability. In stock form it did lack the stability at net to absorb pace. But that can be fixed with a little bit of weight.

Serve Returns:
This is one area where the lack of weight was really evident with this racquet. Whenever I knifed a slice back, it had a tendency to float and sit up. When I had time to set up my return I was rewarded with good depth and pace and ball reaching closer to the opponent's baseline. In other words, if I had time to take full swings I was fine.

I also felt the racquet flutter a bit on heavy serves. When I was trying to block back or chip return with the racquet that I notice that the racquet twisting in my hand often. All of these are things though that a little bit of weight can easily fix, in my humble opinion.

General reaction/comments on overall performance:
A few observation noted below:
  1. First the aesthetics: this is one good looking racquet. I was a huge fan of the P17 scheme (the one this is replacing) so in all honesty, I wasn't sure about it till I had the racquet in hand. The racquet looks gorgeous in person and received a lot of curiosity, followed by compliments, on the courts. Everyone wanted to try it.
  2. This is also a very easy to use racquet and lots of room for customization for the modern player. I would recommend gently bumping up the weight for this and then seeing it transform.
  3. Regarding specs, the cardboard in the racquet head mentions unstrung swingweight to be 295. When I had it tested on my local pro shop RDC it came out full 10 points less at 285 unstrung. It also had a strung swing weight of 313 whereas TW video I saw puts it at 319. I do believe there was some manufacturing variance issue there.
  4. In terms of what this racquets compares to, I would say that the newest Speed MP and Beast 100 - both racquets I have played with recently - and both these I felt play with somewhat similar attributes. The Speed has more control, but less power. The Beast has more power but somewhat less control. So this Pure Strike would sit in the middle.
Conclusion:
For those looking for a good combination of power, spin, predictability and maneuverability without getting a thick beamed racquet, this is the racquet to look at for sure. It also has room to customize plenty and so you can add weight and bring it up to your specs as well if you feel it isn't as stable as you would like. I would not hesitate to call this a racquet something that falls in between a traditional player's stick and a tweener. Add this to your demo list if these attributes seem up your alley. If you ask me, I will tell everyone to demo this and see if they find their sweet spot.

Once again, I would like to end this play test review by thanks @TW Staff for this opportunity. I really enjoyed this play test. If anyone has any questions pertaining to this review, any questions please feel free to contact me and I will reply to the best of my abilities.

Cheers.
Good review- no nonsense and straight to the point.
 

J B

Semi-Pro
Not in the play test but have been playing with it for a few weeks. Conclusions first. Like it but will wait for the 98 18x20 tour to come out. I will explain why in the text. I’m not giving scores here just my thoughts. They fixed the stiffness and made it more playable as far as I’m concerned. I am waiting for the 98 tour version and the Wilson blade before I decide. I think for players that aren’t looking for a dense pattern, I like the lower launch of dense patterns, or a 98 head, this stick will do you very well. If Wilson jacked up the feel of the new blade it might be the only choice for someone looking for feel and control, as they can generate their own power. It has a higher launch angle than I was used too so that was something I counted against it.

Ground strokes: In it’s element here. If you can create some power, you will have fun with the Pure Strike 100. There is plenty of spin, feel, and control. Ball placement isn’t at precise as with a 18x20 but that is to be expected for me, and I admit some slight bias. It really seems like the current Pure strike except it’s more comfortable. Depth is easily controlled with power. I’d enjoy getting it dialed in with different tensions just to see, but I’m not able to afford just cutting out string on a racquet I don’t own. I really feel that it’s as surgical and going back to my 18x20 comment I had to count strings a couple times then switch out. It’s really precise which leaves me dying to see if the 18x20 98 is any better. As to groundstrokes that would be the reason I would wait for the 98 18x20.... can it be better?
Conclusion: A really nice stick if you can generate your own power. This is a really fun thing but the two edged sword is that it requires footwork and technique to get those OMG balls. If you are out of position and your opponent hits with pace it’s not as easy to get that easy power from other racquets. But hey at least you hit the net in the exact line of aim you had..... it would have made it if you had more power. - not knocking just adding levity. I think that can be fixed with my preferred string but in not putting in gut/poly for someone else’s stick

Volleys: For a stick the weighs less than I am use too... I liked it a lot. For me it’s point and shoot on volleys. Funny thing in a doubles match, I underestimated the ability of my opponent to get balls back ( he was using my 355gr Vcore soooo :D ) so my first volley was 3 feet of the mid court line, he gets it back so I just cornered the next shot with ease. I’ll give that one to the Stick. I wanted to hit there but it was PDC to where I was aiming/hoping it would go. The spin, compared to my 2014 PS 98... wow. Drop shots and tricky shots were so much fun and came with ease. Not that you’d use trick shots in a match but messing around always brought a smile. I think my weighted PS is a bit more stable but you have to realize I was using a 355 Vcore 98 then a 330 PS. So this is a really solid volley stick for a 300. Very maneuverable, granted again it’s a feather compared to my other sticks.
Conclusion: with some more weight, probably at 9 and 3 to fix the stability, or maybe just me! I think it would be a real weapon.

Serves: Ok, I’m usually hitting with a 2014 PS 18x20 with gut and poly. So this might be the section you skip. Compared to my usual stick, this knocked my socks off. I added power and spin, kick serves are better placed and with more spin. Sound strange? It’s true because to get the spin for a kick I need to add a ton of spin on the 2014, so I can be more precise with the new PS to get easy spin and my placement is better. Flat serves. Three aces in a row, I went sideline tape, T, sideline tape. Ok and this is not gonna happen for everyone but I broke a guys racquet. Right, there are a million other variables, but I got a clean flat serve and bombed it. He barely got it around framed it and almost lost the stick. It broke the frame. So given that will never happen again I’m taking full credit here. :p
Conclusion: it’s way better than my 2014 98

Returns: This is the one area I think I’d take some getting used to. I’ll just say it. I sent a lot of returns long to start with. I think I was used to a higher SW and it showed. Once I was able to dial back the timing I started to get the balls more where I wanted. I still wasn’t as precise as I was with my current racquet. I really think it’s the weight and lower tension of the strings. I might try some weight on today before I give it back next week. I don’t want to say the stick is bad it’s just that for other strokes it was easier for me to adjust. When I buckled down, stayed with the ball and technique it went well. I still was early on my forehand and backhand. Which is great when a cross court return is what you are looking for. If not you just “ beginner ball coach fed” the guy a ball on a platter and he probably just mashed it.
Conclusion: I wasn’t as solid on my returns and I think it was due to the lighter weight. I finally dialed the depth in but was still early. I am aware this is a timing thing.
 
Last edited:

kdm711

Rookie
Not in the play test but have been playing with it for a few weeks. Conclusions first. Like it but will wait for the 98 18x20 tour to come out. I will explain why in the text. I’m not giving scores here just my thoughts. They fixed the stiffness and made it more playable as far as I’m concerned. I am waiting for the 98 tour version and the Wilson blade before I decide. I think for players that aren’t looking for a dense pattern, I like the lower launch of dense patterns, or a 98 head, this stick will do you very well. If Wilson jacked up the feel of the new blade it might be the only choice for someone looking for feel and control, as they can generate their own power

Ground strokes: In it’s element here. If you can create some power, you will have fun with the Pure Strike 100. There is plenty of spin, feel, and control. Ball placement isn’t at precise as with a 18x20 but that is to be expected for me, and I admit some slight bias. It really seems like the current Pure strike except it’s more comfortable. Depth is easily controlled with power. I’d enjoy getting it dialed in with different tensions just to see, but I’m not able to afford just cutting out string on a racquet I don’t own. I really feel that it’s as surgical and going back to my 18x20 comment I had to count strings a couple times then switch out. It’s really precise which leaves me dying to see if the 18x20 98 is any better. As to groundstrokes that would be the reason I would wait for the 98 18x20.... can it be better?
Conclusion: A really nice stick if you can generate your own power. This is a really fun thing but the two edged sword is that it requires footwork and technique to get those OMG balls. If you are out of position and your opponent hits with pace it’s not as easy to get that easy power from other racquets. But hey at least you hit the net in the exact line of aim you had..... it would have made it if you had more power. - not knocking just adding levity. I think that can be fixed with my preferred string but in not putting in gut/poly for someone else’s stick

Volleys: For a stick the weighs less than I am use too... I liked it a lot. For me it’s point and shoot on volleys. Funny thing in a doubles match, I underestimated the ability of my opponent to get balls back ( he was using my 355gr Vcore soooo :D ) so my first volley was 3 feet of the mid court line, he gets it back so I just cornered the next shot with ease. I’ll give that one to the Stick. I wanted to hit there but it was PDC to where I was aiming/hoping it would go. The spin, compared to my 2014 PS 98... wow. Drop shots and tricky shots were so much fun and came with ease. Not that you’d use trick shots in a match but messing around always brought a smile. I think my weighted PS is a bit more stable but you have to realize I was using a 355 Vcore 98 then a 330 PS. So this is a really solid volley stick for a 300. Very maneuverable, granted again it’s a feather compared to my other sticks.
Conclusion: with some more weight, probably at 9 and 3 to fix the stability, or maybe just me! I think it would be a real weapon.

Serves: Ok, I’m usually hitting with a 2014 PS 18x20 with gut and poly. So this might be the section you skip. Compared to my usual stick, this knocked my socks off. I added power and spin, kick serves are better placed and with more spin. Sound strange? It’s true because to get the spin for a kick I need to add a ton of spin on the 2014, so I can be more precise with the new PS to get easy spin and my placement is better. Flat serves. Three aces in a row, I went sideline tape, T, sideline tape. Ok and this is not gonna happen for everyone but I broke a guys racquet. Right, there are a million other variables, but I got a clean flat serve and bombed it. He barely got it around framed it and almost lost the stick. It broke the frame. So given that will never happen again I’m taking full credit here. :p
Conclusion: it’s way better than my 2014 98

Returns: This is the one area I think I’d take some getting used to. I’ll just say it. I sent a lot of returns long to start with. I think I was used to a higher SW and it showed. Once I was able to dial back the timing I started to get the balls more where I wanted. I still wasn’t as precise as I was with my current racquet. I really think it’s the weight and lower tension of the strings. I might try some weight on today before I give it back next week. I don’t want to say the stick is bad it’s just that for other strokes it was easier for me to adjust. When I buckled down, stayed with the ball and technique it went well. I still was early on my forehand and backhand. Which is great when a cross court return is what you are looking for. If not you just “ beginner ball coach fed” the guy a ball on a platter and he probably just mashed it.
Conclusion: I wasn’t as solid on my returns and I think it was due to the lighter weight. I finally dialed the depth in but was still early. I am aware this is a timing thing.
Thanks for the thorough review! Can you help me understand how they fixed the stiffness yet the RA remained the same? I’m just a bit skeptical due to my own recent experiences.

I didn’t think the PS one7 felt uncomfortable when I first switched to it earlier this year. I actually thought it felt pretty plush, but after a few months my elbow started telling me otherwise. It persistently got worse to the point where I’m now sidelined due to elbow pain for the first time since I started playing tennis ~15 years ago. I recall reading this happening to a lot of people back in the main PS one7 thread. So I am interested to see what the feedback is on the new one after people have been using it regularly for a few months.

The struggle for me has been I’ve been playing the best tennis I’ve ever played with it so I didn’t want to have to give it up. My regular playing partners have even been commenting about how much better my game has been. But after the intense pain I’ve experienced recently from it, there’s no magic wand out there that’s worth it if it’s going to keep me from being able to play.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

J B

Semi-Pro
I don’t have access to it for that long. However I think they did something with the vibration at 9-3. I usually hit with guy and poly hybrid. This is your cheaper solution and usually solves elbow pain. I’ve had some in the past. I don’t know why but it feels less stiff than the previous version. I guess it feels solid but not painfully so. Granted it’s only a few weeks. I’ve used multi and poly. I could see if you have elbow issue the poly would hurt but I’d just do half gut and poly and it will at Least save the elbow and only add 12-15$ to your stringing cost. I say only because it’s only dollars vs time away from tennis and surgery. and it lasts longer. So you kinda don’t pay as much if you factor in it’s gonna last 5-6 weeks if your poly lasted 10-14 days.
 
Last edited:

fundrazer

Legend
I didn't put much time in with mine yet, but I was fairly surprised that it was pretty comfortable. I went with the providied RPM Blast Rough at 52lbs. Didn't have any issues with bad vibrations or anything. Think my timing was definitely a bit off though. Recall seeing somebody else mention that due to the lighter weight they were kind of coming through with their swing a bit quicker than normal. I was hoping to spend more time with it yesterday actually, but for anybody reading my match report thread (like 2 people), the club booked me on a clay court for my match yesterday, and I've never played on clay. Too many variables in play so I went back to my normal stick.

Launch angle was a bit high for me which I will need some adjustment on, particularly with the forehand. For some reason this is a recurring problem for me lately. Liked serving with this stick a lot though. Nice power, good access to spin, and was able to hit spots pretty well.

Might be writing up a few more mini posts as I put more time in, but obviously you can expect a big review post in about two weeks.
 

J B

Semi-Pro
Agree on the launch angle but I thought that was the 18x20 I was used to. I would string this in alu gut and your favorite round ploy at 58/56 or 57/55

I am a OHBH so the launch is great on that but I struggled with getting used to the angle on the FH. A 18x20 has the same spin rpm but different angles. So I like it better. I’ve used it on clay and hard.
 
Last edited:

DustinW

Professional
I've hit with the Pure Strike 100 a few times now and here are my initial impressions. Full review to come later.
  • Super stable for a 300g frame
  • Huge sweetspot (no deadness or pinging or vibrations with off-center shots)
  • I'd call it firm yet comfortable, but not stiff feeling
  • Power is in the medium-high range... maybe a bit more than I want but definitely not Pure Drive power
 

fundrazer

Legend
I'm probably coming off as a bit of a whiner lately, but my second impression with the racquet on a windy day wasn't a good one. Think the wind definitely played a factor, but I felt a lot more confident swinging today than I did on the clay on Thursday (no bad bounces today). Big thing for me was that there was a definite lack of "oomph" (plowthrough) in stock form. Launch angle helped me to get good depth on most balls, but when I tried to swing a bit faster/bigger I didn't feel like I was really getting rewarded.

Slices felt a bit too floaty when I can normally knife them pretty well. Wasn't really feeling the backhand overall with this stick...

Volleys feel okay. Again, there's a lack of "oomph" here on punch volleys, but it's a racquet I'd generally feel confident up at net with. It's very quick/maneuverable.

The two things that stand out for me so far are serving and the surprising comfort level. Serving is definitely the highlight of the stick for me. As crappy as my match on the clay was, opponent was impressed with my serve. Racquet isn't noticeably buzzy when missing the sweetspot also. Or it may be a very generous sweetspot...I dunno. But the Pure Drives I've played with (the first PDR and the 2012 PD) were awful when missing the sweetspot. Way too much shock/vibration would go to the arm and it is not a pleasant feeling. Haven't felt that at all with the Pure Strike 100.
 

TennisHound

Legend
I'm probably coming off as a bit of a whiner lately, but my second impression with the racquet on a windy day wasn't a good one. Think the wind definitely played a factor, but I felt a lot more confident swinging today than I did on the clay on Thursday (no bad bounces today). Big thing for me was that there was a definite lack of "oomph" (plowthrough) in stock form. Launch angle helped me to get good depth on most balls, but when I tried to swing a bit faster/bigger I didn't feel like I was really getting rewarded.

Slices felt a bit too floaty when I can normally knife them pretty well. Wasn't really feeling the backhand overall with this stick...

Volleys feel okay. Again, there's a lack of "oomph" here on punch volleys, but it's a racquet I'd generally feel confident up at net with. It's very quick/maneuverable.

The two things that stand out for me so far are serving and the surprising comfort level. Serving is definitely the highlight of the stick for me. As crappy as my match on the clay was, opponent was impressed with my serve. Racquet isn't noticeably buzzy when missing the sweetspot also. Or it may be a very generous sweetspot...I dunno. But the Pure Drives I've played with (the first PDR and the 2012 PD) were awful when missing the sweetspot. Way too much shock/vibration would go to the arm and it is not a pleasant feeling. Haven't felt that at all with the Pure Strike 100.
Good summary. Telling it like it is.
 

fundrazer

Legend
So I played a match tonight and overall it was a much better performance.

Serving is still my favorite aspect. And again racquet is surprisingly comfortable and pretty stable.

Much happier with the slice backhands tonight also. Was able to get good bite on those and produced a few errors.

Main issue I think is lack of putaway power, but some added weight would probably help. Stronger players would probably have an easier time hitting winners, but I don't feel like I'd be hitting anyone off the court with this thing. Might also be the approach I took with the match in particular. Ended up playing a grindy match...but I won!
 

J B

Semi-Pro
Fundrazer, that is along what I was saying as well. If you create your own power its fun. I still think I will wait for the 18.x20 as the control isnt good enough and the spin while good isnt enough. Then again I was using blast at 57 and I can create my own power. The problem with the power requirement is if you are off on footwork or positioning you will not get the depth or hit the net. I mentioned that in my review. So that makes 2 of us.
 

fundrazer

Legend
Fundrazer, that is along what I was saying as well. If you create your own power its fun. I still think I will wait for the 18.x20 as the control isnt good enough and the spin while good isnt enough. Then again I was using blast at 57 and I can create my own power. The problem with the power requirement is if you are off on footwork or positioning you will not get the depth or hit the net. I mentioned that in my review. So that makes 2 of us.
Yeah. Maybe I should clarify a bit also. It's not like Ultra Tour levels of low power, at least not quite... My opponent yesterday was probably ~4.0, and I was able to hit with enough depth and pace that didn't let him take over too many rallies. In that sense, it's probably adequate power level. The other thing was that even on the run I was able to produce some good shots. Slapped one forehand on the run that caught him by complete surprise.

But for me I don't think it's a stick that I'm going to blast winners with. Maybe if I approach my next match a bit differently, but this one I was grinding and I thought it played surprisingly well. Was a bit Roddickesque in how it turned out, but I'm talking serve and grind Roddick...lmao
 

Tjg

New User
Does anyone know of black grommets/bumper comparable with 2015 aero lite? Do not like the white ones. Thanks
 

appdach96

Rookie
String and tension used for test: Babolat RPM Blast Rough 17g in mains & Babolat Excel 17g in crosses...both strung @ 6o lbs...I have always preferred higher tension.
I did take off the synthetic grip & put on 2 Wilson Pro overgrips. I have small hands, lol


Tennis experience/background: 4.5 doubles player...I played junior tennis until I was 18, then took 18 years off...love the game! I have mainly played doubles since my return.

Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley): I have a fairly big serve for a 5'4" female, which I then work my way in behind, I also return and work my way in, but I do not rush the net...

Current racquet/string setups: Yonex Dr 100...hybrid of Diadem Evolution 17g in mains and Prince rainbow synthetic gut 16g in crosses...I string @ 58/63 lbs respectively.

How many hours did you play with the racquet? 32 hours

Comments on racquet performance:
-Groundstrokes: Right off the bat I noticed this racket felt quite a bit different than my Yonex even though the specs are somewhat similar...The PS19 was definitely more HL, and I noted that my arm was tired after my first 2.5 hour clinic. I felt on my groundstrokes I had a good amount of power and feel. When I missed the sweet spot, I noticed there was not too much jarring or or vibrations. I felt as if my groundstrokes were smooth and sharp, I was able to hit my targets. I felt as if this racket is definitely more hefty than my Yonex. That being said, I was able to whip my groundstrokes and use my opponents power.

-Serves: I really enjoyed this racket on my serves. I felt as if I was able to get great spin on both first & second serves. Where I really enjoyed this racket was on placement of serves, especially my second serve. I have been working on getting a better second serve and this racket helped! Just really loved how accurate it was and how connected I felt to the ball while serving.

-Volleys: Since I am mainly a doubles player, volleys are very important to my game. Although this racket is fairly stable up at net, I felt like I had to really punch the volley to get it to go deeper in the court. This area was my least favorite when it came to this racket. I felt at times, especially during mixed doubles, that it wasn't able to absorb the power coming off a 5.0's (guy) racket. When it came to overheads, I did enjoy it. Like with my serve it gave me plenty of power and the ability to place it where I wanted it to go.

-Serve returns: The return of serve varied, depending on how fast and how powerful the server was..If I was able to really get my shoulders turned and my move my feet like I should (LOL), I was able to drive a return with great depth and pace...Blocking back serves was not as easy, they tended to go out if the I was facing a power server. My backhand slice return was 50/50...at times I was able to get a great low slice return back and other times it was floaty...again this could be my form and not the racket, but I felt like I floated more balls with this racket versus my Yonex. I did enjoy the free power I got off my return when I was able to set up and really step into the return.


General reaction/comments on overall performance: Overall this was a very enjoyable playtest. I am very thankful to @Babolat Official and @tennis warehouse for the opportunity to play with my first Babolat racket. I had heard how stiff these rackets are, and was pleased to see this racket was not as stiff as some other models that Babolat offers. I was able to compare this racket to the PS17 and both myself and the teaching pro felt as if this version feels heavier/heftier...as mentioned above maybe this is due to it feeling so HL. I absolutely loved the cosmetics of this racket, and if that was all I was basing this review on, I would switch rackets in a heartbeat...:-D when it came down to it, I preferred my Yonex and the consistency at net I have with it. If I was in the market for a new racket, this is a great racket. The swing weight, stiffness and how many ounces is a great racket for someone like me who needs free power, and precision of serves.
I was also happy that it did not affect my elbow or wrist as I have had issues with both of them in the past. Again many thanks to Babolat & TW for this awesome opportunity to play test this racket.


Best regards,
Katie
 

fundrazer

Legend
I may add additional thoughts here if my mild bout of tennis elbow clears up, but here it goes for now. Of course I'm also more than happy to try and answer any questions other posters may have.

String and tension used for test:
RPM Blast Rough @ 52lbs

Tennis experience/background:

I've been playing on and off since about 2007 or so. Have been around 3.5-4.0 for most of that time. Played two years of high school tennis (not at a very competitive level), and since then it's been mostly recreational for me. Past few years I've been hitting more regularly with a small group of guys, but I've also been doing some inhouse matches at a local club. Mostly singles for me lately, but I've had fun playing doubles with my 3.0-3.5 buddies.

Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley):

I've joked before that I'm pretending to be an all court player. I'm primarily an aggressive baseliner, but when I'm feeling confident I like going to net and will actively look for opportunities to do so. My forehand is probably my best shot, and when I'm in the zone I'm always working my feet to put me in good positions to take control of points with that shot. I can crack my backhand fairly well, but it's a much flatter shot for me and is not as reliable as my forehand. I do try to mix things up with the slice though. Slice was a shot I had to develop, because the older guy who taught me how to play could keep the ball very low. Slice was the best response.

Serve comes and goes depending on how often I'm practicing it, but it's usually a weapon for me against similarly skilled opponents. I like hitting flat serves, but I also have an aggressive topspin serve that sometimes goes awol.

I mix up my return strategy based on opponents. I like taking cuts at the ball when I have time, but against stronger servers I will step back and block back or punch serves back.

Current racquet/string setups:

Currently playing with an Elevate Tour. Had it strung with solstice power at 48 and haven't cut it out yet, although it's about getting to that point as after about 20 hours or so it's notching a lot.

How many hours did you play with the racquet?

So far I would say about 15. Has been a mix of hitting and inhouse matches so far.


Comments on racquet performance:

-Groundstrokes:

I'll start off by saying that the Pure Strike 100 has quite a generous sweetspot. I've been very pleasantly surprised by the response. Except for some wild shanks, I almost always felt like I was making good contact with the ball. The one thing I kinda took away is that the launch angle is a bit high though. Made for easy depth, but at the same time I didn't feel like I was putting as much on the ball as I would like. What I've mentioned in a few posts already is that lack of plowthrough is probably the main problem for me. I was able to get into more of a groove as I put more hours in with the stick, but I never quite felt like I could hit a lot of winners with this stick.

Although with that said, one of the matches I played was against a similarly skilled opponent with a pretty solid forehand. I felt like I was getting enough on the ball that he couldn't attack me. In that sense this was great. When I was pressured a bit in that match such as a few times when I was pulled wide to the forehand court, I was able to hit with depth and enough loop to get me back in the point. Shots might have been a bit tougher to pull off with a heavier stick.

I think though, that my normal rally ball on the forehand side just wasn't doing as much as I'd like. Generally it's a shot that I can force short balls or hit winners with, and that wasn't really happening.

Backhand groundies were pretty good as well. I did like my topspin backhand. Again, the easy depth is quite nice, and the launch angle helps me as my backhand has a flatter trajectory. For a while I kind of struggled getting my slice to be effective, but the match I mentioned above it was probably the mvp shot for me. Maybe not quite getting that knife slice that really penetrates through the court, but again, I was pleasantly surprised at the effectiveness.

Main thing here is that I would add more weight to help with plowthrough, particularly on the forehand side.

-Serves:

For the most part I really liked serving with this stick. Felt like I could get very good pace, placement, and spin. Was fairly confident hitting most of my favorite serves, particularly the ad side serves. I like going flat out wide, topspin out wide, and slice up the t. Those serves were devastating in the matches I played. Maybe not quite getting the height on the ball as I used to with say my old DR98, but still a very good serving racquet I think.

I did start having a few hiccups on my 2nd serve though. Probably technical difficulties on my part, but double faults started creeping in a lot, and I couldn't quite figure it out. Switched back to my Elevate Tour for a bit and was hitting them much more consistently.

-Volleys:

So while I don't think this has the same oomph or punch that a heavier stick has, it's very easy to handle at net. Light weight makes it very maneuverable at net. Whenever I needed fast hands for a reflex volley I never felt like the racquet was lagging behind.

If my elbow feels better and I get another opportunity to play this week, I'd definitely like to try a bit more aggressive net play to test this a bit more.

-Serve returns:

Returning was fun. Despite the light weight, I never really felt like it was getting pushed around on returns. Worked well for both of my return styles. Felt very confident returning first serves. Was able to take more defensive cuts to return the ball high and deep, and that usually helped me to start off points in a neutral or slightly advantageous position. Against stronger serves though, I could also take a few steps off the baseline and just punch them back into play. Again, the easy depth helped start me off in okay positions. I also had a few return winners doing this. Just blocking back the pace down the line. Dunno if me or my opponent was more surprised when it happened...hahaha

When I got 2nd serves I felt like I could also attack those more aggressively. Although I think one other hiccup I was having here was when the serves were coming in a bit too slow. Was reading someone else's review on another stick I think, and he commented that at times he felt the light weight was causing him to come through the contact zone too early. I think that's what was happening for me. One of the matches I played I ended up mishitting too many 2nd serves, and they weren't aggressive serves either, they basically sat up.

General reaction/comments on overall performance:

One of the things I was most surprised about during this playtest was the comfort level. Despite currently dealing with a mild bout of tennis elbow, this was the most comfortable Babolat I've played with. None of that notorious buzzing when you miss the sweetspot. Or maybe the sweetspot is just that generous. I dunno.

I joked in another post that I felt a bit like grinder Roddick after one of my match wins. Basically summed up as big serve + consistent tennis. I think this racquet would be well suited to counter punchers or players who are confident redirecting pace. Stronger players could probably play an effective brand of aggressive baseline tennis with this stick, although I think additional weight might be needed for that. I also think the racquet would be great for 3.5-4.0 players who are looking for easier depth but also a bit more control than traditional tweeners.

Aaaaand thanks to TW for the opportunity. Hopefully I did an okay job.
 

WhiteStripes

Semi-Pro
STRING/TENSION: RPM Blast Rough – 50 lbs (full bed); Solinco Hyper G – 53 lbs (full bed).

TENNIS EXPERIENCE/BACKGROUND: 30+ years of playing tennis. Spent some time at Bollettieri's as a kid. Competitive junior. Ex-USPTA. Unfortunately, age is catching up at a rapid rate, as well as a lack of time, so my game has been in a steady decline. Last played USTA at 4.5.

DESCRIBE YOUR PLAYING STYLE: Baseliner. Grinder/counterpuncher. Consistency, ball control, and movement have been really the mainstay of my game for a while, although I don't think any of my hitting partners (and a few folks on these boards know me going back many years) will ever say that I'm lacking in offensive firepower.

CURRENT RACQUET/STRINGS: Babolat Pure Aero (2019) / Solinco Hyper G – around 53 lbs., +/- 2 lbs depending on environment/conditions.

HOW MANY HOURS WITH THE PLAYTEST RACQUET: Stopped counting after a while and unfortunately had to cut the playtest a little short due to aggravating my hip while sliding on a hard court after chasing down a wide forehand, but at least over 10 hours.

GROUNDSTROKES: The racquet felt and swung extremely fast. Very maneuverable and easy to generate lots of racquet head speed, which I found necessary in order to generate power and depth compared to what I’m used to. Most of my hitting partners said my power level dropped substantially with the Strike. A number of my friends (several of whom are 5.0C) have also hit with the racquet, and aside from one person (who uses a PO17 16x19), I too noticed a bit of a drop in their power level from their usual racquets, which is not surprising since they are using much heavier racquets with beefier swingweights. As I mentioned in one of my prior posts in this thread, for me, the power, plow, and stability are all less than all Strikes that I’ve played with in the past (2014 18x20, 16x19, and Strike Tour… the 18x20, with some weight added, was my main racquet for 4 years, and I’ve also played a bit with the PO17 16x19 and 18x20).

All that said, I thought the stability was pretty good considering how light the racquet feels and swings. The power, despite being less than what I’m used to, is still decent provided you keep your racquet head speed up and you’re hitting clean. The lower power level along with the maneuverability really does allow me to take some cuts at the ball without fear of the ball really sailing. However, against my friends who are younger high level players, and who are excellent at defending, the drop in pop off my shots allowed them to keep balls in play whereas I'd absolutely pummel the ball with my Aero and outright end the point. I’ve actually had some really solid hitting sessions with the racquet (provided the strings hadn’t gone dead) with really good consistency as well as directional and depth control. However, I just felt my hitting partners were handling my balls with much more ease, and some joked that I should switch to the racquet so our rallies could be even more extended.

Sweetspot size felt average to me, although that could just be me being accustomed to the Pure Aero Tour and then Pure Aero that I’ve used for the last 3+ years (the sweetspots on those feel like they encompass the entire head). I do feel there’s quite a bit of power drop off outside of the sweetspot and especially at upper portion of the stringbed where I felt a number of balls just died. Spin was average and pretty comparable to the PO17 16x19, and certainly a bit less than my Aeros. The racquet does pretty well for me though when flattening out of my shots. My slices were also staying pretty low and skidding through the court nicely, but at the same time, it just didn’t feel as penetrating or effective compared to my Aeros or any of the prior Strikes I’ve played with. Ball trajectory coming off the stringbed is a bit lower than my Aero as I expected, but I didn’t have any real issue with it after a little bit of an adjustment. I think it’s pretty comparable to the PO17 16x19.

Initially, I was concerned when I saw the unstrung RA of 72. However, it feels more flexible to me than my Aero 2019, and a number of my friends who’ve tried the racquet commented that it does not feel very stiff – or even as stiff as my 2019 Pure Aeros, which is flexier than prior Aeros. Although I wouldn’t say the comfort level is high, I didn’t have any real pains or discomfort using the racquet, nor did I feel that it was excessively jarring on any shots. I still have my old modified 2014 Strike 18x20s in my bag, and it actually feels even a little more flexible than those for some reason despite the high stiffness rating.

SERVES: I was pleasantly surprised at the power I was getting with the racquet on serves, which I’m attributing to the lighter weight allowing me to generate a lot of tip speed. My serving percentages were very nice, and with the exception of my flat serves out wide on the ad side for some reason, I was hitting my targets very well. A couple of my hitting partners commented that I was serving pretty well and consistently with good pop with the racquet. Out of all the Strikes I’ve played with in the past, I think this is my favorite serving racquet out of all of them. Kick and slice serves didn’t have as much bite or bounce to them as my Aeros, but I thought they were more than adequate. While I was serving well with the Strike, once I switched back to my Aeros, everything was just dialed up a couple notches and I was reminded how fun my Aeros are to hit flat bombs or just serves in general.

VOLLEYS: My favorite aspect of this racquet (aside from the paintjob, which is sick in my opinion… it looks great) was at net, which really surprised me since I expected the lower swingweight to make it too unstable for my liking. However, provided I was making clean contact, I had no problems with volleys, which had good pop and control. I also had pretty good feel at net with the racquet, and I was actually hitting drop volleys extremely well. There is some instability on off center shots, but the great maneuverability makes up for it as it is much easier and faster to get the racquet in position, especially on quick exchanges or reflex volleys on shots with lots of pace drilled at me. Even in stock form, the racquet held up surprisingly well. No issues with overheads, and the maneuverability actually helped a bit on some quick flick backhand overheads while backpedaling.

RETURN OF SERVES: Probably the weakest aspect of the racquet for me. I’ve always felt my return of serve is the best part of my game, and my modified 18x20 2014 Strike was one of my favorite racquets to return with (during the years I used it, I only lost 1 USTA match and my return of serve was a big part of that). I was hoping there would be some of that magic with this Strike, but it just didn’t fare well against high pace or really heavy sliders or kickers that pulled me off the court. While I could get blocked/chipped or stabbed defensive returns back in play, I just wasn’t redirecting the same amount of pace back or getting the depth I’m used to, which lead to easy sitters for my hitting partners to take a whack at. The stability of the racquet definitely suffered the most for me on returns, especially if I did not make clean contact. On second serves or on serves where I had time to take a cut, my returns were ok, but still nowhere as effective as I’m used to. I like to step well inside the baseline and take balls early at shoulder height and just rip them off both wings. While I could be offensive on my returns, I just wasn’t getting the same pace or penetration with this Strike.

OVERALL: As I said in an earlier post, I went into this playtest not really having high expectations for the racquet in stock form, and expected that it would be more of a platform racquet that I could tweak. For the most part, it actually played better than what I expected in stock form, and definitely surprised me in a few areas (at net and on serves). It’s pretty solid all-around, and I only really struggled with it on return of serves. The flex/comfort of the racquet was surprisingly better than expected. I think with some weight added, many of the issues I mentioned above could be addressed, although on the flip side that would sacrifice some of the maneuverability that I did enjoy with the racquet, especially at net and on serves. As always, thanks to TW and Babolat. I’ve been very fortunate and grateful to have been a playtester for a number of things over the years, including the 2014 Pure Strike 18x20 which I ended up switching to because of the playtest. It really is remarkable and commendable that they offer us-TW board members an opportunity to playtest gear.

One last thing – as much as I love the paintjob, I’m noticing the black and red paint (used for the Babolat lettering and the stripes) on top of the base white seems to be easily chipped on frame mishits around the grommets.
 
Last edited:

BillKid

Semi-Pro
300g 100sqin, relatively stiff...
How does it compare to the usual tweeners like PD, PA or other? Does it feel low powered?
 
Last edited:

fundrazer

Legend
300g 100sqin, relative stiff...
How does it compare to the usual tweeners like PD, PA or other? Does it feel low powered?
I haven't played with many recent versions of the pure drive, but you can except the same type of easy depth from the pure strike 100. I would say the pure drive and particularly roddick/tour versions feel significantly more powerful though.

Doesn't feel nearly as stiff though. With the pure drives you get that notorious buzzy feeling when hitting outside the sweetspot. Didn't get that feeling at all with the strike.
 

jonestim

Hall of Fame
300g 100sqin, relative stiff...
How does it compare to the usual tweeners like PD, PA or other? Does it feel low powered?
It is low powered compared to a PD or PA, but more power than control racquets like the Prince Phantom line. In addition, the launch angle is lower than the PD or PA giving the ball a different trajectory. Depth is still pretty easy but it doesn't have that "wow" factor of hitting with the PA or PD. That said, it has quite a bit more control than those and for me it is a much more usable racquet.

Stiffness is not bothering me - and I could only play a week with the 2015 version of the PD before I had to put it down.
 

DustinW

Professional
String and tension used for test:
Volkl Cyclone 16 at 53#

Strung specs (with overgrip, no dampener):
324 grams
5 points HL

Tennis experience/background:
4.5 doubles player in my early 40s. I used to play both singles and doubles until about a year ago, but now I mostly just play doubles.

Describe your playing style:
Big serve and big return. In my singles days, I was mostly a baseliner who liked to keep points short and finish at the net.

Current racquet/string setups:
Head Graphene Touch Radical MP. I've been playing with one of the Graphene Radicals for more than 4 years. I try a lot of frames, but I always go back to the Radical.

How many hours did you play with the racquet?
10-12 hours of a mix of doubles match play and light singles hitting

Groundstrokes:
Nothing jumps out at me as being great when it comes to groundstrokes, but it is "good" at everything. It has a really nice solid feel and it moves thru the air quickly, which allows me to get plenty of topspin when I have time to setup but also let me easily play defense and get back in the point. I enjoyed the way it seemed to really drive thru the ball on my back hand slice, while staying nice and low. I didn't notice anything different about the trajectory like others have mentioned.

Serves:
I have always loved Babolats (yes all of them) for serving, and this was no exception. I'm not exactly sure why I love them, but I think it is because they tend to have higher sweetspots and are usually easy to generate spin with. If I had one complaint, I thought it was ever so slightly sluggish feeling compared to the Radical... I'm sure that was just the extra swingweight and I would get used to it over time.

Volleys:
Solid and stable at the net, generous sweetspot for mishits, enough mass to block back against big hitters, not too much pop, not too stiff, and not a noodle either. The Pure Strike checked all of the boxes for me at the net. This was probably one of the best volleying frames that I've hit with in a long time.

Serve returns:
Again, I'm sticking with the recurring theme of solid and stable. I found it easy to step in and be aggressive with my returns without worrying about over hitting. And its stability also let me easily block the ball back against big servers. I loved the Pure Strike on returns.

Overall performance:

I am used to playing with 295-300 gram frames, so I probably have a different opinion than others on here who like heavier frames. For a 300g frame, I thought this one was super solid and had plenty of mass in stock form to play competitively at the 4.5 level in both singles and doubles. Although I thought it was a well-performing racket all around, I thought it really shined at the net and on service returns.

The Pure Strike doesn't feel uncomfortable even though it is stiff (actually I would describe it as firm but not overly stiff). Just as other manufacturers are doing, Babolat seems to mask the stiffness by taking all of the vibration out of the frame. Although that makes it "seem" comfortable, I wonder if the stiffness would still get to me over time.

That leads me to my only complaint about the frame, and that is the feel. Overall, I thought it was a little too muted. That zero vibration feels great at first, but after a while it starts to feel a bit numb. Combine the muted feel with a firm frame, and it is kind of a weird disconnected feel for me. I switched back and forth with the Radical, and I much preferred the feel of the Radical. The Radical is slightly less muted and less stiff, both of which let me feel the ball on the stringbed better. I'm going to play around with other strings and tensions to see if it helps with the muted feel, but typically I find Cyclone to be a pretty crisp feeling string.

This frame is going to check a lot of boxes for a lot of people, especially doubles players. I thought it had a nice balance of power and control, while giving you a solid frame in a relatively light package.
 

djkahn86

Rookie
String and tension used for test: Solinco Tour Bite 16L @55 lbs (mains) : Babolat Pro Hurricane Tour 16L @53.5 lbs (crosses) 10% prestretch
Tennis experience/background: USTA 4.5 NJ/DE - College Club team/Highschool Tennis ; 25 yrs of playing
Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley): Doubles: Baseliner Basher (deuce side) - Aggressive Netplay ( I am 6ft 3in) Typical American- Big Serve and Big Forehand
Current racquet/string setups: Wilson Clash 100 - Solinco Tour Bite 16L @55 lbs (mains) : Babolat Pro Hurricane Tour 16L @53.5 lbs (crosses) 10% prestretch
How many hours did you play with the racquet? 40 hours of Doubles/ 2 hours of singles/ 5 hours of ball machine

-Groundstrokes: The stick is light enough to be able to get thru the zone with ease. There is enough power to keep the ball deep and the sweet spot was large. When you hit outside the sweet spot I could feel the power drop but @ 100 sq in, it easy to stay in the zone. In stock form, it performed well and I toyed with the idea of some weight at 3 n 9, but never put the lead on. I anticipate I will put some lead in the butt and counter with the same weight at 3 n 9 to keep the balance. I liked the balance and felt I could put easy top on the ball at will. I couldn't rip laser beams because I felt it lacked some power but I guess that's the control aspect of the frame doing its job.
-Serves: lacks power the most here. super easy for kickers and sliders due to low weight. flat bombs take more effort and is where I think the added weight would be most helpful. Your arm will not tire with this stick and its headlight enough to get creative with placement and spins. You will not push anyone back of the box with this stick in stock form, too weak.
-Volleys: Volleys were clean, crisp and deep. Good balance of control and power. I played mostly doubles and the majority of control sticks don't get the job done for me. This stick could put them in hard to reach places and I pounded many balls out of reach. VERY HAPPY.
-Serve returns: with the lightweight and easy whip, you can be super aggressive with returns. I was able to go 100% most of the time and produce any type of return I wanted. The ample sweet spot let me return big serves with no torsion or strain. If the sweet spot was smaller I could see wanting more stability but it wasn't an issue for me at all. Great Doubles stick to blast returns back with confidence.

General reaction/comments on overall performance: Currently I have this as my # 2 double stick. It does a lot of things well and I will play around with the weight but I like the balance and the fact that it gets thru the zone fast when you have time to create big shots but also when you are on defense. I did not find the string bed to be erratic and there is enough power to satisfy my style. I am a big guy so power is less of an issue and control plays more a reason to choose a stick. This has a good balance of both. Not too much of either one to make it lean one way or the other. I think this would be a good 4.0 players frame. If you do not rely on your serve to be a big part of your game then it slides up the rankings a little more. I noticed once the strings bagged out I needed to restring to maintain everything I stated but I think that's almost every racquet. I was very happy to have tested this stick as I have played with both versions of the PS17 98 and ended up selling them all.

Thank you for the opportunity. It was not wasted on me. Taking this racquet into districts Sunday and hopefully sectionals after that #1 dubs!!
 

jonestim

Hall of Fame
String and tension used for test: Solinco Tour Bite 17 @ 47lb

Tennis experience/background: 46 years old. Started playing at 40. Mid-pack 3.5 player

Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley): Normally 50% singles, 50% doubles. OHBH. My strength is movement and being able to get to many balls that a lot of people cannot. I will try for a quick point off serve or return, and then I'm not afraid to grind it out.

Current racquet/string setups: Most of the last year has been Prince Phantom 93p w/ gut/poly in the mid 50s. Also have been using Phantom Pro 100P with Tour Bite @42 this summer, and I have a few POG OS with Tour Bite @54 in the bag. I have a few Textreme Warrior 100s with leather and a little lead as well.

How many hours did you play with the racquet? Around 17. 7ish singles (some matchplay and other just rally/drills) and 10ish doubles (all matchplay).

Comments on racquet performance:

Summary: It was great. Very happy with it.

-Groundstrokes:
Fast and solid with a low launch angle for a 16 main frame. I am accustomed to heavier, softer frames that have higher swingweights. This frame is a lot faster through the hitting zone. It took a little to get the timing right, but once I did I was quite happy. I have been oscillating between using a tight 18x20 frame and a quite open 16x18 pattern. Each has their benefits, but also negatives. I felt like this racquet was a very good middle ground.

It was quite easy to keep my forehands deep and I was getting adequate spin. It's not the same heavy ball that a PA, PD or even a Warrior sends - but it is much more controllable. I love those more powerful racquets for a while, until the unforced errors creep in - and they almost always do. I had a lot less UFEs with this stick than the very open pattern ones but was still able to keep the ball deeper on average than I do with my Phantom 93P. It was a really good balance.

I have had the best results with my OHBH when using a more open pattern and going for bigger targets. The higher launch angles and more spin allow me to hang back and put deep safe balls, waiting for a ball I can run around and finish with a forehand. I didn't get that with this frame. I did get more precision, but I still found myself running around more or slicing. I was also playing a more doubles than normal and I don't hit many topspin backhands there.

Forehand and backhand slices were low and precise. Not quite to 93P levels, but very good for it's weight and being a 16x19. No complaints.

-Serves:
Quite effective - with proper racquet speed. This is a light, whippy frame and you need to take advantage of that. I hit more spin serves than big flat and I was able to hit targets and be consistent. I was not knocking people off the court but could vary the ball enough to keep people guessing. I found myself holding serve better than my average rate. It's unusual for me to not get broken at least once in a doubles match but it happened multiple times.

-Volleys:
Loved it. Volleys are often the weakest part of my game. This was a very quick racquet to get into position and hit the ball cleanly. The response was accurate and solid. It may not have the same soft touch as other racquets in my bag, but I was more confident and played super well for me.

-Serve returns:
I had great results on serve returns. Easy to get the racquet in position and hit the sweetspot. In doubles I was keeping the ball low and getting it to the rushing servers feet a lot. As such, a lot of return points were over very quickly. My singles hitting partner that is the big server was nursing injury so I wasn't challenged as much during this playtest as I often am.


General reaction/comments on overall performance:
I was super nervous about the stiffness. I broke my elbow 15 years ago and I have had pain in that spot any time I hit with a stiffer racquet for any duration. I have hit with various Pure Drives, APD and Pure Aeros over the years and loved the response - but my elbow just wouldn't take it. Fingers crossed, but I am still playing with this and have not had issues.

I have two hitting partners that have the P17 98" in their bags. I let both hit with this for about 10 minutes each. The biggest racquetaholoic in our group said emphatically "That's a NICE frame. Keep that one in your bag." The other simply said "I'm hitting better with that than mine."

I didn't have high expectations. I thought that I would be adding mass and using it as a platform once the playtest was over. I think the only change I am going to make is to add a thicker grip. I am about a grip 2.5 Babolat, so I got the grip 2 and will put a normal 1.8mm thick grip on it. I'm not going to add leather and not going to add lead in the head like I expected. It plays very well as it is. I'm playing at 3.5 - there really isn't a need for more stability than this.

I will probably string a couple pounds looser next time just to get a touch more angle.

I am most likely going to be using this as my main stick - especially in doubles - for the foreseeable future. And I had just bought the Phantom Pro 100P three weeks before the playtest - DOH.

Thanks to TW and Babolat.
 
Last edited:

warney

Rookie
Putting up this review in final hour (It has been a theme for me this week)!

String and tension used for test:
Xcel 17 main Tourna Black Zone Cross @ 53/51 -- Used for 4 hours
Klip Legend Natural Gut 16 main with Max Power 16 Cross @ 58/55 -- Used for 14 hours
Replaced poly cross in Gut/Poly with Ice Code 17 @ 55 -- Used for 4 hours

Tennis experience/background: Self taught player. I started playing regularly in 2010. Mid-level 4.0 player, right handed and OHBH. I used to play leagues regularly until 2 years back and now I play only recreationally (about 7-8 hours a week).

Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley): I play about 70% singles, 30% doubles. For 4.0 level I have bigger than average first serve and solid second serve. I used to be mostly baseliner until I started playing doubles and now I am comfortable at net. I will rush in when I see high probability of finishing point with volley. I rarely do serve and volley though (unless my opponent is just blocking back returns). I don't hit with lot of spin. My backhand has more spin than my forehand. I do not have high RHS, instead I rely on racquet heft to do most of the work for me. I have learned to grind it out against consistent but passive opponents, but it's not my preferred style of play.

Current racquet/string setups: I have been playing with extended racquets since last 3 years. Currently using PK Q+5X Pro with leather grip (one with gut/poly @ 60/55 and one with full poly @ 52/50).

How many hours did you play with the racquet? 20+.
Played it with Xcel main, Black Zone cross at stock weight (only added dampener) for 4 hours.
Replaced butt cap with XTP butcap (0.5 inch extra), changed strings to Gut/Poly and replaced grip with Babolat Syntec Pro and played for 12 hours
Removed XTP butt cap, Added 6 grams of lead at 3/9, 1 gram at 12 and used it for for 2 hours
Put back XTP butt cap keeping all the lead and have been playing till now.

No overgrip was used in any of these setups.

Comments on racquet performance:

Summary: I don't hate it, but it did not wow me either. Personally I would not buy it (even if I was playing with regular length racquets).

Groundstrokes:
This racquet produces more spin than my PK on all strokes. Partly because of low weight and swingweight and partly because of string pattern. Putting PS on top of PK, two outermost string on Pure Strike are outside of PK's outermost strings. Remaining 17 strings on PS basically fit in a area where 20 strings fit for PK.
Mains on PS are dense in center for 16 mains racquet. This allowed for good control. I was able to place the ball where I wanted however strokes were just not heavy. I could see ball sitting up/slowing down too much after bouncing on other side of net. So my opponents had easier time handling my shots compared to my PK. Slices were not bad (stayed low enough) but traveled little slower than I like.
This racquet though really excelled for me on drop shots. Those spun in the direction I intended to and did not get up much after bouncing.

Overall At stock weight: 6/10 After lead and/or extension: 7/10

Serves:
I tried hitting big serves and it did not result in much success in terms of winning points. It just gave enough pace for returner to use and rarely anyone was beaten for pace. I then relied on hitting spots on serves which worked much better. Hitting spots was not an issue as this racquet has good control. Kick serves were kicking high but again not carrying through the court as I like. Added weight and extending racquet did help a bit, but PS could never match my serves with PK (or for that matter Volkl SG8 315 that I used back in the day).
Overall in all 4 setups: 7/10

Volleys:
I played about 7 hours of double with this racquet. I loved hitting volleys when I was attacking any neutral/easy ball. I did not like it when I was defending hard ball hit at me. It seemed like once I started defending I could never get easy volley again. My volley technique is also partly to blame here (A good doubles player told me that I receive volleys some times rather than hitting it). With my PK being so stable I can just get the racquet in position and block the hard shots back deep. I could not do that with PS with much success.
Overall in all 4 setups: 6.5/10


Serve returns:
I loved it on second serve returns as I was able to use spin generated by frame to hit short angle winners. I hit quite a few of these. I just did not like it at all (at stock weight) against big first serves (especially on backhand returns on deuce side). Racket was pushed a bit and I hit lot of them into net (I typically get such serves from same guys back to at least service line). With added weight and extra length it was little better but I was never attacking on first serve returns.
Overall At stock weight: 6/10 After lead and extension: 7.5/10

General reaction/comments on overall performance:
This is a good looking racquet except for the triple Strike lettering on one side of the racquet. That could be little less busy. The orange line marking between 2 starting mains is nice touch and as a stringer that is appreciated.
For 300 gm unstrung weight and thinner beam this is very stable. It's just not as stable racquet as I am used to. Power level is acceptable, but plowthrough is not. I ended up spending lot more energy playing with PS as I did lot more grinding than I am used to. My matches in last 3.5 weeks lasted longer than normal and I also lost more sets than I normally do. This racquet is just not good fit for my game at this time. I think this frame will be good fit for someone who has high RHS and produces lot of spin.
Overall: 7/10

TW review lists stiffness at 69 and strung swingweight at 319. To be frank, at those specs I would rather get a PA or PD.
Racquet did not feel stiff at all for listed stiffness rating. If Babolat has achieved that using some layup changes then it's really a welcome change. That makes upcoming PS98 more intriguing.

Thank you Babolat and TW for this opportunity!
 

kvan

Rookie
Babolat Pure Strike 100 Playtest
by kvan

*Please reference my earlier post in the thread for photos of the frame.

Racquet Received: Babolat Pure Strike 100

Static Weight
Static weight strung: 314 grams
Strung with Wilson Pro Overgrip: 317 grams
Strung with overgrip and rubber band dampener: 319 grams

This puts me in at about the same range as haqq777’s frame in terms of static weight. Mine comes in a couple grams short since he didn’t use a dampener.

String and tension used for test
I used the included RPM Rough Red 17 and Xcel Black 17 at 50/52 lbs.

After those popped at around the 8 hour mark, I restrung with Pro’s Pro Concept 17 and Gosen OG Sheep Micro 17 at the same tension.

Tennis experience/background
I played varsity singles in high school, club at the college level, and now as a fresh graduate, play recreationally as a 4.5 NTRP.

For most of the duration of the playtest, I played doubles since I just moved to a new city and got to hit with a variety of players, most which I played for the first time. The frame was definitely a good conversation starter and it being such a pretty frame definitely caught some attention.

Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley)
Tall with a big serve and big forehand, and good hands at the net. My slice and down the line forehand are my two favorite shots. In general, I hit relatively flat with strong eastern grips on both sides, and my OHBH can generate more spin than my forehand though I also love flattening it out down the line.

I am generally an aggressive baseliner and always working toward finishing off more points at the net. I enjoy mixing in drop shots and probing backhand slices for variety.

Current racquet/string setups
I currently use stock RF97As with Solinco Hyper G 17 or Pro’s Pro Concept 17 mains and Gosen OG Sheep Micro 17 crosses in the low 50s with a 2-3 pound main/cross differential. Am thinking about switching over to gut mains, however.

Prior to switching to the RF97A, I played extensively with the Volkl C10 Pro, and a modified first generation Babolat Pure Strike 16x19.

How many hours did you play with the racquet?
I have put a little less than 15 hours using the PS100. 8 hours with the first hybrid, and the rest with the second. Stringing the racquet wasn’t an issue either time, but I definitely noticed the funky looking grommets I showcased with some pictures in a post earlier in this thread.

I played on a variety of outdoor hardcourt over the duration of the playtest. Some of the courts were newer/grittier than others, but every day was fairly hot and humid at least in the low 80s.

Racquet performance
Groundstrokes
Stability

Better than expected stability off the ground on both sides. This is definitely the lightest frame I’ve used for an extended period of time and it offered above-average stability for its weight class. It fluttered a bit outside of the pretty generous sweet spot, but the drop off in power wasn’t that noticeable when trading groundstrokes. Could be due to the drill pattern being fairly open.

From the short demo I had with the previous generation 98 inch P17, I would say the new PS100 had a similar level of stability while at a lower static (and swing) weight. Miles above the first generation PS 16x19 I had to modify quite heavily with a leather grip and lead at 3 and 9 in order to even come close to feeling this solid. Happily surprised here overall.

Spin
To be honest, I expected more spin from this guy, especially with poly mains. For a whippy, 100-inch frame like this, I didn’t find spin generation to be a strength of this racquet. I believe the problem for me was the mainly the higher launch angle of the racquet. I wasn’t as confident going for deep, spinny backhands crosscourt compared to my usual stick due to the launch angle increase combined with middle-of-the-road spin generation.

Slices also floated more than usual and didn’t get the penetrating, knifing action I can expect with consistency while using my normal frame.

Power and Control
This is not an underpowered frame by any means, but I didn’t enjoy the lack of plow, especially off the backhand wing. Depth control was good, but could be better if I could have adjusted better to the spin and launch angle.

The biggest strength of this racquet in my opinion is directional control. The maneuverability and pop allowed me to really punch the ball in either corner when the opportunity came. Could really hug the lines easily with this frame.

Feel
Although I still prefer the feel of meatier, thinner-beamed frames, I was happy with the response from the PS100. Having demo’d a few Babolat frames from the early 2010s, as well as the first generation Pure Aero and last generation P17, I think this new iteration of PS has my favorite response. I would describe it as firm, muted, but comfortable. It wasn’t muted enough to feel disconnected from the ball.

Drop shots and shorter slices weren’t anything great, but this frame, like other Babolat frames, is not advertised as a touch frame.

Comfort
I don’t suffer from any arm issues and didn’t feel any tenderness from the time using the frame. This has been the most comfortable Babolat frame I’ve used by a good margin in terms of feel, too.

Serves
The directional control I enjoyed hitting forehands and backhands carried over nicely on the serves. Felt like I could serve all day with this frame with how light it was, too. Flatter serves down the T were the highlight for me, although it didn’t struggle with kicks out wide or slices on the deuce side. Nice power and maneuverability, with enough spin to keep second serves from being attacked.

Volleys
Really enjoyed my time up at net with this frame. It doesn’t offer the silky, rock solid response of my regular frame, but the PS100 kept me confident at the net. Having played a lot of doubles with this frame, I found it superb when being aggressive and poaching off of weaker returns.

It’s quick and stable enough to punch volleys away or at the feet of the opponent at the net. I didn’t find myself hitting drop volleys as much, due to the success of the more aggressive volleys mentioned before.

Serve Returns
The directional control and maneuverability really puts the new PS100 in a good spot for aggressive returners. I enjoyed topspin returns off both sides and loved ripping returns back to the feet of the returner in doubles.

While the power drop outside the sweet spot wasn’t that noticeable when hitting groundstrokes, I did find it a bit low powered when trying to block returns back off of heavier/faster first serves. Definitely one of the things I missed most when switching from my RF97. Slice returns didn’t stay quite as low or penetrate as much with this stick.

General reaction/comments on overall performance
(+) Stable for its class
(+) Most comfortable and best feeling Babolat frame I’ve tried
(+) Directional control for groundstrokes, serves, service return
(+) Large sweet spot
(+) Makes you feel like a wall up at net

(-) Expected more spin for how high the launch angle is
(-) Flutters when returning heavier serves
(-) Power drop off when returning outside the sweetspot
(-) Slices floated and touch shots were middle-of-the-road

Conclusion
Babolat has made a very versatile racquet here with the PS100. I would recommend it as a doubles stick for intermediates who want a very nice looking racquet that backs up its looks with stability and great directional control.

Thanks to TW, Babolat, and all those who have made it this far in the review!
 
Last edited:

atkinjr

New User
Sting and tension used for test
Head Hawk Touch 17g at 59lbs then RBM Blast Rough at 58lbs

tennis experience/background
I played 4yrs HS varsity and 4yrs D1 tennis

Describe your playing style
Attacking/pressure tennis - serve and volley 50% and always looking for an opening to get to net and close out points
current racket/string setups.
Babolat Pure Control Tour with Head Hawk Touch 17g at 57lbs. Down to my last racket, so need to switch soon!

how many hours did you play

I played close to 40 hours with this racket, mainly practice/hitting sessions but also 3 singles matches and 3 doubles matches.

COMMENTS
groundstrokes
This is the bread and butter of this racket. Very easy to get power with a controlled response. The racket does all the work for
you...it swings over the ball with ease. I was surprised how easy it was to go all out on forehands. Backhands were controlled as well,
but the weakness was slicing. I had a hard time getting a penetrating trajectory. The ball would float on me and sit up for my opponent.
If I was to tweek the setup a bit, I would expect to be able to improve this aspect, but frankly I found myself running around my backhand
to hit forehands much more than I usually do.

serves
If the groundies are the bread and butter, the serve is the main course. I could really hammer my first serves. I got more power and
more control from this racket compared to my PCT. When I go flat out with my PCT I tend to miss about 6in long unless I really time
my release, but with this racket, the ball seemed to go straight down and into the box. Kick serves were equally as deadly. I got
a ton of hop on my second serve and with the RBM Blast rough fresh off the stringer, it was hard not to use only my 2nd serve all the time.
With the ball kicking high, I felt comfortable coming in and volleying.

volleys
This was the challenge with this racket. I would have liked to have have more maneuverability and more control with my volleys. I just felt
that the ball would fly a bit due to not getting the racket in the right spot. When I was just volleying at net in a rally with pace from
my partner, I could get grooved, but as soon as I was on the move in a point, I lost the touch. But if you are not a big on getting up to
net, this wouldn't be a big knock on this racket.

serve return
This was a bit of a challenge for me as well. If I was in position and able to take a controlled swing, I could get dialed in. But if
I was playing a player with a big serve and I need to chip or block the ball back, I was getting smoked with their reply because the ball
would just sit up for them.

general reaction/comments on overall performance
I generally prefer a bit smaller head size and a more controlled response, so this racket was not in my wheelhouse, but it is a very solid
stick and I actually recommended it to a few of my friends. It needs some more stability, a bit higher swing weight and some weight in the
handle for me to give it a good chance. I don't think I would switch to this racket, but I will definitely look at the next iteration of
the Pure Strike VS Tour. I do have a sensitive arm to poly and stiff rackets, but this is much cleaner than it's predecessor. I would
think if you felt the previous PS line harsh, you will be very happy with this update. I'm not sure what they have done to the layup, but
it is a bit improvement. I was hoping that they would switch away from the white color, but I'll keep my fingers crossed that the rumors
of a black version of the PSVST are true. I so, that will likely be my next racket to replace the PCT. But the color scheme seems to be
right on for the younger kids. I gave this racket to a local HS kid today and he and his buddies thought the paint scheme was awesome.
Lastly, I did try a few strings setups and I found this racket to play best with a textured poly that is a bit on the stiffer side. BHB7
and RPM Blast Rough were too soft, Cyclone played pretty nice. I didn't try any multi or syn gut as I felt it would not be a good fit.
Overall, it was a great play test and I think this will be a successful line for Babolat.
 

SOY78

Professional
Sting and tension used for test:
Babolat Excel 17g at 55lbs mains, RPM Blast Rough at 50lbs

Tennis experience/background:
USTA +/-4.0. Play at least once per week.

Describe your playing style:
Baseliner when playing singles and attacking the net when playing doubles.

How many hours did you play:
35 hours +/-

COMMENTS:
Groundstrokes: 8/10

Very nice racquet off the baseline, effortless power and spin. Control was not there for me as this racquet is a little too light for my taste.
Very maneuverable racquet though. Ground strokes needed to be controlled with more spin or less racquet head speed.

Serves: 7/10
I really had a tough time controlling my flat serves, but spin and 2nd serves were jumping off the court. I even had a few 2nd serve aces and unreturnables.

Volleys: 6.5/10
Due to this racquet being too light and stiff for me I couldn't dial in any of the feel volleys. Punch and power volleys were fine but I just couldn't control them
as I do with my butter stick the PT57A :)

Serve return: 8/10
Serve returns were on par with groundstrokes as this racquet is very maneuverable and light. Blocking big serves were fun McEnroe style come in on the second serve and
bunt it back with no zip and with a great angle and a put away volley is easy to execute. Powerful serve returns were ok just because I had no feel and control wasn't there
until I adjusted with more spin or less racquet head speed.

General reaction/comments on overall performance: 7.5/10
Babolat and TW, I apologize for the lateness of the review as I needed more time to get dialed in with this racquet. I really enjoyed this racquet playtest. I would really like to see
this type of racquet with around 12oz. racquet weight and around 60ra stiffness rating. But I can adjust the weight next time but stiffness I cannot. This would be a really great racquet
with full poly setup just to dial down the power and increase control. Next time I will use this racquet I will probably use it for doubles purposes only and increase the weight in the
handle by installing a leather replacement grip.
 

DustinW

Professional
Is anybody playing around with string setup and weight and found something that they like?

I first did Cyclone 16 at 53# and it was ok. Cyclone usually has a nice crisp feel that I enjoy, but I wasn't feeling it in this frame. Performance was fine though.

Then I did Xcel 17 in the mains at 52# and Hyper-G 16L in the crosses at 48#. This was also "just ok". It had good feel (although still a bit muted) and performed well for a hybrid (which I tend not to love). Unfortunately I broke the Xcel after 2 sets of doubles (I thought it would last longer than that).

I am also playing around with weight. I added 10 grams on the handle and 5 grams in the hoop at 3/9. I played doubles yesterday with this setup and enjoyed it. It made an already solid frame even more rock solid without making it sluggish feeling, which is a good sign that I can add a bit more. I have a leather grip on the way, so I will bump up the weight a bit more and see what happens.
 

Bhagi Katbamna

Hall of Fame
Some final thoughts. Its been a few weeks since I've received the test rackets and my review is on the front page of this thread. Overall, I think the 100 is just a bit light for me. I'm not used to taking such huge cuts with every swing and I find that I get tired after a while. I am going to add lead to the handle, add lead to 2 and 10, use a leather grip and see.
 
Top