Pro Kennex Kinetic 5g PSE

Length: 27 in.
Weight: 13 oz.
Ideal Swing - Short: No
Ideal Swing - Medium: No

Ideal Swing - Long: Yes
Maneuverability: High
Control: High
Power: Low
Comfort: Low

Think of the ProKennex Kinetic 5g PSE as a litmus test to determine how good you are. If you can handle the heft-it weighs 13 ounces, about 2 1/2 ounces more than the typical frame these days-and swing hard enough to generate power with it, you’re ready for the big time. The 5g PSE, or Pro Special Edition, is the high-performance version of ProKennex’s best-selling racquet, the 11-ounce Pro 5g. The 5g PSE, which is suited for NTRP 5.0-and-above players, will put you in total control of your game. It’s got a flexible feel and is very stable. "This is the heaviest racquet I’ve ever used right off the shelf," a 5.5 NTRP player said. "I won’t need to add lead tape." The 5g PSE has about 100 chambers inside the top of the head that contain thousands of tiny lead particles (5 grams worth) to reduce vibration. And the old-school all-leather grip is a nice touch.

BOTTOM LINE
Only for the most proficient players.

...
Continue Reading
AddThis Social Bookmark Button



Pro Kennex Rod Laver Type SX

Length: 27.5 in.
Weight: 11.6 oz.
Ideal Swing - Short: No

Ideal Swing - Medium: No

Ideal Swing - Long: Yes
Maneuverability: High
Control: High
Power: Low
Comfort: High

Like its namesake, the Pro Kennex Rod Laver Heritage is a winner. The 11 1/2-ounce frame is best for heavy hitters who want complete control over their strokes. "You can go for broke and have no trouble keeping the ball in play," a 5.5 player said. The Rod Laver is available in a standard 27-inch model (Type S) and a half-inch longer version (Type SX). Both sticks feature a drastically tapered beam—-thicker and stiffer in the head, thinner, rounded, and more flexible at the throat—- that produces a solid feel, according to testers. They also noted that when they blocked hard-hit shots, the racquet’s stiff head gave them a little more help than a typical advanced-player racquet. At 11 1/2 ounces, the Rod Laver is hefty and plenty stable, but with an almost one-inch head-light balance it’s very maneuverable at net, where testers’ volleys were crisp.

Bottom Line
A perfect choice for a pro-tour wannabe.

...
Continue Reading
AddThis Social Bookmark Button



New Balance 1003

MEN
Price: $115
Weight: 14.3 oz.
Sizes: 6.5–13, 14, 15, 16 (D, 2E, 4E widths)
Ideal Foot Types: Neutral and supinated

WOMEN
Price: $115
Weight: 12.1 oz.
Sizes: 5–11, 12 (B, D widths); 6–11, 12 (2A width)
Ideal Foot Types: Neutral and supinated

SALES PITCH:
This shoe introduces New Balance’s S-Curve technology for enhanced stability.

OUR TAKE:
As usual, New Balance does a great service for players by making this shoe available in different widths. Overall, the men’s and women’s 1003s are solid entries in the lightweight, high-performance category. It feels like there’s hardly anything on your feet, yet you have plenty of support to stand up to rigorous play. What’s new? S-Curve, a piece of hard plastic, runs the length of the shoe along the outside to provide stability when you make sharp cuts. Women weartesters were the biggest fans of this model, especially its cushioning and quick break-in time.

...
Continue Reading
AddThis Social Bookmark Button



Wilson Wildcard II

MEN
PRICE: $80
SIZES: 6.5–12,13,14
WEIGHT: 15.4 oz.
IDEAL FOOT TYPES: Neutral,supinated, and pronated

SALES PITCH:
If you like a low-to-the-ground, ventilated ride, you’ll be a fan of this Wilson, which is for men only.

FINAL ANALYSIS:
Wilson shoes are known for their unibody construction, whereby the upper part is wrapped around the midsole, creating a stable feel. It works well in this case, as the fully ventilated upper also has a support strap for midfoot and heel stability. The only gripe that weartesters had was that the forefoot lacks a little bit of cushioning. Otherwise our testers were wild about the Wildcard II.

...
Continue Reading
AddThis Social Bookmark Button



Tecnifibre TFeel 305

Price: $190
Head Size: 98 sq. in.
Length: 27 in.
Weight: 11.3 oz.
Flexibility: Stiff
Balance: 3/10 in. head light
Ideal Swing: Medium to long
NTRP: 4.0–5.5

SALES PITCH:
A racquet for intermediate-to-advanced players who want their frames to be a touch lighter and more forgiving.

COMPARE TO:
Tecni? bre TFeel 305 original

HOW IT TESTED:
Even good players need a little help sometimes. They might not want to lug around a 12-ounce racquet and have to generate practically all the power on their shots. If that’s you, the TFeel 305 is something to consider. The weight and balance give it mobility, and it has a bit more giddyup than a traditional player frame. Still, there’s plenty of control on all strokes, making it an effective all-court frame. While it’s stable, the 305 will give you feedback, so be prepared for some vibration on off-center hits. If that bothers you, a string dampener might help. Like many Tecnifibre racquets, the TFeel 305 is offered with a dense (18×20) or an open (16×19) string pattern (other than a cosmetic change, that option is the only difference between this and the original TFeel 305). Playtesters who hit flat, penetrating shots liked the control of the more dense string pattern, while those who wanted more spin and pop on their shots favored the more open pattern.

BOTTOM LINE:
If you’re not up to the rigors of a heavyweight frame, this is a worthy substitute.

...
Continue Reading
AddThis Social Bookmark Button