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Stiga Airoc Astro M & S reviews

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yogi_bear View Drop Down
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    Posted: 09/30/2015 at 11:11pm
Stiga Astro Airoc Medium and Soft Review

 


Stiga Airoc Astro M Max

 Weight: Approximately 66-68 grams uncut

Hardness: around 45 degrees

Speed: OFF+

 

Stiga Airoc Astro S Max


 Weight: Approximately 62-64 grams uncut

Hardness: around 45 degrees

Speed: OFF

 

I received these about 2 weeks ago and have been testing both rubbers in a variety of blades.  I used mainly the Stiga Rosewood V and then on subsequent tests I used several other blades like Yinhe T-1 as a representative of using a very fast carbon blade, an ITC XF for a controlled composite fiberglass layered blade and the Stiga Clipper wood. I used water-based glue for gluing both rubbers. I used  polyball and celluloid balls when I tested these rubbers

Stiga has already released their premier polyball ready rubber last year but then players wanted a more dynamic and more spin on the rubbers so they released the Astro Series. The older sample for the Astro rubber had a calibra topsheet with airoc sponge which was a very good rubber but Stiga decided not to pursue with the idea and released the Astro series which according to them has an increased in quality and performance. So basically, this is the same Airoc topcsheet and with an all new, reformulated sponge. 

The sponges of both the M and S versions have a reactive and springy feel when pressed hard. At first bounce on both rubbers after I glued them, both seem to have a high rebound on the ball. The sponges have very small pores yet they are lightweight and do not feel so dense even the M version. The topsheet feels grippy and has a strong “bite” on the ball. 

When I first get to hit with both rubbers, I noticed a slight increase in speed and performance for both the M and S versions. The Astro rubbers seem to have better spring when hitting the ball on drives and smashes. Even the S version which for me is still harder compared to any sound series of Stiga rubbers released before. Astro M’s speed is comparable to any very fast euro rubber and to some extent it is even bouncier than any other 45 degree tensor rubber. It is slower than the Evolution MX-P though.  Astro S’ speed is faster than the Evolution EL-P. It feels softer by a few notches but faster.

 Both rubbers are very good and perform superbly on service receives that are very spinny.  They are both insensitive to incoming which made me like the rubbers in this area of play. When receiving using drop shots or flicks, there is high control.

 For spinny loops, I found the S version spinnier than the M version. The amount of spin that you can produce mostly come on the improved sponge. Compared to the older Airoc’s which have the same topsheet, the Astro’s sponge especially the soft version digs better into the sponge and grabs the ball better. I think if you placed a euro or Chinese rubber on the Astro topsheet, you would have one complete spinny and fast rubber. In general, I would place the Astro M’s spin as high and the Astro M’s spin as very high. Both still are a few notches lower than modern tensor rubbers in terms of spin. The Astro M has a low to medium arc when doing loops and the Astro S has a medium to high arch doing the same stroke.

 Overall, I would prefer the Astro S version. It is a very good and complete all around rubber which offers good spin and excellent attacking in all strokes. The Astro M is better in smashing and driving away from the table but the Astro S has better spin. The 2 rubbers pair well with both all wood and with composite blades. The Astro S is very versatile and plays good with any carbon blade with off or off+ speeds. The Astro M can be a smashing and driving monster when paired with an off+ carbon blade especially if you are far from the table.

 

 

Independent online TT Product reviewer of ADIDAS, STIGA, TIBHAR, NEXY, JOOLA, ALSER & XVT

ITTF Level 1 Coaching Course Conductor, ITTF Level 1 Coach
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote richrf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/01/2015 at 7:47am
Thanks for the great review!

Are you able to compare Astro S and M to the original Calibra LT (any version). Speed, spin, throw, weight, amount of factory tuning? I'm looking for the one that is better with a shorter and slower swing. Thanks much!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote piligrim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/01/2015 at 1:01pm
more reviews
http://www.experttabletennis.com/stiga-airoc-astro-rubber-review/
http://www.tabletennisdaily.co.uk/equipment/rubbers/10208-airoc-astro-m
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote richrf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/01/2015 at 7:18pm
Thanks for the links!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yogi_bear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/03/2015 at 8:16pm
The astro series has more fa tory tuning than the calibra. The rubber has this small dome upon opening the package. The calibra topsheets offer more grip and spin than the astros series.
Independent online TT Product reviewer of ADIDAS, STIGA, TIBHAR, NEXY, JOOLA, ALSER & XVT

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skyline Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2015 at 3:18am
Originally posted by yogi_bear yogi_bear wrote:

The calibra topsheets offer more grip and spin than the astros series.

LOL?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote speaquinox Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2015 at 3:44am
Probably that's why even Saive, Gerell and Karlsson have moved T05.
Acoustic Carbon Inner, T05 / EL-P
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bolterixus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2015 at 4:34am
I am thinking of getting the astro s for the backhand in 1.9 do you think it is a good idea? Does it also have quite a bit of control
Blade: Primorac OFF-
FH: Bryce Speed FX
BH: Sriver
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yogi_bear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2015 at 4:37am
Get the 2.1. Control is still good.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skyline Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2015 at 5:32am
Yogi do you really think the Calibra topsheet is spinnier than the Airoc topsheet? My experience is that Airoc Soft has much better grip than Calibra but the sponge is to dead and slow. I also have the Astro M and the sponge is definitely more lively and it plays better compared to Tenergy it has a lowish throw though. I have it on my Clipper but it feels a little mushy. Do you think the Airoc Astro pairs with the the Carbonado 190 blade? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yogi_bear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2015 at 10:48am
Definitely yes. I have tried the sample with calibra topsheet and airoc sponge it was different. Too bad it was not continued. The spin in the astro series comes moatly on the way the sponge reacts with the ball. Eventhough the calibra is not as durable as the astro, the grip is better for the calibra.
Independent online TT Product reviewer of ADIDAS, STIGA, TIBHAR, NEXY, JOOLA, ALSER & XVT

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patrickhrdlicka View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote patrickhrdlicka Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/01/2015 at 11:48pm
For cross-referencing purposes: I also posted a review of the Stiga Airoc Astro M here.
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=69419&title=feedback-patrickhrdlicka

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tommy16 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01/20/2016 at 10:26am
Hi Yogi (or someone else;))!
Which rubber in your opinion is closest to Astro M? The reason I´m asking is that I found Astro M to be allmost perfect rubber for my fh, however after 2 sheet in two months I can say durability of the rubber is quite low. Thank you for your help!

Cheers,
Tommi


Edited by Tommy16 - 01/20/2016 at 10:26am
What is the point of playing safe shots when you can miss with style

My feedback: http://www.mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=67171&KW=&PID=811763&title=tommy16-feedback#811763
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote boseabhi25 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/13/2017 at 2:26am
Hi Yogi,

For the BH perspective should one get AIROC S or AIROC ASTRO S? What are the main characteristic difference between these two rubbers?

Cheers,
Abhi
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