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Review: Nittaku S-series S-5 and S-7

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Rich215 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rich215 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 9:25am
Might it also have something to do with Soulspin making it?

Waiting for my shipment from Europe is killing me....haaa  


Edited by Rich215 - 05/05/2017 at 9:26am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rich215 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 9:32am
Arg......did you get a FL?   Wondering about the handle size.  I had a LG violin once..and didnt think the handle was LG...but another regular Nittaku blade I had the FL was tiny like Bty's. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mon22 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 9:39am
How you gone call him out when this whole thread is just you being overly excited about a blade with barely any hard evidence or STRUCTURE in a review?

It's very hard to take this "review" seriously when it's all personal and not enough about the blade itself

Dibble dabble here and there, one or two highlights ( broad/generic explanations), more dibble dabble

If anything, this thread made me sway away from even considering this blade. GG

Just an opinion, don't "battle" me on a forum. Just challenging you to be better
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mon22 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 9:40am
Originally posted by JoeB JoeB wrote:

Young Dude many of the questions you asked I have already made comment on in this thread, especially about looping and Acoustic. A little better than Acoustic for looping in my opinion and I own A.  The other blades you asked about I have not played.
My Japanese student who got one has loved it.  ( I have not, because he took a game off of me the other day for the first time EVER!  I do not like to lose games. I am thinking of banning the S-5 when he and I play.)  He is much harder to play now because he gets more balls on the table, and he loops better.  He took to the blade very easily and that is with faster rubbers than he was playing with.  With the right rubbers I think almost anyone could play this blade because of the control. But it has plenty of gears for speed. It is lots of fun to play with because you feel like you can do whatever needs to be done.Wink


This
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rich215 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 9:49am
Originally posted by mon22 mon22 wrote:

How you gone call him out when this whole thread is just you being overly excited about a blade with barely any hard evidence or STRUCTURE in a review?

It's very hard to take this "review" seriously when it's all personal and not enough about the blade itself

Dibble dabble here and there, one or two highlights ( broad/generic explanations), more dibble dabble

If anything, this thread made me sway away from even considering this blade. GG

Just an opinion, don't "battle" me on a forum. Just challenging you to be better


Who is this comment directed towards?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Pimple Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 11:12am
Originally posted by mon22 mon22 wrote:

How you gone call him out when this whole thread is just you being overly excited about a blade with barely any hard evidence or STRUCTURE in a review?

It's very hard to take this "review" seriously when it's all personal and not enough about the blade itself

Dibble dabble here and there, one or two highlights ( broad/generic explanations), more dibble dabble

If anything, this thread made me sway away from even considering this blade. GG

Just an opinion, don't "battle" me on a forum. Just challenging you to be better

Fair enough! May I ask you then to point us to YOUR reviews so we can see how it is done?
Dr. N Matador ST; Nittaku DHS H3 Neo 2.1, Dr. Neubauer Bison 1.8

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mon22 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 11:42am
Originally posted by Matt Pimple Matt Pimple wrote:

Originally posted by mon22 mon22 wrote:

How you gone call him out when this whole thread is just you being overly excited about a blade with barely any hard evidence or STRUCTURE in a review?

It's very hard to take this "review" seriously when it's all personal and not enough about the blade itself

Dibble dabble here and there, one or two highlights ( broad/generic explanations), more dibble dabble

If anything, this thread made me sway away from even considering this blade. GG

Just an opinion, don't "battle" me on a forum. Just challenging you to be better

Fair enough! May I ask you then to point us to YOUR reviews so we can see how it is done?


Sure. It's called the "search function"

You can also search Yogi's reviews and a few greats on how they review blades. I don't recall ever extensively writing a review but their formatting is something I look up to.

But any seasoned member on the forum has some standard as to how other equipments can be crossed reference by certain standards of descriptions. There's a sticky for that too
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rich215 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 11:49am
mon.....if your referring your critique towards the OP....you expect way too much out of everyone then. 

I guess you think that no one should bother saying anything about equipment they use unless it is a full blown pro review that takes hours/days to put together?  

Seriously......how about you go buy one of the S-5 blades and do the pro review for us all.  ? 


Edited by Rich215 - 05/05/2017 at 11:49am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote young dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 12:07pm
https://stervinou.net/ttbdb/lexik.php

Check out the properties of spruce wood.  Looks like this will not be good for looping.

Binomial name: Picea sitchensis (Sitka Spruce)

Called Fichte in Germany.
Used to create better speed, Spruce plies result in big sound and good feeling when you hit the ball, but when this ply comes too much close to the rubber, the sound and feeling are too powerful, and the ball will not be very spinny, so it is better used beneath a surface ply.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote arg0 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 3:57pm
Originally posted by Rich215 Rich215 wrote:

Arg......did you get a FL?   Wondering about the handle size.  I had a LG violin once..and didnt think the handle was LG...but another regular Nittaku blade I had the FL was tiny like Bty's. 

Rich, no, I got an ST.
But I've wielded all four Violins, ST and FL, normal and LG, so I can compare.

I agree with you that certain Nittaku blades have handles that are smaller, compared to other brands. The same holds true for certain Butterfly blades. This is true for example for Nittaku Violin and Acoustic. Violin LG is larger than regular Violin, but not super-sized compared to other brands. I'd say Violin LG is about the size other brands would call "standard".

Other Nittaku blades, such as Tenor, Latika, and also S-5 have more "standard"-sized ST blades. This means closer to Violin LG than to standard Violin.
I suppose this could be the case for S-5 FL, as well, but I'm just speculating.

Then again it's not just the dimensions of the handle, but also the cross-section that matters: handles with oval cross-section feel smaller (because they are) than more squared blades of the same width and height. But I'm digressing.

Hope that helped.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JoeB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 4:20pm
Argo, totally agree on the St handle size of the S-5. It is larger than my St Acoustic(not large size)
It is exactly the same as a Linga off st (Soulspin made), if that helps anyone. 
I have never seen the large st of a Violin etc. so I apprectated your reference on that.  Thanks
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote arg0 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 4:22pm
Originally posted by young dude young dude wrote:

How does this compare to YEO, Acoustic, or Rosewood V in terms of looping and power looping? And what about speed and control vs those three? Would you say one needs to be at least an advanced beginner to use this blade? Or can you learn to develop / perfect your strokes with this blade? I'm currently using Yasaka Sweden Extra cpen, and I hope to upgrade to YEO, Acoustic, or Rosewood V in a year or so, but this seems like an interesting alternative too, or maybe even an intermediate step before those three.

young dude,
I normally don't judge a blade before having played with it, but I'm reasonably confident, from the acoustic analysis of the ball bounce test, that my S-5 blade is a very stiff blade. If this is the case, I would not recommend it to an "advanced beginner" shakehand player whose goal is to develop and perfect their strokes. But I know little about cpen, and in general to each their own preferences, so you may find it's your perfect blade. Then again, there are so many rubbers to choose from that there's inevitably a good match.
Expecting this is a stiff blade, I will put some softer and controlled rubber on it when I'll test it. Not before a few weeks, though.
Why do/did you think it could be your next blade?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote arg0 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/05/2017 at 4:32pm
Originally posted by young dude young dude wrote:

https://stervinou.net/ttbdb/lexik.php
Check out the properties of spruce wood.  Looks like this will not be good for looping.
Binomial name: Picea sitchensis (Sitka Spruce)
[...]

But then again, compare the physical properties of Spruce and Cypress in Stervinou's database. They're not that different. Not surprising, as both are conifers. Hinoki is a special type of cypress, and many swear on hinoki for looping. Though, that's mostly for 1-ply blades.
When it comes to multi-ply hinoki blades, my experience is that glueing plays a major role in how stiff the blade will be.
Then again "good for looping" is not an absolute definition: it largely depends on the player's level, looping style, and rubbers.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kindof99 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/08/2017 at 12:13pm
If you wanna try seven layers spruce blade, maybe Septear is a choice. It is made of seven layers of Hinoki woods.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bbkon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/10/2017 at 11:46am
Originally posted by arg0 arg0 wrote:

Originally posted by Rich215 Rich215 wrote:

Arg......did you get a FL?   Wondering about the handle size.  I had a LG violin once..and didnt think the handle was LG...but another regular Nittaku blade I had the FL was tiny like Bty's. 

Rich, no, I got an ST.
But I've wielded all four Violins, ST and FL, normal and LG, so I can compare.

I agree with you that certain Nittaku blades have handles that are smaller, compared to other brands. The same holds true for certain Butterfly blades. This is true for example for Nittaku Violin and Acoustic. Violin LG is larger than regular Violin, but not super-sized compared to other brands. I'd say Violin LG is about the size other brands would call "standard".

Other Nittaku blades, such as Tenor, Latika, and also S-5 have more "standard"-sized ST blades. This means closer to Violin LG than to standard Violin.
I suppose this could be the case for S-5 FL, as well, but I'm just speculating.

Then again it's not just the dimensions of the handle, but also the cross-section that matters: handles with oval cross-section feel smaller (because they are) than more squared blades of the same width and height. But I'm digressing.

Hope that helped.


its a bigger problem when you buy a penhold blade
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote arg0 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/11/2017 at 6:47pm
I eventually decided to return my S-5, unplayed. Got an amazing deal on another blade I want to test and had to decide... will probably turn out to be too stiff as well, but let's see.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rich215 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/11/2017 at 7:52pm
That's a bummer arg.....I was hoping to hear your impressions of this blade.  

Don't tell us what other blade you got instead......until you use it and have a good idea about it.  In the mean time.....we will all keep guessing which one it is.   Wink


Edited by Rich215 - 05/11/2017 at 7:53pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JoeB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/11/2017 at 8:50pm
The blade is not  stiff. I have had several stiff blades and this is not like them.  The guys at Soulspin are really sharp and know what they are doing. The blade is wonderful to play with. The 5 ply combination they came up with really works. My student and I are both beating players we could not beat before. It is because of great control, ability to spin the ball, and power in stages (gears) when you need it.Wink     Look forward to others who have bought the blade and played it to share their experience.
"You don't know what you are missing"
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote arg0 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/12/2017 at 1:53am
I played with another soulspin blade before (Koto) and it didn't surprise me. The physical characteristics of S-5 are very close to Kiso Hinoki V, which was a good blade, but didn't fit my game. So it's like I had bought a car without having had the possibility of looking at the specs sheet and then I realised I got a SUV while I was expecting a minivan. Call it presumption, but I've tested about 100 blades in the past and believe I can judge from the specs sheet (actually, the acoustic spectrum), whether it will suit me (and me alone) or not. Others' mileage certainly varies.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote arg0 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/12/2017 at 9:03am
Just because I feel a bit bad about commenting on a blade without trying in in a real game, some more comments.

This is the first time I post impressions of a blade that I never played with, just based on the ball bounce test and acoustic spectrum analysis . The fact is, I bought the S-5 new and if I glued rubbers on it, I wouldn't be able to return it. Had I bought it used, I would have tested it.

To stick with the car analogy, let's say I bought the "car" only knowning part of the specs sheet, i.e. overall dimensions, weight, and max speed. The "minivan" I expected and the "SUV" I got both match those specs. Still, I got a completely different "car" than I expected.

I still believe it would play as I think it does. It's just hard to put in words: "stiffness", "hardness", etc. are very subjective. They also depend on the player's skill and the rubbers used. There's nothing magical in TT blades: just woods, glue, optional artificial materials, and craftmanship. Their characteristics can be described by physics, and placebo effect (which is scientifically proven). They're not supernatural beings.

Switching from my blade to Kiso Hinoki V, or XIOM Jazz, or TSP Hinoki Pure, did not make me beat players I couldn't beat before. Those blades actually made me play worse and I wasn't feeling like investing the time to adapt to them.

Had I known the S-5 was all spruce, I would not have bought it... my bad. It was an impulse buy because the special offer at tabletennis11 was about to expire after a few hours.

I may never know from direct experience, but I have no issues living with this.
Still looking forward to other players' impressions, though.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Makelele Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/12/2017 at 6:36pm
Is the S-7 all spruce also?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JoeB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/12/2017 at 10:35pm
The S-7 evidently has some ayous wood in the 7 ply mix. My guess would be that it is in the core but we don't know for sure. It is 6.3ml thick whereas the S-5 is 6ml. thick. both are rated as Off by Nittaku.
Here is a link to the only place I know to get info on all three blades in this series.
http://www.tabletennis11.com/other_eng/nittaku-s-series-s-7
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rich215 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/13/2017 at 9:14am
Just setup the S-5 last night and played a few hours of doubles and little bit of singles.   Used fresh Baracuda 2.0 on both sides.  But I am holding off on any review opinions yet for a few reasons. 

1. Not near enough time with it.
2. Rubbers are new and Baracuda needs some hitting time to loosen up the sponge.
3. I will test again soon with my well worn in Vega Japan rubbers, then later with some
    broken in Baracuda rubbers. 
4. I need to play more singles matches to get a better perspective of it with my play.

But for your visual enjoyment, I thought it's quality hit me in the face while opening it up!  


This should be the standard of blade box's.



Pic is not that clear, but build quality is.......well  its made by Soulspin so no more words needed there.  Love the dark cherry wood handle....not skinny but def. better than a Bty FL. 




Happy I did not get a lighter one.....same weight as my Yinhe V1, and I am happy for comparison reasons with this. 







Edited by Rich215 - 05/13/2017 at 9:17am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rich215 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/16/2017 at 10:16am
I sent a pm to someone with this info on the S-5 blade after finally getting to hit with it using my well broken in Vega Japan rubbers.  This turned out to be a great combo for my 2 wing looping and more...but with a couple of things I would like better...

I put my broken in Vega Japan 2.0 rubbers both sides......big difference in performance and feel.

Just hit with a friend who is close to my level and usually beats me unless I give it my all. Playing with the S-5 I crushed him with so many good points compared to my normal battles with him.  Not sure if he was just off or something....but I did have much more control and better placement with this setup.   


This blade is a spin and looping machine....from close to mid.  I love the soft feel and it has wonderful control.  Good range of gears with the VJ rubbers.  Most of the time it is a solid OFF- and can play like an ALL. 

My only negatives....or things that I wish were different maybe is a better way to put it....

I need a longer handle and maybe only slightly wider.  I would say the FL is a good average but felt just a tad short like most japanese blades. 

I wish it was stiffer/faster.  I would like a lower arc and slightly faster only so I do not have to swing so hard....being in my early 50's and a back problem. 

But I could loop with ease and lift backspin like nobodies business.  Control is outstanding and I would say this is the best 5 ply all wood blade I have used.  One notch better than the OSP Virtuoso OFF- and Expert.  It has a more muted feel and not a hard direct feel like those.  I really appreciate that as it gave me so much feel and dwell which I need for my style of play.   2 wing looper with lots of spin and pace changes. 

I almost wish I could have one of these with an composite layer 2 layers down from the topsheet.  I am not sure if the S-7 blade will have that same soft touch and control but just stiffer and faster.?

Thats it for now from my first good session with the blade.  I will play a club night wed. and then another session on friday night.  So look for more this weekend or so. 


With this being my major impressions, I ordered the S-7 (86 grams) and will see if that helps the throw angle and speed a bit.  Handle size I have no recourse unless I just order a custom from Soulspin I guess.



Edited by Rich215 - 05/16/2017 at 10:22am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JoeB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/16/2017 at 10:30am
Thanks for the nice review.  I have a feeling the S-7 will be just right for you looking for a lower throw.
Not sure how to get that long handle thoughWink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JoeB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/16/2017 at 10:39am
If anyone out there has an S-7, please post some of your impressions of the blade. Thanks
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rich215 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/18/2017 at 7:52am
Quick update again after playing many matches in my normal club setting. 

I will say this again.....this is by far the best PERFORMING 5 ply wood blade I have ever used.....PERIOD.

I say this because my game play with it is a lot better for getting balls on the table, and it lets me attack with more consistency especially while looping hard.  

I do have to work harder physically and also I have a small problem with the higher throw angle still.  I am almost convinced the S-7 will play much better for me if it retains the same feel and still have tons of control like the S-5. 


Edited by Rich215 - 05/18/2017 at 7:54am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JoeB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/18/2017 at 8:17am
Thanks for the update Rich, your experience confirms my findings. This blade plays bigger than the raw numbers on paper I think. My student continues to beat guys at our club he could not beat before.
I think there are lots of players out there that would really enjoy this blade.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/18/2017 at 10:03am
Originally posted by Rich215 Rich215 wrote:

Quick update again after playing many matches in my normal club setting. 

I will say this again.....this is by far the best PERFORMING 5 ply wood blade I have ever used.....PERIOD.

I say this because my game play with it is a lot better for getting balls on the table, and it lets me attack with more consistency especially while looping hard.  

I do have to work harder physically and also I have a small problem with the higher throw angle still.  I am almost convinced the S-7 will play much better for me if it retains the same feel and still have tons of control like the S-5. 
Rich, what are your previous top 5 ply wood blades?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Makelele Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/18/2017 at 3:48pm
Originally posted by Rich215 Rich215 wrote:




With this being my major impressions, I ordered the S-7 (86 grams) and will see if that helps the throw angle and speed a bit.  Handle size I have no recourse unless I just order a custom from Soulspin I guess.





Looking forward to a review of the S-7!
Probably it is made by Soulspin and then I am intrigued by how it will play comparing it with the Spin Offensive 3 (sold by the brand Soulspin itself), which is a 5 plies blade ( Spruce/Spruce/Kiri/Spruce/Spruce), but thicker (7 mms.)

Edited by Makelele - 05/18/2017 at 3:49pm
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