Alex Table Tennis - MyTableTennis.NET Homepage
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - TT11 equipment testing scheme
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Forum Home Forum Home > Equipment > Equipment

TT11 equipment testing scheme

 Post Reply Post Reply Page  <123
Author
slevin View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member


Joined: 03/15/2012
Location: USA
Status: Online
Points: 3143
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slevin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/03/2017 at 12:19pm
Thanks, sherwood.

The Powerspin Carbon blade has been replaced by the Nittaku S-CZ blade on the review list.


Back to Top
anubhav1984 View Drop Down
Silver Member
Silver Member
Avatar

Joined: 05/08/2009
Location: Redmond, WA
Status: Offline
Points: 878
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote anubhav1984 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/04/2017 at 5:35am

Blade Comparison Review

Victas Koki Niwa vs Butterfly Timo Boll ALC vs DHS Hurricane Long 5 (commercial)

In this review, I will be reviewing Victas Koki Niwa against the two most famous ALC blades currently in the market.

Background

I am a USATT 1850 ish rated player (based on the recent tournament I played), two winged looper and have a strong preference to control rallies and usually dominate in off the table play. 

I am a big fan of Revolution No 3 glue and that is what I have used throughout 

My Butterfly Timo Boll ALC weighs 86 gms and the Hurricane Long 5 weighs 90 gms.

Packaging

The packaging is simple and nothing to write home about.  

Weight 

Couldn't weigh the blade as I do not yet have a weighing scale but it feels like it is about 84-85 gms. It is very well balanced. 

Build Quality 

Very well crafted. Looks and feels like a high end blade for sure.  

Here is the list of attributes I tested these blades on -

Speed at low impact shots near the table --> This is the basic warm up drill that we do when we get onto the table. Low impact, easy hand movements to just flat hit the ball to feel the blade and get settled in.

Speed at high impact shots near the table --> Topspin warm-ups. This is the same drill that TableTennisDaily's videos start with.

Speed at low impact shots away from the table --> Slow topspin vs counter topspin a bit away from the table but with low effort put in from my end. This is to test the true power of the blade.  

Speed at high impact shots away from the table --> Topspin vs Counter Topspin rallies away from the table, with a mindset to finish the point. 

Control in passive blocks --> Simple blocks against topspins. 

Forgiveness in out of position shots --> When you get out of position and you need to land a table, how good is the sweetspot of the blade to allow for landing that ball on the table.

Spin at low impact shots --> Amount of spin generated in low speed topspins near the table.

Spin at high impact shots --> Amount of spin generated in high speed topspins both near and off the table.

Touch game near the net --> Self-explanatory.

Flicks --> Classic banana flicks and forehand slap flicks.

 

From a characteristics perspective, the blades compared like this -

Bounciness à  Victas Koki Niwa >= HL5 > TB ALC

Flex à TB ALC > HL5 > Victas Koki Niwa

Throw at low impact shots à TB ALC > HL5 > Victas Koki Niwa

Throw at high impact shots à TB ALC > HL5 > Victas Koki Niwa

  

First Run - Rubbers used - 

FH – Butterfly Tenergy 80 2.1 mm Black

BH – Tibhar Genius max Red  

Speed at low impact shots near the table --> Victas Koki Niwa > HL5 > TB ALC

Speed at high impact shots near the table --> HL5 >> Victas Koki Niwa > TB ALC

Speed at low impact shots away from the table --> Victas Koki Niwa > TB ALC > HL5

Speed at high impact shots away from the table --> HL5 > Victas Koki Niwa > TB ALC

Control in passive blocks --> TB ALC = Victas Koki Niwa > HL5 (ever so slightly)

Forgiveness in out of position shots --> TB ALC >> HL5 > Victas Koki Niwa

Spin at low impact shots --> HL5 > TB ALC > Victas Koki Niwa

Spin at high impact shots --> HL5 > TB ALC > Victas Koki Niwa

Touch game near the net --> TB ALC > HL5 > Victas Koki Niwa

Flicks --> TB ALC > HL5 > Victas Koki Niwa

Conclusion – The new rubbers (almost) allowed me to really test each of these blades as I could eliminate any possibilities of mis-hit due to rubber losing grip or whatever. Victas turned out to be a nice surprise. It was powerful from mid distance and even on top of the table. It was like having a slightly numb and faster version of TB ALC. Victas Koki Niwa is a stiff blade. It doesn’t flex as much as TB ALC but it still offers superb control and ball feeling. The sweet spot on this blade is almost as big as TB ALC itself.

Is it worth the $160ish price tag that it retails at – this is a tricky one. The blade is high quality. There is no doubt about that. But does it make sense to spend that extra 10 bucks instead of just buying TB ALC? For players needing more kick at high speeds than what TB ALC can give them, this can certainly be an option. However, it is certainly not as forgiving as TB ALC.  

Is it a good quality blade - hell yeah. 

Does it have enough power from mid distance – Yes it does. 

Who is this best suited for? – Player with well-formed technique and quick movement.

Butterfly IF Layer ZLC
FH - T80 2.1 Black
BH - T05 2.1 Red
Back to Top
sherwood View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 05/16/2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Status: Offline
Points: 45
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sherwood Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/04/2017 at 9:52pm
Review: Tibhar Aurus Select on Donic Crest AR+

I tested Select on Crest AR+ with Victas V01 Stiff on the other side.

Bounce test: Select feels similar in overall hardness to V01 Stiff but has a firmer sponge and softer top-sheet.  The softer top-sheet can be engaged somewhat more easily when brushing and, like Prime, the top-sheet seems to engage gradually.  Select also has a nice click and feedback though it’s not up to V01 Stiff in this regard.

Forehand counter-drive: Because of the nature of the top-sheet, Select seems less sensitive to imperfect strokes and timing than V01 Stiff and so requires less attention.

Forehand counter-spin loop: When executing fast spinny loops, Select had good feeling and control but I felt a lack of certainty when executing slow loops and fast loop-drives.  This is very unlike V01 Stiff where I feel precisely what’s happening even when I miss.  Select also felt a bit mushy on brush loops.

Backhand counter-spin loop: On the backhand side, I didn’t notice the uncertainty which I felt on the forehand side though Select still felt a bit mushy on brush loops.

Backhand loop against under-spin: Again due to the top-sheet, Select felt somewhat softer and less sensitive to incoming spin when looping against under-spin but, when executing spinny loops, it was not as capable at grabbing and lifting the ball.

Conclusion: Select could be a good choice for hitters and those who do controlled loops on the backhand side.

Back to Top
sherwood View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 05/16/2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Status: Offline
Points: 45
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sherwood Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/08/2017 at 11:24pm
Review: Stiga Mantra S on a Nittaku S-5 blade and Donic Crest AR+ blade

I tested Mantra S on a Nittaku S-5 blade with Rasant on the other side and also on a Donic Crest AR+ blade with Victas V01 Stiff on the other side.

Bounce test: Though Mantra S has a softer sponge than Rasant, it has a firmer top-sheet and thus feels similar in overall hardness.  When bouncing, Mantra S seems to have nice feel and feedback.  When brushing, Mantra S doesn’t spin the ball quite as easily as Rasant due to Rasant’s softer top-sheet and somewhat tacky surface.

Forehand counter-drive: In forehand counter drives, Mantra S has good control like Rasant with decent feel and sound.

Forehand counter-spin loop: My results when looping were mixed: good on Nittaku S-5 but not so good on Crest AR+.  Like Rasant, Mantra S has good control when brushing on the S-5 blade but, sad to say, it slips too much when brushing on Crest AR+.  The feel when brushing was also good on S-5 but very different from Rasant.  The top-sheet on Mantra S engages the ball firmly but gradually whereas Rasant grabs immediately but softly.  When doing medium loops, loop drives, and fast spinny loops I rate Mantra S as having slightly less control than Rasant but similar feel and sound.  However, on the Crest AR+ blade, only loop-drives felt controlled.  Loops with more spin (but not brushing) lacked control because the rubber would engage some of the time and slip at other times.

Backhand counter-spin loop: Playing characteristics when looping on the backhand side were pretty much the same as on the forehand side.

Conclusion: Given a blade which works well with Mantra S, this rubber could be a good pick for either forehand or backhand – especially if you like the feel of a fairly firm top-sheet.

Back to Top
sherwood View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 05/16/2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Status: Offline
Points: 45
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sherwood Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/08/2017 at 11:39pm
Review: Stiga Mantra M on a Donic Crest Off blade

I tested Mantra M on a Donic Crest Off blade with Victas V01 Stiff on the other side.

Bounce test: Mantra M felt quite a bit harder than V01 Stiff -- especially the sponge.  It seemed to have decent feedback on flat contact but, when brushing, the feel was muted.

Forehand counter-drive: Like V01 Stiff, in counter-drives Mantra M had good control with a little less bounciness.

Forehand counter-spin loop: When looping, Mantra M had similar control to V01 Stiff but, unfortunately, a substantial loss of feel (muted) and sound compared to V01 Stiff.  I felt as if the joy of looping was gone!

Backhand counter-spin loop: Playing characteristics when looping on the backhand side were pretty much the same as on the forehand side.

Backhand loop against under-spin: Mantra M seemed to have similar control and lift as V01 Stiff when looping against under-spin.

Conclusion: Unfortunately, the loss of feel kills the deal for this rubber.

Back to Top
slevin View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member


Joined: 03/15/2012
Location: USA
Status: Online
Points: 3143
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slevin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/08/2017 at 11:41pm
Thanks for the reviews, sherwood!
Back to Top
sherwood View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 05/16/2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Status: Offline
Points: 45
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote sherwood Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/09/2017 at 12:39am
Review: Tibhar Samsonov Stratus Carbon

I tested the Tibhar Samsonov Stratus Carbon blade with Victas V01 Stiff rubber.

Hardness: Overall, the blade has a medium hard feel.  The Limba top layer is slightly softer than the top layer of the Donic Crest AR+ blade (which has an unusually hard outer layer).  The inner layers of the Stratus Carbon are slightly softer than the outer layer but still firm, not allowing as much penetration as the Crest AR+ blade but also less bouncy on touch shots as a result.

Flex: This blade has slightly more than medium flex – it is quite a bit more flexible than the Crest AR+.  The flex, along with the firmer core, make loops a bit more difficult to control than the Crest AR+.

Speed: One characteristic which is similar to the Crest AR+ blade is the speed.  I would rate both as Off- to low-end Off in speed.

Control: This blade has good, but not excellent, control overall.  Looping underspin is relatively easy because of the flex and medium hardness of the blade – it’s less touchy than the Crest AR+.  However, counter-spin loops are more difficult to control than the Crest AR+.

Feel and Feedback: This blade produces a moderate amount of vibration (more than the Crest AR+) but, unlike the Crest AR+, OSP Virtuoso, and other blades with good feedback, the vibration from this blade doesn’t communicate much information.  As already mentioned, the feel is medium hard without much penetration but a fair amount of flex.  The sweet spot is medium-large -- not as large as the Crest AR+ but not bad.  Feedback is good on most shots but, on touch shots, the feedback is not as clear as it is from the Crest AR+.

Conclusion: If you want a looping blade I think there are other alternatives with better control and feel.

Back to Top
sherwood View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 05/16/2013
Location: Pennsylvania
Status: Offline
Points: 45
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sherwood Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/06/2017 at 12:02am
Review: Xiom Vega Pro

I tested the Xiom Vega Pro blade with the following types of rubber: Victas V01 Stiff, Tenergy 05fx, Andro Rasanter R47, Tibhar MX-S and EL-S.

Hardness: Overall, the blade has a medium hard feel.  The Limba top layer is softer than the top layer of the Donic Crest AR+ blade (which has an unusually hard outer layer).  The carbon layer, which is immediately underneath the outer Limba, feels a bit hard but holds the ball before spitting it out in a controlled fashion.

Flex: This blade has medium flex – about the same as the Crest AR.

Speed: I rate the Vega Pro as off- to off in speed – slightly faster than the Crest AR+ in slow loops and similar to the Crest AR+ in fast loops.  Interestingly, the Vega Pro is less bouncy than the Crest AR+ and could be better in the short/touch game as a result.

Control: This blade has very good control overall with no surprises.    

Feel and Feedback: This blade produces a fair amount of vibration (more than the Crest AR+) but, unlike the Crest AR+, Nittaku S-5, OSP Virtuoso, and other blades with informative vibration, this blade’s vibration seems excessive for the amount of information it communicates.  However, overall feedback is good.  As already mentioned, the feel is medium hard without much penetration but with medium flex and the sweet spot is medium-large.

Rubber: The Vega Pro worked quite well with a variety of rubber types.  I preferred Tenergy 05fx and Victas V01 Stiff due partly to their feel, sound, and feedback in addition to their control and spin.  Due to the “dead-ish” nature of the carbon layer, the blade benefits greatly from the “spring-sponge” in Tenergy and I believe the blade would work well with other types of Tenergy in addition to 05fx.

Conclusion: This is a very good offensive looping blade with very good control and decent feel and feedback.
Back to Top
slevin View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member


Joined: 03/15/2012
Location: USA
Status: Online
Points: 3143
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slevin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/07/2017 at 1:24am
Thanks sherwood!

This concludes our testing for the above blades and rubbers. For the next (ongoing) TT11 testing scheme, see here.

Great reviews here. 

Winner of the best reviews: anubhav1984 (he wins the Tibhar Stratus Carbon blade).
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply Page  <123
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down



This page was generated in 0.297 seconds.
Mark all posts as read :: Delete cookies set by this forum

Cookies and JavaScript must be enabled on your web browser in order to use this forum


Copyright © 2003-2013 MyTableTennis.NET - All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer