Tennis Warehouse


Prince Tour 100T Racquet Review

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Video Review

Price:

$149.00

Prince Tour 100T Scores
Power 78
Comfort 80
Touch/Feel 74
Serves 78
Groundstrokes 78
Returns 78
Slice 79
Topspin 83
Volleys 78
Overall 78

Upsides

  • Spin friendly
  • Comfortable
  • Quick through the air

Downsides

  • Some instability outside sweetspot

Summary

The furiously fast Prince Tour 100T offers players maneuverability, power and spin. Our team spent weeks with this racquet to find out what makes it perform. They found that they could combine the whippiness of this light racquet with their powerful strokes to generate plenty of spin, and they enjoyed the feel and control from the large sweetspot. Although the Tour 100T didn't give them as much spin as the Tour 100T ESP, our players were still quite impressed with the bite they could get on their shots with the 16x18 string pattern. They liked the way the maneuverability, touch and feel provided an array of shot options when volleying. What they didn't like was a bit of instability that became quite noticeable on returns. Still, players looking for a lightweight, fast swinging racquet will find this to be a match for their game, and players who want more mass behind the ball will find this racquet ideal as a customization platform.

Groundstrokes - Score: 78

It was apparent from the first ball strike that the Tour 100T was a very quick and easy racquet to swing from the baseline. All of our playtesters agreed that spin was a definite advantage when using this racquet. However, some disagreement came about when discussing the amount of depth this racquet could produce. Chris said, "I had more confidence when moving inside the court because the stringbed gave me better depth control. Compared with the ESP version, flatter shots were much easier to control, and I found I could also string the racquet at a lower tension without any overhitting issues." Despite the Tour 100T not having Prince's ESP technology, Chris could still get loads of spin out of its more traditional string pattern. He added, "I liked this racquet with a poly the most, and I hit with several during the test. It felt really good strung with Luxilon ALU Power 16L, and I also liked it with Prince's Tour XC 16L black. Both upped the level of control and allowed me to go after my shots with more aggression. For maximum spin I found Head Hawk 16 to work really, really well."

The first thing Brittany noticed when hitting her groundstrokes with this racquet was how light and fast it felt. She said, "I definitely could generate a lot of racquet head speed, although I felt the racquet was missing some plow through. I found enough power to satisfy my game, but I was having trouble getting depth on my shots. This was most noticeable when I was on the defensive or stretching for the ball. This racquet was surprisingly spin-friendly, and I was able to generate some nice angled groundstrokes. My personal preference is stiffer racquets, and this racquet is too flexible for me. I did find it to be very comfortable to play with."

Tiffani really noticed the spin potential in the Tour 100T. She explained, "For a non-ESP racquet, I was really surprised with how much spin I was getting. I noticed much more topspin was coming naturally, without me having to adjust my swing. The racquet was also quite comfortable on the arm, and it swung quickly. Where I struggled was with put-away power. I hit more short balls than I like and had a hard time putting the ball away. I also felt the racquet torquing a bit when I missed the sweetspot. I tested this racquet with a couple of different full poly setups, and I think a hybrid or full multifilament setup would be better for me."

Prince Tour 100T Racquets

Volleys - Score: 78

Maneuverability was hands down a standout trait of the Tour 100T at the net. This helped our playtesters be creative at net, and they were able to hit a variety of shots. "I loved the maneuverability up at net -- it was really easy to get the racquet into place no matter how fast the ball was coming at me," raved Brittany, although she did have some issues. She added, "I did have to make an effort to hit the ball right in the sweetspot because I experienced some twisting on anything hit outside the sweetspot. I was also was having trouble feeling the ball hit the stringbed, and I lost a little bit of my touch."

Unfortunately, Tiffani didn't feel quite as comfortable at net as she did from the baseline. She said, "I didn't really feel in sync with this racquet at net. It maneuvered well enough, but the price for that maneuverability was instability. I felt like the racquet was just too easily pushed around. Because I'm not the strongest volleyer, this kept me on the baseline even more when I played with this racquet."

Chris liked this racquet at net, which was a good thing since he was hitting his groundstrokes so aggressively that he could charge the net and finish off points. He said, "I liked the way I could give the ball a good punch with this racquet. Power did not come as easily as with the ESP version, but I felt more in control. My touch around the net was solid, and I liked the feedback I was getting from the racquet."

Serves - Score: 78

Our playtesters found the Tour 100T to perform adequately on serve, but nothing really stood out. Access to spin was there, but not loads of it, and the same was true with power. Tiffani said, "I saw spin coming more easily when compared with other racquets with traditional string patterns. The easy spin fit well into my usual pattern on serve: moderate pace and spin. It wasn't giving me a lot of free power, but I enjoyed the spin potential."

When Chris playtested the ESP version of the Tour 100T he found that he was able to do crazy things with his serve. Without the ESP technology his serving was more sane, as he didn't have as much access to spin. He said, "The amount of pace I was finding was solid. As with any lighter weight racquet, I wasn't getting a really heavy serve from this one, but the pace and spin I was finding had me serving well. The amount of spin I was finding was impressive, but simply paled in comparison to the spin I found with the ESP version. Still, I felt pretty confident serve and volleying with this racquet since I served well with it and felt very comfortable at net."

Finding her serving experience to be similar to that of her groundstrokes, Brittany said, "I could generate a lot of racquet head speed on my serve, but I felt like I was missing some mass and needed a bit more plow through. This caused my serves to sit up a little more than I would have liked. I had a little more success hitting my flat first serve, and I could do some damage at times. Second serves had some nice spin to them, but I never felt like they were heavy or kicking up higher than normal."

Prince Tour 100T Racquets

Serve Returns - Score: 78

The quickness of the Tour 100T made it easy for our playtesters to attack returns, but against bigger servers there was a lack of stability. "This racquet felt so light and fast I had no issues stepping in and taking the return early," said Chris. "This racquet performed best with a faster swing, so I made sure I kept my swing speeds up. A faster swing kept the racquet more stable and also opened up the spin potential. I was getting some nice drive on my slice backhand return, and I also had good success dropping the ball low and short to bring the server into no man's land."

Brittany always felt like she had her racquet back on time and never felt late on any returns with this quick racquet in hand. However, "there was a price to pay, as I was wishing for a little bit more stability at times," she said. "I never really felt I could be aggressive when returning."

Tiffani said, "As with groundstrokes, I noticed that the racquet had some stability issues. The quickness of the racquet did allow me to get the racquet on most serves, but it really did get pushed around when I was facing serves with some pace on them. I had to really emphasize swinging through the ball, which is good practice for me, to get any penetration on my returns."

Overall - Score: 78

Likes

Chris - "I liked the maneuverable feel. The fast feel had me stepping inside the court and taking the ball early. This racquet offered good feedback so I felt well connected to where my shots were going. Spin was easy to generate, and I felt like I had good control on how much spin I wanted on the ball."

Brittany - "I liked the maneuverability, access to spin and comfort that this racquet offered."

Tiffani - "I liked the easy spin, comfort and quickness."

Dislikes

Chris - "None."

Brittany - "It lacked stability and plow through. Also, I'm a fan of stiffer racquets."

Tiffani - "I would need to add some weight to this racquet for added stability and power."

Comparing it to other racquets they've used, our testers said:

Chris - "The very light and fast feel reminded me of the Babolat Pure Strike 100. Both of these racquets encourage me to step in and take the ball early. I think both are great for helping me get inside the court because I can maneuver them so quickly. Both also offer great access to spin and open up some nice angles."

Brittany - "There are many similarities between this racquet and the previous version, Prince EXO3 Tour 100 Team. They are both light, spin friendly and very flexible. I did rate the previous version higher than this one but that was due to a change in my personal preference in racquets."

Tiffani - "The power level and quickness through the hitting zone remind me of the Babolat Pure Strike 100 and the Donnay X-P Dual Lite White 102. I think the Prince is the most spin friendly of the bunch."

Technical Specifications

Length27 inches69 centimeters
Head Size100 square inches645 square centimeters
Weight10.7 ounces303 grams
Balance Point13.33 inches
34 centimeters
1pt Head Light
Construction21mm / 22mm / 21mm /
CompositionGraphite
String Pattern16 Mains / 18 Crosses

Babolat RDC Ratings

Score
Grade
Flex Rating60Range: 0-100
Swing Weight317Range: 200-400

Scores

(Scores are determined by averaging individual play test scores)


Chris' Scores
Power 8 Serves 8
Control 8 Groundstrokes 8
Maneuverability 9 Returns 8.3
Stability 7.7 Slice 8.3
Comfort 8 Topspin 8.4
Touch/Feel 8 Volleys 8.1
Overall 8.2
Tiffani's Scores
Power 7.7 Serves 7.9
Control 7.9 Groundstrokes 7.8
Maneuverability 8.3 Returns 7.7
Stability 7.4 Slice 7.8
Comfort 8.1 Topspin 8.6
Touch/Feel 7.7 Volleys 7.5
Overall 7.7
Brittany's Scores
Power 7.8 Serves 7.4
Control 7.1 Groundstrokes 7.6
Maneuverability 8.5 Returns 7.5
Stability 6.7 Slice 7.5
Comfort 7.9 Topspin 7.8
Touch/Feel 6.6 Volleys 7.8
Overall 7.5
 

Playtester Profiles

Chris: 5.0 all-court player currently using the Wilson Six.One 95S. Chris uses a full-western forehand grip, has a fast swing style and hits a one-handed backhand.

Tiffany: 4.0 level baseliner with a semiwestern grip on the forehand and hits a two-handed backhand. Currently playing with the Donnay Formula 100.

Brittany: Open level player with a semi-western forehand and a two-handed backhand. She currently plays with the Yonex V-Core 100S.

Review date: April 2014. If you found this review interesting or have further questions or comments please contact us.

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