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String Playtest Comparison: Polyfibre Hightec Prem 17 vs Bab Pro Hurricane 17

About the play testerAbout the String
Tester: Kim N. - Tennis Warehouse customer

Playing Level: 4.0

Regular playing equipment: Wilson nCode Tour 90, Multifilament Mains, Poly Crosses (havenÕt found my ideal set-up yet), 57 lbs.

Game Style: All court player, moderate swing speed, semi-western forehand and two-handed backhand. Moderate topspin off both the forehand and backhand with occasional slice on the backhand. More of a doubles player, so most comfortable at the net, but played mostly singles for the play test so net play was limited. Strings being tested: Polyfibre High-Tec Premium vs. Babolat Pro Hurricane

Gauge: Polyfibre High-Tec Premium: 17, Babolat Pro Hurricane: 17

Racquet(s) string is in: Hyper Pro Staff 6.1 95

Tension: 56 lbs (both)


Both strung two-piece, crosses strung top to bottom on Laserfibre MS200TT, constant pull and double action clamps.Polyfibre High-Tec Premium: Out of the package the string felt different from most other polys. The string has a waxy feel to it somewhat like a crayon, but not slippery. Due to the coating the first few crosses had a lot of friction between them. After the first 2 or 3 it was smooth sailing from there. The string was very soft and flexible for a poly and was relatively easy to string so no problems or difficulties with the stringing process. Tensioning was as expected. Not a great amount of stretch occurred and was fairly consistent for the whole string job. The nice thing about this string is that it didnÕt have much coil memory to it so kinks and knots were not a problem at all. Babolat Pro Hurricane: Like the Polyfibre, this string was really easy to string up. The only thing was that it had quite a bit of coil memory to it. Coming from a set made it even worse, not to mention the packaging. So I found that kinks and tangles got in the way sometimes, but other than that, it was a good experience.Power

Polyfibre Hightec Premium 17/1.20 String
This 17 gauge co-poly plays very soft and forgiving compared to most other co-poly strings. Hightec Premium is a solid choice for players seeking added comfort from a co-poly. We have found control and spin qualities to be excellent with this string.
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 String
Featuring Babolat's latest Xtrem Futur Polymer construction, this one offers exceptional pocketing and spin. It is the softest co-poly in the Babolat line. Great for baseliners who like to swing big.

Polyfibre High-Tec Premium: 9 Š Though it was strung at a lower tension, the string played very powerfully. Not so much in a lively way, but more of a trampoline effect. You would hit the ball and it would just go. There wasnÕt much feedback from the string. On serves I found the power was a bit lacking compared to other strings IÕve played with.Babolat Pro Hurricane: 8.5 Š This string had quite a bit of power to it. Inparticular, above the head, such as overheads and serves. I think this is one of the high points of the string. It was powerful, but it had just the right amount of control as well. It was easy to play with and it felt like I've hit the hardest serves yet with this string.Control

Polyfibre High-Tec Premium: 7- The control for this string is good for ground strokes. I wouldn't call it excellent because when you start to take bigger and flatter swings, the trampoline effect makes the ball sail a lot more than most polys. Babolat Pro Hurricane: 7-The power of the string comes at the cost of control. This string had just the right amount of both. Most polys I've played with have too much control and not enough power, but the hurricane feels just right. I could take big cuts and still keep the ball inside the lines.Comfort

Polyfibre High-Tec Premium: 9-The comfort was my favorite aspect of this string. From the start this string felt really soft and easy on the arm. I've had some tennis elbow problems in the past and I'm a little more sensitive to feel on string, but even after playing a few sets of singles with the string I didn't feel any pain or discomfort at all afterwards.

Babolat Pro Hurricane: 7-This string wasn't as comfortable as the High-Tec. On off-center hits it didn't feel that the string had the dampening feel to it. The string also felt noticeably stiffer and had more feel to it, which comes in the price of comfort.


Polyfibre High-Tec Premium: 6-For a 17 gauge, this string felt a little thicker which made it hard to produce spin on all shots-especially the serve. Even when hitting looping ground strokes I felt like the spin wasn't quite there. Note: the strings moved a lot more than other polys I've played with in the past. Nothing like how synthetic strings move, but they did move around and needed adjustments now and again.Babolat Pro Hurricane: 9-The spin for this string was awesome. It wasn't as great for serves as it was for ground strokes, but this is the best spin I've ever gotten from a poly given it isn't textured on the outside.


Polyfibre High-Tec Premium: 5-From the start this string felt really dampened. Almost to the point that I would say that it has a dead feel to it. The good thing about this is that it has a lot of comfort, but I'd like it if it had more feel it it. It was like you hit the ball and it goes, not too much feedback from the string.Babolat Pro Hurricane: 9-Feel was another high point for this string. I would even say it felt comparable to a lot of multifilaments. Hitting with it I noticed that I got a lot of feedback such as how much spin I was getting out of my strokes as well as how much power.String Movement

Both strings had a little bit of movement to them. After points, I found myself having to straighten them (just about after every point). The movement is very slight though. I would say the Polyfibre High-Tec Premium moved a bit more than the Babolat Pro Hurricane did though.

Tension Maintenance

Tension Maintenance for the Polyfibre High-Tec Premium was short lived. The second time hitting with it (the day after it was strung), I noticed quite a bit of tension loss to it as balls started sailing a lot more. It wasn't a totally bad experience, but I found myself having to adjust quite a bit in my strokes. The Babolat Pro Hurricane on the other hand held tension very well. Even a week after being strung I feel like it hasn't lost more than two pounds.Durability

Both strings were used for about 6 hours each. I'm usually a frequent string breaker, but I found that they held up really well. After the play test, I noticed a little notching (very slight though).


Weather was very cold and wet, so the play test was done indoors, the temperature could of caused the string to lose tension a little more quickly, but otherwise it was pretty consistent (temperature wise).

Court Surface: Indoor Hard courts.

Overall Summary:

I think Babolat Pro Hurricane will be my new string. I love almost everything about it. I wish it had a little more power to it, but I think that having it in a hybrid will do the trick. As for the Polyfibre High-Tec Premium, at first I was impressed. It was very comfortable and powerful, but the fact that it didn't hold tension very well turned me off from this string. Spin was also harder to generate from this string, which made it hard to play with.

Polyfibre High-Tec Premium 17 85
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 75
Polyfibre High-Tec Premium 17 70
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 65
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 80
Polyfibre High-Tec Premium 17 50
Overall Playability
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 80
Polyfibre High-Tec Premium 17 70
Polyfibre High-Tec Premium 17 80
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 75
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 80
Polyfibre High-Tec Premium 17 60
String Movement
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 85
Polyfibre High-Tec Premium 17 80
Tension Maintenance
Babolat Pro Hurricane 17 70
Polyfibre High-Tec Premium 17 60

Playtest date: April, 2007.
All content copyright 2007 Tennis Warehouse.

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