STIGA Carbonado 45 blade
Type: Carbon OFF
Composition: 7 ply
Rubbers used with blade: Genesis M
What’s going on guys, it’s Dan and Tom here from TableTennisDaily. Today we are in the TableTennisDaily studio with a brand new review looking at the STIGA Carbonado 45 and 90 blade.
About the blade
These two new blades are an addition to their predecessors the Carbonado 145 and 190. The main structural difference between the 45 and 90 to the originals is that the 45 and 90 have a thinner carbon fiber layer. The carbon used being STIGA’s signature textreme carbon.
The Carbonado 45 and 90 use 64 grams per m2² (per square meter) of textreme carbon whereas the 145 and 190 use 100 grams per m2² (Per Square Meter) of carbon. This 36% less carbon in the 45 and 90 is designed to give more of a woodier feel than the previous models.
The compositions of wood within the 45 and 90 are the exact same. The only real difference between the two are how the carbon fibers are applied. The 45’s carbon layer is placed at a 45 diagonal orientation and the 90’s carbon layer is placed at a perpendicular orientation. These different angles affect the trajectory of the flight of the ball.
The carbon layers within these blades seem a lot thinner than other blades. For example here is a close up of the Butterfly Viscaria blade in comparison to the Carbonado 90.
The blades are crafted using STIGA’s traditional look with sharp features and very solid feel. Myself and Tom used both blades in the review using the new STIGA Genesis Rubbers on both sides of the blade.
Initially we noticed that the ball did not shoot off rapidly like we usually expect from carbon blades. The 45 and 90 both posses more of the popular STIGA wood feeling rather than a carbon one. It was apparent from early on that the blades were not amazingly fast due to the lower carbon ratio, but the high quality textreme technology produces a great sweet spot and clean contact.
When doing an exercise I felt I had to make good use of my body and legs to produce power on the ball. We felt the two blades both fell between medium to hard in terms of density with the feedback being both woody and carbon, a rare quality that we haven’t really encountered before except for the earlier models 145 and 190. This flexibility gave us a lot of feeling and control for our strokes.
Comparison between 45 and 90
The Carbonado 45 and 90 are both very similar in terms of speed, with the 45 producing a touch higher arc in strokes than the 90. When playing topspin attacks with the 90 the ball has a more direct trajectory than the 45 which has a higher throw angle.
What we really like about the both of the Carbonado’s in general is the dwell and control. Although the blades have a thin layer of carbon the wood soaks the ball into the core of the blade producing lots of spin. This was evident against backspin. This extra dwell helped with my accuracy on 5th and 7th ball shots. One attribute I noticed throughout was I didn't make to many easy mistakes that you can sometimes find with faster carbon blades.
My favourite shot at the moment is the backhand flick, perhaps I was inspired to much by Fan Zhendong in the review of the Carbonado 145 blade. If you haven't seen that review, be sure to check it out on youtube. So yeah, before I get carried away by being mesmerized by Fan Zhendong again, the Carboando’s are great when it comes to putting spinning the ball. Using the backhand flick I was able to put Tom under all sorts of pressure through applying lots of rotation on the ball or through good ball placement. The feeling both blades gave me, gave me accuracy needed to take advantage of the point especially on the follow up with the backhand topspin.
Another area where this blade shone was in the blocking department. When blocking you can feel the large sweetspot giving great consistent contact when trying to control the ball onto the table. This is also due to both blades not being too fast.
The Carbonado 45 and 90 are very solid carbon blades with a lot of control. These blades have not been designed for high end speed with the focus being more on consistency and feeling that the woody feel provides.
For players who like to play with a lot of speed the 145 and 190 would be more suited to them as they are quite a bit faster by maybe 10-20%. The 45 and 90 are faster than a Rosewood blade for example however not as fast as a Zhang Jike ALC. These blades are for offensive players who prefer to have control over speed. They suit most offensive all round players who like to play more tactically and not purely base their game on fast attacks.
Between the two blades I preferred the 90 over the 45 as I liked it’s direct nature. The two blades are both very similar speed wise but the 90 does create more of a direct trajectory which I like especially on my backhand for aggressive punch shots. The 45 felt more suited from mid distance to away from table whereas the 90 worked well from top of the bounce at close range.
As mentioned previously the dwell is high on these blades which works well for producing spin on the ball from serves, to open up type shots.
These two blades are excellent for blocking and mixing up the play where they felt suited for an all round based game with enough speed to play outright winners when necessary. Due to the hardness I think medium rubbers will be optimum on this blade. Such as the Genesis S, Tenergy 05 FX or a tensor type rubber.
The Carbonado 45 and 90 are unique blades in the sense that they are made with carbon yet both are a notch slightly slower when compared to their predecessors and other popular carbon blades like the Viscaria for example. This reduced speed creates more control. The thinner carbon layer lets the ball soak further into the blade making more use of the blades inner wood veneers. This means they both have both a woody and carbon feeling that we really liked.