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    Reviews posted by Baal
    Viewed 2851 times
    Avatar Baal
    Total reviews: 8
    Total Likes: 21
    Reviews Rubbers(2)
    Balls(5)
    Blades(1)
        Posted 03-09-2017
        5.00 Great news, a new day for table tennis
        • round
        • similar to NP40
        • nice bounce, also cheap

        • none
        Thanks to a tip from the member Chuck Jordan I was able to buy two boxes of the new DHS 3* D40+ balls from this place:

        http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Exclu...793435592.html

        I received them in about 10 days and I played with them this evening. I paid $15 for 12 balls. Here is my review:

        I already believe that this is the best plastic ball in table tennis right now when everything is considered
        .

        From a playing perspective I actually like them slightly better than the Nittaku Premium!! I never thought I would say that about a Chinese plastic ball!

        Surface of the ball looks exactly like Nittaku Premium. The seams are a little larger, though, more like earlier seamed balls from China.

        They are absolutely perfectly round.

        The static bounce is exactly the same height as Nittaku Premium. If you let the bounces die out on the table, they stop bouncing at exactly the same time the Nittaku does. This is a huge improvement for DHS. None of their earlier plastic balls bounced for crap.

        The D40+ have a normal sound on bouncing (this is different from the 1* version).

        Spin and speed is very similar to the Nittaku, but the DHS feels a little more solid. My practice partner could not tell the difference from the Nittaku Premium when I switched up on him. More significantly, coach Li Kewai (~2700 player) could tell a slight difference and his opinion is that he preferred the DHS D40+ to the Nittaku Premium, and I shared that opinion, although the difference is very very slight. I think the DHS might be very slightly heavier. There is no accounting for tastes, but I would be really surprised if very many people conclude that the D40+ is significantly worse to play with than Nittaku Premium.

        On top of all that, the DHS40+ is cheaper. Also, as DHS stops the production of their previously horrible awful terrible miserable plastic balls, these will probably become the standard, and hopefully other companies will be putting their brands on this ball. It would be a major improvement for the sport. The key will be if DHS can make enough of these D40+ balls to meet the demand and still maintain this level of quality.

        This is the best news I have been able to report in a really long time. As for my expertise on this, I think it is extensive. I know the plastic ball situation in detail (more than I know about most other equipment issues). Very early on I completely stopped playing with celluloid balls, and I have tried about every 40+ ball made, and I was the first one on English language TT forums to really push the idea that the seamless balls are decent, and not as bad as the prototypes floating around for awhile might have led us to believe. (At the time the expectation was that they would be really bad). Seamless balls actually have a lot of good properties, especially durability, but I think these new balls by DHS will probably be very bad news for the makers of seamless balls. I doubt once people get their hands on these, especially given the price, that people will want to use seamless very much. The playing properties are superior (by which I mean a lot closer to celluloid) and they are cheaper.

        The likelihood as a result is that in the foreseeable future we will have a lot more uniformity of balls, which for the last few years has been a big problem for our sport. If in the future the dominant balls become the D40+ ones made by DHS (possibly sold by many companies) and the Nittaku Premium, we will have returned to a situation where the brand of ball doesn't matter very much (as in celluloid era).
        2 people liked this review
        Posted 01-05-2017
        5.00 Very predictable and linear rubber
        • User friendly

        • possible quality control problems with sponge
        I tested M and M+ on a ZJK-ALC blade. Because I bought the rubber myself for market price, and have no business connection to Nexy, you can consider this an unbiased review.

        For the last decade, I have played more or less exclusively with ALC blades and either Tenergy 05, or most recently, MX-P. I am a conventional two wing shakehand offensive player, getting older now, but still around 2050-2100. These days I have worried that I have had a tendency to beat myself more than I would like, missing shots from mistiming -- a lot of that secondary to not being as quick as I used to be (and maybe needing new glasses).

        Here is what I have noticed so far with these rubbers (some of which echos what Next Level wrote on his earlier review):

        There is a slight dome of the rubber right out of the packages (true for both M and M+). The sponges are blue color with very thin pores. There is no booster smell, in marked contrast to MX-P. I had forgotten how much easier it was to glue down and cut rubbers with thin-pore sponges like this one. A very nice feature.

        The pips on the inside of the topsheet are incredibly short (I've never seen anything like it before) and they have a shape that is somewhere between a circle and a hexagon. The topsheet therefore, overall, is very thin. I think this may be the key feature of this rubber. (I hope it does not make the rubber fragile).

        These rubbers are not real fast, and not unusually spinny (although they certainly spinny enough and the topsheet has a very nice grippy feel). The main thing is that they are incredibly predictable, which became clear to me within a few minutes. That is the thing Nexy talked about in his threads (at MyTT, use the search function there) on what he was trying to achieve when he developed the rubber. I have to admit I was very skeptical about that when I read it. It sounded like BS to me. But having tried Karis, I now think he has accomplished what he set out to do, and his descriptions ring very true once you try this stuff. I'm not just talking about his descriptions of Karis, but also how Kris is different from Tenergy and ESN rubbers. When you play with Karis, you sort of feel what he is talking about. They really are something novel I think.

        More than anything than, I would say the main features of Karis are predictablity and linearity. (Output is directly related to input with no weird discontinuities to put it in more quasi-technical terms).

        Because of the predictability of the rubber, I was able to keep the ball on the table really well tonight. When I wanted to hit slow, the ball went slow, and it went where I aimed it. When I swung harder, the ball went faster, and importantly, no sudden increase in ball rebound with a slight increase in racket speed. (That is in marked contrast to the MX-P). So very few inexplicable misses where you hit the ball off the table and you're not sure why.

        One of the places this really showed up is against my opponent's good shots. I brought a lot more of them back and lived to battle longer in the point. I think most amateur offensive players will find that they are a lot better when they are on the defensive with this stuff than they would be with a lot of popular rubbers. In general I kept the ball on the table, but I also felt like I was able to be a bit more deceptive as to where I was going to place the ball. In other words, make it look to opponent like I am going to drive the ball crosscourt with my forehand but then go to the body or down the line at the last minute. For some reason, that was easy with this stuff. Also I was hitting really good angles and I was looping with a lot more variation in pace.

        For now the only downside, and I think it is temporary, is the sense that some of my shots lacked the penetration I would get with Tenergy or MX-P. That's to be expected, Karis is definitely slower than either of those. Also, it seemed like I was hitting my forehand flatter than usual, probably subconsciously trying for more power to compensate for speed of rubber. I guess I would say that the throw is medium, though. I will need to play more with an eye on that more. In any case, when I got good body rotation that was not a problem, then the ball had plenty of pace. It is better to keep the ball on the table and win more points than it is to look spectacular winning a few points, so I don't mind. This sense of very linear control was present on every single shot. Loops, counters, blocks, short game, serve, return, push. I will need to work hard to get good body rotation on my opening loops in particular, because this stuff definitely does not reward lazy technique. You don't need to be Ma Long b ut you can't just loop with your arm. If you do, it will feel like it is about to fall off in a couple of minutes and your shots will suck!!

        As for M vs. M+, given what I have been playing with for the last decade (T05 and MX-P), M+ is a step too far, especially away from the table. I definitely preferred M. Actually, for now I am more comfortable with M on the FH side and M+ on the BH side (which is a bit odd since M+ is distinctly harder), but I plan to use M on both sides for awhile and see how this goes. I ordered another sheet of M today so I will have it on both sides.

        EDIT ADDED AFTER FOUR WEEKS OF PLAY WITH KARIS M BOTH SIDES.

        I am still using Karis M on both sides and would not change much about my review. I can now say that durability is about average for modern rubbers. I don't plan to change any time soon.

        However, one problem has emerged. Several of us have noticed that the sheets have a lot of weight variability. I bought two new sheets to put on a different blade (my favorite Viscaria). The Black 2.2 weighed 67 g uncut, while the Red 2.2 weighed 61. The sheets were the same size. That is way too much weight variability for a $50 rubber! Andy Smith noted at MyTT that he felt some really hardness variability from one sheet of M to the next. Nexy has to do better with their quality control. Fortunately, I still liked it fine, settled with the Black sheet on my FH. But not everybody will be so forgiving.

        EDIT added in late September of 2017. I finally replaced two sheets of Karis M on my Viscaria that I put on in Late January of this year. That is nine months of play, three times per week on average. I would not change a word of the review, except that the durability is beyond belief and I like more than ever.






        4 people liked this review
        Posted 11-09-2016
        5.00 I'll just concur

        I think most of what needs to be said has already been written below by other people, and I agree with it. I should add, though, that it is pretty easy to make a switch to this rubber from T05. Let's say 4-5 sessions of adjustment, and then you can pretty much do what you used to do with T05 and it will work with MX-P. It won't feel the same. T05 has a more muted feel. For me the difference in feel doesn't seem to matter much. MX-P is overall a touch harder and faster than T05. I like the hardness in the short game. But in general, it is a great substitute. It works pretty much equally effectively for the same kind of player.

        One thing I don't like is that some of the really nice qualities of MX-P are reduced quite a bit after the factory booster evaporates away, which maybe takes a month or so. I suspect the best thing to do at that point is re-boost it (as someone else suggests), but I haven't tried doing that. If you take if off the blade and then re-glue it, which I have done, you will find it has shrunk. I have a couple of used sheets in a drawer that I think I will try boosting just to see what happens. If that works out, then for sure the durability will be equal or greater than Tenergy at around half the price (if you buy from TT11).
        2 people liked this review
        Posted 07-11-2016
        5.00 Very much like Butterfly ALC blades, great ST handle
        • Round ST handle
        • weight balance
        • overall feel

        • none
        I have been exploring ST handles, and discovered I very much like rounder ST handles (as opposed to the more square ST handles found on TB-ALC, for example). Donic has the shape I like. I also hoped to find a composite blade with a feel as close to my Viscaria as possible. The Donic Ovtcharov True Carbopn out to be what I was looking for, even more so than the ZJK-ALC I had purchased earlier. The True Carbon is a little faster than my Viscaria blades, whereas the ZJK-ALC ST handle blades were a little slower. So, with plastic balls, this is the winner. Mine is 92 grams, and the handle is very slightly larger than that of my ZJK-ALC, and has no sharp angles, and it makes it very easy to change grip between FH and BH shots. The thickness is identical to the Viscaria. I don't know what the composite material is, but it looks exactly like the ALC material in Btfly blades, at least from the side of the blade.

        Build quality was perfect. I have read that this blade might be made by Soulspin. From the quality, I think that is certainly possible.

        I have been using MX-P on the blade (both sides) because I didn't want to buy two sheets of T05 for a new blade I had never tried before that I might not like. It turns out they go together really well I have played so well with this combination the last two times I played that I think I will stick with it for awhile.
        6 people liked this review
        Posted 12-03-2015
        1.00 Made in Oct 2015, still bad
        • bright white

        • low bounce
        • dips in the air
        • too soft
        I bought balls from an Aliexpress vendor and DHS says they have improved the material they use. Fortunately I only bought 6 of them.

        The weight was an average of 2.76 grams with small variance. This is identical to XSF and Butterfly G40+, a little more than Nittaku Premium 40+. This would meet the strict ITTF standards that come into effect this January. It is an improvement over previous DHS balls, which were always over 2.80 and would not be approved after January. The balls have a nice bright white color, a rough surface and they seem round.

        Beyond that I have nothing good to say about these balls. The bounce height is still very low, in fact identical to a Joola 40+ ball from June of 2014 (which was made by Shanghai DHS factory). In play this is obvious. The balls stays low, dips a lot, doesn't come out which makes play at middle distance difficult, and there were occasional weirdly low bounces. In short, most of the things we have complained about regarding playability of Chinese seamed balls from the start are still a problem, even with the latest version of the balls from this company. Maybe these new ones will turn out to be more durable, but they still suck. And since they suck, I don't plan to use them, so I don't think I will be the one to figure out if they are durable.

        I implore tournament directors, league officials and club managers, please don't use these crappy balls. Why impose terrible balls on players when there are at least three different types of decent balls available (seamless, Nittaku Premium, Butterfly G40+). If price is an issue, go with seamless.
        1 people liked this review
        Posted 11-14-2015
        4.00 update on G40+

        • surface wear
        This is an update on my previous review.

        I have had about five long sessions with the G40+, and I have had lots of my clubmates try them. I have mainly been using them since mine arrived because I wanted to get as familiar with them as possible. With time now I will revise my order of preference for plastic balls to Nittaku Premium > XSF > G40+ (from best to worst). This is something of a matter of taste, but for me at least, I am sure of it.

        The main reason for this is that with a bit of wear the G40+ gets even more smooth and shiny on the surface than they are when new. On my last review, I mentioned that the surface was smoother than other balls when they are new, and this is a unique feature. Once this wear happens to the G40+, with maybe 90-120 minutes of use, the playing properties decline a great deal. You start getting very low sliding bounces, unpredictably, since the normal bounce of this ball is very high. Also the ball becomes harder to control. This does not happen when they are new, at least not as much. But it is in marked distinction to Nittaku Premium and XSF which stay playable for much much longer (and indeed improve a bit after you have hit with them for a half hour or so).

        Everybody who has tried the G40+ at my club has said they feel very fast, more so as they get shinier on the outside. With the speed and high bounce, the game becomes distinctly less spin oriented. I haven't managed to break one yet, but it hardly matters if their wear makes them not useful for other reasons.

        I am going back to the Nittaku Premiums.
        2 people liked this review
        Posted 11-09-2015
        5.00 My favorite plastic ball
        • most like cell
        • fast
        • small

        • price
        • dusty when new
        I prefer to play with this ball over any other plastic ball, and I have tried all known types of plastic ball, and have played almost exclusively with plastic balls since April of 2014. I have had a bunch of these good Nittaku balls last for long periods of heavy play. They are smaller than other 40+ balls. They are also the lightest 40+ (weigh an average of 2.67 grams compared to 2.80 for Chinese seamed balls and 2.76 for XSF). They have slightly smaller diameter measured with calipers. Seam is very very small and only can be seen if you shine light through them. They are dusty out of the box. In my opinion, these balls provide the best overall playing experience and without any doubt are the most like celluloid. I have been using them more than any other ball since June of this year. They are expensive (but less than Butterfly G40+). For a long time they were back ordered everywhere but that is not a problem now.

        Everybody at my club, from Jimmy Butler, Niraj Oak, Viktor Subonj and Darko Rap (all current or former US team members) to ordinary guys like me would rather play with these balls than any other if playing properties are the only criteria.

        I hope these are the ones that will become the standard for competition.
        2 people liked this review
        Posted 11-08-2015
        5.00 A unique and good ball
        • bounce height
        • bounce consisten
        • round

        • no obvious flaw
        OK, here are my impressions of the G40+, specifically in reference to Nittaku Premium 40+ Japan (NP40+) and also XSF. I played with it for two hours today on Tibhar Smash 28 tables.

        G40+ bounces about the same height as an XSF ball, which is a little higher than NP40+ (and a lot higher than Chinese seamed balls). Personally I like this, but if you are used to NP40+, you will need to keep this in mind.

        It is hard to see the seam in a G40+ unless you shine light through it, which is also true of NP40+ (and very different from Chinese seamed balls). However, the seam in a G40+ is quite a bit bigger than a NP40+ (the amount the two halves overlap). Butterfly says that even though they have a seam, the inner diameter does not increase where the seam is. Nittaku Premium has a very very small seam.

        Another really obvious difference I can see right away with two new unused balls right out of the box is that the surface of the G40+ ball is a lot smoother than either NP40+ or XSF. It is instantly discernible when you take two balls and rub them together. The sound of two NP40+ (or XSF) is greater than G40+ and you can feel more vibration.

        As everyone mentions, G40+ has weird sound (like old seamless prototypes or Ipong practice balls), but after about 5 minutes you stop noticing or caring. Once you realize the ball bounces normally and not like a broken ball, the sound stops mattering.

        The good news is that this is a perfectly decent ball and my partner and I had fun playing with it today. Also, new balls right out of the box will not put any dust residue on your rubber!! (Very different from NP40+).

        Some people may consider the next thing bad news; it does not really play all that much like an NP40+, it is not really like a XSF either, and it is definitely not like a Chinese seamed ball (thank goodness). The G40+ is unique, which means that there is even more variability in the playing properties of plastic balls, and this is really a fourth class of ball. All in all it is closest to XSF (but seems faster on most shots) I think but still has unique properties. That is the bad part. We are living in an era now with a lot more difference in ball properties than we ever had in the celluloid era. (I have seen ITTF officials try to downplay this, but it is obvious).

        Dan's review mentioned that the ball flies very straight in the air. I agree, in fact it is one of the things that seems to me to be different from either NP40+ or XSF. Perhaps this has something to do with the unusually smooth surface of the G40+? I also had the impression it flies fast through the air. Is this really the case or an illusion of some type? Hard to say but that's how it seemed. If you are wondering why surface texture affects ball flight, bear in mind that (as with golf balls) a rougher texture could creates a thin turbulent boundary layer of air that clings to the ball's surface. This allows the smoothly flowing air to follow the ball's surface a little farther around the back side of the ball, thereby decreasing the size of the wake. Table tennis balls are a lot lighter, so it may be that smaller changes in surface texture are sufficient to affect blight through the air -- see http://www.scientificamerican.com/ar...es-in-golf-ba/).

        I felt like the ball had more spin after the bounce on the table, and that it jumped less off the table as a result of spin. This could also be due to smooth surface. My guess is that it is heavier than NP40+ (I will weigh precisely next week) but also a lot harder than a XSF, so it will seem lighter when you play with it. At times it felt somewhat intermediate between XSF and NP40+ but when you flat hit the ball or blocked with authority, the ball seemed to move super fast.

        My suspicion is that the very smooth surface of the ball is part of the reason it plays differently. But it is not everything. The G40+ also played a bit differently from a very well worn NP40+.

        A couple of really good players on the next table (Jimmy Butler and Niraj Oak) hit with one briefly, the first impression they had was not altogether positive, but they didn't give it more than about 5 minutes. I very much value the opinion of very good players, they just see and feel things more accurately.

        I am not sure if people will like G40+ better or worse than NP40+ or XSF. To be honest, I am not entirely sure myself how I feel about it.

        The one thing I am sure of is that it is certainly as legitimate an effort to make a decent plastic ball as either XSF or NP40+. There were no grossly bad bounces (I am very accustomed to 40+ balls, have used them exclusively for 18 months). Didn't break one in two hours.

        I will write more after I have played with it some more, and also after other people in my club at various levels have had a change to try it out. But if you held a gun to my head and say rank order the balls, I would say NP40+ > XSF = G40+ >>>>>>>> any Chinese seamed ball.


        Edit added. Second two hour session this evening, this time on Butterfly tables. Nothing really struck me as different except I think I like the ball better this time. After this second session, from purely playing characteristics, I think I prefer it slightly to XSF. The linear ball flight is still an impression I have.

        Anyway, I am perfectly happy with it. I enjoy using it. And my impression is that the ball is pretty durable. Time will tell on that.

        Another thing I should mention is that I now have information on weight. A sample of 6 balls had an average of 2.76 grams, which meets 2016 standards. That turns out to be exactly the same as XSF and significantly more than Nittaku Premium. Don't let anyone tell you that the G40+ is a light ball, if it were any heavier it would be illegal after January 1 of this coming year. It also has a bounce height identical to XSF. So that is why those two play somewhat similarly. However, ball flight of the G40+ reminds me more of Nittaku Premium, and I think the G40+ retains more spin after it bounces on the table.

        2 people liked this review
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