The Prince TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P is like a throwback to the solid midsize rackets we’ve seen in years gone by, yet packed with all the technology we expect from a modern-day racket.
The racket has a heavy, firm feel about it that reminds me of the classic Head Prestige I used to use back when I was sixteen.
So, you can imagine my excitement upon picking up the racket!
Weighing in at 330g, this is a racket for experienced players, who have plenty of racket head speed and seek comfort and control from their racket.
If you’re looking for effortless power then this is certainly not the racket, but if it’s control that you’re after, then this could be a great option for you.
I always seem to say this, and it shouldn’t make any difference to whether you buy this racket, but it looks brilliant!
A no messing black paint job and a beautiful thin frame give the impression of a racket that truly sings about the integrity of the game.
The TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P is classed as a midsize racket, with a head size of 600 sq. cm, and comes with an 18 x 20 string pattern for extra control.
I know there are many top players out there who love the idea of having the smallest head possible on their racket, but I do like a little room for error.
The TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P gives you just enough margin for error if your timing is off whilst still giving you more than enough control.
The TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P goes all out on control by adding in an 18 x 20 string pattern that lets you keep the ball on the strings that little bit longer, giving you an excellent feel throughout the hit.
The racket is packed full of some fancy tech, with Prince’s super thin CTS Beam, and TeXtreme technology.
The CTS beam goes from 16mm thick at the shaft to just 20mm at the head, ensuring a clean swing and a quickness through the air despite the heaviness of the frame.
During our testing, we found that this gave us great feedback throughout the shot.
The Textreme carbon fiber from which the racket is made means that despite being very thin it is extremely strong, resulting in greater stability upon ball contact.
The TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P was designed with the help of tour players to appeal to top level players who play a modern, aggressive baseline game.
We also discovered that it was also a very suitable racket for volleys and serves.
This racket is all about two things: control and feel.
Think of the classic pro midsize racket, throw in a bit of modern technology, and you have the Prince TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P.
This style of racket really appeals to some people, but to many it will do very little for their game.
To be able to benefit from the control and feel you gain from the racket you must have some very solid strokes and be able to produce a lot of racket head speed.
If you’re not able to take a full cut at the ball, then you’re simply not going to be able to generate the power that you need.
For me, I love the idea of the TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P and the pro style racket, but the benefit it gives me in some shots is more than negated by the difficulties it causes me on other shots.
That’s something you must consider if you’re thinking of buying this racket.
For me (Will), my forehand is easily my best shot, and I generate a ton of racket head speed.
As you can imagine, the TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P felt like a dream as I took full cuts at the ball, placing it where ever I wanted.
The problems came on the shots where I’m not quite as assured, namely my backhand and serve.
The racket felt very nice when I was presented with an easy ball around waist height, but once I was having to play high backhands around my shoulders, I found it much more difficult to generate pace.
Likewise, with the serve, the racket was great when I was warming up and smashing serves with no pressure, but I noticed that when a big point came I was often putting in much slower serves.
When you’re investing money into your tennis and rackets, it’s important to bear in mind how the racket suits your whole game.
If you don’t get it right, you could get burnt pretty quickly in more ways than one!
For me, it’s easy to get carried away with the fact that this racket makes my forehand feel like Nadal’s and brush the fact that I’m rolling backhands back at 20 mph under the carpet.
At the end of the day, if I can’t hit a backhand, then my opponent is just going to pin me on that side all match, and I’m never going to hit a forehand anyway!
Not to mention the hole in my pocket as I would need to buy yet another racket…
Groundstrokes – 8.5/10
We loved the feel of the Prince TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P off both wings.
The whole racket is set up to optimize feel and control and that is surely what you get.
One aspect that we particularly liked is that despite the small head it still felt like there was some allowance for the odd mistimed shot whilst still maintaining that focus on touch.
The racket does exactly what it advertises: control, control and more control.
If that’s what you’re looking for then this could be a great option, but you’ve got to be very confident in your swings off both the forehand and backhand sides.
Prince advertise this racket as ideal for the modern, aggressive game, and we can see the thinking behind that.
But for those of us who are not on the pro circuit, it may encourage us to be aggressive, but it might also take some zip off our shots.
Considering how the racket is advertised, we gave it an 8.5/10 for groundstrokes.
We loved the feel, and it certainly gave us all the control we could hope for, but we all found it difficult off our weaker sides.
Lawrence claims he could hit the perfect backhand with a frying pan, and so obviously loved the feel of the 93P, but on his forehand, where he sometimes struggles to generate enough racket head speed he often found himself dropping the ball short and having to put extra effort in to the shot.
You’re going to see a familiar pattern here!
The TeXtreme Phantom Pro does everything it says it does on the groundstrokes, the control is wonderful, but whether it gets you playing the aggressive baseline tennis it is designed for really depends on how strong your strokes are.
Serve – 8/10
This is no rocket launcher, so if you’re changing over from a lightweight racket expect to have to put a bit of effort in to bulking up your serve!
Having said that, we liked the slightly head light balance of the racket which makes it feel lighter than its 330g and really helps you with fast swings.
Once again, the Prince TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P did not disappoint on its promise of control and touch, as it felt well balanced throughout the swing, and very responsive on contact.
We really enjoyed working on placing the ball perfectly with this racket, and it was nice to focus more on precision than power for once.
As Roger Federer goes to show, power is not everything, and if you get your placement right, you’re going to stroll through a lot of love service games.
You will have to focus on keeping your racket head speed up when using this racket, though.
If you start getting tight and the racket head speed drops, then you’re going to be looking at a lot of 30-40 points where you dob in a frying pan second serve!
We tried out the TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P on quite a chilly day with some pretty tight strings, so we did struggle a little bit with creating as much power on the serve as we would have liked.
If we were to have played with the TeXtreme Phantom Pro again we would probably have dropped the string tension just a little bit (Prince recommend between 20 and 25kg to around 22kg), just to give us a little extra pop.
Overall, we’d give the TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P an 8 out of 10 for the serve.
You guessed it, it does what it advertises: control and feel.
The balance of the racket really works on the serve, and the feel is exactly what we look for, but once again, you’ve really got to be confident in your strokes if you’re going to buy this racket.
Volleys – 9/10
Hitting volleys with a heavy, control orientated racket is always a great feeling, and the TeXtreme Phantom Pro 93P didn’t disappoint.
When there’s no real need for power the main thing you’re looking for is feel, and the TeXtreme Phantom Pro feels great.
The Textreme technology gives the racket a lot of stability and this can really be felt when hitting volleys.
Unfortunately, there was only the two of us at the courts while we tested this racket, otherwise we would have loved to have tried it out for a quick set of doubles.
The Pro 93P is crisp and clean on the volleys and gives you the stability you need to dig yourself out of a difficult position.
The Phantom Pro gets a 9 from us for volleys. The pro style rackets always seem to make for great volleys and we loved being at the net with this racket.
Conclusion – 8/10
Although this racket is only going to appeal to a select few people, it is a truly excellent racket.
Prince have set out with a clear plan in mind, to make a racket that is all about control, and they have succeeded.
Who should be buying this racket?
In our opinion you’ve got to be playing at a pretty high level for this racket to work for you.
If there are any cracks in your technique, then they are going to be punished by the Phantom Pro.
As Prince say, this racket would suit an aggressive baseliner, but it is also a solid all-round racket when in the right hands.
One thing to remember is that this is quite a heavy racket, so if you have had injury problems with your elbows, wrists or shoulders in the past, it might be worth thinking about how the weight may affect you.
Likewise, if you’re thinking about stepping up from a lighter racket, just keep in mind the weight difference and work your way in gently.
Overall, we give the Prince Phantom Pro 93P an 8 out of 10.
It’s designed to be a pro style racket for aggressive baseliners, and it does that well.
We loved the design, feel and control of the Phantom Pro 93P and it certainly helped to make our best shots even better.
On the flip side, a racket like this tends to make your worst shots worse, and we did get that feeling with the Phantom Pro 93P.
At the end of the day, whether you will get along with this tennis racket depends on how complete your technique is, and a big part of that will be how much racket head speed you produce.
If you get great racket head speed off all your shots, then you could be the one to pull the “Excalibur” from the stone.
Review by: Will