Babolat Synthetic Gut String Review
Babolat has a rich history of producing some of the best tennis strings in the world. They use a wide range of string materials, including natural gut, multifilament, synthetic gut and polyester. Synthetic gut these days is often seen as the lower end string in the range, and whilst this is the case with Babolat, their offering is still high grade.
Synthetic gut strings are actually constructed using a nylon thread that is wrapped in synthetic material. This material varies from brand to brand, but it can be argued that nowadays multifilament strings are actually closer to the feel of actual natural gut. That shows just how far tennis string development has come! Nonetheless, synthetic gut strings offer a neutral feel and form a great base for many hybrid setups, as well as a good starting point for players new to the game. If anyone is going to produce high quality synthetic gut strings it is Babolat, so let’s see how they played out!
7out of 10
As mentioned, synthetic gut strings differ from multifilament strings due to their solid core which actually offers a little more durability and less power. That being said, synthetic gut strings generally offer more pop than polyester strings due to their more flexible make up.
This is definitely the case when it comes to Babolat Synthetic Gut, as the string is pretty powerful and allows you to gain depth on your shots with ease.
The feel of the string being so soft also helps with pushing volleys nice and deep, as well as improving the penetration on ground strokes even when you are off balance.
Generally speaking I do find synthetic gut strings to feel a little thin, even when they have the same gauge as an equivalent polyester string. Perhaps this is because of the construction, but it is something that I tend to notice.
The result of this is that although you get a great amount of power from these synthetic gut strings from Babolat, they can take a little bit of getting used to.
It is worth bearing in mind that although synthetic gut strings used to be quite cutting edge, due to the huge advancement of polyester and multifilament strings they are now pretty basic in terms of their feel and positioning in the market.
Therefore, they are generally seen as beginner strings that offer a neutral platform for players to build from, whether that is improving their technique or building their knowledge of strings and equipment customisation.
With that being said, the power in these strings is pretty decent compared to all strings out there, but for a softer string of this type, there are definitely more powerful strings to go at.
If you are after a relatively well balanced string that offers a bit of everything, then this could be a solid option. However, if you are really looking to ramp up the power then a natural gut of a soft multifilament would be the way to go.
6.5out of 10
Control is a bit of a mixed bag with Babolat Synthetic Gut. On the one hand it is a pretty well judged string as far as soft, powerful strings go.
The monofilament construction helps to dial down the pop, adding to the muted feel of the string. This gives it a consistent response, helping the string to be predictable.
However, this is still a soft string by design, so will offer a fair amount of power and at times this can be difficult to tame.
The main thing to bear in mind with this string is that it will be quite sensitive to tension changes. If you string it up tight then it can feel quite stiff, almost resembling a polyester string, whereas if you string it loose it will feel pretty lively and be much closer to a multifilament.
Again, the response is pretty muted for a softer string, so you do at least get a uniform level of feedback. This makes it easier to control the ball as you can have a good idea of what the string will do next.
7.5out of 10
As far as touch goes, this is one of the stronger suits of Babolat Synthetic Gut. Compared to some of its rivals, the Babolat option is pretty feelsome and gives a crisp response off the string bed.
You can definitely slice and dice your way around the court well with this string and as it offers good playability and a pretty pure connection to the ball.
On volleys the softness of the string really shone through, you can stick crisp volleys nicely and slices in particular stay very low.
Again, you don’t get a load of spin from this string, but it is easy to feel what is going on in the string bed and this helps you control the ball nicely.
It is of course not quite as communicative as a natural gut string, but it is definitely more responsive than a traditional polyester string.
Again, synthetic gut strikes a pretty good middle ground between the softest and the hardest string out there, making it a great all rounder for less experienced players to try out.
Babolat Synthetic Gut is also great for use in hybrid setups, as it offers a fairly consistent feel that pairs up nicely with a rougher poly. This will give a nice blend of pop, feel, control and spin, especially if you paired it with something like Babolat RPM Blast Rough.
5out of 10
Spin is not one of the major strong points of Babolat Synthetic Gut, however this is not surprising as it is a naturally softer string.
If you decide to go with a slightly higher tension then you can get some spin from the string, but if you are after more RPMs on the ball then it would definitely be worth pairing Babolat Synthetic Gut with a rougher poly.
6out of 10
As far as durability goes, synthetic gut strings are generally not renowned for their long lasting capabilities. Polyester strings are notoriously long lasting, whereas natural gut strings don’t tend to last long, but will maintain their tension more consistently.
Don’t expect Babolat Synthetic Gut strings to last a lifetime, and their tension maintenance is not as consistent as a natural gut string either.
However, due to their monofilament construction they will definitely last longer than most multifilament strings.
They are definitely a middle ground as far as durability is concerned. It may be worth opting for a pre-stretch on synthetic gut strings to enhance the consistency of their tension maintenance.
8out of 10
Comfort is another major advantage of using Babolat Synthetic Gut strings. As it is a softer string, it is definitely an arm friendly option that would be suitable for players that have previously suffered with tennis elbow.
Whilst it is certainly not as plush and smooth as a natural gut string, synthetic gut is still a softer string in general so it does have the advantage of being supple.
Using Babolat Synthetic Gut is also a great way to soften up an otherwise stiff poly based string setup.
7out of 10
Overall, Babolat Synthetic Gut is a good all rounder that serves as a great starting point for beginner players who are just less experienced with experimenting with strings.
It sits right in the middle of a number of playing characteristics, for example it is not as comfortable as a natural gut but more comfortable than many polyester strings.
It is also more powerful than most polyester strings but not as powerful as natural gut. Whilst it is not as durable as polyester strings, it is definitely going to last longer than the majority of multifilament or natural gut strings.
One of the most compelling reasons to use synthetic gut is the very affordable price point. It is definitely the least expensive option of all the string types out there, and it is a particularly good choice to include in hybrids.
Babolat’s Synthetic Gut is one of the best feeling and most comfortable out there and is one of the higher quality offerings compared to its competitors.
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