We really enjoyed our previous playtest with Tecnifibre ATP Razor Code, so we were excited to get our hands on another Tecnifibre co-poly – Tecnifibre Black Code.
I’m not sure what the code is exactly, but I do know that Razor Code got me playing some really nice tennis, so it was time to see if Black Code could do the same. As we would expect with polys, this string is known for its control and spin, but it’s pretty soft as poly strings go, so it should have a little bit of added comfort as well.
We certainly found the Razor Code to be very comfortable for a poly string, so hopefully, Black Code would do the same and make life easy on our joints.
We took this playtest with a Head Graphene 360 Speed Pro strung at 50 lbs, so we were looking to swing through aggressively and really test Black Code’s ability to control the ball.
So, how would Tecnifibre Black Code get on?
Power – 6/10
We found Tecnifibre Black Code offered pretty standard levels of power for a poly string and we were able to settle in really quickly with it. 6 might seem like a bad score, but generally, when you’re looking at polys, you don’t want anything super powerful.
Instead, it’s the control that poly players value, which allows them to swing through without worrying about the ball pinging on them. There are some poly strings that give you a little extra pop, but Black Code was pretty much a middle-ground and we didn’t have a problem with that.
We didn’t feel like we were left underpowered, and we didn’t find we were spraying balls to the back fence either, so Tecnifibre Black Code gets it about right here with a score of 6 out of 10 for power.
Control – 8/10
Black Code didn’t disappoint when it came to control and earned a very good score of 8 out of 10. This is part of the reason people play with polys – for that ability to swing hard but keep plenty of control on the ball and Black Code did nicely here.
It didn’t quite reach the levels of control of a Babolat RPM Blast or a Big Banger Original, but it was certainly on a par with Razor Code, which is not bad at all. Strings are generally a compromise, and strings like RPM Blast and Big Banger may give lots of control, but they sacrifice in areas like comfort, which is where strings like this one win back some points.
Feel – 6.5/10
We found the feel of the Black Code was pretty good but not quite what we got from the Razor Code. This is still a pretty soft poly string though and we certainly didn’t have any real issues when it came to feel.
There aren’t that many poly string that wow us with feel, and it’s not the main reason you go for these strings. For me, feel is in your hands, and although the string can make some difference, Tecnifibre Black Code certainly isn’t going to hold you back from hitting the ball how you want to.
Spin – 8/10
This is another reason why people love poly strings – they give you great access to spin. These strings grip the ball so well, allowing you to get some serious revolutions on the ball and get it kicking up of the court.
Topspin plays such a big role in the modern game and one of the things that allows players to play this way is great strings like Tecnifibre Black Code. It’s not the absolute most spin friendly string on the market, but it certainly gives you more than enough grip on the ball to turn it into plenty of spin.
Comfort – 6.5/10
Again, we all felt that Black Code was just that little bit less comfortable that Razor Code, but it wasn’t bad by poly standards. Poly strings can be very stiff to play with and if you’re not used to them then they can be very uncomfortable.
However, once you get used to them, these strings are fairly manageable, and we didn’t have any real problems with Black Code. It’s fairly standard for a poly sting and certainly nothing to grumble about.
Durability – 8/10
Durability was another area where Tecnifibre Black Code performed well, and we found it lasted nicely. The strings snap back into place really well and don’t lose tension too quickly. Every string is naturally going to lose some tension over time, but Black Code keeps its tension pretty well.
The other big bonus is that it’s difficult to break these strings, which means you don’t have to take it into the shop to get restrung all the time!
Overall – 7.5/10
Overall, we did find the Tecnifibre Black Code came up a little bit short in comparison to Tecnifibre Razor Code. Razor Code is an amazing string, so it’s tough to compete with, but Black Code does work if you can pick it up as a slightly cheaper option.
It’s still a good string, and we enjoyed it’s control, and spin, but we certainly felt we would choose Razor Code if we had the choice.
Review by: Will