Luxilon Alu Power Review and Play Test
String: Luxilon Alu Power (16L 1.25 mm)
Construction: Co-Polymer Monofilament
Racket Used: Babolat Aero Pro Drive
Tension: 60 lbs (about 27 kg)
Cost: $18 a set
Alu Power – What You Need to Know
This is the OG of Polyester strings and one could argue revolutionized/changed the way high level tennis has been taught and played. Amazing to think that this string has been around for over 20 years and is still a mainstay on the professional tours. It’s one of those strings I think any player who hits with topspin should at least try once. It is an amazing string and a string that, if I didn’t have a budget, would likely be my string of choice. The downsides are longevity and price. It’s not a string you’ll break frequently but I’ve always found that after a few hours the string just completely drops off in terms of tension and playability. The question is can you justify the expense? Luckily there are alternatives that I think have a much more appealing cost benefit analysis but there is no denying the legendary status of Alu Power.
Alu Power – What I Loved
In the first few hours pretty much everything. It doesn’t really require any break in off the stringer and from the response on that first ball it just feels good and performs great. Love the pop on serve and the spin potential on groundstrokes. I’ve even found that the response on my touch volleys and drop shots is superior to pretty much any other polyester I’ve tried. There’s a reason this string has stuck around for 20 years and is still so popular on both tours.
Alu Power – What I Hated
Honestly just the performance drop off after a few hours of heavy hitting (for me about 4 high quality sets). This string is no where close to Hyper-G in terms of how long it performs adequately (with that string I usually play until breaks). It’s painful to have to cut this string out after 5 hours but you really notice the drop off.
For me as well I’d like the string to be a bit stiffer (more control). I think Hyper-G is perfect for me but this is so personal and will be a case by case basis. I think for most players who swing with a bit more grace this is the perfect polyester.
This is the most glaring weakness of Alu Power. It’s not a great value string. This is the sort of string where you wait for a sale (of which there are several throughout the year) and pick up a reel. Even though I love the string the limited amount of time this string plays amazing for just doesn’t justify spending $18 a set.
Who this string IS for
Players who take big swings at the ball and generate top spin. Really this string is suitable for players with more of a flat game but it certainly responds well to that low to high swing. This string is partially responsible for the aggressive top spin style groundstrokes that are so common today. It’s not as bad on the arm as many other polyesters and it’s surprisingly crisp on volleys and touch shots. I love the pop it delivers on all types of serve as well.
Who this string is NOT for
The usual suspects when it comes to polyester strings. Alu Power isn’t super stiff but you still need to be able to generate your own pace. It’s not called big banger for nothing. Also players on a budget would likely seek out a cheaper alternative of which there are a few (Genesis Typhoon comes to mind) but a little google searching with give you some alternatives to try.
It’s a top string no doubt about it and a MUST TRY for polyester users. There’s no string that I’ve ever played with that quite compares especially in the first few hours. The pop, the control, the spin potential, it’s all there.
It should come as no surprise to anyone that this string is incredibly popular amongst professional players who can afford to restring after every match. If I had the time and budget that’s what I would do. Obviously most of us don’t have that luxury and that’s where the string falls short. Especially if you take a big cut at the ball this string will start to annoy you after a few hours. The tension drop is very noticeably and the feel that was once so good just goes away and you’re left with a springy unresponsive frame. It’s one of the few strings where I feel it’s absolutely necessary to cut out before it breaks.