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New HEAD Prestige Racquets

by Tennisnerd

I have had the fortune to play-test the new HEAD Prestige racquets over a period of a couple of weeks. In short: this is a great update.

The HEAD Prestige is one of the more iconic racquet lines of all time. It has been played by many, many pro and recreational players of the years. The Prestige line has always been about control. Nothing has changed about this Graphene 360+ update. It is all about pinpoint precision.

So what is different with the new HEAD Prestige racquets compared to the previous version? There are a few mold changes, but the overall difference is the addition of Spiralfibers. This gives the Prestige a feeling of more old-school racquets, something I personally love. It is especially apparent in the MP version, where you can really feel the dwell-time of the ball on the stringbed. Lovers of classic HEAD racquets will definitely enjoy this sensation.

Learn more about HEAD racquets and the new Prestige line on their official website.The new HEAD Prestige racquets: Specs

The HEAD Graphene 360+ Prestige comes in five different models: Mid, Pro, MP, Tour and S. The MP has gone from a 95 sq inch racquet to a “true” 98 sq inch head size, the S has the same mold as the Tour but a lighter weight and a 16×19 instead of 18×19 string pattern. Although 95 sq inch racquets are my usual “sweet spot”, I really felt that this was a good move. The feeling of the MP is very plush and I find it to be a very versatile racquet. But more about the different models below. What is not yet published by HEAD are the stiffness ratings (usually listed in RA from 50-75). RA does not tell the whole story about how a racquet performs and how comfortable it is (weight, layup, beamwidth, etc impacts that too), but I would say the overall idea with the Prestige is a stiffness rating closer to 60. The stiffness goes up a bit when it comes to the S and the Tour, but they are not harsh or uncomfortable.

I have tested the racquets with various different HEAD strings: HEAD Experimental Tour, HEAD Velocity MLT, HEAD Lynx, and HEAD Hawk Touch.  Different strings suit the models differently and I will comment on that below.

How do they play?

Before I describe the various different models, I want to say that the Spiralfibers really soften the feel from the previous Graphene Touch version. It definitely suits the Prestige lines and brings it closer to older versions. The tech is similar to the Gravity racquets (click to read my review) so if you like the feel of those racquets, these racquets are the smaller, more traditional style (box beam!) versions of the Gravity.

Mid
A true 93 sq inch racquet. Not as flexible as the legendary Prestige Classic, but with more free power. A suitable racquet for attacking players who like to move towards the net. Low on power, high on control. Some access to spin thanks to the 16×19 string pattern. A nice racquet when you are in the attacking mood, but midsize racquets are quite demanding so this is definitely for the advanced player. I really like playing with it, but it is not my favorite of the bunch. I would use a hybrid or a multifilament string in this racquet.

Pro
On paper, the Pro should be the one closest to my heart. It has a true 95 sq inch head size, an open pattern and a slightly thicker beam (22 mm) for more power. It is quite precise and plays similar to the Mid, but with a larger head size. I really like this racquet, since it comes around fast enough on groundstrokes and gives me excellent precision at the net. Still, a bit more difficult to use than the MP. I played this racquet with Lynx and Hawk Touch. You can string at a low tension (below 20 kg / 49 lbs) and get some nice pocketing on the ball. A hybrid setup with a soft string in the mains can be a good idea.

MP
The MP has a completely new mold and for the first time in Prestige history – a true 98 sq inch racquet. This one has the sweetest feel of the bunch. It really offers a nice sensation with the racquet flexing on impact. It is not a noodle but gives you a really nice sensation when playing with it. I especially love attacking the net with this racquet. The only thing I would note is that it can be a bit unstable at the top of the hoop, but a few grams of lead tape at 12 helps that.  I think this one plays even better than the IG Prestige MP, which is high praise! If you like the K7 Lime or an 18×20 Blade, you will love this racquet. I played this with Lynx and HEAD Velocity MLT 1.30 and the Velocity was a winner although you got a bit more spin with Lynx. I think this racquet could play great with a hybrid setup.

The “new” racquets in the line

Tour
The Tour was introduced in the Graphene Touch series and is more forgiving than the racquets above and a suitable “tweener” at 99 sq inches with an 18×19 string pattern. It is not as plush or precise as the MP, but gives you better access to spin and is easier to use. I am not sure about the naming here with MP, Pro, and Tour with different specs. Both Tour and Pro sound like fairly demanding racquets, but this one could suit a player who wants something in between a Gravity Tour and a Prestige MP. I liked this racquet with the new HEAD Experimental Tour (soon to be released as Lynx Tour) strung at 51 lbs / 23 kg.

S
The S is a little light for my taste and feels like something Extreme or Instinct-like with less power. The demographic isn’t crystal clear for this frame and it kind of ends in between the different lines of racquets. Not so Prestige-like in my opinion, but not a bad racquet by any means. Just not sure about the identity. I preferred this racquet with HEAD Experimental Tour strung at 53 lbs.

It offers a lot of spin and power, but better control than more Pure Drive-inspired racquets. A good platform racquet for players who like to start with a low static weight and weigh it up to their preferred specs.

Summary

I really believe that the new HEAD Prestige line-up is a significant improvement over the Graphene Touch version. I feel more connected to the ball, the comfort is improved and I think there are quite a few options to suit your game if you are a player looking for control. I personally enjoyed the Mid, Pro and the MP, but the MP had the sweetest feel of the bunch. The ball pocketing was exceptional and although moving to a larger head size was a bold move (although it will annoy some of the Prestige MP fans), it really seems to have worked out well.

If you are an advanced player who likes to feel connected to your racquet on every shot, you should definitely try the new Prestige. A video review to come soon.

Have you tried the new Prestige racquets? What do you think? 

If you buy a racquet from our friends at All Things Tennis, you will get 5% off and a free string upgrade if you use the code: TENNISNERD at checkout.

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16 comments

Jerry Ray December 18, 2019 - 1:04 am

How would you compare the MP to the Wilson Ultra Tour 97? Meaning do I need to own both? ?

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AJ December 18, 2019 - 2:00 am

Do you know the swingweight of each model?

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John December 18, 2019 - 3:32 am

Jonas..great reviews on these 5 new frames from Head,,,you really broke it down comparing each model verses the slightly larger or smaller head sizes offered.
And all the other specs as well weight,beam,string pattern ect,ect..
But what I did not get was the over all length of each model,and are these 27 inch frames only or do they come in a XL longer model,as many many players now looking for that slightly longer frame,as Novak new racquet is 3/8 inch longer than his old model Head racquet.
A new product that by simply changing the factory butt cap on any racquet can add half an inch in length, it’s called the XTP Xtended Tennis Product butt cap.
Many players now making a standard 27 to a XL 27.5 easily done just by installing the XTP cap.
Truly.jk

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Scriabin December 18, 2019 - 9:12 am

Since you tested C10 Pro few weeks ago, how the power of new Prestiges compare to the Volkl? I was a lover of Prestige but abandoned them because of its extremely low power.

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David December 18, 2019 - 6:52 pm

How does this compare to the 2015 Wilson blade 18×20? How much lead did you put at 12 o’clock on the m
MP and did you add any weight in the handle to counter balance? Thanks

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Arvid Jaans December 18, 2019 - 7:28 pm

Hej Jonas! How does the midplus compare to the pro tour 280/630? God Jul!

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Henrik Wallensten December 20, 2019 - 9:14 am

I really like the color of the new Prestige! A great mix of the old-school Prestige Classic and the new bold design of 21´st century. I woulds also say Head is onto something good here with the spiralfibres. A great mix between new and old. A mix that brings the best of two worlds into action.

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WIll December 21, 2019 - 1:06 pm

Could you meassure the sw? The prestige tour looks like a great platform for customizing.

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Peco January 21, 2020 - 3:46 am

After playing with Prestige frame (every version since the Classic and on), I had been waiting for the new Graphene 360+ Prestige to come up. Gotta say this –
Have been demoing Mid, MP and Pro for a while now. In my personal opinion, they look bad and play even worse. Since the introduction of the Graphene (2014), Head designer team is going in the wrong direction.

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will February 9, 2020 - 10:52 pm

I tried the Pro version with Head Lynx Tour in it. I have to say what a great feeling racquet.
I come from the graphene touch en tried several others in between like the wilson ultra tour, prince phantom, wilson blade. But this racquet is something else. It’s supposed to be stiff but it flexes beautifully. And when you hit the sweet spot you’ll get lots off power.
I’ve got one thing to say just test it yourself.

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Nikolaus February 16, 2020 - 11:24 am

Hello Jonas,
Coming from RF97A I‘ve been thinking of switching to either Head Gravity Tour or Head Prestige MP
May I ask you which one would you prefer and why?
So far I couldn’t test the new Prestige MP yet, the Gravity Tour was pleasant racket and plays very similar to my old Head Youtek IG Prestige MP.
Looking forward to your thoughts, Kind regards Nikolaus

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Tennisnerd February 17, 2020 - 8:17 am

Hi Nikolaus,

The Gravity Tour is easier to use. A bigger sweet spot, slightly more power. I would recommend that one.

Regards / J

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Nikolaus February 19, 2020 - 6:02 am

Many thanks Jonas for your answer!
Regarding strings for the Gravity Tour would you rather go for a full bed Poly Head Hawk, Head Hawk Touch or Head Lynx?
Or would you chose a different set up?
I‘ve tried a full bed Head Lynx Tour and this string didn’t suit me at all (strung 24/23kg).
Kind regards Nikolaus

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Tennisnerd February 19, 2020 - 9:35 am

I would go with HEAD Lynx or HEAD Velocity MLT. These are really comfortable yet quite controlled strings. 23-24 kg is good. Cheers / J

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Nikolaus February 19, 2020 - 4:20 pm

Thanks a lot Jonas, I‘ll try the strings and as soon as I‘ve received my Gravity Tour I‘ll post my feedback here!
Great blog BTW 😉

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Joe U June 25, 2020 - 11:51 am

Hello Jonas,
like always top reports.
What is are the differences between the Head Gravity 360+ MP and the Head Prestige 360+ S?
What do you think, who has more power, control, stiffness, sweatspot ect.?
Thanks a lot.
Great work.
Joe U

Reply

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