Tennis Racquets

Prince O3 Tattoo 290 Review

I got a few demos from Tennis Warehouse Europe a while back and one of them was Prince O3 Tattoo 290. Here is my Prince O3 Tattoo 290 Review.

Prince makes the Prince O3 Tattoo 290 and 310 racquets as a part of a collaboration with Italian sports fashion brand Hydrogen. The brand has sponsored numerous players like Fabio Fognini and Feliciano Lopez and creates apparel that’s a bit edgier than the standard fare. The Prince O3 Tattoo is the Textreme Tour O3 with a new, tattoo-inspired paint job.

The Prince O3 Tattoo 290 comes with O-ports to create more string movement and dampen vibrations in the string bed. The technology has been a Prince regular for many years now and works as intended. The upside is comfort and spin potential. The downside is shortened string life and a muted feel. Like with most things, some people hate it, some love it.

Specs

There is also a 310g version, which is what I would typically go for, but this is what they had available for demo at the moment. The only difference between the 290 and the 310 is the weight and the distribution of the weight.

With the 290g you get more weight towards the head to increase stability and with the 310g you get more weight in the handle to increase maneuverability. The swing weight is a bit heavier on the 310, but it’s not drastically different. TWE has measured it as 318 strung for the 290 and 325 for the 310 version.

Head size: 100 sq inches
Length: Standard
Weight: 290 unstrung / 306 strung
Balance: 32.5 cm unstrung (5 pts HL) / 33.5 cm strung (2 pts HL)
Swing weight: 288 unstrung / 318 strung
Stiffness: 68 unstrung / 65 strung
Beam width: 20 mm / 22 mm / 18 mm
Construction: Textreme/Twaron/Graphite
String pattern: 16/19
Stringing: Mains skip 8T, 7H, 9H

How does it play?

I generally prefer heavier racquets and preferred this one with a 2-3 grams of lead tape at 12, so I did feel like the stability was slightly lacking at times. But the feel of the racquet was more connected than many o-port racquets and my favorite shot was drop shots or touch shots near the net. The lack of stability bothered me a bit at the net, but it improved when I added a bit of weight to the frame.

I prefer the thicker beam of the Ripstick in this case. It makes the racquet feel more solid despite the o-ports. And I also generally choose the non-O-port versions of the Textreme and Phantom racquets. O-port racquets with a high flex rating and/or thin beams can feel underpowered and unstable at times and that’s why I thought the combination of the tweener-style beam of the Ripstick and the O-ports for dampening was excellent. Here I felt like I needed more mass.

Still, on groundstrokes, the racquet came through the air nicely and it was easy to generate racquet head speed. The control was above average for a 16/19, 100 sq inch racquet and if you want a more forgiving and spin-friendly racquet but don’t want to go all the way to the Pure Aero/HEAD Extreme/Prince Ripstick, the Textreme O-port racquets are an excellent option. But unless you prefer light racquets, I would go for the more head-light 310g version.

Summary

Control: Above average in the category

Spin: Good, not Ripsticky, but good

Touch: Nice and connected, not too muted

Stability: I felt like it could do with a bit more weight, especially on volleys.

Power: A balance of power and control, not a racquet you tend to overhit with

If you want a racquet that stands out on the court with its aggressive and interesting looks and plays with a nice blend of power/control/spin/touch, the Textreme Tour racquets should be on your radar and the O-port ones will give you the best comfort of the bunch. If you’re not allergic to a bit more weight, I would recommend going for the heavier option to increase stability.

Check out the Prince Tattoo O3 racquets on Tennis Warehouse Europe

Shop Hydrogen apparel

TN

View Comments

  • Completely agree with this review. I have the 310 version, it's a very good racket. I do however prefer the Ripstick like you mentioned, plus the Synergy.

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