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Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review

by Tennisnerd
Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review

You might not have heard of the brand Artengo before, but it is the tennis/padel brand from the French sports superstore Decathlon. The Artengo TR 990 Pro is their flagship racquet and is endorsed by doubles star Oliver Marach from Austria. Here is our Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review.

This review is written by guest writer and fellow tennis nerd Ferenc Ferdinánd Weisz. Thanks Ferenc! You can follow him on Instagram: @ferencferdinandweisz

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review – Introduction

I first met with Artengo brand a few years ago, after Decathlon opened their shop where I live. I wanted to buy a can of tennis balls, and Artengo TB 920 was 5,30 € and the Babolat Roland Garros All Court was 6 €. I had no familiarity with the brand at first and went for the Babolat, but after I was disappointed with that ball, the Artengo TB 920 a chance. Now I only buy this ball, because I like the feel, good playability, durability and perhaps the best price to value ratio in the market. These days I buy their T-shirts and shorts, and I have about two dozen pairs of Artengo tennis socks which I’m also using every day. Maybe a pair of shoes will be next. So I wasn’t skeptical about the brand anymore when I did this Artengo TR 990 Pro racquet review.

Last year, Artengo released their TR 990 Pro and TR 990 Pro Plus racquets, the successor of the TR 990. In my opinion, the paint job of TR 990 Pro was much more elegant and simple than the previous version and it made me interested in the racquet. During winter I had tried  replacing my Head Graphene XT Instinct MP racquets, and I bought a pair of used Wilson Pro Staff 97. After a few months I realized how 315 grams weight is too much for my arm and the 97 sq inch head size is too small with my footwork and I switched back to the Instinct racquets.

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review – The Price is Right

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review

After a few months, the TR 990 Pro was again the focus of interest. I was bored with my racquets and needed some new inspiration.  I also realized it was twenty years since I bought a new racquet, when I started playing tennis as a 7-year-old. The Artengo TR 990 Pro is offered at a really nice price: 29 900 HUF in Hungary, and 89.90€ in Austria or other eurozone countries (£ 69.90 in UK), which is half or two-thirds compared to “big” racquet manufacturers price. How is this possible? The answer is simple: a big brand’s products have to give profit to the manufacturer, wholesaler, and distributor also, but for an own-branded product these three is only one company, which allows a much cheaper price with similar quality as other brands.

I read some of the user reviews of the Artengo TR 990 Pro and they were impressively positive. Someone, for example, wrote how they bought this as a backup racquet to their Pure Aero, but ended up using the Artengo instead.

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review – Specs and Tech

This racquet has a typical “Babolat-style specification”:

  • 300 grams unstrung weight
  • 100 sq inch or 645 cm2 head size
  • 320 mm balance or 7 pts head-light
  • 16×19 string pattern
  • 68.5 cm standard length or 27 inches (Plus version: 70 cm or 27.5 inches)
  • RA 71

The racquet head is more rounded than my Head Instinct, and also rounder than the Pure Aero or Pure Drive. The head length is similar to the Pro Staff 97. Beam is not written on the frame, but I measured both 25mm in 12 and 3/9 o’clock, and 20mm in the throat. The handle shape is classic, not the even-sided one. The buttcap is similar to Head racquets. The grommet has an advanced design, no shared holes, knot positions are prepared and in the most logical position. The racquet coming is sold strung, with some 1.25 mm black polyester string.

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review – First Impressions

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review

Doubles player Oliver Marach uses the TR 990 Pro Plus

For me, a really important thing is, when I take the racquet throat into my left hand. The throat shape, size, paint surface and so on. When I don’t feel comfortable with my throat grip, then it is not my racquet. The Artengo TR 990 Pro worked well for me in this aspect.

First I played with original factory string. Control and maneuverability were fine from the first hit. Slice also worked nicely, but maybe due to the higher tension of the strings than I am used to playing with. I felt some slight pain from the mishits. At this time, I was skeptical about whether I would like this racquet. The department manager from Decathlon told me that I couldn’t restring the racquet, but I did it anyway and cut out the factory string. Instead, I strung it Wilson Revolve 1.25 at 22 kg, ATW pattern.

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review – In-depth

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review

After the first minutes of playing after restringing the racquet, I felt that I made the right decision. Feel and comfort was much better. Suddenly it was really joyful to play with this racquet. My groundstrokes worked really well and I felt that the racquet was fast through the air. This is an important question for an amateur because with my Pro Staff I feel much more sluggish. The Sweetspot of the Artengo TR 990 Pro was much bigger than my Instinct (the small sweetspot was a problem with that) and I think the reason was the more rounded racquet head. I really felt connected to the ball during my time with this racquet.

I’m a fan of 100 sq inch head size racquets, therefore I don’t care about the better control of the smaller head size. In this range, I’m absolutely satisfied with my game. When I swing and hit the ball correctly, I get the response I am looking for.  The topspin was excellent with the Artengo thanks to the open 16×19 pattern.

I never really liked the idea of racquets with high stiffness, but my experience with this racquet was different. I felt that immediate connection to the ball, which I currently enjoy. The handle also contains silicone, like in many pro stock racquets. Since I bought this racquet, I have not felt the urge to go back to my other racquets. I currently play the Artengo TR 990 Pro with Wilson Revolve at 22 kg (50 lbs), but maybe I want to try a one level softer poly at 23 kg (51 lbs), or some hybrid with a multifilament cross string to add a bit of extra comfort.

Artengo TR 990 Pro Racquet Review – Summary

In this spec range, I think this is an absolutely competitive and nicely priced racquet. I’m absolutely satisfied and do not regret that I bought this racquet. I recommended everyone who is looking for a 100 sq inch head size, 16×19 pattern and 300 gram unstrung racquet, to check out the Artengo TR 990 Pro, it is definitely a worthy opponent to a Pure Drive or Pure Aero.

Thanks, Ferenc for the review! Sounds like a nice racquet and I am now curious to test this one myself when I get the chance. If you have tried the Artengo TR 990 Pro, please give us your opinion of it in the comments below.

PS. Doubles player Oliver Marach uses and endorses this racquet model, but the Plus version. DS.

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4 comments

Krisz August 12, 2019 - 6:59 pm

Great review, thank you.

Reply
John August 13, 2019 - 4:19 am

Hello,Ference,,I really liked your in depth review of these 2 Artengo racquets,,and I was very interested in the fact that both the racquets are same except for the Plus model that is half an inch longer in length, at 27.5 this seems now to be the 2nd most popular level length of tennis racquets,,the standard 67.5cm or 27 inch is still most popular for length.
I want to bring to your attention a new product that can easily add half an inch to ANY mfg racquet by simply replacing the factory end cap,butt cap.
By simply removing the standard factory butt cap an then replacing it with the XTP Xtended Tennis Product butt cap now anyone can add half an inch to their frame handel.
Yes this simple customizing product can take a racquet you are bored with and breath life and new dynamics into a frame by now making it a Plus extended frame.
Check out the XTP butt cap.
Thx.john

Reply
Mike August 16, 2019 - 8:38 pm

I bought my racket here in the UK for £69.99. Cheapest racket I have ever bought and therefore was sceptical. I’m used to spending at least £140 (sometimes more) on a Wilson. My most recent racket was a Babolat pure drive but found this a bit of a handful, lots of power (great) but found my shots going long and not much control. As Ference mentioned, I read the really positive reviews and that someone replaced their Babolat with the TR990 pro. I also saw that Oliver Marach was using one, albeit the plus one. I added some Babolat RPM Blast rough (red strings go very nicely with the colour scheme of the tr990) strung at 54lbs. What can I say, this is much better than the pure drive and I am totally a convert. I get the power but this time with control and lots of spin. The racket is great and I love it so much that I am ditching my Wilson’s and Babolat and picking up another tr990 pro. An absolute bargain. Might add a leather grip and try another string setup, perhaps a softer spin poly? Or even a hybrid setup? Any recommendations? I like a shape or rough string as I like the spin they can get and helps control the power and grip on the ball. Overall I am one happy chappy.

Reply
Tennisnerd August 17, 2019 - 8:12 am

Happy you found a great stick! I did not try it myself, but I would use a poly in this one such as Solinco Hyper G, MSV Co Focus Hex or HEAD Hawk Touch. I would string it at 24 kg or 52 lbs approx. Good luck / Jonas

PS. If you feel like my advice is really useful, please consider becoming a patron for $2 at patreon.com/tennisnerd and get exclusive content every week. DS.

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