Luxilon Smart string is the latest addition to the prestigious line from Luxilon. The Luxilon Smart string is designed to give the tennis player a solid feel when swinging fast and nice touch when swinging slower. So pretty much it’s supposed to do the “thinking” for you.
According to Luxilon,
Luxilon Smart is the world’s first high performance tennis string whose characteristics change in real-time based on the force of a player’s swing or shot. Luxilon Smart quickly identifies a player’s swing speed and then adapts to provide more flex on touch shots and more stiffness on power shots.
The secret to this intuitive tennis string lies in three fibers within its polymer material, which stiffen with high swing speeds for more control and soften with slower swing speeds for more touch and feel. This string plays like a polyester, yet with the comfort of a multifilament.
So that’s pretty interesting, a string that plays differently depending on the shot selection. I had to try it, obviously!
Luxilon Smart String Review: Installation
I’m sure you’ve already figured it out, I am a tennis stringer and a good one at that. I have strung thousands of tennis racquets and a multitude of tennis strings. So stringing up the Luxilon Smart string was pretty straight forward, it strung like a very thin polyester tennis string.
Nothing in particular stood out to me when I strung up the string. Although, the string itself did have something of a line on it so straightening the strings was kind of a pain in the eyes. It was hard to gauge where the strings were straight and where they were not. It presented itself a challenge to straighten.
Luxilon highly recommends to string the Smart string at a lower tension, 44 pounds +/-4lbs (20kg +/-1.5kg). This didn’t bother me since I have been stringing in the mid-40’s for the last several years. However, for a player coming from the high 50’s or even 60’s, dropping that low might be scary. I went with 44lbs, middle of the recommendation and a tension I’ve felt comfortable with for a while now.
Luxilon Smart String Review: Playtest
During my warmup, I could feel the poly-like response on my groundstrokes. The string was slightly stiff feeling, even at the 44 pounds of tension, but it wasn’t stiff enough to bother my arm.
When I started hitting full court at full speed, the Luxilon Smart string showed its true colors. The string felt really good. What I mean by that is that it had a nice response to my forehand and backhand when I really cranked it. The string felt stiff though it wasn’t painful; nothing to worry about if you suffer from tennis elbow or other arm issues.
The interesting characteristic of Luxilon Smart string is when I hit slower shots or trying to get a little touch on my shots, the string responded as advertised. It was nice and soft, almost felt like a multifilament (Wilson NXT) but not quite the same. It’s a bit hard to describe because in one stroke it felt like a middle tier polyester and on other shots it felt like a top tier multifilament. But it never felt like a poly + multi hybrid.
Luxilon Smart string definitely gave me enough depth to drive the ball deep near the baseline. Even at the lower tension, the ball never seemed to just sail long. When I swung freely, the strings gave me plenty of pace. Enough to create an error from my hitting partner.
Since I was reviewing the 16L (1.25mm) version of the string, which is pretty thin, I was able to get some OK spin. Luxilon Smart is not a spin string. However, because it is fairly slick I was able to get some spin off my forehand, especially since I was getting a little extra depth. The spin wasn’t crazy like Weiss Cannon Ultra Cable, but it did the job on the top spin. Backspin slices suffered greatly though, they sat up often, allowing my opponent to cream the ball.
Luxilon Smart String Review: Durability
I wish I could write more about the tension stability of Luxilon Smart, but I cannot because the string broke in just over 2 hours of play. I don’t often break strings, so when I do I am a bit surprised.
Up until the string broke, the string appeared to hold tension pretty well. The tension didn’t drop off quickly like some other poly strings do, but I cannot speak too much to that.
Luxilon Smart String Review: Conclusion
All in all, Luxilon Smart is an interesting string. It does some good things but also I wasn’t happy with others. It’s a great tennis string for comfort, especially if you are transitioning to a polyester material. Though, if you have already been playing with poly tennis strings, this may not be your best performance option. Especially with the early breaking and the near $20 price point.