Stéphane Penso performs a double test: that of the Nox AT10 Luxury Genius 18K and the AT Luxury Genius Attack 18K, two palates from the Agustin Tapia series!
Never change a winning team !
After the resounding success of the previous AT projects, the Nox company once again renews its confidence in Agustin Tapia, one of the most spectacular players in the world, in order to complete the joint work they have started a few years ago, by offering two differently calibrated 18K models. When the need lends itself to it, the new Argentinian World Champion allows himself to switch between these two models, depending on whether he needs maneuverability (more obedient teardrop shape) or power (diamond shape heavier in the head and formidable). .
This collaboration returns to us in 2023, keeping the very essence of what made it so successful.
But the renewal of this series, which is the extension of several cycles of research, in no way upsets what had been undertaken on the previous dynasty.
Purified year after year, sharpened on all sides and improved when necessary, this signature series, which already stood out for its undeniable qualities, remains in line with the pre-existing models. The policy of the Barcelona company has always been to capitalize on the flagships of the brand (see ML10), and these palas that we are going to detail today are no exception.
For this new season, we still have two subjects of different shapes; on the one hand, a classic teardrop mold imbued with versatility and maneuverability, and on the other, a more demanding and formidable diamond format. The color code is close to the Nerbo 2023, a modern look covered with dark tones of the most beautiful effect.
All the brand's latest innovations are of course found in these two models which were widely acclaimed last year by players from all walks of life (especially the teardrop shape favored most of the time by the genius of Catamarca).
Regarding the two formats mentioned, the main difference with the Nerbo and the Tempo (rigid Black Eva rubber) recently tested lies in the use, this time, of the intermediate density reference HR3 core, which has been fitted to most Nox models for many years. These palas of the AT series are therefore less capricious and more comfortable than the models mentioned above and are therefore an excellent alternative for all those who are looking for a feeling of less pronounced rigidity.
Palas equipped with the latest technologies
For the more lazy, I give you here the characteristics specific to these two references:
- AT10 Genius 18K: teardrop shape at the sweet-spot (striking area) wide enough to provide satisfactory typing comfort, with good tolerance on off-center hits. Medium balance providing excellent overall stability.
- AT Genius Attack 18K: diamond shape with a smaller sweet-spot, generally preferred by advanced players. High balance (diamond) for even more fire.
- High density Eva HR3 rubber core, providing the necessary striking power and a fast ball exit.
- Carbon frame bringing rigidity and solidity.
- 18K Carbon Cover, a carbon fiber with a heavier weight than standard carbon fiber to give the racquet greater durability and raw power. Maximum rigidity and lightness thanks to the latest generation interwoven carbon.
- Dynamic Composit Structure: manufacturing process reinforcing the materials from the surface to the interior of the structure in order to solidify and stiffen it.
- AVS system: vibration absorption device protecting your arm and joints.
- Rough Surface: rough finish with silica sand accentuating the effects.
- Smartstrap: exclusive Nox technology allowing you to change the strap of your racket at a glance.
- Testea Certification Padel – “This quality certificate is made up of a series of laboratory tests designed according to three objectives: on the one hand, to ensure that all units of the same model behave in a similar way; secondly, checking the good resistance to wear, making sure that the racket does not quickly lose its performance and, finally, checking the good breaking strength of the frame and the faces of the racket.
In game, I definitely preferred the teardrop shape, which is much more accommodating without necessarily losing power. The Attack version is certainly cut out for the thrust, but the difference in maneuverability due to a pronounced balance in the lead penalizes it in the fast phases, volleys/unleashed volleys, and defensive actions.
From this observation, for a major part of players it is preferable to move towards the classic AT10 18K and to leave the Attack to all those who have a substantial technical background.
In order to cross the two tests, I allow myself to give you my feelings as well as a list of awards that only engages me.
The AT10 Genius 18k (teardrop) is an extraordinary reference. Extremely manageable thanks to an ideally calibrated mass balance, it is very responsive, with perfectly manageable power, while being quite comfortable (medium compound).
The Tempo (tear) is a model that lacks nothing, it's my second favorite. Although rewarded with a breathtaking responsiveness (hard rubber) while having a satisfying punto dulce, it remains slightly less maneuverable than the AT10.
The AT Attack (diamond) version takes third place. A little more restrictive than the two aforementioned models without being fundamentally more powerful, it loses a few points due to less maneuverability.
The Nerbo (diamond) closes this classification (without being a criticizable reference), because it is a pala reserved for the cream of the crop, with a hard rubber and coupled with 18k faces. This association is ruthless, the slightest error in centering will be immediately punished, and any notion of comfort will be put aside in favor of a firmness, according to its technical characteristics, highly guessable. I am aware that it risks conquering some activists in search of ultimate power, that's why I want to be as transparent as possible: this hierarchy is purely subjective according to my sensitivity, my level, and my claims!
As you will have understood, I acclaim the versions in intermediate formats, and I am convinced that the AT series will still have a very good future ahead of it, so much the quality of the products and on-board technologies no longer needs to be proven.
Thanks to Manu and Fred for French Padel Shop for their continued trust.
Enjoy a 10% promo code on the two racquets of the test.
Valid until 12/03/2023
Valid for: AT10 GENIUS 18K 2023 / AT10 GENIUS 18K ATTACK 2023
Fan of padel, Stéphane has become the official tester of the planet padel in Europe. Everything goes through his expert hands. Thanks to his extensive experience in the snowshoeing world, he is able to scan your gear from head to toe!