With a one year delay, I could finish the review of the andro Rasanter R48 in detail. But better late than never 😉. I am currently catching up on many rubbers and this one should not be missing.
With the Rasanter rubbers, the table tennis brand andro has caused quite a buzz among the table tennis players in 2017. This was partially due to the fact that the rubbers are using a new rubber concept, which had not been applied to tensor rubbers until then. By using a thinner topsheet, a thicker sponge can now be implemented.
But more to the point, it was the end of the Rasant rubbers. It is not often that a table tennis brand has the courage to discontinue a successful rubber series practically overnight.
As a result, many table tennis players had to switch to new rubbers. Actually the change to the new Rasanter rubbers was obvious. At that time, the series included six rubbers: R50, R47, R42, R37, V47 and V42.
Unfortunately, the rubber innovations could not convince me completely. Although these had more speed and also an increased strong ball acceleration. Both attributes became more important when switching to the plastic ball, but the rubbers are not optimally matched to each other. The feel was often simply spongy.
Other brands did it better. When I think of the Tibhar Aurus Prime, Xiom Omega VII Pro, JOOLA Rhyzer 48 or Donic Bluestorm Z1, it is difficult for me to name a Rasanter of the first series that I consider better than the mentioned competitors.
So it is pleasing that andro has now further developed its series and can correct the hasty change. The beginning has made the andro Rasanter R53, which I am currently simultaneously testing. Recently, the Rasanter R45 has been on the market, which will soon receive a review on this blog.
How should the andro Rasanter R48 be categorized? What are its special features? Where are the major strengths? And which rubbers are comparable? All of this and more I will clarify in the following review 😉
Technical attributes of andro Rasanter R48
As with all modern tensors, a slight smell of a rubber booster is noticeable. With andro rubbers, this is always the same kind.
The topsheet appears very grippy. The surface is also matt. However, you can still quite easily see the shape of the pimple structure. The pimples themselves are rather short and closely spaced. The top layer is very thin.
The sponge has nicely visible, medium-sized pores. Despite the 48°, a certain flexibility seems to be present. The topsheet is comparatively soft due to its thin design and the rubber mixture used. In combination, the rubber is initially very easy to squeeze. Only with greater pressure does the actual sponge hardness become noticeable.
In terms of weight, nothing remarkable is noticeable. The packaging weight is 99.92g. The uncut sample (red Ultramax) weighs 69.57g. Cut on a Viscaria blade, 47.87g remain.
Playing characteristics of andro Rasanter R48
The warm-up strokes succeed without any problems. The andro Rasanter R48 has a strong catapult and a high basic speed. The good sound also comes through on counterstrokes. In direct play, the rubber seems a bit softer than expected, but still has a reasonable precision in the stroke.
When accelerating and at higher speeds, the catapult and speed dynamics affect the stroke to a great extent. I had the feeling that the precision increases along with the impact strength, while the inherent catapult has an extremely strong effect on slow strokes.
Topspin play, Finishing strokes & Counter-loops
In topspin play, the Rasanter R48 has an interesting characteristic. With slow topspins, the rubber seems to me more like a softer version, which makes looping extremely easy accompanied with a lot of catapult. At the same time, there is a high amount of spin.
When I accelerate even more, the dynamics and power of the sponge come through. This makes it possible to play variably at the table, whereby the focus should be on the more dangerous fast topspins and on finishing strokes. The latter can be applied very skillfully. Those who like to prepare safely & slowly and then finish extremely fast will discover the Rasanter R48 to be an ideal rubber.
The rubber’s great strength can be found in counter topspin play at and further away from the table. The early and strong development of speed-dynamics makes it easy to dominate opponents. Longer half-distance rallies are no problem with the R48 and comparatively easy to play. During the review, I often dropped back to then accelerate my game from a half-distance.
Trajectory, Rubber Attributes & Catapult-effect
The trajectory of the ball is in the medium high range for all attacking strokes and can become very long, depending on the applied speed.
Although the andro Rasanter R48 develops very good playing characteristics in terms of pure spin capabilities, the speed feel ultimately dominates. The rubber has a kind of automatic system for intuitive emergency strokes. Due to the strong catapult, some mistakes can be compensated.
The disadvantage is that the rubber is not as precise on slow to medium fast strokes as other comparable rubbers. The question then is, what do you prefer? A rubber that does a lot of things well for you or one that plays more perfectly but also tends to make more simple mistakes? In any case, it’s good that I could at least adjust to it, although I actually prefer rubbers with less catapult.
An alternative for the andro Rasanter R48 is the JOOLA DYNARYZ ACC. Both rubbers are roughly on the same level in terms of performance. However, the R48 is even more extreme in terms of catapult and dynamics. On the other hand, the ACC is a bit more variable in playability. In regard to the spin level, the two rubbers don’t give each other much.
The Tibhar Aurus Prime is designed more for pure spin play and doesn’t have nearly as much catapult. Nevertheless, I see the two rubbers as interesting alternatives due to the similar power development, if a change in one or the other playing direction is to be made.
As already mentioned in the review of the Tibhar Evolution MX-D, I can imagine switching between the rubbers there as well. If you are looking for a harder alternative with more spin potential, you can play without the strong catapult and at the same time you welcome a slightly softer feel due to the topsheet, you can switch to MX-D very well. On the other hand, the Rasanter R48 is a bit softer and easier to play, although equipped with a similar dominance in open playing situations.
Compared to the other Rasanter rubbers, the R48 ranks as the best solution for modern attacking players. Why I don’t like the Rasanter R53 as much, I will analyze in more detail in the R53 review. In short, topsheet and sponge do not harmonize nearly as well with each other. In addition, I consider the strong catapult to be out of place on a hard high-performance rubber.
Compared to andro Rasanter R47, the rubber has more power, spin and a higher arc. Especially during counter-topspins, the comparison “Old Polo – New Golf” comes to my mind. This applies even more to the V47. But even with R50, there is simply more playfulness, dynamics and, in my opinion, more rotation, which is why I clearly prefer the R48.
Which medium-hard andro rubber can you recommend?
If I were asked for advice at this moment and it has to be an andro rubber, I would say the following:
There are three good options in the medium-hard rubber range. If you like it low in catapult in passive play with focus on pure spin while looping, you should choose andro Hexer. If more spin dynamics are required and more catapult is desired, andro Hexer Powergrip is the best choice. And if you want a modern, pure attacking rubber, you can’t get around the Rasanter R48.
Service & Return
When serving, I appreciate the fact that the ball feels like it’s dipping into the rubber. This makes it comparatively easy to generate spin. Unfortunately, this also means that I can see slight losses in maximum spin development. Overall, the spin is very good, but not maximum.
Already in the short-short game, the catapult effect of the andro Rasanter R48 sets in. I don’t consider this annoying, but it is noticeably present. When returning the serve, the rubber interacts strongly and I had to adjust my technique a bit. Basically, the passive strokes over the table show a good quality. However, I personally miss a more direct feel.
Opening at and above the table succeeds perfectly. Especially the faster banana flip with the focus on playing to the opponent’s baseline can be played almost perefectly. The catapult has an equally strong effect on active flips, which makes it easy to actively attack even late hit balls.
Blocking, Counter-play & Shooting
Active blocks possess a high pace. This makes it very difficult for opponents to be always on time. You get a good feel for the ball, as the high speed is easy to control. The nice sound is also helpful (to my ears 😉 ).
In the passive blocking game, the strong inherent catapult helps to play good blocks. Overall, the R48 is rather average spin-sensitive, which forgives some mistakes. Nevertheless, this should not be overdone. Due to the high pace of the rubber, many blocks quickly end up behind the table or in the net.
On counter strokes in open play, the Rasanter R48 seems fast and well controllable. The dynamic development is overall well manageable, although it is not always steady and sets in very strongly.
Power can be generated well in the shooting game. Catapult and dynamics help to raise a dominant attacking game on high balls. Out of the high defense, the andro Rasanter R48 is well playable and has a good feel for the ball. Counter attacks from distance are effectively playable.
Conclusion on andro Rasanter R48
With the andro Rasanter R48 a pure attacking rubber is on the market, which can convince especially by its speed-dynamics and catapult. In open play, and most of all during counter-topspin duels, the rubber shows its great strengths.
In passive play, the strong and early setting in of the catapult helps to compensate for many errors. This built-in automatic help comes somewhat at the expense of precision in play, which becomes apparent on slow to medium-fast strokes. Overall, however, the dynamics are relatively stable and more advantages than disadvantages arise from this characteristic.
The rubber ranks as a catapult-strong and tempo-dynamic alternative among the rubbers with thinner topsheets. The best comparison so far is with the JOOLA DYNARYZ ACC, but other rubbers like Tibhar Aurus Prime or Tibhar Evolution MX-D can also serve as substitutes in certain cases and vice versa.
For me, the game-changing leap that the R48 has made saves the Rasanter rubber series. In addition, I would recommend the rubber as the TOP rubber of the brand if a modern attacking rubber is sought.
From my point of view, the first Rasanter rubbers are done as alternatives. Clearly more than in 2017, andro can gladly discontinue the rubbers completely. Preferably combined with the return to some cheaper Rasant rubbers, as well as the addition of other sponge thicknesses to the Rasanter series with the new technology. The andro Rasanter R45 seems already promising.