I almost missed the Tibhar Evolution MX-D completely. As an absolute table tennis nerd, I am actually always well informed about the rubber novelties. I regularly look at the ITTF LARC list, ask manufacturers or search the Internet for news.
But one thing I don’t do anymore for a long time. Listening to the opinion of others in the forums or on Youtube before my own reviews are finished. This gives me an objective view of what I really think about the rubbers and blades.
It is not uncommon for my impressions to diverge compared to prominent Youtubers or even professional players. But I stand by what I write. And I think everyone who reads my reviews regularly at least understands why I come to one conclusion or another.
Anyway, Sven (or better known in the forums as the Svennie) pointed out to me that the Tibhar Evolution MX-D is already available. And indeed, thanks to TT-SHOP.com and Tibhar I have received a test rubber, which is now tested in detail.
Significance of Tibhar Evolution rubbers
When the first Tibhar Evolution rubbers appeared on the market at the end of 2012, the supremacy of the Butterfly Tenergy rubbers could be challenged for the very first time. The Tibhar Evolution MX-P played the leading role.
In terms of performance, the flagship of the Evolution-P series could absolutely keep up with the Tenergy 05, even though the pure playing characteristics are very different. But also the Tibhar Evolution EL-P, as well as the soft FX-P, could convince some players.
For me as a pure spin player, the Evolution-S rubbers are even more interesting. The Tibhar Evolution MX-S is trimmed for pure spin. A fast arm stroke and a lot of body movement is required to activate the full potential.
More suitable for the masses are the EL-S and FX-S. The focus on topspin performance supports the spin game well. The only drawback I see here is that the Tibhar Evolution EL-S is a bit softer than other TOP rubbers, which doesn’t suit everyone.
Most recently, a 50° sponge version of the MX-P rubber appeared, which I would describe as the only disappointment of the series. I will go into this more clearly in the context of the review.
What more can a MX-D offer?
According to the Tibhar brand, the Evolution MX-D was designed for maximum dynamics. If you follow the definition in the german dictionary, dynamic means the “… movement generated by forces…”. Synonyms are e.g. drive, energy, liveliness,… and many more.
In table tennis I understand dynamics as acceleration in active stroke movements. A rubber is the more dynamic, the more the own arm acceleration is paid tribute to. Non-dynamic rubbers tend to slow down the action and rely on the player to generate the acceleration completely with his own force.
I also find it decisive how the dynamics of a rubber develop. Softer rubbers in particular quickly reach their limits. This should not be the case with a rubber with a specified 50.3-52.3° sponge hardness. It is interesting to see how strongly the topsheet supports acceleration and, at the same time, dispenses with the power of the sponge.
There are rubbers that literally explode very early on and are therefore difficult to control. With the focus on maximum dynamics, this is a big concern.
So I wonder if and when the maximum dynamic of the rubber kicks in? How much speed & spin dynamics can the MX-D provide? Despite this, can the rubber also achieve maximum spin or is this rubber simply fast? And how does the MX-D compare to the other Evolutions? Are there any advantages compared to the rubbers with thinner topsheets? And what about the Dignics rubber series, which also feature harder sponges and more dynamics compared to the Tenergy rubbers? Can the Tibhar Evolution MX-D keep up?
Technical attributes of Tibhar Evolution MX-D
|Reviewed rubber||Red 2,1-2,2mm|
|Sponge||Small to medium-sized pores 50,3 – 52.3° Shores (EUR) Hard+|
After unpacking, the Evolution-typical smell is immediately apparent. The topsheet of the MX-D seems to be very grippy. The color of the red rubber surface is slightly mat, but you can still see the pimples through.
The pimple arrangement is comparatively close together. The pimples themselves are of average width, but quite long. Overall, the topsheet of the rubber is elastic to semi-elastic.
The sponge has clearly visible pores, but they are rather fine to medium-sized. I would have estimated the sponge hardness at over 50° without manufacturer’s specifications. In the pressure test, the rubber seems slightly softer, which will make 50 ° rubbers from other manufacturers comparable.
The weight of the Evolution MX-D is set quite high. One of the testing rubbers (red 2.1-2.2mm) weighs 115.50g with packaging. The uncut rubber brings 76.30g to the display. When cut, this corresponds to 52.19g. The other test rubber weighed 49.93g when cut. Unfortunately, I could not weigh the rubber before cutting. In terms of playing characteristics, I can’t see any differences.
Playing characteristics of Tibhar Evolution MX-D
Countering with the Tibhar Evolution MX-D succeeds flawlessly. The rubber has a high basic speed and a direct impact, which is nevertheless pleasant due to the softer topsheet. The balls can be played precisely, straightforwardly and with a high consistency.
If the speed is increased, a constant dynamic development follows. The rubber starts with a very light, barely noticeable catapult and ends in an extremely high acceleration.
Looping, arc & suitability
The first topspin loops have everything you want from a modern attacking rubber. A lot of power, spin and a nice sound can be expected from the Evolution MX-D. A great strength of the rubber is that it fully develops its dynamics even in spin play. This allows strong backspin to be answered however you want. The rubber develops a lot of pressure on the opponents.
The arc is medium-high to high and wide. From all positions, the ball can be optimally taken along. It seems as if the topsheet grabs into the ball and right after that the dynamics of the sponge come through.
With the backhand, I can strike both with the wrist and with short arm acceleration, and there is a nice spin curve. Nevertheless, the rubber can be used even more effectively on the forehand side, where its power develops even more.
Finishing strokes, counter-loops & half-distance play
Especially final strokes after long rallies are a dream. If the opponent gets too short or too passive, the point can be won at any time. The Tibhar Evolution MX-D always has enough power and spin to be dangerous.
On counter topspins, the rubber is a machine. I don’t know any rubber that unfolds its final dynamics so well controllably. It works very well both at the table and from half-distance.
From half-distance, the Tibhar Evolution MX-D can be used with a lot of spin as well as with a lot of power. The rubber reacts optimally to how I want to shape the rally. Although the overall speed, it seems in active play as if you catch the ball for a short moment before a constant, well controllable acceleration then occurs.
Intermediate conclusion & Evolution comparison
Basically, the Tibhar Evolution MX-D represents what I’ve been wanting since speed-gluing ended. A rubber that has immense dynamics & power and combines that with a certain ease in playing. With the very low-catapult rubbers, on the one hand, this is somehow missing. Other tensors, on the other hand, unleash their power uncontrollably and simply too explosively.
Compared to the other Evolution rubbers, there is a lot to be said. Each rubber from this series, apart from the MX-P50, has its great strengths. The MX-P has that inimitable, exploding power. The MX-S has an extremely high spin potential. The EL-S offers variable to maximum spin variations. The EL-P has a toxic ball flight curve that is difficult to judge. The FX-S guarantees spin and control. The FX-P is powerful despite its soft sponge.
The strength of the MX-D, its constant but strong acceleration & dynamics, helps with all attacking strokes. This makes the rubber the best as a total package, although there are advantages for other rubbers in their respective areas.
Unlike a Dignics 05, the Evolution MX-D has more control and stronger dynamics. In addition, the Butterfly rubber is more spin-sensitive and less forgiving. The MX-P50 should actually compete with the MX-D. However, sponge and topsheet do not harmonize nearly as well. Basically, the 50° sponge replaces the great explosive power and relies on the power of a harder sponge, but this basically robbs its strength with another obstacle.
A more far-fetched alternative to the Evolution MX-D is the andro Rasanter R48. This one I find better than many other rubbers with thin topsheet. Compared to the MX-D, the R48 has clearly higher catapult effect and develops its dynamics earlier, as well as more inconsistently. The trajectory is somewhat flatter. A little less rotation is present. But for those who want a smoother, more catapult-like alternative, the R48 has something to offer.
Finally, I would like to mention the Tibhar Aurus Prime, which I also like very much as an overall rubber. iT also has a high dynamic due to the thicker sponge. The Prime is more trimmed to spin and goes more in the direction of spin dynamics. I also find the MX-D a bit more controlled, which is mainly due to the feel of the ball.
Service & Return
The Tibhar Evolution MX-D is very spin-friendly on serve. Those who go for maximum spin will have to accept slight losses if they do not have an experienced service technique. The precision of the hard sponge requires a lot of wrist movement.
In short-short game, the rubber appears to be stable and constant. Very short, but also very long backspin pushes succeed well. When returning the serve, the ball can be wrapped well. The topsheet gives the player some time to compensate for mistakes. Overall, the MX-D requires a good technique, but at the same time it is not too spin-sensitive.
A lot of pressure can be generated on active flips. Too high serves are also cannon food. Banana flips go quite well, but become effective with more speed added than with pure spin.
Blocking, counter & shooting
In the blocking game, the Tibhar Evolution MX-D has high stability and good forward pressure. Especially active blocks or counter on slow topspins can be applied quickly and precisely. In the passive blocking game, a slight catapult comes through, which also makes touch blocks possible. Simply stalling is not recommended due to the rubber’s vita.
In the shooting game the MX-D is a grenade. Opponents can be shot down extremely fast and with high consistency. Switching to topspin rallies and breaking free from the opponent’s grip is possible at any time. High defense strokes also make a good figure. The rubber has a good touch and a perfect length in the strokes.
Conclusion on Tibhar Evolution MX-D
In my opinion, the Tibhar Evolution MX-D is the most complete attacking rubber on the market. The extremely constant, maximum dynamics help in every attacking situation. Extreme spin and tempo variations can be played. Counter topspins have power and are dangerous. In addition, the rubber grips every ball the way I want it as a player.
What’s also refreshing is that the MX-D is not the hundredth version of the same rubber, but provides a completely different concept. Finally, a harder sponge is used in a way that also has advantages for the players.
At the moment I’m testing the Harimoto ALC blade together with the Vega X. For spin players like me simply a god-like combination. Even though I am actually satisfied with it, I have now tested the MX-D for myself. Because the advantages of the rubber simply outweigh so much that I want to use this for my game. Therefore, I will get the rubber in 1.9-2.0mm and test it further on my forehand.
Is the MX-D really that good or are you exaggerating?
I asked myself this question a lot during my review sessions. The way it went was that I tried to talk myself out of it after the first testing. After all, a first impression doesn’t mean much. After the second test, I thought to myself, try the MX-D on a pure wooden blade after all, to soften the hype a bit (on a Viscaria, all rubbers are a grenade *smile*). It didn’t help….
Then I tried it with an innerlayer blade (Harimoto ALC) and I found the rubber there even better for myself. Finally, I did a final review today where I tested the MX-D exclusively. And I still come to the same conclusion.
Is there any weakness?
Yes, because I don’t think every player can cope with such a hard rubber, even if the rubber offers more control than you would expect. That’s why I see the Tibhar Evolution MX-D more on the forehand side. As a confirmed medium-hard player (47.5°), I didn’t have any major problems switching to it. The topsheet helps immensely and returns a really great touch.
The only drawback is the heavy weight. From 50g on it is just simply heavy. For me, I solve this by choosing the thinner sponge thickness. Normally 47g is then possible and okay for me.
In terms of durability, I have no concerns. The quality is in the similar range as the Evolution S series. A strong factory tuning was used. Basically, I recommend re-gluing an Evolution rubber after 3 months of play. This gives it a final extra boost. Rubber boostering is of course also possible, but only for training purposes 😉
Evaluation & Final Words
In my overall rating, I give the Tibhar Evolution MX-D 95 points, which is the highest rating on my blog. Even the Butterfly Tenergy 05 received “only” 94 points.
However, this does not mean that other rubbers are “bad” or that only the MX-D is still recommended. The rating refers to my impressions and my expectations of a table tennis rubber. And that can be seen completely different. I put it into perspective because some people, especially in the table tennis forums, badmouth others just because they don’t see it the same way.
One reason I enjoy the characteristics of the Evolution MX-D so much is that it has given me personally so much fun to play with that I haven’t been able to experience in a long time. Since the speed-glue ban, we table tennis players have been struggling with low-catapult or over-catapult effects of rubbers.
Finally, there is a rubber that, like a speed-glued classic, has great dynamics and sound, but at the same time spreads this playful lightness. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not like it was back then. But it comes close.
Therefore, I can suggest any savvy offensive attacking player to give the MX-D a shot. Especially if you want to get to the point with spin- and speed-dyanmics using a mature stroke technique. As long as you play offensive oriented and like harder rubbers, there are no concerns about the level of play. But keep in mind that a slower rubber can also bring many advantages.
I hope you could get a good impression. Please forgive me for writing so much. But sometimes it has to be 🙂