After a successful review of the Xiom Omega VII Asia, I can now turn my attention to another rubber version of the Omega 7 series. The Xiom Omega VII China Guang has been released in Europe in mid-May 2021. My thanks in advance to Xiom Europe for allowing me to pre-test this rubber 🙂 .
As I can see from the latest Xiom main catalog, the brand is launching three versions of the Omega 7 China at once. One is the Guang version with a 55° sponge. The comparison to the Xiom Omega VII Tour, which I am currently reviewing, should be interesting. There is also the OVII China Ying with a hard, heavy 60° sponge. Whether and when this rubber will be released in Europe has not yet been determined.
Xiom postpones some novelties due to the current situation. Among them are the Omega VII Tour i, as well as the Vega Pro, Asia and Europe as i Switch versions (self-adhesive rubbers). But this can change at any time.
It is certain that the Xiom Omega VII Asia China Exclusive will not be available in Europe. A review would still be interesting with its 47.5° medium-hard sponge. But I shouldn’t focus on that now, because there are still so many rubbers I want to try out this year 😉.
What I will mainly focus on in this test is how suitable for the masses the very hard China Guang will be. In addition, I am looking for comparable rubbers to be able to give a better impression on the rubber. One thing right away: The Omega VII Tour is clearly different, despite the same sponge hardness.
Technical attributes of Xiom Omega VII China Guang
|Reviewed rubber||Black 2.1mm|
|Sponge||Small-sized pores 55° Shores (EUR) Hard++|
When I unpacked the OVII CG, I could discover a very interestingly composed rubber. The rubber is not supplied as usual with a papered cover as protection for the rubber surface, but with a matte plastic rubber foil. After removing it, I was a bit surprised, as the topsheet is only slightly sticky and seems more like “only” extremely grippy. Overall, the rubber seems more “European” than expected, despite the hard sponge.
The pimple structure is kept very short. The sponge has very fine pores, which means there is hardly any elasticity. Nevertheless, I could press the rubber a bit during the thumb pressure test, but this was only due to the topsheet.
In terms of weight, the Omega VII China Guang is among the heavier rubbers, although in this hardness must be spoken of a lightweight. With packaging, my rubber (black, 2.1mm) weighed 112.43g. The uncut rubber carries 72.94g, while on the racket itself (fiberglass OFF test wood 150x157mm) 50.05g are left.
Playing characteristics of Xiom Omega VII China Guang
The warmup counterstrokes prove to be controlled and easy. The basic speed of the rubber is rather moderate. Moreover, the Omega VII China Guang does not have a noticeable catapult. Everything that comes out of the rubber has been put into it by the player himself. This makes the whole play extremely controllable. You get your feedback from the stable feel of the rubber. In addition, the rubber feels more like a pleasantly playable, European tensor rubber than a China or hybrid rubber, although the overall hardness is undeniable.
Looping, Strengths & Half Distance
Topspins succeed safely and without fuss. All stroke techniques, from soft loops to fast spin strokes, are well playable. However, you notice that it takes a lot of your own arm acceleration and wrist movement to fully exploit the potential of the China Guang.
The low-catapult characteristics also demand an early timing, so that one’s own attacking efforts do not become too harmless. On slow topspins, a very strong spin can be generated with the appropriate arm swing. Especially looping on backspin is very safe and dangerous.
Direct counter attacks at the table are accurate. I had amazing control over the ball, so I could outplay my opponents well. Especially the hard topspin along the line almost always scores the point.
While in the game close to the table the rubber picks up the opponent’s pace well and you can always be dominant, from the half-distance it requires a lot of physical effort. Due to the lack of catapult, any dynamics has to be built up by yourself. That’s why I recommend avoiding longer half-distance rallies and rather playing to your strengths in the game close to the table to keep the rallies short.
Comparisons with Xiom Omega VII China Guang
In comparison with other rubbers, I actually do not find a rubber that is completely similar to the Xiom Omega VII China Guang (until now, Bluegrip C2 seems to be a promising alternative). However, the rubber can be compared quite well with the Butterfly Dignics 09C, which I tested at the same time. D09C is a bit slower than the China Guang in open, direct play. But the topsheet is more grippy/sticky and spin elastic. I could notice more spin dynamics with fast topspins using the D09C.
Finally, both rubbers require a lot of your own arm movement to generate speed. In a steady, direct attacking game, I would prefer the China Guang. The D09C is better when this typical Chinese, slowing sticky top sheet has to be added.
Compared to the Omega VII Tour, the dynamics are completely missing. In addition, the Tour is much more spin-elastic and significantly faster at its basic speed. The comparison to the JOOLA Golden Tango is also interesting, whereby this rubber has a similar low catapult feeling, but plays much more like a china rubber. Furthermore, the Donic Bluegrip C2 could is an alternative. Unfortunately, the tests for this rubber are still in process.
Serve, Return & Opening over the table
When serving, the rubber shows great strengths. Players who can wrap their wrist around the ball have maximum rotation potential for their play. In addition, the low-catapult feel has a positive effect on control and exact repetition of the same serve.
In short-short game, the Xiom Omega VII China Guang is very useful. I was able to control the length and height well. On the return, the rubber is controlled, but also somewhat sensitive to spin. There’s hardly any room for errors in the service anticipation. A great strength is the hard, direct played backspin, which reaches the opponent’s baseline. Enormous spin can be produced in the process.
Direct openings and flips are very successful. There is enough speed on the strokes. Fast flips have an advantage over banana flips. Curvy flips require extremely fast wrist acceleration, but this is also rewarded.
The blocking game can be performed very briskly. Direct blocks are a great strength of the China Guang. Without compromise, this can seamlessly transition into the counter-shooting game. With passive blocks, the rubber has good, sufficient control. Only very late or simply wrongly placed blocks are not compensated as well as with soft tensors, for example. One should always maintain a stable stroking posture.
Shooting, High & Long Defense
You can act directly and precisely in the shooting game, but I miss the dynamics and power of some other rubbers. It’s really important to be on time in order to build up speed. From the high defense the rubber works, but I can imagine better rubbers there.
To break free from distance, I recommend a strong backspin chop rather than struggling with too slow counter attacks. I was able to generate a lot of heavy backspin from the long defense, which is why I can imagine the rubber working well for modern defenders on the forehand side. Traditional defenders, on the other hand, will be in despair by the fact that there is only a 2.1mm sponge available for this rubber.
Conclusion on Xiom Omega VII China Guang
I think that the Xiom Omega VII China Guang is a good addition to the rubber market. In times when catapult heavy tensors are plenty available or hard rubbers always have to come with this China hybrid feeling, the China Guang is a pleasant change.
The constant, low-catapult (or nearly catapult-free) feeling provides precision and control. This is especially noticeable when playing close to the table. When attacking, it depends entirely on your own arm stroke how much spin and power are transferred. The rubber characteristics can also be used very positively in backspin play and when serving.
I see disadvantages for the most part from the half-distance and when the players playing level doesn’t come with a good timing, arm acceleration, etc. This non-catapult, hard rubber still has sufficient control, but doesn’t provide the support we are all used to from other tensor rubbers.
However, due to the good control and the moderate speed, the rubber is also worth a try for lower class players who want to play close to the table and in a direct way. The advantages over classics or Chinese classics are immense in the attacking play.
I would like to mention one more aspect. The OVII CG is ideally suited for rubber boosters. While other rubbers already have a maximum tension, you can only get more out of it in this case. Using boosters is illegal, so I would never recommend it. But for the fun of playing in practice… you know what I mean 😉