Prince Response Pro Pickleball Paddle Review
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This Prince Response Pro Pickleball Paddle Review highlights just how far paddle design has come with Paddletek and Prince teaming up to create the next level of pickleball paddle.
Tennis players will no doubt be familiar with Prince because they’ve been manufacturing tennis racquets for a long time.
In fact, some pickleball players believe that Prince makes some of the best pickleball paddles available in the market, including the Response Pro which is a great paddle and the best paddle for players who want a large sweet spot and some customization options.
And Prince has a 1-year guarantee against dead spots.
It’s definitely one of the most popular paddles on the market and a top seller.
The paddle is one of my favorites and the best pickleball paddle if you want to customize some options such as weight, grip size, and color.
Simone Jardim, pro pickleball player, used a Response Pro when earning top honors at the 2018 US Open. She won four gold medals and was a triple crown winner with the Open Pro Women’s Doubles, Mixed Doubles, and Women’s Singles titles.
The Prince Response Pro is for players who want either a light weight or standard-weight paddle with one of the largest sweet spots and a longer handle. If you like to hit double-handed, then the 5 1/2-inch handle is great. If your shots lack power, consider the standard-weight paddle.
Prince Response Pro Pickleball Paddle
- Weight Ranges: light: 7.2 – 7.6 oz and standard weight: 7.7 – 8.3 oz
- Core: Polymer honeycomb core
- Paddle face: Fiberglass with textured UV coating
- Handle length: 5 ½”
- Standard grip: 4 ⅜” or thin grip: 4 ⅛”
- Total length: 15 ¾”
- Width: 8 ¼”
- Extremely well-balanced paddle
- Excellent spin characteristics
- Large sweet spot
- Very accurate
- Lacks a little power
Paddle At A Glance
The Prince Response Pro has a unique shape with a thick polymer core which is great for players who want a larger paddle face and more consistent performance.
The thick polymer core helps to generate a lot of power and control, but more advanced players may still prefer the standard paddle which should offer more power than the light weight. With great control of direction and the ability to absorb the power from your opponent’s driving shots.
I found that this paddle’s balance was just about perfect. Rather than being balanced towards the head or the handle, the paddle feels neutral, making it quick and easy to get into position.
You don’t have to hit the face dead-center for an effective shot when hitting with the broad face of the Response Pro paddle.
Paddle Surface & Core
Not only does the paddle face have rounded corners for more playing area, but the 8 ¼” width provides a huge sweet spot.
We found that shots played consistently off all areas of the face, making it easier to return shots that may not have been playable with a lesser paddle. Once you’ve got used to the paddle, you’ll find that is consistent and accurate.
The thicker core provides better control, giving players more options when playing dinks and cross-court drop shots. Combining this with the great spin characteristics makes playing around the kitchen a breeze.
The slim edge guard gives your paddle great protection without sacrificing the playing area on the face.
The distinctive paddle shape is not just for show. The rounded corners make room for an exceptionally large sweet spot and players find that they get consistent results from all areas of the face. With both a 4 ⅛″ and 4 ⅜″ grips, we found that we could find the perfect sized paddle for our hand size.
This is the paddle that Simone Jardim, the gold medal winner, and triple crown holder, swears by. The innovative shape and big sweet spot provide her with the perfect paddle for her aggressive style of play. If you regularly hit powerful shots, then this may just be the right style of paddle for you.
The only downside is a slight lack of power in the lighter-weight paddle. Beginners may find it a bit difficult to get the best from this paddle as the fiberglass face takes some getting used to.
The most difficult part of getting used to this paddle is when playing dinks. It will take time to get used to the feel of just how much power is needed for a soft touch with accuracy.
We’d recommend this paddle for intermediate and higher players who can best use the paddle to its full capability, but beginners can grow with this paddle if they are prepared to put up with its more difficult characteristics.
How much spin you get playing with the Response Pro is up for debate – as in most situations, it really does depend on the person holding the paddle. I’ve played with players who state that they could never get as much spin on a ball as they can with the Response Pro. Others state that they really don’t see a difference.
I don’t think I see a difference but maybe I need more time to adapt to the paddle.
Fit & Look
The 5½” handle gives the paddle plenty of options for hand position.
If your style of play includes double-handed shots, the extended reach handle makes this paddle perfect for two-handed shots and for those players with larger hands.
The other great thing about the Response Pro is that you can tailor the paddle to your desires. You can choose between:
- standard weight 7.7 – 8.3 oz and light weight: 7.2 – 7.6 oz
- standard grip and thin grip
- 5 color choices including 3 Simone Jardim colors: Simone Jardim Pink, black and blue with the letter P over a zigzag pattern.
Prince Response Pro Pickleball Paddle Review – FAQ
What’s the difference between the Response Pro and the Spectrum Pro?
The difference between the Response Pro and the Spectrum Pro is handle length. The Response Pro has a 5½” handle and the Spectrum Pro’s handle is 5”. Another difference is that the Response Pro has five color choices including the Simone Jardim colors and the Spectrum Pro has four colors.
Because the Response Pro has a longer handle than the Spectrum Pro, there’s actually a slightly smaller paddle surface on the Response Pro. The total length of both paddles is the same but you lose room on the paddle face of the Response Pro due to the longer handle length.
What’s the difference between the Response Pro and the Response?
The difference between the Response Pro and the Response is that the Response is lighter with an average weight of 7.3 oz and the Response Pro has two weight ranges with an average of 8.0 oz. The Response Pro has a UV coating, costs more and has 5 colors.
Can a beginner play with the Response Pro paddle?
Yes, a beginner can play with the Response Pro paddle. The Response Pro may have design features that are geared more towards an advanced player, but a beginner player can learn to play with it. Players with a tennis or other racquet sports background might adjust easily.
The main reason a beginner player might have difficulty playing with a Response Pro pickleball paddle is because there’s quite a bit of power that comes off the paddle face which can sometimes be difficult to control.
What paddle does Simone Jardim use?
Simone Jardim uses a JOOLA pickleball paddle. Previously, she played the Prince Response Pro but her five-year contract expired in July 2022 and she made the move to JOOLA. Her ex-doubles partner, Ben Johns owns JOOLA and they both play with the Hyperion paddle.
Does Prince make good pickleball paddles?
Yes, Prince makes good pickleball paddles. According to Prince, the 8.25″ wide Response Pro gives players the largest possible usable space. Prince states that player testers have found that the performance feels consistent from side to side, neck to tip due to the largest sweet spot they’ve played with.
What kind of paddle does Ben Johns use?
Ben Johns uses his signature paddle, the JOOLA Ben Johns Hyperion CFS 16 mm pickleball paddle.
Where are Prince pickleball paddles made?
Prince pickleball paddles are made in the USA. They’re also engineered in the USA, with an innovative design by Prince and Padeltek that began in 2018 when Prince added pickleball paddles to their line-up. Prince, along with Padeltek are two of very few companies that manufacture in the USA.
Why is the Prince Response Pro so popular?
The Prince Response Pro is popular because it’s a paddle that provides the opportunity for plenty of power but with control due in part to the thick polymer core. In addition, Prince gives you the option to choose from two weights and two grip sizes along with 5 colors.
Summary – Prince Response Pro Pickleball Paddle Review
Just to summarize, the Prince Response Pro Pickleball Paddle is believed to be one of the best paddles on the market.
Players like the 8.25″ paddle face with the thicker and the largest sweet spot in a paddle. In fact, Prince has a 1-year guarantee against dead spots.
You can’t beat that type of guarantee. It means that Prince is confident in their design and manufacturing.
And it’s definitely one of the most popular paddles on the market and a top seller.