Although Pacific may have gained its most widespread notoriety when Marcos Baghdatis obliterated several of their frames on a changeover a few years back, their reputation is built on the highest level of precision and quality. The all new Pacific BXT X Force Pro is the next addition to their vaunted line of performance racquets. The frame utilizes BXT, a woven matrix of graphite and basalt, in key areas of the frame designed to increase torsional stability. The racquet also boasts Pacific’s Zero Tolerance Guarantee, ensuring that racquets with the same specs and feel are consistently produced at the factory due to the patented Fisher Vacuum Process. With so much care and performance built in, I had to hit the court with this new offering from pacific to see how it would measure up.
From the baseline the BXT X Force Pro was an absolute ball crusher. The 98 inch head offered a good size sweet spot and the Speed++Zone system seemed to keep the power level consistent across string bed, even on off center contact. At 11.8oz strung, the racquet had plenty of mass to drive the ball through the court from either wing. I found the court penetration on my forehand to consistently give my opponents problems. The headlight balance made the frame fairly easy to accelerate, allowing me to add pace when the opportunity to play aggressively presented itself. The 16x20 string pattern may not have been a spin monster, but I still found enough to create a safe margin over the net when I needed to. Typically this was done so I could step into a short ball and hammer it home. Directional accuracy was also very solid with the X Force Pro. I was able to take a relaxed swing and really pick targets that maximized my offense during points. The hefty weight of the frame and its BXT reinforcement provided it with exceptional stability. I was able to redirect pace easily and the racquet was especially adept at redirecting my backhand up the line. The mass also was a benefit when stretched out on defense as it gave my shots the extra depth needed to reset the point.
Volleys & Serves
The BXT X Force Pro brought its classic feel and sensibilities to net on volleys. Despite its weight, the racquet played with a fair amount of maneuverability due to its headlight balance. I was able to stay ahead in most quick exchanges and the speed came in handy on defensive reflex volleys too. The solid weight provided plenty of punching power to finish high balls. Nearly every time I took the ball out in front, I was able to put it away. Accuracy on volleys was also strong, allowing me to use the whole court when up at the net. The crisp feel gave me decent capability to execute touch volleys although I found myself looking for a little softer feel for better ball pocketing.
My serve with the X Force Pro was the biggest mixed bag. My first serve was where I felt the weight of the racquet and it seemed a bit sluggish. I felt I had to work really hard to accelerate the frame through contact and generate the pace I was looking for. Instead of tiring myself out, I focused on relaxing and using the weight of the racquet to create heavy first serves. While not my fastest serves, they penetrated the court and consistently drove my opponents off the baseline. The inherent accuracy also helped. I moved my serve around frequently; switching form wide serves to drives down the T. The 16x20 pattern had decent spin for kick serves but there wasn’t quite enough movement to reliably keep it out of returners’ strike zones. My slice serve was much more effective. I was able to use the weight of the racquet to swing the ball wide and keep it slow and skidding away from people.
Despite the racquet’s reasonably low RA rating, I felt the feel was fairly crisp. Feel in the center was satisfyingly solid on contact. There was a bit of jarring off center but never anything that caused any major issues for me. There was ample feedback from the frame and I always felt confident in how the ball was exiting the string bed. I didn’t experience any comfort issues with the racquet, other than some fatigue from this being heavier than my usual racquet. Players concerned about comfort could always switch to a softer string or decrease tension to address any potential issues.
Advanced players looking for a blend of classic feel and playing characteristics have a new choice with Pacific’s latest offering. It offers hefty, ball bruising power while still being nimble enough to make the transition forward. If you want a control oriented frame that can finish points from anywhere without worrying about it being on spec from the factory, the Pacific BXT X Force Pro may be just the racquet you’ve been waiting for.
About the Reviewer: Matt Locke currently serves as the Junior Programs & Development Coordinator for USTA-Idaho and is an active USTA League and Tournament player.