Expert Review: Head Speed MP 2022 (100)Published on 11/06/2022 · 5 min readThis review is my honest opinion of the tennis racquet, which I purchased with my own money in July of 2022.
All photos courtesy of Brandon M.
About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the tennis racquet, which I purchased with my own money in July of 2022.
The Head Speed MP 2022 is an intermediate to advanced level counter-punching weapon. It offers controllable power, nice spin generation off the ground, and improved maneuverability while on the move. The new Auxetic fibers help make this one of the more comfortable modern player’s racquets on the market with a great feel.
About the gear
- Model: Head Auxetic Speed MP
- Grip Size: 4 ⅜ / EU 3
- String and Tension: Head Lynx 16g Mains/Head Velocity MLT 16g Cross 55lbs
- Head size: 100 sq. in.
- Racquet Length: 27"
- Any Customizations: Gamma Overgrip
- Height: 5’11”
- Weight: 185 lbs
- Previous Racquet Played With: Head Graphene 360+ Gravity MP
- Experience: 28 years of tennis
- NTRP/UTA Rating: 5.0
- When I bought these: July 2022
- Days tested: 5 days
- Court Surfaces: Hard
- Match Play/Practice Session/Both: Both
- Where I’ve used it: Public hardcourts around Kingsford, Michigan
How it performs
What I was looking for
I am currently playing with a Head Graphene 360+ Gravity MP which I have had for just over a year now. Head has updated a couple models that I tested when I initially made the switch to the Gravity MP and also introduced a new model with similar specs. I wanted to see if any of these improvements or the new model would help my game in any way.
Why I chose this gear
I was comparing new Head racquets and revisiting a Yonex VCore 98, which I had tested previously to see if any of these suited my game better than the Gravity MP I was using. During the week, I also tested the Head Boom MP and the Yonex VCore 98. In the end, I ended up sticking with the Gravity MP. I really thought this was a good improvement from the 2021 Head Graphene 360+ Speed MP that I reviewed earlier, though.
What I love about it
- Feel: The newest technology that Head has added to their racquets for 2022 is called Auxetic. According to its marketing, it offers a uniquely flexible construction in the yoke of the racquet to help ball feedback to impact force. Whatever this technology is, I am a big fan of the new feel for the 2022 Speed MP. It is more comfortable than the previous version, while offering a crispness on impact that is similar to the Gravity MP I currently use. The stiffness rating of this version dropped from 64RA to 62RA, which means that it isn’t just a subjective feeling, but an objectively measured change as well.
- Maneuverability: One of the key changes that Head made to the Speed MP for 2022 was lowering the static weight and the swing weight. This contributed to making it much more maneuverable and a real plus for me. I felt like the Graphene 360+ version that I tested earlier this summer and in 2021 was a little sluggish on serves and when out of position, but this version was much more suited to my playing style.
- Ground Strokes: With the improved maneuverability and great feel from the Auxetic technology, the Speed MP 2022 is great for groundstrokes. It took me a bit to dial in the length on some of my shots, but once I had things calibrated, I was able to hit with pace and find angles to open up the court.
- Features: The black/white/bronze colorway of the Speed lineup for 2022 is the classiest paint job on the market in my opinion.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Control: I felt that the control of the Auxetic Speed MP 2022 was an overall positive for the racquet, but I noticed a few balls flying long with my forehand early in the test. The ball was coming off the strings with a flatter trajectory than the Gravity MP and I had to adjust my stroke to compensate. This could have been a string change as it is different than I am used to or the racquet in general.
- Serve: The Speed MP 2022 was a solid partner for my serve, which is a strong suit for my game, but not astounding. I felt like I had good control on first serves to hit my targets but I wasn’t overpowering my opponent with pace. On second serves I didn’t have the aggressive kick like I see with other racquets such as the Head Graphene 360+ Extreme Tour or my Gravity MP.
Favorite moment with this gear
The Head Speed MP 2022 excelled for me on serve returns. The controllable power and good maneuverability let me be aggressive on returns and open up the court with angles.
Value for the money vs. other options
The Head Auxetic Speed MP 2022 is competitively priced with other similar racquets such as the Dunlop CX 400 Tour and Babolat Pure Strike 16x19 while being priced 10-15% less than the Yonex VCORE Pro 100.
The Head Auxetic Speed MP 2022 is the best version of the Speed MP to date. The improved maneuverability and feel make it a fantastic racquet for aggressive all court players. There is easy power to be had with the improved racquet head speed along with great targeting. I still like the extra control I get from the Gravity MP as well as the higher launch angle on my forehand, but I could easily step into a match with the Speed MP 2022 and feel confident in my game.