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Holabird Sports

Gamma Progression ES II+
Gamma Progression ES II+

Evaluations of the Gamma Progression ES II+:

eyeguy, April 03, 2004:

   Place of purchase: Midwest Sports

   Date of purchase: 03/2004

   Warranty: 5 years

   Price: $849


Tabletop (optional stand), rotational electronic constant pull tensioner, 6 point mounting, 2 fixed swivel clamps


I've been using a Klippermate drop weight $139 stringer for the last year and a half and was very happy with it. It was my first stringing machine. But never crazy about the floating clamps, and having to position the string in the gripper just right to get the weight arm horizontal. Many times this would take more than one try.
Looked into the eStringer CL, but didn't like the fact that the tension was voltage regulated. I called Silent Partner and the bottom line is that the tension of each pull could vary depending on the exact line voltage coming through my house's electical system at that moment of pull. The fellow said it could make a variablity of up to 6 to 8 lbs and the voltage can vary from moment to moment depending on my particular electrical system.
Wanted to get a machine that had a high quality tensioner, turntable, mounting system and clamping system, yet didn't cost too much, and was table top so I didn't have to take up floor space permanently in my house. Looked at Gamma's website and their comparisons of features and specs vs. other machines and decided that for the money, the Gamma Progression ESII+ was probably about as good as I could get for under $1000. The eStringer DG (not voltage regulated) was a bit more expensive, had more features, but I was a bit weary about the quality, so went for the Gamma.
First of all, the machine is quite a bit bigger and bulkier and heavier than the Klippermate. So I've ordered the optional stand for $99 and will have to live with it as a permant fixture in my study. Kind of a bummer, but more convenient than fishing it out of my closet everytime I want to string.
I've only strung two and a half racquets so far (the half because I was experimenting with how the fixed clamps and tensioner worked on my first practice run) and I can tell you that it is a very nice machine. All the parts seem high quality, except for the fact that the red base and black tensioner housing is plastic. Actually, the structure is very solid, but it is covered with the colored plastic.
The mounting system is very good and fairly easy to use. Not as easy as the two point Klipper system, but much more supportive. After stringing on my Klippermate, my Babolat Pure Drives would always have a slightly rounder appearance to them than the unstrung frame. After stringing with the Gamma, the frame shape stays closer to the original shape.
The clamping system seems to hold the strings with less pressure than the Klipper floating clamps. The clamps move and work nicely and I really do like the fixed swivel clamps much, much more than the floating clamps. It speeds up the stringing process and I believe results in a more consistant tension (using the ping musical note test on the mains after stringing).
The tensioner is a dream. Love not having to worry about adjusting the position of the string and worrying about how horizontal the bar is. Just wrap the string 3/4 of the way around the drum and through the middle slot and press the button (or better yet, the foot pedal!) and the machine pulls the string to the proper tension, then keeps pulling as the string stretches (you can actually hear a clicking noise each time the tensioner activates and pulls some more). The tensioner of the Gamma takes less time to pull than the eStringer CL (watched the video on the Silent Partner site). eStringer takes about 4 seconds, Gamma Progression ES takes about 2 seconds. It is very easy to wrap the string on the drum and through the middle slot.
The whole unit weighs about 50lbs. Good solid construction in my opinion. After stringing the two racquets, I did notice that the raquets string up significantly tighter with the Gamma. I did check the calibration with the Gamma calibrator and it was spot on. I attibute the tighter stringing to the fixed clamps holding the pulled tension better than the floating clamps. But whatever the reason, if I were to guess, I'd say they seem to be about 6-7lbs tighter than when strung with the Klippermate.
Haven't had much experience with the stringer yet, but so far I love it.

Note that the information on this page reflects the personal subjective opinion of the evaluators. If you disagree, please send in your own opinion.