Released in 2021, the Butterfly Tenergy 19 is the most recent addition to the Tenergy line.
Soon after its initial release, hundreds of world-class professional players, including Kanak Jha, Kirill Gerassimenko, Marcelo Aguirre, and Gustavo Tsuboi started utilizing it on either the forehand or the backhand side of their rackets.
It is advertised as the spinniest rubber in the whole Tenergy line and Butterfly states that the Tenergy 19 is faster than the Tenergy 05.
However, most reviewers agree that the Tenergy 19 is slower and more controllable than the Tenergy 05.
To clear all doubts we had about the Tenergy 19, we bought a sheet specifically for this review, testing it for 10+ hours to discover exactly how it behaves.
Perfect for: Intermediate and advanced attackers on the forehand side, intermediate and advanced offensive players on the backhand side, intermediate and advanced defenders on the forehand side. 4-10+ years of playing.
Alvaro brings 7+ years of playing experience. He’s tested 20+ rubbers for Racket Insight and his style is The Controller.
Blade Used: Stratus Power Wood
Rubber Thickness: 2.1mm
Hours Tested: 10+
Table of Contents
We recommend the Tenergy 19 to players who want to attack their opponents with great speed and spin on their loops and counterloops while retaining good touch and control.
Design of the Butterfly Tenergy 19
The Butterfly Tenergy 19 comes in a high-quality sealed package.
Upon opening the package, we find the rubber. The version we ordered is a shiny black 2.1mm sheet of Tenergy 19.
The topsheet of the Tenergy 19 is extremely grippy and slightly tacky, and its sponge is an intense orange color. Its hardness is medium-hard, around 48 degrees ESN.
The Tenergy 19 incorporates two of Butterfly’s groundbreaking innovations: the High Tension technology and the Spring Sponge. These technologies allow for powerful, versatile offensive play.
The Tenergy 05 was first released with these two technologies in 2008. To this day, most manufacturers are still trying to recreate its playing characteristics, and they still haven’t been able to achieve them.
This explains the steep price of the Tenergy line. It’s simply that there’s nothing out there quite like these rubbers.
The difference between the 5 models of Tenergy rubbers (05, 19, 25, 64, and 80) lies in their pimple structure.
The distance between the pimples makes a huge difference. The closer the pimples are, the more contact they will have with the ball, producing a harder feel and more rotation.
The more spread apart the pimples are, the more spin insensitivity, speed, and softer feel the rubber will have.
The pimple structure of the Tenergy 19 is unlike any of the other Tenergies.
The Tenergy 19 features thinner pimples in comparison to the rest of the Tenergies, and they are allocated as densely as the ITTF equipment rules allow.
These thinner pimples are easier to bend and depress. When the ball contacts the rubber, the pimples bend back, so the ball stays on the rubber for a fraction longer, which gives the rubber a noticeably longer dwell time.
The Butterfly Tenergy 19 weighs in at 49 grams, a good weight for a rubber with these playing characteristics.
The Tenergy line is often compared with the Hurricane 3 given that professional players in Europe use Tenergy rubbers and professional players in China use Hurricane rubbers.
There is a substantial weight difference between the Tenergy 19 and the Hurricane 3 NEO (53 grams). This is one of the advantages European rubbers have over Chinese rubbers: their lower weight.
Playtesting the Butterfly Tenergy 19
Before analyzing the rubber, I must mention that we tested the Tenergy 19 on a Tibhar Stratus Power Wood, a balanced, all-wood OFF- blade.
The Tenergy 19 can be paired with ALC blades for extreme power and spin (most professional players favor this combination), or it can be paired with defensive blades to perform vicious chops.
It’s a medium-hard, fast rubber that’s known for its control relative to its speed levels. Its throw lies between that of the Tenergy 05 and the Tenergy 64.
As we previously mentioned, the Tenergy 19 has a longer dwell time than all the other Tenergies.
Because of this, it is more controllable but not as explosive as all the other offerings in the Tenergy line.
Some people say that the Tenergy 19 is a tamer version of the other Tenergies, and I can see why.
Even if it’s a very fast and spinny rubber, it doesn’t have as much of that bounce and “pop” that other Tenergies have.
As a result, playing with the Tenergy 19 feels a lot safer and more predictable, but it doesn’t feel as dangerous as all the other Tenergies.
The Tenergy 05 has tons of spin and explosive power. The Tenergy 64 has very high speeds.
The Tenergy 19 doesn’t feel like it has an “extreme” quality to it, as the other Tenergies do.
It clearly has more speed and spin than most ESN rubbers but not as much as the Tenergies. The upside to this is that it has more control than the other Tenergies.
Driving and looping
The Tenergy line is made for aggressive looping. Driving with the Tenergy 19 is great and so is looping.
It delivers a lively feel in the hand, but it isn’t that bouncy. The rubber feels stable and firm, and not as reactive as the other Tenergies. Drives travel with a nice arc and have good speed.
The Tenergy 19 is made for looping. Loops travel with good clearance over the net and instill confidence in the player from the word go.
It doesn’t offer as much clearance over the net as the Tenergy 05, but its throw is still medium-high, allowing for plenty of safety in your shots.
The arc on the Tenergy 19 is longer and flatter than that of the Tenergy 05, so you’re a bit more likely to overshoot the table or dump the ball into the net.
However, you do have more control over your shots due to the longer dwell time it offers.
Forehand loops with the Tenergy 19 carry great speed and spin, noticeably more than conventional ESN rubbers. Loops had noticeably more speed and spin than those played with the Rasanter R47 or the Fastarc G-1.
In addition, forehand loops felt safe and stable. It doesn’t have as much bounce and explosive power as the other Tenergies, but the difference between them is not too drastic.
However, I don’t feel that the Tenergy 19 is a rubber I’d choose for the forehand side of my racket.
I think that the Tenergy 05 is very controllable already when playing topspin shots. The Tenergy 05 has a higher arc and the ball doesn’t bounce as deep on the table.
In practice, I feel like the Tenergy 05 is at least as safe as the Tenergy 19, probably even more. It doesn’t have as much dwell time, but the arc is a lot better in my opinion.
When forehand looping, the Tenergy 05 produces more speed, more spin, and it is as safe as the Tenergy 19. That’s why we’ve given the latter 4/5 for looping.
Playing away from the table doesn’t require much effort and the rubber feels perfectly safe and stable. The Tenergy 19 is very consistent and reliable when hitting the ball from longer distances.
Its arc is also really good for playing from a distance. It’s not too high nor too low. I find that rubbers with a medium-high arc are very good for playing away from the table and the Tenergy 19 is no exception.
Another attribute that’s very satisfying about it is its “cracking” sound.
Counterlooping close to the table is one of the main strengths of the Tenergy 19 rubber. I’d say that it has the upper hand when countering compared to the Tenergy 05, due to its higher control.
Open-ups were also an area of strength for the Tenergy 19.
Open-ups carried great spin and felt overall more stable than with all the other Tenergies. The Tenergy 19 doesn’t produce as much power, however. If you want to score a power loop against backspin, you’d be better off choosing the Tenergy 05.
The star of the show, however, were backhand exchanges, without a doubt.
Playing backhand exchanges with the Tenergy 19 feels amazing. It has the perfect arc. It doesn’t have an arc that’s too high, like the Tenergy 05, nor too flat, like the Tenergy 64.
The arc on the Tenergy 64 is arguably the best in the right hands since it is the most direct.
Even though the Tenergy 19 is not as fast, it’s a lot more forgiving and it has much more dwell time than the Tenergy 64.
In addition, it is ideal for punch-type shots, active blocks, loops, and counterloops. It just suits the backhand wing marvelously, and that’s why lots of professional players are using it on that wing.
Serve and receive
Serving and receiving are very good with the Tenergy 19.
In terms of serving, it is excellent. Serves carry noticeably more spin than your average rubber.
I’d say that the Tenergy 19 is probably the best Tenergy rubber for serving. It produces as much spin as the Tenergy 05 while being less bouncy.
This makes it easy to load serves with spin while making it easier to keep them short.
Active serve receives are great with the Tenergy 19. Passive receives are just OK. Even if it isn’t as bouncy, it’s still a Tenergy, and you have to know what you’re doing to receive serves properly.
The Tenergy 19 is a great flicking rubber on either wing. It’s a good rubber for both the backhand and the forehand flick.
It has the stability needed to perform forehand flicks confidently while it also has the spin generation and the arc needed to perform banana flicks against backspin serves. Its grip levels make it really easy to turn backspin into topspin when flicking.
Passive serve receive with the Tenergy 19 is better than with all the other Tenergies but you still have to pay close attention to what you’re doing, as it is a very spin-sensitive rubber.
If you slightly misjudge the spin on the ball, you’re going to give your opponent an easy chance to win the point.
It did help, however, that it isn’t as bouncy as the other Tenergies or the Tibhar Evolution MX-P, for example. It is bouncier than average, but the effect is not as extreme.
Blocking and chopping
I really liked blocking with the Tenergy 19.
It has great stability due to its hardness, and its throw is long and relatively direct. It feels stable and it has the right dwell time for blocking.
Active blocks also work very well with the Tenergy 19. You can easily add power to incoming attacks with a short motion of the wrist.
The only time when the Tenergy 19 was hard to control is when trying to block very spinny shots.
However, it is a lot easier to block with the Tenergy 19 than with all the other Tenergies.
This rubber is clearly the most controllable rubber in the series when it comes to blocking.
You might argue that the Tenergy 64 is a better blocking rubber because it is more insensitive to incoming spin, but the Tenergy 19 is a lot more controllable.
Chopping is great with the Tenergy 19.
This rubber is, again, one of the best rubbers to chop with in the Tenergy line, especially because of its control.
You get quite a bit of sink on the rubber and it also feels firm and stable enough.
It must be noted that we reviewed a 2.1mm sheet of Tenergy. Thinner variants of the Tenergy 19 would be a lot better for chopping, especially when paired with a defensive blade.
Alternatives to the Butterfly Tenergy 19
The slightly more offensive variant of the Tenergy 19. It’s slightly faster and higher throwing, so loops played with the Tenergy 05 are a bit more dangerous.
If the Tenergy 19 is a tamer Tenergy 05, then the Vega X is a tamer Tenergy 19. The Vega X’s grip is great and it has more control and dwell time than the Tenergy 19.
The cheaper alternative to the Tenergy 19. It’s marginally slower and less spinny than the Tenergy 19, but it’s still a great high-performance rubber at half the price.
Overall reflections on the Butterfly Tenergy 19
The Tenergy 19 is a superb rubber, especially for players who are looking for top-tier performance while sacrificing as little control as possible.
This rubber has all the trademark characteristics of the Tenergy line, but it’s slightly toned down, allowing for greater touch and control.
I especially liked it on my backhand side. I felt that its arc, its added dwell time, and its spin made it a superb rubber for backhand exchanges, open-ups, and blocks on the backhand side.
Alvaro’s been playing Table Tennis since he was 15 and is now ranked within the top 200 in his native Argentina. He loves to compete in provincial tournaments and is always looking for ways to improve. Alvaro made his favourite memories with a racket in hand, and he joined the RacketInsight team to share his passion with other players!
Blade: Tibhar Stratus Power Wood | Forehand: XIOM Vega X | Backhand: XIOM Vega X
Playstyle: The Controller