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Yinhe Mercury 2 Review

Yinhe Mercury 2 Review

The Yinhe Mercury 2 is one of the most popular Chinese rubbers, and it’s easy to understand why. You just need to have $5 to spare and you can get a brand new sheet.

Table tennis rubbers are very expensive. Most players use rubbers around the $40-80 price range. For the price of 1 Dignics rubber, for example, you can get over twenty Mercury 2s.

That’s why, before reviewing the Mercury 2, I was somewhat skeptical about it. Could a rubber this cheap be any good? I playtested it extensively to find out the answer to that question.

YINHE MERCURY 2 REVIEW SUMMARY
The Yinhe Mercury 2 is a very affordable tacky rubber that’s perfect for most playing styles. It’s very tacky, even for Chinese standards, so it grips the ball wonderfully and has good spin levels. Its sponge is medium hard but elastic, making it a lot easier to use than most Chinese rubbers. In play, the rubber doesn’t feel too hard and it’s surprisingly easy to use. The Mercury 2 is a medium-speed rubber and has enough power to win points by attacking. It has a medium arc, which is higher than most Chinese rubbers, rendering it a safer rubber than its competitors. The best part about this rubber, apart from its value, is its versatility. The Mercury 2 can be used by defenders, all-rounders, and attackers alike because of its superb control.

Perfect for: Beginner and intermediate attackers, all-round players, and defenders. 0-10 years of playing.
Serve
Drive
Loop
Block
Chop
Benefits
Unparalleled value for money.
Versatile and controllable.
Ease of use.
Linearity.
Stability, firmness, and consistency.
Confidence-inducing.
Good levels of spin.
Very tacky, ball slippage is non-existent.
Great for all kinds of spin shots, including looping and chopping.
Superb at playing out the short game.
Drawbacks
Not as much speed or spin as ESN tensors.
Can’t get much quality in your shots if you don’t play actively.
Mediocre at flat hits.
Not very good for countering close to the table.
Relatively heavy.
4.2

Ace

About the Reviewer

Alvaro Munno - Table Tennis Player & Author

Alvaro brings 7+ years of playing experience. He’s tested 20+ rubbers for Racket Insight and his style is The Controller.

About the Review

Blade Used: Stratus Power Wood
Rubber Thickness: MAX
Hours Tested: 10+

Recommended Playstyles

We recommend the Yinhe Mercury 2 to players who want to utilize a very controllable, versatile and spinny rubber for any kind of playing style.

Design of the Yinhe Mercury 2

The Yinhe Mercury 2 comes in a high-quality sealed package. I was quite surprised by the quality of the packaging as it’s delivered to the same standard of rubbers 5, 10, or even 20 times its price.

A picture of the Yinhe Mercury 2 Package

Inside, we can find the rubber. We bought the Mercury 2 in black, as Chinese rubbers are said to be tackier in their black variants (although the real difference between red & black rubbers is only small).

Another thing that surprised me about the packaging is that the rubber came with a protective film. Lots of expensive rubbers don’t come with a protective film, and to see one at this price point is very positive.

A picture of the Yinhe Mercury 2 Rubber

I was also very pleased with the sponge Yinhe chose for this rubber. 

I was expecting a dense, hard, and stiff sponge, similar to those present on other Chinese rubbers such as the Hurricane 3 NEO or the Friendship 729 Super FX.

From the moment I grabbed the rubber, I noticed that this wasn’t a typical Chinese rubber. 

The cream sponge on the Yinhe Mercury 2 is quite elastic. It’s what I’d expect to find on a European rubber.

A picture of the Yinhe Mercury 2 Sponge

Speaking of hardness, this rubber comes in 3 different variants, soft, medium, and hard.

The variant we bought was the medium hardness one, and I think it’s the one to go for if you’re planning to use it on the forehand side. 

The Mercury 2’s hardness on its medium hardness variant is 36-38 degrees on the Chinese scale. 

I think that 36-38 degrees are an accurate measurement. While playing, it behaves like a medium-hard, elastic rubber, around 47 degrees ESN. It feels a bit softer than it is.

As in every review, I tried to rub my fingers across the rubber, but I couldn’t! My finger stuck to the rubber the moment I pressed on it.

According to Revspin, this rubber is “medium tacky”. I have to say this wasn’t my experience with this rubber at all. See for yourselves:

The Mercury 2 is extremely tacky, and it can pick the ball up from the table for 3-7 seconds.

The one I got is noticeably tackier than the Hurricane 3 NEO we reviewed, and a lot tackier than the 729 Super FX and the Rakza Z.

The Yinhe Mercury 2 weighs in at 51 grams. It’s a relatively heavy rubber, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

A picture of the Yinhe Mercury 2 Weight

I’d very much prefer a $5 rubber to be on the heavy side than to be light and flimsy.

The Mercury 2 is about as heavy as most European rubbers like the Tibhar Evolution MX-P (51 grams), and the Yasaka Rakza 7 (50 grams). It’s also 2 grams lighter than the Hurricane 3 NEO.

Specifications
Yinhe Mercury 2
  • Weight (Cut): 51g
  • Speed: Medium
  • Spin: Medium-High
  • Control: Very High
  • Tackiness: Very Tacky
  • Hardness: Medium
  • ITTF Approved: Yes
  • Sponge Thickness: MAX

Summary: Take control of the rally with this easy and fun to use affordable Chinese rubber.

Playtesting the Yinhe Mercury 2

This rubber’s performance was a huge surprise to me. 

The combination between its topsheet and its sponge works perfectly to create a versatile, spinny medium-speed rubber.

The Mercury 2’s topsheet is as tacky as they come and is paired with an elastic sponge. 

The sponge on the Mercury 2 reminds me a lot of the cream sponge present on the Mark V, though the Mercury 2 is a faster, more elastic rubber.

The Mercury 2 plays somewhat similarly to the Rakza Z, actually. Both rubbers are known for their control, versatility, and ease of use.  

In terms of hardness, the Rakza Z and the Mercury 2 feel exactly the same to me. 

The Mercury 2 is like a 15% slower, tackier, and lower-throwing version of the Rakza Z. 

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Driving and looping

Driving and looping is an area of strength of the Mercury 2, but I can say that this rubber is quite strong at everything. I couldn’t find many weaknesses in this rubber.

Drives are very safe and the Mercury 2 has a neutral feel to it. It feels elastic but not very lively.

Driving and looping with the Mercury 2 instills a sense of confidence in the player, so you feel like you can’t miss. 

This is primarily due to the Mercury’s speed levels. You’ll get what you put into the shot, so you never overshoot the table because it is too fast, but it’s also not slow.

If your swing speed is average, then you won’t get much power on the ball, but you also won’t miss. However, if you charge into the ball with speed, then you can get high-quality shots with this rubber.

I can get a lot more quality with the Mercury 2 than with many of the rubbers we’ve reviewed thus far, with the Mercury 2 being by far the cheapest, other than the 1-cent Huieson Thunder.

The Mercury 2 is great for looping. I can confidently say that I could use this rubber on my forehand side.

As you can see, the Mercury 2 can pack a punch when power looping and it doesn’t bottom out easily because of its hardness range. 

If you hit hard, you get tons of quality. If you don’t, then you won’t get much speed or spin on the ball. 

This is the main difference between the Mercury 2 and most European rubbers. 

If your swing speed is not too fast, then you won’t be able to get pace on the ball. 

If you purchase an MX-P or a Fastarc G-1, for example, even if you don’t hit the ball as hard, the rubber will add power to your shots.

I can’t help but wonder how this rubber would perform with a layer or two of booster. If you want more information about the process and the outcome, we have written a guide to boosting in table tennis.

If boosting the Mercury 2 enhances its playing characteristics, then we could have a fast, spinny offensive rubber for just $5.

Even when unboosted, the Mercury 2 is very good at looping. I didn’t notice that I was lacking power when countering far from the table

As you can see, my shots traveled with good quality. 

What I didn’t like about the Mercury 2 was countering close to the table. 

Its throw angle is medium, but it’s quite flat. I kept overshooting the table over and over again.

I also tried countering with my Fastarc G-1 to make sure I was hitting the ball correctly, and I got most of my counterloops on the table. 

When countering close to the table, this rubber gives very little margin of error, since the rubber doesn’t get the ball up and down as fast as grippy rubbers.

Countering is a lot easier with ESN rubbers such as the Fastarc G-1.

As for open-ups, the Mercury 2 worked perfectly fine. 

However, to generate good quality open-ups, one has to play actively. You can’t just use your forearm and expect a high-quality shot, as you could do with an ESN rubber.

You won’t get much quality on your open-ups if you don’t swing your racket fast enough, but you’ll find it hard to miss the table, which is always good when opening up.

If your swing speed is sufficient, then you’ll get good spin on your open-ups with the Mercury 2.

Serve and receive

Serving and receiving is very good with the Mercury 2. 

Due to the Mercury’s tackiness, it’s very easy to keep serves short and low to the net. I think it’s the best rubber I’ve ever tried for serving short and low.

When I tried serving with this rubber for the first time, I couldn’t get the ball over the net. Once I adapted, my serves stayed as short and low as they’ve ever been.

I didn’t give the Mercury 2 a 5/5 rating on serves because it isn’t as easy to load serves with spin.

Receiving with the Mercury 2 is a dream come true. You can play safe and high-quality flicks and pushes. Flicking isn’t hard because the Mercury 2 is not a bouncy or very hard rubber.

Touching short is effortless. Short pushes stay very short and low to the net because of the Mercury’s tackiness. 

Pushing long is also very good, and you can control the depth of your pushes with ease.

Blocking and chopping

Blocking with the Mercury 2 was great. 

The Mercury 2 has lots of control and a good feel for blocking. I felt like I could block hard-hit loops a lot more easily than with bouncy ESN rubbers.

The downside to this is that it’s hard to compromise opponents with your blocks. It’s quite easy to block but my blocks weren’t that dangerous. 

I would say that chopping is the main strength of the Mercury 2. To this day, the Mercury 2 is the best rubber I’ve ever tried for chopping. 

Chops are quite spinny and stay low to the net. I’m not the best chopper, far from it, but I could chop a lot more consistently with the Mercury 2 than with any other rubber I’ve tried. Chops can be loaded with tons of spin if you graze the ball correctly.

Yinhe Mercury 2 vs DHS Hurricane 3 NEO

The speed level of the Mercury 2 is around that of the Hurricane 3 NEO, but I could note some differences between the two.

The Hurricane 3 feels much harder during play, and it’s a lot harder to use than the Mercury 2. 

The Mercury 2 plays very well, and it’s not hard to use at all. 

I can say that the Mercury 2 is noticeably faster on medium gears than the Hurricane 3 NEO, but it doesn’t have the top-end power that the Hurricane has. 

If I had to choose, I’d use the Mercury rather than the Hurricane since it’s a lot safer and more consistent to use. 

Alternatives to the Yinhe Mercury 2

Yasaka Rakza Z

The Yasaka Rakza Z is a higher quality, slightly faster, higher-throwing and spinnier version of the Yinhe Mercury 2.

Donic Baracuda

The Donic Baracuda is another controllable offensive rubber. It’s very spinny and considerably faster than the Mercury 2.

Overall reflections on the Yinhe Mercury 2

As you can tell, I was blown away by the Yinhe Mercury 2. 

If you told me the Mercury 2 cost $40, I’d believe you. The Mercury 2 is a great rubber because of its versatility, its control, and its ease of use.

I would recommend this rubber to a very wide spectrum of players, as every stroke played with this rubber is very good, except for counters close to the table and flat hits.

The Yinhe Mercury 2 has no business being this cheap, and I could use it myself if I wanted to cut costs on rubber changes, especially when boosted.

If you want to purchase the Yinhe Mercury 2, then I’d recommend getting its medium hardness variant for the forehand side and its soft variant for the backhand side. 

I had lots of fun in my testing of the Mercury 2 and I’ll start recommending it from now on. 

The Mercury 2 shows you don’t need to spend a fortune to get high-quality equipment, and that’s why it is so popular. 

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The Controller
Alvaro Munno - Table Tennis Player & Author

Alvaro’s been playing Table Tennis since he was 15 and is now ranked within the top 100 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: Butterfly Fan Zhendong ALC | Forehand: Butterfly Dignics 09c | Backhand: Butterfly Rozena
Playstyle: The Controller

10 thoughts on “Yinhe Mercury 2 Review”

  1. Hello!
    I plan to stick this rubbers (Soft for BH side and Medium for FH side) on the Yinhe N10s base. I have two copies of this blades (92 and 97 grams). Which mass of blade do you suggest for this rubbers? I think, I am a beginner with rather small experience. I like to attack but also need some skills to defence.
    Can you also give any advice how Yinhe Mercury 2 compares to Loki Rxton 1 rubbers?
    Thanks, looking forward for your answers.

    1. Álvaro Munno

      Hello Vasyl,

      I would personally stick them to the 92 gram Yinhe N10, as these rubbers are not particularly light. You will end up with a low 190g racket, which is reasonable, but towards the heavy side. Your racket will be perfect for your level.

      As for the Loki rubber, we haven’t tried it, but, according to its reviews, the Mercury should be a better rubber in terms of spin and control.

  2. Hello again! Does it make sense to go for Xiom Vega Intro’s after using Yinhe Mercury 2? I found your reviews of this rubbers quite similar. Does Xiom Vega Intro have sirious advantages over Yinhe Mercury 2? I want to try some tensor/european rubber after tacky chinese rubber. Does Xiom Vega Intro need something less physical effort to win points compare to Yinhe Mercury 2? I have to setups with Yinhe Mercury 2 (medium on FH and soft on BH), paired with Yasaka Sweden Extra and Xiom Allround S. Combination with Yasaka Sweden Extra feels slightly better for me.
    Looking forward for your answers and thanks a lot for your great reviews!

    1. Hello Vasyl,

      Xiom Vega Intro is slightly more bouncy than Yinhe Mercury 2, so it’s a bit easier to use (a bit less physical effort, but not a massive difference).

      If you want a greater difference in ease of use, you could take a look at even faster rubbers like the Rakza 7, the Rakza Z or the Vega X.

      Thanks for the nice words!
      Álvaro

  3. Hi Alvaro, thanks for your website, it has been very useful for me getting into tabletennis. Not only the equipments review but also the mindset and tactics stuff. Based on reviews, including yours, I bought 6 sheets of Mercury 2 soft for use on my Yasaka Sweden Classic and my wife’s Donic Appelgren Allplays. I am happy with this setup, it’s easy to learn with due to the clear feedback.

    One surprising thing is that my sheets are not tacky at all, not even directly after removing the protective cover. I have read and watched every review of this rubber, and in that I see people state that it cannot pick up a ball. Yours seems to be the outlier. Would it be possible that yours was somehow tacky from the glue of the protectice sheet? Or perhaps that yours was simple newer or ‘fresher’? Is yours still tacky after 20+ hours? Just curious! 🙂 Thanks again.

    1. Hello John, thanks for the nice words!! They really mean a lot 🙂

      I’m really happy to hear that what we’re writing has helped you. As for your question: I have no idea. It makes sense that most Mercurys aren’t as tacky as mine was given the other reviews online that call it a medium tacky rubber. Mine was incredibly tacky, in fact, it was probably the tackiest rubber I’d ever seen 😂

      If I had to guess, I’d say that it comes down to quality control. You see, these are very cheap rubbers, so quality control is close to non existent. Hence, some sheets will be softer, harder, tackier or less tacky depending on the batch. If you read my Big Dipper review, the rubber was very defective out of the box, so I assume there’s little to no quality control going on the Yinhe factory, so there are important variations between rubbers of the same model.

      As for mine, it was still very very tacky after 20+ hours, only slightly less so than out of the package. I gave it to another player in my club and he used it for months. He was really happy with it.

      Cheers!
      Álvaro

      1. Hi Alvaro, thanks for your reply! I waited with responding because I still had 2 sheets of Mercury 2 medium coming and I wanted to see how tacky they were. Perhaps different than the soft. But they are similar, a little bit tacky, but not enough to lift a ball. Eiterh way, it doesn’t matter, it is a really enjoyable rubber.

        I had ordered medium and soft the first time but they delivered only soft. Soft felt unpredictable on hard forehands. Medium feels really good, much better really. Suddenly almost every hard ball went in, no matter how weird the angle. It is also more linear on soft touches. Next I’m going to try the medium side on backhand as well, curious how that goes.

      2. Hi Alvaro, I had posted but my post is removed? Anyways, again: thanks for your reply. I ordered Galaxy 2 medium (I got delivered only soft before by accident) and it plays much better on FH than soft. Like you said, it feels impossible to miss! Very enjoyable to play. The tackiness is the same as on my softs, so the difference in tackiness is not a part of the hardness. Indeed probably due to quality control.

        1. Hello there!

          I’m really happy you liked it 🙂 That’s why we write these articles, after all!

          Thanks for your support.

          Cheers,
          Álvaro

  4. Great review of this very cheap rubber. I have found that using a faster carbon blade (I tried SOFT on both sides of a Yinhe Pro 01) solves the problem of counters close to the table and flat hits. Drives and flat hits are so easy because the rubber is relatively spin insensitive and the carbon blade gives it stability. Also, the soft version only weighs 42g cut.

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