Lobster Sports Elite 2 Tennis Ball Machine
If you’re in the market for a new tennis ball machine, the Lobster Sports Elite 2 might just be the right one for you. The Elite 2 sits right in the middle of Lobster Sports’ product line, and for many, that represents a perfect blend of price, quality, and features. Just like the other machines from the Lobster’s Elite series, the Elite 2 features the same classy design, offering maximum durability.
However, compared to the previous models, the Elite Liberty, Freedom and One, this model offers a far greater number of features, making it much more popular. Offering a perfect blend of features and a good court time, this machine is one of the best tennis ball machines, within its price range.
Features and specifications:
The Lobster Elite 2 features the almost identical chassis as the entire line. The entire frame is made of plastic, as well as the ball holder, which doubles as a lid. It's pretty durable, and transport friendly since it weighs only 44 pounds.
It's lightweight profile, along with an ergonomic design, and 8-inch wheels, make the machine more comfortable to move around the court. Also, there's a handle molded into the plastic and a foldable handle on the back of the machine. These help you with loading the device into the trunk of your car. To make the tennis practice more challenging, the Elite 2 comes packed with features that offer the best playing experience.
It’s capable of shooting the ball at you within a selectable speed range of 20 – 80MPH. It’s gentle enough for beginners and children, but it can provide enough challenge for intermediate and advanced players. The white ball holder has a capacity of up to 150 balls, which is more than enough for a solid hitting session.
The balls are fed into the machine at pre-set time intervals ranging from 2 to 10 seconds. Two seconds provides a rigorous workout, while a ten seconds interval gives you more than enough time to take a breath. You can easily adjust the feed rate using the control panel to suit your training needs better.
While straight shots are most suitable for beginners, other tennis players will significantly benefit from the spin feature. The Elite 2 can shoot topspin and backspin style shots, with the ability to modify the level of spin. Leaving the spin level at 0 turns off the spin feature, making the machine fire flat shots. Unfortunately, the machine cannot alternate between spins, so you’ll have to plan your training accordingly.
Thanks to the electronic elevation system, the Elite 2 fires the balls at any angle from 0° to 60°, for practicing overhead shots and lobs. The elevation adjustments are modified on the back panel, or with a remote controller which is sold separately.
Triple oscillation is where this tennis ball machine really shines. It’s the most important, and the most confusing features of the Elite 2 tennis ball machine. This feature allows for a sweeping motion back and forth at a constant speed, offering three options regarding ball placement.
Besides the regular side-to-side shooting function, which is present on all Lobster Elite machines, the Elite 2 offers forward-to-backward oscillation. This oscillating feature will have you running up and down the court, by shooting shorter or deeper balls. The third and final option is the combination of the previous two, launching the balls with random movement and different placement.
Out of the box, the Elite 2 offers 4-8 hours of court time. Court time greatly depends on feed rate, and the number of features and settings you're using. If you find this battery life insufficient, you can always buy back up battery that provides an additional 4 to 8 hours of playtime. The basic charger that comes with the Elite 2 can take anywhere between 12 and 15 hours to charge your battery to its full capacity. However, this charger doesn't come with overcharging protection, and if you leave it on for more than 24 hours, you risk killing the battery. Keep in mind that the warranty excludes the battery.
A fast charger, an external AC power unit, and remote control come as an optional purchase. Fast charger offers faster charging time (3-9 hours) and comes with overcharging protection. The remote control gives you a very basic on/off control over various features, while the Elite10 remote offers even more control over certain functions.
- Triple oscillation
- Great features
- Offers 4-8 hours of playtime
- Battery and AC operated
- No pre-set drills
- External AC power unit and remote-control cost extra
The design and features of the Lobster Sports Elite 2 make it one of the best tennis ball machines on the market. It offers a significant number of functions and setting, all of which are accessible via the control panel on the back of the device.
The device comes with a 2-year warranty that unfortunately excludes the battery. The warranty covers server wheels (rotating wheels that feed the tennis balls), but only for six months. Good news is that the 2-year warranty can be extended by up to three years.
The downside of this machine is its basic charger. It lacks overcharging protection, which means that the battery should be unplugged the moment it’s charged. Overcharging the battery can significantly reduce its life-span. For that reason, a fast charger is a sound investment. It charges the battery more quickly than the basic one, and more importantly – it has overcharging protection.
Whether you’re a beginner, an intermediate, or an advanced player, this ball machine will help you to improve your skills. And since the Lobster Sports is a brand that offers quality, you'll get a product that delivers excellence. For a very minimal cost, this device will take your tennis skill to an advanced level.