This is not a “review” because I haven’t had the yoyo long enough to do a proper review. However, I’ve been asked by a few people about the Puffin 2. Here’s one of the more detailed responses I gave via PM:
The Puffin 2 is surprisingly similar to the original Puffin, and that’s a good thing to me, since the Puffin is possibly my favourite yoyo. Reducing the catch zone “bump” did not affect comfort at all-- it feels great in the hand. If anything, the new outer rim makes it even more comfy now, and I have become acutely aware of the thin rim on the original.
Spin times are very good. I’m not sure they’re quite Chief-level and are certainly not BvM2 level (from what I played of one), but they’re very very good. An improvement for sure. I’m still using the pre-lubed CTX; if I was a spin time maniac, I’d probably clean it and run it dry. But I prefer smooth and quiet operation over spin time.
The finish is the same Gruntbull finish we already know and love. No surprises there.
Fingerspins… apparently Palli wanted less nipple and to do away with the inner rim partly to assist fingerspins. I am not a fingerspin master, but it is still not my best fingerspinning yoyo. Even the original Puffin is just as good-- I actually liked the “Chief inner rim” for fingerspins.
It is more stable than the original Puffin for sure. They succeeded in that goal. Although it still feels manoeverable, I noticed right away that some of my newer tricks that I execute sloppily and which would normally knock the Puffin off-axis are NOT affecting the Puffin 2 in the same way. Win!
Horizontal is fine. I only know how to do banana turnover. The very rounded catch zone makes me feel like I’m going to accidentally reject the string more than on other yoyos, but it’s hard to say… when you suck at a technique the way I suck at horizontal, it’s hard to make judgments.
Overall, I’m very impressed. And I’ve been finding myself jaded lately, wondering why top-tier yoyos aren’t blowing me away. The Puffin 2 didn’t necessarily “change the whole game” or anything that drastic, but it put a genuine smile on my face and seems to be an overall improvement.
Does it replace the original Puffin for me? Right now, yes… because it’s so new. But I LOVE the original Puffin, so time will tell.
I am finding the Puffin 2 to be killer for rejections! Seems like you hardly have to work at them at all.
I mentioned stability above, but it’s worth mentioning again: the Puffin 2 is significantly and appreciably more stable than the original. Even with sloppy-ish play, I’m not sending it careening off-axis.
-The outer rim is a thing of beauty. I’ve hardly ever taken note of this part of a yoyo before… the only other time it really mattered to me was comparing the smooth wonderful Punch Line to the Punch Line Repeater. The latter had a thin “line” that you could feel with your thumb, and was a step back. The opposite is true here: it sounds like a silly small detail (and maybe it is), but while holding the yoyo ready for a throw, the thumb sits comfortably on that “wing”-shaped rim. Switching back to the OG, I missed it immediately. The substantial rim also signifies more weight in that area, which is good for the overall stability and spin time thing.
Conclusions: If you passed on the original because people talked about stability or spin time issues, you should jump on the sequel. If you adored the original (as I do) because of its quirkiness, there is still a lot of its character in this one; just “serioused-up” a little. I can’t help suspecting based on some public comments by Chris that the 2014 line-up will eventually hit YYE… maybe the 2nd run or something? That’s PURE speculation, so don’t hold your breath. But in any event, the point is that my first impressions are positive enough to recommend people “on the edge” to just go for it. A proper full review should be coming later… maybe… if someone doesn’t beat me to it with a better one that I agree with.