No two shots are the same, so it's quite impossible to compare stories. I DO believe in the science behind the TW pads. Ever open up the pads of a Wilson wraparound? Not a lot of science going on with that stuffing.
Well, the Delta Flex makes all the difference in the world, if you're comparing box stock rigs. Add the DF to the platinum, and they're close. My platinum has molded to my body over the years, and the Sys 7 is still getting there. The padding on the All Star is superior in every way. Plus, with that center channel, it's cooler. I haven't retrofitted the platinum with the TW pads. Maybe this Fall. If it comes out like my old Gold, it should be slimmer fitting than the Sys 7. IMO, they're close in protection. That is to say, these two are the best on the market. Nothing compares the collarbone protection these offer, as they both have one solid piece of plastic from sternum to over the shoulder.
After a full season in the System 7, and seeing that is has the same amount of collarbone protection, I've taken the Wilson from atop it's throne. The biggest difference is the the All Star dips down to cover my last rib, with it's unique shape. That's just a great design.
I've got a well stocked umpire room for my local league. So here's what I'd start out with:
Champion P2xx chest protectors. They come in 13", 15" and 17' models. There's a guy selling them dirt cheap on eBay, with a "Or Best Offer" on them. Offer him $5 less than his asking price, and he'll take it. No better value in hard shell protection. If you buy a few, see if they'll combine shipping charges.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Champion-P210-Umpire-Chest-Protector-15-BLACK-/381298919054?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item58c72fc68e Cans of spray disinfectant are at your local dollar store. Buy a few, and use 'em.
Here is my progression of pants, from when I started out:
Goodwill pants (honestly, that was a good move. I didn't know if I really wanted to umpire) Sears gray slacks. Levi Action slacks Fechhiemer heather gray combos +POS heather combo +POS plate and base Gerry Davis combos Gerry Davis plate and base pants Honig's polywools. Plate and base. 4-5" hem on each, to help keep from snagging, and increase resale value (if they're too short, you narrow your market)
See all the money I wasted. Not only that, I could never recover much cash on the resale market for those lesser pants. Lose-lose. And this holds true for all the other gear and clothes I bought along the way. BUY PRO GEAR, and skip wasting your dough. It works, and protects better, you look better, and you can resell it for a better price down the road.
I wish I read something like this when I started out.
Thanks, but I'm looking for a review of their latest version. A lot of +POS isn't that same quality as it was in the "olden days". Some of the new stuff is actually better, say like the masks. But I'd like to know from someone who's had both.