I have played this rubber in several configurations from defensive to ALL+ paddles for over 18 months. I use it without a pad in all cases. When combined with a control/spin rubber, it makes a great defensive side to modulate spinny serves and loops. It also confuses the heck out of your opponent because of its anti-spin properties. Without the pad it takes a bit of getting used to since it has very little return energy, but this allows a deft hand to finesse the ball anywhere on the table- including dropping it right over the net, and allowing one to stay close to the table. You can keep offensive players from going to their long and strong game and keep them close to the table.
Obviously, talented and highly rated players have encountered long pips and will have little trouble understanding its properties and the weakness that it will give you- no offensive backhand.
I would recommend it for under 1200 players or for 1800+ players with a strong offensive game and confident forehand who want to take their game to a higher level.
Personally, I have migrated to an offense+ combination, but always keep a long pips with me in case I encounter a long pips player or someone whose strong point is spinning serves.
- Phil Pong, OR