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View Full Version : ***PK Redondo 98 Review*** (jedeloach style)


samster
05-05-2007, 04:50 PM
Well, this may be too little, too late, since the U.S. supply of Redondo appears to have been depleted as PK struggles to find a U.S. distributor. But fortunately, I picked up six Redondo's in the past couple months and I have been playing with it for the past 2 months.

About me: I am a self-rated NTRP 3.5 to 4.0. I play once to twice a week. Semiwestern forehand; can hit with topspin or flat. One-hand backhand, love to slice but occasionally hit topspin during matches. I have a long backswing; "too long" according to my instructor. Former high school doubles player; so I love to volley but undoubtedly a step slower now I am 31 y/o and lack of playing time. I have used a wide range of racket headsizes: the smallest being Head Arthur Ashe frame and largest being Donnay Pro 1 Agassi Oversize (blue and neon yello).

My first Redondo was a used one I bought from TW forum from gotwheels (Jim); I got it for my chronic shoulder problems. But as you will see, the Redondo gave me more than just comfort.

PK REDONDO 98 STOCK; KLIP LEGEND 17 AT 58 LBS; YONEX COBALT BLUE OVERGRIP; 1 GAMMA SHOCK BUSTER.

Design/Comfort: 10/10.

This is by far one of the most comfortable frames I have ever used. Yonex RDX 500 users can easily identify with this. Absolutely no arm pain or shoulder pain even when I completely mishit (ie. frame the ball). The frame is flexible but it is flexible at the right places; I will get to this in the serve section.

It is similar to the PK Heritage Type C except it has a maroon paint theme to it. It has a classic look to it. I like it.

Overall: If you want comfort and feel, look no further.

Groundstrokes: 9/10.

I was concerned about the 18x20 string pattern because I thought it would hamper with hitting topspin. Boy, was I wrong. One thing I really like about the Redondo is its versatility. You can hit flat or topspin with the Redondo without problem.

I have hit harder and more penetrating topspin forehands with Babolat Pure Drive Roddick, but overall I say the Redondo is better (for me) because of the variety of shots I can hit with confidence: nasty drop shots, backhand slice that stays low, or open up and rip a topspin backhand, or work the angles. I am hitting the best BH shots (topspin and slice) I have ever hit consistently with the Redondo.

Overall: No surprises here, you get what you put in. The Redondo will reward you when you take a long, smooth, controlled swing. I found that muscling the ball will not work with the Redondo. The wierd thing is you don't feel like you are hitting a heavy ball; but ask your opponent who is running around trying to catch his breath.

Volleys: 9/10.

This is a good volleying stick given it is headlight, has mass (12.1) behind it, and maneuverable. Because of the excellent feedback you get from the racket, you can volley back deep or hit angled shots with ease. It is not quite as buttery as the RDX 500 mid, but it is awfully darn close.

When I was playing with the Babolat Pure Drive Roddick, there were times I was afraid to go to the net because of the erratic response I get volleying with the PDR. With the Redondo, again, I now have the confidence that I did not have at the net with PDR.

Overall: Rock solid at the net.

Serves: 9/10.

I really enjoyed the Yonex RDX 500 series but I could never serve well with the RDX for whatever reason. I was afraid the same thing would happen all over again with the Redondo given that the Redondo is flexible like the RDX.

Wrong! The Redondo is a dream for those who like to mix it up. Flat bombs? yes sir! Slice? no problem! Kicker? brush it up and you have it! I found good directional control and placement with the Redondo and good pace on flat serves that I did not have with the RDX. Total mishit? no pain!

Have I served faster with another frame? Sure, but again speed is not everything, right?

Overall: I started delivering aces again with the Redondo 98. Again, take a smooth controlled swing and the Redondo will reward you.

Final thoughts:

My journey for "the best racket" has come to an end (temporaily :) ). I bought a Redondo out of concern for my chronic shoulder problems because I always have had some discomfort with the many frames I own. I am glad that I took a chance and bought it even though I tried a PK 5g ten years ago and didn't think PK was any good.

I feel that the Redondo MP would be a good fit for an All-Court tennis player, NTRP 3.5 and above who can supply some power, who enjoys versatility, feel, and confidence that the frame will deliver. This frame rewards those with a long, smooth swing.

Polaris
05-05-2007, 05:30 PM
Thanks for your thoughts, samster. As Anirut would say, welcome to the Cult of the Redondo. I use the Redondo MP, play close to the 4.0 level, and agree with your views on groundstrokes and volleys. I wouldn't give it that much of a glowing review on serves: I find it easy to serve with the Redondo, but think that there are other racquets which might do the job better.

The chief quality of the racquet is comfort, according to me. I was glad that you pointed that out as well, and happy that your shoulder likes it. Someone on this forum once said that the PK5g ought to be sold at a pharmacy for people with tennis injuries. The Redondo MP would make a worthy companion to the 5g in that respect.

BTW: (1) I hate you because you have 6 Redondos and I have only one ;) .
(2): Anirut could probably link to samster's post from his first post on the giant Redondo thread.

rabidcow
05-05-2007, 05:59 PM
Well the Pk site is back up so I think they may have found a distributor??

samster
05-05-2007, 06:05 PM
Polaris,

I would recommend natural gut for the Redondo to bring out maximal power. The Technifibre is a good string but does not have as much power as natural gut from my experience.

Again, I have served harder with other rackets (Dunlop Maxply Mcenroe 98, Babolat Pure Drive Roddick) but I must say I enjoy the variety, consistency, and placement I get with the Redondo. I was going to give the serve a 8.5/10 but it is hard to argue against 3 aces I served in one set on Thursday.

Duzza
05-05-2007, 06:11 PM
Are these reviews rated from 8 to 10 out of 10?

samster
05-05-2007, 06:13 PM
Pictures:

http://i12.tinypic.com/63ai0jn.jpg

http://i18.tinypic.com/6ex7720.jpg

http://i19.tinypic.com/6fzg4fs.jpg

http://i17.tinypic.com/6277om1.jpg

anirut
05-05-2007, 06:43 PM
Thanks a lot, samster, for the wonderful review. JD has probably created a review style everyone can use.

(2): Anirut could probably link to samster's post from his first post on the giant Redondo thread.

Wha da ya mean could? I just DID!

samster
05-05-2007, 07:11 PM
Thanks a lot, samster, for the wonderful review. JD has probably created a review style everyone can use.



Wha da ya mean could? I just DID!

Thanks, Anirut, for the mega thread you made. Reading your mega thread prompted me to give the Redondo a chance.

It is too bad the Redondo wasn't available when I was playing in high school. I ruined my shoulder with the Prostaff Classic 6.1 95. But the PK Redondo has allowed me to play again without pain.

skraggle
05-05-2007, 08:28 PM
Hey Samster-

Glad you're found a racquet that's working so well for you. I've hung on to a few of my Type C 93's for some of the same reasons you've mentioned.

BTW, those Pure Storms in the background look awfully familiar...

Final_Match_Point
05-05-2007, 09:29 PM
How was the transition from a PD roddick to this? Im thinking of making the same change

pow
05-06-2007, 03:25 AM
How was the transition from a PD roddick to this? Im thinking of making the same change

Very different racquets, Almost no aspects of it are near the PD except maybe that 98 and 100 sq in heads are pretty close.
It will be a whole different feel due to the stiffness as the Redondo is on the opposite side of the spectrum being very flexible, the string pattern is closed and not open which makes a world of difference, and the static weight is higher just to name a few major differences.

Oh I just thought of another similarity the 98 Redondo has with the Pure Drive, the grommets on some areas (most of the side and some at the top) have "Babolat-style Woofer grommets".

If you can, definitely demo this racquet, I much prefer it over the PD but that's my opinion and everyone plays different tennis so it's only safe to try it for yourself. In terms of the transition, they are not similar racquets, but I don't see too much reason as to why this one cannot be adapted to.

The Redondo 93 is almost the EXACT OPPOSITE of a Pure Drive with no similarities I can think of.

samster
05-06-2007, 06:22 AM
Hey Samster-

Glad you're found a racquet that's working so well for you. I've hung on to a few of my Type C 93's for some of the same reasons you've mentioned.

BTW, those Pure Storms in the background look awfully familiar...

Skraggle,

Thanks for hooking me up with the Pure Storms. Don't worry, I will try them at some point this summer when I get more time to play.

samster
05-06-2007, 06:29 AM
How was the transition from a PD roddick to this? Im thinking of making the same change

Kind of hard to answer your question. Actually, I have pretty much used thin beamed, low powered frames all my life (PS 6.1 95, RDX 500 Mid/MP, Prince TT Warrior MP, Cayman TNT 90) prior to using the PDR so the adjustment was actually when I purchased the PDR. Hitting groundstrokes with the PDR I have to conscientiously hit with more topspin otherwise the balls will fly on me due to the inherent power of the PDR. Also, I shortened up my backswing with the PDR.

There was not much transition time required for me with the Redondo because it was a good match. I like flexible frame, my swing is long. I have to emphasize that long, fluid swing is best for this frame.

$99 for a new Redondo 98? That's a great deal!

basil J
05-06-2007, 01:16 PM
Samster welcome to the club! I switched over to the Redondo MP just about a year ago and have been extremely happy with it. I too had shoulder issues after using an ncode 6.1 18 x 20 and since I switched to the PK, I have had no issues at all. I too find that if I use a relaxed swing, I generate much more pace than when I try to muscle the ball, especially on serves. It never feels like I hit a heavy ball, but my teaching pro and Tennis buddies all tell me I hit a very heavy ball, so I have had to adjust and accept that I am, even though it never feels like I do. I play 4.0-4.5 tennis and this frame has been a godsend. My game has certyainly improved, and You get out exactly what you put in. I use gut on the mains and gosen synthetic or Kboom poly on the crosses and this frame just plays solid. Other frames may have certain individual properties that may be better, but collectively this frame is one of the best I have ever had the good fortune of ever playing with. The longer you use it, the more you will like it...

samster
05-06-2007, 06:34 PM
Samster welcome to the club! I switched over to the Redondo MP just about a year ago and have been extremely happy with it. I too had shoulder issues after using an ncode 6.1 18 x 20 and since I switched to the PK, I have had no issues at all. I too find that if I use a relaxed swing, I generate much more pace than when I try to muscle the ball, especially on serves. It never feels like I hit a heavy ball, but my teaching pro and Tennis buddies all tell me I hit a very heavy ball, so I have had to adjust and accept that I am, even though it never feels like I do. I play 4.0-4.5 tennis and this frame has been a godsend. My game has certyainly improved, and You get out exactly what you put in. I use gut on the mains and gosen synthetic or Kboom poly on the crosses and this frame just plays solid. Other frames may have certain individual properties that may be better, but collectively this frame is one of the best I have ever had the good fortune of ever playing with. The longer you use it, the more you will like it...

Basil J, I agree with you. The more I use the Redondo, the more I like it. The Redondo is a dependable, trusty friend...unlike my last relationship...anyways, that's beside the point. ;)

I have tried full Legend 17 and Legend 17/Gosen 17 hybrid and they play quite similarly but the hybrid is losing some tension, which I think is the Gosen. I may need to just stick with a full gut setup because I don't break strings often.

jeffreyfranz
05-06-2007, 07:50 PM
Just checked out the rejuvenated website. I have to say I love the looks of the new Redondo, but I am a little nervous about the new specs: 11.8 (new) vs. 12.1 (old); flex 60 vs. 56-57 (93-98, old, if I remember correctly); and 20% Kevlar (not an arm friendly material, according to me) vs. 100% graphite before. But of course the proof is in the playing. It is now 12 points HL vs. 10 before (I like that change on paper). It could feel fabulous, or it could feel a little stiffer.

ANIRUT: What do you know so far? JT

samster
05-06-2007, 08:10 PM
This is from www.prokennex.com

http://i18.tinypic.com/4ordumh.jpg

Looks nice, but I think I will stick with the red Redondo.

movdqa
05-06-2007, 08:12 PM
That white racquet is the Laver I think. A racquet that preceeded the Redondo.

samster
05-06-2007, 08:15 PM
That white racquet is the Laver I think. A racquet that preceeded the Redondo.

Perhaps a typo at the prokennex website; I thought I was losing it...a white Redondo?

knasty131
05-06-2007, 08:26 PM
no...that is the Pro Kennex Heritage Type C..i had the MP and the mid...preferred the mid a lot more, thats why i still have it stashed away

-kevin

fridrix
05-07-2007, 01:54 AM
The white one and the red one are both gorgeous racquets. . . I would buy them on looks alone but I am like that.

The Redondo 98's specs seem simular to the ol' Head Classic MP (102?), which I am using right now. I researched the Redondo but its butt (cap) looks too big. Also I wouldn't want to go any flexier than the Classic.

I used to hit with a Pro Kennex Composite Destiny (95). It had a neat blue leather grip. It cost $65 and came with a free cooler! I am pretty sure it came pre-strung.

anirut
05-07-2007, 03:48 AM
Just checked out the rejuvenated website. I have to say I love the looks of the new Redondo, but I am a little nervous about the new specs: 11.8 (new) vs. 12.1 (old); flex 60 vs. 56-57 (93-98, old, if I remember correctly); and 20% Kevlar (not an arm friendly material, according to me) vs. 100% graphite before. But of course the proof is in the playing. It is now 12 points HL vs. 10 before (I like that change on paper). It could feel fabulous, or it could feel a little stiffer.

ANIRUT: What do you know so far? JT

Well, guys, the info put up on the site was since the Jurassic period I think, if not much earlier.

The white is the Laver Type C, NOT the Redondo. The specs mentioned are all Laver C.

And, my dear distinguished guests, here are the saved Redondo info from TW:

Mid
This softer, 100% graphite version of the Type C offers the type of feel and response advanced players love. Like the Heritage Type C, this Redondo edition is a perfect match for players with long, fast swings. We found plenty of feel at net enabling pinpoint volleys and lots of control on touch shots. From the baseline this racquet is all about control, allowing the player swing aggressively and with confidence. Once in motion, this racquet’s weight and heft supplies some nice pop on faster swings, making both topspin and slice shots come off the court with good penetration. Advanced players looking for a racquet with a truly classic player’s feel should definitely take this one for a demo. Recommended for 4.5+ level players.

Head Size:
93 sq. in. / 600 sq. cm.
Length: 27 inches / 69 cm
Strung Weight: 12.1oz / 343g
Balance: 10pts Head Light
Swingweight: 320
Stiffness: 56
Beam Width: 20 mm Straight Beam
Composition: 100% Graphite
Power Level: Low
Swing Speed: Fast
Grip Type: Leather
String Pattern:
18 Mains / 20 Crosses
Mains skip: 8T,10T,8H,10H
Two Piece
No shared holes
String Tension: 55-68 pounds


Midplus
The Type C Redondo Midplus offers exceptional comfort and control from all areas of the court. Advanced players will appreciate the traditional feel from the stringbed and find lots of control on touch and placement shots. As with the Mid, power and spin production is very predictable, allowing the player to swing with confidence. Long, fast swings are rewarded with a pleasing thwack at impact. Advanced players will find plenty of weight on their shots with this racquet. At net the Redondo Midplus feels as solid as a rock. The headlight balance offers good mobility and the response is all about feel and control. Well suited to advanced players with long, faster swings seeking a racquet that offers the highest level of feel and control.


Midplus Specs
Head Size:
98 sq. in. / 632 sq. cm.
Length: 27 inches / 69 cm
Strung Weight: 12.1oz / 343g
Balance: 10pts Head Light
Swingweight: 324
Stiffness: 57
Beam Width: 20 mm Straight Beam
Composition: 100% Graphite
Power Level: Low
Swing Speed: Fast
Grip Type: Leather
String Pattern:
18 Mains / 20 Crosses
Mains skip: 8T,10T,8H,10H
Two Piece
No shared holes
String Tension: 55-68 pounds


I hope this will help clean up the confusion about the Redondo and the Type C.

BTW, I've just finished my latest hack on the Redondo mid. Will report more after playing my Wednesday night session ... if it doesn't rain.

Will report in the Redondo thread ...

tennisee
05-07-2007, 04:28 AM
Yeah - looking at that pic above; it's the type C, that preceeded the Redondo. It's a silver/grey, not white. I played the C 93 for a while and still like it. Great with nat gut - otherwise a bit low powered (for me). I did not go with the Redondo - a lot of the early adopters found it a bit light, and since I liked the (heavier) C I thought there was little point.

I since went to a 95 Vantage 18 x 20 63 flex 320g 10pt HL - nice.

southpaw
05-07-2007, 04:43 AM
Just checked out the rejuvenated website. I have to say I love the looks of the new Redondo, but I am a little nervous about the new specs: 11.8 (new) vs. 12.1 (old); flex 60 vs. 56-57 (93-98, old, if I remember correctly); and 20% Kevlar (not an arm friendly material, according to me) vs. 100% graphite before. But of course the proof is in the playing. It is now 12 points HL vs. 10 before (I like that change on paper). It could feel fabulous, or it could feel a little stiffer.



Those are still the old specs for the laver type c unstrung. PK never updated their site with the redondo numbers.