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View Full Version : Help Choosing A New Racquet (NOOB/Babolat)


patrick1359
02-14-2012, 11:49 AM
Hi guys,

I am starting to really get into tennis, and I am looking into upgrading my racquets so I can improve my game. I really do not know how to describe my game or what I do, as I am still fairly inexperienced in the game, however, I would like to get the best racquet I can for my game. Some information that might be useful from what I have read online include that I am about 155lbs, 5' 6", and I am 16. I currently am a Junior in High School, and I play both singles and doubles. I have had the same doubles partner for 3 years, so I have found that I am usually playing the back (or baseline area/behind the squares) in a doubles match and then in a singles match, I am all over the place, just depends on how the game goes. I currently only have 1 racquet, however, I am wanting to get a pair of matching racquets. The current racquet I own is the Babolat 135th Anniversary edition Pure Drive GT (I try really hard to keep it in mint condition). I like the racquet and compared to other brands I have demoed, I like the overall feel od Babolats. What I have been looking into know are a couple of racquets, however, I do not know which one is going to be best for me. These racquets include the Pure Drive, Pure Drive +, Pure Drive Roddick, Pure Drive Roddick +, AeroPro, and lastly the AeroPro +. I honestly do not know what the difference is between the + and non+ models, but from what I understand is that they offer a little more power. So my question is what matching pair of racquets should I get? I am also willing to answer any questions so that you can get a better idea of how I play or what I may be doing in my game, because as I said, I do not know how to describe my game that well. Lastly, I am also looking at getting some of last years model racquets instead of this years racquets because of the price I can get them for and my budget as a high school student. (for example instead of getting this years black Pure Drive, I would get last years blue Pure Drive)

Thank you for taking the time to read this! I really appreciate it as I am quite lost on which racquet I should be getting as there are so many out there.

drkplayer122
02-14-2012, 12:06 PM
the + models of babolats are extended length around 27.5 instead of the standard length of 27 so you will get more power out of the stick. I am assuming that you dont have any arm problems since you are using the PDGT. Also do you play with lots of spin or are you more of a flat hitter?

patrick1359
02-14-2012, 12:42 PM
Ok, well, I honestly dont know if I should get + model or not then. I also do not have any arm problems what so ever. As far as my spin goes, I am not really sure, but my best guess would be that I am a flat hitter. I know my coach tries to teach us the tophand top spin, but I think I usually just hit the ball strait on.

Deuces Wild
02-14-2012, 01:11 PM
What do you like and dislike about your current racquet? Your Pure Drive is a very good racquet. Don't switch racquets unless you find something that's definitely better.

Hi I'm Ray
02-14-2012, 01:12 PM
If you are not sure, you can experiment and try out different set ups to find what you like. I like to experiment to try and find new setups that might work for me, so I will get rackets that are vastly different for long term testing. For example I normally use an Aeropro Drive GT and also use a Volkl PB10 Mid. I also found to my surprise that a massively powerful stick like the Wilson Profile was quite usable.

Thats

100sq in/11.3oz/24-26mm beam (thickest in hoop)
vs
93sq in/12.1oz/19mm straight beam
vs
110sq in/13-ish oz/tapered beam thickest in throat @ 37-ish mm

If you are unsure, demo a few frames that have different characterists to find what suits you. I already know I play poorly with + size rackets and cant get enough spin from dense patterns, but I had to demo to find out.

I will say however, that although I like heavy rackets, I find them restricting for customization because they are already so heavy. For example I want the Profile to be more headlight feeling but I'm not gonna be able to add weight to an already 13oz racket, and I can't add much weight to the head of my Volkl PB 10 mid before it gets too heavy. I also think my PB10 Mid has more weight in the handle than I need but I can't do anything about that. Something in the 11oz range is much easier to customize. Also, overly stiff or powerful frames limit my choice of strings. Something that is in the middle as far as power and weight balance, and stiffness are much easier to customize and experiment with.

patrick1359
02-14-2012, 01:20 PM
What do you like and dislike about your current racquet? Your Pure Drive is a very good racquet. Don't switch racquets unless you find something that's definitely better.

I like my racquet right now, however, I would not only like to preserve it as it is a 135th anniversary edition, but I also want to know if there was a racquet that would even further better suit me.

patrick1359
02-14-2012, 01:22 PM
If you are not sure, you can experiment and try out different set ups to find what you like. I like to experiment to try and find new setups that might work for me, so I will get rackets that are vastly different for long term testing. For example I normally use an Aeropro Drive GT and also use a Volkl PB10 Mid. I also found to my surprise that a massively powerful stick like the Wilson Profile was quite usable.

Thats

100sq in/11.3oz/24-26mm beam (thickest in hoop)
vs
93sq in/12.1oz/19mm straight beam
vs
110sq in/13-ish oz/tapered beam thickest in throat @ 37-ish mm

If you are unsure, demo a few frames that have different characterists to find what suits you. I already know I play poorly with + size rackets and cant get enough spin from dense patterns, but I had to demo to find out.

I will say however, that although I like heavy rackets, I find them restricting for customization because they are already so heavy. For example I want the Profile to be more headlight feeling but I'm not gonna be able to add weight to an already 13oz racket, and I can't add much weight to the head of my Volkl PB 10 mid before it gets too heavy. I also think my PB10 Mid has more weight in the handle than I need but I can't do anything about that. Something in the 11oz range is much easier to customize. Also, overly stiff or powerful frames limit my choice of strings. Something that is in the middle as far as power and weight balance, and stiffness are much easier to customize and experiment with.

Interesting, well I wish I could afford to buy a racquet strictly for testing purposes, however I can barely afford a last years model racquet. As fat as customizing my racquet, I would really like just the best stalk racquet I can get, I dont think the string add very much weight, at least for me to know.

Hi I'm Ray
02-14-2012, 01:37 PM
Interesting, well I wish I could afford to buy a racquet strictly for testing purposes, however I can barely afford a last years model racquet. As fat as customizing my racquet, I would really like just the best stalk racquet I can get, I dont think the string add very much weight, at least for me to know.

Thats why you demo first. I will only get a racket that I really like and can play well with. If I don't feel like I can potentially play better with a new frame than my exisiting one, I will not get it. The long term testing is more like finding out which of two frames I play equally well with (but maybe in different ways) will work out best in the long run. I don't have $$ to toss away either.

Well I used to play with only 12+ oz players frames but found I like playing with the APDGT quite a lot. I customized it a bit though, and found it to play better for me than stock form. Lead tape is cheap and there's no reason a frame needs to left in stock form unless you just really want to.

Theres not much weight difference between strings but with a stiff frame you may need to stay away from overly stiff strings and a powerful frame you might be limited to spin friendly strings like poly to keep the ball in.

Deuces Wild
02-14-2012, 01:42 PM
I like my racquet right now, however, I would not only like to preserve it as it is a 135th anniversary edition, but I also want to know if there was a racquet that would even further better suit me.

The blue Pure Drive GT is actually the exact same stick as what you're using right now. Just with a different paint job. If it works for you, which it looks like it does, there's really no reason to change.

patrick1359
02-14-2012, 01:44 PM
Thats why you demo first. I will only get a racket that I really like and can play well with. If it has nothing to offer over my existing racket I will not get it.

Well I used to play with only 12+ oz players frames but found I like playing with the APDGT quite a lot. I customized it a bit though, and found it to play better for me than stock form. Lead tape is cheap and there's no reason a frame needs to left in stock form unless you just really want to.

Theres not much weight difference between strings but with a stiff frame you may need to stay away from overly stiff strings and a powerful frame you might be limited to spin friendly strings like poly to keep the ball in.

I am actually looking to demo some here in a few days, the only issues is they charge you $5 per demo racquet.

As fast as customizing my racquet goes, just adding a little lead tape here and there is perfectly fine with me.

As far as strings go, I am wondering if I should cross that road when I get there, like after I choose a new racquet? However, I do see what you mean by the strings.

Lastly, I am still wondering, what racquet would most likely be best for me (most likely last years models as well) PDGT/PDRGT/APDRGT?

patrick1359
02-14-2012, 01:45 PM
The blue Pure Drive GT is actually the exact same stick as what you're using right now. Just with a different paint job. If it works for you, which it looks like it does, there's really no reason to change.

I do seem to have some a little bit of trouble keeping the ball in the court every now and then. I also figured out I am most likely a back player. Also, maybe a quick string change would solve this?

patrick1359
02-14-2012, 01:47 PM
Also, my current strings is a hybrid of Babolat Pro Hurricane going up/down and Babolat Addiction going across

Hi I'm Ray
02-14-2012, 01:57 PM
Too hard to tell what'll racket will work best for you. Be careful of ppl who suggest you to buy new rackets when they don't even know how you play.

The APDGT feels softer while the stringbed feels firmer
The PD felt stiffer while the stringbed felt bouncier
They produced a similar shot, although I felt like the PD had more power.
Haven't tried the Roddick yet

I don't know what else could explain the stringbed feel except for Woofers that are supposed to be in the PD gromments but not in the APDGT. I thought Woofers might have been made up BS as the grommet material seems similar enough but who knows.

I found Addiction strings to be "sticky" and didn't allow for string movement, which you need for spin. I generally can't get much spin with a poly in the mains and multi in the cross. Maybe a normal syn gut in the crosses, like Forten Sweet, Prince OG syn gut, or OG sheep micro will help with spin.

If your poly strings are dead (most likely to be dead after 12hrs of play time) likely you will lose a lot of spin.

patrick1359
02-14-2012, 02:07 PM
Too hard to tell what'll racket will work best for you. Be careful of ppl who suggest you to buy new rackets when they don't even know how you play.

The APDGT feels softer while the stringbed feels firmer
The PD felt stiffer while the stringbed felt bouncier
They produced a similar shot, although I felt like the PD had more power.
Haven't tried the Roddick yet

I don't know what else could explain the stringbed feel except for Woofers that are supposed to be in the PD gromments but not in the APDGT. I thought Woofers might have been made up BS as the grommet material seems similar enough but who knows.

I found Addiction strings to be "sticky" and didn't allow for string movement, which you need for spin. I can't get any spin with a poly in the mains and multi in the cross. Maybe a normal syn gut in the crosses, like Forten Sweet, Prince OG syn gut, or OG sheep micro will help with spin.

If your poly strings are dead (most likely to be dead after 12hrs) most likely you will lose a lot of spin.

Ok, well on that note then, since I am quite satisfied with the PD, I think I am going to go with something in the PD line. I am specifically looking at the Pure Drive and Pure Drive Roddick's at this point. If anyone could shine some light on those two racquets that would be great! Also should or should I not get a + version?

Thanks!

patrick1359
02-14-2012, 06:43 PM
bumpbumpbump

patrick1359
02-15-2012, 03:38 AM
bumpbumpbump

bc-05
02-15-2012, 04:00 AM
See I don't know much abt racquets either.. All I know is that I'm fascinated by them, so in a way I have tried a lot of different racquets.. And until now my prefer racquet is still the head prestige classic 600 @ 400 grams.. That's cos my game is based on flat serves, groundstrokes and try to do on the rise hits.. mostly do serve and volleys tho ..

But I have tried different racquets.. And my favourite spin racquet is POG mid..

But I see that u have been playing with tweeners.. If that is the case then I love the feel of aero pure drive better than the pure drive itself.. But out of all the tweener racquet I love o3 tour(I think its similar to the exo3 tour) and the radical pros.. So if u want to give that a try (I'm assuming u play similar to me with a more on the rise flatter hit)

patrick1359
02-15-2012, 04:04 AM
See I don't know much abt racquets either.. All I know is that I'm fascinated by them, so in a way I have tried a lot of different racquets.. And until now my prefer racquet is still the head prestige classic 600 @ 400 grams.. That's cos my game is based on flat serves, groundstrokes and try to do on the rise hits.. mostly do serve and volleys tho ..

But I have tried different racquets.. And my favourite spin racquet is POG mid..

But I see that u have been playing with tweeners.. If that is the case then I love the feel of aero pure drive better than the pure drive itself.. But out of all the tweener racquet I love o3 tour(I think its similar to the exo3 tour) and the radical pros.. So if u want to give that a try (I'm assuming u play similar to me with a more on the rise flatter hit)

I can say that I do not know what rise hits are, however, I believe I do sound like a similar player to you.

I would like to note that I am still thinking of sticking with Babolat because I have really liked the feel of their racquets.

What exactly are tweeners as well? I honestly have no clue what that mean :P

Also, do you mean the AeroPro drive? Because as far as I know, Babolat does not have an Aero Pure Drive.

THANKS!

bc-05
02-15-2012, 04:30 AM
Yes I did mean aero pro drive sorry.. But yeah.. Out of all the babolats i prefer the pure storm ltd.. But I do like the aero pro drive..

Tweener, well I myself don't know how to define it.. But I think its a cross between a players racquet and power racquet.. U get the best of both world :)

patrick1359
02-15-2012, 06:25 AM
Yes I did mean aero pro drive sorry.. But yeah.. Out of all the babolats i prefer the pure storm ltd.. But I do like the aero pro drive..

Tweener, well I myself don't know how to define it.. But I think its a cross between a players racquet and power racquet.. U get the best of both world :)

Ok, haha i was a little confused there. And I have not had a chance to try out a pure storm ltd or an AeroPro yet. What would your opinion be on just the new Pure Drive GT?

And ok for tweeners, your definition makes sense to me haha.

Would a Pure Drive GT be considered a tweeners racquet?

Thanks!

rafafan20
02-15-2012, 06:27 AM
my advice: stick with what you have.

patrick1359
02-15-2012, 06:29 AM
my advice: stick with what you have.

Well as far as I understand, the 135th edition is a Pure Drive GT, therefor, I should get another pair of PDGT? I want to keep me 135 in pristine condition

patrick1359
02-15-2012, 08:22 AM
bumpbumpbump

Deuces Wild
02-15-2012, 09:19 AM
I'm not really a fan of extended length racquets. You might be able to get more control out of the Pure Drive Roddick, but it is heavier. If you're able to generate the same racquet speed during match play and can handle the weight without getting tired, it might work for you.

The only way you're going to know is by demoing. Since you are on your high school team and Pure Drives are so popular these days, there might be a kid on your team with a PDR who might let you borrow his stick for a bit.

P.S. The constant bumping of your own thread...not very classy.

patrick1359
02-15-2012, 09:34 AM
I'm not really a fan of extended length racquets. You might be able to get more control out of the Pure Drive Roddick, but it is heavier. If you're able to generate the same racquet speed during match play and can handle the weight without getting tired, it might work for you.

The only way you're going to know is by demoing. Since you are on your high school team and Pure Drives are so popular these days, there might be a kid on your team with a PDR who might let you borrow his stick for a bit.

P.S. The constant bumping of your own thread...not very classy.

Ok thanks!! I think I am going to get some regular Pure Drives and then put some lead tape on after that to get some more weight. I think that would work for me. I am also going to demo a regular PDR. What are your thoughts?

BTW I wont bump anymore then, sorry about that

Deuces Wild
02-15-2012, 09:44 AM
Ok thanks!! I think I am going to get some regular Pure Drives and then put some lead tape on after that to get some more weight. I think that would work for me. I am also going to demo a regular PDR. What are your thoughts?

BTW I wont bump anymore then, sorry about that

That sounds like a good plan. Changing racquets for the sake of just having something new is usually not a good idea.

sansaephanh
02-15-2012, 09:57 AM
I am actually looking to demo some here in a few days, the only issues is they charge you $5 per demo racquet.

As fast as customizing my racquet goes, just adding a little lead tape here and there is perfectly fine with me.

As far as strings go, I am wondering if I should cross that road when I get there, like after I choose a new racquet? However, I do see what you mean by the strings.

Lastly, I am still wondering, what racquet would most likely be best for me (most likely last years models as well) PDGT/PDRGT/APDRGT?

TW demos for the price of shipping. up to 5 rackets.

patrick1359
02-15-2012, 11:38 AM
That sounds like a good plan. Changing racquets for the sake of just having something new is usually not a good idea.

Ok, GREAT! I think I will do just this then.

To the person talking about demos, I would not want to wait for the shipping

THANKS GUYS

bc-05
02-15-2012, 02:41 PM
hi.. if you really like the pure drives than stick with it i would say.. racquet is kind of a preference thing.. i am one of those guys that cannot hit with a babolat for the life of me.. i would have to really make an effort if i was to get a ball in with a pure drive..

as for pure drive being a tweener.. i think it is one of the best selling tweener racquet out there :D..

as for pure drive roddick vs pure drive original.. i like the look of the roddick better (the cosmetic).. but im pretty sure theyre the same racquet alltogether just difference in weight and balance.. so give both racquet a demo and yeah..

the red 135th version of the pure drive i think is a GT version.. so yeah :D

patrick1359
02-15-2012, 04:34 PM
hi.. if you really like the pure drives than stick with it i would say.. racquet is kind of a preference thing.. i am one of those guys that cannot hit with a babolat for the life of me.. i would have to really make an effort if i was to get a ball in with a pure drive..

as for pure drive being a tweener.. i think it is one of the best selling tweener racquet out there :D..

as for pure drive roddick vs pure drive original.. i like the look of the roddick better (the cosmetic).. but im pretty sure theyre the same racquet alltogether just difference in weight and balance.. so give both racquet a demo and yeah..

the red 135th version of the pure drive i think is a GT version.. so yeah :D

Oh I see, well I really like the babolat I have!

I must say it is great to hear that you think this is the best tweener out there to haha!

Lastly, as far as the roddick and just the PD go, I think the roddick looks better to, however, I am going to stick with what I know, and then possibly add some lead tape on later because it is only a 20g difference, and the roddick is balanced to be head light, so i could probably put the tape somewhere in the handle.