Volkl Organix 9 Review

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by retlod, Jun 14, 2012.

  1. retlod

    retlod Professional

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    I pulled the demo trigger immediately when they were available last week. It came in the mail a couple of days ago and I took it out for a spin today. I am a 4.0 baseliner who currently plays with a Babolat APDGT+. I have a big first serve, kick second, big topspin FH, and both a 1H slice BH and 2H flat BH depending upon the incoming ball. I usually don't volley much.

    I have hit with both versions of the X8 and found them to be a more comfortable/less spinny version of the APD series. Slotted between the X8s and the X10s I was expecting the X9 to be less spinny than the 8s and more powerful than the 10s--sort of a mix between the tweeners and the players, offering something for everyone while not doing any one thing very well. The stiffness of 69 was not a scary proposition since I'm coming from Babolats, but the SW of 313 sounded a little low for my liking. My advice to you is this: ignore the specs on this frame. It plays NOTHING like how you think it would.

    Swing weight of 313, huh? A feather in the hand, right? WRONG! Was it easy to swing? Yes. But did it get pushed around? Surprisingly, no! From the baseline, it really cut through the air, and I could really whip through my forehands. Did it put as much spin on the ball as an AeroPro? No, but nothing does. The thing is, though, the X9 came close! I wasn't expecting that at all! It was a great surprise! Mine came strung with poly on the low end of the tension range, which I think is partly responsible for the spin generation.

    The other factor was the flex of the frame and the dwell time I was getting. Wait, this frame has a stiffness rating of 69, right? IGNORE IT! It might be a 69 in the throat where it was measured on an RDC, but the hoop felt like it had plenty of flex. It was not a noodle like a Radical or EXO3 Tour, but it didn't feel nearly stiff enough to be a 69. That little bit of extra flex kept the ball on the strings just long enough to really spin shots in. It also helped provide great directional control and touch. My BHs were average, but as long as I'm not making errors of the BH side, I'm doing well. My favorite shot, the inside-out FH, worked well. The greatest spin test for me is the ISO FH off of a short ball in no-man's-land. If I can step 6-8 feet inside the baseline, take a 100% cut at a ball, and still put enough spin on it to keep it in, the racquet passes. This racquet passes.

    Sadly, this is not a perfect racquet--there is no free power to be had like with tweeners, but that's okay. Put-away groundies and serves lacked the rocket power of Pure Drives, so I felt like I had to do more work to win points. Given the control the frame provided, though, it still worked out well for me in the end. I never felt like I had to dial back my strokes, and I always felt like I could hit out with confidence. When I came to net, I thought the frame had great touch. While serving, there were no big first serve bombs, but instead, I found great consistency with heavy first serves and good kick on my seconds. Overall, it served as well as my APDs.

    Being a Volkl, it was a predictably solid, comfortable hit. The black/orange glossy PJ is nice. SPPP or any black string would look great in it.

    In summary, it's less of a compromise between the X10 player frames and the X8 tweeners and more of a hybrid, taking the best elements of each and combining them into one frame. The specs are also misleading--it plays like it has a swing weight around 320-325 and a stiffness around 66. It reminded me a little of the discontinued Prince Ozone Tour. If my 2nd and 3rd times out with it are as good as today, I think I'll be adding one to the bag. Great job, Volkl!
     
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  2. couch

    couch Hall of Fame

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    Thanks for the review retlod. I also have a demo on the way. Should hopefully have it tomorrow to hit with this weekend.

    I am looking for what you described- kind of a hybrid between a PD and X10. I like the power and maneuverability of a lighter racquet but want the control and accuracy of a heavier stick. Hoping the X9 will fit the bill. I pretty much have it with my old Volkl Tour 8s but always looking for something new since the Tour 8s are about 8-9 years old now.

    I am doubting the 69 stiffness stated by TW too. The 9 series always seems to have a stiffness of about 66 so I would think that's about where this stick will be. I also hope the SW is in the lower 320s because it seemed like the PB9 and DNX9 swung a little too light and thus didn't have a solid enough feel.

    Do you normally play with a poly? Do you know what poly was in the racquet?

    Hoping for a nice solid feel, good spin, and nice power. But then again, aren't we all. ;-) Will try and post some thoughts when I get mine.
     
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  3. parasailing

    parasailing Hall of Fame

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    I got my Volkl 9 demo from TW along with a couple of other racquets and had a chance to hit with it for an hour. Initial thoughts are similar to Retlod's review. It definitely doesn't feel like it a racquet with a stiffness index of 69.

    While serves where a bit underpowered, it was very easy to generate racquet speed and I prefer this over the Organix 10 295 I used to own. I was able to put the ball in the service box easier than current PSTGT though it did lack a bit of pop.

    Couch - The racquet came strung with Volkl V-Pro 17 gauge poly which is a decent poly but nothing special.

    On ground strokes, the racquet was easy to maneuver but was underpowered. You really had to swing hard to keep the ball deep in the court but control was definitely there. This was no match for my PSTGT which I expected due to the low SW of 313. Balance is pretty good but this racquet is going to need a substantial amount of lead to stabilize the racquet.

    I was pleasantly surprised that I would enjoy hitting with this racquet given I had a demo of the Yonex Vcore Tour and Wilson Juice Pro to try out as well.
     
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  4. coolblue123

    coolblue123 Hall of Fame

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    TMav mentioned that Volkl says it's 65.

    I guess it depends on the scale. I am surprised how lower powered the OP has mentioned? I remember my brief outing with the 325 that it had pretty good plowthrough.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2012
    #4
  5. LightHeaded

    LightHeaded New User

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    Parasailing, I'd be interested in your comparsion to the Yonex and Juice. I thougth the Yonex had amazing bite. I've never hit with that brand before, but it has me thinking. I assumed it was the different feel from the head shape. I didn't care for the Juice pro much. It just didn't have any quality that really stood out. I thought the other Juice was impressive with effortless power however.
     
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  6. retlod

    retlod Professional

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    Yes, I normally play full poly, though I string at the higher end of what's recommended. This particular string did not impress me much, although I was digging the lower tension with the X9. Thinner string like WCMB would improve the power level and offer even more spin potential.
     
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  7. lstewart

    lstewart Rookie

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    Appreciate the review. Got a couple in from Volkl two days ago. Plan was for my 16 year old son, who is an open tournament player to switch to them. Don't think that is going to work after two days of practice, so I will give them a shot. Have both strung with all poly now, but will move to a hybrid for my sensitive arm. I hit with it for a few minutes. With all poly it felt much stiffer than the Becker London I play with, but that was to be expected. Big issue for me will be if my arm will handle the stiffness, as it is stiffer than what I can usually play with. Otherwise I like the feel and balance... pretty much like the London. I think it will be a nice racket for alot of players. I have an Organix 10, but I have never been able to find the string set-up that works for it... way too string sensitive. Restrung it several times and gave up on it.
     
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  8. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    Try gut in the mains and Prince Beast XP in the crosses. A fab combo for my Organix 10 325g.
     
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  9. lcalamar

    lcalamar Rookie

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    I play went back and forth between the X8 and X10 - finally settling on the X8. Would have liked it if the X9 was available at the time - might have been what I settled on.


    y wife just went with the X8 after trying out the V1 MP as well as most any 100-102" tweener from Head to Wilson to Babalot.

    Volkl is making a GREAT racket and should be much more popular than it is. There is now a model for most everyone.
     
    #9
  10. parasailing

    parasailing Hall of Fame

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    The Yonex does have good bite and did feel more solid than a Pro Staff 85 which is what people in the Yonex thread mentioned hence my curiosity and purpose for picking it as a demo.

    It is very solid in the throat area and top of the handle reminding me of the Aero Storm Tour GT. If you hit in the lower part of the racquet, it does feel very solid. I didn't like the balance as much but maybe it's something you have to get use to.

    The juice was kinda in between the Volkl 9 and Yonex Vcore Tour 89.

    Now back to the Volkl 9. I just weighed the demo that came from TW with the poly string and it came out to 11.5 oz which is slightly off from what TW listed in their spec guide.

    This racquet does cut through the air due to the thinner beam but the thing I like about the racquet is how easy it is for me to serve with. I sometimes struggle with my serve using the PSTGT and it's probably due to the balance and slightly heavier racquet.

    With this racquet, my timing with the serve is so much smoother and fluid.
     
    #10
  11. puck1230

    puck1230 New User

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    Is there any friendly resemblance to the POG Mid? Or is that a whole different animal?
     
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  12. couch

    couch Hall of Fame

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    There is a video review up on TW now. Not very favorable reviews but then again the x10 295 didn't get very favorable reviews and people seem to like that racquet a lot. The review says the racquet doesn't have any power, small sweet spot, etc. Seems like some of the reviews above and online say the opposite. Oh well, should have my demo today or Monday.
     
    #12
  13. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    That's quite a negative review, almost as damning as those the TW team did for the Gamma RZR series.

    69 RA with no power? How did Volkl manage that?

    Maybe this is a racquet perfect for a full gut setup.
     
    #13
  14. parasailing

    parasailing Hall of Fame

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    This racquet doesn't have much power like I mentioned before but the one I got from TW came is even worse since it was strung with a poly so going with gut might help.

    I do love this racquet for serving though, it's very easy to maneuver and generate racquet speed with. I plan on getting one and string it up with gut to see if it can compensate for the lack of power.

    The only issue that the string will not fix similar to the Organix 10 295 it is not stable enough against heavy incoming topspin shots. You will need to add lead to fix this but it's a challenge to keep the balance of the racquet.
     
    #14
  15. retlod

    retlod Professional

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    This racquet isn't a tweener, therefore it shouldn't have a lot of power, and coming from tweeners like most of those playtesters, it would seem weak. I would like to hear what guys like Chris and Granville have to say about it.
     
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  16. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    If this is not a tweener, what is it?

    Is this a player's racquet or a game-improvement frame?
     
    #16
  17. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    It's a light player's racquet and with this class you have to bring an even better player's game to make up for the lack of heft in the racquet.
     
    #17
  18. JackB1

    JackB1 G.O.A.T.

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    The 8, 9 and 10 class for Volkl are all players racquets.

    Below 8 are the tweeners.
     
    #18
  19. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    1 gram of lead at 12 and 2 grams at 3 and 9 would add enough swingweight to improve the racquet immeasurably while adding minimal weight.
     
    #19
  20. parasailing

    parasailing Hall of Fame

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    Does this apply to all racquets or are you just referring to this particular one?
     
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  21. YK

    YK New User

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    TW's demo frame that I have here came in at 11.2 oz strung yet with 7 points headlight balance. I don't think it is particularly surprising that some might find it a bit underpowered and unstable. I didn't get much hitting time as my son took it for our first hitting session. Being on a receiving end, it didn't feel underpowered to me. He is a former varsity player though, he hits pretty big. I might put some lead just to get it to 11.5 or so and then see.
     
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  22. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    I tried it on a prestige mp which has a similar swingweight in a heavier package and it worked a treat, so it would be a possible move on the 9.




     
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  23. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    The lack of power can be rectified by lowering tension and/or stringing it with gut.

    The question is: Can the frame provide sufficient control at the low tension?
     
    #23
  24. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    The gut will cost you more than the racquet!
     
    #24
  25. parasailing

    parasailing Hall of Fame

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    Aside from that, the biggest problem is stability. It doesn't handle incoming heavy balls and pace very well. Trying to fix this with lead is difficult if you have to use a substantial amount which will increase SW and alter balance.

    Only if he is not currently using gut which I think from his past postings, he strings his racquet with natural gut.
     
    #25
  26. YK

    YK New User

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    I added about 8 grams, 3+ to a throat area and 4+ grams to 3 and 9. That got it from 11.2/7+ HL to 11.5/6HL, and all issues with stability and power went away. The guy I hit with this morning was playing with Youtek Extreme Pro/multi strings so the ball came in pretty hard whenever it landed in. No problems with stability at all. I think that lead in the throat area may have even been unnecessary.
    I had a bit of harder time to generate spin and the sweet spot is on a smaller side, but overall it is a very decent stick. I found it ironic that TW gave it a rather negative review, while giving a fairly positive review to Mantis 305 which is nearly identical in specs. I still have an older Volkl Pro Tour 9 which is precedes the Organix by two generations, and the Organix 9 keeps the heritage lines - lighter, headlight, thin beamed and stiffer in the throat. I wouldn't play with it in stock form, but with a leather grip and just a bit of lead at 3&9, just like my Pro Tour 9 is set, these sticks give pretty unique combination of power and stability while remaining quite maneuverable. If it had come out a couple of months earlier I may have bought it, but I don't see enough incremental benefits over my Yonex Xi 98 to switch.
     
    #26
  27. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    So most people find the Organix 9 not easy to generate spin with?
     
    #27
  28. YK

    YK New User

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    I guess everything is relative. I hit fairly flat, easy access to spin is something that I personally benefit from, to some extent. Org9 will produce enough spin if you you do your part, but it is not the spiniest stick I've used. FWIW, my spin litmus test is second serve. I saw the ball kick up, but I didn't think it was kicking as high as with some of newer Yonex sticks that I've been hitting with recently.
     
    #28
  29. BigT

    BigT Professional

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    I am demoing this as well. The reviews of the OP and TW seem pretty accurate.

    First time around I was playing with a lesser opponent. I was always in position to take full cuts at the ball, and this is where the stick shined. You can put the ball on a dime; in corners for winners, etc.

    When I played with a better player, I found myself on defense much too often and had trouble keeping the ball deep.

    I will have to see if additional weight could could help that out.
     
    #29
  30. parasailing

    parasailing Hall of Fame

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    I didn't have issues generating spin but struggled when returning serve bombs and incoming heavy topspin balls. Other than that, this stick has good feel, love the thin beam design, and easy to generate racquet speed.
     
    #30
  31. Timbo's hopeless slice

    Timbo's hopeless slice Hall of Fame

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    I think it is horses for courses, like most racquet decisions.

    I hit with a mate's DNX9s today and loved them, sort of like my old favourite BIO300s but with just a little more heft.

    Much as I have enjoyed the heavier frames, I must admit I relished the ridiculous RHS I get with something just a tad lighter.. In fact, I think I have subconsciously 'flattened out' my groundstrokes to accommodate the heavier sticks, everyone was telling me I was hitting with 'huge topspin' (!) with the DNX9s

    So, being a cheapskate and not accustomed to buying my own frames, I have ordered some PB9s instead!
    __________________
     
    #31
  32. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    I think if you're a good tennis player with technique wanting to step down this is a good racquet, but if you are less good and require something from the racquet - either more swingweight or more inherent frame power - you won't find it.

    The reviewers on tw fell into the latter category.
     
    #32
  33. chaddles

    chaddles Semi-Pro

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    I wouldn't take too much notice of the TW review, not one of the play testers fitted the target player. Bit of a waste of time really.

    Anyway this is a low powered control frame that has an improved feel over the PB9. Easy to generate spin as with the 10's, and hitting against open guys it held up pretty well - going to try a bit of lead at 3 & 9 for a little extra swing weight.

    This needs to be strung at 50 & below with poly, I had Alu Power at 50/48 which I normally do for X10 325 and it felt a tad firm.
     
    #33
  34. lstewart

    lstewart Rookie

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    I have two I got from Volkl for my son, but he did not like them. I changed the string to my normal hybrid set-up with poly in the mains, multi in the crosses. I play the Becker London, so the Org. 9 has a very similar feel in my hand. It was okay, I could play with it. My main issue is the stiffness, just too stiff for my arm issues. I could probably play around with string and tension and work it out, but i like the London better. It you want a 98 lighter weight players frame that is pretty stiff, you will probably like it. I could play a good match with it, just would not be able to use my arm afterwards.
     
    #34
  35. retlod

    retlod Professional

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    I took my demo out for another spin yesterday and had similar results to the first hit. Excellent control on groundstrokes and especially serves. In my first service game I hit two aces and forced two errors off of well-placed second serves to hold at love. It's true that the racquet feels anemic when you want it to do most of the work, but again--that's not what it's designed to do. With proper preparation, I had no trouble hitting groundstrokes with plenty of pace/depth. The spin was just as good as the first time out as well. The demo heads back tomorrow, but I think I'll be ordering one to tinker with shortly thereafter!
     
    #35
  36. BigT

    BigT Professional

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    Had another hit with a hard hitting partner of mine. I actually thought I was playing well; great net play- I took 4 out of 6 breakers.

    I then went back to my normal stick; my partner said that the Volkl 0.8 had no spin or pace compared with my usual setup.

    That was enough for me.

    When in doubt, ask your normal hitting partners for feedback.

    Customization could perfect a racquet, but you can't expect it to do miracles.
     
    #36

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