Whats your favourite racket technology?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by mTm28, Aug 23, 2009.

  1. mTm28

    mTm28 Rookie

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    I know alot of them are "gimmiky" but whats your favourite? i quite like the aero technolgy from babolat.
     
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  2. iscottius

    iscottius Professional

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    woofer.....
     
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  3. stevewcosta

    stevewcosta Professional

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    Graphite. Wish racquets were still made w/it rather than plastic.
     
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  4. Superspin_AT

    Superspin_AT New User

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    d30 from Head!
     
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  5. mTm28

    mTm28 Rookie

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    Can you actually feel it working? Or is it just the same on all shots?
     
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  6. THESEXPISTOL

    THESEXPISTOL Hall of Fame

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    Microgel and nCode.
     
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  7. mTm28

    mTm28 Rookie

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    Also what's the most stupid and pointless technology?
     
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  8. iscottius

    iscottius Professional

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    everything other than woofer.
     
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  9. mTm28

    mTm28 Rookie

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    You sure do love your WOOFER! lol :)
     
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  10. iscottius

    iscottius Professional

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    yeah, there are very few "technologies" that actually work see below:

    woofer
    cortex
    kinetic
    volkl sensor handle
    o holes/speedports
    poly strings

    all actually work

    99% of all materials added to frames intellifibers/liquid metal/d30/ncode/kfactor etc are all marketing--doesn't mean they are bad racquets, they tech is just bs
     
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  11. El Diablo

    El Diablo Hall of Fame

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    The woofer has stood the test of time, I think. Babolat had a real concept, taking much of the flex out of the shaft and putting it in the stringbed, and much of what came after (O-ports, rollers, teflon grommets, power holes) has been an attempt by other manufacturers to circumvent the patent and do the same thing.
     
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  12. iscottius

    iscottius Professional

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    agreed......
     
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  13. ckledzepplin

    ckledzepplin Semi-Pro

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    Wilson PWS
     
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  14. Bigtime

    Bigtime Rookie

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    In general, marketing is quite often just a glitzy way of being lied to.

    Just look at some of the buzz words/phrases we are bombarded with every day:
    "May help support better tennis shots up to 75% or more.":?
     
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  15. dincuss

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  16. Rysty

    Rysty Rookie

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    Yonex: isometric head and ips weighting system at 3 & 9.

    Wilson: PWS.

    Head: CAP grommets, they protect the frame.

    All other "technologies" are for marketing purposes only.
     
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  17. a-naik.1

    a-naik.1 Professional

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    Surprisingly, you can tell when the Youtek technology is working it a lot stiffer when going for your forehands and what not and it flexes a bit when hitting finesse shots. I enjoy it.
     
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  18. Xtreme

    Xtreme Rookie

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    the idea of d30 sounds cool but i like the aerogel stuff
     
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  19. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    Pro Kennex kinetic system works.
    Prince O ports works.
    Babolat's woofer system is kind of a throw back to power pads in my opinion, but the way they drill their holes seems to work better than the traditional method of drilling at a 90 degree angle from the frame.
     
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  20. T1000

    T1000 Hall of Fame

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    microgel..
     
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  21. droliver

    droliver Semi-Pro

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    PWS/lead tape (the undisputed heavyweight champion of raquet tech)
    Braided graphite
    Tournagrip
    VS Gut
    Polyurethane strings
     
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  22. Hidious

    Hidious Professional

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    Are those common? Where can i find a pack?
     
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  23. Fed Kennedy

    Fed Kennedy Hall of Fame

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    natural gut
     
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  24. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    Yes, I forgot about the synthetic grip. The 1st ones I remember that came out in the late 70's were called Qoro grips. The felt like velvet. Not to tacky by today's standards, but felt good back then.
     
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  25. PurelyPwnedDrive

    PurelyPwnedDrive New User

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    Woofer is probably my favorite.
    Speedports also help the speed of a racquet a lot. You can even feel like you swing faster with speedports. Everything else is pretty much bs...
     
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  26. whereisz

    whereisz Rookie

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    pog's cross bar!!!!
     
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  27. Deuce

    Deuce Banned

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    ^ Teflon tubing was around long before the 'Woofer' thing...
     
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  28. LPShanet

    LPShanet Banned

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    High modulus graphite. It's what every racquet on the market is made with. Fantastic stuff, which is why it's the only material used structurally in tennis racquets for the last 20-25 years.
     
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  29. Deuce

    Deuce Banned

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    Nah...
    Graphite ain't what it used to be.
    In spite of the fancy marketing names they have for graphite today, today's graphite is of lower quality than that of 20, 25 years ago.
     
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  30. anirut

    anirut Legend

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    For me: graphite + wood -- the combination -- like PK Golden Ace, PK Core series, Head Vilas, and others of similar graphite+wood construction.
     
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  31. LPShanet

    LPShanet Banned

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    That's not the point. It's still graphite. And graphite as a category is the best technology ever to hit the tennis market. It's also the ONLY significant technology to hit the tennis market, at least in the Open Era, aside from changes in size.

    (NB: The graphite of today is essentially the same stuff of 20-25 years ago. What has changed is the tolerances in production of the racquets it's used in, and cost/weight savings in the designs.)
     
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  32. Deuce

    Deuce Banned

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    ^ I think it very much is the point - because the sub-standard graphite in today's racquets results in the crappy, no feel frames of today.
    And that, to me, cancels out most - if not all - of the benefits that early graphite had on racquets.

    ^ Based on what I've heard and read, that's not true.
    And what I've heard and read is that the aerospace industry (essentially NASA and airplane manufacturers) are getting today's high quality graphite, while other industries (like the racquet industry) have to settle for the leftovers... resulting in today's crappy, no feel frames, etc...
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2009
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  33. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Agreed. PWS is about the only "technology" that actually makes a difference.
     
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  34. LPShanet

    LPShanet Banned

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    Well, the thread is about what our favorite racquet technology is, not whether graphite has gotten worse. Since graphite is the only racquet technology, it has to be both the best and worst:) Unless you're suggesting we go back to wood due to the subpar graphite, then graphite is still the fave racquet technology. If you prefer, we can specify "good" graphite or "old" graphite.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2009
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  35. LPShanet

    LPShanet Banned

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    That's not quite right. Or at least a major oversimplification. There are two errors made in your interpretation. The first is about how the graphite market works. Aerospace companies are indeed among the primary users of (and highest payers for) graphite ...as well as various other materials such as titanium. But the materials companies make whatever grades companies want and are willing to pay for. So there's no such thing as a shortage in the outright sense. They make as much as there is demand for. There is a HUGE variety of types, formats and brands available to today's racquet manufacturers, and most of the factors that affect quality are determined not in the raw graphite material (which is just carbon), but in how it's used in the tubes and rods that are eventually used. Depending on which stage of manufacture the racquet company becomes involved with the materials (it varies by company to some small extent), the greater factors in frame quality are construction and design, rather than carbon itself.

    What the article(s) you're referring to may have been referencing is the fact that most frames are now made by a few OEMs in China, and in order to maximize profits, they (NOT the racquet companies, per se) often cut many corners. This can happen at the graphite sourcing stage, and it is possible that some OEMs buy surplus graphite to save additional money, but more often happens with respect to the already formed materials, and in terms of production standards. When most people refer to "quality" or to something being "crappy", they are talking about quality control. This affects consistency, breakage and related factors. And the single greatest factor in tennis racquet quality control today is money. Manufacturers are given a choice of tolerance levels by the OEMs, and the choice made is based on what cost per piece the racquet company is willing to pay. The choice of how "crappy" to be is one of cost, and is an elective decision, not one forced on anyone by the aerospace industry or the availability of graphite. Unlike USDA Prime beef, there isn't a finite amount of graphite that can be created. And any use of surplus materials is a choice made by the OEM as a cost saving measure. If the specs the manufacturer gives the OEM are specific in terms of material, then those are the materials used.

    The second apparent misunderstanding you've taken on is that the "quality" of the graphite is what is causing frames to feel the way they do today.
    However, rather than being quality-driven, I have the sense that your definition of "crappy" refers more to the "feel" of the frames, which has almost nothing to do with actual quality, in the way the term is used in manufacturing. Quality in manufacturing is purely a matter of consistency. Frames that "play poorly" and have "poor feel" are the product of changes in design, not changes in the quality of graphite. You could use the "best" graphite on the planet, but if you're putting it in the same exact layup, and processing it using the same mold, you're going to get a racquet that feels almost exactly like any other using that layup and mold. It's kind of like gasoline octane in consumer cars: there may be a difference in theory, but you can't feel it in practical use...and other factors affect performance in a MUCH more notable way that's often confused with what you think you're feeling. Your standard consumer family sedan won't go any faster with a two point jump in octane, and your tennis racquet won't feel any different with a tighter tolerance grade of carbon.

    It sounds to me like your real issue is with the direction in which racquet design and its effects on manufacturing have gone. In the quest to make frames lighter over the last decade or more, the way they are engineered has changed. With the advent of the power game, and the desire to imitate the pro game they see on TV, many players don't care as much about feel as they used to, so the market doesn't really demand that characteristic as much as it did previously. The market has essentially demanded lightness and power over (or at the expense of) feel. Further, the tennis consumer market has been very resistant to price increases. That's why frames cost about the same today as they did 20 years ago, even though they would be way more expensive if they had kept up with the standard price increases in most consumer goods. And to keep the prices so low, manufacturers went exclusively to offshore OEMs and allowed their manufacturing tolerances to broaden. Those factors are what is changing the way racquets feel, not the notion that you can't get good graphite any more. There may be less physical graphite in the average frame, in an effort to make it lighter or cheaper, but the quality isn't a significant factor.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2009
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  36. Superspin_AT

    Superspin_AT New User

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    d30 is cool but 100% Graphite is much better!
     
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  37. Lefty78

    Lefty78 Professional

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    As several others have said, ProKennex Kinetic system is no gimmick. It really works.
     
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  38. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

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    you guys are making a big mess with confusing concepts here... but that is just me...
     
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  39. Lefty78

    Lefty78 Professional

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    High-end graphite's are better than ever, noticeably improved from 20-25 years ago. That said, pretty much all modern tennis frames are made with the cheap stuff... unless you want to shell out some dough for Bosworth racquets. They are using the very highest quality Japanese graphite money can buy. This stuff is not commercially available to just anyone either, but Mr. Bosworth has great connections. Back to the point though, most modern graphite is barely fit for pencils.
     
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  40. fantom

    fantom Hall of Fame

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    Graphite for racquets

    Poly for strings
     
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  41. NicoMK

    NicoMK Rookie

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    Hi,

    Slightly of-topic, but thanks LPShanet for posting great explanations about graphite and other stuff. :) Highly interesting to me.

    As for me, I really like the Fischer Vacuum technic, in addition to the graphite-ceramics construction they use in their (older, I have to say) frames. They make the racquets so coool to play with...

    Cheers !
     
    #41
  42. tennismonster

    tennismonster Rookie

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    #42
  43. dman72

    dman72 Hall of Fame

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    The Dunlop ISIS and Head Noshox handle systems do what they claim to do..reduce shock to the arm.
     
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  44. morten

    morten Hall of Fame

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    braided graphite
     
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  45. Kemitak

    Kemitak Semi-Pro

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    Laminated wood.
     
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  46. Fedace

    Fedace Banned

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    AGREE that Ncode and Microgel were the REAL stuff and it worked especially for the Amateur players.
    but i think we should give some time to YOUTEK material. i really think this material is the best out of all of them. It feels a little in the beginning so it is taking longer to catch on.......
     
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  47. pham4313

    pham4313 Professional

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    k factor = kevlar + graphite = karophite. Cant get any better than that. Pro Tour series are great too.
     
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  48. NoNameZ

    NoNameZ Semi-Pro

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    IDS on the PT and Trisys 260's.
     
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  49. Zielmann

    Zielmann Semi-Pro

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    Any technology that strictly alters weight distribution/placement in the frame. Like Prince's Triple-Threat weighting (the weight positioning aspect, maybe not the material aspect), and Wilson's PWS. Included in this would be varied head shapes, such as Yonex's distinct shape. These are all good, fully legit techs. To the point that I don't even think they deserve to be called 'technologies' rather than just 'frame design'.

    IMO, all 'new' and 'revolutionary' materials being used in racquets now days are bogus. Some might even make sense in theory (like Aerogel), but seriously, do you really think there's enough of that stuff in the frame to make a difference? NO. The switch to graphite is just about the only legit change in frame materials to ever occur.
     
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  50. tennislvr135

    tennislvr135 New User

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    Alot of the racket technology is complete BS... But i think GRAPHITE is the best thing that happened to tennis rackets...
     
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