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-   -   Donnay Pro One 18x20 Review and Comparison (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=429811)

Pure Babs 06-27-2012 07:23 PM

Donnay Pro One 18x20 Review and Comparison
 
I had a chance to play with the "new" Donnay Pro One 18x20 for the last week and hope this review is helpful. First of all, I am a 4.0-4.5 level player. I currently am using the Youtek IG Prestige MP, previously I used Babolat Pure Drives. Only customization so far is an overgrip and rubberband vibration dampener and strung with a Donnay Syn Gut at 55 lbs. I will compare it to the Prestige throughout.

Groundstrokes: My game is built around my long, fluid, and flat groundstrokes; I play aggressive tennis and always look to step into the court to end the point. My favorite part of the P1 was hitting groundies. The frame itself felt very solid upon impact, but also provided some nice ball pocketing flex. Swingweight felt good, but at times when I wasn't in position the racket did feel a little sluggish getting through the ball. The good thing is, this frame has a huge sweetspot and excellent stability. Off center shots didn't seemed to phase me as much, and I seemed to consistantly get that nice sought after "thwak" sound when connecting with the ball. Additionally, I noticed a lot of spin potential. Although I don't hit with a lot of spin, I did see that I could generate quite a bit of action on the ball especially considering the 18x20 string pattern.

Comparison: I would need more time to decide which I like better for groundstrokes. It's hard to beat the Prestige's precision, but I did feel like the P1 was more forgiving off the ground, and definitely offered more spin potential. Also, it handled off center shots better than my Head does. I was consistantly hitting deeper with the P1, although I did feel more comfortable swinging out completely (no matter my position on court) with the Prestige, whereas I had to be slightly weary to not overhit some shots with the P1.


Volleys: My volleys are pretty solid. I wouldn't say they are my go-to shot, but if I need to hit one I am comfortable doing so to end a point. The P1 actually surprised me on this part of the game. I expected it to be not so manueverable... as I did find it a bit sluggish on out of position groundstrokes. However, the stability of this frame really impressed me and made up for the less than manueverable feeling. It allowed me to absorb the pace of the incoming shot and redirect it without feeling any "fluttering effect."

Comparison: Again, I would need to further test these two frames against eachother to determine which volleys better. As of right now, I would have to go with the Prestige, as I still think it is my favorite volleying stick because of the manueverability factor and accuracy off the string bed. It feels like more of a scalpel at the net than the P1.

Serves: Serving was a thrill with the P1. It's not the heaviest stick out there, but the plow through and stability really impressed me. I was thumping serves into the court consistantly and found the large sweetspot helped generate nice kick and slice when I needed it to. I really had to have a fluid motion, however, and let the mass of the stick drive through the ball. Additionally, when I went for extra zip and power, it was available.

Comparison: P1 wins hands down. I served well with my Prestige at the beginning, but now find it difficult to generate pace and power without arming my motion too much. The P1 gave me extra power for less effort, which is perfect for me since I can be guilty of arming the ball during my service motion. I will note however, that the Prestige does have better accuracy, and I was able to hit my spots better with it. Here's hoping that the P1 can improve on that area as I play with it more.

Overall: Overall I can say I was really impressed with the Donnay Pro One 18x20. It really shines on all areas of the court. It's stable, has a good mass, feel, and offers a nice power:control ratio. I did get a chance to test the 16x19 version, and found it felt stiff, had too much pop and I couldn't harness it's power. This new 18x20 version is much improved, with greater control and flexibility. I would compare it to the Wilson nblade 98 and obviously the Head Youtek Prestige MP. Definitely worth a try, IMO. I'll try to answer any questions you may have to the best of my ability! Here are some pictures first with the prototype "X-Dual Pro" and then a headsize comparison with the Prestige.


tball 06-27-2012 08:37 PM

Any word on how it is different from X-Dual Pro?

Pure Babs 06-27-2012 09:35 PM

Good question, and I was going to put that in there but forgot. The X-Dual Pro should be identical, but I actually liked the final version more. The Dual Pro just felt less solid; I felt more vibration and it overall just had a more demanding/harsh feel. So for me there was a noticeable difference. I even restrung both with matching strings to see if that was the difference.

Praetorian 06-28-2012 07:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pure Babs (Post 6666951)
Good question, and I was going to put that in there but forgot. The X-Dual Pro should be identical, but I actually liked the final version more. The Dual Pro just felt less solid; I felt more vibration and it overall just had a more demanding/harsh feel. So for me there was a noticeable difference. I even restrung both with matching strings to see if that was the difference.

Interesting. I am currently playing with an X-dual Pro, and was looking to pick up the pro one 18x20 as a racket to add as a backup to my stable. In your honest opinion, is it different enough to warrant NOT to do so?

Pure Babs 06-28-2012 10:48 AM

Weighed both the X-Dual Pro and the P1 today. The P1 weighs 11.5oz but get this... the X-Dual Pro came in at 12.1oz! Wish I could do further tests but this alone explains why they felt so different for me.

Edit: Both had an overgrip, rubberband dampener, and the 0g donnay cap installed/

ultradr 06-28-2012 04:03 PM

Donnay has weighted handle cap.

skeeter 06-28-2012 09:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pure Babs (Post 6668812)
Weighed both the X-Dual Pro and the P1 today. The P1 weighs 11.5oz but get this... the X-Dual Pro came in at 12.1oz! Wish I could do further tests but this alone explains why they felt so different for me.

Edit: Both had an overgrip, rubberband dampener, and the 0g donnay cap installed/

Stock (no weighted butt cap or lead), but with OG and dampener, my X-Dual Pro weighs in at 11.7 oz strung.

ChicagoJack 06-29-2012 08:30 PM

Pure Babs -

Awesome cool review, thanks. But I'm confused about the "prototype x-dual pro". What's the backstory, how are these two frames related?

- Jack

Pure Babs 06-29-2012 08:38 PM

Hey jack. Glad you found it useful. Donnay originally produced the X-Dual Pro and marketed it as James Blake's frame of choice. A bunch were made, but were very expensive (I think $270) and only available through donnay directly. They are now being discontinued as they are replacing it with the Pro One 18x20, which is supposed to be identical specs to the X-Dual Pro. Confusing, I know. I don't fully understand the company, I am just lucky to know the sponsorship director and thus get to hit all the frames!

BobStar 06-30-2012 02:02 AM

OP, thx for the review
few questions:
- what do u mean by: " arming the ball during my service motion" , just curious
- u say: " you play aggressive tennis and always look to step into the court to end the point" .
The sluggishness you mention combined with the "whereas I had to be slightly weary to not overhit some shots with the P1" seems to me u gonna have a problem with the P1 and prefer the Head. Agree?

ultradr 06-30-2012 10:48 AM

I really appreciate this review.
Is 18x20 p1 a feel racquet like head prestige mid plus or more like clubby pure drive? Thanks.

backatcha 06-30-2012 11:40 AM

Hey Pure Babs,
You stated that the P1 18x20 was similar to the YTPMP... I have felt that the control of the YTPMP was perfect but the power/plow was too weak... Please describe in greater detail the power/plow qualities of the new P1, and compare this to the YTPMP.

ChicagoJack 06-30-2012 07:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ultradr (Post 6678657)
I really appreciate this review.
Is 18x20 p1 a feel racquet like head prestige mid plus or more like clubby pure drive? Thanks.

I've not played the 18x20 but I can compare the 16x19 to the frames you mention. The P1 is closer to a prestige than a PD. A PD has a slightly "twangy" feel to it, much more vibration, slight more power, but waay less control than P1. A P1 plays a bit firmer, yet is nicely damp and muted somehow compared to a Prestige. I think that's a much tougher choice. I dont think it's any contest at all between a PD and a P1. I was more comfortable with my demo P1 than I was with my own Babolats after about an hour of hitting.

Jack

Pure Babs 06-30-2012 08:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobStar (Post 6677345)
OP, thx for the review
few questions:
- what do u mean by: " arming the ball during my service motion" , just curious
- u say: " you play aggressive tennis and always look to step into the court to end the point" .
The sluggishness you mention combined with the "whereas I had to be slightly weary to not overhit some shots with the P1" seems to me u gonna have a problem with the P1 and prefer the Head. Agree?

- By "arming the ball" I mean just trying to power it it with my dominant arm, and not using a fluid motion where my whole body is going into the serve.

- You are certainly right about your second point. I do at this point still prefer my Prestige. Basically, the P1 gives me more power and spin. It is a very stable racket as well, but I found it overall too sluggish compared to my Prestige. I can hit through the ball so well with my Head frame, and still get a good amount of pop. However, I did have trouble with the P1 when I really wanted to step in (especially off the forehand side).

Pure Babs 06-30-2012 08:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ultradr (Post 6678657)
I really appreciate this review.
Is 18x20 p1 a feel racquet like head prestige mid plus or more like clubby pure drive? Thanks.

Quote:

Originally Posted by ChicagoJack (Post 6680142)
I've not played the 18x20 but I can compare the 16x19 to the frames you mention. The P1 is closer to a prestige than a PD. A PD has a slightly "twangy" feel to it, much more vibration, slight more power, but waay less control than P1. A P1 plays a bit firmer, yet is nicely damp and muted somehow compared to a Prestige. I think that's a much tougher choice. I dont think it's any contest at all between a PD and a P1. I was more comfortable with my demo P1 than I was with my own Babolats after about an hour of hitting.

I agree with ChicagoJack on this. The P1 18x20 feels more like a Prestige MP, but it does have that sneaky power that you find in PDs. I would say that it doesn't feel as chunky or "clubby" as the PD too, but instead feels much more solid.

Pure Babs 06-30-2012 09:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by backatcha (Post 6678823)
Hey Pure Babs,
You stated that the P1 18x20 was similar to the YTPMP... I have felt that the control of the YTPMP was perfect but the power/plow was too weak... Please describe in greater detail the power/plow qualities of the new P1, and compare this to the YTPMP.

This is actually a great point and one that I was going to bring up now that I've played even more with the two frames. The control on the Prestige MP is outstanding... however, I do have trouble getting that power and plow through. That's why I have taken such a liking to the P1. It does everything that I struggle with using the Prestige. For example: more put away power when I need it, more stability on off-center shots, and more easy power when serving. Unfortunately for the P1, the Prestige is so "crisp" and precise off the ground and I don't ever fear taking a big cut at the ball because of its level of control. I run into trouble when using the P1 because its not as manueverable, and I've been prone to overhitting when I get tired and struggle to accelerate through the ball. At this point, I think I am too hooked on the Prestige to give up on its feel and ball control. It might be worth it to experiment with some lead to yield more stability and power...

BobStar 07-01-2012 03:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pure Babs (Post 6680238)
This is actually a great point and one that I was going to bring up now that I've played even more with the two frames. The control on the Prestige MP is outstanding... however, I do have trouble getting that power and plow through. That's why I have taken such a liking to the P1. It does everything that I struggle with using the Prestige. For example: more put away power when I need it, more stability on off-center shots, and more easy power when serving. Unfortunately for the P1, the Prestige is so "crisp" and precise off the ground and I don't ever fear taking a big cut at the ball because of its level of control. I run into trouble when using the P1 because its not as manueverable, and I've been prone to overhitting when I get tired and struggle to accelerate through the ball. At this point, I think I am too hooked on the Prestige to give up on its feel and ball control. It might be worth it to experiment with some lead to yield more stability and power...

that and maybe some experimenting with strings/tensions and the prestige can become ur holy grail!

ultradr 07-01-2012 12:34 PM

Thanks chicagojack and pure bob for feedback.

I know what you guys say about pd and prestige. Pd has that twangy feel and all mighty power but uncontrollerable at times. Prestige is all around frame with no weakness in any dept. It just that I too sometimes feel lack of plow on groundies, especially the guy at the other side is with pd, pounding Roddick style forehand.:???:

Pure Babs 07-01-2012 03:40 PM

^^^We should try to lead up/customize our Prestiges to give us that extra plow through, power, and stability against hard hitters. Problem is, I'm not sure exactly where to begin. I know generally that lead should be placed at 12 and 3&9 as well as the addition of a leather grip to counterbalance. Will do some more research!

rrito 07-01-2012 04:53 PM

Mr Babs

Thank you for the review. The power part has given me hesitation to buy this racquet (no demos where i am), as my previous experiment with 6.1 95 16x18 did not end well due to the uncontrollable power that racquet generated. I was a bit apprehensive that this racquet might be in the same league despite its closed string pattern, but from you review it seems it's not as bad as I thought, even though there were still insecurity when you took big swing/cut at the ball.
I have just 1 question: have you tried a different string set up to try to curb the excessive power problem? Maybe a full bed of low-power polyester?
Thanks again for your review


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