Donnay X-Red 94 +
The + version of the red 94 is a bit heavier than the stock version. It is 330g stock. With no strips, and a 5g cap in the bottom however, I felt like it swung a bit easier than the blue 94.
The red is a bit more flexible offering in the Donnay line. I really enjoy hitting groundstrokes with the red 94 +. The power level is a bit higher than the blue 94, and pretty similar to the black line. Usually not a fan of the 16x19 string pattern, I felt the opposite here. On the forehand side I was getting a nice blend of power and crazy spin potential. When I really want to go for a rip, the power is there. On off balance and defensive shots, I was getting more pace than I was with the blue. The control factor is still a major plus with this stick, as I have found with the entire line really. Backhands took me a little while to get used to. At first I was sailing the ball long. After spending some time with it and getting a feel for the flexibility, I was able to get things under control and really start taking cracks at the ball. I was getting more topspin than usual on my backhand, and I’m not sure my slice has been better. Return of serve was also really good as well. VERY stable on all shots, and I felt I could go down the line or rip crosscourt whenever I want to. With the red I noticed I was playing a lot more aggressively than I normally do. I was really taking to the offensive and taking more risks on shots, because I knew exactly where they were going every time. It was a very nice feeling. This frame is a beast from the baseline. I would also like to try the normal red 94 – which I will be doing in the coming weeks.
Not as good as the blue 94, which I still believe is the nicest volleying frame I have ever hit. However, the control here is still very good. I’ve always preferred an 18x20 at the net, but didn’t notice a ton of difference with this one. Very plus feel when the large sweetspot it hit, and still very comfortable on off-center shots as well. I was getting a lot more backspin on drop volleys and drop shots, which I found that I really enjoyed as well. Very easy to take a nice poke at a volley and get good power, but touch volleys is where this frame really excels. I was getting angles very easy, and like I said touch drop shots were extremely effective.
I really enjoyed serving the red 94 +. This is the only part of my game where I noticed the extra weight of the racquet. At first I didn’t think I was going to be able to get the pop I have loved when serving with my prestige MP’s. Although the power was dialed down a bit again, the control was way up. My kick serve was extremely effective, getting some really nice jump. My slice wasn’t as nasty as it was with the 18x20 patterns, but it still had some really good bit. I liked the flexibility of the frame when serving as well. It provided a very comfortable ride, and better access to power as well.
I guess if I rated everything at an 8, then the racquet is an 8 haha. Groundstrokes were great with this racquet. Great access to power, with a ton of control and spin. Same old school thud when striking the ball as well. The frame is heavy, but I feel swung a bit easier than the x-blue 94 which is listed as lighter. Volleys were a pleasure as well. Great control, and touch shots are where this one really stood out. Get out there, and get aggressive! True players racquet fans will really enjoy giving this frame a go!