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Old 03-04-2012, 09:50 AM   #36
VOLLEY KING
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Join Date: Feb 2012
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VORTEX



Thank Joesh for these pictures . I did a search on google images and thread you did came up. The red one is vortex the blue is the woodforde hi ten which the vortex is modeled after.

The reviews given there of the Vortex will be far better than my "regular guy" review so for a more in depth review you should check that thread out.

These racquets are really cool. They may not look "crazy" but they are !!

They have an incredibly sparse string pattern . One model has a mere 14x15 string pattern! The strings are extremely thick as well at 15 guage! Tension is extremely low as well at 45 pounds recommended or lower!! Also the patern is in the shape of a "V" spreading out wider on top . This is supposed to do something .....I'm not quite sure what? But it seems to work

They are modeled after one of the greatest doubles players of all time Mark Woodforde. He used a snauwert hi ten and I think later a Wilson? But his racquet was specially made and produced crazy spin

Mark woodfordes racquet had extreme spin and was super effective . He also used unbelievably thick string . I'm sure Joe can tell you the name. It was a green thick string the kind you would use in a weed whacker.

The Vortex is the modern version of that racquet. They redesigned the racquet so you could use an extremely low tension whereas Woodforde used an extremely high tension which most customers didn't like.

I would be VERY VERY excited to get my hands on a hi ten!! If anyone wants to post a review ( hint hint joe) I would really appreciate it ! Or maybe I could convince you to part with yours? I would be willing to pay a LOT for it.

Anyway I had to settle for the Vortex and I'll give you guys a review of each model. A very short review but a review nonetheless .

Serves

Tour 95    8/10
Tour 100.  8/10
Pro 100.     7/10
Pro 116.        5/10
Es 100.        6/10
Es108.         7/10
Es 116.          4/10
Es 133.        2/10

The sticks with pro or tour on it are more player  oriented frames. They are thinner and the patterns though still very sparse are denser than the game improvement frames.

Basically I found the thinner the frames the better the serves.

Spin was all there big time for all. But racquet speed was lacking in some of the game improvement racquets .

The 133 being the worst for serves. It was just so powerful that you basically could only tap the ball on your serves because a full swing would go out of the ball park. Of your an older player or a 3.0 or lower you will like this frame for serves.

However the Pro 100, tour 100 and tour 95 were great serving racquets. Power, control placement an spin were very good.

The es 100 & 108 were in between the spectrum. They wer good serving racquets . They are "tweener" racquets and right in the middle of the scale.

return of serve

Tour 95  6/10
Tour 100 6/10
Pro 100.   7/10
Pro 116.     8/10
Es 100.     8/10
Es108.       8/10
Es 116.         9/10
Es 133.      10/10

Let me start off with the 133. I know it seems like a crazy racquet to play with . It is HUGE ! The string pattern makes it look even bigger. And the length is I think 29 inches ? 

Anyway there is no better racquet I have ever played with for return a serve . At a mere 10 ounces it's extremely maneuverable . Everything comes back. The only problem is when you play a player with a soft serve. It's difficult to take a full swing with this stick.

The es  116 is very similar in return department. It's just a hair dofference than the 133. It's actually a little better against soft serves.

The tours and pro's are not nearly as good for returns. You have to hot more of the sweet spot and the frame is thinner for less stability .

The es 100 and 108 were probably the best of both worlds. Absolutely awesome returning sticks. Works well against all types of serves .

volleys

Tour 95   7/10
Tour 100. 7/10
Pro 100.   7/10
Pro 116.     6/10
Es 100.     8/10
Es108.       8/10
Es 116.         9/10
Es 133.       10/10

The 133 is just a freaking MONSTER at the net. Nothing will get by you. Maneuverable as a 90 inch stick but big as a boat. The pattern also produce some great returns when diving . Absolutely amazing .

The es  116 is very similar and probably just as good. There is an extremely small difference .

The es 100 and 108 are amazing at the net as well. Some of the best volley sticks I have ever had the pleasure to try.

The tour and pro versions all VERY good at the net as well. All Vortex sticks are great  volley racquets and I would put them up against any stick on the market.

Slice

Tour 95  8/10
Tour 100 8/10
Pro 100.   8/10
Pro 116.      8/10
Es 100.      7/10
Es108.       7/10
Es 116.         5/10
Es 133.      4/10

I use a donnay which I think is the best slicing racquet made today. So I am highly critical in this department and I may be to hard on the Vortex here.

The pros and your versions were very good slicing sticks .

The ES  100 & 108 versions were average

The es 116 is a very good slicing stick....but far from the best . This racquet I think is a great doubles stick.

The 133 is just a powerhouse . It's to thick for serious slices. It's meant for an older player or a low level player .

topspin

Tour 95  8/10
Tour 100. 8/10
Pro 100.    7/10
Pro 116.       5/10
Es 100.       7/10
Es108.         7/10
Es 116.           5/10 
Es 133.         1/10

I'm not a great topspiner and I'm not the best qualified in this department.

The es 116 & 133 I would say are doubles or serve and volley chip and charge sticks. Or even pusher sticks....come to think of it the 133 is probably the greatest pusher stick ever made! They are not for any serious topsinners

The ES 100 and 108 are very good topspin sticks but they are not thin enough for serious racquet speed and violent topspin. They are tweeners.

Tour 95 and tour 100 are serious topspin sticks . You will get some sick topspin with these babies

The pro 116 is just not maneuverable enough 

[b]drop shots and touch shots[b]

Tour 95  8/10
Tour 100. 8/10
Pro 100.    7/10
Pro 116.        7/10
Es 100.       7/10
Es108.         7/10
Es 116.            7/10 
Es 133.           6/10

All these sticks have great feel and touch for droppers except the 133 which is a little too powerful. But it's not terrible. Definitely above average.

Arm friendly

All the same . They all feel good . A bit hollow but I'm a bit critical as a donnay user.

They do make a funny sound without dampeners . They are a must.

conclusion

These are great sticks and really work . They are definitely worth a try. The only reason I am not playing with them is because the Donnays are just better in the slice department and that's a big part of my game.

The mad Raq and these Vortex's are the real deal. They are not gimmicks. 

The thick strings really form a vice grip for extra spin and control. The racquets are stable and arm friendly.

Last edited by VOLLEY KING : 03-04-2012 at 09:56 AM.
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