Best suited racket for Advanced (4.5-5.0) aggressive baseline player

Best suited racket for Advanced (4.5-5.0) aggressive baseline player

  • Head Graphene 360+ Speed MP

    Votes: 8 7.4%
  • Head Graphene 360+ Speed Pro

    Votes: 17 15.7%
  • Head Radical MP

    Votes: 11 10.2%
  • Head Gravity Pro

    Votes: 21 19.4%
  • Angell TC97 18x20

    Votes: 6 5.6%
  • Wilson Pro Staff RF97A

    Votes: 9 8.3%
  • Babolat Pure Drive

    Votes: 7 6.5%
  • Babolat Pure Aero VS

    Votes: 20 18.5%
  • Yonex Vcore 95

    Votes: 18 16.7%
  • Yonex Ezone 98 Tour

    Votes: 10 9.3%

  • Total voters
    108

PKorda

Semi-Pro
4.5 - 5.0 is to big of a gap. You should be one or the other. At 5.0, you basically can play at open level.
Assuming that you are a 5.0, probably shouldn't even be asking here, as you are a better player than 99% of the forum.
He could be in between the two ratings. Players ability is on a continuum.
 

Mischko

Rookie
@TennisManiac I don't know what these numbers mean exactly, I think they are (mostly?) used in NA or USA, but I can hit and hold the ball easily with a pro player, and have hit and played with ex pros, aspiring pros, and hit a lot with advanced 16+ juniors etc. An actual active pro would of course destroy me in serious match play, primarily because when you include serves and returns, you really have to be "in the game" non stop to handle that consistently. Then there's age, I'm 40+ now, so slightly slower, and of blurrier focus sometimes etc.

But nevermind that, I'd easily just write that instability in Speed Pro 360+ is just my observation/opinion but actually no, both JP from team-tennis.fr, and Michelle here in the TW review noticed flutter and instability on the Speed Pro 360+ hoop, and I didn't when I demoed it, so I bought it. Well, then I sure did notice it, with or without lead. For coach-like hitting it's great, but as soon as I started hitting harder it would just shake. On serves same thing, placing them was OK, but as soon as I tried to serve normally with full speed it would just flutter. But a nice racquet otherwise, although even without that I lacked some attacking power with it, it is a consistency kind of frame, not so much for power play. When I did hard court hitting sessions with really good players last winter, I easily noticed how I can hold crosses super consistently, trajectory and all, but I can't really hit a faster ball and punch through although I already had lead on it.

New Speeds should be arriving in a month or so, and I am sure Head did their homework, because it seems that people speak of new Auxetic Prestiges as if they were just tuned 360+ Prestiges, so if that will happen with the Speeds - great.
 
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TennisManiac

Hall of Fame
@TennisManiac I don't know what these numbers mean exactly, I think they are (mostly?) used in NA or USA, but I can hit and hold the ball easily with a pro player, and have hit and played with ex pros, aspiring pros, and hit a lot with advanced 16+ juniors etc. An actual active pro would of course destroy me in serious match play, primarily because when you include serves and returns, you really have to be "in the game" non stop to handle that consistently. Then there's age, I'm 40+ now, so slightly slower, and of blurrier focus sometimes etc.

But nevermind that, I'd easily just write that instability in Speed Pro 360+ is just my observation/opinion but actually no, both JP from team-tennis.fr, and Michelle here in the TW review noticed flutter and instability on the Speed Pro 360+ hoop, and I didn't when I demoed it, so I bought it. Well, then I sure did notice it, with or without lead. For coach-like hitting it's great, but as soon as I started hitting harder it would just shake. On serves same thing, placing them was OK, but as soon as I tried to serve normally with full speed it would just flutter. But a nice racquet otherwise, although even without that I lacked some attacking power with it, it is a consistency kind of frame, not so much for power play. When I did hard court hitting sessions with really good players last winter, I easily noticed how I can hold crosses super consistently, trajectory and all, but I can't really hit a faster ball and punch through although I already had lead on it.

New Speeds should be arriving in a month or so, and I am sure Head did their homework, because it seems that people speak of new Auxetic Prestiges as if they were just tuned 360+ Prestiges, so if that will happen with the Speeds - great.
I enjoyed reading your post here. I'm a bit confused though in regards to the fluttering. When I demoed this frame I didn't experience that. Wouldn't "fluttering" basically mean that your not hitting in the center of the string bed? How could a racket flutter if you're hitting in the center? And how would this new Auxetic tech. help this issue?
 
@TennisManiac I don't know what these numbers mean exactly, I think they are (mostly?) used in NA or USA, but I can hit and hold the ball easily with a pro player, and have hit and played with ex pros, aspiring pros, and hit a lot with advanced 16+ juniors etc. An actual active pro would of course destroy me in serious match play, primarily because when you include serves and returns, you really have to be "in the game" non stop to handle that consistently. Then there's age, I'm 40+ now, so slightly slower, and of blurrier focus sometimes etc.

But nevermind that, I'd easily just write that instability in Speed Pro 360+ is just my observation/opinion but actually no, both JP from team-tennis.fr, and Michelle here in the TW review noticed flutter and instability on the Speed Pro 360+ hoop, and I didn't when I demoed it, so I bought it. Well, then I sure did notice it, with or without lead. For coach-like hitting it's great, but as soon as I started hitting harder it would just shake. On serves same thing, placing them was OK, but as soon as I tried to serve normally with full speed it would just flutter. But a nice racquet otherwise, although even without that I lacked some attacking power with it, it is a consistency kind of frame, not so much for power play. When I did hard court hitting sessions with really good players last winter, I easily noticed how I can hold crosses super consistently, trajectory and all, but I can't really hit a faster ball and punch through although I already had lead on it.

New Speeds should be arriving in a month or so, and I am sure Head did their homework, because it seems that people speak of new Auxetic Prestiges as if they were just tuned 360+ Prestiges, so if that will happen with the Speeds - great.
New speeds arriving in about a month? That's a quick turnaround after 360+ was launched last year (I just bought an MP two weeks ago). Would be excited nonetheless
 

Mischko

Rookie
By Auxetic Prestiges I didn't necessarily mean that the "Auxetic" tech itself is what is crucial, I just used Auxetic Prestige as a name. I'm not an expert in racquet tech, and not particularly following Head either, but since the 90ies I had a feel that Head "tech" is more of Head "marketing name" of a racquet line or generation. I basically meant to say that Head probably noticed that they should resolve the "flutter" in 360+ Speed Pro, and that I'd expect them to modify the carbon fibre layup in that sense. With which tech, I don't even care, as I really know only the barest minimum about carbon tech.

Well I use the expression flutter only because Michelle used it in their review. English isn't my native language after all. It kind of shakes and vibrates a bit. It used to tire my upper outer arm and shoulder on one handed backhands. Backhand itself went well, but I had a tired arm, and slightly sore.

In faster play it's difficult to always get the ball in the middle, that's why racquets are getting larger over decades already. That is also one of the main reasons why ATP pro players will have their frames around 340SW and above, because that stabilises them on off centre hits, and it's much easier to block returns, get unstuck in a point etc. For example, and not connected to Speed Pro, I played for 5+ years with RF97A, super heavy, ultra stable, difficult to maneuver on slower balls. But however and wherever you get the ball with it, you get a solid shot, easily over the service line, you can block, you can hit, you can slice, you can whatever. It's a heavy, stiff power racquet. There is no shaking or anything, that racquet is like playing with steel compared to some lighter frames. But I wouldn't relate it only to weight or swingweight, as there are 300g frames that are totally stable. Ezone 100 for example, but others as well.

I'm not sure now, but I think in a month or so. I've seen 2022 Speed photos somewhere on this forum already. If current Speeds were launched early last year, that would be 2 years for the new model, exactly what Head and most manufacturers usually do.
 
By Auxetic Prestiges I didn't necessarily mean that the "Auxetic" tech itself is what is crucial, I just used Auxetic Prestige as a name. I'm not an expert in racquet tech, and not particularly following Head either, but since the 90ies I had a feel that Head "tech" is more of Head "marketing name" of a racquet line or generation. I basically meant to say that Head probably noticed that they should resolve the "flutter" in 360+ Speed Pro, and that I'd expect them to modify the carbon fibre layup in that sense. With which tech, I don't even care, as I really know only the barest minimum about carbon tech.

Well I use the expression flutter only because Michelle used it in their review. English isn't my native language after all. It kind of shakes and vibrates a bit. It used to tire my upper outer arm and shoulder on one handed backhands. Backhand itself went well, but I had a tired arm, and slightly sore.

In faster play it's difficult to always get the ball in the middle, that's why racquets are getting larger over decades already. That is also one of the main reasons why ATP pro players will have their frames around 340SW and above, because that stabilises them on off centre hits, and it's much easier to block returns, get unstuck in a point etc. For example, and not connected to Speed Pro, I played for 5+ years with RF97A, super heavy, ultra stable, difficult to maneuver on slower balls. But however and wherever you get the ball with it, you get a solid shot, easily over the service line, you can block, you can hit, you can slice, you can whatever. It's a heavy, stiff power racquet. There is no shaking or anything, that racquet is like playing with steel compared to some lighter frames. But I wouldn't relate it only to weight or swingweight, as there are 300g frames that are totally stable. Ezone 100 for example, but others as well.

I'm not sure now, but I think in a month or so. I've seen 2022 Speed photos somewhere on this forum already. If current Speeds were launched early last year, that would be 2 years for the new model, exactly what Head and most manufacturers usually do.
Cheers, the only source on that I could find was here: https://www.thetennisinsider.com/post/head-speed-2022-racket-release, suggesting it may just be a paint job
 

Mischko

Rookie
Yep, that's the photo I saw as well. I sincerely doubt it's a paintjob only. G360+ series were well accepted and very well sold by Head, so I suppose it's to be expected that they'd only tune them a bit, and it seems to be the case with Prestiges. I still remember when I first tried Gravity Pro (their first frame/line in their 360+ plusher feel gen) how I exclaimed OOOOOHHH NIIIICEEE!! Because previous Head I tried was Speed Pro 360 and that was stiff and hollow. They should've named them 180 instead of 360+ but yeah.. :)
 

yessir

Rookie
Vcore 95 should be demo'd by most 1 handers in my opinion. I'm using the Vcore pro D, but the 95 certainly was tempting to stay with using a 1 hander.

There is nothing horrible about adding weight to the 95, but I'd just use the D or H instead, the wow factor of the 95 is the lower SW with about 95% of the stability of the heavier sticks, adding weight in my opinion is chasing something it isn't designed to be, but maybe some people play better with the added weight.
Yeah but backhand slice kinda suck without lead at 3-9 dont they?
 

FuzzyYellowBalls

Hall of Fame
Yeah but backhand slice kinda suck without lead at 3-9 dont they?
No, my backhand slice is great with any racket, I can slice with a clash if I have to, it's just automatic. There is something puzzling about wanting lead from these decent swig weight sticks if it is for a slice.
 

buttercluck

New User
Thank you for all of the suggestions everyone.
I demo’d the speed pro and whilst I thought it was a very forgiving frame and excellent from the base liner, it didn’t have the knife like feel through the air that I crave from a thin beam.

The poll and comments suggest trying the Head Gravity Pro and Yonex Vcore 95 for a more aggressive game like mine. They are quite different but is there anyone who is able to make a side by side comparison between the two? I’m hoping the demo them both next week.
 

TennisManiac

Hall of Fame
Thank you for all of the suggestions everyone.
I demo’d the speed pro and whilst I thought it was a very forgiving frame and excellent from the base liner, it didn’t have the knife like feel through the air that I crave from a thin beam.

The poll and comments suggest trying the Head Gravity Pro and Yonex Vcore 95 for a more aggressive game like mine. They are quite different but is there anyone who is able to make a side by side comparison between the two? I’m hoping the demo them both next week.
Honestly... I think you dove into the rabbit hole. And you may never find your way out. :laughing:
 

Power Player

Bionic Poster
Thank you for all of the suggestions everyone.
I demo’d the speed pro and whilst I thought it was a very forgiving frame and excellent from the base liner, it didn’t have the knife like feel through the air that I crave from a thin beam.

The poll and comments suggest trying the Head Gravity Pro and Yonex Vcore 95 for a more aggressive game like mine. They are quite different but is there anyone who is able to make a side by side comparison between the two? I’m hoping the demo them both next week.
I have both. Very different frames. My GP is pretty light - 336 grams and 330 SW strung 7 PTs HL. My VC95 is 335 and 323 SW 8 pts HL

The VC95 is a knife for sure. Comes through super fast and you can shape the ball however you want. It is not a frame that plows the ball it is more about shape and moving it around the court. It's an attacking frame that you can hit big forehands with and finish points at net. The feel is very muted and the comfort is not bad. This is a top tier modern control frame. Serves are not bad, its not a big serving frame. Returns are very good, but not top tier for me.

The Gravity Pro has a larger head so its not going to knife through the air like the v95. That said, its a thin beam and I found generating racquet head speed pretty easy. I think the key here is to get one that weighs 310 instead of 315 so its not too clunky. The GP is also an attacking frame. It attacks more with plow. Similar spin and trajectory as the VC95, but I think the GP can hit a heavier ball. The Gravity has the best feel of any modern frame I have used, a huge sweet spot and is extremely comfortable. Big server and return frame. It's stellar for that.

I think you may just need to demo both because these are 2 of the best control frames to be released in recent years.
 

KYHacker

Professional
The real answer that TW and most posters don’t want you to know is that any racquet with these specs (maybe SW above 330 and add beam width below 21mm) is good enough for almost all advanced players. You can take any racquet with these specs and tune its performance tremendously experimenting with strings and tensions till it ‘sings’ on the court just as you want it to. Personally, I find it funny that people think there is a lot of variability between how racquets perform when tennis racquets are a very low-tech product with little innovation in 25 years. Once you know the spec range you like, just buy a racquet that looks aesthetically pleasing from the brands you like and then start experimenting with various strings and tensions until it sounds like your own ‘Stradivarius’ Violin.

Don’t get too hung up on string patterns as some brands make dense patterns at the center in open string patterns and others do the opposite. It is pretty easy to adjust to different string patterns in a few weeks if you are an advanced player.

The more interesting question is which racquets in this spec range look the best! I vote for the Gen 1 Pure Strike Tour which looked splendid in red/black.
I sort of agree and sort of disagree. Look at spec range that will work. Probably 305g and above and swingweight of 320+. After that, choose a handle shape that you really like. It makes a bigger difference than you think. Then choose whether you want a racquet with more weight near the yoke, more polarized, or with higher twist weight. Choose headsize.
Ones that have less polarization and similar specs will play very similar. You will probably find that handle shape will determine a lot of whether it “feels right”.
I like the PS97. Prestiges are super nice, but I found the Head square grip shape to be too square to suit me. Pure Strike has a strange weight distribution. I think you’ll love it or hate it. Don’t overlook Prince Tour frames.
 

KYHacker

Professional
I sort of agree and sort of disagree. Look at spec range that will work. Probably 305g and above and swingweight of 320+. After that, choose a handle shape that you really like. It makes a bigger difference than you think. Then choose whether you want a racquet with more weight near the yoke, more polarized, or with higher twist weight. Choose headsize.
Ones that have less polarization and similar specs will play very similar. You will probably find that handle shape will determine a lot of whether it “feels right”.
I like the PS97. Prestiges are super nice, but I found the Head square grip shape to be too square to suit me. Pure Strike has a strange weight distribution. I think you’ll love it or hate it. Don’t overlook Prince Tour frames.
Also, if you already used the RF97A, why would you not be considering the PS97? I used the 360 Speed Pro for a year to rehab from an injury, and it made me realize I could go with a lower swing weight 320-325 coming from 337. I’ve tried a bunch of frames over the past 12 months and the only 100 sq in frames that have any control are Speed Pro and ProKennex Q5.
98 sq in we’re much better. Based on demos of Black Ace 100, I think Black Ace Pro would a top choice as well as PS97, Prince Phantom 97, new Prestige Tour and Radical Pro
 

blai212

Hall of Fame
v7 is more comfortable, has better plow through and power for me. I guess if you felt like v7 SW was too high then maybe v8 might be for you.
 
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