Tennis Racquet Reviews

These reviews are very basic to give an overview to help players figure out a starting point for them. Stop in or reach out for more specifics on any of these or any other frames.

Control oriented models, generally for players with longer strokes that can generate their own power (intermediate to advanced players usually)

Dunlop CX200(16×19): Not the lowest powered racquet in this group, it has a very generous sweetspot, good feel, stability, and is foregiving on off-center hits. A low powered frame where you do most of the work. It’s a little more headlight than many of the models in this group which is great for racquet head speed and helps maneuverability especially if you play some doubles. For more control it also comes in 18×20 pattern.

Yonex VCore Pro 97: Traditional players frame, very low power, very accurate, predictable, with all the precision you need. The feeling is a little muted especially with the low power. If you swing big, hang at the baseline, and like to find your swing out groove this is one to try. Mostly high level only players especially if you plan on stringing with a poly.

Yonex Ezone 98: Top seller; A modern day racquet with the blend of traditional feel and a balance of power and control rarely found in a control-oriented frame. Some models find that edge where control and spin are precise and usually that sacrifices some power, but this racquet has that “on” button to put away those ground strokes or ramp up your serve when needed. Enough headlight to be quick at net too. If you’re a high-level player not generating the same pace anymore this is a first place to start. If you are more intermediate don’t read this as the “goldilocks” racquet, a whole category coming up on that and the Ezone 100 is actually more in that category.

Tecnifibre TF40 305(16×19): Quality is oozing in all of the tecnifibre frames. This one is simply exactly what you expect in a competitive players racquet. Precise, you make the power, good headlight balance, feels great on every stroke, and predictable feel. Definitely on the low end of power production which can be the deal maker or breaker depending on who you are. Also comes in 18×20 for extreme control and even lower power.

Tecnifibre TFight 305RS: Looking for a little stiffer, more crisp feeling, and a little more power than the TF40, this is the next stop. Similar to the Ezone 98, you can find the put away power ready when needed, but the great thing is that when you don’t it has all the control you need. Definitely a more modern feel with its stiffer beam. Also, the dense string pattern may take away from some spin depending on your strokes, but they are also why you still have great control in this frame.

Solinco Whiteout: One of those racquets that surprises you. You don’t expect a newer model to be as advertised right from the start. It’s like a cross between a Wilson Pro Staff and Wilson Blade. Stiffness like the PS and power similar although a little more than the blade. Good feel, precision, does everything well. Their grip tends to run a little larger than advertised so you may be more comfortable going down one size from your usual choice. The traditional old-school all white is a great look too compared to all the crazy colors out there. Looking for a traditional racquet that is just plain consistent and you can’t blame it for anything, this is a good place to start.

Volkl VCell 10: One of the slightly higher-powered racquets of this group, but not enough to jump beyond being a control frame. Stiffer feeling and not as foregiving off center, but in the sweetspot it packs a punch. Very maneuverable almost whippy allowing for good racquet head speed and topspin. If you like to go for winners and take control of a point fast this may be a good option.

Babolat Pure Strike 16×19: This racquet also comes in an 18×20 pattern. If you are looking for control over power I’d go for the 18×20. The 16×19 is still a control frame, but definitely has more power and does have a tendency to spray balls more than the 18×20. This is a top rated racquet wherever you look. I personally felt it did a lot to help weaker shot like typically your backhand, but on the go for it put away forehand it lacked the control some of these others have. That’s not a bad thing because with the right string set up this racquet really covers the control and “goldilocks category” meaning a lot of players can use this frame and be very happy which is why it is very popular!

Diadem Elevate Tour: Another surprise from a relatively small and lesser know company, this racquet had very good balance of all attributes. Nothing was stand out better than any other frame and nothing was worst in any category. Similar to Solinco, if you want a racquet that does it all consistently, good balance of control and power, has power when needed, good accuracy, and simply the racquet can’t be blamed for any real flaws this is a good demo easily overlooked.

Head Speed Pro: The 18×20 pattern of this frame with 100sq. in head makes it much more playable than most 18×20 frames. The frames feel and flex help lessen the boardy feel of an 18×20 pattern. Very accurate, good spin, and power on lower end, but not nearly lowest of this mostly 16×19 group. I think it suffers a little at net. It’s not quite as maneuverable or provide as much soft touch feel as many of these lighter 16×19 patterns. If you hit flatter strokes then the depth and precision of this racquet can be a big weapon. I do suggest lower string tensions to get the real feel for what this racquet can do.

“Goldilocks Frames” these racquets suit anyone from beginner to advanced depending on what you are looking for, some lean more towards control and some towards power, but none go to far either way and with slight string changes can satisfy just about EVERYONE!

Head Boom Pro or MP: This racquet had to be one of the first listed. It has a soft, foregiving, supple feel. Usually that equals no power, but this racquet has plenty on tap to finish points, yet it never feels erratic or uncontrollable. It’s simply not like many other racquets out there. More advanced players will certainly appreciate the Pro whereas beginner to intermediate players will do better with the bigger sweetspot and weight of the MP. Another nice thing with this frame is because of it’s touch and flex it makes it much more playable and safe for your body when playing with poly’s and it was truly amazing with a hybrid set-up in it. One of the best surprises of the year, but not the only.

Yonex Ezone 100: Top Seller: Mostly a little more of everything I mention for the Ezone 98. A little more power, a bigger sweetspot, more foregiving, more spin, and for most of this equals much more playability. It’s hard to imagine anyone not liking this frame.

Yonex VCore 100: Top Seller: The Yin to the Ezone Yang; if you like a more muted/dampened feel on contact and swinging out this racquet has just the right blend of power to control for many and as with most lines comes in a light version at 285g suits most intermediate players better than the standard weight.

Dunlop CX400: Easy power without getting away from you. If you an aging advanced player where footwork and stamina are pulling power from your players frame, look here first. Medium strokes will flourish and long strokes with less than perfect timing or not as fast anymore will result in a smile on your face when putting away balls you have been struggling with. Good all around playability so good choice for doubles player as your serve and volley will be sharp and have some pop. You do have to be selective with your strings though because this one is capable of becoming erratic if you go too loose on your string tension. Injured players can use this frame with a soft string and be very happy too. Want a little more weight and stability you can go with the tour model which also comes in a “Limited Edition” black motif, very sharp!

Tecnifibre IGA Tempo 298: Men, don’t make the mistake, this is not just a women’s racquet. The weight, balance, and feel are near perfect for the majority of most players. Where it really shines is in stability, accuracy, and a perfect blend of put-away power and control. The quality and grommet system are better than most. Factor in the weight with this stability you get great racquet head speed which equals spin, quickness at net, improved serves, and generally a racquet that whether you are beginner or advanced you can find benefits from.

Solinco Blackout: Top Seller; It’s important to note this racquet and many of the previously reviewed racquets often come in multiple weights. My reviews are usually of the heavier or traits of the group that are consistent. I say that because the 300g version of this frame may be a little high for most, but the 285g or 265g put this frame in this category. It has surprisingly good control, accuracy, feel, and no weaknesses especially for a modern frame considered to be slightly more towards the power end of the scale. I found it very predictable and highly controllable for this type of frame and it was very senstitive to string selection meaning it is highly tunable to fit a lot of people. This is a racquet that almost everyone should try in the weight that suits their game best. Many prior Babalot Pure Drive players have switched to this as similar style racquet.

Babolat Aero VS: A permanent member and most well-known do everything “goldilocks frame”. The reason is it’s lightweight, high power, and incredible spin potential make it easily tunable for many. For most people it’s easier to start with a powerful racquet and tone it down than to try and take one with too much control and add to it. For short strokes the power is great and the stiffness doesn’t play as much of a factor, but for harder hitters you need to stay committed to spin (AKA Rafa) to keep the ball in play. The flip side there is that to keep that head speed, spin, and usually a lower powered poly or hybrid you can’t have any injuries as your wrist or elbow are likely to let you know. As most think of this as an advanced racquet, I do think with the right set up it actually suits the intermediate player better. Remember the pros don’t play with the same specs the racquet comes with, they all add weight in the handle and head. Off the shelf, this is a good option for many people.

POWER Racquets, these are frames that start with one priority, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be controlled. Today’s modern game and string work well with these and for those with lesser technique, shorter strokes, aging, or injured can use these attributes to still hit some crushing winners

Tecnifibre TF-X1: So impressive from its looks, grommet system, great stock grip, and I highly recommend using yellow strings. I almost wanted to put this in goldilocks and for many it will be, but it is still a power first racquet especially if you string with a synthetic gut or multi which many will really benefit from in this frame. Good feel which can be an issue with more power. Serve and volleyers, doubles players, or just a heavy hitting baseliner can all rejoice with this one.

Babolat Pure Drive: The reason the Aero didn’t make the power racquet list, this has been the staple for Babolat since Andy Roddick’s and his serve made this racquet well known. If you want power this is a must try. It is definitely not an easy racquet to control and string choice and tension are very important. This is for the aggressive baseliner primarily. There are other players that may benefit, but likely not the best racquet choice for them.