Sunday, September 20, 2015

Badminton Racket Review: Yonex Duora 10

Hey guys, found out some other site's been taking my article wholesale, so be a sport and bookmark the original site - http://everythinggoeshere.blogspot.sg

###

First impressions here.

I've been writing badminton racket reviews for quite some time. I've seen the rise of the Yonex Voltric, the Li Ning wave and then the Victor conquest with their sponsorship of winning doubles pairs.

And then Yonex came in with their lowest price strategy and knocked the ball out of the park. Like the quartz watch brought affordable mechanical watches out the picture in the 1970s, Yonex all but destroyed the smaller badminton racket makers like Toalson, Hart and Prince.

Which left a gaping hole in racket innovation. Badminton enthusiasts like me were left to the whim of whatever the bigger players could pry out of their research vaults. For a long while, the best they could do was sonic metal. I was to scare my opponents into defeat with a sharp sounding smash.

That leaves me to the significance of the Yonex Duora 10. The two-sided racket can be said to the one true innovation to hit the market for a long time. Apart from fiddling around with the stiffness-balance ratio, Yonex finally decided to throw out something experimental for the fans.

I love experimental. It's not always a big bang (everyone remember the eTune and its customizable weight system?), but it's something to keep the passion fresh, and passion pays for itself.

How did the Yonex Duora 10 fare in my review. Here goes.

Oh yes, before I continue, a few disclaimers I must make. First off, my Duora 10 has been customized to be a little more head heavier than one that's off the shelf. I also play with the green side up instead of the orange one. This comes after experimenting several games both singles and doubles with the two sides.

Note: This is a review of my experience after using the racket for a few sessions. I am by no means a professional player, and so you should take my judgment with a pinch of salt. I welcome comments of any sorts.

Yonex Duora 10
Est. Dry Weight: 85g (3U)
Grip Size: G5
Balance: Even-Balanced
Stiffness: Flexible
Strings: Yonex Nanogy 98 @ 27lbs

Defense:
If you've read my first impressions of the racket you'd know that I was quite critical with the Duora 10. It hints of promise, but under delivers in a few aspects. One of the better qualities of the racket happens to be my favorite - defense.

The Yonex Duora 10 opens up an amazing array of defensive shots for me, which to me is a great plus. So much so that I find myself being in utter calm whenever I have to take an incoming smash. Somehow I was always able to steer the shuttle into an empty space with a slight flick of the wrist.

I credit this quality defense to the flexible shaft and light weight. Unlike the head heavy rackets that I am used to, the Duora 10 allows a very quick response to attacks, being smashes or the fast drive rally.

Such dexterity in defense also means that there are plenty of chances for you to turn defense into offense - throwing the game in your favor and giving a little pressure to your opponents.

Attack:
Unfortunately the opponents will have nothing fear about your attacks. The Duora 10 fails miserably in this aspect in my opinion. Anything further behind the mid court might as well be a practice shot for them.

I am unable to gather any amount of power from this racket, whether it is orange or green side up. It's sad really, given it's amazing performance in the front court and defense. I compare the racket then to the Nanoray 900, which is a far better racket when you want to attack. There's a reason the NR900 is and remains my current doubles go-to, and given the lackluster caliber of attack from the Yonex Duora 10.

Somehow, flexible shafts and even-balance do not give a good punch. I suppose Yonex could have learnt a thing from the Flash Boost, but hey, experimentalism trumps practicality!

Control:
Carrying on the responsibility of getting lower ratings from me is the racket's lack of control from the back and front court. Not being able to throw a big punch leaves me pretty much with alternating play with fast drops and quick smashes to force a mistake from the opponent.

While I was able to pull off a continuous volley a drop shots, I never felt confident doing it. Some might know when I say there's this lack of "feel" in the racket. This low response rate from handling the shuttle leaves more to be desired when I find myself trapped in the back court.

The experience in the front court is a little better, as long as I'm on the offensive end ready to intercept a drive defense and tap home the winner. When the time came for a tight net shot or a little trick shot, the racket head's lack of response once again rears its ugly head.

Another thing I noticed was that backhands with this racket come off better than forehands. This is of course welcome for lazy players like me who like to turn their backs to the opponent.

Looks:
Yonex did a good job with the Duora 10. The two sides of heat and cool (while it was quite the opposite for me) are clearly labelled "heat" and "cool" according to their marketed quality of box or sword frame. The racket was designed to look primarily orange or green, in what must be the first time I've seen any sense of practicality in a badminton racket. Kudos to the design team at Yonex.



Yonex Duora 10
"Don't bet on it."
Defense: 10
Attack: 6
Control: 7
Looks: 7

54 comments:

Anonymous said...

Aww man. Was hoping this would be a runaway winner.

Anonymous said...

Me2.

Arthur Wong said...

Well, different strokes for different folks.

My experience may be unique to my own, but if one of you shares my view on one or more earlier racket reviews, you might be on the same boat as I am.

Fred Hsu said...

Sorry for intermediate to advanced player.
Question on Nanoray GlanZ. Didn't find a review link for this racket.
Would like to know comparison of Duora 10/ V Z force-II/GlanZ. Seems like Duora 10 is also more flexible like GlanZ.

Just wondering about your review for GlanZ.

Thanks.!

Arthur Wong said...

Not to sound biased, but the Glanz doesn't strike me as a racket for intermediate players. Then again all I've heard about it was that it was made for Seniors (mid-flex, low tension).

My experience with the ZFII puts it above the Duora in terms of attack and control, but slightly below on defense.

Yonex Duora said...

I dont think changing the frame sides is an easy task for backhand and forehand shots even if for a very much advanced player.

Arthur Wong said...

I think with time the player will usually stick to a certain orientation.

For me the green side yields a better experience.

Anonymous said...

Seeing that u smashed with the green side of the racket no wonder ure smashes were a bit weak... Maybe u shud try the other side too... No offense..juz a suggestion... And even balance and control dont go too well do they... Even the Arc 11 had the same problems...

Arthur Wong said...

I did a few games with the orange side and a few games with the green side. Came to the conclusion that my game fared better with the green side up and stuck with it.

Then came the fact that I could have achieved that with my current BRS10, and sold the Duora 10.

Didn't think it would be good for a player to constantly switch between the two sides based on the situation. There are more things to think about :)

Arthur Wong said...

And thanks for the suggestion!!

I had more fun with the ArcSaber 11 though... The stiffer shaft probably gave more control and accuracy.

Anonymous said...

I am the guy who gave the last comment...
I am using an arc 11 and z force 2... I fell my defence is far better with my arc 11 than the z force 2... But i am planning for a new racket ... I wud be pleased if i had the defending capabilities of and ARC 11 with slightly better attack Not that ARC 11... I am able to pull of decent smashes with the arc 11... Thinking of DUORA 10 and NANORAY 900... What wud u suggest... Heard Duora defends better than the ARC 11.... Pls suggest bro...
PS: I got the z force 2 on ur reccomendation and fell instantly in love with it... Thanks

Arthur Wong said...

Hey there! Glad you liked the ZF2! It's my default racket for singles play now (if I ever get my lazy self on the court).

This is quite a situation you got yourself here. If the sole concern is to get a new racket, I would go for the NR900, purely because I have a better experience with it than the Duora 10.

The more financially sound situation would be you learn to use the ZF2 a little more. Go to the court with it and purposely lift for your opponents to be on the defensive.

When training, winning shouldn't matter - you're after the experience gained after blocking with a slightly heavier racket like the ZF2.

The AS11 comes across as a very good overall racket - defense and attack capabilities are very well balanced. The Duora 10, despite its claims, is pro-defense. The NR900 has mad defense capabilities but will come across weak from the back court.

If you learn to harness offense from the ZF2 and also to control the weight well when it comes to defense, you'll be left with what you're originally after - a strong defense with an unstoppable attack.

Just that the approach won't net you a new racket :)

Vishal Vijayaregu said...

Thanks man :).... Appreciate u taking time to reply my comments....
Ya i am the guy who has been pesterin u recently ...
The past few days ive moved back to arc11 and have seen a noticeable increase in my defending capabilities... without much loss in my smashing power... Ruling out nanoray900 bcoz of weak attack... Either buying a new arc 11 or duora... No matter hw much i try z force 2 doesnt seem to be the best for doubles... I am primarily a doubles player... But feeling sad to part with my zforce which has been my primary racket for an year... The defence with arc 11 is so effortless... So better switch to an even balanced one i guess...

Arthur Wong said...

No problem at all! Actually there's another racket in contention for best racket in my books, and that's the ZSpeed.

With it, shots I make are really effortless - both defense and attack.

Vishal Vijayaregu said...

Well u are pretty much the only z speed fan ive ever come across :p .. Ill check out ur review now...

Arthur Wong said...

It's an effortless racket to use for me :)

Vaishnav Sharma said...

Which is better racket voltric z force or duora 10

Arthur Wong said...

Depends on how you compare them. Personally I like the Z-Force's color scheme more.

Vaishnav Sharma said...

So which racket I have to buy

moksha bhatia said...

which racquet is better z force or duora 10

Arthur Wong said...

@Vaishnav - Whichever you fancy, since I have no other logic to base any form of recommendation on.

@Moksha - As above, though I'm starting to fancy the orange/green layout of the Duora 10 a little more..

Have a good day gentlemen.

soubik putatunda said...

Attack (smach) is very poor,, otherwise good stokey racket,i am not happy to played this racket.

Arthur Wong said...

I share your sentiments, Soubik.

moksha bhatia said...

hello bro I just want to know that I have z force 2 and thinking to string it so which string is better for feather as well as nylon shuttles...

Arthur Wong said...

depends on the cork. Nylon shuttles with cork bases are the same as feather shuttles. Generally, thicker strings tend to break less.

Anonymous said...

yup... i also enjoy playing with my arc11... havent received my duora 10 yet,but will surely try once it arrive... btw,out of topic,is it true that i heard some of my friends told me arc 11 has a fragile frame???i never face the problem n try to surf in the internet but havent get any info on it...

Arthur Wong said...

That information is new to me...

Yonex's weakest frame has got to be the FlashBoost, which some have dubbed the Fast Break...

brenda said...

is the headsize of duora 10 is bigger than voltric zf2? I cant play well with zf2 because of its small head, so when i want to hit the shuttle, then it will hit the frame :o

Arthur Wong said...

Yes it is. Though if you keep at it you'll probably get better with the ZF2. The two rackets offer different experiences in game play, so it'd be good to decide which to spend your time on.

Lance said...

Hi Arthur,

I was wondering if this racket would be great for doubles play? and what racket would u recommend for doubles too?

Arthur Wong said...

HI Lance, I tend to favor headlight rackets for doubles play. The Yonex Nanoray 900 and Z-Speed are my picks for great doubles rackets.

I'm also trying out the Victor Bravesword 12, and it's top notch so far.

BenBenCEJ Ok said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
TS said...

Hi Authur,

Glad to see you're back with some newer reviews, sad to see that the duora 10 was not up to par by your standards. That being said, I guess you won't be reviewing the Duora 10 LCW version then? I'm considering to get one, but stock seems to be pretty empty for it so far, which is also good cause there's still hesitation from my part (esp for holding the racket the right way).

As I said before, I'm more of an intermediate level player playing mainly doubles, and current racket that suits me best is the ZFII, with also a ZFI as a spare. I've tried the Z-Speed and didn't quite like it, something with it throws me off for my control at the net and serves.

So I'm wondering, how would the duora10 compare to the ZFII? My current ZFII is pretty beat-up and I'm thinking of a replacement, should I give the D10LCW a try or stick with a ZFII?
(the LD white one looks lovely, but I still quite like the low-profileness of my matte black with blue accents)

Arthur Wong said...

Hey there TS, I stand by the principle that the best replacement for a racket that you have a lot of affinity with is with another :)

As far as the Duora is concerned, I'm pretty sure it won't perform anywhere near your experience with a ZFII. I'd rank it closer in feel to the Z-Speed, which you didn't really get a hang of.

Flexible shaft, even-balance, and overall light weight, is how I would describe the Duora 10. It's the quick and agile rat that has to pick at its prey a couple of times before it gets the kill.

The ZFII is a grizzly bear. One swipe is probably all it needs.

I've my skepticism about the latest shuttle speeds (I bring this up as LCW has been recorded at more than 400 km/h using the Duora 10) - if the speed of shuttles on court has doubled since 3 years ago, how is it that we can still watch the action.

The BWF implemented a couple of things at a time when badminton wanted to morph into its richer cousin Tennis - it needed more appeal and stickiness. Women were told to wear skirts, rallies needed to be shorter, players needed to be given the ability to challenge the judge, prize money needed to be higher, and of course rackets needed to be more powerful than they actually were.

All that said, who cares what the numbers show? Give the Duora 10 a swing and let me know if it'll suit you :) My money's on a new ZFII. Black.

Ryan Lau said...

Hi Arthur, Given the fact that Lee smash harder with duora 10 rather than ZF2, by logical it is supposed to be more of an offensive racket. I have read all the comments above and most of it saying that the racket doesnt perform well at the back court. Could you please clear my confusion please?

Arthur Wong said...

Hi Ryan, I think Chong Wei smashes harder with the Duora 10 because he's trained a lot harder in the past years. Check out the muscles.

Not everything is a pure result of spending money on new equipment. With only one side of the story, one shouldn't be too quick to jump to conclusions.

I've not increased my training regiment at all, and I've used both rackets, and I've recorded the findings in the form of a review. That is all I can provide for readers to make their call.

Hope I made sense.

Sean Tan said...

Hi Arthur, do you by any chance know of anyone using the red duora 7? Am actually looking for a less stiff racket to generate more power than my current arc10 and n55. Have held both duora 10 and the lcw version, both too head heavy for my liking.

The new jetspeed 12 and hx800 ltd control seems like gd rackets to consider. Was hoping you could advise

Anonymous said...

Hey Arthur! I wanted to buy a new racket and hope you would give me some good advice:D Currently I'm using Voltric Z Force. I love it very much but my hand just gets fatigue very quick. I was considering whether to buy acrsaber 11 or duora 10. Which one would you be more recommend?

Arthur Wong said...

They're both pretty different from the Voltric Z-Force through.

I would give the ZF2 a try, if failing so the Duora might be a little more head heavy than the AS11.

Arthur Wong said...

Hey Sean, I've not used any of the three rackets you mentioned. Been out of action for more than 6 months suffering and now recovering from slipped disc and haven't been up to date with the new rackets.

However, you might want to give the ZSpeed a try. I've had very good experiences with the racket.

Unknown said...

I had been using voltric z force 2 for three years as I'm more fond of power play and smash. Unfortunately that racquet got damaged on a clash and cracked so I had to stop using it when the crack worsened to the point where it looked like it will only take more powerful shot to completely break the frame. Bye to my vtzf2! Loved that racquet's power.


I wanted to try something new and am a big fan of LeeChongWei so seeing that he has showcased Duora 10 as his racquet of choice this year, I made the decision to get me one - a Duora10 LCW edition. 3u G4 strung with bg 80 power.

I felt instant lightness on my initial swings it felt so quick to respond on net kills, taps and defense. This racquet was so much forgiving than zf2 on those aspects.

My box frame is colored Red instead of orange and white instead of green for the aerodynamic frame side. If you have the habit of grip spinning the racquet when you play then you might need to try to get rid of that habit because the sides do benefit your strokes for backhand and forehand which you will need to utilize if you want to gain the best of shots using this racquet.

The only thing I didn't like is that it lacks that KABOOM snap feeling on contact with the shuttle like the vtzf2 when I achieve a well executed smash. The smash speed is almost similar than my vtzf2 with the box frame side, did try smashing with aerodynamic side too but my shots were less steeper.

This in my opinion is better than zf2 in terms of swing lightness. So yeah I like it. :)

mamamiayoe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Zaino India said...

Hello Arthur,

This is Atul here, and I found this information very practical and useful.
I've started playing badminton once again after a gap of almost 15yrs, now I am 39, prefer play singles, not a very aggressive type player but love to hit quick smashes, reflexes not very quick, physically fit enough, but needs to develop good shoulders and wrist. Suggest a good racquet under $100, which shall be best for developing my game to a certain level and later on can graduate to higher level of racquet. However ensure joy of playing is not lost.. Thx, Atul

Zaino India said...

How about Duora 77...? For Duora 10 is expensive for a intermediate..

Arthur Wong said...

Hey there Zaino, thanks for reading!

Honestly, the Yonex range of rackets aren't really impressive at all unless they're top of the line.

If you're not able to afford their Japanese-made ones, I would turn to price friendly brands like Prince or Toalson. They're very hard to find now though.

Alternatively you can wait for the Yonex sale online to see if there are any rackets from their top-tier range for cheap.

You sound like someone who wants to improve their game more than they want a new racket. So perhaps the best advice I can give you is to use that money and get yourself proper coaching. You'll be surprised at the outcome.

Jason said...

HI. I was thinking about getting Duora 10. But after looking at your review, it seem like it is not a very good racket. Does it worthy to get one? I am currently using Li-Ning 3D-Break Free 80EX. Or do you have any recommend racket for me? I'm more on the attacking player

Arthur Wong said...

I would advise a head heavy racket like the ZForce, if you're not able to get enough power out of a high skill racket like the Duora.

Anonymous said...

I bought a Duora 10 last year but quickly sold it because I couldn't get any amount of power out of it, probably because I was using ZF2 at that time. Anyway, got myself a Victor TK9000 and I can safely say that it's the best racket I've ever played with. Brilliant in smash and defense. Zf2 is great for singles but a bit too slow for doubles. My 2 cents...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing. Your blog is so good to me as could see your comments on different rackets. Saw that for Voltric Z-Force II you have review the 3U(LCW version) and 4U(normal version) versions. Will you also review the Duora 10 2U version? Wonder if a heavier version will be more powerful in attack while giving more solid control.

Arthur Wong said...

Hey there, thanks for reading and liking the content!

I'm still recovering from a spine operation, so it'll be quite some time before I can get back on the courts and play this beautiful game..

Am afraid that review will have to wait...

Anonymous said...

Arthur, hope you have speedy recovery and could play and enjoy badminton again very soon

Arthur Wong said...

Thank you for your well wishes!

It'll be a long journey but I'm totally looking forward to returning to the court!

Nathan h said...

Hey Arthur
How did you get your duora 10 customized to be more HH ?

Arthur Wong said...

Hey Nathan, I thought I had answered this...

Lead tape will help, but since I don't need so much of a boost in attack, I usually used joined grommets at the top of the racket.