Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Badminton Racket Review- Apacs Nano 755 Power

Next up for review is the Apacs nanopower 755 badminton racket. This falls into the budget range, but is not yet available to buy in the UK at the moment. The technical specifications are as follows:-

Weight- 85g
Balance- slightly head heavy
Grip- G2
Flex- 8.0-9.0 (stiff)
String- Apacs spider Ti 66 (0.66mm gauge)
Tension- 24-25lbs- pre strung

This racket has nano technology and is made from high modulus graphite. First impression is that it felt heavier than the other rackets i tested, even though it had the same weight spec, ie 4U. It felt very solid in contact with the shuttle, the head stayed in line with my shots, and there was little distortion, which is always a good thing in a badminton racket.

I was able to clear from back to back very easily, and the fact that it had a heavier feel and more head heavy balance certainly helped with this. There was not as much feedback as with the more expensive Apacs edgesaber's, but it is still a very useable racket indeed. Smashing wise i had no problems generating any power, and the shuttle came off the string bed very well, the lower tension also helped to get a bit more power, it was a combination of control and power at 24lbs, a kind of middle ground.

The nano 755 power did not feel quite as stiff as the nanopower 8000, or the edgesaber's, and so it was more forgiving on the shoulder and arm after a couple of hours, but this was only a slight benefit. Being a budget racket i was still surprised with how it played and felt, it did offer very good value, which is the main point, you still want to be able to play well no matter what you use, and the nano 755 power did not let me down.

I would rate this badminton racket as an 8/10 for power and control, and the same for the overall rating. The value for money would be a 9/10 because i don't think it will go on sale for much more than £30, which would give a real bang for the buck. A few of the other members in my club tried it out and they all said it was a decent racket, so it passed the test for them as well. All in all, we were pleasantly surprised with the nano 755 power. If you are on a budget then you can't go wrong with it.

Of course, when testing these rackets you need a shuttlecock, and i tested the Apacs Aero Flight 700. These have been IBF approved, so it gives you a clue as to their quality. I can tell you that these were a revelation. There is always a bit of uncertainty when you try a brand new shuttle, you just don't know what they will be like until you buy them. Now i am a bit of a shuttle snob, in that i hate playing with crap shuttles, they spoil everything in my eyes. This is why i usualy play with RSL tourney no1's, which i get from an ebay seller in hong kong. If you browse through some of my earlier posts you will know what i am going on about here.

I can say hand on heart that these apacs 700's are better than the RSL's. The speed is very consistent, they all land in the same place when you test them. The speed i tested was 78 by the way, which is perfect for the UK at this time of year. The biggest difference between these and the RSL was the durability. The 700's lasted about twice as long as the RSL, and that is a huge benefit as i am sure you would agree.

The feathers felt more robust than the RSL's i had from hong kong. I have a theory that the hong kong rsl's have different feathers in them than the one's sold in the UK, the hong kong one's are not as durable, but they are a hell of a lot cheaper. The Apacs feathers feel much stronger and more well made dare i say. We were slicing the ass of these apacs all day long and not once did any of the feathers break, they just frayed a bit, which is good news because it meant they lasted a lot longer. Even after a good hammering the flight was still consistent, and the speed did not alter much as well.

I have been e-mailing Apacs to get some more free samples, so hopefully i will get some!! When they stop dishing out free samples i will then buy them with my own money because i have fallen in love with them, hopefully i can get a discount!

You will not find the likes of Apacs in the high street just yet, or in the argos catalogue, or any other catalogue for that matter. They won't appear in major retail chains either, they are specialists, so you have to find them online, they only deal online. As they become more popular you will start to find them in other online outlets, this has happened with fleet and yehlex, and it helps to bring awareness to the brand. Of course, those of us in the know don't really care, because it is just as easy to buy direct, you always get better deals that way.

After testing the Apacs rackets and shuttles i would say they offer real good value for money. I was interested in using apacs stuff because of the reputation they had, and i glad i got the opportunity to do this. The badminton rackets are all quality products and will not let you down, and the prices are the added bonus. Hopefully in the future i will have more apacs rackets to test, as the catalogue has many more rackets in there. As they come to the UK i will test them and give my honest opinion to you. I am also on the lookout for more badminton manufacturers to let me test their products, so keep an eye out for some more reviews, as i will sending out some more e-mails.

4 comments:

Andy said...

Hi Antony, thanks for your reviews of the Apacs stuff, its really useful to find someone in the UK using this kit.

I'm after a new racquet, and am tempted by the Edge Saber 10 or 7. What would you recommend out of the two? I'm an intermediate player looking to advance. I get quite a bit of smash power from my arm (coming from a county standard tennis background).

Also, which Apacs did you deal with in the UK? Googling the brand shows two websites (www.apacs-sports.co.uk and www.apacsuk.co.uk).

Thanks

Andy D

antony said...

Hi Andy
I dealt with apacs-sports.co.uk, but i think they are the same company. I just think they have a new website at apacsuk, so you are dealing with the same people.Personally i liked the edgesaber 7 better than the 10, although many people think the 10 is the better overall choice. The 10 gives a lot of feedback, which is in the form of a bit of vibration, but it is a good feeling when you get it. Both are decent rackets, and are at a really good price as well. Both will give good power on the smash. I could only find a very small difference between the two.

Also if you enter the code BLOG10 at the checkout stage on the apacsuk.co.uk website,you will get another 10% off the listed price,and this runs until xmas eve, this is just for this blog, so it will save you a bit more cash.

Andy said...

Thanks for the feedback Antony. Would the ES7 or 10 be ok for an intermediate player looking to advance in your opinion?

I'm also a novice in terms of string choice, usually playing with whatever the racquet from the shop is strung with! Whats the best for allround control and power?

Thanks for the advice on the BLOG10 code, will make use of it if I decide to go for one. I think at apacs-sports.co.uk they are also giving a racquet bag too!

Andy

antony said...

Hi Andy

I would say that both the edgesabers are light weight and stiff, so you have to get the power out of them with your technique, but seeing as you have the power from your tennis background, this should not be a problem.
As far as strings go, the most important part is the tension. The difference between the various strings on the market is not that much in terms of playability, but both yonex and ashaway are well respected. Many players use yonex BG65 or BG65Ti, i use them. Apacs will string your racket with any of these as standard, and at your required tension. The higher the tension the more control you will get, and the lower the tension, the more power you will get, but at the expense of control. Personally i would get the tension at around 25lbs, and then experiment with different tensions to suit your style. Tension is everything, and i am sure you know this from playing county standard tennis.
The edgesabers are fairly cheap, so you can't really go wrong with them, but as i have said before, i liked the 7 better than the 10. If you need more advice on strings etc have a browse through some of the earlier posts, there is a lot of information on the blog, or just leave a comment and i will get back to you.