Sunday, 20 February 2011

Yonex Arcsaber 8DX Review

Well, the Acrsaber 8DX caught my interest as it uses a bit of an ionic name, ie the 8DX, which as any older players know was the name of one of Yonex's most popular rackets. I used to play with an Cab 8dx many years ago, and it was a great racket at that time. I used to string it as tight as could be, and in time the actual head would deform and twist, but it still played just fine. So, to bring back the 8DX name for a completely different racket is a clever marketing ploy by Yonex.

The spec for this racket is as follows-

Extra Stiff

CS Carbon Nanotube
H.M. Graphite

Ultra PEF
H.M. Graphite

Weight/Grip size:
3U (85-89.9g) G3

Copper Orange

The key point to note from this is the "extra stiff" flex. The balance is even by the way when you add an overgrip. I had BG65 string at 28lbs tension, which is just above the recommended tension. Yonex do appear to be moving with the times by recommending higher string tension, even though we all know you can string rackets much higher than they suggest.

First impression was that i noticed just how stiff the racket was. Clearing required quite a bit of effort, and the even balance, with little weight in the head added to the effort needed. This is not a "low work" racket at all. The head was pretty stable on impact, but in the same league as my Apacs lethal 70. So i was a bit disappointed to begin with. However, the way this racket is designed points to it being a more defensive racket, with an even balance and little head weight. Perhaps it would start to make sense around the net area, and for some fast flat rallies. Wrong again, i had trouble getting a good length on smash returns, i really had to force things to get a good length, and this was suprising to say the least. Power wise, the 8DX needs more force, so it is not the best racket for those who enjoy smashing all day. The extra stiff flex will eventually make your arm ache. So, it is not the best for power, it is hard work to clear the shuttle, it takes more force to get a good length on smash returns, so the question is, what exactly is this racket for? I don't really know is the answer. It is a huge disappointment in my eyes, and just a clever marketing exercise from Yonex to sell a few more rackets. For the price tag, i was expecting a lot more.

I am sure many will disagree, and say the 8DX is the best thing since sliced bread, and that it has loads of power and so on, but for me it didn't live up to expectations. I mean if you have an extra stiff racket with an almost head light balance, then it will always be lacking in power unless the technology is out of this world. This then means it should be better around the net and for defensive shots, but it didn't perform here either.

The 8DX name will still be remembered, just not for this racket in my opinion.


Badminton Pro said...

I have got the exact same racket. After playing a few matches i realized that this racket does not fit my syle - it is too stiff.
But after restringing with strings a bit looser it is perfect. who would know...
I also have a badminton site:

antony said...

Yep, way too stiff. Should come with a warning.

Anonymous said...

I do not own this racquet but from reading your reviews, it seems to me that you're being affected way too much by the price of Yonex racquets and comparing too much to the cheaper Apacs such that you psychologically demand too much from the Yonex racquets you try and review.

The Arc8DX may be too stiff for your liking but this does not make it as under-performing disappointing as you review it to be IMHO. Personally I feel that the Apacs Lethal 70's thick frame and shaft (thus a lot of mass which contributes to the stability you felt, but thicker than the Arc8DX's) reduce its aerodynamic maneuverability so much such that it's too slow and its shaft elasticity is just below wrist snappy level (unlike Yonex Muscle Power 100 for example which is even though stiff but still wrist snappable and quick), but I still wouldn't call the Lethal 70 a low priced knock off.

From your review it also seems that your test string tension of BG65 at 28lbs is too high and stiff (i.e. not repulsive enough) for your liking. You could have strung it with something which you're a lot more comfortable with when you review the racquet. What you're doing is almost like test driving a Porsche while sitting on an old, dried out and hardened seat cushion and then complaining that the seats are less comfortable compared to a Toyota's.

Please be less biased on your following reviews.

antony said...

Hi there

It does probably seem that i am biased when i review rackets, but as far as yonex goes, well, i have played with plenty of them in my time, and for the most part they are excellent rackets. They would not sell so many if they produced rubbish rackets. I have mentioned quite a few times in past posts that any review is totally subjective, and that one person will think very differently from another. I also have not even mentioned the price of the 8DX in the review. As far as string tension goes, well i always have it at 28lbs or pretty close to that so i can keep that constant through all my reviews. The 8DX is stiff, and too stiff for my liking which is why i struggled with it. Others will have no problem playing with it, its all down to the individual. I can only comment on what i felt about the racket when i tested it.

Anonymous said...

Hi folks,
I use the Apacs L70, L100 and Tantrum 300 as well as the YY Arc8DX and Arm700 (V1).
I have to say that the 8DX performed considerably better for me when I reduced the string tension a little from 26 to 24 (average). Yes, as per Antony's comment the racket is stiff, but it performs well with little effort. Most rackets require different timing when you use them. Any reasonable player would expect that. How well you adjust to it is really up to you.
Saying that we all have preferences and I like using the Tantrum300 and YY8DX depending on my condition for that day. They all seem to work nicely, but for some reason, the YY Arc8DX is the only one that is slightly lower in tension (all using BG80) to make it work for me.
Anthony NZ

antony said...

Hi Anthony

Great comment.

Anonymous said...

Hi Antony,
Your reviews are good. Can you please give me details about Apacs Slayer 99. Is it possible to give me review on it.

antony said...

I am getting 3 test rackets from Apacs pretty soon, not sure if the slayer 99 is one of them though.

Anonymous said...

Good reviews on the 8DX .

kenj said...


Hi, your review was great,could you give a review regarding on the yonex voltric 80 series because it was the new innovation from yonex and very new to me.. visit blog for reference to the yonex voltric 80 ..

antony said...

Hi Achin

Glad you have found the same problem that i noticed. When i compare it to my lethal 70 it is just so inferior. I would expect all of the arcsaber rackets to be the same as well, ie the 10 and the z-slash.

Anonymous said...

i spent quite a sum on arcsaber 8dx thinking it was going to improve my game. at first, i thought it was my techniques that were lacking. before this, i was using musclepower33 and was playing really well. it was strange that my techniques were lost overnight. then, i bought armotrec 700 and i was playing well again. thanks for ur honest review. i agree with it. arcsaber's just a one off racket. disappointed with it tbh.

antony said...

Yeh i know what you mean. I have even tried stringing mine at a lower tension, about 24-25 lbs and to me it plays even worse than before. The damn thing is just too stiff, and that is the problem with it.

Anonymous said...

From a doubles perspective i found the 8DX to be very responsive both with drives and net play and can produce a decent smash when required. Definitely what i would call more of a net/front court type of racket but the flex/stiffness of the racket was refreshing as it seemed razor sharp defending/driving or netplay.

Strung with BG80 @ 27lbs, I found it less responsive at lower tensions, it's seems to improve 'feel' for me at least around the 26/27lbs mark.

Its main drawback in my eyes is that it is probably a little too head light and you do have to work a little harder to smash hard.

Of course your mileage may vary and feel etc is purely a subjective term.

Great blog, keep it up!


antony said...

Hi Vrosh, thanks for the comment. I have been persisting with my 8DX, using it with a lower string tension, about 25lbs. It does make it more user friendly for me.

Anonymous said...

i found the racket a bit slow in terms of responsiveness especially during drives and pushes. However, in terms of precision, it is spot on. Initially, i disliked it tbh. It took me months to adjust to the weight/stiffness. It helps to develope my arm muscle though. I'm thinking of using it mainly for my single's game.

antony said...


The 8DX is probably the stiffest racket Yonex currently produce, and so it takes time to get used to it.

Anonymous said...

You are right, Anthony.

Sorry. I have to take back my previous negative comments regarding the racket. After doing a few trials and errors on improving my play, i have gotten used to it. First of, i changed to a softer string BG65@27pound. Second, i strengthened my arm muscles by pumping iron. it's working well for me now. It's even my favorite. I almost sold the racket!

Anonymous said...

WARNING: Not for amateurs! :D;)

Personally I think it is a beast around the net ... concur with Vrosh up there.