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Victor Axelsen playing with 100 ZZ Badminton Racket - Badminton Warehouse

Yonex Astrox 100 ZZ Badminton Racket Review: A Powerful and Precise Racket

Introduction

Released in March 2020, the Yonex Astrox 100 ZZ badminton racket quickly became a popular choice among players of all levels. Its sleek black finish with blue and white accents, coupled with cutting-edge technology like the hyper-slim shaft and micro core, promised a powerful and precise playing experience. Used by former world champions Victor Axelsen and Akane Yamaguchi, the Astrox 100 ZZ lived up to the hype, earning praise from both professional and recreational players.

First Impressions

The Yonex Astrox 100ZZ badminton racket is available in two color options: Kurenai and Dark Navy. These color choices provide a stylish look while maintaining the racket's advanced features for optimal performance.

 

Yonex Astrox 100 ZZ Badminton Racket (Kurenai) on sale at Badminton Warehouse!

The Astrox 100 ZZ comes in two different weights (3U and 4U), catering to various player preferences.

3U (Average weight 88g)

  • Strengths: Power, stability, and control. The heavier weight provides more momentum and inertia behind your shots, making it ideal for generating powerful smashes, clears, and drives. It also offers better stability at the net, making it easier to block and counterpunch.
  • Weaknesses: Maneuverability and speed. The added weight can make the racket feel slightly sluggish during fast exchanges at the net or quick drives from the back court. Players with less arm strength might find it tiring to use for extended periods.

4U (Average weight 83g)

  • Strengths: Speed, agility, and defense. The lighter weight enhances maneuverability and responsiveness, making it ideal for quicker swings, deft net play, and fast reflexes. It's also easier to whip around for defense, allowing you to react quickly to opponent's shots.
  • Weaknesses: Power and control. The lighter weight might make it harder to generate the same amount of power as the 3U, especially for beginners or players with less developed technique. It can also feel slightly less stable at the net against strong smashes.

Choosing between 3U and 4U:

  • Playing style: If you prioritize offensive power and control, the 3U is a good choice. If you value speed, agility, and quick reactions, the 4U might suit you better.
  • Fitness level: If you have strong arm strength and good stamina, the 3U shouldn't be a problem. If you're a beginner or have limited arm strength, the 4U might be easier to handle.
  • Playing experience: Advanced players can often handle the weight of the 3U better and utilize its power potential effectively. Beginners or intermediate players might prefer the lighter and faster 4U.

Ultimately, the best weight for you depends on your individual playing style, fitness level, and preferences. It's recommended to try both 3U and 4U versions, if possible, to feel the difference and see which one suits your game better.

Its unique head shape, flatter than previous models, provides a larger sweet spot and increased stability. On the court, the power of this racket is immediately noticeable. The stiff and slim shaft combined with the head-heavy balance delivers exceptional smashes that can send your opponent scrambling.

Strengths

Smash: 10/10

The NAMD technology in the Astrox 100 ZZ allows for more flex and a quicker snapback, adding extra punch to your smashes. The built-in T-joint provides stability and control, allowing for pinpoint accuracy. Our testing confirmed the racket's exceptional power, with smashes reaching the other side of the court effortlessly.

Drop: 9.5/10

The new Aerobox frame and solid core shaft provide smooth air movement, resulting in accurate and controlled drops. The energy boost cap in the handle further enhances comfort and control. We were impressed with the precision and control offered by the Astrox 100 ZZ when executing delicate drops.

Clear: 9/10

The new micro core absorbs 2% more vibration, leading to greater stability during clears. Similar to the smash, the NAMD technology adds an extra punch, making clears more powerful and effective. Our tests confirmed the racket's stability and power during clears.

Net Kill: 9/10

While head-heavy rackets can make net kills challenging, the Astrox 100 ZZ's extra-slim shaft allows for quick and powerful swings. This translates to easier net kills, requiring less effort and skill compared to other head-heavy rackets.

Drive/Defensive Lift: 8/10

While the Astrox 100 ZZ boasts immense power, it sacrifices some of the speed and maneuverability found in rackets like the Nanoflare 800 and Nanoray Z-Speed. Nevertheless, the racket still performs well in these areas, allowing for easy execution of drives and defensive lifts without fatigue.

Overall

The Yonex Astrox 100 ZZ deserves its flagship status. It offers exceptional power and precision, making it suitable for both singles and doubles players. Whether you need a powerful smash for doubles or delicate control for singles, the Astrox 100 ZZ delivers. Compared to its predecessor, the Z-Force 2, the Astrox 100 ZZ boasts improved versatility and adaptability to various playing styles. However, its advanced technology and premium price tag make it a better fit for experienced players.

f you're considering other badminton rackets besides the Yonex Astrox 100ZZ, here are a few options based on different skill levels and preferences:

  1. Victor Jet Speed S12II: Ideal for both intermediate to advanced players, this racket offers a powerful and speedy game. It features an ultra-thin frame for reduced air resistance, a large sweet spot, and is durable with high-quality materials. Recommended for both singles and doubles play

  2. Yonex Astrox 88D Pro: An upgraded version of the Astrox 88D, this racket is suitable for advanced players, especially those playing doubles. It features Namd technology, an isometric head shape for a larger sweet spot, and an extra slim shaft. It's known for its robust build and ability to perform powerful smashes​

  3. Yonex Astrox 88S Pro: Suitable for intermediate to advanced players, this racket is part of Yonex’s Astrox series, known for power and precision. It's slightly head-heavy, has a stiff shaft, and features technologies like the Rotational Generator System and Nanometric technology for improved performance​.

  4. Yonex Nanoflare 800: Designed for fast-paced, aggressive play, this head-light racket is ideal for advanced players. It's endorsed by professional players and supports rapid-fire play with its design that aids in high-speed hits and great control​

  5. The Nanoflare 800 Pro: Compared to the original Nanoflare 800, the Nanoflare 800 Pro offers increased frame stability and reduced vibrations due to the copper-infused technology and ultra fiber construction. It's also designed to be faster and more powerful, with the new frame shape increasing stiffness and stability against warping and torsional forces​

  6. Victor Thruster Ryuga Metallic: The Thruster Ryuga Metallic badminton racket is a high-performance option that is particularly suited for aggressive players who seek power, precision, and control in their game. It is the racket of choice for Lee Zee Jia. Malaysia's number 1 singles player. Here's a detailed look at its features and performance:

    Design and Technologies

    • Aesthetics: The Thruster Ryuga boasts an attractive design with a combination of orange/pearl on the shaft and cone, and lilac/white/orange on the frame, accented by holographic details.
    • Frame and Shaft Composition: The frame is made of High Resilience Modulus Graphite, HARD CORED TECHNOLOGY, and Metallic Carbon Fiber, while the shaft consists of High Resilience Modulus Graphite, PYROFIL, and a 6.8 shaft.
    • Technologies: It includes HARD CORED TECHNOLOGY for increased stability and power, and Metallic Carbon Fiber in the frame for excellent shock absorption and control. The PYROFIL shaft is designed for a crisp response and a great feel​

Conclusion

The Yonex Astrox 100 ZZ is a powerful and precise badminton racket that lives up to its reputation. Its unique design and cutting-edge technology provide a playing experience unmatched by many other rackets. While it may not be the best choice for beginners due to its price and advanced features, it's a dream come true for experienced players seeking the ultimate in power and control.

 

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