Volkl Tour 10 Midplus Racquet Review

Volkl's reputation as a "player's" racquet company was developed in large part by the C-10 Pro. Popularized by pro players, including former champions Petr Korda and John McEnroe, the C-10 Pro became the standard by which all future control-oriented Volkl racquets would be measured. According to Volkl, the Tour 10 Midplus is an evolution of the C-10 Pro. It offers similar playing characteristics but has some noticeable differences, too. It's a little lighter(.4 ounces) than the C-10 Pro, but has an almost identical swingweight. While the Tour 10 Midplus is constructed using Volkl's Powermax Frame cross-section, the C-10 Pro utilizes Volkl's Precise Frame cross-section. The Tour 10 Midplus features Volkl's Sensor Tour Handle, whereas the C-10 Pro has the Twin Absorber Handle. We playtested the Tour 10 Midplus for 3 weeks and have these impressions.

Volkl Tour 10 Midplus

Groundstrokes

It's immediately evident the Tour 10 MP is a Volkl racquet by its dampened feel. Granville offers, "this is one comfortable racquet! From the first forehand it was evident this racquet's sweetspot is very large and forgiving. Even slightly off-center shots provided a good stable response. Players looking for powerful groundies will have to explore varying string gauges and tensions as power is low and not 'crisp'. On the upside, accuracy was very good." John adds, "the Tour 10 MP plays lighter than its listed weight of just under 12 ounces. However, it possesses all the benefits of a beefier racquet. From the very first groundstroke I was greeted by a solid, well-dampened feel. This racquet continues the Volkl tradition of providing racquets that are dampened without sacrificing feel. I was pleased with the amount of topspin I was able to put on the ball from the forehand side. The slightly open pattern seems to expand the sweetspot a bit, enabling one to hit flat or spin shots with confidence. I was really impressed with the Tour 10 MP on the backhand side. I was able to come under or over the ball with ease, and the weight of the racquet let me to hit out with confidence. I'm prone to popping up my sliced backhand with lighter racquets when slightly mishit. With the Tour 10 MP my sliced shots went deep and stayed low. Don says, "I enjoyed the Tour 10 MP and felt more competent than with the C-10 Pro. Perhaps the lighter weight helped, or maybe it was the slightly firmer hoop. There definitely isn't that 'loosey goosey' feel of the C-10 Pro, especially on balls hit in the upper hoop. This translated into better stability for me on off-center shots. The Tour 10 Miplus seems to have a larger sweetspot than the C-10 Pro. Power was adequate and control was impressive, allowing me to take a full swing without worrying about flyaway balls. I liked the dampened feel, which was similar to the C-10 Pro, though a bit more muted. I did prefer the way the C-10 Pro 'plowed' through the ball, but I found it was simply too heavy over the course of a match. I think stringing the Tour 10 a little looser can help me attain a similar feel."

Drew observes, "the Tour 10 does what I like on groundstrokes. I could hit a wide variety of spins and paces, produce angles, or generate enough pace when necessary. The medium power works well for me since I tend to spray balls with more powerful racquets. The Tour 10 is a comfortable, versatile, all-court racquet. If you need a knock-out punch racquet, this isn't it. I felt most comfortable hitting deep shots with a variety of spin. I was able to work the ball around until I could get into position to either hit a winner (maybe) or charge the net (usually)." Mark continues, "the Tour 10 was easy to swing from the baseline. It felt much lighter than its listed weight of 11.7 ounces and it provided excellent control and touch. The power level was lower than I'm used to but higher than I expected considering how light the racquet felt. I had some trouble with my groundstrokes ending up in the net early on, but I was OK once I got a feel for how hard I could swing. I enjoyed taking some big swings without worrying about keeping the ball in the court."

Volleys

Net players will find impressive mobility and surprising stability with the Tour 10 Midplus. Drew explains, "I was very surprised to find out the Tour 10 MP is close to 12 ounces - it's certainly not slow at the net. I'm not a great volleyer so I stayed fairly conservative. The Tour 10 didn't generate any surprises (which is a good thing for me). My volleys had reasonable pace and control, and the racquet remained stable on off-center shots. Mark adds, "I was surprised at how stable the Tour 10 felt at the net considering how light it felt. I thought there'd be a lot more shock transferred to my arm. The maneuverability was excellent, as expected. My overheads lacked power, but were easy to hit with good control." Don continues, "I liked gaining the maneuverability of the Tour 10 Midplus without having to give up stability and power. While the C-10 Pro allowed me simply set the racquet on volleys, I had to 'work' them more with the Tour 10. In the end, I favored the Tour 10 Midplus due to its mobility."

Granville offers, "this racquet fits my net play requirements almost perfectly. Head-light balance is a must, and the Tour 10 Midplus delivers. I was able to get better than expected response, Even on reflex volleys. However, the soft feel and flex of the frame is almost too much, bordering on 'mushy'. I prefer a slightly crisper response, especially at net. I'd guess with a stiffer string the racquet would suit my tastes better." John says, "the Tour 10 Midplus is very maneuverable at net. The thin beam and heft of the frame insures crisp volleys when struck in the sweetspot. I lost a bit of depth and pace on off-centered hits, but I was impressed that there was no noticeable torque or shock. The Sensor Tour Handle seems to work in dampening vibration and shock."

Serves

The Tour 10 Midplus favors players who can generate their own power on serves but need some help with control. John offers, "I was accurate when serving with the Tour 10 Midplus but lost a bit of velocity, as I am used to serving with a longer racquet that has a bit more weight in the head. That said, I was impressed with the control I had on serves. I was also able to get a nice kick when I chose to go that way." Mark adds, "I served effectively with the Tour 10 only when my form was perfect. The racquet itself doesn't have much power so I was forced to generate it myself. When my form was good I could hit serves with good power and excellent control. I would lose most of the power If my form broke down at all." Don says, "I've served harder with other racquets but liked the reliable control and precision of the Tour 10 Midplus. Here again, I'd probably lower string tension to about 52 pounds for added pace. Good spin and placement though."

Granville continues, "here is where the lack of mass and stiffness is most apparent. It really took some muscle to get the 'heaters' firing due to the lighter weight and soft, flexible head. This is really my only concern with this racquet. Otherwise the Tour 10 Midplus has good control and 'pocketing' on the serves. Second serve 'kickers' were very effective, with good bite on the ball." Drew says, "at least for me, this was the Tour 10's weakness. I had a hard time getting any real pace on serves. My placement was excellent and it showed in my serving sucesss; any unreturnable serves were much more the result of where I hit them rather than how hard I hit them. While placement is all very well and good, a little more zip would have helped my confidence."

Returns

The Tour 10 allows most players a variety of choices on their serve returns. Marks explains, "the Tour 10 MP gave me the option of either hitting out or finessing my returns. The quick racquet head and low power level made it easy to attack serves. The excellent touch and control also let me place my returns at my opponents' feet if they tried to serve and volley. The only weakness the Tour 10 had on returns was not having enough power when I was pulled wide. I solved that problem by calling all the wide serves out." Drew, the recipient of those bad calls adds, "I appreciated the racquet's quickness and medium power on returns. I could react quickly and take a pretty good swing. I mostly hit topspin returns but I got better results than I expected when I did get stretched and had to hit a slice. I also had good directional control of returns. In short, I felt like I had a pretty reasonable chance of getting into any point, which is about all I can hope for." Don offers, "similar to volleys, I found the Tour 10 Midplus had a good combination of mobility and stability on returns. Not great, but good. When blocking back sizzling first serves the racquet wasn't quite as stable as the C-10 Pro, but it was easier to get into position. I had a better chance of being offensive on returns if the serves weren't at full pace thanks to the enhanced maneuverability."

Granville observes, "The Tour 10 Midplus is a very stable racquet on returns, offering great (soft) feel. I could take a full swing at a return and place it wherever I wanted without worrying about spraying the ball long. If I was caught inside (return to the body) the racquet provided enough power to get me out of trouble. But, I also found the racquet a bit underpowered at times for the above mentioned reasons. Once again, I prefer a slightly stiffer response from my racquets, but I really can't fault the frame as I am sure there are some very strong bucks out their who can juice the stick for all it's worth. As far as control is concerned, the Tour 10 Midplus can deliver whatever is asked of it, in the right hands." John says, "as with most racquets that are in this weight category, I had fun returning serves with the Tour 10 Midplus. I especially liked the racquet when blocking back a hard serve from either side. Even these returns had good depth and got me into the point. , I was able to take a full, confident swing when given the time to tee off on a second serve, knowing the ball would find the court."

Summary

The Tour 10 Midplus is an excellent player's racquet that offers moderate power, reliable control and excellent maneuverability. It's a great addition to the Volkl line of racquets, providing a lighter weight alternative to the C-10 Pro. There's still plenty of control and stability to go with that "Volkl feel". The Tour 10 Pro Midplus is a player's racquet for mortals (4.5+) who like to hit through the ball. It's certainly worth a test drive.

Individual Play Test Scores:

Mark

Player Info Player Scores
Current Racquet: Prince Thunder 820
Level: 5.0-5.5 NTRP
Stroke Style: Medium
Type of Player: Serve and Volley player who enjoys playing at the net. Hits a flatter forehand and a topspin backhand.
Backhand: One-handed
Power:  6.5   Serves/Overheads:  7.0
Control:  9.0   Groundstrokes:  7.5
Maneuverability:  9.0   Slice:  7.5
Stability:  8.0   Topspin:  7.5
Comfort:  8.0   Volleys:  8.0
Touch/Feel:  8.5   Overall:  8.5

Granville

Player Info Player Scores
Current Racquet: Wilson Hyper ProStaff 6.1 (95)
Level: 5.5 NTRP
Stroke Style: Compact-Medium
Type of Player: Control oriented all-court player who finds particular strength at net. Experienced doubles player. Uses a variety of spins and pace off both FH and BH.
Backhand: One-handed
Power:  6.0   Serves/Overheads:  6.5
Control:  8.0   Groundstrokes:  7.5
Maneuverability:  7.0   Slice:  7.0
Stability:  8.0   Topspin:  7.0
Comfort:  9.0   Volleys:  8.5
Touch/Feel:  7.5   Overall:  8.0

Don

Player Info Player Scores
Current Racquet: ProKennex Kinetic 7g
Level: 4.5 NTRP
Stroke Style: Medium-Fast
Type of Player: All court player who isn't afraid to come to the net.
Backhand: One-handed
Power:  7.0   Serves/Overheads:  7.0
Control:  7.8   Groundstrokes:  7.8
Maneuverability:  7.6   Slice:  7.6
Stability:  7.7   Topspin:  7.6
Comfort:  7.7   Volleys:  7.7
Touch/Feel:  7.5   Overall:  7.7

John

Player Info Player Scores
Current Racquet: Prince Triple Threat Bandit OS
Level: 4.5 NTRP
Stroke Style: Compact-Medium
Type of Player: Control oriented all-court player who finds particular strength at net. Experienced doubles player. Uses a variety of spins and pace off both FH and BH.
Backhand: One-handed
Power:  7.5   Serves/Overheads:  7.0
Control:  8.0   Groundstrokes:  7.5
Maneuverability:  7.5   Slice:  8.0
Stability:  8.0   Topspin:  7.5
Comfort:  8.0   Volleys:  7.0
Touch/Feel:  7.5   Overall:  7.5

Drew

Player Info Player Scores
Current Racquet: Wilson Triad ProStaff 6.0
Level: 4.5 NTRP
Stroke Style: Long, Loopy, Fast
Type of Player: Primarily a clay court player who enjoys playing from the baseline. Like to hit heavy topspin on both sides
Backhand: One-handed
Power:  7.0   Serves/Overheads:  7.0
Control:  8.0   Groundstrokes:  8.0
Maneuverability:  8.0   Slice:  7.5
Stability:  7.5   Topspin:  8.0
Comfort:  8.0   Volleys:  7.5
Touch/Feel:  7.5   Overall:  8.0

Volkl Tour 10 Midplus Combined Scores

Volkl Tour 10 Midplus Test Results Chart
(Scores are determined by averaging individual play test scores)

Technical Specifications

Length27 inches69 centimeters
Head Size98 square inches632 square centimeters
Weight11.7 ounces332 grams
Balance Point12.875 inches
33 centimeters
5pts Head Light
Construction20mm Straight Beam
CompositionTitanium /Graphite
String Pattern16 Mains / 19 Crosses

Babolat RDC Ratings

Score
Grade
Flex Rating62Range: 0-100
Swing Weight328Range: 200-400
ManueverabilityN/A

Review date: February, 2003. If you found this review interesting or have further questions or comments please contact us.

All content copyright 2003 Tennis Warehouse.

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