Volkl V-Feel 3 Racket Review
Volkl V-Feel rackets have always been known for their power and comfort, making them ideal for players that want their racket to do the heavy lifting so they can focus on placement and precision. The V-Feel 3 takes this to the next level and is the ideal companion for the crafty player looking to outwit their opponent in style.
7.5out of 10
Volkl’s V-Feel range has a wide spectrum of rackets, and sitting at the top as the most powerful is the V-Feel 3. Its 110 sq in head gives you plenty of room to strike the ball however you like, rest assured that the racket will take care of the power for you!
Most oversized rackets such as this need to be made quite stiff to make sure as much of the force you put into the shot is translated into the ball as possible. This is all well and good, but the issue it creates is that there is often a lot of harshness that is associated with stiffer rackets, which can often lead to arm issues like tennis elbow.
This leaves manufacturers with the problem of having to dampen their most powerful rackets down so you get as little of this unwanted feedback travelling up your arm as possible. It is fair to say that some brands are better at this than others, but Volkl is definitely one of the more successful ones.
The V-Feel 3 benefits from a range of comforting technologies, such as EVA, V-Cell, Catapult-Effect and silicon polymers. These combine to reduce the vibrations in the racket, improve the dampening in the handle and offer up to 30% more power even when the ball is not struck out the centre of the string bed.
The result is a firm but forgiving racket that feels well damped enough to reduce any unwanted noise, but not so mushy that it is void of feel.
The stand out feature of the V-Feel 3 is of course the power. For players that struggle generating power on their backhands, this is definitely worth a try! You can send the ball deep in the court with only a moderate swing. It feels solid and actually takes some dialling in when you are used to playing with a smaller headed racket.
I found on my forehand that the racket was a little difficult to control, and when I was hitting slices it was a little challenging to modulate how much power I needed to add myself. The V-Feel 3 does pocket the ball really nicely thanks to the Catapult-Effect technology, which gives you a greater sense of connection as well as more power.
Sometimes when I was defending and needed to flick the ball back into court, my slices would really fly on me. This was probably also a result of the extended length which gives you more leverage and power. It definitely took some getting used to, as did the amount of inputs needed when hitting approach shots.
You can almost hit down with a lot of spin with this racket, as it has a pretty high launch angle and has so much power that you hardly need to add any of your own to hit a hard shot that will rush your opponent.
As I mentioned previously, this racket is ideal for players that want to let the racket do the work and allow them to focus on the placement of the ball.
7.5out of 10
Up at the net, the Volkl V-Feel 3 is a bit of a sledgehammer! Its large 110 sq in head and thick beam gave me a lot of easy power, so just putting the racket in front of the ball would send it back down the other end of the court with interest.
The dampening technologies built into the V-Feel 3 did a great job of absorbing the excess vibrations, particularly on faster incoming balls.
Naturally, a racket of this type is not going to have the most crisp or communicative feel compared to a traditional performance racket.
It does lack a bit of feel and can be a little numb at times when you try to hit drop volleys or need to hit with pinpoint accuracy. However, this is to be expected with this type of racket and for a player that needs more power than control from their racket, it is a good fit.
8.5out of 10
I do tend to like a nice powerful racket on serve, so the Volkl V-Feel 3 did fit the bill as far as I’m concerned. There was a bit of an adjustment period required to begin with, as the large sweet spot and extra power from the racket was a little difficult to control, particularly as I looked to ramp up my first serve speed.
The racket was light and easy to swing, so there was no danger of getting tired out with this racket.
Also, the easy power that the racket generates means you don’t have to expend too much energy to hit the ball hard consistently.
On second serves, the main thing I had to adjust was that I only really needed to brush the ball for spin to produce a heavy shot. The moment I tried to add more of my own power on the second serve the ball would tend to fly on me.
This is definitely something that would suit a player that just wants to focus on placement, rather than adding power to their serves themselves.
The dampening technology has really helped the comfort levels of this racket. At a 69 stiffness rating it does of course feel firm, but it is more of a solid feel rather than a harsh stiffness.
7.5out of 10
Returning with the Volkl V-Feel 3 was a bit of a mixed experience for me. On the one hand it is a really powerful racket that does a great job of generating pace for you in a comfortable way.
The technologies that Volkl have implemented here are great at dampening what would otherwise be a very stiff and harsh feeling racket.
The large sweet spot is great for when you need to block the ball back and want to send it deep in the court, as you can do this with only a very short backswing.
In fact, it does take a bit of getting used to, as I am accustomed to taking a slightly bigger swing at my returns as I usually play with a less powerful racket.
However, whilst the Volkl V-Feel 3 did offer a lot of support and easy power, it did lack in control a bit which meant I had to be a little too careful particularly on first serve returns.
The ball would fly on me a fair bit to begin with and I ended up having to just chip the ball back to make sure it still landed in the court. When I wanted to go after second serve returns, the racket almost had too much power and I found myself having to shorten up my backswings.
This wouldn’t be a major issue for a player that is used to oversized rackets, as they would be more familiar with this level of power. But, it is definitely worth noting that the Volkl V-Feel 3 is a very powerful racket that needs to be approached with caution!
8out of 10
Overall, the Volkl V-Feel 3 is a great power focussed racket that will do a lot of the heavy lifting for you when it comes to generating hard, heavy shots.
The various technologies that Volkl have introduced with this racket are great at dialling out the unwanted vibrations, making this a comfortable yet sturdy racket to use.
Compared to its competitors, the V-Feel 3 offers more forgiveness and tactility but also has a large sweet spot and is therefore very powerful.
It did catch me out a few times with how much pop it could generate, but this was probably more down to my expectations rather that the racket being at fault!
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