Volkl V-Sense V1 Pro Specs
Head Size: 99 in² / 638.71 cm²
Length: 27in / 68.58cm
Strung Weight:11.3oz / 320g
Balance: 13.1in / 33.27cm / 3 pts HL
String Pattern: 16 Mains / 19 Crosses
One thing we’re always very impressed with from Volkl is the level of comfort their rackets give. We might find their performance to be a bit hit or miss, but when you find the one that suits you, you know you’re going to get comfort as well as performance. We were hoping that would be the case with the Volkl V-Sense V1 Pro.
On paper, the V-Sense V1 Pro promises to be right up my (Will’s) ally. It weighs in at just over 300g unstrung, with a nice 323 swingweight and 3 PTS HL balance, so it’s pretty similar to the Babolat Pure Strike that I use. This Volkl has a 16 x 19 string pattern whereas I use the 18 x 20, so I was expecting the Volkl to give a little extra pop than I’m used to.
As always, Volkl has packed plenty of technology into this racket – a key reason why Volkls tend to be some comfortable on the arm. This stick includes V-Feel, VCell, VSensor, and REVA, which all aid shock absorption and improve the feel.
The last Volkl racket I play tested was the V-Feel 8 . I found it was way too over-powered for my liking. I’ll admit I like my rackets to major on control, but even accounting for that, I just found the V-Feel 8 to carry way too much juice.
The balance of the V-Sense V1 Pro looks to be much more geared towards a sensible blend of power, control, and spin though, so I was quite looking forward to this playtest I always tend to think of Volkl as producing very modern rackets. They’re normally speedy sticks, with plenty of power and spin, but I was hoping the V-Sense V1 Pro would rein that in with a little bit of classic control!
As someone who’s suffered from plenty of upper body injuries in my time, mainly in the wrist and shoulder, I really like what Volkl do in terms of making comfortable rackets. This is such an important part of tennis because there’s no point playing if you’re just going to be in pain all the time. I think all the racket companies are realizing this, but it seems like Volkl are the ones that have embraced it the most.
Now I’m just waiting to find the Volkl racket that I really love the performance of, and to match the famous comfort levels these rackets typically offer. Of course, I love the C10 Pro, but that’s much more of a traditional racket, with much lower comfort levels, and I enjoyed the V-Sense 10 Tour, but it didn’t suit me perfectly. So, perhaps the V-Sense V1 Pro would be the one that was really made for me!
When we picked up this stick it was strung up with Alu Power at 54lbs, so we thought we’d stick with that and see what happened!
Groundstrokes – 8/10
The V-Sense V1 Pro reminds me much more of some of the rackets Volkl made in the early to mid-2000s. They seemed to break onto the scene with some really good rackets that were well balanced, all-round rackets. I just felt like they strayed away from this slightly in more recent times, but the V-Sense V1 Pro is back to that great formula.
When I talk about balance, I obviously mean how the racket feels in your hand, but I also mean in the sense of its characteristics. From the back of the court, the V1 Pro offers a sensible blend of power, control, and spin that means it will appeal to a wide variety of players.
It is a little bit like the Pure Strike or the Wilson Ultra 100 in that sense, although I would say the V1 Pro is a little bit more powerful with a bit more spin potential. Anyway, the Pure Strike and the Ultra are two of my favorite rackets, so they’re good company to be in.
One thing I particularly liked about this racket was that I got good results from it off the forehand and backhand sides. Many times, I find a racket will work well for me on one wing, but not the other. I seemed to get a pretty even performance from the V-Sense V1 Pro off both sides though.
On the backhand side, I found this stick to be very manoeuvrable and I was able to get the racket through the ball with good speed, maximizing the spin and power available to me.
Sometimes this can be a bit of a problem for me and it can lead to me hitting the ball quite flat and short. With the V1 Pro I was getting good spin and depth though, which meant my opponent wasn’t able to get on the attack as often.
On the forehand side, I enjoyed the slightly dampened feel of the strings and found it very uncomplicated. It did what I wanted it to do and I was able to turn my fast strokes into powerful shots with plenty of topspin. If I was being picky, I’d say I would have preferred a little bit more control, but it didn’t make too much difference.
The other thing that I mustn’t forget to mention is how comfortable this racket is. The balance makes swinging a breeze and it is gorgeously cushioned on contact. Some players don’t like the more dampened feel, but for me, it’s exactly what I want. I’m happy to take as much pressure off my joints as I can, and the V-Sense V1 Pro does just that.
All in all, this was a very good performance from the Volkl V-Sense V1 Pro. It’s a racket that I can see a lot of people enjoying and that’s not something I say often about Volkl rackets.
That’s not because I think they make bad rackets, it’s because I find they’re often not well balanced. They have strong characteristics that a few people will love but most people won’t enjoy. That’s not the case with the V-Sense V1 Pro though.
We gave the V-Sense V1 Pro a very solid 8 out of 10 for the groundstrokes. It’s comfortable, offers a good blend of power, spin, and control, and there’s not too much I could find wrong with it.
Volleys – 8/10
After a good session from the back of the court with the Volkl V-Sense V1 Pro, I wasn’t sure if it was going to be a great weapon at the net. However, when I eventually moved up the court and hit a few volleys I was pleasantly surprised.
The V-Sense has 2 of the 3 qualities I really look for at the net: manoeuvrability, feel and control (stability). For the first two, the V1 Pro ticks them off with flying colors. This racket is wonderfully easy to move into position and it has great feel.
When it comes to volleying, I don’t think you want a super involved feel from your racket. Instead, you want a more dampened feel where you can just concentrate on the basic feeling of the ball hitting the racket. This way you can focus on taking pace off the ball and adding pace to the ball as you want, without worrying about the strings moving all over the racket. Again, the V-Sense V1 Pro was ideal in this area.
The one quality where I felt the V1 Pro could have been further enhanced was stability. When I middled the ball it felt fine, but if I missed the center of the racket just slightly then it felt like the frame got pushed around a little bit. Other than this, I was very happy with how this racket played at the net.
For a 300g racket, I thought the Volkl V-Sense V1 Pro did an excellent job at the net. So far, I’ve found the Wilson Ultra 100 to be my go-to volleying racket in this category, but the V-Sense V1 Pro wasn’t far behind. I’ve given the V1 Pro an 8 out of 10, matching the score of the Ultra, but I’d give the Ultra the edge, just.
Serve – 8/10
Weirdly, the V1 Pro seemed to move more towards control on the serve than any other shot. Maybe I was wrongly dreaming of Pure Strike control with Pure Aero power, but that wasn’t quite the case.
This didn’t bother me at all though, as the V1 Pro allowed me to focus on spin and control and I was able to hit a high percentage of first serves whilst really varying my delivery. I wrote an article a few months ago on How to Breeze Through Your Service Games and one of the main things I recommended was mixing up your serve. I must admit, I can be the first to forget to do this, but with the V1 Pro, I was able to do it to great effect.
This racket had just the right mix of control and spin to allow me to hit the topspin kicker and the slice out-wide without losing margin for error. Sometimes I find rackets to have too much spin potential and especially on the slice out-wide; you just lose all your feel for what you’re doing with the ball. With the V-Sense V1 Pro, I didn’t have that problem though, and I particularly good results hitting the leftie slider out wide.
Without trying to be boring, I gave the Volkl V-Sense V1 Pro another 8 out of 10 for the serve. It does lack a little bit of pop, which loses it a point or two, but other than that, I really can’t fault it.
Conclusion – 8/10
It was pretty obvious this racket was heading for an 8 out of 10 overall! It is a very good racket that I found did everything very well. It doesn’t specialize in any specific area which is something I liked, and I found I got good performance from it on all my strokes.
Of the Volkls that I’ve played with, I think the V-Sense V1 Pro has the potential to appeal to the widest variety of players because it is so well balanced. You can play at almost any level with a variety of styles and still get plenty out of this racket.
Who do I see as the ideal player for this racket? I would say someone like a Grigor Dimitrov. Someone who likes to control the point but is equally comfortable in a long rally. The comfortable nature of this racket would suit someone like Dimitrov who has more of an effortless kind of game than some of the super high-intensity players.
On the groundstrokes, I found the V1 Pro to hit the right balance between minimizing my weakness (the backhand side) and maximizing my weapon (the forehand side); something that can often be tricky to find.
For a racket around the 300g mark, this racket put in a great performance. It’s not as stable as some of the heavier rackets, but it makes up for that with good manoeuvrability and excellent feel that allows you to guide the ball with precision.
It does lack a little bit of power on the serve, but I found that just helped me concentrate on my serving percentages and getting plenty of variety. If you find your serve is very underpowered then perhaps this isn’t the racket for you, but otherwise, it certainly won’t hold you back.
We’ve always known that Volkl makes great rackets when it comes to comfort and injury prevention, but with this racket, they also have a stick that can appeal to a wide variety of players.
Overall, we gave the Volkl V-Sense V1 Pro and 8 out of 10. It’s a great racket, and we really enjoyed playtesting it!
Review by: Will