Yonex EZONE 98 Racket Review
A detailed review of the recent Yonex EZONE 98 racket: here’s everything you need to know.
- It offers an excellent feel, like its predecessor, DR 98
- Generates optimum power
- Has larger sweet spot
- Great maneuverability
- Features a redesigned beam that offers greater stability
- Has Vibration Dampening Mesh Technology
- There is not enough control
- Adjustments might be needed for more weight and swing weight
- The sweet spot isn’t as great as it is in previous versions
Less spin-oriented string pattern
The Yonex EZONE 98 is a recent addition to the Yonex family and features an updated feel and power that players can harness for greater performance.
The racket was introduced to the market in 2020. It quickly earned a reputation as one of the finest rackets on the market.
Most players looking for a user-friendly tennis racket can easily settle with the Yonex EZONE 98 racket due to its ease of maneuverability, access to power, more prominent sweet spot, and great feel.
Yonex EZONE 98 is similar in construction and performance to the previous Yonex DR model, but it features a superior feel and maneuverability, making it an excellent choice for both intermediate and advanced players.
However, players seeking more control might have to tweak their string setup slightly so that the racket can mesh perfectly with their bigger hits.
With the ease of maneuverability, the Yonex EZONE 98 racket is suitable for any playing style.
Its more prominent sweet spot ensures shot consistency and depth. And generally, tennis players looking to wield more speed, power and enjoy a greater feel are going to find this racket the answer to their search.
In this review of Yonex EZONE 98, we’ll go over the specs and tech of the racket and dive deeper into its pros and cons to help you decide if the racket is a good fit for your game or not.
Features of Yonex EZONE 98
The Yonex EZONE 98’s specs a modern player’s racket. It has an outstanding balance of power and control.
Here’s a comprehensive overview of the spec of this racket.
Ideally, this should give you an idea of how the Yonex EZONE 98 might impact your performance.
Note the specs of a racket do not always translate directly to the feel you get, so you might want to try your hands on a few rackets with similar specs before making a buying decision.
- The EZONE 98 has a standard length of 27 inches with a slightly smaller head size of 98 square inches, which is more control-oriented and a 16×19 string pattern.
- The unstrung weight of the racket is 10.8 oz., which also contributes to its excellent quality control.
- The swing weight of the EZONE 98 is 317, while the unstrung and strung frame gives a 9 pt HL balance at 31.5 cm and 6 pts HL balance at 32.39 cm, respectively.
- In terms of stiffness, or measure of the EZONE 98’s flex, it has a RA rating of 64 that is friendly to the arm.
- The EZONE 98 has a variable width beam of 23 mm / 24 mm / 19 mm, which translates to 19 mm at the middle or throat, 24 mm at 3 and 9 o’clock on the racket’s head 23 mm at its top.
- The EZONE 98 has a very soft touch, a feature that makes it comfortable to play with.
|Length||27 in (69 cm)|
|Head Size||98 in² (632.26 cm²)|
|Strung Weight||11.3 oz. (320.35 g)|
|Unstrung Weight||10.8 oz. (306.18 g)|
|Construction (Beam Width)||23 mm / 24 mm / 19 mm|
|Balance Point||12.75 in (32.39 cm) 6pts HL|
|String Pattern||16 Mains and 19 Crosses|
|String Tension||45-60 pounds (20.41 – 27.22 kg)|
Video Review of Yonex EZONE 98
This video review of the Yonex EZONE 98 racket highlights the core features, both the obvious and less conspicuous ones, that contribute to the feel and performance that you can expect to get from the racket.
The racket allows you to take powerful cuts while maintaining precision.
It is loaded with an outstanding amount of spin, touch, and precision, which can be traced to notable features like the isometric head shape and the upgraded grommet system that helps it soak up more pressure and vibration at impact.
Comparing Yonex EZONE 98 to Other Rackets
The Yonex family of performance rackets includes four different series of rackets:
- VCORE Pro
- VCORE, and
Here’s a brief look at what each racket offers and how the EZONE is different from each series in the lineup.
The VCORE PRO is a family of Yonex rackets that provides players with maximum control and stability, a feature that can be traced to their heavier weights.
The racket has features that benefit both intermediate and advanced tennis players. However, there’s a lighter option for players who love these rackets, but do not want the additional weight.
The Yonex VCORE series precedes the VCORE PRO rackets. The obvious characteristics include:
- Lighter weight to allow for faster swings and more maneuverability
- Thicker variable-width beam, bringing about a little bit of power without weighing too much
The Yonex VCORE rackets offer players some more options, based on the different weights and head sizes, and a possible extension in the length of the racket. An excellent example of a widely-used racket in this lineup is the Yonex VCORE 98.
Compared to other lineups of Yonex rackets, the ASTREL line of tennis rackets has the lightest weight.
Hence, they provide excellent maneuverability and swing weight.
Although they have thicker frames and larger head sizes, they’re perfect for delivering effortless power. This is a good fit for beginners and intermediate players.
Although the VCORE and EZONE lines of rackets naturally have several similarities, there are obvious distinctions in feel, topspin, and power.
While the VCORE series takes the lead in both topspin and power, the EZONE rackets offer less spin. This means players using the EZONE will need to put in more effort to build a decent pace.
Generally, the EZONE offers a bit more control and maneuverability than the other Yonex family of rackets listed above.
Yonex EZONE 98 Technologies: What Makes it Different and Better?
The EZONE 98 comes with some familiar characteristics, but it also features some new technologies that set it apart from previous models.
Here, we take a look at what makes the Yonex EZONE 98 racket different.
1. New Linear Tech Grommet System
Unlike previous Yonex rackets, the EZONE 98 now incorporates a Linear Tech grommet system.
This addition pairs perfectly with the Isometric head shape of the racket.
Instead of drilling at an angle, the linear tech grommets are drilled straight through the frame to improve power and comfort. This is like the Parallel Drilling that Wilson uses.
2. Isometric Head Design
If you’re familiar with other Yonex products, you’ll notice the standard isometric head design, which the brand is known for.
According to Yonex, this square-shaped head design helps increase the racket’s sweet spot by up to 7%, thereby making the racket superior to other frame types.
3. Shockless Grommets
The Yonex EZONE generation of the rackets also integrates Shockless Grommets at the side of the racket’s head and bottom.
This new addition aims to minimize shock experienced by players and improve feel.
4. Torayca M40X
In the throat of the racket is a new feature called M40X, a new-age carbon fiber, which was incorporated to create a balance between stability and flex, and allow for more control and power.
5. Oval Pressed Shaft
With the M40X in the racket’s throat, it also maintains the oval pressed shaft in the frame.
The obvious impact is seen in the rounding of the corners of that section of the frame for optimal flex, and it also increases dwell time for enhanced control and spin.
6. Vibration Dampening Mesh Grip
Along with graphite in the handle, the 2020 version of the EZONE 98 comes with an updated dampening mesh that wraps graphite.
This is intended to tone down the vibration and improve comfort and feel.
Yonex EZONE 98 Design & Aesthetics
With up to 15 rackets (including the EZONE 98) in the beloved Yonex EZONE series of tennis rackets,
Here are some perks that contribute to the beauty of the EZONE 98 Design.
- Elaborate blue theme: different shades of blue with a bit of shimmer
- The transformer Esque geometric shape
- A few highly subtle orange feel detailing the entire length of the racket’s head
The white and gold version of the Naomi Osaka’s Limited Edition, released in September 2020, is a perfect example of an EZONE racket with a dramatic design.
Players That Endorse the Yonex EZONE Series
A significant number of players with varying preferences have endorsed the Yonex EZONE series over the years, which is one of the reasons they are popular.
Interestingly, the most recent addition to the collection – the Yonex EZONE 98, follows the same pattern.
Ana Ivanovic was one of the first players who helped bring the rackets to the limelight.
More recently, others, including Naomi Osaka and Nick Kyrgios, have added to the popularity of the Yonex series.
Here are some more players who express public praise for the Yonex EZONE series. However, note that many of these players have their rackets customized.
- Ayumi Morita
- Anastasija Sevastova
- Elena Baltacha
- Magdalena Rybarikova
- Vitalia Diatchenko
- Belina Bencic
- Lloyd Harris
- Alexander Bublik
- Paul Jubb
- Viktor Troicki
- Casper Ruud
- Alex Bolt
Note: Bear in mind players do change rackets from time to time. So, there’s a possibility that these players will switch rackets after some time.
Yonex EZONE 98 Playtest Performance Review
Regardless of the tech advertised for a particular tennis racket, the best way to tell what the racket can really do for you is by getting a first-hand experience of it.
So, from the experience of players who have used the EZONE 98, here’s what you can expect in terms of groundstroke, serves, returns, volleys, and overall score. Note that the experience of these players can differ from yours.
Groundstrokes - Score: 83
On groundstrokes, the EZONE 98 has an updated feel to offer players a readily available power for both players who love to swing with comfort and play with a lot of topspin.
The racket provides optimal comfort that adds to the fun of playing tennis.
While the EZONE 98 is not the racket of choice if you’re aiming for the highest level of spin, it provides you with a decent balance between power and control. The racket combines its 98 square inch head, stiffer poly, and mid-range RA rating to offer excellent control.
For players with an aggressive play pattern, the racket requires a little string adjustment to fit into their style of play.
Volleys - Score: 80
Interestingly, regardless of where the Yonex EZONE is used, it earns praise. When it comes to volleys, the EZONE 98 is precise and does not give up too much of the lively feedback that helps to redirect pace for a brilliant volley.
With the strings installed, it has a 6pts head-light rating, which makes it extremely maneuverable, but watch out for slight instability.
This lack of stability has been compensated for, or offset to a small degree by the manufacturer with a larger sweetspot.
Generally, the EZONE 98 seems to be every modern player’s go-to for a solid performance. Players who prefer some features that do not come with the manufacturer’s spec may incorporate one or two customizations to enjoy the racket better.
Serves - Score: 80
What’s a racket without a good serve? A good racket must be able to help you render good serves. The speed and ease of maneuverability of the EZONE 98 also proved quite beneficial when serving, both for single or doubles matches. The playtesters who tried the Yonex Ezone 98 all agree that it feels much easier and powerful to serve with the racket.
With this racket’s speed and light weight, any player can achieve explosive serves.
There’s also the chance of hitting some decent spin serves when using the EZONE 98 tennis racket.
Returns - Score: 78
When returning serves with the Yonex EZONE 98 racket, it’s easy to note the maneuverability, power, and feel of the racket again.
With its head-light balance, it is a breeze to maneuver, and you can enjoy the precision of the frame, especially when you combine it with an abbreviated stroke.
The isometric shape of the frame made the racket quite forgiving in feel, and the weight offers decent stability when returning a serve, especially when you’re swinging the racket with a lot of momentum.
But for players facing bigger serves, there might be a downside, which, of course, can be offset by a little customization.
Yonex EZONE 98 vs. EZONE 98 DR
Since the DR generation of the EZONE racket was a favorite for many players, let’s see how a quick comparison between it and the EZONE 98 version points out other ideas.
It starts with the new frame in the EZONE 98, which is slightly lighter by 6 grams; it helps maintain the 6pt HL strung balance that translates to a 7pt reduction in swing weight.
There’s also a little tweaking of the beam thickness around the throat of the racket and a little bit more stiffness.
By and large, the differences between the two rackets are not much, and most players are cool with either of them. The EZONE 98, however, surpasses in swing weight, ease of maneuverability, and power. All these contribute to a slightly livelier response when using the racket.
Yonex EZONE 98 Strings & Tension
The recommended tension range for the YonexEZONE 98 falls between 45 – 60 lbs (20.41 – 27.22 kg).
You can string with polyester tennis strings, as they have lower power and spin-friendly characteristics.
Besides the fact that they offer excellent control and durability, Poly Tour Pro is a perfect pair with the EZONE 98.
Where Can I Buy the Yonex EZONE 98?
Most tennis stores will have the product, but if you prefer to have it delivered to your home address, you can have a look on Amazon.
The Yonex EZONE 98 is a thoughtfully crafted tennis racket that delivers a steady performance across the board.
It is suitable mainly for intermediate and advanced players but can be adapted to suit a wide range of player styles.
Remember that finding the right racket takes time, and you may need to try out several types before making a purchase.