Question of the Day: Sourcing Racquet Specifications

by: Justin diFeliciantonio March 22, 2013

TENNIS.com gear editor Justin diFeliciantonio and his technical advisers answer your equipment questions each day. Click here to send in a question of your own.

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I want to know, with respect to your racquet reviews, where do all the specifications come from? Do companies provide them to you? Or do you take the measurements yourself?—Jim S.

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In our reviews, published on TENNIS.com and in Tennis Magazine, we source racquets’ specifications directly from manufacturers, specifically asking them to provide us with strung measurements. (Compared to its unstrung state, a racquet with string, for obvious reasons, tends to be heavier, have a higher swingweight, and be balanced more head heavy.)

In short, the reason we list manufacturer’s specs. instead of taking our own measurements is so that we can best account for variances in each racquet’s production. One thing you should know is that, when a new batch of certain model ships from the factory, the racquets aren’t all  the same; within a certain quality-control range, set by each company, some of the sticks will be lighter or heavier, others will be balanced more or less head light. So when it comes time to write reviews, we list each frame’s “official” median specifications; because we generally receive no more than six of each model for testing, our sample size just isn’t large enough for us to take measurements and say, with complete confidence, that x spec. is at the center of y manufacturer’s factory variance. 

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