Yasaka Rakza 9 Review
The first rubber to be introduced with Yasaka’s Hybrid Energy system was the Rakza 7, which is highly valued by high class players all over the world. The latest addition to the Rakza family is Rakza 9, which has improved speed characteristics. The surface rubber of Rakza 9 has a newly developed formula/rubber combination. In addition the new sponge is made of a more homogenous material and has larger pores. Rakza 9 is the fastest of Yasaka’s Hybrid Energy rubbers and is suitable for technical offensive players, using both high speed and spin to win the point.
- Speed: 102
- Control: 60
- Spin: 105
Click here for Yasaka Rakza 9 pricing direct from Megaspin!
Reviews by Yogi Bear (with permission and thanks!):
Received this test rubber from yasaka japan along with the rakza 7 for direct comparison through the kindness of pingpongonline.com
- Color: red
- Size: 170 x 170mm
- Thickness: Max
- Weight: 72 grams
- Sponge hardness: Hard (like 38-39 degrees DHS Scale)
- Test blade: Yasaka Galaxya flared, Adidas Challenge Speed blade
At first look the topsheet and sponge are obviously ESN made rubbers. I decided to as for the Rakza 7 because i need a baseline comparison with the Rakza 9.The R9 has larger pores in its sponge compared to that of the R7. The R9 has a harder sponge. if the R7 is 36-37 degrees DHS scale, then the R9 is about 38-39 degrees. The topsheet is almost similar to that of the Joola Rhyzm and Tibhar 1Q.
What it feels like?
Hitting with it had a very loud sound. Doing drives and loops have a lower throw and it felt like an Acuda S1 turbo but a bit spinnier. Felt more like that of Tibhar 1Q and Rhyzm. Compared to the R7, the R9 has a longer but lower arc. The R9 is suited mid distance from the table whereas the R7 is best near the table. When hitting with the R9 it felt stronger on the smashing and driving part, it has lesser dwell time compared to the R7. R7 however is better at looping near the table. Counter driving for the R9 is a bit stronger. I would say the increase in the speed between the R9 and R7 by my estimate would be 10-15% with the the R9 being faster.
How is the R9 inside the table?
I was impressed with it while using it in my backhand. Receiving serves were not a problem as the rubber has less sensitivity to spin. Although its not as spinny as the R7, the R9 is good in making spinny pushes. It produces sharp and controllable pushes inside the table.
To summarize the R9 is better at the following:
Pushing – push chops are very spinny. Low, sharp and spinny pushes are very good with it.
Driving, smashing and hitting – its hard and bouncy sponge is good during power shots that require more on speed and less emphasis on spin.
Counter looping – away from the table the R9 performs really well adding to that a loud sound. its very long trajectory is suitable mid distance to far away from the table.
The R9 needs a lil bit of these:
a lil bit more spin – i find the R7 really spinny. Although the R9 has an above average spin, the R7 is still spinny on loops.
a reduction in weight – at 72 grams uncut this rubber is heavier than Tenergy 05. Though i belve a reduction of density to reduce weight would decrease its power also.
One thing I also noticed with the R9 is that its a bit choosy on the blades you attach to it. I tried a 7 ply all wood blade that is very thin and it didn’t felt right. It felt slow. I changed the blade to a stiffer 7 ply all wood blade and it felt better and faster. The R9 works well with stiff carbon blades as long as they are not on the heavy side. I would suggest to avoid using the R9 with 5 ply all wood blades that feel softer. Stiffer blades are ideal with the R9.