Looking for my first Li-Ning Racket

Discussion in 'Racket Recommendation / Comparison' started by Shofro, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. Shofro

    Shofro New Member

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    Hello :)
    My birthday is tomorrow and i want to gift myself a new racket.

    I'm playing Badminton regulary(1-2 times a week) for about 3 month now and i've been using a Carlton Vapour Extreme Force. Now i want to get myself a new racket.
    I know it may be a bit early for a racket with such a high Price but sometimes you just want to get something^^

    I like my current Racket which is advertised as Head-Heavy and Stiff but i totally fell in love with Li-Ning Rackets.
    I've been looking at the Li-Ning N80 and the N90-II because I love their Design.
    I'm quite an agressive player. I love to smash in singles and don't have any problems with clears with my current racket. I also play some doubles with my girlfriend from time to time. So my new racket should be suitable for both, singles and doubles.

    The N80 might be better for my defense but i have the feeling that it might not be so powerful like my current one because it is only slightly head-heavy and medium Flex. Maybe the N90-II ist better for me?

    Unfortunately i can't test them around here in Germany. So maybe one of you has a suggestion for me which one of them would be better or maybe you can suggest me even another Li-Ning racket.

    Thanks in advance
     
    #1 Shofro, Aug 7, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2017
  2. s_mair

    s_mair Regular Member

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    First of all, welcome to BC! :)

    I will spare you the usual "you are a beginner, you don't need to spend so much money on a racket!"-comment (if you want to treat yourself with a nice racket and have the money for it, then why not?). I know it's not easy to get your hands on Li-Ning test rackets. I know that racket-outlet has some of the latest rackets available as test rackets, but they are currently missing the normal N80 is seems. Maybe it makes sense to write them an e-mail to check if they also do have the N90-II and the N80 available. There was a time when tennistown.de also offered a wide range of test rackets, but they seem to have stopped that service. :confused:

    Still, you cannot ignore the fact that you are fairly new to the sport so it will be important to get a racket that will support you and not be too demanding. I wouldn't go anywhere near extreme-spec'd rackets in regards of head weight and shaft stiffness. So I think you are already on a good track with that N80 - slightly head heavy, medium stiff, great feel (like most Li-Ning rackets imo). I can't say anything about the N90II since I haven't played with that one yet. What I would definitely add to your list would be the N9II - a great allround racket with decent power, super solid feel, fast head and very easy to use.
     
    #2 s_mair, Aug 7, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2017
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  3. Shofro

    Shofro New Member

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    Thank you for your suggestion, the N9II also looks really nice.
    I think i will try to get my hands on a N80 and N9II to test them both and rule out the N90II for now. But as you say it's not easy to get them unfornately... I see the N9II listed as a test racket.
    Do you by any chance know how the N9II compares to the N80? Are they similar or is one of them better suited for smashing since this is what i love to do :D
     
  4. s_mair

    s_mair Regular Member

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    Let's see if we can summon @Rob3rt, the supposedly biggest N80 lover out there. :)
    I have played the 3D80TD which is said to be very close to the normal N80 and if you ask me, you can smash with both rackets at the same level above average if your technique is right. I would still prefer the N9II since it is faster in defence and for a fast and flat game.
     
  5. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Regular Member

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    s_mair is right, the N9-2 is slightly faster and provides a little more control as it's stiffer. Overall they don't vary that much. Which one you prefer or play better with depends on your technique, I guess. I prefer the N80 for the extra power it offers. ;)
     
  6. Nicholas Tam

    Nicholas Tam Regular Member

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    As someone who owns a N80I and N9II, I'd say the N9II would be a good choice but the N80 isn't bad either. N80 swings pretty damn fast due to its full aero frame. I've also friends in my club with the N90II and the N99 of which I've tried, and the N90II really isn't your average go-to racket, you really have to be a very advanced player to adapt to the racket's characteristics and isn't that great for doubles. N99 is pretty darn good as well, but leaning more towards being a single's racket.

    As a reference point, I'm a doubles player and half-half between power and technique play.

    Short summary:
    N80: Full aero frame, mid-stiff flex, slight head heavy. Pretty good if you want to do both singles and doubles and have a pretty powerful stroke. Love this racket when I first got it back in 2011 and still have it in my bad with some chips to the paint. DURABLE.
    N9II: Semi-aero frame, mid flex, head heavier than the N80. I love this racket since I'm not exactly a power player and that slightly flexier shaft and head heaviness makes this a pretty good racket for smashes. Got this one recently and absolutely in love with it.
    N90II: Oh boy. As with any other generation of the N90, this isn't exactly an easy racket to use. Head heavy, box frame, stiff. Think N80 but take away everything that makes it such an easy racket to adapt to (the mid flex, aero frame, balance). This racket won't do you good in doubles, it's pretty close and equivalent to the Yonex LD-F that I happen to have as well. Powerful but really unwieldy for less than stellar players.
    N99: Box frame, mid flex, slight head heavy. Pretty similar to the N80 but take away the aero frame and its slightly stiff characteristic. This isn't exactly a slow racket and delivers powerful smashes where needed since it has those unique air slots within its frame to allow air to pass through to deliver a fast swing. Does doubles as well but designed to be a singles racket. Smashes are more solid and stable than the N9II

    It's pretty much finding a combination of these characteristics to see which racket works best for you. As you could tell I'm obviously a fan of the aero frame but not entirely a power player so rely on some head heaviness and the aerodynamic frame to compensate for my less powerful smashes while retaining the fast swing characteristics of balanced and head light rackets. I've contemplated the N99 but definitely not the N90 series since I'm just not powerful enough to use these rackets. Interestingly enough, you could very well use the players that these rackets were designed for as a reference point as to your play style. (I'm disclaiming this since it's wrong to do so but it's not exactly a bad idea in this case)

    N80: (I actually have no idea.)
    N9II: Fu Hai Feng
    N90II: Lin Dan (He only ever used N90I though)
    N99: Chen Long
     
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  7. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Regular Member

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    Xu Chen has been using the N80, before he switched to the N80II. Also one of the Chinese women singles players used it, can't recall her name. Chen Long has been using it for a while, too.

    Hendra Setiawan is also using the N9-2.

    Porntip and Kido have been actually using the N90-2 for a while.

    N99 has never been used by Chen Long, but Hong Wei did.
     
  8. Nicholas Tam

    Nicholas Tam Regular Member

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    While LN tailor make their rackets for a specific player, those players do not necessarily use those said rackets. As to which players actually use those rackets are just too many to list... which is why I've only emphasized "designed for".

    As to taking that little fact into reference should be at OP's discretion.
     
  9. Shofro

    Shofro New Member

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    Thank you @Rob3rt and also thank you @Nicholas Tam for the excellent comparison :)
    That really narrows it down to the N80 or N9II for me. The N99 is just a bit too pricey for my taste right now.
     
  10. s_mair

    s_mair Regular Member

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    I owned the N99 for a couple of months too, and let me tell you - it doesn't do anything better than the N9II that would be just remotely worth the extra bucks. Better buy some decent shuttles from it.
     
  11. Nicholas Tam

    Nicholas Tam Regular Member

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    N9II actually slightly more expensive than N99 in Hong Kong haha... so are the 2nd gen colours. Not sure about the prices over there in Germany, but pretty hard to go wrong with the N9II if you're orientated towards power play because it most certainly is an offense oriented racket with some of the speed of those aero frames. Easy power + fast swings, what's not to love?
     
  12. Shofro

    Shofro New Member

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    May I ask you guys another question?
    I was just looking at the N80 at tennistown.de because it is down to 125€ on there. I noticed that on the stock picture they have, "Flame N80" is written on the shaft. I always thought it was "Woods N80" because i saw it on other pictures of the racket here in the Forum.
    Is it the same Racket(normal N80) nonetheless?
    Might be dumb question but i just want to make sure that I'm getting the right racket.
     
  13. Nicholas Tam

    Nicholas Tam Regular Member

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    Woods N80 or N80II.
    https://store.lining.com/shop/goods-347756.html
    https://store.lining.com/shop/goods-295895.html
    https://store.lining.com/shop/goods-335863.html

    Amongst them there's also a N80S that seems to be a stiffer head lighter N80 which I'm not really knowledgable about but looks exactly like the N80I with an extra "S-Type" monkier on the shaft. Because the original N80's product page probably wasn't archived properly hence the latter catalog number.

    I believe the racket that you saw must be the 80TF which is one of these:
    https://store.lining.com/shop/goods-297116.html
    https://store.lining.com/shop/goods-224406.html
    https://store.lining.com/shop/goods-253679.html
     
  14. Shofro

    Shofro New Member

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  15. s_mair

    s_mair Regular Member

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    That is definitely the normal and "real" N80. I have no idea why and when they have changed it from Woods to Flame - but all the pictures I can find in other german shops (smoof, racket-outlet) show it with "Flame" on the shaft. Weird.

    -Edit-
    For reference:
    https://www.racket-outlet.de/badminton/li-ning-n-80.html
    http://www.smoof.de/Badminton/Schlaeger/Li-Ning/Li-Ning-N80.html
     
  16. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Regular Member

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    Mine says 'Woods'. The picture isn't clear but it really looks like it says 'Flame'.
     
  17. Nicholas Tam

    Nicholas Tam Regular Member

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    The "Flame" instead of the "Woods" branding is definitely weird... it's probably because LN rebranded it for the export market but the model number AYPG-004 definitely that of the original N80I.

    I've just checked several non-Chinese online stores... all of them retails as the Flame N80. Chinese stores and other SEA countries retails as the Woods N80. Model number are definitely the same, so I'm guessing it is a rebrand on LN's part.
     
    #17 Nicholas Tam, Aug 9, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2017
  18. Shofro

    Shofro New Member

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    If you both say it's the real one they may have just changed the branding for the European market or something :confused:
    I think i will order it on tennistown.de then.
    Thank you guys a lot :)
     
  19. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Regular Member

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    One way to find out: A guy at my club bought the N80 from tennistown recently. I'll ask him about it.
     
  20. s_mair

    s_mair Regular Member

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    Good choice and a really good offer there. Don't forget to report back if you like it!
     

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