The NANOFLARE series was first released in March of 2019 to start replacing the famous, head-light NANORAY series from the market. The first additions into the NANOFLARE range were the- NANOFLARE 700, 370 SPEED, 270 SPEED, 170 LIGHT, and the NANOFLARE JUNIOR.
Like previous NANORAY models, the NANOFLARE was released with the 700 model first. This means that Yonex will probably be rolling out the next NANOFLARE 800 and 900 models pretty soon; just like they did with the NANORAY series.
Aside from gearing towards replacing the current NANORAY range, the NANOFLARE comes with some new pieces of tech such as the Torayca M40X (a new carbon fibre developed by Toray Industries) and the new Super Slim Frame by Yonex.
The NANOFLARE 700 is currently being marketed by Ratchanok Intanon, the Thai former No. 1 Women’s Singles player.
YONEX NANOFLARE 700, 4U, G5
Strung with- Yonex BG66 Ultimax, 26 LBS
Gripped with- Yonex AC102EX
Weight- Head Light
Flex- Medium Flex
OVERHEAD- (Clears, Drops, Smash)
An even-balanced racket that doesn’t have a 3U variation. It’s safe to say that most of you were probably very, very skeptical when Yonex claimed that they’d developed a new racket that had the same amount of power as a head-heavy racket. But to test any new invention or theory, it must be put to the test!
From the very first clear the NANOFLARE 700 proved the unchanging rule of physics.
Clears were crisp, and the feel of the racket was there, but the shots felt like they needed more work to push the shuttle to the back court. Being an ultra-light racket with a redesigned frame, the swing-speed was sufficient. However, without any of that beefy weight at the racket head, clearing with the NANOFLARE 700 was not as pleasant as clearing with other even-balanced/ head-light rackets such as the DUORA 10.
This isn’t to say that clears with the NANOFLARE 700 were bad, the racket simply wasn’t as smooth as some others.
Drops were perhaps the only overhead shot the NANOFLARE 700 delivered perfectly on. Being a head-light racket, the precision and placement of drop shots were absolutely pin-point. Although a little more weight in the head may have given the shuttle a little bit more speed, the trade-off of power for accuracy is one that is worth it.
The smash… There’s something very unique about the smash from the NANOFLARE 700. It possesses amazing swing-speed, no doubt about that. But, being a head-light racket in the 4U/ 5U category, the racket just doesn’t have that beefy feel that helps produce those rally ending, nuclear smashes (which are a must in singles, but not so much in doubles). Even with its medium flex, the racket doesn’t smash harder than any other racket with similar specifications.
Smashing with the NANORFLARE 700 almost felt like swatting at a fly. Good speed, good sound. Just not a very good finished product.
Net and Defence
Finally, an area where not being a head-heavy racket has some advantages. The NANOFLARE 700, while mildly disappointing in the overhead shots, comes back with a bang at the net and the mid-court. Being an incredibly light weight racket, control at the net is effortless. Recovering and producing tap kills and drives are so easy with the NANOFLARE 700. But the best thing about this racket? You won’t even feel a slight bit of fatigue when playing those quick doubles shots at the net.
The NANOFLARE 700 is very versatile and manoeuvrable when defending (as expected from such a light weight racket). Controlling the return of each smash from the opponent was a piece of cake.
The NANOFLARE 700 completely goes against every bit of marketing Yonex has been pushing. The simple truth is- head-heavy rackets will always have more power than a head-light or even-balanced racket.
And a head-light or even-balanced racket will mostly always have more control and speed than a head-heavy racket. It all comes down to the player’s choice.
With that said, there are plenty of head-light or even-balanced rackets that have splendid power while still giving you those speedy shots; most notably the NANORAY 900 But the NANORAY 900 only comes in the 3U and 2U weight categories. Without this added weight, the racket would not have sufficient power.
All in all, the NANOFLARE 700 just doesn’t have enough power at the back-court that singles players demand out of their rackets.
However, if you are a doubles player that stays mostly around the net, you may find some great rallies with this racket!