GAMMA Zo VERVE 17 Tennis String Review

January 14th, 2012 by Greg C

filed in Tennis Product Reviews, Tennis String Review

Gamma Sports has recently added a new string to their line of polyester tennis strings— The Gamma Zo VERVE. This play test was conducted with the 17 gauge version and strung in a 100” player’s racquet at exact mid-range. The string is red with black stripes.

MARKETING
Gamma is promoting Zo VERVE as one of their “Durability” stings that will “inject some energy and vigor” into a player’s game (inject some ‘VERVE’). Gamma says that Zo Verve is a co-polyester (blend of stiff and soft materials) which allows hard-hitters the ability to use maximum power. Zo Verve has a high-energy Co-Polyester core which offers greater elasticity (more feel, more power—the red stuff) and ultra high molecular weight polyester “ridges” (my term—the black stuff) that provide maximum spin and extra durability. Gamma, on a 10-scale, rates Zo Verve as follows: Power – 9; Control – 10; Comfort – 8; and Durability – 8.

Gamma did studies with Zo Verve’s new shape and determined that it has a “bite percentage of Gauge of 15.4%. This compares to 4.7% for octagonal shaped polys and 0% for round polys.

Gamma also states that Zo Verve strings hold tension longer than other polyester strings.

STRINGING
Zo VERVE was similar to other poly strings when stringing a racquet with a stringing machine. It has moderate coil memory, tends to snag on everything, and is mildly challenging when weaving the cross strings. One odd thing: the black “raised” stripes are quite sharp. Not to the point I thought I would cut a finger, but really noticeable and surprising.

GROUNDSTROKES / SPIN
Zo VERVE performed as I expected from the baseline. I could hit the ball harder than with nylon strings and yet maintain good control and shot placement. It felt a bit stiff, but I was using a 100% poly setup (not a hybrid). I did notice more shock coming to my arm and this was also surprising. After all, Gamma rated Zo VERVE as an “8” on comfort (I give it a 5).

I did notice an improvement in spin. So much, in fact, that two of my opponents (different days) said that they were having difficulty with my shots—because of the “heavy” spin! (whoop-ee!).

VOLLEY
Zo VERVE performed as I anticipated when hitting Volleys. It is a solid string and offers very good control. It does not, however, “add” power—you gotta do it all in that department!

SERVES & OVERHEADS
One thing I really enjoyed about Zo VERVE was its performance on serves and overheads. It is very accurate and a gives a good amount of spin when desired. I found my second-serve was better than usual (more spin, spot-on placement).

TOUCH
Zo VERVE performed well with slice and drop shots. I think the “ball bite” helps a great deal. But it just doesn’t give the player the same feedback that a good multifilament string does. And not much can be done about that—it is what it is!

SUMMARY
I think Zo VERVE is a great choice for intermediate and advanced players who really enjoy hitting the ball hard! It’s not a string for pushers or players with short strokes. And I would not recommend it to players with any type of shoulder or arm injuries.

But, having said that, I think Zo VERVE is a great string that really adds spin to shots and is very control-oriented. And we all need “control”, right?

 

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