Victor Jetspeed S 12 Badminton Racket Review

Jetspeed S 12 Badminton Racket

Background

The exciting news from Victor in 2016 was the launch of Jetspeed S 12 Badminton Racket. We first saw this racket without decals at the beginning of the year. The mystery racket fuelled speculation amongst Victor fans but nobody could say for sure what it was.

I finally felt and restrung the Jetspeed 12 racket during the All Englands in March when Korean player Kim Ji Jung delivered his rackets to us. Before then, we had only seen the non-decal version.

On to my review

Time moves on and the Jetspeed 12 is now available in shops around the world, having been launched in August. This version arrived in a full length Jetspeed cover – so much better than the cloth bags.

JS12 is a good-looking racket in what I describe as dark purple and florescent yellow – it’s really tasty. This is a 4U version (80-84g) G5, small grip. The racket arrived pre-strung in Ashaway Zymax Fire 66.

It’s hitting time

Having been familiar with a range of Jetspeed rackets, I expected Jetspeed 12 to be different, especially following Jetspeed 10. A quick comparison tells me that it has a standard size head, more isometric in shape. Additionally, the shaft is more flexible.

I’m not a great fan of 4U frames, especially if the racket isn’t head heavy. This frame is only slightly head heavy so I’ve a few concerns that it will lack that extra beef compared to a 3U… let’s see.

Overhead performance

jetspeed-12-badminton-racket-head-wsAfter a few clears it is evident this is a completely different feel compared to Jetspeed 10 or HX800. The hitting surface is really solid and presents a very strong face to the shuttle. I really like this. There’s a lag in the head compared to a stiffer racket, which again wasn’t a problem, merely an observation. It’s also slower than Jetspeed 10, although still generates good swing speed.

Drop shots were really quick and controlled. Again, the solid hitting surface is fabulous which makes the shot so much easier to play, and provides great feel on the shot.  The lag in the head wasn’t as noticeable here. Being a slower frame than JS10, you have to work your hands a little to play the range of drop shots but this can sometimes be good ensuring correct execution. Occasionally a very fast frame can result in lazier technique. I enjoyed hitting slice returns which were still crisp – I simply had to dial in a little more effort.

Onto the smash. Yes, this racket is powerful and my testing partner for the day hit the shuttle a lot harder than me. Being honest, I wanted more and felt the different weight would have given me what I wanted. So, whilst smashes were good and felt strong off the face of the racket, they were a little slow compared to other rackets I’ve used.

Flat drives and pushes were so easy and took very little effort. The 4U weight means that the racket is not too heavy to tire racket arms quickly. But, hands had to work harder, especially when trying to force that extra speed in the shot.

Defence

Whilst this is a fast frame, JS10 and BS12 are faster. I didn’t feel any lag whilst defending and could happily drive, lift or block. Good preparation is essential if you wish to improve your defence and this racket demands this of you, but not as much as a head heavy beast. That fabulous strength in the head really helps here to feel the shot.

Net area

The solid hitting surface made any net shot or kill a delight to play. There’s a heightened feel in the shot which adds to the touch. That said, the slightly heavier head means you need to exercise control and watch the speed.

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Summary

Players who were thinking JS12 will be an upgrade from JS10 may be disappointed to read that I do not see it this way. We are discussing two completely different frames. The lightning speed of JS10 is not in the JS12 DNA. Yes, it’s fast but JS12 is definitely a slower frame. The medium flex shaft plays great and for me the overall feel of the JS12, especially the strength and sturdiness of the racket head is a big plus.

Js10 was a significant jump in racket manufacturing for Victor and I was expecting more great rackets to follow. It’s a hard ask to expect such a jump again so soon. What JS12 does is provide more breadth to the Jetspeed range and takes another step forward in the march to succeed the excellent and virtually extinct Bravesword range.

For my current racket preferences, which have changed a lot over the last few years, I consider JS12 to be the best racket Victor has produced. But, I have to add that this is my personal opinion based on my circumstances. I have thoroughly enjoyed playing with JS12, moreso than JS10 or HX800.

Placing my personal thoughts to one side, I need to review this racket based on overall performance and price. RRP is a hefty £200. Online retails have discounted down to around £150. It’s at the top end of the price spectrum. The 4U version lacked the extra beef in the power department to achieve the rating of JS10. So, for me I am happy to provide a rating of four and a half stars for Jetspeed 12.

16 Comments

  1. AyusSalleh March 8, 2017 at 2:36 am

    Hi Paul,

    I have a question regarding which weight for JS12 i should choose. Currently im using Bravesword 12 3U, and im totally comfortable with it while i have JetSpeed 10 3U MYP as well. But my hand is hurting when using JetSpeed 10 3U MYP. So i wonder if i want to try JS12, which weight i should choose. 3U or 4U?

    • Paul Stewart March 8, 2017 at 11:39 am

      It could be that the JS10 is too stiff for you, however, it is difficult for me to comment fully – you just need to test for yourself to find out what works.

  2. leesaiyang1992 February 4, 2017 at 7:50 am

    Hi Coach Paul,

    I have been using Voltric Z force 2(4u) and Li Ning n9 as my go to racket and I ‘m wondering which racket should i get, Jetspeed 12(3u/4u), Jetspeed 10(3u/4u) and Voltric Lin Dan Force(3u/4u). I play both mixed doubles and men doubles and most of the time attacking from the back court. Can you please recommend me which racket is most suitable for attacking without lagging behind on defending?

    • Paul Stewart February 23, 2017 at 3:50 pm

      All of the rackets you suggest are good. However, you need to understand what is wrong with your existing rackets first. Then you need to realise that you are unique and nobody feels a racket as you do. Therefore, nobody can accurately predict which racket you will like.

  3. Joseph antony January 24, 2017 at 6:19 pm

    I have read ur review and bought tk 6000 which i absolutely loved playing i.m playin men doubles my playin style is defensive counter attackin style and play hard smashes whenever i get opportunity only problem i faced with tk 6000 is that its smaller head than i .m used to in yonex so every hit was not hitting in the sweet spot i am planning to upgrade my racket which would gud one on your opinion tk 9900 tk 9000 3u or 4u ,jets speed 10 lacks head heavines what about js 12 mx 90 ,onigiri which would be the best i just wish a racket that could pack more punch than the thruster k6000 and hava same kinda speed…

    • Paul Stewart January 28, 2017 at 7:51 pm

      TK6000 is not a small headed racket and you will find TK9000 is similar except it is stiffer. Onigiri is a compact head so may be tougher than your existing frame. You may find LD Force will have more of what you’re looking forward

      • Joseph antony January 29, 2017 at 1:25 pm

        thnx forr the reply ok iam goin to get either 9000 or ld force can u describe differences between both rackets

        in tk 6000 4u only downside i felt was i lacked that solid hitting surface and strong face to the shuttle that u were talking abbout in this review which one is better in that department {ld force or tk9000 } and i know i can handle 3u which weight would be better will 3u present that solid hitting surface that u were talkin n about which equates to more power which i want or is it really too much tradeoff to the speed and defence of the rackets

      • Paul Stewart February 23, 2017 at 3:56 pm

        If you don’t like 6000 then there is no point buying 9000 as it will feel the same.

  4. adentan95 December 23, 2016 at 2:53 am

    Hi Coach Paul,

    I have been playing with BS12 3U for months and I feel that it lags extra beef on the overhead performance although on other aspect BS12 is definitely a beast I would keep as my racket choice. Now I would like to own a racket with a little more head weight and my first thought is JS12. Now I have a concern over the 3U or the 4U version. I haven’t have a chance to compare the 3U and 4U side by side, would love to hear your opinion before I purchase the racket. Thank You!

    Regards,

    Aden

    • Paul Stewart January 1, 2017 at 3:06 pm

      Aden

      with all rackets, weight can be subjective. There can be a 1g- 9g difference in weight compared to your existing racket. I doubt you will notice 1g but towards the other extreme there will definitely be a difference. Persoanlly i think 3U JS12 is a better racket. it feels right whereas the 4U version feels lacking. That’s my opinin only and you may find the opposite to be true. Personal taste can change everything.

  5. dan13l December 19, 2016 at 5:37 am

    Hi Paul,

    I am currently using a JS10 4U and I am looking in getting a second racket as a backup. I was thinking of getting a JS10 3U or a JS12 4U, which one would you recommend. I really like the JS10 for smash returns because it’s a very fast racket for defense. I usually shy away from head heavy rackets because I find that after 2 hours of play my wrist gets really tired.

    Thanks
    Daniel

    • Paul Stewart January 1, 2017 at 3:08 pm

      DAniel

      JS12 will feel more head heavy. So, perhaps a 3U JS10 will work better and I wouldn’t be surprised if it becomes your number 1 racket.

  6. beboulder December 9, 2016 at 12:24 am

    Hi Paul,

    I have played with 4u BS12 now for the last couple of years and I was thinking of upgrading to JS12 based on your (and other) positive reviews. However I had a chance to try one recently and had a difficult time adjusting. Compared with my BS12, the JS12 felt stiff, slow, and too head-heavy. I had a particularly difficult time generating any smash speed, which was counter-intuitive. Something about my timing felt wrong. Do you have any tips for making the adjustment to a stiffer, more head heavy racket? Or should I just be satisfied with my BS12s, which I have nothing bad to say about? The BS12 is becoming more difficult to find these days, I fear the eventual day when I break a frame.

    Thanks!
    Ethan

    • Paul Stewart December 13, 2016 at 11:50 pm

      Hi Ethan – BS12 is gettting difficult to find. It has avery unique feel. It’s a fast frame and I’m surprised you have 4U version. To get used to a heavier frame I would suggest doing my armchair exercises which you can find on my website and/or Youtube. Using a heavier racket with a cover for a short while will help enalbe your muscles to get used to the change.

      Good luck
      Paul

  7. IanOh September 20, 2016 at 4:23 pm

    Hi Paul

    You hinted in a post in badminton central that there potentially will be a 3u version coming to the UK. Did you manage to test that as well?

    Thanks

    • Paul Stewart September 27, 2016 at 2:44 pm

      Ian

      i tested the 3U version. In my opinion it is a better model. It feels a touch heavier which provides more beef behind the shot. I’m not a fan of superlight rackets and feel that players trade off so much power behind their shots when it is easier to train hand skills.

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