After a few quiet years in terms of visibility and popularity, Dunlop is gaining steam again after forging a new partnership with manufacturer Srixon. Along bringing back a line of traditional player frames, Dunlop has revamped their “tweener” models to include some impressive new models. At the heaviest end of that spectrum is the new Dunlop Srixon Revo CV 3.0 F Tour. It’s built with Synchro Charge graphite for improved feel on contact and better stability. Dunlop utilizes a blend of urethane & silicone called Sonic Core in the hoop of the frame to provide longer dwell time and cleaner feel. All of this tech is packed in a firm, powerful 98 inch head that should please anyone looking for a more controlled baseline oriented frame. Having enjoyed other new models from Dunlop, I was looking forward to seeing how this one would function out on the court.
Baseline play with the Revo CV 3.0 F Tour was impressive. The firm construction and thicker 23/24/23mm beam produced easy power on both wings. The racquet was a bit closer to evenly balanced than I was used to, so it took me a bit of time to dial in the timing and get it moving through the strike zone. Once I had that sorted out, I was impressed not only with the power level but with how easy it was to control. The 97 inch head size felt more maneuverable and precise than the typical “tweener.” This was especially noticeable in the middle of the court where I had more success flattening out balls than with other frames of this type. Spin production was also strong with this model. I enjoyed the extra net clearance on the backhand side and it was fun to have so much pace and high bouncing spin at my disposal on the forehand side. The 11.3oz strung weight and 331 swingweight gave the racquet impressive stability and I was able to redirect hard hit balls with minimal trouble.
Volleys & Serves
Given its build, I was impressed by how solidly the Revo CV 3.0 F Tour performed at the net. The higher power level made it easy to finish off anything that was left up for me at the net. While the nearly even balance made it a little slower to position initially, I was able to find a rhythm and stay on top of most reflex exchanges at the net. I was again impressed by the directional control the frame offered. I felt confident in directing my volleys to all areas of the court and the solid weight kept them from floating on me. I had a lot of success using the accuracy to open up the court with angle volleys and shots deep into the corners. There was some slight twisting when fighting off hard hit balls at the net but nothing that kept me from coming forward confidently. The firm nature of the frame made it a little more challenging to execute drop volleys as I didn’t quite find the ball pocketing effect like I did in the Revo CX series of frames. While these shots could be executed, the racquet definitely rewarded more aggressive shot making at the net.
If serving with the CX series of Dunlops was like using a scalpel, then the Revo CV 3.0 F Tour was like serving with a scalpel that had a flamethrower attached to it. The mid 11oz weight accelerated through the top of my motion quickly and I found plenty of power from the thicker, firmer beam design. My flat serve came through the court quickly and gave opponents little time to react. Along with that power, I still found excellent accuracy. I was able to move my serve around the box with ease. The high degree of accuracy coupled with excellent pace gave me plenty of free points on serve. The smooth acceleration and spin friendly 16x19 pattern also provided plenty of action on my kick serve. The ball jumped off the court and stayed out of returners strike zones. I had a lot of success using ym kick and slice serves to yank opponents out of position and set myself up with plenty of open court for a first strike ball.
I was pleasantly surprised overall by the feel of the Revo CV 3.0 F Tour. For a firmly constructed racquet, it had a clean smooth response on contact. I could feel the stiffness of the frame especially when deflecting hard hit balls at the net. The racquet had a much more consistent response and connected feel than many similar frames on the market. While it didn’t have the incredible ball pocketing of the CX family, I still felt confident in what the ball was going to do when it exited the string bed. While the feedback was pretty clean overall, the racquet is still a firm 69 RA. Players with sensitive arms would do best to pair it with a softer string to ensure any harshness on off center contact is minimized.
This racquet is an impressive entry into the tweener category. It boasts all of the power and spin of something like a Pure Drive but in a more compact head size that offers improved control and responsiveness. The Dunlop Srixon Revo CV 3.0 F Tour is a unique offering of easy power, impressive control, solid maneuverability and enough feel to make it a dangerous all court option for players across a wide variety of levels.
About the Reviewer: Matt Locke currently serves as the Junior Programs & Development Coordinator for USTA-Idaho and is an active USTA League and Tournament player.