Stable and responsive with room to grow


Just starting out; to give you an idea of where I’m at, I’m executing the basic string tricks and mounts with confidence (double or nothing, Oliver Twists, Trapeze (and Brother)) but not really doing combos yet.

I’m finding one of my obstacles with my Velocity (which I do enjoy, mind you) is spin stability. Definitely owing in part to my skills (need to practice practice!), but the two things that are bumming me out are going off axis and having spins die even more quickly than I intend. The other thing that’s a downer is when switching to unresponsive, I can’t hand start yet… so if the spin dies, I can only get it back by winding. For that reason, I’m quite happy to stay responsive for a while.

From the looks of things, the YYJ Dark Magic II might have what I need-- slightly larger and heavier, good stability, and comes with a thin bearing for responsive play. I really love the YYJ Inspire, too, but looks straight-up unresponsive.

Any others to consider as a “stability” upgrade from my Velocity? Budget’s not really a problem… I don’t care if it’s bi-metal, metal, or plastic… but that said, a reasonably-priced yoyo will probably sit better in my mind than something flashy and expensive; $70 or under is where I’m most comfortable for this particular buy, though all options would be considered.

Something to grow with would be helpful, but this won’t likely be my last purchase ever, so I’m not expecting a throw that will cover all bases and be the holy grail for “every style” or anything like that. If it is on the more “forgiving” side for one-offs and short combos, that’s where I’m at for the near future.

I’m curious in particular if there are any YYF throws that meet my needs.


Well, the DM2 is what I would recommend. It meets all your needs. 2 bearings, responsive, unresponsive and easy to switch back and forth. Grindable, IRG grindable, good size, weight, catch zone, easy to maintain and support.

YYJ also makes many other bi-metals that have 2 bearings. Hitman Pro, XCon Pro, Legacy II, Chaser. I think the SR-71, SFX and a few others are also shipping with 2 bearings. The XCon pro is a good one I’ve found for forcing you to throw straighter, but it’s also undersized.

The DM2 is one of those few yoyos that will take you from “zero to hero” with one yoyo. You probably won’t ever outgrow it. It’s a fantastic starter, learner, trainer, competitor and exhibitor as well. It may not be the “best” for everything, but it’s amazing at just about everything and can handle anything you want to ever do. Very much a winner.

After you can get your bind down and are feeling comfortable with that, that is when you might want to go with a full metal and unresponsive yoyo at any cost factor. Even though I’ve got many high end metals, I still come back to my DM2. Well, mostly. My preferences are changing. Even so, I still greatly enjoy playing my DM2 and have no issue recommending it to anyone, from beginner to pro.

Don’t rush yourself. Progress at your own pace. I’ve been doing this for 16 months today. I’m crawling through the Advanced 2 portion. I’m in no hurry. I’m enjoying things every step of the way.


^What Studio said. I’d also recommend a Protostar if you’re looking for an unresponsive, fun, all around good yoyo. Try using 2 hands to hand start. I roll it off my throwhand index finger to this day.


Thanks, guys.

I do love the look of the Inspire, but would it be silly to get an Inspire and a separate narrow bearing? Probably not worth the $30 extra that combo would cost over the stock DM2.

Protostar is for sure on my list. Once I am handier with binding a hand or snap return (on unresponsive… I can do both just fine with responsive!) this will probably be one of my next purchases.


The Inspire is also a rather unresponsive yoyo.


Stop wasting time on a responsive yoyo, i assure you binding take about an hour at most to master, and people who could do way less than you can now are able to bind without issue so you should stop limiting yourself. There’s absolutely no reason to even start on a responsive yoyo, let alone use one when you can do what you can.


Cheers for your input, Nathan.

As mentioned in the original post, it’s not the binding. It’s the binding from dead. It’s some special kind of annoying to me when I tangle up or let the yoyo die down and I have to restart from dead. I don’t understand how anyone can generate enough spin on a dead yoyo to bind it and return it to their hand.

From still-spinning (trick done, yoyo’s just sleeping) I get it. I can already do basic binds for that. But from dead? Aggravating.

So here I am learning a new trick: throw, mount, do whatever else I need to do, and typically end up back in a Trapeze. Hop the yoyo into the air, and for responsive it grabs on and snaps back into my hand. I get to try the trick again, and keep cycling through at a rapid rate. If I happen to miss or “wamble” my string up, I can hand or snap start with no problem, and I’m back in the game.

Unresponsive, I complete the trick, attempt the bind. I can get it sometimes, sometimes not. When not, I have a dead yoyo that I try 3 or 4 times to hand start before giving up and winding like a n00b. Those attempted hand starts and eventual manual wind are a drag that is detracting from my fun.

Since my level of play doesn’t require a lot of string layers, I really don’t see why not just have fun. If I like that kind of dismount that snaps right back into my hand, that’s part of my fun. I’m not really sure that glorifying unresponsive and fighting against Intermediate-level tricks is contributing positively to my return top experience at the moment, though I’m sure I’ll get there in my own time. Certainly a bunch of the tutorials from what seem to be top-level guys (like Andre, or a guy on another fairly well-known tricks+commerce site) feature responsive and semi-responsive throws. I wouldn’t be in bad company. :wink:

(⛷ Noisy Lurker) #8

Responsive play is a beautiful thing:

  1. It requires great persistence.
  2. It takes more practice and greater attention to details.
  3. It is a more difficult path with its’ own rewards.
  4. It’s so stupendously fun!
  5. It isn’t really limiting oneself but instead, developing refined skills to maximize limitless potential.
  6. It’s your preference.
  7. It’s your choice.
  8. It’s perfect for you! Enjoy the journey, stay the course.

The Dark Magic 2 would be a great choice, in my opinion, but you can make any yoyo more responsive with just the smallest amount of lube, even the Inspire.


Eventually you will get the snap start. It took me a pretty long time to get down and over the last month I think I have just about mastered it. There’s really no hurry for it though. If you’re having fun playing responsive, that’s all that matters. Just take your time, and when you think you are ready, try unresponsive.

To answer your question about the yoyo, I think the Dark Magic 2 would be perfect. Great for responsive and unresponsive play.

You said you also liked the Inspire. I just took a narrow bearing, put a drop of thick lube in it, and played it. It’s really not too bad. It definitely works as a nice responsive throw. It doesn’t generate as much spin time, but still plays nice. If you go with the Inspire, once you are done playing responsive and are ready to go unresponsive, you have a great throw. It’s one of my favorites.

If you like the Inspire, go for it. I would also pick up some thick lube to keep it responsive, too. If you don’t want to drop that much, go with the Dark Magic 2. They’re both great choices.


Thanks all; jsell14, I appreciate your review of the Inspire set for responsive… skitrz, I also find your enthusiastic appreciation of responsive play to be refreshing and energizing. :wink:

I don’t think there’s much point over-thinking, so based on recommendations and my original instincts, I’ll be ordering up the DM2. I think a nice orange one will suit me fine.



I think we’re overlooking the value that responsive play skills adds to the equation. I find myself needing a few responsive yoyos on hand so I can “go back” and see how well I’m doing on many tricks. I am finding that what I can do UNRESPONSIVE, I cannot do RESPONSIVE, and Ed Haponik has shown beyond argument that pretty much anything done unresponsive can be done not only on a responsive yoyo, but a fixed axle as well.

Frustrating? Yes. Enjoyable? Sometimes more than others, but usually not. Either way, it’s a different experience.

I do agree most of us will be doing most of our playing unresponsive, but even so, I feel that we should all learn responsive, at least to get the basics down. I chose to learn to bind before hitting the intermediate tricks. I can now do most of them responsive and unresponsive.