YoYoFactory CZM8 Specs:
Diameter: 56.9mm / 2.24 inches
Width: 42.5mm / 1.67 inches
Gap Width: 4.6 mm / 0.18 inches
Weight: 68.2 grams
Bearing Size: Size C (.250 x .500 x .187)
Response: CBC 19mm Slim Pad
This production version of the CZM8 is YoYoFactory’s latest entry into the $45 metal price range, and as you would expect from YoYoFactory it’s a solid full-size contest performer. The signature model for 5x Czech National Champion Vashek Kroutil, the CZM8 (Czech Mate…get it?) is one of YoYoFactory’s quicker playing full-sized models. There are some slight differences from the prototype version that was released last April; the production version is 0.5mm larger in diameter, 1.2mm wider, 1.2 grams heavier, and the flat outer edge of the rim is about 1mm narrower. All very small differences, but the result is a more refined yoyo that throws and plays smoother, faster, and just generally nicer than the prototypes. The “zero wall” body design gives the CZM8 ideal weight distribution for both standard and horizontal play, and a large, flat cup area makes it an easy target for finger spins (although without any inherent centering mechanism). The CZM8 plays a bit lighter and faster than the specs would suggest, and while it feels quite different from the YoYoFactory Shutter, it has a comparable play value. The straight, flat aesthetic of the body doesn’t quite lend itself to the sexy hype machine that has sent the Shutter sales skyrocketing, but the CZM8 is every bit as good and is poised to be the sleeper hit of the $50 price point this year. It comes with a stock, flat bearing which plays acceptably, but like many YoYoFactory yoyos the CZM8 benefits GREATLY from the addition of their 10-ball Center Trac “CTX” bearing. We also found that the stock white pads lend the yoyo to weak or inconsistent binds, but that replacing them with YoYoFactory’s Blue or Natural 19mm slim pads was a tremendous improvement.
Yoyo manufacturers traditionally catch a lot of grief from uninformed buyers about the quality of China-made yoyos, but the reality is that there are plenty of factories in China doing amazing machine work…and YoYoFactory certainly seems to have found them. The quality on the CZM8 is on-par with the rest of YoYoFactory’s offerings; generally more consistent than their US-made models, and every bit as good as you could possibly need. The machine work here is clean, the finish is lovely, and the two colors of this release (solid purple and a blue with pink splash) are, to my eyes, flawlessly done. The YoYoFactory word mark engraving on the side rim is a bit fuzzy, but the CZM8 logo and Vashek’s signature are crisp and clear, which leads me to believe it was an error with the art rather than an indication of engraving quality. The yoyo comes in YoYoFactory’s typical vertical box with the usual green string and instruction book. YoYoFactory has always paid great attention to the quality of their branding, so it’s no surprise that the CZM8 shares the same packaging quality as the rest of their line.
As one retailer recently said, “It’s all going down at the $50 price point”, and truer words were never spoken. YoYoFactory seems to be working hard to dominate that price point with top-quality metal yoyos built for intermediate to World Champion-level players, and the CZM8 is another perfect offering for the budget-conscious player who still wants top quality. Retailing for $45 – $52 (depending on finish), the CZM8 is a competition grade yoyo at a great price.
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