To be honest, I use both Discraft and Innova discs, so I’ve got no real “dog-in-the-hunt” as far as determining who’s better. They’re both great disc companies. But one of the frustrating things about comparing discs between the two is that they both use completely different rating systems. Innova provides four different numbers for rating a disc: speed, glide, turn, and fade; but Discraft simply gives a stability number with a directional arrow. (or sometimes just a number). The Discraft system is a little easier to understand, but not as helpful or specific as Innova’s system.
This has always been a slight annoyance when trying to figure out exactly how discs from the competing companies compare (alliteration!). That’s been a problem until now! Tonight I stumbled upon an online store that uses the Innova system to rate all discs regardless of company. (DiscGolfCenter.com)
So, an Innova Boss is essentially a Discraft Nuke
Here’s how to understand these numbers . . . Speed is obvious. And difficulty tends to coincide with speed (i.e. – the higher the speed typically the higher the difficulty). Glide is fairly simple as well. Glide refers to the disc’s desire to stay in the air. Some discs tend to fall like a rock when they slow down, others tend to just float and float and float.
When it comes to High Speed Stability (or Turn) and Low Speed Stability (or Fade), these terms explain how the disc will move in the air. For simplicity’s sake, I’ll explain for a person throwing Right Hand Back Hand (RHBH) because that’s what I throw. But the directions will change if you throw left handed or throw a sidearm (the disc still behaves the same, but will move the opposite of what I’m explaining here).
For RHBH, High Speed Stability (also called Turn) is the tendency of the disc to turn right in the initial part of the flight. Low Speed Stability (again for RHBH) is the tendency of the disc to finish left.
According to Disc Golf Center, the Innova Boss and Discreet Nuke are extremely similar, but the Boss tends to glide it bit more.
Some Things to Remember
Even though Disc Golf Center has done a lot of the hard work for you, there’s still nothing like actually getting out and testing the discs yourself. You may find that though two discs are rated very similar, they tend to fly different for you.
Also, plastics make a big difference. A champion plastic is quite a bit more stable than a r-pro plastic for instance.
Finally, the closer your throw is to what would be considered a “proper throw” the more these numbers will make sense. If you have a really wonky releaser or are throwing the disc wrongly, then these numbers might seem off.