Comparing Innova Discs to Discraft Discs

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.

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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.  (

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.


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3 Responses to “Comparing Innova Discs to Discraft Discs”

  1. Kyle Woodcock May 13, 2011 at 2:14 pm #

    I enjoy throwing my Ape so far which is an Innova disc, but the best disc that I have thrown et would have to be my Star Destroyer 🙂 Amazing glide and very straight shooting.

  2. Rudy June 20, 2011 at 9:34 am #

    As a newbie (5 months) to disc golf I am aware of the speed, glide, high speed stability and low speed stability numbers on Innova discs. I would like to know more about using these numbers to select a disc. I want my distance driver to go as far as possible and as straight as possible. Sometimes turning at the end is OK on a dog leg but not that often. I am not able to access the Innova site that explains the numbers.

    Why would you ever buy a distance driver disc that does not have the maximum speed and glide with minimum turn?

    Other than allowing for the wind why would you use a heavier disc?

    Will the lightest disc fly farthest if wind is not a factor?

    What does the difficulty number mean?

    Why get a disc with a high difficulty?

  3. Ryan Werkmeister November 14, 2011 at 12:42 pm #

    When you have a disc that has more fade at the end of the flight is more “overstable”. These discs are much more predictable, although some may not go as far. Discs with little fade or “understable” discs are easier to turn over once your snap starts getting better.

    A heavier disc is FOR THE MOST PART more overstable. Also, a heavier disc can handle more torque from the big arm guys. If you dont have the arm dont go max weight. Too many people go max weight when they dont need to.

    For lighter discs, it all depends on your arm. Find a weight that suits your needs best. Just remember that a max weight isnt always better.

    Difficulty is more of how strong your arm is. A boss has almost the same flight characteristics as a wraith, but the boss is much more stable because of the speed difference. Therefore, the boss needs more power and snap to get the ideal flight path making it more difficult to throw.

    Generally, a disc with a higher difficulty will go farther if you have the right machanics and a strong arm.

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