2016 Drivers Guide

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Golf Discount’s 2016 Drivers Guide

author-bob-gomavitz
By Bob Gomavitz

Being an absolute equipment junkie, I was approached by GolfDiscount.com to write reviews and share my findings with you. Having been chosen to write a number of Taylormade product reviews for GolfWRX.com I felt that this would be an excellent opportunity to put my knowledge to use.

Players are allowed a maximum of 14 clubs per bag, and no club is more often debated, tinkered with and changed in a player’s bag than the Driver. Manufacturers have also put countless hours into research and development of drivers, and the result has become large club heads with adjustable weighting, lofts and lies. However, traditionalists and those who prefer a fixed head driver fear not, there are plenty of non-adjustable drivers still on the market today. A good round begins with successful shots off of the tee, and a driver that matches your attack angle will give you the best opportunity to find more fairways consistently.

This year I have included the target handicap range each club is best suited towards. This range is a benchmark for who manufacturers designed the club for and are marketing it to. It is to only give players an idea which offerings will give them the best chance to play well based on their skill level. These ranges are not to discourage you from trying out any of the following clubs. I encourage you to make your own judgements through your own testing, your hands and eyes will ultimately know best.

Testing was done at Newcastle Golf Course, along with Maplewood Golf Course, which is my home track.

Enjoy the Guide and I look forward to your thoughts, comments and/or questions, and thank you for taking the time to read my reviews.



Bridgestone J815 Driver

Bridgestone J815

 

  • Power Rib Sole
  • Power Milled Face
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review


jgr-driver

Bridgestone JGR

 

  • Improved Power Milled Face
  • F.A.S.T. Crown Design
  • Target Handicap: 10 to 36


Read The Review


alpha-816-driver

Alpha 816 DBD

 

  • Dual Distance Chambers
  • Next Gen R•Moto Technology
  • Target Handicap: + to 9


Read The Review


gbb-driver

Great Big Bertha

 

  • Adjustable Perimeter Weight
  • Next Gen R•Moto Technology
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review



Callaway XR16 Driver

Callaway XR16

 

  • Re-Engineered Speed Steps
  • 460cc Head Size
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review


Callaway XR Pro Driver

Callaway XR16 Pro

 

  • Re-Engineered Speed Steps
  • 450cc Head Size
  • Target Handicap: + to 9


Read The Review


Cobra King LTD Driver

Cobra King LTD

 

  • Speed Channel Technology
  • TeXtreme Crown
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review


Cobra King F6 Driver

Cobra King F6

 

  • Forged F9 Face
  • TeXtreme Crown
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review



Cobra King F6+ Driver

Cobra King F6+

 

  • CarbonTrac weight
  • Speed Channel Technology
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review


jpx-ez-driver

Mizuno JPX EZ

 

  • Fast Track Design
  • Rebound Crown
  • Target Handicap: 10 to 36


Read The Review


Vapor Fly Driver

Nike Vapor Fly

 

  • New Compression Channel
  • Symmetrical C-Shaped Head
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review


Vapor Fly Pro Driver

Nike Vapor Fly Pro Driver

 

  • Tour-preferred pear shape
  • FlexLoft2 Technology
  • Target Handicap: + to 9


Read The Review



Ping G Series Driver

Ping G Series

 

  • Vortech Technology
  • Crown Turbulators
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review


Ping G LS Tec Driver

Ping G LS Tec

 

  • Low Spin Technology
  • Extremely low CG
  • Target Handicap: + to 9


Read The Review


Ping G SF Tec Driver

Ping G SF Tec

 

  • Straight Flight Technology
  • Crown Turbulators
  • Target Handicap: 18 to 36


Read The Review


Z 355 Driver

Srixon Z 355

 

  • Action Mass Technology
  • Ultra-high Balance Point Shaft
  • Target Handicap: 18 to 36


Read The Review



TaylorMade M1 Driver

TaylorMade M1

 

  • Carbon Fiber Crown
  • T-Track Weight System
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review


TaylorMade M2 Driver

TaylorMade M2

 

  • 7-Layer Carbon Crown
  • Internal Acoustic Design
  • Target Handicap: + to 36


Read The Review

Bridgestone J815 Driver Driver Review


Bridgestone J815 Driver
Bridgestone J815 Driver Face

Club Tested: Driver Shaft: Mitsubishi Fubuki ZT 60; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9.5°

The Takeaway

The Power Rib sole provides increased rigidity for the 460cc Crown to flex against and a higher launch angle is due to the increased crown deformation. A Power Milled Face provides incredible spin reduction and you get maximum ball velocities through increased repulsion. The low and deep center of gravity produces forgiving high launching distances and the Variable Adjust System allows players to choose a desired face and lie angle setting.

Who’s It For?

The J815 is for players across the whole handicap spectrum who like to be able to adjust the face and lie angles.

Final Take

Boy does the J815 Driver stand out with its Candy Apple Colorway (I’ll call it that) and super busy crown. Though there is a lot going on, it really does provide an excellent framing of the ball at address. This head provided me with a much tighter shot pattern than the JGR head and produced a very solid feel, excellent launch and penetrating ball flight, even though it did seem to have a slight draw bias to me.

Shop Bridgestone J815 Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Bridgestone JGR Driver Review


jgr-driver
jgr-driver-face

Club Tested: JGR Driver Shaft: Aldila NV 2KXV Orange 65; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 10.5°

The Takeaway

New for 2016 the Bridgestone JGR driver features an Improved Power Milled Face design for the ultimate combination of low-spin distance and added forgiveness on off–center hits. SpeeDARC technology increases the rigidity of the sole providing an incredibly stable base, resulting in fastball speeds. The 460cc F.A.S.T. (Fast Action Speed Technology) Crown Design increases ball velocities and produces the highest launch angles Bridgestone has ever achieved.

Who’s It For?

The JGR driver is for players across the whole handicap spectrum who like the feel of a glued-in shaft design.

Final Take

I found the JGR driver head cosmetically very appealing from all angles. The Yellow colorway highlighted the crown and really framed the ball well at address. I struggled mightily with this head mainly due to the higher loft and what felt like a closed face and very upright lie angle compared to what the specs say. However, the feel was excellent, though unfortunately I could not produce a shot that fit my eye properly, both in ball flight and overall dispersion.

Shop Bridgestone JGR Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 816 DBD Driver Review


alpha-816-driver
alpha-816-driver-face

Club Tested: Big Bertha Alpha 816 DBD Driver Shaft: Aldila Rogue Silver I/O 60; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9°

The Takeaway

New for 2016 the Big Bertha Alpha 816 features extreme distance from the Dual Distance Chambers from their Gravity Core weight. By placing the Core up or down, or in the left or right Chamber, players can change the ball flight and control the bias. It can also can increase ball speed and help with shot-shaping control. The Alpha 816 incorporates the new Next Gen R*Moto Technology providing a thinner face, leading to higher ball speeds on all center hits and off-center hits too. The deeper faced classic shaped head with a low center of gravity produces just the right amount of forgiveness and workability.

Who’s It For?

The Alpha 816 is suited towards the better player who produces medium-high to higher swing speeds. This is a low center of gravity head which produces a lower spin rate to combat the high spin issues that come with a higher swing speeds or a player that flat out just produces too much spin for their swing speed. There are plenty of adjustments for the real technical players that like to dial in their launch monitor numbers to achieve max distance and shot shape.

Final Take

The Alpha 816 Driver has a simple classic look and is the perfect size in my book, it is not too big, nor too small of a footprint. The gorgeous flat black crown has a raised Chevron alignment aid. The face sits slightly open and seems to have more loft than the stated number at address which will help player’s confidence when addressing the ball. The face is deep and very evenly distributed from heel to toe. I found the feeling was very solid and produced a very muted sound. The ball flight was a touch on the low side, but I think this is mainly because my swing speed is just not quite fast enough to create the proper lift from this low spinning 9 degree head. That said, add in excellent adjustability, a huge variety of no upcharge shafts and UDesign for true customizing and you have a winner for 2016.

Shop Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 816 DBD Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Callaway Great Big Bertha Driver Review


gbb-driver
gbb-driver-face

Club Tested: GBB Driver Shaft: Mitsubishi Kura Kage TiNi 50; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9°

The Takeaway

The 2016 Great Big Bertha has some noticeable changes from the 2015 version starting with addition of Adjustable Perimeter Weighting. There is now a 10 gram weight on the perimeter of the club head to add stability and offer players a stronger fade or hook bias by just simply moving the weight into a different position, all without sacrificing forgiveness. This head also has Callaway’s next generation R*Moto Technology which provides a thinner face, leading to higher ball speeds on all center hits and off-center hits too. The aerodynamic head shape and multi-material allows for a lightweight club design for higher club head speeds.

Who’s It For?

Unlike the 2015 version, this year’s model will fit a larger range of players due to a much lower spin rate and an excellent range of shaft weights and designs. These updates allow this head to really cover most any player, even tour players like Jim Furyk.

Final Take

I really like the changes that were done to this year’s GBB. It’s shape is more in line with the Alpha 816 than in the past. The head is somewhat shallow compared to most driver heads with a very narrow heel area that works to a much larger toe area. This gives the head the look that it’s quite upright at address and sits quite square. Also at address you cannot miss the “murdered out” black crown (flat black dull finish) with the chevron alignment aid. I found the feeling of this head to produce a solid feel with a very muted sound, I found both appealing. My launch and spin were also excellent with a nice penetrating flight that fits my eye to a tee. The Kura Kage Tini 50 shaft felt light but was easy to control. With a huge assortment of upgraded shafts and Udesign offerings (design your own GGB driver color wise) makes the 2016 GGB a great new addition to the Callaway driver lineup.

Shop Callaway Great Big Bertha Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Callaway XR16 Driver Review


Callaway XR16 Driver
Callaway XR16 Driver Face

Club Tested: Driver Shaft: Fujikura Speeder Evolution 565; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9°

The Takeaway

Callaway enlisted aerodynamics experts from Boeing to help them re-engineer the Speed Steps to reduce weight and increase speed by reducing drag. Extreme forgiveness from a bigger footprint and a lower, deeper CG leads to more speed across the whole face at impact, which can add more distance.

Who’s It For?

Without a doubt, the XR16 is for any player that wants a very forgiving driver with increased ball speeds. Those who need a lower launch angle and spin will need to look at the XR16 Pro version.

Final Take

The XR 16 has an excellent size and shape. One that should inspire players who might struggle with the driver. The pronounced tear drop shape is a perfect size for the 460 head, not too big nor too small. The XR16 colorway is a matte black, which always looks good to me. However, I found the Speed Step crown combined with the face marking to be quite busy at address, the Speed Step Crown would have been plenty enough on its own.

Producing a very satisfying, strong sound and feel at impact, when you flush one you will really feel like you crushed the ball. The ball flight was spot on for a mid-high to high trajectory, but was penetrating, too. With their OptiFit system and no charge shaft offerings, a player should be able to dial in an excellent driver for their bag. The 45.75″ length was my only concern.

Shop Callaway XR16 Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Callaway XR16 Pro Driver Review


Callaway XR Pro Driver
Callaway XR16 Pro Driver Face

Club Tested: Driver Shaft: Fujikura Speeder Evolution II 665; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9°

The Takeaway

Callaway enlisted aerodynamics experts from Boeing to help them re-engineer the Speed Steps to reduce weight and increase speed by reducing drag. Extreme Forgiveness from a bigger footprint and a lower, deeper CG leads to more speed across the whole face at impact, which can add more distance.

Who’s It For?

The slightly smaller, compact 450cc head size is for stronger, high swing speed player that are looking for lower spin, but still have some forgiveness in place.

Final Take

At only 10cc smaller than the standard version XR16, the Pro version looks quite a bit smaller, almost more like a 430cc driver. The head has a deeper face that the standard version which helps create less spin and a flatter, more penetrating ball flight. The XR16 Pro did both. I set the head to a higher loft angle with the OptiFit system to see a ball flight that would carry enough to produce proper distance. Like the standard version, the feel and sound were very much on par with my liking. The shaft pairing is an excellent fit to help the Pro version accomplish what it’s meant to do.

Shop Callaway XR16 Pro Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Cobra King LTD Driver Review


Cobra King LTD Driver
Cobra King LTD Driver Face

Club Tested: Driver Shaft: Aldila Rogue Black 60; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9.5°

The Takeaway

The King LTD offers a Zero CG which is Cobra’s first driver that positions the CG on the neutral axis line. To do this Cobra installed a Spaceport in the bottom of the sole, which is a 16 gram weight that creates an extremely low and deep CG with a high MOI. The Forged E9 face that is 8-1-1 Forged Titanium face that has variable thickness structure that is lighter, thinner and hotter for faster ball speeds across the face. Add in the Speed Channel Technology which is an engineered trench around the perimeter of the face to minimize thickness. Next Cobra uses Carbon Fiber for the crown called TeXreme that is 20% lighter allowing for more weight to be re-positioned lower and deeper.

Who’s It For?

The King LTD can be played by any type of player looking for the newest, hottest technology out there. Best of all, it is done without a lot of fussing around with weight adjustments.

Final Take

Right away I found the King LTD to be super muted in sound, and because of this it did not offer me a lot of feedback. However, since the majority of the drivers on the market have a definite higher pitch noise to them, some players have been looking for this type of sound and feeling. The head shape for this 460cc head is proportionate and the checkerboard Carbon Fiber crown is flat out stunning. By far one of my favorite crown designs to date! Once I had the MyFly settings dialed in I found the launch and spin to be excellent based on the ball flight that I was seeing.

Shop Cobra King LTD Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Cobra King F6 Driver Review


Cobra King F6 Driver
Cobra King F6 Driver Face

Club Tested: Driver Shaft: Matrix Red Tie 60Q4; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9°; Weight Rear Position

The Takeaway

The King F6 uses some of the Technology from the King LTD, such as the Forged E9 Face, Speed Channel, Carbon Fiber Crown and MyFly with Smartpad. It also includes CG Tuning which is done by offering the player two distinct CG settings that impact spin. The front setting provides a lower ball flight with more roll, while the back setting provides a higher ball flight and more carry.

Who’s It For?

The King F6, like the LTD, is really for any type of player. On advantage of the F6 is you can choose your CG position. Most players will migrate towards the rear setting, which will also help with additional forgiveness on mishits.

Final Take

I did my testing with the weight in the rear position which produced a slightly higher ball flight than I normally see with a 9.5° head. Like the King LTD, the sound was quite muted which confused me about any actual feedback from the strike. The 460cc head sat square to maybe a touch closed to my eye and was very appealing to the eye. Offered in 4 colorways, there is a King F6 for every player.

Shop Cobra King F6 Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Cobra King F6+ Driver Review


Cobra King F6+ Driver
Cobra King F6+ Driver Face

Club Tested: Driver Shaft: Matrix Black Tie 65M4; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9.5°

The Takeaway

The King F6+ features CarbonTrac. This innovative carbon fiber track design frees up more weight than traditional track-systems. The CarbonTrac system allows an 18 gram weight to be repositioned along the clubhead sole for optimized CG settings. With more front to back track length than current adjustable drivers, players are given an even greater adjustable range to dial in launch, spin and forgiveness. The rest of the technology mirrors the King F6 Driver.

Who’s It For?

The King F6+ is for those players that really want different setting to really dial in their numbers to achieve maximum results from their driver. Players that have access to a Launch Monitor will love to tinker with this driver.

Final Take

Even though this head is very similar to the F6 Driver, it produced a much more defined noise at impact than the muted sounding F6. The sound fit my ear much better for what I am used to hearing at impact and provided me with an excellent feedback of the strike. My best results were with the weight in the back which is usually the case for my type of swing (I have a positive attack angle). I also liked the stock Matrix Black Tie shaft which produced a slight lower launch and spin over the Red Tie offered in the F6 version. Like the F6, the head has a very nice shape and I personally love the all Black with Orange trim. Though, if orange isn’t your thing, there are 4 different colorways to choose from.

Shop Cobra King F6+ Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Mizuno JPX EZ Driver Review


jpx-ez-driver
jpx-ez-driver-toe

Club Tested: JPX EZ Driver Shaft: Fujikura SIX XLR8; Flex: Stiff; Loft: Set to 8.5°

The Takeaway

Fast Track Design uses a 10 gram weight in one of three ports, (draw, neutral, or fade) and you can instantly notice the changes to the JPX EZ Driver to dial-in ball flight. Massive MOI design optimizes this internal head for weight distribution low and deep in the head to deliver extreme forgiveness in a high, easy ball flight. The Rebound Crown eliminates the stepper area around the clubface, allowing more flex for greater ball speed and distance.

Who’s It For?

The JPX EZ Driver has a larger footprint and higher launch which will appeal to the Mid-Low to Higher handicap players who like the 460cc head size and a lighter overall weight. Also, this is good for players who like to adjust their driver to find optimal launch conditions.

Final Take

Mizuno does a great job at being different when it comes to Colorways. The EZ driver features and an appealing gray crown with some semi-busy graphics that help you frame the ball at address. The size and shape are on par for a 460cc driver at address. Even with the driver set at 8.5 degrees I felt that the face seemed closed and my results confirmed this hunch. I had issues not hitting the ball left, even with the weight in the Fade position. Everything else was spot on in terms of feel, feedback and launch angles, but I could not shake the continuous hook this club produced for me. Let me be clear though, for many players this can be a good thing, but for my swing that is not the case. So, if you tend to miss a lot of fairways to the right this would be a great driver to check out.

Shop Mizuno JPX EZ Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Nike Vapor Fly Driver Review


Vapor Fly Driver
Vapor Fly Driver Face

Club Tested: Vapor Fly Driver Shaft: Tensei CK Blue 50; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 8.5°; Position: Neutral

The Takeaway

A 30% reduction in crown weight from the 2015 Vapor Speed driver creates a lower CG and higher MOI. The new Hyperflight Face creates extreme ball speeds across the entire face. A re-engineered Compression Channel amplifies performance on mishits. The maximum launch from a Symmetrical C-Shape head is designed for more stability and the Covert Cavity Back design spreads weight to the heel and toe for maximum forgiveness. FlyBeam structure stabilizes the body and channels more energy into the face. FlexLoft 2 Technology offers 15 different launch conditions.

Who’s It For?

The Nike Vapor Fly Driver offers maximum launch conditions, increased forgiveness, and additional spin for those players that might be having trouble getting their driver elevated, producing enough spin and or finding the center of the face. Mid to upper handicappers will benefit from this 460cc head and lightweight shaft.

Final Take

The new Nike Vapor Fly driver with its stunning Photo Blue/Volt Colorway really shapes the head at address. I felt the ball flight was on the high side for the 8.5 degree setting, yet I did not have any real ballooning. The Vapor Fly is semi-muted, but still provided enough feedback on strikes. I was able to work the ball on command with this driver due to the slightly higher spin rates that I get with my type of swing. I liked the shape of this head compared to the past Nike offerings, it seems more balanced and less pear shaped.

Shop Nike Vapor Fly Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Nike Vapor Fly Pro Review


Vapor Fly Pro Driver
Vapor Fly Pro Driver Face

Club Tested: Vapor Fly Pro Driver Shaft: Diamana S+ 60; Length: -1/2″; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9.5°; Position: Neutral

The Takeaway

A 30% reduction in crown weight from the 2015 Vapor Speed driver creates a lower CG and higher MOI. The new Hyperflight Face creates extreme ball speeds across the entire face. The re-engineered Compression Channel amplifies performance on mishits. A Tour-Preferred pear shaped head is designed for enhanced workability and the Covert Cavity Back design spreads weight to the heel and toe for maximum forgiveness. FlyBeam structure stabilizes the body and channels more energy into the face and FlexLoft 2 Technology offers 15 different launch conditions.

Who’s It For?

The Vapor Fly Pro has a much more tour-inspired head shape than the Vapor Fly and will best suit players that seek a lower spin rate and launch angle, and maximum workability, while still having enough forgiveness on their lesser missed shots.

Final Take

The Vapor Fly Pro shape is very close to the non-Pro version. Both are 460cc, but the Pro looks just a tiny bit smaller. I really, really like the addition of the Black colored face over the stainless brush look of the non-Pro. It really frames the face well at address. The ball flight was much lower as was the spin rate which produced a penetrating ball flight even set at 1 degree higher loft. Again, the feel was semi-muted like the non-pro version, but the Vapor Fly Pro is the best feeling and looking Nike driver I have hit to date.

Shop Nike Vapor Fly Pro Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Ping G Series Driver Review


Ping G Series Driver
Ping G Series Driver Face

Club Tested: G Series Driver Shaft: Alta 55; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9°

The Takeaway

Inspired by an approach called Biomimicry, Ping engineers studied the dragonfly’s complex wing patterns. From that they were able to design ultra-thin crown sections for extreme CG and maximized MOI resulting in their longest most forgiving driver ever. The lowest, deepest CG of any Ping driver, it generates greater distance by increasing dynamic loft on both axes for maximizing forgiveness. Vortech technology on the back of the Ti 8-1-1 head minimizes turbulent wake during the downswing for faster speed with stability and forgiveness. Paired with Crown Turbolators they claim to reduce drag 37% through the impact zone.

Who’s It For?

The G Series Driver will cover a large majority of the golfers and will be the most popular of the 3 different versions of the G Series.

Final Take

The G Series Driver is a follow-up of my favorite driver from 2015, the G30. Like the G30, I found the G Series Driver to be just as easy to hit with excellent ball flight, great feel and feedback. However, the G Series Driver with a slightly different sound to it. With the Dragonfly technology the crown is a bit more busy, but nothing that hindered my concentration. The Flat black, blue trimmed head is quite larger looking due to the larger footprint of the 460cc head. The 9° that I tested sat very square to my eye and the large head size instilled confidence. This head is considered the neutral head of the G Series drivers.

Shop Ping G Series Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Ping G LS Tec Driver Review


Ping G LS Tec Driver
Ping G Series Driver Face

Club Tested: G LS Tec Driver Shaft: Ping Tour; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9°

The Takeaway

The LS Tec (Low Spin Technology) version of the G Series Driver features a CG that is extremely low (slightly forward compared to the standard G Series Driver) that produces low, stable spin with forgiveness.

Who’s It For?

Custom engineered for the high spin player who desires lower spin rates with forgiveness when compared to the neutral G Series Driver.

Final Take

The G LS Tec address looks pretty much like the neutral G Series Driver, but when flipped over the back weight is positioned slightly different than the G Series, creating a lower spin rate. I had my best results with this head with the Tour Shaft, which created an excellent medium-high ball flight that seemed to carry for a long time. A definite keeper.

Shop Ping G LS Tec Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Ping G SF Tec Driver Review


Ping G SF Tec Driver
Ping G Series Driver Face

Club Tested: G SF Tec Driver Shaft: Alta 55; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 10°

The Takeaway

This is the third in a series of G Series Drivers. The G SF Tec (Straight Flight Technology) positions the weight closer to the heel to help produce a right-to-left shot shape and steer the ball back into the fairway. It also incorporates all the brand new technology found on the neutral G Series Driver.

Who’s It For?

The G SF Tec is designed for those players that have a tendency to have an uncontrolled fade shot shape. A slightly closed face angle, paired with the addition of slightly higher loft choices will help straighten the ball out more so than the other two G Series Drivers.

Final Take

As expected, the G SF Tec produced a definite draw from my natural draw swing. With the additional half a degree of loft it produced a higher more swinging shot shape. Definitely not a driver for my type of golf swing. This is more suited for those that have fade to minor slice tendencies and need a slight more elevation to their tee shots.

Shop Ping G SF Tec Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


Srixon Z 355 Driver Review


Z 355 Driver
Z 355 Driver Face

Club Tested: Z 355 Driver Shaft: Miyazaki Jinsoku; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9.5°

The Takeaway

Srixon’s Action Mass Technology applies a heavier head weight to the 450cc club head with an ultra-high Balance Point Shaft that combine to deliver incredible consistency with maximum distance and forgiveness. The fast and powerful titanium cup face construction creates an even larger sweet spot for increase consistency and distance off the tee.

Who’s It For?

The Z 355 Driver is more of a Game Improvement driver that offers a higher balance point to help those that struggle to produce a more consistent, stable swing from their driver.

Final Take

Being a high-balanced driver, the Z 355 offered a slightly different feeling. Something I found hard to pinpoint, but the bottom line was I saw good ball flight, excellent results from mishits and the distance was on par. However, I assume I produced a bit too much spin from this set up to see optimal results. The Z 355 has a great head shape and cosmetics. Quite an interesting feel from this very high-balanced club.

Shop Srixon Z 355 Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


TaylorMade M1 Driver Review


TaylorMade M1 Driver
TaylorMade M1 Driver Face

Club Tested: M1 460cc Driver Shaft: Mitsubishi Kura Kage TiNi 60; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9.5°

The Takeaway

The new M1 driver is now a multi-material head with the addition of a carbon fiber crown section, saving about 6 grams of overall weight. With enhancing launch conditions in mind, this weight reduction in the crown allows TaylorMade to redistribute those 6 grams into the new T-Track system creating an even lower Center of Gravity. The front track of the T-Track system allows players to move 10 grams of weight across the face setting up a max Fade or Draw Bias, or anything inbetween. The 10 settings inside of the two polar settings reduce the bias, or on the center setting, create a True Neutral Bias. The front to back Track is also new, which allows players to move a 15 gram weight towards the back of the head or towards the face. Moving the weight towards the face creates a Low Forward CG which reduces spin and loft. Moving it back creates a higher spin rate (about 300 rpms) and a higher launch angle.

Who’s It For?

The new M1 460 driver will accommodate a large group of players. The addition of the T-Track system will allow the majority of players in need of a more Rear CG driver over TaylorMade’s previous Forward CG only drivers like the SLDR and R15. Better players looking to reduce spin while maintaining optimal launch conditions will take full advantage of the front to back weight. By moving it towards the face they’ll reduce their spin rate with a slight increase of loft over the SLDR ad R15. Those with slower swing speeds will need to make sure that they have the proper shaft, and can choose from 28 no upcharge shafts offered with the new M1 Driver.

Final Take

The addition of carbon fiber to the crown creates a stunning visual effect and produces a super easy alignment to the ball. The white on the crown is a glossy white, which creates a bit of a shine, but looks great next to the rich carbon fiber. The sound and feel have also changed for the better. There is less of a “tin” or “pinging” noise at impact, it had a much more muted sound which was very appealing to the ears. With the addition of stabilizing bars inside the head the feel as well is quite different, and the carbon fiber will dampen the feeling to your hands.

The ball felt lively coming off the face, but not in a sense of jumping off the face. Visually, with a very swept back crown, slightly deeper face, and a flatter sole than past offerings the head shape seems more aerodynamic. The ball flight was excellent! The M1 produced a nice, mid-high flat trajectory with good rollout. Even with the COR restrictions, some players will see gains in distance with the proper set up that matches their swing styles.

I had some minor control issues during my testing. I attribute this to simply not having enough time to dial it in 100%, but I feel confident that I could dial it in fairly quickly based on some shots that I hit. TaylorMade now is offering consumers various shaft options ranging from lower to mid and higher launch characteristics. With 28 shafts available without an additional upcharge players will have no problem customizing the M1 Driver to their personal specifications.

Shop TaylorMade M1 Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


TaylorMade M2 Driver Review


TaylorMade M2 Driver
TaylorMade M2 Driver Face

Club Tested: Driver Shaft: Fujikura Pro 60; Flex: Stiff; Loft: 9.5°

The Takeaway

The M2 features a multi-material construction highlighted by a proprietary 7-Layer Carbon Composite Construction Crown that allows more weight to be positioned in the bottom of the sole. Additionally, in the M2’s case, a Low-Back CG will enhance forgiveness and increase distance. The Speed Pocket provides hotter ball speeds, lower spin, and really enhances hits low on the face. Internal Acoustic Design delivers a solid hit and crisp sound at impact.

Who’s It For?

The M2, with its Low-Back CG will fit just about any player out there who just does not want to mess with an adjustable driver like the M1. Players with negative attack angles might see better numbers with the weight moved forward on the M1 over the M2. This is TaylorMade’s distance club with a longer and lighter shaft.

Final Take

Having played so many different TaylorMade drivers in the past, I was very interested in the M series but found myself waiting to hit the M2 based on the low-back CG. The head at 460cc seems a tad big to me, even though the face depth is slightly on the shallower side. The contrast of the black face against the white front crown area makes the face size look on the small side compared to past TaylorMade offerings.

I found the sound and feel were fairly muted. Both have excellent penetrating ball flights with lower spin rate. The 45.75″ stock length is way too much from most, but through TaylorMade’s Custom department you can order any length of the 30+ no up charge shafts that are offered, the most in the industry. Lots to like about this new offering.

Shop TaylorMade M2 Driver at GolfDiscount.com

 


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Bob Gomavitz

Bob Gomavitz Age: 59 Handicap: 4.6 Introduced to Golf: Age 10 Years Playing: 47 Hole In Ones: 2 Double Eagles: 1 Years in the Golf Industry: 14 Rounds Per Year: Over 100 Favorite PGA Tour Course Played: TPC Sawgrass Favorite Local Course Played: Royal Colwood Victoria, B.C. Most Famous Golfer that I played with: Fred Couples Most Famous Person that I played with: Kenny G (High School Teammate) Current WITB Driver: Taylormade 2016 M2 9.5 45" D-3 Graphite Design Tour Ad 60 Stiff 3 Wood: Taylormade RBZ 13 Degree TS Oban Revenge 7 Stiff 43.25” D-3 Hybrid: Taylormade R1118 Degree Matrix Altus Stiff Hybrid: Taylormade R11 Rescue 21 Degree Matrix Altus Stiff Irons: Taylormade Burner 2.0 4-PW KBS Tour Stiff Std Lie, Lofts and Lengths Wedges: Taylormade Rac Black 54 Degree TT DG Wedge Flex Wedges: Callaway X Tour 58 Degree MD TT DG Wedge Flex Putter: Odyssey Versa 90 degree #7 Super Stroke 3.0 34” Ball: Titleist Pro V1x, Srixon Z Star XV Yellow Trackman Driver Swing Info Club Head Speed: 98-101 Ball Speed: 148-151 Angle of Attack: +1.7 to +2.6 Launch Angle: 12.7 to 14.1 Spin: 2400-2750 Angle of Descent: 39.8 to 37.3 Carry: 234-242 yards Distance: 258-272 yards Path: 0.7 to 2.4

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222 Comments

  1. Bill O'Keefe on

    The reviews are comprehensive but nothing mentioned golfers with low swing speeds who benefit from a driver like the Cleveland BlacK. I was also surprised that no Cleveland club was rated.

    • Srixon and Cleveland are owned by the same company and so to streamline their offerings, the two were merged with the Srixon name on metals and Cleveland kept the wedges and putters. The switch was on about the time you started seeing all the Srixon hats on tour combined with the rapid loss of market share by Cleveland. Anyway, that’s the thoughts from the northwest corner of the country.

      • Bob Gomavitz on

        Tom,

        Great driver….make sure to compare it to the M2 would be my suggestion without knowing more about your game.

        • Jeffrey Pan on

          Why does the 460 cc head on the M2 seem too big but not for every other 460 cc driver? Is it the shape?

          • Bob Gomavitz on

            Jeffery,

            Yes ai mentioned a tad to big in my review. Each head that measures 460cc can have a different size or shaped head A diver like a Ping G series seems to be larger than pretty much all of the other drivers but it’s not. A flater, wider head would look very large next to a deep face, higher crown section and stubby backend, but both could be 460cc.

            I hope this helps and thanks…..go give that M2 a try. It’s in my bag!

    • james stockton on

      i’m in the market for a new driver and have been partial to Ping (currently using the I-20 ) i was leaning towards getting the new G series but after reading your reviews I want to take a look at the Callaway XR16 driver as well. Very informative

      • Bob Gomavitz on

        Both should make it hard on you for your final choice James…..let sound and feel play apart because I felt both were different from each other.
        Good Luck

  2. GEORGE STOLZER on

    I have a R11 that I’ve used for two years and I’m thinking about changing to the R15. After reviewing it in your web site, I going to switch to the R15.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      George,

      Having played the R11 but only tested the R15, I would without a doubt would look at the Taylormade M Series before buying a R15. I love the sound and feel of the M2 when compared to many of my past Taylormade drives and I owned a whole bunch of em. What I also like about the sound and feel is that it’s really a consistent sounding and felling driver drive in and drive out. The R15 was one of the few of the past Taylormade drivers that did not fit me well and never saw a day in my bag.

  3. Great in – depth reviews….as a player who has a natural draw ball flight, I found these reviews very helpful as I look for my next driver.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Barry,

      Funny that you mentioned this…..to me it seems that there are less draw bias heads for the class of 2016 compared to maybe 5-8 years ago. Or I just lost my natural draw swing!

  4. I have a Cobra offset driver now and I love it because I can keep the ball in the fairway which is a concern for me with other drivers as I have a tendency to hit a big fade with a std. driver. Is Cobra or anyone else making an offset driver besides Tour Edge?

  5. Some great choices! I am a senior golfer like the looks of the Nike, Callaway and Taylor Made
    Thanks for nice reviews
    AL Copp

  6. Victor DaCosta on

    Great article! Just switched to Mizuno JPX irons & can’t wait to tryout there driver! Longtime Taylormade user but now all in on Mizuno!!

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Victor,

      Nice iron choice…..I would suggest last years Mizuno driver….a real sleeper I felt and I was not alone on feeling this if you read or watched any other reviews on it. I will also suggest that you at least try the no M series drivers from TM…one of their best releases.

  7. This guide is simply AMAZING!!! The clear photo/alphabetically listed guide with tthree key features of each driver under the photo and the in-depth unbiased reviews listing 3 consistent categories (The Takeaway, Who’s It For?, and Final Take) make is easy to compare drivers. Reading the review of some of the drivers I have owned/own, I am very impressed with Gom’s conclusions – on spot! Thank you for taking the time to do this….I have already forwarded to many golfing friends.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Thanks Mike,

      That has to be one of the nices comments that I have gotten about a review. I really do appreciate it Mike.

      Please, any questions just ask.

      Thanks again,

      Bob Gom

  8. Timothy A Leggett on

    I tested four of the drivers in your list and like the info from your man. I would say he is right on for the others too. Good insight.Thanks

  9. Jeremy Carter on

    Very helpful review, this helped me narrow my choice of a new driver down to just 3. Thank you!

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      With so many great drivers out there, narrowing it to 3 is good! Next you have to pick one…..which one are you leaning towards?

  10. Thomas Hannan on

    This was great, my dad needs a new driver and I cant ever get him to actually try one. So this was a lot of help! Thanks!!!!

  11. Anthony Lettieri on

    The most comprehensive explanation of what is new . Very impressive, particularly the recommendation by handicap.

  12. I just got fitted and was able to try all these drivers – Its interesting that my findings matched Bob’s with most of them. I ended up with the M2 with an extra stiff shaft. What an amazing difference the right club for the person makes. I now hit a slight draw and am able to drive most par 4’s if they are under 320 yards (although usually in a greenside bunker) Finding the right driver is like finding the right wife, if it fits you, your life and golf will be much easier. I had never been fitted for a driver before and was very surprised the difference each driver and shaft made. While all these manufacturers make great drivers, they are very different. I would highly recommend going to a independent fitter and trying them all with different shafts.

  13. Ray Carlier on

    Good Stuff I’d like some clarification around what is considered a stronger player as some reviews suggest the model is suited toward a stronger player. Given that all models come in the full spectrum of shaft flexes “stronger” doesn’t seem to necessarily mean a bomber hitting an Xstiff. Likewise where a variety of shaft flex profiles are available fo rthe same head I’d like to see some discussion around the complete package and which golfers are best suited by the combination of shaft and head. Thank gain

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Ray,

      Great points and also a great question. I should be more clear when stating words like “Stronger Player”, thanks for you question.
      When I say this in a review, I am talking about the player with a very high swing speed. Take a head like the Callawy Sub Zero. This driver will perform better for a player that is a true bomber., as in the upper 20% of swing speed wise, but It will not provide max performance for some one with an average swing speed, so it is not suited for them. For these types of players, loft and spin are huge factors in a proper fit. Sure this player will probably need a TX or a tipped X shaft and that is important, but by now these players have been playing those flexes for years. Now it’s all about reducing spin with a proper launch angle at this point. Shaft Technolgy has advanced also so that the Stronger Players are now being able to go to a lighter shaft but it plays like a heavier one. launch and spin wise.

  14. Larry Lemke on

    Thank you for your hard work and concise comments on the 2016 drivers available today. It w as very informative and interesting to get all the ins and outs of today’s many and varied options out there, For me, though, I will stick with my Taylormade RBZ driver and fairway woods 3-7. I have finally, after many years and many attempts to tind a driver that truly works for me, come to the conclusion that these woods are definitely for me as they have provided exceptional length and direction for a few years now.

  15. Your forgot to test the best drivers .. Exotics, Krank, Geek, Bang … You just focus on commercial / industrial products sold everywhere by any shop.

  16. David Covel on

    Still a lot of drivers to hit but have always went with Taylormade at the end, most likely will end up there again because of the choice of shafts.

  17. It’s really difficult to pick out a new driver.I think getting the proper shaft an grip would benefit the average golfer more.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Ronald,

      You bet it’s hard to pick out a new driver, because their all pretty darn good. As for a better shaft and a proper grip, we’ll both of those are available with the majority of the new drivers. Some even at a no cost upgrade too! I will use Taylormade for an example…..over 20 different no upcharge shafts for the M1 or M2 drivers.

      Shafts can adjust the launch angle, change the RPM’s, and offer more control. Most OEM’s offer a Custon Shaft Chart (launch and spin) and is a great starting point reference.

  18. Marshall Thompson on

    So many drivers. Thanks for the info provided. With the info provided, it give a starting point for me to get fitted for a new driver.

  19. Hunt Hibler on

    Thank you for the reviews of all of these drivers. But what most of us are looking for in reviews is comparisons (best to worst in your opinion) and actual numbers in Spin and Distance. I know it is down between the M1 and the Ping LS Tec and I would like to see a statistics in your Launch Monitor numbers to compare them with. Thank you for the work you have done.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Hunt,

      I personally would love to provide LM numbers. Numbers can be misleading as I witness at an outdoor fitting recently. The reality is that without a golfing robot that was able to test all these drivers side by side at a wide variety of swing speeds, one will never get a true side by side testing. Better players that swing very consistent can provide some great info but unless the buyer has the same swing speed as the tester, those comparisons can be skewed for those with different swing speeds. I have watched many YT Video’s of side by sides and maybe one driver is 2-3 yards longer than the other, but the shorter one is slightly straighter. You seem to be a high swing speed player that needs to cut down spin by your choices of the M1 and Ping G LS…..both are great choices. I would say it comes down to feel, looks, ball flight and cost and you’ll be happy with which your choice.

  20. Nick Yackley on

    Its great that mfgs have finally made it easier for golfers to find the right driver based on their play.

  21. David Beerman on

    Thanks for all of the information. It is a big help in narrowing down my new driver selection.

  22. Ian Francis on

    Very good guide. I like the fact that you explain what ability group each driver is aimed at and good for.

  23. Larry Couden on

    Thank you for the info! I have heard a lot of good things about the XR16 and your findings support this. The different shafts available at no additional charge is a definite plus! Will also look at the Ping drivers too.

  24. QUINTON NEEDENS on

    Excellent reviews, I find the M1 review especially helpful in narrowing down my choice for a new driver. Great work, keep it up.

  25. David Narkewicz on

    I play a TaylorMade R11S, if I were to upgrade I would want to try the TaylorMade M1 as it compares to the same customization ability.

  26. Richard Swann on

    Nike Vapor Fly looks good at address. I’ve gained 15-20 yards just playing it, doing nothing else different.

  27. Ted Ricciardelli on

    Bob , nice job with the drivers. Being older and a slower swinger I would like to see more effort from the mfg. world to those of us who would love to hit soft draws . I know proper fitting and instruction are important , especially in todays market of ever changing technology . In my opinion too many changes way to to frequently , and a very small discount for previous models is causing a glut in the retail golf sales world …at least at the stores i visit . Anyway , my choice would likely be the Ping G SF series for my bag . Great job ..Thanks

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      You know what Ted, if I had a dollar for ever golfer that told me that they wish they could hit a soft draw I would have enough to any of these drivers on the list!
      And now I can hardly do it myself it seems. It can be done and with the help of Trackman during a lesson, a golfer can be on that path quicker than ever but it’s still very hard to do!

      The golf retail market is very, very competitive to gain the consumers dollar and this is why we see what you spoke of in today’s market place. I think your choice of the Ping G Series SF is a perfect starting point. Now go hit some baby draws with it!

      Thanks for the kind words Ted

  28. Thank you for the information. I am currently shopping for a new driver and I found this to be very helpful with what I am looking for and what would work great with and for my game. Thank you

  29. Marty Durkin on

    Thank you Gom for providing a comprehensive and unbiased review of today’s new drivers. Being able to read the pros and cons of each product will help me to better understand which is the best suited for my game. Keep up the good work.

  30. Mickey Meredith on

    This was perfect for the true amateur golfer!! Great explanations, and the “Who’s It For” was very informative. Thank you for your work.

  31. John McDonough on

    As an older, slower swing, higher handicap golfer, I appreciate the info differentiating between the clubs so I can eliminate those that don’t match my situation. Now I know which to try! Thanks.

  32. Christopher Ballog on

    Very nice compilation of information. Would have been nice to have some graphics for us visual guys. Shot dispersion, ball flight and oh ya (not that it matters) cost. I need new wedges, gotta review? Thanks for the effort.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Christopher,

      Posting numbers really help if both of our swing styles are close to the same. Otherwise that info is great to look at as a reference point. Shaft, loft angle, Angle of Attack all play a role in comparing numbers side by side. I hope to one day offer some form of info like you aksed for.

      As for wedges, that is so hard to do. Like the drivers, all the wedges are very close to each other. My suggest is to learn what bounce and grind is best for the conditions that you play the most. Looks wise, the leading edge is the main feature look wise that people either like or do not like. In this case, a slightly curved leading edge at the hosel or a more straighter leading edge at the hosel. Set a few down and you will see the differences. This feature is more about the look of the club than performance. My top choices wedge wise are Volkey, Cleveland, and Callaway if this helps as a starting point.

  33. guy crawford on

    I truly enjoyed the various reviews. I just got the LTD and love the muted sound combined with the launch angle and spin rate. Thanks!!

  34. George Smith on

    Enjoyed you reviews. The last 4 drivers I have owned have been Taylormade. I am distressed by all companies lengthening the shafts to gain distance with the promise of accuracy also. These two things don’t really go together. Its a shame they don’t come out with a 430 cc driver that is not just built for low handicappers (Im a 10) I believe Taylormade is pricing itself out of the driver market. Looking at Callaways now

  35. Josh Beason on

    Very insightful guide. Great information on each Brand and type of Driver available. Gonna be in the market for a new driver here soon so this guide will be a useful aid in choosing the best driver. Great Article!

  36. Helpful information! It would be helpful to know what your handicap is so that we can compare ourselves. As a 15 handicapper, I prefer a higher loft than 9 degrees which you tested mostly. Great work though and really appreciated. Any update on the new Titleist drivers?

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Alex, at the top left of any review you will see who the review is done by. Most will be done by me. Just click my name and my profile will appear. I am sorry that it is not easier to see. As for you comments, I need to test what works best for me in order to do a proper review. In this case based on my swing style and angle of attack, a lower loft is best. Most players are better off with a higher loft and even more so with the new technology that has heads producing a lower spin rate.

      As for the new Titleist drivers…..I hit the $1000 one a few times but did not see a $500 improvement for my game. And as for the 917, no and I would guess it will be Sept to Nic before I get my hands on one. Should be a great club for those that need that type of adjustments to their driver. I use to really tinker, but I find myself doing less now with great results.

      Thanks again for the kind words Alex.

  37. Drew Shinneman on

    Well-constructed review. Particularly enjoyed the “who’s it for” section as I find this is not always easy to distinguish based on look/ name alone. Will certainly use this as I try to choose a new driver this fall.

  38. MARC FOUNTAIN on

    A better understanding of the driver qualities than I got from the manufactures reps that were at our driving range.

  39. tom Marshall on

    Great review, thanks for taking the time and effort to help us all out. I am a avid golfer and equipment junkie too . Always looking to improve my game especially as I get older .

  40. Daniel Stone on

    Good overall review. However I feel you lofts for these tests are up the creek. On the basis that most players have high handicaps the Degree’s your using make no sense.
    Any club maker worth his salt, will tell that your average player should be using a 12 Degree driver.

    Rgds,

    Daniel.

  41. Thanks for your reviews, you put in a lot of effort and it’s appreciated. My comment is only meant to be constructive, not negative: It would be helpful to know your current driver model with loft, shaft, length, typical ball flight, swing speed and typical distances for carry and total. Then note in your review how these drivers compared to your norm, I think that would help potential buyers out there.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Todd,

      If you click under my name (not the one with a pic of me) you will see my bio & WITB.

      Currently my driver is a Taylormade M2 but there is way more than this about my driver. Since one is able to simply screw in a different shaft, I have about 6 of them that I rotate. I also added weight to the driver head since my playing length is 45″ or slightly less.

      Loft: 9.5 and I pretty much play it set on N, were in the past I always set the head on a slight fade position.
      My Swing Speed is 98 moh ave, which puts me at 235-242 carry with proper impact
      My launch and spin are good do to a + angle of attack so I get above average roll if the course is allowing it, so total distance is 255-270 with a very piercing ball flight that is mid high.
      Driver is one of the best clubs in my bag with plenty of center hits and my misses tend to be high on the toe area.

      Thanks for the suggestion also…..at the time of testing, I have a different driver.

  42. Mike Brincko on

    I went to get fitted again for drivers about a year ago, and hit most of what you have listed here, and some that are not. I was eventually fitted with the TM M1 430 with a Rogue X-70 set at 9*. What a driver this thing is, spin rates went way down and control is insane as well as distance. Was never a big fan of TM with all the product flooding the market, but I am glad this thing is in my bag. Confidence is everything, and the M1 gives it to me.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Mike, glad that you have become a TM fan….great choice for your needs….high swing speed and spin. This M series are truly great offerings from Taylormade. Personally, I love the feel of my M2

  43. Enjoyed your comments. My takeaway is that just about any name brand driver will work. Pick one that looks good to you and in your price range.

  44. Charley Hays on

    Enjoyed reading all of the reviews on the drivers. Did you have any real favorite or one you might not want because of the way you swing?

  45. Todd Capehart on

    Well done. I like the straight forward approach to your write up of these drivers. No phony rating system or garbage like that. (Why should “demand” be considered when determining if a piece of equipment would be good for me? Sorry, I twisted off for a second…)

  46. Scott Johnson on

    Great article. Very easy way to compare the drivers and get an idea of what to ask for when you are ready for a change.

  47. gerald j gardella on

    When I’m looking for a new driver the first thing I look for is a driver review of all the best drivers out their to read what they say about every driver so I can figure out what is the best driver for me this is very helpful and I wouldn’t buy any driver until I have read about every driver out their I really appreciate these feedback and I’m sure everyone else does also keep up the good work thanks Jerry

  48. Charles Wilson on

    Having read many reviews on drivers, including yours, I decided to order a Powerbilt, Air Force One. Its price was reasonable, as It’s not adjustable.True to the reviews, it is long and workable – a pleasure to hit.

    I’m 75, played golf for 60 years, with a single digit handicap.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Charles, I sure hope that I can follow suit…great game! Glad that you are happy with your driver. The owner AFO is a friend of mine and I know his goal is help players enjoy the game to the up most and I am happy to here that you are one of them!

  49. …and with the right shaft, in my oppinion, the Callawaydrivers are outstanding !
    The listing is Great and helpful !

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Yes the Callaway drivers are….as for the shaft, well with all those choices at no upcharge for sure one will wake up any head.

      Thanks Robert

  50. Thanks for all your research. Guess I’m have to go to my local Golf store and get busy trying them out.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Daniel, my swing speed is about 99-96 mph so we are close…questions?

      As for offset heads….just not seeing these anymore. With all the adjustments to create a draw bias (which is what the offset heads did) they are hard to come by.

      Thanks again

  51. Very good reviews and extremely helpful. With many of the clubs now going to adjustable heads its a necessity to get on a launch monitor to try them out. I have always been drawn to the Callaways and TaylorMade drivers but my last purchase was a Cobra which was much less expensive as well.

  52. Jeff Simpson on

    Liked the description and tendency of each driver
    Gives a good point by point description so that I know what drivers are best for me and will save me some time when I choose a driver
    Thanks

  53. You never once mention the shafts in any of these drivers. The shaft is the most important part of the driver..The drivers you have listed are all about the same just a few weights and slides and mix bag of colors. Sorry but that’s the way I see it….Gene

  54. Thanks for the review. In order to provide even more useful information, I would be interested in knowing:
    1. A little more about your swing speed, angle of attack, handicap, flight tendencies, etc.
    2. Which one of the drivers did you prefer and why.
    3. Which one was the longest and which one was the most accurate.
    4. How did these drivers perform in comparison to previous models. Were they much better or just marginally better?

  55. Lots of excellent information. The biggest issue for me is dialing in the driver with my declining swing speed as I get older.

  56. Jerry Freyberger on

    I have a ping G 3010° driver and will continue to use the G 30 line driver probably will buy new one next year

  57. Donald John on

    Have always loved Taylor Made. For me I don’t know how help it me a high handicap. But I would still love to own one.

  58. Tony Blatnik on

    Thank you for taking the time to write these reviews. Any thoughts to how the new Cobra drivers compare to last years Fly Z?

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Tony,

      I know that the Fly Z’s were very popular with Cobra fans and others trying Cobra for the first time. I personally feel that Cobra has made great strides from past few years offerings as the class of 2016 really shined for me, with the F6+ being my fav of the bunch.

      I don’t have hard numbers to back up my feelings for the current line up against last years, but I can just tell that Cobra really raised their game.

  59. Enjoyed the reviews, they may be more relevant if you used 3 or 4 players along with yourself at various handicap levels and incorporate their findings with yours.

  60. Melvin Scott on

    I really liked reading all the reviews. I did a lot of research before my new purchases this year. I would love to have purchased the TaylorMade M1, but after a 10 year lay off from golf I just couldn’t justify spending as much money as it would have taken to outfit myself again with all this year’s equipment. I think I got last years TaylorMade R15 driver from GolfDiscount. I am also trying Adams Golf New Idea hybrid irons. I also purchased an Odyssey 2-ball fang putter, 3-Callaway wedges, Callaway bag and Foot Joy shoes all from Golf Discount. It’s like trying to learn the game all over again. I am 58 now and was a 6 handicap 10 years ago now I haven’t broken 100 yet this year, but the new clubs may have helped cut 8 strokes off my best score this year. Although I was playing with a 20+ year old K-Mart set. I had to sell my Pings I had when I Quit. I am rambling, Again loved the reviews Thanks Bob

    • Melvin,

      You sound like someone that I would love to play with out on the links and let you try my M2.. Thanks for the support.

  61. Mike London on

    I recently switched from TaylorMade Burner drive to Ping G Series and have never hit more fairways. Ping makes an awesome club

  62. You have peeked my interest now in demoing Taylor Made M1. Your final comments on both Taylor Made drivers are about the same as I am hearing from fellow Golfers about the shaft, the feel and the look. Excellent review. The question I have is how can I eliminate all the variables you talked about and set up that driver that’s right for me. What is the formula ??

  63. Rich D'Angelo on

    The reviews are great and quite useful especially if you know you are in the market for a new driver. However, if you are happy with your big club it is always a chore to figure out if it is time for a fresh look at things. While comparing 2016 drivers to prior year clubs can be a chore, it would be helpful for those of us that “think” they are happy with their current driver.

  64. I hit my titleist 914 well but we all want a little more. I am interested in the M1. But how do I know what shaft to use?

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Jim,

      To answer you question I would suggest going to both of those OEM’s web site and go in to custom options. With a little searching for Custom Shafts, you will find shaft charts by both. These charts gives the consumer basic information on how each shaft is spin wise and launch wise. If you feel that you need one of the following from a certain shaft like, high launch with less spin, mid launch and mid spin, ect ect you will see a small group of shafts that fit in to those categories. It is always best to have the proper loft chosen over a different shaft. Shafts fine tune the heads.

      The best thing to do is rent a Trackman session and get your base numbers for Angle of Attack, Spin, and Launch Angle. Do a little reasearch on what is optimal and you will quickly learn what you need from a driver and or your swing.

      A few good baseline shafts would be the Diamana Blue label or S+ for the Titleist and the Kuro Kage TINi Silver for the Taylormade.

      Thanks,

      Bob

  65. We senior’s have been priced out of the market with the high price’s! We just can’t keep up with the new driver’s every week or so, other wise we might not eat! Rich

  66. Great reviews, seemed very thorough and bias. I am a Taylormade fan and will be trying out the M2 as soon I can!

  67. Mark Mitchell on

    Good information. Wished you had covered Adams product line. I have an Adams Tech driver that I really like and was wondering how their new offerings would fit into your testing.

  68. Andrew Grady on

    Have been a Taylormade user for a long time, but I struggled with the R15. On a whim tried a Ping G30 and was amazed at the control I have with that driver. My hook is now a baby draw. The game is a lot more fun from the short grass.

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Andrew,

      The Ping has a slight more draw bias to it that the R15 and also slightly more Forgiving. In my reviews I try to mention any sort of bias for each head.
      Great choice and glad to here that your in the short stuff.

  69. This is an excellent and comprehensive guide to golf drivers. Thank you for posting! I learned a lot about this key piece of golf equipment!

  70. Bill O'Keefe on

    This is information that is useful if you are in the market for a new driver. Two things are missing however. One for older players weight is important. Second, no evaluation of Cleveland drivers. How come?

    • Bob Gomavitz on

      Bill, I love how you support Cleveland golf. Have a look at the Srixon reviews as Clelveland/Srixon are one.

      As for weight, are you talking about the overall weight of each Driver? I’d more than happy to add each clubs gram weight in the 2017 reviews or weigh out any driver that you want. To help you out right away, all the Driver Reviews list the shaft that was used in the reviews. 50 Series shafts will be mid to high 50’s would be the best starting point for your reference. Plus many of the OEM’s are offering No Charge Upgrades so you can pick out any of the lighter shafts offered by them to fit your swing speed and game.

      Thanks again.

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