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Polar Opposite Driver Reviews


Nick75
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Hey everyone, just got through reading a certain golf website's driver reviews and have to say that there are some really unexpected rankings. No surprise that the SLDR or G25 did so well, but am I the only one who was shocked that the new Big Bertha and Big Bertha Alpha weren't among the elite? How exactly can those two drivers be the among the top choices in two other publications (Golf Digest and Golf.com) and be on the other end of the spectrum in another? I'm fully aware of the advantage (real or not real) advertising dollars play in these types of reviews, but even so, can it really be that far off even if ad dollars are in the equation? Just curious about everyone's thoughts on this. Thanks for all replies.

Titleist TSI2 Driver
Ping G425 3 Wood
Ping G425 3 & 4 Hybrids
Titleist T200 5-GW
Titleist Vokey SM7 54 and 58 Degree Wedges
Scotty Cameron Special Select Newport 2
Titleist ProV1

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My thoughts are ad dollars play a huge effect and that everyone needs to hit them for themselves to see what's BS and what's not. This year surprisingly the SLDR is legit and the BB is not. Sucks for the TM haters, I'd generally say I'm a part of that group too lol. Only my opinion of course.

Ping/Epon/Scratch/Bettinardi WITB Link

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[quote name='swizbeatz' timestamp='1392389725' post='8666641']
My thoughts are ad dollars play a huge effect and that everyone needs to hit them for themselves to see what's BS and what's not. This year surprisingly the SLDR is legit and the BB is not. Sucks for the TM haters, I'd generally say I'm a part of that group too lol. Only my opinion of course.
[/quote]

Thanks for the reply. I know ad dollars can influence one's ability to be unbiased, but I can't imagine it would to this degree (maybe so). The Big Bertha was almost dead last in both accuracy and distance, which I just can't fathom based on my past experience with Callaway drivers. Either way, guess I'm going to give the G25 a shot this spring. Even though 90% of my equipment is Ping, I think I'm the only guy in the world who's never gotten along with Ping drivers.

Titleist TSI2 Driver
Ping G425 3 Wood
Ping G425 3 & 4 Hybrids
Titleist T200 5-GW
Titleist Vokey SM7 54 and 58 Degree Wedges
Scotty Cameron Special Select Newport 2
Titleist ProV1

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I just pulled a shaft from last years gamer and put a g25 tip on it effectively committing to playing it at least for the start of the year. First ping driver since the old tisi or whatever it was called ~13 years ago. I keep reading about high MOI and I saw that on the course in the fall, I also am a low spin player so most of these new drivers won't work great for me. Its a legit driver, its not the absolute longest but its a great combo of length and accuracy. I hit the 3 wood against the I25 3 wood on trackman and the G will be in the bag as well as soon as I find one.

How is the testing going for the jetspeed? If I had to play a TM wood this year the jetspeed would be it, I really liked the 3 wood when I hit it.

Ping/Epon/Scratch/Bettinardi WITB Link

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[quote name='swizbeatz' timestamp='1392396937' post='8667681']
I just pulled a shaft from last years gamer and put a g25 tip on it effectively committing to playing it at least for the start of the year. First ping driver since the old tisi or whatever it was called ~13 years ago. I keep reading about high MOI and I saw that on the course in the fall, I also am a low spin player so most of these new drivers won't work great for me. Its a legit driver, its not the absolute longest but its a great combo of length and accuracy. I hit the 3 wood against the I25 3 wood on trackman and the G will be in the bag as well as soon as I find one.

How is the testing going for the jetspeed? If I had to play a TM wood this year the jetspeed would be it, I really liked the 3 wood when I hit it.
[/quote]

I answered a pm on the Jetspeed driver earlier and here's the short version: Winter has been rough here in Oklahoma, so this is just based on several times hitting it compared to my RBZ Stage 2 (which I love). From what little I have to go by, the Jetspeed is just as long but not as forgiving as the RBZ Stage 2. Sound and feel are typical TaylorMade, not the best but not the worst. Definitely lower spin, so for us mere mortals who don't have 110 mph swing speeds, the RBZ Stage 2 might be the better option. This is based on stock shafts cut down to 45" so obviously what I've said has no merit if you were to get properly fit. I can see how the Jetspeed could be very good for another individual (definitely one to test) but I'm either staying with the RBZ Stage 2 or trying one of this year's models from a different manufacturer. Having grown up playing mostly Callaway drivers, I'm very confused as to how it could rank so low in one website's reviews while being at the top of 2 others. Even with ad revenue playing a part in the "2 others", I just can't imagine that they would fudge the results that much for an underperforming driver from an ad customer. Maybe I'm being naïve and they would.

Titleist TSI2 Driver
Ping G425 3 Wood
Ping G425 3 & 4 Hybrids
Titleist T200 5-GW
Titleist Vokey SM7 54 and 58 Degree Wedges
Scotty Cameron Special Select Newport 2
Titleist ProV1

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I have hit a few drivers and I really didn't see the hype around the SLDR. For me it wasn't a good fit. And the more people I have seen try it, say the same thing. Not sure how it ranked that high in golf digest, but money does seem to have been a factor. I went with my father in law and we tested out quite a few new drivers and the Big Bertha was a huge stand out for him. He is a lower swing speed guy and his ball speed was 5-10mph higher than any other club he hit. Now this could be combination of shaft and head, but he bought the club on the spot. I loved my old Stage 2, but wanted something smaller and went to the tour, but wasn't as happy. Now I am back to 460 cc with the Adams Super LS and can't wait to put it up against my F12 LS. Out of my last 10 drivers, most of them have been either TEE or Adams. And they really don't get the recognition in most publications that they deserve since they don't advertise as much in the driver market.

Callaway Rogue SZ 10.5* W/ Matrix F7M2
Tour Edge Exotics XCG7 Beta 16.5* W/ Matrix F7M2 Proto

Adams Super LS 19* W/ Kuro Kage 80
Royal Collection Tour VS 5-PW W/ Aldila RIP Tour 115
Taylormade RAC Satin 50 + 54 W/ Aldila RIP Tour 115
MaxFli CrossBax 3.0 (#9 Style)
Bag - Honma Mini Staff
Ball - Taylormade RBZ Urethane
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[quote name='nova6868' timestamp='1392399958' post='8668005']
You realize they only used 6 testers...?

Also, BB had limited options available for testers. I think SLDR and G25 both had 2-3 lofts available.

And besides, the only real standout distance wise was the SLDR. And I admit that knowing I don't even like the SLDR.
[/quote]

I didn't know they only used 6 testers, that does make a difference.

Titleist TSI2 Driver
Ping G425 3 Wood
Ping G425 3 & 4 Hybrids
Titleist T200 5-GW
Titleist Vokey SM7 54 and 58 Degree Wedges
Scotty Cameron Special Select Newport 2
Titleist ProV1

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Plus, comparing the 2013 and 2014 versions of this same review you are referring to, the G25 made a jump from 6th overall in 2013 to 2nd this year. Am I supposed to believe that all of the manufacturers made drivers (SLDR being the lone exception) that regressed from last year's performance? For what it's worth, the G25 was their 13th!!! most accurate driver last year, but skyrocketed to 1st in accuracy this year. The numbers clearly prove that this isn't a fail-proof method of testing drivers. Use what works best for you.

PING G410 Plus 9* Fujikura Ventus Blue 6
Callaway Epic Flash 15* Atmos Red Tour Spec 7
TEE CBX 18* and CB Pro U 21* Matrix Altus 
Bridgestone J40 CB or Adams MB2 Raw 4-P PX LZ 6.0
Cleveland RTX4 50, 54, 58 Nippon Modus 125
Byron Morgan 612 or Odyssey Double Wide Flow
Shapland stand bag or PING Moonlite
Snell MTB X

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Thanks for the replies everyone. On a different note, does anyone have any time with the Big Bertha (non-Alpha) and an initial review that they could share, positive or negative? I know it just came out today, but there seems to be a lot of lucky people out there that somehow get these before everyone else.

Titleist TSI2 Driver
Ping G425 3 Wood
Ping G425 3 & 4 Hybrids
Titleist T200 5-GW
Titleist Vokey SM7 54 and 58 Degree Wedges
Scotty Cameron Special Select Newport 2
Titleist ProV1

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[quote name='settling4birdie' timestamp='1392399825' post='8667987']
Ranking OTR drivers is like trying to rank Frozen Fish Sticks....
[/quote]

Trick Question...all fish sticks are excellent

M5 10.5: LAG Trono 65x
Sim 15: Speeder Evo I 757x
TM UDI 2: Motore Speeder Tour Spec HB9.8x
19 P790 4-PW: DG TI X100
TM MG 50, TM TW 56/60 
All 20 of them suck - Currently Scotty SS NP 2

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I thought the BBA was as good as anything on the market. The BB was also great, but not as impressive as the alpha. I don't think the SLDR blows away the BBA by any stretch, and I've heard more complaints about the SLDR than any top rated driver out. It really doesn't fit everyones game. I'm bagging the JetSpeed myself. It's the sleeper of the year, encourages serious speed, and dirt cheap compared to the rest because of all the SLDR hype.

----------------
Golf Jobs
Driver: Titleist TS3 9.5 w/ Tensei Blue 55 S
3W: Titleist 915F 15 w/ Diamana D+ 80 S
3H: Titleist 915H 21 w/ Diamana D+ 90 S
Irons: 4-GW Titleist T100 w/ Project X LZ 6.0
Wedge: Vokey SM8 54.10S TC w/ Project X LZ 6.0

Wedge: Vokey SM8 60.04L TC w/ Project X LZ 6.0
Ball: 2021 Titleist ProV1

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I couldn't get the sldr to work for me. I just wasn't a fan of the sound or feel. I'm not a fan of the bb sound but it felt nice. Haven't swung the alpha or any of the pings. I like the titleist 913 d3. The best of the bunch for me was the amp cell pro. Actually, it's the best driver I've ever tested on a monitor.

There's nothing in the rule book that says you can't play drunk.

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I think the club test was as good as it gets in the golf world. Always going to be flaws. Always going to be what ifs. Have to take it for what it's worth. It's a great read and they give actual data from the testing. Haven't found anything even close in terms of quality.

Callaway Epic Sub Zero with Rogue Max
Cobra F6 Baffler
Ping g30 19*, 22*, 26* hybrids
Cobra Forged Tec 6i-GW
Ping Glide WS 54* and 60*
Evnroll ER7

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The biggest thing I got from the driver test at MGS is that there really isn't much difference between any of the top drivers. Also that there is minimal performance improvement over the 2013 drivers. The G25 was one of the highest rated heads this year, yet finished mid pack in 2013. The 2013 Xhot won last year, this year the "improved" Xhot2 finished near the bottom in 2014.

I disagree that testing drivers with the stock shafts somehow invalidates the results. Drivers tested should be OTR not one off models with an aftermarket shaft. . What benefit is a review of a G25 ,for example, with an ADDi shaft?

Its too bad there aren't similar type shootouts done here at Golfwrx .

Cobra LTD/ Atmos Black
Callaway X2hot 4w/ Kuro KageTiNi

Adams Proi hybrid 20 and 23
TM SLDR/ Recoil 110 4-pw/Nike 54, 58,
White Ice Mini T putter

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Limited options, limited sample size, reviewer bias, etc....do not add up to reliable information.

Titleist 910d3 9.5* (d4 surefit) Fujikura Motore Speeder 7.2s
Tour Edge Exotics cbx 16.5* Aldila RIP beta 80s 

Titleist 818h1 19* (a2 surefit) Fujikura Motore TS hb 8.8
Titleist 962b 3-pw s400
Vokey sm8 raw S 54* s400
Vokey sm8 raw M 60* s400
Ping Zing2 BeCu

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As has been said ad nauseum, any of these "tests" are what they are. Whether it's GD's list or Golf.com's, the reviews here or MGS's, I just look at them to introduce me to some clubs that I might not know of, or know that much about, and to give me an idea of the specs of the club(s).

They all serve their purpose, if used appropriately.

If a person uses any of these "lists" for anything thing more than to give them a general idea of what clubs that they want to hit, well, they get what they deserve, though hopefully, it's a solid fit and club.

No protocol is perfect.

No "model" is perfect.

Everyone has their flaws and if put under a microscope, can be dissected and ridiculed.

However, I know for a fact, that the owner of the other site has spent 1000's of hours, and Lord knows how much money and basically put his life into this and his site, and while you may not agree with the testing parameters, and as has been pointed out above me, to argue or ridicule over 12-15' is ridiculous, though please remember, good men and women are involved in every one of these lists, and I do not believe that an one individual arrives at their desk with the intent of producing inaccurate, poorly organized work.

Regarding OEM money, that site takes $0 from the any of the biggies.

Have they taken part in the press junkets that EVERY other site has participated in?

Absolutely.


However, if you read ANY of the articlea, threads or posts by either Colt or Tony, they pull no punches.

And, as an aside, if you go and look, KRANK is a Sponsor, and if you read the KRANK threads in the forum, and I'll just say that my post in the KRANK Element(Formula 5) review here was a love letter compared to my, and many others, posts to Vince and Lance at KRANK.

Not a single post was edited, delated or a single thread locked down!

I judge an individual, group or company based on actions, and if you go read those threads, and the posts were scathing, and Colt let em stand.

Every single one.

So, I think if we use these lists as a guide, and not a purchasing "bible," then they all have value.

Well, that's my .01's worth :)

Nice thread!

Havae a great season


Fairways & Greens My Friend,
Richard

In the end, only three things matter~ <br /><br />How much that you loved...<br /><br />How mightily that you lived...<br /><br />How gracefully that you accepted both victory & defeat...<br /><br /><br /><br />GHIN: Beefeater 24

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One difference between 2013 and 2014 in the MGS tests are that this time around they didn't just keep the best hits. They kept many more hits in their averages.
As a result a club like the G25 did better as it was more consistent than a lot of other drivers on mishits, hence why it moved up relative to other drivers.
It is not due to new offerings being worse but a slight change in methodology.

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[quote name='rtraudt' timestamp='1392404263' post='8668527']
Plus, comparing the 2013 and 2014 versions of this same review you are referring to, the G25 made a jump from 6th overall in 2013 to 2nd this year. Am I supposed to believe that all of the manufacturers made drivers (SLDR being the lone exception) that regressed from last year's performance? [b]For what it's worth, the G25 was their 13th!!! most accurate driver last year, but skyrocketed to 1st in accuracy this year[/b]. The numbers clearly prove that this isn't a fail-proof method of testing drivers. Use what works best for you.
[/quote]

I didn't realize that...kind of puts the whole test into perspective now, and only emphasizes that each person needs to hit drivers for themselves to see which one stands out the most.

Cobra LTD HZRDUS 75g 6.5 (Synergy Black 70TX tipped 1/2")
Ping 2014 Rapture 3W - Blueboard 73x5ct
Cobra F8 3 hybrid (HZRDUS Black 85 6.5)
4 Hybrid...
Srixon Z545 5-AW (SF i110 stiff)
RTX 3.0 - 54 and 58 (SF i125 stiff)
Ping Ketsch Mid 

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I will never buy based on the following:
1. Any report from other people no matter how scientific, controlled or unbiased they say they are.

2. No OEM advertisements. Yeah, I'm going to give something up because you say I'll do this, that or the other. Seeing is believing.

3. What everyone says is 'hot.'

Thank the good lord for a great pro who has heads, shafts and and a genuine interest in making the game fun. You take the club, go to the range, play 18/36 holes, maybe some more. Compare against what you have that already works. THEN you make a decision.

It's YOU and YOUR game.
Maybe I'm weird but...

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[quote name='MizzyMan' timestamp='1392412065' post='8669377']
For being the highest-rated driver ever, or whatever they're saying, the guys playing the SLDR on Tour (at least the better ones) seem to be hitting it shorter or the same at best. Over-hyped-ier? Loft up, shmoft up.
[/quote]
That's interesting.....Where did this information come from?

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