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Prototype Callaway driver and irons spotted at the Deutsche Bank Championship

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Check out the photos we shot of a prototype Callaway driver with a sliding weight track that wraps around the perimeter of the driver head.

The weight appears smaller than the one in TaylorMade’s SLDR driver, but its rearward positioning is sure to stir healthy (and unhealthy) debate about the best place to position the center of gravity in a driver head.

For years, TaylorMade has been touting the benefits of a low-and-forward CG for a higher launch and lower spin with its drivers. Company officials say that the CG positioning increases ball speed and forgiveness on shots hit low on the face.

Companies like Titleist, Callaway and Ping have preferred more rearward weighting strategies, which according to Ping’s Marty Jertson, a senior design engineer for the company, improves clubhead stability and allows golfers to achieve more efficient launch conditions (a.k.a. a lower spin loft).

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The driver also includes a removable weight at the end of the weight track on the heel portion of the driver and a dual-cog adjustable hosel, but don’t count on this driver coming to retail exactly as is — Callaway officials declined comment on the unfinished prototype, which doesn’t have scoring lines on the face or markings on the sole.

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We also spotted two prototype Callaway forged irons on the range at the Deutsche Bank Championshp. One of the irons looks to be in line with Callaway’s 2013 X Forged iron model, but unlike the X Forged it has a multi-material construction that we can only assume adds to the iron’s forgiveness and functionality.

The other model has a deep undercut cavity, which makes an iron higher launching, more forgiving and generally provides faster ball speeds.

Check out more photos of the driver and irons below, and make sure to click here to see what members are saying about the prototype clubs in the forums.

 

Click here to see the buzz about the prototype Callaway driver and irons in the forums.

 

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64 Comments

64 Comments

  1. Rwhfinancial.Com

    Dec 8, 2013 at 8:18 pm

    She beverages her coffee. Two months ago a next-door neighbor told her about your page, and she asked me to purchase her one of those thingummyjigs. She and I are extremely happy her friend happened over to your blog.

  2. Rich

    Sep 11, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    One of the irons looks very much like the R9 TM.

  3. glenn kirk

    Sep 1, 2013 at 2:29 am

    its all about the shaft people, stock shafts are junk full stop. get a decent after market shaft and you will hit most brands sweet.

  4. roche

    Aug 31, 2013 at 11:04 am

    If Barnum and Bailey were alive today they would bi in the golf business.

  5. Kevin burke

    Aug 31, 2013 at 11:01 am

    Ever wonder why they say a pro lost his game from switching equipment (Mclroy) and yet we amatuers are supposed to switch every 6 months or be left in the dust?

  6. Jordan

    Aug 30, 2013 at 11:37 am

    Another callaway driver… Whats that, the 7th driver they’ve released this year? Ridiculous.

  7. Matt

    Aug 30, 2013 at 2:04 am

    I don’t know why everyone is complaining about the OEM’s putting out new stuff every few months. Hell it’s saved me a bunch of money. I bought a brand new Nike Vr Pro limited for $150.00, a brand new Adams A12 for $85 and a brand new Pro Black for $75 all because the big OEM’s said they’re outdated and enough people out there believe it. Hell I got all three for less than I paid for my last driver 8 years ago and this new one is the best driver I’ve ever had plus the hybrids are awesome too. Keep it up OEM’s I’ll keep buying that 6 month old outdated equipment!

    • Jordan

      Aug 30, 2013 at 11:37 am

      Good point!

    • benseattle

      Aug 30, 2013 at 2:51 pm

      Finally: Golfwrx reveals a man with a brain who knows how to play this “new introduction” game. Rather than buy brand-new, not-really-revolutionary-technology and a few months later griping about “depreciation” and “diminished re-sale value,” Matt here is smartly buying six months or so after the latest introduction and saving BUNDLE$ in the process for technology that’s virtually identical to the new stuff.

      Matt, you’re a smartie and probably not the only one here. (Sadly, however, there are many Golfwrxers who actualy buy into the advertising, the hype and the so-called “prestige” of the latest gear, pathetically believing that new gear — with it’s minute advancements — will actually allow them to Score Better. I kid you not.)

      • Matt

        Sep 2, 2013 at 9:51 pm

        Yeah benseattle so many people want to try and buy a game believing its the arrow and not the indian. My philosophy is stick with what works until it stops working and that’s why I had my last driver 8 years. Think about that how many new drivers came out in that time claiming to be longer than the previous model. I put that old driver a Titleist 905T up against every new driver I tested on the simulator and it consistently put up higher ball speed numbers by a couple miles an hour than the new stuff I tested it against with equally good spin and launch. Some of those drivers I tested, Taylor made Rll, Taylor made Rocketballz, Ping i20 and g20, Cleveland classic, Callaway Rzr and diablo etc. Only the Nike impressed me enough to put it in the bag and it was more for accuracy, feel and the way it looked in the address position than distance.

  8. Leftright

    Aug 29, 2013 at 8:16 am

    Golf is now nothing more than a rehash of old technology, hence forward or backward weighting. The new Titleist 714 I sadly say is nothing more than the first AP2 iron put out by Titleist. I play AP2’s and the 913 but the new Titleist and Ping S55, look closely, pretty much the same design. Golf balls, the same way. The first generation ProV1 is just as long and straight as the current. I have a storage for some old equipment and will safe a couple of sleeves of prior generation balls just for comparison. Marketing, Marketing, Marketing boys.

  9. Courtoni20

    Aug 29, 2013 at 7:49 am

    If manufacturers would keep the same club at the same price as their latest and greatest, they would still hit all of the markets y’all described except us idiots who do want that extra edge, the ones that see all the guys on TV with it and say if they need it to make millions then I need it to hit fairways, sink putts etc. The problem is in the idea that they “need” it; they are employees of whoever they wear on their clothes and bags and thus have to say,”I play something longer than R11″ when they don’t actually except in a simulator. Can anyone who has switched from R9 to R1 over the years and had their balls rocketier boosted twice say that they hit it longer or straighter or more importantly both? We used to call it the TP model because the charateristics of the head, now they do it for the shafts, it will never end until we allow clubs to fail when marketed.

    • MorikawaTMaG

      Aug 30, 2013 at 3:44 am

      I actually just tested my R9 Supertri to my R1 with same shaft and i find that the R1 spins less and goes 7 yards further on average

  10. Ed

    Aug 29, 2013 at 6:59 am

    I have no prob with my ‘old’ Callaway irons or Razr-fit driver – especially after trying out the latest Callaway and TM models. What I find annoying is that the big Co’s have gone to all out war with each other and jumped into instant disposable/obsolete club mentality like never before. It’s not comforting to think that a driver I laid out €360 for is now on sale for €179 and has been superceded by no less than THREE more models within the space of just over 12 months. And who’s to prove that each new model is actually longer and better? Despite many Club golfers claiming they now hit the latest drivers 20, 30 or even 50yds more, I’d like to see the stats. There are strict R&A/PGA rules governing the materials and technology that can be used so all things being equal you might get a 10/15 yard gain – presuming you swing with the consistency of a Pro to begin with. Also, the norm for irons now seems to be to deloft the clubhead. This creates the illusion that you are gaining extra yardage on each of your older irons. But in reality all this means is that your new 5 iron has the loft of your old 4 iron. A Marketing gem maybe, but as the manufacturers don’t reveal this fact openly this is disingenuous to say the least. That said, Callaway still rule. #endofrant

  11. MorikawaTMaG

    Aug 29, 2013 at 1:53 am

    when you guys said taylormade copied the mp-600 at least they made the design diffrent….

  12. BigBoy

    Aug 28, 2013 at 11:32 pm

    Not one “modern” driver or iron has any engineering logic in the design…total hack clubs by hack engineers at hack manufacturers…actually Callaway have disappointed me with this driver…i thought they were better than trying to imitate others for the $$$$$

  13. KCCO

    Aug 28, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    Let the OEM’S do as they please…. There’s a sucker born everyday, and they end up buying into this crap. Must say mizzy and titleist do what they are known for the best, and i feel confident buying their products knowing its not gonna be replaced next week or have some goofy name on it, just feel like those few other companies push a lot of disposable gear that is played, gone, and forgotten within weeks/months….it’s sad to see people get beat, but they get sucked in, and within a short amount of time, you say why am I hitting a shaft with a tribal logo?!? Few weeks later there’s a ton of TMAG, Callaway, etc on BST for a fraction of the price…or in some cases, the stuff actually played by pros for astronomical prices as one company is famous for….

  14. matt

    Aug 28, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    What I don’t understand is why anyone cares if cares if the OEM’s do market their clubs the way they do. I get it that its dumb, but for the people who don’t troll golf sites bashing every new club they see because it resembles another club its a great way to get their product out there. Callaway makes great clubs so quit whining and buy what you like and leave the rest alone.

  15. Ed

    Aug 28, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    I’m a Callaway fan. I use their FT irons and Razr-fit driver. I decided to get fitted for a new set of irons a couple of months ago by a leading Euro club fitter. I tried out TM’s pocket irons and Callaway’s X-Hot irons. The fitter informed me that I was hitting my FT 6 iron as long, and with tighter dispersion, than the TM and despite trying out a number of different shafts couldn’t improve anything. I did manage to hit the X-Hot about 10 yards longer and the Callaway did feel much better but, when you consider that both the TM Pockets and Callaway X-Hot’s are all set a full club stronger than my old FT’s I decided not to change. My Razr-fit driver was bought just over a year ago. During this past 14 months Callaway launched THREE new drivers: The Razr-fit Extreme, the X-Hot and the Optiforce. Note to all the big Club manufacturers: Call a truce and spare some consideration for all the golfers who spend serious money on new equipment. My state of the art Razr-fit driver is now worth substantially less and considered all but obsolete after only 14 months. That’s insane and obscene.

    • TheHeez

      Aug 28, 2013 at 6:53 pm

      But if you like your driver and if you hit it well, isn’t its worth based on your performance with it? Why does its trade-in value have any significance? Is it ego that dictates one must have the latest & greatest? Golf mfgs make money by constantly offering newer/longer/better. You are essentially asking them to make less money so you can feel better about your purchase. Not sound business. Plus, if they have a better product (arguable), do you prefer they not release it?

    • Tot

      Aug 29, 2013 at 2:30 am

      But Ed – you do realize you are not the only people who may be buying new equipment, that there are new golfers out there in the world? Oh yes, believe it or not, there are still plenty of new people picking up the game, and are being invited to pick up the game by the industry. And those new people want new stuff too. So it’s always going to be like that. And we need those new people to spend money on golf so that golf can stay at the high peak we experienced before 2008.

    • benseattle

      Aug 30, 2013 at 2:40 pm

      <>

      I want to sympathize, but I really can’t. Golf clubs are like cars: they’re a depreciating asset. You yourself proclaim that your driver is “state of the art” so the introduction of new clubs shouldn’t affect you one iota. Since your current “last year” bag is yet on a par with the latest and greatest, you’re not going to buy new or trade anything in. Anyone hoping to buy golf equipment hoping for great resale value in a couple of years is simply buying for the wrong reasons. My advice is, buy your favorite clubs, use them for years and only when you see something else that you MUST have, that will actually make you Play Better do you even THINK about a change. And don’t worry your little head one bit about “depreciation” or diminished resale value. It’s golf, man…. it’s SUPPOSED to be painful!

      (Oh and for the record: an item can’t be State of the Art and both “obsolete” at the same time.)

  16. HAK

    Aug 28, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    Thats a lot of heads overs to be in a ‘players’ bag, must be a demo bag properly placed so that everyone with a lens can zoom in…

  17. Zach

    Aug 28, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    I still love my razr x musclebacks.

  18. Dave

    Aug 28, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    It’s funny how this stuff just leaks… **Prototype Spotted** OMG!! Everyone look, ooo ahhhh…. create buzz, create more buzz..
    Product name revealed, Product released… 15 yards longer promises… Product disappointment… new driver only hit 10 times on BST.

    Who’s bag was it seen in? Or was it just a bag of clubs that happened to be sitting around and got it’s photo taken?

  19. Rich

    Aug 28, 2013 at 2:53 pm

    Yep, copy of the MP600 (I have one) and the irons are much like Mizunos and Macgregor!!!!

    Try me I’m the latest junk so I must be better!
    Sooner or later club mfg’s will discover the equipment should go back to a 2 year rotation not 6 months..Some are moving to that now .

  20. Peter

    Aug 28, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    Is anyone else sick of all the gimmicks?! What ever happened to getting fit for a club and learning to hit the shots you want? Tiger had his prototype driver shown at the open and his was bonded and no frills, so why do all of the manufacturers feel the need to add bulk and clutter to a club? Especially if they can’t even decide on what will work better, front or back weighting. Finally please tell me the difference between the sldr, this club, and the original design from mizuno? This is why tour shafts and fittings are more expensive , they know the driver heads with all their added toys aren’t worth kindling a fire with if you don’t have the rest! Just my 2¢ rant for the day.

    • Matt

      Aug 29, 2013 at 11:50 am

      I’m with you 100% Peter I’ve always preferred a traditional set up to all this gimmicky crap, no adjustable clubs in my bag. However I will admit the 2 and 3 irons have both been replaced with hybrids. I’d be ashamed if it wasn’t for all the awesome shots I hit with them!

  21. OS

    Aug 28, 2013 at 1:26 pm

    Way too much off-set on them irons

  22. The Real James

    Aug 28, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    There’s nothing new in the world of club design.

  23. benseattle

    Aug 28, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    “Spotted at the Barclay’s.” What exactly does this phrase mean?

    Were the clubs actually being bagged for tournament play by a Callaway staff player?

    Were company reps merely showing them around, knowing that retail versions were perhaps two full years away? What gives?

    • Zak Kozuchowski

      Aug 28, 2013 at 1:34 pm

      Equipment companies bring out new equipment at certain times during the PGA Tour season for their staff players to see/test and get their feedback. Usually, this is restricted to the range, although in certain circumstances the clubs can make it in to play.

      In the past, it was easy for OEM’s to do this without causing a stir, but then GolfWRX came around 😉

      – Zak

      • OhioGolfDude

        Sep 4, 2013 at 3:41 pm

        Haha, so true Zak. I love everyone’s opinions on what companies do it right vs. doing it wrong.

  24. Joel

    Aug 28, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    I have played pretty well with callaway stuff for a long time, my biggest complaint though is sole width and top line. Even callaways “players” irons seem so clunky to me at address.

  25. Roger

    Aug 28, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    The Iron with the Tourstage look is great.

    The Driver definitely has that Trick look to it, happy to buy
    one in 4 years! Had the MP 001, and the Slider MP, just bought
    MP 630 (no slider).

  26. joe

    Aug 28, 2013 at 11:40 am

    WOW! another Mizuno knock off and even more like the Mizuno than the SLDR.
    History repeats itself but man this is fast.

    as for the irons… they look legit. cant wait to see the finished product

  27. Rob

    Aug 28, 2013 at 11:07 am

    I think I’ll stick to my Cobras. No need to fall for the gimmicks every couple months.

    • Matt

      Aug 28, 2013 at 1:07 pm

      I am with you Rob, I love my Amp Cell driver and 3 wood, nothing else can touch its performance in my hands especially the over priced Titleist and Ping although Titleist does make my favorite ball lol..

  28. Mike

    Aug 28, 2013 at 11:04 am

    Paul…if you look carefully, Callaway owns the patents to SLDR. Thus TMaG is actually using Callaway technology. TMaG’s run as #1 could be coming to an end.

    • HackerDav

      Aug 28, 2013 at 11:17 am

      Could you show us that? Not sure I buy that. From what I’ve read from WRX site editors, the TMaG patents for sliding weights pre-date Mizuno. Would love to see any of the patent info you mention. Looks like the “War” Cally declared is heating up…

      • spazo

        Aug 28, 2013 at 1:19 pm

        Patent #7,775,905 was filed in 2006 by TMaG–which means they were at least working on development before that date, likely a few years before. Mizuno’s came out in 2008. Callaway has nothing that old.

  29. Ben

    Aug 28, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Please bring the Legacy Black offerings stateside.

    Sincerely,

    Everyone

    • 4rheel

      Aug 28, 2013 at 12:06 pm

      Agreed, they need to start selling the premo stuff here in the States.

      Maybe these are going to be the new Legacy Blacks in Japan?

    • HAK

      Aug 28, 2013 at 4:00 pm

      I play a Legacy Aero 8.5(japan edition) and it’s stupid GOOD!!! The funny part is I’m a Taylor STAFF Pro(Crusader)… The SLDR is a good head, just not as good Japanese products

  30. Nick

    Aug 28, 2013 at 10:43 am

    Am I the only one who thinks the weight tracks are fugly and gimmicky looking? Whatever happened to something looking classic. I love my Xhot 3 wood but the tribal tattoo on the shaft is embarassing. Obviously performance comes first but is it really too much to ask that club aesthetics not have a MTV Jersey Shore look to them.

  31. Baba Booey

    Aug 28, 2013 at 10:40 am

    Seriously, these OEMs are out of control. It’s just a marketing machine at this point throwing clubs out every month.

    Stick with Titleist. They don’t do this garbage.

    • wcavanau

      Aug 28, 2013 at 11:30 am

      It all started when the golf companies were bought up by larger, public companies. When you are public you have stockholders which means you need to keeping producing cash!! You have Ping at one end of the spectrum and Taylor Made at the other. Even Titleist is moving away from what they used to be with hardgoods.

      • Freddy v

        Aug 28, 2013 at 11:46 am

        That’s because Titleist is a ball company…they have no chance to compete with any of the companies in the iron and wood category. The ball is the only reason they are profitable…

      • Pancho Golfer

        Aug 28, 2013 at 12:55 pm

        So true. and add the biggest 24/7 marketing machine invention of he past decade, Golf Channel!

    • Dennis

      Aug 28, 2013 at 11:52 am

      I’m with Baba Booey….Stick with Titleist

    • rtylerg

      Aug 28, 2013 at 9:12 pm

      Brand loyalty in today’s world is just foolish if you ask me. Are they loyal back? Do they offer a “rewards card” for past purchases? They’re not interested in keeping loyal customers, it’s all about the bottom line. Why do you think Titleist can get away with charging people twice as much for their equipment and never mark down the price? Because they’ve got the “players” hooked on “in Titleist we trust”. Don’t get me wrong, Titleist makes some of the best equipment, but the point is: find the equipment that works for you. Brand is irrelevant these days because the technology and quality are all about the same from one to the next.

      • Matt

        Aug 29, 2013 at 11:42 am

        Actually Titleist equipment tends to cost more because they don’t putt out new crap every 6 months like Taylormade and now Callaway. Its the law of supply and demand fewer options means higher prices. However I agree with you in trying different brands, all these companies make good products these days.

  32. OhioGolfDude

    Aug 28, 2013 at 10:26 am

    Love the look of the cavity back forged iron…reminiscent of the Diablo Forged! If they are that forgiving, may be looking into that one!

    • Tyler

      Aug 28, 2013 at 12:41 pm

      I thought the same thing when i saw the cavity back. looks like the diablo

  33. Paul

    Aug 28, 2013 at 9:58 am

    So callaway wants to copy both the mp-600 and the sldr? Fail

    • Mike Leether

      Aug 28, 2013 at 11:03 am

      …Don’t forget the s55. Triple fail!

      • Kenny nakato

        Aug 28, 2013 at 12:17 pm

        Although this will most likely be softer. And take a closer look guys. I think this is a solid construction, not a weight badge or feel insert

    • Dave

      Aug 28, 2013 at 3:08 pm

      It’s funny how this stuff just leaks… **Prototype Spotted** OMG!! Everyone look, ooo ahhhh…. create buzz, create more buzz..
      Product name revealed, Product released… 15 yards longer promises… Product disappointment… new driver only hit 10 times on BST.

      Who’s bag was it seen in? Or was it just a bag of clubs that happened to be sitting around and got it’s photo taken?

      • MorikawaTMaG

        Aug 29, 2013 at 1:55 am

        i think its just one of the bags that are just on the range

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pga tour

Ian Poulter WITB 2018

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Equipment is accurate as of the 2018 Honda Classic (2/20/2018).

Driver: Titleist 917D2 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei Orange CK 60TX

3 Wood: Titleist 917F2 (16.5 degrees)
Shaft: Matrix Ozik TP7HDe 7X

Hybrid: Titleist 816 H2 (21 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Tour Green ATX85H TX

Irons: Titleist 716 T-MB (4), Titleist 718 AP2 (5-PW)
Shaft: Project X LZ 130 7.0

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 (52-12F, 56-14F, 60-04L)
Shaft: Project X LZ 7.0 (52), True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 (56, 60)

Putter: EvnRoll Tour ER
Grip: Odyssey Pistol

Putter: Rife Antigua Island Series
Grip: Odyssey Pistol

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

Related:

Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about Poulter’s clubs. 

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Equipment

10 interesting photos from Wednesday at the Honda Classic

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From our featured image of Rory McIlroy putting in a different kind of work on the range in the pre-dawn hours of Wednesday morning, to shots of Tiger Woods’ similarly early pre-pro-am range work, to some intriguing shots Patrick Reed’s prototype Bettinardi putter, GolfWRX has plenty of fantastic photo content from PGA National.

Here are some of the best shots from Wednesday.

Tiger Woods at work prior to his crack-of-dawn pro-am tee time. Gentleman in the foreground: You do know that as the sun has not yet risen, you do not need a hat to aggressively combat its rays, right?

“My feet do not look like that at impact.”

All eyes on the Big Cat…except those focused on the live video on their cell phone screens…

Let’s take a closer look at Patrick Reed’s yardage book cover. Yep. As expected.

Do you think these two ever talk?

It looks like Captain Furyk already has some pre-Ryder Cup swag in the form of a putter cover.

If you’ve ever wondered why Rickie Fowler selected these interesting locations for his tattoos, this may be the answer: Visible when he holds his finish.

We’ve got a Pistol Pete sighting!

Patrick Reed’s droolworthy Bettinardi Dass prototype.

Fun fact: Wedges double as magnetic putter cover holders, as Jon Curran illustrates here. Healthy application of lead tape, as well, from the tour’s resident graffiti artist.

Wednesday’s Photos

Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about the photos in our forums.

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Accessory Reviews

Review: FlightScope Mevo

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In 100 Words

The Mevo is a useful practice tool for amateur golfers and represents a step forward from previous offerings on the market. It allows golfers to practice indoors or outdoors and provides club speed, ball speed, smash factor, launch angle, spin rate, carry distance and flight time.

It also has a video capture mode that will overlay swing videos with the swing data of a specific swing. It is limited in its capabilities and its accuracy, though, which golfers should expect at this price point. All in all, it’s well worth the $499 price tag if you understand what you’re getting.

The Full Review

The FlightScope Mevo is a launch monitor powered by 3D Doppler radar. With a retail price of $499, it is obviously aimed to reach the end consumer as opposed to PGA professionals and club fitters.

The Mevo device itself is tiny. Like, really tiny. It measures 3.5-inches wide, 2.8-inches tall and 1.2-inches deep. In terms of everyday products, it’s roughly the size of an Altoids tin. It’s very easy to find room for it in your golf bag, and the vast majority of people at the range you may be practicing at won’t even notice it’s there. Apart from the Mevo itself, in the box you get a quick start guide, a charging cable, a carrying pouch, and some metallic stickers… more on those later. It has a rechargeable internal battery that reaches a full charge in about two hours and lasts for about four hours when fully charged.

As far as software goes, the Mevo pairs with the Mevo Golf app on your iOS or Android device. The app is free to download and does not require any subscription fees (unless you want to store and view videos of your swing online as opposed to using the memory on your device). The app is very easy to use even for those who aren’t tech savvy. Make sure you’re using the most current version of the firmware for the best results, though (I did experience some glitches at first until I did so). The settings menu does have an option to manually force firmware writing, but updates should happen automatically when you start using the device.

Moving through the menus, beginning sessions, editing shots (good for adding notes on things like strike location or wind) are all very easy. Video mode did give me fits the first time I used it, though, as it was impossible to maintain my connection between my phone and the Mevo while having the phone in the right location to capture video properly. The only way I could achieve this was by setting the Mevo as far back from strike location as the device would allow. Just something to keep in mind if you find you’re having troubles with video mode.

Screenshot of video capture mode with the FlightScope Mevo

Using the Mevo

When setting up the Mevo, it needs to be placed between 4-7 feet behind the golf ball, level with the playing surface and pointed down the target line. The distance you place the Mevo behind the ball does need to be entered into the settings menu before starting your session. While we’re on that subject, before hitting balls, you do need to select between indoor, outdoor, and pitching (ball flight less than 20 yards) modes, input your altitude and select video or data mode depending on if you want to pair your data with videos of each swing or just see the data by itself. You can also edit the available clubs to be monitored, as you will have to tell the Mevo which club you’re using at any point in time to get the best results. Once you get that far, you’re pretty much off to the races.

Testing the Mevo

I tested the FlightScope Mevo with Brad Bachand at Man O’ War Golf Center in Lexington, Kentucky. Brad is a member of the PGA and has received numerous awards for golf instruction and club fitting. I wanted to put the Mevo against the best device FlightScope has to offer and, luckily, Brad does use his $15,000 FlightScope X3 daily. We had both the FlightScope Mevo and Brad’s FlightScope X3 set up simultaneously, so the numbers gathered from the two devices were generated from the exact same strikes. Brad also set up the two devices and did all of the ball striking just to maximize our chances for success.

The day of our outdoor session was roughly 22 degrees Fahrenheit. There was some wind on that day (mostly right to left), but it wasn’t a major factor. Our setup is pictured below.

Outdoor testing setup with FlightScope X3 (foreground) and Mevo

The results of our outdoor testing are shown below. The testing was conducted with range balls, and we did use the metallic stickers. The range balls used across all the testing were all consistently the same brand. Man O’ War buys all new range balls once a year and these had been used all throughout 2017.  The 2018 batch had not yet been purchased at the time that testing was conducted.

Raw outdoor data captured with range balls including metallic stickers. Mevo data (blue) and X3 data (orange) were both generated from the same exact shots.

You’ll notice some peculiar data in the sand wedge spin category. To be honest, I don’t fully know what contributed to the X3 measuring such low values. While the Mevo’s sand wedge spin numbers seem more believable, you could visibly see that the X3 was much more accurate on carry distance. Below is a quick summary of the percent differences between each of the parameters as presented by the Mevo and the X3 in our outdoor session when separated out for each club. As previously mentioned, though, take sand wedge spin with a grain of salt.

Table showing the percent difference of each parameter between Mevo and X3 grouped by club (outdoor testing).

The first thing we noticed was that the Mevo displays its numbers while the golf ball is still in midair, so it was clear that it wasn’t watching the golf ball the entire time like the X3. According to the Mevo website, carry distance, height and flight time are all calculated while club speed, ball speed, launch angle and spin rate are measured. As for the accuracy of the measured parameters, the Mevo’s strength is ball speed. The accuracy of the other measured ball parameters (launch angle and spin rate) is questionable depending on certain factors (quality of strike, moisture on the clubface and ball, quality of ball, etc). I would say it ranges between “good” or “very good” and “disappointing” with most strikes being categorized as “just okay.”

As for the calculated parameters of carry distance, height and time, those vary a decent amount. Obviously, when the measurements of the three inputs become less accurate, the three outputs will become less accurate as a result. Furthermore, according to FlightScope, the Mevo’s calculations are not accounting for things like temperature, humidity, and wind. The company has also stated, though, that future updates will likely adjust for these parameters by using location services through the app.

Now, let’s talk about those metallic stickers. According to the quick start guide, the Mevo needs a sticker on every golf ball you hit, and before you hit each ball, the ball needs to be placed such that the sticker is facing the target. It goes without saying that it doesn’t sound like a whole lot of fun to spend time putting those stickers on every ball, let alone balls that will never come back to you if you’re at a public driving range. Obviously, people are going to want to avoid using the stickers if they can, so do they really matter? Below is a table of data showing the percent difference between the Mevo’s data and the X3’s data of what we collected outdoors with a driver and range balls with and without the use of the stickers.

Table showing how the percent difference of each parameter changes between Mevo and X3 when you use the metallic stickers and when you don’t

The FlightScope website says that the metallic stickers “are needed in order for the Mevo to accurately measure ball spin.” We observed pretty much the same as shown in the table above. The website also states they are working on alternative solutions to stickers (possibly a metallic sharpie), which I think is wise.

Another thing we thought would be worth testing is the impact of different golf balls. Below is a table of data showing the percent difference between the Mevo’s data and the X3’s data of what we collected outdoors with a driver and range balls as compared to Pro V1’s. All of this data was collected using the metallic stickers.

Table showing how the percent difference of each parameter changes between Mevo and X3 when you switch from range balls to Pro V1’s

As shown above, the data gets much closer virtually across the board when you use better quality golf balls. Just something else to keep in mind when using the Mevo.

Indoor testing requires 8 feet of ball flight (impact zone to hitting net), which was no problem for us. Our setup is pictured below. All of the indoor testing was conducted with Titleist Pro V1 golf balls using the metallic stickers.

Indoor testing setup with FlightScope X3 (foreground) and Mevo

The results of our indoor session are shown below.

Raw indoor data captured with Pro V1’s including metallic stickers. Mevo data (blue) and X3 data (orange) were both generated from the same exact shots.

Below is a quick summary of the percent differences between each of the parameters as presented by the Mevo and the X3 in our indoor session when separated out for each club.

Table showing the percent difference of each parameter between Mevo and X3 grouped by club (indoor testing)

On the whole, the data got much closer together between the two devices in our indoor session. I would think a lot of that can be attributed to the use of quality golf balls and to removing outdoor factors like wind and temperature (tying into my previous comment above).

As far as overall observations between all sessions, the most striking thing was that the Mevo consistently gets more accurate when you hit really good, straight shots. When you hit bad shots, or if you hit a fade or a draw, it gets less and less accurate.

The last parameter to address is club speed, which came in around 5 percent different on average between the Mevo and X3 based on all of the shots recorded. The Mevo was most accurate with the driver at 2.1 percent different from the X3 over all strikes and it was the least accurate with sand wedge by far. Obviously, smash factor accuracy will follow club speed for the most part since ball speed is quite accurate. Over every shot we observed, the percent difference on ball speed was 1.2 percent on average between the Mevo and the X3. Again, the Mevo was least accurate with sand wedges. If I remove all sand wedge shots from the data, the average percent difference changes from 1.2 percent to 0.7 percent, which is very, very respectable.

When it comes to the different clubs used, the Mevo was by far most accurate with mid irons. I confirmed this with on-course testing on a relatively flat 170-yard par-3 as well. Carry distances in that case were within 1-2 yards on most shots (mostly related to quality of strike). With the driver, the Mevo was reasonably close, but I would also describe it as generous. It almost always missed by telling me that launch angle was higher, spin rate was lower and carry distance was farther than the X3. Generally speaking, the Mevo overestimated our driver carries by about 5 percent. Lastly, the Mevo really did not like sand wedges at all. Especially considering those shots were short enough that you could visibly see how far off the Mevo was with its carry distance. Being 10 yards off on a 90 yard shot was disappointing.

Conclusion

The Mevo is a really good product if you understand what you’re getting when you buy it. Although the data isn’t good enough for a PGA professional, it’s still a useful tool that gives amateurs reasonable feedback while practicing. It’s also a fair amount more accurate than similar products in its price range, and I think it could become even better with firmware updates as Flightscope improves upon its product.

This is a much welcomed and very promising step forward in consumer launch monitors, and the Mevo is definitely worth a look if you’re in the market for one.

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