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Photos of Titleist’s new Vokey SM5 wedges

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The seeding process of Titleist’s Vokey SM5 wedges began this week at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, where PGA Tour players such as Charley Hoffman and Matt Jones were testing the fifth version of the company’s Spin Milled wedges.

The design of the SM5 wedges is similar to Vokey’s recently released Hand Ground wedges (click here to read our review of Hand Ground wedges), with fewer stampings on the back of the wedge. The changes include:

  • A move of the phrase “Vokey Design,” which was featured on the flange of the SM4 wedges, to the hosel. In its place is now a description of the wedge grind, such as “F Grind,” “S Grind,” etc., adding emphasis to Vokey’s substantial stock grind options.
  • The loft and bounce stampings have been moved from the back of the wedge to the sole. That allowed the “Titleist” and the “Bob Vokey wings” logos to be displayed in larger font on the back of the wedge, just as they were on the Hand Ground wedges.

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Above: Matt Jones was testing a 54-degree SM5 wedge with an S Grind (10 degrees of bounce) and a “Tour Chrome” finish at the Shriners Hospital for Children Open.

Titleist is still mum on details of the SM5, but our insiders in the forums (thanks shootstill!) have shared these spy shots of the soon-to-be-released SM5 stock finishes.

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Bob Vokey has repeatedly told the golf world that “bounce is your friend” when it comes to wedges, and he put his models where his mouth is with the SM5 line, turning a few low-bounce options into new mid-bounce options.

Editor’s note: When this story was first published, it included a spec sheet on the available lofts, bounces and finishes for the SM5 wedges. We were contacted by a Titleist official who said that the spec sheet was not a finalized document, and that several of the models listed were incorrect and/or not a true representation of what will be available when the wedges are released at the 2014 PGA Merchandise show.

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The SM5 line will continue to offer Vokey’s popular “Tour Chrome” finish, but the “Oil Can” and “Black Nickel” finishes have been removed in favor of “Gold Nickel” and “Raw Black” models. According to several insiders in the forum, the SM5 will be sold for the same price as the SM4 wedges, $129.99.

Click here to see what GolfWRX Members are saying about the SM5 wedges in the forums.

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Zak is the Editor-in-Chief of GolfWRX.com. He's been a part of the company since 2011, when he was hired to lead GolfWRX's Editorial Department. Zak developed GolfWRX's Featured Writer Program, which supports aspiring writers and golf industry professionals. He played college golf at the University of Richmond (Go Spiders!) and still likes to compete in tournaments. You can follow Zak on Twitter @ZakKoz, where he's happy to discuss his game and all the cool stuff that's part of his job.

46 Comments

46 Comments

  1. fx mutation database

    Aug 9, 2014 at 6:50 am

    Next, we count how many pips away the top of the highest last 2 candles are, including the wick,
    and add 5 pips. If we all had the answer to that, we could all make a living in the Forex market.
    In the 1930s, an insane person wrote in a book called Mein
    Kampf, “My Struggle,” and that was Adolf Hitler.

  2. Gary Lewis

    Mar 22, 2014 at 3:01 pm

    Nice looking wedges, with a more rounded shape now. Sounds like some improvement in spin and there are quite a few shaft options. Will probably get a Gold 60.07 with an XP 95 shaft, no upcharge on that one.

  3. Chuck

    Feb 20, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    I’m still using all of the pre-2011 Vokeys that I stockplied for use until 2024. It wasn’t just the groove rule; I preferred the old 200 series sand/lob wedges, and the 400 series gap wedges. Still do.

    Now, is it just me (I’ve only seen pictures) or do the SM5’s look closer in shape to the 200 series? When Vokey went away from the 200 series, it seemed that his wedges started to look more like Clevelands. A more compact, upright shape. Less eloganted and teardrop shaped. I know that lots and lots of tour players insisted on the older model shapes. A number of devotess of the 400 series (Voke’s own favorite); and more 200 series than I could ever count. Is Vokey’s “world’s best R&D facility” telling him to go back to the 200 series shapes?

  4. Pingback: Sticks & Greens | The Monday Match – Titleist Vokey SM4 Tour Chrome Wedge

  5. rob

    Oct 30, 2013 at 4:44 pm

    well I hope to god they will start offering premium shafts like c taper the shaft in the sm4 was so bad I only used it for 18 holes before giving it away. Totally one of the worst clubs I ever used and all down to the cheap cheap shaft.

    People need to demand more for Titleist and they should offer premium shafts if they claim to sell premium clubs.

    • Daniel

      Nov 10, 2013 at 3:27 pm

      they offer over 21 premium/upgrade shafts for sm4 including c-taper

      and the “cheap cheap” shaft they have standard is a dynamic gold s200 which is the most played shaft on every tour around the world (maybe not that flex)

    • Rob

      Jan 12, 2014 at 9:53 pm

      Um, thanks for your opinion?? First of all, Titleist offered a Dynamic Gold wedge shaft in the SM4. I don’t know what kind of wedges you are using but almost every OEM retailer uses a very similar shaft as a stock option (with the exception of TaylorMade and a few Mizuno offerings). Also, you can order pretty much any shaft you want in a Vokey wedge. Educate yourself.

    • N

      Mar 29, 2014 at 3:33 am

      Who is this guy? I have a SM4 wedge that I got with a DG Spinner, which was one of many custom options available at the time. Please make sure you know the facts before posting your opinions.

  6. Sam

    Oct 22, 2013 at 1:46 pm

    if i was to get the sm5’s could i get the raw black to rust and how? what is the date they get released

  7. Deaus7

    Oct 20, 2013 at 3:26 pm

    I wonder what the James Patrick Titleist wedges will be like when they come out, I hope James keeps in tune with his original design and does not keep the Vokey style heads. The SM5 look great though. For those who complain about them not being forged dont know Metallurgy very well, 8620 is incredibly soft, and infact can be softer than 90% of the forgings out there. Look at a Rockwell Hardness scale.

    • Rob

      Jan 12, 2014 at 9:54 pm

      From what I have heard the JP wedges will be Japan only for the time being.. maybe a few boutique type offerings on wedge works in 2014 though?

  8. Mike

    Oct 18, 2013 at 4:12 am

    I’m a Vokey fan and cosmetically I’m a little unimpressed.

    I will probably take advantage of the cheaper SM4’s now.

    My point is; I prefer the SM4 having bounce on the back 58.09 and looking a little more classic like the tradition of the old 252.12 200 series style and the biggie as mentioned… No oil can or raw? The gold may be the solution but to all intents I’m a little downbeat by these on first impressions.

    • Zachary yaz

      Oct 18, 2013 at 10:55 am

      completely agree. its almost just a cosmetic change nothing extreme. maybe more details will be revealed in due time.

    • Brian

      Oct 18, 2013 at 5:47 pm

      Technically the black is raw I think

  9. KCCO

    Oct 16, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    Love simple graphics, new finishes are cool, and I’m sure they perform as well if not better than their predecessor sm4…

    • Chiver

      Oct 29, 2013 at 11:21 pm

      Chive on pal…. and yes I believe you are correct in that the performance standard has more than likely stayed the same or improved. My issue is paying for the latest and greatest and not being impressed by what (if any) changes they have made. We will see though. I have been kind of a gear flopper for the last two years and will be getting my hands on some new AP2s in a couple of weeks. Trying to make my golf bag look like something i can be proud of, and not want to upgrade for a while. Trying my best to stop buying so much. Hit em well my fellow chiver.

      • Fred

        Oct 31, 2013 at 12:18 pm

        Chiver – I think you’ve echoed the thoughts of a lot of us out there; I just purchased my MP-54s and, believe me, that’s it! No more equipment. lately, I’ve spent more time buying new equipment than I have in trying to become a better player. Think I’ll stick with sm4s – after all, in the end, it’s the indian, not the arrow. Right? Good post.

  10. Paul

    Oct 16, 2013 at 6:28 pm

    Ehhh nice wedges but I’ll stick with my Nike V Forged.

  11. Indexor

    Oct 16, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    I agree with Billy. While it is obviously personal preference I can also tell the difference between forged wedges and cast wedges. It is not just the feel but distance continuity, spin and ball flight. I switched from Vokeys to Mizunos and am very happy with the results for my game.

    • Paul

      Oct 16, 2013 at 7:30 pm

      If you the think the Mizuno wedges feel good just wait until you try the Miura wedges !
      I had the Mizunos & kicked them to the curb for the Miura wedges .
      I did have a set of SM4s before that and they felt to clicky for me .

    • chris

      Oct 17, 2013 at 12:40 am

      i love the mizuno mp 10’s.. feel like butter but they wear quick

  12. David W

    Oct 16, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    Sweet, now I can start looking for price drops on the AWESOME SM4’s!

  13. Zachary Yaz

    Oct 16, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    Remove the cosmetics and I really think it still looks like the sm4. Hope it still feels the same as my sm4’s cos I might as well just get a new set of sm4’s wedges for (hopefully) a lower price than a new set of sm5’s. Will
    Have to hit a few when they are out. Hmmm. Not convinced.

    • Forged ier

      Oct 17, 2013 at 7:51 pm

      Man dont you know that vokey aren’t forged so they must feel like sh*t?

      • Zachary yaz

        Oct 18, 2013 at 10:54 am

        I actually know that they are not forged. but thats not always what makes the “feel factor”. if you prefer forged clubs then good for you. You must know more than me.

  14. foreright!

    Oct 16, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    New finish and new bounce options, but still the same old technology. You’d think the biggest name in golf and the biggest name is wedges would actually do something better. Oh well, I’ll stick with my SCORs.

    • reets

      Oct 16, 2013 at 3:40 pm

      Maybe some slots in the sole or make them really colorful? That should give you about 300+ yards carry with a 60*. People have to realize that when you have something thats perfect you don’t need to change it.

      • SN

        Oct 21, 2013 at 3:30 am

        lol so true.

        Maybe he just want 10+14+18 yards longer + adjustable hosel from his wedges.

  15. Billy

    Oct 16, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    i’ll stick to FORGED wedges.

    • bull feathers

      Oct 16, 2013 at 3:37 pm

      HAHAHA can you really tell the difference? I bet if “FORGED” was engraved somewhere on there you would think its the best “feeling” wedge ever.

      • Billy

        Oct 16, 2013 at 3:49 pm

        yes

        • The "Voke" himself

          Oct 17, 2013 at 7:41 pm

          There are a lot of myths and misconceptions about cast vs. forged out there. Casting and forging are just processes. The feel of the wedge is determined by the metal used, not by the process. We cast the softest metal available, 8620 mild carbon steel. People think we cast our wedges because it’s cheaper. That’s not the case. It’s because of the number of grinds, lofts, bounces that we have available. We start with the Tour and when we find a shape or grind we really like, we’re able to make a tool for it quickly. The casting process is able to replicate the grind much closer than if we forged it. Think about this: 80 percent of the wedges on Tour are cast. I’ve never had a player come up to me and say, “Voke, this wedge doesn’t feel good. I really wish it was forged.” These are the best players in the world. And that’s my R&D department.

          • Joe

            Oct 19, 2013 at 2:00 am

            But they (vokey’s) still don’t feel good no matter what percentage of the tour uses.

          • Glenn dezan

            Oct 26, 2013 at 5:42 am

            And thats the end of that conversation!

          • DM

            Jan 20, 2014 at 1:54 am

            Joe just wont be quiet, jeeze. Come on.

      • neil

        Oct 17, 2013 at 3:56 am

        I have some beautiful forged Chakara wedges.
        better than cast any day

  16. JB

    Oct 16, 2013 at 2:06 pm

    52.12 F Grind, 58.07 S Grind. All in Black Raw!! Sign me up please!!! God those are gorgeous! The Gold Nickels are sweet too!! Any news on when they’ll be released to stores?

  17. Brand Me Silly

    Oct 16, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    pass

  18. Nick

    Oct 16, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    Wow. All 3 of my wedges they’ve eliminated for the lefties…46, 52.08 and 58.04…

    Thats a shame.

    • Zak Kozuchowski

      Oct 16, 2013 at 3:57 pm

      That might not be true. We were contacted by a Titleist official that said those models could still potentially be available. The article has been updated to reflect those changes.

      – Zak

  19. John

    Oct 16, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    Looks good, like the new finished and like that they got rid of black nickel…I do wish they offered a raw finish (the absence of finish lol) but looks good

    • bl21

      Oct 17, 2013 at 5:10 pm

      Just get a maroon colored 3M Metal finishing pad at the store, it will take the black right off and make it raw.

  20. George P.

    Oct 16, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    Wow! Love the raw black! Nice job!

  21. Sky

    Oct 16, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    Man, those look sweet!

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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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