Pros: An easy-to-use app that incorporate elevation, humidity and temperature into yardage to give golfers accurate distance measurements.
Cons: As with any product release, there are a couple small functionality issues that need to be addressed to improve user experience. Available for iPhone only.
The Bottom Line: This is a simple and logical app. At a reasonable price point, it will likely attract a wide clientele and will likely be more popular with competitive amateur and professional players.
Knowing how far you hit each club is integral to scoring. Most serious golfers are aware that changes in elevation increase or decrease carry distances by approximately 10 percent for every 5000 feet of elevation. That said, it’s doubtful avid golfers (competitive amateurs and pros included) have a working knowledge of the role temperature and humidity play in determining the flight of a golf ball. This app attempts to bring clarity to this relationship.
Common sense tells you that knowing how far you hit each club is important. Tiger Woods has been quoted as asserting the secret to golf is “being pin high.” Knowing how far you hit each club in your bag is absolutely critical to playing golf well, at any level. Need more? Bill Murchison of PGA.com said the biggest difference between tour pros and average golfers “is the ability to control their distances with their scoring clubs — in particular, their wedges.” If you want to make more putts, hit it closer. If you want to hit it closer, know exactly how far you hit each club!
Anyone can make something complicated. A true genius takes something complicated and makes it simple. Or so goes the thought process of FlagHi co-designers Mark Stratz and Nate Regimbal. After a golf outing to Bandon Dunes and 7&6 drubbing, Stratz couldn’t put his finger on exactly why he had played so poorly, but his distances were consistently inconsistent. One iron flew too far and then next came up well short.
Had Stratz played well that day he might not have woken up at 2 a.m. in a cold sweat screaming, “Eureka.” Okay, that didn’t really happen, but Stratz’s frustration did lead to some late night thinking and eventually the “aha” that it’s not simply elevation that impacts how far a ball flies. If you really want to understand what’s happening to your ball you have to account for temperature and humidity as well.
Fortunately, Stratz knew someone who could take this concept and turn it into something palatable and perhaps profitable. Enter Nate Regimbal. Regimbal used his expertise from his days as an IBM software designer to build out a user interface and to develop algorithms that utilize condition differentials (and a bunch of other NASA type gobbledygook), which eventually resulted in the FlagHi app.
The FlagHi App sells for $4.99 and the “Pro” version, which has the company’s patent-pending “PlaysAs” function, sells for $9.99. Both are available for iPhone in the Apple App Store. According to the company’s, an Android version is in the works.
Even if you aren’t the most tech savvy individual, this app is super easy to use. The first step is to input the “baseline” temperature, elevation and percent-humidity conditions for your home course. The average temperature and percent-humidity information can be found on any website that tracks historical weather data. For the elevation of your home course, you can also look it up online – or there are a variety of free apps you can download that allow you to measure the elevation yourself right at the course. From there, enter the specific carry distance for each club in your bag. You have now finished with configurations and are ready to go. As conditions change, simply input the new temperature, elevation or percent-humidity, and the app shows you the adjusted carry distance for each club. Once the app was set up it took me about 5 minutes to get comfortable moving between screens and features.
That said, there are two tweaks I believe would enhance app usability.
- Prior to using the “PlaysAs” screen (the interface in FlagHi Pro where you enter the distance of a shot and the app then tells you the distance that it actually plays), the app requires the user to first input current condition data on the “Current Distances” interface, which doesn’t allow the “PlaysAs” feature to be used right away independently. I would recommend that the PlaysAs interface allow the user to enter the current playing conditions directly as to streamline this experience.
- When you are on the “Current Distances” interface, if you change any of the current playing condition parameters, the app refreshes the screen and reverts to the default sort order – showing your longest club (probably your Driver). My preference would be to persist the displayed club when making changes, so that the effects of your tweaks to the current conditions can be seen immediately for the club you have displayed. This would allow you to more easily “play around” with the app and see how the playing conditions actually affect the carry distances of that club.
If you’re trying to make a decision between the basic and pro version, and wondering whether or not the $10 is worth it, I’d suggest you pony up the $10. The “PlaysAs” feature is probably the most unique piece of this app and is only available on the Pro version. My hunch is that some of the usability issues will be addressed in the near future and for a one time cost of $10, the pro version will offer the user a more robust experience.
The chief benefit for this type of app is clear to the competitive amateur, collegiate, mini-tour and professional golfer. However, if you’ve ever come up a yard short of carrying a hazard or flew a green and you claimed to have “over-pured it,” my hunch is this app has a lot of benefit for you. You might find yourself saying, “I’m not good enough to care whether my 9 iron goes 137 or 139.” It’s funny how much more people start caring when they know how far they actually hit each club. Golf is a game of inches, for everyone.
Moving forward, I don’t think we’re far off from a synchronized GPS/laser rangefinder that incorporates this type of data to give players a true measure of both visual and theoretical distance in one device. I can see college teams, touring pros and competitive amateurs using this data as a means to prepare for particular courses, conditions and events. To that end, we’ve already seen players hire and invest is statistical breakdowns of particular segments of their games as a means to diagnose and improve. In this case, information is good. And you can’t get too much of a good thing, right?
WRX Spotlight Review: T Squared TS-713i Standard Series putter
Product: T Squared TS-713i Standard Series Putter
About T Squared: T Squared Putters is a small putter manufacturer just south of Buffalo, New York. The company was founded by Tony Tuber who created his first prototype putters, after hours, in his father’s machine shop. Since then Tony and his father have been creating high-quality putters in the same facility that creates high precision instruments for the medical field. They pride themselves on creating the highest quality, most precise putter they can offer. They offer a few different head shapes from small traditional blades to high MOI mallets and even a custom program to get exactly what you want.
The Ts-713i Standard Series is based on the Ts-713, the first prototype that Tony created. It is a blade-style putter with a slightly longer flange and a unique face insert milled from 6061 aluminum. The body of the Ts713i is milled from a solid block of 303 stainless steel that is produced in the USA and has a Teflon backing between the body and face insert.
This Teflon backing helps give the putter a softer feel at impact and reduce any unwanted vibration. Details are what T Squared is all about and the neck of the putter shows off their milling expertise. The neck is similar to a plumbers neck, built with multiple pieces and offering some cool texture on the section bonded to the head. Another great detail is that all the silver markings on the putter are not filled with paint, they are milled into the head. T Squared finished the head in a sharp matte black and then milled all the markings on the putter for a unique, shiny silver look that really stands out. Ts-713i putters are built for customizing and have a ton of options that you can select if you would like to build something totally unique
On the green, the T Squared TS-713i really performs fantastic. I found the feel at impact very solid without any unwanted vibration. The impact produces a muted click and soft feel that I wasn’t expecting from this aluminum insert and thin face. The deep milling and Teflon coated back to the insert really work together to produce a great, responsive feel that I enjoyed. Deep milling usually makes me a little worried because it can soften the putter too much and lose that feel we all demand.
The TS-713i has no issues and transmits impact feel back to your hands with ease. Mishits are a little louder and harsh, but nothing even close to unpleasant. I have used putters that don’t feel as good on perfectly struck shots as the TS-713i feels on mishit putts. Distance and accuracy on those mishit putts are not as drastic as you would expect with a blade putter. I often just missed the cup by small margins when I struck a putt on the toe or heel of the TS-713i. There aren’t too many blade putters that have shown this level of forgiveness on the green for me.
The “T” alignment aid on the flange of the putter is large and easy to use. Not only do you get a straight line from the face to the back edge for alignment, but the back of the “T” also helps you square the putter up to your target. The Pure grip is not my thing, and it would be great for T Squared to offer a few more options, but that is an easy fix and a very minor criticism.
Overall, the T Squared TS-713i is a great putter from young Tony Tuber that exceeded my expectations. His attention to detail, precision milling, and take on a classic head shape offer golfers something different without sacrificing any performance. If you are looking for a great feeling putter that is made in the USA, you should take a look at T Squared and see what they can make for you.
WRX Spotlight Review: UST Mamiya Attas 11 shaft
Product: UST Mamiya Attas 11 shaft
Pitch: From UST: “A revolutionary combination of innovative shaft design and advanced carbon fiber materials. We combined aerospace grade M40X Carbon Fiber with a new constant taper design. Designed for a higher launch, high performance shaft offering optimum flex and torque characteristics with feel. The ATTAS line has been a successful staple in UST’s offerings, and with the introduction of ATTAS 11 or “Jack,” this will be no exception. Designed to improve launch, but keep the stability the line is known for, this rendition enhances the line with better materials, better energy transfer, and an unforgettable feeling swing experience.”
You can find more info in our launch piece here.
Our take on the 2020 UST Mamiya Attas 11 shaft
I was provided the Attas 11 6S weighing in at a raw weight of 66 grams, 3.8 degrees of torque, and profile promoting mid-spin with a mid to high launch. This shaft was placed in a Wilson Staff Cortex head playing 11 degrees with the weights in the neutral position and the sliding weight in the middle front location. The shaft was placed up against another UST offering: the Helium, which is a shaft that has been very popular and notable for its lightweight, but super stable design. I was also able to hit it against the Fujikura Atmos Blue Tour Spec 6S.
On course testing went right along with claims from UST. I experienced a good mid flight with notable lower spin than the Helium. The Attas 11 felt much stiffer than the Helium but not in a negative way. After a few rounds with “Jack,” I was impressed with the consistency I was getting in flight, control, and distance. My miss was predictable and controllable, whereas I have been having more of a two-way miss with the lighter Helium.
During an analysis at David Ayers’ Low Country Custom Golf with fitter and club guru Kristian Barker, we discussed shaft profiles and recorded some numbers to see how they compared. The first round was very subpar in terms of swing and after a round with all the shafts and a little guidance from Kristian, the second round was much better. I was very happy to be able to have a testing day where I can see how the equipment performed with bad and good swings.
The Helium was the distance winner, but even though the offline number portrays better accuracy, I was having my typical two-way miss with both left and right big misses. The “Jack,” while a little shorter, gave me a consistent ball flight that was more likened to how I hit when I’m playing well. Also, though the Helium was a bit longer, that can easily be attributed to the fact that it is much lighter, and after the session, I measured it at 45.5 inches playing length whereas I had the Attas 11 cut to 45.
Overall, the Attas 11 is certainly a premium shaft that caters to those who would like a little higher launch without worrying about the spin getting too high or feeling overly stiff. On course and the launch monitor, this shaft performs and is every bit of what UST has marketed it to be in terms of launch, spin, and feel.
WRX Spotlight: EV3D putters
We hear the buzz words “3D printed” all the time these days. It’s a newer technology that has shown to have lots of applications in other industries, but golf hasn’t been one of those until now. 3D printing a putter is a pretty new adventure, but EV3D Golf is showing that it is going to be much more common very soon.
EV3D Golf is bringing new putter designs to us golfers that CANNOT be made through traditional casting or milling. 3D printing is the process of creating a putter layer-by-layer, allowing any supported shape you can think of. Even hollow designs like EV3D’s signature lattice features!
This gives EV3D engineers the ability to create putters that push the limits of MOI, feel, and of course look. The intricate lattice design does more than just look really cool, it also helps move weight to the outside and rear of the putter, increasing MOI in all models. All EV3D putters are printed from a combination of 420 stainless steel and bronze. This alloy gives the putter its responsive feel, excellent durability, and the ability to offer 3 finishes. They also offer a ton of different hosel designs to fit your eye and putting stroke, all are 3D printed as well. EV3D even adds custom touches like text in the cavity, different site lines, and paint fill to make it your own. Right now they offer 6 different head shapes, but if none of those are what you are looking for, they will work with you to print your dream putter from scratch!
We got our hands on 2 models, the EV3D Golf Ares X and Hades, to take out to the course and putt with. In hand the first thing that grabs your eye’s attention is the intricate lattice work on the putters.
All you want to do is hold the putter closer to your face and see how the heck they did it. At the right angles you can actually see through that lattice structure, but we were told that debris getting stuck in there isn’t an issue. The next thing you will notice is the rough texture of the head. This is created by the process of 3D printing the head, showing off the layers of material used to build the shape of the head. I don’t know if was intended but that rough texture does help with reducing glare, making the putters easy on the eyes even in the brightest conditions.
I personally really like the Antique Bronze finish, but EV3D does offer a Natural and Slate Black finish to suit your personal taste. Out on the putting green the Ev3D putters performed really well, offering a hefty dose of forgiveness and a crisp feel and sound. Traditionally modes like the Hades don’t offer much in the way of forgiveness compared to mallets, but the Hades shocked me with its off-center putts. Putts hit off the heel or toe stayed on line much better and I even made a couple that had no business even being close to the hole.
Distance loss on those mishits is about what you would expect, coming up a little short, but defiantly not a drastic difference. Since the EV3D line doesn’t have any fancy face milling, I was a little worried about the initial roll and if the ball would hop or skid. Initial contact was great, only met with a tiny bit of skid before rolling out. Nothing that I think effected even my longest putts. The feel off the face is something that reminds you of a quieter classic Ping BeCu putter, crisp with an audible click. If you are looking for a silent impact, like an Odyssey Microhinge, then the EV3D line might not be your cup of tea. If you are on a quest for exceptional responsiveness on well struck and mishit putts then you should be very pleased with any of the EV3D putter models. The feel of impact is a little firmer than I think we are all used to these days with so many inserts and deep milling. The crisp feel and slightly more audible EV3D is somewhat refreshing and mishit putts are extremely easy to recognize.
Overall, the EV3D putters are a solid offering from a new company utilizing a new technology in the golf club space. With all the combinations of putter heads, site lines, and hosels, I can’t see you not being able to find a putter that fits your eye. Looks for any putter are going to be subjective, but there is no denying that EV3D is pushing the limits at a time where we see a lot of similar putter designs from all manufacturers. And if you are the type of person who wants to create an original design of your own that has never been done, EV3D is waiting for that call to help you take your idea from thought to printed putter head! Check the entire EV3D putter line at the company website.
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