Review: 2010 Titleist CB Irons
You have to think that the 2010 Titleist CB irons are going to be popular. During a week I recently spent testing the 1025 carbon steel forged irons that make up a ¼ of the company’s new iron line; I was inundated with people asking to have a closer look.
It may have been the sleek chrome finish or the old-world styling but whatever the case, they drew attention from a wide spectrum of golfers. Before hitting the irons, like those many admirers, I had a strong appreciation for the look of these sticks. With a compact head shape, slight cavity enhanced with a solid weight pad, and slender soles they draw easy comparison to the classic Titleist blade irons of the past.
On closer look, at address (the money shot for many golfers) they reflected back exactly what I wanted to see for this category of club. Not excessively long from heel to toe (shorter than the 2010 AP2) they might provide a test for poorer ball strikers but they seem to exude power for those who prefer this appearance. They got two other check marks for me in the reduced amount of offset they possess (it ranges from .15” in the 2 iron down to .075” in the PW) and the top line in the long irons which have a soft and thin appearance. With the looks already on their side the real test came when I got to tee it up. My test session consisted of one range outing in dry, warm conditions followed by 41 holes played over four courses in varied stages of wet, windy, and somewhat cool weather. The first impact had me sold on their feel. They are not as “buttery soft” as some irons but they strike a nice balance between solid and smooth with a pleasant sound at impact. There is no jarring feel on impact towards the heel and toe with the latter providing the most negative vibration – if you can even call it that. They were softer in feel than the 2010 AP2 iron that I tested them against with a more muted sound than that game improvement iron provided. Striking balls out of fairway, rough, and even divots was not really an issue in dry conditions but I had some concerns about how the narrow sole might perform in wet conditions. I am more of a sweeper but with minimal roll on the leading edge I imagined there might be some digging going on when pressed into service on moist turf. That turned out not to be the case during my on-course time where I faced golf courses absolutely saturated by inches of rainfall. With the irons possessing grooves that conform to the 2010 Rules I did experience a couple shots from wet lies that flew further than expected. I adjusted quickly having grown up with V grooves. There was plenty of spin to stop the ball out of most conditions, although I will say that the greens were soft enough to accept most shots. I will need further testing on dry, firm greens to judge their true stopping power. The stock clubs were fitted with Dynamic Golf S300 shafts, one of several options (see link to custom options below). The trajectory was comfortable for all clubs, not excessively high, even in the short irons.
Long irons seem to have enough low mass to help me hit them as high as needed with ease. Playing knockdown shots in winds up to 30mph also resulted in very favourable results. Working the ball in either direction was also accomplished easily. I will say that these irons are best suited to better than average to expert ball strikers. The new AP2 is definitely more forgiving and helps the player to achieve a high trajectory even out of the worst situations. There is not much negative to say about these irons other than they have tough competition in the Titleist family with the new AP2. The better player will certainly appreciate them and they deliver perfectly in a number of areas. Average ball strikers would struggle with them and likely rate them a 7-8 at best but for the player looking for a refined iron that still provides some room for a miss-strike or two they are close to a 10. Golfers will find that these irons are softer in shape that the Titleist 695CB with a shorter blade and less progression in blade height from the heel to the toe. The toe is more rounded and the reduced offset in the new CB’s is very noticeable over the 695CB’s. Titleist got it right with these. It is possibly the best forged cavity back they have ever offered.