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Review: Ping i irons

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Pros: Everyone from PGA Tour players to mid-handicap golfers can play the i irons thanks to their progressive design (larger long irons, smaller short irons). They specialize in forgiveness, but also deliver a high trajectory and an impressive amount of workability for their class.

Cons: The long irons in particular will fly higher and farther than their predecessors, Ping’s i25, but they’re are not going to deliver the distance gains of similar-sized, hot-faced irons.

Who they’re for: The best fits are better golfers in search of more forgiveness and a higher trajectory, particularly from their long and mid irons. They’ll also work well for less-skilled golfers who want to play a relatively compact and forgiving set of irons, but still want some of the distance and forgiveness that game-improvement sets provide.

The Review

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Ping’s i irons ($135 per club with steel, $150 per club with graphite) irons have a satin-brushed finish, and are available in 3-9, PW, UW. Default color code is blue. Stock swing weight is D1-D2.

  • Ping’s Stock Shafts: CFS Distance Steel (Soft R, R, S, X), CFS Graphite (65 Soft R, 70 Regular, 80 Stiff)
  • No Upcharge Custom Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold (S300, X100), True Temper Project X (5.0, 6.0), True Temper XP 95 (R, S), Nippon N.S. Pro Modus3 105 (S, X)

When categorized, most would agree that Ping’s i irons are “Players Irons,” which GolfWRX defines as models that are not as large and forgiving as game-improvement irons, yet larger and more forgiving than blade or blade-like irons. But the i irons really belong to a smaller subset of the Players Irons category. Think of them as “Progressive Players Irons.”

Ping’s one liner about the i irons — “Players irons that anyone can play” — is rooted in their progressive design, which blends larger, wider-soled and more offset long irons with smaller, narrower-soled and less offset short irons. The effect is that the i long irons will carry farther than many players irons, particularly on mishits, and the average-size mid irons and blade-like short irons will give golfers more control over their trajectory.

It’s a salivating combination of forgiveness and precision, which can work for everyone from mid-handicap golfers to the best golfers in the world. The question, of course, is whether or not you should make the i irons your next set of irons. Here are three signs that the i irons might be the right model for you. They’re based on my summer of testing the irons against similar models.

You want more distance, but you don’t want to sacrifice consistency and feel

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Above: Golfers will be able to hit Ping’s i irons (left) farther than the company’s S55 irons (right) if they’re willing to consider a set of irons with a larger chassis.

The i irons will fly a little farther than their predecessors, Ping’s i25 irons, thanks to a new construction. They’re cast from 431 stainless steel, the same metal that’s used to create the company’s Glide wedges. That gives them a softer feel that should impress golfers coming from previous i-series irons, which have a 17-4 stainless steel construction that feels “clickier” at impact. No, the i irons won’t feel as soft as leading forged cavity back irons, but they’re close.

2Y9G7076

The CTP of the i irons is located closer to the sole than previous models, and hidden in the cavity of the irons.

The real benefit of 431 stainless steel, however, is that it has a higher strength-to-weight ratio than 17-4 stainless steel. That enabled engineers to improve certain structures such as the Custom Tuning Port (CTP), which allowed for greater precision in locating each of the iron’s center of gravity (CG) locations. The stronger metal also paved the way for slightly thinner faces on the long irons, which create a bit of driver-like face flexing at impact that catapults shots higher and farther than I expected. Ping_I_irons_specs

Want to know more about the technology in the irons? Click here. 

I saw about an extra 5 yards of carry from the 3, 4, 5 and 6 irons, which was the result of a slightly higher launch, lower spin, faster ball speeds and more forgiveness. It was welcome change that helped me shrink my long-game gaps — particularly the one between my longest iron and shortest metal wood.

I saw the extra distance carry over into my 7 and 8 irons as well. I’m very used to certain yardages, so after early testing I actually had those clubs bent 1-degree weaker to help me hit my numbers. The 9 iron and PW flew the distances I expected to see from the clubs.

To be clear, the i irons are not going to produce the ball speeds of players irons with hot faces — think Callaway’s Apex and TaylorMade’s RSi 2 irons. If that’s what you’re looking for, the i irons probably aren’t for you.

You’re always switching between a long iron and a hybrid/fairway wood

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I have a 20.5-degree hybrid, which I alternate with a 3 iron based on course conditions. With the i irons, however, I didn’t find myself wishing that I had the hybrid in the bag for certain shots. The 3 iron was nearly just as long as my hybrid — even on mishits — and much more versatile when I wanted to lower my trajectory or hit draws or fades.

At address: Ping's i 3 iron

At address: Ping’s i 3 iron.

That being said, the i long irons are not going to appeal to golfers who dislike offset or desire a blade-like look over the ball. Depending on how much you forward press the shaft, you might be able to see the wide sole of the 3 iron behind the top line of the club at address. If you start your set with a 4, 5, or 6 iron, however, you won’t have this problem. Their soles are not visible at address, and as I mentioned above, they’re still plenty long.

You always thought Ping’s i-series irons looked a little clunky

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Golfers familiar with the i25 irons will also notice that the i irons are considerably more attractive than their predecessor in the playing position, with less visible offset, thinner-looking top lines and a less mechanical shape that most golfers will call an upgrade.

If you’re a fan of the Glide wedges, you’ll also enjoy the look of the i short irons. Their look was modeled after them, so if you play Glide wedges you’ll barely notice a transition between your shortest iron and your longest wedge.

2Y9G7046

At address: Ping’s i PW (left) and i25 PW.

The shaping of the i mid irons could be Ping’s best work. They’re not too big and not too small, with a sole design that will resist digging in soft conditions.

If you’re coming from more compact irons, as I was, you might think on first glance that the fairly wide soles of the long and mid irons might be a problem. After a few rounds of play, however, I found that the soles played effectively narrower than they look because of the trailing edge relief, which keeps them out of the way at impact.

The Takeaway

On more than one occasion my playing partners told me, “Good shot,” when in reality it was a “good miss.” That’s what the i irons are all about: making average or below-average shots fly closer to the intended target than golfers will expect for an iron their size.

The real charm of the i irons, however, is the way they help golfers without elite skills or top-tier speed execute better long iron shots, while still offering mid and short irons with the looks, feel and feedback needed to score on the most demanding courses. What became obvious to me after a several rounds with the clubs is this; why wouldn’t golfers with day jobs want longer-flying, more forgiving long irons that don’t budge on consistency?

So many PGA Tour players are going that direction. Why wouldn’t you?

[wrx_retail_links productid=”27″]

See what GolfWRX Members are saying about the i irons in our forum. 

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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.

25 Comments

25 Comments

  1. Dave

    Jun 17, 2016 at 9:37 pm

    yep 25 caps.

  2. David

    Sep 24, 2015 at 5:40 pm

    Less accurate than the i25 and the feel is just not as good. Not sure where some of these ‘reviews’ are coming from. Get a set of i25’s before that option goes away if you really want Ping. The S55’s are also very sweet.

  3. Bert

    Sep 15, 2015 at 8:46 pm

    I tried them today and felt they did launch nice and high and seemed forgiving. However I wasn’t impressed with the feel of the club. The shaft was a 70 gram graphite Ping shaft with a 7-iron head. As for feel I believe they have a little click feel that I’m not accustomed too. However most of the “feel” problem most likely wasn’t the club at all, but the range balls that I had to use when trying out the club. Bottom line is I liked the club. I’ll try to get a demo that I can play with so I can get the correct feedback.

  4. Joe

    Sep 10, 2015 at 9:37 am

    Coming from i20 then i25 I didn’t expect much difference. Those are great sets. The e1 are noticeably more accurate. It’s actually pretty strange how good these are. Shhh. Don’t tell anyone!

  5. NGH

    Sep 5, 2015 at 3:30 am

    If Hunter switched, then everybody should!

  6. Max

    Sep 4, 2015 at 6:02 pm

    Former i25 owner here. Just got a chance to hit these. Totally agree. They look waaaaay better in the playing position than the i25. At first, I thought these were nothing special, but wow, that look at address is such an improvement. Look more like an s55+ than a re-badged i20 clone.

  7. jimmy_2_stroke

    Sep 3, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    if ping just got rid of the UW and replaced it with a 2-iron at the top of the lofts….all the others would fall back into place and it would be a reasonable set.

    not amazing….just good.

    is good such a bad thing….?

    can’t blokes hit a club with a “2” stamped on the bottom of it these days…..?????

    must be the social media generation……

  8. Mike Lynch

    Sep 3, 2015 at 12:25 am

    I’ve been and still am a forged blade guy. But, after hitting and playing these I’m seriously considering keeping them in the bag. If I didn’t know these were Pings I’d say I was hitting a Mizuno. As a matter of fact I had one of my friends hit them and he said the same thing. IMHO these are the best feeling, best iron Ping has ever produced. I have the ZZ65 with Cushin inserts in them and I can flight them down no problem. I love the soft feel.

  9. marionm

    Sep 2, 2015 at 7:56 pm

    Played a set with Modus 105. Swing weights were all over the place. D0 to D1. One iron was D2 and it was the 5 iron. Not sure what they were doing with long, super light, upright “stock” I series. And don’t understand why swing weights wouldn’t be perfect since they have weight port. Not better than i20 i25 in my opinion.

  10. Wayz2go

    Sep 2, 2015 at 6:11 pm

    All I will say is I had a set of Ping S56 irons with KBS Tour 90 shafts. Should have kept them. They were about a half a club short in distance compared to everything else I owned, but dead on consistency and forgiving. So why did I get rid of them….. oh I’m one of those guys who has to play a forged club. Still seeking something that works for me. Might give the i irons a shot …. who knows.

    Had 714 AP2 irons which were very good but you had to nail the sweet spot everytime. Now fooling around with Callaway Apex irons. And yes…. they have a very hot face but you will need to bend the 5-6 and 4 iron to “Std”. specs These irons are 3 degrees strong from “normal”

    I play to a 5 handicap. Hit the Aeroburner 10.5 driver about 260 and can hit the 7 iron 165 to 170.

    • dapadre

      Sep 14, 2015 at 5:12 am

      What a 5 hcp and only hit driver 260 and 7 iron 165/170?? Im sorry but im calling you out. On this site 25+ HCP hit 300yrd drives and the 7 iron is for 200 yds (tongue in cheek).

      • Pap Williams

        Jul 4, 2016 at 7:04 am

        He say’s he is a 5 not a zero. You must play in Colorado to hit a 7 iron 200 yards. Not here in the South.

  11. Adam

    Sep 2, 2015 at 3:56 pm

    They look nice and all, but I actually prefer the look of the i25s…
    I think I will wait another release or two before swapping irons. The i25s are exceptionally consistent and forgiving

  12. Chris

    Sep 2, 2015 at 2:53 pm

    I’ve been hitting S56s for the past 4 years and love them. Best irons I’ve ever used. Ping makes great stuff. My only problem with their irons is that the 3 and 4 irons are just not that great. They are automatic throw aways, replaceable with hybrids. I get lackluster distance with them and they are hard to get in the air. I also use a G25 driver with Di-AD 7x shaft. It’s bomb and very forgiving.

  13. steve

    Sep 2, 2015 at 2:36 pm

    I tried these and compared them to my i25’s. I actually like the look, maybe the color of the 25’s a little better, but I didn’t notice much difference in distance between the clubs? I hit my 25’s well and before that I had Eye 2+’s, there was a difference in distance there. Overall I liked the feel, maybe a little softer but not enough to get rid of the 25’s yet. I play to a 4 handicap and hit my long irons really well and I don’t use hybrids, I’ve played blades in the past and like them for what they are but I’m of the thought that if you put a slightly more forgiving club in a better player’s hands, then look out because nobody in this game is perfect. Overall another great club by Ping.

  14. Barry S.

    Sep 2, 2015 at 2:33 pm

    After years of playing Callaway and TaylorMade irons I switched to a set of Ping I-20s two years ago and haven’t looked back. Looking forward to hitting the Ping i irons!

  15. SPANKY

    Sep 2, 2015 at 2:03 pm

    anyone who uses the phrase “best irons I have ever gamed” is 100% pure KOOK! LET THE GIMICKS BEGIN!

    • wellone

      Sep 2, 2015 at 5:44 pm

      “anyone who uses the phrase “best irons I have ever gamed” is 100% pure KOOK! LET THE GIMICKS BEGIN!”

      1989-1992: Magique (cant remember model)
      1992-2004: Ping eye2+
      2004-2012: Ping I3+ blade
      2012-2015: Ping I 20’s
      Aug 2015-current IE1

      I will mess around with titleist, taylormade, and callaway (almost went with the x hot irons), but in the end I cant match the playability and forgiveness of the Pings.

      IE1’s are the best irons I have ever gamed, If that qualifies me as a KOOK so be it. It doesnt make it any less true.

  16. DolphLundrenade

    Sep 2, 2015 at 11:40 am

    1/4″ over length and 1 degree stronger (except the 8-iron which is 2 degrees stronger)… What do you expect for distance? Of course they are longer. Not apples to apples.

    Will we get a club that has the technology in the head, but is A) Not longer than the “standard” B) Not stronger in loft than “standard” and C) preferably without so dang much offset? That would be nice for a change. There are plenty of GI irons already out there. Give us a real players iron with modern tech for a change. IMHO, this set is a step backward from the I20 and I25 irons.

    • wellone

      Sep 2, 2015 at 12:18 pm

      “Give us a real players iron with modern tech for a change. IMHO, this set is a step backward from the I20 and I25 irons”.

      Dolph, I get where you are coming from…. +4 HCP playing the gateway tour just waiting for your break. I on the other hand am a 3 handicap who hits poor long irons from time to time. These are the best clubs I have ever gamed…for my game. If you want a butter knife, dont rip Ping for making a fantastic club that really does improve “better” players game. The improvements arent just in length and lie. Ping has resisted that indurstry norm for a long time. I acutally play these irons (swithced from the I20’s I had for 3 years). There is no comparison, these irons are better in nearly every facet…..for my game. If you have a muscleback game, dont poo poo a great club for not fitting you, as I am sure you hit every long iron pure. your average scratch to 10 hcp will get benefit from playing this club, and it will still make them hit good shots giving the feedback needed to improve their game. I think your mentality is the reason so many new players quit the game… (what, you gonna play those shovels today?).

  17. other paul

    Sep 2, 2015 at 8:18 am

    I’m not sure what all the “shanks” are about. A great iron, is a great iron.

    • Brian

      Sep 2, 2015 at 10:47 am

      Because they’re not Titeist or Taylormade or whatever the shankers prefer.

      • Golfraven

        Sep 2, 2015 at 3:34 pm

        I like Titleist but still game the i20 irons and will unlikely switch until next release of 7xx or Ping or Mizuno or maybe even Bridgestone clubs.

  18. Brody

    Sep 1, 2015 at 6:08 pm

    Great review Zak! Looking forward to checking these out

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Iron Reviews

Review: Honma TW737-Vs Forged Irons

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Equipment

GolfWRX Member Reviews: TaylorMade 2017 M1 and M2 Irons

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One of the many benefits of being a GolfWRX Forum Member is exclusive access to Giveaways and Testing Threads. For Giveaways — we give away everything from golf clubs to golf balls to GPS units — all it takes is a forum name. Enter any Giveaway, and we select winners randomly. You’re then free to enjoy your prize as you wish.

For Testing Threads, the process a bit more involved. GolfWRX Forum Members sign up to test the latest and greatest products in golf, and then they provide in-depth reviews on the equipment. Being the intelligent golf-equipment users they are, GoflWRX Members are able to provide the most-informed and unbiased reviews on the Internet.

df5745825623a9697f92315cd9d8f1d7

In this Testing Thread, we selected 75 members to test a TaylorMade M1 2017 7-iron and TaylorMade M2 7-iron. Each of the clubs were built with the stock lofts and shafts — M2 2017 (28.5 degrees) with a TaylorMade Reax shaft, and M1 2017 (30.5 degrees) with a True Temper Dynamic Gold S300 shaft — and the testers were instructed to post their review of the clubs here.

Below, we’ve selected what we’ve deemed the most in-depth and educated reviews out of the 75 testers. We have edited each of the posts for brevity, clarity and grammar.

Thanks to all of those involved in the testing!

Brock9007

To be honest, looking down on the TaylorMade M1 and M2 irons at address, there is really not much difference. I would have to pick one up to see which is which.

The first 10 balls I hit were with M1 and 6/10 felt great, while the other 4 were toe hits, which I felt and the distance reflected that. Kinda what I expected with a club design for lower-handicap players. Distance was about 1/2 longer than my Srixon iron and dispersion was close, as well. I will say they did not feel as good as the Srixon on center hits.

Next 10 (ok, 15) balls were with the M2. Wow, can you say “up, up and away? The ball really popped of the club face, but wasn’t a ballon flight. Waited for the ball to come down and WTH, with the roll out it was 5-8 yards longer than balls hit with M1, and that is with a few toe shots. I did some smooth swings and then very aggressive swings and was a little amazed at this iron. Just like the M1, it does not have the forged feeling and does have a clicky sound (which I hate).

Bottom line: M2 is the longest iron I have ever hit. I love my 545s, but I could see myself playing M2 very easily. Matter of fact, I will be taking this M2 7 iron in my bag and play it more head-to-head against my Srixon 545 on the course.

deathbymuffin

These are both beautiful clubs. What surprised me the most is how much alike the two clubs look at address. I was expecting a chunky topline and significant offset in the M2, but it’s footprint looked almost exactly the same as the M1, outside of the chrome finish on the M2 versus the frosted finish of the M1. The M2 could almost pass as a player’s iron to my eye at address. These clubs both get A’s from me in the looks department.

The M1 felt a tad thicker than most player’s irons I’m used to, but it seemed to come with a bit of added forgiveness too. Well-struck shots felt good, with a nice mid-trajectory and with the workability that I’ve come to expect from a player’s iron. But true to TaylorMade’s claims, the M1 seemed more forgiving than a traditional player’s iron. Had a nice soft feel at impact, mishits didn’t sting and left you with a more playable result. A really nice combination of the better attributes of both player’s and game improvement irons. I’ve been playing with an old set of Tommy Armour blades, but I’ve been recently wanting more forgiveness for when I’m stuck with my B or C swing. Based on the early returns, I could definitely see myself bagging these.

I’m not sure if it’s the shaft, the design of the clubhead, or a combination of both, but the M2 is definitely a different animal than the M1 at impact. This club launches the ball high, arguably ridiculously so. I was hitting Jason Day moonbombs with this bad boy. Didn’t seem to matter what kind of swing I put on it, the ball launched high, flat and dead straight. The club was super forgiving and if not for the insanely high ball flight, I would love to have a set of these for when my swing is out of sorts. I didn’t really try to flight it at all, so I’m not sure what it’s capable of at this point. One other note was that the M2 had a clicky feel at impact. It didn’t bother me since it still felt so sweet… so strange as it sounds, clicky, but smooth and sweet at the same time. I think these clubs will be big winners with the mid-to-high handicap set.

The M1 is a fine iron, but doesn’t really stand out in any way from other irons of its class.

The M2, on the other hand, is an iron on steroids. I’m really starting to love this thing. It’s super forgiving and just goes and goes. According to my laser, flush shots were going 195 yards (my usual blade 5 iron distance) and very high. I can’t help but think golf would be a whole lot easier, particularly longer courses with long par 3s, with a full set of these in my bag.

poppyhillsguy

M1 feels softer than the M2 and I felt the ball flight was more consistent and what I want in an iron. The M1 did have a harsher feeling in my hands than I typically like, but I’m going to credit a lot of that to the range balls.

M2 flies very high. It was a windy afternoon and about 100 degrees. I love the high ball flight on the range, but I have a concern what that ball flight would be like on the course. I like to hit the ball different heights for different shots and I don’t think I could do that confidently with the M2, but I could with the M1. I don’t like the sound of the M2. It sounded “clicky” to me.

Fourpar18

Initially on the range I was scared because the M1 had a regular flex in it, so I took it easy for my initial 10-15 swings with it. Ball SHOT off the face, loud crack (didn’t care for it, but not too bad) and ball just kept rising and rising but didn’t balloon. I thought, “whoa,” that’s not what I expected…did it again…another CRACK and the ball just flew. I set another down and I paid attention to how it looked behind the ball, not much offset for a game improvement and I thought…”I could actually play this club!”  The 5-7 were EASY swings, aimed at a target of 170 yards away (my normal 7 iron distance) and with a EASY swing I was flying it by 20 yards or so. The next 5-10 I really went after it, same CRACK and ball just flew but to my surprise it was a nice draw, harder draw than the first but it was a nice 10-yard draw. This time the balls were landing just short of the 200 yard marker. Damn, 200 yards with a 7 iron! I know they are jacked lofts but it feels good to say “my 7 irons just few 190-200 yards!”

P.S. LOVE the Lamkin UTX grip!

Now, this was interesting, the M2 was quieter then the M1… weird!  Now, there is more carbon fiber added to this one and there is a “Geocoustic” label on the back. I am sure that it has something to do with all that carbon fiber but it does have a better sound. Other than the sound, it played exactly like the M1: long and straight. The REAX shaft felt a little weaker than the True Temper shaft and it flew a little higher but nothing else I could pick up.

noahdavis_7

Finally got out to the range after getting these bad boys in on Friday. My first impression of them is that they look really sharp. The graphics and design really stand out and really give these clubs a cool, modern look.

They were both a little to big IMO, as I am currently bagging Mizuno MP-68s. The M2 isa definite “game improvement iron”, while the M1 was similar in size and shape to my previous irons, Titleist AP1s.

They both really launch it, high and far. Ridiculous for 7 irons. I don’t have access to a launch monitor, but it was about a 20-yard difference between my gamer 7 iron and these (stronger lofts, as well).

The M1 definitely was more suited for my eye, and produced more consistent ball flights. It felt much more smooth and solid as the M2 had a clicky, cheap feel.

The M2 just isn’t for me. I felt like it was launching too high and ballooning, which could be due to the shaft (the M1 had the S300, while the M2 just had a stock “Reax” shaft). The feel off the face of the M2 just turned me off, to be honest.

While I don’t think I’ll be putting either model in play, I can definitely see the appeal for mid-to-high handicaps. Both irons were super forgiving, and they should be a dream to the average weekend golfer who has trouble with ball striking consistently.

golfnut5438

Looks: As expected, I preferred the M1 with less offset, slightly smaller sole and a smoother finish. Less glare looking down on the iron. I must say the M2 did not look as bulky, or have as much offset as I thought it might have.

Feel: This was a close race, probably due to the shafts as much as the heads. The M1 was just a slight bit smoother feeling on solid shots. But the M2 was not bad at all, just not quite as smooth.

Distance and performance: Our range has a slight incline up the length of the range, so specific yardage gains or losses were difficult to measure. Both irons had a higher trajectory than my gamer 7 iron. Neither sole dug onto the turf either. The lofts for both irons are a degree or two stronger than mine, so I would think they probably flew a little further than my gamers. Neither iron flew “too” high, however. Might be a little harder to hit knock down shots, though.

Final thoughts: I had hit both the M1 and M2 irons last year during a fitting day, but did not like either. This year’s model were both better in my eyes. I asked a fellow member at our club to hit both and he felt the M1 was his preferred model, and he is a 20-index player. So coming from both a single digit, and a high double-digit, the M1 won this battle of wills. I will try and see if I can locate both a 5 iron and 9 iron to see if a full set might be a winner for me.

DblEgl

I was surprised that the M2 was the winner in this brief session. It felt better, flew higher, easier to hit and about 1/2 club longer that my gamer Apex CF16. The feel/sound was better than I thought it might be, but really not up to the CF16. I could, however, easily game the M2’s.

Bstein74

Feel: I hit the M2 first, and found it to be very solid when hit on the screws. There was almost no feel off the club face at all. When I mishit it, you knew it was, but it wasn’t harsh at all. Hit the M1 next, and same type of feel when hit solid. Much more harsh when mishit though, but I knew that was coming.

Distance and performance: This is was where I was curious to see how they would play. The M2 went out high in the air, and just kept going forever. Now granted my eyesight isn’t that great anymore, but it looked like I got about 10-15 yards more from the M2 compared to my Wilson D300. The only thing I didn’t like about the M2 was how much I was able to turn it over. Got a lot more hook compared to my D300. Don’t know if that was from the REAX shaft, but would love to find a less spinning shaft to correct that.

The M1 wasn’t a great performer for me. Same height as the M2, but much straighter off the club face. Didn’t get any great distance advantage as compared to my D300. Can’t game a player’s iron anymore, and testing this one just reaffirmed that.

Final thoughts: Was very happy with the distance I gained with the M2 compared to my current gamer. Very good-performing iron for me, and something I would definitely consider changing them out if I could reduce the spin off the face. If you’re looking for more distance, you need to try these out. The M1 just wasn’t for me, but as a player’s iron, I can see it as a great option.

Bobcat271

Like the other testers, I found the M2 to launch the ball much higher and is 10-to-15 yards longer than my Adams XTD forged 7 iron. Of the two 7 irons I prefer the M1. I like the design of the M1 and its visual appearance at address. I feel more confident in trying to work the ball with the M1. The M1 gave me more feedback as to where the club head was in relation to my swing plane. If I had my druthers I would put the M1 in the bag as it stands now. Will continue to test, what a treat to compare the two irons.

myurick2

Once I started making solid contact with a decent shoulder turn, the M2 really came alive in my hands. Towering flat height, for me, and very long. No more clacky hollow feel, just a very mild pleasant sensation… then zoom. Once I started making better swings, back to the M1, which was a very nice iron. Shorter than the M2 (though not short) and a little lower ball flight. Felt nice and substantial without being heavy. Very forgiving on slight mishits.

But the M2 was the star for me. High trajectory and very long. Club felt lively and fun. Frankly, unless a player wanted a lower trajectory, or likes to hit a lot of knock downs or feel shots, I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t choose the M2. They are very attractive and a very fun iron. I think folks who say that the M2 feels and/or sounds clicky, clacky or hollow may be mishitting the iron toward the toe. I am not judging — I mishit a lot of shots at first. I agree on toe mishits the iron did not feel great. It almost felt like plastic. The ball still flew pretty well, but it wasn’t a very enjoyable experience. Not painful, just felt very dead. But when hit nearer the center, the iron felt fantastic. Light, springy and very lively. 

hammergolf

They are both good-looking clubs. Not too long heel to toe and toplines were not that distracting. M1 is more what I like to see shape wise, but M2 was not bad at all. Personally, not a fan of seeing the face slots. But I could see how some people may like how they frame the ball. 

Ace2000

M1 

– Has a very odd sound on contact, almost sounds a tad like a fairway wood “ting. Not a fan
– Looks very good at address with the brushed finish
– Most shots I hit with it seemed to fall out of the sky (very likely a lack of spin). Ball flight was much lower than I would have expected (not super low, just not much different than my 7 iron)
– Inconsistent misses. Next to no distance gains vs RocketBladez Tour 7 iron

M2

– Doesn’t look as good at address as the M1. Chrome finish at address is not an issue in even direct sunlight for me
– Feels and sounds quite nice to my ears at impact. Not a classic sound but very good considering what type of club it is
– Ball flight is very strong (comes off hot). Ball stays high in the air for awhile. Very high and lands soft
– 10-12 yards longer on average vs my 7 iron, it even had the horsepower to hang with my 6 iron
– VERY forgiving on thin strikes. Couldn’t believe how a near-top still traveled to nearly the front edge in the air and still went as far as the M1 did on a good strike
– Shaft is too light

Even though I’m a 2-handicap and don’t fit the M2 “mold,” I could see myself playing this club from 4-6 iron (although gapping would be a major issue mixing these with almost anything else) if it had a heavier shaft in it (I can only imagine how far this 4 iron must go… yikes)

M1 = 2.5/5 stars
M2 = 4.5/5 stars

tpeterson

Visual first impressions: The M1 7-iron is visually appealing to me as far as the finish and overall look. Even though it is classified as a player’s iron, it doesn’t seem so tiny that it would be tough to hit. I am not a huge fan of the bright-yellow badging, but I probably could get over it. The iron inspires confidence with its topline and a little bit of offset. The “rubber” piece on the hosel is a little bit funky to me.

I thought the M2 7-iron would look clunkier than it really is. Besides the finish being a little bit different, the difference between the M1 and M2 is actually pretty small. The M2’s topline and sole are a touch wider, but not by much. Not a huge fan of the fluted hosel since it can be seen at address. The M1’s fluting is only on the rear of the club.

I did notice that the sole’s finish did scratch pretty easily. Overall, I thought the M1 and M2 are pretty good looking, but I would definitely give the edge to the M1. I also preferred the stock Lamkin grip on the M1 vs. the ribbed M2 grip.

On course action: They both feel solid. I tried hitting both irons in all different types of on-course situations over a two week period. Both clubs launch the ball high but I would not say they balloon. For me, the M2 was about 10 yards longer and higher than the M1. Compared to my Cleveland irons, they are 1 to 1.5 clubs longer.

M1 loft = 30.5
M2 loft = 28.5
Cleveland TA7 loft = 33.5

I know this accounts for the distance gain but the ball definitely comes off hot compared to my set. I was hoping I would hit the M1 better since I like the appearance better, but that was not the case. The M2 definitely felt better for me and I felt more confident with it in my hands.

Discussion: Read all 75 reviews and the responses in our Testing Thread

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Equipment

Members Choice: The Best Irons of 2017

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To help golfers find the best irons for them in 2017, we enlisted the services of GolfWRX Members, the most knowledgeable golfers on the internet. They not only understand the technology used in the latest golf equipment, but they also test new clubs extensively. Following their detailed experiences and words of wisdom about the latest products is the perfect starting point for anyone interested in purchasing new golf clubs.

To gather their votes and feedback, we as a company first needed to properly sort the irons into categories. We aimed to keep the categories as simple as possible with 2017’s crop of irons, and we broke them down into three general categories:

  • Players Irons: Basically, small-sized irons. These irons have sleek top lines and soles. They place workability and control over distance, and for that reason they’re irons you can expect to see in the bag of a professional golfer.
  • Game-Improvement Irons: Basically, medium-sized irons. This category includes a wide-range of clubs that blend distance, forgiveness, good looks and workability.
  • Super Game-Improvement Irons: Basically, large-sized irons. These irons are juiced with hot faces, wide soles, thick top lines, big offset and a low center of gravity, among other engineering feats, that are often unique to each company.

Note: Because of the abundance of Players Irons currently available, we divided that category into two categories: Players Irons and Exotics Players Irons. The Exotic Players Irons list included players irons from companies such as Epon, Fourteen, Miura, PXG, and Honma, which are not as widely available for testing in the U.S.

Below you can access the full results of our Members Choice 2017: Best Irons lists, as well as feedback about each iron from the GolfWRX Community. We’d like to sincerely thank all the GolfWRX Members who participated in the voting and provided feedback on the irons. We also want to thank those of you who provided feedback on the voting process itself. We assure you that we read and consider everything, and we’re going to continue to improve our process in order to provide the best and most useful information about the latest golf equipment.

Members Choice: The Best Players Irons

Mizuno_JPX_900_Tour_Feat-1021x580

Vote Leader: Mizuno JPX-900 Tour

“WOW! Great mix of buttery feel and forgiveness.”

Overall, the Mizuno JPX-900 Tour irons earned nearly 15 percent of votes on the Players iron category, giving them top billing for players irons. One GolfWRX member said he was “weak in the knees from first look at the satin finish and compact size,” and that the “feel is excellent, and there’s just enough forgiveness.” Another said the JPX-900 Tour irons are the “best irons out there right now in terms of blending feel, forgiveness, and the ability to shape shots.”

Full List: The Best Players Irons of 2017

Members Choice: The Best Exotic Players Irons

PXG0311t-600x377

Vote Leader: PXG 0311T

“I can’t say I have ever hit anything that feels as good as the PXG.”

With more 21 percent of votes for the Best Exotics Players Irons of 2017, PXG’s 0311T irons were described by GolfWRX members as “a great looking club,” and that they “felt unbelievable.” When comparing the irons to Titleist’s 716 MB irons, one member said, “The fact that you can barely tell if it has or doesn’t have more offset than the MB 7 iron just shows how little it has.”

Full List: The Best Exotic Players Irons of 2017

Members Choice: Best Game-Improvement Irons

CallawayApexMembersChoice

Vote Leader: Callaway Apex CF ’16 

“Apex CF is simply the most explosive, best feeling iron I’ve ever hit in this category.”

Acquiring nearly 20 percent of votes of all models in the Best Game-Improvement Iron category, GolfWRX Members described the Callaway Apex CF ’16 irons as “simply the most explosive,” and that they “perform very well on center hits and almost as good on mishits.”

Full List: The Best Game-Improvement Irons of 2017

The Best Super Game-Improvement Irons 

PingGironsWRX

Vote Leader: Ping G

“The Ping G takes what Ping has done for years and added in increased ball speed, improved feel and much better looks.”

An iron that “will appeal even to Ping haters.” GolfWRX Members described the Ping G as “stupid easy to hit,” providing a “high and straight ball flight,” and “an eye opener.” The irons also accumulated more than 22 percent of the total votes in the category.

Full List: The Best Super Game-Improvement irons of 2017

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