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Show Stoppers from Day One: 2016 PGA Merchandise Show

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After Demo Day on Tuesday, The PGA Merchandise Show moves inside the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando for its remaining three days. Enjoy the “Show Stoppers” we spotted on Day One, as well as our general galleries below.

RoboGolfPro

A golfer tries Sergio Garcia's swing.

A golfer tries Sergio Garcia’s swing.

This may hurt to hear, but you’ll probably never hit a golf ball like a major champion. But with RoboGolfPro, you can feel what it’s like to swing like one.

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At the PGA Show, RoboGolfPro teamed up with TaylorMade to bring you the ultimate experience. While waiting in line to try the experience, PGA Show attendees could feel what it’s like to hold grips that were molded by the hands of Jason Day (pictured above), Justin Rose, Dustin Johnson and Fabian Gomez. Then, they could swing like them, too.

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The patented system uses robot arms to guide the club (to height scale) on the exact swing path of golf pros, but can also be used in an instructional setting to help golfers feel a certain path, which is determined by the instructor.

RoboGolfPro is in golf academies and instruction centers across the country and the world, and has recently opened two new locations; one in London, and another at the Mike Schy Academy in Madera, Calif. They’re available for personal purchase also, but will run you approximately $150,000.

SeeMore expands Giant putter line

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Most golfers know a SeeMore putter when they see it, thanks to the company’s Rifle Scope Technology (RST). The gun-sight alignment system uses a red dot on the top rail of the putter, which golfers “hide” with the putter’s shaft at address to achieve a square clubface and consistent shaft lean.

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From left: Original FGP, Giant M1t, Mini Giant, Giant FGPt, Giant FGP

In recent years, the company has expanded its lineup to include more traditional Anser and mallet-style putters that also have RST Technology, but the original FGP, used by Zach Johnson to win the 2015 Open Championship, has remained the company’s crown jewel.

Last year, the SeeMore expanded its FGP line with a new Giant FGP putter, which took the original FGP shape and enlarged it to improve the effectiveness of the alignment aid. Its lighter, milled aluminum body (the original is made from steel) also allowed for the addition of two copper sole weights, which increase the putter’s moment of inertia (MOI), a measure of a forgiveness.

This year, the company has expanded the Giant line with three new styles that will be available in February. See photos of each putter below.

The Giant FGPt ($295) is slightly smaller than the original Giant.

The Giant mt1 ($295) has a more classic heel-toe shape than the original.

The Mini Giant ($395) is the smallest of the Giant models. It offers the best size-to-MOI ratio, according to the company, through the use four copper weights.

Arccos Driver

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There’s no question that golf clubs will get “smarter” in the years to come. What isn’t so certain is how fast the golfing majority will adopt systems such as Arccos, which uses lightweight sensors that are secured to the grip of a golfer’s clubs to track shot distances and tendencies through Bluetooth and GPS.

The company’s first launch included 14 sensors that allowed golfers to track their performance from driver to putter. Its latest product, Arccos Driver, focuses exclusively on a golfer’s tee game through a new app, which also doubles as a golf GPS.

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Like the original system, Drive is installed on the top of a golfer’s grip.

Company CEO Sal Syed says the majority of golfers are interested in “capturing that one awesome shot,” which more often than not is the one awesome drive golfers hit. Arccos Driver not only measures every drive a golfer hits in real time, but like the original system, offers game-improvement analytics. It’s also more affordable, selling for $79.99 (the original system sold for $399.99).

Within 20 drives, golfers will know how far their hit their drives, as well as their “Driving Handicap,” Syed said. For the competitive crowd, Driver also creates challenges based on skill level and tendencies to help golfers improve their games. Points can be tracked for both head-to-head competitions, as well as for the company’s Global Leaderboard.

Arccos Driver is available for iOS and Android devices. The company is currently taking pre-orders.

Adidas Tour360 Boost Olympic shoes

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To commemorate the 2016 Olympics in Rio – the first games in the modern era to include golf – Adidas launched three new Olympic-inspired Tour360 Boost shoes. The three offerings, which are NOT limited releases, will sell for between $200 and $230 when they’re released, depending on the model.

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TaylorMade-Adidas golf athletes representing the United States – we’re looking at you Dustin – are expected to wear these patriotic Tour360 Boost shoes along with the USA’s team uniform.

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Also, the dual-material uppers on the black and tri-color striped models (above, $230) have a bottom-half made from thermoplastic urethane (TPU) that’s waterproof, and an upper half that’s made from prime knit; a stretchable fabric designed for more comfort around the top of the foot.

Odyssey’s new putters… and there’s a lot

At the PGA Show, Odyssey released a slew of new putters.

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White Hot RX: The White Hot RX putters have a new insert that combines two different kinds of elastomers to make them feel softer than the original White Hot inserts. Like Odyssey’s Metal-X milled putters, the new inserts have an oval-pattern – with a paint texture added to the edges – to grab the ball and make it roll faster.

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They will be available in models #1, #2, #7, #9, Rossie, 2-Ball V-Line, and a new V-Line Fang, and will sell at $159.99 ($179.99 with Superstroke grips).

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Works Versa extension line: The Works Versa extension line uses the familiar Fusion RX face – a White Hot insert covered with a metal mesh cover to improve ball roll — and Odyssey’s Versa color schemes.

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The extension line includes Odyssey Works Versa Marxman Fang, Odyssey Works Versa #7H, Odyssey Works Versa Sabertooth and Odyssey Works Versa Tank Sabertooth. The new offerings start at $179.99.

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Toe Up: Most putters are either face balanced or have a toe-down design. Odyssey’s new Toe Up putter, fittingly, has a toe-up design, which is said to reduce torque throughout the stroke, thus stabilizing the putter path and face angle.

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They putters are offered in Odyssey’s slightly tweaked #1 and #9 models. They come stock with SuperStroke Flatso grips and will sell for $199.99 starting April 15. Like Odyssey’s Metal-X Milled putters, the putter faces are chemically etched with tiny ovals that improve ball roll.

Gears Golf 

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Blair O’Neal hitting drives on the Gears Golf system.

Gears Golf is only a few years old, but is already considered one of the most comprehensive club and body analyzers on the current market. It uses 6-8 high-speed cameras, which capture 360 frames per second, and works by finding the center of spherical probes attached to a golfer’s club and body to identify location. Unlike other systems, it does not use algorithms to determine its data parameters. It sells for about $40,000 per unit.

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Gears gives golfers detailed information about their angle of attack, clubhead speed, club path and face angle during different parts of the swing, as well as face impact location, grip speed, shaft torque, deflection, shaft droop and much more.

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Jesper Parnevik learning more about his swing on the system.

Cobra-Puma has partnered with Gears Golf, and its R&D department used the system to develop its new line of King clubs.

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7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. BriBri

    Jan 31, 2016 at 11:41 pm

    Golf was last an Olympic sport in 1904. This is not the first time golf is being played in the Olympics.

  2. David

    Jan 28, 2016 at 8:27 pm

    Check out RoboSwing at booth #800. 100% better product for 50% the cost.

  3. KJ

    Jan 28, 2016 at 8:08 pm

    Where in the world is Under Armour ? You have the best player on the planet right now and you cant produce shoes for the masses? What horrible mismanagement of a brand.

  4. Ryan

    Jan 28, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    Seems like Odyssey is coming into Edel’s torque balanced putter territory. I would definitely try it seeing the price point will be less than Edel’s.

  5. Chuck D

    Jan 28, 2016 at 3:56 pm

    Yeah, a wee bit much holding the molded rubba donga of PGA pros! Where’s Steve Elkington for comment when you need him?

  6. steve

    Jan 28, 2016 at 11:50 am

    nice

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Equipment

Forum Thread of the Day: “Your last ever set of irons?”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day comes from Nickc who asks fellow WRXers what they would choose if their next set of irons were the last clubs they could use. Some of our members mention a range of different irons which they would love to splash out on, while others choose between a set of clubs already in their possession.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • cfasucks: “If I had only 1 set to play with for the rest of my life it would probably be my 845s. They are great feeling and forgiving when I’m not at the top of my game, and they’re built like tanks.”
  • kekoa: “At this point, I’d have to choose Seven MB’s. At a price tag of about $4,000 4-PW I wouldn’t be able to afford another set.”
  • bodhi555: “That would be my VR Pros, as they do everything I need an iron to do. Feel awesome, let me get away with not being precisely on the centre of the face, look great and seem to go as far as some distance irons I’ve tried.”
  • Lumberjack627: “Think I’m going to get 790s, and that would be it for me.”

Entire Thread: “Your last ever set of irons?”

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Forum Thread of the Day: “Scotty Cameron Albertsons Boise Open putter covers”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day showcases Scotty Cameron’s Albertsons Boise Open putter covers. The vibrant french fries themed covers have been receiving plenty of love from our members in our forums, with one WRXer calling the new additions their “favorite headcover in a long time.”

Here are a few posts from the thread but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say on the covers at the link below.

  • jschwarb: “Gave up french fries many months ago … this cover makes me happy and sad. I’ll probably grab one for my T22 Fastback.”
  • manVSgolf: “This is my favorite headcover in a long time. Can’t wait to receive mine. Orders are still available for Club Cameron members.”
  • chrisokeefe12: “Those are so sick would love to get my hands on one of those.”

Entire Thread: “Scotty Cameron Albertsons Boise Open putter covers”

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Top 10 most iconic driver and fairway wood shafts of all time

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fujikura golf shaft

If there is one thing we love as golf gear junkies, it’s driver (and fairway wood) shafts!

From the early years to today’s modern designs, materials, and profiles, there are some shafts that have maintained steady popularity—like a Ping Eye 2 lob wedge. There are a lot of graphite shafts that have stood the test of time, and they bring back memories of great driver combos gone by.

This is my top 10 list (in no particular order) of the most iconic driver shafts of all time.

Fujikura 757 Speeder

Fujikura golf shaft

Launched more than two decades ago, you could arguably say it’s the shaft that started the shaft craze. Built from advanced materials in a profile that was designed to work for stabilizing larger driver heads of the time—you know when 300cc was HUGE. The Speeder 757 was an instant hit among PGA Tour players, most notably Fred Couples, who used the shaft for over a decade and was said to have at one point remove all the remaining stock from one of the equipment vans for his personal use.

Aldila NV

Aldila NV Green golf shaft

One of the very first “low-spin monsters,” the Aldila NV took the PGA Tour and retail by storm when it was introduced. The unique green paint made it easily recognizable, and thanks to the many weights it was offered in, it was just as popular in fairway woods as it was in drivers. Honorable mention goes to its cousin the NVS (orange version) that was softer in profile and easier to launch. At a time when most off the rack drivers had three shaft options (low, medium, and high flight-promoting shafts), the NV was the staple as the low-launch option in many OEM offerings.

Mitsubishi Diamana Blue Board

Diamana Blue Board - Tiger shaft

Originally very hard to find, the Diamana Blue Board was a shaft that fit a large variety of golfers. Its name was derived from the blue oval that surrounded the “Diamana” on the all silver/ion painted shaft. Just like others on the list, the Blue Board came in a variety of weight options and was made particularly popular by Tiger Woods. Best known by most shaft junkies as being extremely smooth, it is one of the first sought after shafts in the aftermarket.

True Temper EI-70

True temper graphite EI70

It’s hard to picture a classic 900 series Titleist Driver without an EI-70 shaft in it. The EI-70 was lower torque—when that was a big talking point in shaft design—and it had a fairly stout profile, which in turn made it very stable. Unlike others on the list, it was much more subdued as far as its paint and graphics, but the green shaft was a mainstay for many years on tour and in the bags or recreational golfers.

Graphite Design Tour AD DI-6/7

Tour AD Di7 Tiger orange shaft

It’s hard to figure out if it was the design and performance of the shaft or the performance of a certain golfer (a certain Mr. Woods) that to this day makes the Tour AD DI-7 so popular. Painted BRIGHT orange with a bend profile that offered a lot of stability and playability for a variety of player types, it can still be spotted on tour every week. You could call the DI-7 the grandchild of the YS6/7, which should also get an honorable mention for its well documented smooth feel.

UST ProForce

UST golf shaft gold graphite

The aptly nicknamed “Lakers Shaft” because of its original gold and purple paint job, this was another shaft that was just as popular at the retail level as it was on the PGA Tour. As driver head sizes were going up (400cc ), players were looking for stability and this offered it. The most notable player to use it was Jim Furyk, who won the 2003 U.S. Open with one in the bag.

Grafalloy Blue

Blue graphite shaft stenson

Henrik Stenson and the Grafalloy Blue in his 3-wood. Name a more iconic duo…(I’ll wait). An updated and stiffer version of the Prolite, the Blue stood out for a couple reasons—its color, and its extremely low torque. Most golfers wouldn’t consider the Blue a very smooth feeling shaft, because it took a lot of speed and a quick tempo to maximize its performance, but it did birth another shaft for average player: the Prolaunch Blue, which is still available to this day.

Matrix Ozik TP7HD

1000 golf shaft Matrix

$1,100 bucks! That was the original asking price for the Martix Ozik TP7HD. Matrix thought of this design as a concept car of shafts and threw everything they had at it including exotic materials like Zylon, and the fact that it was wrapped on a 16-sided hexadecagon mandrel. Some golfers said it had a fluid-like feel (we golfers can sure be weirdly descriptive) but it still had a LOT of stability thanks to the materials. Although never as popular as many on the list, if you did spot one of these in the wild you knew its owner was VERY serious about golf gear.

True Temper Bi-Matrix

bimatrix Bubba golf shaft

Bi (two) matrix (a surrounding medium or structure). The first and only truly notable shaft to be made from putting two very different and distinct pieces together. The bottom portion of the shaft utilizes a steel tip section that serves to add stability and additional weight. This shaft is quirky, which is something that could also be said about Bubba Watson, who has used this shaft for over a decade now in MANY different Ping drivers (although Tiger did give it a go for a short period).

Accra SE-80

ryan palmer accra 5 wood shaft

This shaft might seem like the underdog of the bunch, but if you talk to any longtime club builder and get into “vintage” aftermarket shafts, undoubtedly the Accra SE-80 is going to come up at some point. Originally launched in 2006, the SE-80 combined a very low torque rating with an active tip section to help increase launch—yet feel extremely stable. Even though this shaft design is officially a teenager now, you can still find it in the bag of PGA Tour winner Ryan Palmer, who uses it in a TaylorMade R15 5-wood.

 

Editor’s Note: Let us know any shafts you think should be included in the comment section, WRXers!

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