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10 things you need to know about Cobra’s new King F8 lineup for 2018

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Following up on its previous King F7 golf clubs, Cobra is back with its full line of King F8 drivers, hybrids and irons, and you’ll notice a slew of differences from its predecessors. Cobra has thrown the proverbial kitchen sink at the new F8 golf clubs based on about 2.5 years of R&D, according to the company, and many of the new technologies are quite visible. It’s also the first line of “smart” golf clubs, which you’ll learn more about below.

Here are 10 things you need to about Cobra’s new F8 golf clubs, and don’t forget to join the discussion and see more photos of the product!

1) CNC-Milled Faces 

Unlike just about every other driver face on the market, Cobra’s new F8 and F8+ drivers have multi-directional CNC-milled faces. The process, which takes roughly 25 minutes per head according to Cobra, allows the faces to be produced thinner to increase ball speeds, and it saves weight to be used elsewhere in the heads (mostly low and rearward to increase forgiveness).

The surface roughness that the milling produces increases friction, which actually lowers spin on drivers. Additionally, milling the faces tightens the tolerances, leading to more consistency and overall ball speed — since there’s a tighter tolerance, Cobra can get consistently closer to the USGA’s CT limit (a measure of spring-like effect).

2) Aero-(S)trips 

While we’ve seen “speed trips” on the crowns of other drivers on the market to increase their aerodynamic quality, Cobra was able to add trips without adding much weight to the crown’s structure. That’s because Cobra is using polymer decal tape to trip-up airflow around the crown during the swing. The polymer trips, along with a re-designed, streamlined shape — Cobra calls this “360 Aero” — the company has reduced overall drag by 17 percent compared to the F7 drivers. According to Cobra, this leads to 1.1 mph more ball speed, and 4 yards in total distance.

3) Weight a second

Rather than three weight ports in the soles of the drivers, as we saw in the F7 and F7+ drivers, Cobra has switched to two weight ports in the F8 (draw and neutral) and F8+ (forward and rearward) drivers. According to the company, fewer weight ports in the head allowed engineers to drop overall CG (center of gravity) in the head, thus making them more forgiving, while not giving up the ability for golfers to adjust CG to their swing needs.

4) All of the F8 clubs are “Smart”

Cobra launched its Connect system, in connection with Arccos Golf, in the F7 drivers. That means Arccos tracking system was embedded in the grips of the drivers, which uses vibrations to return club analytics.

Now, Cobra Connect will be available in every club throughout the F8 line. When you purchase a set of King F8 or King F8 ONE iron sets, you will also receive a full set of Arccos 360 sensors for FREE; Cobra says this is a $249 value. With the new Cobra Connect system in every head throughout the set, golfers will receive stroked-gained stats and other helpful data in the app.

Side note: you will still need to play golf with your smartphone in your pocket for the system to work.

5) Doubling down on the rails

Cobra’s Baffler technology isn’t new, as it’s been featured in the last few iterations of fairway woods from the company, it has brought the rails closer together and made them taller. The technology works similarly to bounce on wedges, and helps the club glide through the turf, preventing digging and allowing for a more aggressive pass at the golf ball.

The new F8 and F8+ fairway woods have been given a sleeker head shape based on feedback from player testing. There is also Carbon fiber in the crowns to drop weight in the club head to make them more forgiving.

6) Carbon Fiber in the irons

Cobra’s new F8 irons, as with the F8 fairway woods, have also been given a carbon fiber addition. In the irons, there’s a new Carbon fiber medallion in the rear cavities — the design will work to provide a softer, lighter feel. Like irons in the company’s past, the F8 irons also have progressive TecFlo designs and spin technology throughout the sets; this means the long irons will fly higher and with less spin for more distance, while the shorter irons will fly lower and with more spin for greater control. The F8 irons utilize the familiar “PWRSHELL” technology that keeps CG low to boost forgiveness and speed.

7) One-length irons and… hybrids?

The one-length iron sets have been given a few tweaks. Most notably, Cobra has adjusted lie angles throughout the set to make long irons fly a bit higher and short irons a bit lower. Also, the longer irons have been given a wider sole, especially when compared to their variable-length F8 counterparts. The F8 ONE sets will also utilize carbon fiber for a better feel.

New in this year’s F8 ONE set is the addition of a hybrid — it also utilizes Baffler Technology. Along with bringing the long-game benefits of a hybrid into the one-length concept, a Cobra representative also notes that it will be utilized by many as an option around the greens due to its shortened length.

8) Nardo

The “nardo” gray color (pictured on the right), which is an option in the metalwoods aside from black, is undeniably popular right now throughout the sporting world and beyond. You may have noticed Oklahoma State and Ohio State’s college football teams using the color recently for their alternate jerseys, and several automobile manufacturers utilizing nardo in their color schemes. It’s the hottest color in sports right now, so why not bring it into the world of golf?

9) For the kids

Cobra is offering F8 Junior heads that are “real deal drivers,” in 39 (7-9 year olds), 41 (10-12 year olds) and 43-inch (13-15 year olds) length options. The best thing is that if you register the club through Cobra, the company will upgrade the driver with the longer shaft option for free as he/she gets older.

10) Specs, pricing and more

Note: All drivers, fairway woods and hybrids will hit stores on January 12, while all irons will hit stores February 2.

King F8 and F8+ Drivers ($399)

  • The F8 drivers (9-12 degrees) come with stock MRC Tensei CK Blue 50, Aldila NV 2KXV Blue 60, or Aldila NV 2KXV Green 65 shafts with Lamkin REL Cobra Connect grips.
  • The F8+drivers (8-11 degrees) come with stock Aldila NV 2KXV Blue 60, Aldila NV 2KXV Green 65 or Project X HZRDUS Yellow 75 shafts and Lamkin Crossline 360 Cobra Connect grips.

King F8 fairways ($249)

  • Head options: 3-4: (13-16 degrees), 5-6: (17-20 degrees), 7-8: (21-24 degrees)
  • Grip: Lamkin REL 360 Cobra Connect
  • Stock shaft: Aldila NV 2KXV Blue 70

King F8+ Fairways ($249)

  • Head options: 3-4: (12-15 degrees), 5-6: (16-19 degrees)
  • Grip: Lamkin Crosline 360 Cobra Connect
  • Stock Shaft: Aldila NV 2KXV Green 75

King F8 hybrids ($199)

  • Head options: 2H (17 degrees), 3H (19 degrees), 4H (22 degrees) and 5H (25 degrees)
  • Stock Shaft: Aldila Rogue Pro 75
  • Grip: Lamkin REL 360 Cobra Connect

King F8 ONE hybrids ($199)

  • Head options: 3H (19 degrees), 4H (22 degrees) and 5H (25 degrees)
  • Grip: Lamkin REL 360 Cobra Connect
  • Stock Shaft: Aldila Rogue Pro One Length

King F8 Variable length steel ($799 steel, $899 graphite)

Steel irons (5-PW, GW) come with True Temper XP 90 shafts and Lamkin REL 360 Cobra Connect shafts, while graphite (5H, 6-PW, GW) come with Aldila Rogue Pro 65 shafts with Lamkin REL Cobra Connect grips.

King F8 ONE ($799 steel, $899 graphite)

One-length iron sets (5-PW, GW) come with either Aldila One Rogue 65 shafts or True Temper One Flighted shafts and Lamkin Crossline 360 Cobra Connect grips.

 

Discussion: See more photos, and read what GolfWRX members are saying about the clubs in our forums

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He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

20 Comments

20 Comments

  1. Steve

    Dec 17, 2017 at 3:47 pm

    I think this looks like it wants to be in my bag. I want to play these clubs. This just might be what can get me to give up my ping driver. Definitely want the baffler. I sold an old 7 cobalt 7 wood from Tony Penna golf many years ago that had rails I miss that club.

  2. Crazy About Golf

    Dec 14, 2017 at 11:19 pm

    Put a Callaway GBB Epic Sub Zero in my bag a couple months ago and it is a bomber…..but I’m definitely going to give this new Cobra a few swings! Just for fun! It looks bad a$$!

  3. Ian

    Nov 29, 2017 at 9:39 am

    Cobra trying to change the game. Could be great

  4. Val

    Nov 15, 2017 at 7:46 pm

    I WANT all those awesome wild weapons sitting in my WITB arsenal !!!!!
    I’m a King Cobra golfer and others will fear me and my WITB weapons !!!!
    Man ‘o man am I itching for all the FFFFF88888 destroyers !!!!!

  5. Gorden

    Nov 15, 2017 at 6:45 pm

    One thing for sure we are seeing them going to major bells and whistle’s to sell a driver at $399. Anyone playing to a 12 or more will never need any of this, (unless they are under 10 and at a 12 already).

  6. Underachiever

    Nov 15, 2017 at 4:35 pm

    Curious what the numbers will be like on high toe shots I hit when I catch it on the text…

  7. Jeff Newman

    Nov 15, 2017 at 3:03 pm

    So, friction now decreases spin??? WTH? So what is Cleveland and their wedges touting and are they totally wrong? Come on….. Something or someone is not telling the truth.

    • John

      Nov 16, 2017 at 12:04 am

      well if you hit up with a driver and down with a wedge, wouldn’t it produce opposite results?

      • Robert Parsons

        Dec 20, 2017 at 12:08 am

        Explain how that works with so many people that have negative AOA? Thanks for playing, and feel free to try again.

    • Mike

      Nov 16, 2017 at 11:14 am

      Bridgestone did this with the J715 for the past few years and it was amazing. That is still one of my all time drivers because it did drop my spin and I am still using that driver today. All new drivers could not match that head/shaft combo and that was after extensive testing of the other latest and greatest. This might be the new driver for me since I am a true believer of that milled face.

    • Troy

      Dec 3, 2017 at 7:41 am

      I was curious about this too. Seems like CNC milling will only add spin, but there has been no word on this from anyone. I am super interested in the driver, but I am going to have to see how the numbers compare to my current gamer before making any decisions.

  8. alexdub

    Nov 15, 2017 at 11:46 am

    This could be the best looking driver cobra has ever put out. Love it.

  9. Milo

    Nov 15, 2017 at 11:42 am

    Guess we’ll see how the F8+ does against my LTD Pro

  10. Bo Pence

    Nov 15, 2017 at 11:23 am

    Doesn’t look as good as the white and black carbon composite the Taylormades have. Price is good though!

  11. Duncan Marc

    Nov 15, 2017 at 10:25 am

    Is it 7 yards longer? J/K.
    Cobra makes great stuff. I’ll have to give their irons a look when I’m ready this spring.

  12. M-Herd4

    Nov 15, 2017 at 9:57 am

    Awesome!!! My wife made the switch to a full bag of Cobra’s 3 years ago and I traded in my Pings for Cobra’s 2 years ago. Best moved we ever made. Absolutely love Cobra products!!

  13. Dat

    Nov 15, 2017 at 9:08 am

    At least it isn’t $899.

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Equipment

Wunder: I’ve hit THESE new drivers this year…and this is what I think

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During this lockdown, I have done quite a few “Friday Q & A’s” on my IG, and one of the questions I get asked constantly is “have you hit this?” That, and “whaddya think?”

So, in the spirit of organizing my brain, it seemed like the right time to share what new drivers I have actually hit this year…and this is what I think.

Now, it needs to be said that there is a lot of new gear out there, but, to be honest, I’ve only actually hit a select few enough to actually build an opinion. “Enough” in this case is at least 20 balls. Some of these sticks I tested during our pre-launch preview with the OEMs, at the PGA show, a friend has one, or I actually have it in the bag.

Here we go.

TaylorMade SIM

Setup tested: SIM 9 @8.25 w/ Mitsubishi Chemical Kuro Kage XTS 70TX

LOOKS: The best way to describe how SIM looks behind the ball is “comfortable.” TaylorMade has always made drivers that just look correct. The lines are clean, the shape inspires playability, and I dig the paint job. They hit a home run with this one for sure.

FEEL: Best sound out there in my opinion. Heavy, dense, and if you get one dead-nuts center, it lets you know. The feel at contact is just as TaylorMade drivers have always done, center strikes feel like Thor’s hammer and mishits don’t kill your good vibes.

VS THE M5: I get asked this a lot. I loved the M5. Still do. To be honest the two drivers data wise were legit apples to apples. The only difference is my stock shot with M5 was a low spin straight ball and with SIM its a slight draw with a touch more spin and slightly lower launch. I prefer that.

OVERALL: In my opinion, the TaylorMade SIM is the cool kid in high school for 2020. Last year it was F9 followed closely by M5. TM knocked it outta the park on this one.

TaylorMade SIM Max

Setup tested: Sim Max 9 @8.25 w/ Mitsubishi Chemical Kuro Kage XTS 70TX

LOOKS: It has a bit more of a longer face at address, which makes the head appear shallow which inspires a bit more confidence to turn it over. That’s the main thing I noticed with MAX. Other than that its a tried and true TM shape.

FEEL: Like its sibling, it has a nice solid hit audibly at the impact. So, overall its apples to apples with SIM. However, due to the front weight missing on the MAX, the actual strike doesn’t feel AS meaty as SIM. Not a negative necessarily just something I noticed.

VS M6: Both of these sticks I launched a bit too high versus the weighted versions. That’s why they never got any serious consideration to actually put in play.

OVERALL: As a high launch, more forgiving option, it’s an ace.

Callaway Mavrik Sub Zero

Setup tested: Sub Zero 9 w/ Mitsubishi Chemical Tensei Blue AV 65TX

LOOKS: To my eyes, the newer versions of the Callaway drivers have looked a bit more compact than its competition. To me, this always looked “low spin” for whatever reason. The Mavrik has the same shape which is good.

FEEL: They really fixed the sound. The Epic Flash sounded like a pop can to me, and the Mavrik Sub Zero sounds like a sledgehammer. The good thing here is the sound now matches up with what the hit feels like. I think the Mavrik is the best feeling driver Callaway has made since Epic.

VS EPIC FLASH SZ: To me, a complete improvement on all fronts. Sound, feel, and performance for me were all substantially better. Now I must say that the Epic Flash Sub Zero was a great driver, I always got great numbers out of it, but the sound took me out of it. I’m sure there isn’t that much difference audibly between the two, but in this game, even something minor can represent so much. Sound to me is huge.

OVERALL: In all honestly, I haven’t given a Callaway driver a real hard look to actually put in the bag since Epic. The sound got louder wit Rogue and Epic Flash. The Mavrik SZ  however is a fantastic driver and will def get some more testing out of me.

Cobra SpeedZone

Setup tested: Cobra Speed Zone 9 @8.5 w/ Fujikura Ventus Black 7X

LOOKS: The F9 was a winner on all fronts. The only critique I had was optically it looked like the driver was a little too fade biased. The SZ with its milled in top line gives it softer look at address and for me, softer lines mean more workability, just what my eyes tell me.

FEEL: As with F9 and the earlier mentioned SIM, the Speed Zone sounds EXACTLY how a driver should sound. It has a very heavy hit audibly and that’s across the face. I love the sound of this driver.

VS F9: Apples to apples, it’s the same. Beyond the optics, it feels, sounds, and performs like the F9. Not a bad thing though, the F9 was the driver of 2019 in my opinion.

OVERALL: Nothing wrong with repeating an already awesome driver. SpeedZone will stand up to anything out there. If I’m being fair, I think F9 elevated things in 2019, and this year the competition caught up to it. Changes nothing about how good this driver is.

Cobra Speed Zone Xtreme

Setup tested: Cobra Speed Zone Xtreme 9 @8.5 w/ Fujikura Ventus Black 7X

LOOKS: Like the other drivers in this higher MOI category, it looks a little longer heel to toe.

FEEL: No different than the SpeedZone, sounds great, the impact is solid across the face, and even thin shots feel solid.

OVERALL: The Xtreme is the sleeper hit of 2020 and I’ve heard the fitters love this thing. It’s by far the easiest to hit and overall good time of any driver on this list. Is it longer? No. But is it Xtremely (no pun) playable and competitive? Hard yes. It’s a blast.

PXG Proto

Setup tested: PXG Proto 9 w/ Graphite Design Tour AD IZ 6 TX

LOOKS: Slick. Like all PXG gear, the look is there. The matte crown and elegant lines make it very pleasing optically. I also appreciate that although it’s designed to look high tech. The lines inspire playability, and who doesn’t love a driver that looks like a stealth bomber?

FEEL: I only hit about 20 balls with the PXG Proto in the short time I had with it, but, wow, did this thing surprise me. The sound oddly enough is a bit higher-pitched than the others on the list but for whatever reason, it’s not a distraction. It actually adds to the experience of the hit. I typically detest that, but this sound matched up with the solid hit I was getting. I’m not sure if this is the final version since its a limited tour proto but what is happening is definitely interesting.

VS GEN2: It’s just better. Feels better, sounds great, more playable across the face. The Gen2 did one thing better than everyone else, it destroyed spin. The problem I had was control. The PXG Proto is still low spin but with the new 4 weight system (no intel on the tech yet) seems to add quality launch to the low spin profile and puts the player in a situation where very few to any sacrifices are made.

OVERALL: I was a fan of Gen2. No doubt. But it never flat out beat M5, F9, or SIM. The Proto has elevated PXG’s driver game. I don’t think its a matter of whether or not the driver stands up with the irons, I believe PXG is on the right track to having a driver that eliminates any “yeah, but…” to the conversation. That’s a huge leap since Gen1. These guys are trending hard.

I hope this was helpful.

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What GolfWRXers are saying about the final version of Bryson DeChambeau’s LA Golf ‘Texas Rebar’ wedge shafts

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In our forums, our members have been discussing the final version of Bryson DeChambeau’s LA Golf ‘Texas Rebar’ wedge shafts. The look of the ultra-stiff shafts, which originated from Bryson wanting a “graphite shaft that was stiffer than the Dynamic Gold X7″, has impressed our members who have been praising the final version and sharing their thoughts on the concept.

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.

  • QuigleyDU: “Awesome.”
  • My2dogs: “Really coming out with some great new stuff.”
  • HateTheHighDraw: “MMT 125TX are absolute fire, but these must be much stiffer.”
  • Robkingasu: “Sweet!”

Entire Thread: “Bryson DeChambeau’s LA Golf ‘Texas Rebar’ wedge shafts”

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Should I move to heavier iron shafts? – GolfWRXers have their say

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In our forums, our members have been discussing the strategy of moving to heavier shafts in irons. WRXer ‘Z1ggy16’ has been making swing changes lately, and the transition has been most challenging for his iron play. ‘Ziggy16’ says:

“Been making some swing changes lately, most notably working to really shallow my club into the downswing. I’m finding that I’m doing this well with my heavy wedge shafts and driver, but I’m struggling a bit in my irons. My strike pattern with my wedges is pretty good, but the irons are a bit all over. Driver is 80g raw, wedges are 132g raw, irons 120g raw. I don’t think I want to go any stiffer, but is there a chance I’ve “outgrown” this weight and need to move to something a bit heavier to help keep these feels going through my set? No idea what swing speed is at this point, but my 7i is normally a smooth/comfortable 175-180 for me.

I really like the feel of my Accra Tour Z Xtreme 475 and my S400’s in the GW-LW. I’m kind of leaning maybe soft stepping modus 120TX or X100’s.. Heck maybe even S200 straight in? Normally I’d just get a fitting, but with Rona still going around, I’m not than keen on it. 2020 is the year of the self fit for me. FWIW, I used modus 120TX 2xSS in my GW & SW last year and that was pretty good feeling. Perhaps a touch too soft… they seemed to really whip/bend hard when hitting from the rough on full swings.”

Our members discuss whether they feel a switch to heavier shafts in the irons will have the desired impact.

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.

  • Pepperturbo: “You’re not alone. Regardless of age, some of us swing better with heavier shafts. I went from 70g driver and 85g 3wd graphite shafts to 58g Ventus shaft in driver and 70g Ventus shaft in 4wd. In irons went from 130g X to 120g 6.0 PX steel shafts which lasted about fifteen years. Then last year made another downward weight change to Steelfiber (steel & graphite) 110g Stiff shafts, lightest I have ever played. Keep in mind as you transition, changing shaft weight is not the only answer. Increasing swing weight can make up for shaft weight. Though I really like them in 6-3i, not thrilled in SW-7i, so just ordered heavier Steelfiber i125g shafts for my PW-7i blades.”
  • Jeff58: “As someone who has gone through and continues to work on what sounds like a similar situation, your ideal iron shafts will likely change. Where they change to isn’t possible to predict with any degree of accuracy. Don’t change your current irons without knowing. It’s frustrating, expensive, and you won’t have any clubs while they’re being changed out. Instead, get a single club from dealsandsteals or similar and experiment with that. Also, the only relevant experience is outdoors under your actual turf conditions. Indoor and mat use can be grossly different.”
  • Red4282: “Just depends on your tempo and load and preferences tbh. My numbers are about identical to yours; I play 77g in the driver and 125 in the irons. I don’t think I could go lighter than 125.”
  • gvogel: “I have a set of hickory clubs. Of course, hickory shafts are darn heavy, maybe 150 grams or so. I probably hit straighter shots with the irons, and particularly hit better shots with the niblick (wedge). Driver and fairway woods, not so much. That might be a stupid insertion into an intelligent thread, but heavier goes straighter, lighter goes longer. You can go heavier, and it helps in transition, but don’t go too stiff.”

Entire Thread: “Should I switch to heavier iron shafts?”

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