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Callaway launches Rogue, Rogue Pro and Rogue X irons and hybrids

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With its new line of Rogue irons — consisting of Rogue, Rogue Pro and Rogue X models — Callaway continues its search to answer a conundrum that’s plagued game-improvement irons for years; how do you make an iron that produces great ball speed without sacrificing sound and feel. The dilemma is that in order to increase ball speeds, engineers must make the faces of the irons thinner. The problem is, the thinner they make the faces, the more vibration is caused at impact, creating a longer-lasting, higher-pitched sound. Very few golfers want that off-putting, clicky sound, but they do want the ball speed and distance.

So, that’s why companies are experimenting with different materials and injections between the faces of game-improvement irons and their bodies. That buffer creates a dampening effect to reduce vibration, while still allowing faces to be constructed thinner to raise COR (coefficient of restitution, a measure of energy transfer) and ball speed. Companies such as PXG irons use TPE injections, and TaylorMade uses SpeedFoam in its new P-790 irons; Callaway says those constructions either constrict speed, or they don’t have a profound enough effect on vibrations.

For its Rogue irons that are made from 17-4 stainless steel, Callaway is using what it calls urethane microspheres, which are essentially little balls of urethane that it combines together, in the cavities of its irons. The difference between these spheres and other foams and materials on the market, according to Callaway, is that the material is porous. Callaway says the microspheres work to dampen sound without negatively effecting ball speed.

A look at the inside of a Rogue iron, via Callaway’s photography

The inner material in the cavity works in tandem with familiar technologies from previous iron releases such as Apex, Epic and Steelhead XR. Callaway says it has improved upon its VFT (variable face thickness) and Face Cup technologies, focusing on thinning out portions of the face where golfers tend to miss shots — low on the face, on the heel and on the toe. Each of the Rogue irons also uses Internal Standing Wave by way of Tungsten-infused weights that help control the center of gravity (CG) in the club heads; that means centering the overall weight between the scoring lines, and controlling where the CG is placed vertically throughout a given set (re: higher on the short irons for more control and spin, and lower on the long irons for more height).

For the consumer, all of this means getting performance-driven irons at a lower price compared to the Epic and Epic Pro irons. Each of the irons will be available for pre-sale on January 19, and come to retail on February 9. Read on for more info on each of the specific irons, and the Rogue and Rogue X hybrids that introduce Callaway’s Jailbreak technology into hybrids for the first time.

Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about the Rogue irons and hybrids in our forums.

Rogue irons ($899.99 steel, $999.99 graphite)

Callaway’s Rogue irons are the standard model in this line of irons, equipped with all of the technologies described above. According to Callaway, these are essentially Steelhead XR replacements, but have more compact shapes. In the Steelhead XR irons, Callaway used a wider profile in order to center CG between the scoring lines, but due to the inclusion of the Tungsten-infused weights in the Rogue irons, it was able to shape the irons more similar to XR and X-Hot irons of the past — more preferable shapes for GI irons, according to Callaway.

Stock shafts include True Temper’s XP105 steel shaft, and Aldila’s Synergy graphite shaft.

Rogue Pro irons ($999.99)

The Rogue Pro irons, as you may expect, have a more compact shape, thinner toplines and thinner soles than their standard-model-counterparts. Therefore, the Pro design will yield more control that better players will prefer, but they are still packed with all of the performance-enhancing technologies of the Rogue irons. They also have a chrome plating that better players may be drawn to.

Rogue X irons ($899.99 steel, $999.99 graphite)

Callaway described the Rogue X irons to me as “bomber irons.” They have lofts that are 3-to-4 degrees stronger than the standard Rogue irons, and they have longer lengths and lighter overall weights, but according to Callaway, they will still launch in the same window iron-for-iron (re: a 7-iron will launch like a 7-iron). Despite cranking down the lofts, they have bigger profiles, wider soles and more offset; those designs work to drag CG rearward, which helps to increase launch.

Combine that design with the Rogue’s VFT, Face Cups, Internal Standing Wave and urethane microspheres, and the result is an iron that’s “all about distance,” according to Callaway.

Rogue and Rogue X hybrids ($249.99 apiece)

As noted previously, the Rogue and Rogue X hybrids include Callaway’s Jailbreak technology. Like Callaway’s Rogue fairway woods, they use stainless steel bars behind the face instead of the titanium bars that are used in the Rogue drivers. Also, like all of the other Callaway clubs that use Jailbreak, the idea of the design is that two parallel bars inside the club head connect the sole with crown help to add strength to the body at impact, allowing the faces to be constructed thinner, thus, create more ball speed across the face. The Rogue and Rogue X hybrids also have Callaway’s familiar Face Cup technology.

The standard Rogue goes up to a 6-hybrid, while the oversized, Rogue X “super hybrid” goes up to an 8-hybrid. Similar to the Rogue X irons, the Rogue X hybrids have an oversized construction, a lighter overall weight, and longer lengths. The goal with these Rogue X hybrids is to create higher launching, more forgiving and longer hybrid options for golfers who need help getting the ball in the air.

Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about the Rogue irons and hybrids 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.

34 Comments

34 Comments

  1. JH

    May 6, 2018 at 1:45 am

    Not everyone can play to an 8 hcp or less in fact 95% of golfers are 15+;we hit 70 practice balls and play a round a week if that. With these new “gimmicky” clubs, one can have more fun, retain same distance and keep improving even as they age, one caveat you will have to have good fundamental swing mechanics for any club to work. Look at Gary Player you think he is still playing forged blades, 8 degree driver don’t think so, he is 82 and still shoots his age or lower.

  2. Mad-Mex

    Jan 20, 2018 at 7:15 pm

    Didn’t you get enough attention as a child Stan!?! Grow up,,,,,

  3. Jon

    Jan 20, 2018 at 3:17 pm

    Stan,

    I don’t respond to the back and forth very often but feel like I have to respond to the arrogance you throwing around. If you are such a great ball striker the how come you aren’t out the tour making big bucks competing with Jordan, Dustin and Rory? Get a life. I rarely strike the exact center of the club face either but ENJOY the game apparently more than you do. On top of that YOU need to figure out that you need all of us “hackers” or every golf course will close and all you pure ball strikers will have to find a different game (I’d suggest bowling….not wait, Polo for you). If your lucky you might be able to compete against the rest of your fellow pure ball strikers at your local Top Golf.

  4. Stan

    Jan 18, 2018 at 10:35 pm

    My boyfriend uses jelly to dampen the vibrations, if you know what I mean.

  5. stan

    Jan 18, 2018 at 5:46 pm

    FAKE-FORGED JELLO-FILLED GOLF CLUBS!!!
    😮 😛 😎 😉

    • Mikele

      Jan 18, 2018 at 8:18 pm

      No more fake than your lob and run comment.

      • stan

        Jan 18, 2018 at 11:49 pm

        At least I’m not a desperate gearhead who slobber and funner golf.

  6. Jgpl001

    Jan 18, 2018 at 3:49 pm

    The word “Pro” here is such a joke,

    How could anyone buy this stuff?

    If you need these, then give golf and take up stamp collecting

    • stan

      Jan 18, 2018 at 5:39 pm

      The ‘Pros’ who are playing these bloated clubs are paid to advertise them on the Tour. If one of those ‘bought’ pros wins with these clubs or even win, the gearheads will have a feeding frenzy on Monday… after the Sunday win.
      In any case, Ping can claim the G400s are “Tour Tested”…. and what’s good enough on the Tour is good enough for YOU!!! 😛

      • stan

        Jan 18, 2018 at 5:42 pm

        Ooops… correction …. “If one of those “bought” pros is on the leaderboard or even wins with these clubs….” …. now that’s better …;-)

    • JOEL GOODMAN

      Jan 18, 2018 at 7:20 pm

      THESE “CLUBS” AND THEY ARE CLUBS SUITABLE FOR KILLING SNAKES AND RATS AND MICE, I WOULDN’T HAVE THESE UGLY EXCUSE FOR GOLF CLUBS IN MY BAG FOR 10 SECONDS EVEN IF THEY GUARANTEED TO TAKE 50 SHOTS OFF MY GAME.

      • Mikele

        Jan 18, 2018 at 8:20 pm

        Full of dung much?

      • stan

        Jan 18, 2018 at 11:54 pm

        Hollow jello-filled irons are for those who miss-hit… and that is admitted by a club designer who says these abominations are for max forgiveness.
        All these hollow irons are for failures who can’t hit on center and want a mushy slushy feeeel from impact… it’s soooo pa thetic …. :-O

    • Mikele

      Jan 18, 2018 at 8:19 pm

      Do you have to work hard at being an arrogant twit or does it just come to you naturally?

  7. Golfraven

    Jan 18, 2018 at 2:33 pm

    Wow, is half an inch of topline now the new sexy? I think I need to clean my glasses. Callaway finally arrived back at the seniors market, where whey belonged all the time – and likely where they want to be because the old folks have all the cash now.

  8. HDTVMAN

    Jan 18, 2018 at 1:46 pm

    As a fitter, I would have like the price to stay at $799, as the majority of my customers are mid-range players. The Ping G400 have been a harder sale since they rose in price to $899 from the $799 G. However, that being said, having the Rogue and G400 at $899 will definitely put the “puck” in Ping’s corner…as the G400’s are excellent clubs. I have not see the price for the M4’s, and if they also rise $100 for a set of 8 irons.

    • stan

      Jan 18, 2018 at 5:34 pm

      The only golf club market that exists nowadays is the rich hacker and neurotic gearheads. It’s a shrinking market because all the old Baby Boomers are giving up on golf and the millennials can’t afford to golf.
      These grossly expensive clubs are for those who have more money than brains and talent. The desperate OEMs are now squeezing the last dollar from the shrinking market with overpriced clubs to stay alive.
      It’s a collapsing golf club market now … believe it.

  9. SUHDUDE

    Jan 18, 2018 at 1:12 pm

    yeah, shut up stan. Dilly dilly!

    • stan

      Jan 18, 2018 at 5:36 pm

      … and dilly dilly to you too …. because it’s all TRUE …!!!!

  10. mike

    Jan 18, 2018 at 12:56 pm

    shut up stan

    • stan

      Jan 18, 2018 at 5:48 pm

      …(mike obviously has these fake-forged jello-filled clubs in his WITB… ouch!!)

  11. TexasSnowman

    Jan 18, 2018 at 12:42 pm

    ugly. Unbelievable that calls would think these will sell….maybe I’m wrong but anyone with less than a 15 hdcp will not give these a 2nd look imo.

  12. stan

    Jan 18, 2018 at 12:36 pm

    PXG, TM and now Cally…. all jumping on the jello-filled clubheads for gearhead hackers …. soooo obvious …. 😉

  13. stan

    Jan 18, 2018 at 12:28 pm

    Mushy irons filled with jello to absorb the off-center hits by hacking gearheads who can’t stand the vibrations from their beloved WITB clubs! 😮

  14. Robert Parsons

    Jan 18, 2018 at 12:20 pm

    Tons of offset and a topline thick enough a skateboarder could grind.

    • stan

      Jan 18, 2018 at 12:34 pm

      …. and engorged with jello to deaden the off-center hit vibrations and twisting… lol

  15. alexdub

    Jan 18, 2018 at 10:16 am

    Look at those shovels!

    • stan

      Jan 18, 2018 at 12:32 pm

      They shovel-swing with no whipsnap in their release, so these are perfect clubs for gooney gearheads who can’t break 100 honestly …. lol

      • John B

        Jan 18, 2018 at 5:31 pm

        Stan’s a loser. Just because you don’t like them don’t complain. You’re probably a chop yourself.

        • stan

          Jan 18, 2018 at 7:04 pm

          Ooooh …. did I hit a nerve… a feeeel nerve? LOL

  16. C

    Jan 18, 2018 at 7:22 am

    I didn’t think it would be possible to beat Ping on amount of offset. Good lord.

  17. Tucci Gang

    Jan 18, 2018 at 3:38 am

    P790 all the way, baby!

    • stan

      Jan 18, 2018 at 12:30 pm

      P790s…. admission of failure to hit the ball on the center of the clubface.
      Oooooh but they feeeeel soooo gooood ….. 😛

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Equipment

L.A.B. Golf now offers DF 2.1 putter with Electroless Nickel finish

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When you have an award-winning product, you don’t need overhaul it.

Instead, from time to time, you just need to give it a little tweak, and in the case of L.A.B. Golf’s DF 2.1—featuring lie angle balanced technology—that means offering a new highly durable nickel finish.

This isn’t the first time the team at L.A.B. Golf has changed a few things up with the DF 2.1. Just this May, on “Star Wars day” May 4th (because May 4th also kinda sounds like “May the force… be with you”) they released a hyper-limited 5 putter series featuring Start Wars graphics.

The new nickel finish on the L.A.B. DF2.1 is applied using Electroless Nickel Plating which is applied in a nickel bath through a chemical reaction. This reaction doesn’t require the traditional electric current for the plating process and it deposits a uniform layer of nickel onto the surface of the putter.

This nickel plating makes the finish on the putter almost impossible to scratch, and based on the properties of pure nickel, it isn’t affected by moisture.

Price, Specs, and Availability

The L.A.B. Golf DF 2.1 is available now with a base price of $425, with the new nickel plating being offered for an additional $30.

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TaylorMade P Series irons: Talking tour integration

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Now that the cat has been let out of the bag on the new 2020 TaylorMade P Series irons, I wanted to get some intel on how these new sticks will start to infiltrate the major tours and what that might look like.

TaylorMade’s Adrian Rietveld is one of the individuals that players like Rory, Rahm, and a number of the European staff trust to transition into new product.

I had a chance to chat with him this week on all things P Series, and this is what he had to say.

JW: In a general sense, what is the process for you when integrating a new product on Tour?

AR: I never like to do [more than] one product at a time, unless I’m at the Kingdom or off-site. On tour, it’s essential the focus stays in a bubble and we deal with one thing at a time. We typically will speak before any testing is done and I’ll get a sense from them what is looking to be gained or if there are any glaring issues.

The main place to start is going apples-to-apples spec-wise—old product vs new product. At that point we can see what the new product is offering, i.e. where it’s good and also identify what we need to do to get dialed across the board.

JW: Of the main Tour staff, who is testing now, and who will be testing after the season is over?

AR: Can’t answer exactly who is currently testing because all players test at different times, but I know our U.S. and European core staff players all have sets including non-staff players that also have our equipment in play.

The cool thing is the players who have had the time to test put them in play quickly which is a good sign.

JW: Rory put the P7MB in play quickly. What did he respond to on the P7MB that encouraged the switch?

AR: He did, but by the time, he got them he had been testing with us for a good while. When he got the set he has now, he was already quite familiar with them, so the transition was easy. This iron was designed with a lot of his input (as well as DJ) and both players had very nuanced but similar preferences, so it’s safe to say he was comfortable with them when they came outta the box.

It’s not a huge switch from his 730’s. He liked that he picked up marginal improvements across the board and was particularly pleased of the simplicity of the set—especially in the longer irons with less offset.

JW: What improvements are you seeing so far vs old models?

AR: For MB, using Charley Hull as an example, the 730 for her seemed to turn over a bit and was a bit less forgiving. With the 7MB, she neutralized her ball flight all while keeping her spec identical to her old set.

In the MC the long irons seem to launch a touch higher with a fraction more speed. Every player who has tested has made the switch, and that’s with no pressure to do so. We are patient when players irons hit in regards to player switches. I believe in the next 6-9 months you will see a ton of MC’s in bags, whether its staff or non-staff.

JW: Do you think you will see more combo sets than before?

AR: To be honest most setups these days are combo sets in some way shape or form. What I think we will see are players having the P7MB play further down into the set. For example, the player that was 4, 5, 6 750 and 7-P in 730 will now start to have the MB in the 5 and 6. That little addition of forgiveness will give players enough confidence and performance to make them comfortable.

JW: Using Rahm as an example, what is his process when he is getting into a new product?

AR: He spends a lot of time at The Kingdom and does any major switching there. He’s not a player who tends to tinker at a tournament site. As with most of our staff, his process is about making sure any switch in the bag is a step forward in performance. Since he lives in Arizona, getting to Keith and me in Carlsbad isn’t a long trip and that gives us ample quiet time to focus, test, and experiment.

*according to TaylorMade, eight sets P Series irons have been built for players on the European Tour with seven going into play immediately.

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Best tips for shopping for used golf clubs

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We’re in the middle of the golf season, and there is still lots of time left to lower your handicap, post a personal best score, and have some more fun along the way—but it might require some news clubs to get there. The best part is today, new doesn’t have to mean brand new—it can just be “new” to you.

Before spending any money shopping for used golf clubs, it’s important to pay close attention to a number of small details to save you time—and prevent you from having to spend more money down the road to correct for purchasing mistakes.

Here is our how-to guide to shop for used clubs

Shop the big sellers: Unless you are buying locally and have the opportunity to inspect clubs and know their source, the safest and easiest way to shop is from the big online sellers that inspect and verify the clubs they sell are legit.

Although thanks to a very concerted effort by OEMs to mostly eliminate counterfeit gear, it can still find its way into the marketplace and big sellers help stop the spread and prevent you from wasting your money. Also, most of the big sellers use photos of the actual clubs you are buying – not representative photos so you know exactly what you are getting.
**(We also have a great Buy/Sell/Trade board here on GolfWRX too)**

The telltale signs of counterfeit clubs are

  • Badge and brand colors slightly off
  • Poorly installed shaft bands (the stickers on steel shafts)
  • Awful smelling grips – they can feel thin and smell like very cheap rubber or solvents
  • Club weight seems very off – for irons and wedges they might feel extremely light and for drivers and woods they can feel a lot heavier because of the extremely poor quality graphite shafts being used.

Confirm specs: You don’t need to have a shop worth of tools to quickly and easily take some simple measurements to make sure you and getting clubs that match the right spec you are looking for, although a very specific tool is needed to check lies and lofts.

Specs you can check without tools – irons and wedges

  • Lengths: If lengths arent stated and you are buying in person, just simply bring a few of your own clubs to compare.
  • Grips: A quick check that all of the grips match for size and style can save you money, and make sure they feel good when you go to use them. Don’t forget though, grips are an easy and affordable way to make used clubs feel new again.
  • Matching shafts: A quick visual inspection to make sure the shafts match up will make sure you are getting what you pay for. Along that same line, checking to also make sure the ferrules match will show whether any club in the set was potentially repaired at some point.

Shopping for used clubs can feel like a treasure hunt and is a lot of fun—it’s also a great way to save money on equipment. Just be sure to not get caught up in what might seem like a deal too good to be true and take your time when evaluating what you are buying.

Happy (used golf club) shopping!

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