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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

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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