Connect with us

Equipment

All-new Titleist AVX for 2020

Published

on

With the introduction of the all-new 2020 Titleist AVX ball, the company is delivering on its promise to continually improve and provide golfers with performance-driven products created with direct input from golfers at all levels.

The AVX ball’s reformulated low compression core works in combination with a redesigned high-flex casing layer which together aims to provide players with greater ball speed and low long game spin for more distance.

By their own admission golfers are a finicky bunch, especially when it comes to golf balls, and sometimes the variables they are looking for in a ball have less to do with performance and are instead focused on things like feel.

In the development of the 2020 AVX, Titleist asked golfers what they loved about the previous version and what attributes they would like improved, the results were unanimous: more feel and more short game control (spin) without sacrificing distance (Something I think most golfers would want from any ball).

But before we get to what new, let’s offer a quick refresher for those unfamiliar with the Titleist AVX. It was initially introduced in the spring of 2018 following a four-month test market from October 2017-January 2018 in key markets. It was the first new premium urethane ball brand from Titleist since the introduction of the Pro V1x and was developed as a lower flight, lower spin alternative to Titleist’s Pro V1 balls.

Titleist AVX golf ball: Time to Re-engineer

Every golf ball is built from the core out, and the 2020 AVX got a whole new engine thanks to a larger, reformulated low-compression core. The core works alongside a redesigned high flex casing layer to deliver greater ball speed and low long game spin for more distance. The easiest way to understand golf ball construction and how it relates to performance is that with more direct and faster hits the more the core gets “activated.” As hits to the ball start to happen at lower speeds and with greater friction as a result of loft the outer layer construction becomes more important to short game spin and feel.

The new addition from Titleist contains a catenary aerodynamic dimple design engineered with the aim of producing a piercing, low trajectory while also providing a consistent ball flight on all shots.

To improve the feel and spin the way golfers requested a new thinner cast urethane cover was used to deliver the performance. It was easier to make the cover thinner too, thanks to the increased core size. Like I said golf balls are built from the core out.

“The improvements to AVX are a direct result of their insights and the inventiveness of our R&D team to take this design to the next level – and we expect golfers to see better numbers across the board. The new AVX is faster and longer, it performs better around green, and delivers even more of the incredibly soft feel that golfers love about this product.”
– Frederick Waddell, Senior Product Manager, Titleist Golf Balls

The last part of the in-to-out story is the aerodynamics, the engineers at Titleist use a unique aerodynamic dimple design to deliver a piercing, low trajectory that provides a consistent ball flight on all shots.

Price and availability

Titleist’s new AVX ball arrives in both white and high optic yellow and is available in golf shops worldwide beginning Jan. 22. with a MAP of $47.99.

Your Reaction?
  • 142
  • LEGIT15
  • WOW6
  • LOL3
  • IDHT1
  • FLOP6
  • OB0
  • SHANK35

Ryan Barath is part of the Digital Content Creation Team for GolfWRX. He hosts the "On Spec" Podcast on the GolfWRX Radio Network which focuses on discussing everything golf, including gear, technology, fitting, and course architecture. He is a club-fitter & master club builder with more than 17 years of experience working with golfers of all skill levels, including PGA Tour players. He is the former Build Shop Manager & Social Media Coordinator for Modern Golf. He now works independently from his home shop and is a member of advisory panels to a select number of golf equipment manufacturers. You can find Ryan on Twitter and Instagram where he's always willing to chat golf, and share his passion for club building, course architecture and wedge grinding.

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. dixiedoc

    Jan 22, 2020 at 4:48 pm

    For me I found the Chrome Soft to be a better ball all around

  2. jz

    Jan 22, 2020 at 4:34 pm

    I play the AVX because it doens’t spin. Does this mean the ball is going to spin more off the driver and irons? If one wants more spin, why not play a ProV?

    I hope TXG does a comparison of the two models.

    I’m a flipper and come in steep (And am too old to try and change it) and generate way too much spin. Does anyone have a recommendation of another premium ball that doesn’t spin? Would appreciate the help.

  3. Magnus Skold

    Jan 22, 2020 at 1:52 pm

    @Ryan

    Do we know what the compression is for the new ball?

    I’m surprised Titleist says that people just said more green side spin. The main feedback from interviews I’ve read and my own experience is that the original AVX was excellent except too soft for driving. Most third party tests also confirm it’s extremely short in carry. Therefore I’m interested in what the actual compression is.

  4. Rich Douglas

    Jan 22, 2020 at 10:35 am

    The original AVX seemed like an NXT Tour with the price jacked up. Not sure how this is much different.

    It really doesn’t matter which tour-level ball you play. Each now offers two or three variations between their own models, but from brand to brand it’s pretty much the same. This is also true with below-tour-level balls. The biggest difference there is some are incredibly soft (but they’re lacking some greenside spin).

    Pick your tour ball. Enjoy. If it’s too pricey, go with a Supersoft or TopFlite Gamer. You’ll be fine.

  5. Daniel

    Jan 22, 2020 at 10:03 am

    Lack of short game spin was my chief complaint with the AVX. Price the other.

    I got stupid distance gains over the ProV1 I was playing. 10 plus yards off the driver.

    But a Chrome Soft goes almost as far with significantly better short game spin. Much better price as well.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Equipment

TaylorMade SIM and SIM Max driver review

Published

on

New for 2020, TaylorMade has launched the new SIM driver family. First the lower spinning SIM then a more forgiving higher spinning SIM Max and a SIM Max D head to help draw the ball for those that need it.

We have seen the tour players using all three of the SIM drivers.

Technical Details

The SIM, SIM Max, and SIM Max D drivers from TaylorMade feature an asymmetric sole shape as well as a redesigned Inertia Generator. The asymmetric sole shape of the drivers is designed to reduce drag while providing faster clubhead speed, with the redesigned Inertia Generator redistributing weight at the very low-and-back portion of the club in a bid to provide improved forgiveness.

The SIM Max D clubhead contains a heel-bias internal weight with a topline masking to make the clubhead look more open at address to help golfers who struggle with a right-miss.

Other features of the SIM, SIM Max, and SIM Max D drivers includes a speed injected twist face, inverted cone technology, a thru-slot speed pocket, multi-material construction and an adjustable loft sleeve.

Exclusive to the SIM driver is sliding weight technology which allows face angle and flight bias preferences of up to +/-2° loft change and up to +/-20 yards of draw-fade bias.

(Top Left to Right) 2020 TM SIM Max & 2019 TM M6, (Bottom Left to Right) 2020 TM SIM & 2019 TM M5

Reviews

Here are the individual reviews from GolfWRXers’ trip to The Kingdom.

Tester: Rob “osubuckeyes691

I’ll start by saying this. SIM is very good. It’s not a magical 30 yards like everyone is talking about here. That comes from being properly fit. But it is good, and with a proper fitting I’d be shocked if you couldn’t find at least slightly better numbers with SIM over any gamer you have.

My current set up is a Callaway Epic Flash SZ Double Diamond with a Fuji Ventus Black 6x. LOW LOW LOW combo…and I still hit it high haha. I live in the low to mid 170s ball speed with spin sometimes getting up to 2700 2800. Drives I hit well, spin around 2100. My miss is a big push slice.

But it is good, and with a proper fitting I’d be shocked if you couldn’t find at least slightly better numbers with SIM over any gamer you have. -Rob

I ended up being fit in to a SIM 9* with the new KBS Tour Driven 70 Category 5. This shaft is super interesting. It’s really hard for me to describe but it has feel, and a lot of it. Spin dropped to about 2400 on my miss right and really, that’s what I was hoping would happen. I wanted something that when I missed, wouldn’t lose me 30 yards. We put the weight in the heel and it really did help straighten out the miss. Huge advantage for me. I knew as someone who swings 120ish I wasn’t going to pick up 20 yards. I wanted to reduce my miss and that’s exactly what SIM was able to do for me.  Here is a link to his post in the forums.

Tester: Will “fillwelix

For my driver fitting, I was with Perry, who was a blast to get to work with. I started by hitting my gamer on Trackman, talking with Perry about what my misses usually are, and what I wanted to get out of the fitting.

I usually don’t have a problem with distance so I told him the biggest thing I was looking for was a tighter dispersion. I don’t have the trackman numbers yet but with my gamer, I was averaging about 110 club head speed, 160-something ball speed, 270-275 carry, 285-290 total. Launching a bit too high but spin was okay.

The thing was seriously nuclear. My club head speed bumped up only about 1 or 2 MPH, but the launch and spin were incredible, as well as ball speed. I topped out at 170 ball speed, which I had never gotten before. -Will

We tried the 10.5 SIM in a Ventus Black 6x, and he gave me a couple tips in my setup, because my AOA was something like 4 or 5 degrees up. The thing was seriously nuclear. My club head speed bumped up only about 1 or 2 MPH, but the launch and spin were incredible, as well as ball speed. I topped out at 170 ball speed, which I had never gotten before. Carrying 295-300, total of 315-320. One shot carried the fence of the driving range at The Kingdom.

Spent some time going through different shafts to see if there was an improvement, played with weights, etc. but the best numbers were with the 10.5 SIM with Ventus Black 6x and the weight all the way in the toe, because my miss is usually left. Here is a link to his post in the forums.

Tester: Nick “n_rones

I started off with my fittings working with Joe. After some warmup we started with the drivers. Coming in I was playing a Srixon Z785 with a Hzrdus black 6.5 70 gram shaft at 45 inches.

I’m a really tough fit because I have an unusual swing and hit down on the ball heavily with every club. My AOA with the driver was between 5 and 7 down which is pretty nuts I always knew I hit down on it but not that much. I’m still waiting on the trackman date to be emailed to me but with my own driver I was somewhere in the neighborhood of 109 swing speed with a launch angle of 4 degrees and 4000 spin (Ridiculous I know right).

I was able to take it on the course with me that afternoon and hit 12-14 fairways a new record for me and ever ball was easily 15-20 yards longer than I was used to. -Nick

His main goal for me was to get launch up and spin down. The first club he handed me was the Sim 10.5 turned up to 11.25 with a Graphite design IZ 7x. Instantly my launch angle increased and spin dropped. We then went through a few other shafts like graphite design ad di 7x. We came back to the IZ and with a quick change in tee height we ended up where we wanted. We knew with my angle of attack we were never going to get me to super low spin and high launch we just wanted to get it to a manageable number.

By the end of the fit I was hitting the sim with the iz under 3k spin with a couple down at 2500 and 9 degree launch increasing my carry from the 244 range up to the 260-265 range on good swings and we neutralized my cut massively. I was fortunate enough to finish my fit while other guys were still busy so we went right into the build shop and he built me my driver on the spot and gave me a super cool kingdom exclusive headcover. I was able to take it on the course with me that afternoon and hit 12-14 fairways a new record for me and ever ball was easily 15-20 yards longer than I was used to. Most of that is me never being through a proper fitting before but a big factor was I was able to get into the sim head with high loft but it was a great spin killing head for me. Here is a link to his post in the forums.

Tester: “jimbonecrusher”

I am one that gained a good bit of ball speed from getting fit for the SIM driver. My gamer is a Titleist 915D3 9.5* with a Rogue Silver 70X. I wasn’t fit for the driver as I just bought the parts off of the BST. I always felt that I lost yardage due to high spin. The Trackman didn’t lie as I was getting 166mph ball speed and 3000 rpm of spin on well-struck shots. Where this posed a problem was when I was off-center, the ball would be a high right spinner that would lose a lot of distance. 

Where I saw great gains was in dispersion. TwistFace just flat out works. Toe shots came back to closer to center, and heal shots faded right back towards center. I also didn’t lose as much yardage. I did pick up about five mph in ball speed. There are a plethora of reasons for this gain and the resulting 20 yard gain in ball flight.

Some could attribute the gain to almost 30 feet of height in ball flight. It could also be because there was 300 less RPM, or over a degree increase in launch angle. Either way, it has proven to me that getting fit by a knowledgeable fitter is crucial. This is the first time that I have been fit for a driver. All the expectations of mine going into this fitting have been met.

The SIM is forgiving. The SIM is aerodynamically superior to what I have been playing. The SIM just flat out performs for me because it doesn’t balloon, it is forgiving on mishits with good direction and ball speed, and it reduced my spin rate. – 

The sounds of the SIM line is amazing. The solid “thwack” sound it makes at contact is extremely welcoming. Gone are the days of high pitched aluminum baseball bat sounds. Now, some sounds just sound perfect to me. Johnny Wunder posted a video on Instagram of me hitting a driver, and you can hear the sound. Here is a link to his post in the forums.

Your Reaction?
  • 10
  • LEGIT1
  • WOW1
  • LOL1
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK4

Continue Reading

Equipment

Building the perfect half set

Published

on

Beyond physically putting clubs together, one of my favorite games to play is trying to build the ideal half set, and taking it out for some testing on the course. The goal is to see how few clubs I can play with before it becomes a detriment to my game and my scoring—while still having fun trying to hit all kinds of creative shots along the way

Many golfers have, at some point, played the “three-club challenge” (three including a putter), but that often becomes an exercise in caution and course management instead of what many would consider a usual round of golf. Although from the conversations I’ve had with golfers about trying out an extremely reduced set, the consensus generally ends up at, “I shot one of my best scores in a long time.”

I’m not sure how that sentiment potentially relates to handicap or not, but one way or the other, it’s a great way to lighten the load and have some fun thinking differently about your shots.

My ideal half set consists of 7-8 clubs including a putter, but in some cases, I will take it all the way down to 5-6. I love having the option to play with a full set and most times do, but I have gone weeks playing only with my half set and don’t see a noticeable variation in my scoring.

It actually makes me question why I carry a full set and in the grand scheme of golf. I think it would be one of the most entertaining experiments to have a PGA Tour event where players are limited to seven clubs. It would have the potential to make gearheads and the general fan engage in an interesting conversation.

Whatever way you choose to build your set, this is a quick start guide to play your best half set golf.

Thinking Your way Through Building a Half Set

  • The Putter: This is the one club that probably isn’t going anywhere (unless you are a virtuoso putting with a bellied wedge). You are going to be using this club on every hole, and depending on your comfort level hitting certain shots, you might end up using it further off the green than normal—cheers to the imagination! Build out from here, because shots inside 100 yards are still going to take up the majority of strokes on your card, and your putter is going to save you shots.
  • The “Wedge”: Remember that it wasn’t until the last generation of golfers that players started using a lob wedge. Tom Watson famously never put one in the bag and only carried up to a 56-degree. The ideal loft to start your set with is 52-54 degrees, because you can still hit shots out of the sand if needed, and it’s a great club to still hit full shots with—something that many golfers struggle to do with a lob wedge.
  • Your “Go-To” Shot: I think most golfers agree that trying to get more out of a club distance-wise often ends with less than great results. This is why as you go through your set and start to pick clubs, it’s important to think about your favorite go-to shots. You want to do everything you can to avoid standing over a ball trying to manipulate a club because you don’t have “that distance” in the bag. This is hugely important when you realize that close to 90 percent of hazards are placed in front of the green or target areas and being able to get over comfortably should be priority number one.
  • Know Your Iron Lofts:  Most modern sets have 4-5 degrees between each club, but as you get to the longer irons, even towards the middle of the set (7-iron to 5-iron) loft gaps can get smaller quickly, and for some this can equal a diminishing point of return on distance gapping. Don’t just grab every other iron, take a few minutes to think about the carry distance of each club, because that’s going to be important.
  • A Driver is Still Important: We all cant be Henrik Stenson with a 12-degree 3-wood we hit 300 yards. Unless you have plans to go truly minimalist, keeping a driver in the bag is a good idea. It is the largest and most forgiving club off the tee and will help put you into places that will make second shots a lot easier.
Your Reaction?
  • 96
  • LEGIT3
  • WOW1
  • LOL0
  • IDHT2
  • FLOP2
  • OB0
  • SHANK2

Continue Reading

Equipment

What GolfWRXers are saying are the top-3 underrated blade head designs circa 2005

Published

on

@jfp2112

GolfWRXers have been discussing the top-3 underrated blade head designs circa 2005 after forum member ‘8620’ created a thread with a desire to “build a set that starts with a ‘retro’ blade head, that incorporates a modern shaft (Nippon Modus Pro 130)”. Our members have weighed in on the subject, with some inspired by ‘8620’ to follow suit in his project.

Here are what our members are saying on the subject, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below,

  • Gopher68: “Bridgestone J33 blades.”
  • BCULAW: “Mizuno MP67. Awesome blade that never really caught on due to the popularity of its predecessor (MP33) and its sister offering (MP32). Also, the small ‘cut muscle’ gives it a bit of an old school vibe like the old Wilson bullet backs.”
  • Golfingfanatic: “OG Nike Forged Blades.”
  • cardoustie: “Bridgestone MB’s, love my J15’s.”
  • OldTomMorris: “I’ve got a set of mp-37 irons that I am putting TT DG AMT white S300 shafts in right now. Curious to see if I can keep the short irons lower than my current set of irons.”
  • Rapidcat: “This interests me as I played Mizuno SPL blades for a decade and still have the heads in very good condition, thinking about a reshaft for them to have some fun.”

Entire Thread: “Top-3 underrated blade head designs circa 2005”

Your Reaction?
  • 7
  • LEGIT1
  • WOW0
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB1
  • SHANK1

Continue Reading

WITB

Facebook

Trending