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Best fairway wood of 2020: GolfWRX Members Choice

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What is the best fairway wood of 2020? Is the best fairway metal in golf the longest? The most forgiving? The best looking? Best sounding and feeling? Some combination of all or some of these attributes?

We’ll find out.

At GolfWRX, we take great pride in our online community and the cumulative knowledge and experience of our members. Needless to say, that extends to our GolfWRXers views on the best fairway woods of 2020.

The bedrock of GolfWRX.com is the community of passionate and knowledgable golfers in our forums, and we put endless trust in the opinions of our GolfWRX members—the most knowledgeable community of golfers on the internet.

No other group of golfers in the world tests golf clubs as frequently or as extensively, nor is armed with such in-depth information about the latest technology.

Read the discussion in the forums here

best fairway woods 2020

You can see the results for the best fairway wood of 2020, as well as quotes we pulled from GolfWRX members about them from our forums.

Best fairway wood of 2020: The top 5

1. TaylorMade SIM

The SIM Ti fairway wood has a Zatech titanium body, carbon composite crown, and an 80-gram steel sole weight. It also offers an adjustable hosel to dial in loft and face angle as well as Twist Face to help golfers that miss shots around the face. This is the all-in-one fairway wood for golfers looking for adjustability, forgiveness, and top-of-the-line ball speed.

Here’s what GolfWRX members are saying

  • “The TaylorMade SIM is the hottest 3-wood I have ever hit. I had the M6 all last year and absolutely loved it. I said all last year it was the best fairway I’ve ever played….the SIM is even better. I love the profile at address, and there are times the SIM 3W gets within 1 mph of my driver ball speed.” – Member JoeFrigo
  •  “I bought the 5-wood based on reports the SIM is silly long and low spin, and after my first round today, it absolutely delivered. The 5-wood isn’t too big, and I found it to flight excellently off the tee and off the fairway. It set me up today for birdies on all the par 5s. I have mine shafted with an 80X Diamana Blue, and it is fantastic.” – Member DNice26
  • “I’ve never had a club that was more point and shoot than this. Great off the turf and on the tee. Very happy and might even keep the stock shaft in it (HZRDUS Smoke Black 70g 6.0) instead of hitting the bay for an AD IZ or AD DI.” – Member RobYakes
  • “When I was fit for my SIM 3-wood I didn’t think it stood a chance of beating out my M5, but 45 minutes later, I had a new fairway wood that carried farther and went straighter than anything I had ever hit.” – Member tobybear

Read what others are saying in the GolfWRX forums: Official TaylorMade SIM fairway wood discussion. 

2.Titleist TS2

The TS (Titleist Speed) fairway woods, were re-engineered from the ground up for faster ball speeds, higher launch, lower spin rates, and increased MOI. The crown of the TS2 fairway wood is 27 percent thinner than the previous 917 fairways, which allowed engineers to move weight lower and deeper in the club heads. Also, a new variable thickness face helped to save additional weight from the face and helps to deliver faster ball speeds.

The other key piece of technology is the Active Recoil Channel on the sole to help assist golfers in launching the ball higher.  Since fairways need to hit the ball off the turf, and thus, lower on the face, Titleist believes the Active Recoil Channel is a “crucial technology.”

Here’s what GolfWRX members are saying

  • “I just got my TS2 15 degree Tensei 65. First range session and (I) am thrilled with the club. Over the years, I’ve had the 909, 913, and 917F2 heads, and this one feels better than them all, plus it’s easy to hit off a tee and the deck.” – Member DeBoPGA78
  • “I picked up a TS2 fairway and fell in love instantly. I was playing a Cobra F8 (Atmos Blue 7x/tipped 1/2 inch), which is one of the hotter 3-woods IMO, but inconsistent off the tee and off the deck. The TS2 is a straight bomber. Looks great, feels better than anything I’ve tried in a while, and it’s easy to flight high and low.” – Member ClubChamp88
  • “I bought a 15 degree TS2 this week and road-tested it for the first time yesterday. It replaces my old 910Fd 3-wood, and the distance difference is truly amazing. Seem to go as far as my 917 driver.” – Member Plugger
  • “I have a TS2 HL 16.5° and am very pleased. Tensei Blue shaft yielding me up to 245 off the tee. Also easy to elevate off the deck. Great ball flight, sound, and feel.” Member Lobber
  • “I have a TS2 15° with a Tensei Pro White, and it’s the best fairway wood I have had to date. I went from the original RBZ, G30, G400, XHot, Rogue, 917, and now the TS2. Paired with a low/low shaft with the forgiving head its the perfect flight and forgiveness…..and long…” – Member agood3putt

Read what others are saying in the GolfWRX forums: Official Titleist TS2 fairway discussion

3. Ping G410

The Ping G410 fairway woods utilize maraging steel to create a stronger and more flexible face, which Ping believes helps golfers generate faster ball speeds and launch shots farther and higher. The other new technology addition from Ping is a low-back CG and high-density tungsten weight positioned at the extreme boundary of the head which provides greater stability and forgiveness on all shots.

Just like the driver, the Ping G410 fairway woods include a lightweight adjustable hosel which offers golfers the choice of implementing loft (0, +1º, +1.5º, -1º, -1.5º) and making lie adjustments (including up to 3º flatter than standard) with the aim of optimizing ball flight.

Here’s what GolfWRX members are saying

  • “I’ve had the G410 3W with the Tour shaft since April. Definitely one of the most versatile 3W I’ve owned. I had the G400 Stretch—while it was good on the monitor and practice range, it just had too many mini driver characteristics (look and feel). I initially thought I’d seamlessly move into the G410 LST, but my fitting session didn’t give me any confidence and consistency with that club. The standard G410 3W was just easier to launch and work the ball.” – Member RoughingIt
  • “The feel is so solid. It was easy to launch and was probably the best fairway for consistency in striking that I have ever hit. With the ability to adjust the lie 3 degrees flat, it was a no brainer for me.” – Member TGG27

Read what other golfers are saying in the GolfWRX forums: Official Ping G410 fairway wood discussion.

4.TaylorMade SIM Max

The new 2020 SIM Max is a bonded hosel fairway wood designed to get the ball up quickly and with less spin. It uses a C300 steel face and body paired up with a carbon composite crown to keep the center of gravity low and to boost forgiveness. Both the Sim Max and SIM are built on the famous V-Steel sole to reduce friction and make it easy to get under the ball and through any lie you might experience on the course.

It also has TaylorMade’s Twist Face, and speed pocket to keep shots more online and going further.

Here’s what GolfWRX members are saying

  • “The SIM Max is a rocket launcher. Low spin missiles. It doesn’t seem to balloon up on mishits, and when you square one up, you’ll be taking a long walk down the fairway.” – Member gevans24
  • “Sim Max w/ Tour AD IZ 7x… unreal, picked up 20 yards” – Member rangewarrior83
  • “I’ve really liked the larger footprint of this fairway wood so far although I’ve only hit it inside on a simulator. I have a SIM 15 degree w/Ventus Black; I’ve seen 3-4 mph speed increase and 10 yards from my M5 with an old Speeder Evolution 757x. This fairway is hot!” – Member TK3309
  • ” I picked up a SIM Max 3, 15 degrees with the Ventus Blue shaft, and it is a beast!!” – Member J_L_35

Read what others are saying in the GolfWRX forums: Official TaylorMade SIM fairway wood discussion. 

5. Callaway Mavrik Sub Zero

Callaway Mavrik sub zero fairway 2020 sole angle

This is the Mavrik fairway wood for faster players who desire workability and need lower spin. It uses a two-weight system to allow golfers to move weight front to back in the head to alter spin, and adds speeds by using C300 maraging steel in the face and body to provide strength and weight saving.

From a looks perspective, the Mavrik Sub Zero differentiates itself from the others in the Mavrik line by having full-face scoring lines on every head and a more open face angle from the address position—something better players are generally looking for in a fairway wood.

Here’s what GolfWRX members are saying

  • “Love the way the Mavrik SZ sits behind the ball… After three months of owning the SZ, I’ve never driven the ball better and my confidence off the tee is unbelievable. – Member Dingerz
  • “SZ three wood might be the best-looking fairway wood out this year. – Member getair32
  • “Mavrik Sub Zero has a traditional rounded look with a deeper face that traditionalists should appreciate. The Sub Zero’s hot face, flatter trajectory, and lower spin produce long shots off the tee or turf that can easily be worked right and left. Moving the heavy sole weight to the back of the head can add forgiveness while also increasing the launch for those of us who need it!” – Our very own Brian Knudson

Read what others are saying in the GolfWRX forums: Official Callaway Mavrik wood discussion. 

best-fairway-wood-2020

Rounding out the top 15

  • Callaway Mavrik
  • Ping G410 LST
  • Cobra SpeedZone
  • Titleist TS3
  • Mizuno ST200
  • PXG 0341
  • Callaway Mavrik Max
  • Tour Edge EXS 220
  • Cobra SpeedZone Tour
  • Mizuno ST200 Tour

best fairway wood 2020

Ongoing Members Choice polls: Have your say!

We’re still looking for your feedback on the “best” items in several other categories, so head to the GolfWRX forums to have your say!

Check out the polls in the GolfWRX forums below!

Read the discussion in the forums here

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One-length wedges are holding Bryson DeChambeau back

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Bryson Dechambeau is a golf anomaly and has been for his entire competitive golf career.

The most recent example has been his single-minded focus to get bigger, stronger, and hit it farther. And if his early results are any indication, he has succeeded in his goal to seemingly reduce most golf courses on the PGA Tour to pitch and putts.

The other well-known example of Bryson’s unique approach is the single length irons and wedges that he has used since college.

This one-length approach allows Bryson to set up the same way for every shot, but when going deeper into his stats, there seems to be one part of his game that is glaringly below-average: his wedge play. Specifically, his proximity to hole: 124th on tour.

I believe his one-length wedges are to blame.

If we go one step further, his approach proximity from 50 – 70 yards of 17’10” ranks him 152nd on tour, an abysmal ranking for one of the top players in the game.

Breaking down the dynamics of a wedge shot

Hitting short irons, particularly wedges, close is about creating consistent dynamics at impact and controlling dynamic loft, launch, spin, and friction. The higher the loft on a club, the more potential friction and spin can be created, depending on player dynamics, to the point of diminishing return where the trajectory becomes more of an influencing factor for low-speed shots where less spin can be generated.

With single-length wedges compared to standard length wedges, it is more difficult to create consistent impact dynamics because the longer wedges don’t offer as much flexibility at setup, especially when you consider how much more ground undulation is generally found closer to green areas. But don’t just take my word for it…

I reached out to one of the top fitters in the industry, Ian Fraser from Tour Experience Golf, aka TXG, to get his take on how single length wedges could be effecting Bryson’s game.

“Playing his sand wedge at 2.25” over standard would lead to a shallower angle of attack which is detrimental to increasing spin loft—also being shallower with a low point closer to the ball increases the likelihood of picking up debris (moisture, grass etc) prior to impact which also reduces friction and spin control.

“We look for around 45-47 degrees of spin loft to achieve maximum friction, so unless Bryson can get steeper, the ball will launch higher due to the loft portion of that ideal spin loft.”

A further explanation

  • Single-length (longer) wedges: Longer wedges lead to less control as lofts get higher because of the naturally shallower angle the club wants to approach the ball. This extra length also leads to the inability to fluctuate ball position as lies differ greatly as you get closer to the green resulting in less control of launch and spin, leading to poor distance control.
  • Standard variable-length wedges: Standard wedges allow for greater control because it is easier for golfers to change ball position, which leads to greater control of impact dynamics which in turn offers better control of launch and spin, resulting in improved distance control. Not only that, but when you combine the shorter lengths with flatter lie angles into the sand and lob wedge (a setup recommended by most fitters) you get even more versatility.

Conclusion

Bryson is currently ranked 11th in the Official World Golf Rankings, and if he continues his fantastic form, that ranking is bound to improve as he puts himself closer to the green with every tee shot and in better scoring positions—he just needs to take better advantage of these shorter approach shots.

As someone who boasts about his willingness to experiment, Bryson has certainly tinkered with a number of wedges from his club sponsor Cobra as well as others in search of improvement, including PXG and Artisan Golf, within the last year.

I believe the next step for Bryson should be to experiment with a combination set that is single length until his 9-iron and progresses down to more standard lengths in his wedges to rein in speed and gain greater control of his wedge dynamics at impact. With his current ranking of 152nd on tour from 50 to 70 yards, he really only has one direction to go: up.

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What GolfWRXers are saying about the best irons for a sweeper

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In our forums, our members have been discussing irons and which models are the best for sweepers. WRXer ‘bigD77’ reaches out to fellow members and has a preference for players irons. Our members discuss.

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.

  • Frisco Kid: “I’m a sweeper/picker, really enjoying the PXG 0211 irons. I believe they fit in the hollow players distance category. The feel is outstanding and consistent distances. Since distance is not a requirement, I found Maltby DBM (or TE) forged irons superb for feel and accuracy. A sweeper’s dream with slim sole and thin top line. My only gripe with them was I was much shorter with them. My miss is usually thin, and the DBM irons are very good at covering up that miss.”
  • Hougz79: “Ping i210 here. Came from mostly AP2 (712, 716, 718). I don’t have an issue with the slightly thicker sole. I play in MN so pretty “average” conditions, I guess.”
  • scooterhd2: “Srixon Z785. Sweep away my friend, sweep away.”
  • NTCgolfnut: “There are a few that I have used / currently play in rotation that works well if you are a sweeper like me: MP-20 HMB (and most hollow-headed players irons like PXG 0311 range), J15 CB and Miura CB1008 top the list. If you like Blades, then MP5 works well.”
  • cjblake09: “Hogan PTX Pro and ICON combo set. Came from the AP2 718 and the turf interaction with my Hogans is much better.”

Entire Thread: “Best irons for a sweeper?”

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What GolfWRXers are saying about Odyssey/Toulon putters at the Rocket Mortgage Classic

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In our forums, our members have been commenting on the array of Odusser/Toulon putters on show at this week’s Rocket Mortgage Classic.

For more photos, check out the entire thread here.

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.

  • MaineMariner: “Backstryke is BACK! Is the lighting playing tricks on me, or does that Madison have a Versa paint scheme? If that’s offered by the Toulon Garage… welp, my wallet is going to take a beating.”
  • pga43: “It does” (In response to MaineMariner)
  • Bigjim1022; “Is that a bronze finish on the first one? Can’t tell if it’s the lighting or not. If it is that looks sweet!”
  • double or triple?: “Looks like the chocolate finish to me.” (In response to BigJim1022)

Entire Thread: “Odyssey/Toulon putters at the Rocket Mortgage Classic”

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