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New Pro V1, Pro V1X are longer and softer

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Titleist’s new Pro V1 and Pro V1X for 2013 give golfers what they’ve been asking for from the most played ball in tournament golf — golf balls that are longer, softer and more durable than the previous generation.

Pro V1

The new Pro V1 feels softer thanks to a softer compression core, which has decreased from the low 90s to the high 80s. The core change means that it will spin less and have a shallower angle of descent than the 2011 Pro V1 off of long clubs. For most golfers, this means longer carry distance and more roll, meaning the new Pro V1 will be go farther with the long clubs than its predecessor.

“This is the longest and softest Pro V1 we’ve ever made,” said Michael Mahoney, director of golf ball marketing for Titleist.

While the Pro V1 features the same 352-dimple pattern as the 2011 model, it features a newly formulated cover and paint system that adhere better, which makes it more resistant to scuffs and paint chips and actually improves its aerodynamics.

“[For the new Pro V1 and Pro V1 X], we switched to a solvent-borne paint system that flows better,” Mahoney said. “It creates consistent coverage and better aerodynamics. That’s why the dimples on the new balls look sharper.”

2013 Pro V1X

Pro V1X

Like previous version, the new Pro V1X is a four-piece golf ball with an inner and outer core. Having two cores allows designers to more precisely dial in spin on long clubs.

With the driver, PGA Tour players affect the extremely soft compression inner core, which results in low-spin shots. But on shots hit with shorter clubs, the firmer portions of the golf ball — the outer core and inner mantle — are the parts that are affected, so those shots are launched with more spin.

According to Mahoney, Tour players liked the amount of spin they were getting with the Pro V1X off the tee, but they wanted the ball to spin slightly more with their long irons, particularly the 4, 5 and 6 irons. That’s why the new Pro V1X has a slightly different ZG Process core configuration, which Mahoney said not only makes for tighter tolerances, but allows for increased spin with the shorter clubs.

The new core configuration also gives the Pro V1X a different sound profile, which many Tour players have identified as being softer than the 2011 Pro V1X. But the compression of the ball hasn’t changed — it’s still about 100.

It has the same 328-dimple pattern as the previous model. But the new cover formulation and better paint coverage give it a more penetrating flight, which Mahoney said will make it longer than the 2011 version for most golfers.

Comparing the new Pro V1 and Pro V1X

Because of the Pro V1X’s dual-core construction, it’s a lower-spinning golf ball off the tee, and thus the longer of the two balls. Its different dimple pattern and construction also make it is also a higher launching golf ball than Pro V1.

Even though the Pro V1X’s firmer compression makes the ball feel harder than the Pro V1, its performance is essentially identical to the softer feeling Pro V1 inside 40 yards.  From that distance, the urethane cover — not the construction of the golf ball — drives performance.

According to Mahoney, the Pro V1X is a natural fit for high-speed players like Adam Scott, who can benefit from the low-spin performance with their driver to get more distance off the tee. But Scott has always been a Pro V1 player, choosing to give up a few yards off the tee with the Pro V1 in order to get more spin and better control with his long clubs.

“Players [like Scott] see improved numbers with Pro V1X, but they don’t think it’s going to make a difference in their game,” Mahoney said.

Despite all the changes inside the new golf balls, which debuted on the Tour at the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in late October, much of the feedback on Tour has been about the durability of the cover of the new Pro V1 and Pro V1X golf balls.

“Players have told me, ‘I usually play nine or 10 balls a round, but [with the new ball] I just played this round with two or three balls,’” Mahoney said.

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Zak is the Editor-in-Chief of GolfWRX.com. He's been a part of the company since 2011, when he was hired to lead GolfWRX's Editorial Department. Zak developed GolfWRX's Featured Writer Program, which supports aspiring writers and golf industry professionals. He played college golf at the University of Richmond (Go Spiders!) and still likes to compete in tournaments. You can follow Zak on Twitter @ZakKoz, where he's happy to discuss his game and all the cool stuff that's part of his job.

10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. curtiss mull

    Jan 28, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    A few years ago when i was a volunteer chairman for the BMW nationwide tour golf channel, I noted that the players were using the old Pro V I and X, not the newest ball.In speaking with them about it , they told me that Titleist made them especially for them as they liked the spin characteristics better on the old design. Frankly speaking I have always played the top of the line Titleist ball going back to the balata and can’t say I notice any difference since the Pro v came out other than at some time they stopped putting two coats of clear coat on them which caused the shine to come off quicker. You can’t blame them since if the ball lasts too long they don’t sell as many. Interesting that they changed the paint to help them last longer .We’ll see if that’s the case.

    • Blanco

      May 29, 2013 at 12:37 am

      The last gen. Prov1x felt hard to me– much firmer than the 2009 model that are in most of the recycled ball packs. Glad to see it’s more of a high/low profile compared to the low/low ball from 2012.

      That being said: lower your price on these balls to $39.99 ala original Penta. I bet you’ll make more money. The Callaway and TM balls are just as good on certain days and always cheaper. The ONLY reason I don’t play the ProV is the price. Cannot justify 50 bucks on a ball– golf is expensive enough as it is.

  2. Izzat

    Jan 24, 2013 at 11:52 pm

    i must admit i am excited about the new line of products! seems to me that everyone says its better. gonna have to try it out though.

  3. Lenny

    Jan 24, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    Looking forward to trying the new Pro-V1!!

  4. David

    Jan 24, 2013 at 6:28 pm

    I got to demo these balls, the cover durability is the thing I noticed most about the new line. Granted they’re not indestructible like a distance ball, but for a pro level ball the cover was a tank. Overall performance of the ball was much improved as well. Just wish I knew if they sent me the regular or x version on the demo.

  5. Rob

    Jan 24, 2013 at 5:24 pm

    I switched to the yellow srixon z star because of the Pro V1 covers. I was tired of nipping a good wedge and the cover would look like i hit a cart path. I can’t feel any difference between the two and i now love the yellow look.

    • Jon

      Jan 25, 2013 at 9:57 am

      found myself having the same problem (usually get a few rounds out of 1 ball if not lost)..but there is no other ball out there that i can move from right-left, left-right and control the spin like a prov1x. best ball in golf.

  6. Troy Vayanos

    Jan 24, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    I just received an email from my local golf store offering the previous Titleist’s golf ball on special. This was because the new model was coming out.

    I’m interested to see if the newer version do make much of a difference because i’ve always been so happy with the current model.

    I have found them very durable and the spin rate is just perfect. I’m happy to keep playing them for some time!

  7. Billy

    Jan 24, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    It must be great to be able to use 9 or 10 Pro V1s a round!!!

  8. Rick Berggren

    Jan 24, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    I am the tournament director for an annual golf event for our university. Where would you recommend I obtain pricing for the closeout models of ProV1 and/or ProV1x? Please advise.

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pga tour

K.J. Choi WITB 2018

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Equipment is accurate as of the 2018 Valero Texas Open (4/18/2018).

Driver: Ping G400 Max (9 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD DI-6x

Driver: Ping G400 Max (9 degrees)
Shaft: Ozik Matrix MFS M5 60X

3 Wood: Ping G400 (14.5 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD DI-7x

5 Wood: Ping G400 (17.5 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD DI-8x

Hybrid: Ping G400 (22 degrees)
Shaft: Atlus Tour H8

Irons: Ping G400 (4-PW)
Shaft: Nippon N.S. Pro Modus 3 Tour 120X

Wedges: Ping Glide 2.0 (50-12SS, 54-12SS, 58-10)
Shaft: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Ping Sigma G Wolverine T
Grip: Ping Pistol

Putter: Ping PLF ZB3
Grip: Super Stroke KJ

Putter: Ping Sigma Vault Anser 2
Grip: Ping Pistol

WITB Notes: We spotted Choi testing a number of clubs at the Valero Texas Open. We will update this post when we have his 14-club setup confirmed. 

Related:

Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about Choi’s clubs. 

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Accessory Reviews

I tried the great Golfboarding experiment… here’s how it went

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Corica Park Golf Course is not exactly the first place you’d expect to find one of the most experimental sports movements sweeping the nation. Sitting on a pristine swath of land along the southern rim of Alameda Island, deep in the heart of the San Francisco Bay, the course’s municipal roots and no-frills clubhouse give it an unpretentious air that seems to fit better with Sam Snead’s style of play than, say, Rickie Fowler’s.

Yet here I am, one perfectly sunny morning on a recent Saturday in December planning to try something that is about as unconventional as it gets for a 90-year-old golf course.

It’s called Golfboarding, and it’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like: an amalgam of golf and skateboarding, or maybe surfing. The brainchild of surfing legend Laird Hamilton — who can be assumed to have mastered, and has clearly grown bored of, all normal sports — Golfboarding is catching on at courses throughout the country, from local municipal courses like Corica Park to luxury country clubs like Cog Hill and TPC Las Colinas. Since winning Innovation Of the Year at the PGA Merchandising Show in 2014, Golfboards can now be found at 250 courses and have powered nearly a million rounds of golf already. Corica Park currently owns eight of them.

The man in pro shop gets a twinkle in his eyes when our foursome tells him we’d like to take them out. “Have you ridden them before?” he asks. When we admit that we are uninitiated, he grins and tells us we’re in for a treat.

But first, we need to sign a waiver and watch a seven-minute instructional video. A slow, lawyerly voice reads off pedantic warnings like “Stepping on the golfboard should be done slowly and carefully” and “Always hold onto the handlebars when the board is in motion.” When it cautions us to “operate the board a safe distance from all…other golfboarders,” we exchange glances, knowing that one of us will more than likely break this rule later on.

Then we venture outside, where one of the clubhouse attendants shows us the ropes. The controls are pretty simple. One switch sends it forward or in reverse, another toggles between low and high gear. To make it go, there’s a throttle on the thumb of the handle. The attendant explains that the only thing we have to worry about is our clubs banging against our knuckles.

“Don’t be afraid to really lean into the turns,” he offers. “You pretty much can’t roll it over.”

“That sounds like a challenge,” I joke. No one laughs.

On a test spin through the parking lot, the Golfboard feels strong and sturdy, even when I shift around on it. It starts and stops smoothly with only the slightest of jerks. In low gear its top speed is about 5 mph, so even at full throttle it never feels out of control.

The only challenge, as far as I can tell, is getting it to turn. For some reason, I’d expected the handlebar to offer at least some degree of steering, but it is purely for balance. The thing has the Ackerman angle of a Mack Truck, and you really do have to lean into the turns to get it to respond. For someone who is not particularly adept at either surfing or skateboarding, this comes a little unnaturally. I have to do a number of three-point turns in order to get back to where I started and make my way over to the first tee box.

We tee off and climb on. The fairway is flat and wide, and we shift into high gear as we speed off toward our balls. The engine had produced just the faintest of whirrs as it accelerated, but it is practically soundless as the board rolls along at full speed. The motor nevertheless feels surprisingly powerful under my feet (the drivetrain is literally located directly underneath the deck) as the board maintains a smooth, steady pace of 10 mph — about the same as a golf cart. I try making a couple of S curves like I’d seen in the video and realize that high-speed turning will take a little practice for me to get right, but that it doesn’t seem overly difficult.

Indeed, within a few holes I might as well be Laird himself, “surfing the earth” from shot to shot. I am able to hold the handlebar and lean way out, getting the board to turn, if not quite sharply, then at least closer to that of a large moving van than a full-sized semi. I take the hills aggressively (although the automatic speed control on the drivetrain enables it to keep a steady pace both up and down any hills, so this isn’t exactly dangerous), and I speed throughout the course like Mario Andretti on the freeway (the company claims increased pace-of-play as one of the Golfboard’s primary benefits, but on a Saturday in the Bay Area, it is impossible avoid a five-hour round anyway.)

Gliding along, my feet a few inches above the grass, the wind in my face as the fairways unfurl below my feet, it is easy to see Golfboards as the next evolution in mankind’s mastery of wheels; the same instincts to overcome inertia that brought us bicycles, rollerblades, scooters, skateboards, and more recent inventions such as Segways, Hoverboards and Onewheels are clearly manifest in Golfboards as well. They might not offer quite the same thrill as storming down a snowy mountainside or catching a giant wave, but they are definitely more fun than your standard golf cart.

Yet, there are obvious downsides as well. The attendant’s warning notwithstanding, my knuckles are in fact battered and sore by the time we make the turn, and even though I rearrange all my clubs into the front slots of my bag, they still rap my knuckles every time I hit a bump. Speaking of which, the board’s shock absorber system leaves something to be desired, as the ride is so bumpy that near the end I start to feel as if I’ve had my insides rattled. Then there is the unforgivable fact of its missing a cup holder for my beer.

But these are mere design flaws that might easily be fixed in the next generation of Golfboards. (A knuckle shield is a must!) My larger problem with Golfboards is what they do to the game itself. When walking or riding a traditional cart, the moments in between shots are a time to plan your next shot, or to chat about your last shot, or to simply find your zen out there among the trees and the birds and the spaciousness of the course. Instead, my focus is on staying upright.

Down the stretch, I start to fade. The muscles in my core have endured a pretty serious workout, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to muster the strength for my golf swing. It is no coincidence that my game starts to unravel, and I am on the way to one of my worst rounds in recent memory.

Walking off the 18th green, our foursome agrees that the Golfboards were fun — definitely worth trying — but that we probably wouldn’t ride them again. Call me a purist, but as someone lacking Laird Hamilton’s physical gifts, I’m happy to stick to just one sport at a time.

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Equipment

Titleist AVX golf balls passed the test, are now available across the United States

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Titleist’s AVX golf balls first came to retail as an experiment in three markets — Arizona, California and Florida — from October 2017 to January 2018. AVX (which stands for “Alternative to the V and X”) are three-piece golf balls made with urethane covers, and they’re made with a softer feel for more distance than the Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf balls.

After proving their worth to consumers, Titleist’s AVX golf balls are now available across the U.S. as of April 23, and they will sell for 47.99 per dozen (the same as Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf balls) in both white and optic yellow.

According to Michael Mahoney, the Vice President of Golf Ball Marketing for Titleist, the AVX is a member of the Pro V1 family. Here’s a basic understanding of the lineup:

  • AVX: Softest, lowest trajectory, lowest spinning, less greenside spin and longest
  • Pro V1x: Firmer than the Pro V1, highest spinning and highest trajectory
  • Pro V1: Sits between the V1x and the AVX in terms of feel, spin and trajectory, and will appeal to most golfers

Different from the Pro V1 or Pro V1x, the AVX golf balls have a new GRN41 thermoset cast urethane cover to help the golf balls achieve the softer feel. Also, they have high speed, low compression cores, a new high-flex casing layer, and a new dimple design/pattern.

For in-depth tech info on the new AVX golf balls, how they performed in the test markets, and who should play the AVX golf balls, listen to our podcast below with Michael Mahoney, or click here to listen on iTunes.

See what GolfWRX Members are saying about the AVX golf balls

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