Every year brings an opportunity for golf companies to release products that make us want to kick out our current gamers for something new. But golfers are a fickle bunch. Some of us play the same equipment until the grooves wear down, while others will swap out drivers and irons every year searching for a spark that will improve their games. If you are a hardcore GolfWRX member, you might switch more than that.
1. Best Bladelike Irons
These are the most workable designs for the lower handicap golfers. Looking for a thinner sole for more shotmaking ability, or the feel that only a compact forging can provide? These are our favorites that we will be updating throughout the year.
Mizuno MP-64: These are best feeling “player’s cavity” design that Mizuno has engineered. The Diamond Muscle design of the forged irons delivers more forgiveness in the long irons and better control in the scoring irons.
Callaway X-Forged: A tour-inspired forged cavity back designed by Roger Cleveland that offers cleaner looks and better performance than its predecessor, the Callaway Razr X-Forged. The new X-Forged have a slightly wider, more cambered sole that mimics last year’s Razr X Muscleback irons and improves turf interaction.
Miura CB-501: Miura. Is there anything else that can be said? It’s a name that has taken an almost mythological form in the golf world because of the heritage and purity of its forgings. These are the ones that you’ll compare everything else to.
Cobra AMP Cell Pro: The AMP Cell Pro forged irons are actually smaller than their predecessor. Their shorter blade lengths that allowed engineers to place more mass behind the sweet spot of the irons, which contributes to an even softer feel from the 1020 forged carbon steel heads.
2. Best Players Irons
Looking for a little extra distance and forgiveness, but want more feel and workability than a distance iron can provide? This category provides the best of both worlds. Here you will see a blend of feel, forgiveness and distance with clean enough looks to be used by some of the best golfers in the world.
Titleist AP2: Tour players and top club fitters say the AP2 chassis is the perfect size and shape for a players iron, and they’re packed with technology, too. The multi-material construction allows Titleist engineers to move weight to the perimeter, which adds forgiveness.
Ping i20: At first glance, the i20 irons are an obvious departure from the i-lines of the past. The most obvious of these changes are the use of the vertical custom tuning port (CTP) and stabilization bars in the cavity; carryovers from PING’s S56s.
Mizuno JPX-825 Pro: The 4-7 irons offer a deep CNC-milled pocket cavity that is used for extreme toe-heel weighting providing forgiveness. The 8-GW features greater thickness behind the impact for a more penetrating and workable ball flight.
Cobra AMP Forged: Tungsten weights are placed in the soles of the long and mid irons, which when combined with the milled pockets and urethane insert in the cavities create a combination of distance, forgiveness and feel that has golfers raving.
3. Best Game Enhancement Irons
Looking to make a tough game easier? Wider soles and perimeter weighting a must for some golfers and a choice by even PGA Tour players. Distance gains with thinner faces and tweaked CG (center of gravity) to maximize the trajectory along with maximum MOI make this category the most popular of all three. Here are our favorites you can buy now.
TaylorMade RocketBladez: These irons incorporate a slot on the sole of the 3 through 7 irons, which gives the golfer greater distance, forgiveness and a higher launch. In summation, shots with RBZ irons are longer, straighter and stop faster on the greens.
Callaway X Hot: Callaway reinforced the undercut that sits behind the top line of most cavity back irons. This lowered the sweet spot, which improved the overall flex of the face and helps eliminate the “high hot spot” found on previous Callaway distance irons.
Ping G25: All the benefits of a game-improvement iron without the usual bulky soles that are inherent in the GI class. The redesigned soles have a trailing grind relief that will allow these to play more like a players club.
Nike VR_S Covert: Like the VR_S, they are a cast iron aimed at double-digit handicapers. But thanks to a design initiative called “Covert,” the company was able to add distance and playability to the irons without the bulkier chassis of last year’s model.
Cleveland 588 MT: They feature a constant blade length throughout the set with blade heights that progressively increase in the higher lofted clubs. Full hollow construction adds forgiveness and lower, deeper center of gravity for optimal launch and effortless distance.
Mizuno JPX-825: Extreme heel-toe weighting and extremely high-COR faces in the long and mid irons, making them the longest and most forgiving irons in Mizuno history. But the 8, 9 and PW have less hot faces to give golfers more control and workability.