Evan, a 3-handicap who has been using blade irons for almost 10 years, had a chance to review Cobra's AMP Forged irons and won't be switching back. Below is his review.
Cobra AMP Forged (4-GW)
KBS C-Taper X-Flex
Trusted and tour proven, these irons have the best of forged performance combined with Advanced Material Placement to offer the best of both worlds—playability with forgiveness.
AMP Technology is applied individually to each iron in the set. The irons feature high MOI tungsten inserts (3-7 iron) and progressively larger CNC milled pockets (3-9 iron) that redistribute weight for higher launch and more consistent distance on off-center hits.
Cobra packed a lot of power into these irons -- I saw at least 10 yards of distance with each club. Another great feature is that while each club’s sole is HUGE for “players irons,” the sharp leading edge compensates, giving me the confidence that I can compress the ball instead of just having the club bounce off the ground.
Having played blades for almost a decade, I am used to getting instant feedback with every shot -- you know your swinging well with blades when you barely feel a thing at impact. These are SO forgiving that off center hits feel identical to solid impact. Also, at the proper angle, the chrome finish bounces the sunlight into your face at address more-so then other chromed irons I’ve tested.
The added distance and monster ball flight make the AMP Forged extremely fun to play. It’s very easy to produce a shot with penetrating flight that goes DEEP and lands soft. These are ideal for the better player that can’t always get a lot of practice in during the week.
Click here for another review of the AMP Forged from a 45-year-old, 6-handicap golfer and to see comparison photos
Swing Speed (Driver): 110 mph
Plays: 1-2 times a week
I’m used to a small blade without the bling that these irons have. The orange insert is what jumps out to me first. It is purely cosmetic, and egos are the only thing that might be hurt by it, preventing experienced players from giving these irons a chance. The size of the clubs may also be off-putting at first glance, as the short irons are quite large. The sole on the gap wedge, pitching wedge and 9 iron is very wide, which gives them a bit of a “game improvement” look rather than the “players iron” that Cobra might have been going for. Not to worry though -- over the ball the leading edge is sharp and the hosel is thin, giving them a very blade-like appearance over the ball. The sole starts to thin out as you go up the bag, ending with the 4 iron being a not-so-shocking width. The 4 through 7 irons have the added tungsten inserts in the heel and toe which really doesn’t make a noticeable change to the look; just a dark grey spot on either side of the number. Looking at the cavity, you could say that these irons are “ripped.” For a cavity back, there is a lot of muscle bulging out the back, with the COBRA logo popping out of the cavity. For me, the best part of the look is that at address I didn’t see the cavity creeping out behind to the topline in the long irons. So many other brands with this style of cavity back have longer dragged out soles in the long irons that give them somewhat of a hybrid, and thus a “game-improvement” look. With these, all you see at address is the thin topline and sharp leading edge, which a lot of players will like to see.
Click here to see more photos and read the discussion in the forums
The AMP forged have great versatility. A standard shot gives you a penetrating flight that goes for miles and lands softly, which you would expect from a cavity back. Obviously the right shaft helps, but a lot of times, cavity backs are just a big blunt instrument that aren’t as easy to be creative with. With these, you also get the workability and trajectory control of a blade. For as high as these can send the ball, they can just as easily fire little low bullets. Shaping shots is a bit trickier. The larger face and wider sole take some getting used to when trying to work the ball. Having been with thin blades for so long, I was always used to having a small, thin sole hit the ground at impact. With these, the wider sole seems to try to square the face at impact, making it a little difficult to leave the face open and hit a little cut. It’s not impossible though. Once you start to feel how the club reacts differently compared to a small blade, you can make the adjustment and still do have the ability to shape the ball. Also, the lofts are two-to-three degrees degrees stronger than standard (my set had a PW of 48 degrees, the AMP Forged PW measured 45 degrees), so each club gave me at least 10 yards additional distance.
Feel is one of those personal characteristics that make people like certain clubs over others. For me, these have a soft, solid feel that I would expect from a quality forged club. For a forged club, these are also incredibly forgiving. The tungsten weights in the mid and long irons really increase distance and forgiveness on off center hits. My misses were flying just as far as a center strike, and felt just as soft. For me, that’s not always a good thing. When my last shot was “not so perfect,” I try to apply how the shot felt at impact to the next few swings so I can adjust on the fly. My old blades had a very obvious feel when the shot wasn’t dead square, and I could learn and apply that to the next shot. It’s a little harder with the AMP Forged. They are so forgiving that they don’t’ always give you that immediate feedback, making it harder to know how to prevent that same swing on the next shot. Every shot with the AMP Forged feels flush. These might make things difficult for the better player who is always trying to improve and learn something from each shot.
These are definitely a fun club to play. They break from the traditional look and add some great detail that player’s irons may have been missing. They provide the length and forgiveness of normal cavity backs with the versatility of traditional blades. The forged steel is very soft and forgiving, yet provides an explosive feel that makes each shot feel flush and solid. Are these the best feeling clubs I’ve ever played? Not quite. But for a strong player who wants distance, forgiveness and control, the AMP Forged are definitely near the top.