TaylorMade SLDR Driver: Editor Review
Pros: The SLDR has a center of gravity that is lower and more forward than any driver TaylorMade has ever produced. That allows golfers to launch the ball higher and with less spin, which is the key to longer drivers. It also gives the it slightly faster ball speeds more forgiveness on shots hit low on the face. Instead of white, the SLDR has a handsome gray metallic crown that reminds us of TaylorMade’s popular 300 Series drivers from the past. Its 20-gram sliding weight is also faster and easier to adjust that TaylorMade’s moveable weight systems, and allows for much more precise tuning.
Cons: The SLDR doesn’t have a “face angle adjuster” like previous drivers from TaylorMade, which will force some golfers to manipulate the face angle to their desired position at address. It’s also not a “one size fits all” driver, which is good and bad. SLDR drivers have a 3-degree range of adjustability (1.5 degrees up or down) — 1 degree less than the R1. But the range of lofts offered by the four different heads (8, 9.5, 10.5 and 12 degrees) extends from 6.5 degrees to 13.5 degrees — three degrees greater than the R1. Aesthetically, those who liked TaylorMade’s matte white crowns or the cool factor of the R1’s racing stripe will be stuck with a more traditional, glossy gray crown.
Bottom Line: In recent years, TaylorMade has upgraded its premium drivers by adding more. The SLDR streamlines TaylorMade’s driver technologies into an easier-to-use, more powerful sliding mechanism that gives the driver an ultra low, forward CG.
That combination of performance, simplicity and good looks makes it “the best driver TaylorMade has ever produced,” according to company officials, and we don’t think that’s too far from the truth.
Our testing showed that the SLDR is one of the special drivers that comes around every few years that has the potential to win over an enormous amount of golfers. The combination of the SLDR’s faster ball speed, lower spin and foolproof adjustability makes it arguably the best driver that TaylorMade has ever produced.
The mechanisms that have become common place on today’s drivers are one of modern golf equipment’s most important breakthroughs. They allow golfers to customize a driver’s loft and face angle, and some drivers such as TaylorMade’s R1 and Callaway’s Razr Fit Xtreme have moveable weight systems that allow golfers to tweak a club’s center of gravity.
But there is a problem with these mechanisms; while they add adjustability, they also add weight.
That’s why TaylorMade’s company leadership is so excited about its new SLDR driver. It has TaylorMade’s new sliding weight track, which like all other driver mechanisms adds weight. But the sliding weight track is located in the exact location TaylorMade prefers to add weight in their driver — in the low, forward region of the head.
According to Tom Olsavsky, TaylorMade’s senior director of product creation, his company has been working on a system to replace the moveable weight technology it pioneered in 2004 on its R7 driver almost since the time the R7 was released. The reason, Olsavsky says, is because adjustable weight systems are time consuming to adjust, and offer far fewer center of gravity options than sliding systems.
For example, TaylorMade’s most recent driver, the R1 (released in January 2013), came with two adjustable weights — a 10-gram and 1-gram weight that fit in the driver’s two adjustable weight ports. If golfers wanted their R1 to have a draw bias, they placed the 10-gram weight in the heel, and the lighter 1-gram weight in the toe. If they wanted a neutral bias, all they had to do was switch the positions of the weights.
Above: TaylorMade’s R1 driver, which has a 7-degree adjustable sole plate and two adjustable weights.
The SLDR, on the other hand, has a sliding weight that tips the scales at 20 grams. That gives it more than double the influence on a driver’s center of gravity than the R1’s moveable weights. And instead of the R1’s two CG options, the SLDR offers 21 different CG locations that are mapped out on the driver’s sole between the driver’s heel and toe.
Many golf gearheads are quick to point out that TaylorMade’s sliding weight track is nothing new — very similar technology first appeared on Mizuno’s MP-600 drivers in 2007. But here’s what those TaylorMade detractors aren’t computing — the Mizuno MP-600 driver had its sliding weight system in the back of the driver. The SLDR has its sliding weight track in the front of the driver, which creates the high-launch/low-spin conditions that TaylorMade has been touting for years.
One thing that the SLDR is missing is TaylorMade’s “face angle adjuster,” a sole plate on TaylorMade’s R1, R11S and R11 drivers that allowed golfers to adjust the face angle to various levels of open, closed or square in the soled position. According to Olsavsky, the SLDR lacks a sole plate because of the small amount of weight it adds to the rear of the driver, which would cost the SLDR yards in laboratory testing.
Another perk of ditching the sole plate and other weight gobbling mechanisms, such as the two moveable weight ports, is that the lack of those mechanisms in a driver can give it a better sound and feel.
“Weights and sole plate systems – all those things change the resonance of the structure,” Olsavsky said. “We were able to give the SLDR exactly the sound we wanted … Powerful, but still explosive.”
The SLDR driver will hit shelves on Aug. 9 and cost $399. It will be available in four different lofts, 8, 9.5, 10.5 and 12 degrees, and will come stock with Fujikura’s Speeder 57 shaft (R,S and X flexes). A TP version of the driver will also be available for $499 with Fujikura’s Speeder Tour Spec 6.3 shaft (R,S and X flexes). Both clubs will be sold at a stock length of 45.5 inches.
According to Olsavsky, golfers can expect 1-to-2 mph faster ball speeds with the SLDR driver compared to TaylorMade’s R1, as well as about 300 rpms less spin. That doesn’t sound like another one of TaylorMade’s outrageous claims, i.e. 17 yards, 17+10, etc., because it’s not.
Our official tester, as well as an overwhelming majority of the 25 golfers who were fit for SLDR drivers at TaylorMade’s Performance Labs located around the country, achieved higher ball speeds and lower spin rates with the SLDR compared to their gamers.
Just like in our review of the R1, our tester found that he needed to increase loft 0.5 degrees from TaylorMade’s previous model to make up for the lower spin rate, which was easily done with the club’s adjustable loft sleeve
Note to R1 users: While the SLDR’s loft sleeve looks different, it fits the R1 adapter, so you can still use the premium shafts you have fitted with R1 sleeves.
The need for added loft makes sense, as lower-spinning drivers often need more loft than higher-spinning drivers to create optimal spin levels for maximum carry. But how does the SLDR have more ball speed, you might be asking? Well, it’s that low, forward CG thing.
According to Olsavsky, the reason drivers with lower, more forward CGs have faster ball speeds than drivers with more reward CGs is simple geometry. The center of gravity of a driver projects at a point perpendicular to a driver’s loft, so a driver with a center of gravity that is farther back in the head projects at a point that is higher on the face than a driver with a center of gravity that sits farther forward in the head. That’s why the SLDR is longer than the R1 — the center of the gravity of the head projects lower, and more in line with the area where golfers strike the ball, producing a more efficient energy transfer and thus more ball speed.
Our tester also found that the sliding weight track was surprisingly easy to use, and that it didn’t take him long to find his favorite of the club’s 21 settings. Most golfers will “set it and forget it” after their initial fitting, but gear heads will enjoy the ability to add left or right bias to their drives when they’re struggling with their games or making changes to their swing.
Looks and Feel
After three years of white drivers, we were a little shocked to pull the head cover off a TaylorMade club and not see the company’s trademark matte white crown. We never doubted the advantages of matte white paint as they related to reduced glare and alignment, but that doesn’t mean that we’re not happy to see a return to a more traditional paint job.
The SLDR’s 460-cubic-centimeter head inspires confidence behind the ball, with no painted racing stripe (like the R1) or bizarre triangle (like the RBZ Stage 2) to distract from the job at hand. The gray glossy crown also makes the club head look smaller at address than drivers with white crowns, which some golfers will like and others won’t.
One thing we could have done without on the SLDR is the lighter gray section on the back of the crown (TaylorMade calls it a “chrome button back”). We know why it’s there though — on TV, golfers will easily be able to spot the lighter-colored section, and know that “player X” is hitting a SLDR.
More important than the look of the SLDR at address is the feel of the driver, however. Low-spin drivers like the SLDR have a tendency to feel harsh at impact, but the SLDR feels buttery soft. Several testers commented that the ball seemed to “compress and then jump off the face.”
The R1 and previous drivers from TaylorMade have a louder, higher-pitched sound that many golfers said lacks the “pop” they felt with the SLDR. We anticipate that golfers who liked TaylorMade’s legendary R510TP driver will love the feel of the SLDR, because it feels very similar.
When a company is releasing as many new drivers as TaylorMade has in 2013 — the R1, RBZ Stage 2, RBZ Stage 2 Tour, R1 Black and now the SLDR — it’s hard to believe that golfers will see anything more than an incremental improvement in performance. In certain cases, golfers might get no improvement with new models — especially for drivers from TaylorMade, which year after year has produced some the best performing drivers in the industry.
But our testing showed that the SLDR is one of the special drivers that comes around every few years that has the potential to win over an enormous amount of golfers.
The combination of the SLDR’s faster ball speed, lower spin and foolproof adjustability makes it arguably the best driver that TaylorMade has ever produced.
And the shiny new paint job is sure to lure back some traditionalists who abandoned the TaylorMade brand when it went to white drivers.
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GolfWRX Spotlight: Tour Edge Exotics C721 driver
Tour Edge’s Exotics line of high-end golf clubs has been known for excellent fairway wood and hybrid performance over the years. The Chicago-based company has been consistently putting out high-quality products, and golfers are really taking notice. The new line of C721 drivers, fairway woods, and hybrids take yet another big leap forward from last year’s EXS line.
The new C721 driver takes a lot of technology from the 2020 EXS line and further refines and expands on it. I know it is a little cliche when companies say every model is their best ever, but Tour Edge is 100 percent right this time.
When unboxing the C721 the first thing I noticed was the much-improved looks and shape over the previous Tour Edge drivers. The biggest change to my eye is the added bulge, giving a more rounded and softened topline.
The overall shape of the C721 is slightly stretched from front to back, giving it just a hint of a triangular look. The Ridgeback is a titanium spine flanked by two carbon fiber wings that add stability and forgiveness to the head, but they can also work together and an additional aiming device to ensure you are lined up down the center of the fairway.
Getting the C721 out on the course is where you really start to appreciate all the technology that went into this driver. Well-struck shots are very long, very boring, and will hang with anything out on the market today. Center contact is rewarded with a long and very low spin shot that is just fun to hit.
The sound and feel are very solid, you can really feel the ball compress on the face as it leaves at high speed. The sound is more of a muted crack and much quieter than I anticipated. If you practice on an enclosed range your ears will thank you for your choice in drivers. Shots hit away from the center of the face retain a lot of ball speed and stay online really well.
My miss is low on the heel and those misses stayed in the air fairly well and went a good ways. Shots hit down on the heel or higher on the toe side still stay online really well due to the Ridgeback spine and rear weight. The C721 is just slightly higher than mid-launch for me, but the low spinning head never allowed my shots to balloon or rise even into the wind. I do wish the face was just a touch deeper as I had to play with my tee height in order to find the optimal setup. The better players will enjoy the neutral weighting and there seems to be very minimal draw built into the driver.
Overall, the Tour Edge Exotics C721 driver is a great club that will probably be overlooked by too many golfers. If you are looking for added distance, a lot of forgiveness and want to keep some money in your pocket, then you should seriously take a look at Tour Edge.
Review: Ping’s G400 and G400 LST Drivers
I still remember the first time I hit Ping’s G30 driver. It was July 2014, and I was at Ping’s HQ in Phoenix. Super low-spin drivers were all the rage at the time. With their forward center of gravity, they were helping golfers optimize their launch conditions beyond their wildest dreams: crazy high launch, ridiculously low spin. Many in the business, including myself, had one of these drivers and spent many launch monitor sessions trying to figure out how to get more distance from these high knuckleballs. The bad news was that forward-CG drivers, by nature, were really unforgiving. Bad shots were really short and crooked.
Before I knew the G30 was a big deal, Marty Jertson, Ping’s Director of Product Development, explained to me his vision for the perfect driver inside a conference room at Ping Headquarters. In his eyes, the perfect driver didn’t have the low, forward center of gravity (CG) that was being touted at the time. Its CG was located as low and as rearward in the driver head as possible, which he said would offer the best of both worlds: optimized launch conditions on good shots, as well as the best possible forgiveness on bad shots.
Building the perfect driver was a long way off (and still is), but Jertson was excited where Ping had landed with the G30. When it was released, the driver was a powerful testament to his vision. Its rear-CG design created great distance on good and bad shots, and it was also a very straight driver. The G30 sold incredibly well and, as a result, the industry mostly shifted away from forward-CG drivers.
It’s been nearly three years since the release of the G30, and Ping has just made another counterintuitive driver release. The company shrunk the size of its new G400 drivers in a climate where full-size drivers have become the norm. Granted, it’s only 15 cubic centimeters smaller, but it’s noticeable at address. Compared to the Ping G drivers they replace (which replaced the G30), the G400’s look like they cut carbs.
Despite their slimmer frames, however, the G400 drivers are actually more forgiving than the G drivers (which were even more forgiving than the G30). That’s why Ping representatives say smaller is actually better in the G400’s case. The drivers have the lowest, most rearward CG of any Ping drivers ever, and their smaller size is said to improve their aerodynamics so golfers can swing them fractionally faster. The other big change is a new face material made of T9S+ titanium, which is thinner and more flexible to help golfers generate more ball speed.
For this review, I wanted to put the G400 and G400 LST to the test against the G and the G LST drivers that they replace, so I took them to the Launch Pad at Carl’s Golfland in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. I hit five shots with each driver on Trackman IV, and to ensure as much of an apples-to-apples comparison as possible, I tested each driver head with the same shaft. Each driver head was adjusted to the same loft, or as close as possible.
Note: The G, G LST, and G400 drivers I tested were 10.5-degree heads adjusted to 9.5 degrees. The G400 LST had a loft of 10 degrees, and it was adjusted to 9.4 degrees.
In my personal driver tests, I don’t usually see a huge uptick in distance or accuracy when comparing the latest drivers to the most recent models from the same manufacturer. Improvements generally come in the form of improved head shaping, a better feel, or enhanced adjustability. That’s why I was surprised to see such a big change in my launch conditions and dispersion with the G400 drivers.
G400 Test Results: With the G400, I launched my drives an average of 1.6-degrees higher than I did with the G while dropping spin an average of 416 rpm. That led to a significant improvement in distance. With my swing speed and ball speed staying about the same, I added an average of 7.2 yards more carry distance and 8.7 yards more total distance.
G400 LST Test Results: First, a note about the G400 LST. It has a CG that’s slightly lower and more forward than the standard G400 driver to help golfers reduce spin. Like the G30 LST and G LST, it’s still very much a rear-CG driver, but its design helps high-speed golfers who can consistently find the center of the club face maximize distance without highjacking forgiveness. When I test Ping drivers, the LST is generally the model that creates the best performance, and the G400 LST was no exception. I saw an average of a 1.2-degree higher launch angle with all other things staying about the same when I compared it to the G LST. The result was an average of 6.6 yards more carry distance and 3.1 yards more total distance. It was the longest and straightest driver I hit in the test.
Note: Ping also sells a G400 SFT (Straight Flight Technology) driver, which has added draw bias. To learn more about it, click through to tech story on the G400, G400 LST and G400 SFT drivers.
One way to explain the improved launch conditions is that I hit the G400 drivers more consistently. As you can see in the Trackman dispersion chart, I hit the G400 and G400 LST drivers straighter on average than the G and G LST. Is that its slightly enhanced forgiveness shining through? Maybe, maybe not.
To me, the changes Ping made to the look and feel of the driver were just as important as the performance difference I saw on Trackman. I’ve always preferred smaller driver heads, or at least 460-cubic-centimeter drivers that appear smaller than their size. For that reason, I felt more confident with the G400 drivers in my hands. I didn’t mind that I didn’t see any added swing speed or ball speed from the smaller driver head. I was sold on the looks alone.
I also preferred the sound of the G400 drivers to the G drivers. There was definitely much more of a “thwack” than a “ping” at impact, which made the G400’s feel more powerful. Looks and feel are subjective, of course, but to me the improvement was night and day. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that my fondness for the looks and feel of the G400 was at least a contributing factor to my improved performance in the test, if not the most important factor. When I like the way a club look at address, I tend to hit it better, and I know I’m not alone.
I do want readers to keep in mind that this was a one-person test and I hit a limited amount of balls. Yes, it’s a great indication that the G400 driver can be measurably better than a G driver, but it’s not a guarantee.
I also want to address the weaknesses of the G400 drivers. While they’re few, they could push golfers into another driver model in a fitting. Unlike Callaway’s GBB Epic, TaylorMade’s M1 or Titleist’s 917 drivers, the G400’s don’t have CG adjustability. That means there’s no way to fine tune ball flight outside of a shaft or loft adjustment. A bigger deal for some golfers might be the G400 crowns. Despite their smaller size, there’s still a lot to look at address, as was the case with the G drivers.
Aerodynamic features on the front of the crowns, “Turbulators,” have been thickened for the G400 release. There’s also Ping’s “DragonFly Technology,” a geometry on the back of the driver crowns that helps push CG lower and more rearward in the driver heads. I personally think the G400 crowns give the drivers an old-school, muscle car-like look, but there’s no question they won’t fly with all golfers.
Whatever your thoughts about what’s on top of the G400 drivers, there’s no question that what’s under the hood can offer something the G and G30 drivers did not. Maybe you’ll like the smaller head. Maybe you’ll prefer the quieter sound. Maybe the improved forgiveness will show up on a launch monitor or on the course. Or maybe you’ll just flat out rip a G400 farther and straighter down the middle like I did.
If that last bit happens, try not to second-guess it.
Members Choice: The Best Driver of 2017
What determines the best driver on the market; is it the opinion of professional club fitters, professional golfers or testing results from a group of amateurs?
At GolfWRX, we believe all three sources can lead golfers to an answer. Being a website founded by passionate golfers with a mission to serve passionate golfers, though, we place a special emphasis on the opinions of our GolfWRX Members — the most knowledgeable group of golfers on the planet. No other group of golfers in the world tests golf clubs as frequently or as extensively as GolfWRX Members. So who better to poll to get an initial indication of the best performing drivers so far in 2017?
So we asked them, “What’s the best driver of 2017?” They voted for the three drivers they felt most worthy of the title and provided feedback about their selections in our special forum thread. You can see the results below (as of the first three weeks of voting), as well as quotes we pulled from GolfWRX Members about the drivers from our forum.
Remember that our polls will remain open for voting throughout the year, and we’re going to keep an eye on the percentages as more and more golfers have an opportunity to test these drivers. We’re also working on another Best Driver list, which will evaluate clubs in another important way. Stay tuned!
Keep in mind that there’s no single driver on the market that is the absolute best option for every golfer: that’s why nearly every manufacturer makes at least two different models. As this list indicates, however, some drivers are working better than others this year. Happy Testing!
Note: Forum posts were minimally edited for grammar, style, spelling and clarity.
Cobra King LTD Black (3.00 percent of votes)
- The General: All-black LTD is really clean looking. I’m about to cover up the orange on my LTD with lead tape. Orange is played out
- mh7vw: Love my LTD, but wish the black finish (or even this gray) didn’t have that subtle checkering you see in some like. Prefer plain black.
- dbleag: I am a fan of the black/orange combo. The performance and sound of the LTD is very appealing to me. I also like that the standard length is 45 inches. For me, that helps it be super-accurate. With the low-spin design, I hit it longest of the current offerings and can’t remember the last time I missed a fairway. Straight, solid, low spin and nice.
Mizuno JPX-900 (3.20 percent)
- johnnythunders: JPX goes straight. Best real-deal shaft and is long and very adjustable.
- KT35: That blue head looks awesome sitting on the ground. I hit balls off the toe and heel and didn’t see the big drop off in distance like the previous models.
- nmorton: The JPX-900 is definitely more forgiving compared to the JPX-850, and sounds much better. Though they did sacrifice a bit by going with a little larger profile, but it’s easy to get used to. The graphics are so so, but this driver performs. I’m really digging the Evo II (shaft).
- jay65: I can see that Mizuno is really making a decent effort with its drivers/fairways in terms of tech and aesthetics, and they compliment the new JPX-900 line of irons really well, but if they’re going to make any inroads they really have to address this issue of their custom shafts options. It’s rubbish.
- bok006: The JPX-900, after being properly adjusted by the fitter, gave me an extra 20 yards just like that. My swing speed suggested I was borderline S to X (flex), but the fitter said unless I was fighting a hook I should stick with the S.
- bubbagump: …the JPX-900, when properly fit, is just as long on a consistent basis than all the new models I tried in real life situations. It looks great, sounds solid and just knows the way to keep the ball in play.
- Chazb: I’m 69 years old, have a swing speed of 91 mph and played nine with the JPX-900 this morning. It was in the 40s with a brisk wind hit it around 220 to 230 yards. It was a fairway finder, has great feel and is one of the easiest to control drivers I have ever hit. I can’t wait ’til it is warmer and can dial it in more. So far I have the two weights all the way forward for a lower flight and the other set with a draw bias with 10.5 degrees of loft. This driver is the real deal; it may not be the longest or the shortest, but it is a fairway finder which IMO makes it a winner.
Ping G (3.80 percent)
- Wesquire: Ping G is the most forgiving so it wins.
- bopper53: Ping G hands down. Great distance and the most forgiving.
- Dannydubbbs: The Ping G series is just too forgiving. The distance is comparable between most models, but Ping always seems to win out with forgiveness.
- Bruin Bear: The Ping G is going to be overlooked because it’s looked at as “game improvement,” but this driver is a beast. I liked the LS, but it requires a faster swing to get results and in the cold outdoors I just don’t have that all the time. I think the G is the perfect blend of performance and forgiveness.
- cmrl1986: Only reason I switched from the Ping G25 was that the G felt less harsh off the face. Same distance just about.
Cobra King F7+ (3.90 percent)
- EntourageLife: Ball really flies off face. Driver head controls spin well. Not one drive “ballooned” and trajectory was high and best of all… very easy to work ball right to left for a confident draw.
- Gollie: The F7+ is another great offering from Cobra… I didn’t get the “MAN, this is gonna take my LTD out of the bag” feeling, but it has very good sound, feel and performance.
- J13: F7+ is a great offering from Cobra and IMO is in the top-3 drivers this year. Epic is the standout for me numbers wise, then M series and F7+ are right behind it. Love the Agera (shaft) in there!!! Such a great shaft; I can’t seem to get mine out of the bag.
- Golfer from MO: Hit both Cobras lefty and as a lefty the LTD is the shizzle. Last year it was the LTD and Big Bertha down to the absolute wire… the F7+ is more workable than the LTD, but not longer and a little worse on mishits.
- Boognish: I took a few swings with the F7+ at Golf Galaxy yesterday. 9.5 degrees with heaviest weight forward. The stock shaft is actually the same model I play in my GBB (albeit in smoked black instead of yellow). Ball flight and distance were similar to my GBB with good consistent sub-3000 backspin. Sound was OK, feel was harder than the GBB.
- thechief16: Just from the range (no LM), I didn’t see a noticeable performance improvement with the F7+ over the original King LTD. And I like the look and sound/feel of the LTD better.
Ping G LS Tec (4.90 percent)
- drvrwdge: I played the G LS with the Ping Tour 65X (shaft) tipped an inch for about a year. Just put the HZRDUS Yellow 75 6.5 tipped an inch and never thought it was possible, but it’s longer and straighter. Best driver shaft combo I’ve ever hit. You can feel that HZRDUS throughout the entire swing. Really gives you a solid connected feel.
- Mtngolfer1: I am not sure that I would consider this a 2017 Driver, but my vote went to the Ping G LS Tec. The fact that my G is still holding its own against the latest 2017 releases has me very excited to see what Ping will release later this year.
- 3woodvt: Fairway finder and plenty long.
- pitchinwedge: I’ve found the LS to be nearly as fade biased as the M family. I get pretty good results with the LS by making a conscious effort to make more of an in-to-out swing. Any lapse in concentration and everything goes right. The M’s require even more effort, which is the reason I stayed with the LS instead.
- 3 Jack Par: After an up and down year with the G LS, I’ve actually recently gone back to my G30 LS head. I only have a couple of rounds as a sample so far, so I can’t really draw a conclusion about whether one or the other is better, but with the same shaft it seems like my G30 head might be a little longer. Honestly, the performance differences are pretty minimal if you really compare the two generations.
Titleist 917D3 (5.30 percent)
- Gava: The 917D3 is in my bag now, and I’ve found it incredibly long with a recently purchased Graphite Design Tour AD MJ 7TX shaft. Feel and accuracy has been a real improvement as well.
- Togatown22: I find my 917D3 to be just as forgiving as my 915D2 was, and man do I prefer looking down at the head shape and color versus the 915. Very confidence inspiring.
- NIxhex524: I would definitely give the D3 a whirl. I feel like Titleist has made great strides at making the smaller head way more hittable for us ams.
- KPH808: So in conclusion, I was hitting the ball about 9 yards further on average and 3-4 mph faster ball speeds with the 917D3 vs. the 915 D4. The biggest thing for me was the forgiveness between the two; the 917D3 was more forgiving on mishits.
- brushie: The 917D3 head feels soft like the 910 and sounds great. I never had an issue with the 915 sound; it wasn’t great, but it didn’t bother me too much. This is much better, though. The 917D3 head shape is perfect to my eye as well. The area where the 917 shines is forgiveness.
TaylorMade M1 440 (5.35 percent)
- Tigermatt31: The M1 440 is best driver I’ve had ever.
- TollBros: The M1 440 is definitely lower spin than the M1 460 or M2 from last year. Launch angle isn’t really any lower, but spin is lower for sure.
- specimania: This year’s 440 is more forgiving.
- MCoz: Yes, this 440 is more forgiving, and yet it also appears to be more workable than both of the previous M1 and M2s.
- nitram: To save you a bunch of reading and crunching numbers, I quickly concluded there was a little more forgiveness and exactly +0.4 mph ball speed with the 440. By forgiveness I simply mean this: A 1.48 smash 440 will give you the same ball speed and distance as a 1.49/1.50 430. But if you get a 1.50 from both there is no measurable gain. Side-to-side dispersion was better by 4.7 feet with the 440. Workability was a wash between them, although the 430 seems a bit more fade biased whereas I’ll describe the 440 as a scosche more neutral.
- tj24: I hit the M1 440 with my Aldila RIP at an 80-gram X-flex. For me, the spin numbers were around 1700 rpm which is probably to low for my swing. I did, however, like the shape of the head and I felt like I could easily work the ball both ways.
- halfsumo: I really think they nailed it with the shape of this 440 head. Nice pear shape, no weird bulges or ridges that you have to get used to.
- GolfWRX members gain 7 yards on average with 2017 TaylorMade M1, M2 drivers
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Titleist 917D2 (6.65 percent)
- tsletten: Love the sound of the 917D2.
- bladehunter: No doubt the 917D2 is an accurate, forgiving driver that doesn’t look as big as it is and sounds fantastic.
- JStang: Maybe it’s just me, but I find the face to be more shallow (top to bottom) with the 917D2 than other drivers that I’ve tried lately.
- LuckyLowbrow: I was actually spinning it too low with the D4. Going up to the D2 normalized my spin rate, but led to such an improvement in consistency across the face.
TaylorMade M1 460 2017 (11.81 percent)
- Ereim: I ended up going with the M1 460. It gave me a slightly tighter dispersion, and I liked looking down at it slightly more.
- jdenham15: The 2017 TaylorMade M1 is a great driver, but I tend to miss wide right and struggled to turn it over.
- ZBigStick: The M1 460 gave me the best results. Was able to increase launch without much added spin with the (T-Track) weight. Feel is good and felt forgiving; dispersion results backing that up.
- BillMurrayGolfing: The face is hot, receptive, thin and makes a nice sound. I like that.
- JStang: Sound and feel were both fantastic. I couldn’t ask for much more in the sound and feel department than what this club offers. Plenty of feedback was provided based on impact as I would expect. I could easily tell where I missed based on feel.
- tnord: Just as another tester found, moving the weight back and forward absolutely does impact how the club sounds. I’m much more a fan of the weight back.
- chickenpotpie: Moving the slider to the draw position made the feel of the driver a little harsher. Feel was much much smoother with that weight in the middle. I didn’t see any such changes with the front/rear slider.
- GolfWRX members gain 7 yards on average with 2017 TaylorMade M1, M2 drivers
- 12 Important Changes to the 2017 TaylorMade M1, M2 Drivers
TaylorMade M2 2017 (11.86 percent)
- ZBigStick: I liked the feel of the new M2 but seemed to get better results and numbers with the new M1. Could be the extra 5 grams of head weight?
It was dynamite with the GD TP-6 (shaft)!
- erock9174: On Trackman it didn’t put up the most ball speed, but counting all shots the M2 had the longest average distance.
- gripandrip: The M2 seems to have a little bit of a fade bias for me. And the head is HUGE. Maybe it’s a mental thing to be able to turnover a head that large.
- Bomber_11: M2 has very big shoes to fill, as the 2016 M2 was arguably one of the best drivers of the last 3-4 years.
- LONG&STR8: It’s hard to ignore the sound of the new M2. That may be TaylorMade’s biggest fail with that driver, as the sound and feel was one of the best things about the first version that I’ll have in the bag until something better comes along.
- Z1ggy16: The new M2 was terrible for me, not sure why. Unsure if it was the shaft I used but it spun up like a monster and ball speeds weren’t any better than previous M2.
- Peanut191: I don’t really think that the new M2 was much of a step backward, probably more that it doesn’t seem like a big step forward compared to last year’s model. I was hitting my 2016 M2 against a 2017 M2 indoors (which usually amplifies the louder, more obnoxious sound) and I didn’t notice that much of a difference in sound. It could have been that I might have just happened to get a hold of a head that was more muted than normal with the new one, but I just didn’t notice much difference. Performance wise, I could tell that the 2017 was slightly more forgiving than the 2016 model, but I was basically getting the same ball speed and spin numbers, so I didn’t see the need to upgrade.
- gioguy21: Played 54 holes this weekend. The M2 was as reliable as it could get. I hit 11/12 fairways Friday, 10/12 Saturday and 5/9 or so yesterday (windy). Controllable, just wants to go straight. The sound no longer bothers me. I think it’s when hitting indoors or in range bays that it gets unbearably loud. Makes a different sound when hit on the screws I’ve found, similar to last years M2/M1 with less high-pitched ring. The forgiveness is very obvious, as I hit a couple that were close to center of the face but either high or little out toward the toe that flew similar trajectory and distance to how a well struck shot would react. I think where this driver really shines is the ability to either tee it high and hit it with higher trajectory or the ability to hit it lower with a low tee (3/4 of the ball under the crown) and hit laser beams that don’t move left or right.
- G-Bone: From what I’ve seen on Trackman, 2017 M1 was a big jump from 2016; however, 2016 M2 was so good, 2017 is a minor jump.
- GolfWRX members gain 7 yards on average with 2017 TaylorMade M1, M2 drivers
- 12 Important Changes to the 2017 TaylorMade M1, M2 Drivers
Callaway GBB Epic (14.91 percent)
- HDTVMAN: I hit both the Callaway Big Bertha Fusion and Epic with a 44.5-inch UST Recoil F3 shaft and the results were very close. From customer testing, it appears the Epic is longer for those with higher (95+) swing speeds. I have also seen that 44.25-44.5-inch lengths promote tighter dispersion with customers, no loss of distance and better over-all drives.
- mbbrewer: Tried them all and for me Epic was the one. Fastest ball speed, lowest spin and tightest dispersion.
- Ereim: Epic felt great, looked great and the numbers were basically 99.9 percent optimized for my swing.
- johnnylongballz72: There is Epic and there is the M series… then there is everyone else. The votes here show it, the PGA Tour use shows it and launch monitors everywhere show it.
- misplacedtexan83: GBB Epic/Sub Zero pushed the envelop in design and materials to produce increased ball speed and gains. For once a driver did what a company said it would do.
Callaway GBB Epic Sub Zero (16.91 percent)
- jdenham15: I tested the Epic Sub Zero and Epic against my 2016 TaylorMade M1 and the ball speed was 5 mph higher on average, which gave me about 10 yards more carry disstance. That was great, but the part that sold me was the forgiveness. I love my Epic Sub Zero. I feel like it’s easier to turn over and I can work it both ways.
- Z1ggy16: Sub Zero was hands down the best, including my gaming M1 (yeah, not even top-3) due to the combination of lower spin, good forgiveness and feel and looks.
- jimhaire: I had a 2016 M2 and went with the Epic Sub Zero. The look at address suited my eye and the feel off the face was better for me. And the club went straight.
- Sef: I have tested a lot of these drivers and for me the Epic Sub Zero was so much better than everything else. I wish I could just apply all three votes to it.
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Jan 11, 2017 at 6:52 pm
I like this low spin driver but have eventually replaced it with a Taylormade M1.
Sep 5, 2016 at 1:52 pm
I know this driver is 2 years old. But I’m posting anyway because people still are looking for these on eBay and what not.
I am a 15.4 HC. 47YO. I never was able to get more than 215 out of any driver and shaft combo imaginable. Until I was fitted for an SLDR with Fukijura SIX shaft.
Now my mis hits go 225 and on average this past year in league 237.50 with several 250-260 depending on conditions.
This driver will never leave my bag. It’s reduced my spin greatly. I play it at draw settings 13.5 degree loft.
Jun 25, 2016 at 1:15 am
Thanks fro your great post about all the different clubs for beginners.
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Nov 28, 2014 at 8:07 pm
Tried a lot of different drivers and none felt as good as the sldr-like butter when you hit the sweet spot. Put it on draw and have a nice high sweet draw on most drives. I do tee the ball high as I address the ball off my big toe to catch the upswing. Tried the titlest 915 and the callaway 588 and neither could compare to the sldr.
Oct 4, 2014 at 8:44 pm
i love this driver
Sep 26, 2014 at 1:50 am
What is the difference between the TM SLDR, SLDRS & SLDR TP heads?
Aug 10, 2014 at 4:16 pm
Can pick one up on Ebay for $150. Cheap.
Jul 25, 2014 at 9:28 am
I’ve had numerous drivers in my bag- Titelist, Nike, Cleveland and even TM R1 and off the tee was the weakest part of my game (9 handicap). Put a SLDR in before a 5 day trip to Myrtle Beach and was piping it…..absolutely LOVE it!
Jul 23, 2014 at 7:53 pm
This driver flat out bombs. Went from 9 loft on old driver to 11.5 in the SLDR.
Jul 8, 2014 at 4:21 pm
I just put a SLDR 430 in my bag before a 10 day golf trip to Scotland – I can safely say I’ve never been more satisfied with my tee ball. I play totally stock 10.5 degree setting and am now getting to par 5’s in two and hitting more fairways to boot. I play off at 4 and have tried more drivers than I care to admit – have more confidence and belief in my driving than I’ve had in a long time.
Jul 6, 2014 at 4:09 pm
The first time I ever tried to swing SLDR it felt very stiff, and some people I knew had a hard time hitting it, some good players too. I had one in my shop last weekend to install a new grip, at 45.5 inches long it freq at 271 cpm……supposed to be a stiff flex.
Jun 26, 2015 at 11:04 am
I’VE GOT A TAYLOR MADE SLIDER AS OF AUGUST 2014. I AM HAVING A LOT OF TROUBLE LEARNING TO HIT IT. IT FEELS LIKE THE SWEET SPOT IS ABOUT THE SIZE OF A NICKLE, AND I CANT FIND IT. I’VE TRIED TEEING IT HIGH AND LOW, BECAUSE I CATCH THE BALL HIGH ON THE FACE, AND THE BALL WILL NOT GO. I’VE BEEN HITING TAYLOR MADE DRIVERS FOR 20 YEARS. THIS ONE IS “BS”, TAYLOR MADE SOULD HAVE TO REPLACE THEM.
Sep 5, 2016 at 1:43 pm
If you can’t hit an sldr then you should look at high GI drivers lol. Sldr is the easiest driver I’ve ever hit and I’m a 15 HC.
Seriously. If you can’t hit this driver you should quit.
Jun 6, 2017 at 1:55 pm
I feel your pain. Purchased an SLDR on eBay. Spent many hours on the practice tee trying to get the feel for the sweet spot. Could not. Most drives were low screamers, less than 200 yards. Let a friend (low handicapper) try to hit it, he too couldn’t get any distance out of it, either. Could have been a Chinese knock-off, but it was really bad news. Sold it on consignment at the local pro-shop recouped most of my $$.
Back to the R-7 and very happy!
Michael J Husting
Jun 29, 2014 at 10:50 am
I bought the white Sldr and did not like it at first. I stuck with my bagged driver and wold take the Sldr to the range on a regular basis and finally figured it out. The ball felt like a rock coming off of the face and I spoke with our club pro about that and he told me with this driver that I need to tee it lower then normal. Once I did that I actually saw what a wonderful driver the Sldr actually is. Picked up at least 10 yards and I have been in spots on the fairway that I have never hit into a green from.
Jun 17, 2014 at 9:07 am
Seems like the sldr is doing well on the tour.
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May 19, 2014 at 1:12 pm
My golf handicap is a single diget and I have never hit a
Taylormade golf club with as bad a shaft as the SLDR.
Bring back a shaft like your best one ever ROCKET FUEL by
When will Taylormade be launching a better club than the SLDR.
I Hope soon because Ping have a better shaft than the SLDR
May 31, 2014 at 10:42 pm
As a single digit you probably know it’s rare an off-the-rack driver is a good fit. Should be easy enough to try a SLDR with Rocketfuel shaft as the tips are compatible.
May 17, 2014 at 5:23 pm
I saw on TV that there is a chance to win a SLDR driver, but I do not see any place on the internet where to sign up. I remember that one of the promo codes was #SLDR.
On May 31st I am planning on going to UTE Creek golf course where there is going to be a demo day. I am looking to buy a new set of golf clubs, but I am not sure what brand to buy. I am still using my Taylor Made bubble shaft driver & 5 metal.
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Apr 22, 2014 at 6:19 am
I tested the reg shaft SLDR at a demo day in FL, Eagle Trace this week end, my swing speed is 98mpg. The club head felt very hard almost like if it was a rock. This is the worst club I tested recently.
Apr 28, 2014 at 8:17 pm
I never try one, but i d’ont like the look , color, and the adjust is nothing discret.
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Mar 20, 2014 at 6:40 am
So Justin Rose ‘Lofts up’ with the SLDR driver and achieves the worst driving stats since 2002, and with higher spin than in the past years.
Stuart Cink ‘Lofts Up’ and has worse stats than several years ago.
Dustin Johnson ‘Lofts Up’ and achieves identical numbers to 2008 and worse than previous seasons.
Jason Day ‘Lofts Up’ and achieves his worst driving stats since turning pro and 10 yards less.
Get the idea…
Sep 5, 2016 at 1:47 pm
Literally everything you said here is wrong.
Mar 15, 2014 at 9:04 pm
Just ordered the JDM 430 tp sldr, with the graphite design AD-MT shaft in it. Swore after hating the Super-tri, and gaming the R11 and R11s reluctantly for like two years that I would never listen to taylormade again. I play Ping Irons and also a ping g20 at the moment, and can’t believe I took the bait again. If this turns out to be another over hyped TM piece of crap, I’ll never go back. R11 and R11S were total garbage compared to my G20.
Mar 14, 2014 at 12:32 pm
Have been hitting a 10.5 degree, regular shaft Taylor Made Burner for about seven years. The Burner has treated me well, but it’s time for a new driver. 65 years old. 20 handicap. Drives generally range between 190-210 yards, mostly in the fairway, but occasional push/slice (and infrequent pull/hook). 85 swing speed. About 4,200 spin rate. Considering either a Taylor Made SLDR or Jet Speed. Has anyone tried both? If so, comparison comments would be greatly appreciated.
Mar 15, 2014 at 7:35 pm
I currently use the Burner 2.0 and went to a demo day at a local course. I tried a whole bunch of drivers and the SLDR was by far the best one I hit. It was quite a bit longer than the others and my current driver. The sound was much more muted, but I got used to it. I originally was more interested in the JetSpeed because of the price, but it wasn’t any better than my Burner.
I’m getting ready to push the purchase button any day now.
(62 yrs old, 6 hdcp)
Feb 13, 2014 at 7:37 pm
Three weeks ago my clubs were stolen. Obviously I had the go to my club fitter and figure out a whole new set up. I literally tried every new driver at PGA superstore. We went through all shaft options also. I was amazed after everything that the tm sldr was perfect for me.I don’t trust distances from monitors at all. ( I fit clubs for a living not to long ago and know for a fact the distances are off) however, spin ball speed etc are what is important. With the same x trinity shaft I was using before I was able to get the exact launch angle,and spin I wanted. After hours of trying there was nothing else I could get to match the sldr. Easy, good looking, and after playing it, as long as any other driver I have hit. With less spin! Which means more accuracy, which means club championship this year!!! I also picked up the callaway apex irons, and callaway everything else. Which will be a first. Point is that I’m not brand loyal I’m golf loyal and the SLDR happens to be the real deal!
Feb 28, 2014 at 6:33 pm
Just bought tour version sldr (all black) 430cc japan model. Shaft is stiff carbon 114 stock. Tried covert, ping, and titleist. 500-800rpm slower than the other clubs. Ball speed 160’s. Easily 15-20 yards longer on average at the range. 20-30 on simulator. Ball flight is impressive. Had to loft up to 10.5 degrees compared to usual 9.5 loft. i believe the club is the real deal. Previous driver R9 super deep and callaway prototype irons.
Feb 7, 2014 at 6:38 pm
3 handicap plan to get to scratch or better this year after 5years of HARD work and studying the game from mentaly to physicly. Always learning an enjoying the never ending quest to be great will never get old!
Feb 7, 2014 at 6:29 pm
Anybody have a answer for one person getting exactly what TM says your gona get and the next person getting the exact opposite?? Wanting to upgrade from my G20 ping 9.5 is it reaaly worth it if money isn’t a issue?
Feb 11, 2014 at 10:30 pm
Stay in the Ping family. TM is all fanboy hype.
Go to the i20 or i25. Beautiful clubs.
Apr 20, 2014 at 9:56 pm
Telling him to stay in the PING family is all fanboy hype. It depends on what you are looking for. The i25 is okay, not great. the G25 is the straightest driver ever. BUT the SLDR is longer than either of them. Titleist drivers are the most consistent and best looking. It all depends on what you want out of the new driver.
Feb 19, 2014 at 2:26 pm
Remember part this can be hashed out with the way you make contact on your normal “good” swing. These newer CG forward clubs have a sweet spot that is lower on the face, as is pointed out in this article. I can tee the ball lower to get that lower impact position on the face, but having the higher sweet spot on a deeper CG club is not really an issue either.
So “loft up” and tee lower, or tee up and stay with other deeper CG designs. Your Ping G20 (I have one as well) has a low deep CG. I get good numbers with an 8.5* club, teed up. My old Titleist 983E was 9.5*, smaller face but had a forward neutral CG. I can bomb that as good as any other club.
That being said, SLDR is a very nice club. TM v Titleist v Ping v Nike, it all comes down to preference, a good club fitting, and practice.
Mar 27, 2014 at 12:18 pm
Tested an SLDR about a month ago, and wasn’t too impressed. I game an R1 Black with a matrix 7m3 and love it, super predictable flight. I tried the SLDR with the same shaft and, on some hits, it would feel like I killed a drive, but the spin would be ridiculous! Like 42-4500 rpms! I thought it weird since the SLDR is so low spin, however I don’t get the high spin balls off my R1.
Apr 1, 2014 at 4:23 pm
Justin, I felt the same as you when comparing my R1 to the SLDR
Jan 28, 2014 at 5:10 pm
I’m an 8 handicap and bought an SLDR (9.5)in December. I’d been hitting an R7425 and an R7 Limited and I wanted to upgrade. A year ago I bought a Callaway and didn’t like it all. Even though I’m very partial to Taylormades, I have to say that this SLDR was absolutely the worst driver I’ve ever hit. The sound and feel were dead and it was significantly shorter than my others. I have no explanation, but sold it in a month.
Jan 25, 2014 at 1:37 pm
Recently went to Golf Galaxy to try and find a new driver. Purchased the 913 D3 with the white Diamana 72 gram stiff last year after several fittings with other makes. After comparing both the 913 D3 and the 430cc SLDR from Taylor made, I, Honestly, did not see a great difference between 913D3 and the SLDR 430cc on the launch monitor. Both had stiff shafts with the SLDR the TP series. The SLDR had approx. 300 less rpm than the 913D3 on spin rate which is not a lot. The 913 D3 was @ 9.5 while the SLDR was @ 10.5. Total distance was within 5 yrds of each driver. Launch angle was 12 to 13 degrees, 157 ball speed with both, with total distance approx. 280. With decent angle between 35 and 38 degrees for both. The question that you have to ask yourself is it worth 499.00 for the TP series to spend for approx. 5yrds of distance. It may be a lower spinning driver[ approx 300 rpm,s]but that is why they loft up when using the SLDR. Il just keep my 913D3, leave it @ 9.5 degrees with similar launch angle, carry and decent angle as the SLDR and save myself 499.00$. SO make sure you get fitted before buying any new driver. I’m also a 4 hndcp.
Feb 19, 2014 at 12:42 pm
Couldn’t agree more Mark about getting fitted before buying a new driver….I’ve been playing a TM Superquad TP since 2007. Last year I decided to see if it was time to upgrade. I went to Golf Galaxy and hit my driver and about half a dozen of the latest and greatest. The launch monitor numbers were very similar with all the clubs. My 6 yr old driver was just as good as the newest ones.
It’s more important to find something that gives you confidence. You have to be able to look down at your driver and like what you see to hit it consistently well.
Feb 19, 2014 at 9:29 pm
If we could get you launching it closer to 15-16 degrees your total numbers would go up. On either stick.
Dec 30, 2013 at 6:12 pm
I’ve just got the SLDR in a 9.5 TP head with a diamana tour issue shaft from the tour van. Never hit a driver so good in all my life, gives such a good strong flight with the option the hit it low under the wind which is especially useful on the links of the UK. Recommend it to anybody its given me 10 yards extra carry without sacrificing the run i get on the hard bouncy fairways.
Apr 2, 2014 at 6:17 pm
I confirm I have a SLDR HL 9.5 TDxxxx from the Tour van… I have never hit a driver head like that… tolerant, easy, long, good ball flight… with my Fujikura Motore F1 Tour issue ID 3,2 x Flex(from 2009, CPM 300 and tipped)… very serious flight… I will provide you the number with my new GC2 launch monitor (just received yesterday)…o)))
Robert D. Yang
Dec 5, 2013 at 4:12 am
I’ve learn several just right stuff here. Definitely worth bookmarking for revisiting.
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Nov 21, 2013 at 6:02 pm
I tried other lofts and consistently hit to right until I changed to the straight up alignment. anyone have any comments on the advantages or disadvantages of the straight up alignment?
Nov 20, 2013 at 10:37 pm
I’m a PING man. The driver to the putter, shirt, cap, and pants. But, I’m sorry Mr.PING, I changed my driver to SLDR. My G20 driver shot’s problem was high back spins. I tried different shafts, but I could not get lower spin rate. It was 3000rpm with 107mph swing speed and 250yard with 9.5. I tried SLDR (10.5) at a pro shop and I got 1800rpm and 270yard. WOW! I tried about 30 shots with using a launch monitor, and even mis-hits makes only 2400rpm. I purchased SLDR in 2 days.
It is pretty fan to adjust weight and loft at a driving range to see really changes ball flights.
I recommend to get higher loft head more than you think. It is pretty hard to get ball high unless you have decent head speed. If you have been swinging 8.5 or 9, try at least 9.5 or even 10.5. You would get very low spins and nice high ball flight = distance!
H Edward Ewings
Dec 30, 2013 at 4:26 pm
Just purchased SLDR 12 Degrees Reg Flex shaft Standard loft. Hitting ball low and almost duck-hook. What adjustments would you recommend?
Jan 3, 2014 at 9:23 am
increase the loft to 10.5 or even 11. And slide the bar towards FADE!!
H Edward Ewings
Jan 4, 2014 at 12:01 pm
Thank you…will try your suggestions.
Apr 1, 2014 at 4:28 pm
Get properly fitted
Jan 23, 2014 at 10:29 pm
Leave it to TM to design a driver thT nobody with a club head speed less than 100 mph can get airborne! Then change your marketing strategy to Loft Up! What a joke. TM has lost it now.
Feb 3, 2014 at 12:42 am
Your statement about 100 mph swing speed is not accurate. High launch-low spin increases distance at EVERY swing speed. In fact, it probably helps lower swing speed players more because distance gains are not related to ball speed.
Feb 11, 2014 at 10:32 pm
Should have gone to the i20 driver for lower spin and a much nicer club than the SLDR gimmick machine.
Nov 4, 2013 at 2:35 pm
What is the best shaft combination for the sldr head? Just the tp spec shaft?
Nov 15, 2013 at 1:51 pm
slrd is on my list drivers
Apr 20, 2014 at 10:01 pm
I’ve heard the ‘ahina and diamana d+ white were amazing with the SLDR
Oct 27, 2013 at 8:00 pm
I never post a comment, but i had to only for this specific club. I LOVE THE SLDR!!! I have all four of TMADE previous drivers. This CLUB IS THE TRUTH BELIEVE IT. I could only hit my RBZ Stage 2 about 250 and it was always fading or slicing. I bought the SLDR and I AM TRULY HITTING THE BALL 25-30 yards further and straighter. I just go up to the tee box and swing away. Every once in a while i will pull one left, but i would say 95% of the time i am in the fairway and 30-50 yards longer then whomever i am playing with. I constantly rave to other players at my club about how much i love this driver. Taylormade should pay me for the sales i am making for them. There was an elderly player at the club and he was hitting the ball about 200 and slicing. He asked to hit my driver and i reluctantly let him hit it. He hit it straight down the pike about 240. He was so excited he asked me to hit the SLDR for the remaining 5 holes. It really is the best driver i have ever owned. I want to but another one just because i am scared the way i can swing with it that it may break!!! LOL. I have never ever posted anything on this site but this club deserves it. If someone says dont believe the hype smack them in their face and then outdrive them with the TM SLDR!!! They will shut up very quickly when you blast the ball down the fairway. I am 5’6 150 pounds and driving the ball past guys that are much bigger and stronger. I only play the best and the SLDR IS THE BEST DRIVER HANDS DOWN NOT EVEN CLOSE. So if anyone is looking for a TM RBZ Stage 2 Tour its for SALE!!!!!!!! I Play Mizuno MP-68 and MP-69’s Scratch wedges and PROv-1’s. TRUST ME I WILL BE TRADING IN MY RBZ Stage 2 driver, RBZ 3-wd, and RBZ Tour 5 wd in for the SLDR 3-wd and 5-wd and Scotty Cameron Laguna 1.5 custom shop orange. So now you know i play the best and believe it or not THE SLDR IS THE BEST CLUB IN MY BAG NOW!!!! Great club and i am not a TM fan boy i am a MIZUNO FAN BOY. GO TO THE STORE NOW AND TRADE IN EVERY DRIVER YOU HAVE TO GET THIS CLUB YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED I PROMISE!!!!!!!!!
Nov 6, 2013 at 7:29 pm
Its a bit high in price Steve but if you say so Ill give it a go. Wheres the best place to buy and what shaft do you have, Cheers
Feb 15, 2014 at 10:00 pm
Feb 15, 2014 at 10:08 pm
a friend of mine was bragging about this club hes a scratch – i outdrove him all day with my r9 superdeep 8.5 neutral/draw , its all about the proper shaft – i tried this club it is a mailbox , boooooo
Oct 23, 2013 at 4:18 pm
First a little about me: I’m a Titleist “fanboy” if that is what you want to call me. I have owned, but rarely put into serious play, other OEM clubs. I just tend to prefer Titleist. I rarely switch equipment, I am not an equipment hoe. I’m not a fan of Taylormade, nothing personal against them, I’ve just rarely liked any of their equipment. I would never shy someone away from TM, it just hasn’t ever had the best fit for me.
I went today to be fitted for a Titleist 913 D3. I left without that club and with serious doubts about purchasing it in the near future. I was so caught off guard by the SLDR’s performance that I had to revisit my choice.
The thing is the real deal.
Oct 28, 2013 at 9:38 am
Great contribution by Josh on 23/10. Made me smile. I went in for a fitting and looked at the TM SLDR, Titleist, Callaway Fazr Fit Extereme, Cobra Amp, Cleveland Classic XL and Ping G25. Went for the SLDR but still trying to find the right fit which I am sure will come. Just to add to Mike (South Africa) 06/09, I also live in SA and the Dollar is killing us. The TM Lethal are now going to R60 a ball. That is just far, far too expensive!
Nov 10, 2013 at 1:35 am
I did the same thing Josh did – I went in to get try out the slew of new drivers to replace my current R9, which has outlived its’ time. I knew I seriously needed to look at the Titleist 913 D3 and the Ping Anser, but wanted to try a few others.
The SLDR TP outperformed on the launch monitor by far. By far, I mean my R9 was a consistent 280 yard average. The 913 D2 and D3 both were only marginally better – around 283-285. The Anser was a little longer at a consistent 290 but just didn’t have a good sound to it. It was a dull, “clunk” sound that just didn’t fit my fancy. The SLDR TP – with a 8 degree head set to full draw – produced a 307 yard average for 25 balls on the launch monitor. It sounds great – loud, but not too loud. And the feel… it is buttery. And I know buttery – I play Miura blades. This one will be in the bag for a few years.
Feb 11, 2014 at 10:38 pm
That’s strange. I guess it’s all personal preference, but I hated the SLDR.
I hit the Ping i25, Covert 2.0 tour, SLDR, and BB Alpha and found the i25 to be, by far, the best of the bunch. I have a fairly high clubhead speed that tops out at about 120 when swinging hard, but is more like 110-115 when going for smooth. Either way, the i25 killed all the others in comparison of feel, ball speed, and distance (carry and total). SLDR was my least favorite…go figure!
It’s all about personal preference. I play either Taylormade TP Racs or Callaway x-forged irons, depending where I’m staying, and have Cleveland wedges, Odyssey and Scotty putters. I play a Taylormade rocketballz stage 2 3 wood and game an Adams super hybrid. So, you can’t call me a fanboy, I just play what feels good and works.
Oct 11, 2013 at 7:47 am
I’ve been playing golf since 1985. Best round was minus 6 on a par 72
6700 y. I have tried all high quality drivers(TM,Callaway,Ping,Titleist,etc,) and among them there are 4 that were really performant: ERC II from callaway, titleist 913 d2, Taylor Made r7 cgb and TM SLDR. To me, The SLDR comes on the top by far especially
compared to the TM R1 which is 20 yards shorter and have a tendency to leak right even for the world top golfers. The titleist is not far behind the SLDR but is 10 yards shorter. All of the drivers listed above where tested on course and had the same shafts(Bassara) with the same flex tested for frequencies and static deflections (the charateristics can vary a lot for the same shaft), same swingweigth, same equivalent launch angle(tested also on simulators), same grips and all tested at the same times during practice rounds. To conclude, it is not a surprise to see world top golfers trow away their R1 and switch to SLDR. High five for TM to have designed this fine consistent and very long driver.
Oct 8, 2013 at 8:57 am
I agree with alot of people’s problems with Taylormade, the over the top marketing, ridiculous claims of distance games and the overly frequent club releases.
That being said I do love the actual equipment a lot my bag is TM and I love my TM clubs but I do get annoyed by the ads etc. I’ve always struggled with driving and I bought the TM Burner 2.0 basically for the distance gains (silly me) and I’ve always struggled to hit it, shaft too long, difficult to control, ball flight too high etc. anyway I’ve been considering a new driver for a long time and recently got given a £100 voucher for my local pro who I have lessons with when I left my last job and I said I was thinking of the SLDR and he put me on GC2. I hit some balls and it was going further and straighter and had a much better trajectory so I got it, with the voucher, some discount and a trade in of my old driver for only £144! and I couldn’t be happier I’m hitting it further and straighter and much better into the wind.
It’s a great club but the main reason I’m seeing such a benefit is because of my stupidity when purchasing my first driver, if I’d gone to my pro I more than likely would have just bought one that was suitable in the first place!
Oct 2, 2013 at 10:40 am
Im wondering i have a Callaway razr hawk 9.5 and i can hit it 265 270
Got a Cobra AMP wood 5-7 250
RBZ Hybrid 220
Would this driver give me a huge difference?
atm im a hcp 16, play 3 times per week… improving fast haha
Irons Cobra s9 stiff shaft
Dec 12, 2013 at 11:50 pm
i had the razr hawk and love it..i hit the sldr on a launch monitor yesterday and it gave me 25 more yds..i currently play the xhot pro and it blew by that…i was stunned..
Sep 25, 2013 at 12:35 am
I have read the comments and feel the need to respond about the SLDR. I don’t own the driver yet. I owned the 510tp and to this day (at least 10 drivers later), no other driver has come close to the feel of that driver. I currently game a Cleveland Classic and it’s the closest thing to I have come close to. I say all of that to say this. I was at the Tour Championship in Atlanta this weekend and to see a club that was introduced to the PGA guys less than 2 months ago, in EVERY TM staffers bag, and also in the bags of a few who don’t get a dime from TM has to tell you something. These guys don’t just put the shiniest new toy in their bags to try out. The sound is different, muted and softer and once again, if it feels anything like the 510 from 10 years ago—I’m sold.
Sep 21, 2013 at 10:32 am
I am still looking for the right driver. I had been to a number of fitting sessions for a new driver. Optiforce,Razr Fit Extreme, G25, Anser,R1,RBZ S2, SLDR, 913D2 and WS D-100 but none can beat the distance I hit with my old R7 Superquad TP. Help!!! I am still stuck with the flaking crown of the R7SqTP which need immediate replacement. I was never successful on Ebay bidding for a better R7SqTP.
Sep 20, 2013 at 9:54 pm
This is a business site
Get off it
Sep 20, 2013 at 9:28 pm
Just wanna get in on this……
I’m gonna go demo the sldr tomorrow but
I may decide to hit 1 of taylormade’s 6 newer
Sep 18, 2013 at 5:46 pm
Best driver out there is the Nike Covert. Got rid of all my TM equipment this year and went back to all Nike. Love the new Nike Forged wedges.
Sep 24, 2013 at 6:13 pm
I knew someone must actually buy Nike clubs – now we know who it is.
Sep 9, 2013 at 5:19 pm
I hit this on a driving range at a course I played a couple weeks ago. I play off of 5.2. Part of the fun of playing golf is to try these new products when they come out. It doesn’t mean you have to buy a new driver every six months when they come out, but it’s always fun to try. I had never tinkered with an adjustable driver before, and this one was pretty easy to maneuver and understand. It’s a good driver, pretty long and launches high with a good flight. I don’t know really anything about numbers as far as ball speed and launch angle, etc. but it passes the eye test. Certainly a solid club. If you’re in the market for a new driver (I wasn’t, and I stuck with my G20), give it a shot. Heck, give it a shot even if you’re not in the market. It’s fun. Golf is fun, remember?
Sep 9, 2013 at 8:56 am
I pick it up this week. It launches low, I suggest getting more loft than you normally might with a driver. Is than technical or anecdotal info?. Fool….
Mike South Africa
Sep 6, 2013 at 10:12 am
The sldr is being released in South Africa on the 13th. I find it strange that a guy can quote the most intricate of statistics and still be a 20 handicap. If you want it buy it, go out and enjoy the game and stop whining like a bunch of old ladies. We play golf throughout the year as our weather allows it so it must be the sittin g indoors for months and months with nothing better to do than study every single statistic known to man en every single driver. Get a life. I am an 18 handicapper and hit the ball less than 300 but still have a great time everytime. FYI I play with 4 year old TM products. Keep well in the US OF A and keep it on the fairway, with whatever club you are playing with
Sep 19, 2013 at 7:22 pm
Mike, rather discuss something in detail you have access to, than make a misinformed comment there from the R S of A ? Who said people who comment here are only from the U S of A ? Who said golfers in the U S of A or who comment here are not enjoying their golf ? Who said people in the U S of A can’t play golf 365 days of the year ? He he he…..
Mike South Africa
Sep 20, 2013 at 5:34 am
Hi Bud,all I meant is that we play golf for the enjoyment of the game, being out with buddies and really only buy clubs that we can afford. Most of my mates are also mid to high handicappers and do not seem to analize every new driver that lands on the shelves as much as some of you guys seem to do. The SDLR has just landed here and is selling for around US 500 much more than most of us can spend on one club only. Most players here stay with one club for a long time due to the price of clubs. No malice intended. Hope to hear from you soon and keep it on the fairway.
Oct 30, 2013 at 5:53 pm
Totally agree with you. I’m a professional golfer and honestly, I could go out there and play well with hickory shafted irons and persimmon woods. For professionals though, the better you get the more refined you have to get. Every little degree and inch matters when you’re playing for your livelihood. For amateurs and mid-to-high handicappers, it won’t make a difference in your game (it might give you a temporary fix). Work on getting your game better, because no club will do all the work for you. In the end it’s the Indian, not the arrow that matters. But, I respect people who just like to buy new stuff and talk about it because it’s a fun thing to do, however; if you seriously want to improve, improve your game first.
Sep 5, 2013 at 1:03 am
BTW, the SLDR Stage 2 is coming out in November for the Holidays. Fact.
Sep 5, 2013 at 9:15 am
Great contribution to the thread SOUPDOGS!. I realize we live in a free country where you can say/do whatever you please. I don’t need someone hiding behind the name “Soupdog” to remind me. I don’t need to call you any names, your own posts but your complete ignorance on display for all to see. Thanks for coming out…
Sep 6, 2013 at 7:10 pm
And your reply contributed what to this thread? Have you bought a SLDR and tested it? Do you have technical (even anecdotal) info on SLDR that you can share?
Sep 5, 2013 at 1:02 am
lol. The TM supporters here makes me laugh.
I can bash SLDR all I want and there’s nothing you can do about it. If you love SLDR that much, go knock yourself out and get one.
“How can you say you don’t like it until you’ve tried it?” Uh, I’m pretty sure I won’t like jumping off a cliff sans parachute. Everyone has bashed something before trying it or someone before meeting them. In the end, we are talking about golf clubs. GOLF CLUBS. If you don’t like others talking negatively about a driver, go somewhere else.
Sep 4, 2013 at 11:32 am
The TMAG bashing here is getting a little ridiculous. I must admit, I’ve been guilty of this myself in recent years mostly due to the whole white thing. I play 14 clubs of a different company but I am buying this driver. Its not white for starters. I grabbed it off the rack set at 9.5 with a stiff shaft which is what I play now in my current driver. It felt fantastic, just great. I will say it was launching way too low but i’m not concerned with it because I know in fifteen minutes I’ll have the loft bumped up and the weight distribtued differently and this thing will be good to go. I’m not normally one to follow cue of the tour players, but I can’t beleive how many pros made the mid-season switch to this thing. Even more impressive is how many of them aren’t Taylor Made staffers. I’m a 4 handicap, but my games strength is NOT driving distance. I’m always on the hunt for those few extra yards. I know a guy who is a Titleist nut, he even said ” I have to put the SLDR in the bag..”. I’ve also heard Steve Elkington, ball striker extrordinaire and long time Titleist guy comment on Twitter that he is on his way to gaming one soon. That says alot to me. Everyone will have a different opinion I realize but I personally am far from a TMAG enthusiast but am having a tough time discounting this driver….
Sep 3, 2013 at 6:35 pm
Simple question. TM said a few years ago, White was best . So why isn’t, it white ? .Best driver I had was a R510 but soon you get tired of the hype. If. I added the additional yardage of R5/7/9 RBZ not forgetting RBz2 R1 then SLDR (sure I missed some along the way ) then I should be about 425 yds by now 🙂
Dec 12, 2013 at 11:56 pm
hahahaa and then get the newest balls that add ten yards and by 2014 you will be 450 off the tee…
Sep 3, 2013 at 11:56 am
bought it, returned it through terrific 30 day 90% refund program at Golfsmith: harsher feel than R9 or R1, face looks like a big shovel and head looks like a cantelope compared with black faces and more subtle pear shapes of Titleist D2 and TM R1 black or older TM R9. Definitely not any longer….. (tried a few different shafts–no diff.) Spend your money elsewhere.
Aug 31, 2013 at 9:20 pm
Any experience from comparing SLDR with RBZ Stage 2?
Sep 1, 2013 at 5:54 pm
Yes. See my 8/19 comment. After 2 morer weeks of play with the SLDR,love it. I recommend going to more loft and upgrading the shaft.
Aug 29, 2013 at 5:26 pm
I have the SLDR in TP with the Matrix Black Tie in X flex, I swing about 120mph, 6’5 230, 5 handicap. Coming from an R11 TP, LOVE the SLDR, but for me, not an inch was gained in carry and whatever I get in roll is minimal, courses I play consistently and have excellent memory of where ive hit drives, im not there with the SLDR, close maybe but were only 3 rounds in together, still feeling it all out. I suppose im straighter, and that equals confidence. There is a lot of hype on this driver, I do really like it, but with my swing, other than a slightly smaller dispersion rate, its def NOT longer…Would I buy it again knowing this? IDK….maybe, if finding 2-4 more FW’s is worth $500 then yes…I love TM and this is a great driver, but I think at this point, all drivers are COR maxed out, and you wont ever see another driver that is truly longer, until they can harness adamantium faces that is…
Aug 29, 2013 at 2:43 pm
I dont know if you all read these comments back after you post, but all you making negative comments about this or any other club are just stupid. You DONT have to buy the new SLDR or any other new club, if you like your current clubs keep them and play with them, if you think a new club will improve your game then buy it, but saying that this club or that club, or this company or that company are good or bad or right or wrong it is just stupid, these type of reviews are subjective, I have been playing golf since I was 8 and have owned a ton of different clubs from different brands, I usually change my clubs each two years, and at that moment i decide what to buy, if i like the new TM or the new Callaway or Nike or Mizuno I buy it, if not then I DONT BUY IT… Remember that golf is 90% mental and 10% physical, if you have birdied a hole once, physically you can do it over and over, same goes to a long drive and a straight drive, the new clubs and new technologies help your game in the same proportions, but please dont make STUPID comments unless you are being paid by other companies to do it, as some of you think this website is being paid by TMAG.
Aug 27, 2013 at 11:14 am
The so-called face angle adjustment on the sole of my R11S is one of the biggest hoaxes in golf equipment history. It does nothing when the club is in your hands -only when the club is sitting in a jig getting ready to be measured.
Aug 26, 2013 at 7:19 pm
Where is the Grenade golf driver? No need for wrenches and gimmicks just high quality!
Aug 23, 2013 at 11:50 pm
Just got one the other day. Easy to hit straight with consistency with this club. Launches a little high so I had to lower the loft from my standard 9.5. Feel/sound is unlike any other taylormade driver I’ve hit, much improved over the r series. Stock shaft is a little on the lighter side though. Went farther than the 913 d3 that I tested against but both had the same dispersion.
Aug 23, 2013 at 3:14 pm
I really think the only people qualified to make any comments are those who have actually hit this driver against their current one. If you have, please post your numbers and opinions. I have tested the sldr driver and hit it 273 yds avg. not too bad with a 95 mph ss. It launches low and rolls out. My back spin was 1000-1800. I like the sound compared to my rocketballz or the r1. Sounds like i really crush the ball. My current driver goes 230-250.
It may not be the best driver ever but if people demo it and don’t like it, you haven’t lost anything. As for the lack of the white head,TM said that some people preferred a more traditional look. They have contrasted a grey head with a black face to help with alignment.
No one is forcing you to sell your driver to buy the sldr. If you can’t fork out four bills for it, wait a couple months and the prices will drop.
Aug 25, 2013 at 10:30 pm
Kc- Compared to my R1, I CARRIED the new SLDR 10 – 15yrds farther on a consistent basis when I tested it on the 3track launch monitor at the PGA Superstore. I picked up 8mph worth of ball speed over my R1!!!! My hypothesis is that people who have high spin loft measures will see the most distance increase from the SLDR because of its geometric CG properties. Spin loft, as you are probably familiar with, is the difference between the static loft of the club and your dynamic loft at impact. High swing speed and or hard hitters tend to produce more deviation between their static and dynamic launch parameters. Spin loft create losses in ball speed. Reducing the launch parameters of their irons is how tour players hit their irons so far. The geometric placement of the CG in the SLDR alines the CG more in step with the static loft of the club for increased ball speed. The launch off of the SLDR seems to align more with higher dynamic loft launch characteristics, thereby producing even greater ball speed than they would normally see. BTW, there are other reasons besides an early release that can cause a lot of dynamic loft such as a positive AOA and shaft bend profiles just to name two.
Sep 4, 2013 at 2:51 pm
Aug 22, 2013 at 12:46 am
hit it today against my 913d2 — feels dead. looks good/playable at address, but just didn’t feel good at all to me. i’m sure it will be a massive hit but i will stick with my titleist driver — totally personal preference. couple other guys i regularly play with who are very accomplished golfers (minitour and pga professional who competes extensively) felt like it was ok and hit some good shots, but no one loved the feel. one is a g25 guy and the other is still looking for the “right” driver.
Aug 23, 2013 at 12:10 pm
I like it a lot! I love new releases from taylormade. Ill buy the tp version at the end of the month too.
Aug 21, 2013 at 9:31 pm
just sold my r1 today and bought this driver. not that impressed so far. I love the look and feel at address, and the adjustability. the r1 was a lot more complicated. I am a 4 handicap and cannot tell any difference in distance after the first day. both drivers are maxed out to conforming specs like all others so there will probably not be that much difference in distance. a friend of mine that is a scratch player hit his r11 farther and my son who is a scratch golfer hits his first gen rocketballz tour about 15yrds farther. if every claim of a new driver that it is _____ yards farther than the previous I should be hitting 700yrd drives by now. I hit those yonex drivers of the mid 90’s farther than any. I would like to trade one of the new ones but hate to drop $800. all in all there gonna keep telling us this latest greatest driver is longer and straighter than the previous one and we will buy it
Aug 21, 2013 at 4:31 pm
taylormade drivers might not suck so much if they stopped putting cheap “made for taylormade” shafts in their drivers.
Aug 21, 2013 at 8:18 am
Reading all these comments with serious interest. The speed at which TM bring out new drivers always worries me.
I play off scratch and use an old 2007 TM Burner TP with stock Fujikura Reax shaft 65g stiff. It looks ancient next to all the new kit – especially my buddies who use RBZ STage 2 and R1’s – guess what? – I nut it 30-40 yards past them because I swing it better – and when I’ve used their new TM’s they don’t compare to my old trusty Burner.
I think it’s highly individual – find the shaft/head combo which fits your swing. The other strong feeling I have is how ugly this slider rail is – if you can play the game – you have no trouble hitting it low, high, draw/ fade – and all you need to do is tee down, shift ball position or weight and angle of attack – swing will always win out over tech to my mind!
Sep 23, 2013 at 8:52 pm
I have the same year and model Burner TP driver in 9.5 degree loft, X flex Fujikura Reax 65g shaft (I’m only 5′ 8″ so the X gives some additional torsional stability for my relatively flat driver swing plane). I can put a controlled right to left movement on the drive whenever I want to do so, although hitting a baby cut is still difficult for me. I tried the Slider, on a monitor at Golfsmith,and saw some really long hits but also a greater dispersion (much more right miss bias)than I get with my 07 Burner TP. So I’m not diving in for the SLDR just yet.
Aug 20, 2013 at 9:45 pm
Wait just a second… Why did they release an inferior driver? I thought that white was better? There’s no way that was just a marketing gimmick!
Aug 19, 2013 at 9:36 pm
Traded my RBZ Stage 2 Tour 9* Driver for a 10.5 SLDR. Switched my Bassara Ultra-Lite shaft into the new driver.
Been hitting it for a week. Love it. Great look and sound and getting more then 10yards of carry. Have owned atleast 10 TaylorMade drivers (mostly TP models) and this is the best so far.
Aug 19, 2013 at 9:26 pm
I bought this driver and returned it for a Titleist 913D. I sprayed it all over, I was much more consistent with the Titleist. Plus Titleist has the best stock shaft offerings versus the one-size fits all shaft offering. It looks like TM rushed this to market in response to Callaways mid-season launch of the Optiforce line of woods and drivers (I found the Optiforce FW to be the longest and highest thing I’ve ever hit, but I didn’t like the Optiforce driver). I read that the SLDR was something they got from the Adams Golf buyout, so I’m suspicious. No more white heads? After all that talk about white heads? I play Ping and Titleist, they update every two years and the new models offer real improvements, versus TM which floats a new model every six months….I guess they figure we’re stupid or we have no impulse control….
Aug 19, 2013 at 5:44 pm
I never blog so obviously something compelled me. SLDR! I’m an athletic 45 y/o and took up golf just 4 months ago. I have had 18 lessons with a PGA pro and started with an R11s reg flex 10.5 in my bag. Not only was my driving erratic with the R11s but my distance peaked at 220. I can easily hit my 4w over 230. So I went to the SLDR challenge at Golf Galaxy last weekend and they had me hit both clubs and ran the numbers. Once tuned I hit the SLDR Stiff 10.5 248 yds and wicked straight. It smoothed my fade and gave me a great launch rate. I bought the club and went to the range. My range is fenced at 300 yards. I can drive the ball to that fence on one bounce with the SLDR because the club has greatly reduced my backspin. I am a super-skeptic in general but this club solved many issues and has given me confidence in the tee box. $400 is worth the price to advance my game and enjoy driving again. Now my wife wants one!
Aug 17, 2013 at 5:44 pm
To all the skeptics out there, why would so many tour players switch to this driver right before the Open Championship if it wasn’t something special. This may not be “new technology” but TaylorMade has a true winner in this driver. I am a club pro who averages 280 off the tee and have gained 8 yards by switching to this driver.
Aug 18, 2013 at 4:59 am
Well, those who did play a lot of driver (not just TMAG staffers) off the tee generally didn’t fare too well in the Open.
Dec 10, 2013 at 9:40 am
Funny, the guy who won the Open didn’t even use a driver.
Aug 17, 2013 at 7:13 am
Saw the club for the first time yesterday. Love the shape, colour scheme and it sits great at address. Did not like the $499 British price tag. It will not sell at that price when a G25, 913 and Cally Optifit are $100 lower.
Aug 16, 2013 at 2:36 am
Whether it’s a great driver or not…………… TMAG is insulting its customers by pushing so many new clubs out so quick. If you are going to do so, make them cheaper. They are starting to dig themselves a hole. They may be on top right now but all good businessmen know……….. all the peaks come with valleys. Don’t create your valley. That’s exactly what they are doing.
I’ve hit it. It’s meh. Looks cheap. Feels ok. Might as well be an R9 with a different paint job.
Aug 15, 2013 at 2:08 pm
The only way to buy a golf club is on a launch monitor. Once you have selected a driver that suits your eye/budget and feel the shaft is way more important.
Matching the shaft to your swing is the most important factor in selecting a driver.
I recently went to Titleist for a fitting on a 913 D2 and the difference in shafts was staggering. I settled on a Graphite Design AD DI6 shaft upgrade.
It gave me 20 more yards (on average) and the dispersion stats were incredible.
So don’t even consider buying an off the shelf golf club. It is a complete waste of money.
Aug 15, 2013 at 10:07 am
Juan, If you are just starting out and you like TM gear then the best option is to pick up a new RBZ stage 1. Excellent club and it will be very cheap.
Last thing that you need is all the confusing adjustability.
Aug 12, 2013 at 3:18 am
Hi, i am a beginner golfer, i am looking around for a taylormade driver. Which one shut i buy? The sldr or the black R1? Thank you for your help.
Aug 13, 2013 at 1:27 am
To be honest if you’re just begining neither one of these clubs may be the best fit. However if you’re set on these two clubs I’d recommend going to a fitting session or hitting them on a launch monitor before buying. No better proof than seeing the club in action. I can tell you from experience that when I started playing I bought an R7 brand new for $400’s and felt guilty everytime I popped the ball up and scratched the crown or drop kicked the driver scratching the bottom up. I wish I would have bought something 2nd hand and then purchased my R7 when I was a better player. With that said if you don’t care about any of the above thoughts I’d have to say the SLDR was a better fit for me than the R1.
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Aug 11, 2013 at 6:18 pm
I’m a consistent 5 to 7 handicapper and currently play with an old Titleist 907 D1 Driver. I occasionally struggle off the tee so thought it about time a looked at a new one. I’d be saving for a Taylormade R1 and noticed suddenly the price dropped which could mean only one thing. A new driver was about to hit the floor, so I waited (Newer is better, right !). Anyway I’ve now tried them both and for me the R1 is the better club. Despite TM claims, I got less backspin and more distance with the R1. I was also consistently straighter. The new SLDR looks nice enough but just didn’t do it for me so I’ve put my order in for an R1 stiff. For anyone interested, my swing speed is 102 but I only get 250 – 260 yd drives because of a poor swing generating too much backspin. The R1 gave me around 300 revolutions less than the SLDR
Aug 12, 2013 at 1:13 am
ok so heres the deal with the SLDR compared to my 910 that im perfectly happy with. First off let me say I think the SLDR looks like a K-Mart driver and I didnt even want to hit it. Im not a taylormade fan at all really I think its lame how they put out 3 drivers per year. Anyway here is what happened. I went to a demo day at my local course where they had a flightscope set up and I hit both drivers about 5 times each and looked at the numbers. I was carrying my titleist 910 255-265yds with my spined custom ahina shaft. My 2nd swing with the SLDR set up standard with the stock stiff shaft was 286 carry and 1900 rpm. My worst swing of the bunch with the SLDR was 268 carry with 2600 rpms. This thing looks like a toy but im telling you its the REAL DEAL for me. Its super forgiving when you dont hit it dead center, it still flys off the face with low spin. All that said im still not gonna go out and spend 400$ on it right now because I know if I can hold out for a couple months they will have something new and the SLDR will be discounted. I really wanted to hate this toy looking driver, but after hitting it I think its the best out there right now. Well its the best for a couple months anyway.
Aug 11, 2013 at 4:31 am
I demoed the SLDR today in a launch monitor at a local golf store chain here in So. Cal. I thought that this would be no different than the R1 or RBZ Stage 2 but I was presently surprised that this club turned out to be a combo of the two. It had the spin of an R1 and was almost as forgiving as the RBZ Stage 2. I demoed a 10.5 (set at the standard weight setting) w/ a stiff TP Motore Speeder 6.3. I saw a yard or two more in total distance but my launch angle and carry went up. I honestly thought that this club “reorganized” my stats to get to a total distance that I’m basically already at (270 yds). Let me explain first that I’ve had problems w/ too low of a launch and dispersion as my misses tend to be low hooks. Basically with this club I carried the ball longer than before and my dispersion wasn’t that far off the target line. The part where I think this ties in w/ the RBZ Stage 2 is that my ball speeds were good and my smash factor was pretty decent (1.46). I’m not this ultra accomplished player that makes center contact so a forgiving driver is very important to me. The other aspect I noticed is how the ball took off. I swear it got to its peak height fast and then just continued to go at that height. Also, I typically play my drivers around 45″ and this driver didn’t seem that much longer which I found ironic as TM typically makes there stuff way to long for me. Overall I think it is the best driver that TM has right now but @ $500 for the TP model I don’t think I’ll be purchasing this club. However if I win the Power ball jackpot I’ll get one and all of the TM TP upgrade shafts!
Aug 11, 2013 at 1:42 am
FYI the head does have a removable port on the toe side of the SLDR track for the purpose of adding hot melt.
Aug 12, 2013 at 12:09 am
I read that; and I at first thought that the recess on the toe end of the slider-track was open to the interior of the head.
I don’t think that is the case anymore.
I sort of think that this rumor of a port for hot-melting might have originated with some of the Version 1 (prototype only) heads.
If anybody has a picture of a standard Version 2 SLDR with a port opened for hot-melting, could you please post it?
Aug 17, 2013 at 8:47 am
I don’t have a picture because my driver is at my club, but the little plate fell off at the toe of the driver and you can see the port. It looks threaded to me, but you can see right into the cavity of the head.
Aug 10, 2013 at 2:15 pm
Typical tm gimmickie junk!
Feb 11, 2014 at 10:43 pm
Aug 9, 2013 at 9:28 pm
The lack of face angle adjustment will be a letdown to many. If R1 style knob on the head is a problem, why not incorporate a simple adjustment on the hosel, i.e. Nike VRS Covert, which has both face angle and loft adjustment on the hosel.
Aug 9, 2013 at 5:54 pm
WTF! I just got my R1!
Aug 9, 2013 at 12:11 am
My goodness (yes, I just typed that) people–go and hit the thing before you comment. Straighter, better sound and feel, and 10 -15 yards longer than my R11 on the range without dialing it in. I don’t care if it is new or old technology, it works. You can be skeptical (I was), but you will like this a lot. BTW–$70 trade for R11.
Aug 8, 2013 at 4:02 pm
how would you hotmelt this head? there is no port anywhere.
Aug 16, 2013 at 2:40 am
soooooooo you’re “that guy” who needs to hotmelt so you can shoot 82 instead of 79. Good to know.
Aug 16, 2013 at 2:31 pm
Well, hot melting ought to be one of the simplest procedures in all of golf clubbuilding. One step up from lead tape.
I think it gives a driver a much more pleasing sound.
It should cost about the price of a dozen balls, if manufacturers would make it easy to do in the original design, with an internal port for that purpose.
So yeah, I think that a 9-handicap who cares about golf as a hobby and who likes tinkering with his golf clubs ought to be able to perform some hot-melt with his club builder for the fun of it.
Aug 7, 2013 at 10:36 am
THAT WAS NOT ME!!!!!!!!
Aug 7, 2013 at 8:58 am
i sometimes like to do a SLDR on top of your face creating a lovely tension between us. The club just feels right.
Aug 7, 2013 at 8:54 am
i agree to an extent on what you’re saying dan baby.
Aug 6, 2013 at 2:56 pm
If a driver that swings like a house brick with a crap shaft is your thing then its a modern classic. The single most important thing with a driver is the shaft. I got an rbz tour with a 65 gm Pershing x shaft from the trade in bin at my local pro shop and now I remember what a fairway looks like again. Had a TEE CB4 with a rip sigma stiff and it was complete junk. Pick a shaft you like first, then worry about the type of head. That will be outdated. In a week.
Aug 6, 2013 at 7:28 am
When I look at the design the first thing that comes to mind is ‘class’. Makes me think of an Aston Martin or a Merc? I cant see how TM can fail with this as the R1 was such a hit and is cemented as one of the best drivers in history.
A lot of chat on here about how bad the design is but I think its the best ive seen, I play off 21 so if its good enough for the tour players its good enough for me. IMO
Aug 16, 2013 at 2:44 am
Ummmmmmm how has the R1 been “cemented as one of the best drivers in history”. LOL
I can name 5 better “in history” without even blinking.
Aug 5, 2013 at 10:50 pm
I have heard that Taylormade’s engineers are moving so fast with innovation that the SLDR Stage 3 will be released before the SLDR Stage 2.
Aug 5, 2013 at 11:05 pm
If ur on a SLIDE(R) you can’t stop easily 🙂
Aug 6, 2013 at 9:47 pm
May you slide so fast that you end up crashing into something horrible and nasty and it all ends
Aug 5, 2013 at 3:39 pm
So I gather that the article above is flatly incorrect where it reads as follows:
“CONS: The SLDR doesn’t have a ‘face angle adjuster’ like previous drivers from TaylorMade, which will force some golfers to manipulate the face angle to their desired position at address.”
Have I got that right? That in fact the hosel adjuster in use with the SLDR which is intended to manipulate loft will actually manipulate both face angle and loft? Is that correct? Will the article get a correction?
Aug 5, 2013 at 4:47 pm
I think what is meant is that without a “FAA” one has to manipulate with one’s hands ? It seems that in the reply to my Q above by the editor that adding loft and decreasing it will impact on face angle as you suggest….. and thus use hand position to square (or whatever) as there is no FAA to do it for you (like with the R1 where you can use the plate at the bottom to correct it to square after let’s say loft increase). That’s the way I understand it, so no correction of article content needed ? I do NOT have first hand experience of the SLDR though….
Aug 5, 2013 at 6:39 pm
You’re correct, and the language of the review is as well.
Aug 5, 2013 at 11:44 pm
So what will TM engineers do for a tour player who wants a driver that is, say, 4 degrees open?
Aug 6, 2013 at 9:46 pm
They will bend it. Like they have done for ever.
Aug 6, 2013 at 11:11 pm
But, Cnut, what do they bend? There’s no hosel. What do they put a bending bar on?
Aug 10, 2013 at 1:31 am
James Achenbach, writing in Golfweek:
“The SLDR’s adjustability doesn’t stop with the weight track. Loft on the SLDR can be adjusted 1.5 degrees up or down with Taylor- Made’s Loft Sleeve technology. Face angle on the SLDR driver is changed in the same way that it’s adjusted on the RocketBallz Stage 2 driver – by using the Loft Sleeve. Delofting the club opens the face, while adding loft closes the face.”
Feb 3, 2014 at 12:52 am
The article is correct. Changing loft also changes the face angle just like every other adjustable driver on the market. Close the face to add loft. Open the face to decrease it.
Aug 5, 2013 at 2:51 pm
Hi Guys, don’t know whether this has been extensively covered, but I’m interested in the fact that there is no “face angle adjustment” possible with the SLDR………
I have ALWAYS played a natural draw (which may after a bad shoulder injury) go into a hook – on a good day can shoot a 79. I also need more loft (injury, age, and I’m a picker of the ball – no steep attack angle). So the past few years I have been very frustrated…why… NATURAL DRAW + DRAW BIASED CLUB = HUGE, HUGE MESS !!! So I am excited to see this KIND of products coming to the market (again) which can help with my draw/hook….simply put, I DREAM of a fade !!! 🙂 🙂
Now, my question/-s:
***Say I would like a 12 degree, RH, Regular SLDR. I buy it and look at address…is the 12 degree face NEUTRAL if the SLDR below (the gadget) is in the middle ???
*** Say I DECREASE the 12 degree club to 10.5 – will the face OPEN at address ??? (and vice versa CLOSE at 13.5 degrees) ….in this example again, if the slider below is in the middle.
Can someone with (1) tech info or (2) the luxury of a big golf retailer close by (I am very remote :-/) please let me know ??? FOR ME THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT, AS I SAID WHEN I STARTED, I DO NOT NEED MORE DRAW/CLOSED FACES !!!!
Thanks a mil guys, I await your answers !!!
Aug 5, 2013 at 3:03 pm
Reducing loft 1.5 degrees opens the face angle about 3 degrees according to TaylorMade. Since the SLDR head is designed to be about 2 degrees open in its neutral setting, that means it would actually sit about 5 degrees open.
If a 12-degree head was adjusted to 13.5 degrees, the face angle would close about 3 degrees. This means that the face angle would be about 1-degree closed at address (since it started 2 open).
Aug 5, 2013 at 3:29 pm
Thanks Zac ! I NEED more open degrees so this, for me is good news ! (eg, I can take off a bit off loft -ADD A DEGREE OPEN by doing so – and set the SLDR gadget to full on fade – which will sure as heck HELP THIS DRAWHOOKER even more to play as I should !).
Which brings me to another point: choose your loft correctly ! If I bought a 10.5* SDLR I wouldnt be able to get an open face (which I wanted) without decreasing the loft on it, going to 9-10* (which would due to low forward CG and my requirement of a higher launch make the 10.5 a definite no no for me !!).
Aug 4, 2013 at 1:31 am
It’s the best TM driver, ever! I swear to God! I kid you not!
(with the right shaft. heheheheheheheheheheheheheheee…)
Aug 3, 2013 at 1:28 pm
Just posted this in the forums too, but thought it was worth sharing here as well…
I’m sure the haters will be out in full force, but here goes anyway!
I had the chance to swing this driver yesterday. I had played the original RBZ with a TP Matrix Ozik shaft in it and loved that club. Switched up to the R1 and could never really fall in love with it. I don’t have a phenomenal swing, admittedly, but spend time on the range and do in fact work on making that better so the lectures about paying for a better game over lessons will fall on deaf ears. With the R1, I could never really get along with it and was missing everything to the right, and when I did clobber one, it always ended up as a 6-7 yard fade. Which worked fine, but I didn’t love. Long story short, I could never get what I got out of RBZ, and like a doofis, gave it to a friend assuming once I made it “My R1” it would be unstoppable. I was wrong.
As I said, I swung the SLDR yesterday. I tried it with a Fujikura Speeder 67g shaft, with the loft started at 10.5 (that’s the head’s stock loft). I loved it after the first hit. Tinkered with the weight and eventually landed with it in the next to last notch on the draw side. Started loving what I was seeing and genuinely believe the 20g weight does impart more of an impact than the old shot shape weights. Soon after that, I was hoping to get a little more air time as my shots were low. I jacked the loft up to 11.5 and away I went. Absolutely loved what I saw and just to confirm that I wasn’t losing my mind, I compared it to my R1. Just not the same. I don’t think every driver is made for every person, and I’m an admitted gear slut so I’ll give them all a go, but generally favor TM almost always due in large part to design and looks, which to me are important, to you maybe not.
To me the driver wars, the flame wars, the griping about TM releasing too much stuff is non-sensical. They’re a brand whose goal is to make money. Period. Callaway has a bunch of crap they released, and if you paid attention I think you would notice that releases are getting faster across the spectrum of product to begin with. Golf equipment is following the same approach that started in electronics. Remember, variety is a good thing for consumers. So the argument about resale is an odd one to me since I don’t think anyone is “investing” in golf equipment as a retirement plan. Its part of the deal. The second you buy a new iPhone or Nexus, its replaced within months. Its the way consumerism works. And the argument that the club is obsolete is another that fascinates me. People will still buy and use the R11, R11s, R1, etc. There’s still a market for that stuff.
For the guy who likes gear, like myself, I think its a really fun time to be a golfer. I enjoy tinkering, I enjoy trying to new things. And for the moment, I’m really enjoying the new SLDR. It works for me. I’m SURE I’ll buy a new driver next year, but because golf is a hobby I love, I’m okay with that. i won’t sit here and b**** and moan about how companies are stealing my money and duping me into their next innovation. Its a personal choice I choose to make!
Rant over. Let the hate begin in T-Minus 5…4…3…2
Aug 3, 2013 at 5:08 pm
You must be my ‘golfing twin’. Agree with you 100%. Now playing the RBZ Stage 2 Tour 9* with a HOF shaft . Ordered the SDLR 10.5 ( read need more loft with SDLR ) and will install the HOF shaft. Been playing every new TaylorMade Driver for more then 10years and have had FUN buying,adjusting and playing all of them. Have saved a lot of $ since shafts can be moved to the latest purchased without going to a club repair shop. Have built a large inventory of the ‘best new shaft’.
Just wish they would bring back the TP Models with the smaller heads.
Aug 4, 2013 at 1:36 am
Naw, it wasn’t worth sharing.
And, by the way – you can’t adjust the 10.5 head to 11.5. It only goes to 11.25 and then 12, as the head only adjusts to 1.5 degree on either side of the main loft, and half that in between.
And there are also 8, 9.5 and 12 as well, so the 10.5 is not THE stock, it’s one of the stock loft options.
Sp why don’t you just shuddup
Aug 8, 2013 at 2:13 pm
HHH, Its a site about golf equipment. Forgive me for my typo oh wise and mighyt one, 11.25 is correct. I never implied there was only one loft for the head, just the stock loft on THE head I bought, genius. Readin’ shure iss hard!
You add a whole lot to this site and by that I mean nothing. Enjoy life in your mom’s basement, I’ll keep playing golf and enjoying i.
Its this type of worthlessness that are making this sight more difficult to enjoy with each passing day. You don’t have to agree, but you don’t have to a prick either.
Aug 5, 2013 at 6:50 am
You make money in the long run by serving your customer base … not screwing it.
Aug 15, 2013 at 1:39 pm
HackerDav- I agree with your performance appraisal after some preliminary testing this past weekend. The results borne out by yourself and others confirmed my original frustrations. Plainly put the SLDR is significantly better than the R1 for most people that I talked to who have tried it, including myself. I’m GLAD that TM created the SLDR. It’s the driver I’ve been waiting for from them since the R9. Right is right however, and TM knew that they were taking people for a ride with the R1. Will I get a SLDR? Yes, I’m trading my R1 in and adding some other specials and store credits to reduce my out of pocket expense to $40 or so.
So I don’t “hate” TM. I simply have some disdain for a business practice that is predatory in nature. I fully understand TM’s business model and this move wasn’t according to their business model. In the past TM hadn’t done this. They created a new tech platform and then they made minor tweaks each year for a two year period. You could buy the early tech platform because the later iterations weren’t going to be significantly different or better. TM broke that cycle by selling us and end of tech platform as if it were a new one.
TM raked us over the coals with their tech cycle break and most people won’t be in the position to do what I’m going to do. This move was out of fear of their competition. I’m just cutting my losses real quick. Three years from now when it’s time to buy an new driver I will look closely at TM’s development cycle (next 3 years worth)and other manufacturers products. Why? Because I’ve lost confidence in TM’s partnership with it customer base. When companies get their products wrong but sell them anyway, and then quickly bring out new products that they had ready in the first place they are making the customer pay for their mistakes. This almost cost America it automobile base in the 70’s – 90’s (their troubles in the 21st Century were due more to pension issues). It may also be the lynchpin that brings TM down from being number one.
Aug 3, 2013 at 6:12 am
Callaway announces new driver 5 weeks ago and has 42 comments relating to that product; Taylormade introduce sldr and tree are 138 comments within 2 weeks…..TM wins again!
Aug 3, 2013 at 12:52 am
Among Taylormade loyalists, there are an awful lot of complaints about how the TM drivers they bought in recent months have plummeted in value as a result of near-constant new model introductions.
That can’t be good for TM.
Wouldn’t it be a good idea, for TM to incentivize its most loyal customers by giving them special upgrade tradein values for, say R11/RBZ/R1 owners who trade in for the SLDR? I have a mint R11s that is probably worth about $50 in trade. Not much to say for a $399 driver purchased a little more than a year ago.
TM (the world wide leader in drivers) ought to do something to take the sting out of the fact (and it is a fact) that there is no better way to waste money in golf, than buying new drivers at retail prices.
Aug 2, 2013 at 4:55 pm
Why didn’t TM bring this driver out 6 months ago?
Instead, I buy an R1, the color and decal are cool but the technology is meh … same old, same old. The face does not feel hot, and it’s a bit heavy, not that forgiving, the stock shaft is crap. It’s adjustable and my club guy will put a nice shaft on it.
HEY TAYLORMADE, HAVE I HIT THE HIGH POINTS?
But my clubmaker says the ball speeds are great, so I bite.
NOW THIS SLYMER … as in you’ve slymed your customer base.
This is what the R1 should have been – something new, a bigger sweet spot and more forgiving, a better stock shaft. Now you need an adjustable weight on that slyder.
I’ll probably bite in December when it is $100. But I will never buy a TM driver at introduction again. Fool me once …
Aug 2, 2013 at 5:16 am
As someone famous (can’t remember who) said. “Any publicity is good publicity”.
Aug 1, 2013 at 3:56 pm
Although all players on tour are switching to the SLDR. THEY ARE GETTING PAID (big money) to use this driver. I have hit this and spoken to many Head Professionals who have played in tour events and spoken to pros who have said they were told to put it in their bage for 2-4 weeks and they will get paid and switch back to their old driver. Many good players and Head Pros I know have had trouble even getting this gimmick off of the ground
Aug 1, 2013 at 12:09 pm
Here’s the thing… I have no doubt that this driver performs well. Any major OEM’s product perform well with all the tech improvments of the past decade. Where I’m skeptical is the notion that it will perform better than the R1… I just don’t see how it’s possible. The same, maybe, but better? I doubt it.
Aug 1, 2013 at 12:54 am
Geez, why doesn’t someone thank TMAG for helping lower the cost of relatively new equipment? How much has the price of an R11 come down relative to the original 399 in only 6 months? There won’t be any deals close to that for a 913 D or a G25 for another year and a half. Or longer.
Aug 2, 2013 at 2:44 pm
Aug 10, 2013 at 5:55 pm
This’s an excellent point of view!
Jul 31, 2013 at 11:39 pm
So if face angles are not adjustable on the SLDR, how will TM accomodate its tour players who demand drivers that are 3-, 4-, 6- or more degrees open?
Without adjustment, and with nothing to bend?
Jul 31, 2013 at 1:20 pm
every taylormade driver has been longer than the one before it and also their competition … that’s is the power of technology … go get yours now!
Jul 31, 2013 at 11:35 am
I’m not a TM guy. As a matter of fact I have never gamed a TM club of any sort EVER. This being said, we recieve our SLDR demos on Tuesday. THIS IS THE LONGEST DRIVER OUT. I game the 913 D3 with Aldila Tour Green 65 TX , 44.5. Not looking to switch just yet but I hit the SLDR 15 yards past my gamer. This is no joke guys and TM knows they have a technologically advanced driver with this release. Golfers will eventually learn how good the SLDR is after this initial phase of BS from everyone who knows absolutely nothing about what they are speaking on. Try it out, it is impressive.
Aug 2, 2013 at 2:42 pm
How can TM claimed every driver they put out is longer , by this estimated , in a fews year their driver would’ve going 400 yard .
Aug 3, 2013 at 6:30 am
The last sentence shows your BS. The comments do not discuss the performance of the Slyder. But let’s face it, the R1 with essentially nothing new but adjustments, as we have found out, was intro’d in March … they could have come out with this one in the Spring.
Jul 31, 2013 at 10:52 am
Its such a piece of crap, right?? Oh my god, I’m being held at gunpoint to buy a new driver, right? Its a golf club guys. A golf club. And look at all the attention its garnered. Just remember fanboys and bashers, hate isn’t the opposite of love, indifference is! The fact that it earns this much attention should tell you how relevant TMaG is… like them or not, they’re moving the industry forward and every other brand is following them, kicking and screaming…
Jul 31, 2013 at 6:52 am
Grab an old Tour Burner from 2007. You’ll save $350.00 and be able to work the ball w/o sacrificing distance.
Jul 31, 2013 at 12:35 am
I’ve never posted on here before but I felt compelled to say something. I’ve read all the comments about Taylormade especially about the V1 vs V2 R1 debate. All I can say is I just returned from the range after getting an R1 V2 driver with a Mitsubishi shaft and I’ve never felt a driver like that. This new SLDR looks cool but that 600 bucks I spent on the V2 was worth every penny. (I’m coming from a V1 R1) . I really encourage everyone to give that V2 a go. There’s something with that stick.
Jul 30, 2013 at 9:34 pm
Will the R1 loft sleeve fir into the SLDR i have a R1 Black and im looking to just swap my custom shaft into the SLDR ( Custom shaft with r1 tip into SLDR )
Aug 1, 2013 at 8:15 am
As the article says… Y E S. Reading comprehension lacking, try to keep up.
Jul 30, 2013 at 3:39 pm
Will the RBZ stage 2 adaptor fit into the SLDR?
Jul 31, 2013 at 7:54 pm
According to TaylorMade the RBZ Stage 2 adaptor will work with the new SLDR head.
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:27 pm
I am very interested to see how the SLDR performs. I have not been a TM driver fan since the R9 days. Had a 6.5* superdeep that was amazing, but every one I tried since launched too high. Tried an 8* R11 turned down to 6.5 and the ball spun way too much and ballooned. Really want to get this out and compare to my 910 7.5* soon.
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:38 am
Why is the shaft RED in these photos? lmao…… that’s a different shaft to the one that it comes with! Stupid ha
Jul 30, 2013 at 10:15 am
Its all about money the R1 sales were low so bring out another driver that might attract more buyers to make it a good year don’t worry Taylormade has many more drivers for the future maybe 2 or 3 next year!
Jul 30, 2013 at 5:12 am
That’s why I stick with ping and titleist….and buy like new irons from Callaway pre owned 🙂
Jul 30, 2013 at 1:42 am
So much bashing of TM. I agree with some of it.
I often am disappointed when I read of guys who claim to have some expertise as far as equipment is concerned, and then they tell stories of getting a new driver very frequently based on advertisements that address their game’s strength or weakness. But they have their wife get one for them for a Father’s Day gift or whatever, without having tested the driver first.
For all the guys bashing things or extolling their virtues, the most valid ones are the ones that have actually tried the club.
Gotta try one out on the Trackman or Flightscope or a real driving range first. And if you’re going to buy one, purchase the exact one that you are hitting so well, not the same model of that club out of the stock room. Why? Because companies aren’t too good at standard of deviation when it comes to specs. Tom Wishon, who writes articles for GolfWRX, has written about the loft disparity for his own personal company website followers, but I doubt that he could write the same article for this site, since it is affiliated with Golf Digest, which takes advertising from all these companies.
A driver that says 9.5* may be that, or it may be 12* in reality. And the exact same model driver may have significant difference in lofts, and it may have significant difference in flex frequency (cpm’s). I saw a YouTube video that showed a guy testing shafts on half a dozen TM drivers, and comparing the results. All of them were “supposed” to be exactly the same, but the shaft flex varied by as much as a full flex and a half at times. That’s a 15 cpm difference for the exact same shaft, same intended flex, same club.
That’s why you purchase the one you are hitting fantastic when you take it for a test drive, and why you don’t have the salesman get a similar looking/same model one off the rack or stock room.
Aug 1, 2013 at 3:50 am
Joe, with all due respect, unfortunately you are the one that doesn’t know what he is talking about. You made the fatal mistake of assuming. You assumed I didn’t test the R1 out before I got it for a gift and you were wrong. During the bad spring weather we had my testing was done indoors on Foresight machines at several different retailers, none of which had a FlightScope or Trackman.
You see, I did months of winter and spring indoor comparisons before settling on the R1. I clearly wrote that it had deficiencies (although I didn’t delineate that I knew some of those before I decided that I wanted one). I also clearly wrote that it was it’s overall adjustability that won the day for it.
I would assume (to your credit) that you realize that the best demo is one that is conducted outside. Outside is where you can see real ball flight and feel uninhibited with your swing. Actual course testing is the ultimate, but I think you know that as well. Outside is where the acoustics, feel, and ball flight are on display, and our lousy weather prohibited that. Thus, while I could sense that there were some areas that I wasn’t fully on board with the R1, in all the Foresight machines at different retailers kept showing it to be the overall performance winner.
You also assumed, wrongly, that I hadn’t tested it against other drivers. I said that it was the adjustability of the R1 that won the day. That adjustability was the loft and ability to swap more shafts with it than what was available at the places I went to with other brands. It was the only driver that I could get down to the loft that I wanted to try AND allow me to trade out different shafts that some of the other brands didn’t have available in the flex that I needed at the retailers that I went to. I did get to do an outside demo of a Ping G25 that was close to 8deg. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to test that one until 2 weeks after I received my R1 (remember, I wrote that it was an EARLY Father’s day present).
So what part of my response made you assume that I didn’t actually know something about the physics of the equipment? And where did I ever state that I was an expert? As President Reagan was fond of saying: “There you go again”. Was it your assumptions about my lack of testing that made you think that I was claiming to be an expert but wasn’t? Well Joe, we all know on this site that the lofts that are stamped on the heads tend to be off, and that they can even be wildly off. However, we also know that it can go both ways, they can be weaker or stronger than printed. Also, everyone around here (speaking in general terms) knows that there are standard manufacturing tolerances for anything “man-made”. Therefore Joe, testing out a number of drivers when you are ready to purchase in order to see if there are any tolerance differences in the heads and shafts is nothing new. What you failed to incorporate in your response however was that the store you are choosing to purchase you driver from has to have a number of the shafts that you wish to purchase to try in the plethora of heads that you wish to test. Unfortunately, most of the places that I shop at don’t carry an array of “X” flex shafts for purchase. They tend to be special orders, and you don’t get to demo special orders before you buy Joe; at least not at the big box stores that I tend to go to. Oh, but maybe you were assuming again that I used standard shafts that come with the product. Well Joe, if you did, all I can say is: “There you go again”.
BTW, the idea for this purchase was that it was to be a gift. A gift which my wife took great pride in getting for me. I think it was in very poor taste that you chided this action. Maybe you assumed again that I was lying about it. I don’t know. My experience however has been that most of the guys that I have come across struggle to get their wives to be willing to buy them golf stuff. They typically have to play the game and make their purchases as if they were bachelors again because their wives don’t want to have anything to do with love of golf. Now I admit that my experiences on this represent a very small sample size, one that couldn’t be used for statistical purposes. But I like the fact that I can talk some “golf” with my wife. I like the fact that my wife loves and respects me enough to be willing to go out and buy me things that I like, and not get me things that she wants for me. So let’s leave the sarcasm about my wife buying me an early Father’s Day present out of the conversation.
To your point of me not being with her for this purchase, this time you are correct. But this isn’t the norm for me Joe. Typically I’m there for golf purchases. In the past, when I DID play off the rack shaft, my wife would be there with me as I demoed multiple heads and shafts. In fact Joe, this what happened 5yrs ago when my wife bought my R9 for my Father’s Day gift. It was shortly thereafter that I stopped using off the rack shafts, when I actually returned my R9 for an R9 TP with an aftermarket “X” flex shaft. I haven’t gone back to off the rack shafts ever since.
I wasn’t as concerned about loft and spin rates with the R1 for a couple of reasons. First I figured that the loft sleeve that TM put on the R1 was probably closer in tolerances since they were actually marketing it as being specific lofts. Yes, it was an assumption, but it was one that I was willing to take a gamble on. Based upon my rounds, I haven’t experienced anything different than what the monitors showed me on this one. Second, while I wasn’t naive enough to think that the lofts would be spot on, my testing at different places clearly indicated that the spin rates and launch parameters where consistent from demo club and place to demo club and place. Since I do not use stock shafts, I made sure that that my wife ordered my R1 with an aftermarket shaft that was on my list to try (cpm = 276). What I can’t quite figure though, is how you missed the part where I wrote that I had several shafts Joe?
In all, I think my response made some valid points. Namely, I wrote that if the SLDR performance reports were valid, we got taken. This was based upon the fact that the SLDR isn’t a progression of the R1 platform, it’s an all new tech platform. Thus the SLDR was a replacement for the R1 and not a line-up addition to it (like the Rocketballz was to the R series). As a result I wrote that this new tech platform was one that would have caused most to pass on the R1. Or, people would have at least waited the 6 months before buying the R1 to test it head to head with the SLDR before making a purchase. And if the data is accurate I think most people would have been going with the SLDR instead of the R1.
And that was the whole point Joe. TM sold the end of their tech line as if it was the beginning of a new tech line. They did this when the knew that they were going to replace it the release of their “true” new tech platform. And they knew that they were going to do this way faster than even they had been known for doing. This meant that for all practical purposes the R1 represented a stop gap measure for TM. A measure that allowed them to squeeze some very high profit margins out of something that they knew they were about to phase out. This was different, even for TM, and it caught me, as well as a lot of other people by surprise. We knew the R1 was coming quite a while before it came, and people waited to compare it with the R11s. The R11 series went through a few iterations that made it last for about 2.5yrs so we knew that a new tech platform was forthcoming Joe. This was similar to how the R9 series had gone, and the R5 series before it. But this was different. TM released a supposedly new tech platform and then…6 months late they completely replaced it with something that is reported to actually be significantly better. If you don’t see why I or others my be a little frustrated with TM then that is fine.
I didn’t write that I hated TM. I simply wrote that this action gave me pause and clarity about future gear purchases. And if you go back and read what I wrote you would notice that my caution on future equipment purchases was not specific towards TM, only my frustration with them.
To me Joe, you offered nothing constructive regarding the relative shock that R1 users may/are facing with this new tech from TM. You only offered what I think was common knowledge on this site regarding information that wasn’t pertinent to WHY I/others were frustrated. My information regarding my desired performance parameters was for context with my main points about WHY TM’s behavior was frustrating.
TM hasn’t typically behaved like this in the past. I clearly commended TM on being the best (in my opinion) at making innovative tech that was meaningful. This is a forum Joe. Forum’s are where people go to voice their opinions. Telling people that they are stupid for having an perspective about a topic is pretty insulting Joe. I offered my perspective Joe Golfer, which is not only my Constitutional right as an American, but one that I served with military service decades ago. I don’t mind people disagreeing, but Joe, you made a lot of inaccurate assumptions. You not only made a lot of assumptions Joe Golfer (based upon what you wrote), but you also presented them in rather demeaning anecdotes. I don’t know you, and you don’t know me, but you clearly assumed too much about a lot of what you didn’t know.
Aug 2, 2013 at 2:37 pm
R we still on the subject of golf
Oct 5, 2013 at 3:05 am
Wow. Do you have a day job?
Feb 13, 2014 at 4:45 pm
You better peek outside. Two men in white coats and a van just pulled up. Holy s**t.
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:18 am
TM’s next invention is black crown with a white face!
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:39 am
No, that would be Callaway.
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:49 pm
TMaG already offers that combo in Japan.
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:17 am
The chrome reminds me of a 50’s Cadillac.
Jul 29, 2013 at 11:59 pm
nice gimmick, like the rest of the stuff they make, and TM are good at it.
there is absolutely no engineering in that driver that will allow a golfer to hit a golf ball better.
just another way of polishing the turd.
Jul 29, 2013 at 11:59 pm
The radius of the sole means that if the weight is anywhere but the middle, the center of gravity will go up! So no spin, no height, no distance. Can we say bowling?
Jul 30, 2013 at 1:12 am
Sounds like you obviously know more than all the designers at TM… you should probably give them a call and tell them to hold off on launching this new driver until you can tweak it for them.
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:47 pm
TMaG’s next big thing is a high center of gravity reduces spin and hits the ball higher!” The reason that this company is being trashed is that they keep changing their claims as they go along. What was right last week is now very wrong. As long as people like you keep drinking their Kool-Aid then they will remain in business. Before being pompous and high and mighty, why don’t you educate yourself!
Aug 1, 2013 at 8:12 am
High CG to launch it higher? Not sure that’s possible.
My question is, after TMAG reaches their 17* & 1700 RPM goal – Then what?
It sounds like consumers might be getting a bit savvier, maybe the club makers can’t keep changing their story without the peeps figuring it out after all…
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:54 pm
Speaking of trolls!
Jul 29, 2013 at 10:03 pm
Another TM driver for the masses, unlike what they get on tour. You want a tour R1, pay 599.00 through the TM website or designated vendor. That really instills confidence in good players who know the are not getting the same stuff the tour guys are getting. Mahan, Bubba, all the Ping guys hit what is on the shelf. The lofts may be tweaked and heads weighted but it’s the same head. Same for Titleist guys but TM guys get special heads. I know for a fact the XCG 6 spins less than anything out there in stock form. I put a 6M3X in a 9 degree xcg6 and I guarantee that not unless you generate 125 plus you will not spin over 2500. I generate 112 and couldn’t spin the 9 with stock stiff shaft over 2400 and launch angles were around 10-12 degrees. I’ll bet a paycheck the TM spins much more than the Tour Edge. Also TM gives a watered down speeder offering as the stock shaft…again. RBZ XCon 5, 45grams, how do the manufacturers get away with this crap. There should be a class action suit against any golf manufacturer that puts the Brand and model on their shaft that is not the real deal…period. Cut open a Ping driver, look at the quality, you would not buy anything else and they use real shafts. Sorry but TM is not getting my money. Adams and TM do not have “made for” or anything designating it is not the real shaft but it is not the real shaft. That is false advertising and against the law. Manufacturers should have to put stiffness, torque, kick point and tip flex at a minimum on the shaft. Those who don’t care, fine, those who do have it available so you don’t spend hours googling stupid specs.
Jul 30, 2013 at 1:27 am
I recently was on the Ping website, looking at the stock shafts available for the Anser model of driver.
You mentioned that Ping does not use “Made For” or “Designed Exclusively For” type of shafts in their drivers. But when I checked the specs, such as torque and weight, they are a bit different than the real deal shafts being sold through component suppliers. Perhaps Ping also is not using the exact OEM aftermarket shaft that is advertised, at least as it relates to the Fujikura Blur Red shaft and the Aldila Phenom shaft.
I’m not knocking Ping, as I think they make a good product.
And some of TM’s product is good too, though like most folks here, I think they come out with new product too often, and they seem to have started the “strong lofts in irons” revolution that everyone has adopted.
Jul 30, 2013 at 1:20 pm
Ping’s site lists built specs vs the shaft makers listing unbuilt.
That’s been addressed before sir.
Jul 29, 2013 at 8:41 pm
You guys sure make me laugh with all this product bashing. No one is telling you to sell your current driver and go out and buy this one, or that one, or any one. If you are in the market for a driver, give this one a try, along with all the other offerings out there. If you’re happy with your current driver, then that’s great, keep it. Everytime a company comes out with a new product all I see on these sites and forums are people bashing it without ever even hitting it.
Does this same group of people scoff every time a car company comes out with a new model? In case you haven’t noticed, they do that EVERY YEAR! They even have different trim levels and options within each model… If you just bought a new Silverado, do you freak out and hit the forums to bash the next year model when you see a commercial for it? OMG, those GM guys sure know how to use marketing to sell their vehicles! Seriously?
I hear the Titleist vs TM production and marketing (every 2yrs vs. much more often) argument all the time… yet no one thinks its ludicrous when other types of products are offered annually, or semi-annually.
Just because Taylormade keeps its foot on the gas and continues to offer new products doesn’t mean you have to go sell all your current stuff and buy the latest and greatest… but its there if you want it/need it. If you’re happy with what you have, then why even waste the effort to bash something new? If you’re that insecure about your game and equipment, then perhaps its you with the issues, not the golf businesses.
People are picking up the game every day, and they need equipment to do that. Golf companies need to keep modern , current product on the shelf. The way some of you guys think, they should all be playing old worn out drivers from the 1990’s, since apparently nothing new is any better than what was already out there. I guess the car companies should stop building trucks, since my 2006 Ram 2500 is the best truck EVER! C’mon!
Jul 29, 2013 at 11:44 pm
What’s your point!?
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:50 am
My point is, what’s the point of all this pointless finger pointing?
TM is a company… they design, market, and sell stuff… some don’t want it or don’t need it, some do. Whatever your position, either buy them or don’t, then move on with your life.
I swear there are people out here that spend more time bad-mouthing TaylorMade than they do actually playing golf.
Jul 30, 2013 at 7:16 am
Thank you Don for getting up on the soapbox! Don’t you know that you can’t please people no matter what?? I mean, if TM started waiting 2 years to come out with something new, the same folks would complain about that, imo. Why can’t golfers just realize that the latest thing is not “that much greater” than the last one?? They should get a good quality driver through a proper fitting process, and forget about it until they want to change. In the meantime, they need to spend their money on greens fees, lessons, and other services offered by their golf clubs and enjoy playing the game. Golf equipment has been the greatest ever for the last few years for having options, etc. Golfers can buy models of clubs from 3 years ago in brand new condition if they would use a little effort. Therefore, the options are almost endless, which is nice. It means you can get just about any size, shape, and color you want. Why is there so much complaining??? They should do a little research on their own or pay for a fitting to help them sort it out what is best for them based on how much they want to spend. If they need proof that the “latest thing” isn’t “that much better”, look in the bags of the players on the professional tours. Are they all drones that play the “latest thing” with every club? No! And the thing is, they get paid by the manufacturers to play certain equipment!
Jul 30, 2013 at 2:59 pm
Well if we’re logged in to the site we are clearly not playing golf. You sound like your feelings are hurt because people are bashing TMAG. Relax eveyone is entitled to their own opinion. If you dont like it then dont read the comments pal LOL.
Jul 30, 2013 at 9:48 pm
When did we become pals Ron? You’re missing the point of my comment.
I never said anything about being on EITHER the computer OR the golf course, what I said was people spend more TIME trolling the internet bashing products and companies than they do on the golf course. Try to keep up with the conversation.
I don’t understand how so many people can be so down on one particular company, yet its still the number one company out there.
When I feel I want or need a new golf club I try stuff out and make my own decisions on what products I buy. I don’t rely on advertising or recommendations from store or course employees, and I definitely don’t take advice from “internet experts” who spout specs and technological jargon that they Googled ten seconds before posting it. At the same time, I don’t arbitrarily rule out a product for the same reasons, which is basically what all this bashing is about.
Innovation and new technology, in any field, is a good thing. This same thing happens in every major consumer product there is, computers, cars, mobile phones, TVs, bicycles, whatever. I bought a new Samsung Galaxy S3 a few months ago, because I needed a new phone. They S4 is already out, but I’m not freaking out about it, and I’m not going around thinking the money I spent on the S3 was wasted on old technology. It still makes calls, I can still text and surf the internet with it. Is the S4 better? Probably, but who cares? Do I feel the need to go out and trade my old phone in after less than 3 months because something new came out? Nope! And I don’t even own an iPhone, so I definitely didn’t jump on the internet to bash Apple when they announced the iPhone 5. That would be silly, right?
I have a theory about this, but I’ll keep that to myself… wouldn’t want to hurt anyones feelings. Matt obviously gets it.
Aug 5, 2013 at 6:46 am
I think the point of the complaints is that the R1 should have been Slydr. They’ve had this technology on the shelf for 6 years.
TM is guilty of milking with the R1 – bad sound, bad feel, not much performance advantage, only more adjustability. Starts at $399, add $13 weights (X2), add a club maker giving it a decent sound and a decent shaft ($250-300), and you have a driver for $700-750. There is a lot of performance difference between stock (it sucks) and a decent club.
TM, when you put out a driver, make sure it makes a difference. If you’re putting out a fresh iteration of another driver, at least lower the price out of the box.
Jul 29, 2013 at 8:29 pm
Hey guys, so I guess as usual there are tons of doubts about TM drivers. Here’s a little story for you believers and non believers. On Saturday I was lucky enough to hit this driver BEFORE TM announced anything about tech or any of it. I was so excited about it, that I took pictures, and asked the managing editor at GolfWRX Zak Kozuchowski to contact me about it. Being the great guy he is, he contacted me within a few hours. I wrote this message to him along with several pictures, which I will happily post in a forum, as soon as I figure out how to do it…
Until I can post the pictures and stuff, I can show you guys what I sent Zak. This is the review part of the email I sent to Zak discussing the technology and performance aspects of the driver.
“Thanks for the promptness in your reply. I have a lot of tech information regarding this driver from a buddy of mine who is a TM tech rep, not a sales guy. I figured it would be good for the site to get something up and running about this with in hand pictures and launch monitor numbers before TM gets the big release on Monday morning.
Here’s what I can tell you. I play a 20 handicap, my usual driver distance is around 250ish, and I spin it around 3700-4000 rpm. If you see the launch monitor numbers done by GC2, the same thing Poulter carries with him, you’ll see my numbers IMMEDIATELY dropped to an extremely low and desirable range, in the low 2000s. Keep in mind that I’m a 20 handicap, so getting this low of spin was huge for me, especially after I just bought an RFE, considered to be one of the best low spin heads available right now, with a black tie to get the shaft that better fit my swing and my numbers.
Anyway, here’s the tech information I got. Generally speaking, the drivers these days are meant for big forgiveness and high launch. The way they do that is to move the weight far back and low, similar to how you see with the ping drivers, particularly the G25 and Anser, all with the weight at the rear bottom of the club. Moving the weight far back and low makes the driver more forgiving, but also makes the sweetspot slightly higher than the center of the club face, which also gives a lower spin figure. All this I’m sure you know.
What Taylormade has done with this adjustable weight, is they moved the center of gravity far far far forward, as you can see, and made the sweetspot of this driver slightly below the center. This is extremely preferable for golfers that like to tee the ball low, and have a tendency to hit the ball towards the bottom of the face. As you know, hit the bottom of the driver face creates a gear effect resulting in cut spin.
With the center of gravity being more forward, it also creates harshness with it. This particular driver was not nearly as forgiving as my current driver or previous ones (R11s, G20). However what I was immediately impressed with was how low spinning it was, and how low it launched. Another thing I noticed from the indoor simulation done by GC2 is that the ball didn’t curve a ton in the air on mishits. If the ball started offline, it tended to stay on that path offline. Of course, there was some hook or cut spin, but not to the degree same degree that you would see typically with say a G25 or G20, with the weight far and low.
People often criticize taylormade for creating “tinny” feeling heads. This head felt like the farthest thing from tinny. To be quite honest, it felt more like the G20 or RFE than it did the R1, which has had wide criticism of have a tinny sound or feel.
The takeaway I got from this driver is that it is very much meant for a very good player (not me), and its perfect for those players who have a flat or a very slightly upwards angle of attack with their driver, and those who tee the ball low.”
Hope you guys find this helpful.
Jul 29, 2013 at 8:22 pm
I was thinking about a replacement for my current driver but decided to stick. The TM replacement I was thinking about was superseded before I finished the review.
Jul 29, 2013 at 8:07 pm
Why don’t they just start this thing off at $299? You know in 4 months that’s what it’s going to be selling for when they have the improved R1 2.0 on the way. I will maybe wait for the SLDR 2.0 in January since it will be better.
Jul 30, 2013 at 6:52 am
Max, because there are golfers out there who think that the latest thing is “that much better” than the last one. Why don’t you just wait for it to be discounted before you have to buy it?
Jul 29, 2013 at 7:37 pm
Let’s be honest here folks..TM/Adidas golf is a marketing company who has investors/shareholders…we can say whatever we want about the great/shitty products a company TMAG releases but its apart of the business the only thing that matters to these companies is $$$..change the color, change the weights, change the shaft, go back to something you did 5 years ago, create something “new” when someone else did it 7 years before you…the only thing that matters in this industry is the bottom line sales on an income statement…TMAG does a great job (like many other companies do) making the consumer feel like they need to run out and buy the newest shit they make when in fact it is not really going to change the outcomes of your score at all and if it does wtf is 10-20 more yards going to do for you off the tee? Your still going to shank, miss, push, slice your second shot anyways.
Jul 29, 2013 at 7:31 pm
Lets face it, with a COR limit on drivers, technology is now maxed out in drivers. Everything released now is just full of rehashed ideas that are repackaged to keep people searching for the answer. Like it’s been said before, with all the ‘distance’ gains touted over the last five years, I somehow haven’t managed to gain 50 yards, even though I swing it better. From now on, pay some money and get properly fitted, then stick with it…..and save your cash for lessons with the ‘short game’….
Jul 30, 2013 at 6:49 am
Adge, again, it’s nice to see someone in this thread who gets it. I agree with your point that drivers today aren’t 50 yards longer than a driver with the same or similar shaft from 5 years ago, given the golfer has the same swing speed from 5 years ago. Mathematically, it just doesn’t seem possible. I will add to your comment that one should spend money on the service of a proper fitting…get a driver you think looks cool. The reason I say this is because when you have a club you like the looks of, you don’t mind sticking with it longer, imo.
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:28 am
Agreed. I bought a Cobra ZL Encore and had it fitted with a Project X Black shaft after a fitting session. I was hitting it about 270 which was great for me. I then took four hours of lessons ($100 total!) and now am hitting it average 275 with the driver, but the yardage benefit is with all my clubs! Money for lessons, not always equipment.
Jul 29, 2013 at 7:30 pm
Finally people who realize this for the garbage that it is. What a joke this company is TM.
Jul 30, 2013 at 9:19 am
What a joke TM is… All those tour pro’s playing TM drivers must be in on the joke. Go hit your butter knife.
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:36 pm
They are getting PAID to play this stuff. Wouldn’t you?
Jul 29, 2013 at 6:56 pm
wasn;t slider the co pilot with iceman in top gun?
I’ll stick with my G25…don’t need no stinking sliding magic handles on the bottom of my driver to hit it long and straight..
Jul 31, 2013 at 3:43 pm
“Slider … (sniff) (sniff) … You stink!”
Jul 29, 2013 at 6:49 pm
Let’s see what we can do to get the sheeple to give us more of their money!
Jul 29, 2013 at 5:31 pm
I have been a pretty loyal Taylormade user for some time now, but I’m frustrated with them and will be rethinking my equipment purchases from here on. That’s a thought process that TM and all other golf manufacturer’s really don’t want to catch on in the market.
While I understand that TM’s business model relies on fist to market innovation, the release of the SLDR will probably be a nightmare for them. I JUST received an R1 as a pre-Father’s Day gift in early June and now it’s obsolete for me in only two months. Why? Because the SLDR has the EXACT attributes that I needed and wanted for my game. These attributes were suppose to be the exact ones that the R1 was touted has offering, but the SLDR does them all better if the reports are accurate.
I needed lower lofts (ideally 7.5 deg) with less spin, and I wanted increased ball speed. I also wanted a more buttery feel off of the face and better acoustics. The R1 was supposed to be TM’s answer to these issues. So I asked my wife to make the stretch and get me a new $400+ driver for Father’s day, just like I did when the R9 came out. I didn’t like the racing stripe of the R1, but I did like the white paint. After hitting the R1 I also found that I didn’t care for the acoustics. It was better than the R11’s that I had demo’ed but not as good as the old R5 series, or even my R9 that I still have. Performance wise the R1 TP did turn out to be better than my R9 TP. I needed the decreased loft and spin that it offered. However, I have struggled with the affects that MWT has had upon this head regarding swing weight (feel). Since I hover my driver at address the face adjustment was never of consequence.
While I was concerned about TM’s apparent struggle to stay with Callaway, Krank, and other company’s ball speeds, the R1 was close enough. In the end, what really kept me feeling ok about my gift was the all around adjustability that my R1 offered. This is in spite of the fact that I have finally determined that I have to keep it pegged at the 8deg loft setting with only 1g – 2g weights per side. In all my R1 TP has turned out to be an upgrade over my R9 TP even though it still hasn’t been quite all there.
In going with the R1 I deduced that TM would go through their normal, incremental advancements of the R1 theme. This, I reckoned, would mean that it would probably be another 2 years before TM REALLY made something that addressed the ball speed, feel, and acoustic (yes I know that scientifically these are closely related if not synonymic) parameters that I wanted. And therein lies my frustration.
I NEVER would have asked for the R1 if I had known that the SLDR was coming out in less than TWO MONTHS after getting my R1!!!!! Why? Because, if the review and marketing are accurate, the SLDR was the TM driver that I was actually looking for. It’s the one that I figured wouldn’t be out for AT LEAST another two years. I feel like I’ve been robbed. I don’t feel that way because my R1 is no longer the new, hot thing on the block. I feel robbed by TM because the R1 was their stop gap. It was the last bit of the production run that they needed from their older molds in order to realize their profit points based upon the actuary predictions when they started the R9 series. They KNEW that people wanted better acoustics than what they offered in the R11 series. They SUPPOSEDLY addressed that issue in the R1, but the reality is that they did a stop gap job. They KNEW that people wanted a softer feel, which the R11 was struggling to produce, which the R1 was suppose to address. The R1 only offered a stop gap precursor for a better feeling driver.
They KNEW that they were struggling with ball speed from the R9/R11 chassis, and promoted the R1 as the fix, but it wasn’t. It was a stop gap measure. Think about it; the R1 has a mean of 1.5mph more ball speed than the best R11. The SLDR has ANOTHER 1.5mph mean of ball speed over the R1. Thus the SLDR has a mean increase of 3mph in ball speed over the best R11. According to Doppler radar, 3mph should offer roughly 10yrds more CARRY distance that the SLDR has over the R11, and the R11S was just in the stores 8 months ago!!!! Even Callaway knew that the SLDR was coming out before the public got a whiff. How else would TM have sold the R1? In fact, TM further zinged us by daring to offer the R1 in BLACK! They generating even more sales for an antiquated chassis that they KNEW they were about to phase out! It was even further brilliance on TM’s part to offer the R1 in black as it served for a psychological TRANSITIONAL component to get the market ready to go back to the more traditional color of the SLDR!!!
I’m saddened honestly. I expected better from TM. This whole thing smacks totally of them squeezing some really high profit margins out of that last bit of their expected production runs; all at the golfer’s expense. Even Callaway made sure that their new driver was designed in such a way as to address a particular market SEGMENT!!! In essence, Callaway created different models that were tuned to particular segment profiles. Thus, Callaway’s drivers don’t overlap. The new Callaway driver, according to Callaway, is designed for a small segment of the market that needs a particular combination of characteristics which Callaway doesn’t really have in their arsenal. Why didn’t TM do that? Instead, TM brings out a driver that is meant to REPLACE a driver that they JUST released 6 months ago!!!! They make the new driver EVERYTHING that people had been telling them they wanted (less complicated tech, hotter face, better feel, more traditional paint job)!!!! AND TM DOES IT AFTER ONLY 6 MONTHS OF RELEASING THE R1!!!
Again, NO ONE WOULD HAVE BOUGHT THE R1 IF THEY KNEW THE SLDR WAS COMING OUT SO SOON AFTERWARDS, and it wouldn’t surprise me if TM knew this!!!
That’s why it feels like TM basically took me and others for ride. To me, this wasn’t some newly found technology. This was a planned path that they took us on for a long time. TM, you botched this one badly. You went for the short term money and got surprised by a resurgent Callaway who forced your hand. You should have bit the bullet and waited another 8 months, but you panicked. You panicked because your business model was slightly flawed; it depended upon marketing instead maximizing your real talents.
TM, you’re the best at creating new, meaningful technology. That talent doesn’t manifest itself every year. So instead, to keep your handsomely high revenue flowing it seems like you embarked upon planned obsolescence that was facilitated by stellar marketing. But even the car manufacturer’s realized 20 years ago that they couldn’t keep supplanting their current models with new designs every couple of years. It also seems like you didn’t see your competitors coming. So it wouldn’t be too surprising if you thought you would be able to indefinitely meter out your major tech breakthrough’s. Putting a little into each new years update over several years until you had maximized the economies of scale for the production run. This allowed you to keep new offerings before the public for little to no R&D investment on your part after the initial tech was released. Fine, but what you didn’t see coming was that the competition would eventually catch you.
However, it seems that even that wasn’t the major problem. The real culprit that got you into trouble may have been the very technology that you were used to sitting on as king. That tech was portable Doppler radar and the internet. The internet destroyed the market’s reliance on the vague, and near meaningless testing that the major golf magazines had been offering. Meanwhile, Doppler radar provided enthusiast the ability to do real testing. Testing that allowed them to actually see what was happening with their ball speeds, launch conditions and spin rates. The market started to find out that the competition was making drivers that offered them alternatives, based upon the needs/tendencies of certain segments. And the word was spreading fast.
TM, I still think that you are the best at creating innovative, meaningful golf tech. With that said, you can no longer afford to string your base and the market out like you seem to have become accustomed to doing. It’s going to cost you if you continue. The behemoths of industry rarely saw their dominance coming to an end until it was too late. If you want to continue your reign you might want to consider giving people with R1’s a substantial trade in allowance on the SLDR. You’re going to need the good PR.
Jul 29, 2013 at 11:56 pm
Guess what? The SLDR will be obsolete in 3 months!
Jul 30, 2013 at 4:53 am
Wow that’s quite the essay. BTW I think they already came out with the the same driver RBZ stage 2, which just lacks the sliding weight. I don’t know, just stick a little piece of lead tape on the bottom?
Aug 4, 2013 at 1:27 am
That won’t work, because adding 20 grams to the Stage 2 will make it more than 225 grams total. Heavy. Duh.
Aug 1, 2013 at 2:49 am
Great statement!!! You hit on everything especially the part about the business model. Our local TM rep has said the sales have held steady, meaning no real growth. Callaway has come on hard and is pushing TM for sales and I feel the competition between them will continue. I watched TM lower prices and than Callaway lower their prices a week later. I fear we will see new products every 3-6 months where before it was every 9-12 months. Our TM rep told us 2 years ago Adidas wanted less SKU’s so they were limiting products, but that obviously is out the window. I think you were right about TM panicking, it feels like they pushed the SLDR out quite early because Callaway came out with the Optiforce. What I don’t like is that they Pushed the white color on us and now because sales are slipping they actually put something out there that the more traditionalist will like again and they can gain those tradition guys back. It’s just all about the money! I personally have played a Callaway driver the past 3 years and have been pleased. Thank you for such a good read!!
Aug 1, 2013 at 7:56 am
1. Get a dictionary
2. Look up concise
3. Practice brevity
4. Go buy a SLDR
Aug 2, 2013 at 2:22 pm
Dude, your comment is kinda long ,huh.
Aug 10, 2013 at 5:42 pm
Actually longer than the review itself.
Jul 29, 2013 at 4:12 pm
Its my understanding that TM is curently developing the next iteration of the Slider (code name “Electric Slider”). It will be even longer with less spin. . . especially at country clubs with banquet/reception halls.
Seriously, as a person that still plays the original R11 TP (and bombs the heck out of it) and has played multiple iterations of TM irons and woods. . . I truly do not beleve most players will see significant gains from this driver. I remember when the R11s TP hit stores, I purchased it, didn’t care for the larger head and put the original R11 back in my bag.
IMO, TM’s best products on the market: RBZ irons and RBZ 3 wood (I play the tour and TP versions, respectively). Both of these products have engineering that actually lives up to the marketing.
Unfortunately, given the limits on driver face COR, the days of huge increases performance gains from driver technology (at reasonable prices) are done. Call me when sub-50 gram X-flex low-torque shafts are available for less than $200.
Jul 29, 2013 at 4:07 pm
I will say this… My numbers with R1 are perfect.
I hit it long and accurate when I play well. Spin is ideal with the ball(s) I prefer to play.
1-2MPH ballspeed is not worth the money, especially since I hit so much of my TEE CB5 off the tee and my driving iron.
I am fortunate to be gifted and hit fairly long that I don’t need driver on many holes and courses.
I think I will be fine with my Kiyoshi/R1 combo for a while. I don’t need lower spin or shot shape. Nor do I need anything lighter.
1-2MPH ball speed, meh that’s it?
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:55 pm
Wow still so much hate for the SLDR, I thought a positive GolfWRX review would curb some of the negativity but I guess not. Personally, I think it looks awesome and if it can reduce spin I’d game it.
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:00 am
I think GolfWRX is in Tmag’s pocket.
Aug 2, 2013 at 12:33 am
Get fit for a good shaft.. that’s how ya take care of the spin problem. Rbz with tm stiff shaft was like hitting whiffle balls for me. Now r11s with the speeder vc6.2 and the ball flies through the wind and rolls out very nicely.
Aug 2, 2013 at 2:07 pm
Dude, u would buy anything TM slap it name on it . For example, if TM get a driver from wal mart and slap a TM on it u go gaga over it
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:34 pm
From the review:
You mean the EXACT SAME BUNCH that griped and moaned about the all-white heads and then complained again when the “racing stripes” came with the newer versions? Yep.
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:30 pm
another gimmick by TM. At this point I should be hitting the ball 350+ yards. So far Tm has come out with three drivers and nothing is different. FYI mizuno came out with this “new” technology a while ago. Nothing new about it.
TM should try putting out a good setup of clubs. the rocket blades are another gimmick. They state you hit the ball further but all they do is make the lofts stronger. So again i bet i do hit a 7 iron further with the Rocket blades….. because its a 6 iron with a 7 stamped on it.
Keep your money for green fees…
Best of all their products are crap. I had 4 TM driver have issues in a 6 month period. Issue resolved… bought a callway.
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:18 am
I’ve bought in to every manufacturers claims of increased distance each time a new driver came out, and now I’m hitting the ball 600 yards down the pipe every time!
Aug 2, 2013 at 9:04 pm
So when did you buy the Hammer?
Aug 15, 2013 at 6:09 pm
I am trying to find an ad for a new club that says ‘ not quite as long as our previous club, but goes straighter’
But they all claim to be 15 yards longer…. Please make par 7’s at this rate
Oct 5, 2013 at 2:57 am
They will never say that. She, on the other hand, might say that to make you feel better.
Oct 22, 2013 at 2:26 pm
Actually when Adams came out with the new tight lies they said it wasn’t as long but was very accurate.
Aug 1, 2013 at 7:39 am
ALL DUE RESPECT, but, If you know anything about Rbladez then you’d know it’s way more forgiving – not a massive distance increase. If you could hit the ball the same yardage more often with your irons you would be a better player. Also, the irons launch as high as the older ones with weaker lofts (too high for me).
As far as your first complaint, the guys on TOUR are hitting it farther, maybe they have the skill to benefit from the technology and you don’t? Joe, if you’re looking for a club to fix your swing then you’d better be a patient man. Try becoming a better golfer through hard work and you wouldn’t have to blame a club company for your shortcomings… Personally, I would never blame a manufacturer for my poor play. Oh, and no matter what your L.O.F.T., you’ll still hit your irons the same short distance. Because you can’t buy talent, sir. What? I said “All due respect!”
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:30 pm
Why spend 400 dollars on this, when you can spend 100 and have the real best taylormade driver, the rocketballz 🙂
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:15 pm
*Note to R1 users: While the SLDR’s loft sleeve looks different, it fits the R1 adapter, so you can still use the premium shafts you have fitted with R1 sleeves* and just bin the head?? 🙂
Aug 1, 2013 at 7:29 am
No, you swap the SLDR shaft onto the R1 head and off it on Ebay…
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:00 pm
Taylormade: More Drivers Than NASCAR!
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:03 am
And just as bad!
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:00 pm
Hit it anywhere but the center of the clubface, like most of us do 70% of the time, and it’s going 220 yards – just like my 3 year old R11 I bought used for $109, 18 months ago. I’ll rather spend the $400 on greens fees and 19th hole beer any day…
Jul 30, 2013 at 6:37 am
John G, it’s nice to see someone in this thread who finally gets it. Don’t forget to spend some of that $400 on a couple or more lessons.
Aug 19, 2013 at 6:24 pm
I bought the new Callaway Optiforce last week and I was hitting high balloon shots. I brought it back today and the “master club fitter” at golf town spent some time with me on the golf simulator machine. We tried a bunch or different clubs, lofts, shafts ect. Then I hit the TM SLDR. He would tweak the club after every half dozen shots or so. All I can say is WOW! I’m a high handicapper and I get so frustrated with this game sometimes, but this is the most amazing, easy to hit driver I have ever swung. I’m in love with the club and I’m hoping it performs HALF as good as I think it does. I hit a couple of drives over 400! Yeah I know, crazy right? 400 feet baby ALL DAY AND NIGHT!!
Peace out golf dorks and SLD over there’s a new golf god in town….
Aug 17, 2013 at 8:23 am
you can buy a a like new r9 supertri 11.5* head for around $75 and get one of your playing partners who knows a little about shafts to fit a good $75 upgrade shaft and you have one of the best drivers that $150 can buy. it might be 1 to 3 yards short of the new slider, but ??????????
Jul 29, 2013 at 2:52 pm
Snedeker loved his SLDR so much, that he ditched it in the 4th round and went back to his old driver.
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:51 pm
That’s what I thought when he went back to his old driver on Sunday. Did Dustin Johnson hit a SLDR 60 yds off line on 17? The weight must have slipped!!!
Jul 29, 2013 at 7:47 pm
Hahahaham, I actually said that out loud when he hit that shot!
Jul 29, 2013 at 2:47 pm
I am tired to biuying a new TM driver then month later price is reduced. Too many other good drivers on market.
Jul 30, 2013 at 6:35 am
Jeff, why then don’t you just wait that month out until the driver is able to be purchased at a discounted rate?
Aug 1, 2013 at 7:28 am
Jeff, Jeff, Jeff. Who is forcing you to purchase the new club as soon as it’s released? Gotta say though, they know what they’re doing in terms of quality product, savvy marketing & sexy looking clubs. How long can this continue before we reach a ceiling? Bifurcation anyone? My thought is – didn’t they say “hot spots” were bad in 2011, and then release a driver with a dark crown and thusly “hot spots” 2 1/2 years later? I always said they’d wait for the rest of the industry to switch to white then pull a fast one and change back so you could still recognize the players on TOUR with a TM driver…
Jul 29, 2013 at 2:45 pm
The Golf industry learned how to develop and market their product line from Intel..At some point the device or whatever it is can only support the claim of perfection because the technology does not exist to support the claim..Gadgets with sliding this or that or replicable weights..When your swing is pure and you know how to replicate it every time you can hit a rock 300 yards with a broom handle..
Aug 3, 2013 at 8:45 am
I hear the next Driver model will be called the Taylormade Olavsky… It will develop into a new model, colors, weight system before you complete your backswing depending on the position of your hands at address…
Jul 29, 2013 at 2:34 pm
Does anyone actually proof read these advertorials?
Jul 29, 2013 at 2:35 pm
Oh, hang on, it’s an ‘editor review’ – that explains the lack of sub-editing I guess…
Jul 29, 2013 at 1:43 pm
Try this, spend $400 on lessons and you’ll hit your current driver farther than you hit it now!!
Jul 30, 2013 at 6:33 am
Well said wcavanau. And it would be better for the golf industry in general in my opinion for golfers to spend more money on the service of their local pro more than on a product made overseas.
Aug 2, 2013 at 12:24 am
Spot on matt!!! Spend some money with the local guys.. THATS how you get the local economy goin. Not buying all this chinese/murica doo doo.. the little guys need to eat as well
Aug 10, 2013 at 5:33 pm
Well, I just paid $80 in one lesson that revived my trusty driver. Let’s see if I get another lesson when the SLDR1s comes out before Xmas
Jul 29, 2013 at 1:27 pm
Jul 29, 2013 at 7:54 pm
Yeah buddy! It’s going to be hard to knock my 2012 AMP out of the bag. It won’t be this Walmart club for sure.
Jul 29, 2013 at 1:01 pm
When TM comes out with a cupface, I’ll buy. Until then, these faces are old technology.
I’m glad that I hit the R1 middle-top. How dare TM to only expand the sweetspot now. I mean, at least give us an expanded sweetspot when you know it’s available instead of waiting. “That’ll be $400, and if you want a sweetspot, that’ll be another $400. Thank you.”
I’m off to Callaway.
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:06 am
FYI… pull faces are cup faces.
Aug 5, 2013 at 6:29 am
Did not see any discussion of a pull face either.
Jul 29, 2013 at 11:55 am
At least it’s not white…
Pingback: 18 Under Par | Golf and Lifestyle | Taylormade SLDR: It’s Official
Jul 29, 2013 at 11:07 am
what I find funny is when a company, not just TM, tells you low deep CG produces high low spinning bombs is not longer “the in thing”. Now it is forward CG produces high low spinning bombs. Now movable weights and adj sole plates are sloppy and slow. I’m soooo confused. I better dust of my degree in Physics to by a driver!
Jul 31, 2013 at 6:50 am
They’d be better off selling drivers w a few rolls of lead tape and an instruction manual. :p
Aug 1, 2013 at 7:19 am
I’m confused that Ping and some other manufacturers are claiming that a rear and low cg promotes lower spin as well. Can both be true?
Jul 29, 2013 at 10:53 am
“According to Olsavsky, golfers can expect 1-to-2 mph faster ball speed with the SLDR driver compared to TaylorMade’s R1, as well as about 300 rpms less spin. That doesn’t sound like another one of TaylorMade’s outrageous claims, i.e. 17 yards, 17+10, etc., because its not.”
Sorry to be a buzz kill but I just received an email from Taylormade golf with the title “Introducing SLDR: Our Longest Driver Ever”. I guess this is far from stating the actual distance you will gain but still on the side of ridiculous claims. But then again every driver ever produced by any company was always their longest driver ever.
Jul 30, 2013 at 10:40 am
Try the new Taylormade R2, its our 2nd longest driver ever. If you prefer to hit long irons to small greens, then the new R2 is for you.
Jul 29, 2013 at 10:47 am
sorry, this whole game is becoming a joke. the only reason i keep playing is because i have invested my entire life into it. there’s no way i would start playing today, and if i started a few years ago, i would of dropped it by now. it was a fun business and hobby in the 80s and 90s. now its just a business.
Jul 30, 2013 at 6:29 am
t, given the context of this article, why would you say that you would not start playing today? A beginner starting out, with the correct advice from his local club pro or club salesman or buddy who plays, should not be advised to labor over a precise decision as to whether to buy one $400 driver over the next. Proper advice for a beginning golfer is to get good used or discounted new equipment. Just about all clubs these days hit the ball far enough if you get down to it. Only discerning golfers, in my opinion, truly take advantage of the latest technology.
Jul 30, 2013 at 11:37 am
Buh Bye, we don’t need you. Go play tennis, mmmmmk?
Jul 29, 2013 at 10:44 am
As I read this glowing review of this driver (and I agree it looks like a bargain-bin club with a gimmicky feature), I see the background of this very page as well as the banner across the top are … wait for it … TM ads. I know the name of the media game is advertising, but this review coupled with the large TM presence deals a large blow to your credibility, in my opinion.
Jul 30, 2013 at 10:32 am
Yeah I noticed that also. Didnt it come out awhile ago that GolfWrx was in TMAG’s pocket. This driver is a joke and so is this site. Moving on nothing to see here.
Aug 13, 2013 at 11:16 am
You guys do understand that your ads on various websites are tailored to how you search and what you are looking at, correct? Do a lot of Ping or Titleist searches, then go look at a Ping or Titleist club (or Callaway for that matter, since the Optiforce will be out soon), and see what ads you get.
Jul 29, 2013 at 10:43 am
This is guzzle real deal guys trust me go and hit one you will see what I’m talking about. One of these 25 that got one of these awesome new drivers.
Jul 29, 2013 at 10:39 am
Tried it. It’s incredible. The low spin characteristic is unbelievable. It absolutely BOMBS in out there with low spin, it almost looks like the ball isn’t really flying but more like forward rolling up and and over being pushed there with force. I gained 15 yards of carry with not even a hard swing.
It’s gonna be the gamer.
Jul 29, 2013 at 9:49 am
its a new change but is is worth paying $400 for 1-2 more mph ball speed??…. no. The R1 will be on discount now and will be the better deal
Jul 29, 2013 at 9:44 am
I heard August 14th the SLDR Stage 2 is coming out. Even hotter, with even less spin. Stage 3 is due in September.
Sean kent Killeen
Jul 29, 2013 at 3:05 pm
Couldn’t have been said any better font forget in January the return of space balls to replace rocket ballz. They make it too easy to bash. I was a due hard tatlormade guy. Now I am with team titleist. Every two years for new production is worth the wait
Jul 29, 2013 at 10:34 pm
yeah i heard it comes out the same day as the Iphone 9!
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:11 am
You probably will get more distance with the iphone.
Aug 6, 2013 at 3:45 am
Aug 3, 2013 at 8:38 am
I heard the next R111 is going to have an iPhone installed in the sole of the club so can have a launch monitor app for immediate shot analysis..
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:13 am
Boy, Taylor Made is slowing down.
Jul 31, 2013 at 4:57 am
Jul 31, 2013 at 1:42 pm
I hope they do bring out Stage 2 and a whole bunch of version of this because I was going to buy the R1, now I have to wait for this one to come down before I will think about buying it.
Aug 1, 2013 at 10:38 pm
Funny, TM buyers are chump
Aug 2, 2013 at 12:15 am
Lol.. the clubs will be soo hot the ball will stick
Aug 8, 2013 at 10:26 am
It will be even SLD-IER than before!
Aug 13, 2013 at 3:51 am
Oct 5, 2013 at 2:51 am
There is a Stage 2.1 coming out end of August just to satisfy those people trembling with anticipation. I hear it will be deep purple in color with heiroglyphics pattern. Can’t wait.
Jul 29, 2013 at 9:37 am
I’ll be honest…I’ll hold off to seriously pass judgement before giving it a try, as I’ve had some Taylormade drivers in the past and they have been great, but I find this to be fishy. Taylormade comes out with a new “prototype” driver, which warrants relative indifference with the masses, then…low and behold “gasp” three weeks later, it’s destined for the consumer market. Then, the day it’s officially announced on a consumer level, GolfWRX gives it a perfect review score?
There have been some exceptional drivers in the past 6 months, none of which has received a 5-star rating (AMP Cell gets a 4, Titleist 913 gets a 4.5, Covert gets a 4.5, to name some), but suddenly a club that looks like it came straight from the bargain bin at Wal-Mart, and loses several key features of the R1 (namely removeable weights, which can affect overall weight/swing weight, and the ability to have a single adjustable lofted head) is touted as utter perfection on the day it’s officially announced to the masses?
As I say, I’ll eat my words if this driver is the next coming once I’ve tried it out, but it’s looking like this “in association with Golf Digest” is going a bit too far (hot list, anyone?).
Jul 29, 2013 at 1:36 pm
Call me a cynic, but I have to read these reviews with some skepticism when there is a large blue Taylor Made ad staring at me from both sides of the review!!!!
Jul 31, 2013 at 6:45 am
It’s not a review, it’s a re-write of TM press releases.
It looks like that slider track will collect dirt, grass and water. So that’s another good way to add & adjst weight. 😉
BTW, the SLDR head cover is a complete ripoff of the Ping G25’s.
Oct 5, 2013 at 2:48 am
I read this because the link said WRX “Editor” review. I was counting on WRX objectivity. But I should have known that it is just another site that will not say anything bad about the almighty Taylormades and Titleists of the world.
Aug 1, 2013 at 7:58 pm
Well said!!! Its too fishy! Read elsewhere that for this “new technolgy” to work you need 60 gram weight instead of the 20 grm they have.
Aug 2, 2013 at 1:26 pm
the latest and greatest ,, every six months lol
I have a full set of Taylor Made, including Tm Super TRi driver. the R11 S driver, Rocketballs Driver.
Super Tri is very good so is the R11 s, the Rocketballs is like swinging styrofoam, not good for me.
Personally I dont like adjustable clubs, if your swing is bad, fix it dont mask it with a club.
I just finished putting together a full set of Mizunos,, Taylor Made is good but Mizuno?
Put it this way, I dont see me buying anything else going forward than Mizuno.
PS- the fine tuning the adjustable drivers is a major head game, and golf is too much of a head game as it already.
Jul 29, 2013 at 9:10 am
Mizuno did this really? — try reading the article before you make a comment smh lol
Jul 30, 2013 at 12:58 am
Amen to that. Totally agree. Gotta read the article if you are going to comment on that article.
Oct 5, 2013 at 2:40 am
So you read the article? But you don’t even know that what they said about the Mizuno MP600 is WRONG. The sliding weights are NOT in the back. There are two weights that go around a almost semi-circular track that runs around the perimeter of the driver. The Mizuno MP630 refined that even more. The weights allow not just adjustment for draw or fade, but also moves the weight from to back to adjust launch. The SLDR system is a copycat and an INFERIOR one at that. I hit the SLDR and it’s nothing to write home about. It’s better than the R1, which is a piece of crap, but not even as good as the RBZ. And the finish makes the SLDR look very tin-can like. But go ahead and fork out your $399 for yet another Taylormade driver. If you don’t end up liking it, don’t worry. You will get a chance to spend more money in another 3 months.
Aug 1, 2013 at 4:56 pm
6 new drivers in one year..
After alot of research and homework, I finally bought Mizuno after owning Taylor Made.
Taylor Made is good, but Mizuno far exceeded my expectations, for me its a great fit.
The Mizuno irons , woods and driver are so well made, simple, clean, and functional.
I was a 90s and sometimes hard to break a 100 in a round.
Two rounds with Mizuno,, 84 and 82.
Now not saying I will be always in the 80s but the difference is incredible.
Mizuno has much tighter dispersion, more forgiving and just so conssitant compared to any
other brand i have tried over the years.
Aug 18, 2013 at 11:51 pm
Its a great driver from the article, but TM sound like money sucker for me… haha! Anywhere, its still great brand of golf equipment!
Oct 5, 2013 at 2:45 am
If you like Mizuno, give the MP630 a try. Very under-rated. It has a “sliding weight” adjustment system too, and has a Fubuki shaft that is very good. Low launching bomber with a feel like persimmon. You will like it if you don’t care for the “toink” of a lot of other drivers.
Aug 1, 2013 at 10:33 pm
Yes, Mizuno did , it’s the same concept , just because TM place the sliding weight in the front instead of the back does not make it new technology.
Aug 17, 2013 at 3:16 am
Obviously technology cannot be refined.
Oct 3, 2013 at 4:18 pm
“Obviously technology cannot be refined.”?
What about balls, irons, drivers, shoes, cars, TVs … the wheel!
Are you being facetious or just ignorant?
Oct 6, 2013 at 11:53 pm
I think he was being sarcastic dude, take a chill pill
Jul 29, 2013 at 8:17 am
Nothing new here…
Mizuno did this with the MP-600 driver
Jul 29, 2013 at 7:12 am
Jul 29, 2013 at 5:53 am
Jul 29, 2013 at 2:08 am
I would actually game this Taylor made driver…
Jul 31, 2013 at 1:11 am
I hit this driver today vs. my usual Titleist 913 D2, both with a Regular shaft and 10.5* of loft. After making several adjustments to the TM, there was just no comparison! I’m a 7hc but have had 7 back surgeries and just can’t load a stiff shaft any longer. The TM was a full 15 yards longer than my Titleist and while I feel the 913 D2 is one of the most consistent (that is, finds the fairway) drivers I have ever hit, the TM was 99% just as consistent!! The sound is way better than any of the last 4 or 5 TM as well! This driver is going in my bag asap!! It truly is LONG!! Still don’t like TM grips…but that is just me trying to find at least ONE thing to complain about!!LOL!! Best TM in years!! God bless, Todd
Aug 12, 2013 at 3:09 pm
Sir: Am 66 with polio in right leg and swing speed around 84. (12 handicap) Have 913D2 8 degree set to 9.5 with full draw setting. Hit SLDR over two days (9.5 reg set neutral) and +15 yds longer on very firm fairways in NE sandhills. Are you happy with the shaft in the SLDR, as I liked the Bassara 50 and wonder if the R Speeder is ok. Your thoughts? Tom
Jul 31, 2013 at 9:12 am
Anyone know how much the head weighs as compared to the 205 gram R1?
Jul 31, 2013 at 11:15 am
The SLDR also weighs 205 grams.
Aug 8, 2013 at 12:58 pm
My TM R9 still works too well for me to consider changing
Aug 17, 2013 at 8:53 pm
I am 47 years old and I am still pretty long. Over the past 15 years, maybe more, I have hit 80% of the drivers that have been released. I have owned about 12 different drivers in that period of time. 10-11 years ago (whatever year the Titleist 983K was out as I had it with a ProLite X-Stiff) I could hit them 330, maybe a little longer, as I drove a green or two hat was in the 340 range. Over the past few years, I realized that age had caught up to me some, as I was very happy with a 290 yard drive, and if it rolled out over 300, great. The strange thing is that I hit my irons longer than ever over the past 2 years. In any event, I think Taylor makes great drivers, but the endless releases, quick markdowns, saying the new driver is longer than one they released 6 months earlier, was growing old. I had the R1. The R1 is long as my buddies have an RBZ Stage 2 and one still has the original SuperFast. The R1 was just plain longer for me than any of those. I could get the R1 out there about 310 if I hit it on the screws, but I hit the RBZ and the SuperFast, maybe 285. I saw the SLDR was coming out at some point in July and I was like Taylor has to be kidding me. I had no desire to play Taylor’s game. Then, honestly, I read this review, and i was intrigued. I hit it at range on August 10. I didn’t see any more distance than the R1 but I loved the feel. The SLDR has the feel of older titanium faced drivers. No real loud noise that even the current Titleist s give us. Just a “puff” almost soft feel. Some will not like this. I love this. The shaft on this is a Fuji Speeder 57. I have no clue what this shaft is but the torgue is reasonable, This club is not heavy but it does not feel as light as a 57 gram shaft should, which I like. The R1 is sort of like that. Hit the R1 or this club compared to the Callaway X Hot or the basic RBZ Stage 2 and you will know what I mean. Ok, here we go and I know how this will sound. Believe me when I see a guy claiming “I hit a drive 340” I am just not buying it as I have won long drive in numerous scrambles as where I was driving maybe 310. Keep in mind that I am a believer in Taylor’s weight forward thing as it has to be low spin that permitted me to hit the R1 longer than any other driver I hit. I bought the SLDR. Today I took it out to a course I have played at least 10 times before. I have hit big drives here before. The first thing I realized, on the first 2 holes, was that it is pretty forgiving. I pulled my first 2 drives and they were in the left hand rough about 250-260. Then I caught one on the third hole, a hole I had played before. The flight was mid launch and this ball rolled out to at least 320. After that, some good drives, some not so good drives but the club is forgiving. Then I got to number 15, a 371 slightly uphill par 4. I have hit good drives on this hole before. First, my buddy hit my SLDR. He has an RBZ Stage 2 and hits his drives around 240-250. He hit his drive, with a slight fade, easily 265. Then I hit mine. I did not go at it hard but I took a normal swing, which to some, might be going hard at it. I caught it and I knew it. It was a straight, mid (some might say low) launch bullet. I couldn’t have been more than 20 yards from the front of the green. The 371 is to the center and the green kind of big but I feel very safe in concluding that I hit the drive about 330. Next hole, out of nowhere came a fade ( I almost never fade), which still traveled 300. I know the way this sounds. I do but just try the club. It is the real deal. By the way, I have a 9.5 stiff. I left it at 9.5 and I have the weight one notch from neutral towards draw.
Aug 27, 2013 at 2:51 am
Let me file a minority report and see if it stays posted. I currently play an RBZ Stage I, and have hit the Stage 2, RAzr xtreme, R1, G25 and R11S in the past year. Just pulled out a new SLDR 10.5 degree with stock Fujikura 57 Regular shaft and took it to the range for a big bucket. I was most unimpressed. Not noticeably longer than the Stage 1, in fact I’d say it was about 10 yards shorter. Much lower ball flight than my Stage 1, which is also a 10.5 degree but I have dialed it down to 9 degrees. I had to dial this SLDR up to 12 degrees to get a decent launch angle. The sliding weight thing really does work well. If you move it to the extremes you will go from snap hook to banana slice. This will be very useful if you go from courses favoring a fade to ones favoring a draw as you can just move it a couple of notches off of center and be pretty confident of the results. However this feature also comes with a downside. The groove in the bottom of the club will catch in the grass at the start of your takeaway unless you hover the club like Matt Kuchar. This unpublished drawback is similar to the way the R11s and R1 have an absolutely useless face angle adjustment dial if you set the club on uneven grass and not on a flat surface. (Taylormade will never tell you that little fact!)
Sep 19, 2013 at 5:01 pm
I had a very similar experience. I read this very review from GolfWRX, which I considered to be unbiased, and went out that day and bought the SLDR. I currently also have the original RBZ tour, 9 degree driver with a stiff xcon5 shaft on it. I hit a bunch of range balls comparing the two and the RBZ just seemed much longer with a higher ball flight. It seemed to go against everything the review said about higher launch on the SLDR. I took it to my home course and played a couple rounds with the SLDR. It confirmed my suspicions. I was hitting about 10-15 yards shorter than my RBZ. One thing that I will say is that I was able to turn the ball over from right to left easier with the SLDR and the sliding weight definitely works the ball directionally. Still wanting more confirmation, I went to the local driving range that has trackman launch monitors and paid to have a session comparing the two drivers. Confirmed again. SLDR was 10-15 yards shorter. Lower launch angle and more spin! What a crock of S#*&. Needless to say, the SLDR is up on Craigslist and I feel duped. For the record, I’m not a TM hater. I play R11 irons and hybrids and have played TM drivers for the past 5 years. The last point/question is how unbiased is GolfWRX. I feel as duped by them as I do by TM