Callaway SR-1, SR-2 and SR-3 golf balls
If a golfer doesn’t have the swing speed of a tour pro, are they really going to get the most out of a tour-level golf ball?
According to Dave Bartels, senior director of R&D for Callaway golf balls, the answer is likely no, which is why Callaway’s new Speed Regime line of golf balls have three different constructions to suit golfers with different swing speeds.
The SR-1 is designed to work best for golfers with driver swing speeds of 90 mph or less. Like Callaway’s premium golf balls of the past, it uses the company’s dual-core construction and a thin mantle layer that allow the balls to launch with less spin off longer clubs and more spin off shorter clubs. But the four-piece ball has a new HEX aerodynamic pattern that helps golfers achieve a higher trajectory for more carry distance.
The SR-2 will work best for golfers with driver swing speeds between 90-and-105 mph. Its HEX dimple pattern is balanced to reduce drag at the high-speed portion of a ball’s flight, such as the first third of a driver’s flight. But it also adds lift during the last third of flight, when a golf ball is traveling with less speed. The five-piece golf ball also has an additional mantle layer that helps boost ball speed and reduce spin for better performance with longer clubs.
The SR-3, which targets golfers with driver swing speeds of 105 mph or more, will be the 2014 Callaway ball of choice for the company’s tour players. Its HEX dimple pattern is designed to reduce the drag forces that rob high-speed golfers of distance and accuracy.
Like the SR-2, the SR-3 is a five-piece golf ball. The most important layer of the ball is likely its outer mantle, according to Greg Sabella, director of marketing for Callaway Golf balls, because of its impact on feel. In the past, Callaway has been criticized for the firm feel of its premium golf balls, such as the 2013 HEX Tour Black. But the SR-3’s much softer ionomer outer mantle makes it feel noticeably softer than previous models, Sabella said.
Each of the Speed Regime golf balls have a thermoplastic urethane “Duraspin” cover that is specially formulated to accommodate the three different HEX dimple patterns. They will be available in January and sell for $47.99 per dozen.
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7 takeaways from an AWESOME equipment talk with Padraig Harrington
Fans of golf equipment have long known that Padraig Harrington is one of us. Throughout his career, Harrington has been willing to test new products, make changes from week to week, and play with a bag of mixed equipment brands.
What equipment fans may not know, however, is just how brilliant of an equipment mind Harrington truly has.
Ahead of the 2023 Valero Texas Open, I caught up with Harrington to pick his brain about what clubs are currently in his bag, and why. The conversation turned into Harrington discussing topics such as the broader equipment landscape, brand deals in 2023, his driver testing process, why he still uses a TaylorMade ZTP wedge from 2008, square grooves vs. V-grooves, and using a knockoff set of Ping Eye 1 irons as a junior.
Padraig Harrington’s 2023 WITB
Below are my 7 major takeaways from the extensive gear talk with Harrington.
1) Padraig’s stance on equipment contracts, and why he prefers Wilson
Harrington is a longtime Wilson staffer, and although he supports the brand and uses their equipment, he doesn’t use a full bag of Wilson clubs. He finds Wilson’s understanding of a player’s need for flexibility to be beneficial to the player, and it’s attracting more and more professional players to the company (such as Kevin Kisner and Trey Mullinax).
“Wilson wants me to play whatever I’m comfortable with. It’s very important. They’re not a manufacturer that says, ‘We want you to play 14 clubs.’ There’s always a club you don’t like. That’s just the way it is. So Wilson is like, ‘We want you playing well and playing the best clubs for you.’
“I am very comfortable with their irons. I’m very comfortable with their wedges, as you can see. They have an old hybrid 4 iron that I love. They have a new hybrid 4-iron that is too powerful. I put it in the bag last week and I had to take it out. The thing is, I use a 4-iron and a 5-wood. My 4-iron has to go somewhat relative to my 5-iron, and then I have to bridge that gap between 4-iron and 5-wood, so it has to do both. The new 4-iron was going 230 yards. My 4-iron goes about 215-235, maybe 240 on a warm day. And my 5-wood is like a warm-day 265 in the air, but I have no problem hitting it 235, so I can cross it over. But this 4-iron, the new version, it just went. I couldn’t hit the 215 shot with it; it’s just too powerful. That’s why I have the old 4-iron in the bag, but it does the job to bridge the gap…
“As players get more money, they’re less dependent on manufacturers. They need the service of a manufacturer – because, like I need to be on that truck and get things checked. But you’re seeing more players see Wilson as an attractive option because you don’t have to use 14 clubs. If you’re not happy this week with the putter; you know, Wilson has the putters, they have everything, but if you want to chase something else for a moment…remember, there’s two things you’re chasing. If you’re a free agent, it’s not good to be changing a lot. That is a distraction. But it’s nice to have the option that if somebody…like I feel Titleist has come out with a great driver. And I’m able to work my way straight into Titleist and say, ‘Hey, gimmie a go with that. Oh, this is a great driver, I’m going to use this.’ Wilson is aware of that. They want their players to be happy and playing well. Like it’s still 10 clubs, but it’s just not 14 and the ball.
“The irons are great, there’s no doubt about that. They’ve won the most majors. They make a gambit of irons. If you want to use a blade, they have the blade. If you want to use my iron, which is just a good tour composite, it has a bit of a cavity-back, you can do that. If you want to use the D irons that have rockets going off there, you can have them. Like the 4 iron, the one they gave me, it was a rocket! And guys are happy to carry driving irons like that, but mine has to match in with the 5-iron. It was just too high and too fast.
“So yeah, I think you’re going to see manufacturers go more of that way. Our players want to be independent, but the problem is that full independence is not great. You don’t want a situation where you’re turning up – as you see kids who make it into their first tournament, and the manufacturers start giving them stuff, and they’re changing. You don’t want to be the guy changing too much.”
2) The dangers of a 64-degree wedge
Although Harrington himself uses a Wilson Staff High Toe 64-degree wedge, he seldom practices with it. Here’s why he warns against it:
“The big key with a 64 wedge is DO NOT use it. No, seriously, do not use it. It’s a terrible wedge for your technique. That club is in the bag and it gets used on the golf course, and it gets used when it’s needed, but you don’t practice with it, because it’s awful. So much loft will get you leading too much, and you’re going to deloft it. Hit one or two shots with it, then put it away. You’re better off practicing with a pitching wedge and adding loft to be a good chipper instead of practicing with a lob wedge and taking loft off. A 64-degree wedge is accentuating that problem. It’s a dangerous club. It does a great job at times, but it certainly can do harm.
“It’s not bad having it in the bag for a certain shot, but it’s a terrible club to practice with. I literally hit one or two full shots with it, a couple chips with it, and that’s it. I know if I spend too long with it, I’ll start de-lofting.”
3) The interchangeable faces on TaylorMade’s ZTP wedges from 2008 were Padraig’s idea?!
I couldn’t believe it myself, but Harrington says that the idea for TaylorMade to offer interchangeable face technology on its ZTP wedges in 2008 was originally his idea…
“The TaylorMade is obviously attracting a lot of attention, but that was my idea! Myself and a consultant for Wilson, I got him to build changeable faces and he sold that to TaylorMade…that’s fully my idea. He sold that then to TaylorMade, and TaylorMade produced them, which I was happy about. But TaylorMade couldn’t sell them. You can’t get people to clean the grooves, so they weren’t going to buy a new face. Why have 400 faces at home? So I went out and bought these faces to make sure I had them for life. And I was home chipping a while ago, and I have a nice 58. I like the grind on that wedge, and the fact I can just replace the face and have a fresh face every three weeks, it’s just easy, so that’s why that’s in there.”
4) Driver testing isn’t all about speed
“The driver companies know I’m a free agent when it comes to drivers, so every time a new driver comes out, they’ll come to me and say, ‘Hey, would you have a look at this?’
“I will test everything, yeah, but it has to beat what I have in the bag. And Wilson’s new driver is the same. They brought out a new driver and it’s great, but I love the driver I’m using. So I say, ‘Look, guys, not only do you have to be as good as the incumbent, you have to be better, because I already know this and I’m familiar with it.’
“Wilson has built a very, very good driver. There’s know doubt about it. But I love the driver I’m using. And none of these manufacturers can build me a driver that’s better.
“Ball speed gets a driver into the conversation, and then you bring it to the golf course. So the driver has to be going as good as my current driver, and then I bring it to the course and see if I can hit the thing straight. I have gone down the road [of prioritizing speed]…I used a driver in 2014, and it never worked weekends. But it was fast. I used it for about six weeks I’d say – six tournaments – and I missed six straight cuts. It never worked the weekend. It was really fast on the range, but it just wasn’t good on the course.”
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5) Playing with knockoff irons as a junior
“I played as a junior for Ireland, under 18’s, and I owned half a set of golf clubs, and they were imitation Ping Eye 1’s. I borrowed the other half set off my brother. We had a half set each. I had the evens, he had the odds. In that tournament, there was a guy playing with Ping Berylliums with graphite shafts. They cost 1,900 pounds. Mine cost 100 pounds, and they were knockoffs. So I played, for my country, with a set of knockoffs. Before I used those knockoff clubs, I used a mixed bag of clubs. As in, I picked up whatever club they had. The 6-iron might go farther than the 5-iron. The 5-iron might go with a fade and the 7-iron might go with a hook, but I knew what my clubs did. Each club had a purpose.”
6) Using square grooves and V-grooves simultaneously
Square grooves – or “box grooves” – were outlawed by the USGA in 2010 because they were said to help golfers spin the ball too much. V grooves are said to provide less of an advantage because they restrict the sharp edges of the grooves, thus reducing the amount of friction imparted on the golf ball. Prior to the rule change, however, Harrington actually used both V grooves and box grooves, and he’d adjust his setup depending on the golf course.
“What’s interesting is, when the box grooves were around – very few people know this – I carried two sets of clubs at all times. I carried a V groove and a box groove.
“Yeah, see, the box grooves were unbelievable out of the rough, spin wise, but if the rough got to a certain level, the ball would come out so low and with spin that it wouldn’t go very far. Your 7-iron coming out of this rough would only go like 140 yards and it wouldn’t get over any trees because it would come out so low. What I was doing was, if I got to a golf course with this sort of a rough, I’d put in a box groove 7-iron and a V-groove 8-iron. If I got in the rough and I had 170 yards, I’d hit an 8 iron and get a flyer, because the 7 iron wouldn’t get there depending on the lie. And I couldn’t get it over things. So if there were trees, you needed the V groove to get over the trees. A box groove wouldn’t get up in the air.
“No one else was doing it. I played with the box groove for a couple years before I realized that in certain rough, you need the V groove to get there. Hale Irwin played a U.S. Open seemingly with no grooves. Off the fairway it’s meant to make no difference. I would disagree, but that’s what the officials would say. But out of the rough you needed the flyers to get to the green. The V grooves were doing that for me. You get your flyer to get of the rough to get the ball there, but then if it was the first cut of rough, or light rough, or Bermuda rough, or chip shots, it would come out so low and spinny that you’d have no problem.
“I can’t believe that people didn’t realize that I was doing this two-groove thing all the time. I swear to you, you could stand here, you would not launch a 7-iron over that fence there if it was box grooves out of light rough, and V groove would launch over it. The launch characteristics were massively different.”
7) Blame the person, not the putter
Interestingly, Harrington, for all his tinkering, has only used a handful of putters. It turns out, there’s a good reason for that — although he’d like his current model to be a few millimeters taller.
“I used a 2-ball when it came out. Then I used a 2-ball blade, which I won my majors with. I always had a hook in my putts, so not long after I won my majors, I went to face-balanced putter because it helps reduce the left-to-right spin. I started putting really badly in 2013 and 2014 – I had some issues. And then come 2016-2017, I just said, look, I putted well with this putter. If I use this putter, I can’t go back and say it’s the putter’s problem. It’s gotta be me. So I went back to the face-balanced 2-ball blade because I’ve had good times with it. I may have only used 5 or 6 putters in my career.
“I’m really happy that I’ve got a putter that I know I’ve putted well with, and I don’t blame the putter. I can’t say that anymore. I don’t blame my tools, I blame myself if I miss a putt. So it comes down to…I know the putter works, then it’s me. Me, me, me.
“You know, I’ve toyed with using other shafts in the putter, and I will look at other putters, but things are askew to me when I look down. So I can’t have a putter with a line on it. It doesn’t look square to the face. I’ve never putted with a putter that has a line on it for that reason. I line up by feel. I know that putter works, I know it suits me, so that’s why I go with that…
“I prefer a deeper putter (a taller face). The one issue I have is I hit the ball too high on the face, but they won’t remodel the whole system to make me a deeper putter. I’ve tried some optical illusions to try and get it where I hit the ball more in the center, but I hit it high. It seems to be going in the hole so I’m not going to worry about it too much. But in an ideal world, if someone came along and said they could make the putter 3-4 millimeters higher, I’d be happy with that.”
See more photos of Padraig Harrington’s 2023 WITB here
TaylorMade survey on ball rollback finds everyday golfers massively against introduction of Model Local Rule
In response to the USGA and R&A’s recent announcement that they plan on rolling back the golf ball for the professional game, TaylorMade Golf issued a survey asking everyday golfers to voice their opinion regarding the topic of golf ball bifurcation. Today, they are sharing the results.
Almost 45,000 golfers across more than 100 countries spanning a variety of ages, abilities and participation levels took the time to complete the survey and have their voice heard, with some of the major findings shown below:
- To the best of your knowledge, do you agree with the proposed golf ball rule?
- 81% No
- 19% Yes
- Do you think average hitting distances in professional golf need to be reduced?
- 77% No
- 23% Yes
- Are you for or against bifurcation in the game of golf (i.e., different rule(s) for professional golfers versus amateurs)?
- 81% Against
- 19% For
- How important is it for you to play with the same equipment professional golfers use?
- 48% Extremely important
- 35% Moderately important
- 17% Not important
- If the proposed golf ball rule were to go into effect, would it have an impact on your interest in professional golf?
- 45% Less interested
- 49% No impact
- 6% More Interested
The results also show that 57 percent of golfers aged 18-34 years old would be less interested in the pro game should the rule come into effect, while five percent said they would be more interested.
“The goal of our survey was to give golfers the opportunity to voice their opinion on this proposed ruling as we absorb the MLR and its potential effects on the everyday golfer. We are grateful that nearly 45,000 golfers across the world felt the need for their voice to be heard. The overwhelming amount of responses show the passion, knowledge and care for the game our audience possesses. Each response and data point is being reviewed as we will utilize this feedback in our preparation to provide a response to the USGA and R&A.” – David Abeles, TaylorMade Golf President & CEO
You can check out the survey results in full here.
Spotted: Odyssey Tri-Hot 5K Three “anti-right” prototype putter
Odyssey Tri-Hot 5K putters have really taken off on tour, and we have seen a handful of models in tour player’s bags. The latest version we spotted out on tour is a very unique design.
Odyssey makes this putter head with a standard flow neck that offers plenty of toe hang for golfers who prefer or need that weighting. This prototype has a long slant neck installed more near the center of the putter head that lets the toe sit slightly up in the air when held horizontally. This is pretty different since most putters sit with the toe hanging down towards the ground or are face balanced (face sits parallel to the ground). A full shaft offset looks to be achieved with the slant neck and the look at address is definitely different.
We spoke to Callaway PGA Tour manager Joe Toulon about the putter and he had the following to say
“On course [we had a player who] had a little push bias that didn’t necessarily show up in practice but it is something that he felt on course. So we wanted to build something that was a little easier to release and maybe not necessarily open the toe as much in the back stroke and not have to work as hard to release it in the through stroke. That was kind of designed to give a little offset and when you rested it on your finger it would rest toe up a little bit. We thought for that player it would help him square the putter face at impact rather than leave it open a little bit.
“It was more of a concept we had and will continue to work on it. When we had it on the truck and we were hitting some putts with it we noticed that you had to work really hard to push this putter. We wanted to make an anti-right putter. Just a fun little concept that we have an idea and work with our tour department to test things out.
“It isn’t something that ended up in a player’s bag but we learned some things in that process and will keep in mind for future builds and projects.”
The finish also looks to be a little different than the standard Tri-Hot 5K putter’s black and silver motif. The face and neck are finished in silver and the rear done in more of a blueish-gray tone. The White Hot insert looks to be standard and the sole still contains two interchangeable weights.
The shaft looks to be painted in the same metallic red as their standard Stroke Lab shaft, but we don’t see a steel tip section. Not sure if this putter has a full graphite shaft or painted steel.
Check out more photos of the Odyssey Tri-Hot 5K Three Putter.
More “Spotted” pieces
- Spotted: S.H. Kim’s Custom Scotty Cameron Circle T Newport putter
- Spotted: Brent Grant’s Scotty Cameron Circle T T5W putter
- Spotted: Beau Hossler’s custom Scotty Cameron Circle T TG6 putter
- Spotted: Tom Kim’s 2 new Scotty Cameron Circle T putters
- Spotted: Bettinardi BB41 Flow 25th anniversary putter
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Mar 20, 2014 at 3:54 pm
All this talk about balls for different swing speeds is a bit confusing.Do you remember when there were 90 and 100 compression balls.,Was this not based on swing speed?To me golf sales of all kinds are all based on marketing.How many golfers have heard of or tried Miura golf products?Best product in golf without huge marketing!
Jun 26, 2014 at 9:05 am
Yes I remember when there were 80,90,100 and 110 compression golf balls!
Feb 28, 2014 at 1:09 am
Have tried the SR-2 and SR-1 golf balls a little the past few days. Very good golf ball imho, except for that price. For the money the Project A ball compares very favorably to the SR-1 and SR-2, again imho. I tested the two balls on a launch monitor with a 7 iron and the distance between the 2 is very close, SR-2 might be just a tad longer, insignificant it appears. The Project A has a seam on the cover, would be nice if it was seamless, even if cost a few dollars more a dozen. They both seem pretty good around the greens, albeit my testing has been on damp greens.
Feb 16, 2014 at 2:42 pm
I was surprised at the price point for the speed regime balls … and not pleasantly.
For the non-speed freaks, the Chrome launches high and obtains distance. Around the greens, it stops on full shots, runs a little on delicate shots around the green.
I will try the SR1 … when I can find it at a discount.
Feb 2, 2014 at 7:47 pm
I just tried a sleeve of the SR2’s. I usually play the Chrome +, and I can say that there is a tangible difference. The SR2 feels much softer off of the irons and spins much much more around the greens. With that said, I will probably stick with the Chrome + due to price. I can not see myself spending 47.00 per dozen balls. That’s the reason I never gave the Lethals or the Pro V1’s a go. Chrome + is good enough for me and is still the best price / performance option in my opinion.
Jan 8, 2014 at 3:34 pm
Just want to help everyone out there. If you cannot afford or don’t want to pay near $50 for balls, try Callaway Chrome+. For $30, there is not a better ball out there. Distance, durability, spin, feel…it is nearly as good as the $50 selections, and maybe just as good.
Jan 8, 2014 at 12:41 pm
After reading all the comments on here about balls I’ve got to comment. Been in the business for way to many years and playing for over 50 with a plus handicap for more than the last 30. I can’t tell the difference between ANY of the 2 piece balls, they all feel like rocks. Also when playing the 2013 Titleist PRO V1X (my ball of choice since they increased the cover durability) I only use a ball for 9 holes then it goes into the shag bag. A lot of the better golfers play a ball for only 2 or 3 holes. What I have found is that the vast majority of ball choices are made by 2 different variables, the players skill levels (if you can’t break 90-100 NO ball will help or hurt)and the players wallet (lots of guys playing PRO V1’s or other pro line balls that can’t play a lick).
Jan 7, 2014 at 12:59 pm
Hex Chrome plus has been the best ball I have played over the last couple years irregardless of price point. I just hope they keep making the chrome plus or I will have to start my annual golf ball search all over.
Jan 15, 2014 at 1:13 pm
irregardless?? so that’s kind of a double negative. Which in turn it negates your point… unless you mean it is without without regard
Dec 15, 2014 at 1:12 pm
Gary believes the Hex Chrome+ is the best ball he has played. Did you understand that? If yes, then Gary communicated with you, so move on. And if you understood, then his “double negative” did not negate his point.
Feb 9, 2014 at 8:40 pm
Unfortunately, it looks like the Chrome and Chrome+ are going away with the introduction of the SR line. I was at the PGA Show a few weeks back, and the Chrome line was nowhere in sight in Callaway’s section. Moreover, if you look at all the retailers, the Chrome line is now either not on the shelves, or on sale. So, if that’s your ball of choice – now is the time to stock up!!
Jan 3, 2014 at 10:59 am
Callaway seems to be going with the new trend of golf balls being designed for different swing speeds but the price of these are going to turn some people off undoubtedly. Callaway had a pretty good thing going with the Hex Chrome, a very good golf ball at a somewhat lower price. I doubt the SR 1 will do as well as the Hex Chrome sales wise unless it is an absolutely unbelievable ball. The Taylormade RocketBallz Urethane or similar golf balls would probably be MUCH better value over all.
Dec 21, 2013 at 5:31 pm
Wow, with this soft, knee jerk-like entry, it sure looks like Cally is conceding its ball business to atrophy… very unimpressed.
Dec 21, 2013 at 12:56 am
Here’s what I don’t understand about the regimes. . . why base your marketing strategy on a measurement that the vast majority of golfers DON’T KNOW? Seriously, what percentage of golfers get Scoped? Every golf wonk who reads these articles or who works at Callaway, but a tiny fraction of the hackers who trod their way around 18 at the local muni. Do you think that those blissfully ignorant hackers would rather be tagged with ball that declares to the world they are “slow swingers” or game the ball that makes them feel like a pro?
I’m just saying, they don’t sell so many “magnum” condoms because all men are above average.
Dec 20, 2013 at 8:47 pm
Lots of good points out there. From what I have read on the WRX, it is about spin. Lower compression balls will not spin as much, so it would seem that the SR-1 will feel an awful lot like the old TF x-2000(?). In my opinion and experience, if you want a higher spinning ball, it’s going to feel soft around the greens and not necessarily travel as well off the tee. For Callaway, the HEX Black was pretty consistent on both, but the Chrome+ was sweeter. Although, my all-time favorite is the Tour i(s).
Dec 20, 2013 at 8:34 am
I’m playing the SPEED REGIME 3 even if it hurts my game because of my ego!
Dec 19, 2013 at 7:58 pm
So they’re just going to copy the only good ball on the market (Bridgestone B330 Series) and hope they sell? Good idea. Way to be revolutionary. Callaway is now officially awful in every category.
Jan 15, 2014 at 1:14 pm
give them a call… I am sure they would be open to all of your revolutionary ideas.
Dec 19, 2013 at 12:00 pm
I never understood why people spend such ridiculous amounts on golf balls. Order off the net peeps. Knetgolf is a great site for getting refurbished/mint balls in bulk. I received 10 dozen pro V1’s in mint condition for $210 delivered to my doorstep. There is no difference, other than price, to these balls and brand new ones. Great way to save big $$
Dec 18, 2013 at 10:48 pm
I would guess that 48 is the msrp but they will run about 40 in the stores would be willing to try at that price but not 48… Id just play pro v1x for that much
Dec 19, 2013 at 11:58 am
how stupid to name ur golf balls regime
did hitler , mussolini design the golf balls
guess i wont be buying callaway golf balls this season
Dec 19, 2013 at 9:09 pm
what a stupid comment I made earlier today
I was mad at the regime name and took out on everyone
the word is still offensive to me , but someone reminded me that word is Webster dictionary , I still wont use the ball unless I get as a f\gift btw ds bridgestone I believe copied benhogan superdeep golf ball which was the best ball of all time in golf
Dec 18, 2013 at 8:18 pm
These balls sound interesting. I am an avid golfer with a single digit handicap index but I am sorry I refuse to pay in the high forty dollar range for ANY golf ball. For me this new introduction is dead on arrival.
Dec 18, 2013 at 6:53 pm
I would be interested in trying the SR2’s and 3’s to see they compare to the Hex Tour and Chrome+. I play and love both these balls and would have a tough time switching to the SR’s if I don’t see a significant improvement, especially for $48/dozen.
I love Callaway equipment, but don’t think it’s a wise move to price them at $48/dozen.
If you want the public to try your product, initial pricing is key and with this price point, many will not even try this ball.
Dec 18, 2013 at 5:45 pm
In the end, how much does the swing speed a ball is designed for really matter? I’ve read right here on WRX that regardless of which ball you use to complement your SS, there’s not going to be much difference in yardage.
Dec 18, 2013 at 8:45 pm
Its not about yardage. Its about finding a desired ballflight!
Jan 8, 2014 at 3:28 pm
The balls are going to compress differently dependent MOSTLY on swing speed. Just like people with differing swing speeds should be using different shafts and flexes.
Dec 18, 2013 at 2:35 pm
Good deal. Wonder if these will feel like rocks on the shorter shots around the green, like all their previous “premiums” (and almost all the rest of every manufacturer’s “premiums”)?
Dec 18, 2013 at 5:16 pm
Good point, Stephen. Just for kicks, I got some of the new Nicklaus balls. They’re very hard, too.
Dec 18, 2013 at 8:43 pm
Rocks come on. The Tour I(s)was really soft around the greens. But I agree that the trend is that the premiums are getting harder and harder around the greens. I would love to have a room full of 2007 Pro V1:s….
Jan 5, 2014 at 5:34 pm
Pro V1’s have never been “soft”. Any of us old enough to have played wound golf balls know about soft golf balls. Pro V1’s soft, HA! They are rocks next to the old Titleist Tour Prestige golf balls (urethane cover) and let’s not forget balata balls.
Jun 22, 2014 at 10:47 am
Interesting discussion. I play the ProV1 and liked the Callaway Tour Hex Black tour. I have an 80 mph swing but loved the way they stopped on the green for approach shots. But agree that these balls are not so soft. I’d play a balata if they made them again!
Jan 8, 2014 at 3:29 pm
Stephen, just so you know…balls hitting the center of the club face feel much softer than toe shots and shanks.
Dec 18, 2013 at 2:11 pm
what i dont get about the golf ball market is that why arent the companies try to lower their price and increase their sales dramatically? i say that if a new pro v1s cost 2-3 dollars a piece rather than $5 a piece, many people would opt to buy new balls instead of used balls. i not saying that used balls are bad but as i started to believe that new balls perform better. i began to dislike the used balls. i dont know how many balls are being used in a typical round for average players but for me its 2-3 balls a round, 4 rounds a month (once every week), 24 rounds a year given that im living in canada (only half season for us northern warriors :X ). thats 24×3 so 72 balls but lets say 80-85 if i had to use more balls. therefore 7 dozens of golf balls should do for me over the season. 7x$50 for the most expensive/premium ball would cost me $350 a season. i would say thats too much compared to the used pro v1s where i can it for $1 a piece (AAA+ condition i know a guy who works at golf course who doesnt play golf but gathers lost balls for side cash) so i can get same about of balls for about $90 dollars. thats too big of a difference for me. $260 dollar difference. if the companies were to reduce the price for half. that would be $175. but if the used ball prices go down respectively, it would cost me $45 for used balls. but now the difference is much smaller. $135 difference for 85 balls. thats $1.50 difference in each. i would say for golfers who spend $50 a round, 24 rounds a year, thats $1200 and $175 wouldnt hurt so much. if i can enjoy brand new(new version every year) very shiny Pro v1s $175 the entire season. i guess that not a bad investment given that i get positive psychological effect from playing very best conditioned golf balls. heres my 2 cents. what do you think guys?
Dec 18, 2013 at 5:21 pm
I’m a hunter and used to argue with guys over the cost of premium bullets over regular cup and core.
$60 for a box of 50 Barnes TSX bullets vs $25 for 100 Hornadys.
The cheapest part of hunting is the only part that comes in contact with the Animal.
The ball is the same, it’s the only thing that’s in play on all shots.
I easily spend $500+/year on whoring equipment, my membership is just under $3,000, I spend a few hundred at least on clothes, I tend to buy shoes every 1.5 years for $200 at least, I regrip every other year, $100 so it’s easy to get way over $4,000 before balls, tees and gloves.
$200 more a year to play balls you like that help your game represents less than 5% of my annual golf spend.
Dec 19, 2013 at 5:39 pm
I, also, tend to spend a lot on whoring equipment. Usually only when in Vegas.
Dec 18, 2013 at 6:14 pm
Some good points raised, Stephen. Adding on to what you’re saying: let’s face it, there are a lot of weekend golfers who use use balls like the Pro V series who really aren’t good enough to take full advantage of what the balls have to offer. So why spend the extra money, when, in the long run, they could play just as well with balls in the $20-$25 price range. My goal on a par four is to get on the green in two. If I use, say, a Bridgestone e-7 and come up 5-10 yards shorter than if I used a Pro V, who cares; I’m still on in two. Of course, I understand there are other variables to take into consideration as well, i.e., how well the ball putts, how well shots stick on the green, etc., but I don’t make a living playing golf. So…
Dec 23, 2013 at 12:05 am
The reason ProV’s cost so much is not because they are more expensive to make compared to cheap balls. They aren’t. It’s because Titleist CAN charge that much thanks to the ball’s performance and our perception of its performance.
The goal of Titleist and all other manufacturers is not to find a way to make cheaper balls, but to find a way to get us to pay MORE for the next dozen balls we buy. If you owned twice as may balls would you play twice as much golf? No, you wouldn’t. Rounds per year per golfer are pretty static.
If another company can make a ball that is convincingly better than the ProV, then they can get ProV prices. Until then, they are all just squabbling over the same finite pieces of pie.
Jan 5, 2014 at 5:08 pm
Wrong. The process of putting a urethane cover on a golf ball alone, is much more expensive than cheaper balls (surlyn covers and the like). I’m not saying Acushnet don’t try and get more out of golfers for Pro V’s compared to cheaper balls, but the statement that urethane balls cost the same to make as the others is not correct.
Dec 18, 2013 at 1:11 pm
Seems to me that Callaway is following the Bridgestone lead but its SR1 (which is geared for lower swing speeds) has little chance of succesfully competing with the RX RXS or E series in this market especially at this price point
Dec 18, 2013 at 12:59 pm
Yep, was excited about trying these until I saw the price,guess I will just stick to used balls….
Dec 18, 2013 at 12:58 pm
I have played Callaway balls for a number of years, and truly believe that the HEX dimpled pattern of my CHROME+, offers a real advantage over the traditional dimples from all the others. In the wind, there is NO ball that will outperform CHROME+. I will try the new S2 or S3… But they will have to be better than great to get me to switch.
Dec 18, 2013 at 12:29 pm
interested to see which ball is closest to my chrome +.
chrome + is the best ball i have ever played- spins like a top on the wedges, flat trajectory on the driver and durable…plus it’s affordable!!! SR 2 or 3? it will be a tough battle to get in my bag
Dec 18, 2013 at 11:46 am
chrome and especially chrome+ were great great great great balls.
i guess they did not sell enough for callaway to keep them?
Dec 18, 2013 at 12:25 pm
I received a tweet from Harry Arnett at Callaway today saying that the Chrome line is staying put.
Dec 18, 2013 at 11:33 am
I had the opportunity to try a 3 ball sleeve of the new balls. I normally play Callaway Hex Chrome or +. I have 109mph driver swing speed, I saw a lost in distance and performance with irons and wedges. I think it Callaway plot to have a 3 types of ball all at 47.00 a dozen.
Dec 18, 2013 at 11:28 am
It’s a shame that manufacturers change the names of their golf balls every 2-3 years. How on earth do they expect to build brand loyalty? Titleist does it right. Even though the formulation of their premium offerings have changed over the years, the company has stuck with the branding of the Pro V1 and Pro V1x. Say the words “Pro V1” and almost any golfer will know what you mean.
Dec 19, 2013 at 5:02 pm
I sort of agree but if you create a new ball with the same name of a ball that didn’t perform very well in the past why would you try it. ProV1’s have been a great ball for generations so yes you would not change that name but if you were to name a new ball after a ball that sucked even if it was the best ball in the game im sure it would fail to because of past experience with a ball of that name.
Same reason why I would not play a callaway ball myself because about 4 years ago I would hit a wedge shot into the green and have to replace it with a new one on the next hole because the cover was so soft it would tare it up with wedges.
Dec 18, 2013 at 11:22 am
hex chrome and the plus…best balls for the buck…31 dollars and they are just as good as the pro vs, hex tour, any tm ball out there…and they don’t get beat up as bad as the titleist balls..
the bonus? I can’t lose them!!!!
Dec 18, 2013 at 10:56 am
I must confess I have my doubts about a 5 piece ball for us 90 – 105 mph club head speed players. Sure I didn’t get on with the TM Penta and Lethal but I will try a sleeve of TR2’s against the original HEX Chrome which works really well for me. Fortunately I’ve got 3 doz bought on clearance put away for next season!
Dec 18, 2013 at 6:32 am
Even though it’s a little clicky, I still think the Tour ix is the best ball Callaway have made and clicky doesn’t matter if you use an insert putter! Still have a couple of dozen left too.
Dec 18, 2013 at 6:56 pm
I also liked the Tour IX, but switched last year to the Hex Tour and also the Chrome+, which I’ve found to be superior balls in distance and control around the greens, at least for my game.
I will be purchasing a few dozen of the Hex Tour since they are currently on sale for $29/dozen. A great ball at a great price.
Dec 19, 2013 at 7:53 am
Yeah I’ve tried the Chrome+ but not really wowed by it. Like you I might have to get some of the hex black tours now they’re on sale to try.
Dec 18, 2013 at 6:23 am
I will likely give the SR2 and Sr3 a try.
My favourite ball in recent memory was the Tour iz, but I have now run out of them.
Dec 18, 2013 at 3:27 am
$48 bucks a dozen? Thats $4.17 a ball,
Shame on you Callaway! Do something good for golf lower your prices.
OH! Thats right its not about the customer. But ALL about the stock holders. The game of Golf is in a sad Decline. Only the rich can play now.
Dec 18, 2013 at 8:51 am
marko, check lostgolfballs dot com. You don’t always have to play brand new equipment. The only time I buy brand new balls is when I have a gift certificate to redeem.
Dec 18, 2013 at 10:33 am
Check out the Hex Chrome and Hex Chrome Plus. Best ball for the money IMHO.
Dec 18, 2013 at 8:48 pm
Agree! The 2012 version of Hex Chrome felt like an older Pro V1. The 2013 version wasnt as good in my opinion.
Dec 19, 2013 at 5:42 pm
Unfortunately, golf balls are expensive to make. Most companies don’t make any money off of balls. It’s more for brand recognition.
Dec 18, 2013 at 12:34 am
Won’t the SR3 suit anyone because it has 5 layers…if you don’t swing it quick enough your only going to compress or activate the outer layers that produce more spin???