No matter where a golf equipment manufacturer places the center of gravity in its latest driver, one thing is true; modern driver heads aren’t very aerodynamic objects. Ping’s new G30 driver doesn’t change that, but the company’s engineers found a way to improve its aerodynamics without compromising the framework that has made Ping’s line of G-Series drivers some of the best performers in the industry.
The improved aerodynamics come in the way of turbulators, which are six ridges on the front of the G30’s crown that reduce drag forces. According to Ping, the turbulators helped Bubba Watson increase his driver club head speed 2 mph, which lead to 7 to 10 yards of extra driving distance.
“What turbulators do is give you a little bit of turbulence that makes the air stick to the surface,” said Marty Jertson, Ping’s director of product development. “Air sticking to the surface is a good thing … The air already sticks to the surface of the sole of a driver pretty well, so we don’t need turbulators there.”
Golfers who swing faster create more drag forces, so they’ll gain more club head speed from the turbulators than average golfers, who can expect gains of about 0.7 mph according to an internal Ping study. All things being equal, that equates to about 2-to-3 yards of more distance than Ping’s G25 driver. All things aren’t equal between the G25 and the G30, however, which is why golfers might be able to hit the company’s new driver a little more than 2 or 3 yards farther than the G25.
The G30 uses a new T9S titanium face, which is thinner, stronger and lighter than the company’s previous driver faces. The new material saves 4 grams of weight from the driver’s construction, which was redistributed low and rearward in the driver head to boost the G30’s moment of inertia (MOI), a measure of a club’s retention of ball speed on off-center hits. Its MOI is even higher than that of the G25, which was already the highest MOI driver on the market. The lower, more rearward center of gravity (CG) also makes the G30 about 150 rpm lower spinning than the G25 driver, according to Ping.
Moving the weight lower and more rearward has another advantage, Jertson said. The position of the weight helps the driver head swing more upward heading into impact, something that’s known as “increasing dynamic loft.” That helps golfers launch the G30 driver higher, creating more of the high-launch, low-spin conditions that can lead to more distance.
The G30 will also be available in Ping’s SF Tec model, which stands for “Straight Flight Technology.” The G30 SF Tec drivers are nearly identical to the standard models except that their face angles sit more closed at address and they have CG’s that are shifted slightly toward the heel. That helps golfers who tend to fade or slice the ball to more easily square the clubface at impact. The SF Tec driver heads are also 3 grams lighter (203 grams instead of 206 grams). Those combined changes can increase driving distance as much as 12 yards, the company claims.
The G30 drivers are available in lofts of 9, 10.5 and 12 degrees, and have a new adjustable hosel that’s the same weight and diameter as Ping’s fixed hosels. The drivers can be adjusted as much as 1-degree up or down from the driver’s printed loft and allows golfers to adjust loft incrementally as well: 0.6-degrees higher or lower from the printed loft. The stock swing weight is D3.
The G30 SF Tec drivers are available in lofts of 10 and 12 degrees. They have the same adjustable hosel as the G30 and have stock swing weight of D1.
The G30 and G30 SF Tec drivers come stock with the company’s new TFC 419D shafts, which are counterbalanced and have a stock length of 45.75 inches. They’re available in the following flexes: Soft R (53 grams), Regular (55 grams), Stiff (59 grams) and X-Stiff (63 grams).
Both the G30 and G30 SF Tec drivers carry an MSRP of $385 and are currently available for pre-order. They’ll hit stores along with the G30 fairway woods, hybrids and irons in late July.
New Ping Tour shafts
Golfers who prefer shafts that are a little shorter, heavier, stiffer and have less torque can also opt for the company’s new “Tour” shafts, which have a slightly lower balance point that creates the same D3 swing weight while being 0.5 inches shorter (45.25 inches). They also launch a little lower than the TFC 419D shafts.
The Tour shafts are not exclusive to the G30 launch, which means they’re available for all current Ping metal woods in Tour 65 and Tour 80 models, as well as a Tour 90 shaft that’s designed for hybrids.
G30 Fairway Woods
Like Ping’s G30 drivers, the G30 fairway woods have turbulators on their crown to help boost clubhead speeds through improved aerodynamics. That will lead to some distance gains, but won’t have nearly the impact on their performance as their new carpenter 475 steel faces, which are 44 percent stronger than the 17-4 steel faces used on the G25 fairway woods.
According to Jertson, the thinner, stronger faces will give the G30 fairway woods approximately 1.5-to-2 mph more ball speed than the G25 models, which along with other changes make the G30’s much more of a distance threat than their predecessors.
At address, golfers might notice that Ping made the heel height of the G30 fairway woods a bit taller, creating a little more surface area that causes the face to flex more at impact.
The new faces and improved manufacturing techniques also freed up more discretionary weight for Ping to move the CG of the G30 3 wood (14.5 degrees, 167 cubic centimeters) lower and more rearward like the G30 driver to raise its launch, lower its spin and increase forgiveness. The higher-lofted G30 5 wood (18 degrees, 151cc) and 7 wood (21 degrees, 145cc) have CG’s that are moved slightly forward to help lower their spin, which creates a more penetrating trajectory that’s less likely to “balloon.”
For the first time in a G-Series fairway wood, Ping has also made the G30’s adjustable. They use the same adjustable hosel as the G30 driver, giving them a 2-degree range of adjustability.
The G30 fairway woods come stock with Ping’s TFC 419F shaft in Soft R (63 grams), R (64 grams), S (68 grams) and X (69 grams) flexes and carry an MSRP of $275. Stock swing weight is D1.
The G30 hybrids use a new heat-treated 17-4 stainless steel face that improves strength by 19 percent, boosting the CT of the hybrids by 20 points. That will give them a little more ball speed than the G25 hybrids, and with their similar trajectory that means they’ll likely carry a few yards farther for most golfers.
There’s no turbulators due to their smaller, more aerodynamic size, but the shape of the hybrids was tweaked to include a flatter top rail and a higher heel section that gives them a more square appearance at address.
The G30 hybrids are available in lofts of 17, 19, 22, 26 and 30 degrees and use progressive CG locations that are low and rearward in the 17- and 19-degree hybrids for maximum forgiveness and peak height, and more forward in the 22-, 26- and 30-degree hybrids to create a flatter trajectory.
They come stock with Ping’s TFC 419H shaft in Soft R, R, S and X flexes and carry an MSRP of $242.50. Stock swing weight is D1.
Ping’s G30 irons have thinner faces than the company’s uber-forgiving G25 irons, but their design doesn’t follow the industry trend of making thinner, unsupported faces to create more ball speed and more distance.
“The faces are not unsupported,” Jertson said. “We want to be able to control the [flexing of our iron faces] to give our irons more consistency.”
With Ping irons, there’s almost always an effort to reposition as much weight around the perimeter of the iron as possible to create more forgiveness and the G30 irons are no exception. But first things first, Ping engineers wanted the G30 irons to fly a little farther, which isn’t an easy thing to do when the iron faces can’t be made to flex more. The company achieved its goal by giving the irons slightly longer shafts to help golfers create more clubhead speed and a higher launch angle. The longer shafts, along with the slightly stronger lofts, also provide better gapping throughout the set.
Sound like a simple fix? It is until you consider this: when you make a club longer and don’t want to increase its swing weight, you have to remove weight from the club head. And since Ping engineers didn’t want to make the G30 irons less forgiving than the G25’s, they had to do more with less and needed to execute several different design plans to accomplish their goals.
They started with slightly longer blade lengths, which are most noticeable in the 4-iron through 7-iron clubs. That gave the engineers a larger canvas that made it easier to redistribute weight around the perimeter of the irons. The G30’s were also designed with a deeper undercut that lowers their CG to boost the their MOI, which helps iron shots that are hit off-center fly closer to the distance of shots hit in the center of the face. The soles of the G30 irons are wider as well, which moved the CG of the irons a little lower and deeper to further boost MOI. The soles have their extra width positioned on the club’s trailing edge, where it is not really a factor in turf interaction.
Add up those changes and the G30’s not only fly higher than the G25 irons, but the 4 iron is about 7 yards longer, according to Ping estimates, and the 7 iron is about 3 yards longer. The MOI of the irons is also 2 percent greater from heel-to-toe and 1 percent from top-to-bottom despite the lighter head weights.
Visually, the G30 irons have less offset than the G25 irons, a change that is most noticeable from the 6 iron down. There’s also a softer elastomer badging that helps improve the feel of the irons.
The G30 irons are available in 4-PW, UW, SW and LW and have the same lofts and shaft lengths as the company’s Karsten irons. The 4 iron’s stock loft is 21 degrees, the 6 iron is 27 degrees and the PW is 45 degrees. They carry an MSRP of $110 per club with the company’s stock CFS Distance steel shafts (Soft R, R, S, X flexes) and $125 per club TFC 419i graphite shafts (Soft R, R and S flexes).
How old is too old for irons? – GolfWRXers discuss
In our forums, our members have been discussing older irons. WRXer ‘R5Two’ kicks off the thread, saying
“I pulled my old Titleist 695 CBs (cr 2006) out of storage to hit a few balls. I have seen many videos about how much faster the ballspeeds are these days, but I don’t know if I care. I’m a blade guy. Isn’t a hunk of metal a hunk of metal?
How old is too old for forged irons? What are we missing? Non-confirming grooves maybe? Maybe a little forgiveness?”
And our members have been sharing their thoughts in our forum.
Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.
- PEI_Golfer: “Irons are all about accuracy and distance control, not ball speed… Nothing wrong with the 695’s (my first OEM set of irons); I still bring out my 690.CB’s from time to time and OG Nike blades.”
- Tar_Heel_93: “I’m with you. I prefer a solid forged iron. Not looking for a lot of tech. Here are the irons I am testing for next season. Apex MBs have been in the bag for several seasons. Others are recent additions. Titleist CB and Wilson Staff CB have Tungsten in the mid and long irons. However, so far my favorite CB is the Bridgestone J33 CBs circa 2006.”
- mrfuz: “I recently regripped my old 690MBs and pulled out my Eye2s. They’re not replacing my Sim2 Maxes, but they’re fun to play with.”
- HoosierHacker89: “695 CB irons are great! One of my all-time favorites. I found them to be really forgiving especially the long irons. This was one of the few sets I was confident in the 4/5 irons. I played a set of Srixon 765 irons the last 3 years. Honestly can’t say there was much if anyone difference in the heads Of both sets.”
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Coolest thing for sale in the GolfWRX Classifieds (1/13/22): TSi3 driver with Ventus Black
At GolfWRX, we are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment of the game in many ways.
It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball. It even allows us to share another thing we all love – buying and selling equipment.
Currently, in our GolfWRX buy/sell/trade (BST) forum, there is a listing for a TSi3 driver with Ventus Black
From the seller: (@Tverrall): ” TSi3 Driver w/ Ventus Black. This was my gamer from July until October. I love this thing and I hate to part ways with it, but I can’t argue with the numbers I am getting from an Epic Max LS. 8-degree head. Ventus measures 44″ tip to grip. No tipping. Asking $500 for the combo OBO. I will separate if I have a buyer for both.”
To check out the full listing in our BST forum, head through the link: TSi3 driver with Ventus Black
XXIO unveils next-generation X lineup
XXIO has today introduced its all-new XXIO X family of clubs that launch at retail on February 11, 2022.
At the core of the new lightweight X drivers, fairway woods, and hybrids is ActivWing: a technology that stabilizes the clubhead by altering aerodynamic forces at work in the first half of the downswing. The airfoil generates lift to guide the club to its optimal impact angle in design to provide maximum speed and distance.
Speaking on the new additions, Brian Schielke, General Manager at XXIO. said
“XXIO X has the DNA of every XXIO product – lightweight and easy to swing. However, it’s tuned to the more accomplished player. More compact irons, lower spinning woods, and stiffer shafts make X a great choice for better players looking to increase their speed and experience the benefits of XXIO.”
The woods feature Rebound Frame Technology, with four alternating layers of stiff and flexible zones enhancing overall COR.
In addition, for the first time, X drivers feature Rebound Frame with a Cup Face in design to offer more power on strikes across the face, while on the irons, a thinner face allows the entire face to flex more extensively while grooves etched deep into the interior of the iron body further enhance flex.
The clubs contain a heavier clubhead and an extremely lightweight shaft which work together in a bid to increase ball speed and swing speed at the same time, while manufacturers positioned mass under the grip, behind the hands in design to help players find the ideal spot at the top of their swing to make the downswing more consistent.
In addition, XXIO is also introducing its Rebound Drive golf balls which feature the company’s proprietary Rebound Frame Technology, which interposes areas with high and low rigidity in a bid to produce just the right amount of flex for higher initial ball speeds along with a pure feel at impact.
Specs, Availability & Pricing
- U.S. Retail Launch Date: February 11, 2022
- Pricing: $699.99 for XXIO X driver, $399.99 for XXIO X fairway woods, $299.99 for XXIO X hybrids, $199.99 for individual steel irons/$224.99 for individual graphite irons, $1,199.99 for six-piece steel set/$1,349.99 for six-piece graphite set
XXIO Rebound Drive Golf Balls
- Colors: Premium White, Lime Yellow, Premium Pink and 4 Color Pack (Premium Pink, Lime
- Yellow, Orange, and Ruby Red)
- U.S. Retails Launch Date: February 11, 2022.
- Pricing: $49.99
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