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Members Choice: The Best Irons of 2017

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To help golfers find the best irons for them in 2017, we enlisted the services of GolfWRX Members, the most knowledgeable golfers on the internet. They not only understand the technology used in the latest golf equipment, but they also test new clubs extensively. Following their detailed experiences and words of wisdom about the latest products is the perfect starting point for anyone interested in purchasing new golf clubs.

To gather their votes and feedback, we as a company first needed to properly sort the irons into categories. We aimed to keep the categories as simple as possible with 2017’s crop of irons, and we broke them down into three general categories:

  • Players Irons: Basically, small-sized irons. These irons have sleek top lines and soles. They place workability and control over distance, and for that reason they’re irons you can expect to see in the bag of a professional golfer.
  • Game-Improvement Irons: Basically, medium-sized irons. This category includes a wide-range of clubs that blend distance, forgiveness, good looks and workability.
  • Super Game-Improvement Irons: Basically, large-sized irons. These irons are juiced with hot faces, wide soles, thick top lines, big offset and a low center of gravity, among other engineering feats, that are often unique to each company.

Note: Because of the abundance of Players Irons currently available, we divided that category into two categories: Players Irons and Exotics Players Irons. The Exotic Players Irons list included players irons from companies such as Epon, Fourteen, Miura, PXG, and Honma, which are not as widely available for testing in the U.S.

Below you can access the full results of our Members Choice 2017: Best Irons lists, as well as feedback about each iron from the GolfWRX Community. We’d like to sincerely thank all the GolfWRX Members who participated in the voting and provided feedback on the irons. We also want to thank those of you who provided feedback on the voting process itself. We assure you that we read and consider everything, and we’re going to continue to improve our process in order to provide the best and most useful information about the latest golf equipment.

Members Choice: The Best Players Irons

Mizuno_JPX_900_Tour_Feat-1021x580

Vote Leader: Mizuno JPX-900 Tour

“WOW! Great mix of buttery feel and forgiveness.”

Overall, the Mizuno JPX-900 Tour irons earned nearly 15 percent of votes on the Players iron category, giving them top billing for players irons. One GolfWRX member said he was “weak in the knees from first look at the satin finish and compact size,” and that the “feel is excellent, and there’s just enough forgiveness.” Another said the JPX-900 Tour irons are the “best irons out there right now in terms of blending feel, forgiveness, and the ability to shape shots.”

Full List: The Best Players Irons of 2017

Members Choice: The Best Exotic Players Irons

PXG0311t-600x377

Vote Leader: PXG 0311T

“I can’t say I have ever hit anything that feels as good as the PXG.”

With more 21 percent of votes for the Best Exotics Players Irons of 2017, PXG’s 0311T irons were described by GolfWRX members as “a great looking club,” and that they “felt unbelievable.” When comparing the irons to Titleist’s 716 MB irons, one member said, “The fact that you can barely tell if it has or doesn’t have more offset than the MB 7 iron just shows how little it has.”

Full List: The Best Exotic Players Irons of 2017

Members Choice: Best Game-Improvement Irons

CallawayApexMembersChoice

Vote Leader: Callaway Apex CF ’16 

“Apex CF is simply the most explosive, best feeling iron I’ve ever hit in this category.”

Acquiring nearly 20 percent of votes of all models in the Best Game-Improvement Iron category, GolfWRX Members described the Callaway Apex CF ’16 irons as “simply the most explosive,” and that they “perform very well on center hits and almost as good on mishits.”

Full List: The Best Game-Improvement Irons of 2017

The Best Super Game-Improvement Irons 

PingGironsWRX

Vote Leader: Ping G

“The Ping G takes what Ping has done for years and added in increased ball speed, improved feel and much better looks.”

An iron that “will appeal even to Ping haters.” GolfWRX Members described the Ping G as “stupid easy to hit,” providing a “high and straight ball flight,” and “an eye opener.” The irons also accumulated more than 22 percent of the total votes in the category.

Full List: The Best Super Game-Improvement irons of 2017

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11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. Todd

    Aug 2, 2017 at 6:32 pm

    Agree on the Mizuno 900s, was not impressed. Testing the V6, coming from FG62s.

  2. TONEY P

    Jul 24, 2017 at 12:17 pm

    Why are you making up categories for PXG. OH I FORGOT ,THEY PAY YOUR BILLS.

  3. Dick

    Jun 28, 2017 at 10:39 pm

    Steelheads with Recoil shafts are, in my opinion, unmatched for consistency regardless of how you want to categorize these clubs. The categories are too broadly defined to have any teal meaning. Try them all and see what works for you.

  4. Shortside

    Jun 28, 2017 at 5:43 pm

    I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to getting a case of the “I wants” every year as some new irons are sure to give me an itch in need of a scratch.

    That said I just want to be able to control a shot and know how far it’s going to go consistently. Yes I also need to like it at address and looking good in the bag gets points too.

  5. Robert Parsons

    Jun 28, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    This had nothing to do with testing or quantifiable variables.

    It was nothing more than a popularity contest with votes coming from those who hadn’t even hit all the possible entries.

    It’s more a flavor of the month club. Brands with multiple entries had no chance compared to a brand with a single model entered in a category.

  6. Sebastian

    Jun 28, 2017 at 7:15 am

    IMO, I really like the Wilson V6. Very underappreciated and underplayed. They feel and perform really well. I know they are not really bent as strong as most, having a more “traditional” loft on them, so you are not getting the distance, but feel and forgiveness are there.

    I think they are amazing. I still love mizuno, not saying they aren’t great. I hit the PXG, they do feel amazing, but not 3x cost amazing.

    I am surprised that iBlades aren’t doing better. Those feel really nice as well.

  7. Francois Mathieu

    Jun 27, 2017 at 7:24 pm

    Les fers APEX: un excellent bâton tout dépendant de la tige.
    Les PING G: bâton intermédiaire et non de débutant.

  8. ooffa

    Jun 27, 2017 at 2:49 pm

    What are you talking about? These are standard terms. You should embrace them.

  9. Jim

    Jun 27, 2017 at 9:47 am

    Not sure why the Ping G is listed under SGI irons as it’s only a GI iron. Ping has another iron, the G Max, that is in the SGI category. And the Apex is borderline a players club as well. The categories seem to be a little mixed up.

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Whats in the Bag

Patrick Cantlay WITB 2022 (January)

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  • Patrick Cantlay what’s in the bag accurate as of 2022 The American Express. 

Driver: Titleist TS3 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana ZF 60 TX

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Fairway woods: Titleist 915F (15 degrees), Titleist TS2 (21 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana ZF 70 Flex TX, Mitsubishi Diamana ZF TX

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Irons: Titleist 718 AP2 (4-9)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold 120 Tour Issue X100

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Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM7 (46-10F @47, 52-08F), SM8 (56-08M @57), SM8 Prototype (61)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S300

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Putter: Scotty Cameron Phantom X 5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet

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Whats in the Bag

Will Zalatoris WITB 2022 (January)

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  • Will Zalatoris what’s in the bag accurate as of the 2022 The American Express. 

Driver: Titleist TSi3 (9 degrees), Titleist TSi3 (8 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Speeder TR 757 X, Fujikura Speeder TR 661 X F

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Fairway wood: Titleist TSi3 (16.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Blue 8 X

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Irons: Titleist T200 (3), Titleist T100 (4-9)
Shafts: Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

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Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM8 (50-08F, 54-10S), Titleist WedgeWorks 2021 Proto (60 degrees)
Shafts: Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100IMG_1390.jpegIMG_1391.jpegIMG_1396.jpeg

Putter: Scotty Cameron Phantom X 11 prototype

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Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Grips: Golf Pride ZGrip Cord

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Equipment

Do blades negatively impact performance? Or is it all in our heads? – GolfWRXers discuss

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In our forums, our members have been having an in-depth discussion on blade irons. WRXer ‘Royal Mustang’ has questioned whether ‘solid’ players are mistakenly scared off of playing blades, posting

“A lot has been written here about pro-blades/anti-blades. My question for those of you who play them or don’t play them: do they negatively impact your performance? Could you shoot a lower score if you had played a GI or SGI iron? Is that 8-iron you hit slightly thin and left 160 and in the bunker really 164 and a birdie putt with a GI iron? Or is that just your assumption as you have no data to back it up with? Do you see higher scores with blades and lower scores with other irons? Enough to statistically matter to get to a 95% CI? 

I have only played 2 rounds with blades, but I can say that they were both pretty low rounds. I had some good iron strikes. It is anecdotal evidence, however: perhaps I was playing well, perhaps I got lucky. I was well-positioned off of the tee. I can’t say for sure that I was better with these irons. Perhaps I was better as I dialed down my expectations and made smooth swings. I know a blade 8i isn’t going to fly 175, so I don’t try to hit it 175. That is completely mental, however. Make a smooth swing and hit to 165. 

For what it is worth, I play Mizuno MMC MP20s, but I also have a hybrid set of Callaway MB21/Apex Pros. And no, I don’t have enough rounds to say either way. I sure do like the way the MB21’s look when I line up, however!  

I should preface this in that I am talking about people with solid swing fundamentals. The guys/gals you see swing and say “low single digit/scratch/plus”. Their wear spot on their 7 iron might not be the size of a dime, but a nickel is pretty typical.”

And our members have been having their say on the matter 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.

  • PuttingMatt: “Honestly, my scores stay relatively the same, whether I play musclebacks or player cavity backs. Ball striking is on the player, not the equipment. When I started playing, blades were your only choice; it is up to you to decide if your irons perform well for your game. The swing you deliver to the ball is everything.”
  • b.mattay: “Yes. Thin shots hang in there much better with a cavity back IMO. Long irons are also much easier to hit. I’m switching into cavity backs and a 4 hybrid for this next year. Don’t have data yet, but I guarantee my par 3 and par 5 scoring will drop this next year!”
  • Jim E: “Pure blades aren’t hard to hit in the short irons. In fact, I think it’s easier. It’s when you get to the 5,4,3 irons that pure blades are difficult. Higher cog means you need a more pure strike with decent clubhead speed to get these on a playable trajectory.”
  • bladehunter: “If you have some speed, there’s no negative effect that I’ve ever seen anybody quantify from say 5 iron down. Obviously, 2-3 iron will require pretty good everything ….. but many play a hybrid there anyway. Personal preference should be the reason for the Choice either way. If you’re hitting the relative middle it’s not performance.”

Entire Thread: “Do blades negatively impact performance? Or is it all in our heads? – GolfWRXers discuss”

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