PG's Callaway 2012 Equipment Review
Callaway are hitting the market hard this year with refreshes of multiple products as well as the introduction of some new products that bring them in-line with the likes of TaylorMade and Titleist. Club fitter Simon has cast his watchful eye over the range at this year’s 2012 PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, as well as with our newly arrived demo stock, and gives his view of the offering especially for you!
The shape has stayed similar to the RAZR Hawk Tour but the join between the Forged Composite crown and the face has been hidden giving a neater look to the club head, however, the Callaway arrow on the top has also gone so there is no alignment aid on the crown either. A very solid feel off the face and the flight does not appear to have been affected by the hosel system and the resultant movement of weight. If anything it is a slightly stronger launch angle off the face than the RAZR Hawk Tour driver but with a matching spin profile. A good addition to the line up with Callaway’s first adjustable driver.
RAZR FIT Fairway
A very neat and classic mid profile head shape it will suit the better player visually as it sits very square behind the ball but is not as shallow as some heads, promoting a mid to strong flight. As with the driver it has a solid feel off the face and if anything errs on the slightly stronger side trajectory-wise. Very workable and will suit the stronger player looking for a head that will work well both off the tee and off the deck without ballooning the ball flight but as a result is not the most forgiving head on the market. Again uses the same adjustable hosel system as the driver giving it some versatility when setting the club up.
RAZR X Black Driver
This model takes over from the Diablo Octane Black driver and is a more forgiving head aimed at a higher launch and lower spin profile, also with some draw bias as well to reduce the chance of a sliced shot. This has a harder sound off the face than the RAZR Hawk and RAZR FIT series heads but produces a higher ball flight relative to loft. A neater head shape than the previous model it sits better behind the ball at address rather than looking too extreme.
RAZR X Black Fairway
This model takes over from the Diablo Octane Fairway and produces the same ball flight characteristics with strong spin profile and a slight draw bias. The launch angle, if anything, is slightly higher but this only serves to make it a bit more forgiving than its predecessor and is another model that follows the strong Callaway Fairway Wood heritage.
RAZR X High Launch Hybrid
An addition to the very successful RAZR X Hybrid range, where the other models tend to produce quite a strong, flatter flight this is designed to get the ball flight up to the top of the flight quickly and with a slight draw bias too. Utilising a shallower and deeper weight profile to the head it gets the weight under the ball more easily and gives a more “up and out” flight than the other models which tend to suit being played more like an iron. This model can be played more like a wood and gives a more user-friendly head to those looking for a higher ball flight.
The latest ultra-forgiving iron head from Callaway. The forged material and the deep cut-away design make it a complex build and so it is a top end price point but it is an incredibly easy iron to hit with the forged head giving a softer feel off the face, and the dampening plate in the back stopping it sounding tinny. Strong lofts keep the ball flight down and produce long distances from these irons and will make them very popular, particularly in the longer irons where the forgiveness gives them a real edge, and will make them a good alternative to a hybrid for a player looking for the stronger, flatter flight at the top end of the bag. The black PVD finish gives a slightly neater look to the head and a different visual to most of the other heads in the range.
RAZR X HL Iron
A direct replacement for the Diablo Edge Iron, it also has very deep weighting to the head for stability and forgiveness. Slight changes to the positioning of the weight in the rear of the head help to turn the toe over and promote the face squaring up more easily through impact. Again strong lofts will give good distance off these heads, but the cast material gives a firmer feel off the face and makes adjusting loft and lie much harder but a good overall head to give higher levels of forgiveness.
RAZR X Black Iron
This sits between the RAZR X and RAZR X Tour. A slightly longer hosel than the RAZR X Iron helps keep the face squarer through impact and a marginally reduced offset gives a neater look to the head. The Black PVD finish also gives a slightly neater look to the head, and the weighting in the rear of the head gives a good level of forgiveness.
The head offers a different visual (as with the RAZR XF Iron) and will be popular for that but performance-wise there are only small steps from the RAZR X Tour to the RAZR X Black and then to the RAZR X, so Callaway have given plenty of options in this area of the iron market.
Roger Cleveland’s new wedges have taken the groove design from the X Jaws series heads but with a slightly higher toe line and squarer leading edge for a more classic look. The sole grind is a more softened version of the C-Grind that exists on the X Jaws line offering a versatile sole shape, with a slightly narrower sole as well for tighter turf conditions. Offered in Dark Chrome and Copper finish (which will rust up over time) rather than the Satin Chrome and Slate finish that the X Jaws come in.
Hex Black Tour Ball
This ball amalgamates the characteristics of both the Tour-iS and Tour-iZ into one ball by utilising a firmer outer core to optimise high spin on wedge shots and softer inner core to lower spin off the tee, progressing from one end of the spectrum to the other as club speed and ball compression changes. Improved cover durability and strength helps with ball flight stability and a slight refinement of the Hex dimple design helps aerodynamics as well.