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 »  Home  »  Equipment  »  Play Testing  »  Irons  »  New on the Tee: 2015 Irons
New on the Tee: 2015 Irons
By Tom Landers | Published  05/23/2015 | Irons | Unrated
New on the Tee: 2015 Irons

Irons
Getting Better All The Time!

As a rule, changes in iron technology don’t occur as rapidly as with drivers. The rational explanation might be that golfers are more open to changing one club as opposed to an entire set. The skeptic might argue that the marketing machines of the major manufacturers feel that the golfing public is more open to emptying their pockets for sexy claims of enhanced distance off the tee than for boring things like feel, accuracy and consistency, even though the latter is more directly related to lower scores.
Well all of that is changing and if you haven’t checked out new irons in the last couple of years, you’re in for a real treat! Up until just the last few years the words “forged” and “forgiveness” were never used in the same sentence. “Forged game improvement iron” was an oxymoron. But don’t confuse the term forged with feel. More top touring professionals are using clubs that are cast and use multi materials than ever before.
Check out these new iron offerings at your favorite golf shop.

Players Irons


Appearance 5 star
Forgiveness 4 stars
Feel 5 stars
Consistency 4 star
Distance 4 stars

Bridgestone J15 Cavity Backs
www.BridgestoneGolf.com • $789

Unique Features: The J15CB cavity backs are played on Tour by Matt Kuchar and Brandt Snedeker and are constructed from premium forged Carbon Steel for incredible feel. A wider “Sure Contact Sole” ensures consistent contact and turf interaction with added forgiveness and a compact head design provides control and shop shaping capability better players can appreciate.l.

Tester Comments:A nice, simple clean design but with a little cavity to help out … They look like a players iron, but more on the forgiving side … Great high penetrating ball flight, easy to work side to side.


Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 4 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 4 stars
Distance 4 stars

Bridgestone J15 Driving Forged
www.BridgestoneGolf.com • $879

Unique Features: The J15DF forged driving irons feature a compact 2 piece premium forged Carbon Steel design for ideal balance of feel and forgiveness. A hidden, hollow cavity between the front and rear of clubhead enables more distance and relocation of discretionary weight to perimeter allows for added forgiveness.

Tester Comments:Great feel, look and distance … These feel great and are at least a half club longer than other forgings …


Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 5 stars
Consistency 5 star
Distance 4.5 stars

Bridgestone J15 Dual Pocket cavity
www.BridgestoneGolf.com • $789

Unique Features:The J15DPF Dual Pocket Forged Irons utilize a Turbo Rubber Design that allows saved discretionary weight to be moved to perimeter for increase forgiveness and higher M.O.I. while enhancing feel at impact. The mid-size head shape provides a confidence inspiring appearance at address. The wide, rounded sole allows for consistent contact and turf interaction with minimal resistance and added forgiveness on off-center hits.

Tester Comments:Crisp clubhead on ball sound and feel … a little more forgiveness, with a great blade look and lots of performance to it … A very solid golf club. Forgiveness factor is perfect with these.


Appearance 5 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 5 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 5 stars

Callaway XR Pro
www.CallawayGolf.com • $899

Unique Features: The XR Pro iron has taken the Cup 360 used in Callaway’s fairway woods and brought it to irons. The Cup 360 acts like a spring on shots hit low on the face, and is claimed to increase ball speeds everywhere else on the face. These irons also feature a lower CG and a 2-piece construction that includes a dual heat treatment in a head shape that’s more compact, with a thinner topline and narrower sole width...

Tester Comments: Great in the rough and other trouble shots … More forgiving than other player’s irons without sacrificing feel … Longer than others I have tried, distances were very consistent on center and off-center hits.


Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 5 star
Distance 5 stars

Wilson staff Tour M3
www.WilsonStaff.com • $799

Unique Features: Forged from 8620 carbon steel with a matte black PVD finish, this compact head is designed for precision and feel of a blade yet the latest forged irons from Wilson Staff provide a forgiving option for the feel player valuing precision and shot-shaping. Thin top lines on all irons allow for a lower center of gravity and a player’s look at address. The longer irons are thinner near the impact area for increased ball speeds and distance but transition to thicker in the short irons for more workability. As much mass as possible is moved to the heel and toe in the long irons for an increased moment of inertia and more forgiveness, transitioning to a more uniform thickness in the short irons for consistency and repeatability.

Tester Comments: Feel, consistency, and enough forgiveness to get the most out of the entire package. … A very forgiving iron … Average length with a tight dispersion pattern and dependable results


Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 5 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 5 stars

Wilson staff FG Tour V4 www.WilsonStaff.com • $799

Unique Features: The Wilson Staff FG Tour V4 irons are designed for the feel player seeking feedback and shot-shaping control. They feature tungsten weighting and improved sole camber and bounce for improved distance, versatility and optimal ball flight. The 18-gram tungsten sole weight featured in the 3-through 7-irons lowers the center of gravity and increases launch angle without increasing spin, producing a higher peak height on long and mid-iron shots and a steeper angle of descent for attacking pins. Precision milled grooves on a forged 8620 carbon steel allow golfers to control spin and shot-to-shot consistency. True Temper Dynamic Gold DG Pro shafts feature variably sized steps in the bottom half of the shaft for trajectory and responsiveness. s.

Tester Comments: Exceptional feel and great ball flight control … solid a feeling as any players iron … The consistency from shot to shot is impressive … forgiveness on off-center hits and you still get decent distance


Appearance 5 star
Forgiveness 5 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 4 stars

Wilson staff FG Tour 100 www.WilsonStaff.com • $875

Unique Features: A commemorative set for the Wilson 100 year anniversary, these forged 8620 carbon steel and nickel-chrome plating combined with a high polish mirror finish give these blades a premium look. Inspired by the iconic 1971 Wilson Staff “Button Back” model, these blades are forged with modern shape, size, styling and technology. A Fluid Feel bore-through insert paired with a milled face, scorelines and topline provide consistency for better players. Vintage triple knurling on the hosel and long, gold/red/gold ringed ferule with the three-piece button back make this iron a standout classic blade.

Tester Comments: Beautiful does not come close to describing these … These are definitely a players clubs … I was surprised at how easy they were to hit … found it easier than expected to get good results with these irons, especially the scoring irons.



Super Game Improvemnet Irons


Appearance 4 star
Forgiveness 5 stars
Feel 4 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 5 stars

Callaway Big Bertha
www.CallawayGolf.com • $999/$1199 Graphite

Unique Features: The Callaway Big Bertha Iron is claimed to make you up to two clubs longer. With built-in 360 Face Cup technology, this iron is that long. The center of gravity is low and by doing this, Callaway offers up high moment of inertia for maximum forgiveness and ball speed. The hollow body construction provides enhanced ball speed across the face. The new UST Recoil Graphite Shaft offers distance and control for maximum performance.

Tester Comments: Forgiving, really long, and launch the ball really high … Very pure feel off the face and accurate … Longer than any other club I tried … Easiest club to hit.



Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 4 star
Distance 5 stars

Cobra Fly Z XL
www.CobraGolf.com • $499

Unique Features: The oversized yet traditionally shaped Fly-Z XL Irons are designed to give golfers confidence at address and deliver easy distance through consistently higher trajectories. The dual hollow cavity design allows for a deeper, lower CG which helps get the ball up for better distance. In addition, the hollow construction allows for a thinner face which, along with the Speed Channel, delivers additional ball speed, distance and saves weight. The progressive offset design helps to create an easier draw.

Tester Comments: Consistent length on solid hits from shot to shot … These fly straight every time, not a lot of unwanted curvature … Good feedback on shots struck away from the sweet spot


Appearance 4 star
Forgiveness 5 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 5 stars

Wilson D200
www.wilsonstaff.com • $699 Graphite

Unique Features: These irons feature Wilson’s Speed Sole Technology which creates a thin face-to-sole transition, yielding a claimed driver like CT of 234. This cutout allows the iron face to flex, especially lower where most impacts occur, for better distance. Heel and toe weight pods provide a larger sweet spot and more forgiveness. Recoil Technology within the stock UST Mamiya Elements Chrome graphite shaft optimizes the spring effect and promotes the most efficient energy transfer from butt to tip to maximize ball speed and reduce ball dispersion.

Tester Comments: Great distance with solid trajectory … plenty of distance, about a half club longer than my clubs … light, but you can still tell where the clubhead is … thin and toe shots don’t lose much accuracy or distance.


Game Improvemnet Irons


Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 4 stars
Feel 5 stars
Consistency 4 star
Distance 4 stars

Bridgestone J15 Cast
www.BridgestoneGolf.com • $789

Unique Features:The J15 cast irons are a game enhancement iron designed to maximize distance and accuracy for players needing more forgiveness in their irons. The F.A.S.T. construction features a 360° undercut, full face channel to maximize the repulsion area and increase M.O.I. for higher speed and straighter distance regardless of where impact is made. A wide round sole helps provide maximum forgiveness and minimal turf resistance on off-center sweeping strikes while a larger clubhead with a thicker topline and increased offset inspires confidence at address.

Tester Comments: Easy to play shots from tight and sidehill lies; no problem moving shots in either direction if you make a good swing … tons of feedback lets you know when and where you missed it


Appearance 5 star
Forgiveness 5 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 5 star
Distance 4.5 stars

Callaway XR
www.CobraGolf.com • $700

Unique Features: The XR iron has taken the Cup 360 used in Callaway’s fairway woods and brought it to irons. These irons also feature a lower CG and a 2-piece construction that includes a dual heat treatment. XR Irons are the company’s first high speed, cavity back, cup-faced iron built for speed. The improved Cup 360 acts like a spring on shots hit low on the face, and increases ball speeds everywhere else on the face.

Tester Comments: Very forgiving on mishits, and like darts when not a mishit … provide outstanding length and forgiveness … they go high and straight … an effortless iron with lots of foregiveness across the entire face.


Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 5 stars
Feel 5 stars
Consistency 4 star
Distance 4.5 stars

Cobra Fly-Z
www.CobraGolf.com • $699

Unique Features: The Fly-Z Irons feature Cobra’s Speed Channel technology, a visible trench positioned on both the cavity behind the face and on the sole of the irons designed to flex and recover at impact to deliver more distance through faster ball speeds. The irons modern head shape combined with the Speed Channel delivers higher speeds across the face and yields the best combination of distance, forgiveness and feel. They feature a harmonic cavity insert that includes an engineered thermoplastic urethane insert positioned directly behind the impact zone for vibration damping and improved feel at impact

Tester Comments: FLY-Z has a smooth flowing design… The ball just jumps off the face and the forgiveness is better than average. Clean look and compact shape fits perfectly between a players club and a super game improvement iron


Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 5 star
Distance 4.5 stars

Ping G30
www.pinggolf.com • $899 Graphite

Unique Features: Progressive CG locations and offsets ensure efficient gapping and trajectories that maximize distance.. A special heat-treatment process results in a thinner and stronger face to increase ball velocity. The custom tuning port and an undercut cavity help position the center of gravity (CG) low-back to optimize launch and forgiveness. Slightly longer blade lengths help to increase moment of inertia (MOI), most noticeably in the 4- through 7-Irons. A soft elastomer badge further contributes to improved feel and sound in the perimeter-weighted design.

Tester Comments: Solid with a high flight … I was getting better yardage than I normally get … a good and consistent in feel from 4-iron through 9-iron.


Appearance 4.5 star
Forgiveness 5 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 5 stars

TaylorMade RSi
www.taylormadegolf.com • $899 Graphite

Unique Features: Face Slot Technology makes the TaylorMade RSi1 Iron their longest iron, even when you miss the sweet spot. With TaylorMade’s Advanced Face Design that features their thinnest face, a deep undercut, and Inverted Cone Technology, the club promotes maximum face speed and forgiveness. Advanced construction and multiple dampening systems improve sound and feel, while the new Reax 90 graphite shaft from True Temper helps to optimize ball flight for ultimate distance and performance

Tester Comments: A classic looking game improvement iron and very long … The larger head sets up well and the distance was consistent and long … I think it’s one of the best game-improvement irons. Even a low handicap can learn from these clubs


Appearance 5 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 5 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 4.5 stars

Titleist AP1 714
www.Titleist.com • $799

Unique Features: The Titleist AP1 714 Iron is the longest, most forgiving Titleist iron for golfers who want longer distance, maximum forgiveness and solid feel in a game-improvement iron. AP1 714 Irons provide higher-launching long irons and lower-launching short irons for longer flight with stopping control. A pre-worn leading edge that prevents digging and more front to back camber allows the club to release smoothly from the turf.

Tester Comments: Surprisingly long, exceeded my expectations in distance … remarkable ability to hold the line on misses, especially toe misses … Just what I want longer and straighter even on misses with good feel.


Appearance 4 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 4.5 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 5 stars

Tour Edge E8
www.touredge.com • $799

Unique Features:The E8 series irons are claimed to be the longest, most consistently accurate irons to carry the Exotics label. A deep undercut cavity design gives the E8 a hotter free standing face, especially toward the bottom near the sole. Utilizing 431 stainless steel and a one piece casting process, E8 are a classic iron design. Advanced weighting includes two tungsten weights low in heel and toe of the iron. The weight placement utilizes enhanced toe weighting to help square the club face at impact and provide better results on mis-hits. Each iron in the set is engineered for its specific task including center of gravity location, progressive offset, blade length, face thickness and top line thickness to deliver a great blend of distance and accuracy.

Tester Comments: Launches high, goes straight and far … Consistent feel across face even on mis-hits … Lots of forgiveness without sacrificing feel.


Appearance 4 star
Forgiveness 4.5 stars
Feel 4 stars
Consistency 4.5 star
Distance 5 stars

Wilson Staff C100
www.wilsonstaff.com • $699 Graphite

Unique Features: With playability achieved through an head shape and distance attained by a large, unsupported face, the Wilson Staff C100’s are targeted to the control player looking for a crossover of both feel and distance. The head design with a sleek mirror black PVD finish and contrasting face, sole, and Exoskeleton help promotes confidence at address. Exoskeleton weighting accounts for one-third of the total head mass, maximizing the moment of inertia and forgiveness while still maintaining a midsize head shape. A stronger, stainless steel material allows for the thinnest-faced Wilson Staff control iron yet.

Tester Comments: These feel great, light in the head and a good path through the ball …
Center shots felt really good … The distance consistency from shot to shot is impressive.