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ULTIMATE! – “Head-To-Head Golf Club Comparison Tool”

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Big Day For MyGolfSpy - Bigger Day For Consumers!

Today's a big day for MyGolfSpy and the start of what we hope will be an even bigger day for golfers around the world.  Today we're launching a new game-changing feature on MGS ; a tool which has never been made available to golf consumers before.

It's not only one of the biggest requests we've gotten since starting our "Ultimate Review System"…but it's been one of the biggest requests by golfers since golf clubs have been produced.  And because our reviews are scored based on actual launch monitor data, this new feature is even more valuable to anyone interested in knowing what club works best for his game.

First We Launched The "Ultimate Review System"

A few years ago we set out to change and revolutionize the way the industry reviewed golf equipment.  With so many choices, and so many clubs being released each year, we felt there needed to be a better way to help golfers sort through all the hype to decipher what's real.  There were already tons of sites and magazines conducting equipment reviews…but few were leveraging launch monitors, and fewer still were willing to risk advertisers by telling you that one club might actually outperform another.

We've never been afraid of stepping on any golf company toes, so we set out to create a system that would help golfers make more informed decisions about the equipment they test and ultimately purchase.  And while we admit our system is not perfect, in just over 2 years the "MyGolfSpy - Ultimate Review System" has come closer than any golf club test and review process ever conceived to providing real results backed with real data. In a short time our Ultimate Review System has become a resource that not only the industry respects but more importantly one that MyGolfSpy's 250,000 monthly readers find useful and effective during the purchasing process.

The New "Compare Clubs" Feature Takes It To Next Level!

Today we take another step in our journey to providing you the "Ultimate Resource For Golf Consumers".  Today we're launching our "Compare Clubs" feature.  So...how will this new feature help you, your game & your wallet? Well....

  • Are you tired of sifting through tons of Google searches to find golf club reviews before making a purchase?
  • Are you sick of having to read 4 or 5 golf sites or magazines to piece together enough info to become more informed?
  • Have you spent excessive amounts money on golf equipment only to find it didn't help your game?
  • Have you ever wished there was a way to compare one club vs. another, or many clubs all at once?
  • Do you want to know which is the longest driver we've ever tested?
  • Do you want to know which iron, wedge or driver is the most accurate?
  • Do you need to know which clubs our testers thought felt or sounded the best?
  • Have you always wanted to know...if newer is really better?
  • Do you wish you had this data and information all in one place?

If you answered yes to any of the following questions, then our new "Compare Clubs" feature is just what you have been looking for.  Anytime you are looking to make a purchase for a piece of golf equipment make sure you cheek the "Compare Clubs" data first.  The "Compare Drivers" tool is available today, and it won't be long before we add a "Compare Irons" section as well.  Over the next few weeks we will continue to add more and more categories so you can began to compare all the equipment we have reviewed on MyGolfSpy.

{ 85 comments… read them below or add one }

Mike Zabroski April 30, 2012 at 1:37 pm

This system could mean a lot to the average golfer so put it out there for us.

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John April 30, 2012 at 2:10 pm

This is beautiful!

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Finnegans April 30, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Fantastic!

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Barbajo April 30, 2012 at 3:29 pm

Perfect — you guys already have the best reviews on the web. Now you’ve made it even easier for your readers. Congrats and thank you!

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Slim April 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm

*HIGH FIVE* Awesome job guys!

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JGolf April 30, 2012 at 5:33 pm

Just out of curiosity, with the different testing systems will the comparisons be skewed?

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GolfSpy T May 1, 2012 at 5:46 am

Fair question. The best answer I can give is maybe…but just a little. We’re essentially in our 3rd iteration of our testing methodology and scoring system. For the earliest reviews, things were done very differently than they are today (believe me figuring out how to do this stuff takes time, and once you get into the guts of it, the little details make coming up with something cohesive quite complex). For those early revisions, which include clubs like the PowerBilt AirForce One, Adams 9064LS, and the Srixon Z-TX, there is no reasonable conversion that could be made, and so we chose not to include them in the table.

For 2nd generation reviews (PING K15, Titleist 910D, and several others) we had a complete data set, the primary difference between those and the current reviews comes in how the math was applied. When I created the newest revision, I did with the goal of not rendering the previous series of reviews obsolete. That meant converting old scores to the new system to ensure consistency, and then reverting new scores to the old system to ensure that what was true then, is also true now.

It’s a bit complicated, but the short story is we tried to make sure that a new club that performed roughly the same as an older club received roughly the same score.

On the subjective side, we simply took the average of “Sound” and “Feel” from older reviews (where they were scored separately), to come up with the new “Sound & Feel” Score.

So to answer your question, conversion probably isn’t 100% perfect, but it was not only something we considered, but something I spent a lot of time on in order to preserve the value of our earlier reviews.

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Yohanan April 30, 2012 at 8:19 pm

Tears of joy
Outstanding job

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R. P. Jacobs II May 1, 2012 at 7:38 am

Congrats…Great job & excellent feature….Comprehensive & objective…That’s all someone can ask for…Fairways & Greens 4ever…..

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g woudstra May 1, 2012 at 9:10 am

Well done!!!

Love the reviews!!

perhaps it is an idea altering the colors.
meaning (for example):
B 80-85 Solid ………. green
B+ 85-90 Worth buying … yellow
A 90-95 Among the elite … orange
A+ 95-100 Bag it…. red

Then you can see at once which clubs are in the same categorie

greetings

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KFlare May 1, 2012 at 9:38 am

This is a phenomenal step, MGS! So much more helpful and honest than the usual “____ List” we might see elsewhere!

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Alex May 1, 2012 at 9:39 am

I really like the new feature, but i would offer one suggestion.
Once you get messing with the sliders, if you want to go and compare some irons, it takes a really long time for you to get back to the original comparison page. Because everytime you hit the “back” button, it goes through all of the different aspects of the driver you changed. So maybe you could provide a link to the irons page or something.
I don’t mean to nitpick or anything, I really appreciate all that you guys are going, I’m just trying to help out.

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GolfSpy T May 1, 2012 at 9:48 am

Alex – Good suggestion. We’re still a little while out on the iron page, but I don’t see any reason why we can’t include links on drivers to irons, and on the irons page to the drivers.

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Johoyo May 1, 2012 at 5:19 pm

Great Job. Checked the driver comparison and it is really awesome.

Can’t access the iron comparison, there is no link to it.

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GolfSpy T May 2, 2012 at 10:16 am

The iron comparison isn’t up yet. I’m slowly putting it together. Hopefully that will go live soon. Wedges will follow shortly behind it. We haven’t tested enough hybrids or fairways to build data for that yet, but their day will come as well.

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RUSTY May 1, 2012 at 8:10 pm

you need to do compare clubs for fairway woods

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mikerio May 2, 2012 at 4:29 am

Ye see I don’t understand how its gonna be useful comparing a load of clubs for T to just shoot em down with a taylormade super adjustable killer drone driver that won’t get reviewed…..otherwise a good idea….ill be first to compare k15, g20 and I20. I can hear T in the background screaming no go for the taylormade supertri triple shafted weight burnerballz…..X

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Anon May 2, 2012 at 6:32 am

Interesting. I am actually not a big fan to be honest. It’s funny comparing the i20 to the G20. Based on your scores, the i20 is superior, but only b/c it destroys the G20 in subjective categories. I could care less what you and your merry band of testers (whoever they are) think about what is attractive, what is not, what your perceived “feel” is, etc. So you have a driver that overall grades out the highest of the list, and might be one of the most unforgiving. Just what the bulk of amateur golfers need out there on the golf course…..an unforgiving driver. Golf courses are littered with hacks and slow golfers, and it sucks that you are prompting them to put a club in their bag that only makes that process worse and slower. And in the name of the Hot List, could you please conduct some of your testing outside, in real golf conditions?!?! Oh, and you might want to get your hands on a Cleveland Classic. As a person who has owned the G20, Razr Fit, Razr Hawk, R11, and the Classic, it might be the best driver on the market.

The software is cool and the fact that you offer this is cool, but I believe it’s extremely misleading to consumers. I don’t know you, I don’t know your golf game, but I know you hit all this stuff indoors, in ideal conditions. I hate to break it to you, but that’s not golf.

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KFlare May 2, 2012 at 6:48 am

I agree that there is room for test improvement here, but the line has to be drawn somewhere. But, MGS is aware of the test methods shortcomings and they don’t have unlimited resources. They have shown that they are continuing to improve this system, whereas no one else is even trying to provide objective data.

I’d also say, as an i20 and G20 player, that the i20 is about as forgiving as the G15, which was a very playable club. There’s nothing damaging about recommending this club, but it’s only the extreme forgiveness that has been shown this past year by the G20 and others that makes the i20 a “players” driver. 2 years ago, the i20′s forgiveness would have easily fit in with the game improvement drivers (albeit with phenomenally low spin).

Just goes to show that you shouldn’t look at the MGS comparisons and always buy the club with #1 overall score, just like you shouldn’t look at the Hot List and go buy the editor’s choice. However, MGS will also provide guidance and objective feedback to analyze their list and decide what fits your game. I’m glad someone is filling this niche!

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Anon May 2, 2012 at 6:50 am

Yet thousands of consumers depend on the Hot List, and now that the digital arena is growing at a rapid pace, places like MGS and other forums, for information in order to make purchases. Let’s not kid ourselves, people find places like this to get as much information as possible to make an “educated” purchase.

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Alex May 2, 2012 at 12:17 pm

If they did the research then isn’t it considered an “educated purchase”? No matter where they get their research from?
What is the difference between making their purchase decsion off of the subjective scores here as compared to making a purchase off of talking to someone? If you talk to a salesrep, salesmen or a friend, you are going to get a subjective result either way. And the salesmen and the friend probably won’t have the numbers to back it up like this does.

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wdgolf May 2, 2012 at 7:25 am

Keep in mind all the raw numbers are there for you to look at. You can remove all the subjective measurements if you want, but many people do care about sound/feel, so it’s still helpful to have it there.

Compare this to the HotList, which gives almost nothing but subjective viewpoints where you can practically predict who will get Gold every year. There is no perfect system out there, but this is by far the best. The only way to objectively look at club reviews online is with head to head comparisons like this. Then you can look at the numbers and factor in your swing to see which fits you best so you can narrow down your options. In the end, you should still get custom fitted, but you’ll go into the fitting with a lot more knowledge.

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Anon May 2, 2012 at 7:34 am

Agreed. I hate the Hot List, hence the expression, “in the name of the Hot List”. It’s more a joke. I would still like to see some outdoor testing, but that’s just me. Are these drivers just tested in doors? I would like to see how they stack up on the course for the testers. See if their FIR #’s increase/decrease. See how setups perform in the wind.

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wdgolf May 2, 2012 at 9:25 am

I’m still torn about the outdoor vs indoor debate, but I think for reviews you want as stale of an environment as possible. My outdoor would be very different than a Texas outdoor, so it’s hard to translate the results. Plus, if it’s windy one day and not the next, you could get results that are very skewed.

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GolfSpy T May 2, 2012 at 10:02 am

Let me start by saying there are absolutely some aspects of club performance I’d love to test outdoors, but only because they can’t be reasonably replicated indoors (sand chief among them). We choose to conduct our tests indoors because it allows us to completely level the playing field. Weather and course conditions have an impact on performance, and a bigger impact still on perceived performance.

Wind is perhaps the most obvious, but we also have to consider temperature, humidity, and ground conditions (firm vs. wet). Even something as simple as how tightly mowed the fairway is can affect a golfer’s perception of how a given club performed (how do you account for 5 more yards of roll because the grass is shorter, and course drier?). We want to take the elements out of the equation. I would also challenge anyone to prove to me that, with their naked eye, they can accurately distinguish 2-3 yards both of distance and accuracy (left/right) at 220 yards. I can’t do that, but the launch monitor can.

What we’ve proven time and time again is that golfers almost always see what they want to see, and that often bares very little correlation to reality. Using any subjective test, which would include most on-course testing, as a measure of performance is inherently flawed. That’s not to say it can’t add value, but we believe data has to be the thing.

Regarding the inclusion of subjective numbers. After much internal discussion we came to the conclusion that we absolutely had to include them. Still, we do strongly believe that performance matters most, which is why, although individual subjective categories are weighted more highly than others, the subjective total portion of our scoring only accounts for 10% of the total score for everything other than wedges where it accounts for 25%.

One other word of warning. The Raw data should be used for very rough comparisons. Despite our best efforts it has proven impossible to use the same testers for every review (we’ve had multiple injuries, we’ve had people move, etc.). The bottom line is that reviews must continue regardless of individual tester circumstances. We simply can’t shut it down for 3 months because a tester has elbow problems.

To account for this (with drivers and a portion of fairway and hybrid testing), we developed a point-based system. The short of it is that when testing a new club, each tester is measured against the best numbers from his own previous performances. Individual scores are based on how close each tester comes to his achieving his theoretical best.

Short version: Because of the inclusion of different testers, the point system is a more accurate measurement of performance than the Raw data, although the raw numbers, particularly the accuracy component certainly have value.

Let me close by saying we don’t believe for a minute our system is perfect. We do think it’s the best system currently out there (and we’re always working on ways to improve it), but it’s not absolute nor is it flawless. There have been reviews where I’d tell you I don’t believe the numbers told the complete story (and I do try and point those out), and others where I wish we could take a do-over. That said, we’ve received a great deal of feedback from countless readers who report success with clubs they’ve purchased based on our reviews, and have received a tremendous amount of support and encouragement from the golf companies we work with to provide these reviews.

Phana24JG May 3, 2012 at 8:23 am

Why go Anon? I think this is a legitimate criticism. I do not know X, T, or any of the Admins, but I think they have to make some difficult choices. Do they provide their information in the purest form or do they simply provide what is the most appealing?

If you want the appealing stuff, simply go to Golf Digest and follow the lemmings. If you want pure raw data, buy an Iron Byron (or his new equivalent) and publish your findings. While useful, the problem there is human beings actually swing golf clubs, and while I share completely your philosophy regarding the subjective crap. the FACT is that most MGS readers find this information useful. I suspect MGS has to carefully wade through this minefield and I believe their constant updating and improvement of the testing procedure is a testament to their efforts. Do I agree with them, no, I believe, as do you, that I could care less what a club “feels” like or “sounds.” It can feel like a noodle and have the sound of a fart, but if I can drive it 285 down the middle, or start dropping wedges next to pins, I will start to like that feel and sound

Finally, and please take this as constructive criticism, I think your point about outdoor testing is somewhat contradictory. You want the most accurate and scientific information, then you want to add numerous variables relating to weather and test facility conditions. You will get very different numbers for clubs hit at 50F versus 85F. Even the Gold Standard, Trackman, concedes that information for winds greater than 10mph may be compromised. Care to guess what the difference between a wet, unmowed fairway will be versus a dry tour-cut fairway? Is this golf, hell no, but we are NOT playing golf; we are comparing clubs.

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R. P. Jacobs II May 4, 2012 at 12:51 pm

What I don’t understand is how you could say that the I20 review is “prompting them to put a club in their bag that only makes the process worse & slower,”…The reviewer states a few times that this is not a driver for the masses & his statement that “it’s not a driver that I’d recommend to those of you who have trouble finding the center of the clubface,” is about as straight forward as can be if your IQ is north of 90 & you’re not dellusional…

KFlare, GS T & Wdgolf all stated excellent responses though I guess if you’re looking to criticize, you’ll find something to take issue with…”merry band of testers?”..Cute, sarcastic comment, though as one who is on other sites & having played the game for awhile, there is no more professional group on the web…You may not agree with their findings or results, though you cannot attack their credibility…JMHO

All MGS is doing is giving readers unfiltered, unbiased information to assist in there club selection process…I myself, do not use the subjective data at all..Like you, it means nothing to me..Though I find their performance(interactive) data excellent..I have never owned a Ping club & because of the I20 review I tried it, liked it(Now I’m in Love) & bought it…I can only speak for myself & while outside testing would be great, the variables are just too great to make it consistant for every review…I’ve never once had a club that I hit well indoors, if it was properly fit, not play well on the course..Never…

Everything is relative, & if you compare MGS and their reviews, protocols/processes to all of the other sites, they take a back seat to no one…None..The Best…Fairways & Greens 4ever…

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KFlare May 4, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa…while I am a D-bag about a great many things, I came to MGS’ defense for doing the best that they (or anyone else) can. You must have me confused with Anon.

I’m a huge MGS fan, and I love that the Golfspies let us all join in the debate about how to make the best golf site possible. So, no complaints from me.

If nothing else R.P., let us rally around our love for the i20!

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KFlare May 4, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Oh, and in defense of the subjective ratings since many people don’t like them, I actually really like those sections of the reviews. I have a lot of interest in consumer products, so I find it interesting to see what features resonate with golfers.

And if a driver can sound like a cannon when hit well, I want to know about it :)

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GolfSpy T May 4, 2012 at 1:17 pm

We’ve made it a point to be open to questions and criticisms. As I’ve said, we’ve put a lot of thought into the system. We’ve adapted as we’ve seen opportunities to improve, and because we made some assumptions early on that didn’t quite pan out. Building a review system that relies on real data from multiple testers (especially when you can’t guarantee you always have the same guys) is a bigger ordeal than I think most people would imagine. While I wouldn’t say I’m a fan of the Hot List necessarily, I am envious that they can get hunker down for a couple of weeks and test most everything all at once. That’s something we’d love to do.

We’ve known for a while not that some people appreciate having the subjective feedback, while others think it cheapens the review. Though it seems unreal to those of us who have several golf, big box sporting good stores, etc. in our general vicinity, there are plenty of golfers who simply don’t have easy access to golf shops, demo days, etc. We thought it might be helpful to give them something as a starting point.

This is exactly why we’ve broken the scores out the way we have. Maybe you care about Looks, but not sound & feel…that’s why every category has an out of 100 score. If you don’t care about the subjective stuff, the performance scores stand alone. Part of why we built this table is so each golfer can sort and evaluate by whatever criteria is important to him.

R. P. Jacobs II May 4, 2012 at 1:20 pm

KFlare, my apologies if you took my comments as directed @ you..They were directed @ Anon..I should’ve adressed him up front…If you look @ my second paragraph, I gave you, T, & Wd kudos for your responses…Unlike in the forum, I can’t go back & edit my reply..Sorry to raise the bp..it’s all good..

On another front, I’ve only “fallen” for two other drivers in 44 years & the second was the 9064LS..The I20 is the third..I frickin love this thing..It’s funny cuz I’ve never even hit a Ping driver before, much less bought one..Played yesterday & hit 9/11 fairways..Granted, I’m swingin well right now, but damn, this thing loves the short hair..lol…

Have a good week-end Bro..Fairways & Greens 4ever,,,,,,,

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R. P. Jacobs II May 4, 2012 at 1:27 pm

Also, while I don’t use the subjective data myself, I in no way think it “cheapens” the process..As KFlare stated & I know through my business dealings, subjective data like you include is critical when bringing a product to market & to ignore it would be extremely foolish..It’s just for my purposes in evaluating a club, my subjective opinion is the only data that I use..If I need more than one opinion, I just look in the mirror…The Best…Fairways & Greens 4ever…

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wdgolf May 2, 2012 at 6:54 am

Very interesting data. The launch monitor numbers look absolutely perfect for the I20. I’m not sure how much this says for the I20 or the custom fitting. The next best looking spin/LA numbers from my amateur perspective were the Powerpod or G20, but that had 13-15 yards less distance than the I20 and 300-400 more backspin.

The Adams 9088UL and RAZR Fit had very similar numbers, but despite the fact that the Adams had 100 *more* backspin, it went 8 yards further due to 2mph of club head speed.

I realize it’s easy to calculate smash factor from the numbers on the table, but could you add it there explicitly?

Thanks for these charts!

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GolfSpy T May 2, 2012 at 10:13 am

We chose not to include smash factor for a couple of reasons. 1st…we wanted to make the layout as clean as possible. To do that, several bits had to be left out.

2nd, while we believe the aG launch monitors are excellent at measuring launch angle, ball speed, and spin rates, we’re also reasonably certain they overcook head speed calculations by a couple MPH. In my particular case, Bridgestone’s ball fitting had me at an average of 107. Realistically, I think 109 is probably as high as I’ll ever get. However, on the aG system, it’s not unusual for me to hit 112. The result of the higher head speed estimate is that smash factors appear lower than I believe they actually are.

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Phana24JG May 3, 2012 at 7:10 am

I have heard rumors (although no one willing to go on record) that even some of the radar guys think that while their data on the club is superior, the MODERN camera systems might have a couple of advantages on ball data. This would appear to reinforce your intuitive reaction to AG clubhead speed and smash factor.

I emphasized modern camera systems because I have some personal experience with older AG systems that while useful in a personal head-to-head comparison, are not particularly useful for this kind of analysis.

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GolfSpy T May 3, 2012 at 8:52 am

As I’ve been saying for what feels like years now, both camera and radar systems have advantages and disadvantages. Unfortunately camera-based systems (like the aboutGolf units we use, or Foresight’s GC2 system) face an uphill battle because 1) Radar has been the accepted standard in the industry for years, 2) Many golfers actually have experience camera-based systems in one for or another, and it may not have gone particularly well. You mentioned the older generation camera systems, and then there are those you find where they’re *tuned* to sell clubs.

The most common assertion we hear is that Trackman is better than FlightScope, and FlightScope is better than any camera system, and yada, yada, yada. Of course, most of the people who make these claims have never compared the systems head to head, and if they did, the would assume any discrepancies to be an error on the part of the camera-based system, or at the very least, the assumption would be that Trackman is correct, FlightScope is close, and the camera system is probably wrong. Does anyone actually know for sure? Things is, Trackman is on top so the burden of proving they’re not the best/most accurate (and they may very well be) lies with the competition.

Here’s the reality. Golf companies both large and small trust both radar and camera systems to provide accurate and reliable data. PERIOD. We had a conversation with a representatives of a well-known golf company who basically told us that aboutGolf specifically is as accurate as anything else out there (do most people understand that radar is accurate only to +/-3 yards at 200 yards?)

Now certainly there are some things about the aG units irk me. I hate using “special” golf balls. I don’t like the idea of “profiles” that allow you to tune the unit per golfer. If I hit a club with X amount of ball speed, and angle Y, and generate Z amount of spin, that should basically be the whole of it…none of this tuning for slower swing speed players or a “Big Hitter” (big hitter is an actual setting). Pulling data out of the system is tedious on a good day, and since I’m not feeling particularly elegant today, I’ll be blunt and say that the graphical presentation capabilities basically blow. But…at the end of the day, the damn thing gets the job done as well as anything else.

Now if you’re asking if we would consider a switch to an alternative system, the answer is absolutely. But again, that decision would be based around things like portability (can’t really pack up the simulator and drop in a bunker), presentation capabilities (would love to give you guys more/better graphics), time savings (it takes about an hour just to import/format the data for a single review), and additional data (would like to give you reliable club path data for our testers as well as things like angle of decent).

As for the accuracy of camera based systems…I have absolutely no reservations, and neither do any of the “industry insiders” I’ve spoken with on the subject.

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Phana24JG May 3, 2012 at 10:15 am

I think your analysis is pretty sound. My personal preference is for the Flightscope. I have been on all three and like them all. The benefit I see from the ‘Scope is the portability, the way a student can bring his own memory card and get data, and the affordability factor.

Obviously, the AG is superior for golf simulation, and I am sure they will respond in time to the software requirements for lessons and fitting, but their focus is more for the simulator market. The AG is also much more expensive than even Tman according to one guy I have met. You might be vaguely familiar with him, his name is Kent :)

robmailman May 2, 2012 at 9:24 am

this is a fantastic idea because it is done by average joe’s, instead the usual hot list crap, great job guy’s and keep up the good work .

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DL May 2, 2012 at 9:38 am

pretty cool. Nice work!

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Anon May 2, 2012 at 10:58 am

Thanks for the response GolfSpyT. Very thorough and it answered a lot of my concerns. It’s appreciated.

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Kathy May 3, 2012 at 1:06 am

Really appreciate this. Good job

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Gregh May 3, 2012 at 8:19 am

I must say that I like this but, all golfers should know that many of these results are based on one type of shaft and should always attempt to find demo days to test these products aginst each other. I was somewhat surpised that these numbers for drivers actually were very close. Maybe shouldn’t be so surprised as most companies devote a lot of R&D into drivers. Still I think this gives the average golfer a solid basis on which products to test.

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Fleeter May 3, 2012 at 8:19 am

In one word I can describe this as AWESOME. Thanks so much golfspy for the continuing support of this great sport. Great job!

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Andrew May 3, 2012 at 8:41 am

There seems to be a glitch with the cell colors, once a column (any column) is sorted, all the numbers get “greyed” out unless you select the column header cell, this makes it very difficult to read the numbers, certain colors (yellow) are almost completely indistiguishable. This is for the driver sheet, have not been able to access the iron sheet.

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Jim May 3, 2012 at 8:55 am

awesome review. love it. now to show it to all my friends that love to buy new clubs. haha

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Chris Margary May 3, 2012 at 9:16 am

It is very very good !!

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Justin May 3, 2012 at 10:24 am

I love, love, LOVE the premise, if only for the simple fact there’s no ad dollars influencing the “tests”. The only concern I have is the human element- how brandwashed are the testers? Seems fickle, but without the use of uncaring robots, it’s something to be cognizant of.

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GolfSpy T May 3, 2012 at 10:37 am

I think we’ve done a very good job of assembling an unbiased panel of testers. Big brands have been beat on, smaller ones have done well, and vice versa. The TourEdge CB4 Fairways and Hybrids are a great example of a smaller brand that our testers were very open to. I suppose the same could be said about Wilson (FG Tour V2).

As far as robots go. It’s something we actually looked into recently, but the industry types with spoke with suggested it’s a rabbit hole we’d be better off not leaping in to. Robots have their place (and they can be very useful when you’re trying to make a specific point), but they find human testing to be more beneficial.

Don’t get me wrong, I think it would be interesting to toss in a little robot data here in there, but when you figure the cost both financially, and in time spent setting up, configuring, and calibrating, the actual return on investment just isn’t there.

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Phana24JG May 3, 2012 at 2:07 pm

I think this is a valid criticism, and one that MGS will HAVE to keep an eye on. I think T is correct about the validity of human v. robot testing, but over what time frame does a tester provide the same input? For example, a 25 yr old relatively new golfer may be swinging much better in 2012 than he was in 2010. A senior golfer may be testing on a day where a key joint is giving him some problems. Are wedge tests done in January the equivalent of wedge tests done in August? I know we have discussed some of these before, but they are worth repeating for the newbies.

The issue of “brainwashing” is not a concern to me. I would think that if anything, these MGSers probably tend to be far more dubious than idiots like me and similar readers.

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GolfSpy T May 4, 2012 at 8:50 am

It’s hard…probably impossible to account for every scenario with human testers, but we do what we can. For example, if it’s clear that a tester simply doesn’t have “it” on a given day, we toss the results and have him come back again.

We also ask our testers to keep handicaps. While HCP isn’t a complete measure of a person’s game, it gives us something. If a tester is playing well enough to lower his handicap into the the next MyGolfSpy scoring bracket, then that’s where he goes (keep in mind that radius-based tests are scored in part based on handicap.

Finally, when we look at off-the-tee testing (drivers, and a portion of both fairway woods and hybrids), the plan is to reset the baseline after each season. If a tester shows steady, measurable improvement throughout the season, I’m not opposed to resetting baselines more often if the situation suggests we should.

We’ve tried to account for as much as we reasonably can (based on what we’ve learned so far), but there’s always something that forces us to adjust…and we will continue to do so.

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Phana24JG May 4, 2012 at 12:12 pm

The willingness to admit the flaws, and continuing discussion regarding improvement is one of the reason MGS attracts, but more importantly, keeps so many golfers. If I appear hypercritical at times, it is only out of respect because I appreciate that you guys can take it, and enjoy accepting constructive criticism, or rebutting unwarranted critiques. Unlike our friend at that “other” site, or the +5 golfers at GD’s official whorehouse.

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Graham Keen May 3, 2012 at 1:00 pm

You guys rock. Thanks for a great site that is getting better by the day. Cheers

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Jeff May 4, 2012 at 6:07 pm

This is really great, I’m sure its coming but I would love to be able to click on any club in the comparison and see the original review and pictures.

I’m sure some will be upset you don’t have the club from their bag compared apples to apples favorably with the top selling club out there, but I think this is as good as it gets.

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mygolfspy May 4, 2012 at 7:10 pm

Gotta covered Jeff….simply hover your mouse over any of the clubs and a pop-up will appear with a link to that particular club review and pictures.

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Sam F. May 5, 2012 at 5:35 am

Given the complexity of analysis (qualitative data, quantitative data, human element, objective vs. subjective characteristics, technological improvements, improved methodology and measurement systems over time) that goes into this type of project, I cannot imagine a better result than MGS’s approach, short of hiring a team of engineers, physicists, and professors of non-parametric statistics.

I also like the sound and feel ratings because, like many, I don’t have access to hit many of the clubs reviewed. If many people think a club feels harsh I can be reasonably sure that I would feel the same and thus remove it from my consideration (because I think that feel is important). I want to enjoy my time on the golf course. Hitting a pure shot (feeling-wise) is a big part of that experience, whether the result is close to the hole or not. If you only care about hitting targets then maybe darts should be your game.

The only draw back to MGS that I’ve found is that you haven’t necessarily reviewed all the clubs that I want to read about. Not really their fault though.

Would like to see more shaft comparisons. Is that possible?

Thanks MGS!

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mikerio May 5, 2012 at 12:28 pm

It would be interesting if golfspy could possibly promote particular claims by big companies to physics students who are carrying out research to see how clubs do. Coming from a scientific background I can imagine that due to human influence that cannot be controlled such as nerves on first tee, shanks, good etc ….researchers would possibly claim all clubs are potentially brilliant in the right hands….oh and I work with various science departments at Liverpool university and have taught biology for 11 years before the naysayers question my wealth of knowledge ;) …..I’M KIDDING PLEASE

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Phana24JG May 5, 2012 at 12:58 pm

LOLOL….however, I could send you to a website that spends a LOT of time discussing this stuff in an incredible amount of detail. When you need your old physics textbooks and referring to various engineering websites just to follow the discussion, it is time to go elsewhere.

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mikerio May 5, 2012 at 12:30 pm

Tho I do and have worked at those places….I just don’t have a wealth of knowledge..I know shitloads about nothing very interesting

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hongman May 5, 2012 at 2:23 pm

All I can say is… Yowzah…!!

Great Job Golf Spy!! While no scoring system is perfect, this is really the only one out there trying to be meaningful to all types of recreational golfers. I can hardly wait for the irons and wedges to make their appearance as well.

I picked up a recent issue of golf magazine while lauguishing in an airport last week… naturally, it has a club review of hybrids and fairway woods.. segregated by Player handicap/proficiency. While they used Trackman data to fit and recommend clubs to the various players testing sticks, the virtually useless club descriptions did not include any data to support the typical glowing reviews. I wasted $5 on a glossy magazine, when I should’ve just fired up my laptop and visited the Golf Spy site!!

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Phana24JG May 5, 2012 at 6:31 pm

Really??? You mean “smooth as silk” or “wow, these clubs are really forgiving” is not enough information? Tough audience. :)

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mikerio May 6, 2012 at 9:54 am

Phana24JG you joking…golfers talk about spin rates, moments of inertia and COR etc….physics my son. I agree that when it comes down to it on the first tee this don’t mean shit but it would be interesting to get a bunch of guys from Cambridge to rubbish or stand by pings, taylormades claims that their clubs will reinvent your game….oh I have no physics text book I’m a biologist mate….a shit one granted.

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Seth May 8, 2012 at 6:53 pm

Where’s the Adams 9064ls in the review?!?!

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Kathy May 10, 2012 at 7:39 pm

I think it would be the next review

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The Grateful Golfer May 30, 2012 at 6:22 pm

All I can say is WOW! What a fantastic tool for comparing various clubs. I have booked marked this page. Thank you.

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mygolfspy May 30, 2012 at 6:24 pm

Glad you found us…hope you enjoy ;)

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Mark Long June 5, 2012 at 12:58 pm

One word: a-m-a-z-i-n-g. It’s much better than HotList. I agree with wdgolf, there is no perfect system out there, but this is by far the best. Thank you golfspy.

Mark

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mygolfspy June 5, 2012 at 1:04 pm

Thank YOU Mark for checking us out. Glad you are enjoying it. And regarding the HotList, does that even exist anymore?

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Ron Karns June 6, 2012 at 4:04 pm

Absolutely outstanding!! Simple, elegant, and NOT marketing driven. Well done!!

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Troy Vayanos June 9, 2012 at 4:25 am

This could save the average golfer a lot of time and money. I spent hours online researching for my new irons I bought late last year. If it can back up the claims it would be a tremendous tool for golfers worldwide.

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RT June 15, 2012 at 6:30 am

I purchased my Wilson V2 Irons based on the review they had, it was spot on and I love them . Awaiting more !

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Willie June 19, 2012 at 9:35 am

This system is awesome, and the way you guys do test is great. My favorite feature is defiantly the sorting feature. I like knowing that I am playing the irons that have the current highest performance score, even though it is only the 5th highest overall score. Being able to separate the actual swing numbers from the subjective numbers is fantastic.

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mygolfspy June 19, 2012 at 9:39 am

Thanks Willie!

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P.J. July 4, 2012 at 1:50 pm

Interesting article, but I’m confused with the omission of TaylorMade drivers?!?
They claim to be the number one driver in golf and you exclude them??
There are 2 Cobra, 3 Nike and 3 Ping driver and a host of others. Without TaylorMade to compare against, as I said, it’s interesting – but definitely incomplete.

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GolfSpy T July 5, 2012 at 9:17 am

P.J. We haven’t excluded TaylorMade. Up until very recently TaylorMade has been reticent to work with us. We rely on OEMs to provide us with the equipment we use for testing, and for a variety of reasons, TaylorMade believes it is not in their best interest to work with us on club reviews.

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JBones July 9, 2012 at 8:40 am

This is just pure awesomeness.

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John Barry July 26, 2012 at 8:37 am

One word….AWEsome!!

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Hink51 October 22, 2012 at 11:19 am

Best review procedures in the business!!

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BdnPaxton72 October 24, 2012 at 12:21 pm

Awesome! Perfect timing too, in the market for some new irons. Been looking for something like this.

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Greg Capstick November 30, 2012 at 10:14 pm

THIS S GREAT!!, I STILL THINK THERES NO WAY YOU COULD JUST LOOK AT THIS AND KNOW WHAT TO BUY AND WHAT YOU LIKE BUT YOU CAN GET SOME VERY VALUABLE INFO

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Kurt December 27, 2012 at 11:23 am

luv it…taylormade ashamed to loan a club for the test?

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andrew January 7, 2013 at 2:05 pm

what would really be great is if some of the older drivers could be re-swung and have thier numbers put in the system… im sure alot of guys have a 9064(!), an s2,3, or whatever laying around (or still in the bag), and it would be nice to see the data on them, if for no other reason than comprison- is newer really better? i know it would be a pain, but maybe after a testing session, one or two could be snuck in… you could even put an asterisk up to denote incomplete testing- numbers only, and direct readers back to the original review for more detail…

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RP Jacobs II January 8, 2013 at 10:39 am

Andrew, I just took the 9064LS outa my rotation only cuz I wanted the shaft for my i20. I wouldn’t hesitate to reshaft it and bag it. Still one if the elite drivers reviewed by MGS. The kinda driver that, properly fit, transcends “next generation must be better.”

It’s a lot like the i20, in that I you got the swing, the baby is a Beast, HaHA.

Good post Dude!

The Very Best to ya this season

Fairways & Greens 4ever

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Michael Wall January 24, 2013 at 7:19 am

Wow! It has been really interesting just sitting back and reading the debates. Let’s start by saying thank-you to MGS for the intestinal fortitude to take on a project like this. They had to know there would be nay-sayers. While no system is perfect, a good job has been done.

I agree with the indoor testing process. It really does level the playing field for all clubs concerned. If you play in TX then factor in how your conditions will skew your results. I dare you to step off an airplane from most anywhere else and shoot your same score on a NC golf course. I work on a golf course and can honestly tell you that they change from one geographic region to another. And if you take the same clubs from the teasting area to various regions, their performance characteristics will travel with them.

To ANON, I have a couple of simple questions for you. 1) How long have you been playing golf? And 2) What is your handicap, and can you actually play to it? (1)Just becauce someone has been playing for 20 years or so does not make them a golfer. We all play for various reasons. Some just for exercise, fresh air, competition, comeraderie, whatever. But everyone wants to get better. (2)Your handicap really does make a difference! Based on scoring, it does help “level the playing field”. But it is also a measure of how much effort you have put into your game. And that effort is a direct result of having 1) properly fitted, adequate equipment for your skill level, and 2) at least a little direction from a QUALIFIED instructor (but don’t ask Bubba Watson his opinion on that). What this is leading up to is that without some sort of resources to make an “educated” decision with, you and the rest of us would be lost. I know my pockets aren’t deep enough to attend the Titleist Institute (and wouldn’t their reccomendations be a bit biased?), so a system like this is a nice tool to have available. And remember, IT ISN’T A PURCHASE GUIDE!
I cannot for the life of me figure out how you can trash the system the way you have. Is it perfect, no. But I can honestly say that I have spent the hours online and elsewhere researching clubs trying to make some educated decisions. Something like this could have HELPED ME save both time and money. No, I would not make a purchase decision based on data alone. A prudent player would wade through all of the data, whittle down the list of potential winners, and get their butt to a tee (somewhere in THEIR playing conditions) and do their own testing. And I’ll bet neither of us hit a golf ball or swing the same as ANY of the testers for MGS.

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gary March 3, 2013 at 8:30 am

SURE WISH TAYLORMADE WAS IN THE REVIEWS

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Neale Bolen March 12, 2013 at 10:25 am

Quick Question : When will you be adding New Drivers and Irons to the ,
Head-To-Head Golf Club Comparison Tool

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