GREAT MARKETING IDEA NIKE…BUT RISKY! (BIG PROPS)
I gotta admit Nike Golf should be commended for their latest marketing move. So what was it you ask? Well…a couple months ago Nike sent MyGolfSpy and lots of other bloggers on the web a SQ Dymo driver for free to review. But there was a small and risky catch on their part…we had to test it head-to-head versus the Taylormade R9.
So why should this move be commended and why is it so risky? Well for one it was an easy way to get the word out about their drivers not only quickly but also for a very cheap price tag. These heads (at cost) are not exepensive for them at all…so compared to running full page ads in golf mags which can run in the range of over $250,000 this was some super cheap advertising for Nike. But like we said it came at a big risk and took some big kahunas on their part…so we commend you Nike! I know lots of other golf companies who wouldn’t touch this type of promotion in fear of failure. If everyone of us after reviewing their product came to the conclusion that the R9 was better…they would be up the creek without a paddle in a big way. Between all the golf blogs out there that they sent these drivers to…you are talking about a major influence on the golfing public.
But…we know they would have never sent these to us without first launch monitor testing both drivers head-to-head before deciding to do this type of promo. With the technology today it’s so much easier to test heads directly against one another. So I am sure they dotted their (i’s) and crossed their (t’s) before calling us and the others.
So…in the end we agreed but told them that we would be 100% honest in our review…that was our catch. They agreed and said they have always appreciated MyGolfSpy’s unbiased reviews and approach…so we took the 2 drivers to the range and to the launch monitors for some 1-on-1 action.
First I should say that I have hit and tested a LOT OF DRIVERS over the years. I actually competed in the World Long Drive Finals and other long drive competitions for a few years…so I have had the unique opportunity to test about every head and shaft combo you can think of. I also used 2 other golfers at different swing speeds to test the (2) popular drivers…this way you can get an accurate view of how these drivers will help or hurt your game.
(NOTE: every golfer is different and shaft and all other variables will impact your individual results. So these results will vary from golfer to golfer. )
The Nike Dymo STR8 Fit was consistently longer than the Taylormade r9. The Dymo was on average 8 yards longer with all 3 golfers and ballspeed averages were 6 mph faster with the Dymo STR8 Fit compared to the r9. (NOTE: The Nike drivers comes with a longer shaft 45.75″ vs. 45″ so this most likely is the reason for the increased ball speed and distance.) But we did not have a driver with the same length shaft to test so we will have to give Nike the nod when it comes to distance.
WINNER = NIKE
2. LOOK & FEEL
I prefer the look of the Taylormade r9 over the Nike and also the sound at impact. The r9 that we tested was 420 cc’s and carries a sound more typical of what heads felt like 5-10 years ago…which I prefer. Although, many golfers are getting used to the sound that is made by many current drivers which includes the Nike we tested…we were just not a fan. So we give Taylormade the win when it comes to look and feel.
WINNER = TAYLORMADE
3. CONTROL & ACCURACY
In regards to accuracy and control the Taylormade r9 performed better for us. Our shot dispersion (accuracy) was much better although on mishits the Nike performed better. We felt much more confident on hitting a straight tee shot with the Taylormade. This could have been due to the shaft we tested but all (3) golfers at all (3) swing speeds agreed.
WINNER = TAYLORMADE
4. TOOL ADJUSTMENT
This was an easy one for us. First let us say that I have never received an instruction manual for a driver that I played. But that is just what we got with the new Nike SQ Dymo. And where I feel like they did a great job packaging it and designing the tool…they should have known that men typically HATE manuals. I am in the golf industry and agreed to review their driver and still cringed at the thought of having to read a manual to learn how to use another tool and even a headcover. Yes…their are even instructions for how to use the headcover! But we will not bore you with that. The Taylormade driver was not as high tech of a tool but it got the ob done and done without having to spend an hour reading on the range before trying to crush some drives. Like we said this one was easy.
WINNER = TAYLORMADE
5. OVERALL WINNER
Well you would think by looking at the results above that we would be picking the Taylormade r9 as the clear cut winner…but not so quick. We all know that distance trumps feel and sound for the majority of us so it was tougher then you think to choose the winner. And seeing that the accuracy was so close we would have to almost call this a dead tie…but like we said DISTANCE TRUMPS FEEL & SOUND for most golfers. And we are doing this test for other golfers not for our personal likes and dislikes. We just want to give you the data and let you decide.
WINNER = YOU TELL US…WHICH ONE DO YOU THINK IS THE WINNER?
LAUNCH MONITOR DATA ( MY SWING)
Clubhead Speed – 127mph
Ball Speed – 189 mph
Launch Angle – 12*
Spin Rate – 2858 rpm
Avg Distance – 317 yds
Nike SQ Dymo
Clubhead Speed – 128mph
Ball Speed – 195 mph
Launch Angle – 12.4*
Spin Rate – 2665 rpm
Avg Distance – 325 yds