We Tried It: Mizuno’s Hot New Woods

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Bottom Line: Look for the JPX-800 fairway woods in the bags of better players who want a no-nonsense fairway wood that delivers on just about any shot you try to hit with it.

Pros: Long and maneuverable.

Cons: Slow swingers will want a softer shaft and/or more loft to get the ball airborne.

JPX-800 Hybrid

Looks And Feel: Right away, you can tell the JPX-800 doesn't look much like the other woods in the series. The paint scheme is the same, but the wing-style, perimeter-weighting look on the crown makes this club look like it's geared for some real game improvement. Whether hit from the fairway or rough, this club feels heavy—which, in our opinion, helps prevent us from trying to lift the ball in the air.

Performance: It may be the "ugly duckling" of the group, but the JPX-800 hybrid might be our favorite in the JPX-800 line. It's got just about everything working for it: It's easy to hit, it's long, and it can be used to hit a variety of shots. The "Drop Down Crown" pushes the CG low for a quick, high ballflight, and again, the beveled leading edge makes for clean, crisp contact with the golf ball. We tested this club with a Fubuki shaft (all the clubs we tried had one) and found the ball flew high and long. Better yet, unlike some easy-to-hit hybrids that have a lot of draw bias, we didn't feel as though this hybrid forced us to play a draw. Put it this way: We hit a few 215-yard shots dead straight that landed on the green with little to no forward roll. We'll take that all day, folks.

Bottom Line: A wonderful hybrid that can be played anywhere on the course. We also like the hosel's adjustability, in case you want it to be tweaked a degree or two, flat or upright (we suggest you try to match your irons, since hybrids are designed to be swung like one).

Pros: Remarkable playability.

Cons: The crown is a bit funky looking, but you'll get used to it.




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