2011 Buyer's Guide Irons

If you want to score your best, start with the right set of irons

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When it comes to playing your best golf, better iron play is the key to making the most out of longer drives and setting yourself up for shorter putts. Those 300-yard tee shots don’t matter much if you can’t find the green with your approach. And if you really want to start making more putts, you need to start hitting your approach shots closer to the hole. Makes sense, right? Better iron play links good drives and makeable putts together. And the fastest way toward better iron play is choosing the right set for your needs. Whether it be distance, shotmaking control or both, choosing the right iron for your game is essential for shooting lower scores.

Golf Tips Legend

Our picks for new technologies, hot trends and equipment standouts.
s = steel g = graphite

Idea Tech V3
Beauty & BrawnKey Feature: It’s three sets in one: 4-, 5- and 6-, progressively sized, steel-headed hybrids with tungsten weighting; a 7-mid-hybrid with viscoelastic vibration dampener; and an oversized cavity-back forged 8-iron through gap wedge.
What We Like: The nickel chromium plating and PVD black finishes make them look cool.
Who It's For: Mid- to high-handicappers who need help getting the ball airborne.
Specs: Can be alternatively purchased with all hybrids (4-9) plus PW and GW. Graphite shafts are Mitsubishi Rayon Bassara; steel are True Temper Performance Tech.
adamsgolf.com |
$899 s/$999 g
Versatile WonderKey Feature: RAZR Technology shifts the CG lower and deeper in the clubhead, offering increased shotmaking and versatility. Wide-sole forgiveness without the wide sole.
What We Like: Variable Face Thickness Power System, replete with an undercut cavity, translates to plenty of power and forgiveness.
Who It's For: Golfers looking to make the jump from being a high-handicapper to a single-digit.
Specs:Offered in both standard head style and more-compact RAZR X Tour for mid- and low-handicappers. Available in 3-LW, with Callaway-branded shafts.
callawaygolf.com |
$7-899 s/$899 g
RAZR X Forged
Players OnlyKey Feature: Each iron underwent a three-step forging process that yields better feel and enables Tour CC grooves to be precision-forged into each clubface. There are 30% more grooves on the face when compared to that of other irons.
What We Like: The classic forged iron look, plus a higher, squared-off toe and a sharper leading edge. Roger Cleveland hit a home run with these.
Who It’s For: Better players who want a hint of game-improvement to go along with irons designed for advanced-level shotmaking.
Specs: Available in 2-AW, with Royal Precision steel shafts.
callawaygolf.com |
$899 s

Editors' PickKey Feature: A lighter overall club weight and slightly longer and lighter shaft help milk more distance—up to 10 yards, says the company.
What We Like: The large cavity with undercut moves the CG low and deep, making the launch angle and forgiveness ideal. The thin clubface on each iron increases ball speed, to boot.
Who It’s For: For all golfers, leaning toward game-improvement side. The companion CG16 Tour set is for better players.
Specs: Available in 3-PW, in Satin Chrome or Black Pearl finish. Both feature laser-milled faces and Cleveland Traction 85 shafts.
clevelandgolf.com |
$699 s/$799 g
Beauty & BrawnKey Feature: E9 Face Technology means that the sweet spot on each iron is exactly where golfers tend to make impact with the ball on that specific iron. This equates to better, longer iron shots with each club.
What We Like: The vibration dampening is second to none, and the mid-width sole narrows in the heel and toe, for better turf interaction.
Who It’s For: Anyone wanting all-around performance from an iron that absorbs a lot of shock and vibration.
Specs: Available in 4-GW, with Aldila NV-3 graphite or Nippon N.S. Pro 1030H steel shafts.
cobragolf.com |
$745 s/$875 g
S3 Max
Forgiveness Supreme Key Feature: The railed sole helps improve turf interaction for more impact consistency and power, even from off the fairway.
What We Like: Their low-profile clubheads help get the ball airborne. And the distance gapping is consistent throughout the set. They have some killer aesthetics. Nice price, too.
Who It’s For: Mid- to high-handicappers who want maximum forgiveness and high launch.
Specs: Available in 4-SW, with UST IHS graphite or Cobra S3 steel shafts. Also offered with S3 Max, Baffler-style hybrids integrated into the set for more money.
cobragolf.com |
$399 s/$499 g

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