2014 Buyer's Guide Balls

The best balls for 2014

Labels: Buyers GuideBalls
All-Around
Bridgestone
eSeries
Key Features: Each of the three balls (e5, e6 and e7) caters to a specific type of player. The two-piece e5 is a distance ball at heart, but has a high-spinning Urethane cover for short shots. The three-piece e6 is a soft, multilayer ball with a durable Surlyn cover, and the e7 is a distance ball with a spinny cover.
Wow Factor: Great prices. Our favorite is the e5, which spins like crazy on short shots. No, really, it does. The e6 is a solid performer for golfers who want distance and control in a non-premium ball.
Specs: The e5 is a two-piece, with a
Urethane cover; the e6 and e7 are both three-piece, with Surlyn covers.
bridgestonegolf.com | $26/doz.
Callaway Golf
X2 Hot & X2 Hot+
Key Features: Improved HEX aerodynamics for more distance and less slice and hook-spin. The X2 Hot+ is a similar ball, only with a bit more stopping power when hitting your short irons.
Wow Factor: Hitting the ball far is fun. Callaway gets that, probably more this year than they did since way back during the early iterations of the Big Bertha driver. These balls are long and feel soft, which for us is exactly the kind of ball we like to use for a casual round of golf this Friday. (Shh, don't tell the boss.)
Specs: Three-piece construction, with a Trionomer cover.
callawaygolf.com | $27/doz.
Chromax
Metallic
Key Features: The high-visibility metallic finish is crazy! The cover, which is translucent, shows off a reflective inner layer that encompasses the soft-compression core.
Wow Factor: They look great in the golf shop, but wait until you see them in the sunshine. They look like they're actually glowing, thanks to the bright reflective inner layer. They're distance balls, so don't expect a lot of versatility, but for hitting big drives with a lot of style, you can't go wrong here. Quick Tip: Wear sunglasses; they're insanely bright.
Specs: Two-piece construction, with an inner metallic coating.
chromaxgolf.com | $20/doz.
Titleist
DT Solo
Key Features: The DT Solo is back! Reworked for more distance and a very soft feel, the DT Solo is like the Velocity (we think, at least), but with a noticeably softer feel. The two-piece design has a 376-tetrahedral dimple design for a consistent launch and flight.
Wow Factor: We think if you're going to get a DT Solo, get the yellow. It has a nice glow to it! It's also so soft, you'll forget you're using a distance ball. For moderate swing speeds looking for distance, you'll want the Velocity. But for average to slower swing speeds, the DT Solo is the right Titleist ball for you.
Specs: Two-piece construction, with a Surlyn ionomer cover.
titleist.com | $19.doz.
Titleist
Velocity
Key Features: A two-piece distance ball by Titleist? We were skeptical at first, too, but were pleased to learn that it's actually pretty darn playable. It's long off the tee, but it's also long from everywhere else too. Why? The LSZ core produces a fast initial velocity, and the 328-tetrahedral dimple pattern reduces the balls descent angle for maximum carry and roll.
Wow Factor: Going long with a Titleist has never been easier. It's not the best ball for finesse around the green, but that's not what it's for anyway. This is a durable distance ball for folks who want to reach more par-5s in two shots.
Specs: Two-piece construction, with an NAZ2 cover.
titleist.com | $27/doz.
Srixon
Q-STAR
Key Features: Designed as a ball for the average golfer, the Q-STAR has a SpinSkin coating for more control on short shots. That said, it's still a distance ball for golfers with average swing speeds who want to eke out as much distance as they can off the tee.
Wow Factor: Super-soft feel. The SpinSkin seemed to really help the ball spin more with short shots. Not quite like a Urethane ball, but frankly, most amateurs don't generate enough speed to take advantage of a Urethane cover anyway, making the Q-STAR an excellent choice for the best in distance and control—from a ball that's nicely priced and extremely durable. Hard to believe it's a two-piece! Oh, yeah, it comes in Tour Yellow. We love that.
Specs: Two-piece construction, with a SpinSkin Ionomer cover.
srixon.com | $25/doz.



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