Continuing my series of posts on the best golf clubs for 2013 (in time for Father’s Day gift giving), irons are the next type of clubs that would make an excellent gift. Why? Because they’re fairly expensive, so a set of new irons is something most dads won’t buy for themselves. And this is the year you want to go all out for him, right?
Golf equipment and technology evolves almost annually and there are now three different categories of irons to consider — game improvement irons, super game improvement irons, and player’s irons. Each of these categories basically corresponds to the amount of “forgiveness” built into the clubs — that is, how forgiving is the iron on a mis-hit — as well as how much you can shape a shot with a particular iron. Player’s irons allow you to shape shots more readily than game improvement irons. Super game improvement irons are the most forgiving of errors when the ball is struck.
These types of irons also roughly correspond to a player’s handicap. Player’s irons are intended mostly for players with a handicap in the range of 1 – 11; game improvement irons cover a handicap of 9 – 17; and super game improvement irons are good for players with a handicap of 11- 21. (These ranges are designations often used by reviewers of golf clubs, including those at Golf magazine.)
When it comes to buying a set of irons for someone else (like your father), a middle-of-the-road approach, at least to begin with, is probably a good idea. Most enthusiastic recreational golfers can be considered players of average ability. So I’ll be recommending the best golf irons for an average player who might be working to improve his game.
The best-performing game improvement irons tested by Golf Digest are the Ping G25 irons. Testers at other publications have made these a recommended choice as well.
In my recent post on the best golf driver for 2013, I described in detail the four categories of effectiveness and quality evaluated by Golf Digest when reviewing a club: Performance, Innovation, Look/Sound/Feel, and Demand. When it comes to the best golf irons, among the game improvement irons that were top-rated (Mizuno MP-H4, Ping G25, and TaylorMade Rocketbladez), the category leader in Performance was the Ping G25, with a perfect score of 100. Since most golfers prioritize the performance of their golf equipment on the course, the club I’m recommending is the Ping G25.
Not that the Ping G25 fell down at all in the other tested categories — it received 4 out of 5 stars in Innovation, 4.5 in Look/Sound/Feel, and 4.5 for Demand.
The Ping G25 irons are available with either steel or graphite shafts and each of these materials can also be customized for varying degrees of flex.
You cannot go wrong by adding a set of Ping G25s to your bag (or your fortunate gift recipient’s bag). They are among the best golf clubs available this year.
Where to get the Ping G25 irons
As far as which golf store to get your Ping G25 set of irons, I recommend Edwin Watts Golf. The company has been around for a long time, they offer one of the largest selections of golf equipment among specialty golf stores, and with regard to shopping for golf equipment online, they are a Google Trusted store. They carry the Ping G25 game improvement irons in both steel and graphite (click the link above).
Other benefits of shopping for golf equipment at Edwin Watts Golf is that you can get free shipping on orders over $125 (which would definitely include a set of irons). And the EdwinWattsGolf.com Outlet Store has golf equipment for up to 70% off. Plus they frequently offer special deals of various kinds.
Following is a video review of the Ping G25 irons by Tom Jennings of Golf magazine:
In summarizing their review of the Ping G25, Golf Digest stated:
Ping didn’t necessarily go too far with its G20 irons, but that model came dangerously close to super game-improvement territory. A return to a sleeker head size [with the G25] will appeal to a wider audience, and the progressive sole widths will continue to aid less skilled players on long- and middle-iron shots.
Among subjective evaluations for the Ping G25 irons, one tester said: “Effortless flight. It’s as comforting as hot cocoa.” Of the G25s, another reviewer summed up: “This is a standout in a category of clones. The responsiveness off the face is impressive.”
In their testing and review of the Ping G25 game improvement irons, Golf magazine got into some of the key technological aspects that Ping had applied when designing these clubs:
Support bars plus low-toe weighting stabilize the face to enhance feel and improve distance control. A multi-material badge (aluminum and elastomer) softens feel. Progressive sole widths help long irons to launch high shots and short irons to produce a more boring flight.
Among golf club reviews, these are some of the “Pros” that came out in testing the Ping G25…
With respect to playability: “Great for getting the ball in the air — if you’re trajectory-challenged, these are for you; straight shots are the norm but easier to draw than many anticipated.”
With respect to forgiveness: “You can hit the ball all over the face and still find the target more than you deserve; solid correction on directional misses; long irons are surprisingly easy to hit.”
Testers also praised the stability of the clubs, which showed very little twisting at impact. As with most Ping golf clubs, they also appreciated the solid feel of these irons, and the firm feedback they provided to the hands during the stroke.
All in all, the Ping G25 irons are top performers for 2013. About the only drawback anyone mentioned is that some players might not find the gray color of the club very exciting.
But if you’re hitting the ball within 6 feet of the flag stick on your approach shots, who cares what the club looks like? Buy yourself some flashy golf shoes with the money you win from your friends after you start playing with the Ping G25s.