Need a guide for your next iron purchase? Check out this 2019 fall collection of irons as I test them out!
The 2019 fall collection lineup
Today, we would like to try out every new model for fall 2019! The TaylorMade, Titleist, Callaway, Bridgestone JGR, and Yamaha RMX. I am guessing there are currently many shoppers who are unsure of which one to buy from these choices below.
- Titleist: T300, T200
- TaylorMade: P790
- Callaway: Epic Forged, X-Forged
- Bridgestone: TourB JGR
- Yamaha: RMX 220, RMX 120
Titleist T-Series: what Mark Kanai wanted to use all along
Do you happen to know the website, MyGolfSpy? I, personally, like to use this website to learn about trending clubs. When I learned about the Titleist clubs, I fell in love. The clubs, T100, T200, and T300 are all available in the market, and today, I would like to test two out of the three: the T200 and the T300. The T300 has a larger head size and is easy to use. T200 is smaller. In simple terms, the T300 is close to the AP1, and the T200 is close to the AP3. Let’s test them out!
↓ The club that lets the ball take off, but also stays put on the green
★Titleist T300 Iron＃7 Titleist KURO KAGE 60★
I, personally, love the AP1 when it comes to Titleist clubs, and I realized that the T300 is very similar. The shaft is KURO KAGE 60. The head is not semi-large, but is truly a large size. It also has a fairly large bounce angle, considering the size of the head. The bounce is what makes this brand an international one.
I am going to test it out now. 60 grams of carbon. My first impression is how rock solid the shaft is. It is very well made. For me, I couldn't seem to get in the hang of it at first. I am really not the kind of guy who worries about the shaft as much, but when I held this one, I was pretty surprised. It is not flexible at all, in fact, it is very sturdy. Because the face is large, the sweet spot is large, letting the user avoid as many misses as possible, but what caught my attention was how sturdy the shaft is. I actually read about this on MyGolfSpy, Titleist designed the T300 specifically to improve the spin rate of the ball. The purpose is not to let the ball fly, but to let it carry with the help of the high spin rate. With the 7-iron, it was 5,893 rpm, which is considered high for clubs with the purpose to let the ball take off. Therefore, the main purpose is not to let the ball take off, but instead, it is to let the ball sit on the green when it lands.
↓ This club will let the ball stop on the green
★Titleist T200 Iron＃7 N.S.PRO 950GH neo(S)★
Next is the T200. The newly designed shaft, N.S.PRO 950 neo, has been the center of much attention in the golf world.
Let’s try it out. Wow, it feels so good. The spin rate is 5,920 rpm, proving the idea of how this iron is focused on the spin rate. Also, the internal structure of the head is stiff, but the feel on impact is soft. When you use the iron, a decent flying distance is needed, but an iron with a soft feel that produces a high spin rate is ideal. The widths of the Titleist T300 and T200 are very different when you examine them, but surprisingly, they are similar when it comes to performance. Choose the one that feels right for you. After testing both of them out, the T200 feels more powerful regarding the build of the club. For a Japanese user, I believe simple clubs such as the T200 are what Japanese users look for. A great improvement can be seen in the N.S. PRO 950 shaft comparing it with the one from 20 years ago. Someone like myself who uses carbon all the time would be fine using it. If I had to give a brief summary of the Titleist, I would say that it launches the ball at a preferred trajectory and produces a high spin rate. I recommend this iron for users who want the ball to sit on the green.
↓ For users who are able to create power, but the ball ends up traveling right or left
★TaylorMade P790 Iron ＃7 DG120 VSS (S200)★
Next, let’s take a look at the popular P790 Iron. At first glance, the face is flat just like a muscleback and it is very nice. It is not a cavity back, but the sweet spot if enlarged by making the head hollow. The shaft is a DG120, and considered a lightweight in the dynamic gold category. At the address position, it is a little unique. The face looks like a professional model, but is slightly long. Positively speaking, there is a gap. Only in TaylorMade, you are able to find a straight neck even though the head is large. Let’s try it. The spin rate was 5,850 rpm. The feel of the P790 is very soft and is easy to use despite it’s appearance. The biggest difference between this and Titleist is that there is less bounce. For people who are looking for bounce, it may not be right for you. Many people overlook the fact that not all clubs designed by international brands have a bounce angle. The truth is the bounce of TaylorMade is less than the bounce of Titleist and PING. The clubs are designed for people who want to reduce errors. This large head really has a huge gap. The muscleback-like face is nice, but for people who want to use an iron with a large head and a DG120 shaft, it is fit for people who have power to some extent. The slit features of the sole can be seen in most TaylorMade clubs. The purpose of these features is to prevent possible misses when the ball hits the bottom of the face. The P790 iron is for people with power whose ball may travel to the left or to the right from time to time, and also for those who want to own a stylish iron.
↓ For those who want to use the #7 and let the ball fly
★Callaway EPIC FORGED STAR Iron #7 Speeder EVOLUTION for CW(R)★
Next is the Callaway! I will present two of their clubs.
The promotions describe them as “clubs that deliver maximum distance through the optimal combination of speed, spin, ball flight and ultra-lightweight components!” The color is two toned and hollow. The next one is the X-Forged Star (natural wood material). This one is popular among the professional scene, and the natural wood material makes it an orthodox cavity. The shaft of the X-Forged Star is the neo of N.S. PRO 950. It comes with the Speeder Evolution for the ball flight, most likely because most people choose their clubs based on the shaft. Using a shaft with high demand to create new golf clubs is a concept many brands use today.
First let's talk about the Epic Forged Star. Since it is hollow, the face and the back are thick. The top line is a little thick as well. I was surprised when I first held it because even though it is a #7, if you compare it to the others, the shaft is longer. When I held the club for the first time, I noticed that it is longer, which is about 38 inches. With this loft, I believe that the ball will fly. I’ll try it now. It went 174.4 yards when I tracked it with my TrackMan. My distance for a #5 is 175 yards, surprisingly the same! The 2-iron will fly. Why? Because the 2-iron is longer and the loft is straighter, so when it comes to purchasing an iron, you may wonder if you should just purchase a 5-iron. Wrong. I believe that if you want to use a #7 and send the ball flying, you need to purchase the Epic Forged Star without a doubt in your mind.
↓ For users whose focus is on spin control, distance breakdown, and ball directivity
★Callaway X-FORGED STAR Iron #7 N.S.PRO 950GH neo(S)★
The next one is the X-Forged Star.
This one does not have as much loft, and the shaft is the neo of N.S.PRO 950. The size of the head of the X-Forged is large, similar to the TaylorMade. It seems like large head sizes are popular in the fall. When I hit the ball, the distance is very different. It only travels about 150 yards. However, the spin rate is 6,900 rpm. As a result, you are able to hit the ball that stops on the green due to the friction from the spin and the green. This club is what you call an iron. X-Forged has a large head size, but you are also able to change the spin rate at impact as well as the flight distance. The head is slightly large, but similar to the TaylorMade P790 mentioned above, advanced golfers want to use this iron because they would have the ability to control the spin, distance, and ball directivity with this iron. The two new Callaway clubs are made by the same brand, yet they are very different. If you want to focus on ball flight, choose the Epic Forged Star. If you want something that can control the spin, choose the X-Forged Star. Also, they are nicely color coded.
↓ An iron with a flick face, but has a soft feel
★Bridgestone TOUR B JGR HF3 Iron #7 N.S.PRO 950GH neo(S)★
Next, I want to present to you the next JGR. The concept of the Tour B JGR is a nice feel and flying distance.
The club looks like a cavity back, yet hollow. I have heard that the flick caused by the face and the ball is very nice. The width of the sole is very wide, but it seems like Japanese brands have a lesser bounce for the reduction of errors. The face looks very nice. The head size is large and slightly offset. The shaft of the JGR is the N.S.PRO 950GH neo. This Japanese shaft is truly dependable as it can be seen in many clubs. Previously, with the Callaway, the ball flew 174 yards. Let’s try this out. 174.3 yards! For ball flight, you should use the Callaway Epic Forged, but the JGR proves to be just as good. The JGR is carbon and the Epic Forged is steel. The difference between carbon and steel is about five yards. If you think about that difference and if JGR was carbon… I believe that the potential rating is very high. Way to go, Bridgestone! Even though the shots fly off, the feel of it is still very soft. I assume some quality rubber is inside it. It is not something that has a hard impact, as it almost feels like the face wraps around the ball and carries it to the air. Way to go, Bridgestone! I was surprised.
★The Neutral RMX 220, Control-Focused RMX 120★
Next is the Yamaha! When you think about Yamaha, you think about the RMX. There are two models for this: the RMX 220 for flight distance and the RMX 120 for control.
The shafts are both the Japanese original steel N.S.PRO.
↓ Choose this one for a better flight distance and reduction of misses!
★Yamaha RMX 220 Iron #7 N.S.PRO RMX 95 (S)★
First, let’s talk about the RMX 220 and the flight distance.
In today’s iron, hollow irons are popular, but the RMX 220 is a pocket cavity. It has a characteristic of having a deep cavity. The shaft is light for a steel shaft, and has a great flex. Even with a straight loft angle, the iron is designed for the ball to not have a low fly height. Let’s try it out. The ball did not fly as much as I expected, but it went over 10 yards farther than I usually hit. Since the RMX 220 is not hollow and the backside is thin, the feel on impact is very hard. Based on the type of golfer you are, you may like clubs that let the ball pop off instantly after contact or clubs that do not pop off as much. The speed of the pop for the RMX 220 is fast. For the golfers who use soft balls that are designed to go far, this may be right for you. The RMX 220’s sole is wide and the center of gravity is low. Therefore, it is easy for the ball to hit the core. However, the small bounce will not produce as much distance after quite some use. This is not really for people who strike their irons with a downward blow. If you want your irons to have a great flight distance, but want to reduce your errors, I think that the RMX 220 is for you. You do not want an iron that lets the ball fly at great distances, but if you want to let it fly further than usual, maybe 10 more yards more, then this club is right for you.
↓ For those who want a club that is stylish and has a nice feel on contact
★Yamaha RMX 120 Iron #7 N.S.PRO RMX 95 (S)★
The last club is the RMX 120. The face is similar to the TaylorMade P790, Callaway X-Forged, and Yamaha RMX 120, almost like it is their brother.
This face is popular in the market right now. The face is semi-large, and is between a goose neck and a straight neck. However, the width of the soles are all different, with the Yamaha RMX 120 being the widest. The face of the RMX 120 is very different from previous editions of Yamaha clubs. It is orthodox and similar to faces in other brands. I will try it out. The ball traveled far when I used the RMX 120 and similar to the distance of the RMX 220. They have good compatibility. The bounce of the RMX 120 is not as nice, but it still has more than the RMX 220, and is a better fit for downblow swingers. 162 yards. I usually hit around 150 yards with my #7, so when I use the RMX 120, the ball really takes off. When people like myself who are downblow swingers use this club, the ball really takes off.
The appearance of the club is orthodox and standard, but it has a deep cavity and is prone to easy errors. The contact when the ball hits the RMX 120 is soft. It is almost as if the club wraps the ball on impact, so controlling the distance and spin is fairly easy. Again, it is prone to errors. This club is just filled with numerous features so if you like how it feels and like the look of it, I recommend purchasing the RMX 120.
2019 Fall Brand New Models Conclusion
I just tried 8 new models and 5 brands today, including Callaway, TaylorMade, Titleist, Bridgestone, and Yamaha. Now, which one would I want to buy? Wow, this is harder than I thought. There are many great choices for irons available other than these 8. I personally think that it is very important to have an interest in finding out what new products are like.
If you want a greater flight distance, choose the Bridgestone JGR or the Callaway Epic Forged Star. Since these clubs are specialized in flight distance, they will reach your expectations to the fullest.
If you want the ball to sit on the green, and if you are keeping score with your iron, I recommend the Titleist T-Series. You can choose the size of the head based on your preference.
The faces for the Yamaha RMX 120, Callaway X-Forged Star, and TaylorMade P790 are all similar. The width of the soles are different from one another, but they are all in the same iron club category. Besides the soles, it is really up to how you want your iron to be like. I have heard that 9 out of 10 people choose their iron based on the appearance of it, so that is one possible way to choose it.
When using the Yamaha RMX 220, the ball really flies off at impact. This is something that advanced level golfers really care about. But even if you are not experienced in using iron clubs, irons that let the ball fly fast off the head will make you feel really good. If you are not good at downblow swinging, but can imagine yourself hitting the ball and letting it sit on the green, the Yamaha RMX 220 is something I recommend.
I enjoyed trying out the brand new models of fall 2019! I hope this will help you choose your next iron.
Mark Kanai (Golf Club Analyst)
Mark Kanai was born on September 16, 1958, in Osaka. He is 6 feet tall and has A blood type. After working as an editor for a golf magazine, he switched to freelance. He has tested over 5,000 golf clubs. With his expertise and as a single digit handicapper, his golf club trials and reports are published both in magazines and online.