After a week of excitement at the PGA Merchandise Show in late January, the major golf equipment manufactures are beginning to flood golf stores with shiny, high-tech new golf equipment, from drivers all the way down to putters, golf balls, shoes and apparel. You name it, you can find it in brand-new form, just in time for the spring golf season to start rolling along. Here is just a sampling of the slate of much-anticipated new equipment now available:
Two of the largest golf club manufacturers—TaylorMade and Callaway—are once again duking it out in order to maximize marketshare of their new drivers with big marketing efforts. TaylorMade’s SLDR driver (MSRP: $399) and attendant “LoftUp” campaign have created a lot of buzz. And with a few months of spirited lead-up, Callaway revived its famous “Big Bertha” brand of woods with the Big Bertha ($399) and Big Bertha Alpha ($499), with the Alpha being geared more toward players with higher swing speeds. Both the SLDR and Big Bertha drivers are also accompanied by lines of fairway woods.
The diversity of golfers is readily apparent when one surveys the range of different styles of irons on offer from golf equipment manufacturers. The low-handicap set are sated with forged blades like the Adams XTD ($1,100) or Mizuno MP-4 ($1,000), while mid-markers will be more interested in the Callaway X2 Hot ($800) or Titleist AP1 714s ($800). Meanwhile, players for whom scores in the 90s are more the norm will love the Cobra Baffler XL ($700), the PING Karsten ($900) and others.
Wedges are the type of club that most golfers should replace the most often—every two years, if not sooner. If you’re reading this and your wedges have been sitting in your bag for more than three seasons, listen up! Check out mainstream options like the Titleist Vokey SM5 ($130), the Cobra Tour Trusty series ($120) or a more boutique brand like SCOR’s 4161 wedges ($150)
Golfers are all different, as evidenced by their widely disparate tastes in putters. New offerings include more traditional offerings from the likes of Scotty Cameron with their Select Newport series ($350) and Odyssey’s Metal X Milled series ($300). Then there are the more obviously high-tech offerings out there, such as the Nike Method MOD ($300) and the Odyssey Versa/Tank ($170), which uses counterbalancing to stabilize the putter during the stroke.
Among lower-handicap golfers, Titleist’s ProV1 and ProV1x ($48) are still king, but the “#1 Ball in Golf” also has the likes of the NXT Tour and NXT Tour S ($34) to recommend it for middling players. Budget-conscious beginners and those looking for more distance will enjoy the DT SoLo ($20), which is available in white or yellow. Also, look for Taylor Made to make some waves by introducing its “For Amateurs Only” Project (a) ball ($32) which offers increased spin around the green for the game’s touchier shots.
If you’re in the area, there are numerous Myrtle Beach golf stores, in addition to area courses’ pro shops, where you can find these and many other exciting new additions to the golf equipment universe. Check out two locations each of PGA Tour Superstore (near Broadway at the beach and in North Myrtle Beach) and Golf Dimensions (Highway 501 and across from PGA Tour Superstore in North Myrtle Beach), as well as the new Golfsmith location (off 17 Bypass near Coastal Grand mall in Myrtle Beach).