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Best Golf Irons Reviews & Guides 2020

What’s the best golf irons and why do you need them?

There really is not a best golf iron out there because each player and skill level will have a different style of iron that would be best suited for them. For example, a high handicap player that doesn’t make consistent contact with the ball would require a game improvement iron with a lot of forgiveness to play his best. On the other hand, a low handicap player that makes consistent contact with the ball will prefer a player iron with a precise sweet spot for the improved accuracy and workability.

Types of Irons

Forged-

Forged irons are made entirely from one piece of metal. This process results in a great deal of weight near the center of the clubface which makes them feel better when you hit the sweetf spot. If you miss the sweet spot, they are much less forgiving than cast irons.

Since the club is made from a single piece of metal, it feels and performs better when striking a ball. Forged clubs are designed for experienced players that are able to find the sweet spot more often than not.

What is sacrificed in forgiveness, you make up in quality of the sweet spot. Forged clubs will oftentimes be more accurate than cast and they’ll also allow you to shape shots more effectively. 

Cast-

Unlike clubs that are made from a single piece of metal, cast clubs are made by pouring molten metal into a premade cast.

The custom process of casting allows them to distribute the weight further towards the edges of the club. This weight distribution increases the moment of inertia and it allows for more forgiveness on mishits.

The process of making a cast iron allows you to add components like weights and cavities that wouldn’t have been an option with forged clubs. These additions can benefit the player by increasing the size of the sweet spot or the clubhead speed.

Iron Shafts:

Steel-

Steel shafts are highly regarded for their durability and will last for many years as long as they are properly maintained. Steel shafts weigh more than graphite shafts and are the preference of higher level players because of the addes control.

Graphite-

Graphite shafts are lighter than steel shafts and are typically more flexible. Players with slow swing speeds can experience the benefits of this added flexibility because it allows them to generate a better swing. Graphite shafts increase the force between the ball and the club head to increase trajectory and accuracy.

What golf irons are the most forgiving?

The most forgiving irons are called game improvement irons. Game improvement irons are designed for mid and high handicap players. This style of iron is more forgiving because they’ll have features like a larger sweet spot or club head. This allows the player to experience better results from mishits.

Game improvement irons will be offset at the hostel which increases the odds of getting the club square at impact. The added cavity and improved sweet spot of this style of iron will result in increased distance. Game improvement irons give the player extra confidence at address.

What to look for when buying irons?

Before you buy a new set of irons, you need to first consider a few important factors. The most important aspect to consider is your skill level. If you are a player that scores in the 70s consistently, a player iron is going to be the best option for you because of the increased accuracy and the benefit of workability.

If you’re a player with a higher handicap who scores in the 90s or higher consistently, game improvement irons are going to be the best for you because of the forgiveness and the fact that they’re designed to launch the ball higher.

The next thing you need to think about is your budget. This will be the second most important factor of your decision because it will determine where to start looking. You can find irons from a couple hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars so determining how much you’re willing to spend will narrow your search.

Top 10 Best Golf Irons on The Market Reviews

#1 Callaway Rouge

The Callaway Rouge irons are one of the most advanced game improvement irons that the company has ever released. The Rouge irons combine 360 Face Cup technology with Variable Face Thickness (VFT) for a wider and more effective delivery of speed.

Face Cup technology is Callaway’s use of a shallow rim around the perimeter of the face which is designed to flex and release at impact in order to increase the ball speed. The Variable Face Thickness also increases ball speed on shots that miss the sweet spot.

The Rogue irons include tungsten weights for a precise center of gravity. The tungsten weights are twice the weight of the steel that make up the clubhead which creates a center of gravity that will help the ameatuer player launch the ball.

Under the face of these irons are urethane microspheres which dampen the vibration and create a solid sound at impact. The combination of technology and precision weighting in the Rogue irons put them at the top of the game improvement category for performance and feel. 

Pros:

  • Sleek look
  • Forgiving
  • Variable Face Thickness
  • 360 Face Cup technology
  • Tungsten weights
  • Improved feel at impact
  • Suitable for all skill levels

Cons:

  • No major cons

#2 Taylormade M5

The Taylormade M5 irons deliver impressive power and forgiveness with a stylish look. These irons are a great option for any skill level player. Taylormade uses their Speed Bridge technology to enhance energy transfer while remaining forgiving. The M5 also utilizes Taylormade’s Inverted Cone Technology to increase ball speed across the face.

The design for the M5s was inspired by player irons so the clubhead is smaller than a standard game improvement iron without sacrificing any forgiveness or power. Tungsten weights have been added to the club with the goal of creating a powerful yet soft feeling strike.

A fluted hosel and 360 degree undercut are added to this iron in order to lower the center of gravity and produce a high launching and penetrating ball flight even on shots that were hit low on the face. The Taylormade M5 irons are a great choice if you’re looking for a unique player iron inspired design with the benefits of a game improvement iron.

Pros:

  • Sleek look
  • Speed Bridge technology
  • Inverted Cone Technology
  • Tungsten weights
  • Forgiving
  • High Launch
  • Suitable for all skill levels

Cons:

  • No major cons

#3 Taylormade P790

The Taylormade P790 irons have been a favorite of many golfers this season. With the P790s, Taylormade has introduced a revolutionary new SpeedFoam Technology which will give golfers a combination of feel, forgiveness, and workability.

This set of irons has SpeedFoam urethane injected inside of the club head in order to increase ball speed and improve feel. The tungsten weighting creates a low center of gravity for a higher launch. The Speed Pocket in these irons add forgiveness on shots that are hit lower in the face while adding ball speed.

If you’re looking for forgiveness, the Inverted Cone Technology in each iron is designed with the intention of protecting the player from off-center hits and improve the overall accuracy. This makes them a great option for any skill level player, especially higher handicap players who seek the benefits of a game improvement iron with the style of a player iron. These are some of the best irons for beginners and experienced players.

Pros:

  • Sharp look
  • SpeedFoam
  • Speed Pocket
  • Tungsten weighting
  • Inverted Cone Technology
  • Suitable for all skill levels
  • Forgiving
  • Higher launching

Cons:

  • Expensive

#4 Callaway Apex Pro 19

The Callaway Apex Pro 19 is a forged tour performance iron that has been designed to produce advanced distance. The club head is made from a forged 1025 mild carbon steel combined with Callaway’s urethane microspheres.

For the first time, Callaway has included their renowned 360 Face Cup technology into a tour style iron. The 360 Face Cup is a flexible perimeter that activates at impact for increased ball speed across the clubface.

The Apex Pro 19 irons include all of the advanced distance technologies of the Apex 19 irons but in a tour style. These clubs are designed for lower handicap players who are interested in a forged tour club head without having to sacrifice any ball speed or distance.

These irons have a thin top line, straighter leading edge, and a higher toe to create a beautiful player iron look.The Callaway Apex Pro 19 irons are made for an experienced ball striker who is looking for a classic forged iron with added distance benefits.

Pros:

  • Distance benefits in a forged iron
  • 360 Face Cup Technology
  • Carbon steel
  • Sleek look

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Designed for lower handicap players

#5 2019 Callaway Big Bertha

Callaway Big Bertha irons have been designed to be the easiest launching irons that the company has ever made. These clubs use what they call Suspended Core Technology which delivers incredible sounds and feel, longer distances more consistently, and a higher launch with ease. 

These irons include a floating tungsten weight which are injection molded within a urethane material. This allows them to precisely position the center of gravity for a consistently higher launch.

Similar to the Rouge irons, the Big Bertha irons also use the Face Cupe construction. The Face Cup Technology is a shallow rim around the perimeter of the club face which flexes and releases at impact. This increases ball speed and feel at impact.

These irons are incredibly easy to hit which makes them the perfect fit for higher handicap players. If you’re the type of golfer who struggles to get the ball in the air, the Big Bertha irons are an excellent choice for you. The Big Bertha irons are a great option for 20 handicap players and anyone who seeks exceptional forgiveness.

These are great clubs for anybody but they’re the best irons for seniors because of their ability to launch the ball. The Big Bertha irons boast a smoked black finish with red accents which make these irons stand out among the rest.

Pros:

  • Suspended Core Technology
  • Face Cup Technology
  • Unique look
  • Forgiveness
  • Perfect for high handicaps but also suitable for all skill levels
  • Great feel
  • High launch

Cons:

  • Black finish wears quickly

#6 Taylormade M2

The Taylormade M2 irons feature a thinner top line than the previous model for a sleeker overall look. The weight in the clubhead creates a lower center of gravity for a higher launch and increased distance. The 180 degree fluted hosel makes it lighter weight and it assists in lowering the center of gravity.

Taylormade includes face slot technology in the M2 irons which adds forgiveness on balls that are struck outside the sweet spot. The multi-material M2s include tungsten weights in the 3-7 irons which increase launch and ball speed.

Compactly shaped with a smaller head than other similar irons, the M2 irons stand out. The speed pocket technology increases forgiveness on shots that are struck low while contributing to a higher launch. These are a great golf iron for 15 handicap players.

The Taylormade M2 irons offer game improvement benefits without sacrificing its looks. These irons are extremely high quality and feature a handful of Taylormade’s technological advancements. This set of irons will be suitable for all skill levels.

 Pros:

  • Sleek look
  • High launch
  • 180 degree fluted hosel
  • Tungsten weights
  • Speed Pocket
  • Suitable for all skill levels
  • Forgiving

Cons:

  • Lower quality stock grips

#7 Cleveland Launcher HB

The Cleveland Launcher HB irons are designed with the higher handicap players in mind. The purpose of these irons is to deliver higher launching shots with more forgiveness and accuracy. The set transitions from a standard game improvement iron in the short irons of the set to more of a hybrid design in the mid-long irons.

These irons are completely hollow throughout the set which distributes the weight to be low and in the perimeter of the clubhead in order to maximize forgiveness. The HiBore crown is a design that also promotes a low center of gravity and higher launching shots.

The Cleveland Launcher HB irons include a steel face insert which promotes a flex at the moment of impact in order to give the player faster ball speed. Finally, an internal rib design produces a high quality sound and feel at impact.

Pros:

  • High launching
  • Faster ball speed
  • Standard iron and hybrid iron combination set
  • Quality sound and feel at impact

Cons:

  • Chunky looking
  • Hollow design doesn’t produce a soft feel

#8 Cleveland Launcher CBX

The Cleveland Launcher CBX irons have been designed to deliver distance, high launch, and control for golfers of all skill levels. These cavity back irons offer a Cup Face technology which increases ball speed and a cavity design that protects from off-center hits.

This set progresses by using a thicker top line with the longer irons in order to promote longer shots with higher launching ball flight. The short irons are more compact and features a thinner line on top. This compact design encourages control and accuracy on scoring shots.

These irons include features that have been a success in previous models of their wedges. For example, Tour Zip grooves which combine with a laser milling process improve your distance and ability to control the ball from any kind of lie. The lower center of gravity allows for a higher launch on all shots. Lastly, the Dual V-sole design increases forgiveness and versatility.

Pros:

  • Progressive clubhead design
  • Tour Zip grooves
  • Dual V-sole
  • Cup Face technology
  • Higher Launch

Cons:

  • Not as forgiving as other options

#9 Wilson Staff D7

The Wilson Staff D7 irons are designed with an ultra thin face for a hot response and longer carrying iron shots. The long irons in this set have three power holes in order to achieve more distance. The short irons have fewer power holes for improved feel.

The D7 irons offer the sleek look of a player iron while offering the benefits of a super game improvement iron. The irons have a cleaner top line and a sharp head design to make them a great option for any skill level player that is looking for a classic style iron.

Pros:

  • Ultra thin face
  • Progressive head design
  • Benefits of a super improvement iron with better looks
  • Designed for high handicap players

Cons:

  • Not the best option for high handicap players

#10 Cobra F-Max One Length Irons

The Cobra F-Max is the product of a commitment to technology and research. This set of irons is designed to have the 6-PW be the same length and weight as a standard 7 iron. The idea with this design is to allow the player to use the same swing for every club.

The F-Max irons are lightweight and built for effortless speed and distance. These clubs are designed specifically for players who have a moderate swing speed because of the lighter shafts. The lighter shafts allow players with moderate swing speed generate more speed and distance.

The Cobra F-Max irons are designed to have a lower center of gravity in order to improve launch while still offering the forgiveness of a game improvement irons. These clubs come with midsize grips in order to promote a lighter and more comfortable grip throughout the swing.

Pros:

  • Higher launch
  • One length technology
  • Designed for those with a moderate swing speed
  • Promote a consistent swing
  • Chrome finish nickel

Cons:

  • One length irons may not be for everyone
  • People with a fast swing may struggle with these irons

How to clean golf irons:

It’s important to clean your irons occasionally in order to ensure that they perform how they were designed to. Throughout the standard use of golf clubs, the grooves and crevices of the club will become filled with dirt. This dirt can affect the performance of the club by making the grooves ineffective.

When you decide it’s time to clean your golf clubs, you’ll need the following. A bucket of warm water, soap, and a brush or towel. Soaking your clubs in the  warm water and soap will help loosen up the dirt which will make it easy for the brush or towel to scrape it out. After this is done, dry them off and you should be back to new! This simple process will only take a few minutes.

By keeping a towel and wire brush on your golf bag, you can prevent this dirt build up and have effective grooves at any time during your round.

FAQ:

What golf irons should I use?

This is an important question for you to answer before you go out and buy a brand new set of irons. First, you should ask yourself what benefits you are seeking from your irons. For example, do you need an iron with a high launch? Do you need game improvement irons or player irons?

If you are a low handicap player, player irons are going to be best for you because you don’t need to worry about missing the sweet spot as much as a mid-high handicap player would. Players who typically score in the 70s would benefit from the additional accuracy and workability that player irons provide.

Mid to high handicap players should use game improvement irons because of the larger sweet spot and additional distance. If you struggle to make consistent contact or struggle to get the ball in the air, game improvement irons are for you.

What golf irons do the pros use?

Professional golfers use forged irons with precisely designed sweet spots. The irons that professional golfers use will have the weight focused on the center of the clubface which will make for a small sweet spot but increased accuracy overall.

Professionals don’t need any of the benefits that game improvement irons provide so they will typically use forged or blade player irons.

How long do irons last?

As long as you take care of your clubs and clean the grooves, your irons should last you many years. The shafts and grips of a golf iron can be replaced at any time which makes them last an incredibly long time.

Can irons be regrooved?

You can buy a tool called a groove sharpener which glides through the grooves with the intention of sharpening and renewing them.

When to replace golf irons?

You should replace your irons when they get to the point where the grooves can no longer be sharpened or until the face has noticeable damage.

How do golf irons work?

Irons will make up about half of the clubs in your golf bag and they will get you to the green from the fairway and rough. It’s important to have the right irons for your game because each player will require different features. Each iron is set to a specific loft for a different distance shot. 

Can iron shafts be replaced?

Replacing the shafts of a golf iron is a simple process that can be done at any golf course that offers club maintenance. Shafts need to be replaced when there is a noticeable bend or damage.

Can you lengthen golf irons?

If your irons don’t seem to be long enough for you, you can have them extended. This process can be completed by any place that offers club maintenance. This process involves adding a plastic addition at the end of the grip.

Why are some golf irons offset?

A golf iron is considered offset when the club face is set back from the hosel of the club. An offset club provides two main benefits.

The first benefit of an offset club is the fact that it makes the club face easier to square. Since the club head is taking a bit longer to get to the ball than the shaft, the golfer has more time to square the club.

The second major benefit of an offset iron is the fact that increases the launch. Since the center of gravity is set back from the shaft, the ball will launch higher than it would if it wasn’t offset. Golf irons with no offset are going to be more difficult to hit than irons with offset.

Conclusion:

With all of the options available to the modern golfer, it can be difficult to choose the correct irons for your game. Whether you’re a highly skilled player or simply a beginner, there are going to be countless options for you.

Before you begin the buying process, you need to first consider your skill level. This will determine what style of iron is going to be the best fit for you. You also need to consider the amount you’re willing to spend which will narrow your search.

The best way to determine which style of iron is best for you is to visit your local golf professional. They will be able to determine which style of iron is most suitable for you by watching your swing.