Equipment

ClubTest 2014: Callaway Big Bertha Alpha Driver

Photo: Michael Chini

Callaway Big Bertha Alpha Driver

Callaway Big Bertha Alpha Driver
Category: Tour Drivers
Price: $499
WE TESTED:
9° with Mitsubishi Fubuki Z graphite shaft
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: “Gravity Core” rod in the head allows you to manipulate weight to optimize launch and spin. An 8 percent larger face with variable thicknesses helps to boost ball speed. Loads of adjustability for loft (+2°/-1°), lie (neutral/upright), weighting (heel/toe) and CG. Heavier head requires a higher-balance-point shaft.

PROS
DISTANCE:
It’s long, period—one of the top-rated models; the Alpha seems to afford limitless distance when properly adjusted.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: Tons of room on the face to miss it a bit without losing much distance; testers have to make a really bad swing to produce a lot of sidespin; shots hold their line—very forgiving and straight.
FEEL: Powerful “pop” off the clubface; you can feel the ball compress but it’s not too rigid; head is very stable through the impact zone.
PLAYABILITY: Very repeatable mid-trajectory flight that’s fairly easy to turn over; after adjustments it does what you want with a ton of consistency; testers are impressed at how the carbon “Gravity Core” rod is used to alter flight and spin.
LOOK: Our testers really like the shape, dark blue paint job and square set up; the contrast between a dark crown and metallic face make it easy to aim properly.

CONS
A few testers say the amount of adjustability might be overkill; trajectory is a bit lower than some guys prefer.

BOTTOM LINE: One of the highest-rated models. Ranks near the top in all categories.

HOT STIX'S TAKE: Launch - Low; Spin - Low

NEXT REVIEW: Cobra Bio Cell+ Driver

RELATED LINKS
MORE INFO: Callaway Big Bertha Alpha Driver
BUY THE CLUB: Get your own Callaway Big Bertha Alpha Driver
CLUBTEST INDEX: List of past ClubTest Driver reviews

 

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