Equipment

ClubTest 2015: Callaway Big Bertha Irons

On the Range: Callaway Big Bertha Irons
This year's testers talk about one of their favorite irons at ClubTest 2015, the Callaway Big Bertha Irons.

Callaway Big Bertha Irons

 

Category: Max Game-Improvement Irons
Price: $1,000, steel; $1,200, graphite
WE TESTED:
4–PW with True Temper Speed Step 85 steel shaft and 4–PW with UST Mamiya Recoil 460 graphite shaft
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: A strip of metal runs heel-to-toe behind the face to shift the CG low and forward, which directs more energy into the ball.

PROS

 

PLAYABILITY: No problem launching high shots without ballooning; surprisingly easy to sweep from different lies; straight shots or slight draws are the norm with the Big Bertha.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: The most forgiving model in the max game-improvement category; very tight dispersion—keeps you in play no matter how you hit it; maintains distance on misses as well as any set out there and makes slices nearly extinct.
DISTANCE CONTROL: The Big Berthas are long—a few testers say they’re a half-club longer than usual; once you get used to the distance, they’re reliable on most approach shots; forgiveness makes it easy to predict how far the ball will travel.
FEEL: Good compression through the ball; reasonable feedback tells you enough to know how well you struck it; ample weight makes them feel like they swing themselves.
LOOK: Decent setup for an iron with this much forgiveness—sits squarely behind the ball and aligns with ease; they pack a lot of technology into this package.

Photo:

Callaway Big Bertha Irons

CONS

 

A few testers couldn’t control shots from the rough, and other trouble lies, as they expected; feel isn’t quite as lively as a few other models; a little clunky-looking compared with some competitors’ max game-improvement irons.

BOTTOM LINE: Outstanding forgiveness with very good distance make the Callaway Big Bertha irons a must-try for higher-handicappers.

BUY THE CLUB: Get your own Callaway Big Bertha irons

NEXT REVIEW: Cleveland CG Black Irons

MORE INFO ON CALLAWAY BIG BERTHA IRONS

From Golf.com, September 24, 2014

Big Bertha is the company's first iron model to incorporate "360-degree face cup" technology. Previously, the face cup was found in woods only. Attaching the stainless steel face to a hollow body allows specific areas of the clubface to be thinner, which lead to more flex and ball speed.

Bertha also has an extra strip of mass that runs heel-to-toe behind the face to shift the center of gravity (CG) low and forward. This weight placement directs more energy into the ball for added speed. According to Callaway, the combination of a hollow body, a hotter face, and low CG should produce shots that fly 1 to 1.5 clubs further than usual.

The new Bertha is built for the masses so single-digit handicappers would be wise to look elsewhere. Available 4-iron through SW in True Temper Speed Step 80 steel or UST Recoil graphite shafts. -- Rob Sauerhaft

Evolution of Distance: Callaway XR Driver
Callaway's Senior VP of Research & Design Alan Hocknell talks about the new Callaway XR Driver.

NEXT REVIEW: Cleveland CG Black Irons

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