ClubTest 2013: Callaway X Hot Hybrid
Callaway X Hot Hybrid
Category: Game-Improvement Hybrids
WE TESTED: 3H (19°), 4H (22°) with Callaway X Hot H-65 graphite shaft; 3H (19°) with Callaway X Hot H-70 graphite shaft
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: The updated Warbird soleplate has relief in the heel and toe to make the club versatile from different lies. A thin "Speed Frame" design helps the face flex faster for higher ball speeds over a larger portion of the hitting area.
PLAYABILITY: High and straight is the norm; well-struck shots produce a slight draw; heavy, powerful head cuts through rough with ease and excels from fairway bunkers.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: Thin shots lose carry distance but roll forever; heel and toe strikes turn out better than expected; slices get some help.
DISTANCE: Slower swingers pick up 5 to 10 yards over the irons they replace on solid contact; very good length for a club designed to get the ball up.
FEEL: A few testers describe a crisp cracking sound when struck well, like an old steel driver; heavier head than some others but it doesn't take over during the swing; real sense of compressing the ball.
LOOK: Understated charcoal gray finish on the crown contrasts nicely with a black PVD face and off-white shaft; larger head with a fairly shallow face inspires confidence.
Several testers don't care for the pronounced offset; a few guys find themselves in the left rough too often; heavy offset combined with sole weighting makes it challenging to keep the ball down and fade shots.
BOTTOM LINE: A hardworking hybrid for mid- and high handicappers, with above-average distance and slice correction. It's a definite upgrade over last year's RAZR X HL hybrid.
NEXT REVIEW: Cleveland Classic Hybrid