ClubTest 2016: Mizuno JPX-EZ Driver Review
CATEGORY: Game Improvement Drivers
WE TESTED: 10.5° (adjusts 8.5° to 12.5°) with Fujikura Six XLR8 and Fujikura Motore Speeder Tour Spec graphite shafts
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: To increase MOI, the head is longer from heel to toe and front to back than its predecessor.
DISTANCE: Top-shelf -- as long or longer than what nearly everyone has in the bag; for a few guys, the thing's a rocket launcher; even finicky testers trust it to swing for the fences.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: Might be its number-one feature; doesn't give up much distance -- it's tough to call misses "missed"; takes the edge off hooks and slices; with the right settings, it's dead straight and well trained -- it runs away from trouble.
FEEL: Really rewarding through the swing; the stock shafts provide a full kick into the ball, and the beefy, headheavy setup is unyielding on off-center contact; might be Mizuno's best effort yet.
PLAYABILITY: An intuitive weight scheme -- repositioning the screw creates obvious changes in ball flight that improve dispersion, even taking an entire side of the course out of play; controllable, mid-high trajectory; don't think too much -- just aim and fire.
LOOK: A soft gray finish, black face and high-tech sole create a mix of subtle and loud; large head size generates added confidence -- it's ready to mash the ball.
Most complaints are aesthetic: It's loud enough to wake the children, and the tribal graphics in the crown have got to go; a few guys say the Six XLR8 shaft feels too light with this clubhead -- they'd swap it out for a heavier option.
BOTTOM LINE: "Sneaky good" might sound like backhanded praise, but from our testers it's full-on gushing. A huge step up for Mizuno; it can go toe-to-toe with the big guns. Its blend of length and leniency places the new Mizuno JPX-EZ among this year's best offerings.
HOT STIX'S TAKE: Straightforward adjustability -- one head with multiple loft options (plus upright settings) and a single 10-gram weight to promote draw, neutral or fade bias. Definitely higher launching than JPX-850. Launch: Mid; Spin: Mid