TAYLORMADE TOUR PREFERRED EF
WE TESTED: “Tour" grind: 52°/9°, 56°/12°, 58°/10°, 60°/10°; “ATV" grind: 52°, 56°, 58°, 60°. All with KBS Tour wedge steel shafts
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: Electroformed (EF) nickle-cobalt grooves are TaylorMade's most durable to date.
LOOK: An assertive, industrial look that commands an aggressive swing; the ATV grind sits square and stays that way; Tour grind has more skimmed off the heel.
FEEL: A soft head with moderately descriptive feedback; the grooves grab onto the ball and don't want to let go.
DISTANCE CONTROL: Top-tier spin -- it checks on command and eliminates guesswork from the rough; ATV gives a big margin for error -- it shines on full swings and gets it done from close range; both fit shots into tight windows.
PLAYABILITY: Do-it-all ATV takes a clean divot and clear-cuts rough -- an everyman's grind to simplify the short game; the Tour grind handles flops and complicated lies with more elegance.
The ATV doesn't lend itself to being laid wide open; not much the Tour grind can do that the more accessible ATV can't; a couple of guys find both grinds surprisingly inconsistent from the sand.
BOTTOM LINE: One of the higher-rated models. Don't let the "TP" moniker scare you -- mid-handicap testers especially love the forgiving ATV grind.