Callaway RAZR X, RAZR X Tour and RAZR X Forged Irons

April 16, 2012

Callaway RAZR X
From Golf Magazine ClubTest 2012 (April, 2012)

Category: Game-Improvement Irons
Price: $699, steel; $899, graphite

WE TESTED: 3-PW with Callaway RAZR X graphite shaft
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: Thirty grams is redistributed to the back cavity to produce the distance and forgiveness of a wide-sole club and the versatility of a thin-sole iron. VFT face technology adds speed across a greater portion of the face for more distance on off-center hits.

OUR TESTERS SAY: One of the higher-rated clubs. Very strong marks for distance, accuracy and feel.

PLAYABILITY: Easy to hit high and straight; large, heavy head bulldozes its way through rough; rounded sole resists digging.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: Does a great job limiting sidespin and keeping shots in play.
DISTANCE CONTROL: Off-center hits fly almost as far as good ones; shots into greens check up well.
FEEL: Soft, powerful, compressed feel on flush hits; head provides stability and little aftershock on poor hits.
LOOK: Meaty head gives you confidence that the ball will pop out from any lie; with its two white grooves, the face is easy to aim.

The club’s straight to natural draw flight makes it difficult for some testers to manufacture left-to-right shots; the bulky look, thickish topline and progressive offset don’t suit everyone’s eye.

From Golf Magazine (April 2011)
Category: Game-Improvement Irons
We tested: 4-AW with RAZR X graphite shaft; 4-AW with True Temper M10 Flighted-RAZR X steel shaft

Key Technologies: The all-stainless steel iron repositions 30 grams to the lower portion of the cavity, to create a large sweet spot in line with where average golfers strike the ball (low on the face). Consistent, high ball speeds combine with stronger lofts (long irons strengthened by 2°, short irons by 1°) to produce shots that fly 5 yards longer on average than X-22s.

OUR TESTERS SAY: Dependable performers. RAZR X does its best work in terms of accuracy/forgiveness and distance.

PLAYABILITY: Offset head allows for natural draw bias; lower center of gravity produces towering shots.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: Mis-hits don't sacrifice much in terms of distance or direction; a few testers believe it's impossible to lose shots to the right.
DISTANCE CONTROL: Several testers get up to one full club of extra length through the set.
FEEL: Many testers find it to be very solid yet soft at impact—a steamroller through the hitting zone.
LOOK: Significant offset and massive sole let you know the ball will get up easily and won't slice.

Takes time to get distances dialed in due to strong lofts; some testers seek more dampening help on mis-hits.

Category: Tour Irons
We tested: 3-PW, AW with True Temper Dynamic Gold steel shaft

Key Technologies: The all-stainless steel iron has a 30-gram weight on the lower back of the cavity that shifts its center of gravity 23 percent lower and 18 percent deeper than in the X-22 Tour. The primary goal is to deliver the forgiveness and power of a wide-sole iron plus the versatility of a thin-sole iron.

OUR TESTERS SAY: A good option for single-digit handicappers who are looking for "players" sticks that have a hint of game-improvement.

PLAYABILITY: Many testers believe the club's greatest strengths are its ability to get the ball out of rough and to hit straight shots from the fairway.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: Steady as she goes; pleasing outcome on directional misses.
DISTANCE CONTROL: Carry distance, particularly from the rough, is a definite asset.
FEEL: Head-heavy feel gives a strong sense of clubhead location throughout the swing.
LOOK: It resembles a better player iron at address but is more like a game-improvement model in the bag.

Some better ballstrikers find the club doesn't match the number of different shots they want to play; a few testers prefer an easier, more consistent time of it from uneven lies.

From Sports Illustrated Golf+ (February 7, 2011)
Built on Callaway's popular X Series line, the RAZR X is designed to provide consistent distance and accuracy through the set. RAZR technology shifts the center of gravity lower and deeper in the clubhead, offering increased shotmaking from more places. The irons are also available in RAZR X Tour and RAZR X Forged models.

From The Shop Blog (January 10, 2010)
For over a decade, Callaway's signature line of irons, the X Series, has made the company one of the dominant forces in category. From the X-12 to the X-24 Hot, they blended forgiveness and power in game-improvement models, while better-player models incorporated more shot-shaping feel.

You can now say goodbye to the X Series and hello to three models of new RAZR irons. Yes, there's an X on the back of the club, but these irons are built on a different foundation than their predecessors.

The RAZR X is a game-improvement iron that has a huge hitting area. Replacing the X-22 and X-24 Hot in Callaway's line, each of the eight irons in the standard RAZR X set are made using a new variable face thickness technology, which makes the hitting area thinner as you move away from the center. This feature broadens the sweet spot and maintains ball speed on off-center hits.

The weight shaved from the face, as well as other none-critical areas, has been placed in a new waffle-patterned, 30-gram weight found in the back of the club.

Luke Williams, Callaway's director of product design, says, "We added the extension to the back, so it's not a part of the sole. It's relieved from the sole so it won't interfere with the way the club goes through the turf." It's also not visible to the golfer at address.

The center of gravity (CG) in the new RAZR X is 12% lower and 15% deeper than the X-22, so shots hit lower in the face should fly higher. And because the CG is so low, Callaway designers were able to strengthen the lofts of the RAZR X irons to give you more distance.

"What we've done is maintain the narrower sole width, which better players tend to prefer." Williams says. "But by repositioning the weight in the cavity lower and deeper in the iron we've been able to drive the center of gravity lower and deeper." However, in the Tour model, the re-positioned RAZR weight is smaller.

There's less offset in the RAZR X Tour irons when compared with the RAZR X, but once again, because the CG has been driven so low and deep, Callaway strengthened the lofts of the RAZR X Tours.

Potential club champs, tour pros and low-handicap players won't find much offset at all in the RAZR X Forged irons. But they should get lots of feel because these clubs are forged from 1020 carbon steel.

With a narrow sole and thin topline, the RAZR X Forged irons have a classic look at address.

"This is the only iron in our line that's forged," Williams says. "So it's got the feel of a forged iron [which many Tour pros prefer], and it's got our new Competition grooves, which in this club we can forge into the faces. We can control the grooves much more effectively in a forging than in a casting."

RAZR X Tour: $799, steel
RAZR X Forged: $899, steel