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A number of newer golfers are skipping getting to know their fairway woods all together in favor of hybrids. This is a pity as, although not the easiest club in the bag to hit, the fairway wood still has a lot to offer. Sure, hybrids are more forgiving and a bit easier to hit and I am not against them but there is still an important place for a good fairway wood. That’s why we’ve compiled this best fairway woods review to give some inspiration in the fairway woods jungle. Let’s get stuck in.
The above fact has never been more true than now because, although hybrids continue to evolve, the amount of development and adjustability that most new fairway woods have make them even more versatile and useful on the course.
Most clubs now feature similar technology, materials, and adjustability as the larger drivers yet have the flexibility to play well off the tee or directly off the deck. Some are extremely adept at playing from the semi-rough or out of a poor lie.
The more experienced golfers are aware of the value of a good fairway wood and newer golfers will be doing their game a huge disservice if they do not get to know one and take advantage of all it has to offer.
Best Fairway Woods Comparison Table
Ping G400 Fairway Wood
Best Fairway Woods Review
With all the options on the market at the moment, we took a look at the best fairway woods available to come up with our top 6. We looked at the reviews of professionals as well as regular golfers and looked at the feedback from golfers who have bought and used quality fairway woods recently.
One thing about most golfers is that they are a passionate and vocal bunch and if they like something they will tell you. If they don’t like something they will make sure you know. Based on all of this feedback, tests, and reviews we are proud to offer our six of the best.
1. Ping G400 Fairway Wood
Ping appear to have got the perfect mix of ingredients in the G400 to appeal to pretty much any golfer irrespective of their experience or requirements.
While some use their fairway woods exclusively off the tee or off the turf and others use them for both, this fairway wood is equally comfortable and competent in either situation and even performs well out of tight lies. It will launch with ease and the distance is impressive. It is a consistent club that gives you great shot shaping abilities.
In the looks department, it is neat and sleek without being mind-blowing in any way. The familiar turbulators are visible which improve aerodynamics but function more as an alignment aid on the otherwise matte black crown.
It produces a solid, pleasing sound with perfect feedback. One of Ping’s main bragging points is the super-strong Maraging Steel used for the face. This allowed them to make it thinner with much more flex resulting in greater speed and distance. The cascading sole further helps with distance, forgiveness, and launch. It also has an adjustable hosel.
It is an outstanding fairway wood that will appeal to players at all levels. It delivers amazing distance without taking anything away from the forgiveness.
With its sophisticated appearance, incredible adjustability, and game improving technology, the Titleist 917 Fairway Woods topped the charts on many reviews for the best fairway woods. They offer the F2 and F3 options, both using the same technology and similar superb performance. The F2 has a slightly larger head, launches a bit higher, and offers more loft options.
The company has incorporated most of their tried and tested driver technology into the fairway wood design so if you know their popular drivers, you will be familiar with many of these key technologies.
SureFit CG and SureFit Hosel allow you to fine-tune the launch and weighting to optimize your swing, compensate for any weakness, or adjust to the conditions on the day. It will also help you achieve the ideal spin rate for your requirements. This makes the 917 F2 versatile to suit any player form an absolute beginner to a pro.
The Center of Gravity (CG) adjustability is quick and easy to help you play the perfect launch. The hosel options give you a choice of 16 loft and lie settings. Getting the maximum benefit of these options will require a bit of time at the range to check out what combinations work best for you or a visit to a professional fitter. They can make a massive difference to your shots but only once you get the settings right.
Increased speed with less spin is evident thanks to an enhanced Active Recoil Channel and the Variable Face Thickness improves forgiveness and gives good distance even when the ball is struck off-center.
The F2 has a great feel to it, provides excellent feedback, and has a pleasant, powerful sound on impact. If you want all the control the adjustments offer and are prepared to make the effort to optimize them, the 917 F2 will give you an easy launching, hard-hitting, and forgiving fairway wood.
Another fairway wood that regularly featured as a firm favorite is the TaylorMade M1. They have also increased their adjustability and continued with their multi-material construction to produce a powerful club that is extremely popular with a wide range of golfers and trusted by many on the pro circuit.
It is equally at home hitting off the deck or off the tee for outstanding distance. It has a more compact head than the M2 which many golfers like but does mean a slight sacrifice in forgiveness.
The adjustable hosel (+/-2 degrees) combined with the 25g sliding sole weight allows you to set the club up to make the most of your swing speed and style. It allows you great shot shaping abilities if that is what you need.
The open channel speed pocket increase speed and distance which is further enhanced by the Ni-Co C300 face. These also help to make the club less punishing on off-center shots. The stainless steel body has a six-layer carbon crown which allowed TaylorMade to position the CG more strategically.
While it is probably not the best fairway wood in the hands of a beginner, most golfers will get a good solid distance from the M1 and have the ability to dial it into their precise needs. It is a versatile, competent club that is well liked by those who use it.
The Big Bertha by Callaway has a way of cropping up on most top driver reviews and it certainly deserves a spot in this review of the best fairway woods. Known for forgiveness and power, the much loved Big Bertha never disappoints and lives up to the Epic in its name.
Unlike most other manufacturers, Callaway has not used identical technology to their popular drivers but have tweaked it slightly for the fairway woods. They used a Triaxial carbon crown, weighing a mere 6g. This gave them more freedom to position the CG to optimize forgiveness and launch.
The crown also features Speed Step technology for improved aerodynamics and speed. It also works as an alignment aid. More forgiveness and increased playability are available from the ultra-thin Face Cup. MOI is high, further enhancing the distance the performance. The adjustable hosel will allow you to customize the loft and lie to work with your swing.
These technologies combine well to give the golfer what the Big Bertha family always delivers, forgiveness with distance. The club looks great and the carbon lattice structure at the back of the head gives it a bit of edge and intrigue. It is equally capable off the tee, fairway, or light rough.
About the only negative feedback we came across was a few players that were not that enamored with the green accent colors. Others really enjoyed them so as always, you can’t please all the people all the time. The fairway wood suits the full range of players and will appeal particularly to those who battle to get a decent loft and distance off the deck.
The standout feature of this versatile fairway wood is the legendary Baffler Rail System, much loved by Cobra fans for many years. The progressive rail height design makes playing from a poor lie much less daunting. While it is great off the tee, it really proves itself when you find yourself in the semi-rough or a less than ideal lie and you still have a long way to reach the green.
It has two adjustable weights, a 3-gram and a 20-gram weight, to optimize the club to your requirements and swing. On top of that, you still have an adjustable hosel to further tweak the club. Speak to a professional fitter or take the time at the driving range to optimize these options for your game.
It is definitely one of the easier fairway woods to hit and the versatility will appeal to players at all levels of the game. The design makes it a consistent powerful club with plenty of forgiveness and adjustability. It is especially good off the deck or in thicker grass. The look appeals to most players and the sound and feedback are great.
Mizuno truly went all out with adjustability options on their latest fairway wood. Apart from the adjustable hosel it also has a sliding fast track or infinite track that will allow you to very easily move the 25g weight to the position of your choice along the 43mm track.
You can dial the club in perfectly to suit your swing and achieve your desired launch angle and spin rate. Set the weight forward for a low launch and spin or set it further back for greater forgiveness with more launch and spin. Mizuno has used the shockwave sole which allows for increased face flex and improves speed and distance.
Some players hate the orange shaft and matte blue crown combination while others love it. The club has a good sound and feel although this will be affected by the weight positioning. Distance is impressive but it is better suited to golfers with a mid to high swing speed.
As you can see, there has been a massive increase in adjustability and an overall improvement in technology, design, and materials. They are flexible and versatile and able to grow with you as your swing develops. The adjustability allows you to dial the club into your exact requirements to suit your swing style and speed as well as your objectives.
It is important to give some thought to how you use fairway woods and what advantages and features would be best for your style of play. This will guide you as to which of these options would be best for your needs. Fairways and greens!