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Most of the top drivers come with an adjustable loft but that will still only give you a certain range. The loft is probably the single most important factor in selecting a driver and also the one aspect many golfers get wrong.
The majority of golfers naturally assume that the lower the loft the further they will be able to hit the ball. In theory, this is great, but in reality, it is often not the case. If you have a really good swing speed, 100 mph plus, then you can get away with a low loft. Most golfers have a swing speed of 90 mph or less, in which case a higher loft is necessary.
Select a driver with forgiveness that is relevant to your skill and consistency. If you do not regularly strike the ball in the center of the club face, go for a bigger head with a larger sweet spot for maximum forgiveness. A larger driver head also has greater mass, which helps generate more momentum resulting in better distance.
Shaft Flexibility and Length
The basic rule with regards to shaft flexibility is the slower your swing, the more flex is required. Conversely, if you have a fast swing speed you will want a stiff or even extra stiff shaft.
Here you might need to experiment with different lengths to establish what works best for you. Logically a taller person will want a slightly longer shaft than a shorter person. For the average golfer, a slightly longer shaft potentially gives you more distance but with a reduction in control. Most pro golfers use shafts that are shorter than those used by amateurs.
Those are some of the main factors you will need to consider when selecting your prized new driver. There are a number of factors that vary in importance according to the preference or style of the golfer.
Many golfers are very big on the look and appearance of the driver. I believe that the functionality is more important than appearance but no one wants an "ugly" driver. Check to see that you are happy with the look.
Modern adjustable hosels and weights are great and can be very useful. Take the time to understand how they work and what they can do. If you select an adjustable driver, invest a bit of time at the driving range to determine what will work for you.
The great thing about this technology is that as your game develops, the driver can be adjusted to better suit your improved style and performance.
Today’s Best Golf Drivers Comparison Table
Best Golf Driver Review
To deliver recommendations on the best drivers available on the market, we have conducted an exhaustive research. We have looked at the specifications and the features and benefits of the top drivers. We looked at the build quality, materials used, and any unique advantage they might have.
We have also spoken to numerous amateurs as well as professional golfers to get first-hand feedback. That information was then added to the countless comments and the feedback that buyers of these drivers have made online.
Combining all of that research, we can confidently recommend the following as the best drivers currently available.
TaylorMade have pushed the boundaries of research and development in putting the M1 together. Nothing is cutting edge stuff that has never been seen before but it has been combined perfectly and works well together.
By eventually making use of a carbon fiber composite for the sole and the crown, they have managed to reduce weight. The weight saved was used to add more adjustability of weight to change the Center of Gravity (CG) according to your desired launch preference.
Most golfers are impressed with the unique carbon fiber lattice design as the back gives it a high-tech, impressive appearance.
The M1 has two independent tracks with front and back weights for draw/fade and launch angle respectively. The variations add up to an astounding 270 different options. Over and above that, the adjustable hosel allows for a choice of 12 lofts. Basically, there are choices galore.
The Titleist 917 is super adjustable for those who like to manipulate their driver for their game.
Their biggest innovation is the weight cylinder, or as they call it the SureFit CG adjustable weight. This resides in the sole and allows you to manipulate a number of aspects, including trajectory, shape, direction, and your alignment.
They have retained the SureFit Hosel, giving you options of loft and lie settings. They have also improved the Active Recoil Channel for greater speed and carry. The deeper set center of gravity (CG) improves forgiveness.
The 917 is a good choice for golfers of all levels that want a lot of options to adjust the variables.
Forgiveness is the hallmark of this very popular driver. The Big Bertha has been around for some time and Callaway has been consistently making it better every time.
It probably offers the ultimate forgiveness and that’s not just for newbies. Even the more seasoned golfers do not strike the ball perfectly 100% of the time. With this driver, you will barely notice a mishit.
The head is constructed from a forged composite which is super strong while remaining very light.
The Big Bertha has a lot less adjustability than many of the other top drivers which might well suit many players. They do feature an adjustable hosel and there are a number of shaft variations to suit your game.
While it still hits a respectable distance, it is not the longest hitting driver in our top 8 list. For many players, the superior forgiveness might just compensate for this fact. Apart from that, it is a dependable driver that is a pleasure to swing. Unless you really need all the additional adjustability, it is a great option.
Ping has taken their Dragonfly technology even further with additional lattice work and titanium beams giving structure to the thin crown material. Not only is this visually appealing but it reduces weight and makes the head extremely aerodynamic for greater speeds.
They have also pushed the center of gravity back and slightly lower, making the Ping G extra forgiving. It has also improved clubhead speed as well as improved the launch.
The Vortec design and turbulators make the swing more stable and faster due to reduced drag and turbulence. This improves not only speed but also accuracy.
The previous driver model by Mizuno, the JPX 850, proved to be a very popular choice. The company wanted to go all out with their next model and have added a lot of improvements and enhancements to the new JPX 900. Their main goals were to make them more forgiving while producing greater ball speed. They also added way more adjustability to the new edition, as is the current trend.
In terms of adjustability, they have added 2 by 8 gram weights that can be distributed multiple ways, depending on the desired effect. It provides great flexibility to make it suitable for almost any golfer.
The other big addition to their drive for greater adjustability, is what they call the VFA (Visual Face Angle) technology. This is a 3-way sliding mechanism that will let you adjust the face angle to open, neutral, or closed.
The have also incorporated a Quick Switch Adapter which is an adjustable hosel, allowing you to select a range of loft angles. Mizuno moved the CG back slightly and raised it a bit. This will improve the MOI and also help those with slightly slower swings to gain a bit of extra loft.
They have also made an upgrade to the face with their new Cortech face. It is 5g lighter than their previous model with a larger sweet spot, or sweet zone as Mizuno like to call it.
For golfers, there is no sweeter sound then the sound some drivers produce on impact. Mizuno have always had a great sound put have put extra effort into the JPX 900 with their Mizuno's Harmonic Impact Technology (HIT). This feature makes use of a rib structure to give a powerful, impressive sound.
Cobra has simplified things a bit with the King F7, doing away with some of the weight adjustable mechanisms of some of the earlier models.
There are now three simple screws in the sole. Although still a carbon head, the removal of the earlier adjustments has reduced some of the weight while still giving you plenty of options to fine tune your drive.
They retained the MyFly 8 hosel although the loft range is a bit less, with options from 8° to 11°. This is more suited to the golfer with a higher swing speed looking for less spin.
They have used the E9 face with its variable thickness once again. This, combined with the TeXtreme Carbon Fibre crown, allows for greater forgiveness on off-centre hits.
A very interesting technology the King F7 has employed is a Cobra Connect GPS tracking device. This is incorporated into the grip and is powered by Arccos.
All you need to do is link it to your smartphone and it will measure the distance from the tee to your next shot. This smart technology will monitor your game and suggest Cobra's tour player videos to help you improve your game. It is certainly an interesting technology.
The Vapor Flex is a great driver for more experienced golfers with good speed swings and who prefer a low spin rate.
Nike has used the FlexLoft 2.0 technology on this driver. Essentially, it is an adjustable hosel with loft and face angle options. They also incorporated Flex-Flight. This consists of a rod near the rear of the head that adjusts to alter the CG. This further allows you to modify the launch angle as well as spin.
Nike improved and firmed up the "Covert Cavity" feature on the Vapor Flex for improved energy transfer.
The Z 765 is more suited to the faster swingers wanting less spin.
It is also slightly less forgiving than earlier models and other drivers tested, again making it better designed for your more experienced golfer.
If you are in this league then the Power Wave Sole (10% increase in the COR area), stiffer shaft, and other design modifications will give you great control and plenty of distance.
Spoilt for choice? As much as it makes selecting a new driver a bit more time consuming, choice is good. There are a number of things to think about but if you do your homework correctly, it will be well worth it.
Objectively look at your swing or, better yet, get a pro to assist. Understand your swing speed, be realistic about the amount of forgiveness you require, and be aware of your weaknesses. This knowledge will guide you in selecting a great driver that suits your game.
Once you have got your hands on your new driver, take the time to get to know it. Then you are ready to enjoy it for many years to come.