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Whether you’re looking to upgrade your bag or just getting interested in golf, you’ll need a decent set of wedges to cover the yardage, and the Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 definitely fits the bill. The RTX 2.0 it’s a versatile and fairly affordable wedge, and a younger brother of the Cleveland 588, a club that sold over ten million clubs since its inception in 1988. In this Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 wedge review, we’ll take a closer look at the club to make it easier for you to know if this wedge is worth investing in. Continue reading!
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A Bit of History
On that same note, the 588 RTX 2.0 is not the youngest member of the family, as that honour belongs to the RTX-3. As you may have noticed, the RTX-3 dropped the 588 from its name in favour of RTX (referring to the club’s face), which is an odd course of action, especially given the popularity and positive feedback that the original 588 wedge enjoys. The 588 RTX 2.0, as you can see, features both in its name, making for a nice transition between generations.
Now, how the RTX 2.0 came to being? Well, in short, the engineers over at Cleveland pretty much wanted to replicate the success the CG15 wedge had on tour in terms of popularity, so they worked with their tour players and managed to produce a head that resembles that of the CG15 Black Pearl, but has a noticeable edge over it in the way of grooves and forgiveness.
For those of you not in the know, the CG15 itself was one of the many takes on the original 588, one which combined (at the time) new technologies in the groove and sole grind designs. It was (and still is) a wedge intended for more advanced players, or at least those who seek true response in their wedges. The RTX 2.0 builds upon that legacy with its blade-design head and adds another twist with its cavity back version.
We’ll go over both of these designs in a bit more detail shortly, mentioning the other models purely for the sake of comparison and/or making recommendations as per your style of play. Of course, the blade vs. cavity back difference, although a very interesting point to make about the RTX 2.0, is not the only deal maker when it comes to this wedge.
Another great thing is the Rotex face we’ve already mentioned above, as well as a veritable cornucopia of choices in terms of lofts, bounces, grinds, and combinations thereof.
Cleveland RTX 2.0: Fits Any Bag
With 2 heads, 3 grinds, and 10 loft options combine gives you a grand total of 120 different wedge options; once you factor in all of the different shaft and grip options Cleveland has on offer, the choice becomes even more impressive. As for the lofts, you’ve got all the four types of wedges, going from 46 to 64 degrees in 2-degree gaps.
Factor in the various bounce options, and you’ve got a nice and wide selection on your hands: pitching wedge (46.08 & 48.08), gap wedge (50.10 & 52.10), sand wedge (54.06, 54.10, 54.12, 56.08, 56.12, & 56.14), and lob wedge (58.06, 58.10, 58.12, 60.06, 60.10, 60.12, 62.08, & 64.08). One minor gripe, though, that might affect those among you struggling with the swing – the higher lofts (54 and up) are a touch on the heavy side (D6).
The bounty of options is definitely one of the major selling points of the RTX 2.0. This puppy is designed with versatility in mind, allowing plenty of fine tuning your shots according to both your style of play (what kind of golfer you are – sweeper or digger) and in terms of what courses you typically play on (dry and links-y or wet parkland, or whatever else jingles your jollies).
On that same note, the RTX 2.0 allows more creative players to throw the face open or square it up at need, and really dial in the ball for a GIR.
Rotex Face: The Facts
The face of the RTX 2.0 is yet another great selling point of this club – it sports the 4th generation Tour Zip Grooves, which are about 15 per cent steeper than on the original 588. The walls on these grooves are definitely sharp, and you can clearly see that Cleveland went for the roughest face they’re legally allowed to go for with the milling and the grooves. This is important as they do an admirable job of getting all the muck out when you’re playing it out of rough.
Moreover, the new and improved grooves (bet you haven’t heard that about a set of wedges before) will go a long way to generating lots of spin, allowing you to stop the ball dead on the green. Also, not only are the grooves up to game, but the face between them has been “roughened” to give it more bite on the ball. You’ll definitely notice the enhanced control and be able to consistently play with lots of check on that second bounce.
Blade vs. Cavity Back: Which One to Go For?
The blade vs. cavity back debate pretty much boils down to what you want your Cleveland RTX 2.0 to do – give control and feedback or improve your game. Both look terrific, to be clear, but the blade feels more responsive, so it should suit low cappers and scratch players; it allows you to play creatively and aggressively on any type of shot, but definitely excels on chips and out of the bunker.
The cavity back feels just as soft (well, almost), but it’s more intended for golfers looking to get more forgiveness on full shots. There’s definitely a market for this one, some niche where it can fit between set wedges and full bladed models. In other words, if you’ve only played wedges that come with the set, you’ll enjoy the RTX 2.0 cavity back.
The Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Blade wedge certainly inspires confidence when you put it down by the ball without being too big, making you feel like you can really get under the ball. It’s just an overall good-looking head, a touch of classical to it (thanks to its resemblance to the CG15). Moreover, the Blade feels like you can really be aggressive around the green with your chip shots, and playing out of greenside bunkers feels downright easy with how aggressively the wedge allows you to play.
So, to recap – the RTX 2.0 Blade looks great at address, feels great at impact, and goes a long way to enabling you to do more things with one club – throw it open, hit it square, or make a little mix of the two. As for recommendations, it’s better suited to more advanced players and anyone looking for true feedback out of their wedges.
The Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Cavity Back, to give it its full name, is a particularly interesting choice – it’s made for players who are struggling with full wedge shots and basically anyone looking for a bit more forgiveness on off-centre hits when hitting full shots into greens. On a similar note, the RTX 2.0 is a nice middle way between an all-out blade wedge and a set option, so it should be a nice step-up for anyone who’s only been using the wedges that come with the set.
Of course, this does not preclude it from being played by more advanced players. Sure, it’s not as versatile as its bladed counterpart, but it’s definitely one of the best feeling wedges on the market. That said, it still performs better full swing shots, but will still give you plenty of good feedback for half swings.
The Grind: Connecting the Dots
Depending on the bounce, the grind on the Cleveland RTX 2.0 will come in three distinct flavours – low (one dot), standard (two dots), and full (three dots) – you can easily differentiate between the three by the dots on the sole itself. However, it’s still the same ole V-Grind that Cleveland used to put on their RTG wedges, and which the RTX 2.0 took over from the CG15, like most other features.
The Low Grind comes with the lowest effective bounce and most heel & toe relief, which in turn allows you to play it aggressively from any type of lie, but tight lies especially. It’s ideal for sweepers and folks who play a lot of firm courses. As noted above, you’ll recognize it by the single dot on the sole.
The Standard Grind, as we’ve already mentioned, is the medium option with respect to effective bounce and heel and toe relief, which makes it the best choice for anyone looking for versatility. You can play it from virtually any type of lie, and it should suit those with a neutral attack angle.
Dot Dot Dot
The Full Grind comes with the highest effective bounce and lowest heel and toe relief, pretty much enabling you to glide through any type of surface. It should suit diggers and anyone playing predominantly on soft turf and out of bunkers, but has the least versatility of the three.
The Final Verdict
When all is said and done, the Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 wedge comes off as one of the most all-inclusive wedge lines on the market, and that’s counting the newer RTX-3. With well over a hundred different heads to choose from, it’s easy to understand why. And, for a final recap – go for the blade if you want precision, and cavity back for forgiveness; one dot grind is for sweepers and firm conditions, two dots for neutrals, and three dots for diggers and soft conditions. Choose wisely, choose accordingly, and may the course be with you!