Which Srixon and Cleveland golf iron is best for me?


Which Srixon or Cleveland golf irons should I buy? Your guide to each iron in Srixon and Cleveland’s 2021 line-up and who they are aimed at.

Most major brands have five, six or even seven irons in their 2021 line-ups, which shows the importance of having solutions for all golfers, irrespective of ability or personal preference. Choices range from slimline musclebacks to hollow heads and cavity backs, and while some are forged, others have springy faces just like a driver.  

RELATED: Tested – Best Irons

So with such a huge amount of choice out there, we felt it was far too easy for golfers to get confused about which iron best suits them.

Shane Lowry, Brooks Koepka and Hideki Matsuyama have all won using Srixon irons.

Even golfers who have a good idea of which iron suits them probably don’t realise what they put on the line in terms of ball speed, carry and forgiveness by choosing a set above their station.

To help you choose the right Srixon and Cleveland iron model, we will show you how the brand’s whole iron range compares against each other and whether you should be using the same iron as Srixon Tour players and Major champions Shane Lowry, Brooks Koepka and Hideki Matsuyama.

As well as launch monitor data from our pro, we’ve given every Srixon iron a forgiveness rating (1 = least forgiving, 5 = most forgiving) and a handicap guide to spell out simply what sort of players should be considering what sort of models, and why.

If you want to see how all of year’s irons performed then check out Irons Test or, if there are other brands on your shopping list, take a look at which Callaway, TaylorMade, Ping, Mizuno and PXG irons are right for you.

– Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this page, we never allow this to influence product selections.

RELATED: Which Srixon ball is best for me?

Neil Wain is the Today's Golfer golf test professional.

How we tested which Srixon and Cleveland iron is best for you

We asked Srixon and Cleveland to submit their entire 2021 irons range for testing. Why did we test these two brands together, we hear you ask? They’re both owned by Sumitomo Rubber Industries, which is why the likes of reigning Open champion Shane Lowry and Masters winner Hideki Matsuyama play Srixon irons and Cleveland wedges.

Four our irons test we created a controlled test environment indoors at Keele Golf Centre and used premium golf balls.

We collected a ton of data from every iron shot hit, using a Foresight Sports GC Quad launch monitor, all of which can be found further down this piece.

Srixon Z-Forged Irons.

Srixon Z-Forged Irons


Category Muscleback blade | Forgiveness rating 1 | Handicap range Four and below
Construction Forged from a single piece of 1020 carbon steel | Availability 3-PW
Stock shaft Nippon NS Pro Modus3 Tour 120 | 7-iron loft 33º

While Srixon has been cranking out really good forged irons for years, Brooks Koepka’s decision to switch to a set of ZX7s unpaid elevated the brand to a whole new level of endorsement.

The Z-Forged iron is a lovely blade, with a very similar high-toe profile to the ZX7, but the fact a player like Koepka thinks the ZX7s are a better fit for his game should set alarm bells ringing for anyone who finds a set tugging at their heart strings.

Seven yards less carry and less peak height, plus a shallower descent angle than the stronger-lofted ZX5 shows brilliantly how good modern weighting and shaft technology is at flighting shots for optimum backspin, height, descent angle and carry.

WATCH: Best Muscleback/Blades Test

Srixon ZX7 irons.

Srixon ZX7 irons

RRP £899 (s), £999 (g) | VIEW OFFER

Category Players | Forgiveness rating 2 | Handicap range Six and below
Construction Forged from a single piece of 1020 carbon steel | Availability: 4-PW
Stock shaft: Nippon NS Pro Modus3 Tour 120 | 7-iron loft: 32°

Plenty of above-average golfers say a players iron shouldn’t have a strong loft or any face tech as they believe the pair can lead to inconsistencies. With a 7-iron loft of 32°, a solid one-piece forged head and no springy face tech, the Srixon ZX7 is very much a traditional iron.

If you’re a club golfer, think very carefully before plumping for a set in front of the brilliant ZX5. Our data shows you not only give up nearly 4mph of ball speed, but you’re also losing launch, height, descent angle and 10 yards of carry to the stronger-lofted ZX5. That’s a massive trade-off for a bit of supposed extra consistency.

RELATED: Best Forged Irons

Srixon ZX5 irons.

Srixon ZX5 irons

RRP £899 (s), £999 (g) | VIEW OFFER

 Category Players distance | Forgiveness rating 2.5 | Handicap range 6 and above
Construction Forged 1020 carbon steel body with forged SUP10 face | Availability: 4–PW
Stock shafts: Nippon NS Pro Modus3 Tour 105 (s) Diamana ZX (g) | 7-iron loft: 31° 

For players who insist on using really good looking forged iron heads, while needing to factor ball speed and carry distance into their iron buying decision, the Srixon ZX5 irons are a really sweet package.

Our data shows brilliantly how the fast-face ZX5 is more than capable of holding its own against a set of more forgiving and stronger lofted mid-handicap irons.

See this model as competing with TaylorMade’s P790, Callaway’s Apex 21 and Mizuno’s JPX921 Forged iron and you really won’t go too far wrong.

RELATED: Mark Crossfield fixes your golf short game

WATCH: Best Players Distance Irons Test

Srixon ZX4 irons.

Srixon ZX4 irons

RRP £899 (s), £999 (g) | VIEW OFFER

 Category Mid-handicap | Forgiveness rating 3.5 | Handicap range 12 and above
Construction Cast 431 body with forged HT1770 maraging steel face | Availability: 4-LW
Stock shaft: Nippon N.S. Pro 950GH Neo (s), Diamana OEM (g) | 7-iron loft: 28.5°

Having the widest soles, the most offset and the longest blade lengths, along with hollow bodies, means the ZX4s are a brilliant fit for mid-handicap golfers. We haven’t included test data for this model, because we’ve not hit it yet. But based on the performance of its ZX siblings, we know this is a special iron that explores hollow body technology in a route Srixon haven’t followed before.

Srixon say a cast 431 body absorbs vibration for great feel, while the HT1770 forged face is fast and long. With a forgiveness rating of 3.5, the ZX4 is a very solid alternative to Ping’s G425, TaylorMade’s SIM2 Max and the Callaway Apex DCB.

Cleveland Launcher UHX iron.

Cleveland Launcher UHX Irons

RRP £499 (s), £599 (g) | VIEW OFFER

Category Mid-handicap | Forgiveness rating 3.5 | Handicap range 14 and above 
Construction Cast hollow body 4-7 irons, cavity back 8-GW | Availability 4-GW
Stock shaft Dynamic Gold DST 98 (s), Miyazaki C Kua 60 (g) | 7-iron loft 30º

No, we’ve not made a mistake including Cleveland irons right alongside Srixon’s line-up. The pair are both owned by the Sumitomo Rubber company, and where they see Srixon as the ‘players line-up’, Cleveland is much more pitched at average club golfers (with exception of their tour-level RTX wedges).

The UHX irons exploit the modern trend for progressive sets where the head shape and size are bigger and more forgiving in the longer irons and more compact and desirable in the shorter irons. A 30° 7-iron is nowhere near the strongest or most powerful available, but remember that at average speeds, distance gaps narrow.

WATCH: Best Mid-Handicap Irons Test

Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo iron.

Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo Irons

RRP £599 (s), £649 (g) | VIEW OFFER

 Category Hybrid iron | Forgiveness rating 5 | Handicap 28 and below
Construction Cast hollow body | Availability 4-SW 
Stock shaft Dynamic Gold DST 98 (s), Miyazaki C Kua 60 (g) | 7-iron loft 30º 

We reserve our highest forgiveness rating exclusively for hybrid irons (blades are always one and everything else fits neatly in between), so anybody who wants to make the game as fun and enjoyable as possible should be playing the Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo Irons.

Thanks to the wide sole and hollow hybrid head, forgiveness levels are off the chart. But surprisingly, it is also the brand’s highest flying model, so shots land on the green at the steepest descent angle and stop quickly.

RELATED: Best Ladies’ Irons

WATCH: Best High-Handicap Irons Test

How the Srixon and Cleveland irons compared on our launch monitor

How the Srixon and Cleveland irons performed in our test.

READ NEXT: Best Golf Launch Monitors


Simon Daddow is Today's Golfer equipment editor.

Simon Daddow is the Equipment Editor at todaysgolfer.co.uk
Simon has worked in the golf industry for 30 years. Starting out as trainee professional at Downes Crediton GC where he learned the art of golf club making, before going onto work for Clubhaus Plc and Tony Charles Ltd as a golf club maker, and running Product Development at Benross Golf.
Joining EMAP Active (now Bauer Media) in 2006 as Equipment Editor Simon has worked for Today’s Golfer and Golf World magazines and the Today’s Golfer website.
Simon is 46 years old, he’s played golf for 40 years and plays to a handicap of 10. A lack of club speed means he’s short off the tee, but very handy from 125 yards and in.

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- Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this page, we never allow this to influence product selections.