Which Callaway iron suits me?

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Which Callaway irons should I buy? Your guide to each iron in Callaway's line-up, and who they are aimed at.

Most major brands have five, six or even seven irons in their 2020 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.  

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

So as 2020’s irons hit pro shop shelves, we felt the time was right to show how a brand’s whole iron range compares against each other.

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

ROBOT TESTED: Which golf ball suits my game?

Callaway Apex MB iron

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

RRP: £1,049

Construction: Forged from a single piece of 1025 cabon steel

Who are they for?

As desirable as the Apex MBs are, we’d encourage most club golfers to leave them to the pros. This is Callaway’s weakest lofted iron which means it gives up a massive 26 yards of carry (with a 7-iron) to the new Mavrik, which is aimed squarely at average club golfers.

Our data has the MB down, as you’d expect, as Callaway’s most unforgiving iron, giving up 11.3% of carry on mishits, too. Incredibly the MB gave up 16.4mph of ball speed (with a 7-iron) compared to the super strong-lofted Epic Forged, Callaway’s fastest iron. The golfers using these clubs just don’t need that much help.

Callaway Apex Pro 19 iron

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

RRP: £1,299 (s) £1,399 (g)

Construction: Forged 1025 carbon steel with Cup Face tech in the 3-7 irons

Who are they for?

With golfers of the calibre of Xander Schauffele playing the Apex Pro 19, this is as far as most club golfers need look down the Callaway line-up.

Callaway first introduced the Apex moniker in 2014, and the name has quickly established itself as a mark of excellence when it comes to forged irons. If you’re struggling to decide between the Apex Pro and standard Apex, see it like this; the standard one is 2.5° stronger (in the 7-iron), and has a lighter shaft.

According to the tests we’ve done, it means there’s 11-14 yards difference in carry, which to most will be hugely significant. A lovely choice for solid ball strikers.

TESTED: Best 2020 irons

How do Callaway irons compare in data?

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me data

Callaway Mavrik Pro iron

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

RRP: £849 (s) £1,049 (g)

Construction: Cast with AI-designed Flash Face tech

Who are they for?

The Mavrik Pro offers a decent-sized step in between Callaway’s two Apex irons, but where Apex have forged heads, the Mavrik doesn’t. It does have a comprehensive vibration dampening system in the form of urethane microspheres, tungsten weighting and different AI (artificial intelligence) face designs for each iron in the set – which boosts and preserves ball speed for typical on and off-centre impacts.

This might be Callaway’s new baby for 2020, but we struggle to see past the Apex and Apex Pro as a brilliant, if slightly more expensive, decent player iron option in 2020.

36 SETS TESTED: Which forged iron suits me?

Callaway Apex 19 iron

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

RRP: £1,299 (s) £1,399 (g)

Construction: Forged 1025 carbon steel with Cup Face tech

Who are they for?

What the Apex 19 does really, really well is pull all the ingredients of a cracking club golfers iron together in a very attractive package.

You won’t be choosing Apex if ultimate distance is your goal (look at the Mavrik and Epic Forged instead). But the Apex 19 does offer a lovely compact forged head shape, along with plenty of ball speed and distance, right alongside decent levels of ball speed and carry distance drop-off protection.

This is a seriously good choice for lots of reasonable club golfers.

Callaway Epic Forged iron

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

RRP: £1,999

Construction: Forged 1025 carbon steel with Cup Face tech

Who are they for?

On paper, the Epic Forged is seriously impressive. Hands-down it’s our longest iron of 2020 (our test pro averaged 195 yards with the 7-iron), but while we don’t do this very often, approach the set with caution.

The Epic’s lofts are seriously strong (27° 7-iron), but unlike most strong-lofted models, which have extra hosel offset (to position the centre of gravity further back) to launch shots higher, Epic Forged has similar levels as players irons.

For us at least, shots launched lower, span less and descended on to a green at a shallower angle than any other iron we’ve tested this year, which at lower swing speeds (from the types of golfers who always want more distance) means shot will struggle to stop on a green. Just hit them on a launch monitor first.

TESTED: Which Mizuno iron suits me?

How do they compare - Handicap Guide

Brands hate giving an indication of which handicap of golfer each iron typically suits, as it pigeon-holes their models. We've given each a handicap guide below to help ensure you buy the set most suited to your ability. 

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

Callaway Mavrik iron

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

RRP: £849 (s) £1,049 (g)

Construction: Cast with AI-designed Falsh Face tech

Who are they for?

The Mavrik is a very different beast to the Epic Forged, even though both have the same 27° 7-iron loft. Thanks to weighting tech now being so efficient, and cup face tech adding a degree of launch, strong lofts are a necessary part of stopping shots flying too high, with too much spin.

Our data has Mavrik down as Callaway’s second longest iron this year (to Epic Forged).

Just remember, if you’re getting fitted for set any time soon, don’t just be seduced by how much a launch monitor says you increase ball speed and distance with the Mavrik. Check your numbers and make sure you don’t lose lots of launch angle, backspin and descent angle compared to your own set.

TESTED: Irons ranked by Forgiveness

Callaway Mavrik Max iron

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

RRP: £849 (s) £1,049 (g)

Construction: Cast with AI-designed Flash face tech

Who are they for?

At slower swing speeds, golfers often need extra help hitting shots higher, and by hitting shots higher they stay in the air longer, which maximises carry. It’s now pretty common for most brands to have a slightly weaker lofted iron as their most forgiving offering, too.

Don’t be put off by our data showing the Max as a less powerful option than the standard Mavrik. For some, this iron really will allow you to achieve optimum flight and more distance than stronger lofted models.

A chunky but reasonably compact game improving choice, plenty of offset means the centre of gravity is further back which helps flight shots higher at slower speeds.

Callaway Big Bertha iron

Which Callaway Iron Suits Me?

RRP: £1,140 (s) £1,399 (g)

Construction: Cast with Cup Face tech

Who are they for?

It’s a pretty tough choice between the Big Bertha and Mavrik Max, but lots of golfers are likely to be guided by the Mavrik’s slightly lower price. In all honesty, though, and looking at the Big Bertha’s data, this is a really impressive iron.

Compared to Mavrik Max, it just about edges it for ball speed, higher levels of backspin (which help keep shots in the air and boost carry at lower swing speeds) as well as a descent angle that’s going to stop shots on the dancefloor, plus additional carry. A very solid super game-improver option.

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