The TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball promises premium tour-level performance at a compression and price to suit an amateur golfer's swing speed and budget... but how does it perform against the market-leading Titleist Pro V1?
After surveying thousands of average golfers and listening to what they wanted from a golf ball, TaylorMade came up with the three-piece Tour Response. They were targeting amateurs who were playing balls that weren't suited to them, hoping to provide a product that not only performed better, but at a cheaper price point.
The intention was to lure people away from premium tour balls like the market-leading Titleist Pro V1, so we thought it made sense to compare the two head-to-head to see how they stack up and which one is better for your golf game.
Construction and cover: TaylorMade Tour Response vs Titleist Pro V1
Both the TaylorMade Tour Response and Titleist Pro V1 are three-piece golf balls with a 100% urethane cover. It's urethane that makes a ball feel soft and helps with grab and control when it hits the green.
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Urethane has typically only been used on premium tour balls, with cheaper balls having surlyn and ionomer covers which don't sound and feel as soft, or provide as much short game control and spin. Thankfully, that is changing, with Tour Response is a ball aimed squarely at amateurs but still offering the urethane cover that discerning golfers will want.
Balls like the Callaway ERC Soft and Titleist Tour Soft feature blended covers, which can't match what you get from 100% urethane.
Compression: TaylorMade Tour Response vs Titleist Pro V1
The Titleist Pro V1 has a compression of over 100 (our robot golf ball test measured it at 101.8), while the Titleist Pro V1x has a compression of 108.4, making it the firmest golf ball in our entire test. That's because they're designed for tour players with swing speeds typically in the range of 110-130mph.
The TaylorMade Tour Response has a compression of 70, which makes it far easier to compress for golfers with more average swing speeds, helping amateur golfers get more ball speed and distance.
TaylorMade Tour Response vs. Titleist Pro V1 – Price
The Titleist Pro V1 has an RRP of £52 per dozen, which works out at £4.33 per ball.
The TaylorMade Tour Response has an RRP of £39.99 per dozen, which works out at £3.33 per ball, 23% cheaper than the Titleist Pro V1.
TaylorMade Tour Response vs. Titleist Pro V1 – Feel
Thanks to the urethane covers, both balls feel pleasantly soft and sticky in the hand, in contrast to surlyn balls which feel hard and less grippy.
TaylorMade Tour Response vs. Titleist Pro V1 – Performance
In our test, the Titleist Pro V1 was one yard longer off the tee (a difference of 0.4%) than the TaylorMade Tour Response.
With a 7-iron, the TaylorMade Tour Response was 13 yards (8.8%) longer than the Titleist Pro V1, which means you more than gain back any loss from the driver.
There's always the worry that golf balls carrying further with irons will mean lower spin and shots that don't stop on the green. In fact the TaylorMade Tour Response launched higher, had a higher peak height and the same descent angle as the Titleist Pro V1, meaning shots will hold the green. The extra distance came from a ball speed that was 3mph faster than the Pro V1.
The Titleist Pro V1 generated 11% more wedge backspin, but again the Tour Response launched higher, peaked at the same height and fell onto the green at a slightly steeper angle, which meant shots still checked up.
Data comparison: TaylorMade Tour Response vs Titleist Pro V1
Key numbers: TaylorMade Tour Response vs Titleist Pro V1
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Verdict: TaylorMade Tour Response vs Titleist Pro V1
Overall, for club golfers, the TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball is an excellent alternative to the Titleist Pro V1. Unless you boast a tour pro swing speed, it will likely offer improved performance at a cheaper price point.
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Review by: Simon Daddow
Job title: Today's Golfer - Equipment Editor