By Dominic Choma, Club Fitter
Feel is a word that gets thrown around a lot in the golf industry. A major reason being is that the joy that most golfers derive from the game of golf comes from how the game makes them feel. Golfers love to talk about that one shot they hit a round that keeps them coming back, and the feeling that it gave them. Because of how important feel is to golfers of all abilities, club
manufacturers have tried for years to produce clubs that provide the feeling that golfers are looking for. This task is much easier said than done, being that feel is subjective and every golfer will have a different opinion on what “feels” good.
Regardless of what each individual golfer thinks, one company has always held pristine reputation when it comes to feel. Mizuno has been making forged irons for many years, and their irons consistently rank high on golfer’s lists for how they feel. The main reason for this is the grain flow forging process that each forged Mizuno iron goes through. Patented in 1998, this process ensures that, in Mizuno’s words, “the metal’s natural grain is preserved in every step of the process”. This means a more solid and pure feel from the club head.
For the new MP 20 line of irons, Mizuno went back to an old formula to improve on the signature feel of their irons. Featured in the TN87 model from years past, Mizuno discovered that golfers preferred the feeling of an iron that had a copper plating compared to one that did not. Because of this, each of the three new models in the MP 20 line feature this copper plating. The three models available in the MP 20 line are the MB, MMC, and HMB. Each are designed with a particular goal in mind, and the entire line is designed to easily be split into a combo set if the player so desires. The MB is pure blade model, designed for the player who
wants an iron that is workable with a thin top line and minimal offset. The MMC model is a players cavity back, with a slightly larger club head and more perimeter weighting when compared to the MB. This iron is for the player that still wants a smaller looking club head, but wants a little bit of help on their mishits that the MB might not provide.
Lastly, we have the HMB. The HMB is a slightly different animal when compared to the previous two models, as it
incorporates a hollow body design. This iron is the most forgiving model in the MP 20 line, and should go the longest for most golfers. Justin Pahl did the testing for us again, this time hitting each of the MP 20 MB, MMC, and HMB models. The shaft used for this test was the Dynamic Gold x100 at standard length. The MB had 34 degrees of loft, while the MMC and HMB both had 32 degrees of loft. All loft numbers are standard for each particular model in a 7 iron. Results are below.
|Club||Clubhead Speed||Ball Speed||Smash Factor||Launch Angle||Spin Rate||Peak Height||Land Angle||Carry Distance|
For starters, I want to get this out of the way. Justin is a very high spin player, and for this test we used a pinnacle gold distance golf ball. Our testing shows that this golf ball will actually launch lower, and spin higher off of a 7 iron when compared to a Titleist Pro V1. For Justin this equates to a difference of about 800 rpms more spin with the Pinnacle, so although these spin rates seem a little crazy, it has more to do with the golf ball than anything else. As for the differences between each iron, we can see that the MB and MMC are actually fairly similar in the data, while the HMB shows a slight difference compared to the other two. To me this makes sense, as the MMC is really designed to be a slightly more forgiving version of the MB, while the HMB is designed with slightly more technology to make it go farther. Justin’s clubhead speed was essentially the same with all three clubs, right around 97 miles per hour. His ball speed with the MB was 129 miles per hour, while the MMB averaged 129.6 which essentially is no difference. The HMB however did increase his ball speed to 131 miles per hour, 1.4 and 2 miles per hour respectively faster than the other two models. Moving into Launch Angle, the MB averaged 17.5 degrees, while the MMC and HMB both averaged 16.2 degrees. The MMC and HMB both being about a degree lower is likely due to the MMC and HMB having two degrees less loft than the MB. For Spin Rate, the MB averaged 8524 rpms, the MMC averaged 8324 rpms, and the HMB averaged 7734 rpms. There wasn’t a big difference between the MB and MMC in spin rate, but the HMB being 600 rpms lower than the MMC, and 800 rpms lower than the MB does provide a significant difference. For distance, the MB carried 177.7 yards, the MMC carried 178.7 yards, and the HMB averaged 182.5 yards.
What the numbers tell us is that the MB and MCC are very similar irons in terms of the ball flight that will produce. The average ball speed, spin rate, and carry distance between these two models was extremely close, to the point where choosing between these two models would come down to personal preference in the look, feel and forgiveness of each model. As for the HMB, there was a little bit more of a difference when compared to the other two models. The HMB went 4 and 5 yards farther in carry distance, mainly due to the slightly faster ball speed on average combined with the slightly lower spin rate. Although not a massive difference, it is something to be kept in mind when choosing between the HMB and the other two models. Mizuno has enhanced their signature feel in the MP 20 line with the addition of the copper plating in each iron head. Offering 3 different models designed to both be unique in their own way, while also being able to be combined into one set, the MP 20 line is a great option for the lower handicap golfer who is looking for the ultimate in feel and performance.