The first thing that comes to mind for most people when they hear the name Srixon is their golf balls. This makes sense, as Srixon has been a leader in the golf ball market for years now, and their golf balls are recognized as some of the best in the game today. The hard part for Srixon has been to convert the brand recognition that they have with their golf balls into the rest of the products that they offer. Despite the struggles Srixon has always produced golf clubs that have performed well. Their new z585 and z785 irons are no exception, as both have been solid performers so far in The Cluboratory.
The Srixon z585 iron is touted by Srixon as being an iron that offers the distance and forgiveness of a game improvement iron, while providing the look and feel of a more compact players iron. The distance aspect comes from the “speed groove”, which is an internal channel in the clubhead that allows the face to flex more at impact. This will produce more ball speed, which in turn should produce more distance. The speed groove also moves more weight around the perimeter of the club head, which enhances the forgiveness that the clubs offers. The feel aspect of this iron comes from the fact that it is forged from 1020 carbon steel, while the smaller shape and thinner top line are what you normally would see in a player’s iron.
The Srixon z785 is a more compact players iron that is designed to enhance workability for the better player. This iron also is forged from 1020 carbon steel, but it does not have the same cavity back that the z585 has. If anything, the z785 is designed to be less forgiving, as more mass is concentrated around the center of the clubface. What this will allow for is a lower MOI, or Moment of Inertia. The lower the Moment of Inertia, the less stable the club head is. A club head that is less stable will allow the player to curve the ball more easily, provided they have the ability to do so.
For the numbers portion, the shaft being used was the Nippon Modus 120 Stiff Flex at +½”. The loft of the z585 was 31 degrees, while the loft of the z785 was 32.5 degrees. The lie angle on both clubs was 63 degrees. I tried to make my best swing on each shot, with bad swings being deleted. Results are below.
Z585 Shot Analysis
Z785 Shot Analysis
Looking at the numbers, we see some of the differences between the 2 irons. A big difference I see right off the bat is ball speed and smash factor. For the z585, the ball speed averaged 137 mph, with an average smash factor of 1.41. The z785 averaged 132 mph with a smash factor of 1.39. Now my club head speed with the z585 was slightly higher than with the z785, but this could be an issue with TrackMan reading the club head of the z585 differently than the z785. Regardless, the increased smash factor from the z585 shows that this club head was more efficient in transferring my club head speed into ball speed, which is the design intent with that club. In terms of launch angle and spin rate, the z585 launched at 14.7 degrees with an average spin rate of 6029 rpms. The z785 averaged 14.4 degrees of launch with 6482 rpms of spin. The z585 and z785 were essentially the same in terms of launch angle, but the z585 spun 453 rpms less. This slightly lower spin rate will produce a flatter, more penetrating ball flight which generally is better for distance. In terms of distance, the z585 carried 195.4 yards, while the z785 averaged 186.4 yards, which was an increase of 9 yards. The higher ball speed through higher efficiency (or smash factor), with a slightly lower spin rate are the main culprits for the difference in distance.
So, what can this data tell us about who these 2 irons would be good for? Well essentially it tells me that they are good for exactly who they were designed for. The z585 was designed for the player who wants a more compact looking iron that will still provide distance and forgiveness, and we can see that the z585 went farther than the z785 in this test. The z785 was designed for the better player who wants more control over his trajectory and does not necessarily care about hitting the ball farther. The shorter carry distance and slightly higher spin rate will provide that player with what he is looking for relative to the z585. Overall both irons accomplish the goal of what their design intent was, leaving Srixon with a solid line of irons that will cater to many different golfers of differing abilities.
Srixon has always been a major player in the golf ball market around the world. They have always made solid golf clubs as well, and they have been starting to be noticed for that more and more in the last few years. The z585 and z785 irons are another addition to the Srixon line of irons that are a solid performer that look good and feel good as well.