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TaylorMade Introduces 2008 Golf Ball Lineup

Dec. 12, 2007     By     Comments (20)

TaylorMade is ringing in the new year with some new LDP.

Bag DropTaylorMade Golf is kicking off 2008 with a bang by launching an entire lineup of revised and new golf balls that will give golfers a multitude of options to choose from based on what you are looking for in a golf ball.

Four of the balls will carry the TaylorMade name with the remaining two carrying the Noodle banner, and all will feature "a new proprietary aerodynamic technology called Low Drag Performance, which promotes improved distance on the most common types of off-center driver hits."

With a pretty impressive tour staff that includes Retief Goosen, Sergio Garcia, Justin Rose, Natalie Gulbis, TaylorMade is continuing to make a name for themselves in the golf ball arena. I was impressed with how the original Tour Preferred Red and Black balls performed and I am eagerly anticipating giving version 2.0 a closer look.

TaylorMade 2008 Tour Preferred Lineup

Technology
Utilizing new aerodynamics technology called Low-Drag Performance (LDP), TaylorMade is looking to help you gain more distance on off-distance hits. Since the vast majority of us don't hit the center of the club face most of the time anyway, any additional help on mis-hits is greatly appreciated.

According to Dean Snell, senior director of golf ball research:

We used the TaylorMade MATT (Motion Analysis Technology by TaylorMade) System to study the driver impact patterns of more than 80,000 players of differing levels. We found that the great majority of off-center hits occur on the upper part of the clubface, above the clubhead's center of gravity ("CG"). We compared the effects of these types of mis-hits on a variety of balls, including our own. The result was always the same: spin-rate dropped by a large percentage, typically from 500 rpm to 1,200 rpm. Spin rates became so low that the balls couldn't sustain lift. When that occurs, drag slows the shot down and the ball drops from the sky, seriously cutting carry and distance. With some models, the loss in yardage was exceptionally severe - up to 18 yards.

LDP Explained

The LDP technology, which is comprised of the combination of "every element that makes up the ball's surface: the size and depth of the dimples, the angles of their edges and the symmetry in which they're laid out" is now featured in the entire lineup of TaylorMade golf balls.

According to their testing, there is a "clear difference in distance on mis-hits above the CG, as well as on mis-hits level with the CG toward the toe and heel, between balls with LDP and balls without it." Needless to say, I'm quite intrigued to find out if this is true.

Tour Preferred Lineup
The Tour Preferred lineup: BurnerTP, Tour Preferred Red and Tour Preferred Black

New TaylorMade Tour Preferred Black

  • Tour performance and faster ball speed for players who prefer less spin
  • Cast thermoset urethane cover delivers predictable spin and supreme shear-resistance
  • 360-dimple Low-Drag (LDP) improves distance on off-center hits
  • Promotes high ball flight
  • Feels softer than original TP Black
  • Expected retail price of $39.99

New TaylorMade Tour Preferred Red

  • Cast thermoset urethane cover delivers predictable spin and supreme shear-resistance
  • 360-dimple Low-Drag (LDP) improves distance on off-center hits
  • Promotes mid to low ball flight
  • Feels 15% softer than original TP Red
  • Expected retail price of $39.99

New TaylorMade Burner TP

  • Combines awesome distance with tour-caliber bite and great feel
  • HPF 1000 SpeedMantle169 boosts ball speed while limiting driver-spin and increasing iron-spin
  • 342-dimple Low-Drag Performance (LDP) aerodynamics improves distance on off-center hits
  • Iothane cover feels soft, spins great and resists shearing, scuffing and scarring
  • Tour performance at an incredible value
  • Expected retail price of $24.99

Burner LDP Balls

New TaylorMade Burner

  • Fast, long and soft performance for every type of player who wants more distance
  • New 360 High-Lift dimple configuration promotes higher launch angle and longer carry
  • Energetic core boosts ball speed while retaining soft compression
  • So amazingly soft it feels and sounds like a balata-covered ball
  • Expected retail price of $19.99

Noodle Line-Up

Noodle+

  • 10 yards longer and 25% softer than before
  • New core formulation boasts higher COR yet feels softer
  • New 342-dimple configuration promotes increase hang-time, carry and distance
  • Better performance than ever, yet still "priced for the people"
  • Expected retail price of $15.99

Noodle+Lady

  • Created specifically to appeal to women and perform better for women
  • Live-Action Core compresses easily at moderate swing speeds to spring off the face fast
  • Iothane 56 cover feels soft yet resists shearing, scuffing and cutting
  • Highlights in the cover shine with a diamond-like sparkle
  • Expected retail price of $15.99

Final Thoughts
TaylorMade has come up with some fancy engineering to help make the aerodynamics of their 2008 lineup better. Will LDP be the "next big thing" and actually help golfers make-up some of the distance lost due to our mis-hits? That remains to be seen but the idea seems to be a good one although it's hard to imagine that a ball can "forgive your most common miss-hits." Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the potential for added distance, but the penalty is the same whether I hit it 250 yards out-of-bounds or 265 (perhaps LDP will assist my ball from going OB in the first place- that would be nice!).

TaylorMade 2008 Ball Lineup

TaylorMade has an impressive ball lineup coming out for 2008 which will provide a decent array of options for golfers to choose from. While I won't be able to get these on the course until the snow melts, I should have plenty of time to test out which ball feels the best off the putter. The entire lineup will be available January 1, 2008 at TaylorMade's retail parters so you only have to wait a few more weeks to give these a try.

Posted in: Bag Drop Comments (20)

Discussion

  1. frank says:

    does this mean there is not going to be maxfli balls any more

  2. Cory Collins says:

    So they've flip flopped what the TP Red and TP Blacks are for? This seems kind of confusing seeing as the orignial TP Reds were supposed to be the lower launching, higher spinning and the TP Black the higher launching, lower spinning ball.

    Why would the switch the two of them up for the second generation and have the Black be the now lower launching and the Red the higher launching???

    I love the origninal TP line of balls but this seems pretty odd.

  3. shortgame85 says:

    What is interesting to me is that many companies are offering the same type of line up: 2 tour preferred balls for higher swing players around $40 -$45 per dozen, a $24 per dozen ball that promises all the performance and feel of the higher price ball for not quite half the price and a ball for slower swing speed players at $19.95 per dozen. For example, Titleist and Callaway have similar line ups at similar price points. So, I guess a question to ask may be: does this marketing philosophy reflect the limits of ball technology or does it simply reflect an attempt on the part of a manufacturer to be all things to all people ( or both )?

  4. I've emailed TaylorMade and will get an answer.

    While waiting for an answer I checked the official PR. It says the TP Red has the lower launch and the TP Black the high. Since nobody would want a "high spin/high launch" ball or a "low spin/low launch" ball we must then assume that "for the high-spin player" means that player likes a ball with high spin, not that the player wishes to get back to "normal" by decreasing spin.

    I've adjusted the article to clarify these points.

    Update: The response we received from TM clarifies that the balls are the same as they were last year: TP Red = V1 = higher spin, lower launching ball of the pair and TP Black = V1x = lower spin, higher launching ball of the pair. The PR we were sent had contradictory language and has since been fixed.

  5. So they've flip flopped what the TP Red and TP Blacks are for?

    It appears that way if you take "lower-spin players" as being the same as "players who want more spin" (because they're "lower"). If you take it to mean "players who like lower spin" then the spin is still the same: TP Red spins more than TP Black.

    However, you're dead on re: launch angle. The "old" TP Black was high launch, the "old" TP Red the low launch. That has apparently been reversed.

    And if that's true, then I have to assume the spin has been flipped as well, because who wants a high-launch, high-spin ball and a low-launch, low-spin ball?

    I've emailed TaylorMade and will get an answer.

  6. TripleBogey says:

    Are the Burner and Burner TP upgraded Maxfli Fire and Tour Fire balls?

  7. Chez06 says:

    I was given a box of Burner TPs and played them yesterday in the afternoon. I usually play the Srixon Z-URS balls, but since I was given them I felt like I should give them a shot. On the first hole I noticed a little difference off the tee box gaining a few yards, chalked it up to hitting it pure. Approach shot into the green from 122 years I hit PW and overshot the flag and green about 15 yards. The ball does fly STRAIGHT, but feels funny on off the putter. If you are a mid to high handicapper I would suggest this ball, but if you like to work your shots and like a soft feel off the putter then I would suggest something different. For the price though not bad at all. Also, I on the second hole a par 5 502yds I was on the green in 2 (Driver/3 iron) first time ever.

  8. Andy Brown says:

    Each time I read about Golf Equipment companies coming out with new and improved versions of golf balls and golf clubs I feel like shouting out.

    Bad enough professional golf has become a tad bit irritating with players involved in a "I will muscle past you" competition when they stand on the tee. The game is turning one dimensional with POWER being the main ingredient of the golf game.

    That is still easy to digest because we know there are wicked architects out there who have enough tricks up their sleeves to reign in the power hitters and make them focus more on skill.

    My real grouse is with the great number of different equipments out there. Standardisation of the golf gear is a must to be a fair judge of a players game vis a vis another player. What is the point of crowning a champion who has won on the strength of what's in his bag and not purely on the basis of skill.

    Have the different brands ensconced themselves so firmly in the game that it is impossible to dream of a situation where we could see the players playing with the same kind of gear? Hopefully it is not just wishful thinking.

  9. The game is turning one dimensional with POWER being the main ingredient of the golf game.

    Actually, Andy, if anything it's all about putting and GIR. Those two stats alone account for about 70% of the game. Driving distance is 20% and driving accuracy about 10%, based on our calculations.

    And Ben Hogan was complaining about how much putting mattered in the 50s. Not much has changed. You've still got to put the ball in the hole.

    Standardisation of the golf gear is a must to be a fair judge of a players game vis a vis another player.

    Well then it's a good thing the rules already do that!

  10. Frezz says:

    I love the feel of Taylor Made's Tour Preferred Black balls. In my 14 years of playing golf, I have never played anything made by Taylor Made. I decided to give these balls a try and have never looked back.

    These are great for players who have trouble controlling the height on their drives and mid-iron approach shots.

  11. hines says:

    besides the launch and spin differences, what can a ~6 handicap expect to get out of either of these balls (red or black). i play proV1 or proV1x without much consideration of the differences. thanks

  12. james lacy says:

    i am now using maxfli fire 3 pc. ball. will maxfli balls still be available?
    i am a short driver, but good around greens. i need distance but spin around green. what ball would you recommend.

    please reply,
    jim

  13. Paul Trainor says:

    Is the BurnerTP and the Maxfli Tour Fire the same ball? :

  14. jr. says:

    recently whited out the name and logos on some balls .the balls ranged from low to high in the price range. balls included pro v1,callaway,top flite,ti tech beta ti ls and taylormade burner tp.it was very clear that no one ball out performed the other.what is clear spend your money on a lesson not the ball.

  15. Florence Rosato says:

    I find it so confusing as to low core compression/ high core compression golf balls! I'm told if you have a low swing speed, you should use a low core compression ball. Can you tell me if it's true :?:

  16. Lee Kraft says:

    The information on Taylormade balls is interesting. However, what information is available for these balls for a female small frame? I have a Taylormade Burner Driver.

  17. Bogiedust from Canada says:

    My favourite ball is the one I happen to be scoring with. The golf equipment (balls, clubs, gloves, training tools, etc) is the best "sting" pulled on the general public since professional wrestling. I have been playing golf as a member of a club since I was six years old - 35 years. I buy new golf balls when I'm feeling flush. I care what ball I play when I have a surplus in my bag. I buy a club when someone (who has been enticed by the marketing machine) gets tired of theirs (because VJ or Tiger upgraded). I buy new irons when mine have worn out. In my opinion, the greatest developments in the game of golf over the last 35 years have been the Rain Glove (extra golf days for me) and the 3-wheel push cart (I can sling a small beer cooler over the handle). NOBODY loves the game of golf anymore than I do. I am a 4 handicap. I am a tournament player. I love competetion. I feel very sad for all the folks out there that are falling prey to "new and improved". C'mon folks. Everyone knows that it isn't Washington, the UN, or Hollywood that run the world - it's Madison Avenue! Don't let them take over golf too.

  18. ArmyAirborne says:

    I have been playing Prov1 for three years, bought the tp red the other day.
    This ball does not fly as high off the irons and doedn't drop like the Pro V.
    I am hitting my irons very well right now, and have discovered these ball fly about 10 yards futher off the irons that I am used to.

    I've only played 2 rounds with this ball, and found myself going up one club from mid to short irons, 8 to 9 iron for example.

    I hit my 4 iron around 200 now which is great, but I am used to my 56 sandwedge at 100, now its 110.

    The jury is still out, but a dozen tp reds cost $25 at Walmart.

    Also, I get a tremendous spin on chips with the Pro V, less spin with the TP.
    I wish these balls have even more spin because it is not like the Pv1 at all.

  19. Dale North says:

    The $19.99 Burner ball is great on wet courses, and for people who fall into the "mid-handicapper" range. Why spend more when these balls work so well.

  20. Hugh says:

    My game has been improving. Since my handicap could soon go to single digit, I decided to pick a ball. Been trying mostly 3-piece balls. All brands. Lots of great balls out there right now. I finally chose the Taylormade Burner TP. Before this ball shows any signs of wear, I'll lose it. Feels better than TP Red / Black. Checks up nicely. But the thing that really sold me was off the putter. I like putting with this ball. Better putts than with ProV1.

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