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TaylorMade Penta TP5 Golf Ball Review

Sep. 12, 2012     By     Comments (6)

TaylorMade TP5 Balls One BallTaylorMade has never shied away from taking chances where technology is involved. The company that brought us three different ways to adjust a driver and a slot behind the face of a fairway wood to increase the CoR is back, and continues to up their golf ball game.

Already the first company to introduce a five-layer golf ball, TaylorMade has seen their golf ball line take off recently. The TP5 is the fourth premium golf ball TaylorMade has brought to market since their entrance in the mid-2000s, and they're gaining traction on the PGA Tour as well as in pro shops worldwide. 25 million Pentas were put into play around the globe in 2011, and Darren Clarke used a PentaTP en route to his Open Championship victory.

TaylorMade's golf ball market share doubled in 2011, continuing their inroads into a business dominated by the likes of Titleist, Bridgestone, Callaway, and others, and this year they're aiming to bring their (healthy) obsession with innovation back to the golf ball. Read on to see how they did.

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Callaway Hex Black Tour Golf Ball Review

Jun. 12, 2012     By     Comments (5)

Callaway Hex Black TourThe new Callaway Hex Black Tour ball hits all the marks to compete with the other premium balls on the market.

The premium ball market has been dominated by a certain company for - what seems like - an eternity. I was one of the many who followed along and used the newest ball that came out every year. That was, until last year.

I picked up a new ball (cough, Penta, cough) that felt just a bit better in nearly every aspect. What this did was open my eyes a bit more to the other balls on the market. One of those I tried was the Callaway Tour i(s). I hadn't hit a Callaway ball in years and didn't expect much. To say I was pleasantly surprised would be an understatement. This is coming from a bit of a ball snob.

So when the new Hex Black Tours came on the market I eagerly wanted to give them a try and see what they had to offer. How did they compare to the #1 ball on tour and my current favored ball? Read on to find out.

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Bridgestone 2012 Tour B330 Series Ball Review

Jun. 10, 2012     By     Comments (12)

Bridgestone 2012 B330 Ball HeroMany golfers might be surprised to know that, in terms of dollar market share, Bridgestone Golf has grown to become the number two golf ball in the industry. Bridgestone Golf began manufacturing its first golf balls on U.S. soil in 1990 under the Precept brand, and while it's only been seven years since the Bridgestone Golf U.S. brand was launched, the company has been producing golf balls since 1935 and they are the number one golf ball producer in Japan.

Bridgestone's goal is to design a golf ball for every level of player. This is not an easy task since there are so many variations of golf swings. Getting fit for the right ball is just as important as finding the right shaft, lie angle, or grip size. Bridgestone is not only innovating golf ball technology but how golfers get fit for their ball. One thing is for certain, they aren't afraid to compare their results against their numerous competitors.

For the past couple years, Bridgestone has had teams of ball fitting specialists provide free fitting sessions for golfers around the country. During these sessions, golfers see how the ball they currently play stacks up against a Bridgestone ball. I'm sure their competitors have taken notice. It also doesn't hurt to have some notable staff players, Matt Kuchar, Brandt Snedeker, and Fred Couples, playing well and getting a lot of TV time.

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Bridgestone Tour B330 Series Ball Review

Jul. 30, 2011     By     Comments (11)

Bridgestone 2011 B330 BallBridgestone golf might not have the notoriety or the reputation of a big company like Titleist or Nike, but they are quickly making significant inroads into the big business of golf balls.

Bridgestone's dedication to innovation has put them at the forefront of technological advancements, and they are often the first to come out with new ideas in the golf ball industry. Although they aren't always at the top of the "Buzz" column, they consistently put out quality golf balls that are poised to compete with new offerings from the likes of TaylorMade, Nike, and Titleist.

Bridgestone currently offers two main line of golf ball: the Tour B330 line, and the "e" line, in addition to their xFIXx golf ball. The Tour B330 line consists of four different golf balls, with each one fitting a different type of golfer. The Tour B330 line further breaks down into the regular B330 group, and the B330-RX group, which offer golfers of all swing speeds a tour-quality urethane-covered golf ball that promises unmatched performance. Bridgestone is the truly only manufacturer to cater to golfers of all levels.

Bridgestone e5, e6, and e7 Ball Review

Jul. 30, 2011     By     Comments (12)

Bridgestone e-Series Ball ReviewFirst released back in 2005, the e-Series balls from Bridgestone set out to help the amateur that was looking for the boost in distance that the softer balls couldn't provide. Throughout the last few years, the e-Series balls have been tweaked and polished

While some golfers remained unquestionably (and almost illogically) loyal to the offerings of competitors, little by little, more and more amateur players have gravitated to the e-Series (as well as other Bridgestone products) and now sing the praises, wishing they had switched sooner. Bridgestone only added fuel to the fire, offering public ball fittings available to anyone and everyone looking to find the ball to fit their game to the greatest degree possible.

TaylorMade Penta TP Ball Review

Jan. 23, 2010     By     Comments (52)

Penta TP OutsideTaylorMade can't be accused of shying away from technology. If anything, the company behind "MWT" and "FCT" and countless other technology acronyms is one of the most technologically adventurous around.

With the Penta TP, TaylorMade has moved the golf ball into new territory: the Gillette razor blade land of "more is better." In shaving equipment, it's the number of blades. In golf equipment, it's the number of layers.

Joking aside, the buzz around the Penta TP has been tremendous since the ball was given to pros late in 2009. Can one ball - albeit one with five layers - really fit everyone? From the guy who is happy to reach the occasional par four in two to the guys who routinely reach par fives in two on our televisions each weekend?

Let's find out.

Srixon Z-Star/Z-Star X Ball Review

Apr. 28, 2009     By     Comments (31)

Z-StarWhen the 800-pound gorilla in the market (see: Titleist) releases a new version of their premium balls, what are their competitors to do? Srixon has answered the challenge with the release of their newest balls, the Z-Star and Z-Star X.

With names like that it is pretty easy to see that Srixon wants to directly challenge Titleist and take the gorilla head on. Some PGA Tour pros, including Jim Furyk, Vijay Singh, and Tim Clark have been using the Z-Star line of balls since they came out. In a short time, the Z-Star and Z-Star X has grabbed a decent chunk of the premium ball market on the PGA Tour.

The question remains: will it be enough to convince the rest of the golfers out there to not only give the new Srixon's a try, but to convert? Read on to find out if it could convert this long-time Pro V1x user.

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2009 Titleist Pro V1/Pro V1x Balls Review

Mar. 20, 2009     By     Comments (32)

Pro V1/Pro V1x HeroTitleist has had the number one ball on the market for as long as I can remember, and I have a few gray hairs. Every two years Titleist releases a new version of their high-end balls. I sometimes think that if it isn't broke, don't fix it. Titleist seems to use the mantra of "every moment we rest gives our competitors a chance to catch up."

With that, Titleist has released all new versions of the Pro V1 and Pro V1x in an attempt to keep their competitors at an arm's length and keep a tight grip on their tremendous market share. So how do you improve the number one ball on the market? Well, there are a few ways but you'll have to read on to find out what those are and if it made a difference to this long-time Titleist player.

Callaway and Titleist’s Legal Battle, Round 38

Nov. 12, 2008     By     Comments (11)

Recently Callaway celebrated a minor victory in their long-running legal battle with Titleist over patents related to the manufacturing process used to create Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf balls. A few weeks back, Titleist celebrated their own small victory when the U.S. Patent Office ruled the four applicable patents invalid.

Despite the now invalid patents, a Delaware judge recently granted Callaway a permanent injunction against Titleist for the sale and distribution of Pro V1 golf balls manufactured under the patents in dispute in the U.S.

However, Titleist quickly responded to point out that since September, they'd shifted their manufacturing process to a new one clear of these patents, and that production, distribution, and sale of Pro V1 and Pro V1x will not be hindered. This shift in manufacturing has been planned for quite some time and is not the result of the lawsuit. Please see paragraph two of Titleist's official response (below) for more on that. If you were wondering whether there would be new Pro V1s in 2009, you'll also want to read the response.

Titleist Boxes

For those deeply interested - or for those who are as confused as I am about how what are now invalid patents can be used to form an injunction - I recommend you check out David Dawsey's golf-patents.com in the coming weeks.

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