This is my first year golfing. I bought a full set of beginner clubs from Dicks on sale for about 125.00. Its an Acuity set for lefty's with Driver, 3w, 5w, pw - 5i with a 4h. I've used the mess out of them so far, and they especially took a beating early on when I first started swinging them. I've seen great progress (IMO) all summer long and I'm at a point where I'm hitting my irons good distances, much straighter, and with decent contact (mostly ball first, some fat/thin).
I played yesterday with another lefty who's been playing for 5 years. He's a better player than me all around, but we're in the same ball park I'd say in terms of skill. What stood out to me though was that his iron distance was about a club and a half longer than mine. He was playing with a nice looking set of taylor made irons, relatively new, and I'm just wondering: how much difference does it make at the end of the day when you compare the performance of beginner clubs vs. a more expensive name-brand set? Should I expect a performance bump if I upgrade my clubs? I'm debating whether to go with a new/new-ish set come spring time or put the money somewhere else if its not really going to benefit that much.