I just finished writing this section in LSW - about how truly high "high launch" can seem.
I wrote about how I spent two days with the Titleist fitting van and they were constantly trying to get higher launch from people. These guys had 8.5 and even lower lofted drivers, and they kept trying to get them up in the air.
That was almost a decade ago.
The thing is, too - high launch and low spin works well for guys who swing 100 MPH or so… but plug in 22°, 2000 RPM spin, and 125 MPH ball speed and look at the carry numbers here http://flightscope.com/products/trajectory-optimizer/ and compare them to even 16° launch angle. I get an extra seven or eight yards.
So yes but no, @Mr. Desmond… because companies haven't actually made or truly "pushed" 12° drivers, 13° drivers, 14° drivers like TaylorMade is doing now. So yes, their fitters have tried to get people into higher lofts, but the manufacturers themselves have kept the CG back, because it improves "playability," and because consumers were not nearly as willing to consider lofting up, and if they did, the spin would be way too high with many other companies.
Thanks for the link.
Agree -- and so many variables have changed over the years -- the club head and ball.
So yes, OEMs haven't actively pushed 12-14 degrees drivers -- even without the SLDR, many should have pushed those lofts depending on the club head design -- well, they probably were passively pushing it, but they were disguised as 10.5 lofts.
The SLDR is a game changer in a way -- an ultra low spin driver that helps with ball speed and tries to balance forgiveness. So if you want a SLDR that works, generally you need to go up in loft. For all drivers, jump on a LM with a decent ball.
Maybe the SLDR contribution will be that is makes golfers more aware that they must get fit by a professional.