I play off a 20 Hcp hitting my driver around 270 yards and struggling mostly with consistency issues. I picked up golf again about 18 months ago after 20 years without hitting a ball, and have consistently improved to come back to the level I played as a teenager. I'm now focused on breaking 90, which I've done about 10 times in last 20 games I've played - playing with my old clubs from 20 yrs ago doesn't affect performance much (a bit shorter, probably costs me about 2 shots per round).
I am quite tall (6"2) with long arms and large hands, so it was important for me to get custom fitted including oversized grips, longer shafts and +1° upright lie adjustment. I tried the Ping FG-30 clubs, loved them but couldn't afford them custom fitted. I bought and play a set of clones, the Z-Force Z-35 clubs bought recently from Diamond Tour Golf, with Dynamic Golf Shafts and Lamkin grips (3H, 4H, 5I-PW and SW), or UST Proforce v2 shaft and Lamkin grip (Driver). I also have a set of Gigagolf wedges (52 and 60 Pursuit s510 and 52 S2 Black Matte). I've also ordered from Gigagolf a shortened 5 iron club bent 4° upright to make a chipper, which they are currently doing for me.
For both Gigagolf and Diamond Tour, the experience was excellent. I felt their customer service was far superior to what Ping had offered and they offer a very wide range of customization options. They were willing to hear what I had to say and to adjust themselves to my thoughts, whereas the Ping guy just wanted to sell me the most expensive clubs on his shelf and rush through the fitting process. That, for me, is key. I am not a great player but I am pretty picky about my equipment and I am looking to the fitter to adjust to my tastes and not try to fit his square peg into my round hole.
In the end with the customization options I opted for, I ended up paying about US$850 for a full set, which is probably as much as I would have paid for a full set of brand new OEM clubs off the shelf. For that price, I had the clubs "made to measure" which is a whole different experience to having standard OEM clubs. I also had grips and shafts which were equal or usually superior to what the OEM clubs offered as standard. My gut feeling is these clubs play a lot better than any OEM clubs I have tried, if only because each club is taylored to my needs.
Going into the components, obviously the grips and shafts are top notch and better than what comes standard with most clubs. The club heads are the only difference, and these were only a fraction (maybe 10%) of what the OEMs charge you for their club heads if you break it down.
Gigagolf Pursuit s310 wedges: I absolutely love these wedges, they are right up there in terms of appearance and playability with the best clubs which the OEMs sell. I wouldn't trade them in for a brand new set of Clevelands or Vokeys. As far as I can tell they are as good or better than Titleist Vokeys (I used to play old Vokey wedges and wanted to replace them with new ones, initially, before turning to Gigagolf).
Gigagolf S2 Black Matte: Very good looking club with black matte finish, plays well but I have not adapted to it and prefer using my other sand wedge which has a wider sole and a higher bounce. It's a matter of personal preference, and I would certainly not throw it away. I'll keep it for the sunny season.
DTG Z-Force Z-35 Irons: As far as I am concerned, I could not tell the difference between the Pings and Z-Force club heads without looking at the logo, they are really good. Finishing/decoration is maybe a notch below the Ping finishing, but playability is a perfect 10 for me.
DTG Z-Force Z-35 Hybrids: Work well but not quite up to par in terms of feel with the Ping hybrids they are meant to mimic, the sound at contact is less of a "ting" and more of a "wack". Otherwise I'm still hitting very nice shots with these clubs with my 3H going up to 250 yards straight down, so can't complain too much.
DTG Z-Force Z-35 Driver: Not the same as hitting a Ping G30 driver, for some reason the swing weight feels off to me, too light for my taste - maybe the Ping driver I had tried had been weighted. The sound at impact is also not as pleasant. I used it at a simulator venue where the headroom was not enough and hit it against the steel structure, which made a dent in it. I'm not sure if Titanium is supposed to dent when hitting steel. Anyway, for 1/4 of the price of the comparable club, I can't complain, it's still a very good club and I don't think it affects my performance.
DTG Felon Illegal Driver: I bought this driver just for fun, it's 480cc head size is above what the USGA allows. A bit of an expensive toy at almost US$100, the quality of the finishing is not quite up to my expectations but it does what it says on the box. I estimate I hit it about 10-15 yards further than my other driver. I would definitely not have paid US$400 for a toy!