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Do ball types make that much difference to a high handicap player?

post #1 of 39
Thread Starter 
Hi I'm relatively new to the game. Been playing for just under a year. Normally I use used balls as have a tendancy to lose a couple or three a round lol. I am taking lessons and think my game has improved a lot lately especially since I got fitted for a new set of callaway X2 hots which I love and trust!! Basically would it help to improve my game if I used a specific type of ball?
Thanks in advanceI
post #2 of 39
I only use tour quality balls because i want / need the ball to stop when it hits the green. I like the ablity to have chips and pitches check up, too. That's the main reason. When you get to the point where you find your balls rolling to the back of greens or over greens, then it's time to switch. Until then, the harder balls actually may be better for your game. A hard ball will create less spin, so it won't check up as well, but they also don't have as much side spin, so they'll go straighter. Also, hard balls will go farther when you smack them. They are also more durable. They are also cheaper.

When you're paying a round and nobody is behind you, hit an extra Pro V1 or other tour quality ball into a green. See if you can tell any difference. You'll probably like the feel of the softer ball. If you can't make it check up, then stick to the harder balls until your game improves (which it will).
post #3 of 39

Make a difference to your wallet :-P. I hit Noodle's and cheapy Srixon's until I got down to 12ish. Even now I've been buying the Surlyn Titleist x-outs at Walmart for $9.99/doz when the box is primarily NXT Tour.

post #4 of 39

I play inexpensive golf balls.  I suggest that you find a ball that is suitable to your budget and stick with it for a little while.  Golf balls can respond differently.  By using the same ball, you can develop some level of consistency in your game.  I'm alot like you...I lose several balls per round.  My ball of choice is the Top Flite Gamer.  Just my 2 cents.

post #5 of 39

For high handicap players, no. They hit the ball too inconsistent to see any gains from using a premium golf ball. The major difference between expensive golf balls and cheaper ones is the ball cover. Almost all premium golf balls have a Urethane cover or some sort of blend with Urethane. This cover is softer, and scuffs easier, but it spins more on short iron and wedge shots. 

 

I would say play what ever makes you comfortable, and there are some good golf balls that are not premium. 

post #6 of 39

I agree with @indykappa.  I like to see even high hcp players playing the same ball consistently.

 

Find something you like, something inexpensive enough that you don't mind losing it, and stick with it.  There are plenty of decent balls that can be found discounted for a buck apiece or so. 

 

The key isn't so much performance as the consistent performance.  How it reacts around the green, putts, and distance when you do catch it cleanly.  You have a lot of inconsistencies in your game as it is (we all do), one that you can control is sticking with the same ball all of the time.

post #7 of 39
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your advice. Think I will try a few "cheaper" balls and see if it helps with at least some consistency by sticking with the same ball
post #8 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidderz View Post

Thank you all for your advice. Think I will try a few "cheaper" balls and see if it helps with at least some consistency by sticking with the same ball

I have so many other balls that I need to get through before I would think of buying new ones, but I like the intermediate balls that don't have urethane covers because they tend to fly straighter, but have a couple of cores and a good cover because I like to have something that will not run out on greens. The Titleist NXT Tour range balls are what I typically dig out, but the Callaway Hex Control that I've found on courses and such are my favorite for this level of ball. Great for chipping with and, through Costco, are a great bargain. I love playing a low spinning chip shot from the fairway if I'm inside of about 30 yards that will bite, and this does that. To me, that's as much spin as I need. I can't pull that off with a harder ball like a Warbird or DT Solo. So I would say know what you want out of your game and what you prioritize, and pick a ball that does that. I like to have the same model ball throughout the round, save for par 3s, because it builds consistency, gives you feedback (user error vs equipment error) and frankly makes you less of a pain to play with because you can tell your playing partners "I play a Titleist Whatever" so they can know to leave it alone and avoid confusion that can come with switching between a Nike, Maxfli, Titleist and Noodle on every hole. I play ProV1s on par 3s that I play irons with because, man, they're great, but I'd never waste them on a driver or 3 wood tee shot because I'll spray them god knows where. If I were going to buy a ball today to play with, the Hex Control would be my hands down choice.

post #9 of 39

Higher handicappers tend to put too much "wrong" spin on the ball. So with that in mind perhaps a cheapo, 1, or 2 piece ball that is built for more distance, with less spin might be a better choice. 1 piece balls are used at driving ranges, and in my opinion are of the limited flight variety. 1 piece balls are not a good choice for on course play. 3, and 4 piece balls are built for  more control, feel, and more spin. Of course no matter how many pieces (layers) a ball has, it can still be hooked, sliced, or anywhere in between. 

post #10 of 39

Just avoid the really crappy ones like the warbird and diablo and other rock hard balls like them, you want something with low spin but as soft as possible.

post #11 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidderz View Post

Thank you all for your advice. Think I will try a few "cheaper" balls and see if it helps with at least some consistency by sticking with the same ball

 

I started out with those really cheap Ultra 500 (less than $1 a ball I think) balls you can get at Target, moved on to Top Flite D2 (about $1 a ball) balls for a while, and now I generally buy balls that are in the $15-20 range for a dozen which are usually whatever $30 ball happens to be on sale at the time.

 

Playing the same ball so you can get used to the sound and feel of a solid hit is good though, I would definitely recommend sticking with a ball because of that.

post #12 of 39

I'm a high handicapper. Personally I don't know whether a ball has much influence on my game or not. I've played Slazenger Raw Distance (picked them up cheap years ago before I quit playing for a while) and they seem ok... not long but then again I'm not a long hitter. I picked up some Orlimars the other week and don't notice any difference between the 2 balls.

 

I honestly don't know whether the balls help bite on the green or not because I'm normally not in a position to actually see the ball land on the green to see if I have backspin or not. I highly doubt that I do.

 

 

I've read good things about the brands and balls below and think I might try to find one of them in a 2 dozen for the price of $20 or so... or 3 balls golf or rock bottom golf have some on sale... buy 3 get 1 free at rock bottom golf I think... and Golf Galaxy has some on sale too I think.

 

Bridgestone

E6's

B330's

 

Srixon

Z-Star

 

Wilson

50 Elite

Staff Duo 1

post #13 of 39

besides really cheap (how they're made, not price) it doesn't really matter. i buy "used" golf balls in bulk, but i've been going through less so now i have a surplus.

 

i love the hex bite ball, but i just played a few rounds with a different wedge, steeper swing, and a "distance" ball and it checked up way quicker than my hex bite with my mizzy wedges ever do.

 

like most things, it's a personal preference thing. so if you find a ball that you feel more confident with off the tee/around the green/putting then just stick with it. 

post #14 of 39

Let's define high handicap - I am an 18 and I am a high handicap on this forum.  If you are a 30 HCP the ball may not matter that much, but for us TST high HCPs (about 15-25) the ball can make a big difference.  For one, I do not want a lot of spin on my drives since any strong fade of draw is likely to turn into a slice or a hook on even the slightest mis-hit, which is common for me.  I also do not want too much spin on the green since my approaches are usually short and the high spin balls tend to stick like velcro - I need 8-10 feet of roll.  I also do not want a ball that is going to roll like a marble across the green into the nearest bunker or rough, so mid-spin is fine with me.

 

I have played a ProV1x, and it was OK off the driver but came up short too often because it stopped in its tracks.  Mid spin balls like the Gamer Tour and Maxfli U/3 tend to produce long drives and good handling on and around the green.  Balls like the Gamer Soft and Callaway Supersoft are on my list to try.  Surprisingly the TM Project (a) is great for approach shots with my swing even though they have a slightly higher spin than the ProV1.

 

By the way, my SS is 85-90 and I am a definite believer that ball compressions of less than 70 give me more distance after a lot of experimentation.  The distance I get with the U3 has been a game changer for me.

 

So, yes, high handicap players should evaluate and experiment with different types of balls to find the right type for their swing.

post #15 of 39

I'll put it this way.

 

There has never been a time when after a round I thought my score would have been better if I had been using a better golf ball.

 

If I have a bad round it's because I hit the ball like crap and there's not a golf ball in the world that would have changed anything.

post #16 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by flopster View Post
 

Just avoid the really crappy ones like the warbird and diablo and other rock hard balls like them, you want something with low spin but as soft as possible.


Interesting that you call the Diablo a rock hard ball.   According to the Golfballtest.org data from 7/2013, it's compression and cover hardness numbers are nearly identical to the Bridgestone e6, the Srixon Tri-speed and the Titleist NXT (not the NXT tour)..

post #17 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by MS256 View Post
 

I'll put it this way.

 

There has never been a time when after a round I thought my score would have been better if I had been using a better golf ball.

 

If I have a bad round it's because I hit the ball like crap and there's not a golf ball in the world that would have changed anything.

 

I agree with this.  Maybe I am not good enough to tell a difference though?

 

I will say I hate the feel of rock hard balls with the putter though.

post #18 of 39

The ball type makes maybe a tiny bit of difference for us higher handicappers.

 

I think it will make more of a difference when you want to put something like 6000 rpm on a 150 yard approach shot.

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