The golf equipment industry brought in $6.85 billion in revenue in 2020. Nearly half of that went towards golf clubs.
This attractive market features an ocean of golf products catering to every golfer and budget. However, some products are best left alone, and in this guide, I look at the 10 golf club brands to avoid.
There are various reasons to avoid golf brands, including overpaying, cheap components, and reduced durability. I will highlight why you should avoid each brand on the list. Plus, I have provided a group of big brands that you can trust.
Table of Contents
- 10 Golf Club Brands You Should Avoid
- 7 Golf Club Brands You Can Trust
- The Clubs I Use in My Bag
10 Golf Club Brands You Should Avoid
1. Hammer X
It’s hard to hit, lacks durability, and is arguably the ugliest golf club I have ever laid eyes on. Then there are the wild claims that the Hammer X boosts your distance by 60-yards off the tee. Plus, it apparently helps a 50-plus male consistently hit 400-yards.
It also shaves 20-strokes off your score, apparently. In addition to rocketing your swing speed to 62 mph. There is an urge inside of me to add a rolling on-the-floor laughing emoji here. Surely, they are purposefully spewing exaggeration to get a rise out of you?
The sad thing is people will fall for the joke and seriously believe they will drive as far as Kyle Berkshire. For the record, Cameron Champ leads the PGA Tour with an average driving distance of 321-yards, highlighting the unlikeliness of the company’s claims.
Moving on from the marketing hogwash, the club makes it challenging to strike your golf ball cleanly. The shape is off-putting, and the sweet spot is not as enhanced as advertised.
Despite my observations, the manufacturer suggests that it lasts a minimum of 1 million hits, thanks to the Space X metal face insert Zolex. I am not even sure that I can believe that. However, it is a unique design and proves fruitful as a conversation starter. Honestly, I would prefer that you save your greenbacks.
2. Yonex Golf Clubs
I have a soft spot for Yonex. After all, I was a loyal fan of their tennis racquets as a junior. It didn’t harm that I was a fan of the aggressive Australian Lleyton Hewitt, who also used Yonex products during his career.
As good as they are at crafting badminton and tennis racquets, the same cannot be said for their golf equipment. The construction feels cheap, and the clubs are light which can cause average golfers to balloon shots.
Furthermore, the price of their clubs is on a par or more expensive than quality products from well-known golf brands. For example, the Yonex Ezone Elite 3.0 driver is more expensive than the Callaway Mavrik, a respected big stick.
In addition, the Yonex Ezone GT irons are more expensive than a new set of TaylorMade SIM Max. If a product feels cheap and light and more expensive than some of the best golf clubs on the market, why would you consider it?
Ryoma is a Japanese brand aiming to add to the nation’s legacy of exceptionally crafted golf clubs that produce a pure feel at impact. As true as this may be, the faults lie in the acoustics and appearance of the clubs.
You don’t enjoy the crisp sound on shots with Ryoma irons, which may frustrate superior golfers. In addition, the design of some of their clubs is off-putting, with a tungsten power booster sticking out the back of the cavity.
Admittedly, their drivers and fairway woods pack a punch when producing optimal ball speed and distance. However, the clicky acoustics diminish its quality and your experience off the tee.
If Ryoma is to reach the heights of Honma and Mizuno clubs, they need to refine the shape and sound of their golf clubs.
Autopilot offers beginners a range of golf clubs designed to make the game easier for the most vulnerable. However, I worry that the marketing team makes promises they have no control over. Sure, the wedge may simplify shots out of the bunker, but that has no bearing on your distance control and accuracy.
The other issue with Autopilot is that some designs feel like a gimmick. They have the best intention, and I appreciate that, but it gets old fast and makes you the butt end of all jokes in your group.
I do like their idea with the S7K putter, which stands alone and allows you to read the line from a distance. This is helpful for a beginner golfer learning the ins and outs of putting alignment. However, as you improve, the novelty will wear off and you will potentially yearn for something more mainstream.
Staying with the S7K example, it is also pricey for a relatively unknown brand. When I consider my options, the Cleveland Huntington Beach Soft 11 seems better value for money. It is $50 cheaper than the Autopilot putter, and I know and trust Cleveland as a golf club manufacturer. Therefore, it is a no-brainer.
Another example is the C3i wedge. It is not expensive for most of us, but there are several alternative options. For the price of the C3i, you can acquire a Wilson Harmonized lob and sand wedge combo.
The point is that there are several options from recognized manufacturers that are more affordable or around the same price. Naturally, the wise decision is to go with what you know and maximize your value for money.
You may acquire their C3i wedge or S7K putter and love it. But, if your expectations are high and it doesn’t improve your game, you will feel that they are the worst clubs on earth.
Expensive. Do you need another reason not to acquire a set of golf clubs? Granted, Seven MB irons are an attractive set of blades. However, few average golfers could justify dropping $5000 on a set of golf clubs. In addition, The NEO Putter looks like a crab claw and is something capable of injuring you in your sleep.
The issue I have is that you could purchase a couple of sets from the best golf club brands for the price of one of Seven’s. To put it into perspective, you can acquire two Callaway Rogue ST Max iron sets for the price of one NEO putter.
It is bad enough when irons cost the same as two complete sets of golf clubs. It is worse when two sets fetch the same price as a putter.
I am sure some will purchase clubs from Seven to show off. However, when they burn a hole in your pocket, it is advisable to steer clear and stick to affordable options from a renowned golf manufacturer.
6. Yamaha Golf Clubs
My late father used to tell me “find something that you are good at and focus on becoming better at it.” I wish Yamaha had taken his advice and stopped after their success with musical instruments and motorbikes.
However, they ventured into the realm of crafting golf clubs and hoped for the brand name to carry them. Their clubs are more expensive than most, but not in the realm of Seven.
Their RMX VD59 driver is over $770, which is done from a previous high of $859. Honestly, I struggle to entertain the idea of Callaway and TaylorMade drivers fetching over $500, but $770 is unnecessarily steep.
Then we look at the Inpres UD+2 set of irons, which costs over $2100 for an 8-piece set. You could pick up the same amount of clubs in the TaylorMade SIM Max set for half that price. They contain as many game-improvement features, including perimeter weighting, a high MOI, and superior forgiveness.
7. Giga Golf
If you want the best bang for your buck, you need to understand which specs best suit your swing. Not knowing the ideal loft, shaft length, flex, and weight of your clubs could negatively impact your ball flight, distance, and accuracy.
The majority of amateurs are blissfully unaware of what works for them. That is why Giga Golf should be avoided. I like the setup of the company. They allow you to customize every club in your bag. You can grab a new fairway wood, driver, or set of irons and have them shipped in 2-days.
It is an efficient setup. The issue boils down to clueless golfers customizing clubs. If you are unfamiliar with the terms kick point or torque, I advise you to stay away. It is not worth acquiring a new golf club with the incorrect specs because you will struggle out on the links.
Once you discover that you purchased the incorrect specs, you will struggle to resell the clubs because the brand is relatively unknown.
8. Alien Golf Club
The Alien Wedge carries the perfect name to describe its unique design. I have two issues with the club. First, it is the appearance, and second the price tag.
Starting with the obvious, this club contains an alien-looking cavity which makes it look cheap and like a gimmick. Then, there is the matter of cost. You can pick up a Cleveland CBX2 wedge for the same price as the Alien golf product. If you spare a few dollars extra you can go home with a Callaway Mack Daddy.
9. Majek Golf
Majek is the brainchild of engineers from UCLA, who went on a quest to make clubs for seniors and beginners. I see their value for seniors who just want to have fun and get the ball in the air. However, the all hybrid lineup limits versatility in your game.
As I said, seniors may be satisfied with a straight, high shot every time. But, younger beginners seek more options from their clubs as they improve. Trust me. The ability to shape your shots, helps you escape trouble and improve your scrambling record.
You will become bored and seek alternative options, such as a set of game improvement irons. I suggest spending extra and acquiring clubs that you can use for years. Your enjoyment with Majek will be short-lived unless you play from the middle tees.
Wazaki produces woods, irons, and hybrids. The hybrid set is super affordable, and it may excite seniors. However, there is a catch. The chunky profile of the wedges is hard to play from tough lies. Therefore, it is advised to acquire a pitching and sand wedge separately.
Furthermore, the feel of these clubs is cheap, and the acoustics are satisfying. Plus, players with faster swing speeds may shorten the lifespan of Wazaki clubs.
7 Golf Club Brands You Can Trust
Titleist has been around since 1932. Phil Young was determined to create a consistent, uniformed golf ball and excelled in his mission. Over the last 90-years, the company has journeyed into club production and is renowned for optimal fee and quality.
Players on the books of Titleist include Cam Smith, Patrick Cantlay, and Nelly Korda.
A year after Titleist was formed, Mizuno entered the golf club manufacturing space. The manufacturer of baseball products found a way to craft high-quality golf clubs that produce a buttery-soft feel and crisp acoustics.
Luke Donald carried a few Mizuno clubs when he rose to number one in the world. Plus, Brooks Koepka bagged a couple majors with the JPX900 Tour irons.
Ping commenced operations in 1959, and Karsten Solheim engineered the 1A putter. In 1969, the company ventured into irons. Solheim employed heel and toe weighting to add forgiveness across the face. One of the many patents the company has acquired over the years.
Ping Tour Pros include Louis Oosthuizen, Tyrrel Hatton, and Brooke Henderson.
Cobra traces its roots down under in Australia. Thomas Crow founded the company in 1973 and released the famous Baffler utility wood in 1975. They are now renowned for long-hitting, forgiving clubs and their association with Bryson DeChambeau.
In addition to the big-hitting Bryson, Rickie Fowler and Lexi Thompson use their equipment.
TaylorMade has manufactured golf clubs since 1979 and now produces golf balls, gloves, apparel, and footwear. Players carrying their equipment include Tiger Woods, Scottie Scheffler, and Charley Hull.
Roger Cleveland founded the company in 1979, and it has generally sold affordable, forgiving, quality golf clubs. They offer excellent value for money if you are on a budget. Shane Lowry, Brooks Koepka, and Minjee Lee carry
Since 1982, Callaway has developed innovative products crafted to simplify the game for the average golfer. Jon Rahm, Xander Schauffele
The Clubs I Use in My Bag
I now use a Titleist TSi 1 driver, 3, and 5-wood. The irons are Callaway Big Bertha’s, and the wedges are Vokey. Finally, the putter is a TaylorMade Rossa Monza. They are not new clubs, but I enjoy the way they play.
Do Expensive Golf Clubs Make a Difference?
Expensive golf clubs make a difference to feel, construction and appearance. For example, blade irons are typically forged and follow a delicate process. It improves the feel and looks incredible at address.
However, these clubs will not help most average golfers, as they are unforgiving on off-center strikes. Therefore, they do not make a difference to your score.
Differences Between The 2 Heavyweights: TaylorMade and Callaway
In recent years the vision of TaylorMade and Callaway has overlapped. Both brands now produce three versions of their main ranges to cater to golfers of all abilities. Like Apple and Samsung, the two continue to flood the markets with innovative clubs every year.
TaylorMade grabbed the upper hand in 2022 when they released the Stealth range. The carbon-layered clubs shift away from the titanium era and leads the charge into the future. The Stealth range has options for low handicappers and Pros and mid and high handicappers.
On the contrary, Callaway released their Rogue ST range this year which contains most of the technology from previous editions, except for the tungsten speed cartridge in the driver.
Another area where TaylorMade tops their rival is with golf balls. Callaway does produce a variety of quality balls. However, none have been able to battle the Pro V1, as we see with the TP5.
Overall, these are two of the best golf club brands in the world. Their products are quality, and the brands are reputable. However, that comes at an exorbitant price which many average golfers now struggle to afford.