Before striking the Distance+, my experience with TaylorMade golf balls was limited to the popular TP5 and TP5X range. In this post, I share my honest review of the TaylorMade Distance+, which spun low, accelerated rapidly, and launched moderately high for consistent carry distance.
My experience with the Distance+ highlighted the golf ball’s suitability to slow and moderate swing speed amateurs. As a moderate swing speed golfer, I enjoyed effortless launch, stable flight, and optimal yardage.
However, higher swing speed, low handicappers will likely despise the lack of greenside spin.
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Table of Contents
- Overall Rating and Thoughts
- What I Like About The TaylorMade Distance Plus
- What I Dislike About The TaylorMade Distance+
Overall Rating and Thoughts
After conducting my review of TaylorMade Distance+ golf balls, I’m largely impressed. They’re incredibly affordable, low spinning, and produce rapid ball speed on high-impact shots. I feel moderate and slow swing speeds will benefit from the high compressibility, fast rebound, and high launch.
The most significant downsides of the Distance Plus balls were their clicky acoustics and limited greenside spin. The lack of spin prevented me from attacking the flagstick on chip shots, and I turned to playing bump and runs where possible from the fringe.
If you’re a slow or medium-swing speed player seeking a high-performing, budget golf ball, take a look at the TaylorMade Distance+.
Overall Rating: 8.5/10
Contrary to most TaylorMade balls, the engineers kept the Distance+ simple with a 2-piece construction. A highly compressible React Speed Core drives the golf ball, while a moderately soft ionomer cover protects the inner workings.
Thanks to its simplistic design, the Distance+ carries an entry-level price tag that works for beginners and bargain hunters. Lower handicap golfers will likely despise the lack of greenside spin offered on chip and pitch shots.
When I conducted my initial bite test, I thought the cover was a medium-hard distance ball. My findings were contradicted once my clubface struck the Distance+ as it was relatively smooth going compared to the Callaway Warbird or Noodle Long and Soft.
Feel aside, the cover effectively restricted spin revolutions and preserved ball speed on high-impact shots. The components combined helped me generate a powerful medium-high launch.
Unfortunately, the low-spinning nature of the golf ball remained around the green, with limited revolutions produced with my wedges. Naturally, this reduced my control on attacking chip shots and was better prepared for bump and runs.
TaylorMade suggests that Distance+ has a compression score of 77, which checks out based on my performance. My moderate swing speed found it easy to maximize energy transfer and boost compression to increase ball velocity and control spin.
Slower swing speeds, like beginners or seniors, should benefit from the superior energy transfer, low spin, and rapid pace. It’ll help you produce a consistent launch, ball flight, and carry distance compared to a stiffer structure with a higher compression score.
However, I recommend attempting the softer compression Noodle Long And Soft if you generate inconsistent results with the medium compression golf ball.
React Speed Core
The React Speed Core impressed me with its optimal energy transfer, rebound off the clubface, and explosive ball speed. Thanks to the React Speed, I produced consistent pace and low spin, translating into a medium to high launch off the tee box and on approach.
The power produced by the React Speed Core enabled me to deliver optimal long-game carry length. Mid and slow-swing speed golfers are best suited to the forgiving, fast, and consistent nature of the core.
Aerodynamic Dimple Pattern
The 342 aerodynamic dimples aided the Distance+ on lift-off and landing. It warded off drag after leaving the clubface, elevating my ball to a respectable 84 feet, which is mid to high by my standards.
Once the ball hit the sky, the dimples enhanced the slipstream around the golf ball, boosting forward momentum. The Distance+ also delayed its descent owing to the added lift presented by the aerodynamic dimples.
Thanks to the lift increase, my ball managed to land relatively softly on approach causing it to stop faster than other distance balls. I found this made up for the lack of spin, at least on attacking full wedge and short iron shots.
Plus Alignment Aid
The Plus alignment aid is potentially the best design I’ve found on a distance golf ball. I liked the cross design, constructed by a thick arrow intersecting a thin straight line. It helped me find the center of the clubface easier, simplifying lining up my ball with the target.
I found the alignment aid delivered the most value on putts and also leveraged its assistance off the tee box and on the fairway when placing was allowed. Although the aiming tool is helpful for all golfers, I find it benefits mid and high-handicappers struggling with inconsistent alignment.
TaylorMade crafted the Distance+ golf balls in a typical tour white or a Hi-visibility yellow finish. I favor the classic white cover as I grew up playing with it. However, golfers with visual impairments should test the Hi-visibility yellow.
Admittedly the yellow finish is far easier to follow in the air and spot from a distance in the cabbage patch. If you prefer a broader selection of colored golf balls, I recommend looking into Titleist Velocity distance golf balls.
I cannot fault TaylorMade for the pricing of the Distance+, which only set me back $18 for a dozen golf balls. Obviously, the price may vary depending on the retailer, but you shouldn’t pay more than $20 for a dozen.
The entry-level price tag is a welcome gift to high handicappers prone to losing multiple balls every round. Bargain hunters will also welcome the rock-bottom expenses because their durability ought to keep them performing for a few rounds.
Given my impressive results with the Distance+ from tee to green, it’s surprising that it costs less than the Noodle Long And Soft.
For a distance golf ball, I was impressed by the feel of the Distance+ off the clubface. It wasn’t entirely soft. However, it was a pleasure, given the affordability and simplistic construction. I put the moderately muted feel down to the softer ionomer cover and compressible React Speed Core.
I was particularly attracted to the softened feel on strikes out the center of the putter face, as it provided better feedback on off-center strikes. The Distance+ has a way to go until it reaches the ranks of a TP5, but I admire its performance for a 2-piece, entry-level golf ball.
A struggle I commonly face with 2-piece distance golf balls is the clicky sound they produce, and the TaylorMade Distance+ was no different. The ball clicked on shots out of the sweet spot and off-center strikes. I prefer the “thud” noise made by higher quality balls, which also offer instant feedback on where your golf ball struck the clubface.
When I strike a Titleist Pro V1 out of the middle, the sound is more solid, but if I catch it wide, the feedback amplifies. The clicky noise has little bearing on your performance, but many experienced golfers prefer hearing a thud off the clubface.
TaylorMade pegs the Distance+ as a 77 compression golf ball, placing it in the moderate category. I found it perfect for my medium swing speed and overall managed to optimize energy transfer to accelerate ball pace and restrict spin revolutions.
I believe the easily compressible golf ball is a win for slower-swing-speed seniors and beginners. The mid to high launching design doesn’t require excessive force at contact to launch the ball high and long. Instead, slower swing speed golfers can enjoy improved energy transfer helping preserve velocity and promoting a powerful launch.
I conjured minimal spin throughout the bag with the TaylorMade ball, restricting my revolutions off the tee to under 2300 rpm. The low spin paired up with the explosive ball speed to catapult my ball to a medium-high apex and exceptional carry distance.
The low spin theme continued as I moved into the irons department, cracking 5100 rpm of spin on 5-iron shots. Unfortunately, spin was in short supply on wedge shots too, struggling to break through 9200 rpm and providing limited control on shorter attacking shots.
The low spin nature of the Distance+ is ideal for the average golfer looking to gain extra yards. Plus, lack of revolutions won’t hamper the performance of mid and high handicappers who lack distance control and accuracy precision. However, lower handicappers demanding perfection will struggle with this TaylorMade.
Throughout my round, I played far more bump-and-run chip shots to account for the lack of spin, which worked well in the end.
My ball speed results were quick with the Distance+, averaging 129 mph with the driver. The adequate velocity was gifted to me by the compressible React Speed Core, which increased spring off the clubface on long shots to accelerate ball speed.
I received further assistance from the low spin, high-speed ionomer cover, and drag-resistant aerodynamic dimples. The ionomer cover helped restrict ball speed loss and contain spin to shoot my ball into the air.
I welcomed the additional thrust imparted on my ball from the drag-resistant aerodynamic dimples. They cleared the path for my ball to ascend, optimizing forward momentum, flight consistency, and carry distance.
Launch and Flight
I experienced a mid to high launch with the Distance+ stemming from its medium compression, consistent ball pace, and reduced spin. My ball reached an average apex of 83 feet before commencing its descent.
The medium-high flight was compatible with my swing, and I found myself producing optimal length off the tee and on approach. I also feel slow swing speeds will appreciate the consistent, yet not excessively high, ball flight.
When I tested the Callaway Supersoft, for example, I ballooned a few shots owing to the super soft core and towering launch. Fortunately, that wasn’t an issue with the TaylorMade Distance+.
As a long, 2-piece ball, you’d expect that the Distance+ would deliver impressive yardage, and for the most part, it did. I was producing 275 yards off the tee, 2 yards longer than my average.
Then I tried my long irons, averaging 167 yards with my 5-iron, 3-yards longer than an average day. I owe my consistent yardage results to the high rebound React Speed Core, low spinning ionomer cover, and incredibly aerodynamic dimples.
What I Like About The TaylorMade Distance Plus
Low Driver Spin
As I’ve experienced with most distance balls, the Distance+ produced low spin with the big stick, fairway woods, and my long irons. When it combined with the rapid ball velocity, I delivered a powerful medium-high launch and gained impressive carry distance.
Despite scoring 77, I relished the compressibility of the golf ball, which generated rapid rebound off the clubface for low spin and increased zip. I feel other moderate swing speeds and our slower swinging counterparts will enjoy the same results.
One challenge I’ve often faced with 2-piece golf balls is ballooning shots due to the low compression cores. However, I commend the TaylorMade engineers who managed to dial it down and produce a medium-high launch.
I found it offered more control over my shots than I experienced with the Noodle Long And Soft.
Entry Level Price
I paid $18 for a dozen TaylorMade Distance+ balls, which I welcome every day of the week. I thought the Callaway Warbird was affordable, but the TaylorMade model was roughly $2 cheaper per box.
Bold Alignment Arrow
An alignment arrow won’t increase ball speed or lower spin, but it’s handy for amateurs struggling with aim on the greens. The cross design, with a bold arrow, enabled me to place the ball in the center.
What I Dislike About The TaylorMade Distance+
Low Greenside Spin
Like a classic 2-piece ball, the Distance+ produced limited spin on chip shots, which prevented me from attacking the flag. I resorted to bump and runs where I could leverage the roll and the lack of spin.
I also disapproved of the clicky acoustics, but it’s a common theme among more affordable 2-piece distance balls. It won’t impact your ball speed, spin, flight, and distance performance. However, more experienced golfers often prefer the thud sound produced by premium golf balls like the Titleist Pro V1.