One of the equipment categories that has seen the most improvement in the past couple seasons is cavity back irons. Better players don’t need to choose between forgiveness and good looks anymore; plenty of irons offer both.
Callaway’s new Epic Pro Irons offer an alternative choice to top golfers in this competitive niche. The smaller version of the Epic Iron packs the same high-end performance into an iron designed to fit the eye of better players.
The Callaway Epic Pro is designed to fall somewhere between a true player’s iron and a game improvement iron. The top line and sole are noticeably thinner compared to the normal Epic iron, and are comparable to most players cavity backs. There is, however, slightly more offset than some may prefer.
I will be interested to see how better players react to the cavity. While I think this cavity design is appropriate for a game improvement iron, it looks a little out of place for a players club. Perhaps I’m just old fashioned.
Sound & Feel
The Epic Pro Iron differs dramatically from the standard Epic, when it comes to sound and feel. The Epic feels like a rocket launcher. The Epic Pro has a more standard, solid feel. Similarly, the sound is not a “snap;” bit closer to a muted “thud.”
This iron does have good feedback, but it’s not as stark as it is in the Epic. Mishits feel duller than pure shots, but the difference is not huge.
One thing you will notice, when comparing the Epic Pro to the standard Epic iron is the lofts are weaker in the Epic Pro. The difference isn’t huge – 1 degree throughout the set – but it’s one way that the Epic Pro is geared toward the better player.
Surprisingly, despite the smaller head, the Epic Pro retains most of the impressive forgiveness that the Epic iron possesses. Unless a shot was significantly mishit, the carry was within 10 yards of “normal” distance. That forgiveness leads to more greens in regulation and fewer shots that end up short in the bunker.
Callaway entered one of the most competitive subsets of golf clubs and emerged as a leader with the Epic Pro irons. While I would quibble about their “in the bag” look, they deliver on the critical points of distance, forgiveness, and consistency like the best irons in this class.
They are certainly worth a test for the better player who wants a little more help on their “off” days.