Welcome to Devil Ball's Proving Ground, where we put the latest golf equipment through its paces. Today we take a look at Callaway's RAZR Fit driver.
Testers -- Jonathan Wall -- Handicap: 2.4 / Jay Busbee -- Old enough to drive but not drink
Target Golf Audience -- All Players
Instead of the typical Proving Ground, we're going to change things up for the RAZR Fit.
Usually the reviews on this site are one-sided. One of us gets a club, tests it out and we give our take on it. While there's no problem with that, Busbee and I don't exactly have the same handicap, so it feels like we're only give you a review from one angle.
So we're going to try a dual review this time around. That way you get a review from a both sides of the spectrum. Will it help you make a decision on this club? Who knows. But hopefully this gives you a comprehensive look at one of the most talked-about drivers on the market.
Wall: If there's one thing you never have to worry about with Callaway, it's a busy golf club. I don't know about you, but when I step up over a tee shot, the last thing I want is to be distracted by some funky design staring me in the face. As usual, the RAZR Fit is clean as clean can be. Callaway ditched the two-piece crown design, going back to a one piece that looks good to a traditionalist like yours truly. Throw in some simple red and black paint on the bottom of the club and your have a what I'd consider to be an ideal driver in the looks department.
Also, whoever made the call to nix the I-MIX connector for the OptiFit deserves a serious raise. Not to knock the old design, but the I-MIX connector was bulky and the ferrule broke easily when you tried to adjust (at least in my case). The OptiFit is more inline with a lot of the other adjustable drivers (you adjust from the sole, not the hosel) on the market. The new connector is incredibly sturdy, and when I tested it out to see how easy it was to adjust, I went from open to closed in as little as 20 seconds. Not bad, Callaway.
Busbee: This is just a damn pretty club. Really. I mean, this club is prettier than some of my dates back in college. What, that's not the kind of initial impression you're looking for? All right, this: the RAZR Fit is exceptionally well-balanced, with a feel right out of the sleeve that it's an extension of your arm. This is the kind of club that demands you take it to the range, NOW, and put it to use.
Transitioning and Playability
Wall: This is going to sound like a minor detail, but one of the things I loved about the OptiFit system is that it's different from the rest of the pack, in that it doesn't adjust in small increments.
While I may be a single-handicap, I'm not always looking for a slight tweak to my driver. If I'm playing a course that tends to favor a fade (my usual go-to shot is a draw), there are times when I'd rather open the face up and really get a serious fade going off the tee.
Unlike most of the other adjustable drivers on the market, the clubs sits at 1.5 degrees at a closed position, and 2.5 degrees open, which, in my opinion, is almost too much.
If you want smaller increments, they also have a Tour version is your stick. But for guys who normally go out and want to get rid of that nasty slice or hook in a hurry, well, this club can do that for you. And even for a golfer like myself, I found this to be a nice addition.
The club also sounds good coming off the face. There's no loud ping that nearly bursts your eardrums or thud that makes you feel like you're swinging a piece of wood. Also, if you're one of those golfers who swears you'll never hit a composite driver because of the way it sounds. Well, friend, you may want to check this one out.
As opposed to some drivers that you can pull off the rack and take the course for an "emergency nine," this one took some getting used to -- which isn't all that surprising. It normally takes some time before I feel comfortable with a driver.
But the craziest thing of all about this club was how well I hit it right off the bat. Even though it didn't feel like the ball was coming off the center of the face, the ball kept going ... and going ... and going. There was a moment where I started to laugh on the range and a couple of guys turned and gave me a puzzled look.
For a feel guy like myself, this was like the perfect storm. The ball was rocketing off the face, but I couldn't feel if the ball was coming off the heel, toe or the center of the club face. I eventually started to get some better feedback after about 30 minutes, but the bottom line is this club felt good no matter where I was hitting it on the face. We all know that's never a bad thing.
Busbee: Provided you adjust it properly, the first thing you feel when you step to the tee with this club is a sense that you've got more control over both impact and ball flight. It might take you a bit of time to get the weights and face angle adjusted to your liking, but once you do, you're set. The RAZR Fit's OptiFit hosel lets you adjust the club's facing angle, from Square to Open to Closed. Adjusting it couldn't be easier; you can use the accompanying wrench to switch the club's facing in the time it takes for someone to dig a mulligan ball out of your bag. Same goes for the weight screws that change the ball's flight from a draw to a neutral pattern. You can tinker with combinations until you get your preferred feel, and then you're out of excuses.
The RAZR Fit just feels right, and for a high handicapper like myself, it's a forgiving club. You need to have some familiarity with it on the range before heading out to the course, but it doesn't take long to straighten out your drives and even understand how you can shape ball flight with this. (Again, this applies to people who are in the habit of admiring when the ball goes in the direction it's supposed to. More finesse-oriented players will obviously benefit more from the various tweaks you can make.)
Callaway also brings the goods on intangibles like sound. It's less hollow than other drivers, and your entire foursome will know when you've caught the ball flush. You ought to be sure that you get the right shaft stiffness; the regular seemed a little loose for my liking, but again, your mileage can and will vary.
Wall: In my opinion, Callaway has a keeper in the RAZR Fit. The updated OptFit system, coupled with the design tweaks and the feel make this an incredibly solid driver. Throw in the fact that you can also customize the driver with your own paint color (they call it the "udesign") and you have a stick that should definitely be on your must try list if you're in the market for a driver.
Busbee: I can't say that this club transformed par 5s into par 4s and par 4s into up-and-downs for me, but that's probably as much due to my own skill with the shorter sticks. Like most higher-end clubs, this one isn't cheap, but it's a solid investment in your overall game, and this club will be the centerpiece of your bag for several seasons. Recommended.
Price — $399