I know that there are plenty of golf consumers out there that get a little antsy whenever a golf manufacturer releases a new product. Products often come with the trappings of being their “longest, most-forgiving, ever”. Admittedly, we see this all too-often on television spots or the PGA Show floor, when we’re in attendance. C’mon ’22, don’t let me down.
But what about when you have a company, like Tour Edge Golf, and in particular their Exotics range? A brand of equipment where we have seen a true evolution over the last three years. Change that is more than simply “paint and wallpaper” but actual physical difference?
When it comes to Original Equipment Manufacturers (or OEM’s) Tour Edge Golf may not be at the forefront of golfers’ collective minds. But, if there’s one equipment brand that has done a lot of moving and shaking over the last three years, it’s Tour Edge Golf.
Tour Edge Golf has been around a long time. I remember when I first started to notice golf equipment and attend golf & travel shows. Their CB metalwood from around 2007 (but I can’t seem to get 2004 out of my head) had a cult following. Or, what seemed to have been at least a rabid following. I remember swinging it back then and even though I truly had no clue what to look for, it felt hot.
While David Glod’s company has been forging along quietly, to me, it was a big year in them for 2019. They released the Exotics EXS range of products. A range of products that proved that you could have the best in technology, R&D, and components but without the premium price tag (the driver was $299.99 USD). They followed that up with the EXS 220 range in 2020 and that was another range that did the same and simply produced (driver was $349.99 USD). The additional $50 over 2019 was worth it. Improved acoustics, feel, forgiveness, and material. That range fared very well in my Teezy Awards winning multiple awards including several gold medals. But what about 2021?
This year, Exotics has introduced us to a family of products called the Exotics C721. This family of golf clubs looks to be a serious player in the golf industry for 2021. Yes, there is a ton of exposure of the brand on PGA TOUR Champions with golfers like Tom Lehman, Scott McCarron, Duffy Waldorf, and Tim Petrovic already inked. But then, earlier this year they announced that the legendary Bernhard Langer had signed an equipment deal. So, for Langer to go into Tour Edge Exotics you know something was brewing and that it was going to be good. Really good! Langer had quietly been playing the EXS Pro hybrid and had it in play at the 2020 Master’s Tournament.
When looking at the metalwoods (driver, fairway metals, hybrids) I would suggest that from aesthetics alone, this family of golf clubs has more “rack appeal” than its predecessors. The graphics on the bottom end are clean and no longer evident is one of their technologies from the past several years. “SlipStream Sole Technology” clearing the way for a cleaner sole. They’re clean and don’t appear gaudy.
Forgiveness is a key to this range. In saying that, look at the weight at the trailing edge of the head, an updated “Diamond Face” called “Diamond Face 2.0” that offers more speed and forgiveness through design, and a huge difference is their “Ridgeback Technology”. The latter being a “titanium spine running from the center of the face through the crown and wrapping around the head to connect with the titanium sole plate”. In layperson terms, this technology is designed with producing more power on strikes off of the sweet spot or off-centre strikes for that matter. But it also aids in the feel of this driver, which I might add I just received for testing and review, so stay tuned.
We do see some returning technology as well like their “Sound Diffusion Bar(s)” to aid in acoustics, “SpeedTested Shafts” which are shafts that have been extensively robot tested to fit the best baseline shaft/head combination based on swing speeds. Although the options are different from last year. Also featured is an adjustable hosel that allows the 10.5* model to go down to 8.5* or up to 12.5*. Not including upright settings, there are a multitude of combinations to optimize your launch conditions and performance.
The smaller siblings (fairway metals and hybrids) offer much of the same technologies as the driver. With one exception. There is no hosel adjustment. What you buy is what you get, so tinkerers be aware. Should the driver and metalwoods perform better than last year, then… “Gadzooks!” Because last year was impressive.
Switching over to the irons, we have two models of Exotics 721 irons to look at. First there are the Exotics C721 and secondly, the Exotics E721. Both irons do feature hollow-body designs.
In looking at the technology first, Tour Edge has introduced “Dual Vibrcor Technology”. By placing two pieces of TPU the feel offered at impact is enhanced. In saying that, the sound is muted (the prior generations sounded mean and hot impact) while also reducing vibration. Have you ever struck a shot in the cold that wasn’t optimal. The “bees” in your hands and “vibrations” can rattle your teeth. It gets into your head.
Diamond Face 2.0 is comprised of 92 diamond shapes which reduces the face thickness. A thinner face translates to more trampoline effect and potential distance gains. Not to mention an expanded sweet spot. So, a poorly struck shot may not be as severely penalized. If you’re going to miss, miss straight. This is the first time that Diamond Face has been introduced into one of their iron sets. Also, a “Maraging Steel L-Cup” face has been employed in the manufacturing of the Exotics 721 irons. Typically, we’ve seen maraging steel used in metalwoods, by using this material they can engineer the clubface to be thinner. This produces more accuracy and helps in the case of off-centre strikes.
SpeedTested shafts much like the metalwoods makes a return in 2021 as well.
Aesthetically speaking, again Tour Edge has improved the aesthetics of these irons. I often likened the cavity in their recent irons like the EXd, EXi, EXS, and EXS 220 to a ’57 Chevy Belair. It looked cool, it was like a grill on one of those amazing pieces of art. The look stood out, it was different. However, the Exotics 721 irons have been cleaned up. Maybe with feedback from TOUR players and influencers alike, the look wasn’t well-received so they changed it. Or maybe it was just time for a change. The cavities are clean. Golfers will look at these in-store for a different reason. Instead of idle curiosity, their curiosity will nag at them wondering what this nice-looking iron set is. They will then pick them up and take a longer look.
While I’m talking about the looks, the Exotics C721 irons do feature a more compact profile and a thinner topline compared to its thicker toplined, longer profile counterpart. The Exotics E721 is all about forgiveness and this club will offer that in spades in part thanks to extreme toe-weighting and offset (Exotics E721 is pictured above on the right).
My final take on these irons is short and sweet. I anticipate Tour Edge Golf having a terrific 2021. This Exotics 721 family of products looks serious. Aesthetics alone, these sticks look like their all business with still, an attractive price point. Don’t be surprised if these products end up filling spots in bags on all of the tours. It’s just that you may not know who it is.
Until The Next Tee!!