“As Forgiving as They Come“
***Before commencing this review, I’d be remiss if I failed to thank the VP of Marketing and Communications for Tour Edge Golf. Jon, thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to test and review these products from Tour Edge Golf. Without you, none of this would be possible. As always, thank-you for your support.***
Batavia, Illinois headquartered Tour Edge Golf has emerged as one of the golf industry’s most notable up and coming brands. They’re a brand that has continually developed and brought to market premium golf products that you may not consider because they don’t offer huge endorsement dollars to tour professionals. For this reason, their exposure to serious and recreational golfers alike causes Tour Edge Exotics to come up a little short from a market share perspective. Yet, with all of this said the brand has seen increased and record-setting profits over the last several years.
A quick dive into their history shows us that Tour Edge Golf Founder and President David Glod started the company back in 1986. Several years later, Tour Edge Golf introduced its original “Combo Brazed” metalwoods and in case you were unaware, that golf club had a bit of a “cult” following. A fairway wood that produced distance that golfers typically saw with their driver. The hype then was real and well-warranted.
As far as I’m concerned, Tour Edge Golf Exotics really got themselves kick-started in 2019 with their Exotics EXS range of products. That was when Tour Edge Golf announced to the golfing world that you could develop products that were second to nobody. All the whilst using premium components and top-shelf R&D all without producing a premium price tag. Refreshing, considering where the price of golf equipment was and continues to trend. Tour Edge Golf’s “stock” continued to increase and trend upward the following year in 2020 with the Exotics EXS 220, and again in 2021 with the Exotics 721 range.
*** Editor’s Note: Just to clarify, Tour Edge Golf does have a range of products geared more towards recreational players. This line-up is called the Tour Edge Golf Hot Launch series. Even though they share similar product monikers they are different.
The Exotics 721 series was a bit of a juggernaut. You started to see more and more players across the worldwide tour’s (PGA TOUR Champions in particular) gaming the brand. In 2021, John Daly quietly played the Exotics C721 irons. But the big signing for Tour Edge Golf happened when living legend, Bernhard Langer, signed a multi-year deal to play the Exotics brand.
2022 brought more excitement to the Tour Edge Golf stable. Both Alex Cejka and Canadian Mike Weir next signed multi-year deals to play Exotics. Mike Weir was of special interest because he was previously with TaylorMade Golf, a brand that he was with for as long as I can remember. A noteworthy signing because now there was a “lefty” in their midst which would hopefully create more offerings for those on “that” side of the golf ball. One of the complaints that I’ve received in the past has been the lack of love shown to left-handed players. Also, seeing that Canadian golf retail giant Golf Town is a sponsor of Mike Weir, maybe that would mean more Exotics brand exposure north of the “49th Parallel”. For the record, I have never seen an Exotics product in a Golf Town.
What drove the likes of 2003 Masters Champion Mike Weir to choose to play Exotics when he could have signed with anyone? The answer lies within Exotics 722 Series.
For 2022, the entire Exotics line-up comes in two options and with it, a question for golfers. “Are you an E or C?”. Where the “C” or “Competition Spec” product range targets the “better player” because it has attributes that the better player looks for (lower spin and smaller footprints) the “E” or “Extreme Spec” offers golfers more forgiveness and easier to hit and launch products. Some of the features of the Exotics E722 driver include…
30-Gram Backweight – The 460cc profile and deeper face is designed for maximum forgiveness. The E722 Driver’s extreme low-rearward CG position produces an extremely high M.O.I. that is 18% higher to increase stability at impactand tighter dispersion. This is amongst the top Moment of Inertia measurements available: a 5500 g/cm2 M.O.I. rating.
Carbon Wrap Tech – Saves considerable weight in the clubhead , allowing greater face flex in the heel and toe areas meaning off center hits achieve greater power. This weight savings has been re-purposed to the ideal location to help with creating optimal CG location.
Ridgeback Technology – The spine acts as a brace to produce more power on across the entire face, including the extreme perimeters. The E722 Ridgeback design is 20% thinner than the original C721 model, while offering the same structural support properties. Ridgeback is designed to create superior feel at impact. The extra rigidity created by the brace through the crown produces a much stronger feel at impact when compared to a full carbon crown and results in a crisper and brighter feel at strike.
Diamond Face VFT (Variable Face Thickness) – The mini trampolines that make-up Diamond Face VFT create faster ball speeds and an expanded sweet spot. The increase in Diamond Face coverage to the extreme heel and toe dramatically increases ball speed on offcenter hits while also greatly aiding forgiveness on these strikes.
Other features of the 722 Series of drivers include “SpeedTested Shafts”. By employing their test robot (T.E.D.) Tour Edge R&D determines the best shaft/head combination based on different clubhead speeds. All of the shafts are premium, bonafide shafts like Mitsubishi Chemical’s Tensei AV Raw Orange 65 and Fujikura’s Ventus Blue. I should add that these shafts are a tremendous baseline. By seeing a fitter the possibility is there of finding an even better shaft more suited to your needs.
Lastly, there’s what Tour Edge refers to as “A.R.C. Acoustic Engineering”. Acoustic Resonance Channels (A.R.C.) are channels that are positioned internally to produce better acoustics and feel.
While all of the technical speak is “fine and dandy” the real question is, how do the Exotics E722 drivers stack up? After all, it’s why you’re here and why you’re reading this review. Especially, late in the current golf season.
For the purposes of the testing and review process I decided to go with a Exotics E722 in 10.5* of loft. For the shaft, I took a huge gamble by selecting the Mitsubishi Chemical Tensei AV Raw Orange 65 which weighs in at 70-grams. A shaft that offers a mid-trajectory launch. I only say gamble because I know that I’m no longer an X-flex based on my clubhead speed nor have I been since my stroke in 2018. Yet, I have no issue with elevating the golf ball with an X-flex nor do my flight characteristics demonstrate that an X-flex is too strong.
(I won’t delve too deeply into the unboxing process. For the Exotics E722 driver please advance the video below to 14:30)
For the review, I’ll break it down into four parts. Aesthetics, Feel/Sound, Forgiveness. and Performance.
Aesthetics – For the golf equipment aficionado the Exotics E722 driver may not be for you. While the face is quite handsome from a depth standpoint the purist may not like the markings on the face. Some may feel that there might be a “bit too much going on”. Strictly an aesthetics thing and maybe a determining factor for golf consumers. As far as I’m concerned I couldn’t care less what the face looks like. It could be silver, black, or red. It doesn’t matter.
Golfers may not like the elongated footprint of the E722 driver either but again it’s a “means to an end”. The extreme forgiveness of this driver has to come from somewhere and that somewhere is the 30-grams of backweighting set low and far back in the head. Hey, if it’s good enough for Bernhard Langer than why isn’t it good enough for you? Give me the forgiveness.
The “Carbon Wrap Tech” of the head gives this driver a futuristic look yet the sole is quite clean and offers rack appeal at the retail store level earning the E722 some points in the aesthetics category.
Acoustics/Feel – Some drivers feel and sound muted while other drivers feel crisp and lively. In my opinion the E722 driver definitely falls into the latter category.
When it comes to strikes with the E722 driver there’s a strong sense of this head being “lively and crisp”. Think of it like a springboard in competitive diving. Upon impact, you know that you’ve put the face into the back of the golf ball because the ball seemingly jumps off of the face. In this regard I feel that it’s an upgrade over the Exotics C721 of 2021. What I’m not suggesting however is that this head is loud because, it’s not. Tour Edge R&D did a great job with their acoustic engineering and there is a sound difference from what they learned with the Exotics EXS 220 to the Exotics E722.
Between the two heads this year I do prefer the acoustics of the E over the C, if for no other reason that the “E” sounds so pure.
Forgiveness – How forgiving is the Exotics E722 driver? It’s so forgiving that they should have given it an “F Spec” moniker. Just for the sake of clarification let me just say that the Exotics E722 driver is “Forgiving AF (as f**k)”
There is a lot of technology packed into this driver that makes it the forgiving beast that it is. Yes there is the already alluded to 30-grams of backweighting. There is also the insanely high M.O.I (resistance to twisting) numbers. There is the “Carbon Wrap tech” that allows for the optimal positioning of the center of gravity and lastly there is the “Diamond Face VFT”. Every one of these things all equate to the “Most Forgiving Driver Tour Edge Exotics has ever created”. My words… Not their’s.
Strikes out towards the toe, heel, or low on the face all resulted in strikes that shouldn’t have received the mileage that they received. Or dispersion for that matter.
Performance – Overall, the performance of the Exotics E722 was nothing short of spectacular. Especially when you factor in the the level of forgiveness packed into this head. Out of all of the range and course sessions that this driver has seen I’m still not sure that I’ve ever lost a shot right with it. All that I seem to do is hit baby draws. Even though it might tie into forgiveness strikes low on the face didn’t carom off to the “nether regions of the golf course”.
I’m very pleased with the distance off of the tee as well even though I am the first to admit that I, in all likelihood, selected the wrong shaft. But ball flight laws suggest otherwise. I was hoping that major back issues would improve allowing me to get the most out of the Tensei AV Raw Orange 65 shaft but it hasn’t gone according to plan. Perhaps going lightweight and at least one maybe two flexes softer would have been better? Either way, I love the performance of this driver.
The Exotics E722 is an excellent blend of forgiveness and power.
In my opinion the Exotics E722 is Tour Edge Exotics’ opus especially when you look at it from a forgiveness point of view. This is a driver that feels light and lively and has in forgiveness to what Lake Michigan has in water. Forgiveness, length and looks. A driver to seriously consider. I totally understand why Bernhard Langer entrusts this driver to his game.
The Exotics E722 retails for $399.99 USD.
Until The Nex Tee!!