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2014 Callaway X2 Hot and X2 Hot Pro Fairway Woods Review
I’ve long been a big fan of Callaway fairway woods, ever since the original Warbird I’ve enjoyed the traditional look and solid feel Callaway fairway woods offered.
While continuing to produce quality fairway woods over the years, the 2013 release of the X Hot fairway put Callaway back near top of the category. For 2014, Callaway is looking to continue its momentum with the release of the X2 Hot Fairway Wood. When given the chance to review the line, I jumped at the chance to see what Callaway had to offer.
The Callaway X2 Hot Fairway Wood line has two distinct models to choose from: the X2 Hot and the X2 Hot Pro. The X2 Hot model will appeal to the majority of golfers out there. It has a larger club head and more contoured sole design with optimal weighting, which results in a more forgiving club head with a higher launch.
The Callaway X2 Hot Pro Fairway Wood, on the other hand, has a smaller clubhead, flatter sole and weighting designed for a more penetrating ball flight via lower launch and lower spin. Both models have the Internal Standing Wave technology, which also was on the 2013 X Hot line. This technology puts the center of gravity (CG) shallow and forward, producing more ball speed and lower backspin, resulting in more distance.
The new Callaway X2 Hot Pro Fairway Wood clubface.
The Callaway X2 Hot Fairway Wood, however, moves the weight even lower and more forward, improving shots hit low on the face, a trait particularly helpful in tighter fairway lies.
The new Callaway X2 Hot Fairway Wood clubface.
Both the X2 Hot and X2 Hot Pro fairway wood models have a very attractive, and tradition look at address, but with some very noticeable differences.
The X2 Hot Fairway Wood has some distinct graphic markings at address, with a Callaway chevron dominating the center of the clubface, and subtly attractive graphics towards the backside of the club that help frame the ball at address.
The X2 Hot Pro, on the other hand, is clean of any lines or graphics, and is about as traditional in look as you can find on the market, including uninterrupted straight groove lines across the entire clubface. Make no mistake, the X2 Hot Pro has a noticeably smaller club head than its brethren, but both have a traditional design with a dark grey finish.
Both the X2 Hot and X2 Hot Pro fairway wood models come with quality stock shafts, made my Aldila. The Callaway X2 Hot Fairway Wood comes with an Aldila AT Tour Blue 60 shaft, and is available in light, regular and stiff flexes.
The Callaway X2 Hot Fairway Wood comes with an Aldila 60 shaft available in several flexes.
The Callaway X2 Hot Pro comes standard with an Aldila Tour Green 75 shaft in regular, stiff and extra stiff. Both shafts are aesthetically pleasing and cohesive with the overall design and color scheme of the club, and more importantly both shafts are outfitted to fit the overall weighting and characteristics each model to maximize shot productivity.
Make no mistake about it, the Aldila Tour Green 75 is serious shaft for the serious golfer!
The Callaway X2 Hot Pro Fairway Wood comes with a 75 shaft in several flexes.
I was fortunate enough to test an Callaway X2 Hot 3-wood and X2 Hot Pro 3-wood, both with 15-degrees of loft and both had their respective stock shaft in stiff flex. I hit the equivalent of a small bucket of balls with each club using the state-of-the art launch monitor technology available at 2nd Swing Golf.
Eliminating the rusty swings to ensure I had a consistent comparison of shot patterns, I found some distinct differences in performance between the X2 Hot and X2 Hot Pro, consistent with what would be expected with the design and structure of both models.
The following statistics were averages between the two models:
Both models’ ball speed for me was pretty consistent at about 143.6 mph for the Callaway X2 Hot Fairway Wood and 143 mph for the Callaway X2 Hot Pro Fairway Wood. Of note, I did have a wider dispersion of balls speeds with the X2 Hot Pro, highlighting the forgiveness of the X2 Hot model.
For the Callaway X2 Hot Fairway Wood, my launch angle averaged 14.1 degrees, whereas the X2 Hot Pro Fairway Wood came in at 12.5 degrees, a product of the internal weighting for the X2 Hot Pro, which is designed to produce a lower, more penetrating ball flight for the lower handicap player.
The X2 Hot Pro produces a 12.5-degree launch angle for lower handicap players.
Similar to the launch angle results, I had some noticeable differences between the two models with regards to spin rate. For the Callaway X2 Hot Fairway Wood model, my average spin rate (backspin) came in at 3,450 rpm. The X2 Hot Pro, however, came in at an average of 2,890 rpm. Again, illustrating that the X2 Hot Pro is designed for the lower handicap player looking for lower spin and more workability.
The X2 Hot Fairway Wood had a lower average spin rate than the Pro.
Distance: Carry and Total
It should come as a surprise to no one that the results of the above performance characteristics resulted in some differences in carry distance, but I would be remiss if I didn’t share the results, as distance tends to be the most tangible metric.
My statistical distance averages for the Callaway X2 Hot model tallied 240.1 yards, whereas the X2 Hot Pro resulted in 233.6 yards of carry. While the carry difference was more noticeable, the overall distance between both models was less negligible since both came in around 255 yards. The distance results further illustrate that the X2 Hot has a higher launch with more spin, while the X2 Hot Pro has a lower launch with lower spin.
It always gives me confidence when I see the manufacturer’s claims verified with tangible results!
The X2 Hot Pro is distinctive in both look and performance from the X2 Hot, but both are exceptional.
The Callaway X2 fairway wood lines are beautifully marries traditional looks and current design strategies with effective technological enhancements. I give Callaway kudos for keeping the two different model designs, with the X2 Hot and the X2 Hot Pro, distinctively different in both aesthetics and performance.
Whether you are a mid- or high-handicapper looking for a fairway wood to help you launch it higher, or a lower handicapper that desires a smaller clubhead with a penetrating ball flight with increased workability, the Callaway X2 Hot and X2 Hot Pro lines have wide appeal.
If you are in the market for a new fairway wood, I would highly suggest you give the Callaway X2 Hot or X2 Hot Pro fairway woods a serious look, and make 2014 the year you find more fairways off the tee or reach more par-5’s in two.
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