Last year, we delivered full reviews of the latest golf clubs to hit the market in ClubTest 2021. Now, we’re turning our attention to golf balls. For our Ultimate Golf Balls Buyer’s Guide, GOLF equipment editors Jonathan Wall and Andrew Tursky reviewed 42 golf ball models to make you as informed as possible when shopping this holiday season. They organized the balls into four categories: Premium, Premium Value, Distance Value and Soft Spin Value. You can find the Premium golf ball reviews below.
In the first installment of our 2021 Golf Ball Guide, Wall and Tursky studied the ins-and-outs of 19 premium golf balls. These top-of-the-line balls from companies like Callaway, TaylorMade and Titleist are designed to maximize the performance of expert golfers, and anyone else who could use the help of top-notch tech in their balls.
Here are their findings, along with advice on the type of golfer each ball is best suited for. If you identify the perfect golf ball for your game, just click the link to purchase them and start transforming your scores today.
Need help finding the right clubs for your game? Visit the expert fitters at our affiliate partner, True Spec Golf. For more on the latest gear news, check out Wall and Tursky’s latest Fully Equipped podcast.
PREMIUM GOLF BALL REVIEWS
Bridgestone Tour B X
Designed with the help of Bryson DeChambeau, the new Tour B X golf balls are made for fast swingers (over 105 mph of driver speed) who also want peak short-game performance. A new Reactiv urethane cover helps decrease spin and boost speed on long shots while increasing spin when you’re around the greens. (Available in white only.)
Bridgestone Tour B XS
Tiger Woods knows exactly what he’s looking for, and he helped design the new Tour B XS to match his preferences. As such, the new Tour B XS is built with a Reactiv cover that’s slightly softer for maximum greenside control yet still provides distance thanks to a Gradational Compression core. (Available in white and yellow.)
Bridgestone Tour B RX
Searching for a bit more distance without sacrificing greenside performance? The three-piece Tour B RX is designed with a lower compression to help slower-speed golfers (under 105 mph with the driver) gain distance off the tee. The Reactiv cover helps induce spin with shorter clubs too. (Available in white and yellow.)
Bridgestone Tour B RXS
The new Tour B RXS has the same Reactiv cover and core technology as Bridgestone’s other Tour ball offerings, but it’s made with a softer feel and provides max spin around the greens. Fred Couples says he plays the ball for its feel and greenside performance. (Available in white and yellow.)
Callaway Chrome Soft
Chrome Soft delivers the softest feel in Callaway’s premium lineup, and the four-piece ball has a dual-core construction for two-pronged performance benefits. The inner core is made larger to produce high launch, low spin and more distance, while the graphene-infused firmer outer core helps increase wedge spin. (Available in white, yellow, Triple Track, and Truvis.)
Callaway Chrome Soft X
Chrome Soft X, Callaway’s most popular ball on Tour, has a large core and a dual-mantle system to provide golfers speed off the tee and spin with the wedges. With a slightly firmer feel compared to the Chrome Soft, the Chrome Soft X is built for distance and workability. (Available in white, yellow, Triple Track, and Truvis.)
Callaway Chrome Soft X LS
This brand-new offering from Callaway is now the lowest-spinning ball in the company’s premium lineup. Designed based on feedback from Tour pros, the four-piece Chrome Soft X LS (Low Spin) has a urethane cover with a dimple pattern designed to reduce spin on long shots. (Available in white, yellow, Triple Track, and Truvis.)
Mizuno RB Tour
Tired of hitting balloon balls that get affected too much by the wind? Mizuno uses special “C” dimples (or Cone dimples) on its urethane covers to lower spin and enhance performance in windy conditions. The four-piece golf balls are also made to deliver a soft feel, stable flight and greenside responsiveness. (Available in white.)
Mizuno RB Tour X
The RB Tour X four-piece ball has the same C dimple design as the RB Tour to help stabilize flight in the wind. The difference is that the RB Tour X version is slightly firmer, helping produce more speed for some golfers and slightly higher spin on longer shots. (Available in white.)
Srixon Z Star
Seriously, who doesn’t want more spin on their wedge shots? Srixon’s three-piece Z Star ball has an elastic urethane cover to help wedge grooves bite into it and create more spin. They have thin covers, a soft feel and are made for a mid-flight on long shots. (Available in white and yellow.)
Srixon Z Star XV
If the Z Star ball is made for spin, then the Z Star XV is built for distance. The four-piece Z Star XV balls have a soft inner core and firmer outer core to help create more speed on drives and approaches. The construction also helps create a higher launch. (Available in white and yellow.)
The new TP5 has a larger core designed for greater energy transfer and distance. Thankfully, the speed increase doesn’t come at the expense of control. The five-layer TP5 has a new dimple pattern to reduce drag during flight and increase angle of descent for greater stopping power. (Available in white, yellow, pix and pix USA.)
Compared to the TP5, the new TP5x ball has a slightly firmer feel and helps produce TaylorMade’s fastest and longest flight. The TP5x, like the TP5, is built with five layers, including a urethane cover, and uses HFM (high-flex material) to increase energy transfer at impact. (Available in white, yellow and pix.)
If you’re looking for a premium Titleist ball with a urethane cover but with a softer feel, lower spin and more distance, this is the option for you. The AVX has a large core construction and a thin cover, providing golfers with a piercing ballflight and soft feel. (Available in white and yellow.)
Titleist Pro V1
Amazingly, Titleist’s iconic Pro V1 line is entering its third decade. Never resting on its laurels, the company completely redesigned the new Pro V1 and V1x for 2021. Compared to previous iterations, the new three-layer Pro V1 delivers a softer feel and more spin on short shots. Thanks to a firmer casing layer, you’ll find more speed on tee shots and longer approaches. (Available in white and yellow.)
Titleist Pro V1x
Not sure whether to buy the new Pro V1 or Pro V1x? The new Pro V1x has a dual core construction that’s designed for a higher flight, more spin and a slightly firmer feel. Like the Pro V1, the new Pro V1x is also built for more ball speed and a softer feel. (Available in white and yellow.)
Titleist Pro V1x Left Dash
Tour players have been using a “Left Dash” prototype for years, and now it’s available to consumers. The Pro V1x Left Dash is designed to provide golfers the high flight of the standard Pro V1x but with significantly lower spin and a firmer feel on long shots. (Available in white.)
Wilson Staff Model
Wilson pays extra attention to an overlooked part of golf ball construction: the paint job. These four-piece urethane Tour balls use a special paint application process to ensure even coating and consistent performance. They also have cores that are designed to increase velocity for more distance. (Available in white.)
Wilson Staff Model R
This Staff Model ball also emphasizes the paint job without using any paint at all! The Staff Model R’s unpainted urethane cover is designed to lower flight and increase short-game spin by grabbing the wedge grooves more at impact. (Available in white.)
This article originally appeared on Golf.com.