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When you first start playing golf, you play for the experience and the camaraderie of spending a day with someone that you care about. It does not matter if you spray balls all over the place, pick your ball up and giver yourself an 8 on most holes, or lose 15 balls per round. It is just fun. Until you realize there is something else to it, and you can control the ball and have even more fun while focusing on your game. When this happens your game can only improve as much as your equipment, and it is time to find the best golf irons for mid handicappers.
In this article, we’re going to be reviewing the following irons:
- Mizuno MP-20 MMC
- TaylorMade P770
- Callaway Apex 21 DCB
- Wilson Staff Model CB
- Titleist T300
- Cobra King Tour MIM
- Ping G425
- Srixon ZX5
When Should A Mid Handicapper Upgrade Their Irons?
It is time to purchase new irons when you realize your clubs are holding you back from your potential. Two sure signs of needing new clubs are:
- When you look down at your club and realize you just do not like them.
If you have been golfing for a while, then you know the difference between clubs that fill you with confidence and clubs that you are just using because they are there. If you have never felt this and you consistently break 90, then you are probably using the wrong clubs.
- When your clubs are old and out of date.
These two things may happen at the same time and they may not. Golf technology changes consistently, but like anything else, technology does not matter if you stink. If your game has started improving and you notice that there are phrases being used to describe golf clubs that you have never heard before, then you are probably using old or out of date clubs.
If this describes you, then read the following information about the best golf irons for mid handicappers in 2019, and it will help you decide which irons are best for your game. Remember, golf technology will not help you if you cannot play, but if you are breaking 100 every time, 90 consistently, and you sometimes sniff 80, then you may just be a good set of irons away from consistency.
Features To Look For In Golf Irons For Mid Handicappers
As a mid handicap golfer, these are the things that you want your clubs to offer.
You have learned how to hit the ball straight, and maybe even draw the ball from time to time, so now you want what every golfer wants…More distance. One of the most important things your irons should do is help you get greater distance with your shots so that you can hit more greens in regulation and begin putting for more birdies.
The feel of a club is what the club “feels” like when you strike the ball. This is important psychologically, in terms of improvement, and because you get to the point that you know how a club should feel when you hit it correctly. The feel of an iron is important because it helps you know how you hit it, how to hit it differently if needed, and gives you confidence in your game.
Forgiveness is important, especially for low handicap golfers, you will mishit the ball from time to time. As important as the sweet spot of an iron is, the forgiveness of the club head around the sweet spot is equally important. The forgiveness of a club can be the difference between multiple strokes per round and especially for a mid handicapper.
If you are like me, distance is not the issue. I like to use good form in my swing, but I also like to hit the ball hard, and control can be an issue. Most irons made for mid handicap golfers have an offset hosel and a cavity back to help control your shot and keep those slices and hooks to a minimum.
Differences Between Low, Mid, and High Handicap Golfers When Purchasing Irons
Stay away from words like “tour preferred” or “tour pro” in the name. These clubs are usually for low handicap golfers and they are generally the least forgiving with the smallest sweet spot. The main differences between the low handicap and mid handicap irons are that the low handicap clubs have a smaller sweet spot, standard hosels, and are usually blades rather than cavity back irons. The bottom line is that low handicap irons are made for players who can already get the ball off of the ground, do not need a large sweet spot, and have the ability to play the shots that they want without help from the club. You are not quite there yet, but you will be.
On the other hand, high handicap players need every advantage the club can offer just to get the ball off of the ground, to help correct errors like hitting the ground first, and help keep away from the dreaded slice that is so common in high handicappers.
Hopefully you’re swing doesn’t look like any of these either:
Irons for beginners take away from distance and feel, and focus mostly on inconsistent contact and forgiveness. You are past this point and these clubs will only hold you back from hitting more greens in regulation and lowering your score.
Two Things That Give Mid Handicappers the Forgiveness They Need
Your irons shafts are extremely important and they come in either steel or graphite. As a general rule, for irons, steel shafts are the better choice for the large majority of golfers, but going to your local pro shop and getting your swing analyzed is highly recommended. Steel is a little heavier and usually improves feel and control as compared to the lighter and more flexible graphite shafts. The key to choosing the right shaft is that most golfers do not need extra flex on their irons so a regular to stiff steel shaft is usually ideal.
Club Head Design
There are also two club head design options, cavity back or muscle back (blade) irons. Cavity back irons have considerably more forgiveness both from the ground and the ball itself because of how they are weighted. Blade irons have the vast majority of their weight directly behind the sweet spot with the assumption that the player will hit this spot consistently. For mid handicappers, this is not always the case and having a more weighted perimeter can save you on those slight mishits that are still fairly common.
The Best Golf Irons for Mid Handicappers in 2021 Reviewed
Mizuno is known for their soft forged irons, and the MP-20 irons are a great addition to the brand. Mizuno is more known as an iron for lower handicappers, but the MP-20 is perfect for mid handicap golfers.
They have the grain flow forged chromology that gives you that incredible feel and will last forever. This is what Mizuno is known for primarily.
They are consistent, have a large sweet spot, and produce really good distance as well. There is also a forged titanium bar in the back of the club that provides some mass behind the impact area and strengthens the club while also moving the weight to the outer edges which gives you great forgiveness.
The long irons also have a tungsten weight low in the toe to bring down the center of gravity and make it easier to get the ball off the ground. The bottom line for these irons is that they are players irons with enough forgiveness and distance to make them ideal for mid handicappers.
The feel of these irons set them apart and make them no. 1 on our list.
- The grain flow forged chromology that Mizuno is known for.
- These are players irons with enough game improvement features to give you some of the best of both worlds.
- You get great distance and enough spin to work the ball around when needed.
- The tungsten weight in the longer irons gives you a high launch and makes them easy to hit.
- The wedges feel and look great but also have some forgiveness to them.
- They have a big sweet spot and the forged titanium bar gives you extra forgiveness.
- They are suited for better mid handicappers and maybe a little difficult to hit for some.
- They are some of the more expensive irons on this list.
TaylorMade has been at the forefront of mid handicap irons for a while now, and the P770s are a continuation of that. These irons are made to help really good players take their game to a new level.
In the words of the TaylorMade website, “We took everything that makes P790 such a beast and put it into a more compact players shape with P770.”
It is becoming more and more popular to add some game improvement features to players irons, and that is exactly what the P770 irons do. They are forged from soft carbon steel and have excellent feel and confidence inspiring sound.
They also feature a hollow body construction with an ultra thin face that gives you great distance and forgiveness especially for a blade. Each face is milled to offer high end spin and great workability as well.
The P770 have a lot of forgiveness for a forged club, and that comes from the tungsten back bar that is right behind the face of the club. This tungsten bar reduces vibration, lowers the center of gravity, and increases the size of the sweet spot.
The speed foam that you find in some of the other irons coupled with the progressive inverted cone give you great feel and a lot of forgiveness on mishits.
It is progressive because it is different for each club depending on the primary feature of that club. These irons combine the strengths of a cavity back with the strengths of a blade for one of the best iron sets on the market, especially for mid handicappers.
- One of TaylorMade’s most technologically advanced clubs.
- Takes the performance and design of one of the most popular irons to hit the market recently and puts it into a smaller, players shape.
- The soft forged carbon steel produces incredible spin.
- The Progressive Inverted Cone technology means that you do not lose as much distance or accuracy on mishits.
- The Speed Foam technology gives you the speed and forgiveness of hollow body construction and the feel of a forged blade.
- Compact shape of a players club while maintaining good distance and forgiveness.
- Basically take the advantages of the P790 and offer a slightly smaller club.
- One of the more expensive options.
- Made specifically for good golfers.
- Better suited for power players who use spin on their iron shots.
The Callaway Apex 21 irons were made specifically for mid handicappers with a great blend of game improvement and players features. These are forged cavity back irons that give you terrific feel without sacrificing distance or forgiveness.
These irons look great and perform just as well. This is the first Apex set that was made using AI technology, and the flash face architecture designed to optimize each loft is great.
There is no detail overlooked and the speed and spin that comes from this construction makes these some of the best irons out there.
They are very consistent in performance, very accurate, and some of the more forgiving irons on this list. While the Mizuno irons take our no. 1 spot, these Apex irons are probably better for those mid handicappers who are on the higher end of the scorecard.
There is a tungsten core that improves the launch and forgiveness of the club which also add to the game improvement features.
- There are a lot of game improvement features that would help most golfers.
- You get great feel without losing forgiveness and distance.
- Some of the longest irons on this list.
- The AI technology sets these irons apart as each club face is built to optimize performance for that loft.
- These clubs are just as long as the Mavrik Max game improvement irons, but they are more forgiving and offer better feel.
- Some of the most consistent and accurate irons out there.
- They are a great combination of players iron features with game improvement features.
- One of the more expensive sets on the market.
- They do not produce enough spin for many mid handicappers.
- The weight in the head feels a little different than what many golfers are used to.
The Wilson Staff Model CB is a part of Wilson’s ever-evolving players iron line, and it just may be the best version yet. They approached their Tour Staff for input and tried to check all the boxes like a clean look, great sound, soft feel, forgiving long irons, workable and spinny wedges, and a good combination of distance and forgiveness.
These clubs are forged out of 8620 carbon steel and have a great looking nickel-chrome finish that will make you proud to carry it in your bag.
The clubs have a “tri-brace stabilizer” that is basically a piece of steel positioned in the cavity to stabilize the clubs and promote greater energy transfer, more ball speed, and better acoustics.
The tungsten weighted design also enhances stability and lowers the center of gravity for a higher and easier launch. You may be used to a lower price point for Wilson clubs, but these clubs are a little more advanced than other Wilson offerings and the price tag reflects that.
These clubs are a little more suited for better players, but most mid handicappers would find them suitable for their game.
- Some of the best looking irons on the market.
- They sound and feel great.
- You get a good combination of feel and forgiveness.
- The 20g tungsten weight lowers the center of gravity for a high launch and increased forgiveness.
- The Tri-Brace Stabilizer increases the energy transfer, ball speed, and acoustics of these clubs.
- The forged 8620 carbon steel give you muscle back feel with cavity back design.
- A higher price point than what Wilson’s usually have.
- Not as long or forgiving as other irons on the list.
- The short irons leave a little to be desired.
The Titleist “T series” of irons are very well respected and highly rated, and the T300 irons are the most forgiving of these sets. The sole of the T300 is much deeper than the other in the line which gives you more forgiveness and a lower center of gravity for a high launch.
The T300s feature a deep, undercut cavity and a very small offset that looks clean and simple at setup and performs very well.
They are a very forgiving club so that even mishits and off center shots do not end up as poorly as they would with other clubs. The silicone polymer core and tungsten weighting give it a lower center of gravity and perimeter weighting that make the sweet spot as large as possible.
Unlike many game improvement irons, Titleist was able to increase the size of the sweet spot without increasing the size of the club head which makes it look better for the majority of golfers. In the past, many mid handicappers were looking to move away from cavity back clubs, but that is no longer the case.
The T300s offer you the forgiveness and distance of a cavity back but are compact like a blade.
- Offer high end forgiveness and a lot of game improvement features.
- A really good price for a good set of clubs.
- While the head is compact, it offers a very large hitting area with a big sweet spot.
- Some of the most forgiving irons on this list.
- Really good stock shafts whether you choose graphite or steel.
- You get a lot of distance with these irons.
- Progressive design optimizes the face technology for every loft.
- Max Impact Technology extends maximum speed and forgiveness across a very forgiving face.
- Better suited for higher handicappers.
- If you are looking for a muscle back, these are not your irons.
- Lacks distance control and consistency.
- Less feel than most of the other irons on this list.
The Cobra King MIM (Metal-Injection-Molded) wedges are all about creating a softer feel at impact for every iron in your bag. These irons are neither forged nor cast, unlike every other iron on this list and most other irons on the market.
The Cobra King Tour MIM irons are metal injection molded. This process is said to need fewer steps, less time, and less human contact with the club during the production phase.
Also, using a stainless steel head creates a precision that cannot be found in other metals. These things together mean that the Cobra King irons are more precise and more consistent than most.
The result for the King Tour irons is a forgiving cavity back club with all of the feel and workability of a muscle back.
- Very precise, consistent, and accurate club.
- Looks great and very modern.
- Very forgiving on off center hits and keeps the ball straight and pretty long.
- Hot off the face, the energy transfer is really good and the ball speed is top notch.
- Very stable.
- The MIM process is very exact.
- The tungsten weighting gives you a low center of gravity right behind the sweet spot to give you good launch and a large sweet spot.
- The heads of these irons are a little bigger than what most mid handicappers are looking for.
- More of a set for high rather than mid handicappers.
- A very expensive set of irons.
The Ping G425 is a tweener iron between a club built for a mid handicapper and one built for a high handicapper. The “G” series of clubs have been known for forgiveness for a long time now, but the G425 adds quite a bit of distance that previous iterations have not included.
The G425 irons have kept a smaller shape and increased feel to the point that they will be very suitable for many mid handicappers, and some may even prefer them.
The “G” series of irons have been some of the best sellers out there since their inception in 2003, and these are the closest to a players iron as they have made. The stainless steel body give them a precision and roughness that produces great spin and grabs the ball at impact.
You also get the variable face thickness, usually found in drivers, that gives you a lot of heat off the face and quite a bit of forgiveness as well.
- The stainless steel body provides great feel and precision design for each individual club.
- The face is very flexible and moves freely so that the ball really launches no matter if you hit it off center or in the middle of the sweet spot.
- You can find this set at a great price.
- These irons produce one of the straightest and most consistent ball flights you will find.
- A distance iron that looks more like a players iron.
- The tungsten toe/shaft weights gives you Ping’s highest MOI yet.
- The sole gets thicker the further it moves away from the face which gives you a higher and faster launch.
- Focuses on distance and forgiveness at the expense of feel.
- It is more of a game improvement set for beginners and higher handicaps.
- One of the least workable irons on the list.
If you want a set of blades, the Srixon ZX5 are some of the most forgiving on the market. Srixon designed a great looking blade iron with enough distance and forgiveness that they are accessible to most golfers.
The tungsten weight lowers the center of gravity while raising the MOI. The forged face is hot and gives you a lot of ball speed and distance. You get a really high launch compared to other irons as well. The wedges feature progressive grooves that really grab the ball and give you the spin and feel around the green that most golfers want.
- The feel of a muscle back with the forgiveness of a cavity back.
- Forged face enhances speed and distance.
- The deep tungsten weighting in the toe increases the MOI and lowers the center of gravity to make it a very hittable iron.
- Really good wedges.
- The Tour V.T. sole features the comeback of the sole notches that were popular in older models.
- If you want the look and feel of a blade, but you need the distance and forgiveness of a cavity back, this is a good iron set.
- The distance is not there compared to similarly priced irons.
- They are not very workable compared to other irons.
- A high price tag.
Final Thoughts On The Best Golf Irons For Mid Handicappers in 2021
There is just something different about the feel and look of Mizuno irons, and the MP-20 MMC are some of the best out there for mid handicappers.
They have a great design, provide plenty of distance, they are weighted around the edges for extra forgiveness, and they have the feel that Mizuno has come to be known for. There are just enough game improvement qualities for almost any mid handicapper, and there really is not a weak club in the set, from 4-iron all the way up to the wedges.
There are only a couple of sets on this list that you can find for less than $900, and the Titelist T300 is one of those sets. These are really good irons, perfect for most mid handicappers, and you will struggle to find anything close to the T300s at their price point.