Callaway Big Bertha Irons Review (B21 Version)

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The pandemic has been hard on some industries while others have grown and profited.

Because golf is an outside game with a large social component, my guess is that we will see its popularity skyrocket moving forward and new golfers will be entering the market at lightning speed.

When it is time for these beginning golfers and higher handicap players to buy clubs, the Callaway Big Bertha B-21 irons will be waiting.

It is perfect timing for a game improvement iron with a huge head and a lot of forgiveness.

The following is a Callaway Big Bertha B-21 Irons review. I will point out some of the pros and cons of the clubs, describe their features, and compare them to the previous Big Bertha iron releases. 

Things to Consider Before Buying The Callaway Big Bertha Irons (B21 Version)

Another iron set that really focuses its technology on providing additional ball speed and distance.

These clubs boast wide soles, a generous offset, and a thick topline to give you the most forgiveness and distance possible.

The “Big Bertha” brand of Callaway clubs have been around for a long time and they have yet to disappoint.

The B21 irons are great at what they were made for, distance and forgiveness. Just like the Flash Face technology found in Callaway’s drivers and their Mavrik offerings, these are the first Big Bertha clubs to be created with Artificial Intelligence technology.

The also have the tungsten energy core the you can see which looks great and then also lowers the center of gravity of the irons and provides a higher and effortless ball flight.

Callaway has gotten back to their roots as one of the premier game improvement iron designers, and the new Big Bertha will help make the game a little easier.  

Pros

  • Very long and very forgiving.
  • Created with AI so that each club face is setup for maximum performance on each loft.
  • A towering trajectory on well struck shots.
  • The draw bias is obvious and can really help those who struggle with a slice.
  • The shaping of the club lends itself to a lot of forgiveness.
  • The wider sole is both forgiving and aids in launch.
  • Urethane microspheres give these irons surprisingly good feel and a lot of firmness as well.
  • Flash Face cup technology provides a long and forgiving face.
  • The visible tungsten energy core is both visually appealing and helps with the launch.

Cons

  • Very similar to the less expensive Mavrik line of irons.
  • Not a lot of feel.
  • Not as forgiving as the irons at the top of the list.
  • Not ideal for lower handicappers.

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Callaway Big Bertha Irons (B21 Version) Features and Benefits

Construction (5 out of 5)

Head

As has already been noted, these are the first Big Betha irons created with Callaway’s AI technology.

This technology allows each loft to be designed for optimal launch, spin, and performance.

The Flash Face technology gives you a really thin face that produces really high end ball speed. The 360 Face Cup flexes and then releases at impact for a little extra heat off the face.

The shaping of the head is unique and specifically caters to forgiveness. These clubs cut through the turf and help you make great contact with the ball.

There is also a tungsten energy core in the head of each iron which lowers the center of gravity and makes each club easy to hit and launch high.

Finally, the hollow clubhead is filled with urethane microspheres that give you great feel for an improvement club, a pleasing sound at impact, and a firmer strike at impact.

Shaft Options

There are a variety of custom shaft options that are easy to add. The stock shafts are the Callaway RCH in Graphite and KBS Max CT80 in steel. Both of the stock shafts are really good shafts so that most golfers who are purchasing the Big Bertha irons will be able to settle into one of them.

Club Specs

    • Hand Availability: Right or Left
    • Material: Steel
    • Swing Weight: D1 (Steel)
    • Available Clubs (loft):  4 iron (19 degrees), 5 iron (22 degrees), 6 iron (25 degrees), 7 iron (29 degrees), 8 iron (33 degrees), 9 iron (38 degrees), PW (43 degrees), AW (48 degrees), SW (54 degrees), LW (60 degrees)
    • Manufacturer: Callaway
    • Shaft Types: Steel, Graphite
    • Shaft Names: Callaway RCH Irons (Graphite), KBS Max CT80 (Steel)
    • Grip: Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 Soft 46g or 50g
    • Design: Cavity-Backed

Performance (4 out of 5)

Forgiveness

These irons are built for forgiveness. The size of the clubhead alone shows you these clubs are big and they are serious.

The leading edge of these irons cut through the turf and help make solid contact with the ball, the tungsten core gives you a low center of gravity, and the huge sweet spot keeps the mishits to a minimum.

The clubs are lightweight, even with the stock steel shaft, and all of that is before even mentioning the AI technology that each club was built with.

If you are looking for a forgiving set of irons that are easy to hit and really long, the Big Bertha B-21s are definitely worth a look.

Control/Shot Shaping

The control is there. The clubs have a lightweight shaft with a low center of gravity. They launch a little higher than some players like and that takes away some of the control, but not much. They are pretty consistent and pretty solid. 

As far as shot shaping goes, however, they leave a lot to be desired. The truth is, if you are playing a game improvement iron like the Big Bertha, you are probably not as worried about shot shaping anyway, but these clubs are not ideal for that aspect of your game. They are too straight, fly too high, and produce too low of a spin rate.

Distance

Distance, on the other hand, is one of the strengths of the Big Bertha line of golf clubs and it always has been.

The B-21s feature a 360 Face Cup, Flash Face technology, and top notch swing speed. Not only that, but the ball flies high and straight with very little spin produced.

If you add all of these features up, you get a club that produces all the distance you need. 

Looks/Feel/Sound (4 out of 5)

The clubs look great if you are looking for game improvement irons. They are big and the shape really instills confidence in you as you stand over the ball. They sound good though the sound is dampened a little by the urethane microspheres. For a set of game improvement irons like this one, however, the feel is almost unmatched. Generally, with a hollow construction, you lose out on a large portion of the feel that you can find in solid clubs. With the urethane microspheres, however, you get a little bit of both worlds with great forgiveness and the distance and control of a hollow club. They do not feature the softest feel, but they do give great feedback and the vibrations normally felt in a hollow iron are not there at all with these Big Berthas.

Cost (4 out of 5)

Cost is a difficult feature to rate for the Big Bertha B-21 irons. You can find them for under $900, depending on the set, and that is a good price for what you are getting. The problem is that many players who would benefit from the Big Bertha clubs are the same that may not want to spend that much on irons. Beginners and higher handicappers, in general, look for lower priced products to start with and then move up as they progress. The “4” rating comes because the technology of these clubs is worth the price, but there is a caveat in that rating.

Alternatives To The Callaway Big Bertha Irons (B21 Version)

2017 Big Bertha Irons 

When the 2017 Big Bertha irons came out, Callaway described them as “possibly the most complex iron they have ever made.”

This claim described the structure of these irons as the source of their distance and forgiveness.

Most notably, the strong and light exo-cage allowed weight to be correctly distributed so that the 360 Face Cup could produce even more ball speed and distance.

Just like every Big Bertha, these clubs were really big, really forgiving, and really long. In fact, the claims that they made about distance and forgiveness, especially at the time of their release, rang true.

A somewhat underrated aspect of Callaway golf clubs is that their extreme game improvement irons have always been some of the best, and these Big Berthas were some of the best that year.

Pros

  • The light and strong exo-cage allowed the clubs to have a very lightweight foundation so that weight could be added in other places.
  • They featured a high launch and a lot of forgiveness. 
  • They are very easy to hit and very easy to get airborne, really just as easy as the 2019 or B-21 Big Berthas.
  • The 360 Face Cup is very forgiving and gives you tons of ball speed.
  • Mishits still go fairly straight and fairly long.
  • The club heads are big which make them easier to hit and give higher handicap golfers more confidence.
  • The sand wedge is one of the best at getting out of a hazard.
  • They give you effortless distance and launch.

Cons

  • They are very difficult to find new anymore.
  • The AI technology and tungsten weighting are not found in these clubs.
  • Not as long or forgiving as the B-21s.
  • Not ideal for lower handicappers.

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2019 Big Bertha Irons

The 2019 Big Bertha irons were distance clubs that Callaway labeled as “our easiest to launch distance iron.”

Just like the B-21s, these Big Berthas were built for ultimate forgiveness in a distance iron.

The smoke PVD finish on these irons are a little difficult to get used to, but it does provide great contrast with the ball at setup.

The finish also wears off pretty quickly, even after a few rounds, and while this does not affect performance it does affect aesthetics. 

Pros

  • They are a very forgiving set of irons in their own right. 
  • They produced a really high launch with the tungsten suspended energy core that significantly lowers the center of gravity of the irons.
  • The wedges are really good and produce a lot of spin.
  • They had the 360 Face Cup that you still find on the B-21s.
  • They are very easy to hit and to get airborne which automatically makes them longer than clubs that are not.
  • Mishits maintain a good line and quite a bit of ball speed and distance.
  • For a game improvement set, they feature a good, soft feel.
  • When they first came out, they were on the expensive side, but now you can find them pre-owned for really low prices.

Cons

  • They do not approach the distance or forgiveness of the B-21 Big Berthas.
  • They lack the AI technology that you find in new Callaway clubs.
  • Not ideal for lower handicappers.

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Final Thoughts On The Callaway Big Bertha Irons Review (B21 Version) – Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5

The overall rating of this club assumes you understand these are game improvement irons. If you are looking for players irons or a lot of fading and drawing the ball, this rating is not aimed at you.

Callaway Big Bertha B-21s are made for golfers who need that extra forgiveness and distance at the expense of everything else. They are made for golfers who need a club that is easy to hit, launches high, and has a huge sweet spot.

The first time I held these clubs, they just felt like Big Bertha irons. They club heads are big, the topline is big, the sweet spot is big, and when you put the club on the ground behind the ball, you just feel like you are going to hit it a long way.

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