This is another question I get constantly during my Friday Q&A’s on Instagram, its an honest question and to set the record straight right off, neither head caters to good players or higher handicappers IN MY OPINION. Needs are needs and I’ve seen players go into either head with success regardless of their skill level.
The point is, fairway woods have a very specific job to do and each player has a window, carry distance, and spin profile that is needed to play well. It’s a simple breakdown but something you can reference and I also want to keep in mind that I will be discussing the HEAD only. Yes, without a doubt the shaft and build will come into play but we are here to discuss the actual clubheads.
- “Players” Shape
- Weight forward for lower CG to decrease spin and regulate launch
- Of the two it’s the more “fade biased” but in all honesty, it sits dead nuts square
- Bonded hosel
- Jailbreak tech for crazy speed
- Comes in 3+, 3, 4, 5, 7
*Secret Sauce on the Epic Speed is the higher launch VS previous Callaway fairways in the same category. On TOUR the players are loving that a 13.5 head launches like a 15 with either ball speed of 13.5. Make sense? These heads are HOT. Personally, I hit it too far and switched into the spinnier 💎💎💎 head. Of the whole Callaway lineup this year, I think the Epic Speed fairway is the sleeper hit.
Epic Speed on TOUR:
- Larger and more shallow profile for higher launch and increased MOI AKA Forgiveness
- The more “Draw biased” of the two
- Jailbreak tech for crazy speed
- Comes in 3+, 3, 5, 7-wood, 9-wood, 11-wood
- In my opinion, has increased versatility off the ground due to its higher spin profile
- At the higher lofts, VERY good option for Iron/UT/Hybrid replacement
*I LOVE these heads and so do our TOUR staff. It’s fair to say that on the PGA Tour, the Max may be a little too high launch and spin for players at that speed BUT that’s where it ends. I’ve always compared the Epic Max to our Apex Pro’s as it relates to the PGA Tour, a little too much speed and launch. A good number of our LPGA players use this head as well as the Champions Tour and Club Professional staff. The Epic Max head is mindless off the ground and fits more players across the board than any other.
SO WHO SHOULD BE HITTING WHAT?
Epic Speed: Think Porsche Cayenne
-High-speed players looking to keep spin down and who use their 3-wood off the tee more often than not.
-Players who prefer to shape the ball a bit more IE Fade/Draw/High/Low etc.
Epic Max: Think Ford Raptor
-Mid to high-speed players looking for speed and launch off the turf without giving up too much spin.
-Players looking to hit it dead nuts straight as opposed to shaping shots, could be players at any skill level.
My Experience: For me, Epic Speed just went too far for my gapping, 3-wood needs to carry roughly no less than 250 off the ground for me with some height and spin, and If I can get 260-265 off the tee that’s great. With Epic Speed I was getting 260 off the ground with low 2000 RPM spin and off the tee it was flying like a driver. It’s a monster.
Epic Max was a bit closer to what I was looking for but I hit it just a bit too high and I like to hit 3-woods off the tee from time to time and with its shallow profile that was a challenge. That’s just me. My uncle Rob is a 4-handicap and swapped into Max and absolutely kills it off the tee, he’s more of a sweeper than I am and that combo was a perfect fit for him.
The point is DO NOT make assumptions of where you sit before hitting them both. Just because one has a “better player” profile doesn’t mean much. That’s not how there were designed, they were designed to perform a duty and each tool can satisfy ANYONE. I think you will be surprised where you fall once you have had a chance to hit both, the decision won’t be as simple as you think. I feel like they made the Epic Speed launch like a Max and added a little better player unicorn dust to the Max. It’s quite the gear junky puzzle to solve, trust me I’ve mulled over this for months.
Any questions, you know where to find me:)