It was always inevitable that eventually I would get around to reviewing the Titleist Pro V1 golf ball. The Pro V1 is probably the most recognisable brand currently on the market, and based on the conversations I’ve had with various golfers (both on and offline) it seems that everyone is playing with them.
I would suggest there is an element of truth in this, as a high percentage of golf balls I find in the trees (a frequent occurence, I’m not good enough to call myself a regular “greens in regulation” golfer….) are Titleist Pro V1s. This may suggest that there are too many hackers playing with these top-of-the-range balls, but that’s a topic I’m saving for a future article – on with the review….
The Pro V1 ball delivers (at least for me) the types of distance off the driver which I would expect from a power golf ball – I usually hit my driver around 260 yards, but I find with this golf ball I can regularly add an extra 15 or so yards to this, sometimes more. The feel of compression off the face of the driver is great, and really gives me a sense of “crushing” the ball off the tee.
Take heed, however, that the Pro V1 golf ball will respond to misaligned swing paths (a pretty way of saying hooks and slices!) with venom – I can generally keep the golf ball straight with my woods, but on the occasions when I generate side-spin, I have ended up in the trees / water / out of bounds.
I find that it’s a similar story with my irons – I’m adding an extra 10 or 15 yards on a cleanly-struck mid-iron. I’m not ashamed to say that the Pro V1 golf ball feels magnificent on the fairways, it’s amazingly soft and gives the average golfer an opportunity to attempt their shot-shaping. This golf ball is one of, if not the best, at accepting the flight path which you are trying to give it, and it will hold it’s line with an eagerness which other golf balls may struggle to match. It will also hold up very nicely post-carry with cleanly struck shots – an obvious advantage when playing on fast or dry surfaces.
Down to the nitty-gritty then – my wedge play is one area where I sometimes struggle. But hitting the Pro V1 ball with a wedge from 100 yards and less provided exceptional spin generation. On the whole, I am not generally known as someone who can stop a ball dead on the greens – but on more than one occasion with this ball I have stuck a full-blooded pitching / sand wedge onto the green, and, miracle of miracles, the ball has bounced, checked, and spun back 5 or 6 feet! A rare sight indeed, and one which instantly made me very, very proud!
With chips around the green, the ball also checks nicely after landing, adding a further level of control which enhanced my short game further.
On the dancefloor, the Titleist Pro V1 golf ball performs in all the right areas – it feels fantastic when putting, holds it’s line really well and provides excellent feedback up the shaft. It also has the Alignment Integrated Marking sidestamp, allowing you to line up your putts. Little wonder this is one of the best golf balls I’ve putted with.
In terms of durability, this ball may struggle to keep up with other types of power golf ball. After playing one ball for 18 holes (not often that happens…) there were one or two minor scuffs across the face of the ball. I’ve heard other golfers complain that these balls just can’t withstand more than a couple of rounds before becoming unplayable – I can’t agree with this, but I understand where they are coming from – if you’re playing these balls all the time, expect to buy new sleeves / boxes fairly regularly.
Which brings me on to the price of the Titleist Pro V1 golf balls – unfortunately these are amongst the most expensive golf balls on the market, not just within the distance / power golf ball subset. You’ll have to splash out around $30 for twelve brand new balls – a hefty price to pay for a golf ball, but if you love these balls for the reasons I have outlined above, then this may be an ongoing cost you’re willing to accept.
Do you play with Titleist Pro V1 golf balls? Feel free to leave your own comments below!