2015 Chrome Soft
Pros: Great feeling and performing ball that performs well for average and higher swing speeds at a very competitive price.
Cons: The name, “Chrome Soft” may infer that it is meant for slower swing speeds and not attract the better players.
The Gist: Worth a test drive, for sure. Grab a sleeve and play 3-4 rounds back-to-back with them and then make a decision. You might be surprised.
If you haven’t heard by now, Callaway has a new ball on the market that is getting a lot of hype for it’s apparently super soft core and low compression. While most tour balls range somewhere between 85-95 compression, the Chrome Soft comes in at 65 with its SoftFast Core. The Chome Soft comes in both white and a bright yellow color.
So today, I took the Chrome Soft out for a round at my local muni and give it an “Average Joe’s” review. FWIW, I’m currently an 11 HCP, and don’t typically put much wedge spin on the ball (very little, really—maybe enough to get it to check and stop, but not spin back).
For the past year and half, I’ve played both the Bridgestone B330S and B330RX. I would generally switch between the two depending on how good I felt I was striking the ball, and the course I was going to play. I really like how the Bridgestone feels and performs, but wanted to mix it up and see if I could find a more affordable ball that I’d be happy with under all conditions (mental, physical and course!). I’ve played the Chrome Soft for about 6 full rounds now, and I’ve become a big fan.
Driver: Off the driver, I was pleasantly surprised to see that my biggest miss (high, ballooning slice), was significantly less than I was used to seeing. The ball would generally still be in play somewhere and that saved me a stroke or two. In the video below, I tried to set up for a draw, but managed to hit a slight pull and just flirted with the left treeline (a good line for this hole). The distance was respectable for me; about a 235 yd carry to about a 255 total in the right side of the fairway.
Irons: I really, really like the feel of this ball at impact. Yes, it’s soft—but in a way that gives you confidence that you squared up the club nicely on it. The video below shows a 9-iron approach from about 138 yds. I pulled it a little but still found the green. When I got to the green, my ball had hit and bounced about 3 ft left and stopped.
Wedge: I’m not a consistent spinner of the ball with my wedges, but occasionally I can manage to get a small pull back from about 80 yds and in. With this ball, I’ve been getting consistent one-bounce-and-check stops within 3 ft of the landing spot. I’m inclined to think that as I dial in my wedge attacks, and with firmer greens, I can count on a consistent behavior on my approach shots. It’s the kind of thing that gets you excited to pull out a wedge and have a go at the flag.
Putter: Again, I really, really, like the way this ball feels off the face of my Odyssey Metal X No. 7 putter. It doesn’t make the same “click” noise as a Pro V1, but it does give a nice confident sounding “tick” and comes off the face with a nice, easily repeatable pace. At first, I felt it was actually coming out hotter than I expected, but with about 20 mins of putting around, I was able to dial in the right pace.
Callaway touts this ball as “the ball that changed the ball.” While I don’t have Phil’s ability to put a ball through its paces and back that claim, I do feel like I’ve found a new ball that will be a great performer for me and I’m excited about it. I’m also excited about the price; at around $36/dozen, it will contribute to freeing up just a little extra money for those additional premium rounds!
Have you played the Chrome Soft yet? Got anything to add or share? Let’s hear your thoughts; leave me a comment below! Thanks, and play well.