Driver Test Results: 2006

New Testing Methodology for Drivers

At the end of 2005 GolfTest USA partnered with Golf Illustrated, one of the top national golf publications, to provide them with the results of our standard golf equipment testing that we conduct on an ongoing basis. Golf Illustrated has agreed to publish a feature article in each issue highlighting many of the new clubs that have been introduced. In the process of explaining our testing process to GI they asked if we could expand the criteria we have the testers evaluate. We agreed and there are now 10 criteria that the testers evaluate. There is also an additional rating we list in the last column which is the combined “AVERAGE” of the first 10 criteria. We feel this “AVERAGE” gives golfers a good indication of which clubs performed the best across all the criteria.

2006

We pick test golfers with varying skill levels based on what the manufacturer recommends that each club is best suited to. Some clubs are designed for low handicap golfers and some clubs are referred to as game improvement clubs and are designed for mid to high handicap golfers
When testing drivers we use two evaluation formats. The first evaluation format is done by GolfTest USA Test Administrators and in the second evaluation format GolfTest USA asked each golfer to rate 10 criteria on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being best. GolfTest USA had each 60 testers hit shots off a tee on the driving range. GolfTest USA Test Administrators rated the distance and dispersion of each shot on a scale of 1 to 10 and the “Control” and “Accuracy” they felt each golfer displayed with each driver during the test. These ratings were then combined with the second evaluation format which is the golfers own ratings to come up with the final ratings for each driver. (The “Overall” column is not an average of the other criteria. For the “Overall” criterion we ask each tester to rate the club based on how they feel the club performed overall in the test.

On a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being best) they rated each of these criteria.

Distance: Each tester rated how far they hit each driver.
Control: Testers rated how much control they felt they had while hitting each driver.
Accuracy: Testers rated how accurate they felt each driver was.
Forgiveness: Testers rated how forgiving the driver was on off center hits.
Sound: Testers rated how did they liked the sound of each club.
Appearance: Testers rated how much they liked the appearance of the club.
Feel: Testers rated the feel of the club at set up, during the swing and at impact.
Ball flight (Trajectory): Testers rated how they liked the trajectory of the ball off the club?
Recommend to others: The testers were asked to rate how strongly would they recommend to each driver to their friends or other golfers.
Overall Rating: The testers were asked to take into consideration what is important to them in a driver and give it an overall rating. (This is not an average of the other criteria).
Overall Average: A final category was added at the request of Golf Illustrated which is the average of the 10 criteria rated by the testers. We feel this average helps to give golfers an indication of how each club performed taking into account all of the criteria in the test.

Why are the test results the way they are? Click here to find out!

Let us know if there are other drivers you would like us to test and we will contact the manufacturers and see if they will participate in our next testing cycle. requestatest@golftestusa.com.

Based on the testing completed to date we have determined that any club that has an “AVERAGE” score 7.9 or better based on our scoring system is awarded the GolfTest USA “Seal of Excellence” award. Being awarded the GolfTest USA “Seal of Excellence” indicates a golf product has been tested and reviewed by our staff of golf testers and has been judged to be of superior quality, value and performance. Golfers who purchase any of these clubs can feel confident they will be obtaining a quality golf product.

Click on each column head to sort ratings by that criteria.

Product DescriptionDistanceControl Accuracy Forgiveness Sound Appearance Feel Ball Flight Recommend Average Overall Score BUY
Vulcan Caldera 460

Vulcan Caldera 460

User Rating: Be the first one!
7.8
7.6
7.7
7.8
7.5
7.6
7.8
7.8
7.5
7.7
2 TechPower DVF 450

TechPower DVF 450

User Rating: Be the first one!
7.9
7.7
7.7
7.8
7.5
7.8
7.7
7.9
7.6
7.8
3 McHenry TourPure II 365

McHenry TourPure II 365

User Rating: Be the first one!
7.7
7.9
7.9
7.8
7.7
7.8
7.6
7.7
7.6
7.8
4 Black Shark S.E.T. 455

Black Shark S.E.T. 455

User Rating: Be the first one!
7.8
7.7
7.8
7.9
7.8
7.8
7.6
7.7
7.7
7.8
5 McHenry TourPure II 400

McHenry TourPure II 400

User Rating: Be the first one!
7.8
7.8
7.7
7.7
7.9
7.7
7.9
8
7.6
7.8
6 Natural Golf ST Hammer 420

Natural Golf ST Hammer 420

User Rating: Be the first one!
7.9
7.8
7.7
7.9
8
8
7.8
7.8
7.9
7.9
7 TechPower Speed Offset 460

TechPower Speed Offset 460

User Rating: Be the first one!
7.8
8
8
7.8
7.8
7.9
7.9
7.7
7.8
7.9
8 Black Shark MX 460

Black Shark MX 460

User Rating: Be the first one!
8
7.9
7.9
7.9
7.8
8
7.9
7.9
7.9
7.9
9 Infiniti ProPlusion Ti Comp 460

Infiniti ProPlusion Ti Comp 460

User Rating: Be the first one!
8
7.7
7.8
7.7
7.6
8.5
7.9
7.8
7.6
7.9
10 Bridgestone J33R 460

Bridgestone J33R 460

User Rating: Be the first one!
8.1
7.7
7.7
7.6
7.5
8.4
7.9
8
7.8
7.9
ARCHIVED DRIVER TEST RESULTS:

Click here to see results from 2008 >>
Click here to see results from 2007 >>
Click here to see results from 2006 >>
Over several years of testing GolfTest USA has determined that when subjective and objective ratings from our Test Administrators and the golfers taking the test are combined the overall rating is a very accurate indication of the actual performance of any particular golf product. There is only a small difference in the ratings yet even a couple of percentage points difference from one club to another is significant enough to indicate a club that performs at a superior level to other clubs.

Go to our manufacturer's links page to get more information about these drivers.