BOCA ROTON, Florida – If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!
The Acushnet Co., has done that once again with its Titleist TSi line of drivers and metal woods. In continuing with the excellent design and clean, classic tour pear shaping, TSi line stays consistent with its predecessors, with the TSi4 driver again measuring 430cc – 30cc smaller than the Titleist’s TSi 1, 2, and 3 drivers.
The TSi4 retains the features from the previous TS woods, such as the ATI 425 (Military-/Aerospace-Grade Titanium Alloy), SureFit Hosel, with one modification: the SureFit Flat Weight system that allows players to dial-in the which way a golf ball falls during last third of a ball flight. That system replaces the interchangeable weight cylinder from the TS woods.
As the industry continues to be more data centric and reliant on such things as Trackman, finding the perfect launch characteristics no longer take hours, but mere minutes as the TSi drivers and fairway woods are easily adjusted with the Titleist torque wrench for the SureFit system comes standard with the drivers, fairway woods and hybrids.
There is something to be said for consistency, and the TSi4 has the lowest and most forward center of gravity (CG) of any driver in the TSi lineup. This allows golfers to deliver less dynamic loft and less spin at impact. I currently use the TSi 4 driver, and TSi 3 fairways (3 and 5 woods), each with a Graphite Design Tour AD IZ shaft.
I grew up playing golf in the smaller driver head and balata ball era, where deep faced drivers were standard, the center of gravity was closer to the hosel, and face of the club helping reduce spin and lower the launch angle to combat the higher spinning balata golf ball.
As technology continues to evolve, driver designs allow for weight to be pushed to the extremes of the perimeter of the clubs, enhancing stability, higher launch, and lower spin. Titleist’s TSi4, however, is a throwback.
I might be unique in terms of what I am looking for in the performance of a driver. For example, unlike most golfers, I prefer seeing the golf ball come out at a medium-high trajectory window and have a predominantly right to left or drawing ball flight. This is counter to what many instructors, players and even manufactures are touting, which is a higher launch and a left to right ball flight (for right-handed players). The TSi4 is the perfectly designed driver for what I am looking for in ball flight.
The 430cc size, in my opinion, allows the club to be more versatile and for greater shot shaping.
With a 460cc head, more weight can be placed closer to the toe of the club, increasing stability and helping to slow the speed the toe of the club travels through the swing. The TSi4 is the opposite – the smaller 430cc head does not allow for more weight to be pushed out on the toe, so more weight stays closer to the shaft and heel of the club. Not having to adjust the loft lower allows me to maintain the square face angle and turn the ball over.
The Titleist TSi4, has a higher ball flight from its predecessor TS4, yet it does not balloon, meaning the the trajectory window is exactly where I want it. I am driving the ball better than I have in quite some time, so the TSi4 certainly delivers. If you are a player that is looking for a modern day classic and want a driver that looks like they used to, with traditional looks, sound and feel, the TSi4 is great option.
Brian Sommer is a former golf teaching professional and former Division II College Men’s and Women’s golf coach who has competed at the amateur and professional levels.
A scratch player, Sommer holds a holds Ph.D. writing his dissertation on Methods of Teaching and Learning Golf. He has created online groups/blogs that dive into the game of golf entitled “Uncommon Golf Conversations” and “Blind Spots.’’ Each is geared to discussing and exploring the nature of golf, learning, and coaching where he is in the process of becoming a Mind Power Certified Coach.
(Brian Sommer contributed to this report)