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OUR JOB IS YOUR GAME
If you are looking for the best blade putters for 2020, this test is for you.
At MyGolfSpy, we provide independent, unbiased and objective testing so you can make more confident purchasing decisions. We employ consistent methodologies and advanced analytics in our 100-per-cent independent test facility.
Make this the year you stop buying golf equipment you “like” and start buying equipment you keep. Don’t spend a dollar unless it improves on what’s already in the bag.
Most Wanted: Evnroll ER2 & Scotty Cameron Select Squareback 2
Putter Buying Considerations
Typically, stock putters come in either 34-inch or 35-inch lengths. Length can affect distance and direction. Many golfers find that they better fit into putters with shorter shafts. Choose a putter that allows for a relaxed set-up based on your address posture.
Loft is important. The right loft promotes a smooth roll right off the face. Too little or too much can cause bouncing, hopping and, ultimately, distance-control issues. We recommend working with a professional fitter to determine the right loft for your putting stroke.
BLADE vs. MALLET
Which is best for you? It’s a combination of personal preference and individual putting stroke. While there are few absolutes in fitting, those with a faster putting stroke often are better suited with lighter blade putter options. If your stroke is lower tempo and smooth, a heavier mallet might make more of an impact.
As much as tempo is a factor in choosing the right putter so too is the amount of arc in your stroke. If you open and close the face more than average, consider a heel-shafted putter with more weight in the toe. Balance the putter on your two index fingers. If the putter head hangs with the toe closer to 6 o’clock, it’s toe balanced. A face-balanced putter will face the sky. Face-balanced putters are generally well suited for golfers with more of a straight-back, straight-through stroke.
While not quite to the extent of drivers, putters have gone high tech.
It’s not uncommon to find putters with adjustable weighting which, in addition to changing head weight, can alter toe hang to suit either a stronger or less arcing stroke. All Odyssey and Toulon putters feature multi-material Stroke Lab shafts. PING offers adjustable-length shafts on some models. Evnroll and others offer face-milling patterns or inserts designed to not only promote smooth roll but consistent distance (and in some cases direction) on mishits.
FAST vs. SLOW GREENS
There’s a case to be made for matching the weight of your putter to the speed of the greens you play most often. On slow greens, heavier putters tend to perform better. On fast greens, a delicate touch is needed. Often a lighter putter will produce better results.
The Best Blade Putters by Stroke Type
Best SB/ST Putter - Wilson Infinite West Loop - At only $99, Wilson's face-balanced, wide-bodied design proved itself as both an excellent value and a top-tier performer.
Best Slight Arc Putter(s) - Evnroll ER2 & Scotty Cameron Special Select Squareback 2 - Wide-bodied blades for golfers with slight arc strokes, the Evnroll ER2 was a standout at 10', while the Cameron offered balanced performance across the three distances tested.
Best Strong Arc Putter - Ben Hogan BHB03 - Strong arc putters aren't for everyone, but the top 10 finish of the BHB03, stood out among similar designs.
During our search for best blade putters for 2020, we looked for trends that provide insight into where the market as a whole is moving as well as noteworthy advances manufacturers have made to improve year-over-year performance. We also solicited feedback from our testers. We want to understand what they liked, what they didn’t like, and why. While we do collect and share noteworthy portions of this subjective feedback, it does not factor in our rankings.
TRENDS AND TWEAKS
- 2020 is an exceptional year for wide-body blades. Among the 10 best blade putters for 2020, five (including the two models at the top) are wide-body models.
- Of the 35 models tested – 19 blade putters feature a slight arc toe hang(45 degrees), 12 are strong toe hang (90 degrees), three are face-balanced (zero degrees) and one putter is torque-balanced (toe up).
- More than ever, companies are offering the same model with multiple neck types. Swapping a plumber’s neck for a flow neck, for example, can dramatically change how a putter performs. We encourage every golfer to get fitted for their individual stroke type to make a more educated purchase.
- The traditional pistol grip is making a comeback. It’s the stock option on half of the stock putters tested. Oversized grips remain popular as well. Many find they help restrict hand movement during the putting stroke. Another option is the EVNROLL Gravity Grip. Available as an aftermarket option for any putter, the company says it helps stabilize the hands and square the face.
DID YOU KNOW?
The playing length of a putter has to be at least 18". However, there is no limit to the length thereafter.
NOTES FROM THE TESTING POOL
- The Edel EAS-2.0 got low marks in the looks category but its performance is the latest example that suggests looks and performance aren’t closely correlated.
- Rated among the highest for looks were the Scotty Cameron Select Newport 2, Odyssey Stroke Lab Double Wide, Other contenders were Toulon’s Chicago and San Diego and PXG Close.
- Both Mizuno M.Craft putters ranked the highest for feel which isn’t unexpected considering the company’s reputation in the iron space. Testers did, however, comment that the visible glare at address was a distraction.
- The Odyssey Triple Track received mixed reviews. Some said it significantly improved their alignment while others found the three-stripe design distracting.
- While the Wilson Staff Infinite West Loop scored highly across the board, the oversized tapered grip received mixed reviews.
Best Looking Putter - PXG GEN 2 Closer
PXG's Closer was rated highest for looks by our testers. Matte black with just a touch of white and grey, the Closer offers an arguably cleaner take on PXG's signature aesthetic. Keeping the weights out of sight has made a world of difference. For what it's worth, those weights make it easy to add or remove headweight or rebalance the putter for a different stroke type.
2020 Most Wanted Putter Data
EXPERT TIP - TOE HANG & LIE ANGLE
The toe hang and lie angle of your putter should match your stroke and address position. They're key elements of a good putter fitting.
If you have a lot of face rotation through the putting stroke, consider trying a toe down (strong arc) style putter. Vice versa, if you have minimal rotation, consider trying a face-balanced style putter.
Lie angle, just like in an iron or wood, can affect shot direction. Be sure to match your lie angle up with your tendencies with your putter as well.
Best Blade Putters for 2020 – BUYING TIPS
Ninety-five per cent of amateur golfers haven’t been fitted for a putter. Would it surprise you to know that most PGA professionals (the guys fitting you for a putter) haven’t been fitted, either? If you’re playing the wrong equipment for your game, you could be costing yourself strokes. Don’t choose a putter just because it looks or feels good, get fitted for a putter that performs best for YOUR stroke and start making more putts.
The face of the putter is critical. While the technologies vary a bit, the intent is almost invariably to provide a consistent result, even when your stroke isn’t. Don’t ignore what’s on the face of the club and look out for things like variable grooves, face inserts or a more traditional milled face.
Putter grips vary widely and, again, are subject to personal preference. A thicker grip is great for stability but you risk losing feel. A pistol grip might feel better but the trade off could be a slight loss of control.
HOW WE TEST
Our Mission is to help you find the best putter for your game.
We are 100% independent and unbiased, and always put the #ConsumerFirst
ABOUT OUR TESTERS
Our pool of testers consists of 20 golfers with handicaps ranging from plus to the mid-teens. As a group, they span a broad range of putting stroke characteristics.
Over the course of several sessions, each golfer is required to putt and finish 18 holes with each putter. Putter groupings and order are randomized on a per tester basis.
LIMITING VARIABLES AND GATHERING RELIABLE DATA
To minimize variables, all testers hit Bridgestone Tour B-X Golf Balls inside our dedicated Lab X testing facility located in Yorktown, VA.
While it doesn't affect the final results, subjective feedback on looks, feel and alignment is taken from each tester on every putter in the test.
CRUNCHING THE NUMBERS
To arrive at our final results, we analyze the data for statistical significance. Top group percentages (the percentage of the time a putter finishes in the statistically significant top group across the testing pool) are leveled to account for performance at distances and weighted to favor 10' putts as our tests show it's where the greatest differences are found. The Most Wanted Winner is the putter that finished with the highest adjusted top group percentage.
Best Blade Putters for 2020 – PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS
|Ben Hogan BHB01|
|Ben Hogan BHB03|
|Bettinardi BB-One |
|Bettinardi BB Eight W|
|Cleveland Huntington Beach Soft 1|
|Cleveland Huntington Beach Soft 8.5|
|Cleveland Frontline 4.0|
|Edel EAS 2.0|
|Mizuno M Craft 1|
|Mizuno M Craft 2|
|MLA Tour Classic|
|Odyssey Toulon Chicago|
|Odyssey Toulon San Diego|
|Odyssey Stroke Lab 1|
|Odyssey Stroke Lab Double Wide|
|Odyssey Triple Track Double Wide|
|Ping Heppler ZB3|
|Ping Heppler Anser 2|
|PXG Gen 2 Brandon|
|PXG Gen 2 Closer|
|Scotty Cameron Special Select Newport 2|
|Scotty Cameron Special Select Squareback 2|
|Sub 70 Sycamore 001|
|Taylormade Truss TB2|
|Taylormade Truss TB1|
|Tommy Armour Habanero|
|Tommy Armour Trinidad|
|Tommy Armour Impact No1|
|Wilson Infinite West Loop|
|Wilson Infinite Windy City|
Best Feeling Putter - Mizuno M.Craft 2
The M. Craft 2 was rated as the best feeling putter by our testers. The company is notorious for producing some of, if not THE, best feeling irons in golf. That tradition continues with the M.Craft line where Mizuno leverages also leverages 1025 carbon steel to produce a line of putters that offers exceptionally soft feel.
Buying a Putter
Q: Should I get fitted for a putter?
A: Without a doubt. Don’t just go to the putting corral at your local golf store and choose the putter that feels the best or the one you happen to make a couple of putts with. Do your research, know the facts and take your knowledge to your golf course or store with the intention of being fitted for the right putter for YOUR stroke. Your best chance of finding the best blade putter for 2020 for you comes through fitting.
Q: Can I fit myself for a putter?
A: To a degree, yes. PING developed an app that pairs with an attachable sleeve to your current putter shaft to determine your stroke type, lie and loft to help you understand what to look for in your next putter.
Q: How do I find the right length putter for me?
A: An easy test of putter length: Take a comfortable putting stance with a putter. If the putter is too short, it likely it will sit too upright or the heel will be off the ground. On the flip side, if it’s too long, you’ll feel as though you’re crowding the ball and the toe will be pointing up slightly. When in doubt, visit a fitter.
Q: What is the price range for a typical putter?
A: Name-brand putters range from $99 to more than $400. Higher-priced models are often 100-per-cent CNC milled but it’s also true that you could be paying a premium for the logo on the putter. Price may always be a factor but don’t assume the best putters are the most expensive.
EXPERT TIP - FAST vs SLOW GREENS
Green speeds are always varying from course to course. This aspect of the game can have a tremendous impact on your putting performance. However, there is a way to combat it. Consider playing a heavy putter on slower greens. For fast greens, consider utilizing a lighter putter. Putters that offer weight kits are a great way to have an "all in one" putter regardless of green speed. You simply adjust the weighting based on the green speed.
Q: How is the Most Wanted Winner determined?
A: Rankings for the best blade putters for 2020 are derived from “strokes gained” values relative to the average putter on an individual basis. We then take the average strokes gained for each putter across all 20 of our testers and aggregate the three distances tested (five, 10 and 20 feet). The Most Wanted Putter(s) is the one with the highest “strokes gained” value.
Q: How were the best putters for stroke type determined?
A: At the beginning of the test, each putter is classified by its toe hang/stroke type. The best within each designation are those that finished highest overall with respect to toe hang/stroke type.
Q: How much does subjective feedback like looks, sound and feel factor into your rankings?
A: ZERO. Our rankings are based purely on total putt counts and quantifiable performance metrics. We include subjective notes only because readers have asked for more feedback directly from the testers.
Q: Will you publish a mallet putter test?
A: Yes, those results will be published in the coming weeks after the Most Wanted Mallet is announced.