2016 MOST WANTED BLADE PUTTER
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2016 MOST WANTED BLADE PUTTER

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2016 MOST WANTED BLADE PUTTER

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Test Results You Can Depend On

mwp-2016-blade--2

We took the same refinements and improvements we told you about with our 2016 Most Wanted Mallet test and applied them to this year’s blade test.

To recap: We opened a new test facilitydoubled the number of putters testers to 20, and put 25 blade putters to the test. As was the case with our mallet test, testing took over 120 hours to complete, and once again, 9,000 total putts were recorded.

All testers used Bridgestone B330-RX golf balls. The natural stroke type of each tester was identified using the iPing Putting App.

Updated Scoring

sg18

We have made one small change to the way we present our results. Several of you commented that the Strokes Gained methodology was a bit difficult to relate to actual on-course performance. While we should first mention that changing the metric doesn’t alter the order of results, to help simplify things a bit we reverted to our Stroked Gained 18 (SG18) scoring system.

The SG18 value reflects the number of strokes (plus or minus) a given putter would be expected to contribute to your score over an 18 hole span, relative to the average for the field. For example, a putter with a SG value of .50 (the SG18 value for our #5 blade this year), would be expected to save you half a stroke per 18 holes (or one stroke over 2 rounds) relative to the average putter in this field.

The goal, as always, remains to empower you, the consumer, with accurate and reliable data and analysis that will help you identify the best putter for your game.

If you are in the market for a new blade putter, this guide is for you.

How We Test

Testers are asked to play a series of holes with each putter. 18 holes total are played from three distances;  5, 10, and 20 feet (each) by each tester with each mallet in the test. The total number of putts required to finish each hole is recorded. At the completion of the test, a Strokes Gained value is calculated for each putter.

Here are the complete parameters of this year’s test:

  • Number of Testers: 20
  • Handicap Range: +3-20
  • Test Location: MyGolfSpy Testing Facility
  • Balls Used: Bridgestone B330-RX
  • Distances Assessed: Five, Ten, and Twenty Feet
  • Holes Completed at Each Distance: 6 (per tester/per putter)
  • Total Putts in Test: 9000

The Top 5 Ranked Blades

mwputter-2016-no-1

mwputter-2016-no-2

mwputter-2016-no-3

mwputter-2016-no-4

mwputter-2016-no-5

mwputter-2016-no-52

mwp-2016-blade--1

The Data

The chart below contains data from this year’s test. You can hover over any column title to bring up the sort feature, allowing you to sort by whatever columns you feel are most relevant to you.

Our overall rankings are based on the Strokes Gained value, which is found in the last column.

Mobile Users: We are working to enhance the mobile experience for these charts. For now, please view the static version.
blade-data

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      Brian Lang

      7 years ago

      Not surprised seeing Nike’s Origin high on the list. Terrific putter and another underrated Nike product.

      Reply

      Gary Goldmann

      7 years ago

      I see that and my Odessy is ranked #1.

      Reply

      Rich Gaimari

      7 years ago

      Scotty Cameron didn’t rank very high… Gary

      Reply

      4pillars

      7 years ago

      Interesting that the Toe up #1 was next to last from 5 foot and in.

      I have one, and am convinced that the grip is not aligned to the face, and the face is closed.

      This was noted by Rick Shiels in his Youtube review, although he attributed it to the position of the handle, and it closes if you put shaft lean.

      It would be interesting if most of the misses in the test were to the left.

      Reply

      Randy Stoll

      7 years ago

      I don’t think it was the long neck was it?

      Reply

      Jie W Kang

      7 years ago

      What i have is #1 :)

      Reply

      James Jimmy Chang

      7 years ago

      Awesome work! No wonder I love my Madison and Rochester ;)

      Reply

      David Ciccoritti

      7 years ago

      Always appreciate your efforts and hard work putting golf clubs to the test. I actually purchased the Titleist 915D2 driver based on your tests and found the data to be very close to what I’m seeing on the course. Very happy with my purchase. I own the TR 1966 and find it to be a great putter although I place more weight on my stroke vs putter technology (unless we’re talking about an 8802 style putter :-)

      Reply

      Troy Vayanos

      7 years ago

      No surprise to see Odyssey at the top of the list. Great looking and feel putters and the company keep on producing top of the line putters that golfers keep wanting to use.

      Reply

      Chris C.

      7 years ago

      Once again, thank you for your efforts in producing these tests. Alas, I must be the exception to the rule ( or simply an aging contrarian ). I have had extensive experience with many of these putters. I tend to group my putters into two categories. Easy to align high MOI for 15 foot and shorter putts vs putters I can “paint with” which avoid 3 putts from 20 feet and longer. My head begins to hurt when I see the Wilson 8802 ranking 2nd at 5 feet and 23rd at 20 feet. I put my 8802 in the bag when I have a need to dial in my 20+ foot putting and it returns to the confines of my basement when it misses too many 5 foot putts. My needs/goals are simple. Never three putt from 20+feet and never miss a putt longer than 3 feet. What happens in between those distances is up to the gods. As an aside, can I assume that the Evnroll putters were not available for your test? I ask because I have been contemplating acquiring my 999th putter and the Evnroll blades appear to be my next perfect putter.

      Reply

      Harv

      7 years ago

      Chris: I really like your comments, I see you have a large collection of putters, are there any you’re looking for. I’m close to your massive collection as well. I actually use two putters when I play, one for the short and downhill putts and one for longer putts.

      Reply

      Karl Deblitz

      7 years ago

      No Scotty in top 15. Someone should inform the tour⛳️

      Reply

      Christian Alderucci

      7 years ago

      Stupid !!!!

      Reply

      DRMock1

      7 years ago

      Thank you for the club testing. Can you convert the 2016 Most Wanted Mallet Putter to the SG18 Value. This would help anyone thinking of going from a Blade to a Mallet or Mallet to a Blade to compare your results. Thanks for your help.

      Reply

      Tony Covey

      7 years ago

      Done

      Reply

      Brian Jay Murra

      7 years ago

      Wish you could adjust the matrix on the mallet test this year to reflect the same as this blade SG18 score! So one could compare the SG18 score across the board :)

      Reply

      Tony Covey

      7 years ago

      And Done.

      Reply

      MyGolf Spy

      7 years ago

      Done. Graphics still show the straight SG number, but I just republished the mallet table with the SG18 numbers included. -TC

      Reply

      txgolfjunkie

      7 years ago

      Is this the same scoring system (SG18) as in the mallet test? If so, the best mallet (Ping Ketsch) is #10 on the overall list. I don’t think this is the case but could someone clarify the scoring between the blade and mallet test?

      Reply

      Tony Covey

      7 years ago

      Methodologies were the same. For the Mallet test we used the strokes gained tables. It’s a solid foundation, but it doesn’t translate well to something easily understood by the average guy, so we reverted back to SG18…which is, I believe, where we’ll stay going forward.

      Reply

      txgolfjunkie

      7 years ago

      Thanks for updating the Mallet to the SG18 metric. It’s amazing how much better the Ketsch Mid performed versus the best blade. Thanks for all the hard work y’all put into these tests.

      However, could y’all just dumb it down for us and award medals to these putters? And make sure you take into effect public demand as a factor for awarding medals. Thanks! [/sarcasm]

      tr99

      7 years ago

      In todays world I’d say the putter is becoming irrelevant, the ball makes the most difference. The new Calloway “soft” balls are amazing they come off the face with a real positive acceleration! I find it is much easier to get closer to the hole on long putts.

      Reply

      Andrew

      7 years ago

      A ball cannot “accelerate” off the clubface. Physics dictates that all acceleration is done the moment the ball leaves the clubface.

      Reply

      David W

      7 years ago

      tr99, your comment is the perfect example of how putting is all about feel and confidence (ball and putter). I absolutely hate the Chrome Soft when putting, it feels like a marshmallow to me and doesn’t seem to get to the hole. I much prefer the B330 RXS, it feels soft to me yet still firm enough to be able to judge my distances.

      That being said, I was never a good putter until I tried my buddy’s Scotty Newport. The only thing I didn’t like was the long hosel (I was used to straight shafted putters) so I went out and purchased the 2.5 with the shorter hosel. It has made a HUGE difference in my putting, especially for longer distances (reducing 3 putts). It’s all about you and your stroke when it comes to golf, not every club (putter through driver) fits every player.

      Reply

      John Ball

      7 years ago

      Love these tests; however, it isn’t clear how the choices for testing is undertaken. Your recent mallet test included the MLA, and while MLA makes blades, they are not included.

      I’m not suggesting the application of unlimited resources, just a brief explanation of the selection process.

      Reply

      MyGolfSpy

      7 years ago

      Look closer John, they were included in the blade test as well ;)

      Reply

      Mike Robson

      7 years ago

      Interesting, I didn’t dive into the dispersion (on mobile). Iirc the 50% make distance on tour is around 8 feet as well, it’s certainly shorter than you’d expect. At least this year the number 1 pick isn’t going to go to shit customer service wise as a result of the extra demand (hi Carbon)

      Reply

      MyGolf Spy

      7 years ago

      Short version – there’s not a lot of difference between putters at 5′ and 20′. Differences are much more pronounced at 10′. The putters that score well at that distance will generally do well in the overall.

      More Detail:

      Mark Broadie has observed that the real difference in putting performance occurs around 10′ (give or take). On tour nearly everybody makes the short putts and nearly everyone 2 putts from 20 feet. The real distinctions occur in the 8′-12′ range.

      That’s exactly what we observed as well during our tests. There are a number of ways to effectively show that. In this case I took a quick look at the standard deviation of total putts at each of our 3 distances.

      At 20′ the standard deviation is 3.9
      At 5′ it’s 4.4 (a bit more disparity than at 20 where 2 putts is expectation)
      At 10′ the standard deviation is 5.5 (significantly higher than the other two distances).

      Basically, we see a greater performance disparity at 10′ than at the other 2 distances. So while we don’t apply any weighting calculations to the results, the putters that perform above the average at 10′ will pull comparatively (and sometimes significantly) farther ahead of the field than those that perform well at 5′ and 20′ because the performance differences are those distances are less pronounced.

      -TC

      Reply

      The Dawson

      7 years ago

      Hate to be that guy, but your graphic says “faired” but it should say fared.

      Reply

      Kenny B

      7 years ago

      I am sure I probably asked this before, but humor me… I’m old! How much time do the testers get with each putter before making their 18 putts with each putter? I cannot pick up a putter and roll it with much success without “getting the feel of it” for a while. I hope it is more than just a few rolls.

      I also have to say that even though the SG shows that the Odyssey Toe Up came in second with the best result from 20 feet, there is no way I would even consider it when it came in next to last from 5 feet. Something is wrong when it does so well from longer distance, but is so crappy close in.

      Reply

      Tony Covey

      7 years ago

      Keep in mind that putter performance is more much similar at 5′ than it is at 20′, but the differences between the two are less pronounced than they are at either distance vs. 10′. 10′ is where we see the greatest difference. A putter ranked 20th at 5 feet generally exhibits results more similar to the best putter at that distance than the 20th ranked putter at 10′ does to the #1 at that distance.

      Basically, when in doubt, look at 10′.

      Reply

      David

      7 years ago

      Last year, the Carbon Ringo 1/4 won the honors with a stroke gained score of 1.86. This year, the same putter scored a mere -0.10. Since the measurement system used to determine stroked gained has very poor reproducibility, should not one conclude that the measurement system used is unable to generate accurate data and therefore, the entire test is meaningless?

      Reply

      Tony Covey

      7 years ago

      A couple of points – First, we increased the number of testers by 100%. Our expectation is that it would impact year over year results, but also increased repeatability moving forward.

      The actual SG18 math is a bit different this time around. Part of that has to do with calculations from the average (and the fact that the average isn’t consistent from year to year), part of it has to do with the actual number of putts taken on a per tester basis.

      You’ll note that SG18 scores are down across the board this year as a result of those changes.

      We’ve long observed that the design characteristics of any give club can exert an influence on the performance of others. Having a larger test pool and randomizing the order within putter groups can help offset to a degree. This year we took the additional step of pre-sorting putter groups by stroke type, which should also help avoid undue influence from differing characteristics.

      Finally, the Carbon Ringo 1/4 we tested this season was appreciably different than the one we tested last season. Different shaft (color), different grip). All of these influence performance.

      Reply

      Ryan

      7 years ago

      Toulons are amazing! I went to the Roger Dunn store in Santa Ana looking for a black finished Scotty and almost walked out with a Toulon. The feel was far superior than anything I’ve ever tried and basically the putting guru at the store informed me that Toulons are made with the same metal as Circle T Scotty’s and don’t come with a Circle T price tag. You can also get Toulons with steel inserts on the bottom to make them heavier, get them in a black finish, etc. The only reason I didn’t walk out with one was I do not like sight lines, I prefer dot sights or no sights, and the store had a black finished Newport on sale for 15% off. Also doing a fitting with the guy I rolled the Scotty just as good as the Toulon but the feel of the Toulon was definitely better. It just came to price and you have to like what you’re looking down at when putting. I have no regrets getting the Scotty I putted my best all year with it this past weekend. If I had to get a back up though I would save for a custom Toulon with a dot sight and black finish.

      Reply

      Gil Bloomer

      7 years ago

      Very interesting study. Like the data. It proves that I need 2 putters now, one from 20 ft. and one from 5 ft. My bag is full now. LOL. Thanks GS.

      Reply

      Michael Bartholomew

      7 years ago

      They’re all PING knockoffs. PING designed the putter for today’s game.

      Reply

      Large chris

      7 years ago

      That’s what I said an hour ago ¥¥¥¥¥¥

      Reply

      Alex

      7 years ago

      and yet

      Reply

      Fozcycle

      7 years ago

      I wish the Bellum Winmore 707 had been included in this battery of tests……maybe next time?

      Reply

      Kristopher Barrie

      7 years ago

      Interesting that some were significantly better from close vs far or vice versa. If particularly bad in one area this could really help narrow it down. Also, ever tested a TruRoll putter? Canadian company. I love mine, especially in closer than 40ft.

      Reply

      steve s

      7 years ago

      which TruRoll do you have? I’d love to try one….

      Reply

      Golfwhiler

      7 years ago

      All very interesting. The test will not, however, predict individual performance with any club. MGS lowest ranked putter in 2016 performed best for me when I tested a dozen plus putters this year. Many of the putters I tested are on this list. I bought the Cleveland 2135 1.0 without regret.

      Reply

      bill allen

      7 years ago

      My Ping Anser2 (20 y/o) and Rife Aussie with grooved face have been a staple in my bag for years. Haven’t been able to wrap my head around mallets,,,or “game improving” irons for that matter, but that new Odyssey just might find it’s way into my game (someday). And, as a previous poster noted, “they’re all Ping clones, anyway”.

      Reply

      Jim Slavin

      7 years ago

      Love the newsletter. Perhaps, I am missing something. If one takes 6 putts at each distance for a total of 18, wouldn’t the best putter(club) be the one that holes the most putts from the combined distances. (I am assuming, that the greatest majority of putts are taken from under 25 feet in around for the average golfer-more for a lower handicap player and less for a higher handicap player). If this is true the combined score for the number one putter is 16, the number two putter is 29, the number three putter is 21 and the number for Potter’s 17. Why isn’t the the order 1-white-hot, 2- Toulon, 3- Ringo, and 4-toe up?
      Thanks.

      Reply

      Tony Covey

      7 years ago

      Scores are derived from the number of putts needed to hole out from each distance, not simply the number of makes. The SG18 number is derived from the total number of putts across the entire test. Within that scope there is an inherent weighting that occurred.

      Mark Broadie has observed that the real difference in putting performance occurs around 10′ (give or take). On tour nearly everybody makes the short putts and nearly everyone 2 putts from 20 feet. The real distinctions occur in the 8′-12′ range.

      That’s what we observed as well during our tests. There are a number of ways to effectively show that. In this case I took a quick look at the standard deviation of total putts at each of our 3 distances.

      At 20′ the standard deviation is 3.9
      At 5′ it’s 4.4 (a bit more disparity than at 20 where 2 putts is expectation)
      At 10′ the standard deviation is 5.5 (significantly higher than the other two distances).

      Basically, we see a greater performance disparity at 10′ than at the other 2 distances. So while we don’t apply any weighting calculations to the results, the putters that perform above average at 10′ will pull comparatively farther ahead of the field than those that perform well at 5′ and 20′ because the performance differences are greater at that distance.

      Reply

      stevegp

      7 years ago

      Thanks for performing this testing. Interesting and helpful information.

      Reply

      Large chris

      7 years ago

      Great testing, Sad about the 8802, fourth last….

      Blade putters….. Blade putters…. I understand the test has to be called something, but Anser copies have been a category all of their own for years now.

      Reply

      GilB

      7 years ago

      Very interesting stuff on so many levels. Thank you GS.

      Reply

      McaseyM

      7 years ago

      Odyssey coming in big! Carbon staying top 3 three and welcome to the club Toulon.

      Reply

      Rookieblue7

      7 years ago

      Did Toulon only send the Madison? I’d have figured they’d have sent the San Diego too. Had both in my shop for refinishes last week and they’re very similar but vey different. Both were incredibly solid. Balanced slightly different with different head shapes. Surprised at several that were left out actually.

      Reply

      Tony Covey

      7 years ago

      Yes – Sean only sent the Madison. Keep in mind there’s a fair amount of lead time between product requests and test results. To put that in context, there was some overlap with this test and driver testing. Short story, when we requested product, Toulon Design was just ramping up and the Madison was the only ready to go blade in the lineup.

      I’m sure we’ll see more Toulon Design in future tests.

      Reply

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