OUR JOB IS YOUR GAME
With Most Wanted Testing officially over, our “off season” fills up with lab opportunities. It’s a chance to focus on technologies (and related claims) more closely. Hence, conducting an Edel SMS Irons Test.
In July, Edel launched SMS Irons featuring the Swing Match weighting system. The point of technical differentiation is that each iron offers movable weights with each head. The release of the Edel SMS irons brought with it some bold, eyebrow-raising claims.
We put those claims to the test. Today, we dive into the results and do an Edel iron review.
EDEL SMS IRON TEST
For this test, 25 testers hit shots using 7-irons. Four conditions were tested: SMS neutral (center), SMS heel, SMS toe and the testers’ gamers.
The uniqueness of the Edel SMS irons is the movable weight system. The system includes three weights: one eight grams and two two-grams. For each 7-iron condition, the eight-gram weight was positioned in a certain location (neutral, heel or toe).
EDEL SMS IRON ASSERTIONS
Marketing plays an enormous role in nearly every product release. With the SMS irons, Edel made some bold statements:
- Faster ball speeds. An average ball speed increase of 3.30 mph
- Longer distance. An average carry distance increase of 5.60 yards
- More accuracy. 1.30 yards closer to the centerline of average
For this test, we looked at the individual results for each of our testers. We wanted to see how each weight position performed for each of the golfers as well as how the performance of the Edel SMS compared to their gamers.
Here’s what we found.
First, let’s cover the Raw Averages observed from the 25 testers in testing the SMS irons versus the player’s original gamer.
- Ball Speed: 1.18 mph was lost when using the SMS irons versus the player’s gamer.
- Accuracy: Players experienced a 2.15-yard “closer to centerline” result utilizing the Edel versus their club.
- Carry Distance: 2.05 yards were lost while testing the Edel SMS iron in comparison to their gamer.
The results suggest some golfers may benefit from SMS irons but ball speed gains of 3.30 mph are unlikely.
- Only 36 percent of the 25 testers experienced ball speed increases with the Edel SMS irons, with an average of 1.52 mph.
- 64 percent succeeded with their gamer versus the SMS irons with an average of 1.44 mph higher.
Note* The SMS irons were adjusted for the best-performing weight location for each tester.
Throuhgout observation and data collection, we did notice a respectable gain in Carry Distance. Not quite 5.60 yards – but something to be noted.
- Sixty-eight percent of our testers produced longer carry distance with their gamer.
- On average, these testers were 2.74 yards longer than the best-performing SMS iron weight position.
- However, for the eight testers who gained distance with the SMS irons, the average distance gain was 4.31 yards.
Even in the iron category, distance sells. Often, accuracy is overlooked in pursuit of a few extra yards. Our results suggest accuracy is where Edel’s SMS irons shine.
- Edel says golfers were 1.3 yards closer to the centerline on average.
- Seventy-six percent of the testers had a “closer to centerline” result with a SMS iron.
- On average, those 19 testers were 3.56 yards closer to the centerline versus their own 7-iron. It’s an intriguing result that could speak to the benefit of movable weights.
1. BALL SPEED PROMISES
Year after year, products are released with the promise of ball speed gains. Will certain individuals see some ball speed gains? As with most everything we test, the data suggests some golfers will see gains over what’s in their bag, However, they likely won’t reach 3.3 mph.
2. CARRY DISTANCE IS A WILD CARD
Although most testers didn’t see carry improvements with the Edel SMS iron, the eight that did saw an average increase of 4.31 yards over their current 7-iron. While not every golfer saw distance increases, those who did saw significant gains.
3. TIGHTER DISPERSION
Where the Edel SMS irons shone in testing was with accuracy. Considering we’re talking about an iron, that’s a good indicator of the potential to shoot lower scores.
Seventy-six percent of the testers were closer to the centerline on average. That’s a testament to the tighter dispersion Edel SMS iron can deliver.
From our vantage point, the Edel misses the mark on some of its claims around the SMS irons.
Ball speed gains of 3.30 mph appear largely unattainable. Our results suggest that roughly a third of golfers will see improvement and gains will likely be below 1.5 mph.
Where Edel hits the mark is with accuracy. With the movable weights, 76 percent of the testing pool improved their dispersion with the Edel SMS irons versus their current irons.
If you’re in the market for a set of irons, the Edel SMS iron is an intriguing option. Are some of their claims bold? Absolutely. The swing match system is unique in the marketplace and the claims certainly help to call attention to it.
Distance claims may not live up to the billing (chasing distance will often do more harm than good, anyway) but if accuracy is your goal, Edel SMS irons are definitely worth a look. After all, if you want to shoot lower scores, tighter dispersion is a step in the right direction. Literally.
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