- PING’s 2023 putter line features 10 new and reimagined classic putter models.
- The line includes both milled and PEBAX insert faces.
- Pre-orders begin Sept. 13 with a MSRP of $300.
PING’s 2023 putter release is an odd one. Not that the putters themselves are especially odd but rather the overall theme of the release. Maybe that should be the lack of theme.
Most new putter releases feature some unifying piece of new technology. A company develops a new widget and then builds the putters around said widget. This putter production plan has persisted through the years for just about every company. At Odyssey, everything gets a Stroke Lab shaft. Most TaylorMade putters have PureRoll inserts. When was the last time you saw a Scotty Cameron putter without the round sole weights?
Naturally, PING has a long list of putter design innovations and families of putters showcasing those innovations. In recent years, we have had Heppler’s flat faces, Sigma 2’s adjustable shafts and multiple lines with TR grooves with each of their putter lines being built from a core technology.
For 2023, PING’s design team took a different approach. Rather than focusing on a single technology, they focused on the putters.
PING’s 2023 “Nameless” Putter Line
One of the first indications that something different is going on with the 2023 PING putters is that the line has no official name. Obviously, the models all have their individual names but the line is nameless. From a marketing standpoint, this seems risky. Will consumers be able to easily find these online and in shops without a catchy name?
For an engineering-driven company like PING, there must be a reason for the lack of line name. Mr. Solheim, can you help us out here?
“What’s most exciting about our new PING putter models is how different they are from each other. Rather than applying one common technology to every model, our engineers took a more singular approach, applying proven innovations to different head styles to improve the performance of our most popular designs while introducing some brand-new models.” John K. Solheim, PING CEO and President.
So, PING’s 2023 putters lack a unifying technology, hence they lack a unifying name. Rather than diverging from a common physical feature, they are converging on a common function. Yes, that is a thinly veiled reference to different kinds of evolution.
The goal of the nameless PING 2023 putter line is for each head design to maximize made putts. To do this, PING approached each head as an individual rather than an interpretation of a core technology. Like I said, it’s a convergent approach rather than divergent and it is not something we see often, or at all, from golf companies.
PING 2023 Putter Line Technologies: Faces
While there may not be one design element that unifies the 10 2023 PING putter models, there are some common features. The most obvious of the separating features is the face construction.
Some of the designs feature a shallow milled metal face while others have rectangular PEBAX inserts. Functionally, the milled-versus-insert story is simple. The milled face will feel firmer at impact than the polymer insert. I can attest to this. The milled-face Anser is much firmer than PEBAX-faced Anser DS. Think “clicking versus thudding” impact.
The question you may have is why does the Anser have a milled face and the Anser DS an insert? The PING engineers would need to answer that. Based upon the theme of the line, though, I bet they would say something like because the Anser is better with a milled face and the Anser DS is better with an insert.
PING 2023 Putter Line Technologies: Tungsten
Half of the 2023 PING putters feature tungsten weighting. I was excited to see this as I have always considered PING’s tungsten plugs to be a unique design feature. For years, only the PING pros’ putters and custom orders from PINGWRX had tungsten plugs. It’s cool to see these dense design details in a retail putter line.
While putter lovers like me geek out over tungsten as an aesthetic, PING engineers only put the tungsten in the 2023 putters that needed it. For example, check out the DS72 heads. The center-shafted DS72 C has tungsten in the face but the heel-shafted DS72 does not. Why? Again, I would guess the PING engineers found that the DS72 C (370 grams) needed to be a bit heavier than the DS72 (365) for optimal performance.
Adding tungsten to all putters would have unified the line visually but PING only added it where needed. The same statement could be made for other technologies found in the line. Some of the putters have graphite shafts, some steel. The large mallets are aluminum; everything else is 304 stainless steel. Why? Because an aluminum Anser would likely be too light to be functional as would a completely stainless steel Tomcat 14.
At some point, the theme of this theme-less release becomes hard to miss: Use what is needed to make the best version of each putter.
PING 2023 Putter Models
PING is rolling out a wide range of models for their 2023 line. Naturally, you have the classics like the Anser. The Kushin 4 is another one of Karsten Solheim’s original designs. You also have modern heads like the Tomcat 14 and the Prime Tyne 4. PING has even included a few new models. The Tyne G is what you get when the Tyne and the Fetch have a baby. The new Mundy mallet is named in honor of PING’s first business manager and long-time employee, Jack Mundy.
The 2023 PING putter line has models to fit straight, slight arc and strong arc stroke paths. A couple of the heads can also be ordered in different arc variations.
The chart above features PING’s recommendations for different stroke tempos. Maybe you don’t know the exact value for your tempo but you probably have an idea if you are fast or slow. Tempo may not be the first thing we think of when choosing a putter but perhaps it is the last piece missing from your ideal fitting.
Overall, it’s a diverse group of putters. Thankfully, I was able to get my hands on a couple of them early. Here are a few of my observations.
PING 2023 Anser
Assessing the Anser is the first point of order for any PING putter release. How was the iconic PING design reimagined for the new year? 2022 was a big year for the Anser with PING launching their PLD platform, including retail, custom and limited-edition designs. How can this new Anser hope to follow all of that?
The 2023 PING Anser is a unique take on the design, deviating from its PLD predecessors. The shallow milling feels similar but the two-color design sets it apart. While not as bold as the old Odyssey Versa putters, the colors of the 2023 Anser provide similar perpendicular contrast lines to your putting target.
I really like the feel of PING’s graphite putter shaft. Admittedly, I can’t likely quantify what I like about it. Overall, I’d say it makes the stroke feel smooth. Something about it just fits my swing. I think I may send my PLD Custom Anser back to PING to have one installed.
Regardless, the combination of milled face, tungsten weighting and that graphite shaft makes this a must try for the Anser aficionado.
PING 2023 Anser 2D
Yeah, baby. We get Tony Finau’s putter as a retail offering. So glad to see him playing so well this year. Good things should happen to good people.
Anyway, the switch from the Anser to the Anser 2D really shows what the PING 2023 putter line is all about. PING have swapped out the Anser’s milled face for the insert in the Anser 2D but retained the tungsten and the graphite shaft. Obviously, this was the recipe the engineers deemed best for the Anser 2D.
On the green, the PEBAX insert feels very soft. As someone who prefers a bit more auditory feedback, I found it almost too quiet. But it still rolled the ball well, regardless. In fact, it rolled it well enough that, of the four models I tested, this is the putter that ended up in my bag most often. I’ll take a putter that is “too quiet” if it controls distance.
PING 2023 DS72 C
What is this? Could it be a center-shafted putter? Testing out the DS72 C was entirely to appease you center-shafted faithful out there. PING didn’t forget about you in 2023. As I mentioned, PING approached the DS72 C as a unique head, not just the DS72 with a different shaft. Optimizing this head required tungsten face plugs and the smallest PING logo in the cavity I have ever seen.
Admittedly, center-shafted putters are not my cup of tea. Something about the position at address throws off my eye and equilibrium. That said, the DS72 C is very stable during the swing and is a solid example of the head style. I know I’m getting redundant here but once again it shows how PING paid attention to the individual designs.
PING 2023 Mundy
Ever since the Ketsch, I’ve learned to pay close attention to PING’s new aluminum mallets. The Ketsch was so under the radar when released that we easily could have overlooked one of the best mallets ever produced. The Mundy has a Ketsch-like look at address, especially the alignment scheme. I love how the three lines set up behind the ball.
The Mundy also resembles another previous PING mallet, the limited-edition PLD 3 from 2018. Though it only had one sight line, the PLD 3 featured an aluminum body with stainless steel sole plate construction. Granted, the PLD 3 had some cool torch work on that plate that’s lacking in the Mundy.
The face on the Mundy separates it from its predecessors whose faces were all milled. The PEBAX insert makes the Mundy feel much softer at impact than the milled TR grooves of the Ketsch. Like with the Anser 2D, the Mundy’s insert puts a fine roll on the ball. We will see in the 2023 Most Wanted Mallet competition if the Mundy can recreate the dominance of the Ketsch.
Final Thoughts on the PING 2023 Putter Line
Initially, I didn’t see how a lack of cohesion could make the PING 2023 putter line, well, cohesive. I just needed to change my perspective from the norm. True, no single technology unifies the putters. Instead, the PING 2023 putter line is unified by the ideal of approaching each head design independently. I still think the lack of a name for the line could be an obstacle for consumers. Once they are in shops though, this may be a non-issue. Shoppers will pick up their favorite models in the putter corral and roll balls with it.
At that point, the fact that the line lacks a name will mean very little. Overall, the PING name is probably the most important name on the putter anyway.
The 2023 PING putter line is available for pre-order as of Sept. 13 and should arrive in shops on Sept. 29. The MSRP for the line is $300. Oh. Did I mention all of the 2023 putters will be available in both right- and left-handed dexterities?
Find out more about the PING 2023 putters at PING.com.