Review: Odyssey Toe Up Putters
Putters

Review: Odyssey Toe Up Putters

Review: Odyssey Toe Up Putters

Today’s exploration of Odyssey’s new Toe Up putters marks the third time that I have written something about these putters. I can’t remember the last time that I wrote three articles about a single putter release. Obviously, Odyssey has done a great job of building Toe Up buzz.

First, they snuck them unannounced into their PGA show booth, then they officially announced them a few weeks ago, and now we can actually get our hands on them.

That’s a pretty savvy piece of marketing for a putter line that was meant to be a sidebar release, with the majority of the Odyssey marketing machine promoting the new White Hot RX release.

Marketing folk at other companies should write the Odyssey formula down. Be secretive, tease a bit, release something truly different, and then collect the spoils at the register.

I bought the hype. By the time the Toe Up putters hit my porch, I was nearly salivating at the chance to get them on grass and roll some putts. Sure, that’s my usual response when putters arrive, but I swear that I had a little extra anticipation/slobber for these.

When Hype Hits The Short Grass

Odyssey Toe Up- - 27

That sentence would be cooler if I was writing about a basketball product. When Hype Hits the Hardwood sounds way better, especially with a deep dramatic narrator voice.

Regardless, excitement about any product will quickly turn to meh if said product turns out to be mainly just hype. Looking at you Batman v. Superman…

Let’s take a moment to rehash what Odyssey has told us about the Toe Up.

We’ve used Stroke Balanced technology to reduce torque during the stroke for minimal twisting, so when you roll it, it’s going to be much easier to get the face back to square. We do it by strategically placing more weight towards the face to balance the putter, and the CG is aligned with the center of the face. All this is designed to promote a more consistent stroke, and when you put your finger up to the face, you’ll see that it balances toe up like no other putter in the market.

I’m not totally sure about the “no other putter in the market” claim. I can think of a few putters, both current and past, that hang toe up. They may call it something other than Stroke Balanced, such as torque-balanced, but the idea of 12:00 toe hang is the same.

But as I’ve mentioned in previous articles, design innovation is not the key thing that Odyssey brings with the Toe Up, but rather Odyssey’s ability to broadly distribute the line. If that quote from the Odyssey site means no other putter in the market that sells golf stuff near my house, then I totally agree.

The Toe Up putters will likely be the only Stroke Balanced putters that many golfers ever can actually put their hands on. That’s the big deal.

Square to Square

Odyssey Toe Up- - 26

The whole idea behind the Stroke Balanced design is that the head shouldn’t open and close during the stroke like it does with a traditional putter. Though we seldom think about it, face angle at impact with the putter affects ball roll just like it does ball flight with the full swing. A putter face that is open or closed at impact will send the ball in different directions, even if the swing path is the same. Again, just like with the full swing.

The theory of the Stroke Balanced technology is that because these don’t gate open and closed during the swing, they should be easier to return square to the ball – ultimately enabling you to roll the ball more consistently and potentially straighter.

 

Specs: Odyssey Toe Up

  • Head weight: 355g
  • Loft: 3°
  • Lie: 70°
  • Face: Metal-X
  • Grip: SuperStroke Flatso 1.0 – Counter Core
  • Toe Hang: 12:00
  • Dexterity: Right and Left
  • Availability: Shipping begins April 15, 2016
  • Price: $199.99

The Number 1

Odyssey Toe Up- - 9

This is a great little putter, but it’s a strange one too. Though it looks like another Anser variant, it really doesn’t play like one.

At address, it looks a bit different than a plumbers-neck Anser. The shaft sits at a slightly different angle, and for me, that made it feel like my hands needed to be at a different position relative to my usual address position. Look at the address photo. 

Odyssey Toe Up- - 14

Shaft offset is very different than a traditional Anser, it’s like a negative half-shaft offset. I felt the need to adjust accordingly.

Comfort, and accuracy improved when my hands, and the ball, were in a more central position relative to my body; i.e., no press. What’s interesting about this for me is that this more central position is where I traditionally play mallets. Moving the ball back a touch makes sense to me as a forward ball position gives the traditional slight-arc Anser time to close as it opens/closes.

The Toe Up #1 doesn’t gate like a traditional Anser, so that extra couple inches of travel isn’t needed.

Maybe this can all be chalked up to issues with my putting stroke, lord knows there are a few, but I just want to let you know how I changed my set-up in case it makes a difference for you when you roll these. Hands back may help.

 

The Number 9

Odyssey Toe Up- - 18

Of the two, the #9 was the model that I was the most excited to try. I was very interested to see how this head would play with the atypical toe hang. Remember, the traditional #9 has a deep toe hang, and usually meshes with a strong arc.

This #9 definitely plays differently than the other #9s. Really different actually. Whenever I take a traditional #9 out on the course, I find that accuracy relies upon a loose association with the putter, thus allowing it to gate through the stroke. If you don’t let it do what it wants, bad putts proliferate through the round.

The Toe Up #9 plays much more like a traditional mallet. Obviously it’s not face balanced, but it almost feels like it is. The Toe Up tech really changes the characteristics of the #9, making it more like a compact mallet than a heel-shafted half mallet.

My guess is that the traditional #9 player won’t like it a whole lot, but those who like a compact mallet shape, but can’t cope with the arc of a traditional #9, will really be interested in the Toe Up #9.

 

Overall Impressions

Odyssey Toe Up- - 16

It seems ridiculously obvious, but these two putters definitely play differently from traditional putters with traditional toe hang. I know that’s a vague statement, but I want you to expect that they will feel unusual when you first roll them, and not to immediately put them back in the rack because of that unfamiliar experience.

You are going to need a bit of time to get to know the Toe Up. Buy it a drink. Ask it about its major. Spend some time connecting, and you will begin to see how it truly operates.

Roll lots of balls with the Toe Up. I wouldn’t recommend that this is a putter that you purchase after taking five putts in the shop, but like I said above, don’t dismiss it after five putts either.

Once you become accustomed to the unique movement – or lack of movement – of the Toe Up putters, then make your decision.

Some of you will love these, while others may just not mesh with the technology. Such is the case with all golf equipment…

 

Why Flatso?

Odyssey Toe Up- - 2

One question that I had with the Toe Up was why did Odyssey go with the Flatso grip? I’m not bashing the selection of SuperStroke; my gamers all currently sport SuperStroke Mid Slim grips. The Flatso concerns me because it is atypical in its own right, and the Toe Up already faces potential market resistance for being atypical all on its own.

The Flatso is not a terrible grip, but for many, it will feel uncomfortable or at least unusual. Combining the unusual aspects of the head and the grip may turn off some potential players who would have actually putted well with the Toe Up had they spent a little time overcoming their initial disorientation.

 

The Toe Up Revolution Begins Today!

Odyssey Toe Up- - 25

Okay, so maybe that’s a bit melodramatic. Perhaps today will not be remembered as the day that we all transitioned from toe down to Toe Up, but the increased availability of these Stroke Balanced putters is significant nonetheless.

Why, you ask? Because there will be some people out there who will drop balls with the Toe Up design way more frequently than they ever did toe down.

While Stroke Balanced putters may not replace all other putters, we are seeing an ingress of them into the golfing population, even at the professional level. If you watched the Masters, you probably saw Bryson Dechambeau using his torque-balanced Edel Brick, but did you know that JB Holmes made over $400,000 (T4) there as well using an Edel torque balanced putter?

Maybe this will be the start of the next big putter thing after all.

But Did I Win One?

Don’t worry, I didn’t forget about the contest. I am happy to say that the winner of the Toe Up putter is:

Jeff Eilers

Congratulations and check your inbox. I’ll be contacting you very soon.

For You

For You

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Dave Wolfe

Dave Wolfe

Dave Wolfe

A putter-obsessed recreational golfer, constantly striving to improve his game while not getting too hung up about it. Golf should be fun, always.

Dave Wolfe

Dave Wolfe

Dave Wolfe

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Dave Wolfe

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      mackdaddy

      7 years ago

      I try to bring the putter strait down the line at my target. I have been playing a custom putter for over 10 years that has the same toe up balance. This is the best type putter I have ever found for my slight arc back and strait through type of putting stroke. I Highly recommend it if that is your stroke type!!!!

      Reply

      NevinW

      8 years ago

      I got to see and roll some balls with both of these putters today. They definitely have a much different feel and not the same as a center shafted putter. I liked the anser varient better. It really rolled the ball nicely. The Flatso is also different but I got used to it very quickly. I was impressed enough that I might get one of these.

      Reply

      Phillip Vfl Werner

      8 years ago

      I roll it just fine with my method

      Reply

      javier

      8 years ago

      Congrats Jeff, I would love to hear your thoughts on the putter as well, if you have the time.

      Reply

      dr. bloor

      8 years ago

      Just had a chance to mess with one of these at the shop. All they had were a couple of demos at 35″ (I play a 33″), and I’m not a huge fan of the Flatso grip. It looks a little funky at address and it certainly won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but even with the marginal fit it really made taking the club head back effortless, which has always been my weakness. I initially had some difficulties lining up longer putts, but improved with some repetitions, and it’s a killer in the 3-4 foot range. I’ll definitely be taking a closer look once I can try a shorter model.

      Reply

      Ted Huffingham

      8 years ago

      EDEL Golf!

      Reply

      Tom Uraynar

      8 years ago

      Just buy a center shafted putter. Same thing. This is old news people.

      Reply

      Ben Clabaugh

      8 years ago

      If the mad scientist, Bryson, is playing it, that means it’s gotta be good.

      Reply

      Scott Smith

      8 years ago

      Another PING innovation; PING started this with fitting for stroke type 4 years ago.

      Reply

      Alex Shaw

      8 years ago

      Edel rip off?

      Reply

      Ross Munro

      8 years ago

      No problem just gives a shout anytime! Cheers?

      Reply

      Michael Hansen

      8 years ago

      no

      Reply

      Crike C Rombie

      8 years ago

      Sounds like a plan bud. Maybe more lesson than equipment needed.

      Reply

      Ross Munro

      8 years ago

      I’m not sure what putter suits been a while since we had a game. If you wanted you could come down try a few one day maybe get a game and al have a look and see what will suit best! Cheers

      Reply

      Crike C Rombie

      8 years ago

      Suggestions of such putters are welcome mate cheers. #fitting?

      Reply

      Ross Munro

      8 years ago

      Hi Mike these putters are one of a kind and of the back of Bryson De chambau ! Not sure if that’s how you spell his name but I’m sure you know who i mean. I don’t think these will suit many people especially yourself, they will suit people who are very upright and have high hands at address, when we discussed earlier you struggle with this, I would look at a more conventional putter, with a flatter lie angle to suit your hands at address. Hope this helps?

      Reply

      eva

      8 years ago

      I don’t know if this is going to help my putting,
      but I want it to add to my putter collection just because it is different.

      Reply

      Pete Ciambrone

      8 years ago

      Interesting, if this new design is valid I’m curious to see how thes putters will perform in this years MGS most wanted putter test, hoping they plan to participate.

      Reply

      Kenny B

      8 years ago

      Hi Dave! Good to hear from you again.
      From your write-up… “The Flatso is not a terrible grip, but for many, it will feel uncomfortable or at least unusual.” This is not necessarily a bad thing, especially if someone is in need of a change because of putting woes. Sometimes it takes something very different in feel to make a difference in how someone putts.

      I’ll give it a roll, but I know it will feel too light for me. However, it looks like there is plenty of room on the sole to put lead tape!

      Reply

      Marty

      8 years ago

      I’ve been using the 1 for about 2 weeks. I’ve never made so many 4-5 footers in my life. The only thing I need to work on is distance control. This face is hotter then the White Hot faced putter i usually use.
      Agree about the grip, the first thing I did was cut it off and put a SS2 grip on. The other thing that had to go was that putter cover. Patent red goes with my wife’s purses, not on my putter.

      Reply

      Ryan Holcomb

      8 years ago

      How long before some retail putter company markets “shaft band technology”.

      “Our shaft band stickers offer the best true roll and go stroke known to golf because we use only the highest quality sticker glue.”

      Reply

      McaseyM

      8 years ago

      Congrats Jeff! Enjoy the new flatstick

      Reply

      Elie Anquetil

      8 years ago

      Just tried the toe up. The head rotates so much. The head is balanced when the shaft is vertical but when it’s in stroking position this is horrible.
      I m sure directed force putter has a way better concept.

      Reply

      Ryan Finch

      8 years ago

      Doesn’t fit my stroke. I’m all for innovation but don’t just buy something because it’s new or your favorite pro bags it. Find what fits you.

      Reply

      DaeGunn Jei

      8 years ago

      “no other putter in the market that sells golf stuff near my house, then I totally agree.” –> The title does not match with this statement. O’s these putters are NOT “the Next Big Thing.” Simply distributing the well-known, pre-existing type of putters into local warehouses is not the big thing at all.

      Reply

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