There is a lot of cool gear in the golf equipment world that doesn’t always fit neatly into Most Wanted Tests or Buyer’s Guides. You still want to know how it performs. In our We Tried It series, we put gear to the test and let you know if it works as advertised.

What We Tried

Callaway Customs Rogue ST Driver Designer

Your Driver Designer

Dave Wolfe – Ever-curious MyGolfSpy writer and putter fanatic. When it comes to custom golf products, I believe impulse control is something to be controlled.

If You Go Rogue, Should You Go Custom?

Today’s discussion may not resonate with some golfers. Being concerned about the looks of your golf gear may be a foreign concept. You just can’t wrap your head around being concerned about a golf club’s looks. Clubs are tools. Nothing more.

I can understand where you are coming from but we are not of like minds.

For me, and I am not alone, aesthetics are a consideration when buying new clubs. I’m not putting the looks of a club above the performance of a club but the in-the-bag sweet spot for any club is a combination of looks and play. Furthermore, if my gear can look different from the gear my buddies play, all the better. Sometimes this involves just a bit of DIY paint fill but, other times, the manufacturer provides custom options, allowing you to personalize your clubs at the factory.

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From uDesign to Callaway Customs

I love custom clubs. The Callaway Customs Rogue ST driver—the build experience I am sharing with you today—is not my first custom Callaway driver. Back in 2012, the Callaway uDesign program allowed you to choose colors, shafts and grips as far back as their RAZR Fit driver. While I did not order a custom driver that year, I do still have my mostly purple RAZR Fit Xtreme driver from 2013. That driver build system was particularly interesting as you could also customize the crown color. I made mine white as white drivers were the rage at the time.

Since I obviously only replace my driver every 10 years, I knew it was time to check out Callaway’s updated Callaway Customs build interface.

How Custom Is Callaway Customs?

Callaway has a solid online ordering interface. I’m not even talking about the Callaway Customs one just yet. Their regular shopping portal offers lots of options right from the computer. If you know your specs for your clubs, odds are you can order exactly what you need. Want a set of Rogue ST irons to have R-flex i95 Steelfiber shafts, orange Iomic Sticky grips, +2 wraps and bent two degrees up? You can make that purchase completely online.

If all of that customization is already an option, what is the purpose of Callaway Customs? I’d say it adds personalization to the customization.

Focusing on the new Callaway Customs Rogue ST designer, the $100 upcharge for customization allows you to change the color scheme of various parts of your driver. This allows you to transform the off-the-rack Rogue ST driver into something different from the stock offering. You become the color coordinator and you can pick the color scheme that suits your desires.

Callaway Customs Rogue ST Driver: What Can You Customize?

The Callaway Customs Rogue ST Driver interface allows you to customize the colors of five different driver components. There are seven color choices for the sole, the crown, the speed cartridge and the two medallions. Honestly, I see it as four positions as the medallions should be the same color. Yes, you could choose different colors for the medallions but why someone would do something so heinous is beyond comprehension.

Unlike the uDesign system, you cannot change the color of the crown, just the color of the graphics on the crown. There we do find one of the more interesting options. In addition to changing the color of the crown graphics, you can select the “null” option where said graphics are not added at all. This option gives you a naked look at address as the aiming chevron is removed along with the rearward graphics. For those who like a clean look at address, this option alone likely justifies the price of the upgrade.

Functional or Just Cosmetically Custom?

Callaway Customs Rogue ST driver designer allows you to customize the paint and all of the other non-paint customization options, too. As with the standard Rogue ST driver shopping portal, this means you still get to choose dexterity, loft, head, grip and shaft. Some of the options will not bump the price of the club. Others, like exotic custom shafts, can bump the price quite a bit.

I think the best strategy is to start with the driver build that your swing needs and then add the cosmetic elements that your eyes desire. For example, I knew I was going with a Fujikura Ventus blue shaft. Because of this, I picked the head colors to complement that shaft.

The Results: The Callaway Customs Rogue ST Max Ventus-Themed Driver

Ultimately, the custom driver plays the same as the stock Rogue ST driver. That said, I am amazed at how this customized version looks like a totally different driver. The stock Rogue ST Max looks fine but doesn’t really draw me in. The Callaway Customs version is way more visually appealing to me. I’m glad the Ventus blue shaft took me in that design direction. Option Two was going completely black without the crown graphics. That, too, likely would have looked savage.

Overall, I was surprised at how different the driver looked. I went into the process with a “just changing the paint” mindset. Once I had the driver in hand, I better understood that changing the paint was more significant than I originally thought.

Final Take: Callaway Customs Rogue ST Driver Program

Only you can decide if customizing the color is worth the $100 upcharge, making your $550 driver $650. Neither one of those is a small number for a golf club. Realistically, the days of the $300 driver are all in the rearview mirror. The customization question is as personal as your color choices and only you can say if it is worth it.

For me, it is. The last time I bought a new car, the color I wanted came with an additional cost. I didn’t hesitate to add that to the price of the car. I’d already committed to the new vehicle. Adding a bit more money to make sure I got the color I really wanted made sense to me. Maybe you would have chosen to save $500 and drive your second color choice for the next 10 years. I respect that but I’m going to pay the premium for the paint I want. If nothing else, that should keep me from shopping for new cars. See where I’m going with this?

If the Callaway Rogue ST fits your swing, you’ll hit as many fairways with the stock model as with a custom one. However, if you like your gear to be more than just utilitarian, adding a Benjamin to the bill can get you a unique-looking custom club. Five paint decisions may not seem like much but it really does allow you to create a driver that suits your style.

Build your own Callaway Rogue ST driver at callawaygolf.com

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