Callaway GBB EPIC Sub Zero Driver Review: ‘I Love the Sound It Produces’


Disclaimer: Dan E. was recently invited to Callaway HQ with a group of golfers from the online forum The Hackers Paradise and received the Epic driver as part of the event.

Date Tested:

12/5/2016

Model Tested:

Great Big Bertha EPIC Sub Zero Driver

Handicap Index:

1.8

Testing Conditions:

ECPC fitting, 75 degree weather golf in La Quinta, 50 degree weather in wet Ohio.

Driver Swing Speed:

110 MPH +

Driver Loft:

Club Characteristics (1=Very poor, 10=Outstanding)

Characteristic

Score

Aesthetics/Appearance

9/10

Acoustics/Sound

9/10

Feel

9/10

Easy and Effective Adjustability

10/10

Comments:

I am not overly excited about the elevated align/aerodynamics portion of the head, as I much prefer a traditional shape/look, but I think a great job was done to combine the overall size of the head with some of the beneficial features like the carbon crown. It was well received. Early feedback from me and playing partners is generally positive on sound (feel). I think it’s a much sturdier sound than I was anticipating, but I am sure much of that comes from the connectivity of the crown and sole — And very welcomed because I loathe drivers that have heavily manufactured (read: awful) sound

Performance OFF THE TEE (1=Very poor, 10=Outstanding)

Characteristic

Score

DISTANCE compared to current driver

9/10

FORGIVENESS compared to current driver

10/10

CONTROL compared to current driver

10/10

LAUNCH CHARACTERISTICS compared to current driver

8/10

Comments:

I didn’t see a huge margin of difference between this club and my previous gamers (816 DBD, XR16 SZ, TM m1 430) as it relates to launch. I am pretty comfortable in the neutral setting if not down one degree, although I do think it still launches a touch lower than the TM offerings. What stands out to me about this head has to be the forgiveness and control. I’m not really talking about working the ball, but rather controlling the head and the flight to an overly neutral shape that limits trouble. I am shocked at the tech numbers as it relates to last years ‘tour’ head and am totally satisfied with how Callaway has managed to package it into a head without making it look awful. I think the carry numbers are quite impressive, but that is a long term assessment not something done in December/January for me — It’s all about hitting the ball in play even when I don’t deserve it, and that is what I am getting with this head. Bravo!

EPIC DRIVER- Perimeter weighting and OPTI-FIT Hosel Adjustments:

I didn’t see a huge margin of difference between this club and my previous gamers (816 DBD, XR16 SZ, TM m1 430) as it relates to launch. I am pretty comfortable in the neutral setting if not down one degree, although I do think it still launches a touch lower than the TM offerings. What stands out to me about this head has to be the forgiveness and control. I’m not really talking about working the ball, but rather controlling the head and the flight to an overly neutral shape that limits trouble. I am shocked at the tech numbers as it relates to last years ‘tour’ head and am totally satisfied with how Callaway has managed to package it into a head without making it look awful. I think the carry numbers are quite impressive, but that is a long term assessment not something done in December/January for me — It’s all about hitting the ball in play even when I don’t deserve it, and that is what I am getting with this head. Bravo!

EPIC SUB ZERO DRIVER-Sole weights and OPTI-FIT Hosel Adjustments:

OVERALL

PROS:

There is nothing more beneficial for my tee game than low spin with actual forgiveness, and this head is pretty clearly ahead of what I have been gaming. I love the sound it produces, almost validating via audio the jailbreak technology, and the connection between the various parts of the head.

CONS:

Not overly excited about the activity on the crown, but I am sure it serves a purpose — Not a deal breaker.

Summary of My Experience with the Club

So far, it’s been exceptional. I am totally comfortable walking away from 816, XR16 SZ, and any other competitor to commit to a year with Epic. The freedom to have bad swings and still play them, often times from a fairway lie, is something I’ll have to get used to!

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