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2014 Bridgestone B330/B330RX Lineup Member Testing 12 of our forum members have been testing the latest tour line Bridgestone balls for some time now. Rather than have every one of them post a 3 page dialog about what they thought about a golf ball, we had them answer several questions so we can get an collated overview. This first post is about the preconceptions of Bridgestone balls. Some of us feel pretty strongly about which ball we use, others barely remember which one they just hit. So each of our testers answered a series of questions to find out what was important in a ball and what their thoughts on Bridgestone were before they received their balls. The process began with each of our testers went through the BFit Online Fitting from Bridgestone: http://www.bridgestonegolf.com/product/ball-selection-guide Our testers were then grouped into the following categories for their full reviews based on which ball they were fit for: B330RX B330 B330-S Rickkimbrell Fozcycle Txgolfjunkie SeeRed Revkev BestGrips Lefty RoverRick BK in Texas Rickles Sluggo42 dushler No one was fit for the B330RX-S balls... BUT, each tester received two dozen balls: one from the series they were fit from and one dozen from the other ball in the series. For example, txgolfjunkie received one dozen B330 and 2 dozen B330-S balls. Foz received one dozen B330RX and one dozen B330RX-S balls. Preconceptions of Bridgestone balls The overall preconception of Bridgestone before this test was very neutral. Testers stated they've played Bridgestone balls when they found them, but really most of the testers didn't think anything extraordinary about them, either good or bad. Two of our testers said they tried Bridgestone balls in the past, but couldn't get them to work for them. Only one tester had a mostly positive view of Bridgestone balls, but even then it was mainly about the e6. The prevailing word was "Decent". Firm came up a lot from several people. I didn't read a single person saying Bridgestone balls were soft. Prior to this test, these are the brand of balls our testers played mostly Titleist, followed by Taylormade, Callaway, and then a mix of Maxfli, Srixon, and 3UP. 100% of testers used a 3+ piece Urethane ball and not a single one of them played Bridgestone. The e5 and e6 came up a few times as a ball they've played in the past or had a good opinion of. In general most people who knew others who played Bridgestone and mentioned which type of ball mentioned the e series. Online Fitting Process When asked about the online fitting process, reactions were mixed. Some folks said they liked it, but most felt it was fairly generic and really boiled down to swing speed. When asked about what type of players each of the testers were, trajectories ranged from low to high, wedge spin low to high, swing speeds low to high. How some of our testers got fit for a particular ball was a bit mind-boggling. Overall, folks with low 90s club head speeds gravitated towards the RX balls and those with over 100mph clubhead speed went with the standard type balls, but even then there were a few folks in the 90s and low 100s that went with the standard model. Some complaints about the fitting process: Range of distances was too great: 220-245 fit you for a B330RX series and 245-270 fit for B330 series. If someone hit 245, it was a gray area. In store BFit sessions are right-handed golfer only. Bridgestone apparently doesn't think their balls can work for left handed golfers. One person went through the fitting and got a "No compatible results," and was told to call customer support What makes for a good ball? The last series of questions was to find out what makes for a good ball. As expected, the answers were mostly all over the place, but there were a few commonalities. A decent chunk of the testers felt the feel off the driver was important, and a smaller number said the same thing about wedge. I think only one cared about feel off the putter. Of the testers who said they cared about feel, most of them said they preferred a softer ball. Only one said he liked a firmer ball. That might be because of his 114mph clubhead speed. You can figure out who that is later. The one common trait of a ball nearly every tester said they wanted in a ball was the ability to hop and stop on the green. Control and consistency of spin were also very important in general. A few people mentioned it has to be long off the driver, though at least one said he's willing to sacrifice a few yards for a ball that's consistent and feels good. Testing Process The testers have actually had their balls for some time and have been playing with them regularly. Nearly everyday sometime has told me about the feel of their balls or how well they played with them. One person had a slightly disturbing story of what happened to one of his balls. You'll all get to read about them in a week or two, depending on how long it takes to put these damn survey results together. The interesting results are going to be who wants to keep playing the Bridgestone balls they received, if they play the ball they were fit for, and how strong their opinions of the balls are after playing them for a while. In the meantime, feel free to ask questions or leave comments about your own balls, or what you think of Bridgestone in general.