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2018 Official Forum Member Review - PING i210 Irons

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Official Forum Member Review - PING i210 Irons

ping i210.jpg


Danbrook                                      Stage 1                      Stage 2

RickyBobby_PR                           Stage 1                      Stage 2

Steddygolf                                    Stage 1                      Stage 2

txgolfjunkie                                  Stage 1                      Stage 2


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Growing up I played pretty much every sport either competitively or recreationally with friends, however golf wasn’t one of them. Other than a family friend in Milwaukee and one of my friends in high school I didn’t know anyone who played. As a kid I knew who Arnie, Jack, Trevino, Player and Hogan were.  Also around 12 or 13 while the family was hanging out at my grandmothers my dad dropped a nugget on me that her cousin was Chi Chi Rodriguez and my grandmother was in the phone with him. I regret not knowing more about who he was back then. I knew about the majors and that was about it.  It wasn’t until my last year in the Navy (1996) that I finally caved to the peer pressure of coworkers and took up the game with the sole intention of playing a 9 hole scramble at night in a monthly work tournament with o r if my close shipmates and two others from our division.  It took one range session to get caught by the golf bug and after the first time on the course I was hooked.

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I’ve been playing on and off since then with two breaks, the first after 9/11 and the second in 2006 when my wife and I started dating and then planning the wedding. I picked the game back up in 2010 and started taking it serious in 2013 after I gave up playing baseball.  I’ve worked hard since then with lessons, practice, reading and playing to get my handicap to a fluctuating 8-9.  My biggest issue is tempo and an aggressive transition. I’ve been working to smooth those out. To me my strength is my iron play as it’s usually the most consistent part of my game followed by distance...my driver carry is 260ish and I’ve seen balls roll out into the low 290s.  I like to play different shots with my scoring irons and periodically my mid-long depending on distance and pin location.  My stock 150 shot is usually a smooth 8i chokes down about 1/4”. My short game from about 40-80 yards is my weak point at the moment and with the swing work I’ve been putting it has slipped down the list of practice focus.  Playing golf in the DC area it gets hard to maintain the swing come November while waiting for the spring to get here.  But hitting balls and getting in the course are what I love about this game and will swing away if it’s 40* or higher and no wind.  


iron covers.jpg

Quick snippet of my WITB prior to the testing selection:
Driver: Ping G400  HZRDUS Yellow 6.0 
3/4wood: Titleist 917 F2 16.5* UST Mamiya Helium HE5F4
Hybrid: Ping G400 19* Ping Tour 85g S
Irons: PXG Gen2 0311P (4i), 0311T (5-P) PX 6.0
Wedges: Vokey SM7 50/54/56 Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex
Putter: Scotty Cameron Deep Milled Super Rat
Ball: Titleist Prov1 is my preferred but play the 1x as well.
That’s enough rambling about myself, time for what everyone wants to see and hear about.
The Ping i210s that I choose are 4-GW with PX 6.0. Shaft choice was to give me a shaft to help with peak height. I hit a high ball and in my PXG fitting peak height was around 115’. I normally don’t play a set GW because I like the versatility of the non set wedges, but knowing there are those who like the set wedges and the flow from PW into the set GW as well as the forgiveness in most cases I choose to include that in my order and provide feedback to the masses.
These irons peaked my interest because I loved the i20s and since then I haven’t been a fan of anything in the I family of irons from Ping. Taking these out of the box the looks to me stand out. Clean and sharp lines
-Ping is touting a buttery feel with a larger in volume elastomer insert that is 50% softer that creates 25% more face contact and ensuring that pure feel.
-They have refined the the look with a more compact shape and minimal offset.
-Both leading edge and sole have been enhanced to improve turf interaction for precise distance and ability to work the ball, while the HydroPearl Chrome 2.0 finished helps repel water to help improve consistency 
-Copying the Glide 2.0 specs with sharper edge radius and the spaces between tighter between grooves both pw and uw(aka gw) will provide greater precision and control and prevent those dreaded fliers

Now that we got all of that out of the way and the initial range session with these have me excited for the getting them on the course it’s time to get ready, aim and fire away with those questions



iron heads.jpg

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Again thank you to Ping and MyGolfSpy for this chance to review the i210s for the great members of this forum.  I’m someone who can tell relatively quickly whether a club will work for me or not and also what I can or cannot do. After the interest from the first range session, I was excited to get these on the course to see what they could do from the short grass and what has been some thick rough in the DC area all year on some of the courses I normally play. My testing has been a combination of range time (15 sessions) and on course (6 full rounds and 3 nine hole rounds with iron only).  I used my range sessions to get a feel for distances initially, then to test the ability to play different shot shapes with these. Since I normally hit a high ball I wanted to see if I could play knock down shot as well as hit draws and fades.

Looks (9.5 out of 10 points)

Ping’s website states “A refined, more compact shape and look combined with minimal, progressive offset help convey the high-end appeal of the set.”  I have to agree with them on the refined and compact look, for the me these setup beautifully and the offset has been unnoticeable to my eye. The rounded toe along with a topline that is not too thick and not too small frames the ball perfectly at address.  To me Ping has improved the look of the cavity with well blended lines from the sole up thru the top line. While these do not have the glamour of a blade they draw the eye to the bag and on several occasions during my range time several people have asked what irons are in my bag.  The iron number on the toe is the one thing that keeps me from giving these a 10. The i210 font draws the eye into the model and is not real bold looking which adds to a neo-classic look in my opinion, similar to how we have seen football jersery numbers change over the years.  While keeping a similar style font from previous iterations of the “I” line they kept the thicker looking numbers from the i200. I prefer the i20 style numbering when I’m looking at a Ping iron.


Sound & Feel (9 out of 10 points)

Ping describes them as buttery feel.  The activated elastomer insert is much bigger in volume and 50% softer, creating 25% more face contact, ensuring a pure feel at impact while also returning more energy to the ball.”  Ping has always done a great job with the feel of the “I” irons.  For a non-forged head or face these irons provide a soft feel and that muted sound when properly compressed and hit on the sweet spot. A friend of mine was next to me during one of my range sessions and a couple times he commented “I wasn’t watching but I can tell by the sound you hit that good.”  Ping has also done a good job with sound on mis-hits.  There is a small click when caught low on the face and a slight increase in the sound when hit on both heel and toe side of the sweet spot, the sounds are close to more solid contact but they have just enough of a noticeable difference to offer the golfer the feedback on where the miss was.  The sound and feel reminds me somewhat of the Srixon irons when hit in the center and better sound and feel than the i500 and AP3s when mishit. The results from sound and feel on the mishits have produced expected results.

The first strike was pretty much flushed and the second was a fraction heavy


This one was thinned. on the bottom groove

Range Performance (20 out of 20 points)

In my range sessions, I have tried to break them up into two different segments. First segment is to work thru the bag hitting my normal shot to see if anything noticeable stands out such as distance inconsistency or a change in ball flight exists on mishits and well struck shots. The second segment is used to hit different shot shapes. My normal ball flight is a relatively straight shot or a small fade (especially with mid-long irons) so I spend time trying to work the ball from right to left and occasionally open up the stance to hit a more pronounced fade.  Since I tend to play different shots into greens depending on pin placement and trouble around the green, I also spend time hitting knock down shots. The range I frequent uses mats, which allows me to have a good and consistent lie to test these different flights. I have found it easier to play a draw than to play a 5+ yard fade.  I haven’t had any issues flighting the ball down with 6i thru GW although the GW appears to have a higher flight than my sm7 GW on these shots. It’s been quite some time since I played a set GW, possibly the i20 GW being the last one. One of the reasons I added GW to the order was to see how it compared to a non-set GW in regards to partial shots.  Since I know there is a segment of golfers out there that prefer the added forgiveness and set consistency with a set GW I wanted to make sure I added this aspect to the review.  With all clubs distances on full swings have been consistent with only a small 1-3 yard variation front to back when the ball strikes the center of the face.  Toe shots have produced a bigger right to left flight than heel shots have for right to left.  Height remains consistent with mishits. 

Top is Ping and bottom is PXG in both Trackman data and pics.  During the session with Trackman I was unable to compare 5i because I didn't have PXG one in my bag due to bag setup from previous on course testing session.


ping 7i.JPGpxg 7i.JPG



ping pw.JPG

pxg pw.JPG


Ping 5i.JPG

On-Course Performance (38 out of 40 points)

I am not one who keeps stats during the year or from year to year so I don’t have any for GIR or up/down percentage. With so many variables in golf and from course to course I don’t worry about those numbers and am more focused on getting the little white ball in the hole with the least amount of strokes.  For me I could miss fairways and hit greens and vice versa. As I mentioned above I do not always full swing every club since pin placement, trouble, green conditions, etc go into my club choice into greens, so I do not have any numbers with my gamers or these irons for on course comparison to distances seen. My on course testing was to see if distances on full swings were similar to what I saw on the range, how well they held greens on full and partial shots and if lateral dispersion equaled that of my range time.  I played some rounds like I would any other time and spent a few rounds playing just irons from the tee to get a feel for how they performed off a tee and from the deck.  During the testing period we have had warm, cool and wet weather with a few days of high winds so I have had the pleasure of testing this in various conditions. 


Both on the range and on the course I was seeing similar results in ball height which as noted above is relatively high and one of the reasons I went with the PX 6.0 shaft in an effort to reduce the height some. Overall trajectory as well as dispersion both front to back and side to side.  It is nice to see that when a ball is struck on a certain part of the face at the range and the resulting shot that on the course there is no surprise when the same shot occurs.  Based on Ping’s claims about turf interaction “The lead edge and sole profile were enhanced to improve turf interaction for distance precision with workability. A HydroPearl Chrome 2.0 finish repels water to greatly improve consistency from the rough and wet conditions. “ I will agree that they have done a good job in the design.  Ball flight consistency and distance remained the same for me across the several courses I played during the testing.  There was no digging on shots unless I caused it with a steep approach.  Since I played a few times with a few days of extended rain I was able to test the ability of these to repel the water.  I didn’t see any unexpected flyers and I had not issues hitting shots out of thick rough.  The ability to play from thick rough was a pleasant surprise for me because with some previous sets the face getting shut down or digging was pretty noticeable.  I like the finish of these irons due to lack of glare during sunny days. 


There were no negatives that stood out to me during the testing on the range and during on course use.  Everything I was hoping for and expecting from Ping in this release held true.


Play it or Trade it? (19 out of 20 points)

I am extremely happy with the clubs I had in my bag prior to the testing of the i210s and it was going to take a lot to replace them.  Ping delivered an iron that came extremely close to unseating my gamers but in the end the forged head and feel of my gamers won out.  Both sets provide consistency in play on the course and the ability to work the ball as needed.  With that said there is no doubt that these are great clubs and I could easily play them anytime with no worries about losing any performance on the course.

I was talking with a few buddies of mine on the range over the last two weeks about these clubs and how good they perform for me.  During that time we talked about what golfer these were made for.  My response was someone that consistent contact on the face and tends to find the center of the face.  A golfer who has a tendency to miss left or right of the sweet spot will find about 1 club in distance loss and may not enjoying giving that up into greens on a regular basis. I don’t want to define it by handicap because I believe many different factors go into why someone has the handicap they do, but for the most part someone who is around a 12 or lower would benefit the most from these compared to a higher capper.



To make a long story short, for me these are the best irons in the “I” line that Ping has put out since the i20s which happened to stay in my bag for their entire release cycle.  During this review period these irons have performed in a manner I would have expected from the info Ping put out and from what I saw in my first demo session with them.  They will give consistent distances on the well struck shots and the distance loss on mishits is right where I would expect them to be for this type of iron.  If someone is looking for a smaller profile iron with some forgiveness and the ability to change flight and trajectory then these should be on the short list.  If someone is looking for less distance loss on mishits they may want to look in a different direction.  Ping nailed this release in looks, feel, sound and performance.


Final Score: 95.5/100

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Stage 2...don't worry, this review is less than 2,000 words!

If you didn’t get a chance or have time to read my stage 1, here’s a quick summary:

  • Low handicapper (Current hcp: 0.5)
  • Quick transition with a hard loading swing. Think Nick Price tempo and Sergio’s swing.
  • Swing requires low launching, low spinning shafts.
  • I play in the Houston, TX area. Most courses are fairly soft and I rarely play in windy conditions (> 15mph).
  • What I’m looking for in the i210s: Consistency, great turf interaction and proper yardage gaps between clubs.
  • Golf ball for launch monitor numbers and on-course testing: TaylorMade TP5X

In my humble opinion, ripping off the plastic and gripping a brand new club is no different than the new car smell, it awakens the mind knowing that what’s in your hand is something brand spanking new and it WILL make you play better. The good shots are attributed to the new equipment and the bad shots, well, those are attributed to a change in the Earth’s magnetic field or planets getting out of alignment. I’m guilty of this in just about every club in my bag, especially with the driver and putter. While placebos are strong in nutrition/diets and on the golf course, we now live in a day in age where technology can rear its head and allow factual data to help facilitate decision making. I rarely change out my irons simply because it’s not a part of the bag I think needs changing frequently. Irons are irons. Shafts tweak the ball flight and spin rate. What’s the big deal? Why drop $1,000+ on clubs that will do the exact same thing to the ball as what is currently in your bag?! My current set of irons are forged by Endo, one of the top forging houses in Japan. My shafts are the same ones I see on TV. What in the world would make we want to get rid of my Bridgestones in favor of a set of irons from Phoenix, AZ?!? Well…let’s read on.

1.       Looks (8 out of 10 points)

Remember the debate on The Office if Hilary Swank was Hot or Not? I feel like the i210s are the same way. I’ve played with guys who absolutely love the look and I have others who aren’t fans and aren’t afraid to tell me. Personally, I’m a fan of the looks of the 6-UW with the thin(ish) top line, the non-glare finish, the progressive offset and the way the iron frames the ball. From the mid and short irons, they really look like a player’s iron. The cavity of the iron looks great and the iron numbers are clear and easy to read. Here's an example of the 6 iron for the i210 and the Bridgestone J15CB. Both are similar in size, top line and offset. IMG-1929.JPG

Now here's where my beef comes in:

What I don’t like is the 4 and 5 irons. Why? They look like my old Tommy Armour 845s with just a little bit less offset. They are a bit clunky to look at address and the sole is fairly thick. I’ll discuss performance later on but solely off looks, they look a bit game-improvement-ish. Trust me, I can’t hit a butter knife 3 iron, but I also don’t want to look at a Callaway X-12 at address. 

Here's a comparison of the 4 irons. Not too much of a visible difference looking at the face. 


But looking down at the ball, you can see the increase in top line, offset and overall size of the iron. 


One last thing I'll add...while I like overall design of the clubs, the cavity and numbers are hard to keep clean with just a wet towel. There’s a lot of little crevasses where grass and dirt gets caught and it takes a *gasp* scrub brush to really give these clubs a good cleaning. I don’t know if my ego can take the beating with a scrub brush dangling from my bag.

While these look great, every gap, crevasse, etc is a hiding place for bermuda grass and sand.


2.       Sound and Feel (8 out of 10 points)

In the past few years, feel has been misunderstood by a lot of golfers as they combine the feeling in their hands from the strike of the ball AND the auditory response at contact. What I don’t like when people discuss feel is where the audio feedback trumps the impact of the club. A club could have fantastic feel in regards to impact on the club face but if the strike is too tinny, too loud, too muted, etc, it will taint the view of “feel” for a club. I tried my best to break it down during this round of testing.

Sound: These irons have a muted click at impact. When you catch a ball flush, it sounds like something you’d hear on a golf channel infomercial. Not so much a fake sound effect, but a sound that reflects a solid iron cast from a single block of steel. The sound falls somewhere between a beautifully forged and muted Bridgestone or Miura and a firmer click from a Cobra Forged Tec or the older Cleveland CG Red irons.  

Here's my 9 iron with a Titleist NXT range ball. Not too loud, not too clangy, etc. Just a solid iron strike. 


Feel: Ping isn’t known for their ‘buttery smooth’ impact and frankly, I’d like to know when the ball is hitting the face. Though I haven’t hit a wide variety of irons over the years, these aren’t nearly as harsh as my old Adams Forged CB2s, which might’ve been forged from a cast-iron skillet, but not nearly as soft as a Miura, Bridgestone or Mizuno. Solid hits felt great, almost like a coke can filled with marshmallows, and shots out on the toe and low on the face were felt in the hands with a bit more firmness to let you know you mis-hit the shot. Personally, I’m not a fan of soft, milled putters or super soft forged irons but these Pings fall right where I like my irons and my women…a bit firm.

3.       Range Performance (18 out of 20 points)

So with this section of the review, I want to look solely at launch monitor statistics. Going out to the range and hitting golf balls with little to no consequences of a bad shot doesn’t really qualify an opinion unless you have data to back it up. Over the course of three launch monitor sessions, I hit 15 shots with each club and took the best 12 shots. I used the TaylorMade TP5X in every test session. Here’s a summary of the sessions:

Ping Launch.JPG

If you recall, I’m looking for consistency and proper yardage gaps between clubs. Look at the carry yardage gaps between clubs in the i210s. They’re right around 13-16 yards between clubs. That checks the box. My Bridgestones had gaps as small as 8 yards in the long irons and 21 yards in the short irons. Consistency, or dispersion was another huge marker in this test session. Let’s take a look at the dispersion via standard deviations from the launch monitor sessions with the i210s versus previous sessions with the J15CBs.

Ping Dispersion.JPG

I attempted to provide an illustrative chart to show the difference in dispersion for the test but my Photoshop skills are non-existent. As you can see, the Ping i210s weren’t necessarily straighter than the Bridgestone J15CBs, but they were a lot more consistent with the shot area. I don’t mind the ball fading on me, but I want that fade to be consistent and I sure as heck don’t want the ball to fly right when I’m expecting a butter cut to fall off to the left. The carry distance standard deviation wasn’t that substantial between the two clubs. Both carry the ball a consistent yardage with each club.

4.       On-Course Performance (37 out of 40 points)

My main focus of on-course performance was to see if these Pings were really substantially better than my current gamers. How would I go about doing that? Well, I’ve noticed when my scores start to creep higher, it’s a domino effect of missing fairways off the tee followed by a missed green and failing to get up-and-down. If I could find a set irons that help on days where I’m struggling off the tee, then they would find a spot in the bag. Of all the metrics and performance measures I could’ve utilized for on-course performance, I decided to come up with a scoring system to determine which set of irons would best fit the bag going forward:

Hit the green with i210/J15CB from fairway/tee: 1 point

Hit the green with i210/J15CB from rough: 2 points

Miss the green with i210/J15CB from fairway/tee: -1 point

Miss the green with i210/J15CB from rough: 0 points

I utilize SkyCaddie 360 (paired with my SkyCaddie Lynx GT) which is great for tracking stats but the visual data afterwards is hot garbage. If you take the five rounds of golf with the i210s and compare them to my previous four rounds with the Bridgestones and then picked one really great round to see what the J15CBs could do on days where I was on fire, it was really eye opening. 

Avg Score for Ping i210s: 7.6 points.

Best Score: 9 points

Averaged 9.3 hit greens from fairway/tee, 3.7 missed greens from fairway and 1 hit green from rough. Majority of misses were left and short of my target. Less than 15% of my misses were long or right. 

Avg Score for Bridgestone J15CBs: 6.2 points

Best Score: 8 points

Averaged 7.6 hit greens from fairway/tee, 4.8 missed greens from fairway and 1.4 hit greens from rough. Misses favored short and left but almost 30% of my misses were long or right. 

On a side note, my averages don’t total 18 and that’s because I eliminated any approach shot into the green that wasn’t an i210 or J15CB. Most of the par 5s were a 3 wood or hybrid from the fairway to either a layup distance for my Callaway 52* or a simple chip from off the green. Also, there’s the occasional par 3 that required a hybrid off the tee.


5.       Play it or Trade It? (20 out of 20 points)

Well, I sold my Bridgestones back in early October so…that would be a ‘play it’ for me. This combination of low spinning head with a low launch/low-mid spin has really done wonders in the ball flight. The increase bounce and sole design on these irons really work well in the wet conditions we’re starting to see here in the Houston area. These irons have really worked out great for me and the benefits far outweigh the negatives.


6.       Final Score (91 out of 100)

Final Performance Comments

Did I expect the i210s to be substantially better than the J15CBs? No, and I was proven wrong. I’ve never truly given Ping a second thought in the iron department. My premonition towards their irons was that they favored a mid to higher handicapper who needed a lot of forgiveness and offset. Turns out this low handicapper really struck gold with this setup. The higher bounce on the i210s (6*- 13* vs 3*-7* on the J15CBs) really helps in the soft conditions. I didn’t find these clubs to really dig in wet conditions with my steep swing. It was quite refreshing to know that I can really go after the ball with a hard swing and not find a huge divot in the fairway afterwards. Mishits weren’t so punishing that you found yourself well off target. The mishit for me is a little out on the toe. Distance loss out on the toe was around 7-9%, but the ball stayed relatively online to the target. I’ve got a lot of confidence in this setup to know if I really need to hammer down on a shot, I’m not going to lose it right and the solid shots will result in a 3-6 yard fade. From the scratch to the 15-handicapper, I would strongly suggest you give these a look when you’re in the market for a new set.


Here’s the new setup:



2017 TM M1 w/ Oban Black 65 05 tipped 1/2"

Cobra F7 3 wood w/ HZRDUS Black 75 6.5

Cobra F9 19* hybrid w/ Hzrdus Black 85 6.5

PING i210 4-UW w/ Dynamic Gold X100

Ping Glide 2.0 Stealth 54* w/ AWT 2.0

Callaway MD3 58* C Grind w/ Dynamic Gold S400

Odyssey O-Works Versa Tank 38"


This test, though not filled with all the visual references I would like (I need GolfSpyMBP to follow me around with these tests and do some visual editing for the review), was one of the most fun I've had simply because it was rather eye-opening when you take what you see visually and have the stats to back it up. Thanks again to MGS and please feel free to ask questions/poke holes in my data/enjoy my constant rotation of clubs in my bag...however these i210s aren't going anywhere. 

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I entered to test both the i200 and i210. Love them. I just saw the i210’s for the first time and they’re amazing looking. They look great.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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1 hour ago, Danbrook said:

Stage one is up! Hope you all enjoy the read!

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using MyGolfSpy mobile app

Nice job Jaime...I said it in the PM thread, but that is the smoothest 9 handicap swing I've ever seen.  Lefty's always have such a nice looking swing. 

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Nice stage 1.

It'd be awesome if any of you guys were close enough to any of the people testing the i500s to hook up and do a side-by-side.

Looking forward to what else you guys have to say,

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Love all the vids & pics! Great start! Looking forward to stage-2! What ball will you use during testing?
I used the srixon Z star for all testing other then the range Both on the course and on the launch monitor.

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using MyGolfSpy mobile app

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Nice Stage 1! I thought he was aiming at the cars... then realized he was left handed :D

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2 hours ago, Jon Brittan said:

Nice stage 1.

It'd be awesome if any of you guys were close enough to any of the people testing the i500s to hook up and do a side-by-side.

Looking forward to what else you guys have to say,

GolfSpy_Enrique (500)  and Ricky Bobby (210) could probably arrange that if they wanted.   

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Stage one is up! Hope you all enjoy the read!

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using MyGolfSpy mobile app

Nice stage one. That is a smooth swing and congrats on making it down to single digits. That’s a real accomplishment

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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