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2019 Official Forum Member Review-Srixon Z Star and Z Star XV Golf Balls

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The results of the My Golf Ball ball study generated a lot of discussion and also questions as a result.  If one of those questions you had is, which model of Srixon ball will work best for me, the Z Star or the Z Star XV, then we may the answer for you.

Four of our members were sent a dozen of each, and will be putting them in play on the course and putting green over the next 4  to 5 weeks to see which one works best for them.  They will report in regularly along the way with results form both.  So feel free to chime in with questions and read both their stage reviews to get their full thoughts. 

Srixon Z-Star

Our Four Testers Are:

@Reesedw               Stage 1                  Stage 2

@pulledabill             Stage 1                  Stage 2

@ChasingScratch    Stage 1                  Stage 2

@golfertrb                Stage 1                 Stage 2

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Posted (edited)

DSC_3010.thumb.JPG.f3447b81fc38e36b9262a9d390ec6cdb.JPGIntroduction:

First let me say this has been a great opportunity and a huge Thank you to both MyGolfSpy, Srixon Golf. Also thank you to the Moderators for selecting me, it has been an honor.

I have been involved in 3 previous reviews in my short time here. I was able to test the Bridgestone e6 series first. Next came the Wilson D300 irons. Then the icing on the cake, I was selected last year for a full bag review and the chance to compete in the Cobra Connect Challenge which was at the time the most popular and best review on Mygolfspy, which I am very proud of. Which I lost to @Fozcycle after leading most of the season, which still stings, but what a great person.

This review gave me the chance to test and really play with a brand of balls I had not really given much attention to other than the occasional “found” ball. I have 4 full rounds and 5 9-hole rounds with these balls. I alternated between the balls as I play for the most rounds then play either the Z-Star or the Z-Star XV for the whole round. I started with the XV, since that happened to be what I was playing when I switched to 1 ball for the entirety of the round, then to the Z-Star.

I took them to a practice green and did some putting practice, did some chipping, and also full shots on the course. Now onto the review.

**** Note the Black number in the scoring represent the Z-star and the Red the Z-Star XV..

Z-star.thumb.jpg.f40c21917f093ab3f43525ebd6d8dc1c.jpgXV.thumb.jpg.9076edba02365bdacf9100059c4625c2.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looks and Durability:     (15/15, 15/15)

Looks:

I got the balls in plain white, Srixon name is in Black and the Z-star has Black numbers, the XV has Red. The alignment strip is fairly simple with the ball name in the center of arrows on either side. I do not find this an issue but the text could look a little busy to some.

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Durability:

Both of these balls incredibly durable. Normal play should not create any issues, UNLESS you bounce them off a cart path. I did not notice any real damage due to play, even a branch did not hinder the appearance other than needing a cleaning. I played 18 17.5 holes (lost on 18) and felt it was still in great shape.

 

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Sound and Feel:     (13/15, 13/15)

Sound:

This is where I notice the biggest difference. The Z-star has a nice solid sound, do not think I’m saying hard as I am not. Just a solid dull thud. The XV on the other hand has tick or clickish sound. Which is more pronounced off the putter face. Not something I have noticed in great detail with other premium balls. They both had their own distinct sound off the driver also, XV was a little crisper sounding while the Z-Star a little mute. Based on the XV being a firmer ball that should be expected.

Feel:

This is where these two differ greatly. The Z-star is a very soft feeling ball, to me it borders on almost too soft, it’s not quite there but darn close. And a little spongy off the putter. The XV feels a touch firm off the putter but everywhere else not so much. Both of these balls feel great, just opposites. A friend of mine tried an XV, mind you he use to play Pinnacles 15 for $12, thought the XV felt firm to him not hard but firm. Keep that in mind.

On-course:     (38/40, 38/40)

Driver:

Let’s start with the Big dog. Off the Driver these balls were long and consistent. When struck well (I’m a 16ish hdcp give me a break) the XV was marginally longer. Reduced spin, slightly firmer, red numbers, it all adds up to a ball that launches lower and rolls longer. The Z-star is not terrible off the driver, I just noticed 3-4 yds less distance on equally well struck drives on the same hole. For me both balls did great in breezy conditions. I would put either of these balls up against anything if you need to find a fairway, I tried to turn them on a dogleg to the right, and ended up with a nice easy fade, even though I can and was trying to slice it like bread.

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Irons:

Let’s make this simple Long and straight. They feel killer coming off the face, I gained 3-4 yds across the all irons, consistently. I hit an 8 iron from 153 or so out of light rough, to a back pin. Hit the back of the green bounced over a small sand trap and was sitting 4 yds off the green. 8 iron is my 150 club, I was playing it to be a little short and roll to the cup. And that was with a Z-star. I do not notice any difference in feel between them on iron shots.

Wedges:

I have struggled around the green, to be blunt I suck around the green. But these balls, both of them did what we all want, stopped.  Or should I stopped quickly. As someone who does not get a ton of backspin and only on the rare occasion to I get one to back up. I was quite surprised when I had this happen 3 times in one round, and on several occasions. That tells me either I am striking them great (Doubt it), I’m hitting into a wall, Nope, or these balls spin and stick. And I’d say that is what is happening. Because I know not all of my wedges were great strikes, and this happened on day when I was playing well and poorly both.

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Right off the toe of the putter is the ball mark, and just out of view is the flag. it came to rest about 10' short of the hole.

Putting:

This is where I got surprised. I was playing around on the putting green on evening, and was hitting both balls and noticed 1 seemed to be shorter than the other. SO I did a blind test put 6 balls on the green in random order So I could not see which one was which and putted them. I tried to make the exact same stroke for all 6 balls and one was shorter, the Z-star was about 6-8” shorter on a 10 foot putt. I thought it was just luck that those balls were hit poorly. Nope I did it twice more with the same results. Also this is where I noticed that the XV felt the most different. And the sound the most noticeable. The more I played with both balls it got to the point that after the first couple of putts they were so consistent and reliable that putting was a dream..

348658656_XVputting.thumb.jpg.2e2f15869282de7b0959bb421591eed0.jpg 1656325836_Z-starputting.thumb.jpg.e1af917b7c5fea860dc6e2acd8aaa7f3.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Misc:     (8/10, 8/10)

What can I say, these ball do everything. Have amazing length, fight the wind, spin is insane, and feel is off the carts. The only major complaints that I have are both little things. With the Z-Star I noticed a little Ballooning of the driver and 3w... With the XV I had a few that fell out of the sky like a knuckleball. Not like it had topspin like it had NO spin, off the driver also. For those reasons I had to mark them down in this category. I feel I’m grasping at straws here but isn’t that what we are supposed to do? Tell it like it is..

 

Gamebag/Shagbag:     (20/20, 20/20)

What can I say these balls will be in my bag. And if you try them the odds are they might end up in yours also. These are as good as anything on the market, you will be doing yourself a great disservice not trying them.

 

Conclusion:    

In Conclusion these balls just might be the best premium ball on the market, in my opinion. They just won “The Open Championship”. I would play these in a New York minute. I am so torn between the two, I have just found my new gamer ball for sure. As someone who prefers a softer feeling ball I have to give the Slightest of edges to the Z-star. This is after thinking that the XV would be my new gamer up until a couple of rounds ago when I started playing full rounds with only 1 of the balls. I love the XV and would have no problem playing that ball AT ALL… I typically do not like the feel of the firmer “X” balls, but the XV is great.  The Z-star just feels slightly better, to me. And yes I have read the Ball guide and the line that says

A soft ball is a slow ball; it’s that simple. If you are playing a “soft” golf ball, it’s probably costing you distance off the tee (unless you swing under 85 MPH) and spin around the green.”

Well guess what, I do not feel 3-4 yrds is enough of a difference to my game to give up the added spin around the green. As well as the chance to hold a firm green from longer distances with longer irons. If you feel that you need a new ball try either the Srixion Z-Star or the Srixon Z-Star XV. You will love them. I do. Have I found my new gamer yes, will I buy more Heck yeah. These are great ball go try them..

 And my new Gamer ball is....

Z-star.thumb.jpg.f40c21917f093ab3f43525ebd6d8dc1c.jpg

 The Srixon Z-star. I will be gaming this ball for a long time.. Again Thank you to Mygolfspy, Srixon golf, and all the moderators for allowing me this great opportunity..

Final Score:     (94/100, 94/100)

 

****I was selected in the Logo ball voting and won 6 dozen Golf balls of My choice with 1 of 3 My Golf Spy logos. Guess what, I could choose ANY ball and I chose the Srixon Z-Star. Why because they are that good. I selected them with the Official Logo..

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Pictures to come as soon as the balls arrive..

Edited by Reesedw
update Stage 2
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Posted (edited)

Srixon Z-Star and XV Golf Ball – Official MGS Forum Review

by Chasing Scratch

Introduction

What a fun journey this has been!  First off, thanks again to My Golf Spy for selecting me to review the Srixon Z-Star and XV balls.  My overall testing included: short game practice, 9 full-rounds played, and full swings with lob wedge, 7-iron, and driver on a GC2 launch monitor.

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I had additional research questions related to Srixon’s claims about the differences between the Z-Star and XV:

RQ1:  Are there statistically significant differences in distance between the Z-Star and XV?

RQ2:  Are there statistically significant differences in peak height between the Z-Star and XV?

RQ3:  Can a golfer tell the difference between the feel of the ‘soft’ XV and ‘softer’ Z-Star?

Additionally, I wanted to test if the Srixon ball could beat my current gamer (Kirkland Signature 3-piece). 

Data were input into and analyzed using IBM’s SPSS statistical analysis software.

Let’s dive in!

Looks & Durability (13/15 points)

Aside from fun print patterns (*cough* Callaway *cough*), the golf ball is a boring piece of equipment.  Where shafts have fun graphics and colors, and just about every other piece of golf equipment and apparel can be customized, the golf ball is what it is.  The Srixon Z-Star and XV are no different.  Nothing stands out about these balls. The packaging will definitely catch your eye on the shelf.  That metallic/reflective front cover really pops.

The dimples are a basic circle, the print is black (aside from the XV, which has red numbers compared to the black Z-Star), and the alignment aid is simply the name of the ball bookended by some arrows.  Not a bad looking ball, but just average.

One of the most impressive things about both these balls is their durability.  First, when I took the Srixon balls and my Kirkland Signature 3-piece balls to the PGA Tour Superstore for the launch monitor testing, there were significant differences in cover durability.  I started with full swings of my 58* SM7 wedge.  Within the first 5 swings, the Kirkland had some bad scuffs/tears on the cover.

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The Srixon balls lasted the entire session and ended with only minor blemishes.

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I found the Srixon balls to be very durable on the course as well.  With my length off the tee, I hit lots of gap wedges and 100yd and in lob wedges.  These balls can last a full round, even with hitting this many wedge shots.  When I hit a tree or cart path during my testing, you could not really tell.  Perhaps I am just not that picky about minor blemishes, but for my standards, these balls are amazing in their durability. 


Sound & Feel (13/15 points)

This category aligns with my RQ3, specifically the feel concept.  As ‘soft’ is a subjective term, I did my best to test this claim for myself.  I blindly tossed balls around the green/fringe such that the logos were not visible.  I would then hit a putt, chip, or pitch and try to guess which ball was which.  The amazing thing was that I could accurately tell which ball was which every single time.  Kudos to Srixon for making two drastically different feeling balls.  Here is the kicker:  on chip and pitch shots, the claim seems to be valid; the XV felt more ‘clicky’ than the ‘softer’ Z-Star.  However, on putting, the XV felt softer to me than the Z-Star (counter to the claim of Srixon).

I personally prefer the ‘click’ of the XV.  The ball spins so well on short pitch shots that I feel like I can throw it all the way to the hole and it will stop within 2 feet of its landing spot. The click gives me more confidence in impact than the softer Z-Star.  Both balls are great around the greens; the ‘click’ is purely personal preference to me.

The sound of the XV aligns closely with the feel for me.  It sounds like a solid click on pitch shots compared to the duller sounding Z-Star.  On full irons and Driver swings, I could not tell much difference in sound/feel, but then again, I am fully engaged in HULK-SMASH on those swings!

On-Course Performance (40/40 points)

Off the Tee

You get a nice feeling of compression off the driver face.  I would not go so far as to call these ‘soft’ feeling, but the feel is ‘solid’ and ‘satisfying’.  I get great carry with the XV and I hit some monster drives with it (overall longer than the Kirkland I currently game).  The Z-Star is a very consistent ball off the tee for me.  If you need to work a hook or slice off the tee, either ball will do that for you.  Overall, the XV is longer with my swing characteristics.

Looking at the GC2 data and addressing RQ1, my driver testing does show support for Srixon’s claims that the XV is longer than the Z-Star.  The XV (M = 294.5yds, SD = 11.3, N = 10) averaged 9yds more of carry compared to the Z-Star (M = 285.8yds, SD = 7, N = 10). 

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Cohen’s d for the difference in these two means is .93 and the p = .026, indicating a large effect size and statistical significance. 

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Ball speed was also higher on the XV (M = 168 SD = 1.4, N = 10) than the Z-Star (M = 165, SD = 1.6, N = 10), with Cohen’s d = 2, p < .001!  The practical and statistical significance of this difference is huge! Who wouldn’t want more yards off the tee?

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RQ2 examined the claim that the XV flies higher than the Z-Star.  I found no data to support this in either my on the course or launch monitor data with the driver (M = 93ft for both).  However, the MGS robot testing did show significant differences in the two balls (XV peak height was 124 compared to 116 of the Z-Star) with a Cohen’s d of 1.04 (large effect size), so, there is that!  What is interesting to note, the MGS ball test showed that the XV and Z-Star averaged the same carry of 281yds.  Very confusing overall, which counters the Srixon claims as well as my results.

Approach

On the course, these balls hold the green phenomenally well (even on thin shots).  Most of my full swings and inside 100yd pitch shots stop within 2ft of their pitch mark on the firm clay-soil Texas greens.  Playing in Branson Missouri on Bent grass with sand greens, I had substantially more pull back on full wedge and iron shots, so take that into consideration.

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Looking at the 7iron shots, the XV and Z-Star averaged the same 185yds of carry but the Standard Deviation was tighter on the XV (SD = 3.7) compared to the Z-Star (SD = 6.1).  The Z-Star averaged 2yds more of carry on the full lob wedge shots (M = 102yds, SD = 4), compared to the XV (M = 100yds, SD = 3).  Overall, on the scoring irons, the XV was more consistent for me.  I found no statistically significant data to support the Srixon claim that the XV is longer than the Z-Star on the irons and wedges (neither did the MGS robot test).

 1686295947_MeanCarrychart-resize.jpg.ba26a2d13a5542ad52cc7ce32bceb152.jpg

Concerning the claim that the XV has a higher trajectory (mid-high) compared to the Z-Star (mid), I found no statistically significant support for this claim with a 7 iron (difference in peak heights less than 1ft).  Given that I am no robot, I tested the data for normality (it passed) and removed outliers.  The MGS robot test actually showed the Z-Star to peak 2ft higher than the XV with the 7iron.  I am calling bunk on the difference in trajectory claims overall, and the distance claim (aside from the driver).

Ball Flight

These balls will do whatever you want them to.  Cut, hook, high, low, they are really at the discretion and ability of the golfer.  I find the XV to hold better in high wind conditions, (the XV, M = 1,842rpm, spins less off the driver for me than the Z-Star, M = 2,299rpm).  This truly is a tour-level ball. For the types of courses I play, I want the ball to stop very close to its pitch mark. Both of these balls do that for me, spinning at 11,000rpm on 100yd lob wedge shots (XV) and 10,152rpm (Z-Star).

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Around the green

I was skeptical of the ‘Spin Skin’ technology that Srixon touts.  However, these balls spin so well off my SM7 wedges on pitch shots.  Throw it a few feet short of the hole and magic.  I have holed out from off the green in 8/9 rounds I have played with these balls.  How’s that for performance!

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On chip and run shots with a 7iron, I have stopped the ball inside of 3 feet more so than ever in my life.  Both balls perform the same to me in this area; I just prefer the ‘click’ of the XV. One round in particular comes to mind in this category.  I was playing a new to me course and missed all but one of the greens on the front 9.  You know what I shot on that front 9?  Even par.  That is how good these balls are around the greens for me.

Putting

While the two balls have a discernably different feel off the putter face, they both roll the same to me.  I have had no more than 32 putts in each of my rounds, regardless of which ball I use.  I mark my ball with three parallel lines, so I do not use the pre-marked alignment line at all.  I did not find any need to change the way I putt when using these balls.

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Bottom line

These balls are very good performers (especially when you compare them to the higher priced tour-level balls like the Pro V, Callaway, and TaylorMade offerings).  Durability is great, spin is great, distance is great.  Did I mention these balls are great?

Miscellaneous (7/10 points)

Here is where I have to be critical of Srixon.  Given the magnitude of the MGS ball study and the #finditcutit campaign, I started Epsom Salt testing my golf balls.  To be fair to Srixon, I have found it very rare to find a model or brand of golf ball that is overwhelmingly perfectly balanced.  When I pulled 6 balls of each model, the XV had 2/6 that were ‘perfect’ and the Z-Star had 1/6.  For a company that owns every part of the manufacturing process, this was a little disappointing to me. 

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Game Bag or Shag Bag? (20/20 points)

I have invested in the XV as my new gamer!  It is a few yards longer with the mid irons than my former Kirkland, many yards longer with the driver, and the improvement in durability is not even close.  While it is a bit more expensive than the Kirkland balls, it is more than a fair price for a tour-level ball.  At $8-10 cheaper than Pro V1, it is a great buy.  I think it is best for the single-digit high-swing speed golfer, but anyone could play well with it. 

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Conclusion 

In conclusion, the Srixon Z-Star line might be the best bang for your buck in the Tour-level ball category.  If you do not want to buy in bulk from the DTC model companies to get a discount, these balls are an excellent buy.  They are long off the driver, spin and hold the green with mid irons, and give total control over greenside and 100yd and in shots.  Hit a tree and still play it?  I have.  The durability is among the best I have ever played.  Who could ask for more?  The XV is the winner for me over the Z-Star.  The extra distance off the tee is hard to beat when they are statistically the same in every other category.  I shot my second ever under par round with the XV!  Do yourself a favor and try a sleeve!  Time to update the signature!

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Total Score:  93/100

 

Edited by ChasingScratch
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Srixon Z STAR and Z STAR XV - STAGE 2 - golfertrb

I want to start by again saying a HUGE “Thank You” to both Srixon and MyGolfSpy for affording us the opportunity to review these balls. I started this review with the commitment to take the responsibility seriously and I have but I have also thoroughly enjoyed myself! This has been fun! This test has exposed me to a golf ball that I have never tried and likely wouldn’t have and I would have been missing out because these balls are extremely good.  

I have played these balls extensively since receiving them – 20 rounds of golf (2 9-hole rounds and 18 18-hole rounds) and 15 focused short game/putting practice sessions at the golf course in my neighborhood. I also had the ability to walk out on the course and just hit shots from 150 yards and in with each ball playing from the fairway and rough, good lies and bad to see how the balls performed in “real life” situations. 

Looks & Durability (13 out of 15)

Looks: I commented in my Stage 1 that I found the packaging a bit “cartoonish” initially. I didn’t mean it in a derogatory way and in fact, I have come to really like it – it’s bold and distinguishes it from the competition. The balls themselves are distinguished by the brightness of the white. Srixon calls it “Pure White” and it is brighter than most premium balls, which I have come to appreciate because it is easier to see. I also really enjoy the logo – it is simple and clean with a bit of flair. These are clearly quality golf balls. 

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Durability: One the of the things that jumped out at me while doing this review was the exceptional durability of these balls. As I have said throughout the review, any urethane golf ball is going to show scuffs, marks and damage over the course of a round of golf due to the repeated abuse the golf ball endures. Typically, I don’t pay too much attention to the durability of a golf ball unless it is really poor, but the Srixon balls proved to be exceptionally durable for me. I found a hard wedge struck pure leaves a mark, but I have played 18 holes and not be able to tell the ball had been hit other than the initial shine of a brand-new ball being worn off. Hitting a tree or a cart path is going to leave a mark but under “normal” playing conditions the durability is quite good. I found them to be on par or better than ProV1, ProV1x and TP5x.

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All those balls experienced damage through the normal course of play but the durability was fantastic IMHO.

Sound & Feel (12 out of 15)

Having the opportunity to play and review both the Z Star and the Z Star XV was quite interesting because both balls are exceptional and have very different sound and feel profiles. Both balls are what I would consider soft and responsive but different levels of softness. The cover of both balls is soft and easy to press your thumbnail into and feels very similar in that regard to other quality balls such as ProV1 and TP5. In fact, the biggest and most significant differences between the two balls are, for me, sound and feel. The Z Star has very soft feel and provides a muted sound across all clubs. The feel around the greens is extremely pleasant and the ball feels sticky in relation to the wedge. The softness gives the perception of spin, but I found both balls to respond around the greens essentially the same and honestly both balls sound the same to me around the greens. The Z Star is a bit too soft for my liking with the putter but that is totally personal preference and something I could get used to, but I prefer the XV. The XV is soft but has a more substantial feel to me with the putter and something I thoroughly enjoy but more on that in a bit. The XV gives a solid thwack with the driver and a crisper sound with the iron’s vs the muted sound of the Z Star. I found the Z Star a bit softer than the ProV1 but very close, while the XV is more in line with the ProV1x and TP5x. The feel of the XV is hard to explain but it doesn’t feel hard to me at all but rather, solid or as I already said, substantial. The only place the difference in feel and sound had any appreciable impact on performance was with the putter. Putting is a strength of mine – I have a long slow stroke with little or no “hit” similar to a Crenshaw or Mickelson and how a ball feels has a tremendous impact on my ability to control speed. The XV seemed to fit my stroke perfectly. I have had my best putting rounds EVER during this review with the XV. My last 8 rounds with the XV are as follows: 22,27,24,25,27,29,21,25 for an average of 25 putts over the last 8 rounds. The XV rolls out really well for me and feels ideal for my stroke – not too hard or too soft but as story goes, the XV feels “just right.”

On-Course Performance (39 out of 40)

These balls performed so, so well on the course. I have shot two personal best scores since testing and my stats have been quite good. Over the last 16 18-hole rounds, I have hit 138 fairways out of a possible 207 or 67%. During those same rounds I hit 220 greens out of a possible 288 or an average of 13.75 greens per round or 76%. Of the 16 rounds, 11 of those were with the XV, however, the Z Star was used in one of the PB rounds and is an extremely good ball. Off the tee both balls are quite good though I prefer the XV – the launch is a bit higher and spins a bit less, so I get my longest drives with the XV. 

One of the things that I really appreciate about both balls is the ability to flight them – with everything from the driver to wedge. With living in Oklahoma, the wind is always an issue so the ability to manipulate the ball flight to get to flags and work with the wind is paramount. I have compared the Srixon balls with ProV1, ProV1x and Bridgestone BX and the Z Star and XV handled everything I threw at it as well or better than any of them. Around the greens the Z Star and XV are both excellent – again the primary difference for me is feel/sound. They both spin excellently – I like to hit low checking chips and high spinners and the Srixon balls were as good as any ball I’ve played. I shot I have really worked on over the years is the 50-yard pitch and these balls are so good – here is a third shot on a par 5 into the wind from 57 yards with the XV – so good:

IMG_Jul302019at24038PM.jpg.b1a24ec1d59fd2c923464000d4e29b43.jpg

Both balls hold the greens extremely well with no issues at all. The Z Star spun back just a bit and the XV is more of a hop and stop which is what I prefer but the Z Star is not excessive by any means. Throughout the review, I have shared with the thread, all the different shots I have hit while playing these balls and the bottom line is – whatever shot was needed – if I could do it – the Srixon’s could do it. I have hit high draws, low draws, high fades, low fades, partial shots, knockdowns – whatever and these balls handled them with ease.

Here was a 9 iron into a par 3 of 136 yards - almost a hole-in-one (Z Star):

IMG_Jul302019at24251PM.jpg.1d0631186a86bf6b1079b1318e2c4706.jpg

One of the things I most appreciated about these balls is that it didn't matter if it was a partial shot or a full iron or a 3 wood - the balls held their line beautifully. This is a 3 wood from the light rough from 231 yard into a breeze:

IMG_Jul302019at24605PM.jpg.6bab9c04d9f3d9d5133b2996703dc9b0.jpg

I touched on this in the sound and feel portion, but I can’t say enough about how good the XV is with the putter. It seems to roll out just a bit more than the Z Star and it matches my stroke so well. I can very easily say that the XV is the BEST putting ball for me that I have ever used. These balls are fantastic and have without doubt helped to improve my scores. 

Game Bag or Shag Bag? (20 out of 20)

This is an easy one – GAME BAG! The Srixon balls are less expensive than most of the other tour ball offerings and are available at discounted prices several times a year which is an added bonus, but I don’t lose many balls so while finances are a consideration, it’s not the most important one when I am choosing a golf ball. I want to play the absolute best golf that I am capable of any time I tee it up and I want equipment that helps me in that goal. The most played piece of equipment? The ball. I want a ball that performs consistently great. I want a long ball. I want a ball that holds greens. I want a ball that performs well in the wind. I want a ball that has exceptional greenside control. I want a ball that putts well. I want a ball that does all of that and looks great while it’s doing it. Does it sound like I’m asking too much? I’m not. The Srixon Z Star XV is that ball! I have been looking for a ball and as Survivor said, “The Search Is Over.”

Miscellaneous (10 out of 10)

I moved the miscellaneous score to after the big reveal because I didn’t want it to be anti-climactic 🙂 The biggest “miscellaneous” piece of this review is that I’m surprised. Who doesn’t like surprises – am I right? I honestly was excited to try the Srixon balls – really excited but I had really no expectation that I would find my new gamer. I expected to do a thorough review and then go back to ProV1, but the Z Star XV is fantastic. It is a pure joy to use and it has helped to shoot some scores lately that I never expected to shoot. I am surprised and I am delighted! 

Conclusion

I’ve been told that I’m wordy and long-winded but it’s an occupational hazard 🙂 So let me get to the point: the Srixon Z Star and Z Star XV are fantastic tour caliber golf balls. They provide varying degrees of soft feel and perform wonderfully from tee to the bottom of the cup. When choosing a club or golf ball we as golfers should be asking ourselves if this new acquisition is going to lower our scores.  There are many golfers who believe the golf ball doesn’t matter. We say things like, “I’m not good enough to notice any difference” or “any ball with a urethane cover is good enough.” But having the correct golf ball does absolutely have the ability to lower your scores and what I have found in the Z Star/Z Star XV is a ball that has helped me do just that. On June 24th with a Z Star, I shot a PB that I thought I would never shoot again much less beat and on July 24thwith a Z Star XV, I did just that – I shot a new PB.

IMG_Jul302019at23456PM.jpg.b4af5370b431968e21cea1669e1d82ec.jpg

IMG_Jul302019at25159PM.jpg.ab6be94561b8a3d56e71774c7b78b001.jpgMy wife said today that I'm having "the summer of my life" - a new grand-baby, lots of golf - "those golf balls" (Her words!) Haha! These balls are long, durable, have great spin on full shots and shots around the green, roll wonderfully on the putting green and all at a great price in an attractive package. What more could you want?

Final Score: (94 out of 100)

 

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Srixon Z STAR and Z STAR XV - STAGE 1

Hello fellow Spies! It is my absolute joy and pleasure to share my initial thoughts about Srixon’s newest itineration of the Z STAR and Z STAR XV for 2019. First, I want to thank MGS and Srixon for allowing me to test and review this new ball. It is a true honor and one that I take very, very seriously. To be a regular golfer and to be entrusted with putting these balls through their paces to determine if the marketing claims are true and if you, the reader, would be interested in spending your hard-earned money to play them, is simply incredible and it is one of the many things that separates MyGolfSpy from any other golf forum I’m aware of.  

My Background

My name is Terry, I’m almost 48 and I’ve been playing golf for the past 28 years. When I was 20 years old, I got into golf when a friend took me to the driving range, and I was completely hooked. In 13 months, I was a scratch and eventually a plus handicap. I was absolutely taken by the idea that how I played, how I improved, how I succeeded or failed was up to me and my ability to control my golf ball, my expectations, my emotions, my attitude – everything. I never played high school golf and the college I attended didn’t even have a golf team, so I learned to play and compete on the golf course with money on the line. I loved the excitement of playing for more money than I had and beating guys with better pedigrees than me. As time went on, with building my career and having a family, my golf game suffered. I didn’t keep a handicap for quite some time and I basically just wanted to shoot somewhere in the 70’s. 

Fast forward to 2008 and I started getting back into equipment and practicing/playing more and by 2013, I was back to a +3.1. In December 2014, I was in a bad enough car accident that it required two back surgeries including a fusion, but I was eventually able to get back to playing golf and I’m so grateful. It took a few years, new clubs and playing different tees but according to TheGrint, I’m back to a plus handicap and I couldn’t be happier to be playing again!

My Golf Game

My game is not flashy; I’m not long off the tee anymore (Swing speed with driver: 100-105mph) but when I’m playing well, I hit a lot of fairways and greens and when I’m not playing well, I lean on my short game. I need a ball that can squeeze everything I can out of the driver but still behave well chipping and putting. I played Titleist balls from the time I started playing until 2007 but I did not like the 2008 ProV1, so I went looking for a ball. I turned to TaylorMade and played whatever tour ball they were producing at the time from the LDP Black/Red to the 2017 TP5/TP5x. In 2018 I changed most of my bag and I went looking for a new ball. I landed on the Titleist AVX which I played until I read the MGS Ball Test results and the search for a new ball continued. I tried the Snell MTB Black and X and the 2019 ProV1 and had pretty much decided to play the ProV1 when I was selected to do the Srixon test. Because I live in Oklahoma, I need a ball that behaves well in the wind. I need a ball that is easily flighted and workable.  I can work it both ways, but I prefer a slight fade with the driver. My miss can be a push if I’m just a bit off or a pull hook if I’m completely lost. I need a ball that chips and putts well because that is my bread and butter and I don’t mind saying right now that the Srixon’s have surprised me so far. 

First Impressions

 I have heard good things about Srixon golf balls, but I have never played one. Srixon claims the Z Star and Z Star XV “deliver unmatched technology with incredible feel so golfers can elevate all aspects of their game to score better.” (Sounds awesome – I’m in!) The Z Star is a 3-piece ball while the XV is a 4-piece. Both have “Spin Skin with Slide-Ring Material” which is a “supramolecular material that creates movable polymer crosslinks to unlock new levels of spin and control.” This is designed to create more friction for spin and control, a softer coating for feel and stain/tear resistance for extra durability. I have no way to really test that, but I plan on comparing the Z STAR to the 2019 ProV1 and the Z STAR XV to 2019 ProV1x. I will also be making comparisons between the Z STAR and Z STAR XV; all with spin, feel and durability in mind.

My first impressions of the packaging were that it looked a bit cartoonish to my eye (not necessarily a bad thing): 

IMG_Jun142019at60022PM.jpg.9fb048f3c50f1c21ffdb1f317b5189c8.jpg

IMG_Jun142019at55923PM.jpg.094aa2fc3d67214a15b4082fc3c2d877.jpg

I did, however, find the brightness of the ball initially a bit off-putting. The “Pure White” gives the ball the look of a cheaper surlyn ball to my eye. I’ve tried to capture the difference between the Srixon, Snell, Titleist and TaylorMade: 

IMG_Jun142019at55800PM.jpg.7a3390cd85798ee56f3bf6e7e219c3e2.jpg

IMG_Jun142019at60317PM.jpg.f35973db10e366fe075e5027763620ce.jpg

When you look at the balls closely, they are clearly high-quality, but the white is really white. 

IMG_Jun142019at60113PM.jpg.ee90affa35cb53d517daeedf958df0b1.jpg

I will conclude by saying that when we were first notified by GolfSpy MPR about testing these balls we were asked which ball we wanted to test; either the Z STAR or the Z STAR XV and we all chose one, only to find out we were testing both. It’s the ball I DIDN’T choose that I am absolutely LOVING🥰 To say that I have been surprised is an absolute understatement. If you have any questions for me during this test – please don’t hesitate to ask – I am here at your disposal. 

 

I’m with you! I figured they’d be good balls but I didn’t expect to enjoy them this much! I’ve played one round with each so far. Which one are you leaning towards preferring?

 

Texas has high winds as well, so too much spin can be havoc off the tee. These things stop on a dime with the wedges though.

 

 

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I’m with you! I figured they’d be good balls but I didn’t expect to enjoy them this much! I’ve played one round with each so far. Which one are you leaning towards preferring?

Texas has high winds as well, so too much spin can be havoc off the tee. Things things stop on a dime with the wedges though.


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I honestly expected to favor the Z STAR but it's the XV thus far that I'm leaning towards. I've played 4 or 5 rounds with both and a fair amount of short game practice and the XV has really surprised me. It has a more substantive feel somehow that I really appreciate. Off the putter it is fantastic and rolls out more than the other for me which is fantastic. I tend to have balls die at the hole and these just roll out a hair more.

We've had a ton of rain and on the softer conditions the Z Star was spinning too much on the greens with full shots. I typically don't want the ball spinning back and the XV just hits and stops which is great. That said, the last time I played with Z Star it was really, really great. I know it's not a competition between the two balls but the comparisons are easy to make.


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Posted (edited)

Just wanted to give an update.

So far, I have played one round with each ball.  Yesterday, I shot my second ever round under par with the Z-Star XV!!!  Used the same ball for the entire round.  This 4-piece ball spins like mad on full and pitch/chip shots.  I had to adjust on pitches and chips around the green for the stoppage factor.

I did get one scuff/cut on the ball after the 7th hole (image below), but it did not seem to affect the performance of the ball at all for the remaining 11 holes.  As many full swing Vokey SM7 lob wedges as I hit yesterday, the cover of this ball held up phenomenally well.

900821057_ResizeXVscuff.jpg.8023a29d9f5a93909926e472d1c9b4bc.jpg

Playing a new course tomorrow and I plan to play the front nine with the Z-Star and the back with the XV.

Edited by ChasingScratch
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Just wanted to give an update.
So far, I have played one round with each ball.  Yesterday, I shot my second ever round under par with the Z-Star XV!!!  Used the same ball for the entire round.  This 4-piece ball spins like mad on full and pitch/chip shots.  I had to adjust on pitches and chips around the green for the stoppage factor.
I did get one scuff/cut on the ball after the 7th hole (image below), but it did not seem to affect the performance of the ball at all for the remaining 11 holes.  As many full swing Vokey SM7 lob wedges as I hit yesterday, the cover of this ball held up phenomenally well.
900821057_ResizeXVscuff.jpg.8023a29d9f5a93909926e472d1c9b4bc.jpg
Playing a new course tomorrow and I plan to play the front nine with the Z-Star and the back with the XV.


The XV is so good. It's the ball that has really surprised me. I'm on vacation this week at Disney so no golf for me but I'm looking forward to next week when I'm home. Congratulations on shooting under par - that is quite an accomplishment! May it be the first of many sub-par rounds!


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Oh and the durability of these balls is amazing. I'm still playing the same balls with 72 holes each. More on that in Phase 2!


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3 hours ago, golfertrb said:

Oh and the durability of these balls is amazing. I'm still playing the same balls with 72 holes each. More on that in Phase 2!
 

I noticed that with the one Z Star I had in the bag, 2 rounds in and looked like new compared to my 6 holes in ProV1.

I would still be using it, but it decided to go chasing rabbits in the trees and I couldn't get it to come back. 😉

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Played 18 holes today with the Z-Star (same ball for 17 holes). Hit a tree hard once and not a single scratch or scuff on it.

 

I do think that the XV might be better in the wind for me. I had trouble with too much spin and the Z-Star getting climbing and falling short on full shots from 130yds and in. Wind was blowing a consistent 18-20mph for the entire round.

 

 

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I noticed that with the one Z Star I had in the bag, 2 rounds in and looked like new compared to my 6 holes in ProV1.
I would still be using it, but it decided to go chasing rabbits in the trees and I couldn't get it to come back. 


I have been extremely impressed with the durability of these balls. I would have thought that the “spin skin” would have made for a less durable cover. So far I couldn’t be happier with it!


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I noticed that with the one Z Star I had in the bag, 2 rounds in and looked like new compared to my 6 holes in ProV1.
I would still be using it, but it decided to go chasing rabbits in the trees and I couldn't get it to come back. 


I’ve had the same Z Star in play for 108 holes.


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      ·       Cleveland RTX 4 (50º MID, 54º MID, 60º MID)
      ·       Srixon Z-STAR XV
       
      Miguel Angel-Jimenez – Champions Tour – Chubb Classic – Naples, Florida (7th Champions Tour win)
      What’s in Miguel’s Bag:
      ·       Srixon Z-STAR
       
       

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