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2019 Official Forum Member Review - Snell MTBx Golf Balls

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2019 Official Forum Member Review - Snell MTB-X Golf Balls

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@Brjpool  - Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@DaveP043 - Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@gchester33  - Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@GC70  - Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@KevinE - Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@josmi15  -  Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@newballcoach  -  Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@Shankster - Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@tehuti  -  Stage 1  -  Stage 2

@Wedgie  -  Stage 1  -  Stage 2

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Posted (edited)

am really excited to review the Snell MTB-X. It is a different ball than I am used to playing, however it is a switch I’ve been thinking about for a while. Going from a Bridgestone B330 RXS which is a softer ball to something that is advertised as a firmer, higher spinning ball. I originally chose the Bridgestone after testing it against several Titliest and Callaway models. I liked that it was forgiving but seemed to hold most greens. However as I have improved as a golfer in my ball striking I have found that I want more spin and hold on the greens, especially on faster greens.

I have been playing golf for about 7 years, but I have been playing golf as a serious hobby for the last 3 years. I play golf in south central Kansas, in and around Wichita. I love the game of golf, because no matter how many times you play, it is always a challenge against your best round, it’s a challenge to lower your handicap. It is also a great way to spend time with friends and to meet new ones.

What I need from my ball is to hold the green. A few years ago I would have said I need by ball to be forgiving. Today I need by ball to have spin and to stop. So for me the most important thing is to have the ball spin, check up and stop both off my irons, wedges and around the green.

I normally play a Bridgestone B330 RXS, I have played this ball exclusively for the past three seasons. Recently I have been thinking about another round of testing to see if this is still the best ball for me. This testing gives me a great excuse to buy a few dozen different balls and play around with them. I picked the Bridgestone because it felt good off the club, flew pretty well and had more spin than my previous ball. My current handicap is a 10.7 according to the USGA. That is down from 12 last season and 15 the season before that. I play at least 2-3 times a week during the golf season and practice both during the season and during the off season. My goal is within the next few years to drop down to 5 handicap.

 My typical ball flight is medium to high with a slight fade. Driver and irons are medium flight while my wedges tend to be a higher ball flight. When I miss my shot it’s left. When I miss I tend to over rotate and close my club face too much and I miss left.

My golf game is pretty solid all around, but I have flaws just like very golfer. My putting is spotty most of the time. My driving is a strength, I am accurate and usually 280-290. My short irons and wedges are a strength of my game. However long irons could definitely use some improvement.

As I move on to the official review of this club I’ll be trying out new things, trying to test the ball in every type of condition and shot that I can, so that should be an adventure. I’ll also be playing it against several other balls of similar caliber to see if it really is better or worse than they are and if buying direct is the way to go. I would love some feedback on what you all would like to see, I’m sure there are people who have creative ideas or have things they would like to see from a ball that I don’t, so feel free to share those with me and I’ll do my best to review those aspects of the ball. I apologize for the lack of pictures on this stage one, I’ll make up for with my stage two I promise.

Edited by Brjpool
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Snell MTB-x-Official MGS forum review by Bryan Pool

 

It's been a little while since stage one went up and I have had a lot of time to test and review the snell MTB-x. Bottom line up front, these exceeded by expectations and they are going to be going in the bag full time for me. I tested against Pro V1, Bridgestone Bx330 which had been my previous gamer as well as the TP5x. I spent time around the practice green and the course. I did not spend time on the range because I didn't want to waste any balls. When I was on the course I played multiple balls and tried to hit a multitude of shots, working hard to eliminate poor strikes from comparison. I played a total of ten rounds, using multiple balls and comparing them against each other. I spent close to three hours just on the putting green practicing different lengths and types of putts. A quick overall for the Snell MTBx. If you are a mid to lower handicap player who strikes the ball well and is looking for a ball that will spin and stop on the green as well as roll pure on the green. This is a definite winner. If you are a higher handicap (15 and up) I would not recommend this ball to you. It is not forgiving if you mishit a shot and it's not going to stay online for you. It will spin sideways if you cut across the ball with your strike and punish you for it. 

 

 

Looks and Durability 11 out of 15 points

 

I enjoyed the simple italic writing of "Snell" on the ball. The alignment aid for putting is not something I use but if I did I would say it's lacking a little bit. Durability was good. One ball can absolutely hold for multiple rounds as long as it does not come in contact with rocks or the cart path. I did see after any contact with tree trunks, rocks and the cart path the softer cover would have abrasions to it. 

 

 

Sound and Feel 10 of 15 points

 

The Snell MTBx definitely lets you know if you struck it well or not. If you strike it well you don't even feel the ball come off the club. It feels just like you didn't hit anything. If you hit badly it will feel clunky and heavy. I found that if I bladed it especially around the green I heard dull sound and it felt hard. There felt like there was very little give to it. If I hit it well I heard a small "tink" sound right after I came through the ball. I do like a ball that lets me know immediately if I did something wrong through feel and this ball does that. With my previous Bridgestone ball it felt soft which makes sense because of the softer ball but it was also bad about not letting me know I hit it badly right away. 

 

 

On course Performance 33 of 40

 

Off the tee this ball immediately impressed. I kept track for first two rounds my driving distance with my current bridgestone vs the Snell. The Snell out drove the bridgestone by an average of 15.5 yards. I will say the bridgestone certainly has more forgiveness if you miss hit but if you strike the ball well and don't need that forgiveness than the Snell is the distance winner there. I enjoyed that the Snell also does not get high, it has a very low piercing ball flight off the tee. 

 

With my irons the Snell excelled again. One of the things I have had a complaint with the bridgestone BX330 is that I would hit a great approach shot and it just wouldn't hold the green. Even on courses where the greens were slower. The Snell did not have this problem. A few times with my wedges I even got back spin from the snell. On average my experience I could hit the snell and expect it to stop within 3-4 feet of the landing spot. I had one long hybrid shot from about 180 and the snell hit the green and stopped within foot just a couple of feet from the hole. that certainly impressed. The Snell can definitely get up in the air with the short irons and wedges but it still has a lower ball flight in the long irons and a middling ball flight on the mid irons. It certainly does not get up in the air as easily as some other balls I have played. 

 

Around the green and on the green is where I felt the Snell soared. Around the green with chipping it was very easy to chip aggressively and know I could get the ball to check up. The guessing game of will it check up or will it not was gone. I actually hit some chips short at the beginning of testing because I was expecting more roll out and did not get it. I would say that the Snell is right up there with the ProV1 and TP5 in terms of spin and stopping power around the green. It is way above the bridgestone BX330 in terms of spin and stopping with chipping and short pitches. On the green the ball rolled well. Although I give good old scotty cameron a lot of that credit I did not see any flaws with the way the ball rolled on the green. easy to control distance and the ball did not skip or hop off the putter it had a nice smooth roll from putter to hole. I do not personally use the alignment aid on the golf ball for putting. For some reason my eye is better when I simply stand over and use only the alignment aid on the putter and go. If I used the alignment aid on the ball though I would say the alignment aid on the Snell is lacking. I would most likely use a sharpie to draw a black line over the one that is there. 

 

 

Miscellaneous  9 of 10

 

I think that Snell as a company is doing the little things right. giving a discount for bulk ordering. Free shipping. Simple nice design. Multiple offerings. I gave them a 1 point knock because I would like to see golf ball companies say this ball isn't for you if. I will say this ball is not for the high handicap player or the weekend hacker. If your handicap is not below 15 or even 13 this ball is not for you. Your scores probably would not improve using this ball. 

 

Game bag or Shag bag 20 of 20

 

This ball is absolutely going into my game bag. This ball delivered more distance off my drives, great spin and stopping power on approach and around the green and great roll when putting. I am ok with the fact that it isn't the most forgiving ball. I have improved to the point where I can't use the excuse of its the ball or the equipment anymore. It's me, when I miss hit the ball it's going to punish me but I am ok with that and the benefits that it provides me outweigh the occasional miss hit that turns into a slice into the rough. 

 

Conclusion 83 of 100 points total

 

If you take one thing from this review, TRY THIS BALL OUT! if it's not for you, hey at least you know. If it is as good or better than your current ball it's probably cheaper than your current ball. I would consider this ball a must try for anyone under a 15 handicap. For me I'm so glad I got selected to do this because Snell has earned by business. I hope anyone reading this found this helpful. 

 

 sorry for the lack of pictures, I had a while bunch ready to go but they would not upload!

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Well I'm back again with another chance to review a Snell golf ball, this time the MTB-X. My thanks go to Snell, for providing the balls, and to MyGolfSpy for selecting me out of all the very qualified applicants.

An introduction to me, I'm a 63-year old Geotechnical Engineer, living in the Washington DC suburbs. I play golf a bit further west, at Stoneleigh Golf Club in Round Hill, VA. Stoneleigh is on the eastern flank of the Blue Ridge. The course is pretty hilly, lots of uphill and downhill shots, with rolling to really severely contoured greens. The greens are generally moderately firm, its not possible to stop a ball with trajectory alone, spin is important. Its not really long, only 6800 yards from the back tees, but it doesn't need to be. The course is pretty breezy most days, so dealing with the wind is important.

I've been playing golf since I was a teenager, so I'm approaching 50 years of experience. I was largely a hacker, maybe a 15-handicap at best until I joined the club in the early 90s. Since then, with the help of a couple of lessons, a good bit of practice, and lots of play, I've become much better, currently bumping into a 4 handicap. I love to play, and love even more to compete. Lucky for me, my wife is the same. Almost all of our vacations involve golf, we own a condo in the Pinehurst area, golf is a huge part of both our lives. I play club tournaments, and on the inter-club leagues. And when my wife and I play together, we're always playing a match “for all the money in the world.”

A quick equipment summary: I just replaced my driver over the winter. Through a fitting session at Mid South in Pinehurst, I ended up with a Calloway Rogue SubZero with Graphite Design YS-Six shaft. It lowered the spin over 1000 rpm, as compared with my old Titleist 910, so I've gained 15 or 20 yards off the tee. With just under 100 mph clubhead speed, I'm carrying the ball 240 or a little more. Irons are AP-2 714, with Vokey wedges of various ages. Putter is an old Ping G5i (with the blue inserts) B-60.

As I mentioned, I'm a single-digit handicap, current with a 3.7 index. I generally keep the ball in play, hit a fair number of greens. Due to a change I've been working on over the last couple of years, I'm hitting the ball pretty straight, and a little higher than I used to, with a slight tendency towards a draw. Long irons are decent, short irons are generally good, chipping is a little shaky just now, but my putting is solid. Right now our greens are pretty firm, so I'll be interested to see if the MTB X stops any better than my current ball, the MTB Black.

If you're interested, you may want to take a look at the swing I'll be using to test these:

 

Which brings me to some speculation on my part. I initially wondered if my having reviewed the original MTB, and my current choice of the MTB Black, might make me a less desirable as a reviewer in some way, thinking perhaps the GolfSpies might prefer non-Snell players. But in looking at the list of reviewers, we play all kinds of different balls, so we're probably going to come at it from all kinds of different angles. I'm almost as excited to read the other reviews as I am to do my own testing.

The FedEx pack from Snell showed up a Friday, as expected. One thing good about Snell, they let you know when your stuff is shipped, and give you the tracking number so you know when to expect it. I like the blue box, it makes a good contrast with the black box that the Blacks come in.

20190604_213355_resized.thumb.jpg.8f428bf0802c21bc21de5a4708d72e8b.jpgI noticed again that there's no little “window” to see the balls, and that doesn't bother me at all. The Snell logo is just fine, maybe a tiny bit larger than a Titleist, much smaller than the Calloway. The alignment line is fine, I don't use an alignment line so it really wouldn't have mattered.

20190616_082553_resized.thumb.jpg.dea7f2a4df452dc3a20adbd77674daa3.jpg

These photos show a brand new X, a slightly experienced X (18 holes), and a MTB Black, just for comparison. I kind of prefer the red accent at the top of the S on the Black, as compered to the all-black brand on the X.

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Preconcieved notions, of course I have them. In my experience, Snell makes really good golf balls, and sells them at a really good price. So I'm expecting a really good golf ball. The big question I have to try to answer, in my mind, is:

Does this golf ball do what Dean Snell claims it does? Does it spin less, balloon less, than the MTB-Red, yet still spin more off mid- to short irons than the MTB Black?  Does it have similar characteristics off the driver as the MTB Black?  Similar short game performance?

Then the follow-up question. Is this a better ball for me to play than the MTB-Black?  Do I need or want the extra spin, extra stopping power?

So my first chance to actually hit one of these came at one of my regular Friday practice sessions. I got to the course a little early, and experimented with the X around the green. As with most of this review, I compared the X against the Black. Putting, I didn't feel any difference at all. Both balls went the desired distance, I didn't have to hit one harder than the other, very controllable. Chipping was the same thing, same level of firm feel, same kind of spin when I tried to get it. I don't often use a really spinny short game shot, but its good to know its available if I want it.

The following weekend I played the Snell, 18 holes each day, and wasn't disappointed. But really, the story of that part of the testing belongs in the final report. I hope to do some more on-course testing, preferably just myself and some golf balls on a deserted hole. I'm also hoping to abuse a friend's hospitality and utilize his basement Skytrak set-up to get some actual numbers to bolster my more qualitative on-course impressions. If he's willing, I'll try to present spin and carry comparisons for him too, as his swing speed is a bit different from mine.

 

Edited by DaveP043
Replaced video with more recent swings
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Posted (edited)

Here we are about 5 weeks down the road, and its time to draw some conclusions. During most of this period, I've been working away from home Monday to Friday, getting back for weekend golf, but weekday golf and practice were really limited. Consequently testing has been limited primarily simply playing the ball, along with some specific short game and putting practice.

Just to recap, I've been a fan of Snell golf balls since I was first given the opportunity to review the original MTB in 2016. My conclusion at that time was that the Snell MTB gave me the performance on a level even with the ProV1 that I was currently playing, at a greatly reduced price. I've continued to play the Snell ever since then. When the Black and Red became available last spring, I chose the Black, although I did trade a few of those with a buddy so I could try the Red. In my very limmited trials, I decided that the Red spun more than I liked, and have been playing MTB Black ever since.

So the MTB Black has become the baseline for my review here. My goal was to answer two basic questions.:

  1. Did Snell achieve its goals with this ball? Based on the Snell website, They wanted to produce a ball with low spin and good distance off the tee, but higher spin with mid and short iron approaches. The dimple pattern is intended to produce low lift and drag, resulting in a “controlled” ball flight and good performance in the wind. They say the X has a firmer feel than the Back, with excellent short game control and feel.
  2. Did Snell produce a ball I want to switch to?

At the end of my Phase 1 Review, I mentioned that I had played just one 18-hole round. At this stage, I've played about 10 rounds with the MTB-X. Its been good and hot here through most of that time, which has led to some variable conditions. At times it has been critical to keep things moist, to make sure the grass survives the 90+ degree days, so things have sometimes been a bit soft. When temperatures have cooled off a bit, its been safe to let the course dry out a bit, so we've had some days with very firm conditions. Consequently, I've had a chance to try the ball in differing conditions.

As I mentioned in my Phase 1, my first few shots with the X were a putting and chipping session. I alternated balls, trying to duplicate shot types, trying to feel a difference between the two. In spite of the claims by Snell that the X would be firmer, I really couldn't feel any difference. The response off wedges was very similar, enough spin to control, and consistent, so I didn't unexpectedly come up way short with a random spinny chip. Putting feel seemed nearly identical, distance control was good with either ball. These impressions held true through my playing time with the Snell, I had no problem controlling distance and trajectory (beyond my own lack of talent). So for Snell's claims, YES to very good short game control, NO to the firmer feel.

I wasn't able to do a lot of head-to-head testing during my playing, so the remainder of my comparisons are based on over a year's experience playing my home golf course with the MTB Black. Since I've talked about the short game stuff already, I'll break this into tee shots, irons, and wedges.

Tee shots with the X were very solid. I'm using a new driver this year, a Callaway Rogue SubZero. I changed drivers specifically to reduce spin and improve distance (or maintain distance as I grow older and more feeble). The sound of the ball is just what I like, sharp and satisfying. The ball flight is solid, medium launch, no hint of excess spin, a nice flat penetrating flight. Distance was good too, I saw no loss as compared to the MTB Black. I wouldn't say it was longer, either, although I did hit my longest drive ever on our 14th hole a week ago. Per Snell's claim, YES to low spin and good distance with the driver.

Iron shots are where I noticed a real difference. Long irons were good, controlled ball flight, no ballooning, and reasonable stopping power on the greens. But getting into the shorter irons, 7 and 8 and 9, the stopping power was significantly fgreater in the MTB-X as compared to the Black. I'm not a high spin player, I don't have the kind of clubhead speed needed to reliably do that, and my irons are 6 or 7 years old, so the grooves aren't what they once were. Yet on numerous occasions I saw iron shots stop dead, or take one forward bounce and spin back. The combination of penetrating flight combined with good spin surprised me most going into the wind. I hit a number of shots that flew further than I expected, landed right at the back edge of the green, and stopped dead or spun back a bit. Once again, a big YES to Snell's claim of low-drag aerodynamics combined with increased spin with irons.

Full wedges are to me an extension of iron play, and the MTB-X behaved similarly well with full wedges as with short irons, a quick stop or spin-back. I was really impressed with the performance with partial wedges. I've changes my normal decision-making over the past few years, getting as close to the green as possible whenever I can, leaving partial-swing wedge shots much more often than I used to. This is where I saw the greatest benefit from the X. A case in point, I had a 75-yard wedge with a good 2-club helping wind. I chose my 60* wedge, with a full-swing distance of about 90 yards, and hit a gentle “half-swing” shot. There was no way to hit the shot and get normal full spin. The ball was less than 6 feet past its mark on the green, really remarkable to me. This happened regularly during the trial period, very impressive to me.

Looks & Durability (15 out of 15 points)

I showed some photos in my Phase 1, I like the packaging. Its simple and clean. I like the look of the ball. The logo isn't flashy, but its distinctive. The alignment aid isn't excessive. Others have mentioned the seam, and there IS a noticeable seam but that doesn't bother me at all. As for durability, I haven't voluntarily taken a ball out of play due to normal wear. I've played at least one or two of the MTB-Xs for 36 holes or more before they liberated themselves, and they were still very playable.

20190730_110122a.thumb.jpg.1689c6e60e2930bca51f6b0ff5866322.jpg

This photo shows a brand new ball next to one with about 18 holes of experience. You can see a small scrape next to the number, and I'd say the white isn't quite as white as the brand new one. In my experience, this is exactly the same type of “wear” I'd expect for any good golf ball.


Sound & Feel (15 out of 15 points)

I used the word “sharp” to describe the sound of a driver on the X, and I think its accurate. There's no hint of softness, no dull thud, its a solid “Thwak!” The feel on short shots is also firm, but not rock-like, thre's a feeling of control. The golf balls are solid feeling to the touch. I don't know that sound has any impact on me while playing, but I like the kind of contradictory combination of firm yet controllable feeling with the Snell.

On-Course Performance (38 out of 40 points)

s I've said before, the MTB-X lives up to just about every claim that Snell makes. Its solid off the tee, relatively low spin and pretty long. Progressing into shorter irons, the spin characteristics become more evident, with really good stopping power, while the dimples seem to limit the aerodynamic effects of the increased spin. Its a good ball with partial wedges, with chipping and pitching. The feel is really good for me when putting. I can't say this ball improved my scoring, but it certainly didn't hurt it. I was a 3.8 handicap when I started the trial, and I'm a 3.8 now, I got as low as 3.4, and I'll drop to 3.5 in a couple of days, so maybe there's a tiny incremental improvement, but that also might be just normal human variability.

The question I would have, if deciding between this ball and my current MTB Black, is do I really want as much spin as the MTB-X produces. The Black still stops pretty well, but it doesn't spin back for me. Its not that one is better than the other, but the way I picture and plan shots might make me more comfortable with one or the other. That's my only reason for giving less than full marks here.

Miscellaneous (10 out of 10 points)

I think Snell does a lot of things right. Golf balls are shipped quickly, and you get an email that contains a tracking number, so you can know when your shipment is going to arrive. A nice touch I've had on my larger orders, the packing slip is signed by Dean himself. At least I think it is, its an original signature, not done by machine, but I wouldn't know Dean's handwriting, but even so its a nice touch. The pricing is good, and they've instituted more “steps” in the pricing structure. Along with that, you now get the lowest price when you order 5 dozen, where previously you had to order six dozen.

Game Bag or Shag Bag? (15 out of 20 points)

I would have no problem using the MTB-X as my only golf ball going forward. The decision for me will be based on what I really want from my golf ball, more spin or slightly less. It might be a case where I'll keep both. The Black might be right for softer greens, the X when I expect firmer and faster.  This is definitely NOT a shag bag all, but its not quite in my bag full-time, at least not yet.

Conclusion

Simply put, Snell makes two really fine golf balls, and sells them at really good prices. I don't think you can go wrong with the MTB-X. It seems to me to be the perfect choice for anyone who wants a little more spin, maybe your swing speed is a little lower, maybe your ball flight is naturally lower, maybe you play really firm greens, or maybe you just really enjoy watching a ball spin back towards you. For those situations, its a great ball to provide increased spin for irons and short game without sacrificing anything in the longer game.

Final Score: (93 out of 100)

Edited by DaveP043
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Posted (edited)

Hello again MGS readers, I’m excited to have the opportunity to provide some insight into another exciting product for y’all. I’m also in the process of finishing up the Stage 2 review of a GolfPride Tour SNSR Contour Pro 140 putter grip, so if you are in the market for a new putter grip (or club grips), head over to my other review. (SNSR Grip Review) 

 I’ve previously dived more in depth into how my life and golf have evolved playing on and off for the last two decades I won’t bore you with the details, if you’re interested please give a read to the putter grip review. I’m a central Florida resident and we are into the meat of the summer now but while plenty of locals take the summers off from golf to avoid the heat, I am more than happy to get out there and play all year so there is no concern about not getting in enough rounds for this review. I will say that this review is coming at the perfect time as my wife is now pregnant with our first, so post-Christmas 2019 my time for golfing is going to take a big backseat. I’ve described my game previously but I consider myself an everyman golfer. I’m around a 17-18 handicap, and I don’t feel that I have a truly dominant part of my game. I’m 30 and fairly athletic so I ride with Phil Mickelson in our shared love of hitting bombs. My typical shot is a high draw with a tendency to either get too handsy and hit massive toe hooks or get lazy and block shots right. I haven’t measured my swing speed in quite a while, but based on some 18Birdies data and my own anecdotal evidence a typical good drive for me is 270 – 285 yds and my typical 7 iron (32 deg) is 160 – 165 yds.

 I’m currently playing the Callaway Chrome Soft which I picked based on my ability to pick up large quantities for fairly cheap on the second hand market and because I apparently readily give into the marketing hype around “soft” balls. I have grown accustomed to the way the ball feels off the tee and on the green but I am incredibly interested to see what happens when I do an actual performance study comparing the CS to the MTB-X. Reading through the MGS Ball Buying Guide does not start off on a good foot for Callaway as the CS ranks in the “Fair” category for overall performance in comparison to the Snell MTB-X with a “Very Good” ranking as seen on the chart below.

694771917_1-BallPerformance.thumb.png.b7d8743d019dfcdb7914969548cf9ce2.png

As far as ball construction, it’s hard to imagine these two being more different. Again from the Buyers Guide, the CS is a 4 piece construction with an 86.4 average compression while the MTB-X is a 3-piece construction with 114.3 average compression making them among the lowest and highest compressions tested. The cross sections are shown below where you can see the CS has an extremely thin outer mantle with a very thick inner mantle. While I’m not a ball expert I would expect that inner mantle is what provides the low compression. In comparison, the MTB-X has a medium thickness outer mantle then a large core which leads to a much higher compression. In theory, high compression should lead to a more efficient transfer of energy between the club and ball which should increase ball speeds and reduce spin. Thus we would expect to see the Snell be longer off driver but perhaps less controlled and the Callaway likely to offer increased spin with the irons.

535229908_2-CoreComp.thumb.png.5f7a9f9dfe9ddfb03ea807329ec0d713.png

For a little more information I’ve represented the raw data on ball speed and shot area from the MGS Ball Buying Guide into a visually comparative form below which should help to show the differences between the ball in a slightly more easy to view method. Standard deviations are included which show really just how consistent the ball striking robot performed. 

Data Comparison

1.    Carry is a function of ball speed and backspin. The MTB-X achieves both a higher ball speed and lower back spin than the CS off the driver.
2.    Although driver spin is lower with the MTB-X in comparison to the CS, the MTB-X manages a higher spin with the 7 iron and wedge which is impressive and unexpected based on my assumption of compression effects. 
3.    Iron shot area is split between the two balls with the MTB-X having a tighter dispersion with the 7 iron but larger dispersion with the wedge. The difference in the wedge dispersion is more likely to be within the noise of the data due to the short distances involved. 
4.    The MTB-X has a statistically significant larger driver shot area. This is interesting as the CS averaged more than 2 yds more offline than the MTB-X (-10.8 vs. -8.5 yds) and the standard deviations for the CS were 30 – 50% greater than the MTB-X on carry yards and offline. 


1317032481_3-Ballcomp.thumb.png.a3e0087aecf95c25bdc2d7ccdea120e2.png

The Claims
From the Snell website (MTB-X), the MTB-X offers the following:
1680426559_4-Website.png.469ba52f33381f9001e30449d8b16421.png

I find it interesting that Snell is claiming a smaller core considering how large the core is in the image above; however, the MGS data backs up the low spin and high speedsuperior distance claim along with the higher iron spin claim (in comparison to the CCS). We don’t have any wind tunnel testing to compare how the balls perform in the wind but it will be interesting to see if I notice any difference when playing these on windy days. The firmer feel claim is easily substantiated through compression testing as was discussed above. Short game performance will be entirely subjective, so we’ll have to do some testing to see how that stands up.  

First Impressions

The MTB-X arrived at my house in a standard FedEx envelope with the box wrapped neatly in thick bubble wrap. Not sure if the envelope is as protective as a secondary cardboard box, but if that saves some cost on shipping which is passed onto the consumer then I’m all in. The box looks super simple owing to the fact that it doesn’t need to compete on store shelves against the sparkle and glamour of Callaway and Titleist. (Everyone else has pictures of the box etc, figured I might save a modicum of space here and direct you to the other reviews for those pictures.

After unboxing, I did a quick saltwater float test in order to verify the construction consistency of the balls. I thought 1 of the 12 was unbalanced; however, a second check showed that all 12/12 balls were balanced. I haven’t performed a similar test with a new box of Chrome Soft so I can’t directly compare but it was encouraging that even at this price point we have consistency. The vivid yellow color is bright and luminescent without looking distracting or terribly green. The coloring is consistent and the covers feel soft enough that it they should feel better than an old XL3000 but should hold up to a bit of a beating. I’m going to try to pick up a couple sleeves of other yellow balls to offer a comparison of the visibility of  current yellow options especially from a distance in deeper grass. 

Below are a few images to compare the current test subject Snell MTB-X to an older Snell MTB, a slightly older CCS, and a brand new CCS with a Truvis print (won these in a drawing). The first note I can give from them is how truly bright the yellow of the MTB-X is; it was difficult to get it to focus properly in a photo because of how reflective it is. I’m hoping that comes in handy for all the time I spend in the rough. Interestingly the Snell balls measure approximately 0.003” smaller than the CCS which may affect flight in some ways that I am not completely sure of.

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During this analysis I also noticed some changes with respect to the seam on the MTB-X vs. the old MTB (the CCS is seamless). On the old MTB’s the seam runs along the alignment line while on the new MTB-X  the seam runs in a random direction across the ball. A comparison of the seams is shown in the three images below where the first shows both the old MTB and new MTB-X on their aligment line, the second shows both with their seams aligned, and third showns the seams aligned from a single sleeve of MTB-X. I can’t say with any certainty how that would affect things like ball flight and putt roll but if it’s something you are likely to notice and be annoyed by then it’s worth your consideration. (You will again notice just how reflective this ball is though).

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Test Methods
As with my putter grip review, I like to present my test methods ahead of time so that people can have an idea of what to expect, suggest variations, or tell me to GTFO. The first step I’m going to run is to test a sleeve of the MTB-X in comparison to a sleeve of new Chrome Softs at a shop near me that rents out time on their Trackman. I will at bare minimum obtain 5 well-struck data points which the driver, 7 iron, and PW. Depending on time I’ll try to hit through the whole bag because I would love to have all my gapping numbers figured out. Using that data I should be able to spit out numbers for ball speed, carry, spin, and shot area with each club/ball. I’ll go into more detail on the clubs used for each at that time. 

Next will be a short game check. I’ll run through some standard around the green scenarios on a local practice green and see if there is a noticeable difference in around the green performance based on resultant proximity and personal feel. This should help to determine if there is a benefit to additional spin and or controllability from the soft to the hard ball. 

Finally I’ll attempt to play a 2-ball round at some point. Most people don’t like playing weekend afternoons during the heat of the summer around here so I often have the course pretty open. This should allow me to get a more accurate comparison of the two balls on-course in similar conditions. I’ll provide a score for that round with each ball including fairways hit, greens in regulation, approximate tee-shot distance, approximate proximity from the green on approach, and putts. After that round I should be able to give some quality comparative analysis on ball durability, sound, and feel. I haven’t decided if I’ll play each as an individual ball on each hole or if I’ll play each shot twice from the better position and record which ball I use more frequently. 

I’ll apologize now for this being a long Stage 1, but sometimes you just get it going with the words. I’m looking forward to doing this review and hope everyone has an opportunity to follow it!
 

Edited by gchester33
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Let me start by saying how much I enjoyed this process. This was my first official ball test and I found it be enlightening both in how different yet similar these golf balls can be. For the performance portion of this review I focused solely on whether the Snell MTB-X would unseat my current gamer the much maligned Callaway Chrome Soft. As described in my Stage 1, the CS was not a strong performing or consistent ball but I was easily swayed some time ago by advertising and have been using it for about a year. The majority of my testing was done on-course with some statistical backup done on using a TrackMan. I was able to play both balls side by side a couple of times and gleaned some very interesting takes from the time with them. I want to thank MGS and community here for giving me another opportunity to review another interesting product and hope that I can do justice to the both balls.

I will open this review by saying that I desperately wanted to love this ball. After seeing the ball buyers guide results on the Chrome Soft I was ready to toss it in one of the many Florida lakes (where most of my balls end up anyway). Ultimately, while I appreciated certain aspects of the ball, such as the feel and sound on tee shots and long irons; I did not find an appreciable performance improvement in any aspect of my game. I did find myself nearly unable to control the ball around the green and did not see an improvement in distance or spin characteristics in comparison to the Chrome Soft. We’ll dive into more of that below.

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Also allow me to be clear that this is review is purely my opinion and I think it would benefit anyone to take some time trying balls against each other to determine how they perform.

Looks & Durability (13 out of 15 points)

I wish I could tell you that I have a series of pictures showing how this ball looks after a full round played on it…but I’d be lying because I lose golf balls like it’s going out of style. What I found during play was that the cover did tend to scratch pretty easily during high impact situations (i.e. cart path impact), but I would say it’s similar to the cover on the CS and what I’ve seen from playing Pro V’s. In my opinion that’s to be expected from a premium ball where a softer cover can help to improve feel. If we were mostly concerned with durability we’d all be playing XL2000’s. Overall I believe the ball held up about as well as I expected it to, but I did feel that the optic yellow finish showed more signs of wear than a white ball would have due to it being a thin coating on the outside. I did like the visibilty of the optic yellow finish as indicated in the red circle in the zoomed image below you can just barely make out the Snell sitting slightly out of the bunker here whereas the CS was completely lost from this distance (~200 yards).

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Sound & Feel (11 out of 15 points)

Now this is where things start getting interesting for me because off the tee and with full iron shots I LOVE the way the ball sounds and feels. It feels like you’re hitting something solid, especially when comparing it to my current Chrome Soft. On shots where I was comparing the two balls and felt I hit both equally well I would have guessed the MTB-X was 5 – 10 yd longer than the CS based on feel alone. When hit center it sounds and feels like a rocket taking off. I loved making good contact with this ball. In comparison, the CS sounds gentle even when struck particularly well. The cover on both balls is similarly hard however you could feel a significant difference between the two when struck well. This solid feel also translates to improved feedback on off center hits. You can immediately tell when you catch it right or hit it off center and know exactly where you hit it. With partial wedge shots and around the green it feels crisp and firm and provides a feeling (see the next section for how feeling and actual performance differs) that it’s moving fast and efficiently. The ball gets full marks for sound and feel with woods and irons. I have videos of all the shots I took on TrackMan unfortunately none of them include sound.

 Putting however I was not a huge fan of the sound or feel. I’m guessing it’s a factor of just being so used to the sound and feel of the CS that whenever I struck the MTB-X I felt like it was going to go careening past the hole. I like the soft smack of the CS when putting and again it could just be that that is what I’m used to but I could not adjust to how hard the Snell felt to the point that it sounded and felt kind of harsh when putting, and I can’t say I’ve noticed the sound or feel bothering me with something like a Pro V1. I ultimately took 4 points off for how much I disliked putting with the Snell.

On-Course Performance (20 out of 40 points)

As stated above, based on sound and feel alone I would have thought I was hitting this thing like Brooks Koepka. Unfortunately, I am not Brooks Koepka and this ball did not turn me into him and further apparently a golf ball alone cannot fix everything wrong with my golf game. This section will include both my anecdotal notes regarding on-course testing and the results of my time spent on TrackMan. For me to say that one ball significantly outperformed another I would have to see something stand out beyond the error associated with my own impact (the standard deviation bars on the graphs). Interestingly I think I was trying to push the Snell to better performance as evidenced by the increased swing speed in each test, however it was not enough to show an appreciable performance increase between the balls.

 1.     Driver (7/10) – Hot damn when you hit this thing well does it let you know – I just wish it translated to increased distance. I had the opportunity to play the MTB-X and CS side by side on a few occasions and when I hit both balls well with the driver there was less than 2 yards difference between the balls. I’m guessing with a higher swing speed (I’m 100 – 105 mph) you may see a more significant change in distance between the two balls. While using the TrackMan I wasn’t able to get solid data sets for both balls so in the interest of good science I am not going to include partial information. What I can tell you about my time on TrackMan using both of these balls is that I did not observe any appreciable differences in performance, in fact my best shot on both balls was within 1 yard of each other, the CS had a 0.1 better smash factor, the CS carried 1 yard further but the MTB rolled out 1 yard farther probably due to 200 rpm lower spin rate. Anecdotally I found that the Snell seemed to have a more penetrating driver flight than the CS but I also found that it was more likely to get a little crazy off the tee and led me to lose quite a few of them early on.

 2.     Fairway Woods/Hybrids (7/10) – Off the tee the same performance implications stand as with the driver. Distance was equal between the two but the sound was much better. TrackMan performance numbers show that I was putting a little extra booty into my shots with the Snells (Mr. Overcompensation over here). However even with a lower average swing speed I was getting a better ballspeed with the CS. I did see higher spin; however, my attack angle would indicate that I was not consistent between balls and if I corrected for attack angle I would probably see lower or equal spin with the CS. Even with higher launch and more spin I was getting better distance with the CS, but less roll out.

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3.     Long irons (6/10) – I LOVE to hit long irons. A perfectly struck 4 iron is my second favorite shot after that once a round mashed drive. One of the reasons I love to hit my long irons is that I always know how far that ball is going to go. And as long as I don’t get squirrely with my swing I can be reasonably sure that it’s going to take a nice mid-high drawing ball flight. Hitting the MTB-X with my 4 iron was like a match made in heaven. Penetrating flight – powerful sound – and exactly the same 195 – 200 yard distance as I see with the CS. On long Par 3’s I found no difference in stopping power which would indicate to me that spin was comparable between the two. The Trackman numbers say that I was getting more consistent flight out of the Snell (could be poor ball striking on my part) and I was able to get some increased distance on a few, like upwards of 8 – 10 yards. However my spin numbers were all over the place on both the CS and MTB-X so that can lead to some variation. Correcting for club speed I did still see a slight increase in the overall distance from the MTB-X but it’s within the error of my own swing. Just like with the 3 wood I am seeing a significant decrease in spin and a lower launch which leads to more roll. However it also led to an increase in the total distance distribution which is a big negative for a club I use as a scoring club.

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4.     Mid/Short irons (5/10) – Lets keep with the theme here shall we – if you’re in the 100 mph driver swing speed range, you’re probably not going to see a distance improvement by switching to the MTB-X. As described above, I did like the feel on full shots and felt that it may lend some confidence but it never showed me a significant improvement in dispersion or distance on-course. Part of that is no doubt that I am apparently an “inconsistent” ball striker, who knew! On full short iron shots I did not a significant difference in run out between the balls. Most were ending up within the same distance from the ball mark as I saw with the CS. Trackman number again say I was putting some ass into my Snell swings and was again getting lower spin but launching higher with the MTBX. This led to increased carry and total distance; however, once we correct for club speed we’ll see that increase be essentially negated.

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5.     Around The Green (0/10) – Now we have reached the crux of why I can’t give this ball a high score. I DESPISED wedge work with this ball. There are very few things in life I will say I hate – olives, That Team up North, when dogs die in movies, and short game shots with the Snell MTB-X. I couldn’t control this thing around the green if it was all that was standing between me and a Master’s Championship. They flew over the green, stopped short, spun too much, rolled out forever, I think one may have gone backwards just to mess with me. Here’s how I felt chipping with the CS.

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And here is me chipping with the MTB-X

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6.     Putting (2/10)– as described above I hated the sound and feel of the MTB-X when putting. It was like hitting a rock. Performance wise it didn’t have a significant effect on my putting performance but I felt significantly less confident standing over any putts when using the MTB-X. Part of that is undoubtedly that I have spent so much time practicing my putting with CS that I am accustomed to its sound and feel such that it is what I expect when putting. But I’m not sure I’ve seen enough improvement in any part of my game using the MTB-X to merit going through the process of readjusting to a new ball.

So, did the Snell help me to score any lower? Nope! Is any ball on its own likely to help me score any lower? Nope! Right off the bat I took off 10 points for the Snell showing to performance improvement over the CS from tee to green. Then another 10 points came off for my inability to control it around the green.

 

Miscellaneous (10 out of 10 points)

The fit and finish on the packaging and balls was fantastic. I like that isn’t shiny and flashy and trying to do anything but package golf balls. I’ll say it again, I love what Snell is doing here with this business model and I support them 100%.

Game Bag or Shag Bag? (15 out of 20 points)

I love parts about this ball. I love the price, $28/doz when buying 5 dozen is an amazing deal for a high-quality, high-performance premium ball. I was a fan of the yellow ball and how much easier it was to see from a distance. However, as someone that usually plays pre-owned balls though I can snag a dozen ProV’s usually for around $25/doz or I can save even more and keep playing the Chrome Soft. After the MGS ball test I have a lot less interest in the Chrome Soft but I can’t sit here and tell you that this ball performed appreciably better in real life conditions. And honestly with the amount of balls I lose I try to stick to balls I have no real attachment to. Now, if you’re someone who typically plays new premium balls though and is looking to save some cash, I highly recommend trying the MTB-X out.

Conclusion

I wanted to really like this ball. I love what Snell is doing and I fully believe in the DTC model as a way to provide high quality goods to consumers. My hang ups are simple: I didn’t see a significant benefit to using the ball at any point in my game while I saw some significant detriment around the green and putting. Which leads to say that unfortunately, the Snell MTB-X will not be taking over the ball pocket on my bag.

As I have said in some previous posts, I believe dissenting opinions are critical to highlighting the good and bad aspects of a product. This is what makes MGS reviews so important in an industry where many of the YouTube reviews or reviews on other sites are essentially all 4-5 stars. I think people should try the MTB-X and see if it’s the ball for them but I also think it’s important to look critically at its performance and value to you and you alone. Best of luck and shoot low!

 Final Score: 69/100

(i keep trying to get rid of these pictures, it's not letting me. plz help)

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Edited by gchester33
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 Stage 2

Snell MTB-x (Yellow)

Sorry this took so long! As mentioned before I got to play and test this ball a lot. I tested it against the Pro V1x, TP5, TP5x, CS, and CSX. I tested on the 3 hole loop (3 holes that play just like my home course) and the course. 

Looks and Durability (15 out of 15)

Great looking bright yellow and the durability was outstanding. One great thing about yellow balls is, I believe they hold up better or at least hide the scuffs better.

Sound & Feel (10 out of 15) 

The sound and feel was a little hard for my liking. it was way too clicky off the putter and wedges for me. Sounded and felt great off the woods, very power full.

On-Course Performance (20 out of 40)   

  • Off the tee - I found it harder to turn over more than the others I tested. So that's not a bad thing if you want to go straight. It's long but not longer than the others, it was the shortest out of all the balls I tested.
  • Approach - it has a nice high ball flight that just wants to go straight. It definitely doest have the stopping power of the others. 
  • Ball flight - is one of the highest so I was expecting it to have more stopping power. The ball was very inconsistent when chipping and pitching. The wind effected it a lot more than I was expecting. 
  • Around the greens - as mentioned before this ball gave me very little confidence around the green to play my best golf. 
  • Putting - The alignment on side was great to line up the ball. This is the first time I ever put a yellow ball in play and I had a very hard time putting with it. It was just too hard off the putter for me. The ball would roll very nicely. 
  •  Bottom line - The ball did not help my game. The yellow is easy to see, the alignment stamp is great, The flight was nice, but it just didn't do everything I need it to do. 

Miscellaneous (10 out of 10)

I have no issues with this section. Shipping, customer service, packaging, and the product it self was great. 

Game Bag or Shag Bag (10 out of 20)  

I could not put this ball in tournament play. I can't play a ball that I can't trust to do what I need it to do. Chipping and pitch was tough the ones that should stop kept rolling out and the bump and runs would stop. I can deal with the straight high flight and it being shorter than the others, but around the green I need consistency. The yellow is great to see, but I could not game it. I had a hard time putting with the yellow ball.  

Conclusion

I will not be gaming this ball. It's long and straight, but not the longest. Very durable and the yellow is very easy to track in the air. The alignment stamping is great if you use it to line up your putts. The worst part is the inconsistency around the greens. 

Final Score (65 out of 100

 

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Placeholder Stage 1                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

Hi, fellow Spysters, my name is Kevin E. Wonoski. I have quite a few nicknames, and answer to a bunch of them. Let’s just go with KevinE, for now. I turned 62 years old on June 14th. I love to golf, watch golf, talk golf, write about golf, and just about anything else concerning golf. I do love my wife and children and other things, but I really like golf. I live in Massachusetts. I do about 75% of my golfing in Massachusetts and about 75% of that, at my home course. I do play other courses in New England and usually a road trip or two to New York or some other northeast locale. I have had the opportunity, in my younger days, to golf in California, Hawaii, Florida, New Zealand, Philippines and Australia. If you haven’t already guessed, yes I was in the Navy. I was lucky enough to write golf course reviews/articles for on line golf site. The site is no longer up and running, but it was something that I enjoyed immensely.

My game runs something like this. I play to around an 11 to 12 handicap. My swing speed, last time I checked ran around 90-98 mph.My driver goes about 220 -240, with an occasional 250+. I play around 4 times a week. My strengths, and there aren’t many, I drive the ball in the fairway. Not sure if I consider my putting a strength, but I am streaky good. My weaknesses, I don’t putt for a lot of birdies, so my second shot irons aren’t the most accurate. But, usually end up somewhere close and around the green. So, most of my birdie attempts are short chips or long putts from just off the green. Here lies my biggest weakness, short (inside 25 yards) chips from around the greens. They are stroke eaters for me. I hit a high ball from driver to wedge.

This opportunity to test the Snell golf ball came at a perfect time. I currently play the Titleist NXT tour S (Gold Box), which has been replaced. I tried it’s replacement and not sold yet. So, I went to every on line golf retailer I could find and purchased my Gold Box. I have 6 dozen left, and when that is gone, I need to find a new ball. Have tried others, and just have not found the right one. Maybe just maybe these Snell’s are it. 

Ok still having picture troubles....working on that. Here is a small update on my testing procedures. My home course has no practice facility (chipping area, sand trap, driving range). It does have a putting green. So, the way I am going to run my test, is as so. I am going out early in the morning, before the course officially opens. Around 6 am. I am going to play 4 holes with 4 balls. 3 of the balls are ones that I have played regularly. Titleist NXT Tour S, The new Titleist Tour Soft and Bridgestone E6 Speed, and the Snell. The holes will be a short par 4, a mid range Par 3, a long Par 4 and a Par 5. I will do 50 to a 100 yard wedge shots at the course. Putting will be done on the practice green and at home.   Testing has begun !!!!!!!!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 I have taken the Snell on its 4 hole jaunt, twice now. It has performed well, I have noticed that the distance is a little longer than the Bridgestone E6. As I said earlier, I am currently playing the older model Titleist NXT Tour S.  The  Snell MTB X is comparable to the NXT. A little longer off the tee at times. It's with my iron shots (150 and in), I am having trouble dialing in club to yardage. After the second trip, I decided that I would take the Snell along for play on my twi-light league night. After 4 holes, I went back to the NXT. No fault, on the Snell, just my confidence and calculations haven't reached the competition level , just yet. There will be more to come in the not to distant future.                                                                      

Ok, got the picture thing down. I think. Here are the 3 balls I have used  or are using plus the Snell MTB X. Since, I have used or are currently using these golf ball, these are the balls I will be comparing to the Snell MTB X. I've been told that at my swing speed and skill level, I would be better off with a 2 piece ball. I currently am using a 2 piece ball and the Snell is 3 piece construction. I understand the 2019 Pro V is 4 piece construction. This may or may not be true. At this stage of my playing the MTB, I feel I have been hitting it well, just having a little distance control issues. As far as accuracy off the tee, I have  not noticed any major or minor changes..

 

Snell2.jpg.9bbbf26050249a327a18a50183fec3fa.jpgbridgestone2.jpg.2ef7f133e5eb35c0d6deb89964381eba.jpgnxttours2.jpg.dbf0315e0c6161bcc40eead2b3b1704f.jpgtitleisttoursoft1.jpg.276159287a0ba59514c414833e467644.jpgSnell3.jpg.6be9584ca887d7fc44a64f3cff18829d.jpg

 

 

Also I had a small gallery during a 6 a.m. testing session.

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Day 4 of my 4 hole testing routine............being an early riser does have its benefits....

 

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Still doing the 4 hole routine........Have done it 7 times,  plan on 10 times.  Also, started hitting it 80,60,40 yards. Have been putting it at the practice green and at home. With out giving any final analysis, I must say my scoring with Snell hasn't improved nor has it worsen. I have everything I want computed. so when the time comes to give it my final grade, the numbers and my personal feeling will be the outlying factors.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Day 8...Red skies in the morning.......     Today is 7/2....2 more days of the 4 hole 4 ball test....Should have this phase done by 7/4 or 7/5 ....I must say up to this point, I am mildly surprised at some things I've found in the 4 different balls. But, that is for my Final Stage Report. I hope all the fellow testers are enjoying this experience as much as I am. I am curious in the end how different, or how comparable each tester's final results will be.

 

 

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golf4.jpg                                                                                                                                                                                                    Day 9 Not one of the holes I'm playing..just sitting , waiting for the fog to burn off.........                                                                                    The final day of the 4 hole test is complete.....I have my results/opinion. Have also used the same 4 balls for approach and chipping tests. The putting tests are also completed. I am presenting the case to myself and waiting for the verdict to be determined.

Edited by KevinE
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Placeholder Stage 2                                                                     

 

Snell MTB X Final Review                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Looks & Durability    (# out of 15 points)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. The X has a very professional look to it. Its graphic is conservative and functional. Its packaging is a nice color of blue that leans towards basic but very tasteful. It has a nice look all in all.                         

2. I found that the short term durability was very good. On one of the balls I noticed a little peeling on the cover. But, did not find that to be the case in all the balls *I played. I tried and play each ball for as long as was feasible. Not counting lost balls, I played each ball on an average of 36 holes and/or multiple hours of short wedge shots. I used only newer balls when I was putting testing. Out of the complimentary dozen, I used or lost 9. I still have one sleeve remaining unopened.

3.  The X was more or as durable as the other 3 balls, I played alongside it.

4. The X was not Superman. It responded to cart paths, trees, and any other natural or man made objects, the same way any other ball. It scuffed, peeled or generally became unplayable. It also did NOT float. At least the one I hit in the drink, didn’t.

Total Points           13

 

Sound & Feel (# out of 15 points)                                                                                                                              1. To me the sound was crisp. Not, as crisp as my favorite ball. Which I will name later. It is also no longer in production.

2. Did not try the nail. But, it was as hard as two of the balls and not as hard as my 3rd ball.
3. I found that it’s sound did not impact a thing, the feel seemed to impact my irons slightly.

4. The sound of the driver, when well struck brought a smile. From 4 iron to 8, did not cause much of a reaction to me. 9 thru my wedges, chipping and pitching, was not its finest hour with me. Putting was a nice sound and good feel.

Total Points           12

 

On Course Performance (# out of 40 points)

Off the tee

1.       The X was more than long enough compared to the other 3 balls I used. Was 10 yards longer than the E-6. It was comparable with the NXT Tour S and the Titleist Tour Soft. It compared favorably to the NXT and Tour Soft. Outperformed the Bridgestone E6 in distance. Accuracy was a little off until I got used to it.

Approach

1.       My home course has very tiny hard greens. It is quite a feat to make a ball stop on a dime from 150 yards. On the Par 3’s with my high ball flight, the X held well.  I had some distance problems. Hitting it longer than normal with some clubs. I do experience that with the 2 Titleist at times.

2.       Around the Green

This is the area where I had my hardest time with X. I just never got comfortable on how hard to hit it. The click did not have the same sound or feel that I had got used to with the NXT Tour S. I’m sure it was not the ball but more me. But as we all know when confidence is down so is performance.

3.       Putting

The X putted well. It had a nice line on the ball for alignment. It sounded good and rolled true.

4.       Ball flight

My natural ball flight is on the high side. I also generally hit it slightly left to right with some top spin. Thus, I get some roll on the fairway. That basically stayed the same with X.

 

I was pleased with the X off the tee.  I liked it from the fairways and greens. Not so much as mentioned with the chipping. My scoring suffered noticeably at the beginning of the testing. It started to improve the more I played the X.

Total Points 36

Misc (# out of 10 points)

The X is a very good golf ball. It does what it is suppose do. It is a golf ball for its price, at the top of its game.

Total Points   8

Game Bag or Shag (# out of 20)

The X is definitely a Game Bag golf ball. Just not sure it is my Game Bag. I think the ball itself is fine. I think the golf ball is a very good golf ball. Just not sure it is my golf ball.

Total Points 18

 

Total Points (# out of a 100)           87

Conclusion

The Snell MTB X is a very good ball. I enjoyed it, 85% of the time. My testing was against the Bridgestone E6(which I used for a couple years) Titleist NXT Tour S (which I’ve used for 2 years, and much to my chagrin, has been replaced) and the Titleist Tour Soft (which I am having growing pains with). It is a far better ball than the 6. In my opinion is as good as the Tour Soft. But, it doesn’t compare to my NXT’s. They are my go to ball. But, as I mentioned The NXT is out of commission, I have 2 dozen left. So, a change is on the horizon it may be the Tour Soft or the MTB X. My advice to all the golfers out there is give the X a shot, it is a very good golf ball, maybe even great. It just isn’t MY ball right now. The other thing I heard and read on Golf Spy, and others, when you find a ball stick to it. Don't vary if satisfied.  I like it a lot, I just don’t love it. I would like to thank Golf Spy for giving me this opportunity to do this test. It was a real pleasure. It was work at times, thus the compensation of a free dozen of balls. But, it was fun. It was a joy to read comments from other Spyers and fellow testers. I look forward to reading all the final reviews of the other testers. Again thanks for the opportunity it was a hoot. Keep swingin' it is the greatest game in the world !                                 

 

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Edited by KevinE
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Step right up, come on in. If you'd like to take the grand tour.  Sorry, I figured I'd throw a line in from my favorite George Jones song to start my stage 1.   I've been an avid golfer since 2012.  The year I started getting back into shape.  My game is a few steps above a weekend hacker, in my opinion.  My game has come along quite nicely for awhile, but then it has stalled on me.  3 years ago, breaking 90 was normal, but then something happened. I developed a bad habit and a slice just wouldn't leave me alone.  I had to abandon Driver for 2 seasons due to that wicked slice.  Last season I broke the shaft of my driver, so again another season of hitting Woody out of the box. (3 Wood for those that hadn't guessed, and yes I do have a club cover for it with Woody from Toy Story)  This season my slice is mostly cured, it crept back in on the back nine this past sunday for 2 shots.  I'm from Indiana and we have the greatest weather in the world.  It can be all 4 seasons in the same day. If that isn't great, I don't know what is.  That being said, we get good golf weather usually April to October.  I'm currently stuck on my 16 handicap. It's due to me overthinking and strategizing.  Last round I played, on the front without thinking to much, I shot a 41.  With me screwing up both par 3's with doubles.  Back nine I tried to get cute and overthink the course and shot a miserable 51.  I have a high ball flight and if i miss, it's usually on a pull with my irons.  Strength to my game has been on my short game.  So that's where I intend to test this ball the most.

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I normally play a Srixon Softfeel or XV Star for this test. I love the XV Star, but to be honest I really love the price of my Soft Feel.  I chose Srixon about 5 years ago because no one else played Srixons, and this way it made it easier to always find my ball. That being said, lets dive right in.

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Lets start with my first impression of Snell.  When I opened the package I found that I was really impressed with the packaging.  It just seemed Simple and Clean, which I loved. Sometimes ball manufacturers have so much going on the box and it just looks cluttered.  I'm a pretty basic, no frills guy when it comes to me.  My golf Clubs and bag represent that of me.  The only thing I go a little wild for are my club covers.  So, as a simple guy like that, I appreciated the clean look.  

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This past weekend I took the Snells out to one of our favorite courses and put it to the test.  It was a rainy day, so chipping and putting was definitely where we'd need to test it, if you want to score well. The very first putt, I can honestly say it felt like a rock.  That being said though, I just missed a 12 footer with it.  I stayed with putting for about 15 minutes, and everytime it still felt hard, but it performed better than expected.  I chalked that up to my years with a soft feel ball for this feeling. Since I don't have the length of my playing partner, the only way I can keep it close is to chip and putt better than him.  We normally are putting for par, where as his lag put gets him close, my chip shot onto the green has to close to the pin. So we will definitely be looking into how Snell MTX-B's perform.  

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During this past week I took a sleeve over the the local course, and with permission, just chipped and putted for over an hour to get an accurate feel.  It was finally some dry weather.  It still did everything I wanted from it.  I brought out the EyeLine putting aid and Snell and I got real comfortable.  I was making putts from some distance.  Went back to chipping onto the green for another 15 minutes and besides the 3 that I bladed across the green. The ball seemed to respond just fine. The last 15 minutes, I play chip & putt.  I just find a spot, pick a specific hole and chip to that flag.  No matter where it ends up I get 1 putt to send it home.  

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So this is the type of testing that I'm going to concentrate on the most.  I'll be playing with it, but for those that don't have the long game (I'm going to brag on me for a second, I did bomb it down the fairway the other day 255 yards)  A normal drive for me is around 220.  As I stated, I've had struggles with my slice, so now that I've got that resolved. I'm hoping that I can contend more. And if Snell checks out like I think it will, our sunday matches may have just gotten interesting.  Since there was a delay on our posting, I had a day off and was able to enjoy a full round of golf with a sleeve. I took it to another favorite of ours and we have an island green. So does Snell make it over the water? To be continued.........  
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Edited by josmi15
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I was hoping there would be a few more questions if Snell could stick the Island Green. Well, it did!  Snell held firm and I made my par.  Snell saved the day.

 

As I explained in my Stage 1, I can't compete against my playing partner off the Tee, so I rely on 2nd shot on to keep me in the match.  I need a ball that will stick the green, have enough feel for me to be comfortable, and most importantly, to kick his a--.  My first impression of Snell, could not have been more wrong.  I didn't like the feel from my first time hitting and playing with it. I gradually eased it into my bag for our outings after numerous chipping and putting practice.  I can't stress this enough that from 100 yards in, my game needs to be totally dialed in. My chip and putt game comes into real work now.  Just a recap, my chip and putt game is this:  1 ball, 1 chip from X yardage and 1 putt from there to hole out.  I found the more I used Snell, the more I liked it.  

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Looks and Durability:  13/15
Snell started being a trusted friend out on the course.  I did my best to put this ball through the wringer, I hit out of Swampy lies, Rock Hard Sand Traps.  Perfect sand sand traps.  This ball delivered.  I was honestly impressed. The Yellow ball that I chose also just popped. The only thing it didn't do was float.  I did lose 1 to water. I admit, I took my hat off and had a moment of silence on that one.  After the round I was having with it, I think you all would understand. 

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Sound & Feel:  12/15
I feel that I still need to hold back some on the feel and sound, just because of my first impression.  It felt like a rock, when I first tried it.  It stays in the 12 category, just because I got used to it. Here's the thing, I've stuck with the same ball manufacturer for 6 seasons.  So trying something new is way outside of my comfort zone. I honestly appreciate My Golf Spy's for giving me this oppurtunity to step out of my comfort zone

On-Course Performance:  37/40
Off the Tee: I didn't notice much, I did have my longest drive of the season on 9 at Garret Country Club.  I put some hustle behind it for 256 happy yards.  (I average off the Tee 220) I maintained that average so I didn't gain any yardage, but nor did I lose any. (which is important)

 

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Approach: I've been dialed in this season and it helps when you have confidence, this ball was able to maintain my level of confidence that I've had with my Srixon's.  

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Ball Flight: I'm consitently a moon shot and a 3 hop when it comes to my normal flight. I just commented today that if I could hit a line drive out of the box, our matches would be much closer. 
 

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Putting: Again, I maintain that at first it felt hard, but this ball stops on almost on command.  I typically don't mark my ball I trust the alignment line of the ball.

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Bottom line: Did it help improve my score. I'd like to say no, but i'm pretty sure it saved me about 2 putts a round.  I've had less 3 putts since I switched, and isn't that what it's all about?

 

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Miscellaneous: 10/10
Packaging was tremendous. It was basic and clean. The blue box just popped. The yellow ball is pleasant to look at, and more importantly, easy to find on the course!

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Game Bag material! 17/20

This ball helped maintain my confidence, which enabled me to swing freely.  Which in turn enabled me to have a good weekly match against my playing partner.  For the price, It's worth it!  Weekend hacks that love their Pro V1's would be pleasantly surprised to know that They're not going to lose anything on the course. They just may save some money. (Thought I'd post my scorecard from my first round with them)  

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Conclusion. After more than a month of beating on these balls. Putting them through as much misery as I could muster: swampy, soupy, sandy, soggy, dry, rough, fairway. This ball delivered and then some.  Confidence, this ball maintained that also.  If only they float, or could find their way out of that cornfield that runs parallel to 5 @ Eel River!
Final Score:  89/100
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Edited by josmi15
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Greetings everyone! I am happy and excited to be testing the Snell MTB-X golf balls this summer. I know everyone noticed their performance in MGS first ever golf ball buyers guide, and as a result they were sold out and back-ordered all over the internet. Fortunately, they stashed away a few dozen for me and my closest friends, so we are going to get to test, compare and play these things so we can tell you if they are selling the steak or the sizzle. For the record, MGS awarded the MTB-X the best value golf ball, as well as a score of “Very Good” in their buyers guide.

 

But what made everyone take notice in the MGS ball test was that the MTB-X was the longest golf ball. Obviously that has a huge attraction for everyone as distance is tied to low scoring in golf and not to mention it’s very fun to be hitting it past your playing partners. However the important thing to remember is that the MTB-X was also among the highest shot areas and offline yards in the test as well. So is the extra distance worth the potential for the ball to go farther offline? We will hope to find out.

 

 

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As some of you may know, the MTB-X is part of the 3rd generation of Snell tour balls. I have some experience playing the original “My Tour Ball” version and didn’t really have much of an impression either way. It worked just as well for me as other balls, and it was easier for me to buy balls at retail. We all have heard about Dean Snell by now, and how he started Snell golf balls after working with a few OEM’s, including the original Pro-V1. Dean’s original background is in plastics engineering and chemistry, and a lot of his contribution to the ProV was about adding the cast urethane cover to increase spin. The ProV was the first non-balata ball to reach spin levels acceptable to pro golfers and has totally changed the golf ball market here 20 years later. Dean is a great guy to hear talk about the golf ball (I heard him talk at the Toronto Golf Show) and he is passionate about helping people shoot lower scores.

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I am a high school teacher and football coach living in Kitchener, Ontario, playing as much golf as weather and family allow me to. I have two young children which obviously keeps me busy, but I also have a wonderful wife and family that allow me to blow off steam and relax on the course.I love the competition of golf (being a former athlete myself) and trying to beat your previous best always has something to keep you coming back for more. When I was young it was also a fun way for me to connect with my grandfather, who loved taking me out to courses and driving ranges when I was young. I like experiencing new courses and getting a few hours to myself in beautiful outdoor settings with good friends, but I also play rounds alone as well which allows me to get in a bit more practice. This is my 4th summer of “serious” golfing, where before that it was only a few rounds a year with friends, I have been playing more and more and learning more about the game. My goal has been to try and temper my expectations for perfection on every shot and make sure I am really taking the time to relax on the course. It's a work in progress.

 

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For the last two years I have played the chromesoft X (truvis version). I was attracted to the feel and yes, the truvisyness of the ball. It’s always spun well for me and I had never really considered I wasn’t getting the distance I was from other balls, but after reading the MGS test I have been determined to test a few new golf balls. I like playing a urethane covered ball to help me control spin around the green, as my game from 150 and in is my strong suit. I can often recover from a poor drive by hitting a nice approach shot and then making a solid pitch or chip to try and save par. I tend to get my swing speed up into the 105 range, however it does fluctuate up or down based on the time of year and how in shape I am at that point in time. My misses tend to be blocks or pull hooks, but I’ve noticed some improvement after trying a few new things this year so let’s hope that continues to hold true.

 

Being selected for the MTB-X test is very exciting obviously, as I’d love to see if I can benefit from the enhanced distance and spin rate on wedges this ball provides, while dealing with potentially being offline more often. But because I am looking into multiple balls, I will also be testing the Taylormade TP5, Pro V1x, and Srixon Z-star alongside the Snell. However, since this review is about the Snell ball, almost all of the information will be about that product. I may include some comparisons or anecdotal notes, but you can compare these balls using the MGS golf ball buyers guide at anytime, I really want to tell you what the MTB-X can do.

 

First Impressions

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All urethane golfballs have a similar feeling cover and the MTB-X is no exception. The dimples are very traditional, unlike those hexagon ones on the Bridgestone. If I had to guess, I would think the dimples are a little deeper then in the chromesoft-X, but I have in no way measured them. The box is very professional, coming in a nice blue colour with more of a matte finish. A few years, glossy and bright finishes were in style for golf ball boxes, but it seems to be just the opposite right now.

 

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If this were a retail product I would say the box doesn’t do a good job of attracting your attention to try and buy the product. But because these are ordered online and you don’t see the box until after, they could just slip them in recycled cardboard sleeves and it really wouldn’t matter.

 

The ball feels good, and looks good now let’s see if it plays good! I’m off to the practice green, feel free to tag me in the thread if you have any additional questions. Let’s get it!

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Stage 2- Put up or Shut up!

 

This review opportunity has been unique for me. The first review I did for the Callaway Steelhead irons, I desperately needed an iron upgrade. When I reviewed the st-180 driver from Mizuno last year, I didn't think I would be upgrading that club, so it had a tough task (I still don’t think I’m finished that review). But this time, I knew I wanted to change my golf ball, and I took advantage of testing the MTB-X to compare it to multiple other balls to try and find a new gamer. And I did, but I don’t want to spoil the ending, so let’s get to the beginning.

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Playing a round at MacKenzie Hughes home course in Hamilton

 

As the parent of a toddler, you begin to accumulate a lot of extremely useless knowledge. For instance, I can tell you all of peppa pig’s friends names. I can match any paw patrol dog with their vehicle. And most importantly, I can recite the book, “The Pout Pout Fish,” by memory. This is my daughter’s favourite book, and we read it at least once a day. The pout pout fish is always sad because he has a pouty face, so he spreads the “dreary wearies” all over the place. However, once he gets kissed by another fish, he realizes he is a kiss kiss fish instead, and starts spreading “cheery cheeries” all over the place. The big line in this book is, “I thought that I was pouty but it turns out I was wrong.” I promise this is relevent, because this review turned me into the pout pout fish.

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We all hear about feel in golf. How feel is apparently very important to many golfers. I thought I was one. I started playing chromesoft balls and I thought that I liked it. But there were a few holes in my game. My drives were never what I wanted, my greenside performance was inconsistent and my putting was poor. I figured that was me, but, well, it turns out I was wrong. I thought I liked soft balls, but man, did this test change my mind. The firmness I think helped me “feel” the ball off the club, and kept me consistent on and around the green. So, for me, by chasing the good feeling balls, I was absolutely hurting my game. So, now, here I am, to spread cheery cheeries to all of you and tell you about how I tested the MTB-X, what I found, and what my new gamer is.

 

As a quick note, I may refer to the MGS Golf Ball Test a few times during this review. If you haven't read it, get a life, and click on this link. For my own game, I also tested the MTB-X against multiple tour level balls from other manufacturers. I won’t be giving my opinion on those balls, but I will tell you how the MTB-X relates to them.

 

Looks and Durability (11 of 15 points)

 

The looks of this ball are nothing remarkable to be honest. The logo looks nice, the line on the side (if you use it) is fine. In my opinion there’s nothing about the look to add or subtract from the ball. It’s a ball. The durability has been fine for me, been able to play rounds with only 1 or 2 balls multiple times with the balls showing an acceptable amount of wear. I never found a ball I needed to remove from play faster than I could lose it, which is exactly what I’m looking for.

 

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Some early morning testing, Canadian style!

 

Sound and Feel (15 of 15 points)

 

Sound is tough to describe on a ball. I could definitely not tell a difference of one ball versus another on sound. Maybe I am just not dialed in enough, but that’s what it is. Feel however, is a very different story. Many people discuss how important feel is, and how soft feeling balls feel the best. As I mentioned in my runup, I don’t think they do. I thought I liked the feeling until I started playing higher compression balls again. I don’t like that marshmallow/pillow feeling when I hit my driver. I also found it harder to diagnose if/where I mishit with a softer ball. I found the feel of the harder ball to be much more enjoyable, so with the high compression MTB-X gets full marks here.

 

On-course Performance (35 of 40 points)

 

This was the area where I had the hardest time, differentiating between the different types of balls I was using. To be honest, in many situations I found most of the balls to perform very similar, which I think is a feather in the cap to the MTB-X, considering it’s price point. As far as the MTB-X, I felt like I got a much better ball flight then with some of the softer balls, which tended to balloon and lose some distance.

 

Off the driver I was very happy with the MTB-X. I intentionally did not use launch monitor numbers during that test, but it would not surprise me if the spin was lower on that ball than most others. I was more accurate with the MTB-X and, yes, likely longer as well. How much longer? Again, I don’t have a specific number but I was very happy with how my drives ended up. If you are a high spin driver player, this ball is going to help you.

 

Irons I didn’t notice a major advantage with the MTB-X. It had similar distance and ball flight to other balls, but did seem like it spun a little less. However, it’s likely that was my ball contact as I was able to get a few good ones that would hop and stop on the green with my 8 and 9 iron. I certainly wasn’t having an issue holding greens, I just probably don’t have the skills to keep it consistent.

 

Wedges and short game were another area where this ball shined. I found the feel was great and the spin was exactly what I wanted. I was able to get some very nice spin on pitch shots, bunker shots and wedges into the green. I’m not a suck it back type of player, but had lots of shots that finished at or near their pitch mark.

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Putting was an area where this ball shined for me. I had distance control issues with the softer balls, but once I committed to putting with the MTB-X, my distance definitely improved. I greatly reduced my number of bad putts and was able to hole a few more that I wasn’t sure about. Very happy with the consistency of this ball on the greens.

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Miscellaneous (8 of 10 points)

 

There a few things this ball has against it. There were supply issues after the MGS ball test, which probably didn’t help their reputation. They also have a lack of name recognition, meaning that people give weird reactions when you tell them about the ball. I do find the lack of green grass outlets to be a limiting factor for them as well, as they don’t get any of those, “crap I need balls” purchases that happen at many pro shops. It can be inconvenient to have to order balls and wait for them to come in, meaning some people may use other brands just because of that.

 

However, the biggest advantage they have is performance for price. This ball is, at least, the equal of most tour balls out there and costs $15-20 less than most. You can’t beat that.

 

Gamer or Beach Ball?(20 of 20 points)

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Me and the boys getting ready to hit the course

 

This score was set to be a bit lower, because as I said, it can be inconvenient to have to order balls rather then pick them up. Well, my local golf shop just started to be one of a handful across the country to stock Snell golf balls.

 

I have tested almost every option out there. I like playing tour balls. I may not be “good enough,” and they’re definitely more expensive, but I like the spin and I like the performance. The MTB-X gives me everything I want, outperforms some of the more expensive balls and costs less. This ball is going in the bag. I am glad I had the option to test it and that the ball test gave me some motivation to look at my decisions with what is in my bag.

 

The only trepidation I have is related to the MGS #FINDITCUTIT movement. I have not had any balls that have obviously flown off course or shown clear issues. I know that DTC balls tend to have more issues. I haven’t seen it yet. If I do, I definitely plan on cutting that ball open and see what’s up. Snell balls may have less consistency than others, but I do feel that the price may override that concern and Snell do have a good reputation in this area.

 

Conclusion

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I loved this ball. Not everybody did, but I ran it against the gauntlet of the best balls the tour has to offer, and it shone. Like I said, it did everything I wanted it to and using it actually improved my game over my previous gamer. Did I get the big distance gains over the field that the MGS Ball Test showed? Maybe not, but I definitely gained some distance and some accuracy off the tee, which I sorely needed. My putting improved, which I DEFINITELY needed. This is the ball, buy it, test it, and love it. 

 

Final Score- 89/100! Hell yeah!

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This is how you spend your MTB-X savings!

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Shankster Snell MTB-X Stage 2

 

And... We’re back. It’s been an eventful last few months for me; new job, new house, new car, new GOLF BALL...

 

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Durability & Looks

 

7 out of 15

 

Reasoning behind this is for the seam and the odd shaped dimples that seem stretched out near that seam. I hit the sand trap once with a ball (lost it unfortunately) but it took a beating. Paint came off and had the lovely starburst from the sand. The cover seemed to get cut up rather easily.

 

Sound and Feel

 

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7.5 out of 15

 

These have a bright clicky noise when struck properly. The feel is between a rock and a mushroom. Some of them felt different than the others, or should say sounded different. I didn’t care for the feel of them around the greens.

 

On course Performance

 

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30 out of 40

 

I played my best round of the year with this ball, but I felt like I had to work extra to get it to grab on the greens. It taught me to play for a little roll out, which turns out I can judge that shot better than the pin high and stop shot.

 

I didn’t notice any huge distance gains, or losses with the MTB-X. Nearly the same performance as the ZStar, PV1X, and Tour B XS. Probably couldn’t notice anything much at all in distance. Around the greens I will rank them in last place though.

 

1. ZStar

2. Tour B XS

3. PV1X

4. MTB-X

 

I’ve never really paid attention much to the way a ball feels or sounds off the putter because I hate putting, but they were all fairly close in performance on the green. Acoustics they were clicky just like the PV1X. I could putt with any of them, even.

 

Iron shots seemed to balloon on me. I am a high spin player, and was expecting a bit lower ball flight, but got just the opposite.

 

I really liked how white they were on the first few rounds. Really easy to find in the rough. Kudos on that part.

 

So, like I said I shot my round of the year with this ball. But also the worst round of the year. Was it the ball? Absolutely not, it was the machine behind the clubs.... Me!

 

Packaging and Logo

 

10 out of 10

 

So like I said in the first part I absolutely love the packaging that these come in. Plain, simple, no gimmicks... just a box of balls.

 

The logo and alignment mark are top notch. The Snell logo isn’t ugly, and the marker is perfectly lined up with that seam, and bold. No need for an extra line.

 

Gamer or Beach ball?

 

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10 out of 20

 

I’m torn on this. I had some wonderful shots with these. Some terrible shots. But with the ballooning on the irons, and the lack of spin (for me) with wedges is a deal breaker.

 

Beach ball bound.

 

The End? Or To be Continued?

 

These are an outstanding ball for the price point. They can hold their own with the “big names” out there. I think these will work fine for anyone on a budget that wants a premium-ish performing golf ball. Who knows it could be “the one” for you. They are worth a try, I could see myself picking up a dozen or two in the future.

 

Final Score????

 

64.5/100

 

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Posted (edited)

MGS - Thank you so much for this opportunity. I am excited to be part of the Snell MTBx testers team.

What’s your story?

The basics: My name is Larry Brown and I am from Anaheim, CA. But my hometown is NYC where I grew up in Brooklyn and the Bronx. (And in case you're wondering, I knew nothing about golf growing up in the city. That all came later.)

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I got into golf in the late ’80’s here in SoCal after my Navy days, and was obsessed for about 10 years. Then life got in the way and I stopped playing entirely until 2 years ago. But now I am back with a vengeance. In fact, as I write this I have Golf Channel on in the background. At 61 years old and carrying a 20+ handicap, it’s all about love of the game, exercise and a beautiful walk in the park for me. Maybe by the time I retire I’ll have a decent handicap.

I am an analytical guy by nature. In my day job I am a QA analyst for software. What that means is, I analyze new software to see first if it does what it is supposed to do and second to try and break it. The goal is to release the best software we can to the
customer by catching problems early. So the idea of evaluating products in my favorite sport - golf, is a no-brainer. I am as crazy about the tools and accessories of the game as I am about watching and playing. So this will be fun for me.

What makes you love the game?

It may sound strange, but I love golf because it is HARD. You may get better at it, but you will never master it. Every time I see the GOAT Tiger Woods slice his tee shot into the right rough I remember how hard the game is. However you CAN improve all the
time if you are willing to work. The other reason I love the game is that you are really only competing with the course, and with yourself. It’s one of the few sports where you can play by yourself and still win. If I break 100 - I win. If I beat my best prior score, I
win. Even when I have a bad day on the course I win, because I am doing what I enjoy.

What region do you play out of?

Southern California. Orange and LA Counties mostly. I play my local courses mostly, and we are fortunate to have plenty of decent public tracks in the area. I am also hoping to get out to some of the resort courses in Palm Springs and San Diego. As well
as Las Vegas.

How long have you been playing golf?

I started playing in the late 1980s, but I took such a long hiatus that I consider myself a beginner again. So I tell folks 2 years, since I really got serious again in 2017.

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What do you NEED your ball to do for you?

What I need is a ball that doesn’t spin off to the right off the tee and that I can confidently chip onto the green without it running off the other side of the green.

The Golf Questions

What ball do you normally play and how did you choose it?

I have been playing a lot of different balls this year with the goal of narrowing it down to one or two by year end. If I had to choose one ball that I favor right now though, it is the Srixon Soft Feel. It is the right price, I like the feel off my club head. It is durable and I seem to hit it straighter than some other balls out there. I also really like the Snell Get Sum.

Handicap? (Or average score)

I currently carry a 26.4 handicap, which I just established this year. And I recently started breaking 100, so I expect it to go lower by year end.

Typical ball flight?

I typically fade the ball or hit it straight. Too often slice off the tee though. 

Typical miss?

My typical miss is a pull to dead left, with no fade when I could actually use one! Off the tee it's an ugly slice that starts out nicely and then takes a 60 degree right turn.

Strengths/weaknesses of your game?

My strength is my chipping around the green right now, and lately I have been hitting more fairways off the tee. Weaknesses are inconsistency, especially with irons. I am a short hitter, and I just cannot hit hybrids. So the top of my bag is a challenge. Also, I
don’t hit fairway woods off the deck. Just can’t do it - yet. Thank goodness for Tour Edge and their HL3 ironwoods. They have characteristics of both irons and hybrids and I am actually able to hit them. I carry an 18* and a 20* for my long fairway shots.

First Impressions of the Snell MTBx

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My first impression was that this ball might not be for me. I was a bit more inconsistent with it with my irons and especially with driver. So I was thinking maybe I do not have enough swing speed for this ball. My first 3 rounds with the MTBx were all 9 hole
rounds. I played the same 2 balls for the first two rounds before losing them both during the third round. I find them to be very durable. I also improved my score in each of the rounds, and actually had a really good third round with them. Though I still
haven’t hit a really good shot with my driver yet. As soon as I can I want to play a full 18 hole round with some decent longer (250 - 400+ yard) holes to see how they perform.

Addendum: 6/14/2019 - It was Snell vs Snell today. And I also shot my best round on my regular 9 hole course (best ball). I have been curious how the MTBx would compare with the Get Sum head to head, so I decided to play both today after work. I sill feel
like the budget balls would still work better for me. For whatever reason, the surly balls seem to feel better off the club head. On the holes where I hit good drives with both balls I got more distance from the Get Sum, and also better dispersion. Around the
green and on the green they performed exactly the same though. I really chipped and putted the MTBx well all day. This course has only 2 par 4s that allow me to hit driver. On the 335 yard #5 I hit both balls almost the exact same distance, just inside the 150
marker. On my second shot I hit a good shot with the MTB that came up just short of the green. With the same club I hit an equally good shot with the Get Sum that drove the green and stopped just on the back fringe, closer to the pin. Roughly 20-25 yards farther
with the Get Sum, with a higher ball flight. I chipped both reasonably close, but 2 putted both for bogey.

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As I do not have a launch monitor this will not be a numbers driven review. My approach will be more feel and impressions along with head to head comparisons with some of my regular gamers when I am able to play two balls. Consider this a true duffer’s perspective.

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In the photo above the MTBx is in the foreground and the Get Sum is in the background near the center of the fairway. These were consecutive tee shots, and two of my better ones I might add. I am looking across the fairway and the green is on my left. These were hit almost the exact distance off the tee. As I play with this ball more it doesn't feel significantly different from the Get Sum. But I still hit the Get Sum straighter, especially off the tee.

Edited by tehuti
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Posted (edited)

Once again thanks to MGS for this opportunity. It was fun, enlightening and actually got me to work on my game. Below is my stage 2 analysis with my ratings.

Looks & Durability (14 out of 15 points)
Describe the following:
Appearance/graphics/packaging - 2.5

  • I like the logo and the packaging is okay. straight forward, no frills

Short term/long term durability - 3

  • I played several rounds with the same 1 or 2 balls. Except for a few slight scuffs they were pretty durable

Other unique details (ie. dimple pattern, alignment aid, etc) - 3 

  • I use the alignment aid on the tee

How does it compare to other balls, beyond being round and white? - 2.5

  • Same performance or slightly shorter off the tee from Srixon Soft Feel and K Sig 3. Not as much feel as the soft                               cover balls initially, but I warmed up to them over time

Describe (and show) the condition after hitting cart path, hitting an obstruction (tree, etc), a full wedge/iron shots, and a full round. - 3

  • I found the covers of these to be just a bit less durable than expected. They seemed to pick up scuffs easier than with my other gamers as well as the surlyn Get Sum.
  • Performance wise they do not appear to suffer much from the scuffing, but that is just my unscientific opinion. I don’t have any launch monitor results to back up my impressions. 

Sound & Feel (14 out of 15 points)
Describe how the product sounds and feels
Is it soft, crisp, dull, clunky (feel free to use your own imaginative phrases)? 2

  • I prefer the feel of the “soft” cover balls, like the Srixon Soft Feel and even the Snell Get Sum.

Can you press a nail into the ball’s cover? Compare its feeling of hardness to other balls. 3

  • The cover is very durable but it did scuff easier than expected.

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This was a new ball that started scuffing by hole 3, under normal conditions - no tree, cart path or bunker damage.

Do the sound and feel impact your performance in a noticeable way? 3

  • No, after a few rounds playing with them the feel was no longer noticeable

How does the sound cause you to react?

  • N/A - not a factor, so no points off for sound. 3

Describe the difference in sound and feel depending on the club used from driver down to putter. 3

  • More “clicky” than soft balls off irons. No difference off driver

On-Course Performance (40 out of 40 points)
Off the Tee – Does the ball provide adequate distance? Is it responsive? How does it compare to your gamer? Is it easier or harder to find fairways?

  • The MTBx was comparable to my gamers. I didn’t get any significant distance gain on average. Although I did have one of my longest drives with it.

Approach – Does it adequately hold the green? Is it workable or difficult to control? 

  • Definitely holds the green. I can’t work the ball so I won’t comment on that.

Ball Flight – Does the ball stay in the air forever and stop or do you hit low balls that roll forever? Which is better for your course? Is the ball flight consistent? Is it predictable and consistent while chipping and pitching? How does it handle in the wind?

  • I generally hit a ball that is a low liner. The ball flight is fairly consistent across the board for me. No significant wind conditions to try it out in. (SoCal)

Around the Green – Describe your confidence level of playing the many shots required around the green (bump and run, hop and stop, flop, etc). 

  • This is tough to answer because I have one shot around the green - a bump and run. I am useless at trying a flop shot. That said I think I get the performance I expect. 

Putting – Describe how it reacts off the putter. Did you have to make any adjustments to your distance control? Are the markings on the ball adequate to use for alignment (if you do)?

  • I don’t use the alignment marks for putting. Only for tee shots. For putts the alignment marks are more of a distraction. I did not have to make any special adjustments for the MTBx when putting.

What factors were you pleased with? What factors did you find lacking?

  • The MTBx is a good ball. A little firmer off the club face than I prefer, but after a while I adjusted to the different feel.

Bottom line: did it help improve your scores? 

  • Not really. It did not hinder my game at all, but I did not notice an improvement when using the MTBx either.

Miscellaneous (10 out of 10 points)
The little things matter. You can make this section about whatever you please. Talk about the things that don’t fall neatly into one of the other categories. Some examples are: packaging and protection, speed of shipment, customer service interactions, accessories, personal touches, or comments made by playing partners.

  • I won’t ding them for any miscellaneous issues. It performed well. I think the packaging could be a little more interesting, but that really doesn’t matter as it pertains to the quality of the product. I received my balls in a timely manner and they held up well, aside from the few scuffs that I mentioned earlier.

Game Bag or Shag Bag? (15 out of 20 points)
For this section, consider that all things are equal and you’re choosing whether you would put this product in play for a big tournament or money game. Does this product help you play your best? Or is it just nice to have? Is the price point appropriate? Finally, what type of golfer do you think this product would fit the best? If it’s not you, explain why and try to identify the type of golfer that can benefit the most from it. 

  • I have grown to like this ball, but at this price point, for my game I would probably stick with the Get Sum or Srixon Soft Feel. I did not see a noticeable improvement over my gamers, and I don’t shape my shots so I couldn’t test that out.
  • I would classify the MTBx as “nice to have” for me. I wouldn’t kick it out of my bag, but I probably wouldn’t pay a premium just to have them.
  • This golf ball is probably better suited for players who can shape their shots and are longer off the tee than a higher handicapper like myself.

Conclusion


Coming from the perspective of a “budget” golfer, I like this ball a lot but would probably stick with the less expensive alternatives I already play. Solid all around. I really didn’t have any negatives other than it didn’t “Wow” me. If I could get a good deal on a few dozen I would probably go for it. I think Snell in general makes a fine product and the MTBx is no exception.

Final note: With only one sleeve left of the dozen balls I had to test with I played an entire executive 18 today with one ball, and shot my best score ever. Was it me, the Snell MTBx, or both? Hard to say, but I certainly got really good results with the MTBx when I was playing my best golf. I would say to anyone who is curious it is worth it to buy a dozen and try them for yourself.

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The yellow ball in the foreground is my tee shot on #1 today (7/28/2019). 99 yd, par 3.

Edited by tehuti
update.
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