Ten fairway woods from 2014 on review, but which is the best?

Andy Roberts's picture
Tue, 4 Nov 2014


Following the test, all four testers completed their fairway wood handout sheets over a drink and bite to eat before handing them into Golfmagic HQ.

Back to base and working out all the scores just like a Eurovision Song Contest, our 12 points first place goes to PING G30, narrowly pipping the brand new Nike Vapor Flex by half a point and Adams Golf Tight Lies by a further point.

The consensus among all four testers was that the G30 was the most consistent fairway wood throughout the testing session in terms of carry distance, spin, launch angle and accuracy, whether that was a off the deck or tee peg.

Two testers ranked the PING G30 as their favourite fairway wood in the test, with the other two testers placing it in second and third. The G30, therefore, was by no means a fortunate winner.

Nike took the silver medal with its brand new Vapor Flex fairway wood. Apart from the standard grip that the brand continues to use in its products (we're slowly growing to like it here at Golfmagic), this one felt the nicest in terms of headweight and shaft through impact. It's a beast off both deck and tee and will certainly keep you in play more often than not. The new colour design is more a personal preference but three testers very much like the paint job.

Adams Golf, the masters of owning the second shot, pick up the final place on the podium with the new Tight Lies featuring Ghost Slot Technology. The classic, upside-down Tight Lies head design oozed class as expected and delivered a real ease of launch without having to put a swing on it. It was hard to fault but the general feeling among the testing panel was that G30 and Vapor Flex offered a little more consistency and firepower.

Callaway Big Bertha V Series and Cobra Bio Cell+ shared fourth place and we'd certainly not put anyone off these in the slightest. Both offered tremendous carry distance and ideal, low spin rates. We particularly enjoyed the smaller clubhead of the Cobra as it aided some of the best workability in the test - perfect if needing to cut one around a tree when going for the green in two.

Although the Callaway Big Bertha, TaylorMade SLDR S, Adams Tight Lies Ti, Wilson Staff FG Tour M3 and Dunlop DP1 finished in the bottom half of our league table, we'd encourage everyone to still take a long, hard look at them.

We believe all ten fairway woods in this test offer something for everyone currently perusing the metalwood market, particularly given all ten fairways finished within 6.25 points of each other.

Hitting a fairway wood off the deck is often regarded as one of the toughest shots in golf, alongside that dreaded 50-yard bunker shot. It's therefore extremely important you find yourself the correct metalwood that is going to help your game.

If you crave distance, we'd recommend taking a close look at the Callaway Big Bertha, Callaway Big Bertha V Series, Cobra Bio Cell+, Nike Vapor Flex and PING G30.

If it's solely forgiveness you're after, we'd recommend taking a look at the Adams Tight Lies, Callaway Big Bertha, Callaway Big Bertha V Series, Nike Vapor Flex, PING G30 and TaylorMade SLDR S.

If you crave the best combination of both distance, forgiveness with ease of launch, which let's face it who doesn't, we'd encourage you to look at the PING G30 and Nike Vapor Flex.

If you decide to purchase any of the fairway woods featured in our test, or already have some in the bag, we'd love to know what you think, so come and leave your fairway wood reviews in our equipment section.

Special thanks

Golfmagic would like to say a special thanks to World of Golf in New Malden for letting us test the fairway woods in their new Performance Centre, featuring six bays with brand new game improvement technologies. We'd also like to thank our two Golfmagic readers Brian Tracy and Ben Chappell for taking time out their week to help us with the testing.

If you'd like to be part of the Golfmagic testing panel for the next club test at World of Golf in New Malden (scheduled end of November/early December), please get in touch by dropping Andy an email (


To jump to the page of a particular fairway wood, click the relevant link below...

Adams Tight Lies fairway wood
Adams Tight Lies Ti fairway wood
Callaway Big Bertha fairway wood
Callaway Big Bertha V Series fairway wood
Cobra Bio Cell+ fairway wood
Dunlop DP1 fairway wood
Nike Vapor Flex fairway wood
PING G30 fairway wood
TaylorMade SLDR S fairway wood
Wilson FG Tour M3 fairway wood

Your say...

Do you agree with our scores? Are you aghast that we chose the PING G30 as the best fairway wood? Are there any fairway woods you felt should have been included? Tell us on the forum below.

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