Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore Wedge Review

GolfMagic tests out Cleveland's new CBX4 ZipCore wedges.

Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore wedges
Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore wedges
The wide sole provides ideal turf interaction for those who struggle with chipping,
Bulky design not the most visually appealing

Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore Wedges Key Features:

  • ZipCore technology: enhances MOI by aligning the centre of gravity right where the club strikes the ball
  • Gelback TPU insert: absorbs impact vibrations to ensure a pure feel at impact
  • HydraZip: a unique laser line and blast treatment to boost friction off the face,
  • UltiZip grooves: cut through the debris with ease to promote purer spin, more control and increased consistency

The newest iteration of Cleveland's forgiving CBX family of wedges, the CBX4s are packed full of tech designed to help golfers get the most out of their short game. 

Designed to blend seamlessly with game improvement irons, these wedges offer a similar swing feel and weight to irons that feature a cavity back design or hollow construction. 

It's fair to say that bladed wedges aren't designed for everyone, and certainly not mid-to-high handicap golfers who realistically need as much help as possible with their short game.

With that in mind, Cleveland's CBX family is engineered to provide added forgiveness around the greens.

These wedges utilise ZipCore technology, which cleverly redistributes weight away from the heel, closer to the toe, which is where most amateur golfers tend to strike the ball.

This, in turn, increases the MOI of the head, thus providing greater forgiveness from off-centre strikes due to the face twisting less at impact. 

A TPU insert has also been incorporated to improve feel, and HydraZip and UltiZip grooves work together to maximise spin.

To test out if all of this tech could really save our short game, we took these wedges down to Walton Heath for some short-game practice before heading to Custom Golf Works to dig a little deeper into the data.

Let's get into it.

Player Level

The cavity back design, thick sole, and forgiving shape and weight make these wedges ideal for high-handicap golfers or those who need as much help as possible with their short game.

Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore wedges
Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore wedges

Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore wedges Looks and Feel

Featuring a cavity back design and thick sole, these wedges are very friendly on the eye. 

Sitting behind the ball, the large face looks particularly inviting, and thanks to the milled grooves and laser-etched finish, these wedges also maintain a very premium aesthetic. 

While cavity-back wedges perhaps don't possess the same level of shelf appeal as bladed wedges, these are probably the best-looking options on the market in their category. 

The designers at Cleveland have kept things relatively simple on the back of the head, which certainly benefits how these wedges look in the bag. 

In terms of feel, these wedges are remarkably crisp, considering their construction. 

Thanks to the Gelback TPU insert, you get very few vibrations at impact, resulting in a pure feel through contact. 

Thanks to the Ultizip grooves and HydraZip blast finish, you also get a very grippy sensation on full shots and longer pitches, which was also reflected in the impressive spin rates we achieved. 

Around the greens, these wedges were also incredibly impressive, providing a smooth and clean striking sensation on chips and more delicate shots. 

Cleveland CBX4 Wedges
Cleveland CBX4 Wedges

Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore Wedges Performance and Forgiveness

As you can see from the image above, Cleveland's decision to move the weight towards the toe to increase forgiveness was a good one.

During testing out on the course, we hit a variety of shots with these wedges, ranging from full approach shots to more delicate bump and runs around the green.

Across the board, these wedges excelled.

From roughly 90 yards we hit a number of shots to test out how the thick sole would interact with the turf, and we were amazed at just how beneficial the added bounce proved to be. 

The sole cut through the turf easily while providing plenty of forgiveness on our less-than-optimal strikes. After only hitting a few shots, we were full of confidence that the wedge would be able to deal with pretty much anything we threw at it. 

As previously mentioned, we also hit several shots closer to the toe than we would have liked. However, due to the aforementioned ZipCore technology and larger head design, we found our shots were still reaching their target while maintaining a decent level of accuracy. 

Upon landing on the green, our full shots were gripping nicely, and while we were playing on soft receptive greens, we were still impressed with the stopping power on offer. 

Moving closer to the green, we found these wedges really came into their own. 

We're by no means short-game wizards. However, we certainly felt like them after hitting a few chips and pitches.

Whether it was a tricky flop shot over a bunker or a textbook bump and ran through the heart of the green, these wedges were up to the task, working away to leave the ball as close to the hole as possible. 

While there were inevitably some shots that didn't go quite to plan, we found these wedges so easy to hit that we were genuinely trying to find a short game situation that we didn't feel comfortable with when we had them in hand. 

Responsive, grippy and super forgiving, these wedges would honestly benefit so many golfers who struggle around the greens. 

Taking the wedges to Custom Golf Works, we were eager to see what the spin rates looked like, and after hitting a few full shots, we found that the level of spin consistency was among the best we have tested this year, with only a marginal drop off from poor strikes out of the toe.

All in all, these wedges performed remarkably, and are comfortably one of the best wedges we have tested in 2024.

Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore wedges
Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore wedges

Should you buy the Cleveland CBX4 ZipCore wedges?

If you struggle for consistency around the greens and want to gain as much forgiveness as possible from your wedges, then the CBX4s are well worth your consideration. 

The large head, wide sole, and well-positioned weight make these wedges incredibly easy to hit while also providing an excellent level of versatility and forgiveness around the greens.

Coming in at £159, these wedges don't come cheap, but can you really put a price on short-game confidence?

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