Apex CF 16 iron review

Andy Roberts's picture
Andy Roberts
Tue, 29 Sep 2015

Apex CF 16 iron review
Callaway has very much hit the heights with its new Apex

Need To Know

Superb distance gains; exceptional forgiveness for a player iron; lovely 'clippy' sound and a soft, buttery feel throughout; appearance oozes class
Not the cheapest at
Our score:
Overall: 
5
PRICE: £849.00 YEAR: from 2015

The new Callaway Apex CF 16 iron represents the complete player-iron package of distance, feel, forgiveness, workability and looks.

The longer irons (3-7) have been engineered with Callaway’s innovative "Cup 360" technology to boost ball speed across the face, while the shorter irons (8-PW) include a unique engineered face plate for enhanced feel and distance control.

Callaway claims its Apex CF 16 irons are designed to feel "extremely soft" due to their quadruple net forging and mild carbon steel.

The irons feature a progressive offset, sole widths, CG height and notch weighting, with the longer irons utilising more offset for added forgiveness, and the shorter irons designed in a more compact shape for improved feel and control.

TESTED: Best player irons 2015

Looks

We think there are few people who will turn their noses up at this one. The polished satin metal mixed against the matte back works very nicely. 

The moderate topline may appear a little chunkier than ideal for some better players out there, but overall most will be very happy to gaze down on the new Apex. They sit beautifully to the ball.

The blade length is also of perfect size -  not too long or too small - and that certainly inspires added confidence at address.  

The iron’s thick sole and added mass to the heel and toe will likely appeal to double-digit handicap players more so than scratch players, who will likely feel more confident playing the sleeker Apex Pro 16 model.

Feel

The strike and sound when catching the ball out of the middle is one of the sweetest you will hear. There is a soft, "clippy" sound and tremendous feedback on all types of strike.

Added to that is an attractive soft, responsive feel from this forged players iron and we also enjoyed a reduction of vibration on one or two bladed strikes.

Its standard True Temper XP95 steel shaft felt particularly forgiving and certainly appears an ideal stock offering for any moderate swinger of the ball.

Performance

One of the longest performers in our better-player iron 2015 test with average carry distance crawling over the 180-yard mark with a six iron. When we last tested the former Apex iron two years ago, our average carry was 173 yards, so we are looking at a solid eight-yard gain and all with no change in lofts. 

While it ranked in the top two in our test in terms of firepower, the most pleasing aspect was that it was consistently long. The distance control of the Apex CF 16 is better than most, testament to the additional “Cup 360” technology. Even when not quite catching a ball out of the middle, the GC2 launch monitor revealed there was little distance lost. 

It also proved one of the more forgiving irons in our test with 15 of the 20 strikes veering no more than eight yards offline, and when we tested the iron’s ability to work the ball either way it listened accordingly.

And as its name suggests, we received a pleasing launch angle with the six iron averaging out at little more than 17 degrees. 

Verdict

The new Callaway Apex CF 16 iron combines technical power with the feel, precision and beauty you get with a forging.

Despite being categorised as a "better-player" iron, we believe the Apex CF 16 will suit just about anyone from scratch to an 18 handicap. In fact, Callaway's senior director of woods and irons reckons its "sweet spot" is 5-15 and maybe a bit either side. At the end of the day, who does not want to play a sexy, forged player iron with game-improvement performance?

If you can stomach the £849 when the irons fly onto the shelves on 30 October 2015, we believe you will be onto a winner as Callaway has very much hit the heights with its new Apex. 

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Performance: 
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Quality: 
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Value: 
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