Adams Golf has been quite prolific with their equipment releases in recent years, so it didn’t surprise me to hear I’d be reviewing the brand new Speedline Tech Driver. This driver should be on the shelves very soon and I’ve been working with it for a few weeks now. At first glance, it appeared to be a mixture of some things that are familiar, along with some new bits of technology.
- Right Handed – 8.5°, 9.5°, 10.5°, and 12.5°
- Left Handed – 9.5° and 10.5°
Stock Shaft – Matrix RUL 54
Length – 46 inches
Grip – Lamkin Elite Tour 360
Once again, Adams is pushing the envelope with the styling and shape of the Speedline Tech driver. At address it actually looks to be a fairly traditional shape. A closer inspection shows some elements that give it a very futuristic appearance, the most obvious of which is the composite ‘wing’ that envelopes the outer portion of the head. There is actually some pretty interesting technology behind the wing that I’ll touch on later. One little detail concerning the wing that I love is the way the finish is somewhat translucent, which showcases the composite material it is made of. This is hard to show in pictures, but get the Speedline Tech out in the sun and you’ll see what I’m talking about.
Thankfully, the silver finish and oddly curved lines we saw on the top of the Fast 12 driver are gone with the arrival of the Speedline Tech. They have been replaced by a very glossy black finish that is much more pleasing to my eyes. When the head meets up with the copper color of the stock Matrix RUL shaft, you have one of the most visually striking drivers I’ve seen this year. Another thing I have to give Adams kudos for is that they’ve made an adjustable driver with a pretty discreet looking hosel. In addition, the face angel designations are housed on the adaptor and hidden from view unless the shaft is removed.
I have to admit that I really loved the head cover, both visually and functionally. It features the same black and white color scheme as the driver itself and is quite easy to remove due to a small recessed area that is perfectly sized for a finger.
The final words I have on aesthetics should be spent talking about the sound the Speedline Tech produces at impact. Actually, I really only need two words: It’s loud. It may not be the loudest driver I’ve reviewed in the last couple years, but it’s definitely one that will be noticed on the driving range and possibly inside the pro shop.
Technology and Performance
Adams has really packed a ton of technology into this driver. The composite wing I discussed earlier was designed to increase the MOI of the driver (ability to resist twister on off-center shots), while keeping the center of gravity closer to the shaft for more draw bias. At the same time, it’s supposed to increase aerodynamic performance. That’s one busy wing! Truthfully, I didn’t see many draws during the review, but well struck shots did give me a straight ball flight that I enjoyed. Obviously, results here may differ, depending on your swing.
The face was built with what Adams is calling 3DS Surface Technology. While I wasn’t supplied any information on how they accomplished this, they’ve essentially turned the most responsive area of the face into an elliptical shape to provide better launch conditions, especially with off-center shots. Much of what I read from Adams about this feature sounds quite similar to the e9 Face Technology that the Cobra AMP employs, though I personally felt like the AMP was more forgiving for my swing.
An exciting addition to the Adams technology stable is something they are calling Fastfit Adjustability. The Speedline Tech is adjustable and offers eight different settings, which change face angle, loft, and lie angle in one degree increments. The adjustments are quick and easy to perform after a few twists of the torque wrench that is supplied. While this is hardly groundbreaking technology in today’s world, it is something that many people appreciate for fitting purposes as well as for easily switching shafts.
Speaking of shafts, the Speedline Tech comes outfitted with the Matrix RUL 54, which undoubtedly contributes to the $399 price point. Rather than give a lengthy run down of the shaft, I’ll just point you to this THP review that was done on it earlier in 2012. I found that it offered me the mid-launch characteristics that Matrix advertises and it seemed that other testers saw the same thing. I was pretty impressed with the stability of the shaft simply based on the fact that some of the people that I asked to test the driver were high swing-speed players and they were able to control the ball well, even with a softer flex than they normally play.
I definitely see this as an improvement over the Fast 12 driver in many ways. It’s much more pleasing to the eyes, features and adjustable head, and comes with a high-end shaft. I’m not sold that it was the driver for me in every regard, but I’d definitely recommend taking a look at it and seeing how it works for you. I did witness some playing partners hit it very well. The only true negative I heard from anybody, including myself, was the sound. This is a driver that’s going to attract some attention from people nearby, both in looks and in sound. The Speedline Tech should be available for purchase very soon. More information on the technical aspects of the driver should also be available soon at www.adamsgolf.com. Thanks for reading and I wish you luck on the course this year.