Lankin Wraps

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Few pieces of new equipment generate the kind of buzz before being officially announced as this has in recent history. While the company has been fairly quiet about the launch, the noteworthy quotes have been piling up and hit a high this week with the announcement from Rory McIlroy that he will be playing the new line of metal woods to kick off his 2017 campaign. Last month, 12 THPers got a chance to go to California, get fit for the new line of Callaway drivers and have been testing them out and today their reviews will begin to come in. What better way to find out what the new GBB Epic line is like, than from your peers, the golfer.

Before we get to the reviews and hands on testing, let’s talk about the technology and mainly Jailbreak, what Callaway is touting as a game changing breakthrough. What is it? The gist of it is rather simple. There are two titanium bars (each weighing 3 grams) behind the face that run parallel with each other and are connected to the crown and sole. With these in the position they are, it allows the face to take on more of a load at impact and that should result in faster ball speed across a larger area of the face for all golfers.

Did it work? In a word, yes. The golfers that tested both of these models on a launch monitor did see an increase in ball speed nearly across the board. That promoted more distance and even more importantly, better dispersion across the board.

Of course it is easy to listen to the technology behind the club and wonder if it will work for you. Click the link below to head over to the THP Forum Review thread and see what players that have the club in hand think about the new driver. Both models were in play (are in play) and are being covered by golfers, for golfers.

Callaway GBB Epic and GBB Epic Sub Zero Review Thread

Features & Benefits of Epic
Exceptional Distance from Jailbreak Technology
An entirely new and innovative ball speed technology that profoundly changes how the head and face behave at impact to promote more speed across a larger area of the face for dramatic gains in distance.

Maximum Forgiveness from Exo-Cage Construction
Innovative head construction that unites our aerospace-grade titanium Exo-cage outfitted with an ultra-light triaxial carbon crown (9.7g — lightest ever in a Callaway driver) and sole (5.8g) allows us to distribute more weight in the perimeter for higher MOI and more forgiveness in a high-launch, low-spin design.

Precision Shot-shape Control from Adjustable Perimeter Weighting
Changing the position of the 17-gram weight on the precision-engineered track allows you to easily fit the club to your swing, providing 21 yards of shot-shaping control to promote straighter and longer tee shots.

Faster Head Speed from Industry-leading Aerodynamics
The streamlined head incorporates our proprietary Speed Step, created with direct input from aerospace experts, to improve airflow to encourage more swing speed and distance without extra effort.

Four High-Performance Stock Shaft Options
Project X HZRDUS, Mitsubishi Diamana, Fujikura and Aldila Rogue in four weight classes: 40g, 50g, 60g, 70g. Each premium, Tour-proven shaft is engineered to promote speed, stability, feel and control.

Features & Benefits of Sub Zero
Increased Distance from Jailbreak Technology
Innovative new technology changes how the head and face behave at impact to promote more speed across a larger area of the face for increased average distance.

More Forgiveness and Lower Spin from Exo-Cage Construction
Innovative head construction unites our titanium Exo-cage with an ultra-light triaxial carbon crown and sole, allowing improved perimeter weighting for more forgiveness and makes it possible to position the CG in line with the neutral axis, which lowers spin.

Spin Control and Trajectory Control from Interchangeable Weights
Two interchangeable weights in the head (2g and 12g) to adjust spin-rate and launch angle. Put the 12g up front to lower spin; in back for higher launch and higher MOI.

Faster Head Speed from Industry-leading Aerodynamics
Streamlined head incorporates our proprietary Speed Step, created with direct input from aerospace experts, to improve airflow for more swing speed and distance.

Four High-Performance Stock Shaft Options
Project X HZRDUS, Mitsubishi Diamana, Fujikura and Aldila Rogue. Each premium, Tour-proven offering is engineered to promote speed, power, stability, feel and control.

When
In Stores – 1/27/17
Cost – $499

Callaway GBB Epic and GBB Epic Sub Zero Review Thread

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  1. Sox Fan says:

    This driver sounds almost too good to be true! Can’t wait to give it a try!

  2. Forged Lover says:

    Been waiting for this one for a while. Loving the feedback the Grandaddy guys are offering already on the forum.

  3. KEV says:

    I definitely need to get this in my hands! I have a feeling Callaway will be holding down the driver spot in my bag this season.

  4. scarnici says:

    I love the look and the technology is amazing. Cant wait to get this in my hands

  5. TM Guy says:

    Im a taylor made guy for the most part, but I got to hit this one at Roger Dunn last week. Loved it. Going to preorder i think when its available. Now to choose the shaft. What do you think THP?

  6. TM Guy,
    We recommend a fitting. A number of options available and most are high quality. In the linked THP Forum thread where the guys are reviewing the club, they were fit. Most common shaft appears to be the Project X HZRDUS as of now.

  7. Just_Hacking says:

    The tech in this driver is amazing. I am afraid if I try I am going to want it and the price tag is a bit much. With that said, I would not rule it out if it performs as advertised.

  8. Cpljohnst says:

    The in hand reviews have convinced me I need to test this club! Will be looking at it hard this spring.

  9. RNG says:

    Fascinated by the new technology! Can’t wait to give this bad boy a try!

  10. hackernation says:

    Love the look and tech behind this driver, can’t wait try it out ;)

  11. Maybe Golfer says:

    So I am skeptical about new tech, and think the name is probably the dumbest I have ever heard for a driver, but i really want to hit it.

  12. ProV1Kenobe says:

    Love that these reviews are coming from forum guys. really good info so far. my question is about the jail break. i bought a Fusion and like it alot but this is really catching my eye. guys like rory using it doesn’t hurt either.

    will jailbreak be that big a deal compared to what i have with fusion?

  13. Prov1Kenobe,
    Awesome name by the way.

    To answer your question, it’s hard to say or quantify. In our testing, it did produce faster ball speed with less spin than that of the Fusion. The best way to find out though is to head to the store or range when they become available and test them side by side.

    I know it’s not the answer most want to hear, but that will give you concrete information. Outside of that, read through the THP Review thread linked in the article. A number of THPers have tested both and will be offering their thoughts on the two.

  14. Michael Gutierrez says:

    Well they delivered on the looks department for sure and it’s nice to see the sliding weight back. Callaway got that one right and really worked for a lot of golfers with previous versions. As a high spin drive of the ball I’m looking forward to hitting the sub zero and see how I can benefit from it.

  15. Afwcardinal says:

    Been looking forward to this release. First driver in a while that I’ve been really excited about. Can’t wait to hear what the Grandaddy players have to say about these drivers.

  16. Michael G Nelson says:

    the technology sounds pretty interesting and makes alot of sense. curious to test it out at a local demo day and see if it works for me. i struggled with the XR16, but really liked the great big bertha from a couple of years ago.

  17. Chris C. says:

    Is Callaway offering no upcharge shaft options? With the possible exception of a Rogue Silver 60 125msi, the listed stock shaft lines and I do not get along. On the other hand, I love the GDs and Fubukis.

  18. Chris C,
    Those are the standard shaft offerings, but a couple of them are brand new such as this HZRDUS T800, so THP strongly recommends a fitting in with the EPIC (or any driver) and trying out multiple shaft options.

  19. Smallville says:

    I’ve seen this already and I want it.

  20. Scrap iron says:

    Between all the tech and the look I have to hit this.

  21. curtis strange fan says:

    cool tech stuff. i like the name jail break, and it reminds me of the putter that i use called the jail bird. my local store says they will have them in on the 17th for fittings, so i think i will test it out then.

  22. Tiger Tiger Woods Y'all says:

    I don’t like it. Not a fan of the green and will stick to my M2.
    Too many releases.

  23. Jason Freeman says:

    Question for those that understand the technology. If jailbreak as a part of the driver works, what makes it work better where it is placed, rather than say the gravity cores that they had in previous releases. Or taking it a step further, why not put a solid sheet of titanium behind the face rather than the two bars to offer even more stability?

  24. Jason Freeman,
    Those are both good questions.
    To the first one, Jailbreak is a bit different than the gravity core in placement, but we can say during our testing, we saw an increase in ball speed with them in place. However it was not coupled with the level of forgiveness the golfers saw out of EPIC during testing.

    To the second question, I don’t have an answer, other than to say that level of addition of materials would alter the weight of the club head fairly drastically and the center of gravity would shift dynamically as well without counteracting that with more weight in the rear. So what would be done would be the creation of a very heavy club head that might cause a golfer to lose some speed without the counterbalance in effect back at the grip end which would further increase the total weight. Could it work? Yes, however I would be doubtful that the overall package would be beneficial to too many golfers.

    Hope that helps.

  25. Corey Cochstan says:

    Good information and enjoyed learning more about jailbreak. Heading over to read the reviews now. The hype on this one seems almost unobtainable to deliver on, but most of what I have read seems that people really like what they are seeing.

  26. Lions81 says:

    Great information in this review THP. This really does a good job laying out the technology in these drivers and the benefits behind it. As one of the lucky THP’ers who was fit for this driver and put it into play at #TheGrandaddy, I can you tell you this driver is the real deal. The technology works. Great distance but the forgiveness is wonderful as well. I strongly urge everyone to try this one out and give it a chance to make it in your bag. You’ll be happy with what you see.

  27. Alex B says:

    Holy Cow, there are a ton of comments on this, highly anticipated release.

    Big fan of the green, very interested in the Jailbreak Tech and the sliding weight in the rear.

  28. Maybe Just Maybe says:

    So I just got a chance to test this out at my local store. I gained 1 mph ball speed on the center vs my 917 D3. Not rubbish. They were similar to be open. Where this one shined the spotlit on me was the difference around the face. I was 6 mph faster on the toe and 4 mph faster low and high. I don’t miss low very often, but that was eye gouging.

    I just got the 917, and like that it matches my irons, but we will see where I go from here. Going to try it again on the outside range in Ft Worth coming up soon.

  29. braddman19 says:

    Love that the info on these has finally gone live!

  30. WCBM says:

    As one of the reviewers, I can’t speak highly enough about the Epic. It has been a game changer for me. 100% real deal.

  31. Chris C. says:

    Am I correct in assuming that Callaway no longer offers custom shaft options at no up-charge? Obviously, fitting is essential. As the price of equipment rockets upwards, I find myself spending increasing amounts of time getting fitted. I anticipate that prior to pulling the trigger on the Epic, I would to spend 4 to 6 hours spread out over 2 to 3 sessions getting fitted. My concern is that I will be confronted with the prospect of paying an up-charge for a Fubuki Z or a GD Nano Reloaded. Argh!

  32. weeicemon says:

    I am confused where this content is: “Before we get to the reviews and hands on testing” – is it just in the forum or is this somewhere else?

  33. weeicemon,
    The links above take you directly to the review thread on the THP Forum where 12 THPers have had this driver in play for a month now and are providing their thoughts. All different skill levels represented from scratch to higher handicap and the thoughts are quite thorough.

  34. weeicemon says:

    I am missing something – can you repost the link? The only link I can find takes me to the forum.

  35. thechosen1 says:

    SO excited to see this launch. I am in the market for a new driver and this one just might be the one

  36. Mark says:

    Fantastic review! THP = best golf equipment reviews on the web. Thank you!

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