Lamkin Grips

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Callaway has released a new iron set in their high performance, high technology “X Series” line of clubs that has had forum members here at THP buzzing for several months. The Callaway X-22 irons that we reviewed over a year ago are a huge fan favorite and were even a finalist for our Readers Choice Awards for 2009 as the favorite iron set based on THP Reader Voting. With all the love that the previous line was getting what could Callaway possibly do to up the ante? Well THP decided to put the new X-24 Hot irons to the test and find out.

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Technology
From the Company
Callaway developed the new Callaway X-24 Hot Irons for golfers who seek to gain distance not just with the longest clubs in their bag, but also when pulling out an iron on a long par-3 or flying the water to reach a par-5 in two. The stealth PVD Finish, which is the result of a cutting-edge process designed to reduce glare and produce a distinctive look that is darker than most irons. Callaway X-24 Hot Irons were also made with Callaway’s core technologies including S2H2, Precision Notch Weighting and Modified Tru-Bore, all working together to provide total performance for a wide range of golfers.

Complete with a new Stealth PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition) Finish that reduces glare, the new Callaway X-24 Hot Irons utilize Callaway’s proprietary VFT Face Technology, 360-degree undercut channel and a precise center of gravity to create a large and effective hitting area for golfers of all abilities. The result is maximum distance while maintaining the same accuracy, even on off-center hits.

“Callaway X-24 Hot Irons are the latest evolution of our award-winning X-Series Irons, but not discount golf clubs, which have helped make Callaway the No. 1 Irons company in the game for the last 13 consecutive years,” said Dr. Alan Hocknell, Senior Vice President of Research & Development, Callaway Golf. “We recognize there are golfers looking for distance gains throughout their entire bag, and thus employed our core technologies and faster ball speeds into the design of Callaway X-24 Hot Irons, a longer, more accurate set than any of their predecessors.”

•VFT Face Technology: A robust, hot clubface with a large sweet spot generates faster balls speeds for maximum distance, even on off-center hits.

•Precision Notch Weighting: More weight in the perimeter of the clubhead promotes pinpoint accuracy and control and enables an optimal CG position that provides strong trajectories.

•Stealth PVD Finish: Dark Physical Vapor Deposition Finish comes from a high-tech process that produces a distinctive, non-glare finish.

•Callaway Core Technologies: S2H2, a 360-Degree Undercut Channel and Modified Tru-Bore® work together to provide total performance and enhanced feel for a wide range of golfers.

4-AW, SW
RH Only
Steel Uniflex Shafts (graphite also available)
Price – $699 steel & $899 graphite

Topline View At Setup

Looks & First Impression
There are a few things that stand out when you first take a look at the Callaway X-24 Hot irons. Immediately you are drawn to the darker finish in comparing it to previous models. As mentioned above, the darker finish is used to prevent glare, and while it wears after use, the clubs have a distinct and classic look to the faces that give off instant feedback on where you are making contact. The second thing that stands out is the newly designed badge on the cavity. Last year the X-22 had a nice looking blue badge that had a modern & edgy look and had a nice clean appeal to them. The X-24 Hot has a totally different feel by offering a flame like orange color marked with platinum and black that makes you think “HOT”. The cavity looks similar in design with its notch weighting that resemble fangs and its overall “high technology appearance”. The pictures do not do justice to the clubs in hand and their striking good looks overall.

Testing
I was able to put these in my bag for 12 rounds of golf, as well as countless range sessions and each time out I found myself trying to find flaws and nitpicked every little detail. Long, high, and straight seems to be the trend each time I took them out on the course. One thing to note is that in my testing, I was hitting these irons about 5 yards longer than my current set, so there will be an adjustment period. This could be due to stronger lofting, shaft length, or the incredible hot face technology that Callaway is using in these. My bet would be that it is a combination of the three working together. A few months ago, THP reviewed the Callaway Diablo Edge irons and came away extremely impressed with the overall forgiveness and performance packed into the new set. The X-24 Hot irons are a different animal altogether in both feel and performance and offer the golfer another choice when looking at new irons. The X-24 Hot irons are still extremely forgiving, however, where these irons really shined and set them apart from the others was in the performance category. In a rare case with GI (game improvement) irons, our testers were able to move the ball in every direction around the course: left, right, high and low.

The dark finish of the club head does exactly what it is supposed to do and that is eliminate glare that can be caused by the suns reflection off of different types of metals. Another aspect to the dark finish that has not been discussed and was a nice bonus was the fact that while the X-24 Hot irons have a thicker (GI Type) top line, the darkness of the iron had a slight slimming effect and did not bother a single golfer that had a chance to try these out. The confidence that this adds to the golfer is phenomenal because they can not only enjoy what they see at address but also benefit from all the added technology of the GI irons. Most went into the testing thinking they would have issues with the wear of the face during play, but when testing completed not a single person had any issue with it. In fact something one golfer noted, was that with the wear after each shot, it really does give you an idea of how well these irons are fit for your game.

The shafts in the X-24 Hot Irons that we tested were the Callaway Uniflex shafts and we felt they worked very well with the irons. The only issue that came up is when we had a THP Forum member with an incredibly fast swing speed try them, but outside of that, most of the golfers thought the shaft and the club head worked very well together to produce nice high, but still penetrating, ball flights without any ballooning issues. THP does still strongly recommend getting a fitting done before buying any irons to make sure that the shaft, as well as length and lie, are working with your swing rather than against it.

The weighting that these offer really work hard to square the club face up at impact on each swing, but when it does not work in that way (we all do it), the added forgiveness in the heel and toe areas of the club were excellent to keep the ball high and straight without sacrificing too much in the distance department.

One issue that myself and a few others had with the clubs was the stock grip. It was a little too slick for some of our testers, especially for those who live in areas with higher humidity. While better than some of the stock grips we have been trying of late, these still caused some slippage during our hotter and more humid days. This isn’t too big of a problem, however, because grips are an easy and inexpensive fix.

Overall
Callaway Golf has put out another strong contender this year and the X-24 Hots are aptly named as both a followup to the wonderful X-22 irons from last year but also the “Hot” distance that we were achieving with each swing. Some will argue that stronger lofts mean little and people can always club down, but there is a certain confidence that many golfers have with shorter irons. These new irons should be on everybody’s short list if they are in the market for a high technology GI iron that offers incredible distance without sacrificing the performance and feel that golfers are looking for with their new sets. While we preferred the blue badge in the back compared to the new orange look, that is merely a personal preference and with how “HOT” these new irons are, the color is fitting to say the least. For more information on these or any of the other Callaway Golf products, check out their website at www.callawaygolf.com.

Till Next Time

Josh B.

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Category: Equipment, Headlines & News, Irons

About the Author ()

Josh is the Publisher of The Hackers Paradise and co-founder of THP Media with his wife Morgan Babbitt. Together they share a passion for golf, and they travel the country along with their two dogs in the THP Tour Van bringing their love and knowledge of the game to golfers everywhere.

Comments (38)

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  1. Ryan says:

    Very thorough review, JB. Thanks for the info.

  2. SeeMoreGuy says:

    Great review JB. These sound like a solid set of irons.

  3. thanks1974 says:

    Awesome review JB. Very surprised to see that you saw as much as 5 yds more distance with these. The “Hot” feature is obviously more substance than just sizzle.

  4. tcalloway1 says:

    i’ve been waiting for this review for quite sometime and i must say that i am very happy to have read your results and your findings. it’s crazy to think that these, on average, are 5 yards longer than the machspeeds for you!

    great review JB!

  5. Yoccos1981 says:

    Very good read. I always love the detailed reviews I find here. Definitely a fan of the darker irons.. haha. Was the extra length in the shaft noticable? Did you have to make any adjustments to your set up at all (ex Hot 7i vs Mach 7i)?

  6. Administrator says:

    Yoccos,
    I did not find the extra shaft length to be a problem at all. No adjustments really except taking less club for each shot.

  7. OEM Kevin™ says:

    I would have to agree with everything in this review. These irons are the whole package and are well worth looking into if you are in the market. Another excellent review JB!

  8. Yoccos1981 says:

    Not a bad problem to have taking less club 🙂 Thank you!

  9. SethO says:

    I enjoyed this review. I would imagine that Biggsy made those shafts look like fishing rods. It is good to hear that the finish on these things is adding to the appeal of the club when it is in the player’s hands.

  10. Miss Shanksalot says:

    I got my set of X-24s last week, and I absolutely love them. I was fitted, and wound up with Diamana graphite shafts and mid-size Tour Velvet grips. The thing that really stood out for me, as a complete beginner, was the consistency I was able to achieve with them despite my beginner status. Consistency has yielded greater confidence, and greater confidence has led to a better swing and overall game improvement. It also helps that I can get feedback from these in a way I was unable to with the X-22s. And while I, too, was worried about the darker color, it honestly doesn’t bother me. I just love, love, love these clubs.

  11. DannySun says:

    Great review again. I have been reading all the reviews from this wonderful website for the last a few month. One thing I noticed is that in most of the Iron/Driver reviews, you mentioned “a few yards longer than your current iron/driver”. What is your current iron/driver? How often do you change your iron/driver? My feeling is you have been upgrading your equipment quite often. In that sense, you will soon hit a 9 iron 200 yards.

  12. Admin says:

    Danny,
    I wish that was the case. I list my current bag in the forum. In this case they are compared to the Nike MachSpeed irons that I have been playing.

  13. live2playmore says:

    I have the X-20’s which are longer than the X-22’s. My guess they are the same length as the new Hot X-24s and have the same shaft. Grip down 3/4 of an inch…and swing away….SCHWING!

  14. Andy says:

    Would these uniflex shafts work for someone with a driver swing speed of 100-103 and a 6 iron swing speed of 86?

  15. Administrator says:

    andy,
    I would say that a lot of that would weigh on tempo as well. A fitting would be my best answer.

  16. clam fist says:

    Great review. I will try these out when I visit the Callaway Center in Las Vegas.

  17. smileybstx says:

    I have narrowed it down to the X-24’s and the Edge. Any helpful suggetions.

  18. crazzy4life says:

    wish you guys would do a review on cobra s2 max irons.

  19. The x-24 is really hot. I bought a set and immediately went to the range to test it. The distance was comparable to my 2009 TM Burners (with the TM slightly longer) but the x-24 feel is better. The one thing I don’t like is that the clubhead gets easily scratched and it’s so difficult to remove turf stains from the sole!!! After just 3 visit to the range, the x-24 looked because of the scratches.

  20. To smileybstx — I recommend you buy the X-24. I’ve tested both x-24 and Edge; the former is way better in terms of distance and feel. But of course you should try them both first.

  21. John says:

    Great review. Does anyone have a take on the x24 vs. the r9 irons? I am a higher handicap player.

  22. Administrator says:

    Hit them both and then pick which one fits you best based on launch numbers. And DEFINITELY get them fit for your swing.

  23. Bill says:

    hi, i have a set of X-22’s that i got pretty cheap and i must say, im struggling to find any major difference to justify buying the new X-24’s other than the dark finish :s i love the x-22’s and wouldnt change them for anything but what im asking is to the reviewer, i loved your review of the X-22 and i also posted my own follow up reviews on them on this site – do you find any major difference between the 2 sets?? thanks

  24. Administrator says:

    Bill,
    They have a different feel and ball flight than that of the 22s in my opinion. Definitely worth a demo.

  25. mike shoo says:

    Thank you, JB. I just bought a set & absolutely love ’em. Broke the sticks in @ Oakmont last week.

  26. Fred says:

    Thought Oakmont lost it’s greens?

  27. Grunta says:

    Hi, I am a hacker (hadicap 25) and have just started to get serious about my game, playing 2 to 3 times a week now.
    I have a set of X18 and am loking to upgrade.
    I do love Callaway and have read all the reviews on the X22 and do like the look of them.
    Now after reading this review on the X24 I am totaly confused, truth is I still like the look of the X22 compared to the dull look of the X24.
    The golf pro at my club says I will notice a lot of diffference betwwen the X18 and X22 but not between the X22 and X24?? what do you think.

  28. Seijinvet says:

    Got my set fitted, but wow, what a hook. I was playing an old set of nikents, that I hit long and straight, but they were falling apart. As soon as I got my X24s everything went to hell. I mean I was hooking the pitching wedge! I could hit my hybrids, wedges, fairway woods and Driver ok at first, but then I started to mishit these, probably because my swing was trying to adjust to the 24s. Finally had them bent and now the hook is more of my usual slight draw. The game is coming back, but I was about to take up bowling….

  29. Dunkhoo says:

    JB, you say that you noticed a difference in the ball flight between x22 & x24. What was the difference? I am going to buy one of these two sets. I prefer the look of the x22, but performance is key. If I ordered the x22 stronger lofts in the 4-8 irons would I see similar distance? Thanks.

  30. jim says:

    As previously mentioned by others, I too like the appearance of the X-22s vs the X24s. As a senior with a slow swing speed, will I notice a difference between them ? Again performance is the key regardless.

  31. cpack says:

    I got my X-24 Hot’s for Christmas. I was a 12 handicap, now after about 10 rounds (4 in the upper 70’s) my handicap is 10 and could be dropping more if I keep hitting the ball as well as I have been with these clubs. They are more forgiving and a little longer, probably due to the stronger lofting as mentioned in the article. As far as the finish goes, it does get scratched easliy, but I really don’t care if I continue to play this well. My last set I was playing with was Nike Ignite w/ stiff graphite shafts. The X-24’s have the Uniflex shaft. I would recommend them to someone looking to improve their game.

  32. Jim says:

    I replaced some older X-20’s with the X-24 Hot irons. They live up to their name; I have gained about 8 to 10 yards per iron and yet they still fly high and land soft. I pulled the trigger and bought the Approach and Sand Wedges with my set and have no regrets. My short game has improved immensely and I have been shooting the best rounds of my life. (2 over par – my lowest game ever two weeks ago, and a nice, solid 6 over last Sunday!)

    I do have one complaint but it really does not affect the performance. For whatever reason the beautiful black finish does not last. The soles of each iron as well as the hitting area are both down to shiny metal after only one month of use. I believe Callaway could have done a better job on this finish and made it more durable.

    But the short sum of it is, even with the worn look, these irons perform. My handicap is going down with each round I play and I could not be enjoying the game more!

  33. terry says:

    Great review,,, I am the proud owner of these clubs and from day 1 I thought they are amazing. The look,feel and sound of these clubs are worth buying all day long.. But when i bought mine i was told they were limited edition and only 50 sets were made???? either way, damn glad I bought them,, well worth the money. Best clubs ever!

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  37. Dean Stegenga says:

    Is there a way to treat the finish of the x24’s to minimize the scratching of the face?

  38. Dean,
    Not really. Its just that type of finish that will show some wear.

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