Callaway Releases Big Bertha B21 Driver

McLovin

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Why not try the 10.5 ? If it launches to high could always reduce it down.
it was a trade. this driver was never something i would seek out, but i figured i could loft it up and see how it performed loft to loft against the mav max. it was more about adding input to the forum than any serious bag contender.

i would also think going for 10.5 would sacrifice too much ball speed. i never really saw much ball speed/distance out of the b21.
 

Jman

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This one continues to be a TOWERING launcher for me, it’s hilarious at times. The bigger story though remains the way this controls spin on misses is just unlike anything else, ever.

It’s not the lowest spinner for me on center strikes, and that’s where I lose some decent distance, but the misses are most certainly more in play and longer.

Remains much lower spin than the Mav Max in the same loft and shaft setup, 400-500 rpm in fact, so that’s going to be a potential factor for some imo.

Also also, the ball speeds are there. They’re on par with the Mavrik and Mav Max that I have, and that’s something else that’s really impressed me.

Plus, that sound!
 

Tenputt

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This one continues to be a TOWERING launcher for me, it’s hilarious at times. The bigger story though remains the way this controls spin on misses is just unlike anything else, ever.

It’s not the lowest spinner for me on center strikes, and that’s where I lose some decent distance, but the misses are most certainly more in play and longer.

Remains much lower spin than the Mav Max in the same loft and shaft setup, 400-500 rpm in fact, so that’s going to be a potential factor for some imo.

Also also, the ball speeds are there. They’re on par with the Mavrik and Mav Max that I have, and that’s something else that’s really impressed me.

Plus, that sound!
It is one of the best sounding heads I have ever swung. I am not saying that they are the same, but just the sensation of “wow, this feels/sounds great” is the type of reaction I had when I first hit the PING G400 and they had really improved the acoustics.

I also totally agree that if this goes head to head with a Sub Zero, SIM or standard SpeedZone on a launch monitor, it will be higher spin. However, for me, out on the course, where conditions are not perfect, it just works. I hit a lot of fairways with very good distance.
 

Jman

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It is one of the best sounding heads I have ever swung. I am not saying that they are the same, but just the sensation of “wow, this feels/sounds great” is the type of reaction I had when I first hit the PING G400 and they had really improved the acoustics.

I also totally agree that if this goes head to head with a Sub Zero, SIM or standard SpeedZone on a launch monitor, it will be higher spin. However, for me, out on the course, where conditions are not perfect, it just works. I hit a lot of fairways with very good distance.
I think that’s what can’t be stated enough, this is one that absolutely SHINES on non ideal impact and non ideal swings, the ball just wants to stay in play more as it was designed to do and the difference for me on similar misses has been as much as 900 RPM compared to the Mav Max, that adds up to a TON of retained distance on the course.

For me and my game, I’ve been trying Everything to flatten the flight and bring it down, but set to 8.0 and with some crazy stout low launching shafts it STILL cracks 40 yard peaks on the GC2 with ease. That isn’t a bad thing at all, but for me to maximize distance it’s a need of either flattening the flight or dropping the overall spin on solid strikes. There’s just a lot left on the table on center for me at 2400-2600 compared to 2000-2100.

Holy crap it’s a fun driver though.
 

DataDude

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On Saturday I got out for 18. I could not find my swing at all. I played really poorly, but had a lot of good misses. By mid round I realized I was not properly waiting for my club to load at the top of my backswing so I was really coming down in a bad way. I hit 3 or 4 really low on the face (basically topped) with this and they were still getting enough launch to fly 120-150 and roll.put another 50-60 yards which is a fantastic miss when I swing that bad. I also had a few of the absolute ropes that just look majestic.
 

mikeg_74

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9 holes with the b21 vs mav max, and the b21 had to throw in the towel. FOR ME, which is not surprising. the b21 never launch high enough, and it gave me 2 of 7 drives that i feared most: a decent swing, a bit wayward strike, and a (bad) result i did not expect. one was a 147y (that’s not a typo) no spin high toe hook, and the other was a fade that went ob on a good swing center strike. there were other misses that ended up in the fairway, but on decent strikes the max was much higher and 15-20 yards longer. if you’re lower launch and lower spin, i’d recommend trying before you buy. it was a fun experiment, but this one will be moved on to other buddies who can test it and provide feedback.
Thanks for the feedback. You are not the first person to have comments around the launch being lower than expected. I've read other reviews where launch was an issue. I think the results are no doubt from how a player delivers the club to the ball and I'm sure some won't see what you saw, but like you said if you are a low launch/low spin player you need to get some swings under your belt with this one and make sure it will work for you because this one isn't an automatic high launch driver.

Between the B21 and Mav Max, do you notice any huge differences in weight or overall set up that might be contributing to the lower launch/spin? Maybe the shaft at play here? Usually it's something like head weight or something similar that we discount and it's really having a larger effect than we think.
 

Jman

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Thanks for the feedback. You are not the first person to have comments around the launch being lower than expected. I've read other reviews where launch was an issue. I think the results are no doubt from how a player delivers the club to the ball and I'm sure some won't see what you saw, but like you said if you are a low launch/low spin player you need to get some swings under your belt with this one and make sure it will work for you because this one isn't an automatic high launch driver.

Between the B21 and Mav Max, do you notice any huge differences in weight or overall set up that might be contributing to the lower launch/spin? Maybe the shaft at play here? Usually it's something like head weight or something similar that we discount and it's really having a larger effect than we think.
I actually think it is a higher launching head, but, the bigger factor in that is where a persons spin profile is. If one already spins the Mav Max low, then the drop in spin to this is going to make it quite hard to get and keep the ball into the air potentially.
 

McLovin

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Between the B21 and Mav Max, do you notice any huge differences in weight or overall set up that might be contributing to the lower launch/spin? Maybe the shaft at play here? Usually it's something like head weight or something similar that we discount and it's really having a larger effect than we think.
that's a good question. yesterday i only played 9 holes because of rain, and a foursome i got stuck behind who made a mockery of the etiquette of golf. i hit driver on the 7 non par 3 holes, and hit drives with mav max and b21 on 6 of those holes (rain was too intense on hole 1). i used the wrench to remove the head from my thce16 shaft and swap back and forth, so it was the same shaft with both drivers. i also switched which driver i hit first. for instance on hole 1 i only hit the mav max because of the rain. hole 2 is a par 3, so hole 3 i hit b21 first then swapped heads and hit mav max second. on hole 4 a par 5, i hit mav max first and b21 second. and so on.

i don't recall feeling like the headweights were very different. with the b21 lofted up (9* up to 10*) vs the mav max lofted down (10.5* down to 9.5*), the face angles were noticeable which could have made me swing differently.

i hit 3 drives with the mav max on the button, and 4, well, NOT. i only hit 2 drives with the b21 that felt good. so maybe there's something about the weight that affected my swing, maybe the face angle messed with me, or maybe i'm just still riding the driver swing struggle bus.

i have a fitting tomorrow at my club with callaway. hopefully i can get some numbers so we can see what kind of launch and spin i'm working with these days.
 

McLovin

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something else i noticed yesterday was how the b21 and mav max performed on a windy day. into the wind, the mav max got eaten up. on hole 9, i hit probably my best drive of the day. but it was into the wind (16mph per the weather channel app), and did not fly as far as i expected at only 247. but hole 3 was downwind, and the total was 297. the b21 was not far behind the max when into the wind, but downwind was 20-25y short (presumably because of launch, and wet conditions).
 

mikeg_74

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that's a good question. yesterday i only played 9 holes because of rain, and a foursome i got stuck behind who made a mockery of the etiquette of golf. i hit driver on the 7 non par 3 holes, and hit drives with mav max and b21 on 6 of those holes (rain was too intense on hole 1). i used the wrench to remove the head from my thce16 shaft and swap back and forth, so it was the same shaft with both drivers. i also switched which driver i hit first. for instance on hole 1 i only hit the mav max because of the rain. hole 2 is a par 3, so hole 3 i hit b21 first then swapped heads and hit mav max second. on hole 4 a par 5, i hit mav max first and b21 second. and so on.

i don't recall feeling like the headweights were very different. with the b21 lofted up (9* up to 10*) vs the mav max lofted down (10.5* down to 9.5*), the face angles were noticeable which could have made me swing differently.

i hit 3 drives with the mav max on the button, and 4, well, NOT. i only hit 2 drives with the b21 that felt good. so maybe there's something about the weight that affected my swing, maybe the face angle messed with me, or maybe i'm just still riding the driver swing struggle bus.

i have a fitting tomorrow at my club with callaway. hopefully i can get some numbers so we can see what kind of launch and spin i'm working with these days.
Makes sense as you tend to be a lower spin player and need some help there iirc. Either way it could be something as simple as the comfort level at address with the Mav Max and that frees you up to swing better. I know for me when I test something and don't immediately see the results I hope to see or similar to the club currently in my bag, I start to second guess and overcompensate with my swing to try and get results I want to see versus just accepting the results I am seeing.

At the end of the day we all love to tinker, but sometimes the tinkering doesn't pan out no matter how much we want it to.
 

NoLine

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After 3 rounds and 4 range sessions I’m just not getting along with the B21. Those 2 “WOW” drives per round aren’t enough to warrant continuing the experiment. I’ve been averaging high 70% FIR’s all season and I can’t seem to find a fairway with this club. Low balls, block balls, loft up, loft down, swap shafts, not happening. Nice driver to look at but just not for me.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

bbuonic81

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I need to get my hands on a 9 degree head to test out. I'm sure it'll happen at some point...too tempting.
 

Jman

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I need to get my hands on a 9 degree head to test out. I'm sure it'll happen at some point...too tempting.
Would love to hear your thoughts!
 

Jman

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I think there are many who have been or will be surprised at just what this profile is spin wise. Lots of wanting to compare to the Max, which I did as well, and it’s a totally different spin profile and I think for many out there who need a little help getting the ball in the wait and to stay in the air it might actually be too low spin. That’s why seeing some of the feedback that it’s glowing doesn’t surprise me, this is a design that many of us look at and THINK we know and have seen similar in the past, but this is an all new never done before design.
 

bbuonic81

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Would love to hear your thoughts!
Hearing what you and others have said really has my interest piqued.

I certainly know that what I need to do is take a couple of driver lessons and get my swing working for me rather than a little bit against me (based on fitting/LM data from last winter I am right where I want to be iron path-wise - about 2 in to out; driver is a different story - more like 4-5 out to in) so drivers that reduce spin while being forgiving to the right miss are exactly what the doctor ordered from a tech perspective.

With COVID having the indoor bays at my course shut and the range being closed as of last week, lessons will have to wait a little bit. And with a four-year-old and an almost two-year-old at home, if I'm being honest, I'm much more interested in functional playing than grinding a swing change at the moment (not that I'm not committed - just the way it is). Just have to find the right way to get one in the bag to do a compare and see if it's something that might help me hit some better drives and play a little better golf.
 

thewilderside

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I think there are many who have been or will be surprised at just what this profile is spin wise. Lots of wanting to compare to the Max, which I did as well, and it’s a totally different spin profile and I think for many out there who need a little help getting the ball in the wait and to stay in the air it might actually be too low spin. That’s why seeing some of the feedback that it’s glowing doesn’t surprise me, this is a design that many of us look at and THINK we know and have seen similar in the past, but this is an all new never done before design.
I'm far from an expert when it comes to understanding spin and it's impact but I wonder if this being a low spin driver explains why I felt I had to get after this to get good results. When I tried to tempo my swing to keep the ball in play (as I've had to do for a long time) my results weren't great, not bad, but not great. However, when I really got after this the results were what I wanted (low-mid flight, hint of a draw). I know others have said the same. Is there a correlation there or just small sample noise?
 

Jman

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I'm far from an expert when it comes to understanding spin and it's impact but I wonder if this being a low spin driver explains why I felt I had to get after this to get good results. When I tried to tempo my swing to keep the ball in play (as I've had to do for a long time) my results weren't great, not bad, but not great. However, when I really got after this the results were what I wanted (low-mid flight, hint of a draw). I know others have said the same. Is there a correlation there or just small sample noise?
I think it could be a real thing for many. So many are focused on the slice fighting part I think the low forward CG gets lost. And if you’re one who doesn’t make a ton of spin to start, it might be a curious experience.
 

thewilderside

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I think it could be a real thing for many. So many are focused on the slice fighting part I think the low forward CG gets lost. And if you’re one who doesn’t make a ton of spin to start, it might be a curious experience.
I'm hoping to get to the range at some point this week. Will definitely take a few swings tempo swings versus get after it swings and see if the results seem to hold.
 

baylrballa

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Hope to try it at a demo day sometime. Reviews are all over the place. 🤷‍♂️
 

MagicSpell

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Hope to try it at a demo day sometime. Reviews are all over the place. 🤷‍♂️
Like you I've been taking in all the feedback with regards to this new driver. I did get a chance to hit a few with @Wildcat4life 's when he first got it but his Jumbo Max grips were awkward for me since I'm not used to them. Luckily, I've been able to schedule a slot for an upcoming demo day at one of the local courses so I can get a better opportunity to compare to my gamer Speedzone Xtreme. Nov 7th can't come fast enough :LOL:
 

lefty1978

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1 month in and I'm still loving the B21 driver. The pairing with Speeder 569 IV is heaven. I have never had a more consistant driver ever. I'm not sure what kind of witchcraft Callaway put in this head, but they got something right. I usually cycle through 2-3 drivers a year because I love to try new stuff. Time will tell I guess.
 

Jman

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1 month in and I'm still loving the B21 driver. The pairing with Speeder 569 IV is heaven. I have never had a more consistant driver ever. I'm not sure what kind of witchcraft Callaway put in this head, but they got something right. I usually cycle through 2-3 drivers a year because I love to try new stuff. Time will tell I guess.
That’s awesome!
 

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What a difference a week makes. I played another league round today. Haven't touched a club since last Wednesday until my warm up prior to playing. The three clubs that banked me winning my flight in our 36 hole event last week didn't help a bit today. Or I probably should admit, I didn't help them...including the BB B 21.
I was paired with another flight winner and a runner up in his flight as a third. We all agreed that we had probably used up our October allotment of good shots last week.
All three of us played like 💩 compared to last week.
I hit more broad fades today with the B 21 than I have in the past three rounds combined. In defense of Ms. Bertha, I did hit 10 of 13 fairways and I had two sweeping fades that left me in the first cut of rough to the right and I absolutely yanked my drive OB into someones backyard on 18. I did hit a very playable provisional but the hole blew up anyhow.
I did make a few adjustments and was able to "play" the fade on a couple of holes but the wider fade was there today more than it has been. I can honestly say I was swinging poorly most of the day for one reason or another.
The good news is, of the 10 I hit in the fairway two were the best drives I'd ever hit on those two holes and another very badly mishit off the heel that should have gone OB left went relatively straight and longer than it should have given the poor contact. I do believe however that I am the target audience for the B 21 being a high HC with a slice/fade predisposition. The B 21 continues to instill confidence. My poor putter was suffering from a serious lack of adult supervision today.
I'm 95% on keeping it in the bag permanently but will probably give the RCH shaft another try. I'm still a believer in the magic of low spin, I just need a little magic in my swing.
 

DataDude

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At the end of the day we all love to tinker, but sometimes the tinkering doesn't pan out no matter how much we want it to.
And when it doesn't work out, we get to tinker some more!!!!
 

bbuonic81

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I likely won't get any swings in until next weekend (and the weather looks to be shifting quickly into full fall mode here in the Boston area, so distance numbers may not be immediately comparable), but one of these is on the way (thanks, Realmfg) to get put through the paces.
 

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