Lamkin Grips


It’s strange using the term “new kid on the block” when talking about anything concerning a company with the reputation that Nike has. But the fact is, in the golf equipment industry, that is exactly what they are. It’s almost hard to believe really, but Nike has only been manufacturing golf clubs for retail sale since 2002. Since that time Nike has built on their solid sporting goods reputation and they immediately put out quality products for consumers. The one thing consumers trusted all along was that Nike was not going to enter the golf equipment marketplace half-stepping it. They signed some huge names with some very impressive equipment R&D backgrounds and they immediately made a splash with their ever present Swoosh logo. Every year Nike continues to bolster their solid stable of PGA Tour and LPGA Tour professionals. Let’s take a look at what some of these pros are playing in 2011; the VR Pro Cavity irons.

The first thing I noticed about these irons is the Opti-Mass weighting system. Here’s a little more about the Opti-Mass weighting from Nike:

“The Opti-Mass Weighting System features a high-density tungsten-resin insert for targeted CG placement. Throughout the set, the center of gravity is strategically positioned to generate explosive distance with the trajectory required or tour-like golf shots.”

An interesting feature about the VR Pro Cavity irons is that each iron is made differently depending on the purpose of the iron. The long irons are a three piece iron with the face made of AM355 stainless steel; Opti-Mass insert; and a 17-4 stainless steel body. Mid irons are two piece with 17-4 stainless steel making up the body and the face and then of course the Opti-Mass weighting system, and finally the short irons are a one piece 17-4 stainless steel iron to offer more feel.

Clearly these irons are packed with technology but before I get into their performance I have to talk about the looks. One thing about Nike irons that I’ve always been impressed with is their appearance. I love the simple Swoosh logo on the iron to compliment the shiny chrome appearance. The first time I ever got to see a Nike iron in person I immediately loved the look and I’m happy to say that hasn’t changed a bit with their VR Pro offerings. From the classic design of the VR Pro blades and Pro Combos to the almost new aged tech look of the VR Pro Cavity the one thing that Nike Golf has figured out is how to make a gorgeous iron. The Pro Cavity does have a thicker top line and some people will complain, but personally, I’m over that whole hang up and I don’t mind a bit more bulky top line at all when I know that it will provide me with an easier iron to hit. From the back you see the chrome finish with the really cool looking Opti-mass weighting system and a great choice of colors added in. They’re really like nothing we’ve seen before and I really think the look works great.

When I first picked the irons up to swing, I came across what I felt was a little more weight to the head than some other ultra long distance irons out there. This is a good thing. I love being able to feel the club head throughout the swing and that is one thing I really liked about the Pro Cavity irons. You just get a good sense of having a solid iron in your hand and that really builds up the confidence before you even begin to swing the club. I mentioned the thicker top line and how I really don’t mind it, for me this set really helped promote my confidence without robbing me of any of the feel that I really like in an iron. Sure they’re no blade; you do sacrifice some feel for forgiveness here but not nearly as much as you’re accustomed to with game improvement irons of the past.

Recently THP held the annual THP Outing and Demo Day, the Nike VR Pro Cavity irons were a part of that demo day and our forum members had this to say about them:

“The ball feels great off the face and just explodes……high and straight.” TC

“The Pro Cavity irons really stood out for me. Great looking irons with a clean yet modern look. The performance was very good as well. Nice, powerful feeling with a high trajectory. The ball really jumps off the face with a solid feeling that makes you feel like you’re really compressing the ball.” Hanks

“Great feeling iron with a classic shape and look at address. Pretty decent amount of forgiveness considering how nice they look at address.” AHA

“These irons were good. I liked the ball flight and the forgiveness of the iron. Turf interaction was as you would expect from a larger soled iron, and the sound and feel of a well struck shot was fantastic.” Coolbreeze

“One of my favorite irons at the demo day.” Yoccos1981

As you can see, there were a lot of people saying some really good things about these irons. This is just a small sampling of what you can find by clicking here: Nike Golf Demo Day Reviews.

While the looks and the performance of these irons are exceptional there is a small part of them that I was not a fan of. The grip. While I wouldn’t go as far as to say it is the worst grip I’ve ever held, I do think that Nike could have done a little better. Grips are incredibly subjective so what I may love someone else may hate so I’m not going to hammer on Nike at all. Personally, I would consider changing the grip early on. Part of my testing was done in the heat and humidity of Florida in May and it wasn’t always easy getting a good grip on the club. Again, very subjective topic that can easily be fixed.

The shaft that was in the set I tested was the True Temper Dynalite 110. I feel like this shaft is a good fit for the set. It really helps achieve that high launch that people seemed to like most about the VR Pro Cavity irons. I tend to believe the impression of these irons being a little heavy was brought on by this lighter weight shaft. I’m happy with the way everything felt and the ball flight that these irons produced so in my mind the shaft was a good fit. The VR Pro Cavity are also available with a Project X graphite shaft.

When all is said and done I’m very happy with the total package of the VR Pro Cavity irons. They have the look that I like, they give off a great feel and as you can tell by our forum members’ comments, they perform well. A great looking iron that offers forgiveness and playability is definitely a winner in my book. I really liked the fact that I was able to play any kind of shot I wanted with these. If I needed to flight the ball lower it did that fine. If I needed to try to get the ball higher to get a little more air under it, that worked great as well. Personally I don’t really work on moving the ball left or right at all but I know people who do and they had no problems working the ball at all. I went in very happy with the appearance but with the VR Pro Cavity iron Nike is offering much more than just a pretty look. The VR Pro Cavity is available at golf shops everywhere for right around $800.

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Category: Equipment, Headlines & News, Irons

About the Author ()

Jason is a busy husband and father of 2 daughters who are both just starting to take up the game that he has loved for years. Golf is his passion, when Jason is not playing golf and testing equipment he's hanging out with all his friends on the THP forum discussing every aspect of this great game.

Comments (35)

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Sites That Link to this Post

  1. Nike VR Pro Cavity Irons Review | The Hackers Paradise – Nike Reviews | November 17, 2011
  1. Michael Cook says:

    VERY sharp looking irons. The more I research the Nike iron line the more I am impressed. Thanks for the write up – I look forward to hitting these the next time I am in PGA SS. The thing that stick with me the most is being able to feel the club head throughout the swing as I find that to be an important factor.

  2. Chunkylover77 says:

    Great review!! Nike’s entire product line this year is outstanding

  3. Beowulf says:

    Thanks for the info Jason. Good review. I especially like what you said about the weight of the head in relation to the Dynalite shaft. Nike is really starting to produce some fantastic sticks and this no doubt is a reflection of the companies desire to lead the field.

  4. biggsy says:

    Another solid review Jason. I really like the breakdown and how you added comments from the Demo Day as well. I really look forward to your reviews and know they will unbiased and fair.

  5. wcueb923 says:

    Strong review. Awesome look . Nike is moving on up. Watch out..

  6. Ryan H. says:

    This is a great looking set of irons and I wouln’t mind hitting some more balls with them. Nike really came out with some solid gear this year.

  7. royalwulff says:

    Great write up Jason! These irons have really caught my attention for my next set of irons.

  8. Canio says:

    Good review. These irons are great to look at. I would love to try them out.

  9. ddec says:

    solid review Jake! These stood out to me @ demo day. I think these offer a lot to golfers of all abilities

  10. Yoccos says:

    Loved the review Jake. I loved how you linked in the Demo Day thoughts as well. Some of my favorite irons and something I will consider down the road, especially since they offer the PX graphite shafts.

  11. Smallville says:

    Good looking irons. Wasn’t at the demo day so I never hit them. Will check them out in the stores though.

  12. 9-Iron Man says:

    Great review Jake! Sadly I didn’t get to try these at Demo Day. Pretty stupid on my part as I game the original VR Cavity irons….. These sure seem like great clubs!

  13. yorkem says:

    Great review Jason. I can’t wait to see what the THP testers have to say about these on a long term test.

  14. Dr. Teeth says:

    Really well done Jake! I thought these were great irons at the demo day. I can see a variety of people benefiting from the technology that is in these clubs. Plus, they look great!

  15. TC says:

    Great review Jake! I really do like these irons and I thought you hit on all the finer points of the iron. Well done and well done Nike for putting out a wicked iron set. The stock grip leaves a little to be desired from me, but that’s an easy fix.

  16. Jacob Robertson says:

    Great review! These puppies are gorgeous. Nike is bringing it this year.

  17. TheDue says:

    Great job Jake. These are easily the sweetest looking irons on the market, IMHO, and it sounds like they perform just as sweet. They will have to stay a dream set for me, but I’ll enjoy reading all the results our testers see.

  18. Hanks says:

    EPIC review Jake! Nike has really stepped up their game with their equipment offerings and these irons are testament to that! Thanks for the reference in your review too!

  19. Griff says:

    I love these irons. Great review.

  20. Dirtydawg67 says:

    Great review Jake. These irons look really good and the opti-mass weighting system sounds stellar.

  21. Degoins says:

    Great review! Nike is doing some really great things with their golfing line.

  22. Paulo says:

    Nice review Jason! Thanks! These irons look super techy and shiny indeed, lovely!

  23. INgolfer says:

    If these are anywhere near as good as the previous Nike VR Full Cavity irons then these must be AWESOME! I loved my full cavities before I switched to the split cavities

  24. timmyak says:

    Those are some crazy looking irons. Does anyone know how they compare to the cavities in the Pro Combos?

  25. DavidOClark says:

    I used these irons for a few weeks. I was not overly impressed. As the previous reviews. I really liked the Titlest AP1’s and Cleveland CG16’s. I decided on the CG16’s. I felt the AP1’s and CG 16’s felt better on mishits and more forgiving.

  26. bobby boomer says:

    Based on this review, I just ordered a set of Pro Cavity irons with True Temper Dynalite 90 shafts
    regular flex, and Lamkin Stingfree Crossline Tour grips, 1.5 degree flat, standard length.

    The shafts are no cost option but the grips are extra. Anyone know what swing weight would be
    the result of the shafts? There was no option available to stipulate swing weight. I am hoping it is
    at least D2 since lighter swing weights are not for me.

  27. bobby boomer says:

    Just received my set of Nike Pro Cavity Irons. I like the minimum offset, I love the swing weight
    with the Dynalite 90 shaft, and the Lamkin Stingfree grip is very nice. The custom Lie Angle looks
    about right for me. I will post results of actual playing experience after 10 rounds.

  28. bobby boomer says:

    Now I have played 5 rounds with the Nike VR Pro Cavity Irons.

    What I liked: They look elegantly simple, none of the garish & clunky looks of a GI iron.
    The extra cost Lamkin sting free grips are excellent. They do hit straight. And I could work the ball
    a little. Turf action is very good and did not dig in and produce fat shots. Offset is smaller than most
    GI clubs such as Ping G-15’s, which I liked.

    What I did not like: Their heads feel heavier than my Titleist AP1’s, which is not good for
    senior golfer like me who is constantly fighting distance. I had to swing harder than I like
    to get the height and distance. Chipping feel was not as good as the AP1’s.

    There is something missing in these clubs and I am not sure what it is and I can not pin
    point it. I think I will stick to my Titleist irons and sell the Nike’s. However younger and
    stronger players should do very well these clubs. May be I should have bought graphite
    shafts instead of steel shafts.

  29. Colton says:

    I bought these clubs last weekend and I hit them great! Better than my old Cobra II I was using. Perfect placement and very easy to judge how hard you should hit after a couple of practice rounds! Great clubs!

  30. Willie says:

    I just got these irons. I am coming from playing with “clones” (slingshot). But These irons feel wonderful. I think Jake is right that I can feel the weight of the irons as I am swinging it.

    I also like that, when hit right…gosh they go!!! and the sound is awesome, when struck good.

    It does look very pretty at address (since my other ones are really chunky).

    There is not much to complain since I’ve only played two rounds with it. but I noticed that the chrome in the bottom is already wearing off (especially on the 7 iron…I scraped a good chunk of the chrome when I hit a ball lying on hard dirt with rocks around).

    I can’t wait to go back to the golf course and play another round. I am a high handicapper but with these set, (especially at address) these has given me the confidence to score my lowest round, every.

  31. Foster says:

    I traded in my Mizzy MP-53’s 5-AW w/Project X 4.5 graphite shaft for the Nike VR Pro 4-AW w/Project X 5.5 graphite shaft yesterday at Golfsmith.

    -They were discounted to $399
    -I got $256 for the Mizzy’s
    -I tested the 6 & 7 irons with my MP-53’s on the LM, The SS was a little faster with the Nike’s, the launch angle was the same, the spin rate was a bit higher with the Nike’s, the feel was a bit heavier, the average distance was about 5 – 10 yards longer with the Nike’s, I got immediate feedback whether from each shot.

    Overall, they just felt much better than the MP-53’s…..I think a lot of it had to do with the shafts. Over the past year, I was hitting the MP-53’s straight down the pike, but coming up short. The VR Pros were dead freakin’ straight as well.

    Playing Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday as I am now on vacation until Jan 2nd.

  32. Foster says:

    The last 5 rounds with the Nike VR Pro CB’s were all under 90…..with an Eagle last week…141 yds 7 iron!

  33. tim says:

    Bought these irons last fall. Managed to get almost the entire set of irons 3 – sw in 5.5 proj x. I was coming from forged ram irons. I can tell when I have even a slight mishit. Despite the mishit the tech keeps the ball online and gets it nearly the same distance as a well struck shot. Took some getting used to them but i have hit a lot of shots right at the flag despite playing only once a week or so. I find the ball flight to be lower than my previous set and maybe not as spinny. Glad I got them and look forward to playing with them.

  34. Robert chisholm says:

    I bought these irons for there game improvement qualities. I’m not a strong player more your weekend warrior usually scoring 45-55 for nine holes. while I have a solid drive mw second shot and green approach shot have always been my weakness in my game. it took a few rounds to get the feel for them but I love them and the four iron is now mw favourite second shot club and feel so confident of finding the green on par 4 holes more often they feel great on impact and are a delight to swing with. trust me more confidence each shot is improving mw game and I’m always sub 50 every 9 and looking forward to breaking 40. well worth the money I love them

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