Our Best golf driver on a budget 2021/2022 rankings is here for one specific reason. To put a driver in your hands that will provide you optimal performance with optimal savings. The reality is that we could put just about anything that resembled a driver in the hands of a tour player and they would outperform the top-of-the-line driver in the hands of the average golfer. This is why we find budget drivers providing the best value-performance ratios for golfers in the mid to high handicap range.
There are many golfers who look to have the arguably best drivers in their bag year after year. They are not overly concerned with cost given their previous driver is responsible for their troubles. The golf club manufacturers love them and make catchy advertisements to grab their attention. They are the golfers you should befriend if you are looking for a used option 🙂 If this is the market segment you feel best describes yourself then this is not the right ranking list for you.
Instead, there are many good reasons to consider budget options. The first is of course the most obvious, you don’t want to over spend. This might be justified by your belief or the fact that your skill level will not yield any quantifiable benefit from spending exponentially. Alternatively, you might be a casual golfer whose use of golf clubs is limited to the occasional call from friends or family gathering.
Fact is that not all golfers have the same expectations from the gear they use. The good news is that advances in technology and materials have brought budget gear much closer to the performance levels of top shelf options. we have seen that the performance-spend ratio really drops off as we near the premium priced products. We soon arrive at a point where only better golfers really can gain any utility.
Our best golf driver on a budget 2021/2022 rankings is dynamic. It follows the same approach as our other 2021/2022 reviews. We also plan to keep this methodology going forward while we extend it to all our categories and articles. The biggest difference from last year is limiting each driver review category to the top 3 entries. For those falling from the top ranks they still can be found on the master ranking list.
With our USD 350 price cap we are proposing options that are 50%+ savings compared to the top line drivers. Even with this level of savings there are many options that come to market worth considering. The bonus, all of these will leave your wallet away from the hazards and safely in play.
PXG 2021 0211 Driver
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Some months ago, I had the opportunity to take part in an PXG fitting day. I was primarily focused on getting hooked up for a new set of GEN4 irons which I could not be happier about. But when opportunity knocks you should take advantage so I spent the remainder of the day going up and down PXG’s current product offerings, including the PXG 2021 0211 Driver.
The question I had been asking myself was, how does a company who has lived almost entirely at the peak of pricing all of the sudden offer a driver that’s price tag makes you think it is a mistake, and what are the consequences. I can tell you I still have not figured out the how but as far as the consequences go, NOT MUCH!
The look at address would definitely never make you think you were playing anything other than a premium priced driver. Actually, you are not, you just aren’t paying for it. PXG will tell you that you that the 2021 0211 Driver is be benefactor of some of the leading technology advances in the premium priced series. The Ti412titanium alloy face actually makes its debut in 2021 0211 series, so it is not only inheriting tech but taking it forward.
If you turn the club over you will notice that there is not the adjustable sole weighting that comes with the top line of drivers. While some may try to make this a point of concern my opinion is, so what?? I have played a TaylorMade driver with adjustable weighting for the last 4+ seasons and I can tell you that I don’t use it. I understand that many golfers may but I prefer to have my driver set up from day 1 in a way that best suits my game and go with it. I really don’t need to give myself even more to think about when standing over a ball at the tee.
As far as the weighting goes, a backweight is applied to the sole of the club. The weight back design creates a deep center of gravity position, producing higher launch conditions and an exceptionally high MOI. While it cannot be moved there is eight different weights to adapt the forgiveness and weight profile to your game. But I am not here to give you a list of tech specs and marketing…. PXG can do that, I will just concentrate on feel and performance.
In a good half hour of ball striking, I was really impressed with the results. It handled off center contacts extremely well so I can’t argue with this 0211 being promoted as a forgiving driver. I am not one that cares so much about how a driver sounds, I will leave that discussion for when I talk about my guitars. If I stick to golf, where the ball lands are what really matters. Birdies still count when they sound off key, and so do double bogies even if perfectly in tune 🙂
The distances achieved were better than satisfactory. I did not get the same results as I did with my SIM2 but the setup was not the exact same profile. Even so this is not a “short distance” driver. Dropping off 10 yards but keeping your ball in play will give you more gains on the score card than dropped strokes. But the real story here is the cost….
Look, the fact is on overall performance you are getting a driver that can compete with all of those at the top of their class. Will it win longest drive, most likely not. Is it the absolute most forgiving, it is hard to say but it is in the conversation. But there is no other driver anywhere close to performing at this level at a price like this. As far as price-quality ratio’s it wins by knockout.
So, if you are high to mid handicapper this is a great option. If you are a more casual golfer who does not put a ton of rounds in a year, this is an exceptional option. There are a lot of different category golfers who will find things to love about the PXG 2021 0211 Driver. The hardest thing for us is to limit the rankings lists it belongs.
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Cobra Air X Straight Neck Driver
If you are a fan of Cobra’s drivers but you have noticed that your swing speeds are on the decline then maybe the Air X Straight Neck Driver is exactly what you’ve been looking for. Many golfers with moderate to low swing speeds have a tendency to resist being fitted with a more suitable driver for their swings. Most fall into the trap that it is sexier to be playing the same driver as the guy on TV does.
If you can get over it and come to grips with your limitations the Air X Straight Neck Driver is a well put together driver that also comes at a very favorable price. Since my swing speeds are still not in alignment with the Air X ‘s target golfer we brought one of our group, Eddie, along for the testing day. Eddie has never been a big swinger as long as I have known him but may be the most consistent of our group from the boxes and plays a respectable 9 handicap. This is why we chose the straight neck version given his ability to square the face at contact.
To get a better idea of the advantage of the Air X we had Eddie swing comfortably using a heavier driver. Of course, all drivers can be set up differently but as a point of reference our control driver was a SIM2 weighing 315 gr. We had him hit 25 balls calculate his average swing speed which turned out to be 82 mph. We then repeated the same exercise with Cobra Air’s X Straight Neck Driver and there was a very clear difference as his swing speed average had increased to 85.5 mph. The decrease of 38 grams had given him an additional 3.5 mph.
For most golfers an increase of 3.5 mph will get them an extra 10-15 yards on the drive. What is often overlooked is the club’s ability to keep the golfer in his comfort zone. The lighter weight of the Air X made keeping (in this case exceeding) desired swing tempo effortless. This results in better dispersion numbers, not because the club is more forgiving, but because the club allows you to play within your comfort zone.
For Eddie, because of his existing strong play from the tee the dispersion numbers with the Air X were favorable but not conclusive. For a moderate swinging mid-handicapper there is a lot a gain to be realized. If you fall into this demographic and/or are looking for a premium manufactured product at a reasonable price then we can highly recommend you give the Air X Straight Neck Driver a try.
- Lightweight Design-Using a lighter head, shaft (48g) and grip (37g) makes the club feel significantly lighter and easier to swing compared to a traditional driver
- Carbon Crown-Using a lighter carbon crown material, we were able to remove an additional 2 grams of weight from the head
- Back-Heel Weighting-Weight is localized in the back and heel to create stability on off center hits with draw bias for those that need it
- Straight Neck-For those who prefer a traditional look at address with no offset