Srixon Z-Star vs Titleist Pro V1
So should you go for the leading ball on tour or defect to a similar ball from a different manufacturer?
Srixon owns a number of brands now including Cleveland but they are probably still best known for their golf balls which is not surprising as rubber is where the company started, they are owned by Sumitomo Rubber Industries!
Let’s see how there tour ball compares to the “Number 1 ball in golf!”.
Do Golf Balls Really Make A Difference?
This doesn’t necessarily help in terms of distance though as it’s been shown that even at slower swing speed harder balls will generally go further. The difference may not be massive but if you don’t hit the ball that far to start with every little bit helps
Most professional golfers use a firmer compression ball with a soft cover to allow them to generate maximum spin on their approaches but still hit it a long way.
But does the type of golf ball really make that much of a difference for the average golfer?
Yes, it can. A high spinning ball is great for short game shots and stopping irons on the green but it will also make your shots curve more so if you hook or slice it will be even more likely to find trouble!
Matching your club head speed to a ball is one way to come up with a shortlist of possibilities. Another is to look for a ball that you like on and around the green and work back toward the tee using it with your irons and woods to find a ball that gives you the spin and trajectory you want in your long game too.
While Titleist is keen to get everyone playing the Pro V1 I’m not sure it is the best option for everyone.
Things To Consider Before Buying Golf Balls
There are a few things you should consider before purchasing golf balls. If you want a ball that will give you more control and a softer feel, then you should look for a ball with a urethane cover. If you don’t hit the ball very far then you probably need to sacrifice some feel and spin to get a distance ball.
If you lose lots of balls then you probably need to consider price over performance.
There are many different balls on the market, so it’s important to do your research to find the best one for your needs.
If you think your game suits a premium ball then the Pro V1 is the market leader. Most people tend to think about distance as the main priority when buying golf equipment but with a golf ball I think how it feels off the putter face is an important consideration. Some people prefer a soft feel while others like an audible click from a firmer ball.
You also need to consider the durability of your ball. While modern golf balls don’t cut up in the way balata balls used to some balls will handle bangs and scrapes during a round better than others.
What Srixon Ball Should You Use?
It is important to choose the right golf ball for your game. Your handicap and swing speed will determine what type of ball you should use. If you have a higher handicap, you will want to use a ball with less spin. If you have a lower handicap, you may want to use a ball with more spin. It is also important to consider how much money you are willing to spend on balls. If you are just starting out, you may want to use a less expensive ball. However, if you are an experienced golfer, you may be willing to spend more money on balls.
Srixon’s own ball selector tool only seems to recommend their tour balls for players with swings above 85 mph. So they are trying to tell you something right there.
Srixon’s own advice is to go for the Z-Star if you are looking for the highest levels of spin while those out for distance should go with the XV.
Slower swingers are recommended to go for the Q-Star Tour, Ultisoft, AD333, Soft Feel or Distance ball depending on speed and other preferences.
Comparing The Pro V1 And Z-Star
The Srixon Z-Star is a premium golf ball that offers spin and launch characteristics similar to the Titleist Pro V1. It also has a slightly higher compression rating than the Pro V1, depending on your source, making it a good choice for players with swing speeds above 85 mph. The ball comes in three versions: the standard Z-Star, Z-Star XV and the Z-Star Diamond. The XV is designed for players looking to achieve maximum distance while the Z-Star offers more spin. The Diamond tries to offer a halfway house between the two.
The Pro V1 and its sister the Pro V1x have been the most played ball on tour for 20 years when professionals realized how much better performing these balls were than the old wound balata balls. The ‘x’ is for those looking for a higher flight and more spin. Titleist has recently added the left dash and left dot to the Pro V1 family.
The left dot is a lower flying and less spinny Pro V1. The left dash is a lower spinning, lower flying version of the ‘x’.
Off The Tee
In robot testing, there’s not that much difference between the balls. About 2 yards in fact and only 7 yards covered the shortest and longest balls in a group test of 19 different models.
The Pro V1 was about 3 yards behind the longest ball in the test, the TP5x.
The Z-Star was 2 yards further back and didn’t quite keep up in the dispersion stakes either being 2 yards wider
Spin from the driver was virtually identical with a difference of about 1.5%. Not entirely surprising the carry distances were so similar.
As a long-time Z-Star user I have to say that I was a bit surprised by the results as I’d not had great difficulty in hitting fairways although I suppose an extra yard left or right isn’t going to make that much difference in the real world.
I’m probably a bit biased but I can’t say I noticed any significant performance differences between the balls. My swing is more likely to be the problem than the ball itself.
Wedge Spin And Dispersion
The robot found only 75 rpm between the two balls so any performance differences are not likely to be noticeable for a human player, even a tour pro! The highest and lowest spinning balls in the test had a difference of 1400 rpm though which would be noticeable.
The Titleist balls fared best in the wedge dispersion stakes although the Z-Star was among a group that finished a close second.
I’m not sure the extra 1-yard of dispersion will make much difference to 99% of players. If you are getting ready for the Walker Cup or Tour School then maybe you need to go for the Pro V1 but the rest of us can probably cope with the extra bit of dispersion.
How Much Do Premium Golf Balls Cost?
The Titleist ProV1 now has an RRP of $50/doz. and it’s quite difficult to find them much cheaper than that. If you shop around then you might find them for around $45. The Z Stars on the other hand are supposed to sell for $43 but you can often pick them up even cheaper than that. Most of the other big brands want around $50/doz. as well.
Direct-to-consumer brands are a bit cheaper and you can pick up their equivalent balls for around $30-$35 depending on volume.
Titleist are in the box seat when it comes to pricing and they know it so you rarely find offers on their balls. Other manufacturers tend to be slightly more flexible. There always seem to be plenty of logo overrun Z-Stars available in the UK for around £30 or even less and I’m sure that is true in the US. Srixon recently did a buy 2 get 1 free deal which meant 3 dozen Z-Stars cost you around $86.
Srixon Z-Star vs Titleist Pro V1: Conclusion
After comparing the Srixon Z-Star and Titleist Pro V1, it seems that the Z-Star might be better suited for some players. It largely comes down to personal preference. You will probably see some slight differences on a launch monitor but only really skilled players will probably be able to detect those differences during actual play. Ultimately, it is up to the individual player to decide which ball feels best to them and gives them the best results.
Based on various tests the Titleist Pro V1 golf ball will get you a little more distance off the tee and slightly tighter dispersion. Whether you think that is worth an extra $10-$15 per dozen is open to question.
Either would be a great ball for the vast majority of golfers but elite payers will probably stick to the Pro V1 because of its cachet as “The No.1 ball in golf!”.
Alternative Premium Golf Balls
The tour quality ball is a hotly contested segment of the marketplace with every manufacturer offering balls that have similar performance characteristics to the Pro V1.
If you’re looking for a particularly soft golf ball then you might want to look at the Callaway Chrome Soft. This is a lower compression ball so you may notice a loss of distance.
Bridgestone makes a number of balls in their Tour B series and their philosophy seems to be based more around clubhead speed determining the best ball for your game.
TaylorMade produces the only five-piece ball the TP5. A significant number of pros on tour are playing this ball because they like its performance in the wind.
If you want to save some money compared with the big tour brands then a number of direct-to-consumer golf brands are producing excellent quality golf balls for about 60-70% of the price. Companies like Vice Golf, Snell, Cut, Seed and OnCore.
Check out this article comparing the AVX and the Pro V1.
Frequently Asked Questions [FAQ]
Which Srixon Ball Is Most Like The Pro V1?
The Srixon ball that is most like the Pro V1 is the Z-Star. It is a three-layer golf ball and offers a similar performance to the Pro V1.
It has a soft feel and a high spin rate, making it ideal for players who want more control over their shots.
Do Low Spin Golf Balls Go Further?
Do low spin golf balls go further? It depends on your launch conditions.
For a given clubhead speed and attack angle there is an optimum spin rate that will produce maximum driver distance.
The general rule of thumb is high launch and low spin so if you currently generate too much spin a lower spin type ball could help you produce more distance off the tee.
If you don’t generate enough spin then switching to a lower spin ball would probably cause you to lose distance. In this case, a higher spin ball might be your friend.
What Is The Compression Of The Srixon Z-Star?
Srixon’s own data lists the ball as a 90 compression. Some reviewers list it as high as 99.6 and as low as 88. This is because of discrepancies in the way the measurement is taken and what is being measured! Some manufacturers quote the compression of the core while others are talking about the whole ball. The compression can also vary from ball-to-ball.