Best Game Improvement Irons For Performance

Getting the proper iron setup for your game can lead you to instantly lower scores. Because your irons take up the largest part of your golf bag, getting a set that is built for your swing is vital. Today, technology is packed into irons to make them more friendly and give golfers more. Players looking to improve their iron play through equipment now have more options than ever.

This guide takes you through several of the best game improvement irons on the market today. First, however, it is important that you understand why clubs work better in your hands than others. We have illustrated some common term that you will hear during your club fit below. Changing your old irons set to one of these best game improvement irons can make a huge difference.

FYI: Are you looking for the Best Gear of 2019? Then take a look our latest Buying Guides on the Best Golf Drivers, Fairway Woods, Irons, Wedges, Hybrids, Putters, and Golf Balls that can help you take your golf game to the next level. We golf course tested all of these items, and made these buyers guides just for you. Please take a look and let us know what you think!

Top 6 Game Improvement Irons of 2019


Best Overall
PING G410 Blue Dot Iron Set
  • Top-Rail Undercut expands the flexing zone to launch the ball faster and higher
  • 3% shorter blade length and 10% less offset to inspire visual appeal and confidence
  • New "hinging effect" and expands the flexing zone to launch the ball faster and higher
Best Feel
Callaway Apex Irons Set
  • Extremely soft feel comes from a forged 1025 mild carbon steel body
  • 360 Face Cup creates fast ball speeds for consistent distance
  • VFT Face in the short irons promotes aggressive shot-making.
Most Soft
TaylorMade Golf M6 Iron Set
  • Speed Bridge supports the topline to reduce low-frequency vibrations
  • Advanced HYBRAR compression damper effectively filters unwanted face vibrations
  • Lowered CG to increase launch angle and ball speed
Most Forgiving
Cleveland Golf Launcher HB Iron Set
  • Larger club heads mean more forgiveness and more distance
  • Hollow construction to give golfers hybrid-like performance
  • High strength Ht1770 steel face
Most Accurate
TaylorMade M CGB Iron Set
  • CG placement for high-trajectory and optimized spin rates
  • Consistently high COR make it our fastest set from 4-pw EVER
  • Thin & flexible sole w/speed pocket for forgiveness
Great Value
Callaway Rogue X Irons Set
  • 360 Face Cup + VFT for more Ball Speed
  • MIM'd Internal Standing Wave for Optimal Flight and Control
  • Urethane Microspheres for Great Feel


When Do You Use an Iron?

golf iron
Irons are used everywhere on the golf course. The vast number of clubs in each set help give each versatility and more function during certain areas of play. It is important that whatever iron model you choose that you feel comfortable playing them from the tee box, fairways, and rough.

Finding the Best Irons for Your Golf Game

The differences in each golfer’s swing and delivery make their needs for equipment and golf clubs different as well. Knowing the areas of your game that need improvement is the best place to begin your search. Understanding what new equipment can offer you can help lead you to the ideal set up for the course you play and your current and future golf swings.


Iron sets can be long-term investments. Many sets, when properly cared for, can last up to even 10 years of play. Balancing how much you want to spend on this section of your bag can leave money left over for more practice and more rounds. Because players are not looking to maximize distance with their irons, often opting for iron models that are one or two years old can be a great way to save money and make golf easier.

Top Iron Features

The highlighted features of irons are typically the way it is made, the technology that is infused into the club head, and the shaft and grip that accompany each club. We take you through each of these below.
game improvement irons

Forged Golf Irons

Forged irons are created by carving the entire golf club or pieces of the golf club one a single piece of metal. This process leads to greater consistency throughout the club build. This consistency, along with a softer feel and more subtle noise, is why golfers tend to enjoy hitting forged irons more than cast sets.
forged vs. cast irons

Cast Golf Irons

Cast irons use pre-made molds to make irons. The advantage of casting an iron is that more materials and weight can be precisely placed around the golf club head and performance can be adjusted. Often the larger club heads and game-improvement irons are cast materials that feature high-density weights around the perimeter of the golf club.

Designs of Golf Irons

Blade Irons

Blade irons, or musclebacks, are for elite level ball strikers and typically better golfers. Many times, these irons will offer golfers less help but more precsion around the golf course. Blades are often forged from premium steels that make them ultra-soft and effective in many lies.
cavity back vs. forged


Cavity Back Golf Irons

Cavity back irons come in a variety of shapes and sizes. These irons can be almost blade-like in size or large forgiving irons heads that appeal to golfers of lower swing speeds. Cavity back irons often conceal tungsten or other metal weights in the heel and toe of the golf club to help improve ball speeds on off-center strikes.

Sets of Golf Irons

A set of irons refer to the number of iron included with each unit. Irons are often sold in a set that ranges from 3 to pitching wedge, 4 to pitching wedge, or 5 to pitching wedge. Depending on the number of fairway woods, hybrids, utility irons, and wedge you prefer in your golf bag, the number of irons you will need may vary.

Hybrid Sets of Golf Irons

Hybrid iron sets help take some of the guess work out of club buying. Today, many golfers are taking advantage of the easier-to-hit hybrid golf club in replacement of the long irons in their set. Companies have begun to manufacturer sets that include both irons and hybrids to help the golfer get a complete loft match set for their game.

Golf Iron Shafts

game improvment irons
Types of Golf Shafts. Source callawaygolf


Steel Shafts

Steel iron shafts are the most common for today’s golfers. Steel shafts ofter traditional feedback and more stability than some older model graphite shaft designs. Steel shafts are also much cheaper to build and offer golfer more cost savings at their time of purchase.

Graphite Shafts

Graphite shafts continue to grow in popularity as many golfers are beginning to understand the benefits of these high-strength, lightweight options. Graphite, although more expensive, can offer advantages such as less shock at impact, lightweight shafts for higher swing speeds, and more precise loading to help golfers get the most from their deliveries. Do not overlook graphite when getting fit for your next iron set.

Mutli-Material Shafts

Multi-material shafts interweave grapihte and steel materials to attempt to offer golfers the best of both. More stable due to the steel and lighter in weight thanks to the high-performance graphite, these multi-material shafts make great options for players with low swing speeds that prefer the feedback of traditional shafts.

Shaft Flex

All iron shafts come in a range of flex options. Despite of what material they are made of the weight and flex of iron shafts need to be matched to your swing and your feel preferences. Shaft flexes range from ladies’ flex shafts to extra stiff shafts with senior flex, regular flex, and stiff flex in between.

How to Hit Golf Irons Video


Frequently Asked Questions

We have provided some frequently asked questions that often accompany golf iron set buying.


Q: How long do golf irons last?

A: Manufacturers often recommend changing your iron sets every 5 years, when the groove pattern on the face becomes worn, or if you have made technical changes to your swing. Buying new sets can be expensive and caring for your irons properly can make them last longer.

Q: Where is the sweet spot on irons?

A: The sweet spot of an iron is typically located directly in the geometric center of the golf club head. Striking the golf ball with this sweet spot, or center of mass, will produce the maximum performance with any golf club.

Q: What are game improvement irons?

A: Game improvement irons have been created to offer more help to golfers with lower club head speed or who need more confidence standing over the golf ball. These oversized irons are designed to launch the golf ball higher and offer more forgiveness on off-center hits. These irons can often give players more distance as the larger club face can result in more ball speeds.

Q: How do you clean golf irons?

A: Taking proper care of your irons can help them last longer and perform better each shot. Irons should be cleaned after each shot and between rounds. Wipe each iron face with a moist towel or scrub it with water and dish soap. Clean the grooves with a brush or tee to remove dirt and grass. Be cautious not to soak your irons in too hot of water as this can weaken the epoxy that binds the shaft and club head together.

Top 10 Game Improvement Irons of 2019


1. PING G410 Blue Dot Iron Set

Ping has crafted the G410 irons to mimic the performance of the largest game-improvement irons on the market. This performance is often coupled with large, ugly club head shapes that golfers have difficulty looking at. The G410 has been reshaped to give players the advantages of the largest game-improvement profiles with the cleaner visual presentations of a shorter blade length and less offset. COR-eye, tungsten heel and toe weights, and a co-molded cavity badge all ensure that you receive maximum distance and forgiveness in the new G410 irons. Our favorite game-improvement golf club set due to its performance and improved aesthetics, the G410 are a must try for golfers looking from more help in the middle of their golf bag.

  • Blue Dot irons feature a .75° upright lie angle to accommodate golfers with slightly toe down turf interaction at impact
  • Cleaner, more refined profile features a 3% shorter blade length and 10% less offset to inspire visual appeal and confidence
  • Top-Rail Undercut creates a “hinging effect” and expands the flexing zone to launch the ball faster and higher


2. Callaway Apex Irons Set


Callaway took on the challenge of improving what has been one of their most successful irons in the company’s long history. The Apex irons have been redesigned for the 2019 season to give golfers better performance and an improved feel and sound. The 2019 Apex irons are now forged from 1025 steel to provide an ultra-soft feel that is packed with performance. 360 Face Cup, variable face thicknesses, and urethane microspheres help make the Apex irons longer, more forgiving, and softer through impact. One of the most complete irons for crossing over among player groups and handicap categories, golfers of almost every ability can play the Callaway Apex irons to improve their game.

  • The Callaway Apex 19 is the ultimate forged players distance iron.
  • Extremely soft feel comes from a forged 1025 mild carbon steel body, and for the first time Callaway has put Urethane Microspheres into a forged iron.
  • The 360 Face Cup creates fast ball speeds for consistent distance, and the spin control VFT Face in the short irons promotes aggressive shot-making.


3. TaylorMade Golf M6 Iron Set


The newest game-improvement iron from TaylorMade, the M6 irons are longer and more forgiving than any other iron model in TaylorMade’s lineup. The M6 feature a Speed Bridge that helps put more weight behind the club face for faster ball speeds and a larger sweet spot. HYBRAR compression dampeners help to make the M6 sounds more muted and relieve golfers of the unpleasant clank that usually accompanies game-improvement models. The Fluted hosel and 360-degrees undercut of the M6 help drive the center of gravity down to make them easier to launch and more draw bias. Players looking for the most help in curing their slice or getting more distance from an iron can look to M6 this year.

  • MORE SPEED WITH SPEED BRIDGE : The new Speed Bridge structure unlocks the ability to use our fastest thru-slot Speed Pocket for the first time in our players distance category
  • IMPROVED SOUND AND FEEL : Speed Bridge supports the topline to reduce low frequency vibrations for a more satisfying sound at impact; Advanced HYBRAR compression damper effectively filters unwanted face vibrations for a soft and solid feel on all shots
  • OPTIMIZED FOR FORGIVENESS AND PLAYABILITY : Fluted Hosel and 360 degree undercut effectively lowers CG to increase launch angle and ball speed to generate a strong, penetrating ball flight even on low face impacts


4. Cleveland Golf Launcher HB Iron Set


Cleveland Launcher HB irons provide the ultimate relief for golfers looking for more help in their iron play. The Launcher HB irons combine progressive shaping and hollow construction to give golfers a hybrid-like design for more distance and more forgiveness. Slow swing speed players and golfers that struggle making consistent contact with the golf ball can find additional yards in this oversized profile. The Launcher HB irons are perfect for golfers trying to make the game as easy as possible from everywhere on the golf course.

  • Hollow construction
  • High strength Ht1770 steel face
  • Progressive design


5. TaylorMade M CGB Iron Set


Created to push the boundaries of modern iron design, the TaylorMade M CGB irons are super-game improvement golf clubs designed for the golfer in need. The M CGB irons use a face that is thinner than any other iron produced. The result is more ball speed in irons 4 through pitching wedge. More distance, more forgiveness, and more consistency across the entire club face build protection for golfers at every skill level. Especially beneficial to players with low club head speeds, the M CGB irons are an exceptional choice for golfers looking to make the game easier tee-to-green.

  • Sub 2mm face thickness pushes the Limit on ball speed & distance; ultra-low CG placement for high trajectory and optimized spin rates; consistently high COR make it our fastest set from 4 pw EVER
  • MULTI MATERIAL head construction cast 450Ss w/milled tungsten micro weights creates high MOI; thin & flexible sole w/speed pocket for forgiveness; face slots provide increased ball speed
  • GEOCOUSTIC TECHNOLOGY FOR FINE-TUNED SOUND AND FEEL: Precision shaped head for optimal acoustics at impact; Advanced Hybrar damper and stiff 3D sound managing badge dampen vibrations and soften feel


6. Callaway Rogue X Irons Set


Callaway has created the pinnacle of distance-performance irons with the Rogue X. Rogue X leverages massive club heads, low and back centers of gravity, more offset, and Callaway distance technology to create a game-improvement iron for golfers seeking the most help. 360 Face Cup and Variable Face Technology combine to deliver explosive distance without the need to swing quickly. Tungsten weights and additional offset make it easier to launch the golf ball higher even on misstrikes and can help players reduce their slices. Rogue X throw tradition away to create one of the most forgiving and longest golf clubs on the market.

  • 360 Face Cup + VFT for more Ball Speed
  • MIM'd Internal Standing Wave for Optimal Flight and Control
  • Urethane Microspheres for Great Feel


7. Cobra F-Max Superlite Iron Set


The Cobra F-MAX Superlite irons are designed to give golfers more distance through higher swing speeds and enhanced launch conditions. Gapped perfectly by their progressive offsets, hosel lengths, and centers of gravity the F-MAX Superlite irons help you play better tee-to-green. Everything about the F-MAX Superlite irons are built for speed and to give you more help when you need it most. A lighter club head, lighter shafts, and lighter grips combine to give you more freedom to swing freely and hit your longest shots ever without worrying that you will lose performance due to spin or launch. A thoughtful set built for golfers looking for the most help possible, the F-MAX Superlites are the go-to iron for more distance through more club head speed.

  • Lighter overall weight-15 grams of weight saving performance is achieved through a 3 gram lighter clubhead, a 7 gram lighter grip and a 5 gram lighter shaft
  • Progressive cg-progressive hosel lengths are shorter in the long irons and taller in the wedges, tailoring the CG to produce the desired launch and trajectory through the set
  • Progressive Offset design-features more Offset in the long irons where golfers require the most forgiveness and less Offset in the wedges that require more control and precision


8. Bridgestone Tour B JGR HF1 Iron Set


Bridgestone is making waves in the game-improvement iron space with the Tour B JGR HF1 irons. These irons feature a hollow cavity construction and low and back centers of gravity. The result is an iron that launches higher and flies further. Variable face thickness ensures that golfers receive more feedback as strikes vary across the face so they can improve their game. All of this packed into a forged design creates a softer feeling, higher performance iron that many golfers can build to their swing.

  • Bridgestone Tour B JGR HF1
  • The TOUR B JGR HF1 Irons feature 2 key technologies designed to help you increase launch and distance. The Power Slit Face Design provides increased face deformation at impact, causing higher ball velocity and launch. The Variable Face Thickness design will provide the maximum amount of forgiveness on off center hits.


9. Callaway Big Bertha Iron Set


The Big Bertha name from Callaway Golf has come to signify distance and industry-leading performance. The Big Bertha irons continue that narrative giving golfers more help throughout their iron sets. A suspended energy core is built into each Big Bertha iron to help improve launch, spin, and distance conditions at any speed. The Smoked PVD finish helps reduce glare and improve durability and create a slimmer profile at address. The Big Bertha irons are a must-try for players looking for a distance performance iron this year.

  • Easy Launch, Distance, and Incredible Sound and Feel From the Suspended Energy Core
  • Long, Consistent Distance From Our 360 Face Cup
  • New Suspended Energy Core


10. Cobra F9 Speedback Iron Set


The Cobra F9 Speedback irons utilize more steel in the lower part of the club head to give golfers more distance and higher launches. This belt of steel pushes weight down and out to add to the F9’s explosive distance and forgiveness characteristics. A forged E9 PWRSHELL face expands the sweet spot and returns more energy to the golf ball. With all that power comes a harsh impact that is saved by the layers of aluminum, thermoplastic polyurethane, and acrylic foam to create an impact that sounds great and feels even better. CNC precision milled to ensure that every club is built to the highest standards in the industry, the F9 irons from Cobra deliver consistent performance that outpaces the competition.

  • High Moi Design-A higher MOI is achieved using a combined 33g of Tungsten in the heel and toe, increasing stability and inertia for the best combination of distance and forgiveness
  • Low CG Speed back Sole-Additional mass is added low and back, delivering a lower and deeper CG that increases ball speed and launch to maximize distance
  • Forged E9 PowerShell Face-An E9 variable thickness face design is 1.8mm at its thinnest point and expands the SWEET ZONE area on the face


What Golf Iron Should You Buy?

Golf club buying can be confusing. Balancing which iron model to buy, then figuring out how to match that to either your existing or brand-new hybrids, wedges, and fairway woods can be even more challenging. We recommend seeing a professional club builder that can help you narrow your choices.

No matter what the performance of an iron, it is important that the clubs look great to your eyes behind the golf ball. Waggle the club in your hands without hitting a shot to make sure that it feels the way you want it to. Once you are comfortable then evaluate the performance of each iron and make sure that you understand why certain models perform better than others. Ask questions and use this process as an opportunity to learn more about your game.

Finally, outfit your iron club head of choice with a shaft and grip that helps you deliver it consistently back to the golf ball. Begin by evaluating how much you’d like to spend and make sure to be honest with your club fitter. Be sure to read our other guides, reviews, and tips if you are still unsure where to go from here. Good luck and happy testing!


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