One of Callaway’s most popular lines, Callaway Apex irons have been upgraded for 2019. Our in-hand review

By Jon Levy

Callaway Apex irons review
Callaway Apex Pro irons

If you’ve been on a golf course in the past few years, you likely know Callaway Golf’s presence is strong just by peeking in the bag of one of your playing partners.

The headlining story with Callaway often seems to be the woods – be it Epic, Rogue or the brand new Epic Flash line of drivers and woods. What you may not realize, is Callaway has owned the No. 1 iron in the game since 2015 and holds strong across every category of irons.

Case in point: Callaway Apex irons.

A well-rounded pair of offerings (Apex and Apex Pro) in the Callaway fold since 2013, the last iteration in this line in 2016 features a multi-material construction that found a sweet spot for scratch players up to say, the 15 handicap. More specifically, it presented a solid option for golfers who like the look of a players iron, but want and need the assistance of forgiveness.

Callaway Apex irons review
Callaway Apex irons

That said, and speaking as someone who plays 2016 Callaway Apex Pro irons, there are elements of a true players club missing from them. Sound and feel being two major ones.

In a bid to confront those very points, Callaway has unveiled 2019 Apex irons and Apex Pro irons, highlighted by a body forged from 1025 mild carbon steel and insertion of Callaway’s proprietary urethane microspheres to dampen vibration.

Including the addition of tungsten inserts that work in tandem with Callaway’s renowned Face Cup technology, a more refined topline, compact shape and new finishes on both models, the 2019 Callaway Apex irons are clubs that sound and feel better, are more workable yet still forgiving. They elicit more of a players club appearance overall.Testing Callaway Apex irons

This new line promises to be a hit with Callaway fans in search of a set of irons in this category, especially considering the added distance these offer compared to the 2016 edition. Dave Neville, Callaway Golf Sr. Director, Brand Management, has tagged the 2019  Apex line as a “players distance iron.”

“We feel like we’ve created a new category of iron,” explains Neville. “This is our statement iron. We want it to look amazing but have a ton of tech under the hood.”

After having a chance to hit both the 2019 Callaway Apex and Apex Pro irons during a recent visit to the Ely Callaway Performance Center at Callaway Headquarters, I’ll concede the above points. It seems Callaway has delivered on the improvements they set out to create.

Demo and purchase the Callaway Apex irons at GOLFTEC! 

IN-HAND REACTION: Callaway Apex Irons

 

Callaway Apex- 19 pro iron address
2019 Callaway Apex Pro irons

Looks: I’ve played 2016 Apex Pro irons for the past three years and am content with their aesthetics. But I prefer a true players club look, and the thicker topline and elongated toe isn’t ideal. So I’ve never fallen in love with their appearance.

With Apex, circa 2019, however, Callaway has closed the gap there. The Pro model has a shiny, new chrome finish, thinner topline and higher toe leading to the collective characteristics of a blade or traditional players club.

The same goes with Apex standard, save for a slightly larger head, thicker topline, more offset than the Pro and a brushed chrome finish.

The 2019 Apex and Apex Pro irons are also offered in a new Smoke finish, which is a sharp option for those liking an alternative, contrasting look to their irons.

Callaway Apex- 19 iron smoke address
Callaway Apex Smoke irons

Feel: Apex Pro has a slightly softer feel than Apex, and both irons are softer than their predecessors due to the soft, 1025 carbon steel body that’s infused with Callaway’s vibration-dampening urethane microspheres. Each club feels solid going through the turf, and the sound at impact is perhaps slightly higher pitched than the previous models, which also helps these clubs feel more like bona fide players irons.

Performance: I didn’t have a launch monitor at my aid so I can’t speak to distance, but ball flight felt strong and consistent. I also felt better control over shot shape, otherwise know as workability, with the Pro iron than my current set of Apex Pro 16s. The standard Apex also felt improved in this area, but with less control over ball flight and a tradeoff of more forgiveness, due to the bigger clubhead and more dispersed weighting.Callaway Apex- hybrid sole

Apex hybrid: I haven’t covered the Apex hybrid, but that shouldn’t undermine the improvements in performance of this golf club. The previous Apex hybrid is a rocket – a great club off of the tee and rare design that doesn’t gravitate toward going left. But it also isn’t very forgiving or a good club out of the rough.

The 2019 Apex hybrid, however, maintains its better-player characteristics, but with the addition of Jailbreak embodies some of the same mishit speed and playability characteristics that made the Epic drivers so successful.

Demo and purchase the Callaway Apex irons at GOLFTEC! 

VIDEO: 2019 Callaway Apex Irons

FEATURES & BENEFITS: Callaway Apex Irons

2019 Callaway Apex irons

Callaway Apex- 19 iron back

Extremely Soft Feel
Callaway has created a new standard for incredibly soft feel from a forged 1025 mild carbon steel body, and for the first time ever engineered their proprietary urethane microspheres into a forged iron. The 1025 carbon steel body promotes amazing Apex sound and feel, and the urethane microspheres consist of over one million tiny air pockets that absorb unwanted vibration without slowing the face.

Long, Consistent Distance With Playability
Callaway’s renowned 360 Face Cup employs a shallow, flexible rim around the perimeter of the face that flexes and releases at impact to promote fastball speed for consistent distance on center and off-center hits. In the short irons, the spin control VFT Face is designed for aggressive shot-making in your scoring clubs.This is a distance breakthrough for a forged iron.

Optimum Ball Flight and Control
The tungsten-infused, multi-material construction allowed Callaway to locate the position of the CG in each iron with extraordinary precision while maintaining the flexibility of the Face Cup. This promotes optimum launch, ball flight, and pinpoint control for scoring performance through the set.

Premium Craftsmanship and Components
Apex is expertly crafted with a beautiful players shape, a platinum chrome finish and premium components, including a new True Temper Elevate 95 Shaft and Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 grips.

*Apex irons offered in 3-SW with a D2 swing weight
*Stock shaft offerings include the True Temper Catalyst – Graphite (50g, 60g, 80g) and True Temper Elevate – Steel (95g)
Apex irons retail starting at $175/club and hit shelves on Feb. 22, 2019

Apex Smoke irons retail starting at $195/club and hit shelves on Feb. 22, 2019

Demo and purchase the Callaway Apex irons at GOLFTEC!

2019 Callaway Apex Pro irons

Callaway Apex- 19 pro iron back

Extremely Soft Feel
Callaway has created a new standard for incredibly soft feel from a forged 1025 mild carbon steel body, and for the first time ever engineered their proprietary urethane microspheres into a forged iron. The 1025 carbon steel body promotes amazing Apex sound and feel, and the urethane microspheres consist of over one million tiny air pockets that absorb unwanted vibration without slowing the face.

Long, Consistent Distance With Playability In A Tour Performance Iron
For the first time ever, Callaway has engineered their renowned 360 Face Cup into a tour performance iron. Face Cup employs a shallow, flexible rim around the perimeter of the face that flexes and releases at impact to promote fast ball speed for consistent distance on center and off-center hits. In the short irons, the spin control VFT Face is designed for pinpoint shot-making in your scoring clubs.

Optimum Ball Flight and Control
The multi-material construction allowed Callaway to infuse on average 50 grams of Tungsten into each iron, so CG in each iron can be located with extraordinary precision while maintaining the flexibility of the Face Cup. This tungsten promotes optimal shot-making, ball flight, and control for scoring performance through the set.

Tour Influenced Shaping and Design
This is a classic look that the best players want to see with a straighter leading edge, higher toe, thin top line, and a smooth hosel transition. Their extensive input played a significant role in how Callaway designed this set with a beautiful tour performance shape.

*Apex Pro irons offered in 3-SW with a D3 swing weight 
*Stock shaft offerings include the True Temper Catalyst – Graphite (100g) and True Temper Elevate – Steel (115g)
Apex Pro irons retail starting at $175/club and hit shelves on Feb. 22, 2019
Apex Pro Smoke irons retail starting at $195/club and hit shelves on Feb. 22, 2019

Demo and purchase the Callaway Apex Pro irons at GOLFTEC!

2019 Callaway Apex hybrids

Callaway Apex- hybrid sole

Controlled Ball Flight and Workability From Precision Shaping
The design appeals to better players and tour pros, and it transitions perfectly from your irons. Apex 19 Hybrids provide a neutral bias for the controlled ball flight with workability that better players want to see.

Fast Ball Speed From Jailbreak Technology
Callaway has engineered its groundbreaking Jailbreak Technology in an Apex hybrid for the first time ever. Two steel Jailbreak bars stiffen the body, placing more impact load on the face to promote fast ball speed and distance.The Forged Face Cup is made from Carpenter 455 Steel, and is designed for increased ball speed at every impact location.

Premium Craftsmanship and Components
A beautiful Apex shape with a classic dark PVD finish and premium components, including a Temper Catalyst Shaft and Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 Grip.

*Apex irons offered in 2H-5H with a D3 swing weight 
*Stock shaft offerings include the True Temper Catalyst – Graphite (70g/80g)
Apex Hybrid retails starting at $269 and hits shelves on Jan. 25, 2019

Demo and purchase the Callaway Apex hybrids at GOLFTEC!


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Jon Levy
A former Instruction & Equipment Editor at GolfChannel.com and guest author for PGATOUR.com, Golfweek and others, GolfTEC's Jon Levy is an accomplished golf writer. His extensive golf experience also stems from a competitive background in college (Iowa State Univ.) and on the mini tours, and nine years as a college golf coach at the University of Colorado, Scottsdale Community College and Paradise Valley Community College. In 2007, Jon was named the NJCAA National Coach of the Year after leading Scottsdale to the NJCAA National Championship title.

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