My very first driver was a Callaway Driver Big Bertha and even though I have strayed away with my Nike Driver, I’ve always had a special place for Bertha in my heart, so when there was an opportunity to review the latest 2014 edition, I was quick to accept the assignment.
As many of you probably know, Callaway has been reaching back into the past to bring back some of the legendary trendsetters in early modern golf design history. Clubs like the Apex irons were a hit, so Callaway decided to bring back the metal wood that changed the game forever – the Big Bertha.
Callaway definitely made sure that they lived up to the legend by waiting to bring a truly innovative club to your bag. With a bigger sweet spot, which leads to more forgiveness and the added customizing of the adjustable perimeter weighting system, Callaway didn’t just stop there. The 2014 Callaway Big Bertha is made up of 8 different materials including the usual suspects:
- Carbon Fiber
The engineers at Callaway just combined these materials to remove as much as weight as possible, which basically means, they tried to use the right material for the right area. A great example is how they used lighter materials for the crown while saving the denser materials for the perimeter weight system, which helps with center of gravity and moment of inertia.
Perimeter Weight System
Using a 8 gram weight on the 5 inch track around the perimeter of the club head is the kind of technology we’ve been looking for from Callaway. The Big Bertha doesn’t disappoint, as it’s given me a good sense of customization for tweaking the club to my swing.
Coupled with the advanced optifit hosel found in the Optiforce and X2 Hot drivers, the combination of adjusting the loft and the sliding weight system gives a really good sense of custom fitting that has that nice quality feel to it.
From the top of the club, this is a very conservative looking driver, which is fitting for a company with the legacy of Callaway, but flip it upside down and you’re looking at something truly unique. The crown is a rich dark blue and as you move towards the sole, you’ll get some metallic finish mixed with more blues and red trims. The inner comic book geek in me thinks it looks a lot like War Machine aka Iron Patriot from Iron Man 3, but that’s just me.
It’s not as aggressive looking as the Nike Covert 2.0 Driver, nor is it as conservative as a typical Cleveland Driver. What you have you have here is a driver that trying it’s very hardest to create a balance between the future and the legend.
Once you put a Big Bertha in your hand, you know you’re putting something that is going to give you the confidence to pound one straight down the fairway. The large club head size gives off a sense of confidence at address and with the knowledge that you have tweaked your perimeter system to your swing,
Along with the white mitsubishi rayon fubuki Z shaft, the grips also come in a nice matte white, which basically tells me that all Callaway wants you to focus on is the club head and nothing else but the club head.
Once you finally get to the swing, you’ll notice and a very springy, sweet spot and a slightly louder sound than what you would expect from a Callaway driver. Nevertheless, the club gave me a great response where I could feel the ball squeeze on impact and a confident feel of knowing where it was going to go on impact, even before lifting my head on head impact.
I have to admit, the very first thing I do is take my clubs out to the range to get used to them and then I’ll take them out for a round to see how they perform. All the stuff you see above, is pretty much written after I test it, but I always like leaving the performance stuff for the last parts of my review.
With that being said, I am fortunate enough to play in near perfect conditions out here in Southern California, so there’s not going to be any wind or rain storms ruining this review.
I basically start with the weight system and playing around with hitting it off the toe and heel, hitting about 20 shots per setting. I would adjust the weight to the heel and try hitting off the toe of the club, then move the weight to the toe when hitting off the heel. If you’re looking for a launch monitor spewing of numbers that you probably don’t understand, sorry to disappoint. Call me Old School.
I just wanted to see what the club would do. Turns out that they worked as advertised and really straightened out my shots.
Personally, I have my weights set towards the middle to keep my natural draw on my swing. I’ve worked hard to get that slight draw, so I really didn’t have much adjusting to do. With that being said, I went to go play a round with the weights set in the middle and the results were superb.
On the range I got to mess around with the weights and different types of swings I thought other players might have. When it comes to a round, I get pretty serious and set it to get best possible performance. Because of my time at the range, I had a real good feel of how this driver was going to perform. It gave me confidence at every tee box and I was able to launch a majority of my drives exactly where I wanted them to play.
Even with mis-hits where you can hear the difference, the ball didn’t really veer off the hole, rather settling nicely in the second cut of rough, where it was still very much playable.
This legacy driver definitely took me back to the old days, but at the same time, this 2014 Big Bertha gave me a great taste of what’s to come. The ease of the innovation is really what strikes me where the combination of the outstanding hosel design with the easy to use perimeter weight system really makes this an absolutely easy club to hit. From beginners to single handicappers, this club will have something that every golfer will find to love.
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