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The Driver Guest Test – Callaway Epic vs TaylorMade M1 Driver

  • February 8, 2017
The Driver Guest Test – Callaway Epic vs TaylorMade M1 Driver

With the recent launch of the new Callaway Epic Driver and TaylorMade M1. We got a customer to do a Guest Test while we explained the process.


As both heads are very different and do different things, it is impossible for us to pick which one is better, as it depends on what works best for each individual golfer.

Don’t for a minute think that just because the head is new that it will automatically be better or The Best.

After a number of emails, Facebook messages and questions on Twitter, we decided that the only way to be fair to the product was to invite a Guest to take the Test. Dave Hosty put himself forward on Twitter and we asked him to do the Guest Test.



Golfer: Dave Hosty Handicap: 15
Current Driver: Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 9* 
Current Driver Spec: Rh with an Aldila RIP Alpha 70 X – 45.5”at D4 built by ForeGolf in June 2014.

Dave is a tall, strong hitter of the ball and is looking for more accuracy off the tee. He hits it plenty long so isn’t looking for any more distance. His ball speed is above average and due to his height creates a lot of width in the swing and as a result, lots of power.

The miss for Dave is a little low in the heel of the club but generally hits it in the middle of the face. His miss is generally right and has to work hard to protect this. The real success for Dave will come from a driver that has a tighter dispersion and can control the speed and gearing from off centre hits.


Clubs Tested header


Dave tested the following;

The Callaway Epic head
The Callaway Epic Sub Zero head
The TaylorMade M1 460cc head
The TaylorMade M1 440cc head

We used the same shafts in both the Callaway and TaylorMade heads. Our universal shaft fitting system allows us to test the exact same shafts across our entire range of test heads. 

At the beginning of the test we explained the correct shaft choice is an essential part of the process, it needs to work with the head design and the player. 

Note: We left a few of the test shafts out of the TrackMan report, so we could narrow down the selection quicker and keep the reporting easier to read.


Dave wanted to feel a certain thing from the shaft, through impact with a firm tip and soft midsection. He also needs a fairly stiff flex, as he doesn’t like a lot of movement through impact.  

Although if the torque is too low with an X flex, he can’t feel the head and starts to over compensate with this hands and starts to over release and hook the club.

Once we narrowed down the top 3 shafts, we then tested each of the different heads for visual framing and individual feel. We used TrackMan4 for every shot taken but kept the report shorter, so we can highlight the best performing shafts with the individual heads.

Each head was then tuned using the hosel and any of the adjustable head weights.

The report below shows the final testing on the different heads and you will see that there are two Taylor Made data lines as we tested two different flexes of the same shaft. The one that has the best performing shaft for Dave and the driver head is the “Taylor Made Alternative”

There is also a PXG head as Dave wanted to give it a smack while he was testing drivers. 

(click image to enlarge)Hosty Averages

TheResult header

Golf Club Head Reasons For Reasons Against
Callaway Epic Good solid feel and great shape Lower ball speed
Callaway Epic Sub Zero Lower flight, low spin Large shot dispersion
TaylorMade M1 440 Preferred head shape Not good on heel hits
TaylorMade M1 460 Solid hit & tightest dispersion Head shape a little big


TestWinner header

TaylorMade M1 460 9.5° Driver 

Project X HZRDUS Yellow 6.5
at 45.5″ long at D3.
Back weight set to back full
Front weight is 1 click towards fade
Hosel is set 1 click to lower



Data Review header.

Looking at the Trackman Data, even though Dave was not looking for any extra distance, he managed to pick up a little more as the new shaft, head and weight setup allows for a more favourable heel hit, over his current Callaway Alpha.

With more feel and energy flow from the shaft, the M1 460 head delivered the tightest dispersion and also by default the furthest distance. Dave preferred the look of the Sub Zero from Callaway and also the 440cc head but went for the 460cc head as it was better for the off centre hits.

Thanks for coming Dave; we hope that answers your question about which driver is best.



While the TaylorMade M1 was the winner in this test, it’s important to note that ALL of these products are designed to do different jobs.

The success of the club comes from the ability to match it to the playing characteristics of the golfer. Expecting anything new to be better just because it is new is where most golfers make the biggest mistake – investing in a technology that has no place in their game.

It’s also interesting to note
That Dave was hell bent on buying an Epic Sub Zero. He had wrongly presumed that it was best suited to him based on what he had read. Now that could have been a very expensive mistake.

You should read our new article – 5 Things to Know about TaylorMade M1 


If you want to be fitted for custom built clubs
in a performance focused environment. 
Book Your ForeGolf Custom Fit Online

30 Minute Iron Custom Fit €50 (Single Club)
1 Hour Custom Fit €100 (Full Bag)

Learn more about ForeGolf
What we do , the 11 brands available and price guide.  
You should read what our Customers say about us and their clubs built by ForeGolf. 
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« Previous Post:  5 Things to Know about the TaylorMade M1 Driver |     Next Post:  Customer Story: an update to Neil Reid’s progress »

Tags: custom fitting question Customer Story Driver Equipment Review Guest Test TaylorMade Golf 


  • Brillant information again from foregolf just to prove the point that buying straight off a shelf is a very expensive gamble.
    keep up the great work gang class act.

    Ronan Bennett

    February 8, 2017 at 10:57 am

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