The first time you heard of Srixon Q-Star golf balls may have been on TV, being advertised by golf’s Peter Jacobsen. You know the ad – it’s the one where Jacobsen says that playing a “tour ball” actually hurts many players. According to Srixon and Jacobsen, unless you’re a single-digit player, the extra spin that tour-caliber golf balls deliver is not the type of spin you need – it’s just sidespin that makes your drives veer off to one side or the other instead of flying straight.
You might also remember the Srixon Q-Star ad describing how they come in a bright “Tour Yellow” in addition to “Pure White.” Srixon likes to say that it’s “leading the way” in the “visual performance” of golf balls, and that yellow balls are easier to spot than the traditional white version - especially during winter when the grass turns brown. Well, I’m not sure if that’s true or not. I know the yellow version of the golf ball is bright, but I don’t know if it’s any easier to see than the white one. And, I’ve never seen any golf pros playing a yellow ball, so I think calling it “Tour Yellow” is more wishful thinking and marketing hype than anything else.
What’s really important about this specific ball – or any golf ball, for that matter – are it’s playing characteristics. Performance is way more important than the ball’s color or which golf pro is its spokesperson. So, what kind of performance do these balls deliver, and what type of golfer are they best suited for? Read this review to find out.
The Srixon Q-Star isn’t being marketed at high-level players. Srixon has its Z-Star golf balls for that. Nope, this is a two-piece ball which golfers of all skill levels can play. In truth, though, it’s designed to suit mid- to high-handicap players who want a good ball that won’t cost them an arm and a leg.
This ball won’t give you as much spin as the Srixon Z-Star or the Titleist Pro Pro V1x (for example), but providing tour-caliber spin isn’t its purpose. As I mentioned earlier, Srixon believes too much spin can actually harm many golfers’ games. And at around $25 per dozen (MSRP, street price is generally a little lower) this is a ball that could appeal to cost-conscious golfers who don’t want to pay $45 or $55 per dozen for a tour ball.
Well, you never know about a new ball until you try it out. So that’s exactly what I did (I tried the “Pure White” version because I can’t stomach yellow balls, but you might prefer them). Right now the Bermuda rough is up and very gnarly at my home course. As a result, my handicap has gone up to a 12, and I figure I now fit into the Srixon Q-Star “target demographic” pretty well.
Srixon Q-Star golf balls are intended to help average to higher-handicap players by delivering “STAR performance” (Spin, Trajectory, Acceleration and Responsiveness) that has been precisely tuned for those skill levels. As an aside, Srixon Z-Star balls also feature “STAR performance,” but in those balls the four performance characteristics are tuned to be appropriate for highly accomplished golfers. According to Srixon, finding the ball with the “STAR performance” that’s right for your game enhances your ability to score better.
For example, Srixon Q-Star golf balls have lower spin rates than the tour-caliber Srixon Z-Star. As a general rule, less spin off the driver means more accurate drives for average players because there’s less sidespin to cause a slice or hook. So, despite everything you’ve heard about the wonders of “spin balls,” they can hurt you unless you’re very accurate to begin with. A ball with less spin can also help average players around the green: when those players use high-spin balls, they tend to come up short on their approach shots, pitches and chips because the ball spins too much. A reduced-spin ball will release more, increasing the chances of ending up on the green.
So, the company engineered the Srixon Q-Star with a large, soft, resilient “Energetic Gradient Growth™” core, a thin but resilient cover, and a 324-dimple pattern that work together to promote higher shots, more distance, more accuracy and less spin. That’s the kind of performance that can help average- to high-handicappers enjoy the game more while it’s helping them lower their scores.
The Bottom Line: Tee to green, the Srixon Q-Star golf balls performed about as well as other balls in this price range. They were fairly long, fairly durable, and fairly accurate. I wouldn’t call them soft, but they’re not the old-style distance-ball rocks either. And, my approach shots and chips rolled out predictably. If you’re looking for a good all-around ball with a reasonable price, consider buying a sleeve of Srixon Q-Star golf balls and trying them yourself.