Just released on March 1, 2012, do Titleist Velocity golf balls deserve a
spot in your bag? Read this up-to-the-minute golf ball review to find
Titleist’s 2012 ball lineup is out. It’s not surprising that the Pro V1 and Pro V1x are the stars; after all, it’s been that way for quite a while now. The company has also released 2012 versions of its NXT Tour, NXT Tour S and DT SoLo balls. But the biggest news may be the introduction of the all-new Titleist Velocity golf balls.
Titleists have always been some of my favorite golf balls. It’s because the company offers a ball that’s suited to golfers of any skill level, from the high-end, high-performance Pro V1 and Pro V1x to the excellent, slightly less expensive NXT Tours, to the distance-oriented, more affordable (for Titleist) DT SoLo. Performance- and cost-wise, these brand-new Titleist golf balls slot into the lineup between the NXT Tour and the DT SoLo.
At $35 per dozen MSRP (street price is lower), they are cheaper than most Titleists, but they’re still enough money that it’s nice to know something about them before taking the plunge. After all, this is the first completely new ball made by Titleist in more than a decade - other Titleist balls have been upgraded and enhanced regularly, but Titleist Velocity golf balls are the first all-new model in a long time.
I put a sleeve of Titleist Velocity golf balls to the test by playing them during my last two rounds. I also did a little research. Here’s what I’ve learned about these two-piece balls.
First, make no mistake – as you might be able to tell from the name “Velocity,” these balls are engineered for distance. According to the company, Titleist Velocity golf balls are the culmination of proprietary technology, cutting-edge design, and an extremely precise manufacturing process. For example, the core is said to be the fastest solid core in the company’s arsenal. The proprietary LSX core technology works with a new cover formulation (NaZ2 ionomer) and 332-dimple pattern to promote high ball velocities on full swings, consistent trajectories, and a degree of short-game feel not usually seen in “distance” balls.
Second, although they’re clearly designed to be a distance ball (and they deliver on that promise), Titleist Velocity golf balls don’t feel like rocks. Sure, they feel harder off the tee than Pro V1s, but the feel isn’t bad. And, the extra distance they can deliver might be enough to help you overlook their slight hardness. The Velocity is not a “tour” ball and it’s not intended to deliver tour-level short-game feel. It’s intended to deliver distance but still give you decent feel, and it does a pretty good job of doing exactly that.
Although shots off the tee feel a little hard, I didn’t notice anything negative when I was hitting an iron or wood – in fact, they felt pretty solid. One drawback was a lack of backspin when I was hitting wedges. As a result, Titleist Velocity golf balls come into the green on a nice, high trajectory but they do tend to release once they hit. They rolled smoothly and seemed fast while I was putting, so they might be a smart choice if you play on slow greens frequently.
It’s usually fairly warm (if not downright hot) here in Florida, and the temperature was about 88 degrees the first round I played with Titleist Velocity golf balls. I was impressed with the distance they delivered throughout the round. Two days later I used them for another round, and a major cold front had come through in between. It was only about 55 degrees during the second round, and I noticed a distinct difference in the ball’s performance. It felt slightly harder and wasn’t quite as long on the cooler day. Even so, it could be a solid performer on hot days.
The company included its Alignment Integrated Marking™ (“A.I.M.”) side stamp on these new golf balls. It’s handy for lining up putts and I’ve always appreciated it being on Titleist balls, so I’m glad to see this feature continued.
The Bottom Line: They’re not spectacular, but Titleist Velocity golf balls are good, solid performers – especially for their price. I suspect most golfers will gain some distance with these balls, especially on hot days. They might feel slightly hard and they won’t spin and stick on the greens like a Pro V1 or Pro V1x, but they cost half as much as those tour-caliber balls. They can probably help most average to high-handicap golfers who want more distance but don’t want to lose short-game feel completely. I think Titleist can be proud of the new kid on the block.