Honma TR20 Irons Review – Are They Good for High Handicappers & Forgiving?

“The Honma Tr21x irons are very interesting in their design and engineering intent. On the one hand, they appear to be player’s distance irons.”

On the other hand, they have the appearance of game improvement irons.

Honma is not a company that most golfers would associate with amazing game improvement irons but we were actually quite surprised by the Honma Tr21x’s. We went out and tested them because we wanted to really see if they were good for high handicappers. 

What we found in terms of performance was almost as intriguing as the looks of these irons…

The Honma TR Family of Irons

“Like most Honma irons, the Honma TR20 P irons look amazing.”

They give the appearance of player’s performance irons; but they actually play more like game improvement irons. The TR20 P irons have strong lofts and promote a low launch. However, spin rates are kept to a minimum to help with overall distance. 

The TR20 P irons have a compact shape; but they still produce good distance if you are a moderate swing speed player.

Are They Good for High Handicappers?

“One of the things you’ll notice about these irons almost immediately is the chunky sole.”

While the Honma Tr21x irons sport a moderate blade length, the soles are quite chunky. This is noticeable in the bag and behind the ball. This is good news for high handicappers because they look quite congenial behind the ball. 

The top line isn’t too thick or too thin and the blade lengths are equally moderate. The Honma Tr21x’s are also hollow body irons which helps improve flex at impact. For any player struggling with distance, the Honma Tr21x irons should be of good service. 

Their moderate head sizes will surely disqualify them from being mistaken as the best game improvement irons on the market; but they surely do enough to be a viable play for most high handicappers (low 20’s players ideally).

Are They Forgiving?

“Again, these aren’t the most forgiving iron on the market because of their head size.”

That being said, the Honma Tr21x irons have an incredibly hot face design. It feels like the ball is instantly repelled off the face when you pure it. And that’s the rub. You really have to pure the ball with these irons in order to unlock their full distance potential. 

While you don’t lose a ton of ball speed if you mis-hit low on the face, you don’t get the same springy feel as you do when you pure the ball. And the feel is pretty indicative of how far your ball is going to go. 

Gapping, however, was excellent. And we were also surprised at how much workable distance these irons afforded even high handicap players. You can still spin the short irons and launch them high to bite into more greens – even as the lofts are relatively strong. 

Differences Between the Honma Tr21x Irons and the Ping G425 Irons

“The Ping G425 irons also have a rather compact design for GI irons.”

However, the Ping G425’s have variable face thickness which makes them more forgiving than the Honma Tr21x irons for mis-hits. The Ping G425 irons also feature perimeter weighting while the Honma Tr21x’s have no such weighting. Overall, the Ping G425 irons are a bit more forgiving; but distance is almost equal between these two sets. 

Available Shafts

  • Vizard TR20 85 graphite shaft
  • Nippon NS 950 Neo (stiff flex)

Are the Honma Tr21x Irons Worth it?

“If you are looking for a consistent set of irons that maintain distance gaps very well, the Honma Tr21x irons are definitely worth it.”

The spin was just slightly above average across the board which is something we really liked given that these are relatively strong-lofted irons. The Honma Tr21x irons also have a premium look but offer more forgiveness than their appearance suggests. If you are a high handicapper serious about breaking into mid handicap range, we would say these irons are worth the investment. 

Honma Tr21x Irons

In 20 Words or Less

“These irons give you the look of a premium player’s set of irons; but performance more akin to GI sets.”

Honma Tr21x Irons – First Impressions

“The first thing that struck us was how clean these irons looked.”

They feature a moderate cavity back that, if you’re not looking closely, looks like a muscle back. The Honma branding is also kept to a minimum so there aren’t any distracting logos. 

Honma Tr21x Selling Points

  • Hollow body design
  • Shallow cavity back
  • Strong lofts
  • L-Face cup
  • Tungsten weights

Who are the Honma Tr21x Irons for?

“The Honma Tr21x irons would be ideal for mid handicappers.”

But they would also be good for high handicappers who are serious about improving their game. 

The Honma TR Family of Irons

Honma TR20P

These are actually more forgiving than the Honma Tr21x irons. They sport slightly longer blades and refined tungsten to optimize CG and launch throughout the set. This is the TR set that you will want if you are a high handicapper.

Honma TR20 V

The TR20 V entry is considered the player’s performance version of the TR irons. The TR20 V irons are forged from S20 C carbon steel which imparts a soft feel to every club in the set. Compared to the Honma Tr21x and the TR20 P irons, the TR20 V irons feature a thinner top line and slightly shorter blades. This is the TR iron set you’ll want if you are a single digit handicapper.

Honma TR20 B

Like the TR20 V irons, the TR20 B irons are forged from SC20 carbon steel. They also sport a handsome pyramid-shaped muscle back. The set also features progressive bounce specs with more pronounced bounce in the short irons. This is a set geared more towards low handicap players and players who appreciate stunning Honma design. 

Distance: 94/100

Accuracy: 94/100

Forgiveness: 93/100

Feel & Control: 96/100

Overall Score: 95/100

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