Taylormade P790 Vs. Titleist 718 AP1 Irons Comparison Overview

The two juggernauts of golf clash once again as we test the Titleist 718 AP1 irons against the Taylormade P790’s. These are two iron sets that are marketed towards mid to high handicappers; but what is it about them that makes them useful to this demographic.

We hit the course and the range to find out just that. Which of these irons would be best for mid to high handicappers? Find out in the following comparison overview!

Taylormade P790 Irons Comparison Overview

One thing that the P790 and Titleist 718 AP1 irons have in common is a hollow body design.

The advantage of a hollow body iron for mid to high handicappers is that it will allow the face to flex more, usually resulting in better distance. With the 7-iron of the P790 set, our testers were averaging a distance of 128 yards – definitely respectable.

The P790’s also have a great feel and decent forgiveness thanks to an L-shaped forged face insert. The 4140 forged steel face inserts combines with the 8620 carbon steel body, giving these clubs the feel of player’s irons and the metal-wood dynamics of driving irons.

In fact, the P790 irons had the better overall feel in this comparison; but where they fell short was forgiveness and stopping power.

Titleist 718 AP1 Irons Overview

The Titleist 718 AP1 irons feature tungsten weighting in the toe for a bit of added protection in the far end of the club.

In practice, the toe-biased weighting could really be felt and seen. Shots from the toe were flying straight. But the real joy comes from when you pure the ball with these irons. Straight-on shots yield amazing carry distance that resulted in an average distance of 132 yards with the 7-iron.

Sticking the green was also much easier with the Titleist 718 AP1 irons even as they have slightly weaker lofts than the P790’s. The undercut cavity works to produce very impressive launch (33 yards on average after 3 shots with the 7-iron) which helps the ball land dead on the green.

It honestly feels like the Titleist 718 AP1’s are perfect mid to high handicap irons. They offer better distance help and more stopping power than the Taylormade P790 irons. While they have a sort of crass sound and a harsher feel compared to the P790’s, performance-wise they are directly in line with the needs of both high and mid handicappers.

Taylormade P790 – First Impressions

The first thing to notice about the P790 irons is the compact, forged heads that come in a shape and style that will suit the better players.

Despite the players feel of the irons, they also come packed with technology that will add distance and forgiveness like the Thru Slot speed pocket, speed foam and inverted cone technology which allows more flex on impact.

The forged irons are actually a hollow construction, filled with speed foam which allows much greater distances to be achieved than the original P790’s and the tungsten weighting keeps the CG low for an easy launch for an iron of this type.

The original P790 irons, released in 2017, were definitely for the players but with the remodelling in 2019 and 2021, these can also be used for mid handicappers looking to test the waters of players irons.

All in all, definitely not for the high handicappers.

Titleist 718 AP1 First Impressions

We were expecting a lot from these irons before we ever hit the course with them simply because they were Titleist irons and we know Titleist to make awesome clubs no matter the category.

We can honestly say that we were impressed with these irons at the end of the day. What struck us the most was the fact that our high handicap testers were able to land more greens.

The Titleist 718 AP1 irons do an amazing job of launching high and landing soft. They produce an ideal descent angle no matter what your skill level is. In short, the Titleist 718 AP1 will help you perform above your handicap.

Our high handicap testers noted better short game control as opposed to the irons they typically use. We honestly weren’t expecting such accuracy around the pin from these game-improvement irons but of course, we were happy to have it.

P790 Irons – Selling Points

  • 2 Tungsten Weights For Low COG
  • Co Molded Cavity Badge For No Vibrations
  • Lots Of Loft In The Clubs
  • Flexible Hinge And Variable Face Thickness
  • Forgiving And Consistent

Titleist 718 AP1 Selling Points

  • Hollow body design in the long irons
  • Undercut design in the short irons
  • Pre-worn leading edge
  • Custom tungsten weighting in each iron
  • Fairly thin top line for irons in this category

Who Are The P790 Irons For

The P790 irons will be most effective for the better players and certain mid handicappers who want to work the ball a bit more.

If you are looking for a blend of feel and distance, these are going to be the perfect irons for you.

If you are just starting out in the game, you would be better off with a game improvement iron.

Taylormade P Family Of Irons

The P790 UDI is a driving iron with minimal offset and a straighter top line for incredible distance.

The P790 TI range has more distance and forgiveness built in, so worth a look for those more on the mid handicapper side of the scale.

Distance: 92/100

Accuracy: 95/100

Forgiveness: 89/100

Feel And Control: 96/100

Overall Score: 94/100

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Who are the Titleist 718 AP1 Irons for?

We don’t want to say that these irons are best for high handicappers and beginners because that would be less accurate than saying they are best for high handicappers who are serious about their game.

If you are casual about the game, play a few times a year or aren’t particularly concerned about breaking 100, don’t get these clubs. There are plenty of cheaper irons that would suit you better.

If however you are committed to getting better, the Titleist 718 AP1 irons will work great for you. They provide great distance and surprising short-game control.

The AP1 Family

If you are looking for even more forgiveness then the Titleist 716 AP1 irons would be a good choice. They too feature an undercut cavity but have more perimeter weighting than the Titleist 718 AP1 irons.

This will help preserve ball speed when you hit near the perimeter of the face as opposed to the sweet spot. The 716 AP1 irons also have a more noticeable cavity in the back at point of address.

You can actually see the sole jut out a bit more with the 716 irons which may be a welcome sight to beginners and high handicappers. However, in terms of distance the 716’s come up short of the Titleist 718 AP1 irons.

The lack of a hollow body design in the long irons make the 716’s consistently shorter than the Titleist 718 AP1’s.

Distance: 94/100

Accuracy: 97/100

Forgiveness: 94/100

Feel & Control: 94/100

Overall Score: 96/100

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