Titleist 917 D2 Driver Vs Titleist 917 D3 Driver – Which is Better?
It wasn’t too long ago that the 917 series of drivers from Titleist were all the rage.
Players of all skill-levels coveted these drivers because, well, they were Titleist drivers.
The prestige of the company often overshadowed the true merits of the clubs and many made the mistake of buying a 917 driver that didn’t fit their swing.
Nowadays, after having been succeeded by the TS drivers, the Titleist 917 drivers are gaining attention for another reason: they are now seen as bargain drivers.
But even at a lower price, you still have to know which driver will truly benefit your game and which one will simply be a drain on your wallet.
While it may be a few years overdue, today we will be comparing the Titleist 917 D2 and the Titleist 917 D3 driver side-by-side to help you figure out which is the best for your game.
Titleist 917 D2 Driver Overview
“The Titleist 917 D2 has many of the same features as the Titleist 917 D3 driver.”
Perhaps the most important of those common features is the SureFit CG adjustable weight.
The SureFit CG adjustable weight system is essentially three weight cartridges that can be placed in a neutral, rear-heel or forward to position.
In our testing, we found that the weight placement has a significant impact on shot shape so this is not some gimmicky, ineffectual weighting system.
You can use it effectively to promote a draw or fade bias and boost or tone down spin rates.
The effects are noticeable; it’s the system itself that’s a bit clumsy. Fiddling with the weight cartridges and getting them into place is a bit of a cumbersome chore.
Still, the weighting system does have a significant impact on the forgiveness factor of both the Titleist 917 D2 and the Titleist 917 D3 drivers.
For example, if you consistently slice the ball, you can shift the weight to the heel position.
If you hook the ball too much, move the weight to the toe position and you should see much better results.
The biggest difference between the Titleist 917 D2 and the Titleist 917 D3 drivers is that the Titleist 917 D2 has a 460cc head volume vs the 440cc volume of the D3.
This also helps with forgiveness. With the Titleist 917 D2, you simply get more face to work with.
The larger head comes at the expense of spin however. The Titleist 917 D2 yielded significantly higher spin rates than the D3.
Both the Titleist 917 D2 and D3 drivers feature the Active Recoil Channel which helps preserve ball speed when you thin the ball.
In our testing, this feature didn’t have a huge impact; then again most of our testing party didn’t have a huge problem hitting the ball thin with the Titleist 917 D2.
Titleist 917 D3 Driver Overview
“The Titleist 917 D3 driver has a 440cc head volume and a more traditional pear shape than the Titleist 917 D2.”
At address, the Titleist 917 D3 looks downright small – even for some of us who game 445cc drivers.
The Titleist 917 D3 features the Active Recoil Channel which definitely made more of an impact.
That’s because with the smaller head, thinning the ball was much more of a problem for us. So the ARC actually makes a noticeable difference.
The forgiveness factor pretty much ends there for the Titleist 917 D3 though. We found that slightly missing the sweet spot resulted in off-line divergence that neared 15 yards consistently.
There simply isn’t a wide margin for error with this driver.
But on the plus side, our faster swing speed testers were having a field day with the Titleist 917 D3.
When struck face-center, and with good club head speed, spin rates were staying under 2000 RPMs and the carry distance was in the 250-260 yard range.
And with the adjustable weights, we were able to hit some really nice, almost effortless draws and fades to avoid trees.