Titleist ProV1 and ProV1x golf balls captured the PGA Tour around the turn of the century and have yet to weaken their grip. All it takes is the sultry whispers of Jim Nantz singing the praises of the #1 Ball in Golf in a Titleist commercial to remind you of the ball's prowess. Roughly 60 percent of the pros on the PGA Tour use one of the two models, and with marquee superstars like Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Rickie Fowler bombing and putting their Titleist Golf Balls to millions of dollars annually, it's no surprise the regular Joe wants the white spheres in his bag as well.
Still, like Claudia or Cindy in the 80s and 90s or Kate or Brooklyn in recent years, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The debate around golf courses for the better part of the decade has been Titleist ProV1 versus ProV1x. Each brings certain advantages to the course. The performance you crave from your golf ball determines which of the Pro V models is the right fit for your game. Like two Heavyweight Boxers, the battle between these two legendary balls might go 12 rounds.
Which one to select? Luckily, we're here to help.
2017 Titleist ProV1 Golf Ball Review
- Good feel
- Penetrating Trajectory
- Consistent in the wind
- Possibly too soft for some golfers
For years, the soft cover was the knock on the Pro V1. This cost players valuable distance off the tee and on their iron shots, especially shorter irons struck into the wind. Titleist listened to those complaints and changed the core of the Pro V1 in 2017. The Next Generation 2.0 ZG Process Core rests under a ionomeric casing layer which is topped by a soft Urethane Elastomer cover. This revolutionary combination is designed to give players the requisite power without sacrificing the spin and feel on greenside shots.
In turn, the ball is designed to create a slightly lower launch, which should enable most players to handle those shots into the wind, without fear of their shots 'climbing the stairs' and coming up short.
The Pro V1 has a new spherically-tiled 352 tetrahedral dimple design, which was also engineered with the goal of providing an even more consistent flight.
For years, the Pro V1 was Jan Brady and the Pro V1X was Marsha, Marsha, Marsha when the topic was distance. Marsha dated the quarterback while poor Jan pouted around the house counting her worries. Well, call the most recent Pro V1 Jan's Revenge if you will, because the gap has narrowed. Even though the compression on the Pro V1 is 8-10 ticks lower than it's red-numbered sister, the difference in overall distance may not even be noticeable for players who have a naturally high ball flight. Chicks dig the long ball and 2017 ProV1 fits the billing.
Like a Ferrari is known for style and speed, the Pro V1 has built its reputation on landing on a green like a pigeon with a parachute. Then again, too much of a good thing is not always a good thing. Thundering 120 miles per hour down the local freeway is sure to earn a date with a magistrate and a 'spinny' golf ball that buries in bunkers on approach shots will also have a short lifespan. This Pro V1 is a marked improvement in acceptable spin.
Short Game Performance
It's excellent. You can feel the soft cover on a delicate pitch over a bunker and the ball feels pure coming off the putter blade. There's not a better feeling in golf. It will carry you back to your balata-bathed youth.
This is one tough cookie. As long as you don't go clanking this beauty off cart paths and ball washers, chances are you can play multiple rounds with one ball - assuming it doesn't land in any lakes.
2017 Titleist Pro V1x Golf Ball Review
- Amazing distance for a Tour-caliber ball
- Extremely high launch
- Strong in the wind
- Could feel a tad firm compared to other high-end Tour-caliber golf balls
The Pro V1x has a ZG Process Dual Core that is certain to deliver exceptional distance on most shots. The Urethane Elastomer cover is the secret behind what Titleist describes as "stop-and-drop" feel around the greens. It has a 328-tetrahedral dimple design, which has been in place since this model golf ball was first introduced. The difference, beginning in 2017, is the dimples are constructed in a more precise manner, according to Titleist. Their intention with this improvement is a ball that flies more consistently as it relates to line and distance.
It's easy to understand why some claim the Pro V1x is the longest ball among Tour-caliber options. Trackman and launch monitor numbers typically back these numbers up. If a couple of extra yards off the tee and with the irons are at the forefront of your game improvement goals, don't sell this baby short.
There's enough spin. Is there the most spin? No. The ball reacts on par with most of the other options in this class, however, nobody ever thinks spin first when selecting the Pro V1x. On the flip side, this lower spin rate eases the worry of shots ballooning when the gale is in your face.
Short Game Performance
It's fine. The ball is louder and harder than the Pro V1 and it makes a noticeable sound on long chips and lag putts. But the consistency is what stands out.
Again, hit it hard, you can't hurt it.
Titleist ProV1 versus ProV1x, which is right for me?
This is like selecting between a Ferrari and a Lamborghini. Or maybe picking your favorite child? Okay, maybe not that dramatic.
If you're looking for a softer feel, especially in the short game department - select the Pro V1. If you normally hit a high ball off the tee and don’t mind launching a little lower, the Pro V1 is again the answer. However, the low-ball hitter will definitely benefit from the Pro V1x. If you're the kind of guy or gal who likes to brag about the 8-iron you used on the 173-yard 17th hole, the Pro V1x will enable you to comfortable massage your ego as well. Titleist also claims the Pro V1 spins less from tee-to-green, so if your local launch monitor says your shots are overdosing on revolutions, buy the Pro V1, sit back and watch more shots land in the fairway and on the green.
Are the ProV1 and ProV1x really better than the other tour balls out there?
We're going to let you in on a little secret ... there are a ton of good golf balls on the market today. When the ProV1 was first introduced, there was a huge gap between Titleist and the other guys. Today though, you’ll find a lot more manufacturers producing golf balls that are similar to the ProV1.
That being said, in an apples-to-apples comparison, the Pro V1 equates to TaylorMade's TP5 while the Pro V1x is similar to the TP5x. Callaway and Bridgestone also make similar golf balls. How do the manufacturers balls rate against one another? Go ask Justin Thomas and Jason Day and get back to us. It probably depends on who is getting paid to say what. But at the end of the day, it's hard to go wrong with a Tour caliber Titleist golf ball. There's a reason they've been on top of the market for as long as anyone has been keeping score. And there is also a reason that the guys who play for a living select Titleist golf balls when given a choice.
To see a comparison of all the golf balls on shelves, head over to our roundup review of the best golf balls.
The Pro V1 is a great golf ball. So is the Pro V1x (real helpful, we know). If power isn't a problem, stick with the Pro V1 (it has the black number) and you'll enjoy the enhanced feel around the green. If Phil Mickelson-esque flops are the main shot in your bag, the Pro V1 will also be your friend. But if you're intent on playing one of these two and the low, West Texas knockdown is your go-to-shot, the Pro V1x is certain to provide an extra yard or two of carry. Test them both, starting at the green and working back toward the tee as Titleist recommends. And you'll move within a whisper of maximizing your game.