The guys at Titleist have outdone themselves this time. They have come pretty close to killing a decades old myth. In this Titleist 917 Driver Review, we will look at both the D2 and D3 model and help you pick the right model for your game.
You know what myth I’m talking about. You are standing on the first tee and your opponent pulls out a Titleist Driver. All the sudden, you realize that you are completely overmatched. There is a simple reason that you have just wet yourself with fear. It is the myth that only professional quality players can use Titleist equipment. You know that you are in store for a serious beating!
You may be one of the people who believe the myth. For years, that myth was pretty accurate. In its past few models Titleist has created a really forgiving driver for the masses with its D2 model. This year’s model is even more forgiving on off center hits. And of course it still delivers the classic beauty of a Titleist driver.
Titleist 917 D2 Driver Review
- The beautiful liquid slate 460 cc head offers tremendous forgiveness
- SureFit CG weight in head enables golfers to dial up the right combination of draw and fade bias
- There are many premium shaft options available to help golfers customize the driver
- The soft feel and quiet sound is pleasing to the hands and ear
- The improved Active Recoil Channel 2.0 increases ball speeds
- The driver produces a high spin rate that may hurt distance for some players
- The large head is less pleasing to the eye to some players
The 917 D2 is the most forgiving driver Titleist has ever made, period. The Radial Speed Face 2.0 means the club has varying thickness in eight different regions of the clubface and a sleeker more aerodynamic look than some of the manufacturer’s predecessors. What this means to you is that golfers will receive playability and forgiveness in each area. This will help tighten shot dispersion and maximize distance on off-center hits.
The liquid slate finish on the driver is reminiscent of older Titleist models such as the popular 975D and 983K. When the golfer looks down at the driver, it clearly has the characteristics they’ve come to expect from a Titleist.
Customization has been further enhanced in this driver. Not only does it have the typical 16-setting SureFit hosel settings that have become familiar in previous Titleist drivers, but the introduction of the SureFit CG weight, which is tubular in shape, allows golfers to alter the draw and fade settings on the club. Golfers can purchase the full SureFit weight set from Titleist.
The ability to move the weight around is a feature that sets both of these Titleist drivers apart from many of their competitors. The 8-gram, 10-gram or 12-gram weights give golfers numerous options. This allows the weight of the club to be shifted from the back (and the heel of the club) to the front (and the toe). Having the ability to turn a slice into a playable fade or turn a hook into a workable draw can be the difference between putting for birdie and struggling to save bogey.
The D2 driver can provide an additional one or two miles per hour in ball speed and one that can continue to produce high speeds, even on off-center hits. This is one of the longer drivers on the market in 2017. The average launch angle is generally higher than the previous Titleist models such as the 915 and similar to many other drivers that are currently on the market.
Because of the relatively high spin rate and the Radial Speed Face 2.0, offline shots tend to remain playable.
This club is not necessarily known for its exceptional workability, focusing its energy and efforts instead on allowing golfers of all skill levels to produce a consistent, repeating ball flight. Players looking for workability will probably already be looking at the D3 model.
In general, there are many exciting options about this year’s D2 model. Making the proper adjustments to the hosel, loft and now weight are keys to taking full advantage of everything the D2 driver has to offer. Leaving the club in the neutral setting is doing your self – and your game – a disservice. Finding the right match of shaft, weight, lie and loft will enable golfers of all skill levels to maximize all of the technology advancements offered by the Titleist 917 D2.
Titleist 917 D3 Driver Review
- Smaller head (440 cc) is in the traditional pear shape, which many golfers find attractive.
- Produces a lower spin rate and launch angle.
- Features the SureFit CG weight system which allows golfers to make adjustments to offset a hook or slice
- Offers a soft feel and quiet sound
- Many premium shaft options are available
- The liquid slate finish is pleasing to the eye and familiar for golfers who like vintage Titleist drivers
- The D3 Model is used by roughly half of the PGA Tour pros who are using the 917 drivers
- The lower spin rate can be problematic for certain golfers
- Less forgiveness than some other drivers
Are you the player who likes a more traditional looking clubhead and likes to attempt to work the ball? Enter the Titleist 917 D3. The D3 has the classic looking 440cc head and great workability (fades, draws, high shots, low shots). On top of that, many golfers (including really good golfers) have found faster ball speeds with the D3 and increased forgiveness. The D3 is a very attractive option to lower handicap golfers, especially those who might have a high spin rate and a higher than average launch angle.
The D3 features the same adjustability as the D2 model. Just like in the D2 model, players can adjust the SureFit weights, loft, and lie.
The club produces distance on par with any of the top and popular drivers on the market today. Although the launch angle and spin rate are on the low side, the ball speed numbers are exceptional.
In the 440cc Driver category, this club produces not only a repeating, consistent ball flight but also to give golfers adequate forgiveness on off-center hits. By adjusting the weights in the radial sole, the golfer can tweak the 917 D3 driver to help his or her golf ball find the fairway on a more consistent basis.
One of the main features of this club is the workability and is what sets this driver apart from so many others that seem to produce one shot shape and flight. The ability to change weights also aids in the club’s workability and is certainly another bonus feature as well. It is one that should make it appeal to an better golfers who value working the ball.
When players are looking for the classic driver shape, sound and feel, the D3 can be a very good choice. There’s a good reason this golf club is popping up in the bags of players on all of golf’s major professional tours.
Which Titleist 917 Driver is right for me?
Much of the difference between the 917 D2 and the 917 D3 drivers is personal preference. A golfer with a high launch angle and high spin rate who is looking for workability in their game will prefer the D3. A golfer who needs more forgiveness and doesn’t mind looking at a 460 cc head will prefer the D2. If controlling trajectory and receiving accurate feedback on every swing are assets a golfer demands from his driver, then either of these Titleist 917 models will fit the bill.
The Titleist name speaks for itself in golf, having earned its standing and respect among golfers. It is easy to see why it has long been one of the more popular drivers on the PGA tour. Compared to drivers on the market produced by Callaway and TaylorMade, the Titleist 917 drivers have a more traditional look and sound. Golfers who have enjoyed their product in the past would be well served to give the 917 series a shot. Titleist players generally remain Titleist players.
As with all recent Titleist drivers, the 917 has premium stock shafts that will fit any shot tendency. Both 917 models are available in lofts of 8.5, 9.5 and 10.5 degrees with a myriad of shaft options. The 917 D2 does offer a 12 degree loft option.
So after your opponent uses his Titleist 917 driver to humiliate you, put a paper sack over your face and get home! Before you go back to the course, take the appropriate steps to ensure that you get the last laugh. If forgiveness is what you are looking for, I suggest you go pick up the 917 D2 model today. If workability and reduced spin is what you are looking for, the 917 D3 needs to be in your bag.