Expert Review: TaylorMade P790 IronsPublished on 05/16/2023 · 9 min readThis review is my own honest opinion of the irons, which I bought with my own money in November 2020. I was not paid by the manufacturer to write this review.
Photo courtesy of Kaitlyn A.
About this review This review is my own honest opinion of the irons, which I bought with my own money in November 2020. I was not paid by the manufacturer to write this review.
The TaylorMade P790 is a premium feel forged iron hollow body construction, low-profile iron geared towards the low to mid-handicapper who wants fast ball speeds, shot shaping ability, some forgiveness, and tons of workability and feedback. These are in the ballpark of the best golf irons.
- Average score: 78
- Handicap: 5
- Experience: 13 years
- Right/Left-Handed: Right-handed
- Typical ball flight: High draw
- Golf ball used: PRO V1 usually
- Club swing speed: 80mph 6 iron speed
About the club I own
- Model: 2020 TaylorMade P790 Irons
- Loft setting: 1° weak on all irons (more loft)
- Lie setting: 1° upright
- Shaft type: KBS Tour 90 .355 Taper Tip Steel shafts
- Shaft flex: Regular flex
- When I bought the club: November 2020
- Days tested: 7
- Where I’ve used it: Greenfield Lakes Golf Course, AZ (off mats and grass)
- Weather and wind conditions: Mild-warm temps; mid 80’s. Little to no wind
How it performs
What I was looking for
I’ve been in need of an upgraded new set of irons for way too long. My first impressions of these players' distance category TaylorMade P790 irons were super positive. I looked at Mizuno but came back to the TaylorMade P790 irons. Call it love at first sight? The look is so sleek, but the head and sole of the club are a little thicker than a pure blade. I was searching for a club in the player's distance iron category that had a thinner top line and head shape and was workable. I didn't need clubs for a low-handicap golfer, I wanted something that still offered the forgiveness and consistency that I now need, since leaving the competitive golf world and no longer holding a very low handicap. Lastly, I was searching for something that provided better launch conditions than my previous irons which were constantly ballooning too high.
Why I chose this club
I chose these TaylorMade P790 irons because of the classic design look, overall exquisite sound and feel, and workability that I experienced during my club fitting. I was also able to get custom shafts and grips installed as well, which made them that much better. I truly enjoy the massive amount of stability that I felt through the golf swing, it was balanced. The turf interaction was smooth and easy.
What I love about it
- Distance: The distance with these new TaylorMade P790 irons is fantastic! This is a player’s distance iron. I gained about 5 yards on average with each club compared to my previous model. Even with the loft weakened, I gained yardage. The ball speed I gained was phenomenal compared to other models I tested and didn't decrease much even on low face strikes.
- Feel: The feel of these TaylorMade P790 irons is improved by the SpeedFoam™ Air that is injected into the club head right behind the face. The player feedback is excellent. These are not muscle-back irons. They have a wider sole. Therefore, I can feel exactly when I hit the center of the face and exactly when I don’t.
- Workability: The workability of these P790s is fantastic. I can draw right to left, cut it left to right, hit it high, low, pretty much wherever I want on command. It is still quite workable even when you don’t hit it on the center of the face as well. They offer supreme flexibility with the thin wall construction
- Shaft Feel: I love the feeling and performance of the KBS Tour 90s that I had installed in these irons. They’re close to what I was used to in my previous model, are lightweight, and are mid-high launching which is what I wanted. I love to play a higher ball and stick greens. The swing weight was right for me.
- Aesthetic Appeal: The aesthetic appeal of these irons is what initially drew me to them. They also have fairly minimal offset to the club head, a cut-thru speed pocket, which only improves their sleek and tough look, making me excited to hit the ball! I never felt like the hosel stuck out too much.
- Grip Feel: The stock grip on the P790s is the Golf Pride Z-Grip 360 which is a top grip on tour and is an awesome option, but I chose to put on Golf Pride Tour Wrap grips as I love the tackier and almost squishy feel to them. This helps me maintain a lighter grip pressure on the club as well. White makes anything look better too!
Issues I’ve encountered
- Forgiveness/Feel: The main reason behind my 3/5 ranking on forgiveness level with these irons was because they were less than what I was used to in my previous game improvement iron. However, this level of forgiveness was something I wanted in order to help take my game to the next level. I like to feel challenged by my clubs and not feel like they are a crutch for my game. TaylorMade was able to put 31 grams of Tungsten and perimeter weighting in strategic locations throughout the toe of these irons in order to achieve max stability which assists in forgiveness. The new SpeedFoam Air creates a flexible face while also making the club ultralight which allows for huge weight savings and optimization throughout the iron compared to prior-generation clubs. The long irons are shockingly forgiving and the short irons are slim but still instill confidence.
- Sound: The premium sound of the TaylorMade P790s is a little different from my previous model. It’s a little more muffled when you don't hit it perfectly square from the echo-damping system. The forged hollow body construction allows for a nice sound when hit correctly. If I cared more about the sound of an off-center strike, these may not be the irons for me. Also, thanks to the intelligent sweet spot, lower center of gravity, the newly engineered speedfoam air, and the flash face cup, it's much easier to hit solidly, which, in turn, results in fewer off-center strikes.
- Launch Angle: Although the significantly lower CG placement (Center of Gravity), the MOI in these clubs is fantastic, the natural launch angle was a bit lower than I was used to due to the strong lofts and also the nature of the type of iron it is (non-game improvement). I quickly solved this by going with a lighter-weight KBS90 steel shaft instead of the stock True Temper Dynamic Gold VSS or graphite Mitsubishi MMT shafts, and also by weakening the lofts 1°. With these adjustments, I was able to achieve the optimal launch I was searching for.
- Spin: During testing, I was achieving way less spin than desired due to the lower launch angle. However, this was solved by weakening the lofts.
- Face contact: Initially, with stock lie angles, I was hitting the club on the toe, but this was fixed by adjusting the lie angle to 1° upright. Overall, the face stability is fantastic thanks to the Thru-Slot speed pocket and Forged L-Face, which helps mitigate loss of distance on off-center hits and decreases vibration. Additionally, the new construction methods such as new carbon steel body construction and tungsten weighting allow for a super thin face, made for fast ball speeds.
Best shot with this club
My best shot so far with these TaylorMade P790 irons was on a 165-yard downhill par 3. I pulled a 7 iron as that’s my 155-yard club (accounting for downhill), hit it to about 6 feet, and made the putt for birdie. I’m excited to hit some more close ones and hopefully have my first hole-in-one with these irons!
Value for the money vs. other options
These are by no means a cheap set of irons. The handicap range is mid to low player levels. A stock player’s package 4-PW set will run you a little over $1000 before any custom shafts or grips. There are definitely some iron set options under $1k that are similar in playability and forgiveness as these TaylorMade P790s. I would say if you’re looking to invest in a player's distance irons for the long term like I am, these would be some of the best irons for you. The TaylorMade stealth irons and Mizuno JPX hot metal irons series are in a similar ballpark. If you’re looking for a more middle-of-the-road price point closer to $800 or less, the Callaway Mavrik Pros, Callaway apex irons, and/or previous model Srixons come to mind. The Mavrik irons are different in that they are a cast club (P790s are forged), but the Srixons Z585’s will be forged irons like the P790s. These are not blade irons, these are more forgiving. Each of these options would still be great for mid-handicap golfers.
For the higher handicap players looking for more of a cavity back and graphite shaft, some other options could be the TaylorMade SIM, the Titleist T300, and the Callaway Apex DCB—all at varying price points.
These new generation TaylorMade P790s unlocked a new world of visual appeal, workability, and playability on the golf course compared to their predecessors and comparable models. As a result of countless hours of research, a year later, the latest model of the P790 also provides an even more aesthetic appeal than the model I own. Although they are not meant for the beginner golfer or high handicapper, the mid-handicap player range would benefit from these player types with their moderate level of forgiveness, larger sweet spot, and sleek profile. I would definitely put them into the category of fantastic player's distance clubs. Also, they're easily paired with the TaylorMade P790 UDI for someone wanting to add a 2-iron between their longer irons and woods.
These clubs are featured in the Best TaylorMade Irons. Check it out for more recommendations and reviews.