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Expert Review: TaylorMade P790 Iron Set

Published on 03/14/2023 · 6 min readThis review is my honest opinion of the iron set, which I bought with my own money in May 2021.
Ryan Hernandez, Golf Expert
By Golf Expert Ryan Hernandez

All photos courtesy of Ryan Hernandez

About this review This review is my honest opinion of the iron set, which I bought with my own money in May 2021.

My take

The TaylorMade® P790 Black Irons have a bold and sleek look on already fantastic irons. These are player-distance irons but are versatile for a variety of players. I would recommend them for anyone ranging from a 2-handicap player, who wants workability without losing distance, to an 18-handicap player, who doesn’t like the look of a game-improvement iron but wants many of the benefits.

About the club I own

  • Model: 2020 TaylorMade P790 Black Irons
  • Loft setting: 4-PW
  • Shaft type: KBS Tour 120
  • Shaft Flex: Stiff

About me

  • Average score: 73-79
  • Handicap: 3
  • Experience: 25 years
  • Right/Left-handed: Right
  • Typical ball flight: High
  • Golf ball used: TaylorMade TP5
  • Club swing speed: 95-97 (6 iron)

Test conditions

  • When I bought the club: May 2021
  • Days tested: 250+
  • Where I’ve used it : Range at Wildhorse Golf Club in Denton, TX, as well as courses all over the country, simulators, and tournaments.
  • Weather and wind conditions: All conditions: rain,shine, cold, hot, windy, and calm

How it performs

Distance
5/5
Feel
5/5
Launch
5/5
Sound
5/5
Forgiveness
4/5
Workability
4/5

What I was looking for

I was on the hunt for new clubs because I had played blade irons when I was young and into my early 30s. However, I just was no longer good enough to get the benefits from them while sacrificing distance. I went to a Mizuno JPX 919, and while they were good clubs, I wanted something with a slimmer profile, which is when I came upon the P790.

Why I chose this club

I decided on these clubs because they were a perfect fit between my blades and the JPX I had switched to. I loved the look of blades but was no longer the player I once was. I am comfortable working the ball but was losing distance with my blade irons. The JPX was a little bigger and chunkier on the back end, which never fit my eye quite right.

I considered buying the Apex irons from Callaway because I had heard so many good things. However, when I went in to hit options, the P790 felt the best for me and my game.

What I love about it

  • Distance: I gained 10-15 yards (one whole club) instantly without changing anything. This made getting around the course much easier.
  • Feel: The feel of these clubs is great. I love the feeling when they are struck pure, but what is even better is when you hit them off-center. There is very little negative feedback in stinging nor uncomfort.
  • Sound: This is an improvement as well. Hitting them flush sounds like a tour pro. The best irons do not have any sound interference, and these fall into that category.
  • Workability: These are great for workability. Unless you need to hit cuts and draws like Tiger, these will get the job done. They offer plenty of workability for even good players. They do come in a smaller head as well (the P770).
  • Shaft Feel: I play the KBS Tour 120s. These are low-launch, low-spin shafts. I love the feel. They are smooth from transition through impact and the release is pure.
  • Shaft Performance: The iron tech has a tendency to launch high, and I am high-ball hitting, so the shaft allows me to keep from ballooning my irons. I can control trajectory a bit better in the wind as well.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: The black is the best-looking iron out there, in my opinion. The improved look of the regular P790 with the sleekness of the black color makes for an iron that is just so nice to look at you almost don't want to hit it.
  • Grip Feel: I use the MCC +4, which is a phenomenal grip. The ½ corded feel allows for play in all types of weather. In Texas, we can get rain or sun anytime mixed with wind and humidity. I need something that is not going to feel like it is going to slip. I rarely even have to wear a glove except on the most humid of days.
  • Launch Angle: This weight is positioned at the bottom of the cavity behind the sweet spot and helps to lower the center of gravity and increase the launch angle. In front of this, the Cut-through Speed Pocket in the sole allows a little flex on the thinner face and increases ball speed. This speed pocket is found on clubs 3 to 7 and is not required for the shorter irons.
  • Spin: These irons are low spinning which translates to more distance. High launch and low spring will mean more carry distance for most golfers and the ability to hold greens.

Issues I’ve encountered

  • Forgiveness: These are player-distance irons. As a result they will not be the most forgiving irons on the planet. However, I think they are very forgiving for the player-distance category. If you wantmaximum forgiveness or still struggle to break 100, you’ll need to look at something in the game-improvement or super-game-improvemnt line, such as the Callaway DCB, TaylorMade Stealth, or Cobra LTD.
  • Upgrades: Compared to the original P790’s, there is not much of a gain. That says less about this model and more about how well these clubs are made and received by consumers.
  • Exterior Finish: The black does wear some on the base, especially on lower irons.

Best shot with this club

I was playing a tournament at Tour 18 in Dallas. Tour 18 is a course that copies famous holes from around the country. Its ninth hole is the famous 17th island green at the TPC Sawgrass, where they play The Players Championship. The flag was tucked on the back right, and I had wind in my face. The distance to the flag was 141 yards, and I hit a beautifully cut, P790 8-iron over the water, and it cut perfectly through the wind. It hit once and landed 3ft from the cup. I tapped in for birdie!

Value for the money vs. other options

These irons are comparable in price to competitors, and they are worth every penny. Not only will you get out the door for cheaper than the Apex, but you will be getting a better club. Sure, you can find cheaper options, like the 2020 King TEC, but you will lose out on performance. These irons are unbelievably versatile. This is a very forgiving iron trapped inside of a forged body that will satisfy mid handicappers and low handicappers alike. They are sleeker and more appealing than the JPX Forged and outperform the Apex and TEC for a similar price.

Final verdict

These are the top-performing player-distance clubs in their class. The combination of the forged face and speed foam for speed and distance and the improved sound and feel make it an iron that appeals to mid and low handicappers alike. The look of these are second to none, and if you can get your hands on the black version, you have a display piece that rivals any other club!

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