2019 TaylorMade P790 UDI Driving Iron Review

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The 2019 TaylorMade P790 UDI driving iron may have high tech construction but it’s meant only for better ball strikers.  If you want an easy to hit utility iron, look elsewhere.

Introduction

Driving irons and utility irons have successfully transitioned from being the trendy club in an OEM’s line up to a staple of each year’s release.  The P790 UDI – Ultimate Driving Iron – is the second generation of one of the more popular driving irons on Tour.  I tested one to see how it works for golfers who don’t get paid to play.

Looks

In the bag, the TaylorMade P790 UDI looks like every other P790 iron (review of the P790 irons HERE).  TaylorMade has kept the back of this hollow body iron very clean with only a small “T” logo and the P790 branding in a modern font.

At address, the UDI distinguishes itself from the rest of the P790 irons.  The top line is thinner, and the offset has been reduced.  The sole is also noticeably thinner in this 2-iron than in the 6-iron.  TaylorMade states that these changes are the result of requests from their Tour staff.

Sound & Feel

Aside from the shaft change, I found the feel of the P790 UDI indistinguishable from the standard P790.  Impact has a snappy sound that’s crisp and rather loud.  Misses tend to be even louder.

The graphite shaft – Project X’s HZRDUS Smoke – does dull a bit of the feedback through the hands, but it’s still easy to know when you missed a shot.  Pure strikes feel very satisfying through the hands, misses don’t.

Performance

The TaylorMade P790 UDI is only available in a 17 degree 2I.  Even with the slightly lighter graphite shaft in it, that’s simply not enough loft for for me or most regular golfers.  When you combine the lack of loft with a thinner sole and less offset, you have the recipe for nothing but knee-high stingers that carry as far as a 4 or 5 iron.

When hit flush, the P790 UDI does create a ton of ball speed.  It’s not unusual to see smash factors of 1.4 and above from a good swing.  Unfortunately, the forgiveness is average at best.  It’s very easy to lose a lot of ball speed and distance if your strike isn’t premium.

In terms of spin, the P790 UDI is fairly low spin but not as low spin as the irons in the set.  The P790 iron set is one of the lowest spinning irons I’ve ever hit.  The P790 UDI is in the lower half of driving irons but far from the bottom.

Conclusion

If you’re an excellent ball striker or a player with tons of swing speed, the TaylorMade P790 UDI may be a great alternative off the tee.  However, if you value forgiveness or simply want more loft options, there are many better choices such as the Wilson Staff Model Utility Iron, Titleist U-510, and New Level 4995 HB.

TaylorMade 2019 P790 UDI Iron Price & Specs

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Matt Saternus

Co-Founder, Editor In Chief at PluggedInGolf.com
Matt is a golf instructor, club fitter, and writer living in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. Matt's work has been published in Mulligan Magazine, Chicagoland Golf, South Florida Golf, and other golf media outlets. He's also been a featured speaker in the Online Golf Summit and is a member of Ultimate Golf Advantage's Faculty of Experts.

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5 Comments

  1. Lyle Keith Williams

    Thanks for the advice. I’ve taken a Titliest 917 3 wood out of my bag because of inconsistent results. I do plan on replacing it and you have made some good recommendations on where to look elsewhere. Regards, Lyle Williams Tavares, FL

  2. Who will win if tm p790 udi vs titleist u510 in driving iron category?

    • Matt Saternus

      Jason,

      It depends on the player swinging the club. I think broadly speaking, the 510 would win because it’s much easier to hit.

      -Matt

  3. Garry Christie

    How do the new Cobra irons ( steel shafts ) compare to the Ping 410’s & Callaway Mavrik irons for 15 handicapper?

    Thank you,

    Garry

    • We’ll be testing the Cobra SPEEDZONE and Callaway MAVRIK irons soon. If those reviews don’t answer your questions, please post again.

      Thanks for reading.

      – Meeks

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