50 Words or Less
The Bettinardi HLX 3.0 wedge has stunning looks and excellent feel. Two sole options. Plenty of spin.
It’s been over five years since Bettinardi released the H2 wedge [review HERE]. That’s a long product life cycle, especially by golf industry standards. What have they been doing with all that time? Completely redesigning their approach to wedges, with new material, a new face, and a stunning new look. The result is the Bettinardi HLX 3.0.
In the bag, the Bettinardi HLX 3.0 is easily one the best looking wedges on the market. Bettinardi covers the top of the blade in their signature Honeycomb milling. Thanks to a simple monochromatic paint scheme and tasteful branding, the focus stays on this unique element. Another thing that I like about the look of the HLX 3.0 is the abundance of mill marks along the sole.
At address, the HLX 3.0 wedge has a traditional teardrop profile with a very slightly rounded leading edge. The head is average in size overall, giving it appeal to players of all ability levels.
The Bettinardi HLX 3.0 wedges are available in two finishes: Black Smoke and Chrome.
Sound & Feel
One of the biggest changes to the new HLX 3.0 wedge is that it’s made of carbon steel. According to Bettinardi, this change was made to give the player a softer feel at impact.
To me, this soft feel really comes through on short shots. From pitches to chips, the ball feels very heavy on the face and creates a quiet “thud.” As you move into 3/4 and full swings, the feel firms up a little and the sound gets more crisp. The feedback on strike location is excellent.
Let’s start with the sole. Bettinardi is offering the HLX 3.0 in six different lofts with two different grinds. At 50, 52, and 54 degrees, the HLX 3.0 comes with the C-Grind. At 56, 58, and 60 degrees, players can choose between the C-Grind and the RJ-Grind.
Looking at the specs, you’ll see that the RJ-Grind has 2 degrees more bounce than the C-Grind. This leads Bettinardi to describe the RJ-Grind as being more forgiving and better for the player with a steeper angle of attack. What you’ll notice in looking at the two grinds is that the RJ-Grind has more relief in the heel and toe and appears a bit narrower overall.
Despite having a fairly shallow angle of attack, I often gravitate toward wedges with a little more bounce and sole width, so both Bettinardi HLX 3.0 wedge grinds worked well for me. With either wedge, I was able to make an aggressive swing without fear that the club would stick in the turf. I did find the RJ-Grind to be a little easier to open up, but the difference between the two grinds was not huge. I could be very happy gaming either grind.
In addition to offering new grinds, Bettinardi has redesigned the face of the wedge. Per Bettinardi, their High Helix Cut machining process cuts grooves that are at the USGA limits. In my launch monitor testing, the HLX 3.0 wedge was in the elite range for spin. From full swings to half swings, spin was very high and consistent.
The Bettinardi HLX 3.0 wedge comes with four premium stock shaft choices. I tested these wedges with the KBS Hi-Rev 2.0. The other options are the Nippon Modus3 115 and the True Temper Dynamic Gold in S200 and S400.
The Bettinardi HLX 3.0 wedges were well worth the wait. In the bag, they’re pure eye candy, and they reward good strikes with excellent feel. Add in consistent spin, a pair of versatile grinds, and a quartet of premium stock shafts and you have a wedge I can confidently recommend to nearly any player.