Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Irons Review

50 Words or Less

The Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke irons provide a big dose of distance with plenty of forgiveness.  Wonderful new look, satisfying sound and feel.  Strong lofts, mid spin.

Introduction

I assumed the new Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke irons were the 2024 version of the hugely successful Paradym irons of last season [full review HERE].  After a quick visit to the Callaway website I learned that the Ai Smoke irons are an addition to the Paradym iron lineup – billed as Game Improvement versus Players Distance.  And if you need a little more help in the irons department, Callaway has you covered with the Ai Smoke HL and Ai Smoke Max Fast models.  We’ll cover those more golfer friendly models in future reviews, so let’s dive into the standard Ai Smoke irons.

Looks

As much as I liked the look of last year’s Paradym irons, the Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke irons look even better.  In the bag, the Ai Smoke irons are sharp looking.  With three logos and three finishes, I’d typically conclude the back side has a super busy look, but Callaway pulled off a classy design.

At address, the Paradym Ai Smoke irons display a moderately thin topline and a slight offset.  The blade length is a little longer than the original (left), but it gives the irons a bit more inviting, streamlined look to my eye.  Starting with the 6 iron, the trailing edge of the hollow body construction came into view.

Sound & Feel

The Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke irons produced a crisp ‘tack’ on decent strikes.  Outside the generous strike zone, the sound was a muddled ‘ack.’  Irrelevant to actual play, I did find it interesting to hear a tinny sound when I raked balls into play on the range – clearly a natural result of the face thickness and hollow body construction.  Compared to the original Paradym, the Ai Smoke sounds slightly crisper and a little louder.

Feel was an interesting juxtaposition – firm, yet pillowy.  Maybe crisp is a good adjective again.  The feel I’m attempting to describe is a strike that’s solid, but gentle.  It’s super satisfying but comes with virtually zero tactile feedback.

Performance

Callaway has long been on the forefront of using AI in their club designs, and for the Paradym Ai Smoke irons they added real swing data for the computer to analyze.   And not just data from a handful of touring pros – Callaway gathered data from thousands of real golfers.  The result is what Callaway calls Ai Smart Face – a face that “promotes maximum distance with tight dispersion into the green.”

On the launch monitor at Club Champion, total distance jumped off the screen with every swing of the Ai Smoke irons.  I was picking up about 10 yards over my gamers on good strikes and 5 yards on my mishits.  A closer look at the data revealed there was more to the distance equation than just increased ball speed.  For the 7 iron, the Paradym Ai Smoke was 20% lower spinning and launched 3° lower than my gamer.  And while that could be partially explained by shaft performance, it’s important to note that the loft is 4° stronger than my gamer, and 1° stronger than the original Paradym for the 7 iron.

Ai technology also allowed Callaway designers to add ¼” to the shaft length on the 4 through 8 irons without sacrificing control.  The added length promotes swing speed and thus distance.  That’s a combination I can certainly use.

One final design feature worth pointing out is the Callaway Dynamic Sole Design, where the leading and trailing edges have been sculpted for more efficient turf interaction.  Callaway describes the leading edge as “pre-worn” and the trailing edge as a variable bounce.  I didn’t observe anything dramatic or specific, but did have “easy to launch” in my field notes.

Conclusion

The Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke irons are fun to hit.  It starts with eye appeal at address, and finishes with a “Wow, I can’t believe how far that went” moment.  The spin and landing angles were a bit low for my needs, but for a lot of golfers and golf courses, the Paradym Ai Smoke irons will be very appealing.  As always, finding the best shaft can greatly affect performance.

With all the iron choices Callaway offers, I’ll leave you with their descriptor:  “The Paradym Ai Smoke model is best suited for golfers with average to high swing speeds looking to maximize distance and improve dispersion.”  And one bonus nugget – the price of the Ai Smoke irons is lower than the original Paradym.

Visit Callaway Golf HERE

Buy the Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Irons HERE

Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Irons Price & Specs

Matt Meeker
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9 Comments

  1. Cue the “that 9 iron is like my 5 iron comments”

  2. Why not just call the aw a pitch and so on ? Because thats what it is

  3. Not sure the why behind the what . Why Gap wedge and “A” wedge . ? Is that a way to sell another iron ?

    • Matt Meeker

      It’s about lofts that fill distance gaps.

      – Meeks

    • I got fitted for these irons in late January. Got them last week of February. I have Played about 14 rounds with them. Yes, I get to play every day. Had been playing Apex 21. My driver SP is right at 100 mph. I play to a 5.5. The biggest difference for me was the new much lighter shaft. I had Project X io 6.0 in Apex. Yes, the lofts are jacked. I hit these exactly one club more than the Apex. The A wedge become the PW, etc. I was concerned about going from forged to multi piece. After using them for a couple weeks, the distance and dispersion are great. I use Bridgestone RXS golf balls and can stop on Bermuda greens with little to no roll out. I made the switch because I have surpassed the age of 60 and cannot swing as efficiently as in the past. These irons have put a little pep in my step. They perform as advertised.

  4. Got fitted a couple months ago. Had these irons side by side with the Paradym X. The X felt better (can’t beat forged feel), these felt a tad ‘fragile’ ….. bought the X and haven’t looked back.

  5. Charlie Rouse

    “the Paradym Ai Smoke irons display a moderately thin topline” Where you see a moderately thin topline, I see a moderately wide topline. Eye of the beholder and all that. I think it would be interesting to see the launch, spin and distance differences between your gamer 6 iron and the Paradym Ai 7 iron. I like that they have included the extra wedges to provide good gapping.

  6. These lofts keep getting knocked down. I guess that helps the lower swing speed player but how forgiving can they make a sub 20* iron? At some point you do want to spin it. Have a buddy that loves these who also plays 3 hybrids and does quite well with these. He’s short, but accurate & has a very good short game. Will be curious to see how these do-they are certainly targeted for a large group.

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