Cobra KING F9 Speedback Hybrid Review

50 Words or Less

The Cobra KING F9 Speedback hybrid is one of the best iron-replacement hybrids I’ve tested.  Consistent distance with plenty of spin to hold greens.

Introduction

With so much emphasis on distance, it’s easy to forget that hybrids were first conceived of as a replacement for long irons.  The KING F9 Speedback hybrid shows that Cobra hasn’t forgotten, because it’s a stellar stand in for that hard-to-hit 3I or 4I.

Looks

The Cobra KING F9 Speedback hybrid has a large, symmetrical shape at address.  In comparison to the F8 hybrid, the F9 is 10% bigger, but it ditches the crown graphics for a clean matte black look with a Cobra alignment aid.

The variable length version of the KING F9 has a black and red color scheme that’s carried from the sole through the head cover.  The F9’s sole has a lot more visual interest than your average hybrid with a red weight and silver rails.

Sound & Feel

At impact, the Cobra KING F9 hybrid is surprisingly quiet.  There’s a small, metallic “tink” when you strike the ball perfectly, but that sound disappears when you stray from the center.  The feel of impact is very solid; not what I expected from such a large hybrid.

That small audio difference between pure and mishit shots is the extent of the audio feedback from the F9.  Your hands will feel the difference between good strikes and big mishits, but this is a club that’s designed for stability over precision feedback.

Performance

Distance sells.  That’s Golf Marketing 101.  However, when you’re staring at a long par 3, you don’t need crazy, brain-melting distance; you need predictable distance with the right amount of spin.  That’s exactly what the Cobra KING F9 Speedback hybrid does.

In my testing, the F9 hybrid delivered fairly high ball speed that was consistent from shot to shot.  The spin was in line with the iron that the hybrid would replace.  It was not so high that shots would balloon, but it was high enough that they would hold a green.

Critically, I did not see any shots that went much longer than expected.  Those unexpected rocket shots are what keep many players – myself included – from swapping out an iron for a hybrid.  Cobra seems to have removed that concern which makes me much more likely to bag one of these in place of my 4I.

Finally, the F9 hybrid features Cobra’s Baffler Rails.  I always find myself conflicted when discussing sole rails.  Many times, as with the F9, I do get the sense that they improve turf interaction and help to save fat shots.  Then I wonder if it’s a placebo, and I’m just paying more attention to turf interaction because of the rails.  I may never get a definitive answer, but I can say that the F9 produced very acceptable results from some chunky impacts.

Conclusion

If you like to use your hybrids as precision instruments, you should go demo the Cobra KING F9 Speedback hybrids.  These are perfect long iron replacements because they provide consistent distance and green-holding spin.

Cobra KING F9 Speedback Hybrid 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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10 Comments

  1. John Solian

    Good review, Matt. I want to try the entire line of F9 products. When will we see a review on the F9 driver and/or irons?

  2. Do you prefer the PING G410 hybrid or F9 more overall? Thanks.

    • Matt Saternus

      Ryan,

      It really depends how you’re going to use it. Subjectively, I have a slight preference for the PING because of my history and comfort with the brand, but I’d have no problem bagging the F9 in the right situation.

      Best,

      Matt

      • Excellent explanation. Thank you! Would you say in terms of just dispersion of shots, was the g410 more accurate in that regard?

        • Matt Saternus

          Ryan,

          I don’t have the data to say. I tested the two clubs at different lofts and one had a shaft that was a far better fit for me.

          -Matt

  3. Hi Matt,

    How do these compare to the F8 model from last season? For a mid-handicapper who struggles to find the sweet spot, would you rate this or the Tour Edge EXS as more forgiving? Is the EXS as predictable in distance as the F9 or does it have the rocket shots you referred to?

    • Matt Saternus

      Brandon,

      I didn’t test the F8, so I can’t offer you a comparison there.
      The EXS is not nearly as high spinning as the F9, so it’s longer and has more potential for those extra long shots.

      Best,

      Matt

  4. Hi Matt,

    Nice review. May i know from your testing if the f9 has a strong draw bias? thank you!

    Mio

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