Epon AF-506 Irons Review

50 Words or Less

The Epon AF-506 irons feel spectacular.  Decent look at address but quite ugly in the bag.  Performance is fine but doesn’t stand out in any category.

Introduction

Among the gear-obsessed “Endo Forged” is an indication that an iron is elite.  In addition to producing irons for other manufacturers, Endo also produces their own clubs under the Epon brand.  The AF-506 is one of Epon’s latest designs, and I tested it to see how it compared to offerings from the more well-known brands in the game.

Looks

At address, the Epon AF-506 is a standard game improvement iron.  It has a healthy amount of offset, a medium-thin top line, and a blade length just below average.  There’s nothing too exciting here but nothing bad, either.

In the bag, however, I think these irons look terrible.  And, to be fair, it’s just one major issue: the screws.  If those were removed, this would be a perfectly standard cavity back iron.  In fact, I think the shape of the cavity is pretty cool  and a bit unusual.  The screws ruin the whole aesthetic.  They look cheap, like something out of a box set, and given the premium price of these irons, that’s unacceptable.

Sound & Feel

Endo forging comes with a lot of hype, but these irons back it up.  Hitting the Epon AF-506 on the center of the face feels magical.  They are incredibly soft, like the ball just melts into the center of the face.  These are the softest irons I’ve hit in quite a while.

When you move off center the feel does get firmer, but it never crosses into being hard or unpleasant.  Feedback is very precise – you can pinpoint the impact location without any trouble.

Performance

The feel of the AF-506 is spectacular.  The looks, at least in the bag, are awful.  The performance is somewhere in the middle.

On their website, Epon says that this “packs a ton of game improvement in a 1-piece forged design.”  In my testing, I found the forgiveness to be good but not outstanding.  Virtually every major OEM makes an iron of similar proportions that is as or more forgiving than the AF-506.  With this set, your small mishits will be on or around the green, and your bigger mishits are going to be ugly.  It has a fairly wide sole and low CG to boost thin shots, but you’ll still lose considerable distance on those strikes.

When hit well, the Epon AF-506 produces good ball speed, and medium-low launch and spin.  This adds up to distance that’s adequate but not elite.  Epon says that this has the thinnest face of any 1-piece billet forged club, but that’s not enough to keep up with the fastest irons on the market.

Ultimately, I’m left a little puzzled as to whom this iron is for.  Players who want maximum distance are going to find better fits.  The forgiveness is fine, but it’s not impressive for its size (or price tag).  If you don’t fall in love with the feel of impact, I don’t think this iron is going to end up in your bag.

Conclusion

The one great strength of the Epon AF-506 irons is the feel at impact.  Endo Forging lives up the hype and produces one of the softest hits you’ll find.  Unfortunately, nothing else about this iron is worthy of its hefty price tag.

Visit Epon Golf HERE

Epon AF-506 Irons Price & Specs

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Matt Saternus

Founder, Editor In Chief at PluggedInGolf.com
Matt is the Founder and Editor in Chief of Plugged In Golf. He's worked in nearly every job in the golf industry from club fitting to instruction to writing and speaking. Matt lives in the northwest suburbs of Chicago with his wife and two daughters.

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6 Comments

  1. Thanks for the review.

    I remember when the 501’s were a player’s club. The 701 was GI/SGI. Things change in 11 years. You’re right, those screws are screwy. Disappointing.

  2. Tom Duckworth

    I see a giant frog face ….disappointing from Epon

  3. I’ve had every iron you can possibly think of.. The 506 not the prettiest.. but they are the best iron I’ve ever played.. Worth every penny!!!!

  4. Thanks Matt for this review. I actually bought these not too long ago and absolutely love them. I think they fit right in between the Players Distance and Game Improvement iron categories kind of like the Srixon Zx5 profile. I switched out of the Mizuno JPX-900 Forged to these Epon AF-506. I tried the new APEX, Zx5/Zx7, T300, Miura CB-301, new P790, and these Epons stood out from the pack. I am not a brand loyalist and I myself wasn’t a fan of the industrial look either at first but they actually have grown on me over time and I can get over some of the looks given the performance its giving me, however I know everyone has difference preference and swing profiles. I think this iron is unique in this category as its the only 1 piece forged in this category so to speak. I agree the feel is absolutely its selling point. I was looking for an iron with that same soft feel as my Mizunos with a bit higher ball flight, forgiveness, better turf interaction, keeping a “thinner top line”, and better spin. For me this one did exactly that when I paired it with the NS Pro 950 Neo Shaft. For me it came down to these the Zx5 and Miura CB-301. The Zx5 was just to low spin and feeling off the face wasn’t near as satisfying as its a 2 piece forged head. The CB-301 lived up to the hype of their unique Miura feel but not as forgiving and don’t think I’m quite a good enough ball striker to game those just yet. P790 was long but lowest spin and wouldn’t be able to stick greens like I would want. The Epons for me also are about identical lofts as my old JPX900 and im a half club longer with the 506 (might be due to the better quality of build and slightly heavier heads to help fitters more on builds/swing weights). Side Note I’m originally from Seattle but currently living and working in Bangkok, Thailand so its easier to test some of the JDM brands and buy them (Cheaper here in Asia). Again just my personal experience with these and I know everyone has different taste and preference.

  5. Keith Finley

    I feel the same about the Apex MB. Maybe they are functional? Different weights to adjust SW and/or CG?

  6. I actually demoed these this summer and was a bit disappointed as well. I thought the AF305 was much nicer overall.

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