50 Words or Less
The Mizuno M-Craft putters are solid interpretations of classic designs. Good value.
One of my favorite things at the 2020 PGA Show was the display in the Mizuno booth showing the history of Mizuno putters. Many golfers may not realize that some of the biggest names in flat sticks – TP Mills, Scotty Cameron, and Bettinardi – all made putters for Mizuno.
In this incarnation of their putter line, Mizuno has brought the work in house. Their M-Craft putter family has three models, and I tested each of them for this review.
With three different models and three different finishes, the Mizuno M-Craft putter line encompasses a lot of visual variety. Each of the models can be purchased in White Satin, Blue ION, or Black ION finishes. To my eye, the White Satin is fine, the Blue ION is terrible, and the Black ION is a show stopper. Of course, others will disagree.
Mizuno keeps the naming of the three models simple: 1, 2, and 3. The 1 is a boxy blade similar to an Anser 2. M-Craft 2 (below) is is a pure Anser-style putter. The 3 (above) is a symmetrical, round, mid-mallet.
In my opinion, Mizuno did the best job with 2. It’s a little more compact than other Ansers, has a rounded top line, and is aesthetically pleasing overall. The 1 isn’t quite to my taste – it’s too square – but it’s fine. I found 3 to be a head scratcher. I can’t recall seeing this style of putter with shoulders this small ever before, and I found it very jarring.
Finally, I think Mizuno did a great job on the sole design. The mix of gloss and matte finishes is eye-catching without being busy, and the branding is very clean.
Sound & Feel
All of the Mizuno M-Craft putters are forged and milled from 1025 carbon steel and given deep face milling patterns. Despite these similarities, there are some differences in feel among the three models.
I found the Mizuno M-Craft 1 to be the softest of the group. With a urethane-covered ball, impact created a soft “tock” and a medium-soft feel. Off-center hits were slightly louder. The 2 had a similar sound but a livelier, more responsive feel. Finally, the mid-mallet 3 was closer in feel to 2 and got noticeably firmer on mishits.
The Mizuno M-Craft putter line up not only has a lot of visual variety, it also covers a lot of ground in terms of performance. Among their three models, they have something for nearly every player. The 1 has toe hang around 5:30 which is best for players with more arcing strokes. On the other end of the spectrum, the 3 is face-balanced for straight-back, straight-through putters. The 2 covers the players in the middle with 4:30 toe hang.
In terms of forgiveness, the M-Craft putters deliver roughly what you would expect. The 1 and 2 are average for Anser-style putters. You don’t need to hit every putt perfectly, but bigger misses won’t get to the hole. I found the 3 disappointing; despite its size, it was no more forgiving than the 1 or 2.
Finally, a big thumbs up to Mizuno for giving their putters adjustable weights and actually including the weight kit. In their stock configuration, each M-Craft putter head weighs 355 grams. The included kit has 3 and 13 gram weights for players that would prefer a heavier or lighter head.
With a retail price of $300, the Mizuno M-Craft putters represent a solid value in the premium putter market. The inclusion of an adjustable weight kit is a big plus, and the variety of finish options is refreshing, even if they don’t all suit my eye. If you find that one of these models fits your taste and your stroke, you shouldn’t hesitate to put one in the bag.