50 Words or Less
The Mizuno ST-X 230 driver is a solid all-around driver. Strong feedback. Depending on shaft choice, can be strongly draw biased or workable. Good ball speed.
In a year with a ton of great driver stories, Mizuno has snuck in one of the most intriguing ones. They bill their new ST-X 230 driver as being both “more workable” and “draw biased” – a combination one rarely sees. I was eager to get this in for testing to see how this club performed and who it’s built for.
The Mizuno ST-X 230 driver is one of the most traditionally-shaped draw biased drivers you can find. It has a round, full shape that favors the heel side by just a tiny amount. From front-to-back, it’s average in length, and the face is slightly taller than most. The carbon fiber part of the crown is set further back from the front edge, making it a non-issue when playing.
Above, you see the ST-X 230 (right) next to Mizuno’s ST-Z 230 driver [review HERE]. Despite being the draw biased model, the ST-X 230 does not look any different at address. There is a very slight difference in face angle in the neutral position – the X is more closed – but both are very close to square.
Where you can see the key difference between the two Mizuno drivers is on the sole. On the ST-Z 230, the weight on the sole is centered. For the ST-X 230, the weight is positioned closer to the heel to create the draw bias.
Sound & Feel
The Mizuno ST-X 230 driver rewards quality strikes with satisfying sound and feel. Striking a Tour quality ball creates a low-pitched “pop” with gentle metallic overtones. Through the hands, the sensation is lively, almost bouncy, giving the feeling of the ball rebounding off the face.
While this driver is forgiving, the feedback is fairly stark. Off-center strikes feel dull in the hands, and the sound is flat and dead. If you’re not afraid of the truth behind your driving, you’ll like the ST-X 230.
It’s not too common to find Tour players using a company’s draw biased woods, but that is the case with the Mizuno ST-X 230 driver. Both Greyson Sigg and Ben Griffin have this driver in play on Tour. Diving into Mizuno’s website, an explanation is offered. Mizuno bills this driver as having a “mild draw bias” and being “more workable.” They also note that “natural drawers of the ball may find more ball speed from the ST-X.”
Regardless of whether you’re looking for workability or slice-busting, there’s a lot to like about the ST-X 230 driver. In addition to making the feel of impact solid, Mizuno’s CORTECH Chamber does an excellent job keeping the spin low. Mizuno also utilized a carbon sole plate to unlock more discretionary weighting and make the club more stable. Across the face, I found the ball speed to be excellent.
To the question of whether this driver is workable or draw biased, I think the answer depends on your shaft choice. For their stock shafts, Mizuno has offered three sub-60 gram options. They also tend to be softer, more active. I tested the ST-X 230 with the Kai’li Blue [review HERE] and found that it really enhanced the head’s draw tendencies. Unless I had a strong fade intent, my drives wanted to start a little left and draw.
On the other hand, if you put a more tip-stiff shaft into the Mizuno ST-X 230 driver, you may unlock that workability. The shorter shaft-to-CG distance can give players more control over the club face. Mizuno offers a wealth of custom shaft options – some at an upcharge – to bring this set up into play.
Finally, for players that want higher launch and lighter weight, Mizuno offers the ST-X PLTNM 230 driver. This is a custom build of the ST-X 230 designed for players with slower swing speeds who want a stronger draw bias. It’s offered in 10.5 or 12 degrees of loft with a 40-gram shaft.
The Mizuno ST-X 230 driver is one of the rare clubs that can be played on Tour and by higher handicap golfers. With the right shaft and loft, this can be a very workable Tour-style driver or a serious slice buster. In either case, the strong forgiveness shines through – something all golfers can appreciate.