OBAN Kiyoshi Black Shaft Review

Oban Kiyoshi Black (1)

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The Oban Kiyoshi Black is an ultra-stout, low spin shaft that can stand up to even the fastest, most aggressive swings.


Despite being one of the younger shaft companies in golf, Oban has done an impressive job of building both a long resume of professional wins and strong allegiance among amateur golfers.  Both of those accomplishments have much to do with their premium Kiyoshi series.  The Kiyoshi line currently includes six shafts to fit all types of golf swings.  Today we will focus on the Kiyoshi Black, a shaft designed for low spin and stability.

Oban Kiyoshi Black (4)


Like all of Oban’s Kiyoshi shafts, the Black is eye-catching without being distracting at address.  It is predominantly black, obviously, and there are no graphics at all near the club head.  Near the grip, there are two gold bands, the Oban Kiyoshi branding, and the warrior faces that are a staple of the line.

Oban Kiyoshi Black (2)


Stout.  The Kiyoshi Black is firm from butt to tip with very little noticeable flex unless you absolutely stand on it.  This is really a shaft for the big hitters and players who want the utmost in stability.

One thing that makes the Kiyoshi Black unique among low-spin shafts is that, through the use of high-end materials, it is stiff without feeling boardy.  While softer swings may not get much “life” out of the shaft, it never feels harsh.

Kiyoshi Black LM Data

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The most standout characteristic of the Kiyoshi Black is its low spin.  For some golfers, the spin will be several hundred RPMs less when compared to other members of the Kiyoshi family.  The may not sound like a lot, but it can make a huge difference in both carry and total distance.

Interestingly, the Kiyoshi Black keeps the spin low without dropping the launch angle too dramatically.  Though the spin was markedly lower than other Kiyoshi shafts, the launch angle was only 2° lower.  That is a significant difference if we’re looking for truly optimal numbers, but it’s less of a drop than you may see with other low spin shafts.

For this review, the Oban Kiyoshi Black was tested by both myself and a Club Champion fitter who is a former professional golfer.  For obvious reasons, his numbers were used in the graphic above.  Additionally, the launch monitor numbers in all our Oban Kiyoshi reviews can be compared apples-to-apples as they were collected from the same player at the same time using the same club head.

All launch monitor testing was done at and with the help of Club Champion.

Oban Kiyoshi Black (3)


For the truly aggressive player, there are few shafts out there better than the Oban Kiyoshi Black.  It is very low spin and provides the stable feel that will allow powerful players to swing freely.

Oban recognizes the importance of fitting, so their shafts are distributed only through certified fitters like Club Champion.

Matt Saternus
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  1. Chris Pompilio

    Matt, great site and reviews on the Kiyoshi line. I’ve always had major problems with spinning drivers, always around 3500rpm. I currently have the SLDR with the Kiyoshi Black 05 . Swing speed typically about 107-110. When I was fitted, the Black produced decent numbers launch about 14* and spin around 2400, but this was inside. However, when I bring the driver out to the range, the ball seems to die. It carries as far as my old driver, but the flight looks somewhat lifeless. I’m actually surprised that it carries that far. Have you done any testing with the Kiyoshi line in SLDR’s specifically? Thanks!

    • Matt Saternus


      The testing we did with the Kiyoshi line was done with the SLDR 460, if I recall correctly.

      Were you using the same ball in your fitting that you use on the course?



  2. Chris Pompilio

    Thank you for the reply. The balls outside that produced the dying flight were top flite range balls. It was also downwind. Perhaps when I factor in the low spin of SLDR and the low launch low spin of the Kiyoshi black 05, maybe I need to loft up more, although I’ve already lofted up from 8.5/9.0 on my old R11 to 10.5 with the SLDR. It just had me questioning that the white Kiyoshi may be the better choice.

  3. Chris Pompilio

    Also was this testing done with the 04 or 05 Oban Kiyoshi Black? Thanks.


  4. Matt, thanks for the review. I have been using this shaft for a year now in my razr fit extreme 8.5 and really like it. However, in attempt to get a tad bit more carry without spin, I was playing around with a new driver the x2 hot pro 8.5 which comes with the standard tour green shaft. I like it but it seems to be a tad spinny but the head seems to be hotter. I was wondering if you had any insights into the spin comparisons of these two shafts and heads. I was considering having the kiyoshi refitted to fit the x2 hot pro but don’t want to go through the trouble if they are not likly to be a good fit together. Any insights would be great. Thanks

    • Matt Saternus


      The OBAN Kiyoshi Black will likely be lower spinning the the stock Aldila Tour Green in the X2 Hot Pro. I’ve never put the two heads against each other in an apples to apples comparison, so I can’t speak to their relative spin.


  5. Great! Thanks. I think I will try it our in the X2 Hot Pro head and see. I will let you know what I come up with.

  6. Matt, thanks for the oban review, very nice. I picked up a kiyoshi black sold out of a Taylormade fitting cart, with the intention of refitting a titleist adaptor. Titleist 913 comes stock at 45″ and the oban is going to end up being 44.5″. Through a bit of homework I’ve noticed all the oban black setups come in at 44.5. Should I have it extended 1/2″ or just get used to it? Thanks Paul Brown

    • Matt Saternus


      I would suggest playing it at 44.5″ for a while to see how you like it. If you don’t care for it, you can always extend it later.



  7. Hi Matt,

    As always the review was a pleasure to read.

    Wondering how you would compare Kiyoshi Black 65 04 with Devotion 7 04 (the difference in weight is 5 gms) in terms of launch and spin. Any thoughts on feel, although subjective, would be nice too. Finally, will the Black be a good/close enough substitute for Devotion 7?

    Thank you.

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