PING G Driver Review

PING G Driver_0143

50 Words or Less

The PING G driver is faster than the G30 and has a bit more forgiveness.  Once again, PING has the best driver in golf.

PING G Driver_0172PING G Driver_0173

Introduction

For the last 18 months, PING’s G30 driver has been dominant.  It’s been adored by players of all skill levels, and the sales numbers have been crazy.  The G30 has represented as much as 40% of the driver sales for the country’s best club fitters – the guys who sell purely based on what works the best.  Improving on G30 looked to be impossible, but the engineers at PING have done just that with the new G driver.

PING G Driver_0162

Looks

There’s a lot happening on the crown of the PING G driver.  First, it has the Turbulators which we first saw on the G30.  What’s new is the Dragonfly Technology.  The structure of the crown is designed to mirror a dragonfly’s wings.  The benefit is that the crown is strong but lighter and thinner than ever.  While this all creates a fairly busy crown, the features are easy ignore because they are a uniform matte black.

In general, the G driver will look very familiar to those that played the G30.  It has a large footprint but isn’t overly big in any particular dimension.  The combination of large size and expertly-crafted shape will allow the G driver to appeal to players at all levels.

PING G Driver_0145

Sound & Feel

Overall, the new PING G driver feels very similar to the G30.  If you hit them on different days, you might not notice much a difference – both have a medium volume, slightly bass-y “crack.”  When hit them head-to-head, however, you will notice that the G is slightly quieter and thus feels a bit softer.

Just as with the G30, the G driver is substantially counter balanced through the stock Alta shaft.  The purpose of counterbalancing is to keep the swing weight reasonable while making the head heavier.  This is important to keep in mind if you plan on swapping out the stock shaft.

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Performance

I’ve gamed the G30 driver since the moment it was released, so I have a very solid basis for comparison with the new G driver.  While it’s not a revolutionary jump forward, the new PING G driver is better than the G30 in every way.

First, it’s faster.  Based on my testing and conversations with the fitters at Club Champion, PING’s new Vortec Technology works.  Combined with the Turbulators, players can expect to gain measurable amounts of club head speed with the G driver.

The new G driver is also more forgiving thanks to Dragonfly Technology.  By shaving eight grams from the crown, PING has raised the MOI to make the G driver more stable on off-center hits.  Again, it’s not a huge difference – the G30 was already extremely forgiving – but it is better.  And when you combine more speed and more forgiveness with high launch and low spin, you have the best driver in golf.

PING G Driver_0155

Conclusion

As I bestow the honor of “best driver in golf” on yet another PING driver, I’m left to wonder what’s next.  The G driver was inspired by dragonflies and 18-wheelers.  What will inspire the next upgrade in speed and forgiveness?

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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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29 Comments

  1. Hi Matt,

    Another great review, I have been testing the G Series too. I have been struggling with the counterbalanced shaft. Are you using the ALTA shaft or are using some other shaft?

    Thanks, John

    • Matt Saternus

      John,

      Yes, I tested with the Alta shaft. I always try to post numbers with the stock shaft since that’s still how most people buy and play their clubs.

      Best,

      Matt

  2. Robert Morris

    If the Ping G Driver is that much superior to the G30 that I spent a lot of money on last year then I will wait until next year’s Ping G driver and try that one as it should be that much better than this year’s G driver. When are golf companies going to figure out that people hate spending top dollars on drivers one year and be told the following year that their driver is inferior?

    • Matt Saternus

      Robert,

      Serious question: what would you have the golf companies do?

      A couple things need to be made clear:
      1) The G is not vastly superior to the G30. There are no huge gains left to make in drivers because of the USGA limits. The G is better, but the G30 is not exactly obsolete.
      2) The G30 was “new” for 18 months. PING has the second longest product life cycles in golf.

      Best,

      Matt

      • Ha! I don’t think the big golf equipment companies (or any business for that matter) lose sleep because the consumer isn’t happy about spending money…
        And I wouldn’t see progress as a bad thing. just because a new version of my car is .2 M/PG better on gas than my model from 2 years ago, doesn’t mean I’m not happy with my current ride and excited that the improvements will be there in the future when I need to replace it.

    • The G driver is a tad better but not much better than G30. If you had the G20 or G25 driver you may want to consider upgrading but honestly several gold lessons will help your swing more than a new club. The G30 is a serious club that can help improve your game.

  3. Thanks for the great review!
    I think your reviews are the best on the internet!!
    Looking forward to your reviews on the G irons fairway woods, hybrids, and crossovers!

    Keep up the great work!
    Dave

  4. Matt-
    I recently went through a full bag fitting at Club Champion. Surprise, Surprise, my best numbers came with the G30 (My fitting was 2 days before the G release.) I am assuming that going with the G over the G30 is a reasonable jump and could expect similar (hopefully superior) performance.

    The big question, though, is with the shaft. I am a novice in the detail and minutia of shafts, etc. I was fit to a Fuji Speeder Evolution 661. From what I have been able to find, thus far, this shaft option isn’t available with the G series unless getting built at CC or buying the shaft separately and having it installed. I have not been able to determine if the Speeder Evolution 661 II will be an option.Through some research, it seems that the Aldila Rogue Black 70 is a very similar shaft in terms of specs (and easier on the wallet.) Is it reasonable to think that those 2 shafts will perform similarly or am I making an inaccurate assumption? Any other shafts I should consider? Any input or thoughts you have are greatly appreciated! Thanks!

    • Matt Saternus

      John,

      I would recommend going with the shaft you were fit for. Specs are not consistent across manufacturers, so I would not trust that.

      Best,

      Matt

    • Matt Saternus

      John,

      I would recommend going with the shaft you were fit for. Shaft specs are not consistent across manufacturers, so I would never recommend fitting based on those numbers.

      Best,

      Matt

  5. Keep hearing about this whole series…I will have to check this out.

    My question, or topic, is on driver forgiveness. Every article/review I read talks about off-center hits, but what about us that miss slightly below, or hit the sweet spot but it’s OB right if your path is even slightly off (ATE at 100mph SS)? My understanding is that 10mm off CoC equals 31 yards offline at 250 yards, so you get the idea.

    I have a Callaway Optiforce with a Diamana Blue S+ shaft I love, but the draw bias makes no difference. Also have a Cleveland Classic 290 with a Fujikura 765 Speeder I also love, but at 9°, again, it’s gone if I miss, harsh price for the 300+ fairway I just hit down the pipe.

    If I were to find “forgiveness” that addresses, money would be no option.

    • Matt Saternus

      Jon,

      I’m not sure I understand your question or what you’re trying to get at. Missing the sweet spot definitely has an effect on accuracy because of gear effect ( http://pluggedingolf.com/ball-flight-laws-5-gear-effect/ ), but the amount that it matters will vary from one club to another. More stable heads (higher MOI) help not only ball speed on mishits, but also accuracy on mishits.

      Best,

      Matt

  6. I just tried the Ping G and loved how the ball came off the face. As soon as I went on the monitor it was 20 yards less than the new Cobra F 6 plus. Ping felt and sounded great but fm did not perform
    to my expectations. Cobra is making some really great products.

    • Matt Saternus

      Lou,

      That’s hard to believe, but it’s exactly why we always preach that you must be fit for your clubs!

      Best,

      Matt

  7. I apologize for any confusion. Yes, no doubt on gear effect. I guess I’m wondering if certain construction characteristics or shape affect misses. For example, I had trouble with the older, wider Callaways (RAZR X, etc.), much better with Adams, Cleveland, with taller/deeper face (that look like this Ping driver). I have an XL 3wood that drifts offline and charges major yardage for mishits, but that’s about it. My Callaway Xtreme, though, that ball is gone.

    • Matt Saternus

      Jon,

      The construction can certainly play a role in ball flight, gear effect, etc. There’s also the issue of how the club looks to you and how that impacts your performance.

      Best,

      Matt

  8. Great review. Will a counterbalanced shaft still operate as intended if the shaft is cut down to say 44,5″ ? A lot of golfers find 45,75″ to be too much and prefer shorter shaft for more control.

    Thanks

    • Matt Saternus

      Svein,

      That’s a bit of a complicated question. Counter balancing is putting weight into the butt of the shaft to reduce swing weight. Cutting off that heavier section could cause the SW to go up, BUT when you cut down a shaft, you’re doing a lot to drop the swing weight due to the shorter length. It might all balance out at the same SW or it might end up lighter or heavier, depending on the severity of the counter balancing.

      Clear as mud? :)

      Best,

      Matt

  9. Thanks Matt.
    Learned some about counterbalance at least.

  10. Mike Payne

    I have the G 30 10.5 driver with the ping tour reg shaft, I was fit last year and am always between reg. and stiff at 95mph swing speeds
    and 8.1 index. I really would like more distance (240yds). On my course I’ve hit the XR 16 with the red speeder shaft in stiff and have picked up some distance. I did not consider the G for more distance, how do you compare it to the G30? Thanks

    • Matt Saternus

      Mike,

      I’m hitting the G a bit farther. I’d recommend a fitting to see if it can outperform your G30 or the Callaway you mentioned.

      Best,

      Matt

  11. Matt

    Currently have used G30 since it first came out. Plan on testing G LS. Curious, will the stock shaft in my G30 also fit in the G for comparison purposes?

    Thank you
    John

  12. Hi Matt

    I’m currently a high handicapper using a Titleist 913D2 Driver.

    Based on your opinion would you go with the G Driver/ Callaway Big Bertha / Callaway XR

    THANKS

  13. After reading your article and some of the above posts, I have a further question about the stock Alta shaft and the counter balance in it. I recently won a G driver in a tournament and like the way that the club looks at address, hooker that hates a closed face. I have been using a Kuro Kage Black X-flex in an older Adams LS that I really love, so much so that I have purchased several to plug into future drivers. If I put one of these into the G how much will the lack of counter balance affect the “feel” i.e. making the club head heavy? I know feel is very individual, but since this club head was engineered and weighted with a counter balance shaft in mind, will this switch be too detrimental to even attempt? With a 105-108 swing speed and a left miss, I am afraid that the stock S Alta isn’t stiff enough to work for me.

    Thanks.

    • Matt Saternus

      Scott,

      The counter balancing in the Alta gets the G into a “normal” swing weight at 45.75″. You can use a non-counter balanced shaft at a shorter length to get a similar SW.

      Best,

      Matt

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