PING G430 MAX Driver Review

50 Words or Less

The PING G430 MAX driver keeps PING atop the rankings for most forgiving drivers in golf.  Much improved sound over G425 MAX.  Incremental performance improvements over last generation; may be noticeably longer for some golfers.

g430 max crown

Introduction

This may be the most anticipated review in the history of Plugged In Golf.  I have never received so many emails, comments, and DMs asking when a review would be live.  And I can’t blame all those readers, because I’ve been waiting for this, too.  Regular readers know that I’ve gamed PING drivers exclusively for several generations, so I’m always eager to see how – or if – PING is able to one-up their previous creation.  So without any further ado, let’s get into the PING G430 MAX driver.

ping g430 max driver address

Looks

The PING G430 MAX driver is instantly recognizable as a PING thanks to the turbulators on the front edge of the matte black crown.  There’s also some subtle shaping in the middle and back that suggests a takeaway path and is reminiscent of the TaylorMade Burner driver.  In terms of shape, the G430 MAX is round and full.  It is fairly large from front-to-back, but that’s hidden by the shape.

Comparing the G430 MAX to the G425 MAX, there are some noticeable differences.  First, the face of the G430 MAX is about 1/8″ shorter.  Additionally, the shape is more symmetrical, not tilted toward the heel.  Finally, the G430 MAX looks slightly shorter front to back, though I can’t be certain if that’s a just a function of the shape.

In the bag, the G430 MAX driver doesn’t differ radically from the G425 MAX.  The most notable addition are the yellow graphics on the toe and heel which give the club a subtle touch of color.  PING branding dominates the middle of the sole with “G430” and “MAX” pushed to the toe and heel.  The movable tungsten weight qualifies as visible tech despite being camouflaged in black on black.

ping g430 max face

Sound & Feel

There isn’t much I don’t love about my G425 MAX driver [review HERE], but, if I’m honest, the sound could be better.  When I’m at the range, I feel like I have one of the louder drivers.  PING recognized this, and put the focus on improving the sound of the G430 MAX with a new internal rib structure and an increased curvature of the crown, skirt, and sole.  The result is a sound which is much more solid and quieter.  If the sound of the G425 drivers kept you away, you need to try the G430s.

This unobtrusive impact sound pairs well with the light impact feel.  Similar to the Titleist TSR drivers, the ball feels like it tiptoes on the club face rather than engaging in a violent collision.  Despite the industry-leading stability, you can get moderate feedback on strike location through your hands.

Performance

If you read through PING’s talking points on the G430 MAX driver, it would be easy to miss the phrase “biggest distance gains to date.”  This is classic PING, barely mentioning what other companies would be screaming from the rooftop.  Further reading shows that they’ve maintained the G425 MAX’s historically high MOI while adding Spinsistency thanks to a variable roll radius on the face.

My first testing session with the G430 MAX was a casual range session that went as expected.  This driver is long and straight, just like its predecessor.  It lets you get away with a lot without delivering punishing results.  If you want to keep virtually every drive in play, the G430 MAX is nearly impossible to beat.

Get low spin with max forgiveness in the PING G430 MAX 10K driver HERE

Next, I headed to the launch monitor to see how the G430 MAX differed from the G425 MAX.  After several testing sessions, my conclusion is that the G430 MAX is an incremental improvement on the G425 MAX in three ways.  First, it launches slightly higher.  It also spins slightly less and has fractionally higher, more resilient ball speed.  Depending on your numbers, that may add up to a significant distance gain.  As a high launch, low spin player, I saw measurable improvements on both good and bad swings but not huge leaps forward.

What stood out more to me is what PING calls “Spinsistency.”  They’re using a variable roll radius to keep spin rates more consistent across the face, and that was definitely noticeable in my testing.  I’m very familiar with the low heel miss, and the G430 MAX kept the spin rates down when I struck this area.  This helped preserve distance and kept the ball closer to the middle of the fairway.

Need lower spin?  Check out the new PING G430 LST driver HERE

The PING G430 MAX driver is also one of the most adjustable drivers in golf.  The 25 gram tungsten weight makes a significant difference in the way the club feels and performs.  PING claims that the weight can change ball flight by 8 yards right or left, and I think that could be larger for many players.  Add in the adjustable hosel with eight loft and lie settings and you have a club that can cure a hook, a slice, or just bomb it straight down the middle.

Need extra help hitting a draw?  Check out the PING G430 SFT driver HERE

Finally, something new for the G430 family is PING’s High Launch (HL) option.  Available in the MAX and SFT drivers, it includes an 11 gram backweight, PING Alta Quick shaft, and Lamkin UTx Lite grip.  According to PING, this lighter configuration helps slower swingers gain an average of nine yards off the tee.  This is typical PING, and it’s what makes them one of my favorite OEMs: rather than just offering a lightweight shaft, they engineered a cohesive build to help players get more distance.

ping g430 max driver sole

Conclusion

The PING G430 MAX driver is easily one of the best in golf.  It may be the very best when it comes to dealing with poor strikes, and it’s a strong performer on center, too.  Add in the wealth of fitting options and the adjustability, and you have a club that virtually every golfer can put in their bag.

Visit PING HERE

PING G430 MAX Driver Price & Specs

Matt Saternus
Latest posts by Matt Saternus (see all)

59 Comments

  1. HI Matt,
    Great Review! Is this one going in the Bag?

    • Matt Saternus

      Anthony,

      Thank you. It’s certainly under consideration, but I won’t make any final decisions until we’re playing outside regularly here in Chicago.

      Best,

      Matt

  2. Raymond Norris

    Matt, which shaft did you test with? thanks, ray

    • Matt Saternus

      Raymond,

      I tested numerous shafts but got those numbers with the Mitsubishi Tensei 1K White. The numbers weren’t significantly different with other shafts, but that’s my gamer, so I was a little more comfortable with it.

      Best,

      Matt

  3. Did you test the LST alongside the max?

  4. Matt,

    Any plans to test Mizuno ST-Z 230? I’m between 230 and G430.

  5. Hi Matt,

    Is the sound that much better than 425 Max? I loved it but the sound was just too loud and I reluctantly decided to give it up.
    Thank you,
    Mike

    • Matt Saternus

      Sound & Feel
      There isn’t much I don’t love about my G425 MAX driver, but, if I’m honest, the sound could be better. When I’m at the range, I feel like I have one of the louder drivers. PING recognized this, and put the focus on improving the sound of the G430 MAX with a new internal rib structure and an increased curvature of the crown, skirt, and sole. The result is a sound which is much more solid and quieter. If the sound of the G425 drivers kept you away, you need to try the G430s.

  6. I hit all of the new heads when I got fit a few weeks ago. The PING G430 and TSR2 separated themselves from the pack. I got most consistent results and highest ball speeds from both. But the PING won because it was so forgiving. I loved the G400 Max and this is better in a every way. The sound and feel is MUCH improved from the G425. The comments of the feel at impact are spot on…it reminded me of the TSi.

    My fitter thought the spin was a bit high. We tried the LST version, but it didn’t perform as well for me. My fitter ended found a shaft that got my numbers just about perfect.

    I’ve played a few rounds with it and it is as good on the course as it was on the LM. I hit some drives that had no business being as long and playable as they ended up. But most of the time it’s just point and shoot. Golf is SO much more fun when you have confidence you’ll be in the fairway.

    • Kevin Relphorde

      I have about an 85 mph swing spee, and I found that I am hitting my G430 very high – i have the alta cb shaft, could that be the problem ?

      • Matt Saternus

        Kevin,

        Were you fit for the Alta CB?

        Best,

        Matt

      • Height is typically dictated by your dynamic loft and angle of attack. Ping describes the 57 gram alta cb shaft as mid-high launch meaning a softer tip which might contribute to increased the dynamic loft delivered to the ball. Ping’s Tour 2 Chrome shaft (regular flex) weighs 56 grams and is listed as mid launch meaning a firmer tip section. Try the Tour 2 Chrome shaft in same flex you have in your Alta cb shaft. Best thing would get on good launch monitor to know your club face at contact.

    • Paul Oliver

      I still have the G400 max is it worth changing the G430 max in terms of noticeable distance and accuracy?

      • Matt Saternus

        Paul,

        My advice is to bring your G400 to a fitting and compare it to the G430. Different people will find different drivers to be longer.

        Best,

        Matt

  7. Absolutely true bought 1 my self and am so happy with it
    Great reviews

  8. My G425 vs Stealh Plus vs Rogue ST Max LS – The G425 is always more forgiving and accurate, typical Ping right. Then at the new drivers were rolling out I tried the G430 Max – Aside from the better sound, the word ‘distance’ can go with Ping. Ordered the G430 Max and it’s going into the bag!

  9. Mark Lehman

    Compared to Paradym, big difference or very similar???

  10. Quick math shows a robust 1.48 smash factor!

  11. Love Ping. My three woods are Pings and am looking at new irons (including 230s and 525s). Absolutely crushed my 410 LST to the point I caved the head in early Jan. Ping stood behind the product and I got a new 425 LST. They sent the wrong weight (the 430 weight) and it definitely made a difference so had them send the correct one. Here’s the thing – the 425 is marginally shorter than my 410 (~3%) and the 430 testing results are not longer, either. This matches to some other testers I follow (Finchy being one). I haven’t tried the Max versions because of prior poor attack angle on the driver (since cured but saw no reason to change) so have never seen super forgiveness off the tee, but LST has been predictable and long. Just wish there were meaningful distance bennies to go with the nicer sound in the 430. I’m sure anyone who isn’t properly fit with their current driver could benefit from a 430 being properly fit for them, but candidly I’d think you can say that about any of the top 10-15 drivers, right.

  12. Mark Kuyawa

    I can’t wait to hit this in a week or so. I’m coming off back surgery so need to take it a little slow, but pretty sure it’s going to be going in the bag. Just need right shaft snd specs!

  13. Hi Matt,

    Thanks for the G430 review. Just curious if you hit any with the Vanquish shaft?

    Thanks again for Plugged in Golf as a whole!!!

  14. This driver was probably my favorite out of the new ones I recently tested, however I didn’t see much improvement over my g425, other than sound. But then again, the g425 is a great driver!

  15. Greg Hollis

    I’m a ping gamer too! I’ve had the 400,410,425 and now the 430! They were all forgiving and 410 was the longest until the 430 was in my hands. Everything was as advertised in your review but only 5 yards longer until I changed shafts! Went from ping tour 60 to graphite design TP5 and gained 20 yards with the same forgiveness and accuracy just point and shoot!!! Just added the 430 irons and can u say looong!!! Wow is the answer so I’m set for a while and let the games begin🏌️Thank u for your reviews they are always taken with respect!

  16. Geoff Back

    Hi Matt
    I receive your newsletter all the time and enter the competitions, being from Australia is there any sense in doing this.
    Cheers Geoff

    • Matt Saternus

      Geoff,

      If a contest is US only, we will state that. Many contests are open to everyone around the world.

      Best,

      Matt

  17. Rich Hoehlein

    Not a deal breaker for me, put can one get the head without any yellow accents on the toe and heel areas?

    • Matt Saternus

      Rich,

      I don’t believe PING has any options for custom aesthetics.

      Best,

      Matt

    • Steve Dodds

      I agree. I’ve had excellent results with a demo G430, but the go fast stripes bug me.

      They make traditionally stealthy Ping look like Cobra.

  18. Plans to review the LST soon?

  19. Luke Richmond

    My all time favorite driver was the G400 Max! The G430 Max is now my new all time favorite. Fitted into the max, 9* cracked down to 8* with the Ventus Black 7x, 45.25. Easy to hit, great ball speeds on center contact and consistent ball speeds on non center hits. And most important it I’m consistently in the fairway!!! Great review as well.

  20. Henry nadolny

    I’ve been playing a Ping G 10 10.5% R flex since it came out. I have hit as far as370yd twice and lots of 300 plus up to age 69. Now at 78 I struggle going past 200. Ya think the 430 G max would get some distance back?

    • Matt Saternus

      Henry,

      The only way to know would be to get a fitting. That said, the G430 will be significantly more forgiving than the G10.

      -Matt

  21. David Lewis

    Got the 430 Max with the Tour 2.0 shaft and very pleased so far. Thanks for the review.

  22. Andy jones

    Great review took a demo out and it did exactly as the review states. Just waiting for it to arrive from
    Ping

  23. I’ve understood that the g430 is less forgiving compared to the g425, as additional distance requires to give up some forgiveness. Can you confirm?

    • Matt Saternus

      Toby,

      I did not find any meaningful difference in forgiveness between the two.
      To the overall question of distance vs forgiveness, it’s not a strict either/or. There are a number of factors that contribute to both.

      Best,

      Matt

  24. Hey Matt. Really good review. It helped me make a decision on my driver. Quick, random question: Is the G430 supposed to come with a screwdriver or some sort of tool to adjust the tungsten weight at the back? The screw head is an unusual shape, but my box arrived with no tool to adjust the weight. Thanks a lot!

    • Matt Saternus

      Colin,

      Thank you!
      Yes, there is a specific tool for adjusting that weight. I know some OEMs are cutting back on which clubs they send tools/wrenches with, but drivers should always come with one. I would contact the seller to get one.

      Best,

      Matt

  25. Hey Matt!

    Great write up! I am gaming the 400 Max, and I wondering if I am leaving anything on the table by not going 430. SS is approx 94 mph. I fit myself into the Aldila NV green 65 after some trial and error and found that after dialing the head down to 8 degrees, I have found that ideal launch window. Is the 440 that bug of a leap over the 400 MAX?

    • Matt Saternus

      Mike,

      The G400 Max is a modern classic; there’s nothing negative to say about that driver. That said, you’re looking at jumping forward three generations, so it is possible that you’ll see some improvements. As always, my advice would be to bring your gamer to a fitting and test it against the G430 Max – and the rest of the great 2023 drivers.

      Best,

      Matt

  26. Is the 430 max longer than the 410 plus driver and is the dispersion that much different ?
    Thanks
    Jim

    • Matt Saternus

      Jim,

      Longer will depend on the person swinging it and what they need to be optimized. The MOI of the MAX is higher, so the dispersion should be tighter, all else equal.

      -Matt

  27. Hi Matt,

    Thx for the quick but great review on all the key points. Curious to know how it compares to the current year G430 Max which I have. I’ve heard that it helps reduce spin on miss hits which would I find beneficial to keeping it closer to the fairway. I’ve also found the current G430 to sound a little “pingy” (no pun intended) vs. a solid “thwack” like other drivers (TaylorMades for example). So any comments on the latest model “10k”!in comparison to the current G430 Max? Cheers- John

    • Matt Saternus

      John,

      The 10K model has not been released yet, and I have not tested it. When it’s available, we will have a full review.

      -Matt

  28. Kevin Brett

    Have you tried the velocore fujikara? I’m thinking if its worth the upgrade I may do it.

  29. Thomas R Bellmann

    Matt: Love your site. I am 76, post polio rt leg totally useless. Now in Titleist TSi3 with Hiskei Wave R shaft and hit every fairway but only 170 yds. Have my heart on PingG430 Max 10K HL 12 degree for the expecting distance gain??? Have you or anyone tested the 430 HL for slow swingers as they have 46″ 35/45 gm shafts? Thanks. Tom

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