PING i230 Irons Review

ping i230 irons

50 Words or Less

The PING i230 irons have unbelievable consistency.  Super tight distance dispersion.  Understated looks, solid feel.  An ideal players set.

Introduction

I regularly say that there are hundreds of ways to enjoy golf.  If your golf happiness comes from seeing that one perfectly struck iron shot soar fifteen yards beyond your target, you should stop reading this review.  The PING i230 irons are not for you.

However, if you love low scores and watching your approach shots do the same predictable thing swing after swing, you’ll want to post your current irons for sale now.  The PING i230 irons may be the most consistent players iron I’ve ever tested.

 ping i230 irons address

Looks

The PING i230 irons are extremely clean in the bag.  PING has never made particularly loud irons, but these raise the bar on minimalism.  The cavity is very straightforward, and the “i230” engraving on the toe is small with black paint fill.  There is one interesting detail – the small depression in the cavity –  that speaks to the precision of the weight distribution.

ping i230 irons 3 address

At address, the i230 irons have a compact look that’s in line with previous i-Series irons.  PING has made the long irons (3-5) slightly smaller than the i210 irons [review HERE], but the rest of the set is similar in size.  Throughout, you get minimal offset, a gently rounded leading edge, and a thin top line.

For those interested in comparison, the i230 is slightly larger than the Blueprint [review HERE] in every way.  There’s a touch more offset, the top line is a bit thicker, and the blade is a little longer.  These differences are obvious when the two irons are side by side, but, on their own, they’re definitively in the same ballpark.

Sound & Feel

The sound and feel of the PING i230 irons is as understated as the look.  Impact creates a quiet, staccato “tock” that barely changes on mishits.  Thin strikes are a bit more abrasive to the ears but are still fairly quiet.

Through the hands, the strike simply feels solid.  There’s no spring, no bounce, no explosion, no ball-mushing-into-the face.  It’s just a clean, straightforward impact.  There is, however, very good feedback through the hands.  Mishits don’t change the character of impact, but you can feel precisely where the ball met the face.

Performance

Sometimes it takes me a minute to see the forest for the trees.  I started my testing of the PING i230, as I always do, with the pitching wedge.  I hit several mediocre shots, noting the distance was just a few yards below my normal “good strike” number.  Then I absolutely melted one, 10/10 perfect impact…and the distance only ticked up six yards.  I shrugged, hit a few more, and moved on.

Next, I jumped to the 7I.  Again, I started with a couple stinkers that landed within five yards of my expected number.  The third shot was pure, and it landed five yards past my number.  This time the message sank in.  The PING i230 irons have an incredibly tight dispersion pattern.  They are remarkably forgiving of mishits, and, just as importantly, they don’t produce fliers.  Every key number – ball speed, launch, spin, and carry – is consistent whether you miss it a little or flush it.

As impressive as this was, I hadn’t even hit the best club yet.  When I got to the 4I, I found ball speed that was on par with elite distance irons alongside easy, high launch and spin.  Even for players who are committed to their blades, throwing in an i230 long iron is the obvious move.

Comparing the i230 irons to my Blueprints, the biggest difference was, of course, the forgiveness.  I still regard the Blueprints as the most forgiving blades out there, but the i230 is in a different class.  It’s also worth noting that the i230 is one degree stronger throughout the set.  The stronger lofts along with a lower CG lead them to be about half a club longer on the best strikes.

Finally, PING continues to set the standard when it comes to custom fitting options.  First, they offer the i230 with standard lofts, Power Spec Lofts, and Retro Spec Lofts.  They also have an array of stock shafts including the Nippon Modus 105 [review HERE], two graphite options, and several weights of Dynamic Gold.

ping i230 irons in bag

Conclusion

If my brain has anything to do with my WITB [always up to date HERE], the PING i230 irons will be there in 2023.  These are the most consistent irons I can remember testing.  As a players iron, they do absolutely everything I could ask for.  The tag team of my heart and ego will be battling hard to leave the Blueprints in place, and it will be a long, epic struggle.

Visit PING HERE

PING i230 Irons Price & Specs

The following two tabs change content below.

Matt Saternus

Founder, Editor In Chief at PluggedInGolf.com
Matt is the Founder and Editor in Chief of Plugged In Golf. He's worked in nearly every job in the golf industry from club fitting to instruction to writing and speaking. Matt lives in the northwest suburbs of Chicago with his wife and two daughters.

Latest posts by Matt Saternus (see all)

19 Comments

  1. Michael Constantine

    Nice review. Couple things. I am surprise that the substantial difference in offset between the i230 and Blueprint wasn’t mentioned when you made comparison. Assuming you bag a 5 iron, the offset is .08” compared to .14”. To a skilled ball strikers such as yourself I would think some adjustment time physically or mentally would have to occur to make a change. Next, I found the 0211ST to be the most forgiving blade I’ve ever hit and currently bag them. Your declaration that the Blueprint are to you what the 0211ST are to me has on the hunt to find a set and give them a whirl. I’ve hit the 7 iron as a demo a while back and was impressed. Again, nice review.

    • I agree, offset of 0.2 inches in the 3 iron is a massive difference to comparable players sets. Can’t think of one even close with that much.

      That being said great review and they look class. Pluggedingolf best reviews out here

  2. Matt – great write up.

    I got two quick rounds in with these before Michigan weather took its hold, and my thoughts would echo yours. Irons have been a revolving door for me the last few years, and the i230 is set to change that. The accuracy, consistency, and predictable yardages were super exciting in my brief experience. The lines I could take and hold were nuts.

    I liken them to a friendlier T100.

  3. Great review, Matt. The last time I recall reading such a glowing review of irons from you was maybe the Mizuno Pro 223s. I have both and like the i230s better. To me, they’re more forgiving, their sole is a better fit for my steeper swing, and they’re just super, super consistent, as you point out.

    My only small criticism would be of Ping’s shaft offerings. I wish they offered some heavier Modus shafts, rather than just the 105s. But the DG 120 is actually a good fit for me in these because they help knock spin down just a touch, so it’s really not a huge deal.

    • I agree it was a great review, as always. As far as “glowing reviews”……I would say this one is right up there with the HONMA TW 757 irons that Matt reviewed earlier this year making these (and the PINGs herein) among the most positive and intriguing that I have read from Matt.

  4. Hi Matt,
    How would you say these compare to Apex 19 pros?

    Thanks,
    Adam

  5. I tested these the other day and agree with your assessment. These are the best PING irons I have ever hit. Fantastic feel and consistency.

    They feel like Honma Players Irons, and that is a great complement! Love their forgiveness and might serious consider pulling out the TR20P Irons for these. Great work PING!

  6. How is the forgiveness of these to the zx7?, thanks

  7. Hi Matt,

    Great review, always been a Ping fan and if you are considering replacing your Blueprints with these I’m thinking that the I230s might replace my beloved S55s!!

    One question, though, is Ping not offering Project X as a shaft option now?

    I’ve been a Project X/Rifle guy for a large chunk of my golfing life and would ideally like to keep that consistency in shafts with a new set.

    Thanks,

    Neil

    • Matt Saternus

      Neil,

      Project X isn’t listed as a stock option, but I’d be shocked if you couldn’t custom order it since Project X and Dynamic Gold are both part of the same company.

      Best,

      Matt

  8. Matt,

    Love the review. What would say is a reasonable handicap range for these irons?

    • Matt Saternus

      Brian,

      With the caveat that I don’t really care for that line of thinking, I’ll say anyone at a 15 of better should give them a try.

      -Matt

  9. I read your 210 and 500 prior reviews, and I got the impression that the 210 was quite consistent but didn’t offer the shotmaking that your Blueprints did. This 230 review sounds like they’re more consistent than the 210s (and more forgiving?) but offer better players some of the features of the Blueprints too.

    My questions as a i210 player now (and who has described the i210s to people as “amazingly consistent”) is: 1) are the 230s enough of a leap over the 210s to warrant the cost and 2) do you need to have skills at the “could enjoy playing Blueprints” level to appreciate the 230s over the 210s?

    Thanks, and your site really does have a lot of the best reviews in golf.

    • Matt Saternus

      George,

      Thank you!

      I would really like to run the i210 and i230 head to head to answer your question objectively, but unfortunately that’s not realistic at this time. With the caveat that I reviewed the i210 over four years ago, my subjective sense is that the i230 is more impressive in terms of consistency. Whether that’s worth the cost – I can’t answer that for you because I don’t get to (or want to!) spend your money.
      To your second question, I don’t think you need any different skills to enjoy the i230 over the i210 – they’re geared toward the same player, so that player is more than capable of determining whether the i230 is better for them.

      My best advice is for you to take your gamers to a fitting and see if the i230s are better for you.

      Best,

      Matt

  10. I hit the i230s a couple of weeks ago, when I hit it in the center it flew as long as my gamers with 3 deg weaker loft in the 7 iron, but when I mishit them on the toe, I was losing a lot of distance, at leat 10-15 yards. For me they aren’t the correct club as my ball striking isn’t consistent enough, but they had a great feel to them and the distance on center hits was amazing compared to the loft of other players distance irons I have and have hit.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *