50 Words or Less
The PXG 0311 Black Ops driver improves on GEN6 with more forgiveness. New face material powers higher launch and lower spin. Remains the most adjustable driver in golf.
No one does media events quite like PXG. To give us the true Black Ops experience, we didn’t take commercial flights into Phoenix and shuttles to Scottsdale National, we parachuted from a decommissioned military plane onto the range at SNGC in the middle of the night.
Ok, that’s obviously not true (have you seen most golf writers?), but I don’t know that it wasn’t considered.
Parachute or not, I did travel to Scottsdale this past December to examine the latest release from PXG. After their driver took the #1 spot in my bag in 2023, I was eager to see if the new PXG 0311 Black Ops driver could help this still-young OEM keep that spot for a second straight year.
The most obvious change to the PXG 0311 Black Ops driver is the look. After several generations of matte finished crowns, PXG has switched to a gloss finish for Black Ops. Still present are the light graphics around the trailing edge and the X alignment aid. Another change you’ll notice in the bag is the carbon fiber plate on the sole.
At address, the 0311 Black Ops driver has a large footprint with a slightly triangular shape. The look is a little more “stretched” than the 0311 GEN6 drivers, but it’s well proportioned. PXG reports that most of their Tour staff is opting for this driver over the Tour-1, so it’s clearly fitting the eye of the best players in the world.
Check out the PXG 0311 Black Ops fairway wood HERE
Sound & Feel
From talking to PXG’s club design team, I knew they were extremely proud of the sound of the new PXG 0311 Black Ops driver. Compared to the 0311 XF GEN6 driver [review HERE], the first four primary natural frequency modes were raised by as much as 1,000 Hz.
What does that translate to? An impact sound that’s staccato and punchy, a mid-pitch “crack.” The Black Ops driver may be a little quieter than GEN6, but it’s close.
The feel of the 0311 Black Ops driver marries well with the sound. Impact feels very solid with a moderate pop off the face. There’s excellent feedback through the hands. During my fitting, I was able to identify my impact locations – verified by Trackman – from the first few swings.
PXG claims that their new 0311 Black Ops driver is more forgiving, longer, and more consistent than GEN6. This would be an outrageous claim if they didn’t bring the data to back it up. They did.
The two changes that drive this improved performance are the new face material and the use of composite in the sole. Dubbed “AMF* Technology,” the proprietary titanium alloy in the face is stronger and creates higher launch (0.5*) and lower spin (200 RPM) compared to GEN6’s T-412. PXG’s engineers stated that they’ve “never seen face material have this much change in performance.” This change helps the 0311 Black Ops to be the highest launching driver while keeping its spin in the lower half of all drivers tested, per PXG’s data. It was also the second longest (one foot short of first) in that testing, which included every significant driver on the market.
*AMF stands for Advanced Material Face in the official press materials. The NSFW military acronym (look it up yourself) is equally fitting but funnier.
While that’s incredibly impressive, it’s the forgiveness that has players on Tour making the switch. Comparing the PXG 0311 Black Ops driver to the 0311 GEN6 XF (the more forgiving version), the horizontal MOI (heel to toe) is up 3% and the vertical MOI is up 25%! You’re going to hear a lot about 10K MOI this year, and this driver can hit that number with a small tweak to the stock weighting. That translates to the tightest dispersion among all tested drivers – 400 sq. yds. (35%) better than the next closest OEM in total dispersion and 3 yards better in left-to-right dispersion.
My fitting and testing experience bore out both the enhanced forgiveness and the lower spin of the PXG 0311 Black Ops driver. I trekked to Scottsdale with my December (read: worse than normal) golf swing. The Black Ops driver didn’t turn every swing into gold, but not one ball was unplayable. Most impressive to me was how off-center shots performed. Toe and heel shots didn’t curve wildly. Low and high impacts all flew on similar trajectories – no low, ballooning shots or high knuckleballs. And, as eagle-eyed readers will have noticed, the spin of the Black Ops was so low that my fitter lofted me up to the 10.5 degree model.
Need lower spin? Check out the PXG Black Ops Tour-1 driver HERE
Finally, an important thing that has carried forward from GEN6 is PXG’s Precision Weighting Technology. This is one of the reasons why I had the 0311 GEN6 driver [review HERE] in my bag last year. PXG gives their fitters and players more flexibility than any other OEM. With three weight ports and individual weights ranging from 2.5 to 20 grams, you can tune the 0311 Black Ops driver to be anti-hook, anti-slice, and find any swing weight you deem comfortable.
Every OEM claims that they make drivers without compromise, but the PXG 0311 Black Ops driver really does check all the boxes. It’s more forgiving than GEN6 while also being longer. The “standard” version is so impressive that PXG Tour pros are eschewing the Tour models to game it. If you want to hit your tee shots farther and straighter, book a fitting for Black Ops today.