TaylorMade Stealth HD Driver Review

50 Words or Less

The TaylorMade Stealth HD driver is the highest launching member of the Stealth driver family.  Slight draw bias.  Very similar to the other Stealth drivers in looks and feel.

Check out the new TaylorMade Stealth 2 HD driver HERE

Introduction

For the last few generations, TaylorMade has used “D-Type” to designate their draw-biased woods.  The move into the Carbonwood Era prompted a change to a new and more accurate nomenclature: HD.  HD stands for “High Draw,” and the Stealth HD driver backs up both parts of that name.

Looks

It’s often the case that the draw-biased version of a driver is oddly shaped or sits closed at address.  That’s not the case with the TaylorMade Stealth HD driver.  Lining up all three Stealth models in the playing position, it’s hard to tell them apart.  All three are average in size from front to back and very slightly pear-shaped.

My favorite thing about the Carbonwood Era is that TaylorMade has brought back black crowns.  There is still a slightly glossy ring around the matte carbon crown, but it’s not nearly as noticeable as with previous generations.  Even more understated is the “Stealth” branding on the crown toward the heel.

The underside of the Stealth HD lives up the name.  With a largely black-on-black color scheme, even the standout technology pieces are subtle.

Finally, the one piece of the Stealth HD that is anything but subtle is the face.  The red carbon fiber face is the calling card of this club, and it’s going to get noticed on the tee.  As striking as it is when you’re examining the club, I found that I barely noticed it when playing.

Sound & Feel

TaylorMade clearly believes that players who want help turning the ball over shouldn’t have to play an ugly driver.  That carries over to sound and feel, too.  The Stealth HD driver sounds and feels identical to the Stealth [review HERE] and Stealth Plus [review HERE].

The feel of impact is very solid with the Stealth HD.  With the carbon fiber face, I found that impact was actually a little softer.  This may not feel as fast or powerful to some, but I enjoyed the contrast with most other drivers.  This solid feel is complemented by an impact sound that’s quieter than most drivers and very staccato.

I found the feedback from this driver to be surprisingly precise.  Locating impact through my hands was easy from the first few swings.  Similarly, there’s a stark audio contrast between the quiet pure strikes and the louder mishits.

Performance

Having previously tested the Stealth Plus driver, my ball speed expectations for the Stealth HD were very high.  Powered by the 60X Carbon Twist Face, this driver had no problem meeting them.  Centered shots screamed off the face, but the really impressive piece is how fast my mishits were.  When your hands and ears – not the launch monitor – tell you that you missed one, that’s a good thing.

There are two key factors that differentiate the Stealth HD from the other models: the draw bias and the higher launch and spin.  What I found in my testing is that the draw bias is noticeable but it’s more subtle than previous generations.  The sweet spot is shifted toward the heel which makes the Stealth HD easier to draw.  That said, I had no problem hitting a straight shot or even a cut with this driver.  I like this subtle draw bias as it makes the driver playable for more golfers.  If you need to correct a wicked slice, you can use the hosel adjustment to close the face.  If you want just a slight bias, leave the face square.

It’s also worth noting that the Stealth HD comes with a lighter stock shaft than the other Stealth drivers – the Fujikura Air Speeder 45.  For many players, this lighter, slightly softer shaft will further promote a draw.  In my testing, this was certainly the case.  For the purposes of the launch monitor numbers above, I used the same shaft that I did when testing the Stealth Plus, the Mitsubishi Kai’li.

Finally, the Stealth HD launches and spins higher but not wildly so.  There’s a nice stair step progression from the Stealth Plus to the Stealth to the Stealth HD.  This opens up a ton of fitting possibilities when you mix in the different loft offerings and the adjustable hosel.  You can get to lower launch and spin by switching models, lofting down, or adjusting the face angle.  With this array of options, there’s no excuse not to get optimized.

Conclusion

The TaylorMade Stealth HD is one of my favorite draw-biased drivers because it makes no compromises on looks or forgiveness.  Players who want to flight it right-to-left get the same excellent sound, feel, and looks as those playing the Stealth and Stealth Plus.  When you add in the huge forgiveness and ball speed, there’s no reason not to give this a shot at your bag in 2022.

Visit TaylorMade HERE

TaylorMade Stealth HD Driver Price & Specs

Matt Saternus

19 Comments

  1. Nice job as usual Matt. With all these carbon drivers out there, do you have an opinion which might be the best for a senior with 85 mph, without regard to cost.

    • Matt Saternus

      Terry,

      At 85 MPH, I would guess that the Stealth Plus isn’t going to be a fit, but either the Stealth or Stealth HD could work.

      -Matt

  2. I’m not a big fan of anything that says draw bias . But this might be the club that breaks the cycle.
    Great review Matt, always look forward to your email.
    Robin

  3. Great review as always Matt. I’m going for a driver fitting tomorrow to see if the new Stealth’s or Rogues can knock the Epic sub zero out of my bag.

    For your swing speed and launch conditions what would you consider to be your optimum spin rate?

    Thanks,
    John

    • Matt Saternus

      John,

      Great question. There are a variety of answers depending on whose chart you’re looking at, but I’m happy with anything between 1800-2200. That tends to be on the low side of what some people recommend, but it works well for me.

      Best,

      Matt

  4. Would i benefit from this driver as I have fairly slow demon speed.

  5. With prior TM drivers I preferred a 9.5* or 10.0* loft. With the higher spin of the HD would you recommend that I zero-in on the 9.0* and adjust from there if necessary?

    • Matt Saternus

      Steve,

      My recommendation is always to get a fitting. The HD is higher spinning than the other two Stealth drivers, but may not be higher spinning than what you’re playing now.

      -Matt

    • I am hitting a Taylormade 10.5 degree driver. I am 81 years old and hit it 210-220 consistently. I have tried a number of other drivers but nothing gives me the distance and accuracy also it is the RBZ regular shaft.

  6. What’s the best driver you’ve tested this year Matt? And have you got reviews on the new cobras coming?

    • Matt Saternus

      Jason,

      Yes, we will have reviews of the new Cobra clubs coming soon.

      For me, the best fit of the new 2022 drivers has been the Rogue ST Max LS, but I expect the “standard” Stealth will be right there with it.

      Best,

      Matt

  7. Thanks for the nice review Matt.

    Are there any plans for Plugged in golf to do any sort of ranking by more granular characteristics like a few other sites have done? Even if it’s just your launcher monitor data for every club reviewed in a tabular format to better see the incremental differences between them.

    Seems like every club being reviewed is great (and they objectively are) but its getting harder for us consumers to filter through the more nuanced differences that may exist between the clubs in any release year.

    • Matt Saternus

      Francis,

      No, that’s not something we’re going to do. Everyone in the industry knows that fitting is the only way for every golfer to find their best set. Thus, those tables, charts, and graphs are not meant to help golfers; they’re meant to keep you on their sites longer (and sell more ads). We would rather you spend that time playing golf, hence “50 Words or Less” on every single review.

      -Matt

  8. Bryanflach

    I shoot between 72 and 76, swing speed is about 90, and I hit the ball high, which Stealth should I lean to?

    • Matt Saternus

      My recommendation is always to get fit. Swing speed and score are not nearly enough to make a good recommendation.

      -Matt

  9. Adi Martadinata

    Hi Matt,

    Thanks for the review. I am 22 handicapped, and my driver mostly slices to the right.
    According to the test, my swing speed was 102 mph, and they advised me to get Ping G425 or Stealth, both with a stiff shaft.

    Stealth gives a good distance but still has a little slice at the end. While G425 with stiff shaft a bit struggle when down swing. I think to lowering become SR type?

    I haven’t decide yet. Any advice and recommendation?

    • Matt Saternus

      Adi,

      My policy is to never second guess a fitter who has worked with you in person. That said, if you’re not happy with either recommendation, you should let them know that and try more combinations.

      Best,

      Matt

  10. I’m a big fan of TaylorMade drivers. I’ve had a few over the years and they’ve all been great. The Stealth HD driver is no exception. It’s a great driver and I’m really happy with it.

  11. Bob Delahunt

    This is what I have been looking for and have purchased one and can’t wait to get it and take it to the course

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