Callaway believe there are three types of player when it comes to driver technology.
Studies of golfers at demo days and fitting sessions have shown there is not one recipe for distance and one driver type that fits all. Callaway's design philosophy of putting the golfer first has taken these observations and produced the current line up of Big Bertha drivers.
The first type of golfer is primarily in need of additional head speed from a lighter driver to help them to deliver the club accurately and convert their own power into kinetic energy in the head and therefore into kinetic energy in the ball for greater overall distance. To help these players Callaway released the Big Bertha V Series Driver.
With the release of the Big Bertha Alpha 815 and Big Bertha Alpha 815 Double Black Diamond, Callaway now believe that they have the answers for the remaining two categories of players; those whose distance will be optimised by a combination of low spin with forgiveness and those who require extreme low spin.
Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 815 Driver
The Big Bertha Alpha 815 is a new class of driver that achieves low spin and forgiveness in the same construction.
Aimed at the largest part of the market for players who can benefit from the distance advantages of lower spin, but who still require forgiveness, Callaway think they have successfully delivered this combination for the first time.
Multi-material construction - a titanium body with a carbon composite crown - allows Callaway to stretch out the clubhead and distribute the weight to increase the Moment of Inertia for extra forgiveness. This also allows the head to be slightly lighter making the club easier to swing whilst still retaining the high MOI characteristics.
The gravity core first seen in the previous generation of Big Bertha Alpha driver is maintained in the Alpha 815, allowing golfers to move the Centre of Gravity up or down to optimise ball speed to the area of the face that they usually strike the ball.
With the heavier end of the gravity core in the lower setting the driver is optimised to a low spin and high launch combination for greater distance. However, not all players consistently hit the ball in the centre of the club with a lot of average golfers consistently striking the ball above the centre of the face.
Flipping the gravity core around to put the weight in the upper position produces a mid spin characteristic that will produce a more efficient combination of speed, launch angle and spin for these players.
New to the Big Bertha 815 driver is a face technology called RMOTO that delivers benefits to the club that cover the whole spectrum of performance and forgiveness.
RMOTO is based in the design insights from the face cups used in Callaway's fairway woods and hybrids where the focus is on controlling the area immediately around the perimeter of the club face. Face cup technology cannot be applied to drivers given the difference in the face aspect ratio compared to fairways and hybrids heads, so in order to change the stiffness of the boundary of the face RMOTO was developed.
RMOTO - meaning ribs for motion control - uses discrete ribs to connect the face and the sole and the face and the crown to produce an area next to the face that is lighter and more flexible than would have been the case from a titanium shell. This allows Callaway to control the motion of the face to improve ball speed particularly in the areas around the edge of the face and off centre impact locations used by a lot of average golfers.
A key aspect of forgiveness in the Alpha 815 is gained through the high level of adjustability offered to allow golfers to tailor the performance to their particular golf swings.
The Alpha 815 has a natural draw bias, but this is enhanced by the 7 gram and 1 gram screw weights in the clubhead that can either produce a more pronounced draw or a more neutral character in the head.
This is complimented by Callaway's familiar Optifit hosel technology that gives four degrees of loft with two lie options for each of those four degrees.
The Big Bertha Alpha 815 comes with a premium Fujikura 53g Speeder Motore 565 shaft to give players more speed.
Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 815 Double Black Diamond Driver
Those familiar with the categorisation of ski runs in North America will be aware that Double Black Diamond is a warning for "Experts Only" and it's no surprise that Callaway has adopted the moniker for this version of the Big Bertha Alpha 815.
The Double Black Diamond has been designed for players with good swing mechanics who can consistently hit in the centre of the face with the driver and have relatively high ball speeds. These players primarily need to take spin off the drive to hit the ball further.
The Alpha 815 Double Black Diamond benefits from the same RMOTO face technology as the Alpha 815 with weight saved to move the CG lower as well as increasing the forgiveness for faster ball speeds across the face. Whilst boasting the same 460cc head size as the standard Alpha 815, this volume in the Double Black Diamond had been modelled to a tour inspired shape with a deeper face and smaller footprint favoured by better players.
The multi-material construction saves 20 grams of discretionary weight that the gravity core allows players to put to use in creating a low spinning driver that fits their swing characteristics. The gravity core in the Alpha 815 Double Black Diamond produces 100rpm less spin than the 2014 Big Bertha Alpha driver, with Callaway increasing the vertical CG change across the core so that the up and down positions are enhanced to give the correct amount of spin for maximum distance.
Callaway has found that in extreme low spin drivers it is important to have quite a high MOI in the loft and deloft direction and they have focussed on improving this aspect of MOI over the previous generation Big Bertha Alpha.
This forgiveness improves the consistency of ball speeds for impacts up and down the face as with a low centre of gravity if you strike the ball higher on the face you can lose ball speed and therefore distance. The ability to flip the gravity core and put the heavier weight in the higher position, producing a similar CG characteristic to the 2014 Big Bertha Alpha, will allow players with higher impact locations a launch angle and spin combination to maximise their distance.
The Alpha 815 Double Black Diamond does not achieve as much draw bias relative to the standard Alpha 815 which fits in with the player profile who will not need as much help in this area, but it does come with draw weights of 5 grams and 1 grams and it also benefits from the full range of Optifit adjustability.
The Big Bertha Alpha 815 Double Black Diamond package is completed by a premium shaft offering with the option of either the Aldila Rogue 60 or new Matrix Ozik Black Tie 70 shafts.