Martin Hopley

I have to confess that it has taken a while to get my head around the Mizuno MP-H5 irons and the best I can come up with is that they are part of a new category of 'elite player game improver' irons.

Mizuno MP-H5 Iron Back

If you have being a devoted Mizuno MP disciple over the years then you know that they are usually beautiful looking clubs that offer varying degrees of unforgiveness in return for the best feel and control when shaping shots.

Over the last few years the unforgiveness has been minimised with classics such as the MP-60, MP-57 and even the recently reviewed MP-15 irons.

Despite all these improvements, the MP clubs are firmly for category 1 players who can hit the middle of the club and tolerate feedback on any mishits if they fall short of the green or remove your fingers on a chilly morning.

Yes, even low handicappers need help and the design technologies around these days mean that most of us can get more forgiveness and ball speed without giving up feel, as the excellent Mizuno JPX850 Forged irons prove.

However for elite players at scratch or plus, blade style irons is where it is at, but even they could benefit from a different head design and with advances in launch monitor use you can now prove that is the case.

Mizuno MP-H5 Iron Face

The video at the end of this review with designer Chris Voshall, who plays off 1, up against Luke Donald illustrates it perfectly. Twenty years ago top players only had a choice of blades or clunky cavity backs, so blades were the least worst option. Unless you have a tour level swing speed of over 105mph with a driver, then you don't generate the club head speed to get the most from blades, especially in the mid to long irons.

Mizuno MP-H5 Iron Address

What the MP-H5 iron does is to look and play like a blade, but give people like Chris more ball speed and a higher launch to get the thing going by having a progressively larger hollow cavity head and deeper Centre of Gravity (CG).

Mizuno MP-H5 Iron Toe

The trailing edge of the sole is cambered away to achieve this whilst also allowing the sole to play thinner than it looks and I like this style of club.

Mizuno MP-H5 6 Iron Sole

Mizuno say Luke uses the H5 in the 2 and 3 iron, so if even he needs help at that end of the bag then most amateurs probably need it from the 6 or 7 iron.

When I checked out the MP-H5 against the MP-15 and JPX850 Forged with a launch monitor on our outdoor range, the MP-H5 was about the same as the MP-15, but 2-4 mph slower than the JPX850 Forged.

The flight was higher than the MP-15 and pretty similar to the JPX850 Forged and the previous MP-H4. The deeper hollow head helps acheive this even though the JPX850 Forged head is longer and should therefore be more forgiving.

The feel was just as good the semi-blade MP-15 as the mass behind the ball was steel rather than titanium. This is quite an achievement as the 7-iron through Pitching Wedge are grain flow forged like the irons, whereas the 6-iron upwards are a different construction with a full hollow head and a Maraging Steel face.

Mizuno MP-H5 Mp-15 Compare

The other big difference is the lighter KBS Tour C-Taper Lite 110 steel shaft that is 20 grams ligher than a Dynamic Gold S300 in stiff flex. This helps create greater club head speed and together with the deeper CG will increase launch and ball speed. With the brushed silver finish, it looks pretty good too.

KBS Tour C-Taper Lite 110 steel shaft

One of the key benefits of the MP-H5 is the longer irons that are part of the family tree that goes right back to original Fli-Hi irons which to me are still one of the best driving irons around and still legal for elite competitive play despite being launched in 2008.

The MP-H4 carried on the looks of the Fli-Hi and in the USA they were sold as a set, which has led to the worldwide launch of the MP-H5 as a set too.

Mizuno MP-H5 MP-4 Compare

The driving iron heritage from the previous MP-H4 continues with a 3-iron in the set and also an 18° 2-iron and a 16° 1-iron available as special orders. It is great to see someone making an iron with a 1 on the bottom. There's just something about it that stirs the soul more than a delofted 2-iron.

Mizuno MP-H5 1 Iron Sole

Just so you know where you stand in the world, the 1-iron features the word 'Hitogami' on the back, which apparently means 'human god' in Japanese.

Mizuno MP-H5 1 Iron Hitogami

I had to attempt deity and I did manage to get it airborne, so maybe I can start a small cult somewhere. As you may expect it was more carry and roll than carry and stop, so ideal for fast running links for me, but maybe with a tour level swing speed, others may get more from it.

The looks are OK, although I am not sure about the large cavity protruding from the back of the iron with its shiny finish facing up, as it does not look as clean as the longer chunkier looking MP-H4.

Mizuno MP-H5 1 Iron Toe

The H4 is obviously hollow but the thicker top line hid most if not all of the trailing edge. On the longer MP-H5 irons, the top line is thinner and at address it looks like a regular iron with a lump of metal on the back that does not look as good and the shiny finish on the back could distract some people.

Mizuno MP-H5 MP-4 Compare Address

Overall I would have to say that the MP-H5 is a very good club and maybe starts a new 'elite player game improver' niche in the market. The lofts, lies and cost per iron are designed to blend with the MP-15 irons to create a holy union of MP set.

However is there a market in the niche? I can see tour players using them, but in the real world of amateurs, I feel that the path is less clear.

If you consider it sacrilege to not step foot on the course without your MP blades then the MP-H5 may offer a little more forgiveness for your golfing sins. However if forgiveness is what you are after then the performance of the cheaper JPX850 Forged irons with their larger heads and a similar flight makes me wonder why you would opt for the MP-H5s.

If you are just using these as a driving iron then I would probably stick with the better looking MP-H4 irons, or even find some of the original Fli-Hi irons as either are so easy to hit from the tee.

As Mizuno say, they can see everyone on tour who uses blades will use these style of irons in the future, so maybe this is the first step down this road for today's golfing gods.

And we should pay heed to these teachings my children as forgiveness comes in many forms.

Golfalot Rating: 4 stars
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Mizuno MP-H5 Irons - Product Details

Launch UK01 September 2014
Launch RRP£920
Handicap Range
Hand AvailabilityRight
Shaft NameKBS C Taper Lite
Shaft TypesSteel
Shaft FlexRegular, Stiff
GripGolf Pride
DesignCavity Back
Set Makeup3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, PW
Additional Clubs1, 2
Manufacturer's WebsiteMizuno Website

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User Reviews

January 2016

I'm a 8 handicap and was hitting Titleist AP1. Switched last year to my old set of MP29 . Was going to purchase MP5. But to be honest once I hit the H5 I was in love. I'm a long hitter with the AP1 and I can tell you hit the H5 just as far but was much more accurate. And yes I did order the 1 iron - awesome club off tee or deck.

January 2016

I concur with the above writers sentiments. I have played Mizuno's MP-62's for 7 years now and recently hurt my shoulder so that it will never be 100% again. I can still score with my 62's but the weight really taxes my shoulder and I want to be able to play golf for a long time :). I recently added Callaway's V series driver to my bag to see if a slightly lighter club (the one with the most leverage in the bag) would help my did! So, I decided to research some lighter irons and I really wanted to stay with Mizuno as I find Mizuno clubs the easiest for me to shape shots and found these with the KBS C-Taper shafts at 110 grams 20 grams lighter than the S300 in the 62's. I demo'd the set and yes they helped! The forgiveness was night and day as thin shots flew just as high (not quite as far but within a few yards) and direction was much less pronounced :). If you are a single digit player looking for irons that are lighter and more forgiving for whatever reason I would recommend trying these. I am 53 y/o with a 6.7 HDCP and 101 mph driver swing.

September 2015

To start off, I play 2 rounds per week. I've played some of the finest courses in the continental US. My clubs in the past, in no particular order, range from the Tommy Armour 845s, to Adams V4, to Mizuno MP-53, Mizuno MP-67, Srixon I-701, and Titleist 690 CB. Of those mentioned, the MP-53 and MP-67 were my 2 favourites until I bought this set. Granted, the asking price is high, but if you have the cash to spend, these are definitely deserve a try. I feel the new MP-15 and MP-25 are garnering all the attention, but these aren't second fiddle clubs. They actually remind me of a perfect blend of the MP-67 (blade/MB) and the MP-53 (CB). Clubs 3-6 are hollow but if you weren't told, you would believe they were forged. 7 iron up are 1025 grain forged. I've never hit 3 or 4 very well, so I'll start with 5 and 6 which have the Mizuno butter feel. I adored the MP-53 6 iron (my go to club) but I found my direction and distance were enhanced by these clubs. The ball seems to melt upon impact. The 7 through wedge play like a dream, basically identical to other recent Mizuno's in every aspect. The look. Oh, the look. These are, in a word, divine. The 3 and 4 are slightly bulbous, but walk around with these in your bag and heads will turn and tongues will wag. The satin finish gleams in the sunlight. The only other recent Mizuno I feel looks equally beautiful are the MP-4's.

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