We first heard about the Shockwave Sole and Waffle Crown with the launch of the JPX850 range of fairway woods and hybrids and the JPX EZ 2016 range introduces the next generation of this technology.
JPX EZ 2016 Fairways
The first thing you'll notice about the JPX EZ fairways is the extended footprints and extended head size across all lofts from the 3-7 woods. This confidence inspiring feature fits into the whole design ethos behind the JPX EZ fairway, a club that Mizuno has designed to be easier to hit all round.
Mizuno club engineer, Chris Voshall explains:
We recognised that modern fairway woods, especially those with adjustability, have started to favour the stronger ball-striker. But most of us don't generate the clubhead speed needed to flight the ball properly. So we've gone back to the drawing board and created a larger, flatter head with a tendency to generate more backspin.
The next generation of the Shockwave Sole extends further around the clubhead, adding weight to the heel and the toe for increased forgiveness as well as lowering the clubs centre of gravity, as does the saving of weight from the waffle crown that again can be moved lower. This helps players get the ball in the air as well as helping to maintain ball speeds from the flex the Shockwave Sole gives the clubhead, especially from shots directly from the turf.
A nod to the fact that Mizuno has recognised the increased difficulty of hitting adjustable clubs for some players due to the increased weight is that they are offering the JPX EZ fairways with the choice of either a fixed hosel or the Quick Switch adjustable hosel. The Quick Switch hosel gives players the option of a 4-degree loft range and upright settings to optimise launch characteristics.
The JPX EZ Fairways have an RRP of £219 for the adjustable version and £179 for the fixed hosel option.
JPX EZ 2016 Hybrids
Unlike the fairway woods the JPX EZ hybrids are only available with a fixed hosel but they share the same technology and design ethos.
The larger footprint in all of the hybrids, available in lofts of 16˚, 19˚, 22˚ and 25 together with the centre of gravity optimisation of the next generation Shockwave Sole produces a high and softer landing flight to optimise carry distance for all but the most powerful ball strikers.
Faster ball speed from the flex of the face and increased ball stability as the sole wraps further around the heel and toe of the club all contribute to a more forgiving hybrid with a tendency to generate more backspin.
The JPX EZ Hybrids have an RRP of £179.