The original version of the JPX Tour iron was unique in that is was designed by Mizuno for a player that they did not already have on their staff.
Brooks Koepka was with Nike at the time but he was the kind of aggressive, high spin better player that the JPX900 iron was aimed at. Lo and behold when Koepka was a free agent after the withdrawal of Nike from the equipment market, he actually picked this model out to use.
He is still not contracted to anyone so Mizuno can't use his name, but I can, so Koepka and other un-contracted ex-Nike players like Ross Fisher and Lucas Glover have given Mizuno feedback that has led to the new JPX919 Tour iron.
The main things they wanted to see, like most tour players, was a thinner top line and a wider sole so that is what Mizuno gave them.
To be honest you need good eyesight to spot the difference as the previous model was pretty thin as it was.
However the 5% wider sole is more noticeable and this does help improve the forgiveness of strike a little, but this is not really what this iron is about.
The head is still forged but Mizuno has used their High Density or HD forging using 1025 Elite Steel, which we first saw in the Mizuno MP-18 irons.
This packs the grains more tightly in the steel for better feel and certainly the JPX919 irons were a little more solid and better feeling than the 900s, which were a little on the harsh side.
As before, the JPX919 is probably not quite up to MP feel levels yet because of the larger head that is now up to 10% longer than the JPX900 Tour.
The cavity back has also been modified with what Mizuno are calling a Stability Frame and this saves weight from the heel/hosel area of the club and moves it to the toe to increase the MOI.
This moves the CG 1.2mm closer to the centre of the club, which is quite a lot in iron terms and is one of the factors that helps with the better feel.
Compared to the previous JPX900 on GC2 with Titleist Pro V1x balls there really wasn't much in it, just a slight drop in spin.
Compared to the other two models in the range, the Tour was behind both the JPX919 Forged and JPX919 Hot Metal by around a club length.
One shouldn't panic though as the other two models have heads designed for speed, so read the JPX919 Forged and JPX919 Hot Metal reviews to find out more.
The JPX900 Tour is more for those single figure players who want a larger headed version of an MP iron that offers a little more forgiveness.
I am still not convinced that the feel is up there with the MP-18 and it is a close call between the JPX919 Tour and the MP-18 SC which, as an older MP snob, I might still go for.
Mizuno rightly say that younger power players like Koepka have never played MP so they don't have the emotional baggage when making a decision between the two models.
Either way the JPX900 Tour iron is very good and the cleaner, colour free look without the Mizuno name on it makes it look like an MP iron with a bit more forgiveness. Personally if you are for this size of iron then I would head for the JPX919 Forged as the feel is better and it goes further, but if you are low to mid single figures and have to have a 'blade' then the JPX919 Tour is a worthy choice.