Does Ball Compression Matter?

Join our new community on Patreon! – The issue of ball compression ratings is frequently brought up by golfers of all skill levels, but does it actually change your ball flight or is it all based on feel preferences? We tested a very soft compression ball, the Wilson Staff Duo Urethane, against a firm compression ball in the Srixon Z-star XV using GC Quad and analyzed the data. See which type of golf ball is best for your game!

Filmed at: Tour Experience Golf
Custom Golf Club Fitting Studio – Toronto, Canada
Featuring: Ian Fraser & Matt Blois


COO Ba says:

I have gone to the Duo over the last year and half. I found I have better scoring results from the original Duo over the urethane Duo. In my game I find urethane balls on average leave me further from the cup on chip shots do more spin and less roll out. Just another amateur’s toughts.

Snowman9K says:

Please repeat using the 93 mph woman teaching pro. 🙂

wangbang2007 says:

Nothing against Matt but have yall thought about finding someone with slower swing for these vids? Feel like you guys would get numbers more applicable to the majority of the audience.

Elias E says:

Hey guys, love your videos they’ve really helped me a lot, I was wondering if you guys can try range balls vs premium balls at an avg swing speed.

Scott Yeaman says:

Very insightful as always gents.. You guys were threatening to test scuffed balls verses brand new balls of the same manufacturer… that still on the to do list??

Alberto Fernandez-Sanguino says:

Brilliant! Have long awaited your thoughts on the Wilson Staff Duo/DX3 Urethane, a very much underated golf ball in my opinion. Would have liked to have seen the comparison using a wedge, both full and half shots, just to see what kind of spin characteristics you would get. But the idea of testing at various clubhead speeds is awesome, just perfect for us weekend hackers……

Will be testing this one, along with the Vice Pro Soft, Bridgestone RXS and Inesis 900 later this month, want to get deep into this.

Inesis is the golf brand of a French sports superstore chain called Decathlon, you find them throughout Europe. They produce there own balls, manufactured in Korea for them. The inesis 900 is a 3 piece ball with urethane cover. If you want, can send you over a sleeve of 3 for testing.

Best regards and keep up the great work. Your videos are simply unique, looking forward to more of them!!

Dustin Telles says:

I have about 105 driver club head speed would I probably see about the same numbers difference as Matt?

Justin CEM English says:

When ur guys do testing kindly included wedge spin also


Halldór Óskarsson says:

Great channel guy’s!! Playing in Iceland can be cold during the summer so it’s good to play them soft…

Quick question: Can flatning the ly of the club help with steep path when hitting the ball?

Best regards.

Street11 says:

This is funny because I went from the Srixon XV to the Wilson DUO U simply from feel on greens. I swing at 110 and I haven’t lost any distance with the Duo U, but the FEEL is so different. It started with the putter and I am addicted to the feel of the Duo U. There are so many good quality golf balls out there that you just need to pick out the ball that feels the best. If you like soft, the Duo U is for you. Great video fellas.

Colin Bowkett says:

Gents — loving all of your videos and deeply bothered by the fact that you don’t have a shop opening in Vancouver anytime soon…!

I have a suggestion for a video that deals with the back and forth that takes place between strong loft and traditional loft enthusiasts (“that 7 iron is actually a 5 iron…!”). Rather than say that a club goes too far for the number on the sole — the question should be how easily can you hit a target at X distance? Who cares what the number on the sole is? Do I have a 180 yard club in the bag I can hit easily and consistently?

A test that had a golfer of appropriate handicap (Iron Matt’s ball striking is a little too consistent…!) trying to hit a 180 or 200 yard flag with both strong and traditional clubs would be very interesting.

Robert Salazar says:

I played the Duo-U when it came out and I loved it but Wilson seems to take too long to get another premium ball on the market. Now the Srixon QStar tour is just as good as the Wilsons and others seem to have passed up this ball. Haven’t seen a Wilson premium ball in over two years.

Luke Wanless says:

On both occasions the lower compression seemed to be a little straighter for Matt. I found that moving to lower compression has mad a difference in the amount of draw or fade I get. Keen to know if thats another factor in choosing a lower compression ball. Still never been able to find a ball that matches the characteristics of the preceipt u tri tour I loved that ball. It still has a bit of a cult following. Flew low and checked everytime. Oh what I’d give to have a few of them to test against the latest balls.

Jeff Shawver says:

Sweet video. I started playing the Wilson Duo’s mainly because I went back to playing my Wood Bros “The Corker” persimmon driver and Ping Eye 3,4 & 7 woods (to make golf more fun) and didn’t want to crack them with the harder balls. They perform wonderfully props to Wilson. I even play the Wilson Staff Zip which is right around 29 compression (I think) No complaints. Thanks guys.

gnarwarrior says:

It’s nice to have some softer balls in the early spring and late fall when the ball is cold and feels like a rock. Usually the greens are slow rolling then too.

lio says:

Please do a video about terms used in golf fitting/shafts! Stuff like loading/unloading/kickpoint and stuff like that for the clueless golfer!

Graham Halstead says:

COR coefficient of restitution re ball and club the faster you swing the COR diminishes so more gain at slower swing speed.

sabr686 says:

Surprised you didn’t hit wedge with them. Just to compare extreme to extreme.

Chuck Hill says:

You guys have some of the best content on YouTube. Keep up the great work guys.

Austin Coppock says:

have you guys done a video on strata voodoo golf balls?

Ray Farrell says:

Would love to see a test done on your (Iron Byron) new machine where a specific speed could be set and repeated over a vast number of brands.

Mike Cook says:

Love the analytics involved!! We need a 95 MPH swinger to do this test.

Joe Pizza says:

I played golf today, 43 degrees outside. Callaway 55 worked well!

Snowman9K says:

Your comparison charts say Duo soft, which might confuse people because there is a Duo Soft model, surlyn with 29 compression (claimed). You tested the Duo U or Duo Urethane, whatever it’s named. I know you were just using Soft as a descriptive label, not the model name.

I swing 90 mph. For me the Duo U is slightly shorter than B330 RX off the driver. But off the irons I think it spins a bit more.

walter says:

When I was at the last Champions tour in Calgary a month ago I asked Touring pro Glen Day about adjusting ball distance from sea level to Calgary which is at 3500 ft. His first answer was “usually 5%”, but it was the second part of his answer which I took notice of. He said at these cooler temps(it was about 15C) you can’t compress the ball anyway so it doesn’t matter. So I asked him to expand on that, he says you can’t compress the ball when the temp is below 65F. I found that interesting.

David Abrial says:

There’s also the 29 compression. Although not a premium cover, so maybe not worth testing ? Would also be interrested in a temperature test as suggested below. We can play outside in winter here. But with temps below 10°C or even below 5, I wonder if low comp can help a bit for feel at least

Geronimo says:

no it doesnt matter. Thta’s why Phil Mickelson still uses balls made with rubber bands in em. Left handed balls

T.J. Hodnett says:

Awesome video as always!! I do have a question for the 2 of you being that I trust your experience and expertise. My nephew made the golf team (yay!). He’s a 14 year old beginner…. what kind of clubs should we get him or how do we go about choosing them?

CivSkates says:

I’d love to see this test done with the great close up high frame rate shots that really show the club/ball interaction.

Jesse Steffen says:

My driver swing speed is about 106, ball say 148… what should I used… swapped to the z star xv this past season

Gary Rigby says:

My 14 year old daughter off HC 5 plays the DX3 Urethane in the UK. We absolutely love the compression, soft feel off the club face and the grab on the greens, not forgetting the unbelievably low price per dozen. My understanding is the main difference between golf balls with premium covers is around and approaching the green. Would have been good to line up the top six urethane balls to compare grab, check and back spin from 90, 60, 30 & 15 yards in with a wedge

Rob Siekerka says:

Matt found a collar!

Kr0pD says:

Looking forward on the re-do of the test for us, slower swing sp. pps
Great stuff

hi2meb says:

Said this before, i select a ball based on how it feels with the putter. If the ball is very soft it often feels like a miss hit or I might hit it short. Have tried the Wilson 50 compression, felt like I was hitting a rubber ball.

Mark Kirk says:

Ian, when could you test the balls in the wind, now that the windy season is arriving?

Ole Krarup says:

Hey guys

I’d really love to see:

High spin driver with low spin ball
Low spin driver with High spin ball

So spin and launch maybe would be optimized, but maybe you would have tighter dispersion with one / less worksbility?

Maybe throw in a similar 6 Iron test while you are doing it 🙂

I am gaming an Epic SZ, and with some balls I get too low spin and ball drops out of the air. I also have dispersion problems.

So I am considering a higher spin head and very very low spin ball.

I like low spin balls on irons anyway, I know different for everyone of course 🙂



Don Harrold says:

You guys do some of the most interesting golf stuff on YouTube. Every episode involves an experiment and analysis of results. Nobody on YouTube presents these types of studies so well. The only other way to get this type of information would be to work within the major manufacturers.

Rick Bethea says:

Thank you both for a great presentation…very pertinent to me.

I’m 67 years old; I’ve played golf for 55+ years; and, after two back surgeries and arthritis, I have lost a lot of flexibility, strength, and in so, ball speed and yardage (Presently a 14 handicap). I have used both the Wilson Staff Duo Urethane and the Srixon Q-Star Tour recently, and I concur that the Wilson Staff Duo Urethane is an exceptional option for us older guys with slower swing speeds. Interestingly (and as you both surmised), I did find the Wilson Staff was extremely soft, gave me added yards on ALL shots, but for short irons and wedges, I found it was extremely “spinny”, which is a good thing. You had offered spin numbers for the driver and the 6 iron…I’m curious why you didn’t show numbers for the wedge…? Anyway, a great session…keep them coming?

Ray Farrell says:

Ok, so I just watched the whole video. A comprehensive test with actual golfers at different speeds would be phenomenal. But I think you need to add a wedge in there. Compressing the ball with driver and trying to stop it near the flag are very different factors. I’m in the 220 yard driver distance club, but I’d sacrifice a few yards off the driver for a ball that’s going to hop and stop.

Allan Kegler says:

Hi guys, I’m a 28 HC and went to golf town for a iron fitting. They put me into titleist ap3 extended 1 1/4 and upright 2• . I would like a full bag fitting but am unsure where to start. Could you help get me in the right direction as to what I should be getting first ( driver irons wedges putter fairway woods) love the channel keep up your good work. Thanks Allan

Jonny Daniel says:

It would be great to see this exact same test with someone maybe 80/85 mph to see if then the slower swing speed player sees the benefit of lower compression? DUO-U is a great ball!

Stuart McIntosh says:

Man I could sit and listen to you guys all day, fascinating stuff.

Larry Proffer says:

How about a second tester for your videos, not many people have a 172mph ball speed consequently we don’t get a lot from his info.

WhiskerRub says:

Great video! Is Ian the slogan wizard or what — TXG Fuss About It! I want the first t-shirt. Well done looking deeper into the variables always making us think!

Ajit Bains says:

I think you guys need to get a good player with a lower swing speed for these sorts of tests. It’s pretty obvious that Matt can get the most out of a high compression ball but I’d like to know whether the 90-105mph driver swing speed golfer can?

Karri says:

Great video as always. Hope these could be a podcast instead of a video, so I could listen to these while commuting. 🙂

Gary Davis says:

Another great video. Still can’t find a ball that has the distance of ProV1 AND the spin into the greens. Would love to have a cheaper option, just haven’t found it.

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