While modern irons have a higher ball speed than the Ping Eye 2, they also offer more distance due to stronger lofts. In material construction, Ping Eye 2 used the same stainless steel that many club manufacturers use today; however, some modern clubs now have tungsten and titanium in the club head.
As the iconic Ping Eye 2 irons walk into their fourth decade of play, many players have tried to compare their equivalent with modern clubs. Indeed, there are a few tour pros who still use the Eye 2’s.
While enjoying a solo round of golf last week with my Ping Eye 2 Green dots, I teamed up with a group of three players. Some of them teased me for using “outdated” 20-year-old clubs, insisting I’d fare better with a $200 set from Canadian Tire than my current ones, which they deemed inferior to their flashy Callaway clubs.
I decided to do an extensive comparison of Ping Eye 2 and modern-day clubs to see what I could really be missing out on. In the rest of this article, I will walk you through my findings.
What You Should Know About the Ping Eye 2 Irons
The Ping Eye 2 irons were unique because they had a dot system that showed different launch angles.
These irons were made from substantial stainless steel, making them challenging and giving them a nice, soft feel.
They are perfect for forgiveness and accuracy. The way they’re designed, with weight around the edges and a special hosel, helps you hit the ball more accurately and make it go higher.
These irons also have a cavity-back design, which means the back of the clubhead has a hollow space.
This design makes the ball go faster and is more forgiving for players who might not hit the ball perfectly every time.
However, the initial production line had some legality controversy because they were designed with square grooves, which don’t conform with the United States Golf Association’s (USGA) and R&A rules.
What You Should Know About Modern Clubs
Unlike Ping Eye 2s, modern golf irons come packed with high-tech features to improve your game.
One standout is the use of multiple materials in their construction, which boosts the speed and trajectory of the ball.
For example, the Ping G425 iron is built with innovative features like cascading soles and stronger lofts. This makes the club lighter and more robust, improving your performance on the course.
But it’s not just about high-tech improvements.
One of the most incredible things about these modern golf irons is that they can analyze your swing speed. This is something the Eye 2s can’t do.
With the swing analysis, you can choose the right clubs that match your playing style, ultimately making you a better golfer.
Comparing Ping Eye 2 vs. Modern Irons (Spec Difference Chart)
Indeed, there are some relevant differences between the specs of a Ping Eye 2 and modern irons such as Ping G425 irons.
Here are some of the significant areas of difference:
|How Ping Eye 2 Compared With Modern Irons
|The modern irons will have a higher ball speed than the Ping Eye 2.
|The modern version of many golf irons has customized and unique specifications, mainly on stronger lofts, which offer better distance than the Ping Eye 2.
|Modern golf iron club heads now have tungsten and titanium incorporated into them. But Ping Eye 2 used the same stainless steel that many club manufacturers use today.
|Sticking with the older Ping Eye 2 irons may be the most affordable option if increased distance doesn’t matter much to you.
|There’s minimalism in the overall aesthetic design of the Ping Eye 2, which seems to be the objective of many manufacturers of modern clubs.
What is the modern equivalent of Ping Eye 2 irons?
The Ping GMax irons are the closest to the Eye 2 in terms of shape and forgiveness in Ping’s newer lineup.
Although the Eye 2 irons are iconic and a personal favorite, the technology from 1982 is outdated compared to today’s standards.
Despite their excellence in the past, the Eye 2 might struggle in today’s golf scene. It would be cool if Ping brought back the Eye 2 with some modern updates like new materials and lighting.
This could attract both golf enthusiasts and those who appreciate the history of golf equipment. The idea is to keep the essence of Eye 2 while making it relevant for today.
The Eye 2 irons changed how people see golf clubs, so trying them could be a unique experience for any golfer.
Overall, it’s about blending the classic design with modern features to create a set of irons that pays homage to the past but fits well in today’s golf world.
Which Should You Choose Between Ping Eye 2 and Modern Irons?
Ping Eye 2 is forgiving, helps with your shots, and has a good balance of height and weight.
If you want a good deal and don’t want to spend too much, go for Ping Eye 2 irons. But if you have more money to spare and want to improve your game, go for the newer irons. These newer ones are perfect for people who are not so great at golf yet.
If you prefer something easy to use, especially for recreational golf, choose Ping Eye 2.
But if you’re looking for irons that will make you better at the game or have a more precise design, go for the newer models.
Ping Eye 2 irons are different from modern irons in so many ways, such that one will easily be able to discern that the latter is a better option for intentional game improvement.
In terms of shaft options, Ping Eye 2 only offers one option—Ping JZ series steel, Ping 350 Series graphite—while modern irons offer multiple options. In terms of ball speed, modern irons will be faster than the Eye 2’s.
Meanwhile, Ping Eye 2 is only known for its stainless steel material, but you can find various modern irons with various improved materials.
One unavoidable area of comparison is the lie/loft differences and which modern irons are stronger.
So, as far as this review goes, Modern Irons wins the belt against Ping Eye Irons. But if you base your argument on cost-friendliness and nostalgia for using old clubs, then Ping Eye 2 stands a chance.
Outside of those two exceptions, even a beginner is better off with a modern iron. What do you think? Please share your thoughts in the comments.