Your Golf Ball Questions Answered Ft. Titleist Golf Ball Expert Michael Rich

In case you missed it, Titleist's Manager of Golf Ball Fitting & Education, Michael Rich, recently spent time fielding golf ball related questions from Team Titleist members on our discussion boards. When experiencing a Titleist golf ball fitting anywhere in the world, Michael is the liaison between our Golf Ball R&D Team and our extended fitting team to ensure our fitters are providing a world-class fitting experience to each and every golfer.

As with all Titleist equipment, there's no substitution for a real-life fitting. That being said, Michael's forum Q&A has some great insight for golfers who don't have that type of access or just needed some added assurance for more confidence on the tee. 

While all of Mike's responses are worth a read, we compiled the following Top-5 Q&A wrap up that we think is most beneficial to the wider Team Titleist community. Check out the top 5 questions and answer below, but we also strongly encourage viewing the full Q&A thread here: Golf Ball Forum Q&A

The Top 5 Golf Ball Questions and Answers From Our Recent Team Titleist Golf Ball Q&A


TT Member PULPLVRCan you please clarify the differences between the Pro V1 and the Pro V1x and how those differences have changed in the past few years?

Michael Rich (MR): Great question! This is a question that comes up all the time in our golf ball fitting. The differences between Pro V1, Pro V1x, and AVX can be boiled down to flight, spin, and feel. Pro V1 delivers optimal flight (a penetrating flight) and spin for most golfers with a very soft feel. Compared to Pro V1, Pro V1x will fly higher, spin more through the bag, and feel firmer. Compared to Pro V1, AVX will fly lower, spin less through the bag, and feel softer. This flight, spin, and feel relationship between Pro V1 and Pro V1x has been the case since the 2017 generation of these models and we don't anticipate this relationship changing moving forward. Check out the attached image, as this is a simple way to understand the performance differences between the three models.


TT Member ED BAs a high handicapper and older golfer (65), what should I be looking at when choosing a ball? What do you recommend?

MR: Beyond which specific model may be best for your specific golf game, it is important to understand the importance of playing one golf ball model consistently. Every golf ball is designed to perform differently. Additionally, you will see significant differences in terms of quality from manufacturer to manufacturer. My biggest piece of advice to someone fairly new to the game is to find a golf ball that you like in terms of performance and feel, and commit to playing that golf ball exclusively. Shot after shot, round after round. Golf is a tricky enough game without introducing unnecessary variables into the equation. Eliminate one of those variables by selecting one ball you like and sticking with it. Using the same model golf ball on every shot of every round eliminates performance variation, builds confidence and consistency, and will ultimately lead to you shooting lower scores.


TT Member DOLIVIERIHow can the layers of a multi-layered golf ball have that much effect on the performance of the ball?

MR: Your question gets at the heart of why and how the introduction of the original Pro V1 back in 2000 revolutionized the game. Before the original Pro V1 existed, golfers were forced to make a choice: play a ball that provided spin and control or play a ball the provided distance. Most professional golfers played performance balls with wound construction, liquid-filled centers, and balata or urethane covers for their feel and spin characteristics. Most amateur players played low spinning, solid core distance balls that mostly had Surlyn covers. Titleist saw that there was an opportunity to develop a golf ball that offered total performance. So our engineers seized this opportunity, combining the best of both worlds: the distance of solid core golf balls with the feel, spin, and control of wound golf balls. That golf ball was the original Pro V1, and suddenly, for the first time ever, the best golf ball for Tour Professionals was also the best golf ball for amateur golfers. The multi-layer, multi-component construction of Pro V1, Pro V1x, and AVX make it so golfers of all abilities can benefit from their performance and quality.


TT Member MBALLAre there recommended swing speeds listed for your different model golf balls?

MR: This has been a popular topic in this thread, so I want to reiterate what I've said to a few other folks.

There is a lot of "noise" out there about swing speed, but choosing your golf ball based on your swing speed is a flawed approach. All of our golf balls at Titleist are designed to perform for all swing speeds, with every club, on every shot. So, what do we recommend you focus on when selecting a golf ball if swing speed is a non-factor? We want you to focus on the performance the golf ball delivers on shots around the green and your approach shots into the green. This is where you have the greatest opportunity to improve your score and where golf ball performance is most important.

We know that there are a lot of choices out there for golf balls and it can be difficult to know which model is best for your game. If that's where you are at, I'd recommend you take a few minutes and go through our online golf ball selector tool.


TT Member BENTRONHave you found that certain on ball alignment aids suit certain putting styles/ strokes better?

MR: We know that many golfers utilize the golf ball's sidestamp or another alignment aid to help with their putting. In fact, our research shows that only 14% of golfers never use the sidestamp on the golf ball for alignment. That means 86% of golfers use the sidestamp on the golf ball at least some of the time to aid in their alignment. Dating all the way back to 2002, the sidestamps on our golf balls have been incorporating an alignment element. And, this is something that we continue to work to enhance, as you see with our Pro V1 and Pro V1x enhanced alignment offerings, as well as the sidestamps we are utilizing on the new Tour Soft, Velocity, and TruFeel golf balls. All that said, the alignment aid that is best for you and your game really comes down to personal preference.