Rocketballz Driver Review
The TaylorMade Rocketballz line of drivers, fairway woods and irons were released on February 3, 2012 along with the R11S line of clubs. The Rocketballz, labeled RBZ on the driver head, design is a completely new line for 2012, it is not based on a previous year’s model. This is good news for you because it allows TaylorMade to introduce Billy new technology without having to keep the look or feel of an older club design. The marketing department TaylorMade is using Jason Day and Camilo Villegas as the PGA professionals used to advertise their latest driver.
In this review you will get it in depth look at what makes the Rocketballz driver unique, you will be able to determine if it is a good fit for you and you will be presented with both the positives and negatives of the driver.
Flight Control Technology (FCT):
The Rocketballz driver offers some tunability similar to the R11 and R11S. The most prominent tenability feature is TaylorMade’s Flight Control Technology. This feature allows you to change you launch angle 1.5 degrees in either direction, providing a 3 degree total range of flexibility. Just like the R11S, this driver’s FCT adjustment happens where there driver head and shaft connect allowing for easy adjustment and refinement. Higher handicappers tend to opt for a higher loft setting while lower handicappers generally prefer a lower loft. Being an average player, I use a slightly higher than normal loft. This will be something you can test and experiment with on the range to see which setting is best for your skill level and swing.
TaylorMade states that this new aerodynamic clubhead design will benefit golfers by 2-3 percent over the previous superfast design. It may not sound like much but every bit of clubhead speed will definitely help to improve my game. The shallow face of the standard Rocketballz driver makes it easier to get the ball into the air and provides additional draw spin. These aspects can be fine-tuned for your swing through FCT adjustments.
“The RocketBallz driver is crazy good. I wanted to put it in my bag the first time I hit it and instantly understood why it was named RocketBallz. I can’t wait to play with this driver.” –Jason Day
Psychology of White:
The RBZ driver continues to establish and reinforce TaylorMade’s white club head identity. They claim the contrast between the white head and black face allows for easy alignment at address. They use a matte white finish to eliminate hotspots and glare. The white club head is supposed to visually look larger than other competing color options, giving you more confidence at address. As I stated in my TaylorMade R11S review, I am not a big fan of the white club head. The intense sunlight in the southwest makes anything white colored difficult to look at or focus on in mid-day sunlight.
Rocketballz vs. Rocketballz Tour:
The two are version of the rock walls driver has a clear you were label on the club making it easy to know exactly which of the two you have. The two are version features a deeper face and appear smaller size at address. This provides a bit more workability and a more penetrating golf ball projection. I prefer the standard Rocketballz driver, but the Rocketballz Tour will potentially be beneficial for lower handicap golfers.
- FCT – Flight Control Technology allows for quick loft and face angle tuning.
- Lightweight overall design, including lightweight shaft and grip, encourages faster swing speeds.
- Refined design creates a lower center of gravity to promote higher launch for more distance.
- Speed-enhancing head aerodynamics reduces wind resistance to promote faster head speed for more distance.
- Inverted Cone clubface technology promotes faster ball – speed and distance on off-center hits.
- Matte-white crown and black face makes alignment easier and eliminates glare at address.
“Just got back from hitting the driver, 3 wood and hybrid rocketballlllllllzzzzz and I gotta say I am very impressed.” –tofur99; golfwrx.com
Rocketballz vs R11S:
The most noticeable difference between these two drivers is price. The base Rocketballz driver is ~$299 while the base R11S is ~$399. TP versions of both drivers come in at a slightly higher price point. The RBZ has a slightly better aesthetic with the green accents and visually smaller club head. The extra price tag on the R11S will give you additional adjustability and is more tunable. If you have not read it already, be sure to read my R11S review here.
My personal vote goes to the RBZ. It has a great look and feel. The price point is good for this new technology, it is able to be fine-tuned to your swing and the lower price tag will make that first big scratch on the bottom sting slightly less. In the end, either of these drivers are a great choice.
The RBZ driver comes standard in the fashionable TaylorMade matte white club head with black club face. For those concerned about your new white driver getting scuffed up in your bag or through normal wear and tear Taylormade clearly states that the white paint is applied in three layers and is picked on for maximum durability. This by no means is stating that the finished indestructible, just that Taylormade is aware of these concerns and has addressed it through their paint application process. This is the third iteration of white clubs from TaylorMade and does not use the same crap processes the early Ghost Manta putters which have experienced issues the durability of their paint.
“I am always working hard to raise my performance – especially off the tee. This driver’s distance and the fact that I can tune it gives me a huge advantage this year.” – Camilo Villegas
The RBZ Driver has a 460cc head. It visually looks smaller than the R11S to me. The shaft is 46” and has a D4 swing weight. 9.5 degree, 10.5 degree and HL models are available. Each features 3 degrees of tenability and flexibility using Flight Control Technology. The styling aligns with that of a classic driver. It has a great look and feel to it.
The shape of the Rocketballz clubhead gets away from the modern design of the burner line and steps back toward a classic driver head shape and design. TaylorMade claims that golfers tend to prefer this classic driver had designed over a more aggressive looking modern head design.
Rocketballz has a lot going for it. The name is a bit gimmicky, but the technology is there to back it up. The driver has a great feel to it. TaylorMade has thought through ever feature on this club. It is adjustable enough to make it fit your skill level and swing without the price tag of the R11S. The weight of the club and aerodynamic head design give it a great swing feel. It is hard to argue with a driver of this level at a great price point.
“this thing is so deadly accurate and is at least 30 yards further than my old driver.” –J. Jones; Amazon.com
The biggest downside of the RBZ to me is the color. As stated earlier, being in the southwest‘s intense sunlight does not make a white (even matte white) driver fun to look at. This may not be an issue for you at all. I personally do not play with sunglasses on and do not plan to just to make the glare from the driver more bearable. Yet, the color is not a big enough downside to keep me from gaming it.
The Rocketballz driver is getting a lot of buzz for a good reason. It is an excellent driver for the price. Anyone who has gamed it will attest to that. When combined with a program like GolfSmith’s Playability Guarantee, there is no reason not to have this club in your bag.
Where to Buy:
The price point of the Rocketballz driver is in a similar range to Taylormade’s Burner line. As stated earlier, this driver is not an updated Burner driver; it has been redesigned from the ground up.
I recommend purchasing your new driver from Golfsmith. They pass along great deals and discount to my blog which I am able to give to you. Be sure to use the discount codes I provide through my links to ensure the best deals.
I also recommend checking for the best deals at Golf Galaxy and on Amazon. Prices and promotions change regularly, so check to make sure you are getting the best deal by price checking at the links below.