Official TaylorMade Stealth 2 DRIVER REVIEW THREAD

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agent0
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2023 10:49 pm

Official TaylorMade Stealth 2 DRIVER REVIEW THREAD

Post by agent0 »

TaylorMade Stealh 2 Review

Driver as tested:
TaylorMade Stealth Plus 2
Loft in STD spec measured to exactly 8.6 degrees of loft on the face
Face angle is 2.1 degrees open
Shaft is Mitsubishi Tensei 1k White 70TX Untipped
45 inches in length
D4 swingweight
Grip is Super Stroke S-Tech Midsize

Notes about my game and swing:
I play to a 1 handicap with a typical swing speed of 117-120mph. I set the club fully with my wrists, going slightly past parallel in the back swing. Grip is very neutral, path is typically 2.5-3 degrees inside to out, with the club face being 1-2 degrees closed at impact. This results in my normal ball flight being a slight pull draw. My normal angle of attack is around 3.5-4 degrees upward, and my tempo would be described as medium to slightly smooth. Release is late with a bit of hand rotation through impact, and typical miss would be an over draw, which cuts off a few hundred rpm of spin. I tend to like “white” profile shafts with a stiff tip, preferred weight being mid to upper 70 gram range.


A giant Thank you to TaylorMade for providing these heads for testing and review.

Also a big thank you to Super Stroke for providing not only the grips for this test, but for all GIA testing for the first half of 2023.


Looks: 9.5/10

I don't think anyone would deny that the TaylorMade Stealth 2.0 line looks fantastic. The all black crown and, by today's standards, mid sized footprint really make this driver attractive at address, especially for better players. I also feel that the move to gloss black from matte black of the original stealth is a subtle but definite improvement.

The red face with the contrast of the black crown look amazing together, and from the sole, the driver is again very tasteful and beautifully designed with the red ring framing the shape perfectly. No complaints at all in terms of aesthetics.

Also, the fact that TaylorMade allows the custom ordering of colors and details is also a huge bonus to those want to fully customize their driver. With the vast combinations of custom options, there's no doubt that nearly everyone should be able to fall in love with the looks of this club.


Sound/Feel: 9.5/10

Those of you familiar with the original Stealth will know that even though the carbon face is something new, the solid sound and feel of a TaylorMade driver remains. That fact is no different with the Stealth 2. The sound is muted, but somehow not too different from traditional TaylorMade titanium faced heads like the original M2 or SLDR. Which are two drivers often praised for their “solid” or “muted” feel at impact. The Stealth 2 delivers a very similar experience without sounding as if it's made of an entirely different material, although in reality, it is.

The feel of the driver is, however a bit different. I would describe the feeling off the face as a feeling that the ball is not completely compressing. Almost a firm feeling at impact, although based on the ball speeds, this is clearly not affecting performance in any way. It is however, unique and does take a bit of time to get used to. Mishit sensation is definitely still there, and it's fairly easy to immediately tell where on the face you have struck the shot. All in all, TaylorMade engineers have done a remarkable job creating a satisfying acoustic experience in spite of changing face materials entirely from the traditional titanium.


Distance Performance: 10/10

Plainly stated, the TaylorMade Stealth 2 is at the top end of the spectrum for 2023 driver ball speeds. As a matter of fact, it boasts the highest center strike ball speed of any driver I have yet tested for 2023. Center strikes are ridiculously long and the ball seems to explode off the face in a way that you know is special the first time you really center one up.

Launch angle with the Stealth 2 Plus is more of a mid trajectory to loft when compared with other offerings for 2023. The spin rate is also on the lower end of the spectrum for the plus, with the standard Stealth 2 being slightly higher launch and spin relative to loft. Although slightly higher in both, the jump is in no way large, as will be highlighted in the launch data below.

Overall, the Stealth 2 Plus is the longest driver on center strikes of any driver yet tested. Surely this isn't much a surprise knowing TaylorMade's history of phenomenal driver releases.


Forgiveness: 7.5/10

This is the one category that this driver falls slightly short of some other 2023 offerings, although it is a mild improvement from the orginal Stealth, which was lauded as penalizing on mishits and more catered to the better ball striker. TaylorMade has made strides in 2023 to improve on off center ball speed loss without sacrificing the sniper rifle type ball speeds on center hits. Stealth 2 is marked improvement from it's predecessor in off center ball speed retention.

Oddly, I did not notice a huge difference from Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 Plus in this regard, with the exception of slight heel side hits, which held ball speed on the base model to a high degree.

Forgiveness wise, I wouldn't say this driver is necessarily for the very high handicap player, but anyone who is a reasonable ball striker won't find slight mishits too penal in either speed loss or direction, with the non plus model being a bit easier to turn over as well. Overall, a definite improvement from original Stealth.


Overall Thoughts:

Quite frankly, I love this driver. It looks fantastic, sounds solid and muted, delivers industry leading ball speeds, maintains mid trajectory and low spin, while being forgiving enough that I can play it with confidence, knowing that a ½ inch mishit will still clear the water hazard I'm aiming over. Considering the carbon face TaylorMade drivers are only two years old, this is all pretty remarkable to say. Not only am I excited for the future of TaylorMade drivers, the current line is, as usual, at the very top of the class for overall performance. TaylorMade Stealth 2 line is an absolute must try before settling in on your driver for 2023.


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User avatar
Agent Alpha
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2023 2:54 pm

Re: Official TaylorMade Stealth 2 DRIVER REVIEW THREAD

Post by Agent Alpha »

TAYLORMADE STEALTH 2 AND STEALTH 2 PLUS REVIEW

INTRO/BACKGROUND:

Currently I am hitting the Callaway Mavrik SubZero in 8.5 with Tensei CK White in stiff, tipped an inch. I play my drivers at 44.5” as it provides me the best control while still being able to get correct distances.

DRIVER SETUP:


The Demo Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 Plus were set up as a 8.5* neutral setting. The swingweight is approximately D3/D4 with the total length being 45".
The head is shafted with a Mitsubishi Kai’Li. The flex is x-stiff, untipped.
The driver has a Superstroke S-tech grip with one wrap underneath.

A LITTLE ABOUT THE PLAYER:

My swingspeed has generally been in the high 90's/low 100s, and while I haven’t had the chance to play over winter other than some practice time, my swing was a bit rusty. I felt I made some great swings while testing this driver and I am happy to report the results.

APPEARANCE:


Over the years, Taylor Made drivers have always been great looking drivers (except the white ones) and this one is no different. The carbon fiber crown is absolutely a great looking head if truth be told. The Plus has the moveable weights versus the regular Stealth 2 which is a fixed weight head. The head has the look of a very tech-savvy driver head with a great view from address.

PERFORMANCE:

I was really looking forward to hitting this head as I would be with any new TM heads. I really didn’t hit the first Stealth models so I didn’t know what to expect. The sound off the head was very muted to me as one would expect given the composition of the head. The heads were pretty much on par with my current driver in terms of distance, no real gains that I saw. For me, where this head was lacking was the forgiveness. I understand TM is using the term “fargiveness" in its media ads, but I thought my off center hits lost a lot more than the Ping, Callaway, Cobra or Srixon heads. To me, this is a players club, one that I believe would best be suited for a very good ball striker in terms of gaining the most distance and forgiveness. I am not of the opinion that higher handicaps cannot play this head, but I would say that do not expect it to be as forgiving as some of the other 2023 offerings.


OVERALL:

I have always loved TM heads. They are well made and always look great. For me, one of the most forgiving heads of all time was the TM M2, but I think this head is clearly not as unforgiving and designed for the better player. Your results might certainly vary, and I was truly hoping that the Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 Plus would be one of the contenders for me this years, but my expectations fell a bit short.
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