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Post by agent0 »

PING G430 Driver Line Review

Driver as tested:
Loft in STD spec measured to exactly 8.5 degrees of loft on the face
Face angle is 2.2 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 PING 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: 9/10

I know the first comment anyone expects from a PING driver review is that the person hates the look of the turbulators on the crown, but bear with me for a minute. Admittedly this is a look that you have to get used to, but once you do, the turbulators actually help not only frame the ball, but also make you conscious of the face angle, which isn't such a bad thing, considering more than a couple times, it made me realize I was aimed a bit more right or left than I wanted to be. While not the most traditional of looks, there is function to it beyond the intended aerodynamic affect. Beyond that, the heads are a very understated matte finish and boast an overall shape that is appealing to the eye. If there is something to dislike, for me, it's the pronounced line across the crown from heel to toe on the LST. Alone, it wouldn't bother me, but with the turbulators as well, the crown is just a bit busy.

Sound/Feel: 9.5/10

PING drivers have traditionally been somewhat, pingy I suppose. With a sound that is often a bit loud and metallically pronounced, that's what I've come to expect. Imagine my surprise when neither the LST or the MAX head sounded anything like that. The 430 line is a huge step forward in the acoustics department with a much more muted and silenced sound at impact. I wouldn't call it quiet, but the days of needing an earplug in your left ear when hitting a PING driver are over. This sound satisfaction transfers right across to feel, which is no surprise since they are so closely connected. The feel is firm, but explosive in a way best described as the sensation of the ball being full compressed as opposed to the face rebounding. It is both powerful and solid simultaneously.

Distance Performance: 9/10

While the main attribute of PING drivers tends to be forgiveness, which we will get to, this year's LST and MAX deliver on distance as well. For the first time since the days of the Rapture driver, I can safely say that PING is back in the distance game. Both driver heads are right there with the rest of the pack in terms of ball speed and both are relatively low spin without hitting unplayable knuckleballs for lower swing speeds. While neither is the lowest spinning driver in their respective category, both sit middle of the pack, which should give just about any player of any speed a viable head and loft combo for their game. Also we should remember, distance shouldn't only be judged on perfect strikes, and off center is where PING continues to shine.

Forgiveness: 10/10

Would anyone expect PING not to be a ten in this category? On both the MAX and LST heads, forgiveness was absolutely top end of all 2023 drivers. The MAX is expected to be the forgiveness monster, and it does not disappoint. The real surprise was how forgiving, not only in ball speed retention, but directional retention, that the LST is. Unless you miss the LST by an inch in any direction, it is remarkable and keeping those poor strikes playable in all manners. Of every “low spin” category head in 2023, I would give the PING G430 LST the nod as the most forgiving LS product in the market this year. As usual, PING absolutely knows how to deliver playable drivers for every skill level, and that simply means better golf.

Overall Thoughts:

With the massive improvement in sound and feel, excellent distance, especially in off center ball speed retention, and very industry competitive ball speeds, these drivers really deliver a nice well rounded package. There is really no weakness in either head. The MAX is surprisingly low spin and the LST is surprisingly forgiving, somewhat negating the complaints of recent years. It really just comes down to the fact that PING just knows how to make a damn good golf club that somehow delivers enough of everything to make just about every player wonder if they should be playing a PING. Every single year I hear higher handicaps tout their PING drivers as if they found it at the end of a rainbow, and I hear better players use the sound or the lack of distance as an excuse not to look in PING's direction. This year, those complaints are hollow, and for the 99.99% that occasionally don't hit 14 perfect drives a round, we are out of excuses not to strongly consider putting a PING driver in the bag.

Data coming
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Last edited by agent0 on Tue Feb 07, 2023 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Agent Alpha
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Post by Agent Alpha »



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.


The Demo 430 LST and MAX were set up as a 8.5* neutral setting. The swingweight is approximately D3/D4 with the total length being 45". The face is absolutely dead square with no manipulations by tour sleeves, etc.
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.


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.


I guess this review is going to be more good news/bad news from my perspective, so I thought I would give my opinions that were more critical first, and they all start with the appearance. Now, I want you to take what I say with a HUGE grain of salt because I think my opinions are solely based on my perceptions and not others. While others may agree with me, I don’t think that I will persuade too many not to try this club.
For me, I can’t get used to this club in terms of looks and sound. I have played mostly Taylor Made or Callaway drivers now for approximately 10+ years and I just love the way they look and sound. Classic shape, pure black color, sound of a slightly metallic crack. As many of you know, Ping has had a certain head design for a while now, including the “turbulators” on the crown. For me it’s a distraction. I also am not generally a fan of matte-finished heads, but again, this is just my opinion. I like to think that I am more about performance, but we all have our aesthetic likes and dislikes.

Ok, now that I have the “bad news” out of my system, I will move along to what truly matters to most people...


I am well aware that many drivers that are coming out are so close in terms of performance that you just need to find the right head and shaft for you. That being said, these heads performed as good as I could expect for me. This setup, shaft wise, was a bit stiffer but really not unmanageable. The reality is that of all the drivers I have hit to date, all shafts being the same, these head gave me the best results as far as overall distance and spin. I believe my average launch was around 13-14* and spin was somewhere around 2400-2650 rpm. The LST head gave me slightly better numbers than the Max overall.
Off center shots which are more prevalent with winter rust, really didn’t go offline too badly and would have been manageable on the course. I noticed that the LST was a bit more forgiving along with being about 5-6 yards longer for me than the Max head, but overall they were similar. While I didn’t like the overall appearance, I can’t help but say that this head is going to perform for me and others who need low spin heads while getting the forgiveness that one expects from Ping.


Listen, I may sound a little harsh about the appearance and sound of this club, and well, I probably am making it worse than it really is. I guess that’s just because I know what I like and this design isn’t it. But its really hard to ignore the performance of a club not even set up correctly for me as it was neck and neck with a driver that was. I think I could bag this driver no problem if I could get past the the appearance mostly. For those of you who these factors don’t matter as much, I think that 430 LST and MAX will be among the tops of the 2023 crop.
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