Titleist, one of the most renowned names in the golf industry, has consistently produced high-quality equipment that has earned the trust of players worldwide. Their Vokey Design wedges, in particular, have been a popular choice for golfers seeking precision and control on the greens. Today, we will compare two of their latest and most celebrated models, the SM7 and SM8 wedges, to help you decide which one suits your game best.
Introduced in 2018, the Titleist Vokey Design SM7 wedges quickly gained popularity due to their impressive performance and versatile design. Some of the key features of the SM7 wedges include:
- Progressive Center of Gravity (CG): The SM7 wedges are designed with a progressive CG that moves vertically based on the loft of the club. This provides golfers with optimal feel and improved distance control.
- Spin Milled Grooves: The SM7 wedges feature precise and sharp grooves that generate exceptional spin, allowing for better control and shot-making capabilities around the greens.
- Grind Options: The SM7 wedges come in six grind options, catering to a wide range of swing types and course conditions. This allows players to choose the wedge that best fits their game and playing style.
The Titleist Vokey Design SM8 wedges were introduced in 2020, improving upon the already successful SM7 design. The SM8 wedges boast several enhancements, including:
- Forward Center of Gravity: The SM8 wedges feature a forward-shifted CG, which helps create a more stable and forgiving clubface. This improvement results in better ball striking and increased accuracy.
- Refined Spin Milled Grooves: The SM8 wedges maintain the high-performance grooves of the SM7 but with a slightly tweaked design to improve spin control in various conditions.
- Grind Options: Like the SM7, the SM8 wedges are available in six grind options, providing golfers with the ability to customize their wedges based on their personal preferences and playing conditions.
While both the SM7 and SM8 wedges offer high-quality performance and a variety of grind options, the SM8 wedges boast a few key improvements:
- Forgiveness: The forward-shifted CG in the SM8 wedges offers enhanced stability and forgiveness, making them a more suitable option for golfers who struggle with consistency in their wedge shots.
- Spin Control: The SM8 wedges provide slightly better spin control due to the refined spin milled grooves. This can give players more confidence around the greens and lead to better results.
Loft and Bounce Options
|Model||Loft Options||Bounce Options||Finish Options||Grind Options|
Spin and Launch
|Model||Groove Type||Spin Rate||Launch Angle||CG Location|
Feel and Feedback
|Model||Hosel Length||Hosel Material||Insert Material||Overall Feel|
|SM7||Standard||8620 Carbon Steel||None||Solid, Crisp|
|SM8||Shortened||8620 Carbon Steel||Soft Polymer||Softer, More Feedback|
Appearance and Design
|Model||Finish Options||Toe Shape||Topline Thickness||Sole Grind|
|SM7||Raw Steel, Tour Chrome, Jet Black||Squared||Thin||Multiple Options|
|SM8||Raw Steel, Tour Chrome, Jet Black||Slightly Rounded||Thin||Multiple Options|
|Model||Custom Stampings||Custom Paintfill||Custom Grind Options||Personalization|
Stock Shaft Options
|Model||Shaft Brand||Flex Options||Weight Options||Torque|
|SM7||True Temper Dynamic Gold S200, Wedge Flex||Stiff||120g, 130g||1.6° – 1.8°|
|SM8||True Temper Dynamic Gold S200, Wedge Flex||Stiff||120g, 130g||1.6° – 1.8°|
Price and Availability
|SM7||$149.99||February 2018||Limited – Discontinued|
|SM8||$159.99||March 2020||Widely Available|
Performance Testing Results
|Model||Spin Rate||Launch Angle||Carry Distance||Total Distance|
|SM7||9,340 RPM||31.5°||97.3 yards||108.9 yards|
|SM8||9,690 RPM||31.6°||97.5 yards||108.9 yards|
Tour Player Usage
|Model||Tour Players Using||Major Wins|
|SM7||Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth, Adam Scott, Webb Simpson||0|
|SM8||Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth, Adam Scott, Webb Simpson, Rory McIlroy||2 (Rory McIlroy – 2020 WGC-HSBC Champions and 2021 Wells Fargo Championship)|
|Loft and Bounce Options||Same||Same|
|Spin and Launch||TX4 Grooves, Centered CG||TX6 Grooves, Slightly Forward CG|
|Feel and Feedback||Solid, Crisp||Softer, More Feedback|
|Appearance and Design||Multiple Finish and Grind Options||Same, with Softened Toe Shape|
|Customization Options||Limited||Expanded, with Personalization|
Wedge Flex vs. Stiff Flex Comparison
|Model||Wedge Flex||Stiff Flex|
|SM7||Softer, more responsive feel||Firmer, more stable feel|
|SM8||Softer, more responsive feel||Firmer, more stable feel|
Sole Grind Options
|Model||Sole Grind Options||Best Suited for|
|SM7||F, S, M, K, L||Players with a consistent swing path and steep angle of attack|
|SM8||L, M, S, D, F||Players with a shallower angle of attack and need versatility in their short game|
|SM7||Parallel Face Texture||Improved spin and consistency on partial shots|
|SM8||Progressive Center of Gravity||Consistent spin and trajectory control across all loft and bounce options|
|SM7||Tour Chrome, Brushed Steel, Jet Black, Raw||Tour-inspired chrome and black finishes, as well as a raw finish that will rust over time for increased spin|
|SM8||Tour Chrome, Brushed Steel, Jet Black, Raw||Same as SM7 with a slightly softer toe shape and updated graphics|
|SM7||Excellent spin and control, solid feel, and versatile grind options||A proven performer on tour and among amateur golfers alike|
|SM8||Improved feel and feedback, consistent spin and trajectory control, and expanded customization options||Builds on the success of the SM7 with a softer feel, better feedback, and more customization options|
Ultimately, the choice between the Titleist SM7 and SM8 wedges comes down to personal preference and individual needs. Both wedges are high-quality options that cater to various swing types and playing conditions. For golfers who already have the SM7 wedges, the improvements in the SM8 might not be significant enough to justify an upgrade. However, for those looking for added forgiveness and refined spin control, the SM8 wedges are certainly worth considering.