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In this review, I’ll be taking a look at the Callaway 2023 Great Big Bertha driver.
The Great Big Bertha makes a return to the golf world in a modern, cutting-edge package. It benefits from a new lightweight design for maximum clubhead speed and distance, and it’s also engineered to deliver high launch, low spin, and forgiveness for golfers who seek it.
How does the 2023 Great Big Bertha driver perform? How does it stack up against the Rogue ST MAX and the previous Great Big Bertha? Who is it best suited for? Is it worth putting in the bag?
Read on to find out what you need to know to make an informed purchase.
What are the reviews like?
At the time of writing, the 2023 Great Big Bertha driver has an excellent 5/5 (100% recommended) score on the Callaway store and enjoys high ratings from critics.
What People Like
- monster distance
- promotes maximum clubhead speed
- solid feel
- high and strong ball flight
- in certain conditions can outclass the performance of the Rogue ST MAX
What People Don’t Like
- super expensive
- too light for some people
The 2023 Great Big Bertha driver has an ultra-lightweight design that is almost 30g lighter, on average, than a Tour driver.
The lightweight design not only includes a lightweight chassis, but also a lightweight stock shaft and grip that are 34% and 56% lighter, respectively, than typical stock shafts and grips.
The end result of all this is that it’s easier for golfers with slower swing speeds to increase their clubhead speed and hence distance.
Triaxial Carbon Crown & Forged Carbon Sole
A lightweight Triaxial Carbon Crown paired with a Forged Carbon Sole allow for significant weight savings that are used to shift the CG low and deep. This leads to a high level of forgiveness and stability across the face.
In addition, a weight in the heel area and a steel sole plate add somewhat of a draw bias.
Jailbreak Speed Frame
The new Jailbreak Speed Frame, built with artificial intelligence, vertically connects the crown and sole to produce more ball speed. It also adds horizontal and torsional stability that improves ball speed towards the heel and toe.
Flash Face SS23
The latest iteration of Callaway’s A.I. Flash Face is now optimized for spin. In addition to producing faster ball speeds over a large area of the face, it also reduces spin for more distance.
The 2023 Great Big Bertha driver is available in 9°, 10.5°, and 12° standard lofts at 460 CC.
Also available is the 2023 Great Big Bertha driver for women, in 10.5° and 12° lofts. The women’s version has the same head technology but the length, stock shaft and grip are tailored to women to maximize their performance.
The 2023 GBB comes with an Optifit hosel that allows you to adjust loft and lie. The loft settings are -1, +1, 0 and +2 (a range of 3°). The lie settings are N (neutral) and D (draw), giving a total of 8 possible configurations.
The stock graphite shaft is the UST Mamiya Helium Nanocore IP 50. The stock grip is the Winn Dri-Tac Lite. Custom options are available.
If you’re interested, full information on the driver, shafts, grips and their specs can be found here.
Below are the specs of the 2023 GBB driver for men and women. Click or zoom to enlarge.
How long the 2023 Great Big Bertha driver is will depend on your unique swing and circumstances. Generally speaking, however, if you have a slow to moderate swing speed, you’ll get better distance than the Rogue ST MAX.
For golfers who tend to struggle getting their tee shots airborne, the 2023 GBB will not only help get the launch up, but it will also keep the spin down so that shots don’t balloon.
The forgiveness of the 2023 Great Big Bertha — more specifically, performance in mis-hit regions — is excellent and comparable to the Rogue ST MAX.
When you play the 2023 GBB, you gain confidence that you’ll never miss a fairway. It’s been a while since I tested the original GBB, but there’s little question that the 2023 model is substantially more forgiving.
This thing is rock solid and super consistent. Missing fairways will typically require exceptionally poor ball contact.
Typical ball flights with the 2023 Great Big Bertha are high (higher than the Rogue ST MAX) and arcing with lower spin. The driver tends toward a slight draw bias due to the strategically placed sole plate.
Unlike the original GBB, the 2023 version lacks a sliding sole weight, which means you have less flexibility in finding a configuration that best suits your swing. However, this allows Callaway to position the CG more optimally for improved performance.
This driver is designed to help you get the ball in the air and hit more fairways, so don’t expect much in terms of workability. I imagine most people who play the 2023 GBB won’t be concerned about it.
Callaway has made the Great Big Bertha 23 driver stand out with a modern, unique flare that looks nothing like the original GBB.
The dark silver “galaxy” texture of the crown is unusual but very attractive, and the face pattern is very similar to the one used in the Rogue ST family of drivers.
The driver features a chevron alignment aid with subtle logoing along the edge of the crown. At address, the ball sets up more or less square.
The colour scheme of the 2023 GBB appears to consist entirely of different shades of black and white. This monochromatic style is unusual, and I can’t say I’m crazy about it. It looks quite bland in the bag, to the point where everything seems to just meld together.
I think adding a few accents of colour on the sole (perhaps red like the original GBB) would have added much-needed contrast and pop to the aesthetic.
The Sound & Feel
With the stock shaft, the 2023 Great Big Bertha driver generally feels light, stable and balanced through the swing.
However, this really depends on your strength and speed. If your swing speed is too high, you might find that the shaft feels “whippy” through the swing, and in that case you might benefit from a stiffer flex.
The best word I could use to describe the feel at impact is solid. The sound is an explosive “whack” that really lets you know this is a speed machine. Overall, the sound & feel are very reminiscent of the Rogue ST MAX.
What I was particularly impressed with is how similar the sound and feel are in mis-hit regions to center strikes. There isn’t much feedback in that regard, but I reckon most people who play the 2023 GBB won’t be bothered by this at all.
Where To Buy This Driver Online
At this time, the best place to order a 2023 Great Big Bertha driver with custom specifications (loft, length, shaft, grip, etc.) is this page on the Callaway store. If you’re interested in the women’s variant, go here.
If you want to save some money, you can find discounts on eBay. Optionally look at what’s available on PGA TOUR Superstore or Global Golf, which are among the best dedicated online golf equipment stores.
Callaway has does a tremendous job updating their Great Big Bertha driver for the 2023 season. If you’re looking for a lighter and higher-launching alternative to the Rogue ST MAX, you can’t do much better.
Falling in the “ultralight” category, the 2023 Great Big Bertha is best suited for mid and high-handicap golfers (12+) that have a moderate or below-average swing speed.
However, because of the special steps involved in building the 2023 GBB driver and the premium materials used, it’s going to do a number on your wallet. If you can, we recommend trading in your previous driver to soften the blow.
Are you interested in the 2023 Great Big Bertha driver? Have you tried it yet? What have your results been? Let us know in the comments below.
Callaway 2023 Great Big Bertha Driver
- Light weight helps players generate clubhead speed
- As fast and forgiving as the Rogue ST MAX
- High launch
- Appealing "galaxy" crown texture
- Balanced feel through the swing
- Bland sole aesthetic lacks colour and pop
- Sky-high price tag
Got fitted at True Spec. They do not have this club in their matrix but specially it ordered for me to try along with other drivers. I’m a 10 handicap golfer with an 85 mph swing speed. My carry distance jumped 15 yards with this club compared to my Big Bertha driver from 2014. The shaft I was fitted with was a Fujikura Ventus TR blue regular flex. This head performed better than the Rogue or Titleist heads. On the course, I’m hitting my drives consistently 15 to 30 yards longer than my old driver. Mis-hits still go a decent distance and straight. I’m ecstatic about this club. Of course, it’s very expensive but as I’m an avid golfer – to me – it is worth every penny.
Great to hear!
Note: I’m 58 years old with 8.8 index on the Grint. Im 6 foot 4 / 225 pounds with swing speed around 97 to 100 on the driver.
Just tested – ordered the New Callaway GBB driver using a 4th gen Hazardus Black 6.0 stiff shaft. Key note: spent 90 min hitting with the pro at PGA Super Store. Hit it vs Ping G430 with 65 gram Tensai Orange shaft and my Rouge ST Max with blue 55 Tensai stiff shaft. Goal was to walk out of there with the Ping G430 not the GBB. However my numbers were so much better using GBB. I even tried the new Callaway Paradyme with same Hazardus Black shaft but was hitting it right. Something about the light weight GBB head allowed me to straiten the face easier at impact. Plus I went from around 240 yards drives using Ping G430 and Rouge St Max with 3500 spin to 265 yards and 2500 to 2800 spin using the GBB. I ordered GBB. Note the true tale of the tape is outdoor performance. I’m a touch skeptical about the heavy 60 gram shaft with such a light head however I get 90 days to try it thru Pga Super Store.
Thanks for sharing. Glad the GBB did well for you and let us know how it goes.