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In this review, I’ll be taking a look at the PING G425 SFT driver.
The G425 SFT (stands for ‘Straight Flight Technology’) is designed to straighten out slices and fades with a draw bias which is generated by a fixed tungsten weight in the heel. While this is the primary goal of the driver, it’s also designed to deliver fast ball speeds, forgiveness, and optimal feel.
How does the G425 SFT actually perform when put to the test? How does it compare to the G425 MAX and previous G410 SFT model? 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.
Note: Unless otherwise stated, stock shafts and stock grips are used when evaluating this club. In most cases, the golf clubs reviewed on Golfstead are acquired temporarily for testing purposes and are not purchased. The review that follows is based on the personal experience and research of the author. Because everyone’s swing and body are different, results with a particular club may differ from person to person.
What are the reviews like?
The PING G425 SFT driver won a gold medal on the Golf Digest Hot List for 2021 and 2022. It has been lauded by critics for its tremendous slice-mitigation abilities.
What People Like
- long & forgiving
- has a powerful ability to straighten out slices and fades
- spin is not too high
- easy to swing
- nice high launch
- great feel
What People Don’t Like
- unorthodox sound at impact
- a bit of a one-trick pony
Most of the technologies that go into the G425 SFT driver are the same as the G425 MAX, namely:
- T9S+ Forged Face: a proprietary precision-machined, high-strength face that maximizes flexion across the face at impact, thereby increasing ball speeds
- Dragonfly Crown Technology: an ultra-thin Ti 8-1-1 (titanium alloy) crown takes on a web-like “dragonfly wing” structure, enabling weight savings that are redistributed to increase MOI and distance
- Crown Turbulators: a series of angled ridges on the crown (part of a special aerodynamic design) that reduces drag for increased swing speed
- Internal Ribbing: a Ti 8-1-1 body contains an internal rib structure that reinforces key sections of the head, enhancing acoustics for solid sound and feel
The key differentiating features are:
- a 23g tungsten weight (as opposed to a moveable 26g weight on the MAX) that has a fixed position near the heel, shifting the center of gravity (CG) in that direction and introducing a draw bias of roughly 25 yards
- a lighter swingweight of D1 (as opposed to D3 for the MAX) which helps golfers generate more speed
The G425 SFT driver is available in a 10.5° standard loft at 460CC.
An included Trajectory Tuning 2.0 adjustable hosel, lightweight and aerodynamic, offers eight loft and lie combinations to fine-tune your trajectory.
There are many stock shaft options offered at no upcharge including the PING Alta CB 55 Slate, PING Tour 65, ALDILA ROGUE White 130 MSI 70, Mitsubishi TENSEI AV Orange, and PING Alta Distanza. The Alta CB Slate, in particular, is counterbalanced to deliver more momentum and forgiveness.
The stock grips are the Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 and Tour Velvet Cord, both of which are compatible with Arccos sensors.
Below are the specs of the PING G425 SFT driver. Click or zoom to enlarge.
Your distance results with the G425 SFT driver will really depend on your personal situation.
For example, if you would normally put a slice or unwanted fade on the ball with the G425 MAX, that’s going to result in a lot of lost distance because much of the forward momentum is being diverted sideways.
In this case, you’ll probably pick up a considerable amount of distance (25+ yards or more) with the G425 SFT simply because your shots will be straighter.
In terms of raw speed potential, however, the SFT is about the same as the MAX. However, it’s also worth noting that this driver is only available in a 10.5° loft which tends to produce a higher launch and a little more spin than a 9° loft would.
Draw-bias drivers tend to be a little less forgiving than their neutral counterparts, and I find this to hold true for the G425 SFT.
While forgiveness is very similar to the G425 MAX, the MAX has a slight edge when the weight is positioned in the middle. This is not surprising considering the additional 3 grams of tungsten and the fact that having the CG deeper increases MOI.
The main way the G425 SFT driver is forgiving is in straightening out slices. In terms of dispersions and ball speed preservation on mis-hits, there is generally enough forgiveness there to satisfy most mid and high handicappers.
The G425 SFT driver tends to produce a high trajectory with a strong draw bias — it’s probably the most draw-biased driver I’ve tested to date.
This driver certainly isn’t very workable, since any ball contact will strongly tend towards a draw shape. With enough competence and skill, you can control the flight to an extent, but frankly, most people who play the G425 SFT shouldn’t want to.
It’s worth noting that this driver is only available in a 10.5° loft which tends to produce a higher launch and a little more spin than a 9° loft would. Depending on your swing speed and other individual factors, this might hurt or help your distance relative to the MAX.
The look of the G425 SFT driver is nearly identical to that of the G425 MAX. In fact, at address, I can’t really tell the two apart! You can think of the SFT as basically the MAX with a fixed weight instead of a moveable one.
It also shares many similarities with its predecessor, the G410 SFT. You have the “valley-shaped” face pattern, crown turbulators, a matte black finish, and a fixed weight on the back edge of the sole.
The G425 SFT has quite a lot going on in the sole design. There are no coloured accents; instead, a black/white/silver colour scheme has been employed with a sharp, tasteful aesthetic.
There’s no question that the G425 SFT gives you a lot of confidence when set up behind the ball, and that should lead to chronic slicers producing even better results.
The Sound & Feel
Sound & feel is another area where there is little to no difference between the G425 SFT and G425 MAX. Sound is fairly hollow, resonating, a little metallic, and medium-pitched, producing a nice “whack” at impact.
Unfortunately, with this sound will come a good number of displeased golfers. Impact sound has been a point of contention in PING clubs for a long time and this has yet to change, although it has improved in recent years.
Feel is solid and stable, yet there’s an element of explosiveness that allows you to really feel the face flexing at impact.
I personally found the consistency of feel to be a little worse than the G425 MAX, particularly in the toe region. This is not surprising because the CG is focused towards the heel, but it also means that you can discern the location of face contact without too much difficulty.
Where To Buy This Driver Online
Online availability of PING golf clubs is more limited than other manufacturers.
One of the best places to pick up the G425 SFT driver (new or used) is eBay. You can typically find deals here that you can’t find anywhere else.
There are many draw-bias drivers out there that have been proven to help golfers reduce their right miss and hit more fairways. In my experience, the PING G425 SFT may just be the best of them all.
The draw bias of the G425 SFT is real. It’s powerful. And it’s extremely effective at turning a slice into an arrow straight down the middle. The cherry on top is great speed, forgiveness, feel, and a nice high launch.
Whether you’re a high, mid or low handicapper, if you struggle with unwanted fades and slices off the tee, the G425 SFT is a must-try. On the other hand, if you want a big stick with more versatility, you should consider the MAX or LST models.
Are you interested in the G425 SFT driver? Have you played it? What’s your experience? Let us know down below.