If you have ever used a hybrid and thought “this is the easiest club to hit”, then you might be interested in using a hybrid iron set. These sets take the much-loved hybrid design and apply it to every iron in your golf bag.
Hybrids are known for their forgiveness and versatility, which makes them ideal for golfers struggling with their irons. Many golfers think of hybrids as just long iron replacements. But, if you have similar problems with shorter clubs too then why not replace these with hybrid-style clubs too. You could benefit from golf clubs that are easier to hit and travel further. What golfer doesn’t want to hear that?
There are far less hybrid iron sets available than standard iron sets, however you can still find plenty of excellent options. In this article we will be reviewing the best hybrid iron sets currently on the market as well as discussing their benefits and drawbacks.
Table of Contents
- 1. Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo
- 2. Cobra T-Rail 2.0
- 3. Pinemeadow Excel EGI
- 4. Powerbilt EX-550
- 5. Majek MX4
- 6. Tour Edge Hot Launch E521
- 7. Wilson Launch Pad
- What is a hybrid iron set?
- Why use hybrid irons over standard irons?
- Who are hybrid iron sets targeted at?
- What is the typical hybrid iron set blend?
1. Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo
Distance: 95 | Forgiveness: 100 | Feel: 95 | Versatility: 95
Best overall hybrid iron set
Hybrid irons are much less popular than standard irons, even among higher handicappers, despite the fact that they are significantly more forgiving. Golf should be about choosing the clubs that allow you to enjoy your game the most. So, if you want to pick the easiest possible irons to hit, then the Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo’s are an excellent choice. These clubs are extraordinarily forgiving, offer good versatility and impressive distance.
Launcher HB Turbo hybrid irons come with a HiBore Crown that positions the weight deep in the club head to make it easier to launch the ball high in the air. The club head also has a completely hollow construction with internal stabilizing ribs and a turbocharged thin face, designed for maximizing both forgiveness and ball speed. Progressive shaping throughout the set ensures you still get reasonable feel and control on the shorter irons too. They are not going to hit the golf ball for you, but these Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo irons offer as much support as you can get and that is why they are our pick as the best hybrid irons available on the market.
2. Cobra T-Rail 2.0
Distance: 100 | Forgiveness: 100 | Feel: 90 | Versatility: 90
Best premium hybrid iron set
The Cobra T-Rail hybrid iron set is the most premium on our list, but it certainly has the performance to back that up. These clubs have a more iron-like profile, especially in the mid irons, that should appeal to a wider variety of golfers. What is most impressive about the T-Rail hybrid irons is the combination of distance and forgiveness. They have stronger lofts than typical for hybrid irons, but low and deep CG placement ensures an easy-up ball flight.
A thick-soled hollow design remains throughout the set for the ultimate forgiveness even down to your sand wedge. I would suggest making a combo set by choosing the full hybrid T-Rail design on the longer irons for even more forgiveness. Cobra’s famous Baffler Split Rails improve turf interaction for better performance from any lie, whilst a forged variable thickness E9 face ensures fast ball speeds no matter where you strike it.
3. Pinemeadow Excel EGI
Distance: 80 | Forgiveness: 90 | Feel: 80 | Versatility: 75
Best for beginners
Pinemeadow are known for producing low cost golf equipment ideal for beginners and their Excel EGI hybrid iron set is no exception. Each hybrid is weighted to create a larger sweet spot and shaped to improve turf interaction for use in any lie.
You can choose between a low torque Pinemeadow graphite shaft or an Apollo Lite steel shaft. Whilst this is a nice option you do not normally expect at this price range, every golfer purchasing a hybrid set should choose the graphite option. On our list of best hybrid iron sets, only the Powerbilt EX-550 are cheaper than these ones. Given the lower price point the overall performance is pretty good. They would be perfect for anyone new to golf looking for a bit more help with their iron play.
4. Powerbilt EX-550
Distance: 75 | Forgiveness: 85 | Feel: 80 | Versatility: 85
Best for golfers on a low budget
Many of the golfers that are in the market for a hybrid iron set will be high handicappers or relatively new to the game. So, it is unlikely they are looking to spend thousands of dollars on golf equipment. The Powerbilt EX-550 hybrid irons are an excellent lower budget option that can offer plenty of extra forgiveness at a far more cost effective price.
The set progresses from a full wide soled hybrid design on the longer irons for additional forgiveness, to a narrower sole on the shorter irons for improved accuracy. These clubs come with a hollow cavity construction for higher MOI and a thinner clubface for increased distance. The sand-wedge is a more traditional design for better distance control and feel on short game shots.
5. Majek MX4
Distance: 85 | Forgiveness: 85 | Feel: 80 | Versatility: 80
Best for occasional senior golfers
Majek have recently begun to get recognised a little more by budget hunting golfers, largely due to their success selling online on Amazon and in retail stores like Walmart. The quality might not be as high as premium named-brand alternatives, but priced at the lower end of the market they make appealing clubs for beginners and high handicappers.
The MX4 hybrid irons have additional weighting positioned behind the sweet spot for improved forgiveness and a higher launch angle. A thin forged still face is designed to promote faster ball speeds and more distance. Each hybrid comes with a lightweight premium graphite shaft designed to improve club head speed for slower swings. As lofts get higher there is a subtle change of club head shape to allow for a bit more control, but overall the thick hybrid-like shaping remains even in the pitching-wedge.
6. Tour Edge Hot Launch E521
Distance: 95 | Forgiveness: 100 | Feel: 90 | Versatility: 80
Best value for money hybrid iron set
Tour Edge President David Glod claims that the Hot Launch E521 will be “the easiest irons you ever hit”. They are technically called iron-woods, however the design and performance definitely sits among the hybrid iron sets on this list. For a while now Tour Edge have been recognised within golf for their good value extreme game improvement golf clubs. The Hot Launch E521 irons represent the latest innovation from Tour Edge and feature tons of technology at an incredibly reasonable cost.
The first thing you notice about this set is the rather strange-looking Houdini Sole design. Tour Edge says that this reduces turf interaction by 35% and repositions the weight deeper in the clubhead. This helps to reduce the amount of heavy contacts with your irons and boosts the overall forgiveness. Hollow-body perimeter weighting is combined with a super shallow face to make it easier to launch the ball higher and longer. An offset heel promotes a straighter ball flight, which is ideal for golfers that are struggling with a slice.
7. Wilson Launch Pad
Distance: 95 | Forgiveness: 100 | Feel: 85 | Versatility: 95
Best for golfers struggling with duff strikes
In recent years Wilson have arguably been producing some of the most underrated game improvement clubs and at a cost lower than the top brands. Continuing that trend are the Launch Pad hybrid irons, which are designed to make hitting your irons as easy as possible. This set has a progressive design, so golfers should feel confident standing over longer shots yet still have enough control over the shorter ones.
The Launch Pad’s thick sole is designed to significantly reduce the effects of heavy contacts and make it easier to launch the ball higher. A hollow body construction features a thin face for faster ball speeds and more distance, whilst a lightweight design ensures quicker club head speed. Compared to other sets on this list the Wilson Launch Pad fits midway for pricing, but given the performance and quality that represent excellent value.
What is a hybrid iron set?
Firstly, a hybrid itself is a combination of a fairway wood and an iron. The club head is smaller in size than a fairway wood, but often features similar technology and materials. Hybrids were originally designed to replace the difficult to hit longer irons as a more forgiving alternative. Hybrid iron sets take this same concept, but instead apply it to all of the irons. Depending on the manufacturer some sets will have more of an iron-like appearance than others.
Hybrid iron sets use the same technology as standard hybrids with a hollow body construction to help keep the weight towards the back of the club. This helps to lower the CG placement and create a higher MOI for improved forgiveness. The shaft will typically be graphite and the length the same as an iron.
Hybrid clubs became popular in the early 2000s, mostly after the release of the TaylorMade Rescue. This is the reason many golfers also refer to a hybrid golf club as a ‘rescue’. Despite being designed to help golfers that struggle with longer irons, hybrids have become popular with even the best golfers in the world. Many Tour players can be seen carrying at least one hybrid in the bag set-up.
Why use hybrid irons over standard irons?
Hybrids have become increasingly popular in golf and not just among higher handicappers. A large portion of golfers on Professional Tours can be found carrying at least one hybrid club. The reason is that any golfer can benefit from the improved forgiveness and higher ball flight of a hybrid compared with a long iron.
Only a small portion of the best and most consistent ball strikers should choose to use a long iron. So, when it comes to golfers that struggle with striking even their shorter irons why should hybrid clubs still not be a better option?
The deeper hybrid sole of hybrid irons allow for a lower CG placement, which creates higher MOI than you get with a traditional iron. The result is more support on mishits, a higher launch angle and improved distance. You are going to sacrifice some distance control and workability versus an iron, but a lot of golfers will be willing to make this tradeoff.
Who are hybrid iron sets targeted at?
Hybrid iron sets are designed to offer support to golfers that struggle with hitting their irons. This could include any golfer that has a slower swing speed or regularly struggles to hit the ball near the centre of the face.
Senior golfers, beginners or higher handicappers are normally most likely to benefit from the use of hybrid irons. But, any golfer that wants more forgiveness and distance might want to give these clubs a try.
Lower handicappers are unlikely to want to use a hybrid iron set, because they are willing to forgo additional forgiveness and distance in preference of more control and workability. Elite golfers need to be much more precise with their distances and spin control, which is where extreme game improvement irons come up short versus players-style alternatives.
What is the typical hybrid iron set blend?
Hybrid sets can vary in their level of ‘hybridness’ throughout the set and this will depend on the design chosen by the manufacturer. What you choose will depend on your own personal preference. Sets that feature more traditional short irons and wedges have more control and feel on shorter shots, but you do sacrifice some of the forgiveness compared with a complete hybrid set.
On our list of best hybrid irons sets some of them use progressive shaping, such as the Cleveland HB Launcher Turbo or Wilson Launch Pad and others retain their hybrid shape such as the Pinemeadow Excel EGI or Cobra T-Rail.
Hybrid iron sets do not get much hype in golf media, probably as they would never be used by a professional. It is likely this partly explains why they are not as popular among recreational golfers. Some people may also feel like hybrid irons are a dent in their ego or that they are somehow uncool. Yet, many higher handicappers and senior golfers could make their golf far more fun by using a hybrid iron set.
Hybrid irons are more forgiving, launch the ball higher and can add distance when compared with standard game improvement irons. Surely this should be a winning formula for golfers looking for more support with their iron play? If more golfers were willing to give hybrid iron sets a try, I think they would be surprised by the performance.
When it comes to choosing the best hybrid iron set on the market our choice was the Cleveland HB Launcher Turbo. This set offered the most complete performance and had everything you would expect from a top of the range hybrid iron set. That being said, all the sets on our list would be an excellent choice for the right golfer. Whether you want something to transform your game as you get older or a set to help you as you first start out.
Hopefully the article has helped you better understand hybrid irons and whether they could potentially improve your golf. If you are still not sure, I would say it is definitely worth trying them out.