Searching for the best golf driver for a mid handicapper? If you find yourself overwhelmed with choice, it helps to narrow down the field. Consider what features really matter to you and which options suit your game.
After all, you want to make an informed selection that isn’t disappointing after you open the box.
To get you started, we’ve gone over some of the key driver info you need. Plus we’ve reviewed five golf drivers all highly rated by mid-handicap players:
- Callaway Golf Men’s Rogue Draw Driver: A classic but premium design deserving of its loyal following.
- Cobra Golf F9 Speedback Driver: For the intermediate golfer working on consistent control.
- TaylorMade Golf M5 Driver: Part of the successful M series that offers a very adjustable club.
- Cleveland Golf Men’s HB Driver: A no-fuss driver suitable for developing players.
- Mizuno ST200X Driver: An up-and-coming brand giving established names a run for their money.
Read on to find out how we compared these drivers. Want to skip to the reviews? Head to the end of the page to discover the best driver for an average golfer.
Why Having the Right Driver Matters
There comes a time when your game is ready to go up a level. At that point, you need clubs to match. You may even have to say goodbye to an old friend.
And nowhere is that more apparent than when you’re standing at the tee. Your ball is up in the air and you know it could have gone further towards the green. But your gear is holding you back and you know you need to trade in that trusty (albeit rusty) old club.
With the optimal driver for a mid handicapper, your swing has more power, accuracy, and potential. And there will be fewer hooks, slices, and drifts to contend with.
Choosing the Best Driver for Mid Handicappers
Congratulations on hitting the mid-handicap range. Now that you’re here, it’s time to shake things up in your golf bag. Whether you’ve been playing with a beginner’s set or some hand-me-downs, it’s time to upgrade your clubs to keep the (golf) ball rolling.
To get from tee to green, you’ll need a decent driver that suits your level. There are some time-tested criteria to help assess your options. The basics apply to everyone: Good design, adjustability, and value for money.
Driver Design Choices
It’s clear that ongoing efforts by manufacturers mean significant technological advances in clubhead designs. Especially in terms of weighting and face. The most important outcomes are effective distance and control versus the margin of forgiveness the clubfaces allow for.
Features such as composite materials, hollow backs, and aerodynamic designs interact to carefully position weight. This creates forgiving impact surfaces that improve both power and accuracy. For these reasons, it’s best to choose a club that works with your swing.
Shaft length and flex also have a role to play. These factors are often dictated by preferences and your physical build.
Webb Simpson recommends that mid-handicap players use larger clubheads and ditch the small-headed clubs. A larger sweet spot could mean the difference between driving down the fairway and driving home disappointed.
There is a big trade-off when it comes to adjustability. More controls offer the ability to fine-tune your club. But there comes a point when it’s hard to tell if weights or a player’s inconsistency is to blame.
At the same time, you do want the ability to compensate for consistent spin and slice by adjusting the loft and balance of the head.
Manufacturers offer a plethora of options to adjust weighting. All of which can have a critical effect on distance control.
The drivers in this review range in price. But as always with golf, price is a distinguishing factor that adds up the more serious one gets about playing.
Below, you can compare prices safe in the knowledge that the clubs reviewed should all enhance your play. Regardless of the price point.
Now, with some basic but important considerations in mind, let’s look at some of the best drivers for average players.
The Five Best Golf Drivers For Average Players:
In the tradition of the XR-series clubs that inspired it, the Callaway Rogue combines forgiveness with a relatively compact ‘pro’ head.
Callaway is a brand with many loyal followers. It’s considered by many as making the best drivers for mid and high handicappers.
The Epic was one of the most popular golf drivers not so long ago. So it’s not surprising that its successor, the Rogue Draw driver, is still a best seller. Let’s find out why.
- Adjustable loft.
- The repositioned weight offers extra speed and distance gains out of your usual swing.
- External and internal weighting that enhances your draw while minimizing spin.
- The trademark Boeing Aero Package uses cutting-edge aerospace technology to maximize airflow for faster head speed.
- An exceptionally large carbon composite crown surface accounts for increased stability and forgiveness, aided by the cavity back design.
- Adjustable shaft-length.
- Great look.
- Great sound.
- Great feel.
- Weights are sold separately.
- Disappointing shot-shaping ability.
- The premium price tag might be too high for many golfers
Tip: Don’t be tempted to buy loft that’s too low. But stay well into the double digits to ensure you keep your launch angle up.
Our verdict: If price isn’t the deciding factor, this popular driver has helped a lot of players improve.
Cobra pride themselves as innovators, and deservedly so. The Speedback combines a markedly low center of gravity and milled CNC face with an aerodynamic clubhead.
The F9 driver is built with state-of-the-art technology that enhances clubhead speed, ball speed, and forgiveness. It’s striking how easily the club handles to produce a fast, fully controlled swing.
Consistently high ball speed (and those essential extra yards) are the result of effective aerodynamic design. All in, this driver ticks all the top-of-the-line boxes. In part thanks to its adjustability and clever drag-reducing aerodynamics.
- Low center of gravity for speed and power.
- Multi-material tungsten weight structure.
- 3D printed club driver face (CNC milled).
- Light, efficient clubhead and face.
- Exceptional aerodynamics.
- Good value for money.
- Ranked in the top three drivers of 2019 by the Professional Golf Teachers Association of America.
- The busy design of the crown may not appeal to everyone.
Our verdict: The Cobra Golf F9 ticks all the boxes with regard to control and distance consistency of distance.
The M5 looks cutting-edge and it and handles like that too. It features carbon fiber, weight tracks, and speed slots for power and a smooth ball flight. TaylorMade has also embellished these functional elements so the club has great aesthetics.
The TaylorMade driver offers excellent ball speed, surprising distance. And it just feels great! Solid and stable in hand, it makes a satisfactory sound on impact when you’ve nailed one.
- Every head is individually speed tested and injected with resin to optimize ball speed and distance.
- Engineered to reduce side spin and deliver straighter shots.
- T-Track to adjust two 10-gram weights for optimal spin and trajectory.
- Improved looks when addressing the ball.
- Good ball speeds and distance.
- Excellent driver for high swing speeds.
- Consistent ball speeds.
- The adjustable weights could be superfluous. But then again, you don’t have to use them!
Our verdict: The M5 gives great ball speed and carries well with faster swing speeds. The adjustability will suit players willing to experiment and fine-tune their driver.
Aimed at high handicappers working on improving their play. The Launcher HB works well for golfers who want a driver that performs well straight off the shelf.
The ultra-lightweight hosel is non-adjustable which saves 15 grams of weight. A proprietary Flex-Fin Technology uses channels on the sole. These return energy at impact for distance on strikes.
Cleveland produces high-performing gear for low handicap players with some top technology. The HB comes with a bonded hosel, that is HiBore Crown, as well as Flex-Fin Tech and Cup Face Take. These respectively realign weight, preserve speed, and transfer impact efficiently.
The HB is ideal for slow and mid-swing speed players. We like that there’s not too much dispersion on off-center hits. A fairly long 45.5-inch shaft helps with clubhead speed. An impressive amount of performance for the price.
- Top technology with HiBore Crown, Launcher cup-face and flex-fins
- The shaft comes in three different flex and loft options.
- Relatively high and low-spinning flight with a powerful, solid feel.
- Excellent performance at a reasonable price.
- Includes a headcover for protection.
- One of the best golf drivers for high handicappers.
- The long stock shaft may reduce control for some golfers.
Our verdict: For players that just want to “grip it and rip it” without tweaking or adjustments, the Launcher HB driver is ideal. A forgiving club for recreational golfers after power.
The Mizuno ST200X might not carry the brand recognition of other clubs reviewed here. But it deserves special mention. The ST200X, along with the standard and G version drivers, has an impressive performance that goes head-to-head with the best performers of 2020.
The X model gains from more heel-bias weighting along with a lighter shaft and grip to help increase draw and clubhead speed. And unique shape with additional heel weight and an upright lie angle show that a lot of thought has gone into this club.
- Optimized face thickness distribution.
- Ultra-lightweight carbon composite crown allows weight to be moved low within the clubhead.
- Engineered wave geometry compresses and rebounds at impact for higher ball speeds.
- Quick Switch Adaptor to define loft/lie settings.
- Fine-tuned head geometry delivers ideal impact feel and feedback.
- Pleasing feel and sound on contact.
- One of the best golf drivers for a mid handicapper.
- Can be challenging to align at address.
Our verdict: The ST200 series brings us a new style of Mizuno metal woods. The result of close collaboration between Mizuno’s Japanese and US teams, the ST200X features masterful engineering.
Tip: Designed to work best with the MFUSION 39-gram shaft.
We have two clear winners in our review. One will gain you instant approval at the clubhouse. But the other one may need a live demonstration, even at the risk of upsetting your handicap.
The acclaimed Cobra F9 Driver delivers a well-rounded design at a reasonable price. It’s a good-looking club, adjustable to a player’s characteristics, and offers distance and accuracy.
Mid-range players report this club has removed strokes from their game and eliminated their slices. It should also boost distance while being extremely forgiving.
Our second recommendation is great value for money without any compromise on quality. The Mizuno ST200X employs Japanese technology to bring a well-designed, high performing, versatile driver to the tee that will not disappoint.
So, got yourself a new driver? Now it’s time to perfect your swing.