AP1 or AP3?

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By Daniel N

  • 25 Replies
  1. As a 6 handicap golfer, I have to be the worst legit 6 handicap around the area at hitting my Greens In Regulation.. I am usually right off the fringe and can chip it close enough to have a great chance at one putting. Strengths to my game are driving and scrambling/putting. I currently have 714 AP2 and I have been looking forward to swinging both the 718 AP1 and the 718 AP3 as I feel like I can use a little technology, if it might actually help. I love the idea of the second W at 53 deg in the AP1 set. I have a lot of 75-90 yard approach shots where I play. But I am not sure that I wanna go with the full game improvement set of clubs. What do you guys think? Will either one of these clubs increase my likelyhood of hitting a few more greens from 100-200 yards out? I have a bit more of a sweeping swing than an over the top swing.. Thanks for any advice I truly appreciate it a lot! I really want to get better this year! I am ordering one or the other ASAP

  2. JBigda


    You might want to think about a combo set. I was in a similar scenario and went with 4-7, AP1, 8-48* AP3 after a club fitting. You get the help where you need it with the longer clubs and a little more control and feel with the shorter clubs.
  3. Doug E

    Doug E
    Urbana, MD

    FWIW, I carry a 7-8 hdcp index. I average around 39% GIR from blue tees and 47% GIR from white tees. I feel my short game is quite good. Normally, with those GIR numbers, one might expect a slightly lower index. But, my home course has extremely difficult, fast, sloped and undulated greens and the course itself plays quite difficult overall (137 slope). I have played AP2s since 2011, but presently play a combo set of AP2 716 and AP3 718.

    Certainly, you should hit both the AP1s and AP3s, but if you are fairly consistent in your iron ballstriking, I can't imagine you would need the AP1s, at least not in the mid and shorter irons. If you find you are better with the AP1s in the longer irons, consider being fit for a combo set. The AP3s, IMO, look nearly the same at address as the AP2s. When hit well, they feel almost as sweet. The distance is longer by a measurable margin, partially due to the stronger lofts, but overall, mishits go further than one might expect due to the forgiveness built-in. So as far as you hitting more greens, I would bet on it. I have no problem working the ball with the AP3s, but a draw with my irons is pretty natural for me. So consequently, I can also draw an AP1. (Not sure how easy it would be for me to cut an AP1 though, except by accident/incomplete or poor swing.)

    Finding the correct shafts for you will make a big difference, no matter which way you go. Ideally, as the entire T/T world will scream, get fit. However, if that is not in the cards, at least go somewhere you can demo both the AP1 and AP3. Many courses/clubs who are Titleist dealers have demos. Or better yet, now is the season for Titleist Thursdays pretty much all over the country. Look for one in your area. No cost and you will definitely walk away knowing whether the AP1, AP3, or a combination of both, is the right choice, as well as knowing which shaft of those available with no upcharge, best suits your swing.
  4. Dale V

    Dale V
    Escondido, CA

    Probably the AP3 will be what you want. I still would suggest doing a Titleist Thursday and hitting both just to make sure. I went to mine thinking it would be either the AP1 or AP3 and ended up in the T-MB. I too am one of those 9-11 handicappers that doesn't necessarily hit the best irons shots but keeps the big numbers off the scorecard. Happy hunting!
  5. Barry S

    Barry S
    Oakville, ON

    Just my 2 cents... I would lean towards the AP3's as they look amazing at address and perform just as well. I am a 9 hcp, and went with a split set of AP 2's and AP 3's. Just something else to think about and try.
  6. I really appreciate all the advice! keep it coming! I just set up an appointment to be fit in a few hours and I am going to hit both clubs and look at some numbers to help me decide.. Would it be crazy to have a combo set where I have AP3 to the wedges and then have a 48 and 53 AP1?
  7. Barry B

    Barry B
    Lake St Louis, MO

    Schedule a fitting and don't go in with your mind made up about what you think is the best for you. Hit both the AP1s & AP3s and see which gives you the best performance...your fitter will also be able to help with figuring out whether a combo set is the best way to go or full set of the AP1s or AP3s.
  8. Dr. Kovatchian

    Dr. Kovatchian

    Polish up your game first before getting into a new set...you may not need to make the jump yet. The 714's are still a really solid iron!!! Work on that short game and take a few lessons...you may want to look into wedges instead. 6.0 is a pretty playing if you ask me!

    Dr. K
  9. I have the Ap1s 5-Pw set and wow I love my irons that use to be the weakest area of my game and it's now the strongest from 150-200 I'm dead on they fly straight and far even on your miss hits!Even guys I've golf with were amazed at just how accurate I was from that range!Hope this helps
  10. Rick D

    Rick D
    Weston, WI

    In addition to moving towards a more forgiving club, you may consider that a lesson, or series of lessons might be the most help. You hit the driver well, get up and down a lot playing to a 6, which is no slouch.

    Some years ago i was struggling to hit greens. Left one time, right the next. I talked to our pro and we agreed on a couple lessons. After a couple swings he told me my swing was fine, but alignment was poor. I needed to develop a pre-shot routine that lined me up properly. No new clubs needed, worked on the routine, practiced a couple weeks, then followed up with a second lesson. It helped immensely.
  11. I'm and 8 handicapper. Miss a ton of greens but have a short game that keeps my handicap down. I hit my buddy's AP1s and liked them. When I got fit I certainly gravitated toward the AP3s. Coming from the AP2s like you are, I would recommend the AP3 irons.
  12. I thought I would be fit into a straight set of AP3 but was surprised to find it was 6-pw AP2 and 4,5 iron TMB.
    I'm delighted with them and it just proves the importance of proper fitting.
  13. Norm H

    Norm H
    Hollidaysburg, PA

    Sounds like you've answered your own question. If you are missing more greens than you are hitting in a round. And most of the misses are on or near the fringe. You either have to improve your game or get clubs that will help control those misses. I've always got more satisfaction out of watching my ball landing on the green than looking down at a pretty club head.
  14. Edward K

    Edward K
    Wesley Chapel, FL


    It really comes down to ball flight, and in the fitters eyes, your trajectory. I played MB's for years, wanted the CB's, hit them too high. Settled into the AP2's, couldn't be happier. Played DG X100's for 25 years, still do. Stick with the stock shaft, per the fitter, as 95% of the guys out there upgrading to the KBS or Project X are wasting time and money. Very few I know are actually seeing a significant difference in performance. Stick with Titleist!......
  15. Don O

    Don O
    Madison, WI

    At a 6 hcp, I doubt a club change to a GI iron will make much of a difference. It doesn't hurt to have a pro you trust spend a couple of sessions with you. At a higher handicap, I improved hitting into greens with an approach shot by going from the AP1 to an AP3. It wasn't the club head as much as a different weighted shaft for tempo. I credit the AP3 probably more than I should credit my trainer, fitter, and pro. I'd start with the pro, although after 4 years, you might need to get fitted for a new head/shaft combination - just don't assume the AP1 is the answer.
  16. Wow I really appreciate all the help everyone! Update: I spent 3 hours with a Great golf Pro yesterday afternoon. I hit the AP3, AP1, AP2, TMB, and my old AP2s which were 4 deg flat w stiff shaft. Since I bought my AP2s, I went from a 13 handicap to as low as a 4 handicap, but I would credit my golf pro with about 15 hour long lessons over the course of 3 seasons. But consistent Strong Iron play is always something I lacked on the course. I would have a great week or two a month.. Well, Not only was I surprised to find out that the AP1 was easily the best club for me, but I also found out that i hit the regular flex shaft better as well. AND after all of those lessons, I have gone from 4 deg flat to standard lie angle. Unbelievable.. Well I am going to try all of them out besides my 53 deg wedge tomorrow, I went with a 5-53 set. I appreciate the advice, I got a lesson first. Was hitting it well, tried them all out, had an open mind, and went with the club that I hit in the smallest circle. I also gained a lot of distance, but that was secondary to me. Looking down at the club, didn't bother me at all.. It is a little bigger but nothing that will bother me long term.. Overall, I am really happy with the looks of the club, I am not a big shot shaper so just being more accurate is great.. I found the AP1 the most forgiving. The Ap3 was very very close second and I like it overall! I just needed help and I think I got it..
  17. steve  m

    steve m

    Ap3 all day
  18. I was in the same boat last fall as an 8 HC. I figured I need some forgiveness from my 716 AP2 and went with 718 AP1. Played about 10 rounds and couldn’t stand the feel, top line and offset. I really didn’t see a massive improvement. Longer, but it was related to loft. AP3 didn’t make sense to me. Feel wasn’t great and performance was not much different than AP2. I went to 718 AP2 and I’m happier with those irons. I was afraid of leaving something on the table by going with AP2 but the trade offs as explained above were not worth it to me, just my opinion.
  19. I’m a 10 handicapper and I went with AP2 5-pw set combined with AP3 3 and 4 iron. I love how easy the 3 and 4 are to hit and they are much easier to point and shoot than the AP2 I’m my opinion. They feel really good too and center and slightly off center shots. My fitter thought there was just too much difference in club style between AP1 and AP2, but AP3 just seems to fit well in a combo set
  20. I have played golf for over 50 years at a single digit handicap. I did the Titleist iron fitting a couple of years ago and the fitting said I should hit the AP1s so I switched from the AP2s that I loved. I hated the AP1s.... they looked terrible and had no feel but I stuck with them because the numbers said I should. Then Titleist produced the AP3s! I couldn’t wait to be fitted with them. I am really excited about my game again. The AP3s look great and feel even better. The confidence I have in my irons has improved enormously. Thanks Titleist!!
  21. As an owner of the new AP1s, which I bought for forgiveness and tighter dispersal pattern...and as a high handicapper, I doubt you need the AP1s. As others have noted, the AP3s have a more "pro" look and a good session with a fitter will surely lead you to a good set. One thing I might suggest is looking at the new Vokey wedges and getting fitted for a set of those for your full swings into the greens. Just a thought. Good luck.
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