The Mind's Eye
August 10, 2008
Are your putter's optics messing with your brain?
Cleveland VP3 Milled
The dual-axis alignment of the VP3 Milled helps correct the position of the hands and eyes ($150, clevelandgolf.com).
A dual-axis alignment system on the Cleveland VP5 alerts players to a faulty setup: If you see the three white rings inside the clubhead's middle bar, your eyes are set too far outside or inside the ball. If the circles are invisible, your eyes are directly over the ball ($130, clevelandgolf.com).
All three staggered alignment discs on the Xcitour are individually machine-milled ($200, fussellputters.com).
Guerin Rife TwoBar Hybrid Blade
The vertically cut notch of the TwoBar Hybrid Blade works with a sightline to optimize aim ($200, rifeputters.com).
Mizuno Black Carbon Series
The Black Carbon Series includes two blade-like models with a glare-reducing black-chrome finish ($250, mizunousa.com).
Never Compromise GM2 Exchange
The company's signature black-on-gray color blocks (milled 304 stainless steel) are designed to help you line up the putter squarely ($230, pinggolf.com).
The green putterhead and shaft of the 20-15A are designed to blend with the putting surface, helping users focus on the white aiming features ($140, nikegolf.com).
Nike IC 20-10
Everything on this putter is green -- the clubhead, the shaft and the grip -- except for the white alignment lines (one running the length of the blade, the other as an aiming line extending from the center of the face) that help you set up squarely to the ball. The idea is that because the green color tends to blend with the grass, the alignment aid becomes much more visible ($140, nikegolf.com).
Nike IC 20-20
The green grip, shaft and clubhead on on the IC 20-20 are designed to optically melt into the background of the putting surface and emphasize the white alignment aid on the top of the putterhead ($140, nikegolf.com).
The aiming lines assist with setup, and the White Hot XG insert has a soft elastomer base for soft feel, plus a thin, textured outer layer for additional feedback ($170, odysseygolf.com).
Odyssey Black Series #7
A precision-milled soft 1025 carbon-steel head with a nickel-plated finish has been fitted with tungsten "fangs" to move the putter's CG low and as far back as possible for a high MOI and better roll. ($270, odysseygolf.com).
Odyssey Black Series-I #1/#9
The series includes two blade-like models, the #1 (a classic Anser style) and the #9 (the half-mallet look preferred by Phil Mickelson). ($270, odysseygolf.com).
Odyssey White Hot Marxman Mallet/Mini
The Marxman's white 3-D alignment strips create a two-lane image to help you set up squarely at address. ($170, odysseygolf.com).
Odyssey White Hot Tour #1
Two blade options include #1 (a classic crank-neck, full-shaft offset) and #2 (a short hosel with scooped cavity and half-shaft offset). ($160, odysseygolf.com).
Ping Karsten Series Craz-E
The blue-accented alignment aids stand out against the gray steel, and the myriad lie, loft and length options make this putter easy to customize ($120, pinggolf.com).
Ping I-Series Craz-E
The i-Series features a raised alignment aid that puts the back of the putterhead level with the top line and eliminates the two-dimensional look of the earlier versions ($160, pinggolf.com).
Profound Ingenieur Blade
Orange appears at the heel or toe if your eyes aren't directly over the Profound Ingenieur Blade ($480, profoundputters.com).
Profound Dark Ace
By placing a set of bars directly above two orange lines on the bottom part of the black putter, Profound has created a high-contrast 3-D alignment system to help you set up correctly, with your eyes parallel to the target line and over the ball. The milled-steel face is backed by a soft insert ($190, profoundputters.com).
The m2's optical aid (a small red dot on the heel side of the blade) is designed to be hidden by the shaft when the putter is addressed square to the line ($325, seemore.com).
SeeMore has taken its popular rifle-scope alignment system (which encourages the golfer to set up squarely to the target by making sure the red dot behind the shaft is hidden at address and during the stroke) and married it with the latest materials and designs ($325, seemore.com).
This milled update of the original SeeMore putter has "rifle-scope technology" that helps players use their eyes to set up in the correct position over the ball. The alignment system is designed to help you execute a proper pendulum stroke by hiding the red dot behind the shaft at address and throughout the stroke ($325).
A reverse-trapezoid shape places weight toward the back and into the corners behind the small putterface for a high MOI ($180, taylormadegolf.com).
In addition to high-MOI features, such as enormous volume, and a variety of alignment guides, the Spider's primary attribute is the "anti skid groove system insert." ($180, taylormadegolf.com).
Titleist Scotty Cameron Studio Select Squareback
The Scotty Cameron Studio Select Squareback has a compact face and an extended flange ($300, titleist.com).
Titleist Cameron Studio Style
Each shaft length comes with a different head weight to optimize the putter's swingweight, and the sole design (built with negative bounce) helps you set the putter squarely at address ($270, titleist.com).
Titleist Red X3/X5
These two classic mallets, the new Red X3 and X5 (which has a plumber's neck hosel), have subtle design features. Both have a charcoal finish designed to reduce glare and hidden internal weighting under the aluminum soleplate ($300, titleist.com).
The Sandy's triangle cutouts on the heel and toe provide a quick alignment reference ($190, yesgolf.com).
This computer-milled-carbon-steel version of the popular C-Groove putter looks prettier, feels smoother and rolls better than the less-expensive models from the company. ($250, yesgolf.com)
Yes! is best known for its C-Groove face design, which is intended to prevent skidding and impart topspin on the ball immediately upon impact. The putter features a long, single sightline, a center shaft and face-balanced weighting ($150, yesgolf.com).
Zen RDE Premium Tour
RDE stands for "reduced dimple error." It refers to the hairline ridges in the face that are designed to minimize the amount of contact area. This helps reduce the possibility of the putter catching the edge of a dimple, which might send the ball rolling off-line ($275, zenoracle.co.uk).
Zen Oracle RDE Mallet
The lines in the face of the milled stainless-steel RDE Mallet might look like grooves, but don't call them that -- they're "micro ridges" designed to reduce the surface area that's in contact with the ball at impact. The purpose is to eliminate inconsistent roll because of off-center dimple contact ($325, zenoracle.co.uk).