The Ben Hogan PTx Pro irons, the company’s update of its multi-material, dual-construction iron first introduced in 2016, reflect a unique design philosophy that aims to prevent the head’s center of gravity from getting too low.
While the pursuit of low-CG has been a calling card for a lot of club design in recent years, the PTx Pro tempers that focus. According to Ben Hogan president and CEO Scott White, like the original PTx, the new PTx Pro looks to maintain a relatively higher CG on the scoring irons to produce a flatter.
“The CG of every other iron set on the market decreases (gets lower to the ground) as you move towards the pitching wedge,” White said. “Loft is the biggest contributor to launch so you don’t need to double down and have a lower CG along with higher loft. The result of this is ballooning short irons and inconsistent distance control.”
Of course, this is not to say that the PTx Pro irons don’t pursue a low CG on the longer irons in the set. But rather than letting the CG get lower as the lofts get weaker, the PTx Pro irons maintain what White and his design team call a “linear CG” through the set where the height of each head’s center of mass (as measured from the ground up) is relatively the same whether the club is a 3-iron or a wedge. That lack of shifting CGs means a relatively higher short iron CG, and in compared to the PTx, the PTx Pro features an even higher CG.
“The most significant changes are in the shorter, scoring irons,” White said. “The 8-iron through pitching wedge have a slightly higher CG to deliver a lower ball flight and help prevent ballooning. We received feedback from good players, including tour professionals and highly accomplished amateur players who were using the original PTx irons that the short irons had a higher trajectory than they wanted.”
The PTx Pro again uses different constructions for the long and middle irons, compared to the short irons. The long and middle irons are hollow with a high-strength, maraging steel alloy face insert made of MS300. White said MS300, which has been used in aerospace applications, allows designers to “decrease the face thickness, increase the COR [coefficient of restitution or spring-like effect], and increase the durability.” The body of the three-piece design is forged 1025 carbon steel and tungsten weight is forged into the toe to create more forgiveness and, White said, “increase launch and spin per degree of launch” on the long and middle irons (4-iron through 7-iron).
Meanwhile, the short irons are a solid construction of co-forged 1025 carbon steel with titanium cores of various sizes. The idea is to replace selectively the steel with lighter titanium to shift the CG upward on the short irons.
Throughout the set, the grooves on the PTx Pro irons are milled, and like all Ben Hogan irons and wedges, the PTx Pro irons feature a version of the company’s trademark V-Sole for better turf interaction. On the V-sole design the bounce angle is sharply higher in the front part of the sole and softens on the trailing edge.
"The shaping is similar to PTx," White said. "PTx Pro was really designed to fit the eye of the most discerning, accomplished players. The face area, sole width, and offset have been increased slightly."
Like all Ben Hogan products, the PTx Pro irons are offered only direct-to-consumer at the company’s website, BenHoganGolf.com. The price for a seven-piece set is $770 (4-iron through pitching wedge), while six-piece ($690) and five-piece sets also are available ($600).