Being a good ball striker limits your club choice. Although you can get away with some of the better cavity back irons, you will not reach your full potential.
To move my game to the next level for more consistency and workability I had to look at the premium market for players irons.
Let’s take a look at a popular choice, the Ping i500 Irons.
The Evolution Of The Ping i500 Irons
Although Ping has produced excellent irons for many decades, they have stayed out of the forged iron market, until fairly recently.
I for one am glad that they combined the forged iron with the hollow back construction to create good-looking irons with excellent workability and performance.
With the G700 irons and Ping i500 irons release date in 2018, the company ventured into a new category that they have not competed in previously.
📢 Need To Know: This was done in response to PXG launching its hollow body irons in 2014 followed by TaylorMade’s release of the extremely popular P790’s in August 2017 and Titleist’s 718 AP3 irons.
The i500 is aimed firmly at the player’s distance iron market while the Ping G700 irons are aimed directly at the game improvement market. In this Ping i500 irons review, we will look at the differences, advantages, and specifications.
Ping i500 irons fall into the ultra-premium market and are manufactured as a hollow body construction that enhances playability and forgiveness.
Irons are constructed with a forged face but unlike its rivals from TaylorMade and Titleist, it does not use tungsten weighting or internal foam to dampen vibration.
Too much vibration has a long-term impact on your wrist and elbow joints and effects your ability to apply the desired torque on your shaft.
This is only the second time in the last three decades that Ping has ventured into any form of manufacturing a forged club. The Ping i500 irons face is forged while the body is cast.
Combining it with a hollow head pushes them into a new category.
It is aesthetically pleasingly on the eye while offering the performance a skillful player expects and some extra distance and forgiveness. The topline is slim with a muscle back appearance.
- The Ping i500 irons are a combination of the best the Ping G700 offer and the best that the Ping i200 irons offer.
- The best attributes of the Ping G700 irons were used and compressed into a smaller package. This challenged the designers to fit hollow pockets while maintaining flexibility and weight distribution.
- Furthermore, Ping managed to maintain the offset the same as can be found on the iBlade.
- Ping used the forged maraging C300 face in the G400 fairways and hybrids since it is three times stronger than the 431 stainless steel used in the i200. These increase face flexibility by up to five times.
- Ping i500 irons are ideally suited to the better player that wants extra distance, forgiveness, and workability in a single club.
- Great looking irons
- Extra distance and forgiveness
- Pleasing feedback, sound, and feel
- Lower ball flight
- Low spin reduced stopping power slightly
Ping i500 Irons Specs and Features
Ping increased the lofts of the Ping i500 irons to 2.5 degrees stronger than the i210.
This enables you to launch the ball the same as the i210 and reach the same apex as the i210. However, the Ping i500 irons take longer to reach the apex and therefore adds some distance to every club.
Ping i500 power spec lofts are 1.5 degrees lower than the standard loft on the 4-iron to 9-iron while the 3-iron and wedges have power spec lofts that are 1 degree less than the standard loft. This keeps the ball lower and decreases the amount of spin.
📢 Need To Know: The retro spec lofts are 2-degrees more on all irons and wedges adding to the amount of spin and the apex but loses out in distance.
Ping i500 shaft options
Fitting your irons with the correct shaft is made easier by Ping offering nine different shafts in either graphite or steel options in a wide variety of flexes.
📋 Keep in mind: A good club fitter can counteract the low spin generated off the clubface by fitting a shaft with a lower kick point.
This video will give you some insight into selecting the best shaft for your irons.
Ping claims that a Ping i500 7-iron will generate up to 15 yards extra than the corresponding 7-iron in the i210 set.
This can be attributed to the stronger loft but also the improved technology from the hollow head, extra speed off the forged face, and lower spin.
The compact Ping i500 iron head is built for speed, and it does not disappoint with the seriously inspiring average ball speed of 124mph generating a hefty average carry of 185 yards.
Much of the increased performance can be ascribed to the low spin that is around 4300 rpm coupled with the relatively low launch angle and ball flight.
📋 Keep in mind: What you gain in distance, you may lose in the lack of stopping power on the greens due to the lower spin and incoming angle.
The Ping i500 irons provide the performance of a blade with a touch of forgiveness.
Although designed for the better player that can work the ball around, the Ping i500 irons offer sufficient forgiveness on off-center strikes. The added forgiveness will enable you to generate the extra distance that the irons promise on those off-center strikes.
Even though it offers forgiveness, golfers that do not hit the clubface consistently will be ill-advised to play the Ping i500 irons.
That does not mean it’s limited to single handicapped golfers. It will suit a wider range of golfers including those with Ping i500 handicap levels between 12 and 15, provided the player in question is reasonably consistent in their ball striking.
The low offset numbers on the Ping i500 enable you to work the ball around and shape it according to the hole setup.
Ping’s precision milling produces a clubface that offers you consistency and confidence that you will achieve the shot shape that you are planning.
However, the lack of spin may limit the amount of movement that you can generate in the air.
Ping i500 Key Questions
Are Ping i500 irons any good?
If you are in the market for a set of good-looking players forged irons that offer extra distance and workability with the latest hollow head technology, the Ping i500 must be on your list of clubs to evaluate.
What handicap is the Ping i500 irons for?
The Ping i500 irons are suitable for golfers ranging from a single-digit handicap up to a mid-handicap golfer of approximately 15 handicap.
Are Ping i500 irons good for high handicappers?
The Ping i500 irons aesthetics are what you would expect from a genuine players club, which is the market for which they were designed.
High handicap golfers may find the look and feel of these irons rather intimidating. Mid-handicap handicap golfers that consistently strike the ball may be able to get away with playing the i500 range.
💡 Golfible Tip: High handicap golfers are recommended to give the ping i500 irons a miss and select more forgiving cavity back irons.
Are There Any Ping i500 Problems?
There are no significant problems with the quality and construction of the Ping i500 irons. The looks, sound, and performance are what you will expect from premium player’s irons.
Some golfers have indicated that the face of the i500 irons is prone to scratching and wearing out quicker than other premium blades.
The lack of spin and a low ball trajectory may be the biggest problems that some players expect.
Ping i500 vs Ping G700
You can expect higher ball speed and lower spin rates off the Ping i500 irons than off the Ping G700 irons. This combined with the strong lofts available on the i500 irons you can expect some extra distance.
The lower spin creates a lower launch angle on the i500 than on the G700 irons.
Selecting power lofts or retro lofts enables you to get a launch angle and spin rate that suits your game. This is not available on the G700 irons.
Distance gaps are consistent between the i500 and the G700 irons.
Ping i500 vs Ping G410
Some notable differences between the Ping i500 and G410 irons are:
- Clubheads of the Ping i500 irons are more compact and appealing than the G410 irons.
- Forged construction on the Ping i500 irons generates a louder sound and softer feel compared to the G410 irons.
- The G410 irons produce a higher launch angle, higher spin rates, and distance than the i500 irons.
- You can expect increased ball speed off the face of the Ping i500 irons as well as a steeper descent angle.
📢 Need To Know: The forgiveness of the G410 irons makes them more consistent with the average golfer than the i500 irons.
Ping i500 vs Ping i210
The Ping i500 irons succeed the i210 irons therefore you would expect some differences or enhancements on the i500.
Additional distance off the Ping i500 irons is one of the claims made by Ping that has been tested and found to be so. This is a result of changes in spin rate and stronger standard lofts on the irons. Wedge lofts are the same on both sets.
Lower spin assists in the distance but offers less stopping power on the green than the Ping i210 irons.
The i210 irons tend to offer more accuracy out of the rough and from the fairway than the i500.
Ping i500 vs TaylorMade P790
TaylorMade P790s were released before the Ping i500 irons with some notable differences.
The lofts on the two sets are the same with the exception of the 3-iron in the Ping i500s with a stronger loft than the TaylorMade P790 the i500 5-iron and 6-iron have higher lofts than the P790 irons.
All irons are the same length as the opposition except for Ping i500 3-iron to 6-irons that is marginally longer than the equivalent P790 irons and the pitching wedge of the i500 being shorter than the P790.
Ping i500 irons from 3-iron to 8-iron have a slightly lower lie angle than the matching P790 clubs while the 9-iron and wedges of both brands have the same lie angle.
📋 Keep in mind: Most lower handicap golfers will find the Ping i500 irons more to their liking than the TaylorMade P790s.
Ping i500 Verdict
Moving your game forward to the next level using blades rather than cavity back irons is not easy but worthwhile.
Having a good-looking set of irons that offer you some forgiveness while finetuning your game will offer you improved performance and control. This, if you are a better player, should reduce your score and make the game more enjoyable.
For more information on the Ping i500 irons click on the link below.
Do any pros use Ping i500 irons?
Currently, there are no professionals using the Ping i500 irons. Although, in 2021, Cameron Champ and Mackenzie Hughes used them.
Is Ping i500 forgiving?
No, the Ping i500 irons are not considered forgiving. These clubs are forged blades that are extremely difficult to hit for beginners. The sweet spot on a blade is small and a mishit near the toe or hosel can lead to a blowup hole on the scorecard. Irons with cavity backs are forgiving.