If you have been around golf for a while, you know that the Vokey design wedges are known to be one of the high performers. The Vokey wedges are widely used on the professional golf tours. Some golfers say that they have never had a wedge spin and perform the same way that a Vokey does. In our honest opinion, we are also huge fans of Vokey wedges.
With Titleist putting out a new wedge every year or two years, it’s essential to take a look at what has changed and what has improved from the previous versions. If you think your Vokey wedge may need an upgrade this year, you are in the right place.
Titleist Vokey SM8 All You Need To Know
Some will say that the number of options that the SM8 wedge comes in can be a little overwhelming. If you are new to the game of golf and trying to figure out what all of these different grinds, bounces, and lofts mean, you are not alone. Here are the most important things you need to consider when you pick out a Vokey SM8 wedge.
The SM8 comes in four finishes. You will have your choice between Tour Chrome, Jet Black, Brushed Steel, and the Raw Finish. Some will argue that there isn’t much difference between the finishes; however, we believe that the feel and the overall aesthetics change quite a bit. The jet black is excellent if you struggle with glare; the raw finish is ideal if you are a stickler for a pure feel.
The SM8 is available in a variety of lofts ranging from 46 to 62 degrees. The lofts will go up in increments of two degrees. If you have been trying to put a set of wedges together, Vokey has plenty of options to help you do this.
The bounce options are going to change based on the loft of the club. You will see that the bounce on the higher lofted clubs is usually going to be quite a bit higher than those on the lower lofted clubs. The number of degrees of bounce will range from eight to 14.
If we have not already overwhelmed you, you will also have to consider the grind. The Titleist Vokey SM8 comes in several different grind options. The grind will help you zero in on the types of shots you want to hit with your wedge. For instance, the F Grind wedge is going to be best for full swing shots; the K grind would be better suited for bunker shots.
The SM8 is one of the best spinning wedges on the market. The SM in the name of the wedge stands for spin milled. The Vokey design SM8 is not the first wedge by Titleist to feature these spin milled grooves. The thing that helps these wedges stand out is that each groove is individually cut depending on the loft and the finish of the golf club.
This is not just a run of the mill wedge; each one is made to be a perfect match with the loft and the finish. By creating the Vokey design SM8 wedges this way, you can get deep and narrow grooves in the lower lofts and wider shallower grooves in the high lofts. Vokey knows you want all of your wedges to spin, but you don’t’ need them all to spin the same amount.
Anytime you look at a blade style wedge, you know some of the forgiveness is going to head right out the window. Wedges Titleist makes are always going to have great feel and precision, but sometimes the forgiveness is not there.
With the SM8 wedge, Titleist changed things up a bit and went with a progressive center of gravity. This has made the SM8 Vokey more forgiving than prior Titleist models, and yet it still has an excellent feel, perhaps even better feel than the SM7.
Titleist used tungsten weights and changed the length of the hosel as well. This helped them move the center of gravity in the front of the face of the wedge. You get a very high moment of inertia on these wedges regardless of if you are hitting full shots or small chips.
We are impressed that with this progressive center of gravity, you still feel as though you can control the loft and direction of these wedges. Sometimes when too much forgiveness is added, workability and control are left in the dust.
The SM8 Vokey has some of the most durable grooves in the game of golf. All great players know that the grooves on their wedge will start to deteriorate after some time. This is common, and you can have the club regrooved or purchase a new wedge. (Most opt to buy a new wedge as the technology has very likely changed since the original release).
The SM8 Wedges are treated with very high heat before they are finished with their manufacturing process. This extra shot of heat helps the grooves to stay more intact and hold up with repeated use. This is important for golfers that play a lot of golf and want a product that they can depend on for years to come.
The SM8 wedges are thought of as being a players club. The low handicap players demand a lot of performance, spin, and durability from a wedge. The SM8 wedges can undoubtedly hold up to the demands of the lower handicap players. The question is, are these wedges a bad idea for a higher handicapper?
As long as the shaft, bounce, grind, and loft match the specifications of a higher handicap player, than there is nothing wrong with putting a Titleist Vokey wedge in the bag. These wedges are going to teach higher handicappers how to control the ball, how to spin but full shots and short shots, and how to use bounce in your game correctly.
Of course, higher handicappers should expect that they are not going to see as much forgiveness from the Sm8 wedges, and the full swing shots may be a little tricky until you get the hang of the game of golf.
With anything that Titleist puts their name on, you can expect a premium price. When it comes to the SM8 wedges, they will sit towards the top of the market, but when you look at the custom loft, bounce, grind and finish options, there isn’t another company that can compete with Vokey.
If you don’t think the wedges Vokey makes are the best for your game, there are a few other choices on the market that could work. You can find them here.
Cleveland RTX 4
The RTX 4 has excellent spin, control, and many loft options. You will not get the same grind choices as Cleveland tends to make these decisions for you. Overall the RTX 4 is a good wedge, and the pricing should be a little lower than the SM8.
Callaway Mack Daddy 5
The Callaway Mack Daddy 5 Wedges are a new release from Callaway. You will get lots of loft and grind options just like you do with the Titleist. The MD5 tends to have some more rounded shaping and design features to them, but they are certainly a great fit for golfers from the mid to low handicap range.
Which Vokey Wedge Should I Get?
As we mentioned early, the positives and negatives of the Vokey wedge can be the same thing. They offer this wedge in many different choices, and that can make finding the right one for your game quite difficult. Here are a few tips for making sure you get the right Vokey SM8 for your game.
Pick A Finish First
You are going to be the one that has to look at the wedge all the time. Find something that looks good to you and appeals to you before you start moving on to the bounce and the grind. If you like the jet black finish, that’s great; if you think that the brushed steel has a more classic look, that is certainly fine as well.
Next, you have to choose your lofts. Space them about four degrees apart when possible.
Check Grind/Bounce Options
Last you will look and see what is available in the loft and finish that you chose. Try to make sure you have at least one wedge with a high bounce. This will help tremendously with bunker shots. If you have no idea which grinds works best for you, Titleist always offers an option that they call “versatile.” With the versatile bounce and grind, you can’t go wrong.
Are Vokey Wedges The Best?
Everyone has their favorite golf company and their favorite golf wedge. There is no question that the Titleist Vokey SM8 wedge is quite popular for amateurs and professionals alike. The clean design, high levels of performance, and the ability to get a wedge custom fit to your needs on the golf course does set the Vokey SM8 wedges apart from the competition.