The Ping i210s are well-respected player irons that offer a surprising measure of forgiveness. The Ping i525s are player distance irons that travel a mile and look absolutely beautiful at address and when glimmering inside your golf bag.
However, they have left many reviewers wanting in terms of sound (they are still a bit clicky) and they aren’t quite as forgiving as other player distance irons like the Taylormade P790s and the Cobra Forged Tec irons.
Now that you know a bit more about these different irons, it’s time to get stuck into the details of this comparison.
Loft Comparison - Ping i210 vs i525
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Offset Comparison - Ping i210 vs i525
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Swing Weight - Ping i210 vs i525
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Key Differences Explained
1. Different Iron Categories
First and foremost it is worth clarifying that the i210s actually fall into a slightly different iron category than the i525s.
Ping i210 Irons = Player Irons
Player irons are typically designed for low handicap players with reasonably fast swing speeds. Player irons aim to deliver an excellent combination of accuracy and feel, and a bit more spin than a typical ‘player distance’ iron. This makes it easier to shape the ball in either direction, and it also improves a golfer’s ability to stop the ball quickly on fast greens.
Ping i525 Irons = Player Distance Irons
Player distance irons are designed for low handicap and mid-handicap golfers that want maximum distance in a relatively compact iron face.In this regard, the i525 irons can absolutely deliver the goods.
The hollow construction face unlocks a high launch and low spin combination that can help you hit the ball significantly further than a more traditional iron face with a similar loft.
It is a combination that works exceptionally well and helps explain why Player Distance irons have been so well received by the general golfing market. For instance, the Taylormade P790s, the Ping i525s and the Cobra Forged Tec irons all fall into the player distance category, and they are some of the best-selling irons on the market right now.
2. Hollow Head Construction
One of the main reasons that player distance irons travel further than traditional player irons is because of the hollow head design. This effectively increases the spring effect of the iron face (also called the coefficient of restitution), which literally creates higher ball speed numbers when compared to a fully forged iron head.
Importantly, the Ping i525s employ this hollow head construction, and it explains why they are so long when you hit the sweet spot.
However, the drawback of this design is that it doesn’t produce the greatest sound (it’s a bit clicky) and it dampens how good the irons feel. For many players, it’s a reasonable trade-off. You get to unlock extra ball speed, but you sacrifice the pleasing sound and feel of a solid iron head.
3. Iron Lofts
The default lofts of the i210 irons are notably weaker than the lofts of the i525 irons.
The difference in loft specs is most notable in the mid irons, where the i525 irons tend to be up to 2 degrees stronger. Given that the i525s have stronger lofts and a hollow body iron head, you should find that they travel a club further than the i210s, in most scenarios. In the mid irons, you might even find that the i525s give you a club and a half of extra distance.
For players that need a bit more distance to reach the greens, the capabilities of the i525 irons could be well suited to their games. However, if you have a fast or medium-fast swing speed, you might find the gapping offered by the i210s is actually more beneficial for your game. You will be less likely to ‘overclub’, especially with the scoring clubs.
Also, if you like the i210s and you need a bit more distance, you should consider the Power Spec versions. The lofts of the power spec i210s are almost the same as the default lofts of the i525s.
4. Offset Specs
As a general rule with golf clubs, irons with minimal offset are typically designed for better players, whereas irons with maximum offset are designed for average and below-average golfers.
With the Ping i210s and the Ping i525s, the offset specs are actually very similar. Technically, the i210s actually have a little bit more offset than the i525s, across the set.
On the whole, however, this is actually more of a similarity than a difference. Both iron sets offer a low-to-medium amount of offset.
5. Swing Weight
Another substantial difference between the Ping i210s when compared to the Ping i525s is the default swing weight.
Simply put, the swing weight of the i210s is notably heavier than the swing weight of the i525s.
As a result, you should find that you can unlock a slightly higher swing speed with the i525s in your hand. The reduced swing weight will automatically increase your swing speed, without any conscious effort on your behalf. In almost all scenarios, a lighter club will travel faster than a heavier club.
6. Feel & Sound
There are two areas where the Ping i210s easily trump the Ping i525s, namely feel and sound. The Ping i210s deliver a soft and buttery feel when you make good contact, and a pleasing sound whenever you strike the ball. Pure is the word that springs to mind.
Conversely one of the chief criticisms of the i525s is that they don’t sound particularly magical. While they aren’t quite as clicky as the original i500s, they still can’t compare with the i210s in this regard.
In addition, the hollow head of the i525s doesn’t feel quite as pure as the solid construction + elastomer insert combination offered by the i210s.
7. Handicap Range
Simply put, the Ping i210s are designed for better players, meaning a handicap range of about 0 – 10.
The Ping i525s are designed for low-to-mid handicappers, which translates to a handicap range of about 3 – 15.
When it comes to player irons (ie irons for low handicap players), the Ping i210s rank very high on the ‘forgiveness scale’. It’s one of the key findings of most players that end up putting them in the bag.
On the other hand, the Ping i525s are not the most forgiving player distance irons. A key criticism is that when you don’t make good contact, they can be a little bit harsher than competing player distance irons like the Taylormade P790s and the latest Cobra Forged Tec irons.
In essence, the Ping i210s are more forgiving than you might expect, while the Ping i525s are less forgiving than you might hope. In this particular area, the i210s actually win this battle.
Ping i210 Product Technology
Ping i525 Product Technology
Forged, Maraging Steel Face
Pleasing Sound, Feel
In the end, this product comparison really comes down to how much distance you require from the irons that you play.
If you have a fast or medium-fast swing speed: The Ping i210s might be the better bet. They are super accurate, feel amazing, and are surprisingly forgiving. It’s hard not to be drawn to them with this epic combination.
If you have a slow or medium swing speed and you need extra distance: The Ping i525s are probably the better choice. The i525s look absolutely stunning, they deliver in the distance department. You could gain between 1 and 2 clubs of distance, depending on the irons that you currently play.