Golfing is enjoyable when you have the right equipment. I started playing golf because I enjoyed the company of my dad. Later, I started enjoying the great outdoor environment and the friendships I made on the course. I believe the right club set plays a huge part in building your golfing skills. In this article, I have outlined the best club sets for value shoppers. We assessed more than 15 golf club sets and found the five best golf clubs for the money.
Callaway Golf Men’s Strata Complete Set – Best Overall
This set offers 12 clubs, allowing a host of shots. The large sweet spot and the aerodynamic design of the clubheads make them ideal for golfers of all skill levels.
Precise Golf Club Set for Tall Men – Best for Tall Men Golfers
Precise Golf Set sports high quality materials and taller shafts to accommodate tall golfers. They are ideal for beginners and intermediate players.
Wilson Sporting Goods Ultra Golf Set for Men – Best Set for Beginners
Wilson Sporting Goods designed these clubs with large clubheads and aerodynamic designs to offer enhanced forgiveness.
RAM Golf EZ3 Men’s Golf Club Set – Best Set for Shorter Golfers
Precise M5 Men’s Complete Golf Set – Best for Long Distance Shots
Basic of golf clubs
You can only bring 14 golf clubs in your bag, according to the United States Golf Association. However, when practicing, you can bring as many as you need until you find the one that works for you. A standard golf club set features two fairway woods, a driver, pitching wedge, sand wedge, and 3-iron through 9-iron. With such a set, you only need a comfortable putter to have a complete set.
Some players will bring 9 or 10 clubs and still enjoy their game and score well. For a beginner, you need enough clubs to learn different types of shots. For starters, one needs a wood club to hit the golf ball for long distances. You also need an iron to learn how to make accurate iron shots – for this, I recommend a 6-iron as it is easier to use compared to a 3-iron. A pitching wedge comes in handy for short shots. Lastly, one needs a putter. As your golfing skills improve, you can add more clubs to your set to enjoy the game more.
If you want to reduce the number of clubs you carry, bring a hybrid club that serves as a wedge and as an iron.
What do each of the above clubs do?
Drivers have been referred to as woods for a long time, thanks to the original construction material. However, nowadays the clubs sport a titanium or steel construction. Drivers feature graphite shafts and long clubheads to make long distance shots on Par 4 or 5.
It sports a large face for hitting with 460 cubic centimeters. Large faces are ideal for golfing beginners while smaller faces (less than 440cc) are ideal for professional golfers. The large face means more forgiveness for the novice player.
Also known as Fairway metals or Metal Woods, these clubs are ideal for long fairway shots. The clubs feature graphite shafts and sometimes steel. Usually, they come as 3-, 5-, or 7-wood clubs. The number indicates an increase in loft and, consequently, the height of your shots. The difference between these woods and drivers is the bulbous-shaped head and its flat face on its side that you use when you strike the ball.
You can also use these clubs to make long Par 3 tee shots and short Par 4 tee shots. If you cannot hit your drivers, the Fairway wood gives you more loft for more accurate shots.
Irons are the most versatile clubs. You can use them to make short-, mid-, and long-range shots. They are available in sets from irons 3 through 9. There are also Pitching and Gap Wedges (referred to as Approach Wedge).
The clubhead on an iron sports deep grooves that extend across its face. These grooves regulate the spinning of the golf ball, allowing you to control the distance and the height the ball goes. Higher numbers on irons indicate more loft angle. Such clubs will make the ball fly higher even on shorter distances.
Irons have relatively thin clubheads depthwise. This makes them more accurate when you are a short distance from the hole. Irons come in different varieties, depending on your skill level. These include:
- Cavity Back Irons
These irons have a large cavity at the clubhead back to give them more forgiveness. They are ideal for beginners.
- Game Improvement Irons
Although these irons have a smaller cavity at the back, they are easier to use and are the most common irons. Their soles and toplines are thinner and smaller, and they accommodate players of different levels.
- Player’s Irons
These are fairly difficult to hit. They have a smaller cavity and are less forgiving, but when successful, they give a great feeling.
Wedges look almost like irons, but they have higher degrees of loft. Their design gives them more accuracy and enables more efficient spins. Wedges have a bounce, an angle between the sole bottom, and the leading edge of the clubface. You can choose between three types of wedges:
Also known as the Approach, it falls between a sand wedge and a pitching wedge. It is ideal when you need more distance and more accuracy than other wedges.
- Sand Wedge
This sand wedge is ideal for chips and sand bunker shots when you need to get the ball spinning in the air.
- Lob Wedge
You can use this wedge for long distance shots and when you need the ball to travel high and spin. It is great when you need to manipulate the ball around the greens.
Putters are ideal for rolling the gold ball to the hole in the green. They sport steel shafts and squared or flat grip where you can have your thumbs. Its clubface is flat and is smaller than that of other clubs in the set. Putters are available in two types:
- Blade Putters
These sport a smaller head for golfers who need a smaller look. They are also more accurate when you need distance and direction.
- Mallet Putters
These sport a large head and accommodate golfers of different skills. Their head is relatively large and heavy for increased forgiveness. The shape and size of the head also stabilizes straight putts.
Hybrids blend the features of woods and irons. Their shape is close to that of woods, but their length and loft is that of irons to offer you better distance. You can replace your long iron with a hybrid when you need more forgiveness and playability. A hybrid stands in for 3- or 4-irons.
Components of clubs
The grip occupies about eight inches on the edge of the shaft. This rubber part gives you a good hold of your golf club. Different clubs offer different sizes of grips with varied textures, colors, and designs so that you can shop based on your preferences.
This is the long and narrow part that forms the handle of the club. The shaft features graphite or metal construction and comes in different lengths. These shafts come in different flexes, so you can have one that is flexible or stiff. Flexing affects how fast the clubhead moves. You can choose from different levels of flex, depending on your ability level, gender, and your flexing preferences. Most men go with R shafts (Regular) while ladies choose L (Ladies).
The hosel is the part that connects the clubhead to the shaft. This part controls the lie angle of the club, which is the angle the shaft and the clubhead sole form. You can adjust the lie angle based on your arm length, your height, and your swing style. If you bend the shaft to increase the angle, you will end up with an upright lie. If you decrease the angle, you get a flat lie.
Some clubs feature adjustable hosels. These make it easy for you to adjust their lie angles and loft as you need. Adjustable hosels are common in hybrids, drivers, and fairway woods. You only need a wrench to remove the shaft, adjust the lie angle and the loft, and then reinstall it.
This is the part of a club that hits the golf ball. It determines how far and high the ball flies. A clubhead should be the first part you check when shopping for clubs. The head performs the same function in all clubs – it hits the ball and propels it forward and upwards. Large clubheads offer more forgiveness and are ideal for beginners while smaller clubheads work perfectly for experienced players.
What to look for while buying
Now since you know the basics, let’s talk about things to look for in the best set of golf clubs for the money.
Most woods feature a graphite shaft, and you do not have much to choose from. Irons feature either graphite or steel shafts. Graphite shafts are common in long clubs. Unlike steel, graphite is less forgiving, but it helps when you need more distance.
When shopping on a budget, you might want to consider steel as it is more affordable than graphite. Steel shafts are heavier, but easy to control during a shot. Steel shafts will not offer as much distance as graphite shafts, but the distance is not considerable. Younger golfers with energy and fast arm speed can go for steel shafts while older golfers looking to improve their distance can go for graphite clubs.
Steel and graphite shafts flex to a certain degree. The flex can be stiff, extra stiff, regular, ladies, and seniors (denoted by letters X, R, A, and L). A-rated flex is for seniors. If you pick a flex level that doesn’t meet your swing style, the clubface will be misaligned at impact and your shots will veer off target.
Shaft flex impacts accuracy, trajectory, and distance. If your shaft is too stiff, your ball will fly lower, might go right, and fade sideways. You might also feel that the shot was less solid. If the flex is not stiff enough, the ball will fly higher than you expected, the ball may go left, and the shots might feel more solid even when they are not.
Which clubs should be in your set? A few clubs might be ideal for experienced golfers, but amateurs might need more as they are still figuring out their game. Most budget golf clubs offer a mix of long and short irons, a fairway wood, a hybrid, and short shots tools. You also need a sand wedge to help you with some tricky shots.
Lastly, you need a comfortable putter, especially one with the right length.
A forgiving golf club has a design and structure that minimize the effects of poor swings and poor club-ball contact. Forgiveness comes in handy for beginners as it allows them great efficiency. Most golf club manufacturers market their clubs as forgiving, so it is easier to find a set that meets your beginner needs. The most forgiving clubs have a lower center of gravity and a relatively large clubhead so that players do not miss the ball. Besides the clubhead size and the center of gravity, it is important to pick a shaft flex that works well for your swing style.
Value for money
This entire guide is about the best golf clubs for the money. If you need a quality golf club set, you need to spend between $200 to somewhere around half a grand. This is cheaper than buying individual golf clubs. While you might want an affordable set, it is best to consider your golfing needs and the set so that you do not lose your money on a useless club.
Best Golf Club Sets for the Money
Callaway Golf Men’s Strata Complete Set: Best Overall
The Strata Complete Set features 12-clubs designed to offer maximum performance. It offers balanced distance, forgiveness, and control, especially given the lightweight nature of the clubs. In the set are a driver, 5 hybrid, 3 wood, 6-9 iron, and PW, and a putter. Callaway also offers you a stand bag and two head covers.
The driver is lightweight and has a 460cc clubhead with a large sweet spot for enhanced forgiveness. The lightweight and the large sweet spot allow you to hit the ball for a longer distance. For beginners, the 3 wood is also very forgiving, thanks to its aerodynamic head shape. It is ideal when you need to hit the ball to fly high and for long distances.
You do not need long heavy irons, thanks to the hybrid club. The hybrid allows you to make a variety of shots with confidence. Irons 6 – 9 and the pitching wedge offer a great balance between forgiveness and control, making it ideal for novice golfers.
Callaway offers a mallet putter in the set with advanced alignment to give you maximum accuracy for all shots. Better yet, Callaway offers a stand bag to accommodate all the 12 clubs. This bag sports five pockets, a cooler pocket, and a rain hood. The padded back straps make the bag easy to carry.
• Accommodates players of different skill levels
• Lightweight for easy carry and added control
• Comes with a carry bag and two free head covers
• The set misses a sand wedge
Precise M5 Men’s Complete Golf Set: Best for Long Distance Shots
The M5 is a golf set for tall right-handed men. It offers a lightweight 460cc driver with a relatively large sweet spot for added forgiveness. This driver makes the set ideal for beginners and golfers who need to achieve a longer distance.
Other clubs include 21 hybrid, 5 – 9 irons, pitching wedge, and a putter to create a complete set for a variety of shots. You also get a high quality stand bag to carry your golf set to the green and around the course. Three head covers accompany the clubs to protect your clubs. The putter offers a great aiming mechanism, allowing beginners and experienced golfers to make a variety of shots.
I love the feel of the club and the grip when I am making long distance shots. It is also perfect for tall golfers who need clubs that balance control and forgiveness.
• Ideal for beginners and intermediates
• Quality construction to last long
• The padded double shoulder strap makes the bag easy to carry
• You have to buy a sand wedge separately
Precise Golf Club Set for Tall Men: Best for Tall Men Golfers
The design of this golf set accommodates right handed men between 6 feet 1 and 6 feet 4. In the set are a 460cc driver, 3 wood, 21 hybrid, 6-9 and PW irons, and a deluxe putter. This makes the set complete for all the shots you need to make on the course. Further, the Precise offers you a comfortable stand bag with padded straps and a padded and ventilated back for comfortable carry. You also get three head covers to protect three of the clubs from damages.
The woods feature a lightweight graphite shaft with balanced flex to offer you enhanced control. Better yet, the irons feature true temper steel shafts for durability, balanced flex, and control. The large sweet spot on the driver and the irons enable you to make perfect short and long shots even if you are a beginner.
The grip feels comfortable, allowing you to make a perfect slice. The hybrid offers the versatility you need on the course, and its design makes it forgiving.
• Great seat for buyers on budget
• Strong grip for perfect shots
• Ideal for tall golfers
• Large sweet spot on the driver, making the set ideal for beginners
• The bag is relatively less durable
Wilson Sporting Goods Ultra Golf Set for Men: Best Set for Beginners
The Wilson Ultra Golf Set works perfectly for beginners, but intermediate players will still find it great to use. It might not offer the durability of professional golf clubs, but it offers great quality for the money. The set contains nine clubs, which allow you to make a variety of shots. It offers a driver, fairway wood, hybrid, 6-PW irons, and a putter.
Its driver sports a large clubhead that offers enhanced forgiveness for beginners. Further, the aerodynamic design of the driver head enhances head speed when you need to make long distance shots. Irons in the set feature a deep undercut stainless steel cavity for long and straight shots. I love the weighting of the scoring clubs as it allows more control and improved golfing on the greens.
The manufacturer offers a lightweight stand bag with adjustable shoulder straps, numerous pockets, and a rugged handle. Better still, there is a self-activating stand that makes the bag easy to use.
• Balanced weight for better control
• Large sweet spot on the driver for added forgiveness
• Comfortable grips
• Good club combination to make a variety of shots
• Set doesn’t work well for taller golfers
RAM Golf EZ3 Men’s Golf Club Set: Best Club Set for Shorter Golfers
The RAM EZ3 is one of the most affordable sets on this list. The set is available in -one inch size, which is not common with many sets. This configuration makes the set ideal for users who are shorter than 5 feet 5. The set features a driver, 3 wood, 21 hybrid, 6 through PW irons, and a mallet putter. This makes it a complete set for all the shots you need to make.
The 3 wood club features a durable graphite shaft with the right flex for the most variety of shots. Hybrid club replaces a variety of long irons and comes with a heavy and durable steel shaft. Even though it is made of steel, the hybrid is still light enough to give you the control you need.
RAM offers you a quality bag to carry your clubs to and around the course.
• High quality construction to last long
• Balanced weight for added control
• Works well for people shorter than 5 feet 5
• Doesn’t work for taller golfers
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I get new golf club sets or used ones are fine?
Used golf clubs can be a great option when you are on budget. However, most of them are poor quality, and they will fall apart within a few short months. Because there are so many new budget golf clubs, you do not need a used set.
Do I need to get fitted for new clubs?
Custom fitted clubs are great for players of all skill levels. However, you will not get most of them at a discount. If your budget allows, you can go for these for an enhanced game.
Does the golf club brand matter?
I have a few golf club brands that I trust. However, this doesn’t mean that I always go for the most expensive golf brands. I consider the quality and the playability of the clubs more than the brand.
Among all the club sets above, the Callaway Strata for Men is my favorite. It has all the clubs needed for different shots, and it works well for beginners and experienced golfers. Its large sweet spot, balanced weight and flex, and the aerodynamic head design make it a comfortable club for golfers of all skill levels.
A good club set should have enough clubs to make all the shots you need. You need a mix of long and short irons, a driver, a wedge, and a putter. If you have at least nine of these clubs, you can make all necessary shots, depending on your golfing style.
When shopping for a golf club set, you need to understand the various parts of a club. These parts include:
• The grip (rubberized part of the club that you hold during a shot)
• Shaft (the long part leading to the handle)
• Hosel (parts that connects the shaft to the clubhead)
• Clubhead (part of the club that hits the ball)
Once you understand the parts, you can now choose the club set with the right shaft flex, enough clubs for different shots, and enough forgiveness.