I was able to spend the last week playing around with both the TaylorMade R9 Irons and R9 Max irons so I thought I'd give some feedback on these Japan market models even though people are probably ck to death of discount golf clubs hearing about the R9 with all the exposure this line got this year. Taylormade is one of the most if not the most focused American brands in the Japanese market. With excluve models released just for Japan and
top models like the R9 being released first in Japan before anywhere else in the world, Taylormade has always given that extra little attention to the demanding Japanese market.
When comparing the two irons de by de, the Max is not much bigger but you can clearly see the slightly expanded dimenons. So overall the R9 Max is not in any ways huge though the top line is on the thick de. The wider sole leads do a deeper cavity and more weight lower in the head for a high trajectory launch, coupled with the strong lofts we are talking about Mizuno MP-69 Irons a distance iron here. Interestingly, while both share the inverted cone technology, what players usually perceive as a gn of extra forgiveness, the pocket cavity is actually on the R9 iron and not the R9 Max.
Taylormade Japan promotes the R9 as a workable neutral iron with mid trajectory and is paired with lightweight steel in 950GH and heavier S200 shafts (also available with Motore 65 graphite). The R9 Max is promoted as a high launch straight to draw shaped trajectory aided by very lightweight shafts. Made by Fujikura, the stock Motore 55 Regular flex shaft in my R9 Max were only 51 grams and low kicking and gave Titleist CB 712 Irons an obviously high trajectory. The low CG and shaft make this a very easy iron to launch and matched with its wider multifunctional sole, good in mostly any lie.
While the R9 is rather forgiving with its pocket cavity, those with slower swing speeds or higher handicaps will benefit from the lighterweight and bigger head R9 Max. At D0, the Motore 55 is easy to load and is a very forgiving shaft when it comes to unloading and meeting the ball at impact.
So to top it off, the R9 Max is a forgiving distance iron. It's lightweight and easy to swing, its not overly large but the top line is a bit too thick for my liking. If however you do not care how thick the top line is and you are Ping G20 Irons a higher handicapper needing a forgiving easy
launch Taylormade iron then the R9 Max is a good choice. As for the R9 I can't judge it as a players cavity nce I myself am not as player, but I can say from a feel standpoint, its not the soft casting people are raving about with the Burner TP, the pocket cavity cavity helps with forgiveness and low to mid cappers may appreciate this iron for its technology however if it is feel you want, wait for the R9 Forged or try the Burner TP. I wish I had the R9 iron in graphite to make a better comparison nce I admittedly play graphite most of the time in my irons.