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Callaway Strata Review – Should You Buy them?

For many years the Callaway Strata golf clubs have been the go-to choice for beginner golfers. In this article we’ll review the Callaway Strata 12, 14 and 16 piece sets, we’ll also explain the difference between the standard, plus and Tour Strata sets and help you decide if they are right for you.

The Strata range is Callaway’s offering for beginner and high-handicap golfers looking for a complete set of golf club and golf bag at a great price.

They offer three different golf sets within the Strata range (12, 14 & 16 pieces). The ‘pieces’ count the stand bag and headcovers too. Think of the 16-piece as the full set option and the 12 and 14 as slightly smaller than full sets. The smaller sets are still great options and can save you some additional money.

Below is a detailed review of each Callaway Strata set, or click this link if you wish to check out alternatives to the Callaway Strata sets.

Enjoy.

12 piece set

14 piece set

16 piece set

Callaway Men’s Strata Complete Golf Set (12 Piece)

callaway strata golf clubs 12 piece set in a blue stand bag

The most popular offering for beginner golfers is the Callaway strata 12-piece complete set. This set also features in our best golf clubs for beginner guide. The 12-piece Strata set provides excellent quality, all the clubs you’ll need to get into the game and carry bag for a very reasonable price.

Woods and hybrids

The lightweight steel-shafted 460cc forged driver has a large sweet spot, providing good forgiveness for any miss-hit drives. The Fairway woods are again oversized creating great forgiveness and create long, high flying shots. The 5-hybrid also provides you with a forgiving alternative to long irons, making these shots off the fairway and long par 3s a little easier.

Irons and wedges

The long clubs in the Callaway Strata 12-piece set are finished off with a set of irons running from 6-iron to 9-iron and a pitching wedge. All the irons have a large cavity back design which makes them highly forgiving and helps get your iron shots up into the air.

The rest of the set

The set also comes with a bladed putter and a lightweight carry bag. The carry bag comes complete with a stand, four pockets and a dual strap system that makes carrying this set a breeze, an additional cooler pocket and a rain hood.

Essentially everything you need to start your journey as a golfer.

Summary

Grab these clubs if you are looking for an affordable, quality set of clubs that will give you good quality and forgiveness. If you would like more of a complete set and want to max out your driving distance, then consider checking out the Strata Plus golf set below.

Callaway Strata Plus Golf Set (14 Piece)

Callaway strata golf club set 14 pieces in a res stand bag

The Strata Plus golf set is the same as the 12-piece set review, but it comes with the following upgrades.

Additional clubs

The Callaway’s Strata Plus Golf set provides you with a sand wedge to go along with your pitching wedge. The sand wedge can be particularly useful around the greens when you need to hit high-lofted shots.

Increased performance

Another key addition are the graphite shafts in the Driver, fairway wood (the club heads design are the same in both models). Graphite shafts make the overall weight of the clubs lighter compared to the steel shafts that come in the standard 12-piece set.

The lighter shafts allow you to generate a higher clubhead speed, meaning you’ll hit your shots further. Not by a lot, possibly by 5-10%, but that may turn your 200-yard drive into a 210 – 220 yard drive, so this is worth considering.

Summary

The Callaway Strata Plus set is a great set of golf clubs for a beginner looking to max out driving distance. Or for a high-handicapper who is looking to buy a set of golf clubs that will see them down into a low 20s to teen handicap.

Callaway Men’s Strata Tour Complete Golf Set (16-Piece)

Callaway Strata golf club Tour set in a red and black golf stand bag

Last on our list we have Callaway’s Strata Tour complete set. This is the top of the range in the Callaway Strata selection.

Additional clubs

Along with the driver and 3-wood featured in the last two sets, the Tour set comes with an additional 5-wood and 4-hybrid. These two additions give you alternative clubs to hit off the tee and more forgiving options to hit off the fairway on long par 4s and 5s.

The rest of the set still follows with the 6 – 9 iron, PW and SW that are in the 14-piece set – and a putter. Essentially, this is Callaway’s all-singing, all-dancing, full set for beginners and high handicappers.

As a golf pro, who has taught many beginner golfers, I will happily tell you that you don’t need a full set of golf clubs, to begin with. But, some golfers just want a full set to feel the part, so the decision is down to you.

Grab the Strata Tour complete set if you are treating yourself and want a great set of golf clubs. I personally feel the 14 piece Strata Plus set will be the best option for most beginner players, but the extra clubs won’t do you any harm.

Alternatives to the Callaway Strata set

As mentioned at the top of this article Strata used to lead the way in beginner golf gear. However, now you have many more great options to choose from. Below in this Callaway Strata review article are some great alternative choices for you to consider.

Callaway Edge golf set

Callaway Edge complete set

The Edge set is Callway’s follow up to the incredibly successful Strata series. It was thought that this would spell the end of Strata, but this is not the case. Instead, Callaway are running both for beginner and high handicap golfers.

The performance differences between the two are apparent in places but are not drastic. The Callaway Edge irons provide a slightly softer feel off the face when pitching and chipping, yet still, feel powerful on longer shots, and the addition of the Oddesy White Hot putter in the Edge set is a great bonus.

However, the Callaway Edge set doesn’t offer any flexibility in set sizes (number of irons), and offer no choice in fitting options. Both are great options for beginners, with the Edge set possibly just edging it for all-around performance if you can get your hands on the limited sets that come in and out of stock.

You can read our full Callaway Edge review here. We now also have a complete Callaway Edge vs Strata article for those wanting a toe-to-toe comparison.

Cobra XL Speed complete golf set

Cobra Fly XL complete set header

The Cobra Fly XL is the latest in Cobra’s resurgence into the beginner market. These are at a different price point to the Callaway Strata golf club set, however, they are a great beginner set if you can afford them.

Depending on where you live around the world and any deals, you’ll find these for £/$200 more than the Strata clubs. The irons are very comparable, but that extra money buys you a driver, fairway woods and hybrid clubs that are more powerful and more forgiving.

Wilson Profile SGI Complete Golf club Set

Wilson Profile SGI golf club set in a blue and grey golf bag

The Profile SGI is Wilson’s latest complete club set for beginners. The Profile SGI club set come with a 10.5º driver, 5-wood, 5 hybrid, 6 – 9 irons, pitching wedge, sand wedge, putter and golf bag. This all comes in at a great price.

The performance of these clubs is near identical to the Callaway Strata Plus set. I’d even argue the irons and wedges feel more solid and provide more feel around the green.

The driver and fairway woods come with graphite shafts which will help give you some additional distance when hitting off the tee.

The great news is that these come in at a similar price to the top Callaway Strata set. Making them an ideal alternative if the Strata clubs are out of stock.

Check out our full Wilson Profile SGI review

STIX Golf Clubs

STIX golf clubs in their stand bag

The STIX golf clubs are a higher-priced options than the Callaway Strata set, they look the part, particualry if you opt for the matching STIX golf bag. In terms of performance, the driver and woods are very similar to the Strata clubs. The irons and wedges are slightly less forgiving but offer more control when hitting wedge shots and chipping around the green. You can click on the link above to read our full review.

Callaway Strata review – Further questions answered

Are Callaway Strata clubs graphite?

The irons and wedges in all Callaway Strata sets are steel. The 12 piece set has a steel shafted driver and fairway wood, whereas the 14 and 16 piece sets have graphite shafted woods and driver.

Are Callaway Strata clubs good?

Callaway Strata golf clubs are great golf clubs for the price. They will suit beginner golfers well and will allow you to progress as a golfer. There are two areas they save money, firstly, the 12 and 14 piece sets have fewer clubs meaning they can keep the price down.

Secondly, the driver is made out of slightly cheaper materials than the top drivers on the market (that can cost the price of the entire Callaway strata set!). This results in slightly less distance and forgiveness, but not to a point where it will noticeably affect your game.

Are Strata golf clubs forgiving?

Callaway Strata clubs are very forgiving. If you are will to spend more you can find irons that offer ~10% extra forgiveness, but these will cost double the price and are not needed when first learning to play golf. For more on the most forgiving irons check out this article.

What is the difference between the Strata Tour and Ultimate?

Callaway suggest the tour is better in performance while the ultimate is more forgiving. There are slight changes to the head size and shape in the woods between the two, but both will suit beginner golfers well, as the differences are marginal.

Are Callaway Strata golf clubs the best choice for a new golfer?

As mentioned at the start of this article, Callaway Strata golf clubs used to be the best choice for beginner golfers. They were superior quality compared to other beginner sets and the sets of clubs came in 12, 14, and 16-piece options. The 12, 14 and 16-piece set options also offered great variety.

Now I would argue that the Cobra XL golf set are superior in quality, and the Wilson golf sets offer similar quality at a comparable price. Both the Cobra and Wilson set of clubs come with a cart bag rather than a stand bag, which may sway some golfers.

Should I buy the Callaway Strata complete golf set?

I sure hope this article has helped you decide. The end decision lies with you. However, I will say this – as a golf coach, I would be delighted if a beginner turned up for a lesson with any set of golf clubs from this article, including the alternative options above.

If I had to pick for a student of mine I would suggest they go for: the Strata 14 or 16-piece golf sets (which have a graphite shaft in the driver) or the Cobra XL set – all three are great options.

Do the Callaway Strata golf clubs only come in men’s sets?

In this review, I’ve linked out to the men’s set. There are also women’s Strata clubs check here for options. Callaway are replacing these with newer models. For the most up-to-date information check out our full article on the best women’s beginner golf clubs.

What is the difference between Callaway strata and Solaire?

The Solaire golf sets are another Callaway golf club set for women golfers who are shorter. Custom-fit golf clubs are not purely based on height, arm length is a factor too. If you feel you may need custom-fit clubs do find a local golf pro for a fitting. You can learn more about the Solaire golf club here.

Frequently asked questions when buying beginner golf clubs

Below we’ll answer some of the most commonly asked questions when beginners are buying new clubs.

What clubs are the smaller sets missing?

The Callaway Strata 12 piece has a gap between the 3-wood and 6-iron, it is also missing a sand wedge. The Strata 14 piece set comes with a sand wedge but doesn’t come with a 5-wood and 4-hybrid.

Do I need a full set of clubs as a beginner golfer?

As a beginner, you will not need a full set to begin with. The clubs will travel different trajectories and distances when hit well, but to begin with, most beginner golfers won’t notice a consistent difference between their 6 and 7 iron. This will change as your striking of the golf ball becomes more consistent.

Can I buy more golf clubs at a later date?

Yes, you can buy extra clubs at a later date. Try to keep your irons matching as not all manufacturers have the same loft on each iron.

However, wedges, putters, fairway woods, hybrids and drivers can all be mixed and matched as you wish. Most beginner golfers will look to add an additional wedge or buy a new putter as they really get into the game.

If you love your irons from your starter set, but want to find clubs to max out your hitting off the tee you can always get fitted for a driver at a later date.

Callaway Strata golf clubs review – Summary

I hope this guide has given you a bit more insight into the Callaway Strata golf club rage. They are great golf clubs, ideal for beginner golfers and high-handicappers and easy to hit. If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment below.

You can also join our free weekly email for more great golf articles emailed straight to you every Monday.

Happy golfing – Will @ Golf Insider

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Will is a PGA golf professional, with a PhD in Biomedical Science and MSc in Sports Biomechanics & Psychology. He spent 10 years lecturing part-time at Leeds Beckett University and the University of Leeds in Biomechanics and Motor Control before becoming the Head of Golf for the University of Exeter. He currently runs Golf Insider UK, Sport Science Insider around wider consulting and academic roles in sport performance and motor control.

6 thoughts on “Callaway Strata Review – Should You Buy them?”

    • Hi George,

      I have been doing my best, but these are selling out on a daily basis. My top tips are to check the following:

      Amazon
      Global Golf
      RockBottom Golf
      American Golf (UK based)

      If they aren’t in stock:

      Similar price and great clubs are these Wilson SGIs:

      Amazon
      Global Golf

      Higher-priced options but great golf sets include the TalyorMade RBZ

      Global Golf

      If you’re happy to wait, then send each retailer a message and ask when their next delivery is and if you can reserve a set. If you’re in a rush I would be very happy for any beginner student of mine to turn up with the sets above. There is also a full run down here.

      I hope that helps, it’s a tough mix of high demand and a backlog in production from the past 18 months of lockdowns.

      Will

      Reply
  1. Hey will. Great review on these clubs. It made my decision to buy the 14 piece set. Due to be delivered tomorrow.
    Thank you..
    High handicapper.

    Reply
    • Hi Drew,

      As an absolute begginer which would you recommend getting out of thr 12, 14 or 16 piece? I’ve played on driving ranges and putting greens but not a full course. I have every intention of taking up the sport seriously though.

      TIA 🙂

      Reply
      • Hi Charlie,

        Will here, the 12 piece is more than enough to get started with. Beginner golfers often want more clubs, but from my experience, you’ll not see too much difference in distance between your irons and hybrids until you reach a 24-20 handicap stage and can strike 8/10 shots well.

        I hope that helps and have fun with your golfing journey.

        Reply

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