The TaylorMade Tour Response is often considered an alternative to premium balls. We wanted to test the TaylorMade Tour Response and see how it compared both on the course and with TrackMan data. To give you something to compare to, we tested the Tour Response, Soft Response and matched it up with testing against the Pro V1.
At A Glance
TaylorMade Tour Response
- Construction: 3 Piece
- Cover: Soft Tough Urethane
- Feel: Soft feel
- Compression: ~73
- Price Point: $42.99
TaylorMade Soft Response
- Construction: 3 Piece
- Cover: Ionomer
- Feel: Softest
- Compression: ~70
- Price Point: $29.99
Off the tee
We tested the TaylorMade Tour Response in an indoor facility with a TrackMan launch monitor. At the same time, we also tested the TaylorMade Soft Response and the Pro V1 so that you would have a way to compare the performance.
The TaylorMade Tour Response has almost the exact same distance capabilities and performance as the Titleist Pro V1. Not that we should always use the Pro V1 as the standard; it has sort of become the standard through the years.
The TaylorMade Soft was a little shorter, with a reduced ball speed, but we would expect this with a lower compression golf ball at this club head speed. Based on what we know from low-compression golf balls, this difference in distance will reduce as club head speed reduces, but harder golf balls will always travel further with driver.
I tested the Tour Response on the golf course and compared its performance to the Pro V1 and also found that it had no trouble keeping up from a ball speed and total distance category. In overall testing, the carry distance was about one yard shorter with the Tour Response, but the spin was also just a little lower than the Pro V1.
In the end, you get a golf ball that can compete with the most premium ball regarding distance off the tee. We were also careful to check the low spin claim on the course and make sure that the ball was rolling out, and it certainly was.
Peak height from the Tour Response was a little lower off the tee than you will find with the Pro V1. The slightly lower ball flight isn’t too noticeable and is likely due to the lower backspin rate.
So far you can see the Tour response is a great competitor to the Pro V1 and the Soft Response will keep up if you have a medium to low club head speed.
For our full-swing wedge shot testing, we use a pitching wedge. This is where you see why the Titleist Pro V1 and the TaylorMade TP5 are $10 more than the TaylorMade Tour Response. The Pro V1 had backspin rates of 7964 on average during our testing, and the TaylorMade Tour Response was 7015.
Overall, spin coming into the green isn’t great. If you are a player who tends to have their golf balls run through the green on iron approach shots, you may struggle with the slightly lower spin rates from the Tour Response. The Soft Response performed a little better in terms of backspin, but was still 6% lower than the Pro V1.
Descent angle (how steeply a ball lands on the green) is another useful factor in determining how quickly your shots will stop on the green. As you can see there was no difference between the three golf balls.
Inside 50 yards and around the green
Inside 50 yards and around the green, we noticed the same performance as we did on the full-swing golf shots. On the golf course, the Tour Response spins, and it stops, but it certainly rolls out further than the Pro V1 and the TaylorMade TP5.
There is certainly a difference between a 3-piece and a 4 or 5-piece golf ball, and it is seen around the greens.
TaylorMade says that the spin on the Tour Response iron approach is lower than the TP5. You may find that you get a few extra yards on the iron shot, so plan your distance accordingly. A 142-yard shot could land 145 simply because the spin was just a little lower, resulting in less drag through the air.
As a side note, I liked the TaylorMade Tour Response’s soft feel, as it feels responsive around the greens and workable. It just simply doesn’t feel as tight from a performance perspective as the premium golf ball.
Overall feel from the TaylorMade Tour Response is great. I felt like it jumped off the tee and had a softer overall feel (but not too soft). When you play with it the first time, it is going to remind you very much of a premium golf ball like the TaylorMade TP5 or Pro V1.
Around the greens, I really enjoyed the feel of the Tour Response when it came to putting. If you like the soft feel while still having enough firmness to keep you on your line, I think you will like the Tour Response.
The Tour Response holds up well. I did not play with a TaylorMade Tour Response Stripe, so I’m not sure if the fancy paint job on those golf balls will hold up for more than a few rounds, but I have yet to see players complaining about it.
I had one interaction with a tree branch that blocks a green where the golf ball clipped the tree, and the cast urethane cover on the Tour Response was completely intact.
I think once you are paying for golf equipment (golf balls) over the $40 price point, you have to expect to get several (at least 3 or 4) rounds out of the ball.
The standard Tour Response and Soft Response don’t offer too much from an alignment aid standpoint. If you want, there is enough to use as your line on the putting green. However, the new Tour Response Stripe is kind of a different story.
The Stripe model has quite a bit to offer from an alignment aid standpoint. For my own personal preferences, it’s just too much going on, but I actually like this ball from a training standpoint.
If you are working on improving your roll on the putting green, the TaylorMade Tour Response Stripe does a great job of letting you watch the ball roll end over end. In addition, for newer players looking for a way to line the ball up on the tee, the Tour Response stripe could do the trick.
I think this has to come down to more of a personal preference as performance will be the same with the TaylorMade Tour Response Stripe and the standard model.
If all you looked at was the distance results and our feedback about on course distance performance, I think you may be tossing premium golf balls out the window and going for the Tour Response as an alternative.
As we know, there is always a reason why a golf ball is not priced quite as high as another.
In this case, it’s spin on wedge shots and particularly spin and shot-stopping inside 50 yards.
However, before we count out the TaylorMade Tour Response and say that spin rates aren’t quite like the premium ball, we have to at least give credit where credit is due. The Tour Response still spins around the greens, and it still spins on approach shots with short irons; just not quite as much as a Pro V1 or TP5.
The value of the TaylorMade Tour Response is good. It’s priced right where it needs to be for the performance that it offers. The golf ball is no secret weapon or crazy good deal that you must run out and buy. Instead, it’s a fairly priced golf ball that allows you consistent and reliable performance from tee to green.
Golf Insider Verdict
The TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball is very good. If you do not want to sacrifice distance and are fine with giving up just a little greenside spin to save some money, you will like what this ball has to offer. The slightly lower spin and ball flight off the tee might also be useful if you struggle with high, spinning drives.
We look at the Tour Response as one step down from a premium. It is certainly everything that TaylorMade claims it to be. Consider this ball for mid to fast swing speeds, average to better-than-average players looking for superb performance without having to pay the TP5 or the Pro V1 prices.
The TaylorMade Soft Response will set you back a few yards off the tee unless you have a mid to slow swing speed, in which case you’ll likely not lose more than 1-2 yards. Again, we recommend this golf ball for players who want to save a little money and aren’t worried about giving up some spin with wedge shots and around the green.
Alternatives to consider
Here are a few golf balls to consider if you think the TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball may not fit your game best.
Titleist Tour Speed
The Titleist Tour Speed is a similar golf ball known for being just a step down from the premium Pro V1 model, the Tour Speed has a slightly harsher feel than the Tour Response but has some good overall ball speed and wedge spin.
If you don’t want to give up on that premium greenside spin, the TP5 is a great choice. It has quite a few similarities, but the five layers just improve performance around the green. You can read our side-by-side testing of the Tour Response vs the TP5 golf balls here.
If you are looking for something even less expensive than the TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball, take a look at the Titleist TruFeel. This affordable golf ball is just a standard ball with two pieces, but Titleist did a nice job with feel, responsiveness, and total distance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are a few commonly asked questions about the Tour Response from TaylorMade.
What is the compression rate of the TaylorMade Tour response?
TaylorMade is not saying much about the compression rate on the Tour Response and there are a few different methods to measure compression, but it falls between 72 to 76 compression.
Is TaylorMade Tour Response a low spin ball?
TaylorMade Tour Response is a low spin ball off the tee. Driver total distance is long.
How is the TaylorMade Tour Response when it comes off the putter face?
TaylorMade Tour Response has a soft but responsive feel coming off the putter face, on pitch shots, and chip shots.
Can I replace my TP5 golf balls with the new Tour Response?
The Tour Response is a good replacement for the TP5 off the tee, especially if you have mid to high swing speed. However, around the greens, you will notice the Tour Response will not spin quite as much. Most of this comes from comparing a 3-piece golf ball to a 5-piece golf ball.
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