Volvik Balls: Bubba’s boo boo
A week or so ago we played our usual Wednesday round at Modderfontien Golf Club. As we get to the first tee box one of the guys in my four ball, Chris Williams, breaks out a new pack of Volvik Vivid golf balls. Needless to say, this caught everyone’s attention. It was the brightest golf ball I’d ever seen, like something Ricky Fowler would wear.
We were all amazed at the intensity of the colour, this day glow translucent orange, and the rather odd matt finish. Now Chris is a recovery golf master, provided he can find his tee shot. So, for him this ball was a God send. It is so easy to track through the air, and is also far easier to spot in the rough. Where incidentally, I happened to hit my tee shot a few holes later. Rummaging through the rough, I stumbled across another Volvik, an S4 White Colour. Not ordinary white through, a metallic, glittery white. It instantly reminded me of the Callaway Soliare (which whilst researching for this article, I found out to my dismay, is in fact a woman’s golf ball). At any rate, it looked quite good.
So after a dismal front nine 51, I decided to use the Volvik I just procured, on the back nine. I was quite impressed, ten shot improvement impressed. So I decided to go out and buy a sleeve of S4’s, and a sleeve of Vivids, and test them out properly. I needed bench mark to test them against, so I got a few Callaway Chrome Softs, Some Pro V1’s, and some Srixon Soft Feel Yellow.
Vivid vs Soft Feels
I figured I would pit the Vivid’s against the Soft Feels, and the S4 against the Pro V and Chrome Softs.
The Vivid proved to be a better ball than the soft feel, feeling softer off the club than the Srixon, and also far easier to find in the rough. On the chipping green it far outperformed the Srixon in terms of feel, as well as its ability to check on the green. It’s no Pro V, but it’s also not a Nike PD Long. I think for the recreational golfer with a mid to high handicap, the ball is perfect. And its worth at least one extra shot at the 19th. For a lower handicap golfer, the lack of feel and performance on the greens will mean it will never replace their existing favourite.
S4 vs Pro V and Chrome Soft
Then I compared the S4 to the Pro V and the Chrome Soft. And after being impressed the first time, I was left very disappointed after the comparison. The S4 checks up decently on the greens, but not as well as its competition.
Off the club face though, is where it really let itself down. The ball feels very hard, like a stone, not confidence inspiring at all. I took a Srixon Distance out my bag and hit that, followed by the Volvik. Judging by the feel, distance and ball flight, I could not tell them apart. And that I think is where Volvik dropped the ball, as it were. As their premium ball, it is just not good enough. It is outperformed by its competition in every department. I really wanted to love the new Volvik S4, but to be very honest, I’d rather play with a Vivid. And I most certainly would not substitute any Volvik for the Chrome soft that I usually use.
I think I may know why Bubba is T95 at +6 today….