beginner golf club set guide

Top 10 Best Beginner Golf Club Sets for 2019: Reviews and Guide

In this 2019 beginner golf club set review, we will look at the 10 best golf club sets for beginners.

You will soon have all of the information you need to make an educated decision about which sets are best for you and your budget.

Some of the questions answered in this 2019 guide are:

Golfing can be a fun, relaxing way to spend an afternoon. It is very challenging no matter your skill level. For beginners, just buying the proper equipment can be a daunting task.

beginner golf club set guide

What if I buy a few thousand dollars worth of equipment and hate golfing?” These words have been uttered by most new golfers.

Complete starter sets are available from many golf club manufacturers. These may just be the best, most affordable solution for new golfers on a budget.

Top 10 Best Beginner Golf Club Set Reviews for 2019

With so many beginner golf club sets on the market, which are the best for you? Whether you’re looking for the best overall set, the best value set, or the cheapest set, we will review all of this.

Here’s our top 10 best golf club sets for beginners in 2019:

  1. Best Overall: Cobra F-MAX Superlite Complete Set
  2. Best Value: Callaway Strata Complete Set
  3. Wilson ProStaff HDX Complete Golf Club Set
  4. Precise S7 Complete Golf Club Set
  5. Tommy Armour EVO Complete Golf Club Set
  6. Cobra XL Complete Golf Club Set
  7. Best Cheap: Nitro X Factor Complete Set
  8. Top Flite XL Complete Golf Club Set
  9. Wilson Ultra Complete Golf Club Set
  10. Coolest Looking: Pinemeadow Pre Complete Set

Best Overall: Cobra F-MAX Superlite Complete Golf Club Set

This Cobra Beginner set includes a driver, 3 wood, 5 wood, 4 hybrid, 5 hybrid, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, pitching wedge, sand wedge and putter.

It includes club covers for the driver, woods, hybrids, and putter. The cart bag has 7 pockets, 14 full length dividers and an umbrella holder.

This set features some of the lightest clubs I have reviewed. A lighter club will maximize your swing speed and get the most distance out of your swing.

The F-MAX driver has a 10.5 degree launch angle. The combination of the two woods and two hybrids is great for getting the most variance of distance and easier to hit than long irons.

The irons are some of the lightest on the market. They are very forgiving and great for a beginning golfer. The blade putter is great for a golfer that has an arched putt.

2019 Cobra Golf Mens F-MAX Superlite Complete Golf Club Set
  • Great distance with the F-MAX driver.
  • Very complete set including the sand wedge.
  • Low profile hybrids make it easier to get out of a difficult lie.
  • Full length bag dividers keep the clubs from getting damaged grips.
  • Probably the best looking clubs I have reviewed.
  • Price. Great clubs, but the highest priced set I have found.
  • I found these available to order only, not in any stores, which means you can’t see or try the set until you’ve purchased them. Although you may find them individually at a golf store.

Overall, the Cobra F-MAX Superlite is a great set for the golf beginner with no budget. This has a few more clubs than a true beginner would need, but a beginner won’t be a beginner forever. Although this is a wonderful starter set, the price is not for too many beginners.

Best Value: Callaway Strata Complete Golf Club Set

This set come in a 12-piece (the one I reviewed) and an 18-piece. I will talk a little about the 18-piece at the end.

This set includes a driver, 3 wood, 5 hybrid, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, a pitching wedge and a putter. The stand bag has 5 pockets and seems super durable.

The driver was a bit inconsistent for me and if I bought this set, I would likely replace it.

The irons were some of the best I have reviewed. Their large sweet spot was perfect for some of my inconsistent ball strikes.

The wood and hybrid were better than average. I was not a huge fan of the putter as it felt kind of cheap.

Callaway Men's Strata Complete 12-Piece Golf Set
  • Excellent value.
  • Quality irons, great for beginners.
  • Good distance on the wood and hybrid.
  • Good bag, high quality.
  • Overall high quality clubs.
  • Driver was not my favorite.
  • Sand wedge is not included.
  • Mediocre quality putter.

Overall, the Callaway Strata (12-piece) is for sure the best value golf club set for beginners. Decent driver, great wood and hybrid, and fantastic irons.

Callaway Strata Ultimate 18-Piece Golf Set

If you would be thinking of adding a matching sand wedge to the 12-piece set, you might as well go for the Strata Ultimate 18-piece set.

The 18-piece set has the sand wedge, a 5 wood, and a 4 hybrid.

If you can afford the bigger set, it is less expensive than adding 2 of the 3 clubs at a later date.

On a personal note, I have a 55 degree sand wedge that I not only use for sand, but also for short chipping.

So I would for sure buy the Callaway Strata 18-piece set over the 12-piece.

Callaway Strata Ultimate 18-Piece Golf Club Set

Wilson ProStaff HDX Complete Golf Club Set

This Wilson set is a good quality, low priced set. It is similar to the Strata 12-piece set, but at the same price, this set includes a sand wedge.

The ProStaff HDX includes a driver, 3 wood, 4 hybrid, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons as well as a pitching wedge, a sand wedge and a putter. It also includes a stand bag, and head covers. I enjoyed this set more than I expected.

While the driver was not bad, it felt a little cheap. I was super impressed with the wood and hybrid! I would even consider these when I need to replace my everyday clubs.

I enjoyed the irons and they seemed to have a good sized sweet spot. As much as I like the irons, I wasn’t thrilled with the wedges, these were average at best.

The putter was also fine, not great, but felt solid. Probably what I would consider “good enough”.

Wilson ProStaff HDX Complete Golf Club Set
  • This is a great set for the money.
  • Wood and hybrid are some of the best I have tested.
  • Good looking clubs and bag.
  • Left and right handed as well as tall sets available at the same price.
  • Above average irons.
  • Cheap feel to the driver.
  • Wedges are as good as the irons.

Overall, if the ProStaff HDX set had better wedges, I would probably rank this as the best value beginner club set. Although, I still would highly recommend this set to any beginner that is on a strict budget, simply because you don’t need to go out and buy a sand wedge.

I absolutely loved the hybrid and wood. I would be very happy with this set as a beginner.

I would likely plan to replace the driver and wedges if I made this my set. I don’t think it would be something urgent, but something to save for in the future.

One great thing about this set, you can get tall clubs for no extra charge.

Precise S7 Complete Golf Club Set

Honestly, I hadn’t heard of Precise before finding a set to test. The good thing about that is, you don’t pay extra for the name.

This set came with a good selection of clubs: driver, 3 wood, 5 wood, 4 hybrid, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, pitching wedge, sand wedge, putter and a stand bag. Also 4 head covers.

I had no expectations going into this test. I hadn’t noticed this brand before, not in stores or on the course, although I am not typically poking around through other peoples clubs.

I was pleasantly surprised with the high quality. Really, nothing in the set was the best of these sets, but everything was above average.

Precise S7 Mens Complete Golf Club Set
  • Great complete set for beginners.
  • Pretty darn good putter.
  • No bad clubs in the bag.
  • I think the clubs look pretty sleek.
  • If I had to add one con to this set, it would be the bag. It isn’t a horrible bag, but the quality doesn’t seem like its too durable.

Overall, the Precise S7 is the best golf club set you’ve never heard of before. I could be happy to have this set, and I recommend it.

It is another one that comes in tall (all clubs are 1 inch longer) and doesn’t charge anything extra.

I enjoyed playing with this set, and was pleasantly surprised by the entire set. I would probably rank this set right where it’s price point is.

I like it better than the Callaway 12-piece and both Wilson sets, but I would prefer the Callaway 18-piece set.

Tommy Armour EVO 20-Piece Complete Golf Club Set

The Tommy Armour name is now owned by Dicks Sporting Goods, which I didn’t know. This is considered their higher end house brand.

This 20-piece set is quite complete and includes the following: a driver, 3 wood, 5 wood, 3 hybrid, 4 hybrid, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, pitching wedge, gap wedge, sand wedge and a mallet putter.

This is a really cool set. I haven’t tested a set that has a gap wedge before.

I really don’t think that I would necessarily consider this a “beginner set”. This really has more clubs than a beginner would need.

If you are a beginner and are serious about becoming a long term golfer, this would be a great option.

Tommy Armour EVO Complete Golf Club Set
  • Very complete set.
  • Great quality.
  • Includes a sand wedge and a gap wedge.
  • I like the driver, it seem forgiving, and I hit it well.
  • A bit more expensive than many of the other starter sets.
  • I like the look of the clubs but the bag isn’t pleasing to my eye.

Overall, this is a very good set, but probably more for the novice than the beginner. It is great to get a set with two woods and two hybrids, plus the gap wedge.

If $800 is in your price range, this complete set is great option. Although not attractive, the bag is designed well and seems durable.

Cobra XL Complete Golf Club Set

This is another fantastic complete club set from Cobra. It comes with the same variety of clubs that the Cobra F-MAX Superlite set has.

It has a driver, 3 wood, 5 wood, 4 hybrid, 5 hybrid, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, pitching wedge, sand wedge and putter.

This set is a good solid set to play with. It has everything you need, plus some of the things you just may want in the future.

I am a fan of the sets that have two wood and two hybrids. I played really well with this set. Before this test, I had hit Cobra drivers and hybrids, but never any of the irons. I am really becoming a fan of Cobra clubs.

This set is a bit heavier than the F-MAX set, but with around $400 savings, it may be a good choice.

Cobra XL Men’s Complete Golf Club Set
  • High Quality Clubs from the driver to the putter.
  • Two woods and two hybrids in the set.
  • Good bag, seems durable to last many years.
  • I liked the feel of the grips.
  • I could only find these in graphite shafts, for the irons, it was a little too much flex for me.
  • Not available in a tall option.

Overall, I only had issues with irons having graphite shafts, because of this the flex was more than what I am used to playing with.

I typically have my clubs extended 1 inch, because I am about 6’4” tall, this wasn’t an option and would have to be done after the fact.

I really did like the play of the clubs and didn’t have an issue with any of the clubs despite the shafts.

I did prefer the other Cobra clubs, but that is to be expected with the price increase.

Best Cheap: Nitro X Factor Complete Golf Club Set

The Nitro X Factor set is the least expensive set I could find. Even with the low price, this set has a decent variety of clubs.

It comes with a driver, 3 wood, 4 hybrid, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, pitching wedge and a putter.

I had pretty low expectations from these clubs, but they really weren’t as bad as I thought.

I think this is a set for someone on a very low budget that really doesn’t plan to play a lot, or will replace the set if they like golf.

Nitro X Factor Mens Complete Golf Club Set
  • Lowest priced set I tested.
  • Quality was better than expected, still not great.
  • Although the driver didn’t appear very durable, I did hit the tee shot pretty well.
  • I don’t really care for the putter.
  • Quality won’t hold up as long as most of the other sets.
  • The bag is not made of high quality material.

Overall, this set is what you would expect it to be, a cheap starter set. If you can only afford to spend $100 or less on a set, and you don’t plan to golf often, this may be a set for you.

If you plan to play often and buy this set, you can expect to replace it soon.

Top Flite XL Complete Golf Club Set

This 13-piece set includes, a driver, 3 wood, 4 hybrid, 5 hybrid 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, pitching wedge, putter and a stand bag.

It is missing the sand wedge, but a matching one is available for only $50.

In my opinion, once you add the sand wedge and get up to $250, you might just be better off buying the Wilson ProStaff. I did like having the two hybrids with this set though.

The set includes only 2 head covers, so your hybrids won’t have any protection. This isn’t a huge deal, you just have to organized the clubs strategically so they don’t bang around.

The quality of the clubs overall is around average, but the driver seems a bit cheap, like it wouldn’t last a year.

Top Flite XL Mens Golf Club Set
  • Two hybrids in a set is great.
  • Irons quality seems on par with Callaway and Wilson sets.
  • Available in 3 colors.
  • Bag is pretty light.
  • Driver is poor quality.
  • No sand wedge.

Overall, I will score this a 5 out of 10. If the set included a better driver, and a sand wedge I would likely bump it up to a 7/7.5.

I would say this is a good starter set, but if you’re going to add the sand wedge, just go buy the Wilson ProStaff set.

Wilson Ultra Complete Golf Club Set

Wilson Ultra is a great set of starter clubs. The set includes, a driver, 3 wood, 4 hybrid, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, pitching wedge, putter and a stand bag.

I was actually really impressed with the driver. The quality felt great when I swung it, and my ball went exactly where I expected it to go.

The strange thing about this set is, I felt like I was missing a club. I don’t mean the sand wedge, although there isn’t one in this set.

I felt as though the 5 and 6 irons gave me about the same distance, somewhere around 40-50 yards shorter than the hybrid.

Maybe it’s just me, but I think a 5 hybrid would add a ton of value to this set.

Wilson Ultra Mens Complete Golf Club Set
  • Great driver, one of the best for a starter set.
  • Really good putter.
  • Forgiving irons.
  • The grips felt pretty good.
  • No sand wedge.
  • Very very ugly bag.

Overall, this set really exceeded my expectations. I guess I should have had higher expectations based on how impressed I was with the Wilson ProStaff set. I would really recommend it.

The Wilson Ultra is a great beginner set, and it is quite important to have a driver with this kind of quality.

The driver itself is probably worth the price of this set. I would say this set is even with the Callaway Strata 12-piece set, you can buy either of these sets and not be disappointed.

Coolest Looking: Pinemeadow Pre 16-Piece Complete Golf Club Set

The Pinemeadow set has a bit of a strange assortment for a beginner: a driver, 3 wood, 3 hybrid, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 irons, pitching wedge, mallet putter and a stand bag.

I was surprised to see this had a 3 wood, 3 hybrid and then a 4 iron on up. In my opinion a starter set would be better served to have a 4 hybrid, not a 3, then go up to a 5 iron and include a sand wedge.

I really like the looks of this set of clubs, in my opinion, it could be the coolest looking set I have reviewed.

These may not be my top rated golf club set, but they are good and got me around the course well.

The quality is where it should be for the price. I was neither disappointed or overly impressed with this set.

Pinemeadow Pre 16-Piece Complete Golf Club Set
  • Great looking set.
  • Good all around quality of the clubs.
  • Pretty good putter for a mallet style.
  • Odd assortment.
  • Small bag with questionable quality.

Overall, this is a pretty good value. Just kind of a “steady” set, no real highs and no real lows. If a beginner had this set, there wouldn’t be a reason to replace this set with another.

Review Recommendations

Based on all of these beginner golf club set reviews, here is an easy way to figure out the best starter clubs to buy.

If you have an unlimited budget or can spend up to $1,200, I would suggest buying the Cobra F-MAX Superlite set.

This set blew me away, but I know the cost will be prohibitive for many new golfers.

If your budget is less than $1,200 but over (or around) $800, I would recommend the Cobra XL set. The Cobra XL had a great assortment and was just a little heavier than the F-MAX.

If you have a budget of less than $800, but more than $500, the Callaway Strata 18-piece is a great set with some of the best irons in these sets.

To me, the Callaway 18-piece is a perfect set with a reasonable price point.

If spending $400 on a set of clubs, some of the greens fees and other costs of golfing may be too much for you. You still can get some pretty great sets for around $300. The Precise S7 is one of the best beginner golf club sets you can buy in this price range.

Best Golf Club Brands for Beginners

We have reviewed some great sets. Some higher end, some mid and some really cheap and inexpensive.

Here are some highlights of the best golf club brands:

Callaway

Callaway was founded in 1982 and is based in Carlsbad California. It is the world’s largest manufacturer of golf clubs.

Callaway’s beginner golf sets are a tremendous value for such a good product. Although I only talked about two of their sets, they do have a couple more variations of the Strata.

Cobra

Cobra Golf is owned by Puma and the golf portion is also based in Carlsbad California.

Cobra was founded in 1973 and was known for producing the Baffler, a utility club and really the first of its kind.

The Cobra sets were some of my favorites to play. These are a fair amount more expensive than most other sets, but if they’re in your budget, well worth the price.

Wilson Staff

Wilson Staff was founded in 1914. Wilson Staff has quite a few claims to fame, including making the first sand wedge, making the cavity back irons, having its irons used to win more than 60 PGA majors, and providing financial backing to form the Women’s PGA which would eventually become the LPGA.

The Wilson beginner sets that I reviewed have tremendous value, and I highly recommend the ProStaff HDX 15-piece set.

After more than 100 years of making clubs, it seems fitting they can produce a high quality, inexpensive set.

Precise Golf

Precise Golf was formerly known as Tartan, a golf cart distributor. They now make golf clubs, accessories, and you guessed it, cell phone accessories?!

While this company may have an odd assortment of items it handles, their S7 golf set is a great set. Good value for the price, and a great assortment of clubs.

I can’t comment on the quality of cell phone accessories, but the S7 clubs are great!

Other Brands

There are a lot of other brands of golf clubs. Many of them are great brands that either don’t make a beginner sets, or I just didn’t get the opportunity to test them out.

Some great brands to try if you would like to assemble your own complete set are, TaylorMade, Ping, Titleist, Cleveland and Mizuno. All of these companies make some great quality clubs.

How Much Is a Set of Golf Clubs?

Most beginner sets are going to be in the price range of $200-$600. The sets I have reviewed vary from $85 all the way up to $1200.

If you are a new golfer, I would be cautious to spend much more or much less than this for a new set.

Where to Buy Clubs?

Now that you have all the golf club set reviews you need to make a decision, where do I get the clubs.

You usually have a few options of where to buy. I have a couple recommendations.

Go somewhere you can try the clubs. Most golf stores will have the option to try clubs before you buy them.

You might be hitting at a driving range they have outside or might be hitting into a screen of a little green carpet.

Either way, it is good to get the feel of the club before you buy, once you find the clubs you like, compare prices.

Price will be a big factor too, and going online is a great way to compare prices and find the lowest. You might find a great golf store that matches prices, this could be a good one to go to after you’ve done your research.

Find a place with a hassle free return policy. I have heard too many stories of people getting a great deal on a set of clubs only to have the head fly off the driver the first time they used it.

No big deal if you can go to the store and swap it out, but if you bought it online or a place that doesn’t allow returns, you might be upset.

Frequently Asked Questions from Beginning Golfers

As an avid golfer, I get lots of questions from people that have had golf peak their interest. Here are some of the most common questions I get.

How Do I Get Started Golfing?

There are a few different ways to get started. I would suggest going with a friend to the driving range and hit some balls.

Taking a few lessons is a great way to get started and have the possibility of avoiding some bad habits.

Go with a friend, either use their clubs or borrow some from someone you know. Many courses also will rent clubs.

How Much Does It Cost to Start Golfing?

It all depends. To start I would say have at least $500 set aside for golf. This can get you a starter set, or a used set of clubs, balls, tees, good golf shoes, and some clothes.

Golf is easy to get started and add a few things here and there as you golf more.

How Many Clubs Do I Need?

The limit is 14 clubs in your bag. Over time you may find that you have a couple clubs you don’t use, just take them out and maybe add something you will use.

When I was a brand new player, I had a 3 Iron that I hit horribly. One day while golfing with a buddy I tried one of his hybrids (which I had never hit before) I took one practice swing and hit the ball about 215 yards, as straight as an arrow.

Once I saved up enough money, the 3 Iron was in my closet and a new 3 Hybrid was in my bag. It’s really a good idea to be always be on the lookout for your next new club.

How Long Does It Take To Get Good?

Good is a relative term. I try to focus on getting better. Typically, the more you play the better you get.

I used to play 3-4 times a week, I am now lucky if I get out 3 times in two weeks. I was a much more consistent player than I am now.

Do I Have to Wear Golf Clothes?

(I really do get asked this often.)

No, and yes. You really don’t have to, but you should. Most courses have dress codes you have to follow to play there.

Golf clothes are great for golfing, they are made to allow all the proper movements you need to swing your clubs, and they are quite comfortable.

Should I Get New Clubs or Used Clubs?

That is totally up to you. I would suggest being very careful buying used clubs.

The grooves on golf clubs provide the spin your ball needs to get lift and fly the way you want. A heavily used set might have worn enough to prohibit proper spin.

The best used clubs will be from someone that bought clubs to go out a time or two, but doesn’t play much. Similar to a car, the less miles the better.

What Should I Do Now?

Hopefully if you’re reading this, you have been bitten by the golf bug. You should take your time before spending a bunch of money on clubs.

Determine your budget, do some reading and narrow your selection down to a couple sets.

Once you have your choices narrowed, get to a golf store and try out a few of the clubs.

A golf store may not allow you to demo a complete set, but they should have some of the individual clubs available.

It’s always good to demo if you can, just because I fall in love with a set, it may not be comfortable for a different person.

I am hopeful that this review will help you in your decision making. I feel that no matter your budget, you should be able to find a complete set of golf clubs that are affordable for you, and that you’re proud to use.

If you’re happy with your purchase, you will have way more confidence and like Jack Nicklaus said “Golf is 80% mental, 10% ability, and 10% luck”. The more confidence you have, the better you’ll play.