10 Best Fairway Woods of 2024

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Louis Pringle
Apr 23, 2024
10 minutes

Fairway woods are often tricky to shop for as you need to find a club that you can rely on, both on and off the tee. Ideally, your fairway wood will help you deal with tighter and shorter fairways or help shorten par 5s. But with so many options on the market, getting your hands on the right one for you can get confusing.

Fortunately for you, we got our expert Dylan to provide you with 10 fairway wood suggestions that he considers to be the best fairway woods in 2024. He offers a summary of each model, along with his impressions of each club. Additionally, his selections cover a wide range of skill sets, giving you as many options as possible.

The 10 Best Fairway Woods in 2024:

  1. TaylorMade SIM2 Max Fairway Wood – Most affordable option in the list
  2. Callaway Paradym Fairway Wood – Terrific for golfers with a sizeable budget
  3. TaylorMade Qi10 Max Fairway Wood – Perfectly suited for golfers with a high handicap index
  4. Callaway Steelhead XR Fairway Wood – Highly forgiving option, suited to beginners
  5. Cobra Air-X Fairway Wood – Suited to golfers with slower swing speeds
  6. Titleist TSr2 Fairway Wood – Highest performer in overall categories
  7. Cobra DAKRSPEED MAX Fairway Wood – Delivers high forgiveness level and anti-slice properties
  8. Ping G425 Max Fairway Wood – Best option for mid-to-high handicappers
  9. TaylorMade Stealth 2 HD Fairway Wood – Offers draw-bias properties to counter a slice
  10. Srixon ZX MKII Fairway Wood – Suited for golfers with a higher skill level

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1. TaylorMade SIM2 Max Fairway Wood

Firstly, the look of the TaylorMade SIM2 Max fairway wood is immediately striking. The 190cc clubhead size fills the gap between the Max D and the SIM2 fairway woods. The matte carbon crown is a darker shade of grey, complete with a “T” logo adjustment on the grey crown. All these changes give the club a cleaner look, which I found quite appealing.

The sound and feel of the SIM2 Max are noteworthy. It is a mix between a sort of deep resounding noise and the “crack" of a wooden bat. Off-center strikes felt better than the previous SIM model, giving you the feeling that every strike is hit right off the sweet spot.

In terms of performance, the SIM2 Max fairway wood surprised me. The white edge of the crown frames the ball providing a good dose of confidence, especially for golfers who struggle with alignment at address. Most of the shots I hit were absolute rockets. I also found a significant amount of consistency from one shot to the next. This consistency was also noticeable, both on and off the tee.

However, there are some things to consider with this club. While it is versatile and forgiving, it does favor the left side of the fairway for right-handed golfers. This might be a bit challenging for some players who already have a draw-bias. Also, the changes from the previous year's model are not groundbreaking, so if you're already using the previous model, you might not find a significant difference. But if you’re model is starting to show its age, this could be a game-changing upgrade.

In conclusion, the TaylorMade SIM2 Max fairway wood is an ultra-forgiving fairway wood. It’s easy to launch and has the ideal amount of spin and forgiveness to make it the secret weapon in your golf bag. We like it so much that it was even featured in our list of the 8 best fairway woods under $125. But as with any club, I'd recommend giving it a try yourself to see if it fits your style of play.

Our takeaways after testing the SIM2 Max fairway wood:

  • Ideally suited to beginners because of its low price and forgiving properties
  • Delivers an important draw-bias at impact to limit the effects of the slice
  • Provides consistency from one strike to the next off the tee

Shop TaylorMade SIM2 Max Fairway Wood

2. Callaway Paradym Fairway Wood

The Callaway Paradym fairway wood’s look quickly jumped out to me. The deep blue crown reveals an intricate carbon construction when the light finds the right angle. The sublime blue "Forged Carbon" midsection, gold tungsten weight insert, "Jailbreak AI," and iconic Callaway logo on the sole tell you all you need to know about this club. It’ll certainly stand out in your bag.

When it comes to performance, the Callaway Paradym fairway wood is a bit of a mixed bag. On one hand, it produces amazing ball speeds and balances it out with a good bit of forgiveness. The all-new Jailbreak Batwing moved the stiffening elements to the perimeter, stiffening the framework and allowing for more flexibility in the club face at impact. More flexibility results in faster ball speeds. I was very happy with the ball speed I was achieving with this club.

But there are some things to keep in mind with this club. While the Paradym fairway wood delivers when it comes to distance, it falls on the short side in terms of forgiveness. This was something I noticed during my time with the club. The head felt mostly stable unless I wandered out towards the toe.

The sound and feel of the club were quite rewarding. Pure strikes had a woodsy-sounding impact that felt like the ball stayed on the club face for an extra split second. Feedback was subtle, but I was able to confirm the impact location quite easily.

In conclusion, the Callaway Paradym fairway wood is a club that offers high launch, neutral ball flight, and impressive ball speeds. However, its forgiveness could be a bit underwhelming for some golfers. It's a club that requires a bit of skill to use to the best of its abilities, but when you do, it can certainly help you achieve some impressive distances on the course.

Our takeaways after testing the Paradym fairway wood:

  • Delivers impressive strikes time after time
  • Perfect upgrade for golfers looking to get more distance out of their fairway wood
  • Offer limited forgiveness, but provides more control and feel for the golf ball

Shop Callaway Paradym Fairway Wood

3. TaylorMade Qi10 Max Fairway Wood

The first thing you notice when you set this TaylorMade Qi10 Max down by the ball is its size. It's massive! The fairway sits flat to the ground and seems to stretch back much further than most other fairways I have used in the past. This larger footprint, along with a little more loft than standard models, is designed to assist golfers who struggle to strike their fairways consistently and could do with a little more assistance to get the ball airborne.

The Qi10 Max features a new Infinity Carbon Crown designed to extend over the edge of the clubhead. You’ll also find a new sleek hosel design, to save weight in that part of the club and repurpose it in more useful areas. In this fairway wood, it is used to lower the CG, increasing launch and generating more distance.

Now, let's talk about performance. When I tested the Qi10 Max, both the ball speed and the carry distance that it produced were impressive to me. The ball speed in particular was great turning my regular swings into trajectories that felt like a missile coming off the clubface.

However, it's not all sunshine and rainbows. While the larger size can be a confidence booster for some, it might be off-putting for others who prefer a more compact club. Also, the bonded hosel saves weight but limits customization. So, if you're someone who likes to tinker with your clubs, this might be a drawback.

In conclusion, the TaylorMade Qi10 Max fairway wood is a solid option for those looking to upgrade their fairway woods. It offers a nice blend of power and forgiveness and could be a game-changer for golfers who struggle with their fairway woods, especially when it comes to hitting off the ground. But as with any club, I'd recommend giving it a try yourself to see if it fits your game.

Our takeaways after testing the Qi10 Max fairway wood:

  • Massive clubhead for an extra dose of confidence at address
  • Higher loft angle to launch the strikes with more ease, both down the fairway and off the tee
  • A bit pricey as it’s an inline model, but its performance will certainly make up for the price

Shop TaylorMade Qi10 Max Fairway Wood

4. Callaway Steelhead XR Fairway Wood

The first thing that will strike you about the Callaway Steelhead XR is its look. The carbon fiber is visible in the rear of the crown, a signature of Callaway's designs from this period. It's a detail that's far enough from the ball that it's not distracting, and it adds a unique factor to the club.

The sound and feel at impact are excellent time and time again. The impact sound has a medium level, yet crisp, pitch with a robust metallic quality. However, one thing I noticed is that the feedback is far from optimal as all strikes felt the same off the club face, regardless of impact location. This could be a downside if you're a golfer who relies heavily on auditory feedback for shot correction.

Performance-wise, the Steelhead XR is forgiving and easy to launch. My strikes produced consistent carry distances no matter how good the impact was. Ball speeds also stayed high when I wandered to the edges of the sweet spot. These are clear signs of a fairway wood that is perfectly suited for beginners and less-experienced golfers alike.

Overall, the Callaway Steelhead XR fairway wood is a solid choice for golfers looking to upgrade their clubs. It combines a classic look with modern enhancements, offering a balance of performance and aesthetics. But like any club, it has its quirks, and it's important to try it out for yourself to see if it fits your game.

Our takeaways after testing the Steelhead XR fairway wood:

  • Perfectly suited for golfers looking for a highly forgiving option
  • One of the more affordable models in this list, and on the market
  • Impressive ball speeds at impact, regardless of impact location

Shop Callaway Steelhead XR Fairway Wood

5. Cobra Air-X Fairway Wood

The first thing that jumped out to me with the Cobra Air-X is its lightweight design. This club is all about "effortless speed", as the designers have focused on reducing weight to make it easier to swing. This is especially useful for golfers on the lower end of the swing speed spectrum, providing them with more control and the ability to generate more speed. This is a club that doesn't tire you out, even after a long day on the course. It’s so good, in fact, it was featured in our list of the 5 best Cobra fairway woods under $125.

The Cobra Air-X fairway wood is also quite forgiving. It's designed to straighten out a slice, making it an excellent choice for golfers who struggle with this trajectory on the course. The offset hosel and heel weighting minimize left-to-right ball flight for righties (and vice versa for lefties), which can be a game-changer for golfers struggling with a slice.

Now, let's talk about the aesthetics. The dark grey clubhead has a wonderfully rounded shape at address. The carbon composite construction becomes visible about halfway back from the face, which gives the club a unique touch. The face is shallow and wide, ideal conditions for optimal strikes from the fairway.

When it comes to sound and feel, the Air-X fairway produced a woodsy "crack" across the face. The sound was pleasant to my ears and was a great compliment to its stable and solid feel in hands.

However, there are some things to look out for. While the club is designed to fight the slice, it might be a bit too aggressive for some. Normal swings in a neutral club setup produced a strong draw that was on the limits of a hook. So, if you're someone who desires to produce a baby draw, this might not be the club for you.

Also, while the lightweight design is great for golfers with moderate swing speeds, it might not be suitable for golfers on the other end of the speed spectrum. If you're someone who swings fast, you might want to look at other options.

In conclusion, the Cobra Air-X fairway wood is a club that offers a lot of forgiveness and can help golfers with slower swing speeds or those who struggle with a slice. However, it might not be the best fit for golfers with higher swing speeds or those who already produce a draw trajectory. As always, I recommend trying it out for yourself to see if it fits your game.

Our takeaways after testing the Air-X fairway wood:

  • Extremely lightweight golf club, perfect for golfers who struggle with consistency
  • Promotes a strong draw-bias thanks to the offset near the hosel
  • Perfectly suited to golfers with slower swing speeds

Shop Cobra Air-X Fairway Wood

6. Titleist TSr2 Fairway Wood

I was immediately drawn to the clean and traditional look of the Titleist TSr2 fairway wood. The gloss black crown, adorned only by a small "TSR" alignment aid, is a subtle sign of understated elegance. The medium-sized footprint and rounded, symmetrical shape gave it a balanced feel, and the face height struck a good balance, inspiring confidence whether off the tee or down in the alley.

One of the first things I noticed was the scoring lines extending all the way across the face, giving a different look from the previous generation. This feature, while seemingly small, made a significant difference in my perception of the club. It highlighted the loft at address, making the club feel easier to launch at impact.

Swinging the TSr2 for the first time, I was struck by the quiet, understated tone of impact. The golf ball felt light and quick off the club face, and I could get a good sense of impact location through the feedback in my hands. It was as if both the sound and feel were trying to be as discreet as possible.

But don't let the understated sound and feel fool you. The TSr2 packs a punch when it comes to performance. The new, lower center of gravity (CG) promotes higher launch angles at impact. I remember thinking that I was hitting some of the best strikes of my life while testing this club. Even thin strikes proved to be decent.

However, there are still some aspects of the TSr2 that might not suit everyone. While it's a fantastic club that produces a good amount of distance and is more forgiving on mishits, it's not an undeniable upgrade over the previous generation. If you're already using the TSi2 fairway wood, for example, you might not find the improvements in the TSr2 compelling enough to warrant an upgrade.

In conclusion, the Titleist TSr2 fairway wood is a solid choice for golfers looking to balance distance and consistency. It's easy to launch, delivers impressive distance, and offers a sleek, traditional aesthetic that many golfers will appreciate. However, if you're already using a recent model from Titleist, you might want to try it out first to see if the improvements justify the upgrade.

Our takeaways after testing the TSr2 fairway wood:

  • Packs an impressive punch on impact
  • Provides plenty of forgiveness on mishits
  • Sports a classic, subdued yet chic, Titleist clubhead profile

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7. Cobra Darkspeed Max Fairway Wood

Firstly, the aesthetics of this Cobra Darkspeed fairway wood are truly bold. The stealthed-out look of the Darkspeed Max fairway wood, complemented by the red accents on the sole, gives it a slick yet modern look. It's one of the better-looking fairway woods from the 2024 class of new releases.

Performance-wise, it's a solid fairway wood, especially for golfers seeking longer carry distances and a draw-biased ball flight. The club’s forgiveness is largely due to two interchangeable weights located in the sole. One weight is situated at the back and low to increase the CG and MOI, and the other weight is placed near the heel to help promote a right-to-left shot shape for right-handed golfers and left-to-right for lefties. This makes it a great choice for beginner golfers looking for ultimate forgiveness.

However, there are a couple of things that some golfers might not find ideal. The matte carbon crown makes the head appear a little more compact than it truly is. While this is great for a confident player looking to have control over the golf ball, it may not be ideal for those who want to look down on the largest head possible for that boost of confidence. Also, some may prefer a gloss crown over the matte carbon look.

In summary, the Cobra Darkspeed Max is a fantastic-looking wood with loads of technology to make it one of the brand’s most forgiving and highest-performing fairway woods. But as with any club, it's always best to try it out for yourself to see if it suits your game.

Our takeaways after testing the Darkspeed Max fairway wood:

  • Stealth look that gives the club a seriously “badass” profile
  • Provides a draw-bias ball flight to help counter the likelihood of a slice
  • Show a slightly more compact clubhead profile, but launches the ball at a high angle with a lot of spin

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8. Ping G425 Max Fairway Wood

The black and silver color scheme of the Ping G425 Max fairway wood’s sole immediately caught my eye. The absence of any true highlight color gave the club a sleek look. The strong angular lines gave it a powerful look. At address, the G425 Max fairway wood is an even bigger departure from the previous model due to the absence of the usually obvious turbulators. This new look gives the club head a much cleaner appearance which compliments the matte black finish.

The first swing I took with it, I noticed the solid and stable feel of this club. The feedback in my hands was subtle, requiring me to really pay attention to locate the impact zone on the club face. The sound was also somewhat consistent, with any decent contact producing a hollow, metallic impact that was loudish, but with a pleasant tone, typical of Ping clubs.

In terms of performance, the Ping G425 Max fairway wood is great for a golfer who wants a reliable fairway wood in all phases of the game. It excels at everything that you could ever want from a fairway: distance, forgiveness, and feel. I expected the Ping G425 Max fairway to have decent launch angles, but what really grabbed my attention was the consistency of its ball flights.

However, here’s what you should keep in mind. While the club is highly forgiving and provides high ball speeds time and time again, more experienced golfers may find it a little harder to shape the ball to their desire. The LS version of this G425 might be better suited to your needs on the course in that case.

Overall, the Ping G425 Max fairway wood is an excellent choice for golfers looking to upgrade their club. It provides accuracy without sacrificing distance and performs especially well from the ground on impacts struck low on the club face. It's a club that doesn't just perform well but also looks and feels great in your hands. I hope this helps in your decision-making process!

Our takeaways after testing the G425 Max fairway wood:

  • Sleek dark clubhead profile that will suit the eye of most golfers
  • Incredibly stable at impact, almost to a fault as club feel takes a hit
  • Delivers incredible performance, even on impacts near the lower part of the club face

Shop Ping G425 Max Fairway Wood

9. TaylorMade Stealth 2 HD Fairway Wood

The first thing that strikes you about the TaylorMade Stealth 2 HD is its clubhead size. It's quite long from front to back and larger than most from heel to toe. This creates a larger contact area, which can be a confidence booster when you're standing over the ball. The shallow face that sits slightly shut at address is another feature that stands out. It follows in the lineage of quality TaylorMade woods and was even featured in our list of the 8 best TaylorMade fairway woods under $200.

When it comes to performance, the Stealth 2 HD is a beast. It's ultra forgiving and very easy to launch high whether off the tee or the ground. This is a great choice for players who are struggling with a slice. The club has a strong draw bias, which can help correct any undesirable fade.

On quality strikes, the Stealth 2 HD feels very crisp and powerful in hands. The impact sound amplifies the feedback you experience through your hands. Strikes that find the sweet spot produce a mid-pitched impact with low-pitched metallic undertones. When your shots strike the heel or toe, the sound becomes a disharmonious slap – a clear reminder to get back closer to the center of the club face.

However, it's not all sunshine and rainbows with the Stealth 2 HD. While it's great for players with lower swing speeds or ones who struggle with consistent ball striking, golfers with high swing speeds might think this club misses the mark. The design properties of this fairway wood can lead to too much spin, which could rob these players of distance.

In conclusion, the TaylorMade Stealth 2 HD fairway wood is a solid club that offers a lot of forgiveness and can help players struggling with a slice. However, golfers with high swing speed might want to look elsewhere due to the potential excessive spin levels. As always, I recommend trying it out for yourself to see if it fits your game.

Our takeaways after testing the Stealth 2 HD fairway wood:

  • Features a massive clubhead for added confidence at address
  • True feedback on the quality of impact, both audibly and in terms of feel
  • High spin levels that will please golfers with slower swing speeds

Shop TaylorMade Stealth 2 HD Fairway Wood

10. Srixon ZX MKII Fairway Wood

The first thing that strikes you about the Srixon ZX MKII is its appearance. It has a slightly triangular shape combined with a fairly average clubhead size. The sole is a mixture of gloss and matte black with prominent silver branding across the sole. The face looks a little shorter than average, which, combined with the “flatter” leading edge, makes it a very efficient option off the turf.

When you take a swing, the sound is something to behold. It produces a big, round metallic contact that sounds immensely powerful without turning to an eardrum-piercing sound. When it comes to feel for the ball, it isn't bad, but it takes a back seat to the sound.

In terms of performance, the Srixon ZX MKII fairway wood is low spinning, yet it’s easy to elevate off the turf. This is a rare combination that helps to shorten long par 4s and 5s. The high launch angle persisted throughout my time with the club. Every good shot was around 12 degrees, and even my poor swings launched over the 10-degree mark. Higher launch is key to producing longer carry distance.

Now, let's talk about the areas where the Srixon ZX MKII could improve. For accuracy and forgiveness, it comes in below average relative to other fairway woods from the same year of release. It is a fairway wood that lacks adjustability, so if you're considering the Srixon ZX MKII fairway wood, I strongly recommend you get one with the proper specs.

In conclusion, the Srixon ZX MKII fairway wood is a solid choice for golfers looking for a versatile fairway wood that offers great performance in various situations. It's suitable for golfers of different skill levels and with a wide range of swing speeds. However, its lack of adjustability and below-average accuracy and forgiveness may be a drawback for some. As always, I recommend trying it out for yourself to see if it's the right fit for your game.

Our takeaways after testing the ZX MKII fairway wood:

  • Highly versatile fairway wood that performs in any situation on the course
  • Low spinning model, ideal to maximize distance for golfers with faster swing speeds
  • Accuracy and forgiveness are slightly lack-luster

Shop Srixon ZX MKII Fairway Wood

Hopefully, this list brings you closer to upgrading your fairway wood, or maybe even help get your hands on your first one. As previously mentioned, these recommendations cover a wide range of skill sets and can suit the playing style of just as many golfers. Dylan’s takeaways should help you structure a clearer view of what a model can do for you.

Shop All Fairway Woods

Of course, if you feel like the options in this list aren’t suited to your needs, we have other ways to help you find your next clubs. First off, you can use our trusty “Club Finder” tool that finds the right clubs for you by having you answer a series of multiple-choice questions. If you prefer a more personalized approach, you can always book a call with Dylan, or any other of our experts for a one-on-one experience.

Until next time,

The Golf Avenue Team

Further reading

Looking for a new Cobra wood? Here's a list of our top 5 Cobra Fairway Woods at cheap prices. Find the best wood for beginners, distance, adjustability and more!

There's lots of options when it comes to choosing a fairway wood. This beginner's guide will explain how to choose a fairway wood and what differences are there.