Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 816 Double Black Diamond Driver

Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 816 Double Black Diamond

Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 816 Double Black Diamond Driver

Equipment

Callaway Big Bertha Alpha 816 Double Black Diamond Driver

Keeping in mind accomplished players who have a consistent swing and who want to decrease spin and work the ball off the tee, Callaway is bringing the Big Bertha Alpha 816 Double Black Diamond driver to stores Sept. 18.

Last season’s Big Bertha Alpha 815 Double Black Diamond was designed to be a spin-killer. It had an OptiFit adjustable hosel that allowed golfers to change the loft and lie angle, an R-Moto face cup to increase ball speed, moveable weights to create a draw or a fade bias, and a two-position Gravity Core (a cartridge with a heavy end and a light end) that allowed players to shift the center of gravity location up or down. Several pros, including Phil Mickelson and Patrick Reed, used it on the PGA Tour.

Callaway gave the new Alpha 816 Double Black Diamond the same 8-position adjustable hosel with an updated variable-thickness, titanium R-Moto face to enhance ball speed.

Evan Gibbs, Callaway’s manager of performance analysis, said one of the issues with the previous Alpha driver was the Gravity Core was positioned in the center of the club. It took up a lot of mass in an ineffective spot for MOI. To alleviate that problem, Callaway originally planned to give the Big Bertha Alpha 816 Double Black Diamond two Gravity Cores, but designers feared a two-cored driver would be too confusing for consumers and create too many overlapping trajectories.

However, they still liked the idea of two positions for the Gravity Core and getting it out of the center of the club.

“What we did with the new driver is eliminate the heel and toe weights and put two tubes in the driver, one in the heel and one in the toe,” Gibbs said. “The Gravity Core can go in either chamber. Basically, it takes the place of the heel-toe weights.”

The updated design allows golfers to select from four CG positions (low heel, high heel, low toe and high toe). Gibbs said the ideal way to select a position is to think about the shot you want to hit (a draw or a fade) and then think about spin, either moderate- or low-spin.

To decrease spin, Callaway recommends positioning the heavy end of the Gravity Core in the down setting; to increase spin put it in the up position. However, Callaway really is touting the increase in ball speed that players get when they align the heavy end of the Gravity Core with the spot where they tend to make contact on the face.

“If you tend to hit high in the face, playing the Gravity Core up will allow you to get more ball speed,” Gibbs said. “If you tend to hit in the middle of the face to low, putting the heavy end down low will tend to give you more ball speed.”

The empty chamber can be covered by an aluminum cap that comes with the driver. A thin piece of acetate in the aluminum caps allows a player to see through to the chamber. If it appears black, it’s empty; if it appears silver, the Gravity Core is in the lower position. Seeing red means the Gravity Core is in the up position.

The Gravity Core itself is slightly shorter, and its position can reduce spin by about 200 rpm, which is less than the 330-rpm change last season’s Gravity Core created. The weight plug in the back of the club is not adjustable, but fitters can use it to modify the club’s swingweight.

The 45½-inch Big Bertha Alpha 815 Double Black Diamond will come standard with an Aldila Rogue 60 or Mitsubishi Rayon Diamana D+ shaft for $499.99. A large selection of aftermarket shafts are available through custom order with no upcharge.

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