2016 Golf Balls: Everything you need to know

At American Golf we pride ourselves on pairing the perfect golf ball to every player to help them improve their game and perform at their absolute best.

This comprehensive buying guide to golf balls will offer advice and tips about golf balls, including how best to utilise them on the greens, a closer look at which options are available and which brands are definitely worth considering.

Golf brands often speak about ball construction, but many players (including some Tour pro’s) don’t really understand their meaning. Every golf ball will feel different when coming off the clubface, and the way each golf ball is put together can have fundamental changes to a player’s individual game. Some golfers might be familiar with the 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5-piece construction which makes up a golf ball, but for those who are new to the game or who haven’t had the chance to really look at their golf balls in this way, here is a brief description of each golf ball’s construction.

One-Piece Golf Ball

Golf balls with the simplest construction are one-piece and designed mainly for golfers in the amateur ranks or those that play on driving ranges. One-piece balls are rarely used as playing balls and made from a solid sphere of Surlyn with dimples moulded into it. These golf balls are excellent value outside of competition play, and one of the reasons they do not give the distance of other models is due to having lower compression. Practice golf balls such as the PGA Tour Sports Balls 6 Pack, Callaway Golf HX Practice 9 Ball Pack, Masters Golf Practice Foam Balls, PGA Tour 36 Practice Balls, Masters Golf 30% Practice Balls and Masters Golf Airflow Practice Balls may also be considered one-piece.

Two-Piece Golf Ball

Everyday golfers like the feel and performance of two-piece golf balls as they combine maximum distance with greater durability. The basic construction is based around a single solid sphere core, often made from hard plastic, which is then enclosed in the golf balls cover – adding the second piece of the two-piece design. Two-piece balls are associated with having a firmer feel and providing improved distance, though often this is at the expense of control and feel. Average golfers will enjoy what they get from these golf balls as they are virtually indestructible and offer much needed distance in air and on ground.

Three-Piece Golf Ball

Similar to the two-piece design, three-piece golf balls have a solid rubber core. The cover on the three-piece golf ball is soft, synthetic plastic and is a lot softer than its two-piece counterpart – thus allowing for better golfers to place more spin on the ball in order to control it through the air and across the turf. The third piece comes in between the core and cover, with a layer of enhanced liquid rubber being added around the core before another layer is added to the design to increasing spin. The three-piece offers more spin and control in air and over turf.


The four-piece golf ball has a particular purpose in mind to create the distance of a two-piece design with the softer feel of a three-piece. The core of the four-piece design is a soft rubber primarily created to offer explosive distance. The inner layer transfers energy from the impact to the core. The next inner layer (the additional layer compared to a three-piece design) is designed to increase driver distance without reducing the spin from mid irons and when around the green. The cover of a four-piece ball is where most of the feel comes from and is the thinnest layer of the golf ball, made from urethane, which helps make it soft.

Five-Piece Golf Ball

Innovated by TaylorMade is the five-piece golf ball. Each layer is engineered to optimize performance in five key areas that skilled player’s desire: driver, long irons, middle irons, short irons and short wedge shots. These golf balls offer extremely soft, low-compression cores and it’s the most critical layer at promoting high launch and low spin off the driver for maximum carry and distance every time.

Distance Golf Balls (Mid-High Handicap)

Distance golf balls are suited to mid-high handicap golfers where distance is more important than spin or control. Offering distance off the clubface, these balls are perfectly suited for mid-high handicaps seeking easier play with far more forgiveness, adding precious yards to every golf swing.

A selection of distance-level golf balls for players include the Titleist DT TruSoft, Callaway Golf Superhot 55, Titleist NXT Tour S 2016, Titleist Velocity Double Digit, Srixon AD333 and Nike Golf RZN.

For ladies, the Srixon Soft Feel 5th Generation Ladies 12 Ball Pack, Wilson Staff DX2 Soft Ladies 12 Ball Pack and Bridgestone Golf Precept Ladies 12 Pack are the perfect distance golf balls on the market today.

Spin/Control Golf Balls (Mid handicap)

The Wilson Staff DX3 Urethane, TaylorMade Penta Urethane 12 Ball Pack, TaylorMade Lethal 12 Ball Pack, Wilson Staff FG Tour 12 Ball Pack, Titleist NXT Tour and Callaway Warbird Plus 12 Ball Pack are a comfortable middle ground for mid handicap golfers or golfers looking to make a step up from amateur level. Spin/control type golf balls offer distance characteristics with a pinch of spin for good measure, despite not being as long as pure distance golf balls and not offering as much spin as premium golf balls allow; it nonetheless benefits in both areas by finding an ideal balance in between the two.

Premium Golf Balls (Low handicap)

The best golfers will look to premium golf balls such as the Callaway Golf Chrome Soft, Titleist Pro V1x, TaylorMade Tour Preferred TPX, Srixon AD333 Tour 12 Ball Pack 2016, Titleist Pro V1 and TaylorMade Tour Preferred TP. These golf balls are designed to maximise total control and feel with minimal loss of distance, these golf balls will roll onto the greens, but only if a player is good enough and skilled enough to control them.

We stock a huge selection of golf balls for players of all levels and from the biggest brands, including Titleist, Nike, Srixon, Bridgestone, Callaway, Mizuno, TaylorMade, Second Chance, Wilson, Emoji, Wilson Staff, Challenge, Longridge, PGA Tour.