Best Golf Fairway Woods

Golf Fairway Woods

The fairway can be a tough place to navigate on many golf courses, but the right set of fairway woods can help any golfer make it to the green in a few less strokes. With a variety of different options on the market, it is important to find the right wood for your game.

What is a fairway wood?

Fairway woods were originally named for the hardwood persimmon they were made from, but now they are mostly made of metals such as titanium. Woods include the driver and the fairway woods, and these clubs are used to get some distance on your shot. For shorter holes, some golfers will choose to use their fairway woods to tee off rather than the driver, which typically is used for longer holes. For example, a short par 3 hole might be a good time to use a fairway wood to start off. For a longer hole such as a par 5, starting with the driver and moving to the fairway wood after the first shot might be the best plan. It is important to have at least one or two fairway woods so that you have options depending on how far you need to drive the ball. Some fairways are spacious, and getting to the green can take a few shots. 

What do the different fairway woods mean?

Fairway woods will typically consist of clubs numbered 3 through 7. The most common fairway woods are 3, 5, and 7. Lower-numbered fairway woods will allow a golfer to hit the ball farther, as they have longer shafts, bigger clubheads, and lower loft. Meanwhile, higher-numbered fairway woods will go a shorter distance due to increased loft, shorter shafts, and smaller clubheads. The average distance most golfers will hit each fairway wood are as follows:

  • 3-wood: 215 yards
  • 5-wood: 200 yards
  • 7-wood: 190 yards

Things To Consider

When looking for a fairway wood, you'll want to consider the following:

  • What kind of fairway wood are you looking for?
  • How much are you looking to spend on a fairway wood?
  • What degree of loft are you looking for?
  • Are you right or left-handed?

What are the best fairway woods?

  1. TaylorMade SIM 2 Max Fairway
  2. Callaway 2021 Epic Max Fairway Wood
  3. Cobra 2020 Men’s Speedzone Fairway Wood
  4. Callaway 2020 Maverik Fairway Wood
  5. Titleist TSi2 Fairway Wood
  6. PXG 2021 0211 Fairway Wood
  7. Callaway Big Bertha B21 Fairway Wood
  8. Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo Fairway Wood
  9. Cobra 2021 Men’s Radspeed Fairway Wood
  10. TaylorMade M4 Fairway Wood

1. TaylorMade SiM 2 Max Fairway

Specifications:

  • Price: $279.99
  • Rating: 4.8/5
  • Brand: TaylorMade

Owned by Dick’s Sporting Goods, TaylorMade has produced high-quality golf clubs, golf balls, and other golfing equipment since 1979. Among these, the SIM 2 Max Fairway is one of the newest and most advanced clubs in the brand’s reputable lines. This fairway wood sees the return of TaylorMade’s specialized V-steel, combining it with their patented SIM (Shape in Motion) Technology to create a club with the lowest center of gravity in the company’s lineup. The combination of multi-material construction and superior weight distribution on the bottom of the club allows the SIM 2 Max to achieve greater distance and speed and reduce spin on the ball. The club’s design also works to improve friction on any surface, making the SIM 2 Max a solid club for use both on and off the tee. The SIM 2 Max also includes TaylorMade’s Twist Face® Technology, a specialized curvature on the face of the club designed to help straighten shots and correct mishits. Overall, the SIM 2 Max provides excellent, rounded performance as a fairway wood and is well worth its price for any golfer looking to improve their fairway performance.

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2. Callaway 2021 Epic Max Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $299.99
  • Rating: 4.7/5
  • Brand: Callaway

Callaway has been one of the major names in golf since the company’s founding in 1982. In 2021, Callaway introduced one of the latest in its line of Epic Max Clubs, the 2021 Epic Max Fairway Wood. Designed with an intentionally-oversized shape meant to maximize ball speeds, the Epic Max Fairway Wood contains a new variation on Callaway’s Jailbreak Velocity Blades, using A.I. technology to design a new system that angles the internal blades of the club to maximize weight distribution and power. The new Jailbreak Velocity Blades in the Epic Max Fairway stiffen the body of the club while allowing greater flexibility in the face, making for much greater ball speeds. The Epic Max Fairway also possesses the ability to fine-tune the launch and spin of the club using adjustable weights within the club head itself. This makes the Epic Max Fairway extremely versatile and more than worth its price for the advantages it gives.

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3. Cobra 2020 Men’s Speedzone Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $198.95
  • Rating: 4.8/5
  • Brand: Cobra

A subsidiary of the PUMA brand, Cobra Golf has been manufacturing golfing equipment, including clubs, since 1973. In 2020, Cobra released the Men’s Speedzone Fairway Wood, a club that paired its traditional shape with a shallower face and increased weighting in the back to improve launch angle and ball height. The Speedzone contains all-new hollow split rails, a variation on Cobra’s Baffler Technology, which allows the club to create higher launch angles and greater speeds. The hollow rails contained within the club are more flexible than solid rails, and this increases the hot spot of the club by 70%. The rails also improve the club’s performance on various turf types, enhancing the Speedzone’s ability to glide through thick grass and even sand. Finally, carbon fiber makes the club’s center of gravity lower and deeper, improving weight distribution and accuracy. One of the cheaper clubs on our list, the Speedzone offers several perks with a reduced price that should be pleasing to many golfers looking to improve their fairway performance without tremendous cost.

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4. Callaway 2020 Maverik Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $299.99
  • Rating: 4.7/5
  • Brand: Callaway

The Mavrik Fairway Wood is Callaway’s fastest fairway wood, containing a large hitting area and a single, fixed weight at the bottom of the club to move the club’s center of gravity downward and back, heightening launch angles and flattening ball trajectory. The Mavrik makes use of Callaway’s unique, A.I.-optimized Flash Face, which is specially designed for each new model of club to maximize their performance. The Mavrik contains Jailbreak Velocity Blades designed to promote distance and flexibility. Additionally, the Mavrik uses specialized leading-edge geometry to streamline and perfect the shape of the club head in order to improve launch angles. However, one drawback of the Mavrik is that it does not contain a tunable or interchangeable weight, whereas the Epic Max contains two tunable weights for a greater variety of performance. Nevertheless, the Mavrik remains an excellent choice for golfers looking for a fairway wood with proven consistency and up-to-date technology.

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5. Titleist TS2 Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $299.00
  • Rating: N/A
  • Brand: Titleist

Established in 1932, Titleist has long been the leading name in golf balls, but the company also produces clubs and other golfing equipment, including the TSi2 Fairway Wood. This club is designed for performance and integrates many of Titleist’s own unique technologies. The TSi2 joins many other fairway woods in lowering its center of gravity and includes Titleist’s patented Active Recoil Channel 4.0 Technology to improve the consistency and height of the club’s launch angle. The TSi2 contains several adjustable features that make it a truly versatile club, one of which is Titleist’s SureFit® Hosel, a specialized sleeve and ring which allows golfers to interchange shafts between different types of Titleist clubs. This allows golfers a far greater range of versatility and length in their clubs, and when paired with Titleist’s Customization Features, the TSi2 becomes a highly valuable addition to our list, especially for golfers who enjoy experimentation and versatility in their clubs.  

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6. PXG 2021 0211 Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $199.99
  • Rating: N/A
  • Brand: PXG

Founded by Bob Parsons in 2014, PXG currently serves golfers of all levels in more than 50 countries worldwide with high-quality golf clubs. Among these clubs, the PXG 0211 Fairway Wood is notable for combining balance, speed, and forgiveness, and is suitable for players at all levels. The club is known for its rounded face, which is made from HT1770 stainless steel, and for its larger profile at address. The PXG 0211 is unique among many of the clubs on this list in that it features a single-weight port near the front of the club, rather than the back. This weight port is adjustable, allowing golfers many different options when approaching their shots, and the weight-forward design allows for lower ball spin and greater distance. The PXG 0211 also contains an adjustable hosel, which can add or subtract up to 1.5 degrees from the club’s loft in order to alter ball trajectory. As another of the cheaper clubs on this list, the PXG 0211 stands up as an extraordinarily versatile club, similar to the Titleist TSi2 and the Callaway Epic Max Fairway Wood, yet at a far lesser price.

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7. Callaway Big Bertha B21 Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $299.99
  • Rating: 4.8/5
  • Brand: Callaway

Considered one of Callaway’s most famous products, the Big Bertha Driver first launched in 1991 and achieved instant notoriety as a result of professional golfer Mark Brooks, who won two tournaments on the PGA Tour using the club in its first year on the market. Now, Callaway has expanded the Big Bertha label to include fairway woods, among them the Big Bertha B21. The B21 is an easy-to-launch fairway wood designed to improve distance for golfers who are uncomfortable with most fairway woods. The club includes a shallower face, an oversized shape, and smooth turf interaction, which combine to make it easy to hit. Once again combining Callaway’s Flash Face and Jailbreak Technologies, the B21 uses its large face and stiff inner blades to increase ball speed, and the club also includes additional offset to avoid slices and increase overall distance. At $299.99, the B21 has fewer adjustable elements and unique design perks than other similarly-priced clubs on this list, but its ease-of-use design nonetheless make it a good choice for golfers who want to gain more experience with fairway woods by starting out with a more efficient design.

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8. Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $169.99
  • Rating: 4.7/5
  • Brand: Cleveland

For over 40 years, Cleveland Golf has been a big name in the manufacturing of golf wedges, with their products winning multiple championships on the PGA Tour. The Launcher HB Turbo Fairway Wood is designed to provide greater speed, greater distance, and to allow shots to go higher, longer, and straighter. The club contains an all-new turbocharged cup face which better adheres to the ball, creating a larger impact zone that increases speed and distance. The Launcher HB Turbo is made with a HiBore Crown and an Ultralight Hosel, which combine to lower the club’s center of gravity and redistribute weight. The center of gravity in the club shaft is also optimized, located higher towards the grip than most clubs, in order to achieve a greater moment of inertia. While these perks do come with an inherent lack of adjustability, the Launcher HB Turbo makes up for its simpler design with a lower price, coming in as the cheapest fairway wood on our list, and making itself an obvious contender for golfers who value simplicity and cost-effectiveness over flashiness and high prices.

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9. Cobra 2021 Men’s Radspeed Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $248.95
  • Rating: 4.8/5
  • Brand: Cobra

The Cobra Radspeed Fairway Wood pairs a traditional shape with a unique radial weight distribution that delivers not only the expected high launch angles and reduced ball spin, but also improves stopping power when approaching the green. The Radspeed increases the distance between its front and back weights to create a balanced combination of spin and speed. The front of the club contains two 8-gram RAD weights, with an additional 7-gram weight in the back, and hollow rails at the front of the club increase its flexibility by 70%. This pairs with the club’s use of a thin-ply carbon crown, which uses 30% thinner material to lighten the club and further increase flexibility. At $248.99, the Radspeed is a moderately-priced fairway wood that offers a number of solid perks while not verging into overly sophisticated technologies that would drive its price even higher. This makes it a great choice for golfers who are looking for a decent all-around club that will pair a satisfactory price with equally-satisfying results

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10. TaylorMade M4 Fairway Wood

Specifications:

  • Price: $314.24-$330.00
  • Rating: 4.7/5
  • Brand: TaylorMade

The final fairway wood on our list, the TaylorMade M4 Fairway Wood, offers a number of TaylorMade’s signature technologies in a simple and direct package. The club makes use of TaylorMade’s Twist Face® Technology and also contains the company’s signature Speed Pocket, both of which work together to enhance accuracy and velocity. The M4 is made with Geocustic Technology and has internal split weights, providing better sound and feel while also increasing the club’s forgiveness. The sleek, ergonomic design of the M4 is also a plus, but it does have its drawbacks–namely, the relative simplicity of the club when paired with its high price. Having fewer perks or adjustable features than other clubs, the M4 may drive some golfers away due to its lack of specialized features, but for those looking for a solid, dependable fairway wood with proven technologies, the M4 may very well be an alluring choice.

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FAQ

In what situations should you hit a fairway wood?

Fairway woods are used for the first swing on shorter holes such as par 3’s or even a short par 4. Using a 3-wood for these holes can help deliver the ball close to the green, where you can switch to a different club option. For longer holes such as par 5’s, it is appropriate to use your fairway wood after first teeing off with your driver and landing the ball on the fairway. You may still have some ground to cover before the green on long holes, and the fairway woods are perfect for that.

How much do fairway woods cost?

Depending on the brand and the type of wood being purchased, they can range from $150 to over $1,000 for clubs used by professionals. Many of the top brands sell a variety of woods, and figuring out if you would prefer to buy one adjustable wood, which can be a more expensive club around $300, or multiple standard woods priced between $150-$300 is important. Another option is buying an entire set of clubs that would include woods, irons, wedges, and a putter for several hundred dollars. 

How far can you hit a fairway wood?

The smaller the number of the wood, the more distance you can potentially get on a shot.

3-woods will typically max out around 125-235 yards, which is about 20% less than you might be able to get from your driver, but the wood can make for a more precise shot. 5-woods generally shoot between 105-210 yards, and again, the shorter distance is meant to come with a little extra precision. Sometimes you simply do not need the additional distance on your shot to land near the green, which is where a 5-wood can come in handy.