Callaway Chrome Tour X golf ball Review

By , Today's Golfer Equipment Editor
  • At a glance

  • TG Rating 5 out of 5
  • Owner Rating Not yet rated
  • Pros
    • Expect very strong ball speed compared to the Titleist Pro V1x.
    • Never forget this ball is played by some of the game's very best players.
    • After their investment, it's hard to imagine any brand making more consistent golf balls.
  • Cons
    • It's a shame the Chrome Tour isn't priced just below the market-leading Titleist Pro V1x.
  • RRP £54.99

What we say...

The Chrome Tour X is designed to be a direct alternative to the Titleist Pro V1x. Callaway says the model outperforms the market-leading model for ball speed and distance. My review finds out if it delivers on the promise.

The original Callaway Chrome Soft golf ball was launched in 2014. It came with the tagline “The ball that changed the ball”. The model was designed from a strokes gained angle with extra emphasis heaped on feeling soft. the promise was to help golfers score better, rather than just focus on being the fastest or longest on a launch monitor.

Chrome Soft changed the golf ball landscape. It became one of the best golf balls available and started a whole new soft feeling, lower compression golf ball trend. A decade on and golf’s biggest golf company hopes the new Callaway Chrome Tour will have a similar impact on tour pros and elite players.

Callaway Chrome Tour X golf ball

Soft was a hit with club golfers but struggled on tour 

The original Chrome Soft was a bit of an oddity. It started a whole new golf ball category offering aspirational club golfers soft feeling tour quality golf balls designed just for them. Which back in 2014 was a first.

The model was low spin, which helped golfers find more fairways with extra distance. Yet its 65 compression gave a softer feel than leading tour balls like the Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x. Thanks to a soft premium urethane cover golfers got guaranteed greenside spin and control to boost scoring potential. In much the same way as they experienced with the market-leading tour ball.

The trouble was Callaway’s tour stars (much like most tour pros) didn’t put a premium on a soft feel. The Chrome Soft was criticized for flying too straight, and it was hard to work. Needless to say, it wasn’t long before Callaway introduced a firmer Chrome Soft X and an additional Chrome Soft X LS for bombers.

Since then though the brand has built a solid band of staff players who use Chrome Soft golf balls. World #3 and #6 Jon Rahm and Xander Schauffele both do, but only at a firmer compression than the original Chrome Soft.

Xander Schauffele uses Callaway's premium tour ball.

Golfers now know the Callaway Chrome Tour X is a direct alternative to the Pro V1x

At tour level Callaway works directly with the pros, so they can easily dial players into their golf ball family. But at retail not having an easily identifiable competitor to the Titleist Pro V1, golf’s most popular ball, led to the brand underperforming within the tour ball sector.   

The new Chrome Tour and Chrome Tour X then will target Titleist’s most famous golf balls head-on. Expect the new Chrome Tour to fill a softer space than where the brand’s tour balls have been positioned before. I’d say if you see the Chrome Tour as an alternative to the Pro V1, and the Chrome Tour X targeting Pro V1x players you’ll be thinking exactly along the right lines.

But why would you choose Callaway tour balls rather than Titleist if they’re very much the same? Well, Callaway says both the Chrome Tour models will outperform Titleist on ball speed and distance. Essentially highlighting the major selling point of this whole new family.     


Callaway Chrome Tour and Chrome Tour X Triple Track Golf Balls.

Everything you need to know about Callaway Chrome Tour X golf balls

A new gold standard from core to cover

Callaway has invested over $50 million over the last five years in updating the machinery and processes at their Chicopee golf ball plant. The factory where the brand’s premium golf balls are made. And they’re so confident their investment pays dividends in accuracy and consistency that they say these three new Chrome models represent a brand-new gold standard for golf balls.

Everything from the formulation of the HyperFast softcore to new mantle layers and a softer urethane cover is all brand new to this generation. Three new aerodynamic packages have also changed dramatically from the previous Chrome Soft, Chrome Soft X, and Chrome Soft X LS.

Thanks to collating over 100 million data points every day as balls travel through their QC process, with every ball being 3D X-rayed to maximize consistency, Callaway says consumers will buy the most advanced golf balls ever made in 2024.   

Callaway Chrome Tour X golf balls

Different aero packages

Over the years Callaway has made a massive point of the HEX pattern on the cover of their golf balls being geometries, not dimples. The aerodynamic edge they create is critically important to performance gains. The original design was created by ex-Boeing aircraft aerodynamicist Steve Ogg, yet for the first time, each new Chrome Tour ball will come decked out with HEX geometries and nine areas of circular-shaped dimples.

The HEX pattern varies for each of the three new Chrome golf ball models. The idea allows engineers to dial in the specific ball flight wants of the target player of each ball. Such breakthroughs mean while the Chrome Tour X will be the highest-spinning ball in the family, it will also produce less drag and flight shots lowest. This is because its aero package is designed to be the most penetrating with the least amount of lift.

The new Chrome Soft is at the opposite end of that scale. It’s a low-spin ball, but golfers most suited to this model usually need a little extra help launching shots to a higher apex. So, while its distance comes from spinning less a new Seamless Tour Aero package will help increase lift to ensure maximum playability and distance.

The hero Chrome Tour ball sits neatly between both.  


Under the cover of the Chrome Soft, Chrome Tour and Chrome Tour X.

The Callaway Chrome Tour X has a more uniform paint job

Wilson has talked a lot about the importance of golf balls receiving a super-even layer of paint before. The aim is zero pooling in dimples, with a consistent layer over the whole ball. The brand mentioned the idea when launching the Staff Model and Wilson Staff Triad. Callaway is now jumping in on the idea too.

Global Director of Brand and Product Management Golf Ball at Callaway Jason Finlay said “Look at some of our competitor’s golf balls under black light and you will see areas of blotchiness, which obviously affects flight”.   

It’s no secret that over-painting affects lift and drag, which changes the aerodynamic performance of a ball. It also affects shot consistency and dispersion. Callaway wasn’t keen to put an exact number on how much difference the issue makes to shot accuracy, Finlay did though confirm the company had seen up to 15 or 16 yds of difference whilst running internal tests. He wouldn’t though expect this amount from a major competitor.      

How to choose between the Callaway Chrome Tour, Chrome Tour X, and Chrome Soft

Callaway Chrome Tour golf ball

RRP: $54.99 per dozen | Construction: 4-piece | Compression: 90

Callaway Chrome Tour Golf Ball.

This is Callaway’s hero tour ball for 2024. The model is for golfers seeking distance along with a good helping of feel. A 90 compression means the Tour is positioned within a softer space than Callaway has previously operated at with the preceding Chrome Soft X (which had a compression of 98 where the standard Chrome Soft was 75) and Chrome Soft X LS.

Unlike previous Callaway tour-level balls, this model is designed to be a direct alternative to the Titleist Pro V1. But Callaway says the model outperforms the market leader on ball speed and distance.     

Ball speed is a key ingredient to this new model, and prototypes have been in play out on tour for 12 months under the guise of the ‘Callaway Chrome Soft Dot’. 35% of Callaway’s tour staff have played the prototype during its development phase. The brand is super confident then the model will garner plenty of usage on the game’s biggest stage.

Players like Xander Schauffele choose this model as the world #6 wants to hit the straightest shots possible. A demand that’s fulfilled by the Chrome Tour’s lower spinning tendency.

Callaway Chrome Tour X golf ball

RRP: $54.99 per dozen | Construction: 4-piece | Compression: 98

Callaway Chrome Tour X golf balls

The new Chrome Tour X is for decent players who seek ultimate speed and control. The X is the highest-spinning Chrome Tour model (from the driver all the way down to the wedge). It’s also the ball chosen by World #3 Jon Rahm. The Spaniard chooses the Chrome Tour X as he likes being in control of taking spin-off shots, which he feels he can do best when playing a higher-spinning ball.

The Chrome Tour X has a compression of 98 and the company is reporting ball speed gains of 1.5 – 3mph during internal testing. Interestingly the speed gains don’t come from a firmer compression. This model is actually the same compression as the previous Chrome Soft X. Golfers should expect 300 RPM more backspin up to 50 yards from the surface of the green, the all-important scoring zone for the very good players.   

Callaway Chrome Soft golf ball

RRP: $54.99 per dozen | Construction: 3-piece | Compression: 75

The 2024 Callaway Chrome Soft ball on the green.

The standard Chrome Soft has been a substantial part of the Callaway business since its launch in 2014. This model is for aspirational players looking for a tour-quality ball with a softer feel, urethane cover, and the added benefit of extra distance. Typically golfers suited to this ball will benefit from flighting shots a fraction higher. Often they’re just the sort of golfers who are a little less skilled than those playing the Chrome Tour and Chrome Tour X.

Compared to the previous 2022 Chrome Soft you can expect more ball speed, a very similar spin profile, but with a significantly higher apex, and extra distance. In contrast to the highest-spinning Chrome Tour X ball flying lowest, the Chrome Soft is the lowest-spinning ball in the family yet offers golfers the highest ball flight. A feature that’s really important to this player to generate additional distance.   

How the Chrome Tour, Chrome Tour X, and Chrome Soft compare

FeelLong Game SpinShort Game SpinWorkability
Chrome SoftSoftLowHighMedium
Chrome TourMediumHighHighHigh
Chrome Tour XMedium-FirmMaximumMaximumHigh

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About the author

Simon Daddow

Simon Daddow – Today’s Golfer Equipment Editor

Simon Daddow is the Equipment Editor for Today’s Golfer. Having tested and played more than 10,000 clubs in his life, what he doesn’t know about golf clubs isn’t worth knowing.

He joined EMAP Active (now Bauer Media) as Equipment Editor in 2006 and has worked for both Today’s Golfer and Golf World. Working alongside our test pro Neil Wain, Simon has made the most reliable source for golf club testing.

Despite his youthful looks, Simon has played golf for more than 40 years and plays to a handicap of 10. A lack of club speed means he’s short off the tee, but very handy from 125 yards and in.

Simon’s job means he plays regularly around the world, and rates Kingsbarns as his favorite course. He uses a PXG 0311 GEN6 XF driverTaylorMade Stealth 2 HL (15º), Ping G400 (20.5º), PXG 0317 X Gen2 hybridPXG 0311 GEN6 P irons (6–PW), Cleveland CBX2 wedges (52°, 58°), Ping 21 Fetch putter and a TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball.

You can contact Simon via email and follow him on Twitter for loads more golf equipment insight.

Product Information

Callaway Chrome Tour X golf ball

RRP: $54.99 per dozen

Construction: 4-piece

Compression: 98

Visit the Callaway Golf website here 

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