The Miura PI-401 is the new release for the year 2021 and for a long time Miura releases a "Two Piece Construction", i.e. a club head that is not classically forged from one piece but assembled from two components. With this construction, Miura appeals to players who need a little more support in their game, but do not want to do without a noble Miura design.
The lofts of the Miura PI-401 are relatively strong with 30° in the 7-iron, so it is recommended to take an iron set of 5-GW. However, loft is always relative and the Miura PI-401 still achieves a high launch as we have already seen in our test. This combination of high launch and low spin helps to achieve decent distances even at lower head speeds.
The Miura PI-401 convinced us especially with its forgiveness. You simply notice that there is a bit more technology behind it than, for example, in a Miura CB-301. Even sub-optimally hit balls launch very high and, above all, at very constant ball speeds. The dispersion is therefore minimal, both in direction and in length.
We recommend the Miura PI-401 especially with light steel shafts like a Nippon Zelos or a NS Pro and with high quality graphite shafts like a Fujikura Vista Pro. Especially a Nippon Zelos helps to achieve a high launch and fits perfectly to this club head.
The Miura PI-401 is unfortunately not available as a single iron, but as a set of 4-PW, 4-GW, 5-PW and 5-GW. Because of the strong lofts it is recommended to choose the set up to the gap wedge to keep the gap to the other wedges minimal.
We would like to point out that the Miura PI-401 is not manufactured in Himeji, Japan as usual because there are better factories for this construction.
Miura PI-401 Lofts and Specifications
PI-401 Review and Comparison to CB-301
With the new Miura PI-401 Miura releases again a "Two Piece Construction", that means an iron which is put together from several pieces. Normally, Miura's strength lies in the classically forged club head. And we know that Miura only releases irons that they are 100% convinced of. We were all the more excited about the performance of the PI-401, especially in comparison to the forged CB-301 which appeals to a similar category of players. So far, the CB-301 is our gold standard and even the most modern irons with the most sophisticated technology can hardly keep up with this iron.
We did our comparison with the Zelos 8 shaft in Regular at about 75mph clubhead speed. This is a typical club head speed of players who play such an iron with a light steel shaft.
The test is unfortunately not quite fair because the PI-401 is very strong with 29° loft in our 7 demo iron. The CB-301 has "only" 31° loft and is much more traditional in this respect. However, loft is relative and should not be considered in isolation. The PI-401, for example, is designed for higher launch, which compensates for stronger loft. Nevertheless, less loft automatically means more ball speed and less spin. This has to be taken into account in the following test.
Our result PI-401 vs. CB-301
In short, we can say that the PI-401 generates way less spin than the CB-301, launches slightly higher and generates minimally more ball speed. The latter is also much more constant, i.e. the ball speed does not fluctuate as much as with the CB-301. Poorer hits are therefore also punished less harshly and still develop decent ball speeds and thus also a more constant carry length. This can also be seen in the numbers.
None of this is unexpected. Because this is exactly what the "Two Piece Construction" is designed for. It allows the centre of gravity to be set lower in order to simplify the launch. And the forgiveness is improved insofar as the MOI is increased and hits outside the sweet spot lose less speed.
The most noticeable difference, however, is in the spin. Over 1000rpm difference is a lot. This also explains the longer carry length and cannot be explained by the loft difference. 2° less loft does not cause 1000rpm less spin. You should be aware of this when choosing an iron like the PI-401. This low spin naturally makes it more difficult to attack flags on the green - at least with identical balls as in our test.
The launch difference is only 1.2° although the PI-401 has 2° less loft. This difference is not necessarily large, but it can be said that the PI-401 favours the launch slightly better than the CB-301. However, it must also be said that the CB-301 is already very well optimised in terms of launch. In this respect, it speaks for Miura that the launch could be improved a good deal with the PI-401.
Playability with the PI-401
One reason why you often go for a cavity back like the CB-301 instead of a two-piece iron is that it gives you more playability. In other words, it is easier to vary shots with draws, fades, punches, etc. In principle, this also applies to the PI-401. However, the PI-401 surprised us a little in this respect because it still allows a lot of leeway. However, it is quite clear that, for example, a deliberate draw with an identical stroke produces a less pronounced left-hand curve than, for example, with the CB-301. The ball takes on a little less "sidespin". Of course, this is also an advantage, because unwanted shapes have a less serious effect.
The playability of the PI-401 is nevertheless given and the ball does what it should. The V-shaped sole of the PI-401 is also very helpful here. Overall, it is wide but you don't feel the full width. This is a feature we have already learned to appreciate with the Srixon ZX5.
Optics and appearance of the PI-401
Apart from the sole the PI-401 surprises with a relatively compact design. Most irons in this category often look very clunky and are therefore already out of the question for better players. This should be different with the PI-401: the topline is relatively thin, the clubface not excessively long. You don't see anything of the technology in the address position, even with the longer irons. The offset is present and also necessary in this category, but not exaggerated.
Conclusion of our PI-401 Review
The PI-401 is a positive surprise, especially in terms of appearance. There is a lot of technology in this iron, but Miura nevertheless packages it very cleverly and hides the technology in a compact and noble design. The PI-401 is not surprising in regards to the advantages it is supposed to deliver in comparison to the CB-301.
The PI-401 is especially recommended for players with below-average to average club head speed who need a certain amount of support in their game. The combination with a light steel shaft like a Nippon Zelos or a high-quality carbon shaft like a Fujikura Vista Pro is, as with the CB-301, very coherent.