The new Mizuno Pro irons will be released in February and the Mizuno Pro 225 is the official successor of the MP20 HMB. In principle, not much has changed here and the HMB iron was a complete success with convincing performance. The 225 is a "Hollow Construction" and the club head is originally hollow. However, it is filled with a lot of tungsten in the right place and polymer materials. This allows the 225 to achieve very high ball speeds, maximum launch and therefore maximum support.
The new Mizuno Pro 225 iron will be available to order from us from February - as always in all conceivable combinations and with professional advice before your purchase.
Mizuno MP20 HMB review and impressions from the course
The MP20 HMB is a new generation of iron, namely a "Hollow Construction" iron. And the beauty of this iron is that you can't see the technology that's in this iron. Hollow Construction means that the iron is first of all hollow and is filled with different materials in the further production process. Mostly it is a special plastic and tungsten that is placed in the lower part of the sole. The MP20 HMB is also constructed in this way and we are actually asking ourselves whether this construction will not be the future in golf. Mizuno did not invent the concept, but in our opinion it is one of the best designs we have seen so far. Also the Honma TR21 X is such a construction and is eagerly awaited. For us it was time to hit dozens of baskets with the Mizuno MP20 HMB and test them on the course.
Appearance of the MP20 HMB
Let's get straight to the really big strength: this iron looks very noble and looks like a classic blade. From a distance you can't tell the difference between an MP20 blade and the HMB. In short: you can't see any inserts like plastic or tungsten. Not even weight screws or slots "deface" the iron. It couldn't be more classic and noble.
What you can already see on closer inspection, of course, is the clear difference in head size. The MP20 HMB is more of a game improvement iron. The clubface is very large, the topline thick, the sole wide and it has a decent amount of offset. This is where the differences to the MP20 Blade are clearly to be found. Especially the sole is very different. The MP20 Blade has a thin and aggressive sole. It punishes somewhat steep shots rigorously - something that is absolutely not the case with the MP20 HMB.
How does the MP20 HMB play?
Apart from the wide sole mentioned above, the MP20 HMB also has all the other characteristics to be considered a Game Improvement Iron. Because it promises and delivers in all three points: High ball speed, high forgiveness across the entire clubface and simplified launch. The latter even turns out a bit "too strong". In other words: the ball can be launched into the air very easily. This is partly due to the tungsten insert in the sole, but also to the 32° loft, which is quite a lot for an iron of this category for a 7 iron.
So if you have a slightly higher clubhead speed and are considering the MP20 HMB to make your life easier, you should consider using slightly stronger lofts. On the other hand, if you have a mixed set of MP20 HMB and MP20 Blade you don't have to worry too much about the lofts, because the MP20 HMB launches much higher and compensates for the minimal difference in lofts.
The MP20 HMB also impresses with its constant ball speed, even with suboptimal ball hits. And it is precisely in this respect that such an iron must deliver. The Mizuno HMB passes this test with ease.
Feeling and feedback
Let us move on with the next strength of this iron: it plays surprisingly soft. In our opinion, possibly the softest Hollow Construction iron on the market. In particular, even suboptimally hit balls still feel soft. In our test we wanted to make full use of the large clubface and could not identify any area that really feels uncomfortable. Even thinly hit balls are not very nice, but the feeling is still okay. You just don't get punished that hard.
However, this advantage also has a small disadvantage: the hits all feel pretty much the same. This has always been our little criticism of this type of iron: often you don't really know where you hit the ball. The feedback is much less direct. This fact may not bother every player, but if you want to know exactly where you hit the ball, you might have problems with the MP20 HMB.
But the point that Mizuno engineers probably wanted to make is that it's hard to produce fades or draws with the MP20 HMB "Side Spin". The bottom line is that the ball holds direction more easily and produces less side spin. This is of course an advantage in principle, but not if you want to "shape" the ball and intend to make such shots.
In our opinion the HMB iron is one of the best in its category and you could call it almost perfect. Basically, it leaves nothing to be desired, because our criticism mainly refers to points that are either not possible or not wanted with such an iron. Especially better players, who want to go in the direction of such an iron, should consider the following: The launch is relatively high and could cause problems with "gapping". Shaping is very limited because little side spin is produced. And the HMB iron has quite a lot of offset which is especially important for players with a drawing tendency.
However, players with low club head speed do not have these problems. For them the MP20 HMB might be just right and it will be difficult to find a comparable and better iron on the market. Therefore, we can only give a clear recommendation to buy the HMB and are happy to provide further advice.
Mizuno MP20 HMB Specs and Lofts
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Mizuno is one of the very few manufacturers who are able to produce large sclaes of club heads and still achieve an exceptionally high quality. This is possible through an innovative manufacturing process for their irons and by individual assembly in each of their core markets. In Europe the assembly takes place e.g. in Scotland. However, the club heads are mass-produced and exported in Hiroshima, Japan. This makes it possible to assemble and customize each Mizuno iron set individually.
For decades Mizuno has been using the innovative "Grain Flow" process to remove unwanted air inclusions in the steel. This is followed by the forging process typical for Japanese manufacturers. This means that all Mizuno irons that can be forged from the head shape are also forged and not cast as with most manufacturers. Usually the forging process is too complex and expensive for high volumes. That is why it is rarely used by the major manufacturers. Mizuno makes no compromises and still manages to produce a high number of club heads without losing control of the costs.
Each set of irons is then individually assembled in Scotland exactly as you order. This process is much more precise and can be adapted to many more wishes than other large manufacturers. This is why Mizuno is far superior to most other manufacturers when it comes to individuality. You can choose from dozens of shafts, grips and can determine shaft length, loft and lie virtually at will.
There are, however, limitations and these affect the swing weight of long and short clubs. Mizuno has its limits when it comes to customization - but not for us as individual clubmakers. For example, if you want a shaft that is 1 inch longer, you would have to take weight out of the clubhead so that the swing weight is not too heavy. We drill the clubheads from the inside. Mizuno cannot do this. This means that a club over 1/2 inch longer or shorter will most likely not have the correct swing weight. It is strongly recommended that you contact us to discuss this issue before ordering the club.