Mizuno MP Reviews

Mizuno MP Irons – A History of the Lineup

MP 7 irons

When it comes to making fine forged irons, Mizuno has more than a few tricks up its sleeve.  It’s been making high-quality, high-performance forged irons for decades now, and it puts every bit of its knowledge and skill into its famous Mizuno MP-series irons.

The MP series is a much-heralded, long-running lineup of more than 20 different models, all of which are forged.  The first Mizuno MP irons (the MP-7 model) made their appearance in 1988, but new models are still arriving on the scene on an ongoing basis.

High Standards, High Performance

Mizuno’s MP irons have always been designed for low and low-middle handicap players who want workable forged clubs that deliver terrific feel, feedback, control and precision.  Mizuno has an impressive amount of forging expertise – more than seven decades’ worth – and the high standards it has set over the years for forged irons has other club makers constantly scrambling to try to keep up.  In short, Mizuno’s forged irons, and in particular the models in its MP series, are world-renowned for their superior performance and soft but solid feel.

Even though there are 20+ Mizuno MP models, there are a few that have really made big waves in the golf world. Many will remember Tiger Woods playing a set of cutaway muscle-back Mizuno MP-14s when he won his first US Amateur and first Masters.  Later came Mizuno’s “Cut Muscle” modified cavity-back MP-32 model, which has been so incredibly popular since its launch in 2004. Mizuno introduced the MP-57 model, the world’s first-ever full-cavity irons with a Cut Muscle design, making forged irons even more accessible to the mid-handicap golfer.

MP 14 irons

Here are just a few more details that explain why Mizuno’s MP-series models have become some of the world’s most highly-regarded forged irons.

Continuing Design Improvements Throughout the Years

Over the years, Mizuno has made several significant improvements in the designs of its MP-series irons.  For example, although Mizuno’s MP irons have always been forged, early models like the MP-7 (launched in 1988) and MP-9 (launched in 1990) had a muscle-back blade design with very small heads and even smaller sweet spots.  For their day they were excellent irons, and in the right hands they offered terrific shot-shaping capability.  Today, though, they’d be considered brutally unforgiving on mishits.  Many golfers think their overall design makes them look a lot more like butter knives than clubs they’d feel comfortable with at address.

The company took a significant step forward with its groundbreaking MP-14 model, introduced in 1992.  Its innovative, cutaway muscle-back design produced terrific results on Tour almost immediately, but it also led to the clubs winning their way into the bags of plenty of amateur players.

The Cut Muscle modified cavity-back design of 2004’s Mizuno MP-32 irons was the next giant leap forward.  All of a sudden there was a forged iron with a modified cavity-back and perimeter weighting that made it a little easier to consistently hit the ball on the sweet spot.  And then the trailblazing Mizuno MP-57 came along in 2007.  This model has a full-cavity (not modified like the MP-32s) Cut Muscle design and retains the famous Mizuno forged feel but provides a lot more forgiveness than earlier MP-series irons.  Some people think Mizuno MP-57 irons represent the pinnacle of Grain Flow Forging™ and the Cut Muscle design.  Others think the slightly earlier, modified cavity-back MP-60 model might hold that prize.

MP 32 irons

Grain Flow Forged™ Mild Carbon Steel

That brings us to what many experts consider to be Mizuno’s most significant contribution to the world of golf – the patented Grain Flow Forging™ technique it now uses to make its MP-series irons.  Although the process was introduced earlier, since 2008 all Mizuno MP-series irons have been forged from a single, solid bar of premium-quality, soft 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel.  Other varieties of mild carbon steel were used in earlier MP models, but Mizuno believes 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel gives its clubs the best combination of softness, strength, consistency and distance control.  This type of carbon steel also gives Mizuno more design freedom than the steel the company previously used, making cavity-back forged irons like the MP-57 a reality instead of just a pipe dream.   Mizuno first used 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel in the MP-32 (2004) and MP-60 (2005) models.

Mizuno’s forging process begins with the steel billet being carefully heated until it becomes red-hot.  It’s then shaped using an incredible 1000-ton hammer press.  Grain Flow Forging™ is a multi-step process involving repeated forging and finishing steps.  Ultimately, in addition to shaping the steel into a single-piece iron (not a forged head and a separate forged face which are later welded together, as with some other companies’ forged irons), the process aligns the grains in the metal and produces the tightest, most uniform grain structure currently possible in a club head.  It also prevents the formation of the microscopic air bubbles that are inevitably present in the heads of investment-cast irons and can lead to inconsistent results on your shots.

Perhaps even more important than all the club head design refinements Mizuno has made over the years, the perfection of the company’s already-famous forging techniques gives the MP-series irons a remarkably soft, solid, consistent feel when the ball is struck properly.  This particular forging process even eliminates some of the harsh vibrations you’d ordinarily get on mishit shots with forged irons, although the feedback is still helpful.  It’s the kind of feel and feedback that every golfer wants and many golfers need.  Other club manufacturers aren’t concerned about the grain flow or uniformity in alignment throughout the head – and it shows in their forged irons.  Mizuno’s Grain Flow Forging™ process produces the ultimate in feel and consistent ball control.

Mizuno MP Reviews

Because Mizuno has made so many different MP models, keeping them all straight can be a chore.  With that in mind, we decided to put together some brief information about each of the models in the series.  Each model is identified by name and the year produced, followed by a short description of its characteristics and its target handicap range/skill level.  Any noteworthy highlights are also mentioned.  The models are listed in chronological order by the year they were produced.

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Mizuno MP irons for sale on 3balls

Click on each model for full length reviews.

  • Mizuno MP-7 Irons (1988):  Muscle-back blade; thin topline; minimal offset; workability is a strength but not known for forgiveness; best suited to single-digit players (the lower the better).

 

  • Mizuno MP-9 Irons (1990):  Muscle-back blade; thin topline; minimal offset; workability is a strength but not known for forgiveness; used by Sir Nick Faldo in his 1990 British Open win; best suited to single-digit players (the lower the better).

 

  • Mizuno MP-11 Irons (1990):  Muscle-back blade; thin topline; thick back pad and slightly rounded sole; known for control and workability but not for forgiveness; best suited to single-digit players (the lower the better).

 

  • Mizuno MP-14 Irons (1992):  Revolutionary cutaway muscle-back design; double-forged mild carbon steel; slight offset; known for delivering a soft, solid feel, immediate, precise feedback, and controlled shot-shaping; used by Tiger Woods to win his first US Amateur and Masters tournaments; best suited to single-digit players but can be played by skilled ball-strikers with slightly higher handicaps.

 

  • Mizuno MP-29 Irons (1992):  Cutaway muscle-back design; double-forged mild carbon steel; slight offset; known for delivering a soft, solid feel, immediate, precise feedback, and controlled shot-shaping; closely related to the MP-14 model but topline is thinner and lofts are 2 degrees stronger; best suited to single-digit players but can be played by skilled ball-strikers with slightly higher handicaps.

 

  • Mizuno Grad MP Irons (1994):  Innovative graduated cavity-back design uses full cavity-back heads in long irons progressing to a full muscle-back pitching wedge; cavity-back forgiveness but blade-style shot-making ability; mild carbon steel; known for soft feel; widened soles for increased playability; suitable for single-digit and mid-handicap players alike.

 

  • Mizuno MP-19 Irons (1996):  Dual-level cavity-back design; double-forged mild carbon steel; dual-cut sole for increased playability; known for forgiveness and soft but crisp, solid feel; suitable for single-digit and mid-handicap players, but exclusively for left-handers (no RH sets ever made).

 

  • Mizuno MP-33 Irons (2000):  Muscle-back blade; Grain Flow Forged™ carbon steel (earliest use of Grain Flow Forging™); slightly oversized heads for larger sweet spot and increased forgiveness; known for pure, soft, solid feel; best suited to single-digit and low-mid handicap players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-30 Irons (2002):  Progressive cavity-back (long irons) to muscle-back (short irons) design; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025 Select Mild carbon steel; modified U-grooves increase spin rate for better control from various lies; rolled leading edge, cambered mid-sole and beveled trailing edge for increased playability; known for forgiveness and pure, soft, solid feel; suitable for single-digit and mid-handicap players alike.

 

  • Mizuno MP-32 Irons (2004):  Innovative “Cut Muscle” modified cavity-back design keeps sweet spot located consistently throughout the set; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; modified U-grooves increase spin rate for better control from various lies; Cut Muscle weighting and deep center of gravity produce medium to high ball flight with long irons and penetrating flight with short irons; known for pure, soft, solid feel; much-beloved by many single-digit and low-mid handicap players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-37 Irons (2004):  Muscle-back design; Grain Flow Forged™ steel; repositioned center of gravity produces a medium-height ball flight throughout the set; slightly more compact head for precision and workability; rolled leading edge, flatter mid-sole and rounded trailing edge for consistent ball-striking from various lies; minimal offset; modified U-grooves increase spin rate for better control from various lies; not known for forgiveness but precision and control are strong points; best suited to single-digit players who are excellent ball-strikers.

 

  • Mizuno MP-60 Irons (2005):  Cut Muscle modified cavity-back design; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; head slightly larger than the MP-32 but sweet spot 10% larger; slightly higher trajectory with long irons and medium ball flight with scoring irons; modified U-grooves increase spin rate for better control and playability from various lies; suitable for single-digit and low-mid handicap players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-67 Irons (2006):  Innovative “Slender” Cut Muscle design positions the center of gravity for optimum trajectory, control and feel throughout the set; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; modified U-grooves increase spin rate for better control and playability from various lies; rolled leading edge, cambered mid-sole and rolled trailing edge for consistent ball-striking from various lies; known for accuracy and a consistent, soft feel, but not known for forgiveness; best suited to single-digit players who are excellent ball-strikers.

 

  • Mizuno MP-57 Irons (2007):  The world’s first-ever full-cavity Cut Muscle design; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; center of gravity positioned for optimum trajectory, control and feel throughout the set; rolled leading edge, cambered mid-sole and rolled trailing edge for consistent ball-striking from various lies; modified U-grooves optimize spin rate for better control and playability from various lies; known for forgiveness and consistent, soft, solid feel; best for single-digit players, but can be handled by mid-handicappers too.

 

  • Mizuno MP-52 Irons (2009):  Unique Dual Muscle design with CNC-milled “pocket cavity” for low, deep center of gravity; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; modified U-grooves optimize spin rate for better control and playability from various lies; somewhat forgiving but known for their pure, soft, solid feel; rolled leading edge, aggressively cambered sole and rolled trailing edge for Tour-caliber workability and control; suitable for single-digit and low-mid handicap players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-58 Irons (2009):  Dual Muscle titanium design; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel with titanium positioned directly behind hitting area to enhance feel; rolled leading edge, flattened mid-sole and rolled trailing edge for consistent ball-striking from various lies; modified U-grooves conform to 2010 Conditions of Competition and optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; known for amazing sound and feel; best suited to single-digit and low-mid handicap players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-62 Irons (2009):  Dual Muscle design; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; rolled leading edge, cambered sole and rolled trailing edge for playability from various lies; thin topline; modified U-grooves optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; minimal offset; known for soft, solid, consistent feel and Tour-caliber workability and control; best suited to single-digit and low-mid handicap players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-68 Irons (2009):  Muscle-back design with computer-optimized 3D muscle technology to position center of gravity lower for workability, shot control and penetrating ball flight; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; rolled leading edge, flattened sole and rolled trailing edge for playability from various lies; fairly minimal offset; modified U-grooves conform to 2010 Conditions of Competition and optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; soft, solid, consistent feel; not known for forgiveness but combination of workability, feel, feedback, accuracy and control is superb; best suited to single-digit players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-53 Irons (2010):  Diamond Muscle design with “V” slot milled pocket cavity enhances feel and creates a high Moment of Inertia for increased forgiveness; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; 360-degree grind on topline and sole to improve appearance; modified U-grooves conform to 2010 Conditions of Competition and optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; soft, solid feel; best suited to single-digit and low-mid handicap players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-63 Irons (2010):  Diamond Muscle design (without the MP-53’s “V” slot) for enhanced control; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; 360-degree grind on topline and sole to improve appearance; modified U-grooves conform to 2010 Conditions of Competition and optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; known for control and soft, solid feel but not forgiveness; best suited to single-digit players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-59 Irons (2011):  Half-cavity design with titanium forged into muscle; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel and titanium; sweet spot 5% larger than the somewhat related MP-58; increased perimeter weighting for more forgiveness and increased playability; modified U-grooves conform to 2010 Conditions of Competition and optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; known for solid feel and forgiveness; suitable for single-digit and mid-handicap players alike.

 

  • Mizuno MP-69 Irons (2011):  Muscle-back design uses computer-optimized 4D muscle technology to position center of gravity optimally throughout the set; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; beveled trailing edge for playability from various lies; modified U-grooves conform to 2010 Conditions of Competition and optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; soft, solid, consistent feel; not known for forgiveness; best suited to single-digit players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-64 Irons (2012):  Diamond Muscle design (without the MP-53’s “V” slot) for enhanced control; Grain Flow Forged™ 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel; compact head promotes workability and control; modified U-grooves conform to 2010 Conditions of Competition and optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; known for feel and control but not forgiveness; best suited to single-digit players.

 

  • Mizuno MP-H4 Irons (2012):  Hollow forged long irons but one-piece Grain Flow Forged™ half-cavity scoring irons (1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel); beveled trailing edge for playability from various lies; wider sole and deeper center of gravity for higher ball launch; modified U-grooves conform to 2010 Conditions of Competition and optimize spin rate for better control and playability from different lies; solid feel; best suited to single-digit and low-mid handicap players.

 

As you can see by reading through the overview and descriptions of the models, Mizuno’s MP line of forged irons has definitely evolved over time.  Although MP irons have always been fine clubs, the earliest sets were much more difficult to hit crisply and much less forgiving than later models.  But one common thread runs throughout the entire history of the MP lineup:  every model features the famous Mizuno forged feel. Hopefully these Mizuno MP reviews will help shed some light on the many excellent forged irons models in the Mizuno MP line.

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