- Odyssey’s White Hot OG line features the original formula White Hot insert.
- The new line consists of eight different models including a redesigned Rossie.
- A new version of the Stroke Lab shaft will be optional.
With the new Odyssey White Hot OG putters, Odyssey has implemented a double-decade dialing back of their face technology. When all other new golf products are about the latest and greatest advancements, why would Odyssey choose to go backward? Essentially, many of you are at fault, along with about 50 percent of the Odyssey tour players. You’ve asked and asked and now you get what you want.
The Return of the Original White Hot Insert!
Yes, Odyssey is bringing back the original White Hot insert. How could this happen? Though COVID-19 prevented me from making my usual Carlsbad pilgrimage this year, I still have an idea about how the conversation between Odyssey designers Luke Williams and Sean Toulon went down.
Luke: “What we gonna do right here is go back.”
Sean: “How far you going back?”
Luke: “Way back. And it goes a little something like this.”
Fine, maybe it wasn’t exactly like that. A guy can dream, can’t he? Regardless, the fact that the White Hot insert is returning in its OG, Original Gangster formula is significant for a couple of reasons. First, players want it. I mentioned before that half of the Odyssey players on the global tours play the White Hot insert. Additionally, many non-tour golfers are still playing their venerable White Hot putters, loathe to give up that original feel and performance. Pros and amateurs both want it so why not give this dedicated consumer base what they want?
During my visits to Odyssey, the conversations about new putters and inserts always at some point involved the White Hot insert. Insert X has the same hardness as White Hot. This new Insert Y has the same tone as White Hot. Insert Z is very close to White Hot. Replicating and perhaps improving upon the White Hot was a recurring design theme. Catching lightning in a bottle is an amazing feat but then you face a huge pressure to catch it a second time.
But if you already have that bottled lightning, why not let some out now and again?
Specifications: White Hot OG Putter Line
- Models: Eight
- Construction: Cast, then surface milled.
- Insert: Two-layer original formula urethane White Hot
- Shaft: Stepless steel or new Stroke Lab
- Grip: Odyssey DFX Rubber
- Left–Hand Models: 1, 7, 7S, and 2-Ball
- In Shops: Jan. 28
- MSRP: $219.99 steel shaft, $269.99 Stroke Lab Shaft
What’s So Hot About White Hot OG?
The White Hot insert is so hugely popular that, at some point, it was going to make a return. However, I bet some of you are reading this are not quite sure about the whole White Hot mystique. Let me bring you up to speed a bit. Twenty years ago, the first White Hot insert was designed in collaboration with the Callaway golf ball design team that produced the Rule 35 urethane-covered ball. This same urethane material became part of the White Hot insert recipe.
What made the original two-layer White Hot insert special was its physical properties during putting. The insert is quite firm to the touch but softens up with speed of impact with the ball. This combination of firm-softness hits the putting sweet spot of combining the expected roll with impact speed. Basically, it rolls to where you feel like it should. That’s the White Hot magic that has kept fans loyal for two decades.
White Hot OG: Upgrade or Re-Release?
So did Odyssey just phone it in and release the same putters from 20 years ago or is there something new in the White Hot OG line? Obviously, the main point is to give customers the White Hot insert that they have adored for the past two decades. That part of the design is a conscious retread. For the metal part of the putters, Odyssey didn’t just dust off the old 2001 molds. While the insert may be unapologetically retro, the rest of the putter is most definitely modern.
OG Insert with Modern Tooling
The insert in the White Hot OG putters reflects the vintage polymer formula but the heads that the inserts live in show modern manufacturing methodologies. Though all heads are all initially cast, the faces and other surfaces of the White Hot OG putters are subsequently surface milled to their final shapes. This allows Odyssey to add some subtle ridges and lines to the heads that would be difficult, if not impossible, to produce in a purely cast head. If you look closely at some of the heads, you can see the difference between the rough cast surface texture and the precise milled surface texture. The cavity shot on the #7 above shows the difference. While this milled texture probably won’t change your make percentage, the milled surface does make for a far more handsome putter.
The heads also feature modern elements such as removable weights and slant neck options on the #7 and redesigned Rossie. While we accept these features as normal in 2021, in 2001 they were not part of the putter lexicon. You would not find the multi-material construction on the bottom of the #7 in the original White Hot line. Fun fact: While the original White Hot line did feature a #7 model, it was a rounded mallet with a plumber’s neck. The fang design took over the #7 moniker later in the lineage.
New Optional Stroke Lab Shaft
Perhaps overshadowed by the insert release is the introduction of a new version of the Stroke Lab shaft. The new Stroke Lab shaft has been reconfigured so that the steel section is shorter and stepless. This drops the weight by seven grams. The shaft is stiffer as well. Odyssey’s testing shows this improves tempo and swing arc metrics by six percent and improves face impact consistency by nine percent. While those percentages at first glance seem low, we all know that even small improvements can help scores. Not a fan of the Stroke Lab shaft? Well, you will be happy to know it is now optional. Stepless Shaft White Hot OG models will cost $219.99 and the White Hot OG Stroke Lab Shaft versions will be $269.99.
You Wanted The Best, You Got The Best. The White Hottest Band in The World…
I think enough time has passed for Odyssey to safely release the White Hot OG. A company that keeps releasing the same thing every year won’t likely last long. However, a band that refuses to play their old hits in concert also is likely not on tour for long. Sometimes you need make the fans happy by putting the makeup back on and playing Freebird.
The White Hot insert is one of Odyssey’s greatest hits and, as such, has multitudes of fans. The new White Hot OG line should appease those folks but it should also appease the consumer who appreciates the modern Odyssey elements such as the Stroke Lab shaft. Does this mean Odyssey has abandoned their modern inserts such as the high-performance White Hot Microhinge Star insert? It does not. Insert research and development is still ongoing toward that second bottle of lightning. It just means the Odyssey folks know when to play the favorites.
Find out more about the new Odyssey White Hot OG line at callawaygolf.com.