I think it is fair to say that you are probably deciding whether you should buy a blade or a mallet putter. Let’s talk about some of the things that you should take into consideration to make the best decision for you.
- First, determine which putting motion you have. Determine if you want to have a more straight-back, straight-thru (SBST) putting motion or a more arced putting motion. Although the effect is small, SBST putters will perform more consistently with a mallet putter. Arced putters will perform slightly better with a (toe weighted) blade putter. This all comes down to the design of the putter and how their weights are allocated. Face balanced mallet putters are meant to keep the face square longer, while blade putters encourage the face to rotate more in both the back stroke and forward stroke. Mid mallets are typically in between the two, though they lean more towards being toe weighted.
- Second, and of equal importance, is to determine if you prefer a small compact head or a larger head. Larger putting heads offer more room for a sight line or aiming tool. If you prefer large sightlines than you won’t be able to find a blade that meets your needs. However, if you much prefer the look of a very small profile head with a small sight line or dot, then a blade is best for you. You’ll have to prioritize between putting motion vs overall shape preference when deciding which type of putter is best for you.
- Third, find a model that is within your budget and appealing to your eye. Let’s be real here, if a putter costs $200, it might just be out of your budget. And if it doesn’t fit your eye, no matter if it is perfect for your putting stroke, you won’t want to putt with it. So, make sure you find a putter within your style preference AND within your budget.
Please note that all links and pictures that you click on will take you to the available listings on eBay.
Who should use a blade putter?
- someone with a putting stroke that has an arc to it
- someone that has great control of the putter face
- someone with a straight back, straight through putting stoke that simply likes a slim profile head
- someone that is trying to make their putting stroke based more on feel
- someone that wants to be like vintage Tiger Woods 🙂
Really, the only person that I wouldn’t recommend a blade to is to someone that wants to have the most straight-back, straight thru putting stoke as possible and wants there to be a large sight line or some sort of aiming tool on the putter. Otherwise, blade putters are great for everyone. I don’t think that there is any evidence that shows that a mallet is better in any way besides just personal preference and aiming. If you struggle with aiming, I would recommend you get a mallet putter.
If you want a putting stroke more on feel and intuition, blade putters are great for that. Mallets can cause you to focus too much on technique and keeping the sight line focused on the target the entire stroke, which can cause a lot of tension in your putting stroke.
Pros: better feel, more attractive at address due to slim head (in my opinion), lessens the need to focus on a sight line too much
Cons: You might feel as if the face twists and turns more than a mallet putter. However, nearly all of the best putters of all time have had an arc to their putting motion, so don’t be afraid of the face opening and closing.
Best Budget Blade Putter: Odyssey #1 Putters
Basic putters perform. It’s as simple as that. You don’t need all those sight lines and those bulky putters. Heck, just look at the Bullseye putters that many guys used back in the day. Small profile putters like blades just look better at address in my opinion. Though I rotate back and forth between using a blade vs. mallet putter, I always love the look of the blade when I change back to it.
Odyssey #1 model putters have everything you need, and nothing you don’t. You can find them in many different colors. The Hot Pro series putters are grey, while the White Hot Pro series are dark grey. Versa is black/white, and there are many more besides those!
Best Blade Overall: Scotty Cameron Newport 2 (might be out of budget, sorry!)
Looking for the best of the best, huh? Well, Scotty Cameron putters are it. They make the best putter of all time in my opinion. Their milled putters are something that you would just have to see and feel to believe. When you see someone with a SC putter, you know they are a serious golfer. They mean business, and they are probably a really good putter too! Problem is, they cost a lot of money. But hey, it’s just money, right? You can always earn money, but you can’t always putt with a Scotty Cameron. Or something like that. I forget how the quote goes.
Who should use a mid mallet putter?
- someone that wants a little more area for a sight line to get their aiming right
- someone that doesn’t want a huge mallet head, as they can appear too bulky
- someone that wants to reap the benefits (somewhat) of both blades and mallets
- someone that wants to be like Phil Mickelson or Brandt Snedeker 🙂
Mid mallet putters are becoming increasingly more popular, thankful to some great putters on the PGA tour that use them. They can be seen as the best of both worlds in a way. They offer enough area of club to put a decide sized sight line on the flange of the putter. However, they are still toe weighted, so they encourage the face to open and close throughout the putting motion.
Many mid mallets also use an alignment system that makes sure the putter is perfectly flat on the ground. By putting sight linse on the top/topline of the putter and on the bottom/flange of the putter, you can make sure the putter is square on the ground by aligning those lines together at address. A great example of this is one of the Rossie putters, which was made popular by Brandt Snedeker.
Pros: good “middle ground” putter between blades and mallets, enough area for a good sight line without being too bulky
Cons: Not many designs available, cost a little more on average
The Best Mid Mallet on a Budget: Odyssey #9 or Odyssey Rossie
Hard to go wrong with the classic Rossie and #9 model putters from Odyssey. Odyssey just makes too good of putters to only sell them for a tad over $100. I started my golf career with an Odyssey Rossie model putter (right), and I’ve got back many times to it. It’s just a great designed putter. I love knowing that my putter is completely flat on the ground. Otherwise, I have always had a tendency of putting the toe of the putter in the air too much.
Brandt Snedeker made the Rossie famous, but you could also say that Phil Mickelson made the Odyssey #9 putters (left) popular as well. He has used this model for so long, that it is the only thing that I can think of when using a mid mallet.
My Pick for the #1 Overall Mid Mallet Putter: TaylorMade White Smoke
TaylorMade has actually got a few great looking mid-mallet putters. I really like the White Smoke MC-72, the Big Red Monte Carlo, and the Tour Preferred Mullen. These are all super high quality putters, and they don’t cost an arm and a leg.
Just find a good name brand, mid mallet putter that you like the look of and is in your budget. You can adapt to any putter over time!
Who should use a mallet putter?
- someone that struggles with their aim
- someone that wants a large sight line, a two-ball design, etc.
- someone that wants a very much straight-back, straight-through putting motion
- someone that thinks their putter face twists or turns too much
Mallet putters are becoming more popular each year. In my mind, they are kind of like hybrid clubs. Mallet putters, like hybrid clubs, try to make golf easier and for everyone. Not everyone can hit a 3 iron, but everyone can hit a hybrid with a little practice. Not everyone can aim and putt consistently with a blade putter, but everyone can with a mallet putter.
The whole goal of a mallet putter is to: 1) make aiming easier and 2) stop putter face rotation as much as possible. With their face balanced designs, the face is supposed to stay square for as long as possible. Just balance a putter on your finger by the shaft. Most mallet putters are going to have the face pointing to the sky, while a blade putter is going to have the heel of the putter pointing to the sky.
Although this doesn’t 100% compare to a putting stroke, this shows that a mallet is designed to have the face square to the target longer than blades. You won’t have to forcibly rotate the face through impact to square the club, like you might have to with a blade.
Pros: easy to aim, easy to keep square, lots of different creative designs
Cons: too bulky for some people, puts too much emphasis on keeping the club going perfectly straight back, straight through, which can hurt a good putting stroke
The Best Value Mallet Putter: Odyssey V Line
Odyssey V-line putters are very popular among mallet lovers. They sport a long sight line, which is great for those that struggle with aim. The putter is a little bulky, yes, but the face balanced design is great for keeping the face as steady as possible.
I’m also a huge fan of Odyssey #7 putters, but they are harder to come by. Just try to find one that allows you to aim as best as possible, and you can work out the kinks later on.
The Greatest Mallet Putter: TaylorMade Spider
TaylorMade has made some incredible putters in the last couple of years. Their new TaylorMade Spider Tour putters are becoming crazy popular. They offer super easy aiming and a great feel at impact. If you prefer a larger head putter that is focused on staying as square as possible, this is the best putter that you could buy on the market.