Review: Cleveland RTX 588 Wedge

Combining some of Cleveland's bests for the new RTX
Over the years Cleveland has been known for their wedges.  The variety of headshapes, styles and grooves is probably the biggest in the market.  I have to admit, I’ve had my ups and downs with Cleveland Wedges.  I seem to find one aspect I liked and maybe another I didn’t.  The RTX 588 is really a combination of the best Cleveland has offered.  Basically take a 588 shaped head, make it a cavity back like the CG16s, put a new face on it with the Rotex grooves and you have the newest Cleveland wedge the 588 – RTX.
Let’s start with the Rotex grooves.  They claim to be 16% bigger.  Without a microscope, I can’t really prove that claim.  They also claim to have a rougher surface area, which I think this one I did noticed with a little more spin than the 588 wedges I have.  Finally they have milling in the un-grooved area which is there to help create a little extra spin on delicate, open faced shots.  I think this too was noticeable.
On course I think that these did just what they said they would do.  They offered a slight increase in spin over last years 588 forged wedges. It wasn’t drastically different, a couple feet tops.  But sometimes that little extra stopping power can mean the difference between on the green and off the green.  The Rotex face offered just slightly more spin on regular shots, but on the creative touch shots, it offered noticeably more.  I actually found I liked the spin on these wedges more than my CG15 wedges which had non-conforming grooves.  The control and results were just plain better.

The head shape is another nice feature of these clubs.  As I noted in my review of the 588 forged wedges, I thought that this is Cleveland’s best shaped head.  It isn’t too round, or have too much offset, but is about the cleanest shape they make at address.  The big change on this wedge is the cavity back.  It offers some improved forgiveness on off-center hits.  Wedges probably need the least amount of forgiveness, a little is still helpful.  It is kind of hard to judge forgiveness on a wedge, but I did find shots that weren’t hit dead in the center of the face still resulted as good shots.

The finishing touches on this wedge are very nice.  The stock shaft is DG wedge shaft.  I appreciate this over a proprietary “made for” shaft.  The True Temper shaft offers a consistent feel and trajectory that you can count on.  I never had any spinners or weird results due to the shaft.   The standard Tour Velvet Cleveland grip works well.  The Black Pearl finish is still on of my favorite finishes Cleveland offers.  It is a matte black that eliminates reflection and seems to hold up quite well, even with moderate bunker play.  A nice little touch on this one too, was the laser engraved name on the hosel. It is always fun to have a little personalization on your wedges.

While the 588 RTX included many of the best of Clevend’s wedges, the only area where another Cleveland wedge is superior is the feel.  The 588 forged are still their best feeling wedges.  The 588 RTX is a close second.  The cavity back design is still pretty solid feeling on center hits and not bad on off center shots, but just not quite as pure as the forged 588.  I think I did see a pic somewhere of a forged 588 with Rotex grooves.  That would be the winner for me in terms of feel and spin.  Yet we all know the cast is going to be more durable in the long run too so  it really depends on your needs.  The 588 RTX will spin more and offer more forgiveness with just a slightly harsher feel.

I like were Cleveland is going with with their wedges in 2013.  They are using the best of what they have made in the past to create a new really nice wedge.; the 588 RTX

Check the price online here

For more information:

Quick Hits
+Classic 588 shape
+Cavity-back forgiveness
+Rotex grooves offer more spin
+Nice Black Pearl finish

–Slightly firmer feel

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