Titleist DCI 822 Oversize Irons Review – Are They Forgiving & Good for High Handicappers?
“Today we are taking a big ol’ step back in time.”
The Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons were released in 2001 so they are over 20 years old in 2023. But do they still have something to offer high handicappers?
Spoiler alert: yes! The DCI series of irons are very interesting. They come in many different size profiles and were made for different types of players. And despite being old and utilizing rudimentary technology, they really surprised us during our testing round.
The Titleist DCI 822 Oversize in particular are most definitely game improvement irons. They were made for mid and high handicap players and we’ll tell you right now, they are annoyingly consistent. But what else do the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons have to offer? Let’s find out.
Titleist DCI 822 Oversize Irons Overview
“The first thing we should discuss is the loft profile.”
The Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons have an overall weak loft profile. The 9-iron has been jacked up to 41.5° just to give you an idea. The loft profile, coupled with the moderately thick soles and undercut cavity make for very easy launch – something that many high handicappers struggle with.
As we just hinted at, the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons are cavity back irons – and what a cavity! While there is nothing special in the cavity (like Ping’s Custom Tuning Port or any polymer badges), it is a deep cavity which promotes forgiveness across the face. One of the things we noticed during testing was that we were getting really good ball speed when we made poor contact around the perimeter of the face.
The Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons also have a kind of awkward face profile. It’s not a boxy profile but the face/hosel transition is odd. It has a steep curve with a high point that suddenly drops down into the hosel. This design may be deliberate in order to increase forgiveness near the heel. We’re not sure.
“What we are sure of is that the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons offer straight flight. Only the worst mis-hits will result in a slice.”
Are the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize Irons Forgiving?
“For the most part, yes.”
The Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons tick almost all of the forgiveness boxes. The face is very forgiving and it seemed that only extreme high-toe misses were losing ball speed and veering off the line to the right.
The Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons also have moderate offset (it’s at least noticeable at address) so it’s easier to avoid such mis-hits – especially in the long irons. Launch is also effortless.
So you have almost all the bases covered. The only thing we were missing was distance. Don’t get the wrong idea. We’d be willing to bet that the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize are still 3 – 6 yards longer than your current gamers. But we consider this a marginal distance gain. To give you an exact idea, our testers (most of whom boast swing speeds between 88 and 95 MPH) were averaging 164.3 yards with the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize 5-iron.
Are the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize Irons Good for Beginners & High Handicappers?
“If your main issue as a beginner or high handicapper is staying on the fairway, then yes, the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons are excellent.”
The main benefit that the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons offer is tight dispersion. You don’t have to be able to nail the sweet spot 10/10 times in order to get optimal placement on the fairway with these irons.
Naturally, the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons produce a baby draw that doesn’t really veer back to the right. Instead, you are likely to see the ball land just left of the line. It’s a pretty sweet flight if you are used to seeing the ball hook into the trees.
And you can get this shot shape consistently so long as you are in the same zip code as the sweet spot.
Should you Buy the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize Irons or the Titleist T200’s?
“Right off the bat, you lose size with the T200’s.”
They are more compact than the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons; but that doesn’t make them a bad choice. They actually offer more distance than the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons. You just have to be a bit better at making consistent contact.
Titleist DCI 822 Oversize Irons
Category: Game Improvement
Titleist DCI 822 Oversize First Impressions
“We were actually a bit disappointed when we first saw the size of these irons.”
Yes, they’re big; but nothing like what we are used to seeing from modern, behemoth game improvement and super game improvement irons. It truly was a different time.
Titleist DCI 822 Oversize Selling Points
- Stainless steel construction
- Heavy club head
- Enlarged hitting zone
- Helps increase swing speed
- Deep cavity back
Who Are the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize Irons for?
“The Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons will work best for high handicappers who are having trouble keeping their ball out of the rough.”
Yes, they lack the distance that modern game improvement drivers offer. But we were very impressed with the dispersion we were getting from these irons. It didn’t matter which iron either. We were seeing the same tight dispersion from the long and short irons. If distance is your chief adversary on the links, then it may be advisable to look to another iron set. But for virtually any other kind of high handicapper, the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons will lower your score through improved accuracy.
The Titleist DCI Family of Irons
If you happen to be a slightly more skilled player, consider the Titleist DCI 962’s.
They feature V-shaped grooves that allow for acute spin control throughout the set. The 962’s also offer better turf interaction compared to the Titleist DCI 822 Oversize irons.
Feel & Control: 95/100