ClubTest Proving Ground: OnCore’s Vero X1 golf ball
With so many options to choose from, it can be hard for a new golf ball to differentiate from the industry stalwarts who dominate the shelves at your local golf shop or big box retailer. But every once in a while, one exceeds our expectations of what a direct-to-consumer brand can do.
Enter the Vero X1 by OnCore, a four-piece, tour-caliber, cast-urethane-covered golf ball that delivers high performance for players with swingspeeds at 95 mph and up. It’s a ball that’s been around a little while, made by the 12-year-old company that earned notoriety for creating a model with a hollow-metal core. Since then, the company has dived headfirst into the premium category with its Vero X1 leading the way.
Let’s cover the technical stuff first. As mentioned, this ball is a four-piece multilayer ball with a cast urethane cover, meaning the cover can be made thinner and more resilient. It’s also typically the more expensive way to make a cover (compared to injection molding), which proves that OnCore takes performance seriously and isn’t cutting any corners to deliver their best ball.
Next is the nano-thick transition layer followed by a metal-infused, perimeter-weighted mantle layer, which work in tandem with the aforementioned cover and oversized core for the best blend of tee shot distance and greenside control. The Vero X1 has a relatively soft 80-84 compression rating, but still holds a firmer-than-most feel.
How does it hold up on the golf course? We took it upon ourselves and played an entire round with the Vero X1. Here’s our initial, true-to-life experience:
OnCore Vero X1
We played with the Vero 1X and found it to produce comparable distance with the driver when compared to other tour-level golf balls. Shots with a boring (in a good way) trajectory—a trait which according to OnCore is a byproduct of the perimeter-weighting technology that yields lower tee shot spin rates (with drivers and woods) and tighter shot dispersion. We didn’t see huge yardage gains switching to the Vero X1, but the distance was for certain comparable to other balls we’ve tried in the same category.
We’ve seen other reviews and player feedback that seem to indicate the ball has a firmer feel with a driver, but in our playing test, we felt it very similar to balls designed for faster swingers. It’s definitely firm, but not hard like a range ball would feel or how some hard-covered 2- or even 3-piece balls sometimes feel. Iron shots felt great, and despite the relatively low compression rating, we liked the firmer feel with wedges and the putter.
Long shot spin and flight
Off the tee with a driver we saw a medium-high ballflight, which is a little higher than expected, but not too high that the ball flew and stuck when it landed. There was still some forward roll despite the higher launch. Shots that were hit low on the clubface flew a lot lower, but in fairness, that’s more a function of the golfer, not the ball. Distance-wise, again, the Vero 1X proved very comparable to other multilayer tour-level balls that tend to favor faster-than-average swingspeeds. This doesn’t mean any type of player can’t use it—we just think faster swingers will gain even more distance from the Vero X1 like we did.
Middle shot spin and flight
Middle iron shots felt crisp and flew with what we’d best call a mid-height trajectory and controllable spin. Any more spin the ball would balloon, any less we’d have a hard time holding the greens. You really don’t need a launch monitor to see it—it’s abundantly clear that the Vero X1 will incrementally spin more as you go up in loft. Plain as day.
Short shot spin and flight
This is where the Vero X1 really shines. From 100 yards and in, we had zero issues with holding the green and were pleased to see some of our shots check up. In fact, we we’re blown away by the resilience of the Vero X1 around the greens. Even chips and pitches seemed to have more rotation and the firm-but-not-tinny feel was responsive and made it easier to know whether we hit the shot solid or not.
OnCore’s proprietary perimeter-weighting technology has much to do with the way the ball flies in the air and the stability and consistency it has, but we think you’ll notice it on the greens, too. Weight is pushed to the perimeter of the ball, and with the putter, creates a firmer feel with a pleasant click sound at impact. It’s the kind of feel better players often prefer to help them feel their putts and better gauge their putting ball striking and improve their distance controls.
The Vero X1 is a venerable tour-level golf ball. With plenty of tee shot distance and high short shot spin rates, it’s ideal for the player who has a faster than average swing speed and want a ball that is both consistent and easy to control around the greens.