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Callaway ERC Soft golf ball

Callaway ERC Soft golf ball. (David Dusek/Golfweek)

Price: $39.99 per dozen
Construction: Three-piece ball with ionomer cover and urethane coating. Available in White and Yellow with Triple Track lines
Compression: 72

There was no need to talk about the difference in price between the Chrome Soft, Chrome Soft X LS and Chrome Soft X because all three balls cost $54.99 per dozen. The ERC Soft is $15 less, and to reach that price point, Callaway needed to make some adjustments.

The ERC Soft is designed for players who want a low-spinning ball off the tee that feels soft at impact and that can provide good distance with irons. It is similar to the Chrome Soft because both balls are designed with three pieces (a core, mantle layer and a cover), and the balls should feel similar when you hit them because they both have overall compressions in the low- to mid-70s. According to Finley, the balls should spin nearly identically off the tee with a driver, but the ERC Soft should fly slightly higher and spin less with irons than Chrome Soft.

The biggest difference between ERC Soft and Chrome Soft, and the reason for the $15 price difference, is in the cover and greenside spin. While Chrome Soft has a urethane cover, the cover of the ERC Soft is made with an ionomer material that has been given a urethane coating.

“Compared to Chrome Soft, there will be some tradeoffs in terms of greenside spin and control,” Finley said. “The ERC Soft has our GRIP urethane coating, which is in service of getting the most out of [the ionomer cover] as we can.”

While the coating has no impact on full swing shots with irons or woods, it increases friction between the cover and the grooves of your wedges, so the ball slides up the face less and spins more than the previous ERC Soft.

However, Finley concedes, even with the urethane coating, the ERC Soft will not spin as much as a Chrome Soft on shots from 50 to 75 yards. Individual results will vary, but he estimates that golfers will produce about 300 rpm less spin on a 50-yard pitch shot with an ERC Soft than they would with a Chrome Soft.

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