This is directly related to how well your existing equipment is fitted to your swing.
After many years of making and selling clubs, manufacturers have — through a trial and error process — found that most golfers, categorized by stature and physical fitness fit into specific sets of “standard specs” and as long as the quality control is up to par, these standard specs will be sufficiently adequate for at least 90% of golfers.
Today’s equipment is 90% better than 90% of the golfers who use it.
In most cases standard equipment, with slight changes to properties such as shaft flex and a slight adjustment to lie angle is about all that is needed.
This does not mean that a so-called “customized set” will not make a difference — even if the customization varies very little from the standard specs – because the golfer is inclined to believe that this personalization will make a difference and that belief is all that is required to build the needed and very important ingredient “confidence” which certainly does affect performance.
Unfortunately, Mother Nature has set limits on improving equipment performance and we are very close to those limits.
This should not hold you back from looking at, and/or trying out some of the newest equipment, because you may find that for a short time, your belief that these changes will work, actually distract your mind from giving in-flight instructional control and lets your natural swing take over, resulting in enhanced performance.
Taking a lesson or two from a knowledgeable expert may be less expensive and the results longer lasting.
If you can afford it and not compromise your kids allowance then Go For It and try some of the new stuff, otherwise invest in a lesson or two.
I always use old equipment because I think I’ll swing like Ben Hogan. So far it hasn’t worked but I’m keeping my eye on the ball and the prize.
The OEMs will hate this column, but I agree that we need to get off the equipment ‘new and better must be custom fit’ bandwagon. I like shiny new clubs as much as anyone (and I treat myself to them periodically). But every now and again I’ll get out my 80’s Ping Eye irons (off the shelf black dot) and shoot the same scores I do with my year old customs. The only substantive difference? The loft vis-a-vis the number on the bottom of the club.