Cobra Darkspeed vs Titleist T350 Irons: Read Our Head-To-Head Verdict

How do two of the best game improvement golf irons of 2024 stack up against one another? Let's take a look!

Cobra Darkspeed vs Titleist T350 irons
(Image credit: Future)

When it comes to the best irons on the market, Titleist and Cobra are among the leading names in the game. Both brands produce a variety of models that cater to a wide range of golfers, while they are also known for producing some of the best golf drivers and best wedges money can buy.

Following their namesake in the driver department, the Cobra Darkspeed are one of the best irons we've tested this year, while the slightly older Titleist T350 made a big impression on us in 2023. 

It can be difficult to know how to choose golf irons when the choice is so varied and much depends on your skill level. Game improvement irons tend to be larger and more forgiving, making them a better choice for mid-to-high handicappers. If you are a more skilled player who values control and workability with your irons, then check out our guides on the best compact mid-handicap irons or if you're an absolute flusher then the best golf blade irons!

For the average golfer, however, both of these models are ideal, so after extensive testing, we have drawn up a head-to-head to find out which model is better and why. From looks to technology to performance, find out which one is best for your game here!

Technology

We'll start with the Titleist T350 which replaces the T300 model as Titleist’s main game improvement iron offering sitting in between the hybrid-iron T400 iron and the players distance T200 iron. In fact, the T350 was inspired directly by the T200 distance irons played on Tour, as Titleist say that a new multi-material, hollow-body construction transforms the performance of the T350 over previous models.

The T350 also benefits from split tungsten weighting, which really boosts forgiveness. The Max Impact technology sits a little higher and coupled with the dual taper forged face, Titleist claims gives solidity and a nice stable feel right across the face. Our results from testing backed up those claims.

Titleist T350 Iron Review

(Image credit: Future)

The main tech story with the Darkspeed iron is that it's filled with a lighter foam material than the model it is replacing, the Aerojet iron. Cobra claim this leads to 25 percent more face deflection, improved distance, softer feel and sound and reduced spin due to more time on the face.

Put simply, there is now 3g of foam as opposed to 7g of polymer, so that allows the spare 4g to be repositioned to lower CG and help improve launch conditions, which you can see demonstrated in the image below.

Photo of the internals of the darkspeed iron

(Image credit: Cobra)

Additionally, within the heads there are progressive levels of hollow. So the 4-7 irons are fully hollow, the 8-PW look around three quarters hollow and the GW and SW half hollow. This is to help Cobra use individual CG locations on different lofts to optimize launch.

Lots of tech on offer from both, but we're going with Cobra in this category.

Looks

The T350 features a cavity now covered by a back plate that helps manage the sound at impact. This is a marked improvement on the previous model and strengthens the appeal of a blended set within the best Titleist irons. At address, the T350 certainly doesn’t scream high handicapper - more a mid handicapper - with the offset and generous footprint but without a chunky sole or thick top line that the most forgiving irons often have.

As for the Darkspeed, the charcoal finish looks really sleek and sophisticated in our view. Looks are highly subjective though and not everyone will be a fan of dark or even raw irons. If you prefer a more classic finish then the T350 is certainly a nice looking iron.

We just feel that the charcoal finish is a bit of a masterstroke from Cobra because dark colors tend to slim appearance, which is important in this category of irons where irons get get a bit on the chunky side. So what is actually a fairly substantial head still looks relatively neat and compact due to the coloring. Of course, if you are a golfer that likes that reassurance of a thicker top line then this isn't going to resonate with you.

Down behind the ball the shaping of the Darkspeed head is nice too. Nothing too angular, just some lovely soft curves and not a crazy amount of offset. A clear winner for us in this category.

Feel

The T350 feels fast and more powerful off the face and has quite a loud sound at impact, which adds to the feeling of power along with how springy the face comes across. It’s fast from off center hits too, meaning you can get away with a poor swing. 

So the feel would best be described as explosive and the sound falls in line with that. That will appeal to some, but not to others.

Onto the Darkspeed, and the changes internally within the clubhead have created an exceptionally good feel for irons in this category and are actually more akin to some of the best golf blade irons on the market. Of course it isn't buttery soft, but there is a lot less of the harsh feel that is often associated with distance-orientated game improvement irons. They are relatively soft but have a notable liveliness that lets you know you are hitting some good ball speeds numbers.

The Darkspeed just edges this category as we feel that Cobra have done a great job in producing the a unique acoustic and impact feel.

Photo of the Cobra Darkspeed iron

(Image credit: Future)

Performance

The main selling point for the Titleist is its forgiveness and power combination. With the T350 shots low on the face performed especially well in terms of maintaining launch and speed. The T350 certainly slots in among some of the very best distance irons capable of combining speed and playable trajectories with an explosive feel.

It's very good at masking your misses, making it ideal for the golfer that is relatively early into their journey in the game or experienced players looking for maximum help on their approach shots. Spin was quite low, however, which makes it trickier to get the ball to stop in faster conditions. This is a negative for golfers who like to hit it high and stop their approach shots, but it's great for those who often find it difficult to carry the ball all the way to the putting surface and who need a little extra run.

Photo of the Cobra Darkspeed iron

(Image credit: Future)

Onto the Darkspeed. The flight was strong, which you would expect from a pretty strong lofted set up, and as a result on that spin levels were also relatively low, although not as low as the T350. This low spin was counteracted somewhat by a decent level of launch. For context, the 7 iron is set at 27° which is strong even for irons in this category, but it launched higher than some irons with a higher loft. 

We didn’t notice any particular shape bias and found the Darkspeed to be very easy to hit. Any mis-hits still retained a really good level of ball speed which was a real positive. The T350 may be slightly more forgiving but there isn't much in it. 

The Darkspeed did provide better feedback in terms of strike location than some of the other irons we have tested in this category, including the T350. Some will welcome this feedback while others may prefer to be flattered more.

We can't separate them in this category as the performance from both is excellent, albeit in different ways. The Darkspeed is better for golfers who want to hit it high and stop it, whereas the T350 suits the shorter hitter who needs extra run and a bit more forgiveness. Both of these irons are great at what they do so it's tough to split them on performance.

Which One Should You Choose?

Choose the Cobra Darkspeed iron if…
- You want to see a higher, more stable ball flight
- You like a charcoal finish
- You want a bit more stopping power without sacrificing length

Choose the Titleist T350 iron if…
- You want extra distance
- You want to see a lower ball flight with less spin
- You want a more traditional head design

David Usher

Dave is a distinctly average golfer with (fading) aspirations to be so much more than that. An avid collector of vintage Ping putters and the world's biggest Payne Stewart fan, in 2021 Dave turned his front garden into a giant putting green to work on the weakest area of his game. Progress has been slow but steady! In addition to his work reviewing golf gear and writing features for Golf Monthly and T3, Dave is the founder of the Bang Average Golf website


Dave’s lowest round is a one over par 73 around Kirkby Valley Golf Club in 2018, which included a bogey on the 18th to ruin the one and only chance he’ll ever have of shooting an even par or better score.  That errant tee shot on 18 does not still haunt him to this day though, in fact he hardly ever thinks about it.  No, honestly, he doesn’t. Not at all. Never.


Dave splits most of his golf between Hurlston Hall Golf Club in Ormskirk, Lancs, and Berrington Hall Golf Club in St Helens and has a handicap that fluctuates between 9 and 12, largely depending on how poor his putting is. 



Dave’s current What’s In The Bag?


Driver: Wilson Staff Dynapower Titanium, 9.5° 

5 wood: Tour Edge Exotics 722, 18°

7 wood: Callaway Mavrik Max, 21° 

Hybrid: Srixon ZX 2 hybrid, 16°

Irons: Wilson Staff Dynapower, 6-PW

Wedges: Cleveland CBX ZipCore (graphite), 44°, 48°, 52°, 56°

Putter: Ping PLD Oslo 3

Ball: Wilson Staff Triad