10 Matte Finish Golf Balls That Promise High Performance

Matte finish golf balls are a relatively new phenomenon, but there are now plenty to choose from in a rainbow of colours including several premium-brand offerings

Volvik Vivid Golf Ball Review
(Image credit: MHopley)

10 Matte Finish Golf Balls That Promise High Performance

The world of golf balls was for many years a largely monochromatic then duochromatic one, possessing a very basic colour palette compared to the world of household paints. How things have changed, for not only do we now have lists of the best yellow golf balls that include some of the best golf balls out there (including the Titleist Pro V1, Srixon Z Star and TaylorMade TP5), but we also now have a whole rainbow of colours at our disposal as well as a choice of finish.

In recent years, the high-sheen or gloss paint finish, which we’d never really questioned, has come to be joined by a growing number of matte-finish golf ball options, including, among others, certain models in the Titleist golf ball range, the Callaway golf ball range, the Srixon golf ball range and the TaylorMade golf ball range.

So, what are the claimed benefits of a matte finish? We’re not sure it’s really so much about benefits as a matter of personal taste, although several of the models below talk about their capacity to reduce glare relative to glossier finishes, helping you to focus and concentrate a little better. Some talk about how their bright colours (most matte-finish balls come in vibrant shades) make them easier to track in flight and to find, but of course, the same could be said of a brightly coloured gloss-finish golf ball!

Wilson Duo Optix

Best yellow golf balls - Wilson Staff Duo Optix yellow

(Image credit: Wilson Staff)

Matte colour options: green, red, yellow

This ball promises more distance and accuracy via its smaller core, while still offering good feel around the greens – noticeably softer than many balls at this price. The matte finish certainly eliminates sun glare, but it does also give the yellow version a slightly disconcerting dimpleless appearance in duller light - a minor issue relative to the performance on offer at this price.

Titleist Velocity

Titleist Velocity 2022 Golf Ball

(Image credit: Titleist)

Matte colour options: green, orange and blue (from late 2022); 2020 model was available in matte pink, green and orange

Velocity has long been the distance ball in Titleist’s range, and the latest model, launched in early 2022, features a core that is now a little firmer, which helps to generate more speed on full shots as more energy from impact is retained. It’s designed to fly high too, no bad thing as it’s quite low-spinning, so the higher flight adds a degree of stopping power. The matte versions of the new model won’t arrive until autumn 2022, but you may still be able to get matte versions of the previous Velocity model.

TaylorMade Soft Response

TaylorMade Soft Response matte red

(Image credit: TaylorMade)

Matte colour options: red, yellow

Soft Response is one of two Response models (Tour Response is the other) sitting beneath the premium TaylorMade TP5 golf ball. It’s designed with moderate swing speeds in mind, offering all-round performance with a softer feel, courtesy of a soft but durable ionomer cover. An Extended Flight Dimple pattern promotes decreased drag and increased lift to keep the ball airborne for longer at lower spin rates.

Callaway Supersoft

Callaway Supersoft matte golf ball

(Image credit: Callaway Golf)

Matte colour options: green, pink, red

Callaway’s low-compression Supersoft is the ideal all-round ball for those with average swing speeds. Improvements in the latest model have seen a new hybrid cover (christened a Paraloid Impact Modifier!) that paves the way for added distance and durability without sacrificing feel and short-game control. It’s engineered for a high-launch, low-spin combo in your longer clubs.

Srixon Soft Feel Brite

Srixon Soft Feel Brite matte

(Image credit: Srixon)

Matte colour options: red, orange, green

The 12th generation of Srixon’s Soft Feel model features the new Brite version in three matte-finish colours. The ball is designed to help slower-swinging golfers maximise distance without compromising feel. Srixon’s softest ever FastLayer Core is said to snap back into shape more quickly after impact for added ball speed, while reducing long-game sidespin for increased accuracy - an important consideration for many.

Bridgestone e12 Contact

Bridgestone e12 Contact matte golf ball

(Image credit: Bridgestone Golf)

Matte colour options: yellow, red, green

The feel at impact is reasonably soft, especially for a ball that is marketed for its distance gains. Off the tee, e12 Contact is as long as some of the best premium golf balls and launches fairly high, promoting better carry distance. It’s perhaps not as workable as some balls, so if you want to shape shots, it may not be right for you. But for the majority looking to dilute a slice into a fade, it may help a little on that front. It feels genuinely soft and responsive on chips and pitches, with a good level of feel for a mid-price ball.

Seed SD-15 Country Mile Matte Red AF

Seed SD-15 County Mile matte red golf ball

(Image credit: Seed)

Matte colour options: red

The Seed SD-15 County Mile is another good-value all-round performer promising a blend of distance, durability and feel, with the emphasis perhaps on distance on account of its low-compression core and surlyn cover. This new matte red version is designed with anti-glare properties and enhanced visibility in mind, especially in dull weather.

Volvik Vivid

Volvik Vivid Golf Ball Review

(Image credit: MHopley)

Matte colour options: purple, blue, green, orange, pink, red, white, yellow

It is the choice of eight different colours that really makes the Vivid stand out from the crowd. In terms of performance, it’s aimed at those with a driver swing speed of 70-90mph, delivering mid to high trajectory and spin. It does feel a little firmer than some balls to chip and putt with. Overall, a decent performer in an impressive colour palette.

Volvik ViMat Soft

Volvik ViMat Soft golf balls

(Image credit: Jeremy Ellwood)

Matte colour options: yellow, orange, red, pink, green, white

Another Volvik ball targeting mid swing speeds (70-90mph) and promising a mid-high trajectory coupled with low driver spin but more wedge spin. It has an extremely soft feel both to the touch (it almost feels tacky in the hand) and off the clubface, so ideal if you like a really soft feel on and around the greens.

Inesis Soft 500

Inesis Soft 500 matte red golf ball

(Image credit: Decathlon)

Matte colour options: green, red

Targetting mid- to high-handicappers looking for a decent ball at a very favourable price, the Inesis Soft 500 combines an extra-soft touch with good all-round performance. This high-launching ball has a low compression, so those not blessed with the fastest of swings can optimise their distances via improved energy transfer at impact.

Do Matte Golf Balls Make A Difference?

Volvik, the brand at the forefront of the matte revolution, claims the following about the benefits of its Volvik Vivid model: “minimised glare on ball surface promotes concentration and improved ball-striking”, which ties in with the first perceived benefit.

However, we have to confess we’re not quite sure what this means in relation to the benefits of the new Volvik ViMat Soft model: “improved focus in matte pastel colours that give a psychological stability!”

There may be some truth in both the anti-glare and findability claims, but we suspect it’s more about being able to offer something just a little bit different that will appeal to some golfers and not to others.

Interestingly Vice Golf’s Pro Soft model was formerly available in a matte finish, but the current model now boasts a ‘new glossy finish’ in a variety of colours, so maybe the matte finish is also still seen as a potential deterrent to some.

Jeremy Ellwood
Jeremy Ellwood

Jeremy Ellwood has worked in the golf industry since 1993 and for Golf Monthly since 2002 when he started out as equipment editor. He is now a freelance journalist writing mainly for Golf Monthly across the whole spectrum from courses and Rules to equipment and even instruction despite his own somewhat iffy swing (he knows how to do it, but just can't do it himself). He also edits The Golf Club Secretary Newsletter, has authored or co-authored three books and written for a number of national papers including The Telegraph and The Independent. He is a senior panelist for Golf Monthly's Top 100 UK & Ireland Course Rankings and has played all of the Top 100 plus 89 of the Next 100. He has played well over 900 courses worldwide in 35 countries, but put him on a links course anywhere and he will be blissfully content. On his first trip to Abu Dhabi a decade ago he foolishly asked Paul Casey what sort of a record he had around the course there. "Well, I've won it twice if that's what you mean!" came the reply...

Jezz can be contacted via Twitter - @JezzEllwoodGolf