With so many options out there for disc golf enthusiasts to build the bag of their dreams, sometimes it really comes down to splitting hairs. Depending on what slot you’re looking to fill, there are going to be plenty of choices to consider with regards to weight, plastic type, colors, etc.
Especially if you’re looking for something new; maybe you want to work on powering up your hyzers, but you’re curious about a different brand. Let’s talk about two popular and similar distance drivers from sister brands: the Axiom Virus vs. MVP Impulse.
Comparing the Axiom Virus vs MVP Impulse
Rounding out the Axiom Discs lineup of 20mm distance drivers, the Virus is an understable disc that has a slight turn but gentle fade, which will help you hit some narrow s-curves on the course.
Considered one of Axiom’s easiest-to-throw distance drivers, it’s not hard to see the appeal of having the control to extend and shape lines, especially if you’re new to the game.
At first touch, the Virus feels smaller than it actually is. It’s comfortable to grip with its rounded, curved shoulder, concave bottom wing, slim rim, and overall compact size. Power throwers will be able to enjoy massive turnover shots with a decently straightforward fade.
You can see an example of how much turnover distance the Virus can get in our follow flight video review:
The Virus is not the most understable driver available on the market, but it can be controlled. If you’re looking for more under-stability, some enthusiasts recommend trying it out in Plasma plastic.
If you’re curious how it compares to the MVP lineup, popular opinion will say that the Virus resembles a worn-in Impulse. There’s always going to be some noticeable turn and fade but just as reliably, there will be energy that naturally carries the disc forward at the very end of its flight.
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Enthusiasts warn the Virus in Proton plastic can get a little slick in the wintertime. On colder days it can get somewhat rigid and slippery, but durability is not a concern.
Do be warned, there’s a danger of having too much turn if you overpower this disc or throw it into some headwind. It can be thrown straight on a hyzer with less flip, but you have to be careful of speed control or else it’ll flip too much.
A little anhyzer could give you a better turnover shot. In Neutron plastic, the Virus could also be potentially a good roller if you had the right arm for it. Don’t be discouraged though. Average throwers can still get some decent flight distance out of it.
In this speed range, the Virus has the same amount of glide as other MVP and Axiom discs, so it’s enough to get down the fairway. The flight numbers for this disc are pretty spot on. This is the type of disc that really likes two things: the right amount of speed and proper form- it’s wonderfully particular (and versatile) that way.
You can buy an Axiom Virus here.
Fourth to be introduced in the MVP distance driver line, the Impulse is an understable driver in the 20mm distance driver class. With a weight range of 155g-175g and a slightly concave 2cm wing, their trademark GYRO™ action can give throwers more control and accuracy. This disc complements the uber-popular Inertia by producing steadfast hyzer flips and seamless glides.
It has a similar hand feel to a seasoned Inertia or Insanity and is generally regarded as comfortable for forehand or backhand throws. Fresh out of the box, this disc turns like a dream.
When given more speed, the turns tend to mellow out. The more power you give it, the more turn will become apparent, similar to the MVP Inertia. The fade of the Impulse has been likened to the Inertia’s; just enough to bring it out of a turn, but it won’t settle too far left at the end of its flight.
For lower power throwers, the neutral to understable flight profile will allow them to achieve relatively straight lines. Beginners will find that this driver gives a gratuitous amount of distance and meet them at their ability, although it does benefit from a bit of a snap.
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GYROnauts will tell you that the Overmold technology from the Axiom and MVP discs will require more spin and good form in general to really get going. Power throwers will find the Impulse useful as a utility driver in order to take advantage of tailwinds. The Impulse does its best work during calm throwing conditions and could be capable of giving you a new max distance record.
For players that rely on the Impulse as their workhorse this is a must-bag for long and smooth turnover shots as well as rollers. It does its best work when thrown flat or with a slight hyzer and can do wonders in a low-ceiling situation. Adjust your hyzer flip based on your arm speed and the Impulse will be golden.
In headwinds, there’s a bit of a disagreement- for some, the Impulse can do decently. Others say it’s unfavorable and there are other discs that just simply do better. But like most things related to disc golf, it depends on the thrower’s feel and a variety of throwing conditions.
Regardless, this great disc will bring added benefits to any bag.
You can buy an MVP Impulse here.
So, Virus Or Impulse?
As far as choosing a new distance driver, you can’t go wrong with either of these discs.
Even if the Axiom Virus is regarded as a worn-in Impulse, that should be a testament to the versatility of these discs in the sense that both discs offer disc golfers something to fill a certain slot in their bag, but with enough nuance that the golfer can make an educated decision for themselves to choose what ultimately feels right to them.
Improving your game will not only require working on your throwing form but understanding the roles that these discs play and knowing them through and through. And if you’re not sure that the Virus or the Impulse will fill that slot, then keep doing your research, and find your next distance driver at Reaper Disc Supply.
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