Updated on March 15th, 2023 at 04:54 pm
If you are serious about your golf game, buying a reliable launch monitor is likely something you have been thinking about. As your game progresses, it is important to know your swing speed, carry distance, ball speed, ball flight, ball data, trajectory and launch angles in order to improve and get more out of your swing.
If your goal for 2022 is lowering your handicap and seeing a significant improvement in your game, then a golf launch monitor is probably going to be something you purchase this year.
The prices of a personal launch monitor have dropped significantly over the last few years, and in addition to being affordable, they really will provide you with immediate knowledge about your game, your distances, ball flight, and where you can improve. Other than a clubfitting, this may be the best golf experience you can have.
Adding one of these devices to your bag may be the smartest decision you made to improve your golf game.
Best golf launch monitor
(This would have been our top choice as the best golf launch monitor, but the restriction of IOS impacted our ratings.)
If you have an iPhone, then this is our top pick. We love the Rapsodo Mobile Launch monitor and nearly everyone who picks one up feels the same.
Bring your iPhone to the course – this Rapsodo app with a launch monitor will picture you swinging and show you all your stats. You can show this off on Facebook! The stats will display your distance, speed, club head speed, smash factor, speed launch angle, and direction. There’s even a GPS feature that shows you where your balls landed from where you hit them!
This is one of the perfect portable launch monitors for golf of the 21st century, and the IOS app is fantastic. What’s better – the monitor hooks to your Golf bag and allows you to carry it around the course. The stats are accurate and will compare to much more expensive trackers, and you can verify them by checking out range markers and range finders.
The video feedback is the best feature: You’ll be able to review your swings with data displayed right underneath, instead of only looking at raw data (without yourself in the shot).
iPhone/IOS only is a bummer, but this app is an excuse to purchase an iPhone in itself! You won’t believe how much better your shots get and how much it boosts your confidence when you see yourself on the screen with stats displayed below as if you’re a pro golfer.
Moreover, when you get video playback, you’ll instantly see “flaws” in your swing that you can improve right away. The Rapsodo R-Motion Golf Launch Monitor will show you the distance in yards/meters, the speed upon impact, the speed of your club, the angle, optimized launch angle and information for your game, and the direction upon launch. What more do you need from a golf launch monitor? The Rapsodo mobile launch monitor has it all!
- Video feedback with stats.
- Accurate statistics.
- Integration between IOS and other platforms
- GPS shot tracking
- IOS exclusive with required app
- No virtual course mode
SC200 Plus Swing Caddie
The Swing Caddie SC200 is the newest product from Voice Caddie. It can talk to you and is extremely accurate. After each swing, the monitor with audible output will tell you exactly how far you carried the ball. A nice feature with of Swing Caddie SC200 plus is that you can take practice swings without hitting a golf ball and still get an estimated distance of the distance carried. This launch monitor is affordable and easy to maneuver.
The SC200 Plus can provide you with much-needed data but is unable to give you those valuable spin rate measurements like the Trackman. On the other hand, it utilizes Doppler radar like the Flightscope Mevo and this is quite a feat since the size is comparable to an iPhone 6. The SC200 Plus does not need to be paired with a phone, unlike many of the other portable devices. It comes with a remote control and requires four (4) AAA batteries.
The SC200 Plus has some excellent features, including a barometric pressure sensor regulator for more precise readings. It can be adjusted for various lofts of clubs for more precision and will store the data.
When it comes to the readings, you can obtain club head speed, total distance, carry, ball speed, and smash factor. You can also use it while practicing on Target or Random mode to see how well you perform. This makes practicing more enjoyable and productive.
This portable launch monitor is unable to report your shots’ launch angles, but the data does form part of the calculations of the distance and carry.
- Doppler radar and barometric pressure sensor regulator technology.
- Accurate with multiple shot and club modes
- Limited hardware dependencies.
- Doesn’t track spin rates
- Doesn’t track launch angles
- Requires AA batteries
If you are looking for something portable, compact, and less expensive, Flightscope has recently launched the FlightScope Mevo, which can pair with your smartphone. It measures club speed, spin rate, angle spin rate, smash factor, carry distance, carry total, the distance launch, speed clubhead, side spin, back spin, swing speeds, vertical launch angle, and ball speed.
The Flightscope Mevo is a multi-faceted launch monitor that can help you improve your golf game. This device pairs with the app to assist you with capturing video and data on your phone. This is beneficial because you can save the data to compare with previous practice sessions. Being able to track your progress will enable you to increase your confidence and motivation to improve your technique.
You can track several things with the Flightscope Mevo:
- Clubhead speed
- Smash factor
- Vertical launch angle
- Flight time
- Apex height
- Carry distance
- Ball speed
- Best launch angle for your game
The app that comes with the Flightscope Mevo is its best highlight. You will be able to take a video of your swing and pair it with the data simultaneously on one screen. The app also has an interface that can be customized, which allows you to control what you see during each session. Additionally, the device is easy to take with you because it is smaller than most mobile phones. The Mevo is designed to be compact so you can easily take it with you when you are on the move.
The FlightScope Mevo has some fun features to improve your game. If you record your swing with your phone, you will be able to link the video with the data collected from Mevo. This is awesome for players who want to share information with their coaches.
While Mevo is an application designed for golf, it can be used for other sports including soccer and baseball. I consider it a great buy for a household of sports enthusiasts because all of them will be able to enjoy the benefits of the Mevo.
If you need more information, we did an in-depth review of flightscope here.
- Basic and affordable
- Dedicated smart phone app
- Video and statistic memory storage
- Tracks a decent range of data
- Indoor/outdoor and multi purpose
- Less accurate tracking
- Dependent on smart phone capabilities
- No virtual course mode
GARMIN APPROACH G80 GOLF GPS
The Garmin Approach G80 is a golf radar and launch monitor combined. When reviewing this technology, it was clear that this is one you want to be using on the course, and not as much for your indoor practice training sessions. The launch monitor components track “estimated” distance, clubhead speed, swing tempo, ball speed, and smash factor.
The GPS side contains precise distances for over 41,000 courses throughout the world. It also has a full-hole view which enables you to see water hazards and the location of bunkers. It offers complete hole by hole layout.
The Garmin Approach G80 also has a lanyard carabiner so that the device can be attached to the cart for easier mobility during rounds. There is also a cart mount and a mini charger to ensure that your gear and other golf gadgets are kept charged. This product is ideal if you prefer a launch monitor and rangefinder in one!
- Comprehensive kit with carrying case
- Rechargeable, no batteries to replace
- High quality GPS, radar and virtual course play
- No hardware dependencies.
- Doesn’t track spin rates
- No video recording mode
The SkyTrak launch monitor is typically one of the more expensive launch monitors on the market because it is a golf simulator and monitor in one.
It is truly a golf improvement device where you can play virtually. Although this is a more expensive model, being able to play practice games on virtual courses, as well as using a virtual indoor driving range is pretty sweet.
While it costs more money, it is absolutely worth every penny! The SkyTrak offers the essentials you need in a golf training device including club speed, spin rates on every shot, distance with audible output, and ball speed.
Hitting balls with a portable launch monitor that only provides distance is different than playing on a golf simulator. Your friends may not show up at your house to hit balls, but they will show up in the winter to play golf on a golf simulator with 3d ball flight every stat you could hope for.
The SkyTrak can connect to any compatible device to display swing data immediately. Its high-speed photography assists with measuring the golf ball to provide accurate readings. It also provides a simulation of your actual shot.
You can see the following data with your SkyTrak launch monitor:
- Shot dispersion
- Ball speed
- Launch angle
- Carry and total distance
- Spin rate
The SkyTrak launch monitor has a built-in battery which weighs 1.7 pounds and can run for up to five (5) hours. It is also portable and comes with a carrying case. The best feature of the SkyTrak is its capability to be used as an at-home golf simulator.
Be sure to check out our two most recent reviews including the SkyTrak vs Garmin r10, along with another comparison of the Garmin r10 vs Trackman.
- Full virtual play indoors and outdoors
- Complete and accurate stat tracking
- Rechargeable and comes with metal case
- Smart phone integration
- Game improvement package costs extra
- Certain smart phone dependencies
Arccos Caddie Smart Sensors
We reviewed the Arccos Caddie Smart Sensors in our golf training aid reviews section, and still love this digital caddie. It is different than the traditional golf launch monitor that you place on the ground behind you or to the side. These launch monitors are attached to every club in your bag.
If I had to give you my thoughts on this device in a few sentences, I would say that when you know the distance you are going to hit each club in your bag, you are going to shoot lower scores. When you remove indecision and reach for a club with confidence, you are going to make a better swing.
That being said, what better way to know how far you hit each ball than by reviewing each shot on your phone after the round is over?
Launch monitors can help you work on that control, but what do you do when those high-tech launch monitors are simply out of your financial reach? You find an alternative like the Arccos caddie sensor. The sensors are attached to the end of the grips on your clubs. They are affordable and simple to use, but best of all, they are an asset to your game.
The Arccos caddie system connects the sensors to a mobile app. They read the information when you swing, and the app calculates the distance and records the data according to the club you use. It can then advise you on how to choose your clubs and improve your game.
The complete system includes 14 sensors with batteries that are built to last five years or more. Its ability to provide reliable data about your distances can help you succeed on the golf course.
All of the Cobra Connect golf clubs now come with the Arccos caddie system built-in. This partnership between Arccos and a leading golf manufacturer is just one of the reasons I gave it a try.
- 14 fully-fledged performance sensors for each club with hands-free technology.
- AI caddie with advanced analytics to improve your game and help call shots
- Proprietary accurate GPS
- Affordable with no additional costs
- No video capture
- Smart phone dependencies for full features
Sports Sensors Swing Speed Radar
Do you play golf and baseball casually? How about a device that can measure both your golf swings on the course and your baseball swing? If you have a son playing baseball, he will be delighted to measure his speed as this device can track virtually all swings.
The Swing Speed Radar is a tiny measurement device that employs radar velocity sensors, which immediately analyze the speed of a swing along with some other important data points. It can measure swings for golf clubs of all sizes including Golf clubs for kids, and it’s also useful for sports such as baseball and softball.
What better indicator to tell you a device is effective than when it’s multi-sport? The Swing Speed Radar boosts your confidence on the course and allows you to improve your stats by measuring your swing speed and allowing you to monitor your consistency.
If you struggle with choosing the right club, you can swing with different clubs and calibrate your ability based on the data you’ve gathered from the Swing Speed device.
Too slow on your old device? The Swing Speed Radar measures distance in real-time: No waiting for data analysis. Simply swing, and the radar will pick up on the exact real-time velocity.
The radar can pick up on speeds between 20-200mph, and the radar transmission levels are very low, well within FCC requirements for ensuring maximum safety.
Inside the box, you’ll find 3 AA batteries (which are easy to swap out). The radar also comes with an instruction manual for fast calibration on the course.
- Easy to use
- Simple Doppler radar that measures up to 200 miles per hour
- Requires AA batteries.
- Only measures clubhead speed.
- Outdated technology
Voice Caddie Swing Caddie SC300 Portable
“Swing Caddie” dominates both high-end and low-end tracking devices: They’re the go-to company if you want reliable data on the course, and their devices are used by pro golfers. The SC200 was their flagship model, and it used to be super popular, but they upgraded it for the all-new S300.
The S300 provides the most accurate measurements to date with millimeter-specific launch angles and apex height, which can come of vital importance to professionals who care for the millimeter-specific detail. You’ll be impressed with the accuracy of the SC300 if you come from the SC200 as it saw massive improvements. The SC300 comes with mobile apps for both Android and IOS, integrating and transferring the data in real-time.
The measurement detail on the SC300 is military-grade. It provides accurate insight as to ball speed, swing speed, smash factor, yard carry, launch angle, and apex/maximum height. The appearance is high-end with a very sleek finish that looks a lot more “solid” and firm compared to previous hardware by Voice Caddie.
The device syncs data to Smartphone apps via Bluetooth that includes support for both Android and IOS. The app is minimalistic and intuitive: It allows you to keep track of your previous practice sessions and to analyze how you progressed over the long term. Tired of apps and smartphone integration? Worry not – if you don’t like apps, the Voice Caddie doesn’t force you to integrate your phone. This is optional.
- Smart phone compatible, with spin data and long-term stats available.
- Full range of statistics.
- LCD screen for most stats and voice capability that calls out distance in real time
- Very accurate and compatible with any club
- No virtual course mode
- Doesn’t track hooks and slices
Ernest Sports ES14
The Ernest Sports ES14 is a high-end launch monitor that integrates with Android/IOS apps for real-time feedback and provides access to all analytics you need on the course. The Ernest Sports ES14 can measure the total distance, ball speed, club speed, smash factor, and even vertical launch angle and spin rate. How cool is that?
There are “standout” features on the Ernest Sports ES14, which you won’t find on other basic-hardware measurers. The ES14 gives you voice feedback! You don’t even need to come close to the device as it can say out the distance out loud. This makes you save a few seconds between swings. The app can store all your shot details and allow you to review them in the future. It will measure your “averages” and show you your average swing speed, ball speed, distance, and more.
The ES14 can work as a standalone hardware app without phone apps. All your critical data will be delivered in real-time, and the voice feedback feature makes it easy to get your data in real-time without actually using the device nor your phone.
Once you set up your account the ES14 can deliver all your data in digital readouts (without App integration), through smartphone apps (support for IOS/Android) and voice integration, this the ES14 one of the most technologically advanced and versatile monitors to date.
- Smart phone app integration.
- Accurate with basic stats
- Leverages smart phone without requiring one to use
- Compact and easy to use
- Voice feature calls out distance
- Requires 9V battery
- No advanced stats
The best golf launch monitor is …
The FlightScope Mevo is a portable golf monitor that you can use on the driving range, in a golf training studio, on the course, or hitting into a golf net in your basement or garage. It is a training aid and launch monitor wrapped into a tiny little package. Definitely worth the money and a golf launch monitor your friends will be begging you to use.
Be sure to check out our recent reviews of the best Travel golf bag, our top pick for the top Golf Bag Cart, and our 2023 review of our favorite Golf Rangefinder. Have something you want us to review? Drop us a line and our team will get to work.
Choosing the best golf launch monitor technology takes more than merely ordering the first one you see, no matter what the brand. To get the best one for you, you should know what features will provide you with the most information.
Buying a personal launch monitor as a Gift for golfers is different than purchasing a commercial device.
You will want a device for indoor practice, that is accurate on a hitting mat when hitting into a Golf net. However, you will want an affordable golf launch monitor that can quickly be transported to the range or used when you are playing golf on the course.
Finding a golf simulation device that will provide you with all of your ball flight parameters at a great price point is now easier than ever. Our golf launch monitor reviews and top picks can help you find a device to use like a mobile device rain or shine golf
Your personal golf performance tracking system
You want to purchase a portable launch monitor for golf that is convenient and accurate. You should look for features in budget launch monitors that will benefit your game the most.
If your main goal is to dial in the distance of every club in your bag, then you will want to find a launch monitor that is “dead on balls accurate” with distances.
Distance control is a critical aspect of your game, and the more confident you are with your golf clubs, the better. It makes sense to find a tracking system focused on your distance.
What is the best unit after testing?
Today, most serious golfers know that a Trackman and a FlightScope are the Best Golf Launch Monitors used by instructors and club fitters.
These monitors offer a massive amount of technology and can measure launch angle, ball travel, golf club head data, target distance, ball speed carry and overall distance, and spin rates for both side and backspins.
However, the golf launch monitor market can be expensive, with a cost of the highest end model from Foresight Sports ranging around $20,0000 with doppler radar technology and performance data, and therefore with a price range that is not always the most affordable option.
With the more expensive models, there are often setup fees and annual costs. Even if you are interested in this level of technology, you probably wouldn’t mind finding the best affordable launch monitor or something a bit less expensive and more portable.
Thankfully, technology continues to evolve quickly, and this will enable you to find a compact and more affordable launch monitor which can fit your price point. We are not claiming that a monitor that costs $500 will be as accurate, but you may be surprised by the numbers, results, and level of accuracy.
When you combine your practice with an accurate launch monitor, you will make your practice more much more productive. Knowing your numbers will provide pertinent feedback when you practice. As a golf pro I know always says…”Perfect Practice is The Goal!”
No matter which launch monitor you choose, whether you want the best launch monitor for indoor use or just the best home launch monitor golf, it should be of excellent quality and include some type of warranty since you are dealing with technology.
We have tested, reviewed, and put in some time to help you find the best golf launch monitors available online.
If you are looking for more of an in house driving range, you may want to consider a golf simulator. These simulators can be a bit pricey, but they are well designed, realistic, and you do not need to go outside as you can play year round in your basement, garage, or anywhere else you can find the space.
We have been busy, and will provide you with even more outstanding reviews throughout the year, but first, check these out! FlightScope Mevo Monitor personal golf review as well as a comparison between the Flightscope mevo vs mevo plus and much, much more.