Launch monitors have become important practice tools for today’s golfers. With a wide range of affordable units available, few serious golfers go without a launch monitor. But how do you know which one’s right for you? To help you out, let’s look at seven of the best-known models on the market and see how they stack up.
Entry Level - Under $500
We’ll begin with the low-end models. These three launch monitors are all priced at under $500. They use a Doppler radar system to track the ball, and display a select group of data points to the player.
Swing Caddie SC200 - $350
- Compact enough to fit into your club bag.
- Setup is fairly simple with the included kickstand, although you’ll have to be precise with your placement behind the ball.
- Decent accuracy for the price.
- Metrics include ball speed, club speed, smash factor, and carry distance.
- Operates best on mid-yardage strokes.
- Recommended to use either outdoors or in a bigger room where the radar has more space to operate.
FlightScope Mevo - $499
- Futuristic-looking device that weighs under 8 oz.
- Uses Doppler radar like the Swing Caddie but claims to have a greater degree of accuracy.
- Metrics include measuring ball speed, club speed, carry, spin rate and launch angle. You’ll need to attach a small silver dot to every ball you’d like to track spin rate for.
- Fully app-based, so all data and visualizations are shown on your phone or tablet. It’s compatible with both iOS and Android systems.
- Capable of recording your stroke with your phone’s camera and sync it with the ball’s trajectory. In practice this is a little difficult to set up properly, but it’s a handy way to analyze your golf swing.
Mid-Level - Above $500
SkyTrak - $2,000
One of the more interesting launch monitors on our list is the SkyTrak. Until recently, most launch monitors were aimed at either novices or professionals. Coming in at around $2,000, the SkyTrak serves those players in the vast middle.
- Uses a single high-speed camera system to record club and ball speed, launch angle and spin rate, and calculate the ball’s 3D trajectory.
- Accurarcy is on the level of other high-end launch monitor market.
- Allows manual input of weather and course conditions.
- Marketed as a primarily indoor device, although it does work well on the driving range if there’s not much sunlight.
- Wi-Fi ready and will easily link up with a wide range of simulators on iOS and PC, including World Golf Tour.
High-End - $10,000 - $25,000
Finally, let’s move on to the higher end of the market, which includes launch monitors from $10,000 all the way up to $25,000.
TrackMan 4 - $19,000 - $25,000
- Latest unit from TrackMan.
- Biggest advancement is the use of two radars during swing analysis. One of the radars tracks the clubhead and impact, while the other focuses on the flight of the ball after impact.
- Single built-in camera to capture your swing and additional club data.
- Short-range radar detects angles, spin, and strike position at the club face.
- Very portable, weighing just over 6 pounds
- Chargeable battery lasts around 4 hours of play time.
- Base unit is rated for indoor use only.
- Outdoor and indoor option will cost around $6,000 more than a standard model.
Foresight Sports GC2 - $9,500
- Uses high-speed cameras and advanced algorithms to capture and calculate data with unmatched precision and reliability.
- Best-selling model which utilizes stereoscopic cameras to capture three-dimensional data of your swing.
- Most launch monitors sit behind the golfer, but the GC2 is side on, able to clearly see the club face and impact. This translates into more accurate data.
Foresight Sports GCQuad - $14,000
- The first launch monitor in the world that boasts four ultra-high-speed cameras in a quadroscopic array, providing exceptional accuracy and insight.
- From azimuth and spin-tilt axis to angle of attack and closure rate, the GCQuad offers no fewer than 13 club and ball data points.
- Equipped with an infrared light source, built-in barometer and thermometer, and self-leveling system makes it simple to pick up and play in any conditions.
- No caliberation required. The hit zone is 6-times larger than anything else on the market.
- Great for junior golfers.
- Won the Editor’s Choice Golf Digest award in 2018 and 2019.
- Full GCQuad details
Foresight Sports GCHawk - $16,000
- Uses the same four-camera tech as the GCQuad.
- All-in-one mounted solution designed for fixed simulator setups.
- Because it’s mounted in front of the user, it can switch between left- and right-handed players and still deliver precise results with no extra input.
- Comes bundled with a license for FSX, the incredibly detailed simulator software created by Foresight Sports.
- Best choice for commercial installations.
- Full GCHawk details
As you’ve seen, there’s a golf launch monitor out there for every level of player and every budget. It’s just a matter of picking the one that works best for you.