Golf Simulator Launch Monitor: How To Choose

You have many options to choose from for a launch monitor in your golf simulator. Let us compare and contrast to help you choose between the most popular launch monitors.

SkyTrak Launch Monitor

A golf launch monitor is the brains of the operation. It’s an electronic device that sits near, above or around the hitting area to read all the important data as the ball is struck. That data is then transmitted to a software program on a tablet or computer to show your shot distance and shape.

To show you what your shot looks like, a launch monitor uses many different data points, such as ball spin, ball speed, club speed, club attack angle, and much more. Launch monitors are manufactured using different technology - including cameras, radars and sensors - to capture said data. 

At Carl’s Place, we offer several launch monitors

  • SkyTrak
  • Uneekor EYE XO
  • Uneekor QED
  • Mevo+
  • Garmin
  • Full Swing KIT

Just Show Me The Comparison Chart

 

Radar vs. Camera Launch Monitors

The Garmin Approach R10 uses radar technology to gather data, while the SkyTrak and Uneekor launch monitors use cameras (photometric). The Mevo+ is a radar launch monitor, but has an upgrade that will also bring its camera capabilities into play. Each launch monitor is programmed with its own algorithm to produce the data after reading the ball at impact. 

Alex at My Golf Simulator explains more about radar versus camera technology, saying radar-based launch monitors excel outside and in larger spaces where it can see more of the ball flight, while camera-based launch monitors typically work better in small spaces. Radars track moving subjects, such as your golf ball, and camera-based launch monitors take many pictures or video just before and after the ball is struck to gather data. 

Sometimes reflective stickers or intentional marks on a ball will help launch monitors pick up the spin on the ball, which affects most of the data output. However, some of the higher-end launch monitors require less help. 

Some of the data provided by mid-end launch monitors include more basic information such as carry distance, total distance and ball speed. Higher-end models offer a lot of the same ball data, but also add in club data such as attack angle, dynamic loft, club lie angle, impact point (horizontal and vertical) and more. 

Golf Simulator vs. Launch Monitor - What's The Difference?

Sometimes, when people refer to a “golf simulator,” it is actually the launch monitor they are talking about.

What is a launch monitor? The launch monitor is what tracks your swing and ball to give you realistic data on where your ball virtually went. What is a golf simulator? To us, the golf simulator is the entire setup: enclosure, screen, and technology that lets you experience virtual indoor golf. 

Many golfers will use the data from their launch monitor and take it to a certified golf instructor, who will then be able to tell the golfer what areas of their swing they need to improve.

Why is a launch monitor necessary when it comes to a golf simulator setup? 

Without the data a launch monitor provides, there is no way you would be able to see how your ball would fly. You wouldn’t be able to play any courses or games, leaving you to not be able to improve your game.

Simply, while other pieces of a golf simulator setup might not be a necessity, a golf simulator cannot work without a launch monitor. You might as well just be out on the driving range smacking away at golf balls randomly. Speaking of! We are building a library of launch monitor driving range tests, check them out!

Comparing Launch Monitors

Check out the spreadsheet below where we compare the pricing and data provided by some of the most popular launch monitors!

 

Launch Monitor Comparison Chart