Personal golf launch monitors are becoming extremely popular among golfers. It wasn’t too long ago that if you wanted to analyze your swing, you’d have to visit a range or launch monitor station to get these results. Now, with advances in technology, personal golf launch monitors are becoming more affordable, allowing golfers to enjoy the benefits right from their home.
Every round of golf that you play, something is bound to go wrong. It’s almost unheard of that someone shoots the exact score they were trying for. There’s always room for improvement. So, if you were allowed to diagnose why you may not be shooting what you’ve been hoping for, wouldn’t you take it? Now, we all understand that user error is a large part of golf. Sometimes, you chunk a chip or misread a putt. It is what it is. But for consistent errors, there are ways to figure out what you’re doing wrong on a grander level, and not all of them require a swing coach and expensive lessons.
This is where a golf launch monitor can come in handy. It is a device that can help you track important data about your swing, and the data is specific to you. Your swing is unique, so rather than having a swing coach try and analyze it, a launch monitor will actually show you what is going on with your swing. If you’re someone who tends to slice their drives or irons, you can find out your vertical launch angle or your clubhead speed to better correct your swing.
There are many different kinds of personal golf launch monitors, so you may want some help figuring out which one is best for you. We’ve done the homework and found nine of the best on the market for 2021. Please take a look at our picks and try and pinpoint what’s going on in your swing.
Best Golf Launch Monitors: Our Top Picks
If you want our recommendations right away, here they are. Read further for the full list and individual reviews.
- Best Overall: FlightScope Mevo
- Best Premium: SkyTrak Launch Monitor
- Best Value: PRGR Black Pocket Launch Monitor (New 2021 Model)
Features That Matter
There are different levels of features that you’ll find with golf launch monitors. This all depends on which one you have and what exactly you’re looking for. If you use a launch monitor, you will be able to take something away from it, guaranteed. Launch monitors should be used by serious golfers who are looking to make some changes to their game. When it comes to launch monitors, you’ll find various features. But what features should you consider when choosing one?
Every launch monitor’s job is to take a look at your swing and calculate data based on it. Some will take videos of your swing to show you what you look like, while others will measure how you’re hitting the ball. When it comes to specific pieces of data, standard ones like swing speed and carry distance are tracked by practically every golf launch monitor and helpful to any golfer. If the head of your club is dragging behind as you’re making contact, you’re more likely to push a ball. Figuring out how far a ball will go when you make contact with it will give you a better idea of which distances to use different clubs for.
More advanced metrics are also available, depending on the level of technology you want at your fingertips. Working up to data like spin axis and angle of attack will be of use to more experienced golfers. That kind of data can help you shape shots and figure out where you might be able to take a shortcut on a course and where you should lay up. The more you use it, the more useful it will become. You should definitely see what metrics are measured by the launch monitor and see if you’ll be able to get the most out of that information.
Accuracy is such an important part of using a golf launch monitor. You need to make sure you set it up properly for your swing every time you use it. You need to have enough room around you to analyze your swing. For the most part, each launch monitor will track every swing. Reading up on how accurate the launch monitor claims to be is important, and checking out reviews before you buy one is a smart idea.
You want to be able to take a launch monitor with your wherever you want to use it. Most of them are very portable, and you can pop them in your golf bag and head to the range. But others require more to help prop them up, requiring you to perhaps bring something to lean it against. Some will track data and send it to your phone or tablet, while others can keep the data on the monitor itself. You want to visualize where you’re going to be using the monitor before buying a specific one.
Best Personal Golf Launch Monitors of 2021 (with Reviews)
1. FlightScope Mevo
This is one of the most trusted launch monitors on the market. It is used by pros like Bryson DeChambeau and Bubba Watson to track their data. You’re able to capture videos of yourself and send all of the data straight to your smartphone or tablet for further review. It’s easy to use this indoors or outdoors.
You won’t find many simpler items to use on the market. PGA professionals and golfers trust this at many levels. The fact that it will take a video of your swing and send it to your mobile device is beneficial and will give you a better picture of what’s going on with your swing. It can be relied upon, and it’s a reason we are big fans of it.
- Sends data in real time
- Automatically record, clip, and save each video with data
- Great for use indoors and outdoors
We loved how you’re able to save and share your data, all in the Mevo app. It’s effortless to carry around with you, as you can pop it in your bag without an issue. You can dial in your distances from the grass, mat, or indoors. The 3D Doppler radar-based monitor allows you to practice with purpose. You can measure eight different metrics, including apex height, flight time, and spin rate.
To get the most consistent data, you should be applying metallic stickers to your balls when you’re using the FlightScope Mevo indoors. These are included with the purchase, but if you need more, you’ll have to buy more. The accuracy of the readings can be affected by temperature, which it does not account for.
2. SkyTrak Launch Monitor
If you want data, you’re going to get it when you use this. This provides you with so much data, so you’ll be able to dissect your swing like never before. We loved the embedded Wi-Fi, which allows you to use it wherever you want. You’ll be impressed with how you can enter the kind of conditions you want to work on and track yourself through those kinds of shots.
- Photometric technology
- Wireless design
- Simulation packages available for more advanced metrics
This can measure 11 different metrics, and it uses high-speed cameras to track it. The advanced algorithms will work to calculate your ball’s flight path and distance. Your game will improve, and this is ideal for indoor use. It sends data to your wireless devices. While golf can be extremely challenging, this will make practicing fun, as you can challenge your friends. With a simulation package, there’s so much more to unlock, like environmental controls, multiple camera angles, club comparisons, and more.
You will get the most out of this with a package through SkyTrak. That can run up the price of your launch monitor a decent amount. The launch monitor and basic practice plan will set you back $1,995. You really are only going to use this indoors.
3. PRGR Black Pocket Launch Monitor
The PRGR launch monitor allows you to get the data right on the device, so you don’t need your phone or Wi-Fi to be available. It’ll track your info using Doppler radar and includes everything you need to get started. It can also be used for other sports to measure the speed of a baseball pitch or a tennis shot.
Giving you plenty of bang for your buck, this golf launch monitor delivers data for a solid price. It uses Doppler radar to track your shots, and it has multiple uses for a multi-sport family. It’s straightforward to use, as you’ll get the data to show up right on the monitor. You can just set it up, and it’s ready to go.
- Can be used for more than golf shots
- Includes everything you need
- No Wi-Fi is needed
The data is displayed right on the device, showing the swing speed, ball speed, carry distance, total distance, and smash factor for each club. The screen is easy to read, and the precise algorithms give you data within seconds. Great to use indoors or outdoors. You can set it up and start swinging. It won’t cause you to readjust it after every swing.
The data is limited compared to some other launch monitors. Certain users have reported inaccurate readings for clubs with higher lofts.
4. FlightScope Mevo Plus
Carry distance, Total distance, Club head speed, Ball speed, Smash factor, Angle of Attack, Spin rate, Spin axis, Spin loft, Horizontal launch angle, Vertical launch angle, Lateral landing, Roll distance, Shot shape, Apex height, Flight time.
Take everything that you like about the FlightScope Mevo and add more features to it, as it combines a launch monitor and simulator. The action video clips with data overlay and the ability to use it indoors or outdoors are just a few of the included features. This will provide you with the most data of any launch monitor that we’ve found. You’ll also be able to play virtual courses with this, allowing you to challenge yourself even while you’re practicing.
- Internal camera for alignment
- Skills challenges and mini games
- Wi-Fi connectivity
This takes the FlightScope Mevo and combines it with some of the features you’ll find with a subscription package of the SkyTrak. It is its own Wi-Fi hotspot, allowing you to use it wherever. You can play simulated courses and challenge yourself and your friends. This offers eight extra data parameters like horizontal launch angle, lateral landing, angle of attack, spin axis, spin loft, and more. There are also 17 practice ranges included.
The FlightScope Mevo Plus costs $1,500 more than the standard Mevo, so it’s one of the pricier options you’ll find.
5. Garmin Approach G80
If you’re interested in playing rounds worldwide, this is the golf launch monitor for you. You’ll be able to practice and gather your metrics, such as swing tempo and smash factor. But you’ll also be able to do that while practicing at courses across the globe, virtually, because this combines a GPS unit with a launch monitor. This has some unique features that are useful for helping you better measure your own golf shots.
- PinPointer and PlaysLike technology
- Combines G80 GPS unit with a launch monitor
- Offered with many add-ons
You’ll get a lot out of using this, as it can help you while you’re on the course and while you’re practicing off of it. This has a GPS to prepare you for your current shots. It has a launch monitor and virtual course play integration that gives you access to 41,000 courses. You’ll be able to find out more about your swing and the course you’re playing with the PinPointer and PlaysLike technology features. You can also purchase items like a trolley or cart mount, hard protective case, portable charger, and more to get the most out of it. This does not have a subscription fee.
This will not take spin or launch angle into consideration, so carry distance may not always be accurate for each club.
6. Swing Caddie SC200 Plus
Rather than having to reach down and look at your monitor for every single shot, you’ll find out what your data is shortly after you swing. That’s because the Swing Caddie SC200 Plus will read out the metrics to you. The distance voice output and Doppler radar technology deliver accurate information for your practice swings. It’s simple to use and delivers a wide measuring range, making this perfect for any level of golfer.
- Barometric pressure calibration
- Remote control
- Tracks stats for every club
You’ll get the data read out loud to you, or it comes up on the monitor for you to follow. You don’t need to hook this up to Wi-Fi to use it. It comes with a remote control that allows you to change up your club and the modes. There are different modes like practice mode, accuracy mode, target mode to measure different levels of your practice. It measures between 30 to 320 yards, allowing beginners and pros alike to utilize it. It’ll also show you the metrics for your last 100 shots.
It has to be in the right spot, which is behind the swing, in order to get proper readings.
7. Swing Caddie SC300
Featuring a portable launch monitor that provides golfers with complete swing and ball flight metrics found in professional ones, including launch angle and apex data. It also measures carry/total distance, smash factor, ball/swing speed, and spin rate.
The Swing Caddie SC300 is another upgraded model on our list, expanding on the great capabilities of the lower-end SC200 Plus model. It can measure a wider range of distance measurements, offer apex readings, and deliver spin rate metrics. But the biggest difference is that it allows you to track your data in the SC300 app via Bluetooth. You’ll get a more in-depth analysis of your shots to let you dive deeper into your game.
- Instant feedback via LCD display
- All the features from the SC200
- Adjustable loft angles
Delivering more data tends to happen with an upgrade, but in this case, you’ll be able to track the data more easily. The SC300 app is user-friendly and syncs up easily with your monitor. You’ll be able to see carry distance, smash factor, launch angle, swing speed, apex height, and ball speed metrics, thanks to the advanced Doppler radar technology. This will deliver voice output like the SC200. You’ll get a USB cable and a USB cover along with the remote control.
The Swing Caddie SC300 costs $100 more than the SC200 and requires you to use your phone, so if you want something that doesn’t need extra devices, this may not be the version for you.
8. Rapsodo Mobile Golf Launch Monitor
Being able to set up and use this in no time is a huge perk. The instant feedback it relays can have you reading out your metrics and comparing them shot after shot as the data overlays. It is an accurate launch monitor that has modes for indoor and outdoor use. You’ll be able to get more out of this when you sync up your compatible Apple mobile device.
- Can be used hitting indoors or into a net
- Shows where your shots would have landed on a course
- Data is simple to search through
You’ll be able to look at your shot history with a shot trace and data overlay. This lets you view averages, dispersion, trajectory, and standard deviation for each club. It takes less than 30 seconds to set up and comes with its own case to prop up, so you won’t just have to rest it on the ground. This will use your phone’s GPS to show you where your shots would have landed on a course. The app is simple to use and keeps everything easy to find.
This only works with Apple devices, so Android users won’t be able to use it.
How much do golf launch monitors typically cost?
Launch monitors can range from around $200 to a few thousand dollars. Depending on if it requires a subscription plan and the advanced features you can tap into, the price change can fluctuate around a few hundred dollars. Some launch monitors have golf simulator software that can boost up the price as well, but you’ll have more features at your fingertips and more data to play around with.
Are golf launch monitors worth it?
You first need to ask yourself if spending the money for a launch monitor worth it for you. You’ll have to try and figure out what data you need to help you lower your scores. If you’re someone who frequently plays throughout the year, saving a stroke here and there on your handicap can put you in line for a club championship. If you’re more of a casual player who grabs their clubs six or seven times in a year, buying one for yourself may not be in the cards.
Studying the data in real-time will be worth it, but how you use the data is just as important. Golf simulators are often used in conjunction with a launch monitor to provide you with a clearer picture of your swing’s strengths and weaknesses. A launch monitor is easy to set up and utilize, which definitely works in its favor. Only you can decide if buying a launch monitor will be helpful to your overall game.
Where should you be using one?
If you’re heading to the driving range, you should bring your launch monitor with you. That’s an easy place to set it up and get swings in so that you can utilize the features. You can utilize it at home if you have a net that you’re hitting into. Whether you’re hitting off of grass or a mat, this will pick up your swings and transmit data for you. You can try and use it on a course, but having to set it up and pick it up and bring it with you doesn’t make much sense. This is for practice to help you when it comes time to get on the course. Plus, you want to be able to switch your clubs up after a few swings and track the data fluidly. At home, indoors, or at the range are the best places to use a monitor.
There is a golf launch monitor out there for every level of golfer. Being able to work through the data is what will help turn a good golfer into a great one. Whether you want to use your phone to store information or use the monitor itself for that, there are plenty of choices for both. All of them can change your golf score for the better. For those who take their golf seriously, a launch monitor is a valuable addition to a golf product lineup.