Having a golf GPS handheld device around will actually provide you plenty of help in your game. A number of models can even do more than just display your distance to a pin; some can provide earlier hazards or holes, determine distances on the green and indicate waypoints.
However because of the arrival of great models in the market, choosing a device which will suit your needs can be a hard task to accomplish. This article will further discuss today’s hottest golf GPS devices to make searching for the perfect model a lot easier for you.
Best Golf GPS Devices
There is a good number of golf GPS devices in the market today. No doubt about that. The challenge now is to find the perfect one to match your needs and budget. Below are seven of the best golf GPS in the market today, let’s find out what they have to offer:
Garmin Approach G6
The Approach G6 is one of Garmin’s newest models and it is not made in the same vein as its forerunners the G3 and G5. It demonstrates the mode of gathering every good feature of those aforementioned devices into one convenient design. Although the G6 shares similar attributes with the older model’s touchscreen, it weighs lighter and it comes in a more streamlined design.
It is one of the smallest golf GPS models available in the market today and like any other model on Garmin’s Approach line-up, features pre-loaded courses without the annual fees. It also features statistics tracking and the capability to indicate averages of club distance.
Garmin Approach G10
Due to its handy clip-on features, the Approach G10 provides precise distances and course data by way of your belt, bag or pockets since this convenient unit can fit itself just about anywhere. It gives users pin placements, hazards on every hole and front, middle and back of green distances. It has over 40,000 pre-loaded international courses, perfect for the jet-setting golfer who loves trying out new courses all over the world.
The device also includes green view features so they can actually see the factual layout and shape of the green while manually shifting the pin provides them ideas of distances. A good model fit for the busy, traveling golf enthusiast.
IZZO Swami 5000+
The IZZO company has managed to provide enhancements on the Swami 5000 with its latest offer, the brand-new 5000+. It acts fast, provides precise distances to factors like doglegs and hazards so your days of guesstimating are over. You won’t ever have to fret over course management and just enjoy the game, improve it and have fun.
The device features precise distances to the front, center and back of the green and it also includes helpful data like over 30,000 global pre-loaded courses. Users can also access those courses without paying a yearly fee for the subscription or downloads.
The GB3-PT4 is one of the brand’s newest babies and this upgrade features a larger 4-inch LCD with higher resolution. It has a user control panel which includes a capacitive touch panel and a sleek, slim figure. It packs plenty of pre-loaded global courses and hazards—in fact, 37,000 of them and as a nice bonus, users won’t have to pay for any membership or download dues.
It also includes other crucial features like distances to the front, center and back of the green. target data, pin placement section, a Dynamic Green view function and a score tracker. It claims to have 10 hours of battery life and is water-resistant to boot.
The Touch line by Skycaddie is a complete progression of earlier models like Breeze, SGX and SGXw. The model has a bright, comprehensible 3-inches color screen and it also includes a full graphic view of the holes and its details. Another great feature of the model is it’s capable of customizing a broad selection of settings according to their needs and preferences, which is convenient if you want to improve your game even more.
Unlike previous models mentioned above, the Touch requires an annual fee for unlimited course perusal, which will deter prospective buyers but it will all the more give its users extra advantages beyond updates—users are given access to the company’s portal and a number of great discounts.
Garmin Approach G3
The Approach G3 is one of the company’s trusted models. A bit heavy than the aforementioned G6, it weighs 5.35 ounces in a small, compact size. It features the brand’s diagrams of holes in the course as pitted against actual images of satellites—the diagrams are brighter and crisper measured against the photos so it can be viewed clearly in every available light condition.
Its user interface or control panel can be compared with its predecessor the G5, one of the most praised interfaces in the market today. Other than that, the device can also indicate the distance to any point and as an added perk, it does not require any kind of set-up since all courses are pre-loaded.
Bushnell Neo Ghost
The Neo Ghost is a convenient model which can be worn by users and provides a broad array of course data. It weighs light at 42 grams and it features a wide, big screen to make viewing crucial information a breeze. It is over 1 inch wide and it shows the front, middle and back of the green in a comprehensible fashion by way of its well-designed font.
Golfers who have bought the item were satisfied with its user-friendly features; its auto-course recognition technology was quick to precisely find the course. The distances it gave to the green seemed precise and so were distances to nearby fairways and wayward shots. This is a no-fuss golf GPS model for models with minimal preferences and needs.
In looking for a golf GPS device, you have to take into account several factors. The most crucial factors include price, technology and ease of use.
In terms of prices, you will see plenty of differences on each model. More affordable units often include basic features while the more costly ones have enhanced designs, extra features, compact sizes and are often lighter in terms of weight.
The Approach G10 and the Neo Ghost by Bushnell both top the list for having the same affordable price. These are no-frills devices for the golfer whose needs are simple. Both units provide thousands of courses, shows distances on the front, middle and back of green plus its accompanying hazards and both also offer perks of zero membership/subscription, download and upgrade fees.
The Swami 5000+ takes the second place for its cost-effective price rate and ten bucks difference. Like the abovementioned models, this unit also includes basic features without the obligatory yearly fee for course upgrades. The Approach G6 comes in third; due to its additional features like statistics tracking and club distance averages, it is a bit more expensive than the mentioned three units but to sweeten the deal, there is no fee needed to access its course archives.
The Garmin Approach G3 falls in the fourth place and this unit will ultimately win over many golfers since it does not require any setting up, plus it does not obligate users to provide access fees for course database usage either.
The GB3-PT4 is actually the most expensive, but compared to Skygolf’s Skycaddie Touch, which ranks last, you only have to settle with the unit’s retail price and not worry about additional fees for course database use and downloads right after since it does not oblige users of any extra expenses.
The Skycaddie Touch is more affordable than the GB3-PT4, but here’s the setback; unlike most of the devices mentioned earlier, it does require a yearly fee for its course upgrades.
Thus in terms of practicality, you might settle for the GolfBuddy GB3-PT4 or the Garmin Approach G6 if you do not want to be hassled by annual charges and just enjoy your game.
The overall Number One is the Garmin Approach G6 with its packed features from statistics tracking and determining club distance averages. It has features and customized settings that majority of golfers will require, all available in manageable menus. It is capable of displaying distance readings up to the green (users will see this through Green View) which contributes to the unit’s overall exactitude.
Second place goes to the IZZO Swami 5000+ which includes fundamentals like shot measurements, layup distances (yards and meters), distances to many targets and the automatic hole advance feature.
The Approach G3 comes in third for its formidable selection of beneficial features that are well-executed and it is waterproof to boot. One of its better points is its ability to identify the exact position of a target on the course; it allows greater flexibility and Garmin supplements this function with pre-indicated distances to plenty of applicable targets and hazards.
The GolfBuddy GB3-PT4 meanwhile is a multilingual device; it offers users to select the language they want to use from its available 8 languages. It includes features like Statistics Analysis Mode, which lets users scrutinize the varying statistics they acquire to further comprehend their play, On-Hole Positioning and personalized target capacities.
The Approach G10 meanwhile includes the usual basics like over 40,000 courses, distances to the front, back and middle of the green and its Green View display too which indicates the green’s form by way of manual pin placements. And finally, Bushnell’s Neo Ghost comes in fifth — a practical but basic model for the laidback golfer.
When it comes to technology, the Skycaddie Touch disappoints almost everyone. Most reviews of the Skycaddie are not positive and this is not without surprise… On paper this golf GPS handheld looks very promising with its wider variety of features like Shot Tracking, which lets users indicate their shot to gauge distances, Scores and Statistics to track fairways, putts and scores plus Preferences, which allows users to customize settings for the backlight, auto-advance and auto-off down to units of distances.
Ease of Use
The most user-friendly devices turned out to be the units which provided basic features. The Swami 5000+ comes in the first place because as many users have said of the device, it was able to provide all the essential information a golfer needs in a convenient manner. It has only one button for the front/center/back distances and a single button for distance to a hazard.
The Approach G10 makes everything easy for golfers since it comes in a clip-on design and provides precise distance readings and course data anywhere you clip it. If you do not like wearing something on your wrist, then this device will be a sure shot.
The Approach G6 meanwhile takes the third place for being a compact and light unit. It features a straightforward display which includes the touchscreen and the buttons and lets users gain easy access to a variety of features and information.
The Approach G3 also features a simple control panel or interface where users can acquire features and data. All courses are saved on the unit so golfers won’t have to choose which course to replace or disable on the unit’s memory. The touchscreen was also capable of determining distances to an objective point easy, fast and convenient.
The fifth place is for the Bushnell Neo Ghost. The device’s auto recognition technology acted fast in determining courses with precision and users won’t have to do so much fiddling with the device when doing yardage readings not unless they are required to check hazard yardages.
The Skycaddie Touch is a bit complicated to use thus users are often advised to read its manual first before taking it to the green. The GB3-PT4 comes in last; several users have complained that the updating and course software of the unit is not manageable.
One complained that the software produces messages and alerts that are not that relevant while another user said that its screen was a bit of a challenge to use under bright sunlight.
The golf GPS unit that will work for you is something that will rightfully fit your needs. First, you have to decide whether you want a golf GPS watch or a golf GPS handheld device. Maybe you need to compare the watches and handhelds first. And do you only need the basics? You can go for units that scored high on its user-friendly aspect while those who want more advanced ones should consider looking at the models which scored better on the technological aspects of this review. We hope that at the end of this article, you have a clearer idea of what sort of model you need.