I was one of the early adopters of GPS. Although I liked the unit (Skycaddy), it never really did all that it promised, or even I had hoped for.
I switched to laser years ago, and have never looked back. I do have a mini Golfbuddy (with a backup battery) that lives in the bag and will get used at new tracks, but for the most part stays in it's pocket.
I'll not rehash all the "I think mine's better because" arguments, but I will say this...If the GPS owners biggest gripe about Lasers is that "They're too accurate!", you may want to rethink your position.
North Butte wrote:
Agreed. Yardage book, knowledge of the course, caddie and/or GPS if you want to know where you are to arbitrary spots. Or maybe someone with supernaturally steady hand with a laser.
I keep a little Bushnell Ghost around just for the 3, 4, 5 rounds a year I play on unfamiliar courses. The other 100+ rounds I already know where I am relative to fixed points, my laser is used to fill in information on the flag location the half-dozen times it matters in a typical round.
The one thing every GPS I've ever owned does (and it drives me crazy even if it doesn't really matter) is to temporarily settle on what looks like a steady number a couple seconds after I quit walking. Then in the time it takes me to hit my shot it changes by anywhere from a couple to maybe eight or so yards. Every single one of them will do that at least a couple times a round.
Nothing fills you with confidence like being given a number like 146, hitting the shot and then being told "Nah, I was just messin' with you. It's really 139". The only way to avoid it with the Ghost is to stand still for 20-30 seconds and make sure it's not going to change its mind...which I'm not going to do. Ever. Heck when I want a number to the flag from the laser I usually do it while I'm still walking.
North Butte wrote:
Please quit repeating the stupid canard that anyone using a rangefinder must be trying to measure the distance to an insanely precise degree.
North Butte wrote:
It's not that I don't believe you or the other people who have said that. But after half a dozen different units in a 10+ year span I'm not going to try any different ones to find out. On the occasions when I do that the Ghost to an unfamiliar course I just go off the first number I see and be done with it. There aren't many occasions when being off by half a dozen yards matters anyway it's just annoying.
I probably walk too fast or something.
Reading the other posts one can conclude that neither laser or gps are perfect but both are better than pacing out your shots, looking for yardage markers or guessing.
Here is my list of pros and cons of both:
1. "Exact" yard from your location. More accurate-- so long as you hit the right target
2. Better battery life/ does not need to be recharged
3. Slope information
4. Can be used on range or for other sports
5. No set up/ programming/ easy to use
6. Laser the group in front of you to see if they are out of range
7. Check out the cart girl
8. measure random features like hedge rows, boulders, fairway targets
1. Expensive- way less than the used to be
2. Time consuming
3. Players with shaky hands can not use
4. Targets hard to hit. Might be hitting the ground or tees behind. Flag poles without relflectors hard to hit
5. Can not be used for blind shots or when players have the flag pulled
6. Can be lost since it is not attached to body/ constantly pulled out and put away
7. No information about fairway shape unless you can see i
8. Hard to impossible to get accurate front/middle/back of green distance
9. No info about green shape
2. More features/ more information
3. Shows layout of unfamiliar course/ greens
4. Used for blind shots
5. Slope + other information
6. Shaky hands not a problem
7. Help with planing out all shots
1. Can be complicated- not really
2. Recharge battery
3. Subscription / update charges- only 1 brand has this
4. Less accurate
5. Update periodically- not really an issue, as updating is not mandatory
6. Course might not be programmed to unit- haven't found one in US or Canada yet that isn't... but it could be an issue in some countries.
7. Watches can get in the way of swing- I thought that initially as I don't wear a watch, but was never noticed on the course unless I forgot it, then I'd miss it. But a watch is only 1 option, there are also handhelds and fobs.
8. Some units hard to read- I wear 1.5 readers and can still see everything on my Neo-X and now X40
9. Auto advance feature can **** up function
10. Can't use on range
Please feel free to let me know if I missed anything.
For myself I have yet to use a gps but I'm not ready to dive in. The only yardage I need at this point is on the approach. I'm not as interested in the added features and yardage from the tee boxes. The score card provides enough information about hole layout generally and laser gives me information about dog legs. I can't quite justify getting a high end gps unit yet. A less expensive one might do like the bushnell neo ghost.
Side note, I don't understand people who use GPS apps on their phones.
1. The battery life on my phone would never last long enough.
2. All the constant text messages and phone calls I get are too distracting. The reason I golf is to get swags from those things.
North Butte wrote:
BDP5 adds some good points.
For me the most important factor is how often you play courses with which you are not familiar. If you already know the layout of each hole before you tee off and there are no surprise hazards or whatnot, a lot of the benefit of the GPS goes away.
OTOH if you play different courses constantly and they are the typical modern layouts with numerous hazards and various twists and turns to obscure your view, just having a laser still leaves you needing a yardage book, a practice round, a caddie, as Sherpa guide, something.
See post #4 /derisive.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':derisive:' />