When you think about golf simulators, you probably picture the classy setups that coaches and pros use, with premium impact screens and a powerful projector.
However, smart devices and wifi hotspots are changing the dynamic. In this post, I reveal the 10 best outdoor golf simulators to check out in 2023.
I have tried and tested numerous options to identify the top picks for different golfers. The aim is to help low handicappers to beginners leverage the power of golf simulator technology. These devices will enable you to practice whenever you want, and gain detailed insight into each golf shot.
If you are on a budget this year, you can find a range of suitable options in our guide of the 10 best golf simulators for under $1000.
Table of Contents
- 1. Flightscope Mevo + – Best Overall Outdoor Golf Simulator
- 2. SwingLogic SLX MicroSim – Best Budget Golf Simulator Package
- 3. Flightscope Mevo – Best Golf Simulator For High Handicappers
- 4. Bushnell Launch Pro – Best Golf Simulator Setup For Mid Handicappers
- 5. Full Swing Kit Launch Monitor – Best For Low Handicappers
- 6. Foresight Sports GC3 – Best Launch Monitor For Golf Coaches
- 7. SkyTrak Basic Practice Range Package – Best For Entertainment
- 8. Voice Caddie SC300 – Best For Average Golfers
- 9. Garmin Approach R10 – Best Hybrid Golf Simulator
- 10. Rapsodo Mobile Launch – Best For Video Analysis
1. Flightscope Mevo + – Best Overall Outdoor Golf Simulator
Comes with 6 iOS E6 Connect simulated golf courses, 17 different practice ranges, and a mini game. 16 unique data parameters including carry distance, club head speed, ball speed, smash factor, spin rate, spin axis, spin loft, angle of attack, horizontal launch angle, vertical launch angle, lateral landing, shot shape, total distance, roll, flight time, & height.
My top pick for outdoor golf simulators is the Flightscope Mevo +. The brand has strong ties to the town of Stellenbosch, where I spent years working in the wine industry. Despite my patriotism, the Mevo + stood out for its exceptional accuracy, quality simulation software, and its portability.
LIV Golf recruits Bryson DeChambeau, and Bubba Watson has long supported the performance of the Mevo +. You’ll notice that its price point makes it accessible to most golfers. Acquiring this simulator package gives you access to the E6 Connect golf software, which features 6 virtual golf courses and 17 practice ranges.
You’ll need an iOS device to enjoy the simulator features. However, you can link up the launch monitor to your iPad or iPhone and enjoy the functionality on the driving range.
Besides the entertainment aspect, the Mevo + measures an uncanny amount of data points for its price to enhance the accuracy of each reading. 16 is the exact number, which includes ball, club, and flight data for improved results.
Finally, the Flightscope Mevo + is a doppler radar device, which must sit approximately 6 to 8 feet behind the hitting mat for accurate measurements.
You can also read my full write-up on the Flightscope Mevo+ here.
- Measures 16 data points
- More affordable than a Trackman, Bushnell, or Foresight Sports product
- The package gives you access to E6 Connect simulator software
- Light and portable
- It is expensive compared to the standard Mevo
- The device requires a wifi point or hotspot to connect to the software
2. SwingLogic SLX MicroSim – Best Budget Golf Simulator Package
I understand that golf simulators are premium products, which rules them out for many players. However, you’ll notice a handful of super affordable products propping up online. The SwingLogic SLX MicroSim is one model defying the trend of traditional golf simulators. Instead of a launch monitor, they employ a sensor clip.
The device attaches to the top of your golf club and measures 8 data points that revolve around your clubhead. It provides no ball data and can produce inaccurate results. In addition, the clip loses control when you strike a standard golf ball. Therefore, you need to strike sponge balls or no ball.
Alternatively, you can operate the swing stick without striking any golf ball to receive feedback on your swing. Despite its rock-bottom price, the package includes a complimentary 6-month subscription to E6 Connect golf software to provide the simulator experience.
The downside of limited data points is the accuracy of your measurements. You’ll find that this is not a train smash for the average golfer seeking entry-level insight into each swing.
- Super affordable golf simulator
- It measures 8 data points
- The package includes a swing stick
- The swing sensor clip saves space taken up by launch monitors at setup
- It gives you a 6-month complimentary subscription to E6 Connect Software
- You cannot strike urethane or ionomer golf balls
- It does not measure any golf ball data
3. Flightscope Mevo – Best Golf Simulator For High Handicappers
Mevo provides accurate real-time performance data to help you train and improve with every club in the bag, whether on the range, on the course, or in your home. Practice indoor or outdoor with data parameters that include carry distance, club head speed, ball speed, smash factor, vertical launch angle, spin, apex height and flight time.
We are back with Flightscope for the best high handicappers simulator for outdoor use. The standard edition of the Mevo does not provide access to golf simulator software. However, it does measure a handful of data points using doppler radar technology. Plus, it enables you to record each swing.
I noticed that it recorded 8 data points, which is half the amount of the Mevo +. But, it provides sufficient insight into each shot for high handicappers. You’ll notice that it measures the standard carry distance and launch angle. Plus, it records spin rate, smash factor, clubhead, and ball speed.
Despite the reduced simulation experience, Flightscope gives you access to the Mevo mobile application to view historical data on your tablet or smartphone.
You’ll find what the Mevo lacks in data points. It makes up for it with its lightweight construction and super affordable price. This gives the average golfer access to a moderately accurate device that does not smash the budget.
- It measures 8 data points
- More affordable than the Mevo +
- Allows you to video your shot and apply data overlays
- Allows you to store historical data on the Mevo mobile app
- Light and portable
- It measures half the data points of the Mevo +
- It does not provide access to golf simulator software.
4. Bushnell Launch Pro – Best Golf Simulator Setup For Mid Handicappers
The Bushnell Golf Launch Pro captures and measures thousands of frames per second, giving the most reliable and accurate launch condition and ball flight in the industry. Precisely captures and analyzes ball and club performance where they matter most – at impact – to give you unmatched ball flight data in any space you can safely swing a club.
The Bushnell Launch Pro is a premium launch monitor brought to you by the legends of the golf rangefinder world. While it is priced higher than several options on this list, I found it ideal for mid-handicappers serious about becoming a low handicap golfer.
The launch pro records 17 data points to enhance the accuracy of every shot. Besides the standard distance, spin, and launch angle, the Bushnell measures the angle of attack, club path, and descent angle. In addition, you’ll notice that it is equipped with a barometer to adapt the read to the surrounding weather conditions.
As a photometric launch monitor, you must position the device parallel to the golf mat to record all your shots. I was impressed with its ability to measure thousands of frames every second to provide highly accurate results.
The Launch Pro pairs with an iPad or gaming laptop, or PC to offer simulation features indoors and out. You’ll notice that purchasing this edition includes a one-year subscription to the basic membership and a 30-day free trial for the gold setup.
The basic membership does not offer the simulation experience, which I found disappointing, given its price. Furthermore, you only receive access to the basic membership for 12 months, after which it is $249 per year. You do have the option to upgrade to the golf package, but you can expect to fork out over $58 per month.
- Superb accuracy
- Measures an impressive 17 data points
- Provides real-time flight view
- You receive a 1 month free trial to the gold subscription
- Durable and quality product
- The launch monitor is expensive
- The basic subscription does not offer the simulator experience.
5. Full Swing Kit Launch Monitor – Best For Low Handicappers
Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth, Jon Rahm, and Jason Day. Besides all winning at least 1 major tournament, what else do they have in common? They all choose Full Swing for their golf simulator needs. The Kit Launch monitor is a more affordable option for low handicap amateur golfers to gain insight into your game.
You’ll see that the device employs advanced doppler radar technology, which can zero in on 16 elements of every golf shot. Using their expertise, the engineers ensured the device offers an accurate net return on all readings for greater insight into your golf swing.
Furthermore, I found the 4k camera feature handy to review my swing path relative to the distance and flight of my golf ball. You will notice that it records your swing and feeds the video to the Launch Monitor app for you to review later.
If you want the simulator experience, you’ll need to upgrade to the basic subscription package, which runs you $299 a year. This package gives you access to virtual golf courses, driving ranges, games, and challenges to enhance your skills.
Despite its exceptional features, the Full Swing Kit is still a high price to pay, for the average player. But, you can consider the option of 4 interest-free payments. Overall, it suits lower handicappers or golf enthusiasts searching for detailed insight into every shot.
- Exceptional accuracy
- Measures data points
- 5 hours of battery life
- 4K camera records your swing to analyze later
- You can acquire it in 4 interest-free payments
- The package does not include a subscription to the E6 Connect software.
6. Foresight Sports GC3 – Best Launch Monitor For Golf Coaches
Foresight Sports are famed for their GCQuad launch monitor, employed by golf coaches and players globally. However, this time, I am giving much-deserved credit to the GC3, which succeeded the popular Quad. It earns my respect for its accuracy and the simulator experience.
Foresight engineers opted for their tried and tested photometric technology, which uses three cameras to measure 10 data points, for improved measurements. You’ll find it ideal for golf coaches looking for a quality yet moderately priced device to operate at the driving range.
Furthermore, I enjoyed the overall simulator experience with the FSX app, which gave me access to 20 virtual golf courses to play in my own time.
The major downside for me was the quality of the FSX application on my iPhone and iPad. The application froze at times, making it slow and frustrating. I noticed that when I brought out my Windows-operated laptop, the results were superior. However, it is inconvenient to take your laptop to the range.
If you want to read a full review on this product, my colleague Britt created a full write-up here.
- Optimal accuracy on all shots
- Measures 10 data points
- It gives you access to 20 virtual golf courses
- Built to offer golf coaches insight into their student’s swings
- 1-year warranty
- Expensive product
- Records fewer data parameters than other premium devices
7. SkyTrak Basic Practice Range Package – Best For Entertainment
SkyTrak took over in the age of the pandemic, as golfers desperately searched for ways to continue enjoying the game. Their affordable but robust home golf simulator setup attracted the average player to their offering. Ultimately, it stood out to me as the best golf simulator for entertainment.
The engineers went all out and made the SkyTrak launch monitor compatible with 4 simulation software options. You’ll notice that these include World Golf Tour, TruGolf E6 Connect, Jack Nicklaus Perfect Golf, and the Golf Club Game. This increases your access to virtual golf courses, driving ranges, games, and challenges.
As a photometric device, the SkyTrak must sit between 6 to 8 feet parallel to the strike zone for optimal readings. Although it isn’t in the league of the GC3, it is accurate enough for the average mid-to-high handicapper looking to have fun while you practice. With 11 data points, you cannot complain.
Furthermore, I found that SkyTrak, unlike other launch monitors, does not discriminate against operating systems. Whether you roll with Windows, iOS, or Android, the SkyTrak software supports your device.
- Access to 4 golf simulator software options
- It enables play on multiple virtual golf courses
- Undertake challenges and games
- Measures 11 data points
- Syncs with iOS, Windows, and Android
- Still expensive compared to other golf launch monitors
- The data readings are not as accurate as a premium device
8. Voice Caddie SC300 – Best For Average Golfers
Let me tone it down and showcase an entry-level golf simulator product. One that does not offer the complete simulation experience. Instead of enabling you to play virtual golf courses and watch your ball flight, the SC300 records basic data and gives top-level insight into each shot.
When I tested this device, I noticed that it is perfect for the average golfer searching for additional information about their swing. It measures 6 aspects of your golf shots, including carry distance, swing speed, launch angle, ball speed, smash factor, and apex.
You’ll find that the SC300 launch monitor connects to an iOS and Android application, which houses historical data for you to analyze your progress. In addition, the app is the only place where you can view your spin rate.
Voice Caddie opted for doppler radar technology to improve the accuracy of the device’s measurements. In my experience, it is 2 to 3% off of premium launch monitor measurements, which is insignificant for the average or high handicappers.
- Records 6 data points
- Connects with iOS and Android smart devices
- Provides voice output for distance readings
- Offers instant feedback
- The data is 2 to 3% off of premium launch monitor measurements
- It only measures 6 data points
9. Garmin Approach R10 – Best Hybrid Golf Simulator
The Garmin Approach R10 provides players with a unique hybrid functionality to record swing data and offers distance insight on the links. In other words, the R10 is a launch monitor and GPS device to help you on the practice range and the golf course.
You’ll find that the R10 is a portable and lightweight model that is sold with a phone mount. This elevates the device’s position when in operation, ensuring an unobstructed view of the hitting zone.
Although the basic R10 package did not offer the full simulator ordeal, I took it for what it was worth and enjoyed the analysis of my shots. It recorded 6 parameters, including the standard speed, spin, and launch angle. Plus, launch direction and smash factor.
I decided to go ahead and subscribe to the basic E6 Connect package, which did allow me to play on a handful of virtual golf courses and driving ranges. In addition, I undertook a handful of challenges to improve my skills from tee to green.
The data is stored on the Garmin Golf app, which is accessible on iOS and Android devices. You can open the app at any time and review your historical records. Added to its launch monitor tendencies, the R10 gives you distance readings for holes on 42,000 golf courses.
- Serves as a launch monitor and GPS device
- Affordable for a launch monitor
- Measures 6 data parameters
- The Garmin Golf App is available on iOS and Android
- You can subscribe to the E6 Connect software for the complete experience
- It measures fewer data points than other devices
- You only receive a 30-day free membership to Garmin Golf, after which it is $9.99 per month.
10. Rapsodo Mobile Launch – Best For Video Analysis
Awarded 2021 best personal launch monitor by My Golf Spy. Distance accuracy is within 2% of Trackman at just 2% of the price. The real-time video feedback comes with a shot trace and data overlay making it easier than ever to understand cause and effect. Access your stat history to view averages, dispersion, trajectory and standard deviation for each club.
The final pick on our list of best outdoor golf simulators is the Rapsodo Mobile Launch monitor. This device earned my pick as the best option for video analysis. You’ll notice it doesn’t offer the traditional golf simulator setup, but it is fantastic for recording each swing.
It did measure my distance, clubhead and ball speed, launch angle, and smash factor, which I could overlay on the video. I found it handy to understand how my swing correlated to the outcome of my shot.
In addition, to the data, the launch monitor provided shot tracing capabilities to follow my ball into the distance. I noted the data overlay with the shot tracer boosted my insight of each swing.
Besides the impressive video library and the shot tracer feature, the Rapsodo mobile launch monitor provided a GPS shot dispersion map and club gapping index. The shot dispersion highlighted the consistency of each shot while gapping identified any loft issues in my set.
The only notable bummer is that the Rapsodo Mobile Launch monitor only pairs with iPhones and ipads.
- Enables you to video each swing
- Add your data for each shot as an overlay to your video
- Includes shot tracer feature
- GPS shot dispersion map
- Club gapping index
- It does not provide the standard simulator experience
- It only measures 5 data parameters
Can you put a regular golf simulator outside?
No, you cannot operate a regular golf simulator outside because of the features required to run it. You need an electricity connection, wifi hotspot impact screen or golf net, a projector, and a PC.
However, many golf launch monitor manufacturers now allow you to pair your device with their app. This allows you to experience the simulator festivities outdoors.
How accurate are outdoor golf simulators?
The accuracy of outdoor simulators depends on the number of data points measured and the consistency of the device’s read. For example, a premium device such as the Full Swing Kit Launch Monitor is accurate to the nearest 1%.
Conversely, a product like the Voice Caddie SC300 or SwingLogic SLX is far less accurate due to fewer data points measured and more basic technology.
Can you build an outdoor golf simulator on your own?
Yes, you can build an outdoor golf simulator on your own. All you need is a hitting mat, a launch monitor, access to golf simulator software such as WGT or E6 Connect, data or wifi, and a net with a steel frame. Finally, a mobile device or tablet is vital to operate the software.
You’ll notice that this allows you to enjoy the simulator experience for a fraction of the cost of an indoor setup.