Most helpful positive review
552 of 559 people found the following review helpful
AWESOME product and convenience
on June 25, 2012
I've been in the market for a golf GPS or rangefinder and have been undecided for a long time. The laser rangefinders are definitely appealing, but the form factor and having to dig a large item out of your bag when you need to get the pin distance was a major drawback. I also looked at a bunch of the new GPS systems, but many of them almost had too many functions and features - enough that I knew I would be distracted during my golf round. Really, all I want is a good, reliable, accurate distance to the pin. This product is it.
I bought this a week ago on Amazon and have tested it at several golf courses -- a few I was unfamiliar with and my home course where I am already dialed into the distances from playing the course several hundred times. This item is very accurate. After I bought it, I was obsessively checking the distance and comparing it with markings on the course. It always matched the plaques or sprinkler head covers of all three courses I ran this on. On one round, I was with someone using a laser and on another round I was with someone using a SkyCaddie. This item matched both each time.
But the biggest plus to this product is the form factor. You can easily clip this onto the side of your hat or your belt and forget it is there. Need the distance to the pin - simple: press the button and it tells you. Need the distance to the front or back of the green - press the button again for three seconds and it tells you. It is very easy to hear, yet is quiet enough that it will not disturb your playing partners - in fact when the volume is turned down halfway, I doubt a playing partner five feet from you could hear it at all. If you don't want the voice, you can just peek down at your belt and see the distance in big numbers on the display, which update in real-time as you walk.
This item has two other features. One is where it will show you the actual shape of the green, and rotates that shape depending on your approach angle. I never really used this, because the graphical interface is simplistic, and I really only needed the distance to the pin. The second feature is very nice -- it will record the distance between any two points. So say you want to know how far you hit your six-iron. You press a small button on the side, then the main button. Then you hit the ball and walk to it. When you get there, you press the main button again and it will tell you how far you hit the ball. I suppose you could just as easily look down before and after you hit and then do a little math, but I still found this feature to be a big bonus. I am already pretty dialed into my club distances, but if you are not exactly sure how far you are hitting each club, this was a nice feature to have.
The first round I played with it was a five-hour round, and I obsessively hit the button as I played to test it out. I still had half the battery life left, so I believe this could easily last two full rounds, especially since under normal conditions I wouldn't be activating it every single time I saw a yardage marker for comparison.
This product is small, the clip is strong so you won't lose it, and it just plain works with an unobtrusive form factor that makes it a huge bonus. The voice is a computer-sounding female voice not unlike Siri on an iPhone.
I was not sure this would be the solution I was looking for -- but now I am certain that every GPS/rangefinder company will be copying this product in the next 6-9 months. It is really great. I love it.
PS - when you get it, it comes with a micro-USB cord. You should go to the GolfBuddy website and make sure you have downloaded the latest firmware version. Mine needed an update, but installing it took only a few minutes and clicks on my Mac.
UPDATE: NOVEMBER 2015 -- Well, I have played about 300 rounds with the Golf Buddy, and it finally died. But to update my old review, I can say that I played with this device all over the United States and the distances were always accurate. I will be replacing this with the new version, which shows front/back/center on the screen without having to cycle through -- a great improvement.