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Dr Draw

Yardages on golf simulators different?

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I've been having some issues finding out how far I actually hit my clubs. I go to my local PGA Tour Superstore to hit around and practice, but it seems like it is reading my clubs wrong. I have a 103+ clubhead speed on my three wood and it only carries like 225. Then I switch to my 3 Hybrid and it carries the exact same distance. It also reads the ball as a terrible pull hook all the time. I then went over to this place called Tee2Green to play a round on their simulators and the ball was carrying over 260 yards with my three wood and the hybrids distance was still about 225. I feel like that's how I really should be hitting it but whenever I got to the superstore, it discourages me and makes me wonder if the Tee2Green place is juiced or the superstore is just not reading correctly. Does anybody else who goes to PGA Tour Superstore get funky distances and shot shapes?
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Went to golfsmith to buy a new hybrid, shot shape and distance is pretty accurate. Went to range right after to compare.
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I've gotten some squirrely numbers on those things before. One store might show pretty good numbers and make me feel good, and another store shows I suck....Oh wait...That's about how I play...Nevermind. A lot depends on your launch angles with those clubs. There could be a 30 yard variable with a 103 mph club head speed depending on the AOA, and of course side spin can change everything.
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The simulator at our Golf Galaxy seems to match up VERY well with what I see at the range.  (though I'm certain there's a hidden switch in there for the reps to select between "sell" and "teach").  But they have two kinds of sims and one is very good, the others are just for customers banging around.

Local golfsmith sims seems comparable to GG.

The Trackmans at the indoor range are dead on for irons.  Seems to under report for drivers by a lot, but then for that I'm looking at angles and spin and head speeds, not the track or the reported distance.

haven't been anywhere else here

I always bring in one of my clubs and hit a few just see if the sim is matching up to reality.  Then just take the offset into consideration.

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Yeah I don't know. I just really want to know my real yardages because it baffles me that it says a 108 MPH clubhead speed for a driver only carries it at most 230 yds. I am hitting it in the center of the face as well. Oh well I guess it just matters on the course, right? I'm sure I'll hit it better there. Just stinks with all the snow on the ground you can never get out to go hit the ball and get the true flight and everything. Only a couple more months.
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Yeah I don't know. I just really want to know my real yardages because it baffles me that it says a 108 MPH clubhead speed for a driver only carries it at most 230 yds. I am hitting it in the center of the face as well. Oh well I guess it just matters on the course, right? I'm sure I'll hit it better there. Just stinks with all the snow on the ground you can never get out to go hit the ball and get the true flight and everything. Only a couple more months.

Your driver is only 5 yards longer than your 3w? It's the monitor. The optical monitors only measure the speed at a single point, so there is probably some error. I thought it was only lefties that had issues with the monitors, apparently you are too. If I went by the fitters simulator results, I would be using a ladies flex on everything. As it is I use a Xstiff 130 gram shaft. No, I don't hit 300 yards, but this is the configuaration that gives me the most comfortable and accurate drives. This equipment is probably not made for my swing and possibly not for you too.

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Yeah I don't know. I just really want to know my real yardages because it baffles me that it says a 108 MPH clubhead speed for a driver only carries it at most 230 yds. I am hitting it in the center of the face as well. Oh well I guess it just matters on the course, right? I'm sure I'll hit it better there. Just stinks with all the snow on the ground you can never get out to go hit the ball and get the true flight and everything. Only a couple more months.


One way to find out yardages is either buy or borrow a laser range finder and just hit a few balls to a marker or flag and just remember which ones were your more solid impacts or just put markings on the balls, I don't trust store simulators unless it's a trackman.

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The guy helping me at the superstore said that the simulators only measure ball speed and backspin. Everything else is calculated off of that.

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I find these simulators pretty much useless.   If I am looking to buy a club, I usually bring my old one with me to compare

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I find these simulators useless. I was at sports authority and hit the latest TM driver. Even though I was drilling it, it said I was only getting 180 yds. I can hit my 5 iron 180 with an ez swing. Not much better at the pgass. They're junk.

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One simulator showed me hitting my 5 iron over 200 yards. Got my hopes up that somehow I had found the magic swing. The next day I went out behind the house and could barely touch 160. Guess which distance I'll trust when I have 180 to carry over a water hazard (I mean a real water hazard)?

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One simulator showed me hitting my 5 iron over 200 yards. Got my hopes up that somehow I had found the magic swing. The next day I went out behind the house and could barely touch 160. Guess which distance I'll trust when I have 180 to carry over a water hazard (I mean a real water hazard)?

Yeah, the one thing to pay attention to with simulators like in Golfsmith is the carry numbers as opposed to total distance. They can really goose the total distance number, which is the one that pops up in the middle of the screen, with things like slope and fairway hardness. I was getting something like 15 yards of roll with a 7 iron there that made the numbers look way better than they were (I consider 15 yards after landing a flaw in a 7 iron, not a feature, haha).

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If you are at Golfsmith, ask them to create a new golfer profile on the GC2 that they use to ensure the profile doesn't have some exaggerated attributes. A close friend of mine has a GC2 setup in his garage and I play on it 3 times a week in the colder months here in Michigan so I know what my numbers look like on a GC2 that is setup correctly. Within the GC2 you can "boost" a golfer's profile and make the ball go a lot farther than it really is going. Its a dirty trick and my friend found out the hard way with a recent driver purchase. He went to Golfsmith and he is pounding a 2014 model Titleist D2 over 300 yards every single swing. He buys it, gets to my buddies simulator and he is at 275/280. Never even sniffed 300 on his simulator. Fast forward to a couple days later and we go to another Golfsmith and make a comment to one of the guys and he says that their simulators at that store are known to be "enhanced".. My buddy was pretty disappointed he just dropped $300 on a club he hits 5 yards farther than his older model D2. The other thing I will add is you get some phantom shots on the GC2 from what I have seen. I have hit shots that I know 100% are off the toe and will be terrible shots and they end up dead straight and longer than normal. So unless you are using a Trackman, I wouldn't put to much faith in the GC2. I have used it mainly to compare it against my own clubs, and it works great when we are just playing rounds on the simulator and nobody is really caring what your "numbers" are.

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It's probably worth doing some research. A lot of the simulators out there are really more enhanced gaming platforms than real simulators (GC2, Aboutgolf, HD Golf...). As far as I am aware there are only 2 devices out there who can successfully read all ball trajectories with a wide range of parameters, either Tracman or Sports Coach. Both of these are able to measure ball speed and angle precisely, but also read precisely the direction and speed at which your ball is spinning from all angles. The Sports Coach simulators beat the Tracman for playability in my view, as they have much more realistic modules for short game and putting. The Tracman has the best data storage and analysis in the world, which is probably why it is mostly used as a swing analysis tool by all the pros and as a coaching or fitting tool - for that it has my vote any day of the week. As a general rule, if you want accurate data, you need your simulator to take readings from above rather than from the side, or preferably both - that's the only way you can get 3D view, with 1 camera you are limited to 2D. You want the readings to come from a high speed high definition camera which will be able to read the slightest ball spin. Anything which reads your swing with a laser beam has no idea what your ball is doing, it is simply guessing, and impact-sensor tools such as Optishot basically read the speed of your club head but can't tell you what impact or ball trajectory will look like, from near or from far, they won't really know if you shank or top or slice the ball. As far as I could tell the only tools that can read spin properly are Tracman and Sports Coach, the others barely give you launch angle and distance, often inaccurately. One thing to also take into account is also wear and tear, with a lot of simulators taking readings too close to the ball striking area, and we all know what a golf ball or club hitting a piece of electronics can do... Tracman and Sports Coach also avoid that pitfall by having cameras overhead and to the side. The worst simulator in my view is Golf Achiever, which can't read half the shots you make, and when it does read them it can't reall tell what you're doing (e.g. a shanked ball will occasionally continue its trajectory dead straight ahead of you for 200+ yards whereas your "real ball" hit the wall to your right and never even made it to the screen - true story!). I haven't yet shelled out the US$30k+ I am budgeting to buy a simulator but I've been doing some market research for over a year and you might as well benefit from that!

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