If you are in the market for a cheap, dependable golf GPS unit, you might consider checking out the IZZO Swami 1500 Golf GPS.
I was given the opportunity to review this unit and I’m going to tell you all about.. but first, here’s the copy and paste from the website 🙂
Simple, Fast & Accurate! SWAMI is everything a golfer needs in a GPS unit.
Featuring Insta-Lok Technology & powered by the latest SIRFStarIII chip, the SWAMI instantly calculates distance to the Front, Center and Back of the green of 12,000 US courses*.
SWAMI stores up to 10 courses at a time and automatically recognizes the course you’re playing, on power-up.
Easy to use buttons and a large display allows you to quickly cycle from hole to hole for quicker play.
The rechargeable Lithium Ion battery holds a charge for a minimum of 12 hours at a time for extended play. Finally a GPS unit, with the features you need, at a great price.
Now that that’s out of the way…
The first thing that I noticed about the IZZO Swami 1500 was the size. It is much smaller than other units I’ve tried out and it comes with a very convenient belt clip that does not hinder the golf swing. Most of the time, I find myself leaving the GPS in the cart because it’s so cumbersome, but not this one..
I was pretty impressed at the time it took to lock on to my position once I was on the course. It wasn’t quite instant, but by the time I got out of the cart and walked back to my golf bag, the yardage was there on display.
Speaking of yardage, for the most part, the unit was accurate to within 3-7 yards. Pretty darn impressive if you ask me..
The only time I noticed a larger variance is whenever I was on a tee box of a dogleg hole and the gps was calculating the most direct distance from between the green and me rather than following the hole. This isn’t an IZZO Swami 1500 issue, as far as I know all GPS units have this limitation.
It has a pretty cool feature where it’ll recognize what course you are play just by turning the unit on, well, that is assuming you’ve installed the correct course… 🙂
The annoying part about this feature is the fact that it can take a couple minutes to actually locate the course. But this really only affects the start of the round, when you first get to the golf course and if you’re a responsible/respectable golfer, you’ll arrive at the course with plenty of time to turn the unit on and have it find the course prior to the start of your round.
Once it’s setup, the unit is real simple to use. You just add ten courses you want, make sure it’s charged and it’ll do the rest for you. 🙂
When you are playing the course, the default yardage is to the center of the green. There’s an FCB button that you can press to get the distances to the front and back of the green. The button just toggles through those three settings.
One thing it doesn’t do, that I wish it did was automatically change holes. What I mean is if you go from the tenth to the eleventh, unless you push the up arrow, it’ll still be recording distances from your position back to the tenth green. I suppose it’s a relatively minor annoyance, but I’ve noticed it happening to me quite frequently.
The unit sells for $149.99 and there’s an annual subscription of $35.00.
Overall, I have to say I’m pretty happy with the unit. It’s not as sophisticated as other units and doesn’t quite have all the “fluff” that others does, for more than 1/2 the price of many of the other units, it does a pretty awesome job.
The display is large and easy to read and it’s a very precise unit. I’ve played with it on two courses so far and I’ve had no problems.
One recommendation I have, add one more button to the unit that’ll allow us to lock a current position and track the distance from that position to your ball. That was one of my favorite features of some of the other big names and I’d love for this to get it.
Here’s a link to their website where you can pick up the unit.
Hope you found this helpful.. Leave any and all feedback!