Skycaddie have been around for a few years now and is used by many golfers. It’s basically a caddy in phone form and has good range of detailed information at the push of a button.
Skycaddie enables you to check your distances to your target and key points on each hole such as bunkers, water, out of bounds, trees and just about anything else that you would ever need to consider before playing your shot.
How it works
Skycaddie representatives have been out on courses all over the world mapping out the distances for you. When you purchase the unit you then download the course(s) that you require and you have all the information at your disposal. Software now works for both Windows and Mac systems and is very simple to utilize.
Each hole appears on the screen and you can move a cross hair to check the yardage to wherever you want. Most useful, Skycaddie has what it calls it’s IntelliGreen feature which gives the distance to front and back of the green, the pin location and to any split tier.
You can also use it to determine how far you hit each club. Don’t worry though, you can keep that information to yourself and still hit the golf forums and tell everyone about your amazing 300 yards drives and smooth 7 irons that flew 190 into the wind. They’ll never know any differently and you can just hide the 4 iron for that 190 yard approach.
On purchasing the unit you need to signup for a yearly contract which includes a fee of around $30 per year, rising to $60 if you intend to jet set around the globe taking on a host of international courses. These membership plans are necessary if you want pre-loaded data but you can take a free option and input everything yourself.
How good is it?
Out on the course the Skycaddie is obviously going to give you quite a few benefits. Alongside knowing the actual distance you have to go comes the confidence of being a good deal more certain that you are using the correct club. How many times have you been unsure and fearing that you are a club short, make that fatal last minute attempt to squeeze a bit extra out of your swing? I know I’ve done it more times than I’d like to admit and armed with that extra information it can help you maintain a better swing throughout your round.
Your Skycaddie comes with a clip allowing you to attach it to your belt or, more commonly your bag. Just walk to your ball, check the screen and you can instantly see how far you have to go to the green. It means less uncertainty and pacing about to any markers to work out how far you have. Good news for speeding up play and that’s another nice side affect of the Skycaddie.
Having been mapped by real people on each course Skycaddie is very accurate. There were some rumblings in their early days but these have been ironed out and you can be confident that what the screen tells you is correct. From what I have seen and heard there are no problems regarding inaccurate yardages.
The screen is easy to read and understand and doesn’t become impossible to see in bright sunlight. All in all it’s a decent tool, well made and useful.
Skycaddie offer several models, each with differing levels of information. The top of the range SGX can store an eye-watering 30.000 courses (though, who is going to play that many is beyond this reviewer), the SG5 can store up to 20 courses and the SG4 10. All models can manage up to 10 which should be fine for all but the most widely traveled golfer to use day in day out.
The SGX model retails at around $300 and the other models generally sit nearer $200. You do get a good amount of information for your money but they can’t exactly be called cheap. However, having had the misfortune to give “cheap” a trial run, all I can say is that it was a fairly hideous experience and that you do get what you pay for.
|SGX||Up to 30,000 courses preloaded 3-inch, high-resolution, transflective TFT-LCD Interactive HoleVue™ with ZoomIntelliGreen®* and IntelliGreen® Pro
Hazard, Carries & LayupsDigital Scorecard & Stat tracking synching to ClubSG
|SG5||Brilliant, outdoor-readable color display20-Course storage capacityMapping module to record Front/Center/Back of GreensPatented IntelliGreen and IntelliGreen Pro TechnologyInstant distances to Hazards, Carries and LayupsDigital scorecardLong-lasting rechargeable lithium-ion battery
|SG4||High-resolution grayscale screen10-Course storage capacityPatented IntelliGreen® TechnologyInstant distances to up to 40 targets per holeMark your ball – Know the distance you hit any shotLong-lasting rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery|
|SG3.5||Brilliant, outdoor-readable color screen20-Course storage capacityPatented IntelliGreen® TechnologyInstant distances to up to 40 targets per holeDigital scorecardThree AAA batteries|
|SG3||High-resolution grayscale screen10-Course storage capacityPatented IntelliGreen® TechnologyInstant distances to up to 40 targets per holeMark your ball – Know the distance you hit any shotTwo AA batteriesRugged, waterproof shell
|SG2.5||Sleek, ultra-light design20-Course storage capacityPatented IntelliGreen® TechnologyInstant distances to up to 40 targets per holeDigital scorecardLong-lasting rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery|
Skycaddie offer a good choice of models that can help any golfer with their game. The units are easy to use in hand and only total IT novices would need assistance in accessing the downloaded courses.
They are a solid choice in a rapidly growing market and justify the tag of market leader as 2011 draws to a close.
Want to see what we have to think? Check out our Golf Club Reviews page to see if we’ve take the club you’re interested in for a test drive.