Tired of spending $40 on a dozen golf balls, plus your green fees? One of the great benefits of golf simulator play is a golfer cannot lose a golf ball and the green fees are free on your home golf simulator (after the initial investment).
With the wide range of options for golf balls in today’s market, a golfer has many different options not only when playing regular golf, but when playing on a golf simulator. Nothing is worse than watching your golfing buddy go through a dozen golf balls during a round of golf at a difficult golf course as they struggle to break 100.
So what is the best golf ball for golf simulator play? I would recommend the Srixon Soft Feel golf ball and the Titleist Pro V1 Practice golf ball. Below I will walk you through some of the key pieces that you must take into consideration when making this decision. I have tried many different golf balls in my over 300 rounds of simulator golf and have settled on these two for various reasons.
Here are the key factors a golfer should consider when making their selection:
1 – Is the Golf Ball New?
2 – What Color Golf Should I Use?
3 – Is a logo golf ball good or bad for golf simulator rounds?
4 – What is the Durability of the Golf Ball?
5 – What is the performance of the golf ball?l
6 – What golf ball do I normally play with?
7 – Why the Srixon Soft Feel and the Pro V1 Practice Ball
8 – Related Questions
Is The Golf Ball New?
It is essential that you use a new or barely worn golf ball. I would highly recommend a brand new golf to prolong the life of your impact screen. If you are using just a net to hit into, then this is not important. Your overall golf ball cost is miniscule compared to potentially ruining your quality impact screen that you have purchased. You want your investment to last, so it is a lot cheaper to look for discounts on golf or logo overruns and use new golf balls in your golf simulator.
What Color Golf Ball Should I Use?
Some of the traditional launch monitors in the golf simulator market, especially the SkyTrak, highly recommend using a white golf to ensure the accuracy for he measurement as it the main technology is reading the ball. With other systems you may be able to test the overall performance with a yellow or orange golf ball.
Is a golf ball with a logo good or bad for golf simulator rounds?
If you are using a SkyTrak or similar launch monitor I would recommend a logo golf ball, although it is not necessary. The more marks or wording on a golf ball make it easier for a launch monitor to read the ball and might reduce the number of misreads or no reads when using a launch monitor.
One of the major benefits of a logo golf ball is that there are different websites that will sell logo overruns for cheaper than the traditional ball without a log. No big deal that you are using a logo ball and it might just help your launch monitor be more accurate.
What is the Durability of a Golf Ball?
I have found that a mid level golf ball such as a Srixon Soft Feel will last for 15-20 rounds before cracking. The ProV1 will not crack, but will wear down and you will lose the dimples on the golf ball. I have not seen a big discrepancy in spin rates from a brand new ProV1 and frequently used ProV1.
Please note that some people believe that the ProV1 can be hard on the impact screen and reduce the life of the impact screen. Be careful when the golf ball cracks not to use again as it could damage your impact screen. You will notice a decrease in ball spin when the ball cracks.
What Performance Can I Expect from a Golf Ball?
I have found that the SkyTrak simulator will read a Srixon Soft Feel and a Pro V1 very similar with a Driver or 3 Wood. However, with the irons, the spin rates seem low with the Srixon which can result in irons that fly further than a typical shot.
This impacts the overall accuracy as I have hit an 8 iron that has travelled 185 yards with the Srixon that would have normally only carried 155-160 yards with a ProV1. I find the accuracy with the irons on the SkyTrak to be very accurate and realistic to what I carry my irons on a real golf course when using the Pro V1.
This has helped me dial in my distances when I play golf outside. I used the Srixon Soft Feel ball with my Driver and 3 Wood as I feel it flies pretty accurate to real life and the spin rates are fairly accurate.
What Golf Ball Do I Normally Play With?
I play the majority of my rounds outside with the Srixon Soft Feel as I live in an area where courses are often soggy and don’t require a ton of spin to hold a green. This provides a bit more distance with the driver and the ball has soft feel around the greens when hitting chip shots or putting. They do sell for around $20/dozen and the budget is always a concern with golf balls.
When playing a more difficult course with a firm golf course, I will often use a top of the line ball such as the Titleist Pro V1. I would recommend testing the typical golf ball with on your golf simulator and assessing the durability, performance and overall accuracy of your ball. I have found that the really hard (cheap) golf balls crack much easier and end up costing you more money in the long run. They also spin very little according to the SkyTrak and can unrealistically boost some of your distances.
Why the Srixon Soft Feel and Titleist Pro V1 Practice?
The main reason is these are the two golf balls I traditionally prefer to play with when playing a course. They also can be purchased for $20/dozen or $30/dozen. After researching the difference between a Practice Pro V1 and a regular Pro V1 the only difference is there is a potential cosmetic issue with the Practice ball and they are approved for tournament play as there is nothing internally wrong with the golf ball.
One other ball that performs well both in real golf and simulator golf is the Callaway Super Soft ball which retails at around the same $20 price point per dozen.
What if my golf ball doesn’t seem to carry on the golf simulator as far as it does in real life?
There could be a spin rate issue or you may be using different golf balls in real golf. However, many people often overestimate just how far they carry a golf ball with just about every club in the bag.
People often forget to take into consideration that your drive might have rolled 30 yards or even the 8 iron you hit into a green may have bounced and not stopped for another 7-10 yards. One other area is to pay attention to is the launch angle of your shot. For a driver you want a higher launch angle and a low spin rate. This will maximize your distance.
What if my SkyTrak is not reading my shots?
After trying different types of golf balls, I would check the placement of the golf ball on the red laser and if that still doesn’t correct the issue you should check the height at which your Skytrak is sitting from the ground. I have found that if it is sitting too high it can lead to no reads.
Do you find the performance of the golf shots to be accurate on the golf simulator?
Yes, I believe the yardages that I hit my clubs in real life is very accurate with my SkyTrak golf simulator. I often times find that I strike the ball better in simulator golf because the mat is consistent everytime and the lie does not vary like it does in outdoor golf.
Sometimes our distance can be thrown off outside from a flyer lie in the rough (ball travels extra far) or a difficult thick, heavy lie in the rouge (ball doesn’t travel as far). On my golf simulator the majority of the shots are like hitting out of the fairway. The one major benefit is that a a golfer can really become good at solid ball contact, which does transfer out to the course.
Can I Use an Almost Real Golf Ball?
Depends. If you are using the Optishot 1 or 2 then yes. If you are using the SkyTrack, GC2, ProTee or other excellent options then you should use a real golf ball.
How much fun is simulator golf?
There are many benefits. You no longer have to worry about the snow, rain or cold weather cancelling your round of golf with your buddies. Here at GolfJourney365, we want to support people in their journey to play golf 365 days a year, if they so choose. The game is very fun and realistic and can be completed in about a quarter of the time of a traditional round of golf. Having played over 300 rounds of simulator golf, I am a big believer in not only the entertainment side of simulator golf, but also the benefits related to game improvement. Read more about Simulator Golf with the SkyTrak