SkyTrak vs Optishot: Which One Should I Buy?


Tired of the snow, cold or rainy weather keeping you from playing golf year round?

Do you ever find yourself dreaming of playing golf while at work, hanging out with friends or other activities?

Do you sometimes wish you lived in states like Florida, Texas, or Hawaii?

Below I dive into to help you answer SkyTrak vs Optishot and which one is best for your situation.

The game of golf is a journey that we are all on and that many of us love to play.  The challenges both physically and mentally to take our game to the next level and shoot our best possible scores is exhilarating. 

There are ups and down and moments when we think we have it and moments when we walk away frustrated!

I was able to build my own access to playing golf 365 days while living in the midwest part of the United States by building a golf simulator in my garage. 

After many months of research I finally made the commitment and 700 rounds later I can say that it is one of the most amazing purchases of my life!

One of the questions I had to answer was SkyTrak vs Optishot and which one I should buy.  What are the pros and cons of each option and what was I looking for in my golf simulator experience.

I break it down for you below with many of the topics and frequently asked questions when comparing the SkyTrak and the Optishot.

I went with SkyTrak and have been extremely satisfied.  

Over the past 5 years, I have played golf on many different systems and have used a Optishot at friends house to provide an accurate comparison.

Let me tell you, there is nothing like spending 4 to 5 hours on a weekend playing golf with my Dad or my sons on a cold winter day!

Ready? 

Let’s dive into the SkyTrak vs Optishot and help you decide which one you should buy?

Nothing like coming home from work and play some simulator golf! Or on a cold weekend day, playing Pebble or St. Andrews!

SkyTrak vs Optishot: Which One Should I Buy?

Here are the topics I will cover:
  • Goals of purchasing a golf launch monitor?
  • Pros and Cons of the Optishot
  • Pros and Cons of the SkyTrak
  • The price difference between the SkyTrak and Optishot
  • SkyTrak vs Optishot: Head to head comparison
  • Final Verdict!
  • Other Option

Goals of Purchasing A Golf Launch Monitor

In most things we do in life, we should start with the why!  

The why will drive a great deal of the decisions.  My specific why was because I wanted the opportunity to play golf 365 days a year.  Living in a part of the United States where winter runs December thru March, I didn’t want to go 4 months without playing golf.  

As a kid, I often dreamed of having a golf simulator and being able to play on those cold, snowy days!

I also wanted to get better.  Some of those early season rounds or late seasons rounds were a struggle because you don’t get to play as often as in the heart of the season.  I can now play quality rounds in April or November and have my ball striking be spot on.

I answered my why, set my budget, completed all my research and have benefited from having a golf simulator build in my garage!

Here are some questions to consider:
  • What is your main why for getting a golf simulator?  Are you looking for quality data and analytics to work on your swing.  Or are you looking for a way to swing the club and have some fun 365 days a year?
  • What is your budget? Do you have around 5-7 thousand dollars to spend or do you need to stay in the 500-2000 dollar range?
  • What courses do you want to be able to play?

How to build a simulator for $1000 or less!

Some direct links to Rain or Shine Golf for pricing and financing:

Could you imagine being able to hit balls whenever you want and work on your game!

Pros and Cons of the Optishot

The optishot is more a fun level golf simulator setup that is at a very low entry price.  The overall accuracy of the data and the realistic nature of the results can be questioned at time, but if you are someone simply looking for some cool graphics, decent course options and the opportunity to swing the club then the Optishot might work for you. 

I would recommend going with the Optishot 2 and pursuing the optishot in a box options that are available.

Here is what the Optishot 2 Tracks for you:

  • Distance
  • Clubhead Speed
  • Face Angle
  • Tempo
  • Path

Optishot Pros

  • Great value
  • Decent Accuracy
  • Good if you just want to swing
  • Decent graphics
  • Not a bad starting point if limited budget

Optishot Cons

  • May not be reliable from a realistic stand point
  • Hitting mat can be awkward
  • The serious golfer will want more
  • Lack of overall course options

Pros and Cons of the SkyTrak

The SkyTrak is an affordable golf simulator option that can be used indoors or outdoors. 

This mid level price for a golf simulator measures the ball immediately after impact and gives data based on ball speed, spin, launch angle and other measurements that provide an overall high quality experience.

Where is the best place to buy a SkyTrak?

Some direct links to Rain or Shine Golf for pricing and financing:

The SkyTrak can be paired with a gaming computer or ios device to allow for immediate feedback and a quality game experience.  There are multiple software options depending on your budget.

There are some people who simply buy a launch monitor and utilize a hitting mat and net to get the feedback and experience they need. 

While others go the full route and buy the projector, impact screen and enclosure and gaming computer and pair it up with The Golf Club (TGC) software that allows for an amazing golf simulator experience.

Full review on TGC Software

Pros of the SkyTrak:

  • Affordable
  • Amazing simulator experience when pair with TGC software
  • Provides multiple software options
  • Helps bring about game improvement
  • Can be used indoors or outdoors
  • Can play live against others with TGC software

Cons of the SkyTrak:

  • Has a shot delay
  • Can be difficult to align
  • Sits next to the ball, which requires a protective case
  • Occasional no read

I must note that when the SkyTrak is paired with the TGC software the access to high end graphics on the TGC end and what seems like an unlimited number of courses with many of the courses being ranked in the top 100 in the world.  

I have played on many different golf simulators that are more expensive than the SkyTrak, but leave feeling not satisfied because the graphics on the software are below average.  This can even be said about the commercial experience in many cities.  

The TGC software is truly incredible and provides the opportunity to play Augusta, Pebble, Whistling Straits, St. Andrews, Bethpage Black, Oakmont and many of the top 100 courses in the world!  The graphics truly bring the experience to life!

Need a hitting mat – Check out these three options.

The course options on the SkyTrak and TGC are incredible!

The Price Difference Between the Optishot and the SkyTrak

The optishot on average will run around $299, while the SkyTrak will cost around $2000. This is a large price difference, but the quality is signficant.  Of course with any golf simulator build there are multiple pieces and parts that the consumer must decide on.

There are always different ways to save money with any golf simulator build.  The essential pieces include the launch monitor, enclosure and screen, projector, computer, and a hitting mat. 

If your budget is tight I would recommend going with the Skytrak and building along the way.  Maybe start with just a simple hitting mat and a net and utilize the Skytrak with an older computer or you ios device.

If you do not have the money upfront there are financing offers through Rain or Shine Golf that can take a large, maybe overwhelming cost and cut it down to affordable monthly payments.

SkyTrak vs Optishot: Head to head comparison

The SkyTrak is for the more serious golfer that wants a realistic experience.  The Optishot is for the golfer who just wants to have some fun and swing away.  Both will provide an experience, it comes down to what experience you are expecting for your money.  

I think highly of the SkyTrak and after my 700 plus rounds on the SkyTrak and the TGC software, I could not be happier with my purchase the benefits of the SkyTrak.

Here are some additional posts I have on the SkyTrak of Golf Simulators in general:
Is a Golf Simulator Worth It?
How to Build a Golf Simulator?
What is the Best Golf Simulator?
Golf Simulator Accessories?
How to Build a Golf Simulator for under $7000
Top 11 Reasons to Buy a SkyTrak
How to Build a Golf Simulator for Under $1000
Why Build A Golf Simulator?
What Space is Needed?
Can A Golf Simulator Improve My Game?
How Much Does A Golf Simulator Cost?

Final Thoughts: My Secret To Golf Improvement

The reality…in order to get really good at golf, we must practice frequently.  About three years ago, I made the leap and invested in a golf simulator build for my garage. 

I went with a SkyTrak Launch Monitor and the TGC software and can now play over 100,000 courses including Augusta, Pebble Beach, Bethpage Black, Whistling Straits. St. Andrews and many other of the top 100 courses in the world.

This golf simulator setup, which is more affordable that you might imagine, has been a game changer. 

I can now play golf everyday of the year regardless of rain, snow, cold weather or time of day.  I can practice or play rounds of golf.  I can stand in the 11th fairway at Augusta and with the auto-rewind feature I am able to practice my approach shots from various differences.

It is worth checking out through Rain or Shine Golf as they offer some incredible packages along with financing offers that are difficult to beat.

Some direct links to Rain or Shine Golf for pricing and financing:

Final Verdict!

My recommendation is the SkyTrak if you have some limit on your budget.  I would highly recommend checking out Rain or Shine golf as they offer financing offers, great pricing, awesome customer service and excellent packages for a one stop shop for all of your golf simulator needs!

Here is one last set of data that might help you decide. 

I did a comparison between my last 15 rounds of simulator golf and compared it to my last 15 rounds of actual golf.  The numbers were mind boggling!

Golf Simulator ScoreRelative to Par15 Total RoundsReal Golf ScoreRelative to Par
721Round #1764
750Round #2786
723Round #3743
819Round #4710
753Round #570-1
733Round #6710
753Round #7720
71-1Round #8731
71-1Round #9721
721Round #10743
733Round #11743
721Round #12744
721Round #13721
721Round #14733
764Round #15732
110231109730
73.472.0773.132

Accuracy of Golf Simulator vs Reality – Data Breakdown

  • Total Strokes (15 Total Rounds) = 1102 in Simulator Golf and 1097 in Real Golf
  • Total Strokes Over Par (15 Total Rounds)  = 31 in Simulator Golf and 30 in Real Golf
  • Average Score = 73.47 in Simulator Golf and 73.13 in Real Golf
  • Average Strokes Over Par = 2.07 in Simulator Golf and 2.0

Other Options

There are some excellent options for all golfers in the $500 to $2000 range that can provide you with instant feedback and numbers to improve your game. 

You can make educated decisions at the range and as you practice your swing. No longer do you have to guess on what the fix is or what is going on in your swing.

That is why the launch monitors are so important to have!  Check out these three great options below.  These fall within the price range mentioned above:

Other comparison posts on golf simulator options:

Take Action – What You Can Do Today to Get Better

What does this mean for you?  I believe in the following recipe to get better:

1 – Improve your motion in the golf swing by identifying a golf instructor.  Here are some options:

Here is a list of golf instructors that we have reviewed:

2 – Train to swing faster and improve your swing speed.  Here are some options:

Looking to gain more Speed and Distance in your swing. Two Options:

3 – Understand course strategy and work to break through your next barrier.  Here is a series on breaking through:

We have provided guides on how to break 100, 90, 80 and 70. Check out more below, if interested.

4 – Practice Frequently

Did you know that I build a golf simulator in my garage and have played over 500 rounds of golf on my SkyTrak system?  It has been a game changer and one worth checking out. Here are some of my other posts on golf simulators frequently asked questions:

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