For our 2023 picks, we considered 12 golf simulators and launch monitors from 7 manufacturers, and for the third year in a row, Foresight’s GCQuad came out on top. Find out why we picked the GCQuad as the best golf simulator this year, and check out our other recommended simulators below, with options to fit all budgets.
Which golf simulator is right for you? A quick summary
As usual, we’ll begin this overview by saying that probably the biggest factor in determining which golf simulator setup is right for you is your budget.
It might sound like a cop out, but it’s the truth.
Because if you want the best of the best — and the sim setup that most pros use — you’re looking at a GCQuad. But they don’t come cheap.
The good news however is that for most amateur golfers a mid-range sim (somewhere between $4K and $8K for the full setup) is going to be more than sufficient. And the mid-range is very well served with excellent options from Mevo and SkyTrak.
Additionally, most retailers will offer credit terms that let you spread the cost of the sim over 12-24 months. So even if you do decide to splash out for one of the top of the line models you’re not necessarily going to have to pay everything out in a lump sum.
Here’s our top pick for each price point. For more detailed comparisons and choices, check out the individual sections.
Foresight GCQuad (best overall) – right at the top of the golf simulator tree we have Foresight’s GCQuad simulators. These are the sims you’ll see the top online golf instructors like Rick Shiels using in their videos. They’re the best golf simulators on the market, and they are priced accordingly. The GCQuad launch monitor alone is $14K (with sim software), and for a full simulator setup you’ll be looking at around $20-$25K.
SkyTrak (mid range) – In the mid range, we’ve got the ever popular SkyTrak system. This is going to set you back anywhere from $2K for just the launch monitor, to mid 4 figures for a full setup including hitting cage, mat, projector etc. It’s expensive, sure, but SkyTrak is close to pro (and in fact “pro enough” for 99% of golfers), and is coming in at least 50% cheaper than the high end golf simulators.
Which is why, I’d recommend SkyTrak to most golfers who have a reasonable budget and are looking for a true “at home” golfing experience.
Garmin (budget) – at the true budget end there isn’t much choice for what we’d class as a genuine simulator (as opposed to a “golf game”). But for under $2.5K you can get a full training setup with a Garmin launch monitor here.
And if budget is mega tight? While not a true launch monitor, the cheap and cheerful OptiShot 2 will at least allow you to play golf and hit balls at home. Stats on the OptiShot will be spotty, but they’re not going to be a million miles out.
So that’s your options. For many golfers, the Garmin might be sufficient. For those looking for more accurate feedback, SkyTrak is going to do the trick. But if you want a truly accurate indoor golf experience, then GCQuad is where you’ll want to be investing your money.
What about TrackMan?
While TrackMan continues to be the benchmark against which all other golf simulators are measured, we consider it to be for pro use, rather than a home setup. It’s going to set you back double the price of an all singing, all dancing GCQuad setup, and we feel that any gain in accuracy over the GCQuad is minimal enough to be a non-issue.
Now let’s look at each of the simulators in a bit more detail.
Reviews: The best golf simulators this year
As mentioned above, we split our picks into 3 categories; high end ($10K+), mid range ($3-10K), and budget (under $3K).
Ultimately, as you would expect, the very best simulators fall into the high end range. But every sim we picked, and particularly those in the mid range (like SkyTrak), are excellent golf simulators with stats that will be accurate enough for most amateur golfers.
There are two choices in each category, but we also picked an overall winner for each section.
- Foresight GCQuad – best high end, best overall
- TruGolf Vista – runner up, high end
- SkyTrak – best mid range
- FlightScope Mevo+ – runner up, mid range
- Garmin R10 – best affordable
- OptiShot 2 – best golf simulator under $1000
Best High End Golf Simulators ($10,000+)
Uneekor’s excellent ceiling mounted launch monitors were in contention in this category. But ultimately we decided that once again, Foresight’s GCQuad is the best overall golf simulator in 2023 — although TruGolf’s Vista does run it close.
Why did we choose the GCQuad over the TruGolf? In a word, accuracy. That’s not to say that the TruGolf Vista isn’t accurate (it is), but GCQuad’s accuracy is industry leading.
Here’s a more detailed rundown on the GCQuad and the TruGolf Vista.
1. Foresight GCQuad
I’m not going to go big into features (we’ve got a full GCQuad review here). Suffice to say the GCQuad is insanely accurate. It’s trusted by PGA pros like Rickie Fowler and Francesco Molinari. You’ll see Martin Hall using it on the golf channel. You’ll see YouTube golf gurus using it to test clubs in their videos.
If every mm and fraction of an angle matters. If you need an exact RPM for spin. If you need to know your distances to the yard for every club, then Foresight’s GCQuad golf simulator is what you need.
What will it set you back? Anywhere between $14K (for the launch monitor and sim software) to $26K for a premium setup with all add-ons. Our top pick is the SIG10 setup (pictured) that currently comes in at just under $21K.
If you really want the best golf simulator on the market, then that’s what it’s going to cost.
Check out Foresight GCQuad packages here.
2. TruGolf Vista
TruGolf’s Vista sim, is going to set you back anywhere between $10K and $20K depending on the package you choose.
There’s a step up in accuracy from mid rage sims such as SkyTrak. And really here, you’re looking at Trackman levels of precision with regards to launch conditions. Not only are the cameras that little bit faster and sharper for capturing ball flight, TruGolf have invested a ton of time (and we assume money) researching the physics of golf impact, to get as close as you can to simulating how a real golf ball will fly based on that first foot or so of launch.
If you hit it 5 yards offline in real life, you’ll hit it 5 yards offline on a TruGolf simulator. If you hit it 30 yards offline in real life… well you know what I’m going to say.
But as much as the stat tracking is a level up, what really impresses us is the way the courses look. Quite simply they are stunning. And while SkyTrak has nice looking golf courses, there’s no doubt they have that digital look. You know you’re playing a game. TruGolf’s courses look about as real as you can get with modern tech. To put the difference in simple terms, it’s like comparing a PS5 (TruGolf) with a PS2 (SkyTrak).
The speed of feedback is also impressive. As soon as you hit the ball you’ll be able to see your stats and ball flight on the screen. There’s literally no delay.
Highly accurate launch and impact statistics, instant feedback, and stunning graphics (at up to 4K) make the TruGolf Vista a truly pro level golf simulator.
Check out TruGolf packages here.
Best Mid-Range Golf Simulators ($3,000 – $10,000)
$3,000 to $10,000 may seem a wide price range. But that’s mainly because the cost of your sim setup here is going to depend on the rig (mat, hitting net, projector etc) you choose to go along with your launch monitor.
Most setups will probably set you back between $6,000 and $9,000. But if you opt to go for the add-ons (or on the other end, a basic setup) the price can vary quite a bit.
So let’s look at our top two choices in the mid range.
Overall, SkyTrak would be our number one recommendation for most golfers who have a reasonable budget and are looking to accurately measure their stats and play golf at home.
Sure, it’s not got all the bells and whistles of the truly high end golf simulators. But it’s a big step up from the Garmin at the affordable end and is close enough to “pro” as most amateur golfers will need.
Price wise, you’ll be able to pick up a SkyTrak simulator setup for somewhere between $5,000 and $9,000 (depending on the options you pick). But even at the top end, that’s still coming in a lot cheaper than the most “affordable” TruGolf and GCQuad simulators.
The main difference between the SkyTrak and budget simulators like the OptiShot 2 (which we’ll cover below) is that the SkyTrak is an actual golf launch monitor. It uses high speed cameras to track your ball flight immediately after impact. Which means it can accurately measure speed, spin, trajectory etc, and give you stats that are much more precise than the clubface tracking of the OptiShot.
For each shot you’ll get:
- Ball Speed
- Launch Angle
- Back Spin
- Side Spin
- Side Angle
- Carry/Total Distance
- Distance Offline
- Roll Distance
- Clubhead Speed
- Angle of Descent
Head to head studies have shown that SkyTrak’s stats are 98% as accurate as Trackman, which for many years has been considered to be the gold standard of golf simulator/launch monitor accuracy. And as a Trackman system will set you back somewhere between $25K and $50K, a 2% difference in accuracy seems more than acceptable.
Game play on the SkyTrak is great, and unlike OptiShot you’ll get properly named PGA Tour courses. Playing “closest to the pin” at Pebble Beach is a great way to while away the hours, and teeing it up in front of the R&A headquarters at St. Andrews will give any golfer the chills — even if it’s only in pixel form.
SkyTrak purchase options
As mentioned above, the cost of a SkyTrak sim setup is going to vary depending on which accessories and add-ons you go for.
But whichever option you choose you’re still going to be coming in a lot cheaper than the high end sims (TruGolf and Foresight) in this guide.
We’ve included the 3 most popular options below, but if you want a really basic setup you can grab a SkyTrak with a Net Return Pro net and a hitting mat for just over $4K here.
SkyTrak Bronze Golf Simulator Package ($6,149)
This is coming in just over $6K ($6,149 at the time of publishing), but we think it’s worth forking out the extra to get yourself a SkyTrak setup with a projector and screen.
With the training package (the $4K option we mentioned above) you can view the results of your shot on your iPad or laptop, but we much prefer the instant feedback of viewing your shot on the screen. It just feels more like real golf.
With that being said, you could of course opt for the training package and purchase a screen and projector separately. But you’re not going to save much (if anything) and possibly giving yourself compatibility headaches.
So here’s what you get with the Bronze SkyTrak package:
- SkyTrak Launch Monitor
- SkyTrak Play & Improve Software
- SkyTrak Metal Protective Case
- Net Return Home or Pro Series V2 Net & Frame
- Side Barriers & Golf Simulator Screen
- 1080p HD Short Throw Golf Simulator Projector
- Projector Shield (projector floor mount enclosure)
- Net Return 6′ x 10′ Pro Turf Mat
- 15′ HDMI Cable & Lightning to HDMI Adapter
- Two Rubber Tee’s – 1.75″ and 2.25″
It’s a decent little setup at an attractive price.
SkyTrak SIG10 Golf Simulator Package ($8,199)
This is the most popular SkyTrak package, and currently comes in at just over $8K, with financing available from just $369.13 a month.
The SIG10 package includes a full on, immersive golf sim enclosure, with a 10’ wide screen.
Note that you’ll need a ceiling height of at least 9’ to accommodate it.
And you’ll also be able to choose your hitting mat from a range of options.
Here’s what’s included:
- SkyTrak Golf Launch Monitor
- Metal Protective Case
- Play & Improve Software
- SIG10 Golf Simulator Enclosure
- Side Barrier Netting
- Landing Pad Turf
- Choice of Golf Hitting Mat
- Golf Simulator Projector
- Ceiling Mount
- 15′ HDMI Cable and HDMI to Lightning Cable
- Micro-USB Charging Cable for SkyTrak
- SkyTrak User Manual & Quick Start Guide
Check out the SIG10 SkyTrak package here.
SkyTrak SIG12 Golf Simulator ($8,399)
If you have the space, it’s not much of a step-up in budget to go for the top of the range SIG12 SkyTrak package.
You’re getting a huge 12’ wide screen, with the image covering 100% of the screen for a truly immersive experience.
The package is pretty much the same as the SIG10, just with the larger enclosure and screen. You’ll need a ceiling height of at least 10’ (probably a little more to be safe) to fit it in.
Check out the SIG12 SkyTrak package here.
Overall, SkyTrak is our top recommendation this year. It hits the right balance between affordability (relatively speaking) and pro level shot tracking.
The competition here is a Flightscope Mevo sim setup, and we feel that overall, SkyTrak has the edge in accuracy, stats, and consistency.
Check out SkyTrak packages here or read our full SkyTrak review.
2. FlightScope Mevo+
FlightScope’s Mevo+ is a Doppler Radar tracking launch monitor. Which means it actually tracks the golf ball in flight similar to Trackman, rather than calculating stats based on impact conditions and initial launch.
Does that make it more accurate than SkyTrak? Perhaps ever so slightly, but in our experience (and in other tests we’ve seen) we’d say the difference was negligible.
Certainly the Mevo+ is not as accurate as the GCQuad (which like SkyTrak is photometric) so we can safely say that Doppler tracking isn’t inherently better than photometric tracking.
What we can say for sure is you’ll be happy with the accuracy of the stats you’ll get from your Mevo+. And you will get a few more numbers to chew over from a Mevo+ setup when compared to a SkyTrak, including:
- carry distance
- clubhead speed
- smash factor
- apex height
- flight time
- spin rate
- vertical launch angle
- horizontal launch angle
- angle of attack
- total distance
- roll distance
- spin axis
- spin loft
- shot shape
If you need even more there’s also an add on that will unlock 11 additional metrics, including club path, low point, and dynamic loft.
On the sim itself, you can choose from 5 different courses to play, or if you prefer to simulate being on the range, there are 17 different choices. Mevo even threw in a mini darts game, because… why not?
At a space friendly 6.8″W x 4.6″H the Mevo+ is one of the smallest launch monitors on the market. Which means if you want to take it out of your home setup and onto the range it’s easy to carry around with you.
All in, the Mevo+ is an excellent launch monitor, which makes for a great home golf simulator setup. We do prefer SkyTrak, but there’s really not a lot in it, and you’re going to be happy with either choice.
Check out FlightScope Mevo+ packages here.
Best Affordable Golf Simulators (under $3,000, under $1,000)
The mid range of the golf simulator market is well served. But at the budget end, there’s not a huge amount of choice.
Really there are only 2 launch monitors we’d consider for a sim setup here; the Mevo (not the same as the Mevo+) and Garmin’s R10. Overall, we prefer the Garmin.
We’ve also included the Optishot 2 as a budget option (under $1,000) but note that it’s not technically a true launch monitor.
1. Garmin Golf Simulator Package (best under $3,000)
Garmin are known for their excellent golf GPS watches, which we’ve long found to be the most accurate on the market. I wear one myself.
So it’s not a huge surprise to see them venture into the golf simulator (or at least launch monitor) space.
The Garmin R10 is a doppler radar launch monitor. But unlike the Mevo+ it’s not going to be tracking your ball in flight, it’s using the radar to track your club (speed, distance, path etc) through impact.
Accuracy wise, it’s reasonable. But if you need precise measurements then you’ll really have to go for a mid range sim.
Here’s what Garmin say about their stats:
Measured by Radar
- Club head speed accuracy: +/- 3 mph
- Ball speed accuracy: +/- 1 mph
- Launch angle accuracy: +/- 1 degree
- Launch direction accuracy: +/- 1 degree
Calculated by Algorithm
- Club face angle accuracy: +/- 2 degrees
- Apex height accuracy: +/- 5 feet
- Carry distance accuracy: +/- 5 yards
So you’re saving cash, but you will be losing a bit of accuracy on stats. There’s always going to be a trade off.
In terms of functioning as a golf simulator though (i.e. playing a simulated golf course rather than geeking out over stats) the Garmin is probably on a par with the mid-range sims. Garmin’s E6 connect system is impressive, and gives you the option to play 100 different courses — more than most of its competitors.
You can grab a Garmin training setup for under $2.5K. And if that suits your budget, it’s going to be a great choice.
2. OptiShot 2 (best under $1,000)
If you’re looking for an affordable golf simulator that will give you some valuable feedback on your swing, and just let you “play” golf at home, then the OptiShot 2 should be your choice.
It’s the world’s best selling affordable golf simulator, and it’s easy to see why.
Their “golf in a box” package gives you everything you need to get started for under $800, which is ridiculously cheap when compared with the higher end golf sims.
You’ll get 15, 3D rendered courses pre-loaded onto the OptiShot, with the option to add another 45 with a subscription. The courses have slightly different names to the ones they emulate (we assume for budget/licensing reasons), but it’s easy to figure out what’s what, and the emulations are pretty faithful. Bottom line: you’ll be playing PGA tour courses on your OptiShot 2.
The OptiShot 2 tracks your club using sixteen precisely-tuned, high-speed 48MHz infrared sensors. And I say “your club” for a reason, as the OptiShot isn’t actually tracking your ball, it’s tracking the path of your clubface. Which means you can hit real golf balls, foam balls, or even no ball at all.
Of course, while this is an advantage to some degree (you don’t even necessarily need a hitting net), the fact that the OptiShot is not actually tracking your ball means the stats should be taken with a healthy grain of salt. There’s no substitute for hitting real balls and observing true ball flight.
And in terms of the stats, you’ll get club speed, club path, face angle, tempo, distance, and estimated contact location on the clubface. Club path is particularly useful if you’re looking to groove a more in to out swing/fix over the top.
The OptiShot is not a pro level golf simulator. But you’ll get some useful stats and can play a simulated round of golf at home for a wallet friendly price.
Which is why the OptiShot 2 is our pick for the best golf simulator under $1,000 this year. In fact, it’s the only full golf sim we considered in this category.
If that’s what you’re after, then no need to read any further. Just go here and buy it.
Where To Buy An Indoor Golf Simulator In 2023
While there are some sim deals available on general retailers/marketplaces like Amazon, we’d recommend buying your golf simulator from a specialist retailer based in the USA.
Golf sims are not cheap, so you want to make sure you’re getting the real deal, and that your sim will be fully covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.
Here’s where we recommend shopping for your golf simulator.
1. The Indoor Golf Shop
From their base in Dallas, Texas, The Indoor Golf Shop (previously Shop Indoor Golf) build and ship simulators across the USA.
They have a great selection of sim setups from SkyTrak, TruGolf, Foresight, Optishot, and Flightscope, with a range of packages to suit all budgets.
Financing is available to help spread the cost of your sim, and you can choose to pay over 3, 6, 12, or 24 months. 0% APR is available on the 12 month financing options.
Check out the Indoor Golf Shop here.
2. Rain Or Shine Golf
Rain Or Shine Golf is based in Charlotte, North Carolina, and ship their sims across the USA.
They have a wide range of sim packages available from brands including SkyTrak, Flightscope, TruGolf, and Uneekor.
Again, financing is available (max $15K) with 0% APR up to 12 months, and other finance deals available up to 36 months.
Check out Rain Or Shine Golf here.
Golf Simulator FAQs
answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about golf simulators
What’s the difference between a golf simulator and a launch monitor?
A launch monitor is part of a golf simulator setup and is the “brains” that measures what’s happening at impact, and how the golf ball will fly. These measurements (which include statistics such as club path, clubhead speed, spin, trajectory, distance) can be read in isolation on a stand alone launch monitor, or used to simulate ball flight on a screen as part of a simulator setup.
What equipment do you need for a home golf simulator setup?
For a basic home golf simulator setup you’ll need a launch monitor, a hitting mat, a hitting net, and a connected device (iPad, laptop, phone) for viewing the simulated ball flight. However to get the most out of your home golf simulator setup, it’s recommended to also purchase a projector and screen, rather than viewing ball flight on a small device.
How much does a golf simulator cost?
Golf simulator costs range from under $1,000 for a full setup at the lower end (OptiShot package) to over $20K for premium simulator setups such as TruGolf and GCQuad.
Check out our full golf simulator cost guide here.
What height of room is needed for a golf simulator?
The minimum recommended room height for a golf simulator will vary depending on the exact setup, however, a good rule of thumb is that a simulator setup will require a room height of at least 8.5 feet.
How much space is required for a golf simulator?
The exact space required for a golf simulator will depend on the setup, however, most golf simulators will require a minimum space of 10’W x 10’L x 8.5’H.
How accurate are golf simulators?
The accuracy of a golf simulator will correlate roughly with the cost. A high end golf simulator such as GCQuad can simulate ball flight with an accuracy of around 95%.
Ready to choose your new golf simulator?
As I said at the start, a lot of what drives your choice here is going to be budget.
If you’re just looking for some basic stats, and to play golf at home, then the OptiShot 2 will get you going. The SkyTrak system takes things up a level. And then at the top end you’re choosing between TruGolf and Foresight GCQuad.
There are several other golf simulators on the market, but we wouldn’t look beyond these 4 when making your decision.
Hopefully we’ve covered what you need to know. But if you have any questions, then just drop a comment below and we’ll get back to you asap.
Looking for more ideas for practicing golf at home? Check out our guide to the best home golf drills here or our guide to this year’s best indoor putting greens.