Setting up a Golf studio at home is the best thing for many golfers as it gives them the freedom to practice whenever they want, day or night. Golf Simulators do have some limitations though and these need to be considered before you spend your hard earned cash. Keep reading to find out what you will need and how to plan in advance so you can end up with the ideal “den” to work on your swing!
Golf Simulator Setups at Home
Depending on your budget the chances are you will be getting yourself an entry level simulator for home use. There are professional options available that can easily reach $100,000 for a custom room design and installation. I am going to assume that you are looking for a realistic and affordable option that makes sense.
The first thing to keep in mind is that models like the Optishot and ProSwing do not work outdoors as they rely on infra-red sensors to track your golf swing. This means you will have to find enough space inside your home to set everything up. In most modern homes this can be a challenge as the ceiling height is not able to accommodate a full golf swing, especially if you want to use your driver. I know several golfers who have used their garages for their studio as it offers more space and often a better height from floor to ceiling. You may even need to remove a couple of the ceiling boards allowing you to swing between the rafters, although not perfect it does work well. The garage also gives you a nice and peaceful area to play around and make the most out of a golf simulator. Make sure you have planned this out before you decide to buy as you can’t easily fix it if you have nowhere to swing!
As mentioned above home based simulators work via infra-red sensors and these will need to be setup and calibrated for use. This can become a problem if you plan to pack your simulator away after use because you will need to setup everything from scratch each time you want to make use of it. Finding an area in your home where you can permanently install your simulator is advised.
Recommended Display and Computer for Golf Simulation
As with most things in life you need to spend a little bit more here to get the best out of your simulator. LED, HD displays have dropped significantly in price over the last few years and it is well worth getting the largest one you can afford. The bigger the better really for the best experience. Projectors are without a doubt the best way to do this if you have the space and the budget. Working with a projector will give you the sense of realism that you are actually playing on the golf course. Most projectors you find today will be perfect for the job so you don’t need to get overly technical with specs etc.
A decent PC is also required and I recommend the best you can afford. I would recommend a minimum of an I5 processor and a decent gaming graphics card. Slower computers become irritating as the graphics can stutter and it makes it harder on the eyes.
What Else is Needed?
There are two other key pieces of equipment you need to consider. Although not essential they do make the difference. The first is a high quality hitting mat (use the link to find out more). You will get one included with your purchase but these tend to be small and can end up hindering your swing. You can buy much larger and higher quality mats to go with your particular model of simulator and these are recommended.
The second, and more important, piece of equipment you need is going to be a catch net for the golf balls. This does not have to be an expensive purchase as any decent net will do the job. If you plan to use practice balls with your simulator then this is obviously not something you will have to worry about.
I hope this gives you some ideas to think about before you decide what equipment to buy. As you can see, a little bit of planning is required to make a success of your installation so you can work on your swing and play some virtual golf with your buddies from the comfort of your own home! Nothing beats this if you love the game.
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