Knowledge Base

Are Golf Simulators Accurate?

It has become a dream come true for nearly every golfer to be able to play golf in the comfort of their own home using a golf simulator. However, there are many questions regarding the accuracy of the golf simulators. That really shouldn’t come as a surprise.

There is no game in the world more precise, or analyzed as heavily as golf, where even the tiniest of differences can have a great impact. The first person who will notice a slight difference in performance is a golfer. 

We have answered this question in this article to see if golf simulators are accurate or not. In order to help you better understand why you may sometimes see inaccurate numbers when using your golf simulator, we will cover what contributes to accuracy, which golf simulators are the most accurate, and what factors contribute to accuracy.

Are They Accurate?

There is a short answer to this question – yes! There are many golf simulators available on the market that come with a reliable and rigorously tested technology. Many tour and teaching professionals across the world rely on this technology to take their performances to the next level.

Is it possible that they can sometimes be wrong? Yes, of course. Nevertheless, there are many things you can do to make a simulator more consistent that you can do to make it more accurate.

In that regard, it is important to understand why a golf simulator may display the numbers it does.

It is still around 85%-90% accurate most of the time you will tend to find.

Andrew of GolftLink

Example Of A Good Golf Simulator

We would like to mention that the Phigolf Mobile and Home Smart Golf Game Simulator has got to be one of the best and most accurate golf simulators on the market right now. It comes with a swing stick which was included, which in our opinion only improves accuracy.

Phigolf, WGT, and E6 Connect are three of the most popular golf apps loved by professional golfers and golf enthusiasts alike.

In addition to multiplayer games, Phigolf offers 3D swing analysis, among other features. You can use WGT to combine your favorite app with your real golf swing.

With E6 Connect, you can take high-quality courses, play driving ranges, play mini-games, and participate in tournaments. This is a great choice if you want to work on your shot skills and really see how accurate you are on the course.

What Makes Golf Simulators Accurate?

There is no doubt that the most accurate trackers combine two or more technologies so that they can track both club and ball data simultaneously.

All golf simulators require calculations to be made in order to function properly. It is the simulator that identifies where the ball should go based on the data it receives from your shot.

It uses all the data produced by your shot to do this. A golf simulator, as a rule of thumb, should be more accurate and more efficient the more data that it processes.

If you do get yourself a simulator be sure to use it as much as possible and it will be able to get a better idea of the shots you are taking. 

In the final calculation, a golf simulator has to guess more in the final calculations in order to determine your shot based on only a few shot metrics. Consequently, the data may not be as accurate.

Fortunately, most golf simulators today track enough shot data to produce accurate results. It is still possible for other factors to affect the overall accuracy of your golf simulator, even if you have the best technology.

Components That Help Gather An Accurate Result

The devices listed below help players make an accurate prediction of where their shot will land on the simulator by providing a precise indication from the use of data and actions.

  • Cameras – When making contact with the ball a high-speed image is taken. From these images all kinds of data about the ball and the club can be obtained.

    This helps calculate the shot that is made on the simulator.
  • Doppler Radar – During the flight of the ball, the signals generated by the launch monitor are interfered with by the ball.

    Various data can be calculated by using the signals interrupted by the ball to calculate the different variables of where the ball would go. 
  • Optical sensors – When a ball and club pass an optical sensor, which is usually placed inside a hitting surface, the ball and club are tracked. In this way, you will be able to calculate information such as club trajectory, horizontal launch direction, and ball speed.

    This information is an integral part of getting an accurate result in the simulator.
  • Infrared light – The last and most important part of the process is the light. It is possible to track data such as ball speeds, launch angles, and launch directions when the ball passes through infrared light waves.

    It is such smart technology that goes into making a successful golf simulator.

What Causes Golf Simulators To Give Inaccurate Results?

The truth of the matter is that there are two big issues that make a golf simulator give off poor results and end up ruining your experience with the digital course.

This section is going to explain both of these and how to fix them, so that it corrects any potential problems that you may be experiencing.

  • Location – The most important thing you need to remember if you are planning on using your golf simulator indoors is that you should make sure that you have a lot of space to do so. The majority of golfers say they also tend to hit short shots indoors.

    There are two possible reasons for why you do this. One of the most common reasons for it is that some are probably afraid of hitting something and that stops them from being able to swing freely.

    If this is the case for you then you might want to reconsider where you play your simulator. Whatever the reason may be, it seems that some golfers tend to have lower swing speeds when they are indoors.
  • Set-Up – A silly mistake golfers tend to make when using their simulator is that they haven’t set up the equipment properly.

    Depending on the surface of the simulator, or the conditions in which you use it, your simulator may be unable to register this information that could impact your shot.

    In most cases, simulators now have the capability of allowing you to change that information if, for instance, you are out in the open.

    Before you start your next simulator course, make sure you check your settings and equipment one more time before you start because if you want to get a good result, you must do everything right.


As with any technology, there are certain things that will not compare to real golf. It’s inevitable that a golf simulator will show a number that makes you scratch your head now and then.

The results you receive from most golf simulators are extremely accurate over the course of a round.

We hope that this guide has been able to explain everything on golf simulators in a way you can understand, and that you now have a better understanding on how accurate a golf simulator is.

If you have been experiencing any problems with your own simulator you should now be able to work out those problems and correct them.

Frequently Asked Questions about Golf Simulators

Is A Golf Simulator Worth It?

If you want to improve your game at home, you should definitely purchase a golf simulator. The accuracy of the device is more often than not, so it is a great way for you to see exactly how you are hitting the ball in detail. It is good to note that the average cost of golf simulators has gradually decreased over the last few years.

How Much Room Is Needed For A Golf Simulator?

You need to take into account a lot before you buy your golf simulator, including the amount of space you have for it. You need to work out distances from the wall to the projection screen, the tee to the projection screen, and four to six feet between the golfer and the projection screen. Golf simulator space requirements are determined by many factors as you can see. As well as using the most technology and equipment, the more expensive golf simulators will require the most space.

How Long Does A Golf Simulator Take?

It takes an average of one hour to play 18 holes of simulator golf. Assuming that you are playing with a foursome, you can estimate that it could take you about four hours to finish the round. With just two golfers, it should only take roughly two hours to complete the round. For someone who is an expert, it takes around 30-45 minutes to complete the round. It really depends on how experienced you are with using the golf simulator and if you are good at golf or not. You should expect this is going to take you some time if you have trouble hitting accurate and long shots from the tee when you are using the simulator.

By Andrew Barrett

Hi, my name is Andrew Barrett, and I have been a keen golfer for the last 15 years. As a teenager, I used to attend my local golf club and resort with my father, and I quickly realized that it was the perfect sport for me. From here, I decided to take the sport more seriously, and have been playing regularly with family and friends since.

Over the years, I have picked up many useful skills and tips about golf. I have decided to set up my site, Golf Link, as a way to share my knowledge and tips with other keen golfers. Through this site, I will be talking you through general golfing knowledge, and I will also be reviewing golf clubs and equipment too.