For the past 20 + years I have been an avid Golf Junkie not being able to get enough of the game that seems to always want to kick me in the ass for no good reason!
Well, I guess I am a glutton for punishment because I keep going back for more.
The 20+ years of trying to whack that little white ball into that little cup, I have tried pretty much every tech gadget, swing aide etc. to improve my game.
So when I saw this new Rangefinder/GPS device I thought why not give it a try? I did, and this is my Garmin Approach Z80 Review.
This is the first rangefinder to not only use a laser and GPS to find the distances, but it comes with a virtual 2d image of the hole with distances mapped out to the middle, back and front of the green.
The feature that I like is the ability to get distances to the hazards, and I seem to spend a lot of time in hazards?
But I guess that is another post? Another benefit of this device is that the unit provides the best of both the rangefinder and GPS, which I think is pretty cool.
How Did It Perform?
The concept of this device is quite amazing in marrying the laser rangefinder with a GPS! But did the device perform up to the hype?
Just like any other new device/gadget, it did take some getting used too, but after two rounds I found it to be easy to use.
Below are a few of the Pro’s and Con’s I found with the Garmin Approach Z80.
- The Z80 Provides the best of both the Rangefinder and GPS wrapped into one.
- I found this device to be extremely accurate and easy to use. The Approach Z80 is the most accurate yardage device that I personally have used throughout my 20 + years of playing golf.
- Provides the golfer with more than enough on-course information that anyone would need.
- Can be a bit pricey for someone on a budget and may not be affordable for everyone.
- The device takes some time to get used to out of the box, but as stated above, 2-3 rounds are all it takes to master the Z80.
Get a Different View Of The Game
The Approach Z80 is the most accurate range finder on the market today. The device also gives you access to more than 41,000 courses worldwide.
The full-color CourseView and Green View overlay is a great feature showing distance to the front and back of the green.
The Device provides accurate yardages to the pin — within 10”.
This feature will allow for a better pace of play as all distances are visible and taking multiple readings will not be required.
Provides Accurate Yardage From Uphill And Downhill Lies
The PlaysLike feature will adjust yardages on uphill or downhill lies based on the change in elevation from where you are standing.
This makes club selection faster and more accurate as the Z80 will give the adjusted yardage based on the elevation.
See The Entire Hole
The Z80 draws an arc on the 2-D course map at the distance you are hitting from, so you can see everything that is in play at that distance.
Who Should Buy This Unit?
I personally feel that at this price, you would want to be a golfer that plays a lot and is not concerned about budget and wants the best tools to give the most accurate yardage and ease of use.
If you are a casual weekend golfer, perhaps on a bit of a tight budget, you would do well to purchase a GPS watch that will give you accurate front, middle, and Back of the Green yardage for under $100.
If you are in the market for a GPS or Rangefinder and budget is not an issue, then I would recommend the Garmin Approach Z80 for its top of the line accuracy and ease of use. Also, you will get all of the benefits of both the rangefinder and Gps rolled into one unit.
Garmin Approach Z80~$550.00
- Rangefinder & GPS Rolled Into One
- Extremely Accurate
- Provides The Golfer With More Than Enough Course Information
- Image Stabilization
- Pricey $$$
- Takes 2-3 Rounds To Get Used to The Settings and Feel