I have never been very good at judging distances. I honestly can’t tell the difference between something 100 yards or 60 yards away, it’s all a guess for me. Needless to say the assistance of a GPS unit is pretty much mandatory when I play golf. Sure I could go searching for sprinkler heads marked with the yardage, but having a GPS unit makes things so much easier. If I had my choice of going sprinkler head hunting or having a compact GPS unit right in my pocket I would take the latter any day of the week. So when Izzo Golf asked us to review the new Swami 3000 GPS unit I tackled the other THP writers for the chance to review this device.
From the Company:
Enhanced Golf GPS
Includes all the great features of the SWAMI 1500, plus:
Course name displayed right on screen
Pre-loaded with over 19,000 courses
Ready to use right out of the box
Includes AC wall charger
No hassles with uploading courses
No Computer or Subscription Required
Just Charge and Play!
After reading everything the Swami 3000 could do it almost seemed too easy and too good to be true. So the minute it arrived I took it out of the box, and before even trying to plug it in to charge, I turned it on. I wanted to see if it would immediately start searching for a satellite signal, and just as advertised it did. I was too far from the course for it to pick up anything but within seconds it was already at work looking for a golf course. I plugged the unit in and let it get fully charged and then I headed out to the course for some testing. As I was pulling up to the course parking lot I turned the Swami 3000 on and within 60 seconds it knew where I was. I was extremely impressed with how quickly it picked up my location.
Before I talk about how it performed I want to talk more about the actual unit and its features. The first thing I noticed was just how small this device is and how light it is too. For some reason I expected it to be heavier. I was pleasantly surprised that it fit so easily in my pocket, it didn’t feel bulky or get in the way at all. For people who do not want to put the Swami 3000 in their pocket there is also an attachment that comes with it where you can secure it to your waistband or belt loop. The buttons are all self explanatory and even without looking at the user manual I found operating it to be simple and extremely user friendly. This is a no frills GPS, it isn’t full color, it doesn’t show sand traps and water hazards and it’s not touch screen, but it will tell you how far you are from the front, middle and back of the green and it does it with ease.
I used the Swami 3000 for several rounds of golf at various golf courses in two different regions of the state and never once did it fail me. I don’t want to sound like an infomercial but I honestly cannot say one negative thing about this device for the money. I played at courses with GPS units built into the carts and I also brought a different GPS unit with me in order to compare the accuracy of the Swami 3000. I found the yardages to be extremely accurate. There might have been yard or two difference between the different units but nothing that would affect my game or cost me strokes.
Where I found this device to be the most helpful was during days after a big rain when the course was cart path only, or if I hit a shot into the woods and I couldn’t have the cart GPS with me to get an accurate yardage to the pin. The other GPS unit I had with me, while small, wasn’t nearly as small as the Swami. The Swami 3000 fit securely in my back pocket, almost like having a yardage book back, so I could quickly take it out and get an exact number to the green for those wayward shots. I loved knowing exactly how far I had to reach the pin, because as I mentioned earlier, my judgment when it comes to measuring distances is questionable at best. I was very impressed with the accuracy and convenience of the Swami 3000.
If you are looking for a GPS that is full color and shows you every sand trap and hazard then this is definitely not going to be for you. However, if you are looking for something to let you know how far you are from the pin no matter where your shot landed, and something that you can easily carry in your pocket, then this is a great piece of equipment to have. At only $99 with no monthly fees and pre-loaded with over 19,000 courses you really cannot find a better GPS for the money. With the holidays coming up I know what I will be getting a few family members as a gift. I used to use a device that was touch screen and had all the bells and whistles but now I just use the Swami. I just love how portable and light weight it is, how quickly it starts working and how easily it recognizes a course. For more information on this GPS unit and other great items from Izzo Golf you can check out their website at www.izzo.com.
Your Equipment Guru,