Most golfers are familiar with the original line of FlightScope products. They are larger tv-monitor type boxes often used by professional golfers and those with deeper pockets than humble golf bloggers have. Their immense popularity with the pros is no coincidence as they provide ultra accurate and reliable data and a long list of features to make any golf junkie drool.
The reason why you don't see every golfer hauling around his or her FlightScope X3 is that the unit itself costs around $15,000. In other words, you could chose between buying 2.5 of these launch monitors or a brand new 2020 Tesla Model 3. What I'm getting at is that the FlightScope X3 is really expensive.
Luckily, the company was willing to listen to the cries of the golf community for something a little more portable and a lot more affordable. And thus the FlightScope Mevo was born.
- The Nuts and Bolts of Mevo
- Top 4 Reasons Why You Should Purchase a Mevo
- What The Mevo is Missing
- Recommended Accessories
- Is the FlightScope Mevo For You?
The Nuts and Bolts of Mevo
The size of this device is truly laughable. It is almost exactly the same size and weight as this bar of soap sold on Amazon for about four dollars. But turn this little puppy on and see how quickly your laughter stifles when you come to find out it packs quite a punch. Parameters measured include:
- Ball speed
- Club head speed
- Ball spin data: backspin/spin rate
- Vertical launch angle
- Flight time
- Apex height
- Smash factor
- Carry distance
- Clubs: unlimited number of clubs
- Club Loft: Must be input manually for reference only
Not bad for a little guy!
Top 4 Reasons Why You Should Purchase a Mevo
After spending a lot of time with the Mevo while working on this FlightScope Mevo review, I have come up with the following top four reasons why you should purchase this product, reviewed in further detail below:
- It is listed at an unbeatable price point
- It is extremely compact
- The FlightScope reputation for accuracy has been upheld with the Mevo
- The app Rocks
The Most Bang for your Buck
The Mevo unit will set you back about 500 bucks (check current price HERE) which is about as cheap as a launch monitor gets. One step down in price point and you'll be looking at the monitors that feel like a Game Boy with data points simply displayed on a screen to varying degrees of accuracy.
I personally believe the value for your money is huge with the Mevo. Especially because with this product there are no "hidden costs." Meaning, once you have purchased the Mevo, there's really nothing left to buy. No annual subscription to a service and no app to pay for (the app is free as we will discuss below). There are a couple of accessories that I think add to the fun, but I'll discuss that further below and they are by no means necessary or expensive.
With the money you spend you'll get accurate and invaluable data from each of your shots including golf ball speed, club head speed, carry distances, ball spin, launch angle, flight time, apex height, and smash factor.
When you're ready to use the device, I recommend you first use an online calculator to find your potential carry distances based on your swing speed and optimal launch conditions (I like this one). Take these numbers out to the driving range with your Mevo and see how your actual numbers compare to what you should be striving for. I guarantee you'll be happily enlightened by your Mevo data. Once you establish your baseline you'll be able to evolve and adjust, making this an indispensable tool.
Small but Mighty
The compact size means there's really no reason why you wouldn't take your FlightScope Mevo in your golf bag anytime you want to go play. Given it's size, I've found that no one even notices when I bring it out at the driving range or even on the golf course.
If you've read any of my other articles, you know I am a firm believer that what gets measured, get's managed (thank you, Peter Drucker). Meaning, if you practice without measurements, you're really not going to be able to manage or improve your game in a meaningful way. That doesn't mean you can't still have fun, and by all means I know sometimes I need to just hit some range balls without feedback, but in my opinion it is much more fun to practice with analysis on your improvements and setbacks.
I believe this is a key reason why the Mevo is such a popular product. It is so compact and simple, it truly couldn't be easier to pull out of your bag, set it up on its little kickstand, and start recording.
Although this may seem trivial when reading a launch monitor review, the barrier to usage of larger more complicated devices can make or break that split second decision between setting it up and "meh" leaving it behind. Let's not forget - we play golf because it is ENJOYABLE, not because it's a chore! Never purchase a launch monitor that will make practicing a chore or obligation!!
Testing the Mevo's Accuracy (indoors and outdoors)
When FlightScope decided to put their name on a product for the average golfer, they knew their reputation for accuracy was on the line. And overall I think they nailed it.
Now, in doing my research for this article, I've seen some golfers post about how the Mevo was not as accurate when compared to the FlightScope X3 during practice sessions. To them I say - no duh! The question is - are you willing to pay an extra $14,500 for the few extra percentage points in accuracy? I suppose that depends on what you are looking for in a launch monitor, but for the average player I think the Mevo provides all accuracy needed for meaningful practice.
Overall, the general consensus is that any differences in numbers seem to be consistent, meaning, you just need to factor in that some of the measurements are going to be a couple percentage points more or less. I believe for the price you pay, this still leaves the Mevo as an excellent tool for measuring swing consistency and effectiveness.
The Mevo uses 3D Doppler Radar to measure club speed, spin, launch angle, and ball speed. Then, using those numbers and sophisticated algorithms, it calculates carry distance, apex height, and flight time. Funnily, this means the calculated parameters will often be displayed before your golf ball even hits the ground. The FlightScope Mevo website will tell you that metallic stickers (little silver dots that you individually stick on your golf balls) are necessary to get the most accurate data, however, we will discuss that more below.
In researching other FlightScope Mevo review data as well as our own team's research, I've come to the following conclusions about the Mevo's parameters and their accuracy.
|Ball speed||Excellent||Usually not off by more than 1%|
|Club speed||Excellent||Discrepancies are minimal|
|Back Spin Rate||Pretty Good||Improves to Excellent when metallic stickers are used|
|Vertical launch angle||Probably the worst measured parameter||Consistently measures launch data high|
|Smash factor||Excellent||Goes along with Club head speed and Ball Speed|
|Flight time||Pretty Good||Usually off by less than half a second|
|Apex height||Pretty Good||Difficult to compare as true apex height is hard to gauge|
|Carry distance||Excellent||Within 1 - 2 yards on most shots. Tends to round up|
Keep in mind, the calculated parameters are the most susceptible to errors. If one of the measured ball data points like spin rate doesn't register, it will throw off the calculations for the flight time, peak height, and carry distance numbers as you would expect.
A few other points on the precision of the FlightScope Mevo:
- The real world environment will not be included in the calculated parameters. That means if you are shooting range balls with the wind in your face or into an upward slope, the carry distances of those shots will almost certainly be calculated as longer than what happens in reality given the environment.
- Equipment matters. The higher the quality of the golf ball you use, the better the numbers.
- Shots from Mid irons and drivers seem to do the best with the Mevo. Sand wedge not so much.
- The quality of the strike will affect the accuracy of your measurements. That being said, do you really care to know the numbers of your shank?
- The Doppler radar technology of the Mevo means it works well in bright or dim light, however, fluorescent lighting, excess metal nearby, heavy machinery, and/or rotating objects like a fan or AC can affect the performance.
- Setup matters. It is paramount to have the device at level height to the golf ball and level to the ground. Also the thing weighs like 8 ounces so you can't tell me it's hard to adjust. Take the extra 5 seconds and set it up right!
The bottom line regarding Mevo's accuracy is that for the average golf junkie looking to hit the ball further, this device is plenty accurate for giving you valuable feedback and added fun and information to your practice sessions. However, professional club fitters might splurge for a more expensive model.
Best Mevo Feature: Video Overlay
My favorite feature of the Mevo device, and one that I believe truly sets it apart from other launch monitors at the same price point, is the app that is free to download for either Apple or Android mobile devices.
The reason I think this app adds so much value to the Mevo is because it allows you to record a video of your swing from your compatible mobile device and then automatically and instantly syncs the data from your shot to the video.
If you're not tech-savvy, don't worry. If you know how to record a video from your phone you'll know how to do it from the app. Also, if your smartphone is smart enough to record slow motion videos, you can also record a slo-mo video capture of your shots from within the app! Your phone doesn't need to be setup from any specific angle, just the view you find most valuable.
I think most launch monitors in the $500 price range can be expected to give you some measurements with reasonable accuracy and not a lot more. The Mevo gives accurate measurements as discussed above PLUS the added dimension of being able to analyze video of your swing along with the data set.
The Mevo golf app is free and whats more, there is no annual subscription or pesky monthly cost. These costs are often overlooked and can add up! You wouldn't be reading this article if you weren't on a launch monitor budget and I'm trying to help you out here.
The device and app are extremely easy to setup straight from the box, as summarized in this 3 minute video. I also really appreciate the instruction manual from the FlightScope website as it uses simple graphics and I tend to be more of a visual learner myself.
I think you'll find it easy to navigate through the app to pull up previous videos and data sets. And let me tell you, the added value of being able to pull up a video of your swing + data the next time you're grabbing a beer with that one semi-pro friend for some feedback is priceless.
What The Mevo is Missing
While every launch monitor has pros and cons, I believe the FlightScope Mevo Launch Monitor is the perfect tool for a lot of golfers, but is probably not the perfect tool for every golfer.
For one, the Mevo measures a lot of numbers, but it doesn't measure every data parameter out there. If it is key for you to be able to see the horizonal launch angle or lateral landing of your shots, you will need to look for a different product (in this case, check out my Mevo+ review (check Mevo+ pricing). That being said, many golfers find that any additional data beyond what the Mevo provides is just extra fluff and unnecessary to pay for.
The Mevo is also unable to show a simulated ball flight after your shot (ie during indoor practice). It can, however, show 2D trajectories within the app. If this is something important to you, I get it. Indoor practice sessions with a golf game simulator that simulates your ball flight are extremely fun. The problem is the price range for launch monitors that provide this kind of software are higher than that of the Mevo. If you're curious to learn more, check out our SkyTrak Launch Monitor review to see a really fun product for about 4x the price of a Mevo (Check price on Amazon, Rain or Shine Golf, or Top Shelf Golf).
The accuracy of the Mevo is also something that can turn off some players or professionals looking for a razor sharp level of precision. As I mentioned above, vertical launch angle was probably the least reliable data point measured, however, I found all other parameters to be very reasonable. If you're an average hack, you're probably looking for a launch monitor that will give you reliable feedback on how to hit the golf ball further. I believe this product more than delivers on that with a truly unbeatable price.
One of my favorite things about the Mevo is that it comes with everything you need. No fancy subscriptions to pay for or other hidden costs like other launch monitors, just a free app for you to download onto your phone and you are ready to go.
That being said, there are two cheap accessories I believe are well worth the money for their added value:
- If you want to be able to record your swing without soliciting help or performing a balancing act on your golf bag, consider a smartphone holder. I like THIS ONE because it's a simple little plastic thingie that clips one side to your phone and the other side to your bag, club, or alignment stick. If you're serious about using the Mevo's video features, then the money is absolutely worth it.
- Although the Mevo comes with a cute little carrying pouch, it's still a $500 item and to me it's worth it to get a protective case. As I said above, part of the appeal of the product is its portability, and I found I'm much more willing to "throw" it in my bag if it is in a protective case.
Is the FlightScope Mevo For You?
I hope in this FlightScope Mevo review I've been able to show you all this product has to offer. When researching launch monitors, you'll quickly find that there are a lot of great products on the market, and each one has something unique to offer.
I believe what sets the Mevo apart is it's low price tag, compact size, accurate data, and free app with video capabilities.
As any golfer experienced with launch monitors can tell you, the depth of effectiveness you get from practicing with a launch monitor is priceless. With the Mevo app, you'll be able to correlate how your golf swing felt with video feedback and accurate data on your shots. As you continue with your shots you'll be able to establish a baseline from your Mevo performance data averages which you can then use to determine the effectiveness of whatever skill or tip you're working on. The ability to understand if the changes you make as you practice translate to improvement of your game makes the Mevo an indispensable tool.
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Last update on 2020-10-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API