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Home Simulator Builders, buyer beware tip


54 replies to this topic

#1 clevited

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Posted 20 November 2018 - 10:40 AM

For those looking to build a home simulator.  There is another site that I thought was an open forum for all discussion on simulators.  It seemed to be a great place to trade information and help each other find the equipment and software that best fit their needs.  However I was wrong.

There is still a lot of good info there, but I have found out that the site is run by Protee and they will censor and ban people that mention Jack Nicklaus Perfect Golf (JNPG) in their posts.  The reason for this I gather is because this website is being run by Protee, and they sell The Golf Club (TGC).  The admin does not allow software comparisons on their site.  So for those of you seeking unbiased information about either one of those simulation softwares for your build, just be aware of this.  This is just me as a consumer trying to inform others before you spend a lot of hard earned money, or think you are receiving all of the information you desire on that website. For those that don't know, the website is Golfsimulatorforum.

As a consumer, misleading customers to think that your website is open and free, yet finding out its run by a distributor that has very unreasonable bias is unacceptable.  Everything golf is expensive enough, and there is already too much censoring of any kind of negative feedback regarding golf products of all kinds.  I just wanted to make sure I inform all of those I can so they are aware when they visit the website.

Good luck on your builds!

Edited by clevited, 24 November 2018 - 10:16 PM.


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#2 Papaduke

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Posted 20 November 2018 - 11:11 AM

I whole heartedly agree.  I was banned from golfsimulatorforum for discussing JNPG with someone on there that was interested in gathering information on different sim software packages for Skytrak.

Edited by Papaduke, 20 November 2018 - 01:40 PM.


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#3 Tonyholland

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Posted 20 November 2018 - 02:13 PM

I was in the same boat, I loved all of the open info on the forum, but was very difficult finding info on JNPG.  Ended up finding info via youtube and other forums.   I used GSF for building my sim, just did not follow their (GSF) advice on LM and Sim Software.   Wish they would just be upfront and tell everyone that they own TGC and ProTee, would make everything much easier for everyone instead of misleading that it is a open forum.

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#4 delmer

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Posted 20 November 2018 - 02:27 PM

I found the same thing when I putt an artificial green in my backyard.  A lot of the information you find looks like unbiased reviews but it's mostly put out there by either the contractors or the OEMs.

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#5 clevited

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Posted 20 November 2018 - 03:35 PM

 Tonyholland, on 20 November 2018 - 02:13 PM, said:

I was in the same boat, I loved all of the open info on the forum, but was very difficult finding info on JNPG.  Ended up finding info via youtube and other forums.   I used GSF for building my sim, just did not follow their (GSF) advice on LM and Sim Software.   Wish they would just be upfront and tell everyone that they own TGC and ProTee, would make everything much easier for everyone instead of misleading that it is a open forum.

Yes, this bothered me the most.  If at least up front about being run by Protee and being a seller of TGC, then its not as big of a deal.  I think we as consumers of this industry need to start speaking up about this kind of crap.  It happens across the board, not just on that site.  I have purchased many products that all have seemingly great reviews, only to find out the product sucks or has serious issues.  Its hard to find honest reviews that cover all of this, even on this website.  Many Con's the consumer should know are omitted as if the OEM has a say in what is talked about.

Lets keep talking about this kind of stuff and start demanding some changes in the golf industry.  The problem runs deeper than just that website.

Edited by clevited, 20 November 2018 - 03:35 PM.


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#6 sdrthedj

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Posted 21 November 2018 - 10:15 AM

 Tonyholland, on 20 November 2018 - 02:13 PM, said:

I was in the same boat, I loved all of the open info on the forum, but was very difficult finding info on JNPG.  Ended up finding info via youtube and other forums.   I used GSF for building my sim, just did not follow their (GSF) advice on LM and Sim Software.   Wish they would just be upfront and tell everyone that they own TGC and ProTee, would make everything much easier for everyone instead of misleading that it is a open forum.

The protee simulator misinformation and hype on that form is worst than for software.  Any mention of anything negative and it's 'auto ban'.

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#7 boerdoc

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Posted 22 November 2018 - 11:02 AM

I bought Protee from GSF a few years back based on the favorable feedback on GSF.  I soon found myself unpleasantly surprised with its inaccuracy and inconsistency.  I sold that and got Skytrak and used that with TGC, The Golf Club sim software.  I loved playing tournaments but then found out that the competition was not fair in that anyone could tweak the software to fit their game giving them an advantage.  Certainly, not something to lose sleep over but it was not a fair competition.  I now play JNPG exclusively and could not be happier.  I had been a heavy contributor to many people who were building their sims with help from GSF but I was banned from there for asking someone in a "private" message to contact me privately about JNPG.  He was trying to get answers about JNPG but could not get a response to his questions as the answers were being blocked by the GSF admins.   So, when I was trying to keep the information off their site, I got banned.  Sneaky, shady business.  Quite unfortunate that they have to behave that way.  Make your product better and let it live on its own merits, Protee.
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#8 clevited

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Posted 22 November 2018 - 11:19 PM

I have certainly found a lot of misinformation or lack of information when it comes to certain products on that site, most of which Protee sells.  It really irks me that they are treating users in such a way, basically pulling a fast one on visitors to the site, and banning people for posting negative yet truthful comments about certain products.  I hope this kind of behavior stops and stops quickly so the damage to many people new to sim golf can be limited.

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#9 grabthepin

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Posted 24 November 2018 - 11:25 PM

I too felt misled by the site - took me many months to find out and regret helping a lot of people out there. I'm not banned but I rarely visit anymore - the Facebook simulator group is truly unbiased and strangely enough, the main products sold by golfsimulatorforum's sister site hardly ever get a serious mention there. If they do, it's rarely with love, so I guess the modus operandi is to censor and get the newbie sale quickly. I note they have a very highly priced yearly sub fee which makes the $1k lifetime licence look a no-brainer, yet unlike other software, have no trial, no returns and control your ability and cost to offload it. There were some quality posters on the forum a good year or two back, but they all seem to have discovered Jack Nicklaus Perfect Golf and got banned, so I find a lot of blind leading the blind there now.

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#10 wegobomber31

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Posted 25 November 2018 - 12:03 AM

I found a lot of invaluable information from GSF on building out my sim. They really saved me a lot of money. I had decided on JNPG before I had a sim, therefore wasnt mislead on the software choice. I tried the first version of TGC for console and found the course designer to be cumbersome and laborious, especially if you want to make a real course. JNPGs Course Forge allows you to import LIDAR terrain, which is a bhuge advantage for getting real courses as close to the real thing as possible.

I have to admit I find some of the information shared on this thread disappointing. I wonder why the products cant stand for themselves. Im sure both have their pros and cons.


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#11 Jagpilotohio

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 09:39 AM

Wow.   Nice post. Thanks.

Their whole site is an quite elaborate deception to sell their products.  Very interesting and disturbing.
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#12 burnabao

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 10:24 AM

Great post - I recently got banned from that other site for advising a poster to do his research on the various software options (in those words). I had been a forum lurker for years and got lots of good information from there on sim building but I think it was only JNPG being one of the options when I finally got my Skytrak that made me realise there were genuinely other options out there.

The fact that they push everyone to a single piece of hardware and single piece of software should be a warning to all.

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#13 Yrrdead

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 11:20 AM

Its pretty obvious that they are shilling for TGC. Its unfortunate that you didn't realize it earlier. And the monitoring of PM's is pretty dang shady.

That being said it is the single best site I've found yet with build information. Hands down.

Want to get impact screen material at a pretty big discount? Want to get custom made flash modules for your GC2 and not pay foresight $500? Want to see crazy guys literally digging out their basement to get more swing room? Want to see another brilliant dude making essentially his own launch monitor???  Want a tutorial on setting up a DTL and FO dual camera setup?  The non software stuff and obviously a ton of the posters are what makes that site awesome.

That being said do we know the status of JNPG 2??? :pimp:

Edited by Yrrdead, 26 November 2018 - 11:22 AM.

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#14 trhode

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 11:32 AM

I agree about that forum but, I have still yet to find a more rock solid sim setup than Protee for both right and left handed players. With the upcoming TGC 2019 release it should be awesome. People dog Protee for being an older system, but I only use it for sim play and turn off the club data.

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#15 clevited

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 11:57 AM

 trhode, on 26 November 2018 - 11:32 AM, said:

I agree about that forum but, I have still yet to find a more rock solid sim setup than Protee for both right and left handed players. With the upcoming TGC 2019 release it should be awesome. People dog Protee for being an older system, but I only use it for sim play and turn off the club data.

Depends on what you want in a simulator but people dog Protee because its just not accurate enough for them.  I have played on a similar system and I found myself wanting accurate information.  The system I played on inflated my ego too much and I didn't realize until I got a Skytrak just how badly.  The lefty righty thing is definitely an issue though, hopefully a less expensive and much more accurate alternative comes out in the near future.  GC Hawk is just not affordable for most.

Also, TGC has its own issues, but again, it depends on what you want in a simulator.  I am working on getting all of the details about TGC in the thread I posted earlier, if you have some good info to share about it to help other current and future sim users, please post.  Please post about your Protee system as well, post what you would tell someone interested in getting into golf simulation at home.  This way we can at least eliminate Protee bias regarding their own systems and games.  

You may notice its a JNPG tournament website but please don't let that keep you from posting.  I play JNPG because my friends play it and because it happens to have what I want for features.  I also had a connection in getting JNPG on a Skytrak.  I was granted the ability to make the thread on their website which I was denied on GSF. I want honest information in that thread, so please help out.  Its to inform all current and future sim builders.  

Thanks.


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#16 sdrthedj

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 12:20 PM

 trhode, on 26 November 2018 - 11:32 AM, said:

I agree about that forum but, I have still yet to find a more rock solid sim setup than Protee for both right and left handed players. With the upcoming TGC 2019 release it should be awesome. People dog Protee for being an older system, but I only use it for sim play and turn off the club data.

Protee does work for right and left handed players.   People don't dog Protee because its an older system.  It has shortcomings and it's rightfully critiqued for them.  Protee is compared to other sytems that cost similar amounts of money and it gets beat in many (most) categories.  It's just what it is.

$5665 for the protee base pack with TGC is a lot of money when you consider GC2 can be bought as a CPO for $5400 and used for around $4000.  Even worse when you put it against Skytrak for under $2000

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#17 clevited

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 12:22 PM

 Yrrdead, on 26 November 2018 - 11:20 AM, said:

Its pretty obvious that they are shilling for TGC. Its unfortunate that you didn't realize it earlier. And the monitoring of PM's is pretty dang shady.

That being said it is the single best site I've found yet with build information. Hands down.

Want to get impact screen material at a pretty big discount? Want to get custom made flash modules for your GC2 and not pay foresight $500? Want to see crazy guys literally digging out their basement to get more swing room? Want to see another brilliant dude making essentially his own launch monitor???  Want a tutorial on setting up a DTL and FO dual camera setup?  The non software stuff and obviously a ton of the posters are what makes that site awesome.

That being said do we know the status of JNPG 2??? :pimp:

Yes, that is what makes it sad.  It was a great website for all things simulator until it got tainted.  It seemed Protee wasn't censoring or monitoring PMs until JNPG came out.  I don't care about the history, I care about how innocent parties are treated and I care about fair and open trading of information good and bad about simulator products.  That site has banned a lot of really knowledgeable people that can no longer help or share ideas.  Almost all banned by association with JNPG.  Some banned for telling others about the Protee system they used to have the downsides it has.  Many of those were pissed off because they felt ripped off as they had a hard time reselling to recoup money.  I don't understand why Protee has so much against a sim software.  I personally think JNPG is a lot better than TGC but not everyone does.  A software will win users based on its merits, including cost, user base, and features.  Protee's actions takes away potential double buyers of software, especially if TGC improves in the future.  I would have considered it down the road when I have more money if Protee didn't irk me on GSF.  Now I have decided I won't.

As for JNPG 2 i have no idea, and don't really care.  I get plenty of enjoyment with the current iteration.

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#18 Tretee

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 12:44 PM

I remember many years ago when me and the kids played sim golf on Nintendo Wii. Those nunchucks also support left & right players. Same as the ProTee system it was a lot of fun.
But the brutal truth is that it has very little to do with real golf. If you play golf in real life and want to have any kind of realistic measurement of your shot. The equipment needs to measure back spin and spin axis tilt among other more obvious things such as ball speed and direction.
I can understand if someone picks up an Optishot system for a few 100$ and uses it just for fun. It's cheep and it could be fun depending on what you are looking for. Several k$ for a ProTee or GSA system, that makes absolutely no sense.

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#19 trhode

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 01:30 PM

I find simulators and launch monitors to be 2 very different systems. I think people are expecting the simulators to provide the same information as a high end launch monitor, they don’t. Not even close. The good part is, at least for me and the Protee system, you can make adjustments to the yardages for different clubs in the Protee base software to make the yardages more accurate. I have spent many hours hitting shots into greens on Protee while simultaneously using Flightscope to measure the shots. You can at least get accurate distances. But, as I said before, the club data is not really something I trust.

Edited by trhode, 26 November 2018 - 01:31 PM.


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#20 Tretee

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 01:52 PM

Just want to clarify for those that might be new to the topic. Many of us use GC2 to play sim golf. We get accurate data and a great simulator experience.
So to say simulators and imply that is somehow related to floor based sensors is wrong. ProTee is a kind of launch monitor, not a very good one but nevertheless a LM.
(yes I agree calling a Nintendoi Wii nunchuck a LM is a bit of a stretch:-)


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#21 clevited

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 01:59 PM

 trhode, on 26 November 2018 - 01:30 PM, said:

I find simulators and launch monitors to be 2 very different systems. I think people are expecting the simulators to provide the same information as a high end launch monitor, they don’t. Not even close. The good part is, at least for me and the Protee system, you can make adjustments to the yardages for different clubs in the Protee base software to make the yardages more accurate. I have spent many hours hitting shots into greens on Protee while simultaneously using Flightscope to measure the shots. You can at least get accurate distances. But, as I said before, the club data is not really something I trust.

Simulators often use launch monitors for the initial launch conditions.  They then put that data into the simulation software and let it account for atmospheric pressure, wind, elevation and flight physics.  Not all algorithms for modeling ball flight and behavior are the same, so yes there can be some discrepancy to real life distances but most are very good.

GC2 is a launch monitor
Skytrak is a launch monitor
Trackman and Flightscope are launch monitors

All of these can be used to grab initial launch data very accurately from the ball being struck (GC2 is better than Skytrak but Skytrak is very good too especially for its cost), then the simulation software takes over.  You can't hope to play realistic golf if first, your launch monitor is not accurate.

Now, reading club data, that is for launch monitors like Trackman or GC2 with HMT, or GCQ, or Flightscope etc etc.  I am only referring to initial ball launch data.  If you want to play a game, that Protee system will work, if you want to get accurate information for learning purposes and to give you as true as you can currently get simulation, you need to have a LM that measures all of the important ball data.

Again, if you enjoy Protee thats just fine, don't let me convince you otherwise, just trying to clear the air.

Edited by clevited, 26 November 2018 - 02:01 PM.


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#22 trhode

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 02:24 PM

That was pretty much my point. I don’t know when simulators and radar based launch monitors will ever merge. E6 on Trackman is crap on short game and putting. Most of the courses around me have theirs set to “auto-putt”.  FS is supposedly in the final stages of their testing. The GC Hawk is a good option for an all in one setup for right and left handed players. But, so far, the GC Quad will only work with the FSX software for play. The TruGolf systems are becoming a bit more affordable and seem to be more accurate out of the box. We’ll have to be patient and see what the next few years holds.

Edited by trhode, 26 November 2018 - 02:24 PM.


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#23 clevited

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 02:35 PM

 trhode, on 26 November 2018 - 02:24 PM, said:

That was pretty much my point. I don’t know when simulators and radar based launch monitors will ever merge. E6 on Trackman is crap on short game and putting. Most of the courses around me have theirs set to “auto-putt”.  FS is supposedly in the final stages of their testing. The GC Hawk is a good option for an all in one setup for right and left handed players. But, so far, the GC Quad will only work with the FSX software for play. The TruGolf systems are becoming a bit more affordable and seem to be more accurate out of the box. We’ll have to be patient and see what the next few years holds.

Well if your priority is seamless lefty and righty LM capability, yeah the more affordable alternatives won't work as well.  Currently I converse with many players playing JNPG tour, and most use GC2.  Some have your same issue.  They have come up with clever ways to rotate it for each player or move it easily.  GC2 does well with putting and chipping, ST does ok (has its problems) but these machines were not designed to handle those shots initially, so always some pro's and con's with each system.  If you haven't already, I suggest watching some youtube videos about GC2 left and right handed solutions.  I can post one if you like.  If you are willing to sacrifice the seemless ability to switch left and right handed players for greatly improved accuracy even with putting, GC2 is for sure a great solution that costs possibly less than your Protee system.  

I have access to a lot of people that can help you out if you ever want to learn more or source things like a used GC2 but again, to each their own.  I am just sharing information and if you look at that comparison site I linked in a previous post, it will eventually be pretty detailed about a great many things and you can learn whatever you want from that from people like you that own or have owned the things talked about.

Last thing, I don't know what Trugolf is coming out with but that was the system I played on a lot a couple years ago.  That was an ego inflator.  It was fun to play on but it made me think I was a lot better than I was.  The dang light sensor was frustrating as well, stinkin mat would deteriorate and block the sensors.

While I don't want to try and convince you of anything, if you haven't done a lot of research, it really does pay to do a LOT of research when it comes to simulator stuff.  Personally I would try to find unbiased reviews of things, especially before you really consider Trugolf.

Edited by clevited, 26 November 2018 - 02:38 PM.


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#24 trhode

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 02:57 PM

My use is more for business so, left and right is a must. I’ve been in contact with Foresight for a couple of years as they have been working on the Hawk. Unfortunately, their release time frame will miss this years simulator golf season and won’t be available until after the pga show sometime. If it were just for myself, I would’ve bought a gc2/hot years ago.
I have seen some of the turntable setups that people are using with these units. The stability of the hitting surface has me concerned.

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#25 burnabao

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 03:15 PM

I can see the appeal of something like protee for residential users who absolutely need seamless LH/RH capabilities - the only alternatives are professional grade LMs like a Trackman but for a residential user the space requirements and cost are likely prohibive. That said, there are setups using a single GC2 or Skytrak which let you get to an almost-seamless LH/RH switch without sacrificing accuracy of data.

I guess there are two distinct user bases for simulation golf - gamers who are more interested in just having a fun and playing the game (whatever software they choose to play) and then golfers who want to use the sim space as a practice tool for real golf. There is simply no way something which doesn't accurately measure back/side spin is going to be a viable practice  or training tool. It's like hitting balls into a net and saying "yeah that felt good, lets call it 250y in the middle of the fairway". Horses for courses though


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#26 clevited

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 03:40 PM

All great information on here but if I might get things back to the original post.  If anyone has been rubbed wrong by GSF, please post here to let others know I am not alone.  We are consumers that can speak up and in my opinion, this current situation over at GSF has ruined the entire site for me and many others.  It is/was a popular site for all things simulator, but censoring important information and banning people to shut them up about certain products is unacceptable.  Please post your concerns.  Maybe with enough disgruntled consumers speaking up, Protee will change how they convey themselves over there.  I would like to see that site cleaned up and left alone so we can talk and trade information without worry of being banned or censored.  

It will be difficult but if they are not willing to do that, I am going to try and grow an alternative where the above can be done.

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#27 Whiskeybent

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 11:23 PM

Add my name to the list that has been banned at GSF. Someone had a post asking what the best simulation software was for multiplayer. He was looking for different game modes like scramble, alt shot, and greensomes. I responded by saying that TGC does not offer those game modes and JNPG had all of those and more. The forum moderator removed my post less than 3 mins after I posted it. I then send the OP a private message with my email address so we could communicate off the site, and that led to a ban. That site is crooked and terribly misleading.

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#28 Doyouevenblade

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 12:40 PM

Is there any reason GolfWRX doesn't have a simulator forum? I was looking into building one earlier this year and was shocked that I couldn't find information on this site

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#29 clevited

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 12:58 PM

 Doyouevenblade, on 27 November 2018 - 12:40 PM, said:

Is there any reason GolfWRX doesn't have a simulator forum? I was looking into building one earlier this year and was shocked that I couldn't find information on this site

I would love to help make that happen but I would only want to see that happen if GolfWRX is not biased towards any manufacturers.  The good and bad of all simulator products would need to be able to be freely shared.

So if I can be assured of that, and they are willing to make a simulator section, I would be all for that.

Edited by clevited, 27 November 2018 - 12:59 PM.


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#30 fairways4life

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 01:45 PM

 Doyouevenblade, on 27 November 2018 - 12:40 PM, said:

Is there any reason GolfWRX doesn't have a simulator forum? I was looking into building one earlier this year and was shocked that I couldn't find information on this site

I was also a little surprised. I've become more and more interested in the world of simulators recently and over the Thanksgiving break I spent some time doing some research. Found some discussions here on Golfwrx but no dedicated section for simulators. Considering there are sections devoted to clubmaking and hickory clubs and almost everything else golf-related, it seems that a simulator section would make sense. Especially considering how many people here seem to have them or are interested in having one.

Can we petition a moderator to maybe set one up?


*Funny thing is that during my research, I came across the GSF site and thought I had struck gold. I didn't read up on any software, I only spent a few minutes reading about nets and screens. So I didn't pick up on the software bias. But thanks to the OP for alerting me of that*


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