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garmin approach g6


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#61 blazman11

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 11:34 PM

View Postgolfnut-2X, on 21 May 2012 - 05:06 PM, said:

i love the new g6.  unfortunately it pops off the belt clip frequently.  any suggestions?

I hated the belt clip so I found a Case Logic hip case at Walmart that fits it perfectly.  I bought one off Amazon too that fits it a little more snug than the Case Logic one.



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#62 4gearGolf

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 01:19 AM

View Posttodd_i, on 20 May 2012 - 07:33 PM, said:

Rather than renewing my skycaddie, I jumped ship and moved to the Garmin G6.   I've used it for a few rounds, and it seems good, but I'm still getting used to some of the differences.

One area that I'm hoping can be optimized is the scoring.  Maybe I'm missing some config options.

1. It can score for up to 4 people.   But, I typically keep only my score.  If I am in a group of 4, we typically do it on a score card so all can have access to it.   But, with the G6, inputting score is a two step process: select golfer then input score.    Can I tell it to forget about golfers 2-4, and just go right to the score input?

2. How can I get a summary view of all all the holes in the round?  Skycaddie has a nice view for this, where is will show your score on each hole, or your + / - relative to par on each hole.   It also make it easy to see if I missed inputting score on a hole.      On the G6, I have to scroll through each hole to see the score, there is no complete round view.

Has anyone found any better solutions to the above issues?

Hi,
I've played a half dozen rounds with mine and I just keep my score. First I select the course and enter my local handicap (or index and slope). Then at the end of a hole I click the 'score/measure' button. Select the green/white pencil symbol next to your name for that particular hole --> Enter stroke and putts (and Fairway if tracking stats) and press check mark --> Then select back arrow to get back to course view or front arrow for next hole.
To get a summary view of your scorecard or putts or GIR or Fairways hit, click the 'score/measure' button --> select the three horizontal bars symbol (next to the back arrow) --> Select Round Details --> Select the three horizontal bars symbol again --> Select Player Details --> Select your name --> Select Scorecard or Putts or GIR or Fairways Hit.

I hope this made sense and helps you.

Edited by 4gearGolf, 22 May 2012 - 01:40 AM.


#63 DandyDon

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Posted 27 May 2012 - 06:07 PM

Just started looking at purchasing one of these things....How many courses are available?  Do I have to pay for each course I use, or do I have to pay a subscription fee?  
Thanks



#64 Laws of Woo

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 03:40 PM

View PostDandyDon, on 27 May 2012 - 06:07 PM, said:

Just started looking at purchasing one of these things....How many courses are available?  Do I have to pay for each course I use, or do I have to pay a subscription fee?  
Thanks
Last i heard was around 20k courses. No fees whatsoever aside from purchasing the device.
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#65 kitsoasis

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 07:55 PM

View PostLaws of Woo, on 28 May 2012 - 03:40 PM, said:

View PostDandyDon, on 27 May 2012 - 06:07 PM, said:

Just started looking at purchasing one of these things....How many courses are available?  Do I have to pay for each course I use, or do I have to pay a subscription fee?  
Thanks
Last i heard was around 20k courses. No fees whatsoever aside from purchasing the device.

Exactly. When I got mine I just plugged it into the computer to update the device, but that's all you need to do.

If you go to their website you can check the directory to see whether your usual courses are there


#66 Ken in Regina

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Posted 03 June 2012 - 10:27 PM

Hi.  I'm Ken and I'm addicted to golf.  :)

I have a G6 and have used it for about 8 rounds.  The reader's digest version is that it's great for helping you manage your game around the golf course.  It gets it done for entering and reviewing scores.  And it sucks big time when it comes to stats.

If you don't care about stats and it's in your price range my unqualified recommendation is to buy it.  It would be hard to find anything better for managing your game on the course.

If you really care about stats, in-round and aggregate, forget it.  It's not going to help you at all.

So now that that's done, let's address the folks who think it's a troll with such strong opinions on a first post and then get on with a more comprehensive review....

In fairness, I need to issue a wind warning. :download: The following is pretty long.  I hope it's useful to some.

First, I have read the entire thread.

Second, I'm a veteran of electronic media.  I've been using online fora of various kinds since Usenet and FidoNet.  For those too young to recognize them, that's early 1980's.  I recognize that not all forums think it's the best etiquette to share strong opinions on a first post.  However, I don't know what else I could have posted to waste half a dozen posts just to pump my credibility.  So I figured I would just jump in with both feet.  And hope they don't end up in my mouth.

Third, i have a few years experience using golf GPS range finders.  I started using the Intelligolf app on my Garmin iQue (integrated PalmOS and GPS) in 2005.  I continued to use Intelligolf on my Palm T/X and Palm Centro (with a Garmin Bluetooth GPS10x) until I got the Approach G6.

Along the way I have used the iGolf (Bushnell) Neo for just over a season.  I've used my brother's Sky Caddie a couple of times.  And I have been playing with various golf apps on my Android phone for the past couple of months, with varying degrees of unhappiness.  FreeCaddy is the one currently installed on the phone but it hasn't been used since I got the G6 and I really don't miss it.

The one I miss is Intelligolf.  I hope they do it for Android some day.  The interface is getting a little old but it does everything you could ever ask of a golf program.  The best part is that it includes a PC app so you can do all your post-game/post-season analysis on the PC rather than squinting to do anything useful on a small screen.

I'm a senior whose eyesight is reaching the point where I can hit the ball farther than I can see.  Even with a 3 hybrid on a good day!  But I still walk and carry my clubs (Sun Mountain 3.5 carry bag) for three or four rounds a week.

Against that background I can say that the Approach G6 is a stellar device for on-course use.  It gets a location lock really quickly.  As soon as you hit the PLAY button it gives you a list of the nearest courses.  The one at the top of the list will be the one at which you are about to step on the first tee.

It took me a couple of holes to get used to navigating between the two main on-course display screens and back and forth to the score screen and the shot distance measurement screen.  It took a little longer to figure out how to end a round. It's not the greatest interface, but compared to most of the Android apps it's not bad.

As a couple of folks have already pointed out, the touch screen is a little ... well, .... touchy.  Mostly it hasn't been an issue for me.  But I learned quickly that when I want to measure how far I just hit a shot I should just carry it in my hand, not toss it back in my bag or stuff it in my pocket.  The odds of the measurement screen not being reset to 0 are just about 0 unless you carry it so nothing can touch the screen.  It really needs a standby condition (e.g. GPS is still alive but the screen is turned off until you want to look at it again).

Once you get the navigation figured out and get back to focusing on your game it's a dream to use.  It gives a relatively accurate overhead view of the hole you are playing, including the primary hazards (e.g. bunkers, water features, etc.).  Of course, just like any halfway decent GPS, it gives you the measurements to the front/middle/back of the green.  All pretty hohum for any useful GPS device or smartphone app.

Where it really shines is when you really need the help.  That is, those (hopefully rare) occasions when you have managed to somehow stray from the fairway and need guidance to get back to a visible or known position.  A simple tap anywhere on the hole display will get you the distance from where you are to that point and from that point to the centre of the green.  It sounds simple but it's worth its weight in gold when you need to know how far to hit it.  For instance, to a layup point or for a recovery shot back into the fairway.

It takes the guesswork out of recovery and layup shots.  I've actually found it most useful for those shorter chipouts/pitchouts where you want to be sure to get it all the way to the fairway but not bash it over the other side and right back into more trouble.  I use it for that more than for layup yardages.  What does that say about my game??  :)

It's also really nice, once you are in sight of the green, to be able to tap the real pin position on the green rather than having to do a mental calculation based on the pin's relation to the front/middle/back measurement.

I am already completely addicted to those last two features that are based on tapping the screen anywhere on the hole or the green to get those yardages.  Sufficiently addicted that you would have to pry the G6 from my cold dead hands.

The viewability of the screen must be mentioned.  It's a really great screen for bright sunlight.  I'm now sure how they do it but it's sort of reflective so even on the brightest days it's easy to view the screen.  On sunny days I turn the backlight completely off.  As you might expect, that does great things for the battery life, too.  The only day I had to turn the backlight on for a few holes it was a really dark dreary overcast day.  Normally I won't golf on such a day but we had started the round in better conditions.

The above features of the G6 are good enough that I'm able, most times, to overlook just how truly awful some of the other features are.

Scoring is so-so.  It's easy enough to enter your score.  Once you figure out how to get there, you can get a hohum summary of your score any time during the round.  I don't fault the lack of a more comprehensive scorecard-like display because it would be just awful on that small screen.

But I expected a lot more than you get when it's connected to a PC.  Rather than having a proper PC program that you can upload the scores into for analysis and display, it has a hokey HTML script in one of the folders in the G6's internal memory that you run with your browser.   All it does is display a list of the rounds and then displays the round you select from the list.

That's it!!!

If you want to get any aggregate information from your scores, like handicap, average scores on par 3s, 4s,5s, percentage birdies, pars, bogies and so on, you are on your own.

Stats are even worse.

The only thing you can track is the number of putts and whether you hit or missed the fairway.

Those who are about to say it also lets you track Greens In Regulation, hold onto your shirts.  It doesn't.  Specifically, you cannot tell it you hit the green in regulation.  It just guesses.

You enter the number of strokes you took on the hole.  You enter the number of putts you took on the hole.  The G6 subtracts the two and decides whether it thinks you hit the green in regulation.  Mostly it works.  But it can also be wrong.

Example: the 9th hole at one of the courses I play is a par 3 with a green that slopes steeply from back to front.  On Wednesday I hit the green but hit it to the back of the green when there was a front pin.  I putted off the front of the green, chipped it close and tapped in for 4.  The G6 does not credit me for a GIR.  It's wrong.

It doesn't track any other useful stats like bunkers, up-and-downs, sand saves, etc.  And there's no way to display any of the stats even if it tracked them.

I know I sound kind of hard on Garmin regarding the scores and stats but this is an expensive device.  I should be able to expect better ... a LOT better.  Especially when you consider that Android apps you can buy for $2.99 do a lot better than a device that costs a hundred times as much.

As I said at the start, it's wonderful for helping manage your game on the course.  The screen is excellent in bright sunlight.  And the battery life is great (I haven't tried it but I'm sure I could get three rounds out of it).  For those things it's a keeper.

But if Intelligolf ever becomes available for Android I'll be going right back to it for scoring and stats and using the G6 strictly as a range-finder.

I hope that's helpful for anyone considering a Garmin Approach G6.

  ...ken...

Edited by Ken in Regina, 03 June 2012 - 10:38 PM.


#67 Solutions Etcetera

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 08:56 AM

View PostKen in Regina, on 03 June 2012 - 10:27 PM, said:

I have a G6 and have used it for about 8 rounds... And it sucks big time when it comes to stats... I'm a veteran of electronic media.  

The stats are in the device, in XML format. I wrote a dedicated app for the G5 to import these files from the device and aggregate the data. Now they have changed the data format in the G6 so my current app will not support it. I am not sure whether I will update the app for the G6 as demand has been modest at best for the current version. Perhaps this is why Garmin hasn't taken the extra step. In fact, I think they carefully considered what MOST folks would actually use and implemented it. I think it was nice to see the other scoring modes added to the G6.

In any event, you can access this data on the device and pop it into a spreadsheet or database if you really want it.

Quote

I learned quickly that when I want to measure how far I just hit a shot I should just carry it in my hand, not toss it back in my bag or stuff it in my pocket.  The odds of the measurement screen not being reset to 0 are just about 0 unless you carry it so nothing can touch the screen.  It really needs a standby condition (e.g. GPS is still alive but the screen is turned off until you want to look at it again).

The G5 allows you to lock the screen by momentarily pressing the power button, which brings up a screen that displays battery level and a button to lock the screen. Don't know why they would've removed this feature from the G6 (it clearly isn't documented) so you might want to give it a try.

#68 Solutions Etcetera

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:02 PM

Oh BTW... The PGA Tour tracks putting as the first stroke made on the green and every stroke thereafter until holing the ball. So, if you record your putting stats the same way, the Garmin's "guess" will always be correct.

View PostKen in Regina, on 03 June 2012 - 10:27 PM, said:

You enter the number of strokes you took on the hole.  You enter the number of putts you took on the hole.  The G6 subtracts the two and decides whether it thinks you hit the green in regulation.  Mostly it works.  But it can also be wrong.

Example: the 9th hole at one of the courses I play is a par 3 with a green that slopes steeply from back to front.  On Wednesday I hit the green but hit it to the back of the green when there was a front pin.  I putted off the front of the green, chipped it close and tapped in for 4.  The G6 does not credit me for a GIR.  It's wrong.


#69 crazygolfnut

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:21 PM

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 04 June 2012 - 07:02 PM, said:

Oh BTW... The PGA Tour tracks putting as the first stroke made on the green and every stroke thereafter until holing the ball. So, if you record your putting stats the same way, the Garmin's "guess" will always be correct.

View PostKen in Regina, on 03 June 2012 - 10:27 PM, said:

You enter the number of strokes you took on the hole.  You enter the number of putts you took on the hole.  The G6 subtracts the two and decides whether it thinks you hit the green in regulation.  Mostly it works.  But it can also be wrong.

Example: the 9th hole at one of the courses I play is a par 3 with a green that slopes steeply from back to front.  On Wednesday I hit the green but hit it to the back of the green when there was a front pin.  I putted off the front of the green, chipped it close and tapped in for 4.  The G6 does not credit me for a GIR.  It's wrong.

So if I understand you correctly, the chip back onto the green would be recorded on the PGA tour as a putt. I never new that.  Very interesting.
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#70 Solutions Etcetera

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 08:15 PM

Note that this is not a "rule" by any means, but has always been my understanding based on what I've read. Unfortunately, I have not been able to read this on the PGATour site. I even remember reading somewhere that it is the same in the US Open and why there were a number of five putts recorded at Olympic Club in 1998.

With that said I have been unable to find any "definitive" statement about this using Google so maybe it is time to contact the PGA Tour and ask them. I'll post back if I get a response.


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#71 Solutions Etcetera

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 08:31 PM

Ok… not exactly definitive, but this does  support my understanding...

http://www.thesun.co...n-one-hole.html

#72 Ken in Regina

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 10:58 PM

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 04 June 2012 - 08:56 AM, said:

The stats are in the device, in XML format.

Yes. Found them.  It's interesting that the G6 also maintains track files that you can transfer directly into Mapsource or Basecamp for viewing just like a regular Garmin GPS.

Quote

I wrote a dedicated app for the G5 to import these files from the device and aggregate the data.  Now they have changed the data format in the G6 so my current app will not support it.

Good work!.  But my point was that should not be necessary for a device that costs $300.  And you can't aggregate stats you can't track in the first place.  The format change between models is typical Garmin. (Said as a heavy Garmin user for about 8 years.)  Just look at the dog's breakfast they've made of all the various Nuvi models.

Quote

I am not sure whether I will update the app for the G6 as demand has been modest at best for the current version. Perhaps this is why Garmin hasn't taken the extra step. In fact, I think they carefully considered what MOST folks would actually use and implemented it. I think it was nice to see the other scoring modes added to the G6.

That might be what you call a self-fulfilling prophecy: don't provide the capability and nobody will use it. !!

Thanks for the tip on the screen lock.  It's there on the G6.  The power button is so hard to operate that it may be more of a nuisance than a feature but I'll give it a whirl on the course tomorrow.

Also thanks for the tip on what counts as a putt.  I'll check with the club pro tomorrow and see if he has any idea.

...ken...

#73 Solutions Etcetera

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 08:59 AM

View PostKen in Regina, on 04 June 2012 - 10:58 PM, said:

It's interesting that the G6 also maintains track files

Just one more thing I like about Garmin. You can also import them into Google Earth and create a tour of your round.

Quote

The format change between models is typical Garmin.

Yes, but I have seen the files and it is an improvement over the G3/G5 format and not just done "for change sake". Can't really fault them for that.

Quote

That might be what you call a self-fulfilling prophecy: don't provide the capability and nobody will use it. !!

Possibly. But I play a lot of golf... with a lot of different types (from the head pro on down to a friend that has broken 100 only once in the last year and a half), and I just don't see all that many folks who want to keep track of that many stats... at least not outside of GWRX. (c;

My biggest criticism about Garmin is the entire dedicated device model. The G5 has a GigaByte of storage (most of it free space), and a micro SD slot as well (which goes unused). The whole golf thing could have easily been just another mode and map set on the Oregon series. Instead, it is pretty clear Garmin wants to sell you multiple devices, which I find disturbing.

Enjoy, your G6. If I decide to rework my app to support the G6 I'll drop you a PM.

#74 Ken in Regina

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 09:30 PM

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 05 June 2012 - 08:59 AM, said:

My biggest criticism about Garmin is the entire dedicated device model. The G5 has a GigaByte of storage (most of it free space), and a micro SD slot as well (which goes unused). The whole golf thing could have easily been just another mode and map set on the Oregon series. Instead, it is pretty clear Garmin wants to sell you multiple devices, which I find disturbing.

I agree.  The G6 also has a ton of free memory and a microSD slot.  When you stick a card in the slot and connect to the PC you can see the card.  Mapsource/MapInstall will even cheerfully compile and install maps to it.  But the G6 just bellyaches when you power it up that it sees an incompatible map.

Quote

Enjoy, your G6. If I decide to rework my app to support the G6 I'll drop you a PM.

I would sure appreciate it if you ever get around to it. I am thoroughly enjoying the G6 for what it does really well.  I have no regrets.  By the way, I tried the screen locking on the course today.  It's really more bother than it's worth.  Much easier to just hang onto the G6 until I get to my next shot.  With the exception of par 5s I usually want it out for an approach yardage anyway.  Or a get-out-of-jail yardage.  ;)

Truthfully, I'm comfortable enough with my club distances that I don't use the measurement much anyway, other than to amuse myself if I crack a particularly good drive. :)   Although it's really useful on days like today.  It was blowing 50kph gusting to 70kph (about 30mph - 45mph).  It was handy on the first few holes to get some yardages into and with the wind so I had an idea how many clubs to add/subtract for approach shots.

...ken...

Edited by Ken in Regina, 05 June 2012 - 09:32 PM.


#75 Solutions Etcetera

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 11:30 AM

View PostKen in Regina, on 05 June 2012 - 09:30 PM, said:

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 05 June 2012 - 08:59 AM, said:

Enjoy, your G6. If I decide to rework my app to support the G6 I'll drop you a PM.

I would sure appreciate it if you ever get around to it.

Mac or PC?


#76 hectex

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 03:28 PM

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 06 June 2012 - 11:30 AM, said:

View PostKen in Regina, on 05 June 2012 - 09:30 PM, said:

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 05 June 2012 - 08:59 AM, said:

Enjoy, your G6. If I decide to rework my app to support the G6 I'll drop you a PM.

I would sure appreciate it if you ever get around to it.

Mac or PC?
Add me as an interested person should you decide to develope for PC.

#77 Ken in Regina

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 03:38 PM

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 06 June 2012 - 11:30 AM, said:

View PostKen in Regina, on 05 June 2012 - 09:30 PM, said:

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 05 June 2012 - 08:59 AM, said:

Enjoy, your G6. If I decide to rework my app to support the G6 I'll drop you a PM.

I would sure appreciate it if you ever get around to it.

Mac or PC?

I'm a PC guy.  Got half a dozen kicking around here.  Or WebOS .. I have an HP TouchPad tablet. :)

                  ...ken...

#78 JoeShark

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 02:06 PM

I got one over the weekend at Golfsmith for $249.99

I have a post I started over at the "Deal of No Deal" section describing my purchase.

#79 golfnut-2X

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 08:55 PM

View Postblazman11, on 21 May 2012 - 11:34 PM, said:

View Postgolfnut-2X, on 21 May 2012 - 05:06 PM, said:

i love the new g6.  unfortunately it pops off the belt clip frequently.  any suggestions?

I hated the belt clip so I found a Case Logic hip case at Walmart that fits it perfectly.  I bought one off Amazon too that fits it a little more snug than the Case Logic one.



Milan Extra Small Universal Horizontal Cell Phone Case / Pouch / Holster with Belt Loop & Belt Clip

http://www.amazon.co...ils_o00_s00_i00

THANKS FOR THE POINTER!!!!  i hate the clip also.  it always pops out.  will give this one a try.  Thanks for the tip.

#80 golfnut-2X

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 09:05 PM

anyone run into accuracy issues with their v6?

i love my small unit (outside of the clip which I just ordered a new one based on reco above on amazon).

i have both the v6 and bushnell 1500.  i like the range finder for accuracy to 1 yard.  I don't see anything published on garmin for accuracy with v6.  i like that its quicker since its realtime for front, middle, back and quick estimates for pin approximates.

I noticed on a few holes the yardage was off quite a bit when compared to bushnell.  anyone experience this?  how do you know when this will happen?  does it tell you gps signal strength and only use it when full strength?  on full strength do you know the accurancy error?

Thanks.


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#81 Ken in Regina

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 11:29 PM

As long as you have a decent view of the satellites, the accuracy will have more to do with the mapping than with the GPS chip/signal.  The GPS chip in the G6 is excellent ... very sensitive so it will get a location fix very quickly and will get a decent location accuracy with even rather weak signals.  But big signal strength doesn't help if the mapping is inaccurate.

If you have examples of accuracy errors please notify Garmin so they can make the necessary corrections.  If the accuracy is off on a particular course due to their mapping you should notice that the error is fairly consistent around the entire course.  If so, let Garmin know so they can fix it.  If there are specific issues, like the pin front/middle/back on a particular hole(s) rather than a general error amount around the entire course, also let them know so they can fix it.

If you are concerned about differences between what the range finder and the GPS are telling you you should check the same locations on different rounds to see if the GPS is consistently off in the same places by about the same amounts.  If it's not, e.g. if the error amount is inconsistent from round to round by a fairly large amount, this would be an indication that you have inconsistent GPS signals rather than mapping errors.

Regarding accuracy of the distance to the actual pin location, keep in mind that the range finder can pinpoint it because it's actually checking to the real pin.  If you tap the screen on the G6 to simulate the actual location as you can see it, even if you are within, say, 50 yds of the green or closer you are still doing an approximation.  Odds are that you will still be off by at least some feet and more likely some yards on your tap versus the actual location.

...ken...

#82 chas521

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Posted 13 June 2012 - 06:58 AM

My 2 cents.  I found that most of the problems [differences] are because the person using the GPS has not kept the device looking at the sky with a clear view.  Granted that the device will usually maintain the satellite lock even when kept in the pocket but the strength of the signal will be changing when it is removed from the pocket to view the yardage.  What usually happens when you do that is the number starts changing and that accounts for the difference.

Granted that a laser is more accurate with a clear view of the pin or target but the difference is usually less than 5 yards depending upon the location of the actual pin.  When it comes to hazards, the GPS is very good.

I like the Garmin and here's why.  I have a G5 and a Callaway mx+.  I like the G5 better.  The overall size of both is the same except that the G5 is slightly thicker due to the fact that it uses AA batteries instead of a rechargeable plug.  I use rechargeable AA's and I carry a second set in my bag so I always have use of the device.  The screen size is larger on the G5 and the whole hole is displayed with the hazards and the distances instead of having to scroll on the mx+.  Yes, the hole is cartoonish on the G5 rather than actual view [as if from a helicopter] but it is done nicely so the hole looks like the hole.   The advertisement of the Pro Mode view on the mx+ is much better than what you get.  The Garmin stays "awake" so you just look while the mx+ is constantly going to sleep and you have to press the power button to wake it up.  I find that very annoying.

Edited by chas521, 13 June 2012 - 07:01 AM.


#83 gphin305

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Posted 13 June 2012 - 03:58 PM

View PostKen in Regina, on 03 June 2012 - 10:27 PM, said:

Hi.  I'm Ken and I'm addicted to golf.  :)

I have a G6 and have used it for about 8 rounds.  The reader's digest version is that it's great for helping you manage your game around the golf course.  It gets it done for entering and reviewing scores.  And it sucks big time when it comes to stats.

If you don't care about stats and it's in your price range my unqualified recommendation is to buy it.  It would be hard to find anything better for managing your game on the course.

If you really care about stats, in-round and aggregate, forget it.  It's not going to help you at all.

So now that that's done, let's address the folks who think it's a troll with such strong opinions on a first post and then get on with a more comprehensive review....

In fairness, I need to issue a wind warning. :download: The following is pretty long.  I hope it's useful to some.

First, I have read the entire thread.

Second, I'm a veteran of electronic media.  I've been using online fora of various kinds since Usenet and FidoNet.  For those too young to recognize them, that's early 1980's.  I recognize that not all forums think it's the best etiquette to share strong opinions on a first post.  However, I don't know what else I could have posted to waste half a dozen posts just to pump my credibility.  So I figured I would just jump in with both feet.  And hope they don't end up in my mouth.

Third, i have a few years experience using golf GPS range finders.  I started using the Intelligolf app on my Garmin iQue (integrated PalmOS and GPS) in 2005.  I continued to use Intelligolf on my Palm T/X and Palm Centro (with a Garmin Bluetooth GPS10x) until I got the Approach G6.

Along the way I have used the iGolf (Bushnell) Neo for just over a season.  I've used my brother's Sky Caddie a couple of times.  And I have been playing with various golf apps on my Android phone for the past couple of months, with varying degrees of unhappiness.  FreeCaddy is the one currently installed on the phone but it hasn't been used since I got the G6 and I really don't miss it.

The one I miss is Intelligolf.  I hope they do it for Android some day.  The interface is getting a little old but it does everything you could ever ask of a golf program.  The best part is that it includes a PC app so you can do all your post-game/post-season analysis on the PC rather than squinting to do anything useful on a small screen.

I'm a senior whose eyesight is reaching the point where I can hit the ball farther than I can see.  Even with a 3 hybrid on a good day!  But I still walk and carry my clubs (Sun Mountain 3.5 carry bag) for three or four rounds a week.

Against that background I can say that the Approach G6 is a stellar device for on-course use.  It gets a location lock really quickly.  As soon as you hit the PLAY button it gives you a list of the nearest courses.  The one at the top of the list will be the one at which you are about to step on the first tee.

It took me a couple of holes to get used to navigating between the two main on-course display screens and back and forth to the score screen and the shot distance measurement screen.  It took a little longer to figure out how to end a round. It's not the greatest interface, but compared to most of the Android apps it's not bad.

As a couple of folks have already pointed out, the touch screen is a little ... well, .... touchy.  Mostly it hasn't been an issue for me.  But I learned quickly that when I want to measure how far I just hit a shot I should just carry it in my hand, not toss it back in my bag or stuff it in my pocket.  The odds of the measurement screen not being reset to 0 are just about 0 unless you carry it so nothing can touch the screen.  It really needs a standby condition (e.g. GPS is still alive but the screen is turned off until you want to look at it again).

Once you get the navigation figured out and get back to focusing on your game it's a dream to use.  It gives a relatively accurate overhead view of the hole you are playing, including the primary hazards (e.g. bunkers, water features, etc.).  Of course, just like any halfway decent GPS, it gives you the measurements to the front/middle/back of the green.  All pretty hohum for any useful GPS device or smartphone app.

Where it really shines is when you really need the help.  That is, those (hopefully rare) occasions when you have managed to somehow stray from the fairway and need guidance to get back to a visible or known position.  A simple tap anywhere on the hole display will get you the distance from where you are to that point and from that point to the centre of the green.  It sounds simple but it's worth its weight in gold when you need to know how far to hit it.  For instance, to a layup point or for a recovery shot back into the fairway.

It takes the guesswork out of recovery and layup shots.  I've actually found it most useful for those shorter chipouts/pitchouts where you want to be sure to get it all the way to the fairway but not bash it over the other side and right back into more trouble.  I use it for that more than for layup yardages.  What does that say about my game??  :)

It's also really nice, once you are in sight of the green, to be able to tap the real pin position on the green rather than having to do a mental calculation based on the pin's relation to the front/middle/back measurement.

I am already completely addicted to those last two features that are based on tapping the screen anywhere on the hole or the green to get those yardages.  Sufficiently addicted that you would have to pry the G6 from my cold dead hands.

The viewability of the screen must be mentioned.  It's a really great screen for bright sunlight.  I'm now sure how they do it but it's sort of reflective so even on the brightest days it's easy to view the screen.  On sunny days I turn the backlight completely off.  As you might expect, that does great things for the battery life, too.  The only day I had to turn the backlight on for a few holes it was a really dark dreary overcast day.  Normally I won't golf on such a day but we had started the round in better conditions.

The above features of the G6 are good enough that I'm able, most times, to overlook just how truly awful some of the other features are.

Scoring is so-so.  It's easy enough to enter your score.  Once you figure out how to get there, you can get a hohum summary of your score any time during the round.  I don't fault the lack of a more comprehensive scorecard-like display because it would be just awful on that small screen.

But I expected a lot more than you get when it's connected to a PC.  Rather than having a proper PC program that you can upload the scores into for analysis and display, it has a hokey HTML script in one of the folders in the G6's internal memory that you run with your browser.   All it does is display a list of the rounds and then displays the round you select from the list.

That's it!!!

If you want to get any aggregate information from your scores, like handicap, average scores on par 3s, 4s,5s, percentage birdies, pars, bogies and so on, you are on your own.

Stats are even worse.

The only thing you can track is the number of putts and whether you hit or missed the fairway.

Those who are about to say it also lets you track Greens In Regulation, hold onto your shirts.  It doesn't.  Specifically, you cannot tell it you hit the green in regulation.  It just guesses.

You enter the number of strokes you took on the hole.  You enter the number of putts you took on the hole.  The G6 subtracts the two and decides whether it thinks you hit the green in regulation.  Mostly it works.  But it can also be wrong.

Example: the 9th hole at one of the courses I play is a par 3 with a green that slopes steeply from back to front.  On Wednesday I hit the green but hit it to the back of the green when there was a front pin.  I putted off the front of the green, chipped it close and tapped in for 4.  The G6 does not credit me for a GIR.  It's wrong.

It doesn't track any other useful stats like bunkers, up-and-downs, sand saves, etc.  And there's no way to display any of the stats even if it tracked them.

I know I sound kind of hard on Garmin regarding the scores and stats but this is an expensive device.  I should be able to expect better ... a LOT better.  Especially when you consider that Android apps you can buy for $2.99 do a lot better than a device that costs a hundred times as much.

As I said at the start, it's wonderful for helping manage your game on the course.  The screen is excellent in bright sunlight.  And the battery life is great (I haven't tried it but I'm sure I could get three rounds out of it).  For those things it's a keeper.

But if Intelligolf ever becomes available for Android I'll be going right back to it for scoring and stats and using the G6 strictly as a range-finder.

I hope that's helpful for anyone considering a Garmin Approach G6.

  ...ken...
Thanks for the extensive write up. I've been all over the web the last few days reading reviews of the G6 and the SGX Skycaddie and yours is the only one I read that verified you get the three (front,middle,back) distances to green.  I've used a SG2 Skycaddie for the past 4-5 years and am due for an upgrade and have been getting annoyed at....... having to pay an annual fee, go through the computer uploading process everytime I play a new course, and deal with one round battery life.  Just ordered the G6 (Skycaddie needs to either substantially lower the price of their hardware if they want to continue to be the only one to charge an annual fee) and I'll provide my review after a few rounds.......got a good deal through an Ebay seller.  I've been playing a long time and don't need heavy stats......just a good on course equipment to help with shots.  Will keep you posted.
BTW, has anyone confirmed that tapping the power button once will place screen in temporary lock mode so it doesn't change randomly while in your pocket?  Also, I'm nervous about the "popping out" comments regarding the clip holder. I've always had my Skycaddie clipped to my bag with no problems.......anyone have any comments about using the Garmin clip to secure device to my bag.......I think it's easier to use that way rather than pull out of pocket every time you take a shot. Thanks.

Edited by gphin305, 13 June 2012 - 04:24 PM.


#84 Ken in Regina

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Posted 13 June 2012 - 04:39 PM

It's even better than just front/middle/back.  Once you are where you can see the pin position you can tap on the approximate location on the green and it will replace the middle yardage with the yardage to where your tap positioned the pin.  I find this a very handy feature and use it all the time.

Battery life is another bonus.  For instance, today's round took just over four hours and there was still 73% battery life.  That's lots for at least another round and more to spare.  That's pretty much normal in my experience so far.

For what it's worth, Golf Logix also charges a subscription as does iGolf (Bushnell).

...ken...

#85 chas521

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Posted 14 June 2012 - 08:27 AM

Works fine for my Approach G5.  Supposed to work for ALL Approaches.  http://www8.garmin.c...ew_updater.html

Edited by chas521, 14 June 2012 - 08:28 AM.


#86 ej002

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Posted 14 June 2012 - 08:50 AM

View PostSolutions Etcetera, on 22 February 2012 - 05:55 PM, said:

The G5 is actually based on a trail unit (the Oregon series). I love mine and have the following concern about the G6, and that is the proprietary battery. One of my favorite aspects of the G5/G3 units is plain old AA batteries. While I do use rechargeable AA's, I keep a spare pair in my bag at all times so if I forget to charge the night before, I am still good. Always! I have run into this issue more than once, and if I did not have spare AA's in my bag I would have had no GPS.

I agree, I love the fact that I can use rechargable batteries.  I never have a problem with them.   The G6 sounds good, but if it still a cartoon screen and the resolution is the same (or maybe worse), I think I will pass and wait for the next upgrade.  I love my g5 right now and there is really no reason to change.

#87 golfnut-2X

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 12:35 AM

I just bought a garmin v6 and love it.  pin location all over the green.  small / portable.

i decided after the fact that i am going to get the watch.  since i use both gps and range finder when needed thsi way the gps is always on my wrist and i only need to take out one device when needed.

anyone interested in buying a brand new awesome v6 pre owneed PM me.

#88 kitsoasis

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 12:55 AM

View Postej002, on 14 June 2012 - 08:50 AM, said:

I agree, I love the fact that I can use rechargable batteries.  I never have a problem with them.   The G6 sounds good, but if it still a cartoon screen and the resolution is the same (or maybe worse), I think I will pass and wait for the next upgrade.  I love my g5 right now and there is really no reason to change.

Funnily enough I actually chose the G6 over a discounted G3 because of the in-built battery! I like not having to deal with taking batts out and charging them etc.

#89 golfnut-2X

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 06:12 PM

View Postblazman11, on 21 May 2012 - 11:34 PM, said:

View Postgolfnut-2X, on 21 May 2012 - 05:06 PM, said:

i love the new g6.  unfortunately it pops off the belt clip frequently.  any suggestions?

I hated the belt clip so I found a Case Logic hip case at Walmart that fits it perfectly.  I bought one off Amazon too that fits it a little more snug than the Case Logic one.



Milan Extra Small Universal Horizontal Cell Phone Case / Pouch / Holster with Belt Loop & Belt Clip

http://www.amazon.co...ils_o00_s00_i00

blazman11 - thanks for the tip! just received the new case you linked to amazon.  it fits the g6 perfectly.  using it tomorrow.  thanks again for the tip!!!  glad not to use that belt clip again.

#90 Ken in Regina

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 07:57 PM

View Postkitsoasis, on 15 June 2012 - 12:55 AM, said:

Funnily enough I actually chose the G6 over a discounted G3 because of the in-built battery! I like not having to deal with taking batts out and charging them etc.
I'm pretty much there now, too.  I used to prefer devices (cameras, GPS, etc.) that allowed me to use standard AA or AAA batteries.  I do a fair bit of travelling in the boonies and used to do a lot of camping so it was nice to know that all I had to do was stash a 40 pack of AAs and I was good to go.  Or that I could pick up spares at pretty much any gas station or convenience store.

Then I got a new digital camera with a proprietary lithium ion rechargeable battery (Canon Elph SD1100 IS).  The battery life in that little camera is phenomenal!!  So that pretty much killed my concerns about battery life on those proprietary batteries.  My new Panasonic camera, a couple of Bluetooth GPS receivers, my last three smartphones and my G6 all have proprietary batteries that have excellent battery life.

I still do my homework researching the relative battery life of a new device before purchasing to be sure I don't get a dog.  And I make sure the device has a user-replaceable battery.  Otherwise I'm quite happy to quit worrying about dragging along spare batteries for my electronic toys.

...ken...


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