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3Bays GSA: Initial Impression

Golf Swing Analyzer

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#1 neova

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 01:01 PM

Summary
3BaysGSA (3Bays Golf Swing Analyzer) is a small transmitter that plugs into the butt end of the grip via the drainage hole and sends data wirelessly via blue tooth to your Apple iOS or Android devices. Here is more info on the device and videos on what it does. The app is free to download from Apple or Android store.

Background
I’m mostly self-taught (rightly or wrongly) and have been looking for swing analyzers that gives me immediate feedback on any swing changes. I have taken some lessons before, but I find that once the instructor or Launch Monitor isn’t there when I practice on my own, I tend to go back to old habits. Let the vicious cycle repeat.

Packaging

Posted Image

If you’ve ever purchased a small bottle of ice wine then the packaging of the 3BaysGSA is very similar: Outer sleeve, followed by a rigid box with magnetic enclosure and foam cutouts for the GSA device. It also comes with a leather tube carrying case and a microUSB cable and charger. Minimal instructions is provided in print as the rest is either built-into the app or on their website.

Setting up
Just pair it with your phone or tablet and you can start using it right away. I took some time to look through the various settings/features and after about a minute or so I was ready to go.

Posted Image

The Device plugs in at the end of the grip via the grip’s drain hole and there is an alignment arrow on the device that you need to adjust to match the club face (or grip logo for those of you who do not play with grip logo down).

Warning: Although the tip is quite sturdy, it's still only plastic. Instead of ramming it into the hole or yanking it out, I suggest twisting it in place so as to not put so much force on the tip

Once the blue lights on the device is steady, you’re ready to swing, after each swing the blue lights will flash to transmit the data and stops once transmission is complete (usually about 3-5 seconds).

You can keep swinging and let the device capture them all before viewing, or look at it after each new swing. I usually do 5 identical swings and then review all 5 to get a better idea how I’m swining.

What can you use this device for?
Obviously you should not use this to do fitting for clubs as it is not as accurate as flightscope or trackman since it doesn’t capture important parameters like spin, launch angle, spin axis, etc.

However, it’s pretty accurate for what it does measure: +/- 1 to 2 mph on swing speed and 3 to 4 yards carry.

What’s important is that this device is INTERNALLY CONSISTENT, so even if the actual numbers were off, from swing to swing I can see if I’ve made improvements.

For me, this is a device used to baseline your current swing, and then check how well you’re swinging over time. We all know that everyone swings a little different so this is a great way to see which “swing tip” will actually translate into better numbers for YOUR swing!

My Results
I took 39 swings with my driver – no warm up, over a period of about 45 minutes. I break for a bit after every 5 swing to check out the data, try something new to better my numbers, then try something else…

Best vs Current Swing
Below were my average swing (blue) and best swing (yellow) after my 45-minute session


Posted Image

Below is a historical chart for club head speed of my 39 driver swings

Posted Image


The grey and red arrows were added by myself in SnagIT after I exported the screen capture from my iPhone.
  • Warmup: The first couple driver swings were three-quarter swings, slowly working to my normal full swing (105mph)
  • After Normal 105mph: As with any guy, I tried to improve the numbers by swinging harder – that is, muscle tense up, grip and rip harder, swing a lot more out of control. The result? SLOWER SWING SPEED!!!! I then stopped trying to kill the ball then went back my normal swing
  • +Hips 107mph: Once I started swinging normal again (105mph), I decided to use a bit more of my hips to help me turn better, as well as leading my downswing with my hips instead of arms. Result – I slowly gained club head speed up to 107mph!
  • From 107mph on: This is where I get greedy and starting adding a whole bunch of moves in order to increase my swing speed, in particular trying to “hold lag”.

    Obviously on the first couple tries felt weird and my swing was out of control/sync and resulted once again in my swing speed dipping below that of my normal.

    At one point, I also got a bit frustrated/fatiqued so once again I need to reset myself: Get back to normal (105mph) first, then try to get back to the 107mph mark only adding the hip turn.
  • +Lag 109mph: Once I got back to the 107mph level, I decided to set my wrist angle early in my back swing so that I stay connected with a more compact swing, and immediately it felt much easier and more natural for me holding my right wrist angle when my hips initiate the downswing. I was a bit surprised how solid and fluid the swing felt! Now I’m at 109mph!
  • From 109mph on: The vicious cycle beings. Once again I’m trying more swing changes, this time trying to get a bigger shoulder turn to create more hip/shoulder separation.

    Again it felt weird at first and I lost clubhead speed but this time around I was still swinging at 106mph which is higher than my normal (105mph). it’s not all that bad and maybe I just needed to stop exaggerating the move and be a bit more smooth…
  • +Turn 111mph: Finally when I’m able to correctly time everything: Hips, Lag, Shoulder Turn, I was able to swing up to 111mph. It’s very beneficial to know what a 111mph swing feels like!

    The GSA said my ball would carry 280, I verified the distance with a range finder and it was more like 270-275 so that must mean my ball speed (and hence smash factor) is a lot lower that what the “attainable” numbers are. This makes sense because I’m now swing 6 mph faster than my normal swing, so the smash factor (accuracy) probably suffered a bit.
  • Red Rectangle: After reaching my max club head speed, I stopped trying to get more speed.

    I went back to my last controllable swing which would be only adding the hip turn and holding lag moves to my swing, because the extra shoulder turn at the top is not very easy to repeat.

    The result was that my 10 following swings were all between 106mph and 108mph, and slight improvement from my previous norm of 105mph which should theoretically translate to about 10 extra carry yards (when struck solidly)!

    This could potentially be my new "normal" swing speed!
How to bring this result onto the course
  • I have yet to play a round with the “new swing”. Chances are I won’t use it just yet and I do care about my overall score – maybe once I’ve warmed up and on the back 9 I’ll try the new swing on a short par-5 that’s wide open enough =)
  • I intend to do some warm up swings prior to each round so that I get an idea of what my swing will be like for the day – I’ll do this on my driver, 3 wood, 3 hybrid, 8 iron, and SW as I’ve baselined all these clubs in my GSA app
    • If I’m swinging worst that my baseline, then I’ll club up for the day
      • If any swing with a particular club is very bad (usually driver) then I should not play it at all for the round and work on it AFTER
    • Conversely, club down if my swing is hot for the day!
Value
  • At $199+tax it’s not cheap, and about $50 more than the swingbyte. I’ve not used the swingbyte but I think while the UI for the swingbyte app looks better, I don’t like how the sensor is attached on the club shaft.
  • If you intend to baseline your swing and then check on it from time to time, then this device is invaluable
Where to get it
  • I ordered mine last week from Par2pro.com (Alberta, Canada) but this week Golf Town announced that they will carry it in store so you can save on shipping if you want to buy locally.
  • In the US I think Golf Smith as well as a host of PGA instructors already sells them.

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#2 BlkNGld

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 01:25 PM

I'm not sure how all of this is measured with a device at the butt of the club.

I suppose there might be some things that you could enter - for example club length would be needed to figure out clubhead speed, and at the least, club weight would be needed to figure out the force.

I don't see how it can measure ball speed (and therefore distance) unless it's applying some guesswork as to smash factor, launch angle, spin rates, etc.

#3 neova

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 01:32 PM

I asked the OEM the same questions - I supposed they use some theoretical smash numbers to calculate "attainable" balls speed and carry.

As for club length it asks you to pick a club - I guess it assumes standard length?

I must stress that this is not a device to measure your true swing parameters but as a tool to baseline and compare your swings.

Edited by neova, 05 October 2012 - 04:30 PM.

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RBZ 2 Tour 18.5 Fubuki t415s
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Fourteen RM-11 52 DG S200 / 58 DG S400
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#4 sharkhark

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 04:27 PM

I read your tgn post and came to read review. Regardless of how I or others could be naysayers if I verified yardage as you said you did with range finder and compared 50 yard pitches etc and it was within a few yards..... Naysay all anyone wants..... The thing works. I likely will try one. Thx for ur info and review. Appreciated.

#5 Britboy

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Posted 29 October 2012 - 09:42 AM

Does anyone know if this works with the Kindle Fire HD ?

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#6 avgjoe

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Posted 30 October 2012 - 08:08 AM

that's a lot of info from something shoved in the butt (of the shaft)!

#7 5-putt

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Posted 06 November 2012 - 04:16 PM

Ridiculous product. Does anyone seriously believe their scores will drop from using something stuck to the grip end of their club with a link to software?  Honestly people, stop wasting your money on crazy 007 devices and go to see your PGA pro instead!  I categorically believe this product will not save you even one shot.

#8 npham

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 12:49 PM

View Post5-putt, on 06 November 2012 - 04:16 PM, said:

Ridiculous product. Does anyone seriously believe their scores will drop from using something stuck to the grip end of their club with a link to software?  Honestly people, stop wasting your money on crazy 007 devices and go to see your PGA pro instead!  I categorically believe this product will not save you even one shot.

Just like a Trackman or similar LM's, this is just a tool to help you improve your game. If you know the AoA is x and should be y, you can get some relative data from this gadget which will improve your game as long as you use it as intended. When I was fitted for a Titleist 913, there was a similar device plugged into the butt of every single shaft I hit.
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#9 StefanP

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 08:01 AM

I evaluated the GSA for iPhone for about a month.  Although most of the numbers displayed in the app appeared to be correct, I  encountered  a serious issue with the Club Head Speed and Carry Distance.  These values  during my testing period were consistently incorrectly high.

Based on my experience with other radar based indoor or outdoor swing analyzers such as Flightscope and GolfTec, I know what my Club Head Speeds (CHS) and Carry Distances (CD) are. I also know the CDs are correct from these other analyzers as they correspond to actual  measurements I have made on the golf course.

The CHS and CD  numbers produced by the 3Bays GSA were very high for all my clubs.  For example, with 3Bays my 6 iron CHS is 95 mph and CD is 191 yds.  I wish my numbers are this high in real life but I know for a fact that other swing analyzers have the numbers for my 6 iron at CHS 82-84 mph and CD 165-170 yds.  Other example for my driver:  CHS 101 mph and CD 255 yds  where as they should be CHS 94 mph and CD 230 yds.  Testing with different clubs from different manufacturers produced almost identical results.

I  contacted GSA tech support several times via email on this issue and they stated that the device was not inserted all the way into the butt end of the club.  Of course it was .  And the device was inserted with all the many clubs I tried from different manufacturers.  Always returned the same high readings.

After repeated emails to 3Bays tech support and a lack of resolution on this important issue, I returned the unit.

Edited by StefanP, 01 December 2012 - 09:11 AM.


#10 wundej

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Posted 02 December 2012 - 01:17 PM

View Post5-putt, on 06 November 2012 - 04:16 PM, said:

Ridiculous product. Does anyone seriously believe their scores will drop from using something stuck to the grip end of their club with a link to software?  Honestly people, stop wasting your money on crazy 007 devices and go to see your PGA pro instead!  I categorically believe this product will not save you even one shot.

Will the PGA pro come to my back yard? Will he have a trackman or flightscope that he'll let me borrow so I can see how I'm doing when I practice?

If the device gives you numbers that are repeatable, you can use them as a baseline and work over time. I wouldn't use any of the CHS, Carry, ball speed numbers for anything other than comparison to other swings on that device because they are just guesses.

<sarcasm>
Seriously, how could some little bit of technology make anyone any better?  I mean, a Trackman is only the size of 2 shoe boxes, can't be worth anything. All these dang 007 technology devices are ruining the game! :rolleyes:
</sarcasm>


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#11 M4RSH

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 05:37 AM

View Post5-putt, on 06 November 2012 - 04:16 PM, said:

Ridiculous product. Does anyone seriously believe their scores will drop from using something stuck to the grip end of their club with a link to software?  Honestly people, stop wasting your money on crazy 007 devices and go to see your PGA pro instead!  I categorically believe this product will not save you even one shot.

Ridiculous or not, technology is here to help even in a small way. For years before technology, no doubt we would go thru our round and take stats of FIR's GIR's PIR's Ups n downs etc to find out where we can improve? So these analysers are now a cheap way to gain numbers/info without paying high prices of Trackman n flightscopes.I don't have this but I do have Golfsense analyser which again gives you certain parameters of your swing but also tracks swing path, hip rotation, tempo, plane comparison, distance in 3D. Will it improve my swing with continued use on my own, I doubt it, but I spend £75 ($120) a session with my coach, who has video technology, the SAM putting system and would like Trackman but it's mega expensive!!! All this data is there to help and is relative but in conjunction with a PGA pro you may get the best out of your swing and data.

#12 colin_ba

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 01:00 AM

For those interested in the 3BaysGSA, you might want to consider waiting for the new swing analyzer coming from SkyGolf called the SkyPro.  Looks pretty hot.  If you download the app from iTunes, there are a few sample swings included and you can see it in action.  Personally i think SkyGolf took the swing analyzer market to the next level with this device.

#13 Skyboxer

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 09:10 PM

I recently got the 3Bays GSA Pro (had some gift cards to use).
Really works well for seeing your swing plane (inside/out etc..) and temp/club head speed..Love the instant feedback.

#14 Maruuk

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Posted 24 March 2013 - 07:45 PM

I'm kind of between the Swingtip for it's low price and nice graphics and 3 Bays. Can't go Skypro since they don't support iPad 1. The Swingbyte 1 has a major attachment problem, a dealkiller. Swingbyte 2 might be worth a look. They solved the clamp slippage on it.

And yes, I know the Swingtip has glitches and is alignment-critical. But for $130 you get a lot.

Edited by Maruuk, 24 March 2013 - 07:48 PM.


#15 mike johnston

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 02:39 PM

View PostSkyboxer, on 27 February 2013 - 09:10 PM, said:

I recently got the 3Bays GSA Pro (had some gift cards to use).
Really works well for seeing your swing plane (inside/out etc..) and temp/club head speed..Love the instant feedback.
How is it with yardage accuracy?

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#16 SwingBlues

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 03:33 AM

View Postcolin_ba, on 13 February 2013 - 01:00 AM, said:

For those interested in the 3BaysGSA, you might want to consider waiting for the new swing analyzer coming from SkyGolf called the SkyPro.  Looks pretty hot.  If you download the app from iTunes, there are a few sample swings included and you can see it in action.  Personally i think SkyGolf took the swing analyzer market to the next level with this device.

Still no Android support for the Skypro as of now (if I am wrong, correct me). Seems like they like to cut off a major market considering Android outsells iPhones. I will take a look at Swingbyte 2 instead.

Edited to point to Skypro.

Edited by SwingBlues, 04 December 2013 - 02:18 AM.


#17 drmguy

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 10:26 AM

Are you referring to the 3BaysGSA?  As far as I'm aware, they've always had an android version.




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