5 Best Golf Simulators Under $10,000 – 2019 Reviews & Buying Guide

Many people dream of having a full golf simulator setup in their home, so they can play their favourite golf courses or practice on the range at any time of the year.

At the same time, many golfers want a high-quality simulator experience, and they’re willing to spend up to $10,000 for it. If this is you, then you’ve come to the right place.

As golf simulator technology has advanced and improved, high-performance solutions that can accommodate a wide range of budgets have appeared on the market.

In this article, we’ll review and compare our picks for the best golf simulators under $10,000.

At this budget, it’s quite easy to achieve a full simulator setup that includes an enclosure, screen, projector, and high-quality launch monitor, particularly with certain brands.

You’ll not only have a fun experience with these simulators, but you’ll also be able to get precise feedback that will allow you to hit the ball farther, straighter, and improve your game.

We have tested all of these simulator setups. Some offer less features than others, but they all give an exceptional golf simulator experience for the cost.


Our Top Picks For Golf Simulators Under $10,000

Based on our own testing, research, and experience, here are our top selections:

  1. SkyTrak HomeCourse Retractable Golf Simulator Package
  2. TruGolf Vista 8 Golf Simulator
  3. OptiShot 2 Golf-In-A-Box Pro
  4. SkyTrak SwingBay Golf Simulator Package
  5. SkyTrak Practice Golf Simulator Package

1. SkyTrak HomeCourse Retractable Golf Simulator Package

SkyTrak HomeCourse Retractable Golf Simulator Setup

This is an excellent (and affordable) simulator package with a full enclosure and screen that can be retracted with the click of a button. It was put together by Rain or Shine Golf, one of the best sources for golf simulator equipment out there today.

The package comes with the powerful SkyTrak Launch Monitor, which allows you to practice on a virtual driving range, hit at simulated targets, play minigames and challenges, and play world-class courses.

It comes with everything you need to improve your game and have a blast with friends and family, whatever the weather conditions are outside.

What Is Included

The SkyTrak HomeCourse Retractable Simulator Package consists of:

  • the SkyTrak Launch Monitor with protective case
  • SkyTrak Game Improvement Software (upgrade from base)
  • HomeCourse Ceiling & Wall Mount Kits
  • HomeCourse Retractable Screen
  • Landing Pad Turf
  • a choice of 1 of 2 hitting mats
  • Optoma 1080p HD Short Throw Projector
  • ceiling projector mount

What sets this package apart from others is the full HomeCourse enclosure plus a screen that can easily retract and return a space back to its original form.

The retractable screen is wireless and powered by batteries. Unlike many other simulator setups, a landing turf is included that will keep your balls from coming into contact with the floor.

The source I recommend for this simulator is giving you a choice between two hitting mats: the Country Club Elite (most realistic) and the Fiberbuilt Center-Hitting Studio (most forgiving).

Minimum room dimensions of 8.5 ft high x 10.5 ft wide x 10 ft deep are recommended. It’s important to make sure that you can take a full swing with your longest club unimpeded.

Customers love the fast shipping and how painless setting up and taking down the simulator is. Many people use it in their garage.

For more details about what comes with the simulator, how exactly to set it up, and more, visit this page.


2. TruGolf Vista 8 Golf Simulator

TruGolf Vista 8 Golf Simulator

This simulator from TruGolf costs a touch over $10,000 at the moment, but we decided to include it in the list because of how good it is.

If you want a quality golf simulator studio setup with top functionality, and you have a big enough budget, the TruGolf Vista Series is what you want to look at.

The Vista 8 is the most compact and affordable simulator in the Vista line, making it a great option for for the insides of homes, garages, and more.

The Vista Series is defined by high-definition image quality, a cutting-edge tension system, advanced swing analysis capabilities, and portability with easy installation.

TruGolf is a reputable maker of simulators, and their team of developers and golf pros are highly respected.

What Is Included

The Vista 8 simulator comes with:

  • an HD Vista projector and screen
  • the TruTrack2 system, which captures important shot data using multiple optical sensors
  • a 1-year subscription to E6 CONNECT, which is a simulation software that allows you to practice, play with friends, and compete with golfers around the world
  • a 1-year limited warranty

The Vista 8 is offered in Base and Pro versions. The Base version includes the above items, while the Pro version includes numerous additional features including a touch screen monitor, TruGolf computer, fairway turf, protective side nets, and more.

The minimum space requirements are 10 ft high x 14 ft wide x 16 ft deep.

Unlike many of the other simulators on this page, the Vista 8 doesn’t use the SkyTrak Launch Monitor; it’s a completely different system built by TruGolf. People are really impressed by the tracking precision.

For more details about what comes with the simulator, how exactly to install it, and more, visit this page.


3. OptiShot 2 Golf-In-A-Box Pro

OptiShot 2 Golf-In-A-Box Pro Simulator Setup

Golf-In-A-Box Pro is the most expensive simulator package in the Golf-In-A-Box line, but it’s also the best, and it’s still more affordable than other similar setups.

If you want a full simulator setup with a screen, enclosure and projector, but you don’t want to pay the cost of the SkyTrak, this is a really good option. What sets it apart from the Golf-In-A-Box 3 is the improved screen enclosure from HomeCourse.

Golf-In-A-Box Pro comes with everything you need to get an exceptional simulator experience and improve your game, whatever the season or weather.

What Is Included

The Golf-In-A-Box Pro simulator is quite different from the original Golf-In-A-Box. It pairs the OptiShot simulator and software with:

  • the HomeCourse Pro Retractable Golf Simulator Screen Enclosure
  • an OptiShot2 hitting mat
  • the Optoma X305ST XGA Short Throw Projector
  • adjustable rubber tees and foam practice balls (not needed)

The screen enclosure is battery-powered and fully portable; you can retract it and return your space to its original form with the click of a button. The screen is ballistic-grade and durable.

The Optoma projector produces a bright image of 3000 lumens, with an 18,000:1 contrast ratio. The OptiShot mat is specially designed so that the OptiShot 2 device can fit directly into it.

A minimum space of 8.5 ft height x 10 ft width x 8 ft length is recommended. Setup is pretty easy, and you can contact support anytime if you need help.

Note that there are a few add-ons available at extra cost, including a wall mount kit and landing pad. If you don’t mind a simpler screen setup with a net instead of the HomeCourse enclosure, check out the Golf-In-A-Box 3.


4. SkyTrak SwingBay Golf Simulator Package

SkyTrak SwingBay Golf Simulator Setup

This is a brand new golf simulator package that is being offered by Rain or Shine Golf. It’s for those who are willing to get a bit closer to their $10,000 budget, and who have more space to accommodate a slightly larger setup.

When golfers look into full-priced golf simulators, many get overwhelmed with learning how everything works and how to set everything up. This simulator package was designed specifically for that.

With this simulator setup, you can count on being able to dial in your swing and take your game to the next level.

What Is Included

It consists of the SkyTrak Launch Monitor and a top-tier SwingBay simulator screen and enclosure (designed by Rain or Shine Golf) that are easy to assemble.

Also included are your choice of a hitting mat, an Optoma projector, ceiling mount, landing pad turf (to protect your flooring), and a few other useful items.

Like the Retractable package above, this package includes a 1-year subscription to the SkyTrak Game Improvement Plan, which is a step up from the cheapest SkyTrak plan.

Minimum room dimensions of 9 ft high x 12 ft wide x 16 ft deep are recommended. Get your longest club out (usually driver) and make a backswing to ensure you have enough clearance.

The hitting mat options on offer, the Country Club Elite and the Fiberbuilt Center-Hitting Studio, provide some of the best data accuracy for the SkyTrak Launch Monitor.

For more details about what comes with the package and the steps you need to take, visit this page.


5. SkyTrak Practice Golf Simulator Package

SkyTrak Practice Golf Simulator Setup

This package is very affordable because it doesn’t include a screen or projector. Instead, you can view your precise SkyTrak shot simulation and data on either your computer, tablet, or TV.

The SkyTrak Practice is a very popular simulator package that is being offered by Rain Or Shine Golf. It comes with a net & mat that can be set up within 30 minutes, wherever you have the space.

The particular net included in this package is considered one of the best on the market, mainly because it has the ability to return balls back to your feet and can withstand ball speeds of up to 225 mph (good luck reaching that speed!).

What Is Included

This package consists of the SkyTrak Launch Monitor with Game Improvement Software, plus:

  • The Net Return Pro Series V2 Golf Net
  • The Net Return Pro Series Side Barriers
  • The Net Return Pro Turf Golf Mat (6 ft x 10 ft)

Minimum room dimensions of 8 ft high x 10 ft wide x 12 ft deep are recommended. Even without a screen and projector, you can achieve a similar feel by connecting to a TV through HDMI and positioning it behind the net.

What are customers saying? Well, they love the fact that they can benefit from the precise ball flight data and feedback that the SkyTrak provides, with real clubs and balls, without breaking the bank. Check out what everyone is saying about this golf simulator package here.


Buying Guide

Investing in a golf simulator with a $10,000 budget is a huge step. Because of this, it’s important to consider all the factors that will affect your experience and match it with what your goals are.

Here are the most important factors you need to consider when figuring out what golf simulator will best meet your needs:

1. Size

White Measuring Tape

Size is a very important factor in golf simulators.

Many simulators under $10,000 come with a full screen enclosure, and this will require the most space. Others use just a net, which will require less space. In any case, you need enough space for the simulator setup and to swing your longest club (driver) unimpeded.

You need to measure the width, length and height of your space and compare it to the minimum space requirements of every golf simulator you look at.

The average space requirements for full golf simulator setups tend to be roughly 10 feet in all directions. Whether you want to use your simulator outdoors or indoors, your space should be able to easily accommodate this.

2. Portability

Another thing to consider is ease of transport. Generally, the more the cost goes up, the less portable the simulator becomes, although there are exceptions.

If you don’t have at least a net or mat, mobility is not an issue at all. Net setups are usually easy to set up, take down and transport. Screen and projector setups are usually less portable, but they can still be transported nonetheless.

The Golf-In-A-Box Pro and SkyTrak Retractable simulator packages above, for example, come with a screen that can be retracted at the press of a button and an enclosure that can be easily taken down.

Do you plan to have a dedicated place where your golf simulator will always be located, or will there be times when you need to move it?

Maybe you travel periodically and want to be able to easily take it with you. Maybe you just want to pack it away during the summer, when you can get out to the driving range or golf course.

If you plan to move your simulator around often, you may not want a full simulator setup with screen and projector unless it’s marketed as retractable. If you’re planning to invest in a net only, then make sure that transporting it is straightforward.

3. Net Vs. Screen

Netting Closeup

In general, there are three options with golf simulators:

  1. You can have no netting or screen and hit foam balls, plastic balls, or no balls at all.
  2. You can hit into a net, but still be able to view your shot data and see the ball flight on your connected computer or tablet.
  3. You can have a screen and a projector that will project your shots on a virtual driving range or golf course.

#1 is obviously the cheapest option, and in many cases, a setup of this nature will cost less than $1000. #2 will be more expensive.

#3 gives you the best experience, but it’s also the most expensive; it will typically bump up the cost of your golf simulator to at least $4500. Full enclosures will cost even more.

If the full golf simulator experience is important to you, and you want to feel like you’re playing a real-life simulation, then you’ll probably want to invest in a screen and projector setup.

On the other hand, if you’re satisfied with seeing your shot data and ball flight on a phone or tablet, then you should consider just a net.

If your goal is being able to work on and improve your game from the comfort of your own home, some would argue that it shouldn’t matter if your shots are projected on a big screen in front of you or not. But that’s something you’ll have to decide for yourself.

An interesting fact is that more than 50% of all golf simulator owners use a net instead of a screen.

4. Simulator Software

You should also consider what kinds of things you want to do, games you want to play, and activities you want to take part in on your golf simulator.

There are many software options available. For example, SkyTrak has software in three membership levels:

  • Basic Plan: offers a practice driving range.
  • Game-Improvement Plan: offers minigames, numeric display, and many other advanced features.
  • Play & Improve Plan: offers all features of other plans plus full integration with WGT (World Golf Tour).

OptiShot, which is considered a “tight-budget” solution, has software that allows you to practice and play multiple different game types including stroke play, better ball, alternate shot, and match play.

E6 CONNECT is a high-quality software option that is highly customizable. It offers various course simulations, minigames, training ads, tournaments, and more.

The Golf Club Simulator Logo

Other software possibilities include The Golf Club, TruGolf, Creative Golf 3D, and Fitness Golf.

What software features do you see yourself using most often? Do you just want to practice on the range, play world-class courses, or both? Consider what software options are available when looking at simulators, and make your decisions accordingly.

5. Budget

You might not want to spend more than $10,000, and that’s totally understandable.

But would you be willing to spend 3 figures on what are considered “bottom-of-the-barrel” simulators? Would you spend $2000-$7000 on better setups? How close to $10,000 are you willing to go?

It’s important to realize that the less you spend, the less you’ll usually get, both in terms of equipment and software. You’ll also get farther away from a realistic golf simulator experience.

In this guide, we’ve tried to include golf simulators over a range of prices under the $10,000 mark. But the great thing is that, in many cases, you don’t have to drop the full cost of a simulator at once.

Our recommended golf simulator source here provides easy financing options that allow you to pay for your simulator over the course of a year or longer. Don’t forget about this option.


Conclusion

Golf simulators have become a lot more accessible and affordable over the past decade, with more companies developing and manufacturing cutting-edge simulation technologies. This means more golfers than ever before have been able to acquire their own personal setup.

A serious simulator setup that costs up to $10,000 can be a huge boon to your golfing toolkit. Finding a simulator package that can meet your needs is certainly possible with some research.

Each of the simulator options reviewed above offer excellent value for the cost. We’ve given you the information you need to make a decision; now it’s up to you to go the rest of the way.

While it’s likely that no golf simulator setup will tick every one of your boxes, some will come pretty close to doing so, especially pricier ones.

We strongly recommend reading user reviews of golf simulators to acquire useful insights as to how they actually perform. This will help you a lot in the decision-making process.


Thanks for reading this guide. Have you tried any of the simulators reviewed in this article? Let us know in the comments below.

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