Wednesday, October 6, 2010

FlightScope News

Since the golf blog has started I've discussed the Trackman launch monitor on several occasions. The big reason for the preference in Trackman over other launch monitors is not only does it have military grade doppler radar technology, but it can accurately measure the Attack Angle, which plays a large part in figuring out what the clubhead path and horizontal swing plane are doing in the swing.

The issue with Trackman is the expense. It costs about $28K with an addition $300 a month maintenance fee.

FlightScope has the same doppler radar technology, but costs only $10K However, the issue with FlightScope has been the accuracy of the data.

For instance, this Michael Jacobs video shows FlightScope measuring swing dimensions that are geometrically impossible.

Jacobs claims that with a 7-iron he has:

-3.3* attack angle
-0.1* Horizontal Swing Plane
-1.6* Swing Path

It's geometrically impossible to hit down with a club and have the direction of the low point area to the right of the actual path. I also find it odd that FlightScope doesn't measure the attack angle with a negative number. It just reads it as 3.3*, instead of -3.3*. Now the other measurements have a negative number associated with them. And one of the problems that FlightScope has had is with reading the attack angles correctly.

Now, if you were to hit a club with a *positive* attack angle of +3.3* and your HSP was at -0.1*, then your path could very well be at -1.6*. But since this is a 7-iron (and it appears that way by the clubhead speed and spin rate), we don't hit up on irons.

However, here's what I've been told recently about FlightScope's continually improving technology.

The new version that they've been using on the Euro. Tour has a camera alignment and runs wireless. It can also be used on the course with the info. being transferred to an Android or I-Phone, no computer needed.

I found out about the angle of attack data and why is sometimes has an occasional anomaly. They've done numerous side-by-side tests and the data is virtually identical, with the new product.

The engineer said that when the Flightscope bounces back bad information, it's a blast of reflective microwaves that bounce back and confuse the system. He said it happens mostly on mats. But, he said when Trackman gets the same data bounced back, it gives no data instead of bad data. He said Flightscope doesn't filter the bad, but you can delete a shot.
So it's a wait and see, but I think the technology is getting there.


1 comment:

John Graham said...

They've been saying that for months. The bottom left frame clearly shows that FS thinks he swung up 3.3 degrees. The line is drawn right on it.

I hope they do improve it but so far not even close.