Shot Scope G5 Golf Watch Review

Shot Scope G5 Golf Watch Review

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The Shot Scope G5 is like a Go Kart. If you take an F1 car, and strip back to its most core elements, removing all it’s unnecessary features and electronics, you get a Go Kart. And you know what Go Karts are…they’re relatively cheap… they’re fun!!!

And so is the Shot Scope G5 (well the cheap and fun part, not the dangerous part!). I’ve shanked my way around the course several times like the average golfer that I am to give this new watch a thorough test, so I can let you know everything you need to know about it, including who should consider buying one.

When it comes to budget golf watches, The Garmin S12 has long reigned supreme,, and when side by side, the G5 bares a striking resemblance, just with a touch more personality. Both use four buttons in the same layout for navigation and selection, and both have cases that are thin, lightweight and circular,, housing basic square displays. But where the Garmin has as basic black and grey memory in pixel display, the Shot Scope has as more vibrant colour memory in pixel display. Don’t get me wrong, the display is hardly impressive, but it’s nice to have a splash of colour.

And talking of colour, when buying the G5 from the Shot Scope website, you build your watch by choosing from a black or grey case, and then selecting two of the 12 different colour straps for it, which is a pretty unique way to buy a watch, and I like the customization available here. The watch straps are pretty thin silicone ones, but it’s nice and easy to swap them over, and you can buy additional straps if you want more than two options. If you’re the fashion forward type golfer who loves the idea of matching your watch to your latest golf shoes, this watch is for you! 

The battery life of the G5 sounds impressive on paper, but I was a little disappointed in real life. The Shot Scope website claims 10+ days in non golf mode, but in my testing, I didn’t get anywhere near that. On Thursday morning the watch was at 100%, I wore it all day Friday with minimal use, and then left it on my desk on Saturday. It was down to 48% on Sunday morning, I continued to leave it on my desk, and by Tuesday morning the watch had run out of charge, so for me it lasted less than 5 days…and I only wore it once! 

Compare this to the Garmin S12, which in similar conditions lasts me 30 days!

While testing out on the course, the G5 went from 100% down to 74% after a few hours of non-GPS use and 18 holes of golf. The fact you can get at least 2 rounds of golf on a single charge is always a good thing.

A real positive of the G5 is using it out on the course. Because it’s a budget watch, there’s not many features to get in the way, and the watch is nice and simple to use out on the course. The simple interface works well with the buttons and all the essential information you want from a GPS watch is easy to find and understand.

If you like essential information that’s easy to understand, you might want to subscribe to my channel, and if you’re finding this video help I’d really appreciate it if you tap that like button, which will help other golfers see this video.

Once you’ve selected your course, chosen your tees, and selected if you want to keep track of your score, you’re presented with the home screen, which gives you the front, middle and back yardages. In the menu you can select alternative layouts, including a big numbers mode for those who’d benefit. And a single button press takes you to the hazards on the hole. A key feature here is Shot scope provide both the distances to as well as to carry each of the hazards, many other watches, including the Garmin, only provide the distance to the hazard.

From this screen you can also access your lay up yardages, as well as the distance to any doglegs on your hole.

You have the ability to track the distance of your last shot, and who doesn’t love starting the distance counter after you’ve just hit a screaming drive, only to be disappointed it only made it 220yards…it’s almost like new drivers don’t add more distance??

I didn’t have any issues with the accuracy of the watch out on the course, and I have seen Shot Scope implement changes to my home course layout, so make sure you keep your watch up to date.

When you get to the end of the hole, if you chose to keep score, you’ll be prompted to enter the number of strokes you took, and that’s it. It doesn’t ask you for the number of putts you took, nor where you hit your tees shot, any penalities you may have incurred, your bloody type, or mothers maiden name, or whatever else all the more complex golf watches seem to keep a track of these days. And that’s because when you finish your round, the watch will show you a simple score summary, and then promptly delete that information. Gone.

Although the watch does have bluetooth, you can’t export your scorecards to the Shot Scope app. So as well as the battery life, this is another area the Garmin S12 has an advantage, because if you want it,  you can track that information and then export it to the corresponding app afterwards. And there will be plenty of golfers who’ll want the ability to have that information saved. On the other hand, now all golfers with a handicap should be saving their rounds on the Golf England app, which I’m sure you all are, you all have the  ability to save your scores centrally there. But there will be tons of golfers who don’t utalise such a system, so to have it automatically transfer to the Shot Scope app would have been a great feature.

It seems Shot Scope have embodied the acronym KISS with this watch – Keep It Simple Stupid, and as simple as the G5 is by just providing only the on course essentials with none of the associated club tags, I can’t help feel the lack of post round connectivity was just a little bit stupid, given they already have all the systems in place for their V3, X5 and H5 units.

(KISS always confused me as an acronym, why the need for the insult on the end?)

When connected to the Shot Scope app, you can update the firmware of the watch, along with add any course updates, although the later has been a bit buggy in my experience, with the app refusing to update some courses, just sitting on 0% completed, while others have updated not a problem (I was using IOS app version 3.0.4).

From the app you do get the ability to access aerial views of all the courses in the data base, so you can either previous a course before you play, or use the app on the course to get yardages that way, which is a nice option if you occasionally want a little more information while out on the course.

At £149.99 / $149.99 the G5 seems it’s sat at an attractive price point, and is certainly worth considering if you just want a basic golf watch. I’ve also included my affiliate link with any discount down in the description of this video.

But there are alternatives worth considering.

At £159.99/$199.99 the Garmin S12 looks a little plainer, but as I’ve explained has more features you may want. 

And even Shotscope’s own V3 watch is worth considering. If you can find it, at only £159.99 in the UK, it does everything the G5 can, but also comes with the 14 club tags and provides some of the most in depth performance tracking data currently available, all without an annual subscription.