GPS + Launch Monitor? Review of the Garmin Approach G80

If you’re looking for a new golf GPS and trying to decide if the Garmin G80 is right for you, keep reading.

We’ve used and researched a ton of different golf GPS devices on this site. Some are great while others are a total waste of money (Hint: Garmin G80 is NOT as a waste). But there are so many choices out there, narrowing it down to just one is difficult.

This Garmin G80 review will help you figure out if this is the right GPS for your game and budget.

What is the Garmin Approach G80?

The Garmin Approach G80 is a handheld, portable golf GPS designed to help take your game from the range to the course. But it’s not just a golf GPS, it’s also a launch monitor as well. So instead of just giving you the right distances to your targets, it also helps improve your game.

If you don’t know, launch monitors provide detailed insight about your game like swing speed, ball speed, swing tempo, and more. These devices are normally several hundred dollars alone so having a 2-in-1 design is a great way to save money.

Garmin G80 Review

The Garmin G80 comes right out of the box loaded with features. It has a 3.5”sunlight-readable touchscreen display and super slim design. It also has an integrated launch monitor to help you track things like smash factor, swing tempo, ball speed, and more.

Not to mention, this device comes with over 41,000 courses worldwide. This will help make practice more enjoyable and the rangefinder features will help you find the perfect distance on the course. Here are some more features of this top GPS device.

Features of the Garmin G80 Golf GPS

High-Speed GPS

I can’t stress how nice the large, full-color display is on this device. The Approach G80 is like a personal caddy telling you where to hit and where to miss. Plus, it loads fast so you don’t have to slow down play waiting for the right distance.

With its large color display, you can easily create a tee box strategy on each hole. Then, you can also pick specific spots to avoid (i.e. water hazard) and find the right distance to the pin. No more guessing the distance to the end of the dogleg or the water.

Advanced Distance Features

Don’t you hate it when you misjudge the slope when you’re playing a hilly course? Now, the G80 will give you distances to the target adjusted for slope.

No more trying to figure out the slope on your own. If you’re playing in tournaments, you will need to disable this feature as it’s illegal but all it takes is one button to make it happen.

The G80 also has “Green View” which will help you zoom in to the green and easily locate other yardages. Plus, it already displays the pin, front of the green, and back of green yardage as well.

Practice Mode

Do you ever go to the range, hit balls and feel like you didn’t improvement at all? Or maybe you have even felt like your swing or confidence levels got even worse? Well, the G80 can help make your practice time a lot more effective so you can actually improve your game.

One way the G80 does this is the target mode so you can spend time practicing with a buddy. You can select one or two players and hit to a bunch of different targets and yardages that you designate.

After evaluating each shot, you get a score based on accuracy. This way you can make practice more engaging and competitive to simulate being on the course.

Play a Virtual Round

The Approach G80 also allows you to play a virtual round on the 41,000 preloaded courses. Not to mention, you never have to pay for new updates or courses like other golf companies.

Before going to the course, simply load up one of the courses you want to play in practice. Then, you can hit shots and simulate where the ball ended up.

Sure, it’s not quite as cool as indoor launch monitor but it can help you stay focused during your practice sessions. This is much more fun than just hitting 7-irons or drivers over and over again.

Pairs with the Garmin Golf App

The Garmin Approach G80 works with the free Garmin Golf app which has tons of awesome features. It let’s you compete, compare and connect with fellow golfers playing on more than 41,000 courses worldwide.

The Garmin app also allows you to track golf stats during your round so you can identify what’s holding you back from shooting lower scores. Plus, you can post your scores and compare data, rankings, and stats all in the smartphone app.

Long Battery Life

There isn’t much worse than losing your golf GPS during a round of golf. Luckily, the G80 last up to 15 hours in GPS mode. One charge of just a few hours and it’ll last you at least 3 rounds of golf.

Alternatives to the Garmin G80

1. Garmin Approach G8 GPS

The Garmin Approach G8 doesn’t have all the features of the G80 but it also is a few hundred dollars cheaper as well. But don’t worry, it still has tons of benefits to help you in practice and during your round of golf.

The G8 comes with a 3” color multi-touch display that makes it slim, sleek, and durable. It also comes with more than 30,000 international courses for play and practice. Plus, like the G80, it will act as a rangefinder and even adjust distances based on slope.

2. Garmin Approach S60 Golf Watch

If you prefer to wear your GPS as a watch, this is one of the best alternatives to the G80. It has a full touch screen display in full color with course mapping tons of features.

Like the G80, you get full hole layout and precise yardage to course maps, doglegs, greens, and hazards. It also comes with auto shot game tracking and gives you a post-round analysis.

The S60 watch comes with up to 10 hours of battery life in golf mode (or 10 days in watch mode) and looks good for any occasion. Not to mention, it comes preloaded with profiles for running, swimming, cycling and more. This modern golf watch can easily be worn off the course and still look stylish with all the adjustable bands.

Learn more about the Garmin Approach S60 golf watch here.

Top FAQs about the Garmin G80

Do you have to pay a subscription each year?

No, unlike other golf GPS companies, Garmin does not make you pay each year. Not having any membership fees and free updates is an awesome deal!

Is this unit easy to use?

Yes! Garmin is one of the top names in the game when it comes to making easy to use golf handheld devices. It has a large, bright screen plus it has a large number display as well.

Does the G80 come with any accessories?

If you buy the bundle, it comes with a portable charger, protective case, and cart mount. I’d recommend splurging the extra few bucks so you can protect your investment.

Summary of the Garmin G80

Overall, the Garmin G80 is loaded with a ton of great features to help improve your game. Plus, it’s a 2-in-1 device so you don’t need a golf GPS and a launch monitor.

While there are a lot of great options out there, it’s tough to beat Garmin. They are a trusted leader with all sports watches and GPS devices.

It will help you with indoor practice, keep you entertained on the range, and help you find the perfect distance. The G80 is an all in one device that can absolutely help you shoot lower scores.

Click here to purchase the Garmin G80 golf GPS today.

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