50 Words or Less
The Rapsodo MLM Mobile Launch Monitor combines video capture with basic launch monitor functions. Very easy to use. Data accuracy is on par with more expensive units.
Younger readers may not believe this, but in my lifetime, there were car phones that cost a fortune and were literally bolted to your automobile. Now iPhones – immensely more useful and powerful – are relatively cheap and commonplace.
Where launch monitors used to be as rare as unicorns, they are now becoming a tool that any serious golfer can afford. The latest step in that march of progress is the Rapsodo MLM Mobile Launch Monitor. We tested it to see how it stacks up to the current crop of consumer-level monitors and the professional-grade units.
Set Up & Ease of Use
The Rapsodo Mobile Launch Monitor is a very small device (essentially a 1.5″ thick smart phone) that uses your smartphone’s screen as a display. Before you can uses the MLM, you need to give it a full charge and download the Rapsodo Golf app to your phone. You’ll also need to calibrate the phone’s camera before your first session. I did not find the calibration process intuitive – it took me several minutes – but it’s a one-time thing.
I found that my phone connected with the MLM faster than any device I’ve ever used. The moment I pushed the “Connect” button, the device was ready to use. This is far from the norm and a major plus.
The MLM app is responsive and easy to use. Once you set it down in Play mode, it captures shots automatically and displays the data on your phone’s screen. Overall, using the Rapsodo Mobile Launch Monitor is intuitive and fun.
Like its competitors, the Mobile Launch Monitor measures ball speed, club speed, launch angle, smash factor, and distance. I set up the MLM head to head with my Foresight GC2 and was very impressed with the accuracy of the MLM. The Mobile Launch Monitor typically reported the exact same ball speed as the GC2 and was never more than 1 MPH off. Carry distances were within 2-3 yards throughout the bag. The MLM was typically about 1 degree higher on launch angle, but that was very consistent, too.
It is worth noting that the MLM does not measure is spin. This is typical for launch monitors at this price – only FlightScope’s Mevo (review HERE) measures spin at $500 or less.
One extra thing that the MLM measures is launch direction. This is obviously an important factor, but many similarly priced units can’t do it. While there were a few shots that didn’t read correctly, I was generally pleased with the accuracy of the MLM on both start direction and curve.
The MLM also incorporates video. It automatically captures a down-the-line view of each swing and can replay it instantly with shot tracer. For those seeking an easier way to film their swings, the MLM is a solid choice.
Finally, each shot that you hit with the Mobile Launch Monitor is stored in the app for later review. You can look at each shot – with video – as well as averages of your performance with each club.
Because it leverages the computing power in your phone, the Rapsodo MLM is very small. This means it can live in your golf bag, which is a major longevity plus for me. Another huge advantage is that it takes only seconds to set it up.
What really elevates the MLM in terms of longevity is the quality of the app. During live play, you can see stats, stats plus video, or a GPS view of each shot. There are also multiple ways to play: range mode, closest to the pin, and long drive. Finally, being able to easily review previous sessions can be a major driver of improvement.
The Rapsodo MLM gets higher marks for longevity than any other personal launch monitor.
The Rapsodo MLM retails for (UPDATED) $299 (please consider supporting Plugged In Golf by buying it HERE). This is the exact same price as the FlightScope Mevo and the Swing Caddie SC300. In my opinion, the ease of use, accuracy, and strong features makes the MLM the class of this category.
The premium membership allows you to record unlimited swings with video and shot tracer in the app. Without the premium membership, the app will only store your last 100 swings.
The Rapsodo MLM Mobile Launch Monitor has taken a commanding lead in the personal launch monitor market. This device is accurate, easy to use, and fun. If you’re looking to improve your game, the MLM is a tool that is definitely worth considering.