50 Words or Less
The Rapsodo MLM2PRO launch monitor is a major step forward from the original MLM. Very user friendly. Superb accuracy with Callaway RPT golf balls. Fun practice modes and simulation.
The original Rapsodo Mobile Launch Monitor [review HERE] was among the first wave of affordable, easy to use launch monitors aimed at the recreational golfer. Since it was released, numerous competitors have entered the field and raised the bar, prompting Rapsodo to unveil the new MLM2PRO launch monitor. In this review, I’ll help you understand where this device fits into the crowded launch monitor marketplace and whether you should consider making it your LM of choice.
Set Up & Ease of Use
The Rapsodo MLM2PRO launch monitor comes with the monitor, proprietary tripod, charging cable, carrying case, and a small instruction booklet. There is also a sleeve of specially marked Callaway golf balls, which I’ll discuss more later.
Set up starts by fully charging the MLM2PRO and downloading the accompanying app to your smart phone or tablet (iOS or Android). You’ll also need to set up an account in the app and populate your bag with your clubs. Filling our your virtual bag is not optional, so make sure you take the two minutes to do this before you run to the range.
Once you’re ready to hit, click the Rapsodo MLM2PRO into the tripod and set it about eight feet behind your hitting area. Open the app, tap “Play,” select your mode, and connect to your MLM2PRO. The connection happens quickly and is very robust – it didn’t drop once in my testing. There is a camera built into the launch monitor, which makes precise alignment very easy.
From initial set up to overall ease of use, the Rapsodo MLM2PRO launch monitor is extremely user friendly. The app is intuitive, and the device works exactly as promised.
The Rapsoso MLM2PRO launch monitor produces 13 metrics, 7 of which are measured. The measured metrics are ball speed, club speed, carry distance, launch direction, launch angle, spin rate, and spin axis. The spin numbers are only measured if you use the Callaway RPT (Rapsodo Precision Technology) Chrome Soft X golf balls. Metrics that are calculated are total distance, side carry, smash factor, descent angle, apex, and shot type (straight, draw, etc). Spin rate, spin axis, and descent angle are new additions from the original Rapsodo MLM.
To test the accuracy of the MLM2PRO, I ran it head to head with my Foresight GCQuad [review HERE]. I tested indoors and outdoors with range balls, Tour-quality balls, and Callaway RPT balls, and with clubs ranging from the driver to lob wedge. In all settings, the accuracy of the MLM2PRO was extremely impressive. Ball speed was always +/- 1 MPH and was often an exact match. The Rapsodo was generally a little higher on club speed – as much as +2 MPH – than the Foresight, but that could relate to where the two devices measure the club. Carry distances were often a match and never more than +/- 3 yards. Launch angles were typically a match and almost always within 1 degree.
What really shocked me, and what sets the Rapsodo MLM2PRO apart from other devices in this price range, is the accuracy of the spin. Again, this device only measures spin when using the Callaway RPT golf balls, but when it does, it’s extremely good. The spin rates were within 200 RPM of the Foresight on every shot. Adding the Callaway RPT ball also improved the carry distance accuracy to +/-2 yards with more exact matches.
The App & Golf Simulation
As impressive as the accuracy of the Rapsodo MLM2PRO is, what really sells it for me is the app. It’s extremely easy to use, it stores a ton of data, it has fun modes, and it can help you improve.
There are three Play modes within the app: Practice, Combines, and Simulation. Practice is the basic range/launch monitor functionality. One feature that the Rapsodo MLM2PRO adds is the built-in camera, so every swing has a video with it. The onboard camera also makes aligning the launch monitor very easy.
The benefit of having to input your clubs is that the app stores your data and helps you to evaluate your practice sessions. When a session is over, the app can offer an Insight Report with commentary on your accuracy, distance, and consistency. It can tell you which club you need to work on more and compare your performance to the average golfer in your handicap range. This is a tremendous tool for focusing your practice sessions, and the stored data is a great way to learn your club distances.
Combines and Simulation are unlocked with the Premium Membership, and they add a lot of fun and variety to your practice. In the Combine, you hit your driver and to two target distances. After a series of shots, a score is generated which you can work to improve over time.
The Simulation is similar to that on the Garmin R10 [review HERE] where you can play virtually any course but with fairly simple graphics. This isn’t an immersive experience, but it’s a great way to mix up your practice, hit lots of different clubs, and prepare for an upcoming round.
Finally, Rapsodo has recently announced R-Cloud. This is web platform where you can access your data from your computer. You can review the shots you hit, see your swing videos, and even make corrections to shots if you mislabeled a club. It’s a strong addition because it gives you another way to reflect on your practice data and focus future sessions to match your goals.
Third Party Apps
In addition to the proprietary app, the Rapsodo MLM2PRO can be used to power third party apps for practice or simulation. If you want the best graphics and most realistic simulation experience, you’ll want to use E6 Connect. With the purchase of the MLM2PRO, you get a code that unlocks five courses in E6 Connect, which is a great way to test it out to see if you want more.
This device also powers Awesome Golf (both pictures above), which I got to try for the first time as part of this review. Your MLM2PRO purchase gives you a short trial of Awesome Golf. There are many modes in this app, from basic range to simulation to arcade style games where your shots knock down piles of bricks or sink boats. It’s a great choice for those that get bored hitting into a net during the winter.
While I think the Rapsodo app is great on its own, having these options is nothing but a plus for players who want more variety.
When looking at the value of the Rapsodo MLM2PRO launch monitor, there are three things to consider. First, there’s the device itself, which retails for $700 [consider supporting Plugged In Golf by buying it HERE].
Second, there’s the premium membership. Your first year is included with purchase, but after that the cost is $200/year.
Finally, as mentioned earlier, to get measured spin numbers the MLM2PRO requires Callaway RPT Chrome Soft X golf balls. One sleeve is included with the launch monitor; additional balls can be purchased through Rapsodo for $70/dozen.
I think the device itself is a great value. The price is a little unusual – most comparable launch monitors are at $500 – but the built-in camera and excellent app make it worth the cost. Getting a year of the Premium Membership with purchase allows you to decide for yourself if the additional Play modes are worth it to you. If you use the MLM2PRO indoors, I think they are. The golf balls are the one part of this equation that is a little tough to stomach, but unless you’re a long drive champ, it’s unlikely that you’re going to be breaking golf balls and making replacements a substantial added cost.
Though it’s a little more expensive than many of its competitors, the Rapsodo MLM2PRO launch monitor has become my favorite in the sub $1,000 category. It checks the box for accuracy while also being extremely easy to use. Perhaps best of all, it’s fun, which means that you’ll use it more and start seeing improvements in your game.