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Golf Gadget Review! – The Voice Caddie GPS

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voice caddie gps

Introduction

(Written By: GolfSpy Frank) There's a new trend starting in the GPS market...and it's all about simplicity.  Up until recently you had only a few options when it came to knowing your yardage.  There was GPS and there were Laser Rangefinders...and then there was Bob your playing partner giving you yardage within an amazing 3-15 yard accuracy.  This year however we have already reviewed one model that relates to this new trend and today we are taking a look at another version called "The Voice Caddie".

So I already knew to expect with the Voice Caddie, something simple.  I would press the button and it would tell me how far I was from the center of the green.  My question going into this was the same that many of you posted when GolfSpy X posted the first pictures of "The Voice Caddie".

Would only the yardage to the center of the green be enough?  Well, it is time for you to find out.

The Voice Caddie GPS

According to the Voice Caddie website, the Voice Caddie was the first voice-guided golf GPS in the world. It is designed to give you the distances to the center of the green in a simple and faster way.  Clip the lightweight GPS onto your hat and press the one button on the GPS.  When the button is pressed, the Voice Caddie speaks to you, telling you what hole you are on and how far you are from the center of the green.  Simple, right?

Looks & Feel

The Voice Caddie GPS comes in small box with four items.  It comes with instructions, the Voice Caddie GPS, a USB cord, and an outlet adapter to plug the USB cable in to.  Set-up is rather simple.  You go onto the Voice Caddie website, register, download the program, and then download the courses you want onto the Voice Caddie.  If you do it one by one, it takes a very long time.  A great aspect of the Voice Caddie is its memory.  So, when uploading, I recommend checking the states you usually play in instead.  I was able to download every course in New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Arizona in a matter of minutes.  That's over 2200 courses!

The Voice Caddie is even easier to use.  Clip it onto your hat, turn it on 2 minutes before your tee time, and then play.  You will know it is ready because the GPS tells you.  When on the course, it's as easy as pushing a button; literally.  Push the button, it tells you how far you are from the center of the green, and then continue playing.

Score: 18/20


Performance

There is no question that the Voice Caddie does what it is designed to do.  It tells you how far you are from the center of the green without any effort on your part.  Like I mentioned before, everyone that saw this product on the forum was concerned about the simplicity of that.  Well, I am not a scratch golfer like some of you, but I am here to say that sometimes just the yardage to the center of the green is enough.  For all of you golfers who play the same course over and over again, there is nothing wrong with getting the Voice Caddie GPS.  You already know what clubs to hit to carry bunkers or to reach hazards.  For example, I did not need a GPS to tell me how far I have to hit the ball to reach the hazard on the first hole of my home course.  I know if the tees are normal, I hit 3 hybrid.  If the tees are up, I hit 4 hybrid, and if the tees are back, I can still use my 3 hybrid.  If you are the golfer who plays the same course(s) over and over again, this GPS is perfect for you.

The same argument is in effect for the yardages for the back and front of the greens.  If you know your course, you will know how you will have to change the distance of your shot depending if the flag is in the front or the back.  I know that some GPS systems nowadays allow you to drag where the flag actually is on the green to make their reading even more accurate, but as you will see in the value section, those GPS systems are a lot more expensive than the Voice Caddie.

Another argument against the Voice Caddie is layups for par 5s.  DO THE MATH.  If the Voice Caddie says that I am 297 away from the hole and I know I want a pitching wedge into the green, I subtract 297 from 125.  I know I am 172 from my layup area and I can hit my 7 iron to get there.

The problem with this GPS compared to other GPS units with detailed screens is when you go to new courses. If there are no yardage books, you are basically on your own. This is just a matter of knowing your tendencies.  If you are Mr. Predictable, playing the same courses over and over again (like me), then it’s great.  If you are the Traveling Golfer, I might not recommend this model.

Another aspect of the Voice Caddie GPS that I think is important to discuss is the voice.  It is a sound that you will hear for 18 holes, so you have to be comfortable with it.  It took me exactly one hole to get used to.  Think Wii Golf. The first time I heard the high-pitched, immature feminine voice, I laughed.  After that first hole, it grew on me.  It adds something to your game.  When you are standing behind your ball and staring at the flag, you do not have to look down at a screen.  You keep your focus on the flagstick, thinking about your shot the entire time while the Voice Caddie tells you how far you need to hit it.

The most important aspect of the Voice Caddie GPS is that it is accurate.  I did not have any yardage problems throughout any of my three rounds with it.  Besides that, you do not even feel it.  Since you cannot feel it and cannot see it, it does not distract you at all.  Add that to the fact that the battery lasts 9 hours and it equals a very effective product.

Small, lightweight, keeps me focused, accurate, and has nine hours of battery life.  Add that to the fact that I play the same courses all of the times and I know I will continue to clip it onto my hat for a long time. Did I mention that there is no annual fee? All of the courses in the Voice Caddie database are free to download forever. Plus, it does not look bad at all. It is not big and obnoxious. I first wore it with a white hat, which makes it barely noticeable unless you are my playing partner.  The only time I would not use it is on my vacation trips to Myrtle Beach.  For that, I am going to need find some other way of navigating around the course.

Score: 51/60


Value

The Voice Caddie GPS is sold on the Voice Caddie website in 2 different colors and models.  The one tested is the VC200 and retails at $139 and the VC100, which is bigger, retails at $119.  Both come in black and white.  A lot of GPS systems are a lot more than that, which is why I consider it a good value.  Again, before you buy it, know your tendencies.  If you are like me and play the same courses all of the time, take a chance.  I do not think you will be disappointed at all.

Score: 17/20

Final Thoughts

The Voice Caddie GPS is a great product.  Yes, it has some shortcomings that some of you are not going to like, and that influenced its score.  Although, in the end, it still received a good rating.  As I have repeated several times throughout this review, know your tendencies before you buy something, and that goes for everything you buy.  Remember, this is the perfect product for the golfer who plays the same courses over and over.  If you are that golfer, I don’t think you will be disappointed.  You will save some money too!

Total Score: 86/100

Review Summary

B
86.00

{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Three Guys Golf Blog August 17, 2012 at 11:46 am

I agree, the Voice Caddy or any of the other micro GPS units are awesome for your home course. I love the freedom it gives me from technology. I also think it helps me focus on my game rather than fiddling around with gadgets.

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MIGUE VISCIDO August 17, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Dear My Golf Spy
Good afternoon, a company dedicated to Golf in Colombia, organize trips, tournaments, events and a golf magazine in national circulation.
We have interest in reaching an agreement with you and Cadie Voice GPS market.
I welcome your comments, thank you very much

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Trebuchet August 17, 2012 at 4:31 pm

Great review! Thanks for addressing our collective concerns. I’m going to give this one a shot!

Thanks!

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GolfSpy Frank August 17, 2012 at 6:09 pm

Glad to hear you are going to try it out. Here’s the link to make sure your courses are available to be downloaded onto the Voice Caddie:

http://voicecaddie.net/bbs/board.php?bo_table=course_list

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Drew August 18, 2012 at 6:00 am

“I did not have any yardage problems throughout any of my three rounds with it.” How do you know? Why didn’t you use a laser as a part of your test?

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GolfSpy Frank August 18, 2012 at 11:38 am

I compared it to my GolfLogix GPS during my round and they were either the same or one yard off. I know the distances I hit my clubs, and I remained accurate with my distances through three different days. I would have used a laser rangefinder but I do not have one and cannot afford one right now.

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Drew August 18, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Thanks Frank. I enjoyed reading your review.

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GolfSpy Frank August 18, 2012 at 5:23 pm

I’m glad :) If you have any more questions, post them and I will try to reply as soon as I can.

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Scott Messner August 18, 2012 at 6:29 am

I can’t do without the front and back yardage of the green. Even on my home course, I do not want to have to remember this yardages.

Another thing which is a huge benefit is knowing what is needed to carry bunkers and hazards.

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Paulielama August 19, 2012 at 5:45 pm

How about a photo with something to compare for size?

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GolfSpy Frank August 20, 2012 at 8:13 am
lefty August 20, 2012 at 3:46 pm

how does it handle if you hit onto the wrong fairway?

seems like it may be too simple to handle that situation

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GolfSpy Frank August 20, 2012 at 5:59 pm

For me it worked. I do not know if it has checkpoints on the course where if you do not reach the 7th tee box, it stays on the 6th hole, but whatever it is it worked perfectly for me. I remember seeing somewhere that actually says it stays on the same hole, but I cannot find the place to quote it from. If I find it, I will make another comment. If for some odd reason you were using it and it switched over to the hole of the wrong fairway, you can just press the plus and minus buttons until you get to the correct hole. Again, it worked on the wrong fairway for me, and I will reply when I find the quote.

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GolfSpy Frank August 20, 2012 at 6:07 pm

Okay, it does not say exactly how it does it, but this is on the Voice Caddie website: “Even if the ball falls on the next course over, Voice Caddie will continue to guide you to your original target.”

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RP Jacobs II August 21, 2012 at 3:26 pm

Nice review Frank…Solid product…….

Fairways & Greens 4ever…..

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GolfSpy Frank August 21, 2012 at 7:09 pm

Thanks for all of the support RP. It means a lot.

BTW I typed up a tutorial for you and sent it to your private message inbox. This probably isnt the best place to tell you that but I thought I’d give you the heads-up.

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Wayne August 23, 2012 at 8:54 am

Have you ever heard of Golf Buddy came out about a year ago. I believe it was the first like this. I’ve had mine 6 months or more. Love it.

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James Jin August 30, 2012 at 10:50 pm

Voice Caddie is the world’s first voice guided golf GPS and afterwards Golf buddy voice was released.

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Charles Edwards September 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm

I just go the voice caddie but can’t seem to register to be able to download the drivers, courses etc. I cannot seem to see or type “the code shown”… I tried the link above for registering and it sends me to an educational site. Any help on being able to register?

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Dennis December 10, 2012 at 3:53 pm

You have probably already noticed by now that you no longer need to register to download the drivers and Voice Caddie Manager. Its very easy to use as well.

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alan January 22, 2013 at 3:03 pm

i bought the voice caddie 200 the model tested it is a fantastic product easy to use and totally unobtrusive during a round of golf, accurate tested alongside skycaddie and a bushnell laser range finder without having to take time out to to look through or look at i would have to put on my reading glasses for the latter my mate said what if you go deaf, my reply not quite as bad as going blind.

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kiefer May 5, 2013 at 8:39 am

my voice caddie is telling the meters distance not the yards? how to change it to yards?

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Yteejr October 4, 2013 at 7:26 am

I am having the same issue with my VoiceCaddy. Does anyone know how to change it back to yards from meters?

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Linda Cocchiola July 12, 2013 at 10:20 pm

I used the Voice Caddie on a course in the U.S. and I loved it. Problem is I live in Canada so why are there NO canadian courses preprogrammed? I tried downloading the firmware on my Mac but it doesn’t support Mac OS so I tried downloading it on my Dell computer and the security program won’t allow me to continue because it is Malware. Anyone have any ideas as to what to do to download the courses?
I contacted the Voice Caddie people and they STILL haven’t responded.

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Jack August 8, 2013 at 10:05 am

Just bought the Voice caddie 200 in the plane for a friend in Buffalo NY. However when we checked in Buffalo on the website, there were only 3 public courses available for downloading, and these were not really the most popular ones. So the VC 200 is pretty useless in Buffalo NY. I don’t know whether that goes for other cities?

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martin September 30, 2013 at 1:47 pm

The support is worse in the world! Never response your request and thr golf course list is not comprehensive! Even after many emails with all information provided, nothing is done. Save your money!

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