Simplicity is serenity as we take the Bushnell Phantom 2 GPS out on course for a thorough test.
Bushnell Phantom 2 GPS Review
Bushnell is one of the most popular distance measuring device brands and the new Phantom 2 GPS reinforces that position while also accounting for significant improvements on its predecessor.
The first thing we noticed when picking up the Phantom 2 is the size – it’s 40 per cent larger than the original Phantom.
In our opinion it’s the best change Bushnell has made in the new device and, despite the larger size, it’s still a relatively small device that easily fits into the palm of your hand.
With the larger frame comes a larger screen and this displays much clearer graphics when compared to the original Phantom as well as other basic GPS devices on the market.
This larger, clearer screen meant we could quickly scan the device for our yardage, rather than have to go up to our bag and inspect it closely.
It also comes with Bushnell’s updated Bite technology, a magnet on the back of the device that allows to stick to any magnetic surface – a feature that would be useful on a buggy, for example.
While we didn’t actually take it out for a spin on a buggy, we can see how useful it would be and the Bite magnet has seven pounds of pulling force so is strong enough to stay in place.
The most significant new feature on the Phantom 2 is Dynamic Green Mapping, which provides you with front, middle and back distance measurements no matter which direction you are approaching the green.
This is especially useful when you find your golf ball well off the beaten track – don’t worry we’ve all been there – and conventional 100 or 150 yard markers are well out of sight.
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Whether you’re playing your home course for the umpteenth time or you’re playing a new track for the first time, we found having these accurate yardages from any angle gives you the confidence to pull out the correct club and execute the shot.
Another feature on the Phantom 2 is GreenView pin placement distance, allowing you to get an even more precise yardage to an exact pin location, and is accessible with the simple press of one button on the side of the device.
It’s this and other simple ergonomics of the Phantom 2 which make it such a pleasure to use.
The main front, middle and back yardages are always present on screen and then its just takes a press of one button to place the pin, find out how far away a hazard is or log your score on a hole.
Our only qualm with the Phantom 2 is the integrated app.
The app has been given a significant update since the original Phantom GPS was released and allows for course updates to take place, provides additional course information and allows you to keep track of score.
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While the app itself is pleasant to use, it doesn’t offer enough extra information to make it worth having your phone out all round alongside the Phantom 2.
All the main information you need is already on the device itself – dynamic yardages, pin placement and score etc. – so what’s the need for the app?
We struggled to answer that question over multiple rounds with the Phantom 2 and when we realised just how much of our phone battery was being drained, we quickly put our phone away and got on with using the device on its own.
The Phantom 2 offers users a simple yet data rich experience at a very competitive price.
Another excellent GPS offering from Bushnell that has ironed out any creases that may have been found in the original Phantom. The Phantom 2 has made huge strides versus its predecessor, so much so that we think this will not only attract first time users, but will likely persuade current Phantom users to upgrade. The simplicity, clarity and user-friendliness of this device makes it a great companion on course.