pocket radar ball coach vs smart coach

Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach: Our Review

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pocket radar ball coach vs smart coach

I’ve decided to write this Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach comparison and review for all of us curious parents. Hopefully, I can shed some light on what these gadgets can do, what they can’t, and how they could potentially fit into our kids’ training routines.

As a dad of a Little Leaguer, I’ve spent countless hours in my baseball chair, cheering and trying to decipher the inexact science of pitching speeds and exit velocity with nothing but my eyes. Does that sound familiar to you? In our tech-driven world, I thought there must be a better way. That’s when I came across the Pocket Radar.

No marketing fluff, just one parent’s experience trying to navigate through these high-tech offerings in the name of youth baseball. Throughout the article, I’ll be sharing my first-hand observations on the features, accuracy, user-friendliness, and overall value of both devices. And of course, I’ll highlight the quirks and downsides that I’ve come across. Because let’s be real, no product is perfect.


Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach Overview

About The Pocket Radar Smart Coach?

This isn’t just another radar gun. It’s a stand-alone device that pairs with your iOS or Android, serving as a complete speed and video training system. The Pocket Radar Smart Coach accurately measures exit velocities, pitching speeds, and other important metrics, which it displays on your phone or tablet. What sets this apart is the ability to record auto-edited videos with the speed embedded.

One of the standout features for me was the ability to track data over time in the app’s history. Additionally, all of the data can be exported to a CSV file. This has been invaluable for monitoring my son’s progress and seeing where he needs to tweak his technique. Also, the Smart Coach has an audio speed call outs feature, which can be very useful.

The Pocket Radar app, which is free, pairs with the Smart Coach device via Bluetooth connectivity feature. It’s very simple to use. Pocket Radar also offers a 2-year warranty, which is a nice bonus.

Our Pick
Pocket Radar Smart Coach
$399
Pros:
  • Remote speed display
  • Instant feedback
  • Speed announcement via audio
  • Record and share videos with speed embedded
  • Compatible with iOS and Android
  • Remote training and coaching
  • Durable
  • Accurate
Cons:
  • Long distances may hinder accuracy
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About The Pocket Radar Ball Coach

The Ball Coach Radar is Pocket Radar’s entry-level radar gun and speed training tool designed for youth baseball players. It accurately measures ball speeds from 25 to 130 mph with a range of 120 feet. The radar provides instant feedback on hitting power, pitching speeds, and more, making it a great tool for player development. It operates hands-free and comes with a soft-shell belt holster case, wrist strap, and 2-year warranty. Please note that the pocket radar ball coach is not compatible with the Pocket Radar App and functions solely as a radar device. If you are looking for an easy-to-use, no-frills radar device, this option would be perfect.

Ball Coach
Pocket Radar Ball Coach
$299
Pros:
  • Measures speeds from 25 to 130 mph
  • Highly accurate
  • Hands-free
  • 120 feet of range
  • Includes 2-year warranty
Cons:
  • Not compatible with pocket radar app
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Comparing Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach

pocket radar ball coach vs smart coach

Price

When comparing the Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach, the first thing to consider is the price. The Ball Coach Radar is priced at $299.99, while the Smart Coach Radar is a bit more expensive at $399.99. It’s important to think about the additional features of the Smart Coach when weighing the difference in cost.

Ball Coach

The Ball Coach radar is a stand-alone device designed for convenient and accurate measurements of ball speeds. It’s suitable for occasional pitch speeds or exit velocities off the bat. The battery life on the Ball Coach is impressive, providing a long-lasting experience. The Ball Coach radar comes with a warranty that covers any defects in materials or workmanship.

Smart Coach

The Smart Coach radar incorporates some additional features, making it a more versatile option. One of the main distinctions between the Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach is the compatibility with the Pocket Radar App. This app allows for a wireless display on a mobile device and remote control of the radar.

Another noteworthy difference is the Smart Display. This accessory connects to the Smart Coach and provides a plug-in power option along with the standard battery usage. The smart display ensures versatility in various settings, such as coaching, scouting, or training sessions.


Pocket Radar Gun Reviews – Testimonials

During my search, I found several testimonials highlighting the effectiveness of both the Pocket Radar Ball Coach and the Smart Coach. These radar devices have helped many athletes, scouts, and coaches monitor and analyze pitching performance effortlessly.

I discovered that MLB scouts have been using these devices to gather data on prospective players. Many find both units to be reliable and accurate, even comparing them to high-end radar guns like the Stalker Pro II.

College coaches have also experienced success with the use of these radar gadgets. With their easy-to-use features and accurate measurements, coaches can now evaluate their pitchers more effectively. The data gathered from these devices helps in creating individualized training programs tailored to each athlete’s needs.

Lastly, athletes themselves have noticed significant improvements in their sports performance, as seen in this YouTube Pocket Radar review. The Pocket Radar Smart Coach has helped them track their velocity accurately. This allows them to make necessary adjustments to improve their skills.

Pocket Radar With Younger Athletes

It’s important to remember that a radar gun is a tool and its effectiveness depends largely on how it’s used. Misuse could lead to complications, especially when it comes to younger children. There’s a tendency for kids, especially around the ages of 10 to 12, to push themselves too hard when they see their speed being tracked. This overexertion could potentially lead to mechanical issues or even injuries.

Many parents want to see their child continually increase speed, which, while understandable, can sometimes get in the way of proper development. Younger children, in particular, can get fixated on velocity numbers and it could start affecting their mental game. For example, with my own child who is 10, I’ve noticed that even just a few instances of measuring his pitch velocity can lead to him becoming overly focused on the numbers.

However, I’ve found a balanced approach to using the Pocket Radar, especially with the Smart Coach model. I now avoid showing my son his pitch velocity altogether. Instead, I use it as a tool for me to monitor his progress. That said, it’s a different story when it comes to measuring exit velocity (velocity off the bat), which we actively track.

Remember, it’s all about balance. While I don’t plan on revealing my son’s pitching velocity until he’s around 13 or 14, I still see value in using the radar to track his improvement. Having a tangible way to show children their progress can be encouraging. It can also help them understand that their efforts are producing results.

Pocket Radar Connect: Integrating With GameChanger

As part of the newly launched Pocket Radar Plus subscription, users can now input pitch velocity as they score. The integrated pitch speed radar readings are then featured in the play-by-play and on the live video scoreboard.

pocket radar ball coach vs smart coach

Pocket Radar recently launched two new offerings for its customers: Pocket Radar Plus and Pocket Radar Connect. Pocket Radar Plus is the company’s first subscription product. It offers new features such as slow-motion video, pitch tagging and charting, and more integrations with third-party apps like GameChanger through the Pocket Radar Connect platform. This service charges $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year.

Pocket Radar Plus offers a range of features that are not available in the free Pocket Radar Connect app. For example, users have access to slow-motion video, which allows them to analyze their performance in more detail. They can also tag and chart their pitches, which helps them to identify areas for improvement. Pocket Radar Plus also offers more integrations with third-party apps, which means that users can connect their Pocket Radar devices to a wider range of sports and fitness apps. However, this is a subscription-based service, which means that users have to pay a monthly or annual fee to access these features.

Pocket Radar Connect, on the other hand, is a free app that allows users to connect their Pocket Radar devices to their smartphones via Bluetooth, enabling them to see real-time measurements and data.


Conclusion: Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach

I have thoroughly examined and compared the Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach devices. Both products offer high accuracy and ease of use, making them valuable tools for improving pitching skills. The Smart Coach Radar is priced at $399.99, while the Ball Coach Radar costs $299.99. If budget is a concern, the Ball Coach Radar is a more affordable option, but if you’re seeking additional features such as app compatibility and video analysis, the Smart Coach is worth the extra investment.

While these prices may seem a bit high, they are actually much less compared to some other high-end pitching radar guns on the market. Both of these options offer incredible value.

In terms of performance, the Smart Coach Radar has an edge over the Ball Coach Radar, as it offers more advanced features. With the Smart Coach, I can easily connect it to a smartphone app for enhanced training possibilities. This enables me to analyze throws, track progress, and even share results with my son’s coaches. The Ball Coach Radar, on the other hand, focuses more on simplicity and is better suited for users who prefer a straightforward, no-frills approach to measuring pitching speed.

I am confident that both the Pocket Radar Ball Coach and Smart Coach devices are reliable and effective in assessing pitching performance. While each radar has its unique advantages, it ultimately comes down to individual preferences and budget constraints.


Frequently Asked Questions

How Accurate Is The Pocket Radar Ball Coach?

In terms of accuracy, both the Ball Coach and the Smart Coach radar guns are on par with each other. The Ball Coach claims to have an accuracy of +/- 1 mph within a range of 25 to 130 mph, which is suitable for most games. The Smart Coach, also maintains the same accuracy level but offers enhanced functionalities. Their accuracy is comparable to more expensive and larger models, such as the Stalker Sports 2 Gun.

What are the main differences between Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach?

The main differences between the Ball Coach radar and the Smart Coach radar are the additional features and the ability to connect with an app in the Smart Coach model. While both radars are highly accurate and have similar ranges, the Smart Coach offers better data tracking and analysis tools through its app.

Which features are unique to the Smart Coach Pocket radar?

The Smart Coach Pocket radar is unique due to its connectivity with an app that provides live ball speed display, video recording integration, remote control functionality, and data exporting capabilities. Moreover, the Smart Coach radar offers customizable speed ranges and recording intervals, making it more versatile and adaptable for various training routines.

How do you use the Pocket Radar Ball Coach?

Using the pocket radar is relatively simple. Make sure it’s powered on and positioned at the appropriate angle facing the action you want to measure. Within a short distance, the device will capture the speed and display it on the screen. If you want to utilize its full potential, connect it to your mobile device via Bluetooth and explore the features available on the Smart Coach App.

Buying a used Pocket Radar Ball Coach

When purchasing a used pocket radar, it’s important to ensure the device is in good working condition and offers accurate readings. By checking the seller’s reputation, return policy, and warranty information, you can make an informed decision about the suitability of the used radar. Additionally, consider whether the device comes with accessories, such as a carrying case, charging cable, or tripod mounting feature, to save time and potential extra costs.

Is the Ball Coach compatible with the Smart Coach app?

The Ball Coach radar does not have the built-in Bluetooth connectivity needed to connect with the Smart Coach app. Thus, it cannot pair with the app to provide the additional features and functionality offered by the Smart Coach radar.

Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach Pricing

The Smart Coach radar is a more advanced model with a higher price point than the Ball Coach. The additional features like app connectivity, remote control, and video integration justify the price difference between the two models. Always check the seller’s listing and the manufacturer’s website for up-to-date pricing information.

Battery And Charging Options

Both the Ball Coach and Smart Coach pocket radars utilize two AAA batteries for power. The Ball Coach FAQ states that these batteries should last for over 2,000 readings (or one minute of continuous use). The Smart Coach FAQ also mentions similar battery life, with an option to use rechargeable lithium-ion batteries for added convenience. Both models can be charged via a micro USB cable when using rechargeable batteries.

Size and Weight Of The Pocket Radar

One of the most noticeable benefits of using the Pocket Radar Ball Coach vs Smart Coach is their compact size and lightweight design. The Ball Coach weighs only 4.5 ounces with batteries and has dimensions of 2.3 x 4.7 x 0.8 inches. This makes these devices easy to carry around in a pocket or bag.

Chris F.

Chris F.

Chris Forbes is the founder and editor of BaseballMode.com, a leading blog in the youth baseball space. As a lifelong baseball player, coach and fan, he decided to team up with his young son to offer advice and share their experiences with the sport they both love. Chris lives in the Boston area with his wife and three children.

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