The Breakmaster Digital Green Reading Tool Review
Lots of golfers have trouble seeing breaks in the green with the naked eye. And most of us regular golfers don’t have caddies who have charted the greens on the courses we play. But the fact remains that most golfers will spend more than half of their shots on or near the green.
In fact, according to Golf Digest, average players spend just over 40% of their shots on putts. And when you combine putts with approach shots, the tandem makes up 60% of all types of shots. So it’s easy to see just how important your short game is in the grand scheme of things.
So what’s a golfer to do? How can a golfer improve their short game? Today we are going to be reviewing a product that is geared toward helping golfers putt more accurately. It’s called the Exelys BreakMaster.
What does the Breakmaster do?
To begin with, it may be helpful to think of the Breakmaster in the simplest terms possible. In essence, the Breakmaster is a level like one you would use to make sure a table or shelf is perfectly straight. The Breakmaster can be placed on any part of the green to tell you which direction the break is going.
The Breakmaster is a small, handheld device with an LCD screen embedded on top. You simply turn the device on, lay it on the section of the green you want break information on and the screen will point an arrow in the direction that the green is breaking.
A large number will also appear in the center of the screen indicating the degree of slope of the break. For instance, if you lay the Breakmaster down on the green and it displays 2.6 and is pointing towards the left, you know that the green is sloping down leftward at an angle of 2.6 degrees.
What does the Breakmaster Come with?
When you purchase the Breakmaster, you will receive:
1. The device itself
2. An operating manual
3. A greens book which allows you to chart the greens on your favorite courses and keep them for later rounds
4. A carrying case (not really useful as I've just tossed it into my bag)
The Breakmaster does not come with batteries. Please note that the Breakmaster is operated by two SR44 (357) watch batteries. The LCD screen will flash a little battery icon when the batteries are running low and need to be replaced.
Is the Breakmaster Tournament Legal?
In short, no the Breakmaster is not tournament legal. You cannot use any green reading device in tournament play. You can however use a green reading device like the Breakmaster before a round and chart the green in a yardage book (and wouldn't you know it, we can teach you how to make yardage books with our Premium Bundle).
These books are legal for tournament play so long as they are 4 and a quarter inches by 7 inches or smaller.
How does the Breakmaster Perform?
The best way to use the Breakmaster is to try to see how the green breaks with the naked eye first. Then, when you think you have a good visual reading, place the Breakmaster within 1-2 feet of the hole to get a reading.
We found that we were usually wrong about where the break line was and how severe it was. The Breakmaster did a good job of letting us know where our aim line should be and what the break direction was.
Functionality - It will display multiple arrows indicating that the slope is heading in more than one direction which is helpful information to have
Battery Life - The battery life was great too. This isn’t a complex device so it doesn’t draw much power. After 6 full rounds, the battery was still at 88%.
Readings - It does take a few seconds for the device to settle on a reading but once it does, it is accurate which is the most important thing.
One performance issue that could be remedied however is that the Breakmaster is a bit difficult to read in direct sunlight.
Overall, it did help us in reading greens slopes and having reference points for how much a putt should break, especially at the 1-3' putt distances. If you are like us, having a aim point for your putts like "center of cup", "left edge", or "one ball right of cup" is some part science, another part art, and the last bit of luck for the ball to get into the cup. The Breakmaster can help both the science and art parts of the putting stroke, but it always will go back to you as the player to putt the ball into the cup in the lowest amount of strokes.
Pros & Cons
1. Teaches you to read greens better
2. Good battery life
3. Comes with a carrying case
4. Comes with your own custom green book
1. Not tournament legal
2. Doesn’t come with batteries
3. Hard to read the LCD display in the sunlight
How much does the Breakmaster Cost?
That will depend on where you buy it. The official Breakmaster shop has the device on sale for $124. But if you choose to buy from Amazon or other online retailers you could pay less, about $115.
Using the Breakmaster was actually a lot of fun. It plainly illustrated how much the break affects roll even with just a one degree difference in slope. We weren’t the best at drawing in our own break lines and charting greens in the book it came with, but utilizing it in the Flaghunting Yardage or Greens Books we were pleasantly surprised at how much we used the slopes/readings when playing.
For casual play, or tournament golf this is a very encouraging device that can lower the handicaps of amateur golfers. It’s a handy tool to have and more importantly; it can teach you a thing or two about reading greens and how breaks can affect your putts.