Speed Radar “Battlefield”: Stalker vs PlaySight vs Bushnell vs SKLZ vs Athla Comparison

If you search online today, many previous online reviews of speed radars cut between every shot leaving the true performance unclear.

Below is the first live comparison of five speed radars simultaneously in one continuous take so the actual performance can be seen.

Here were the radars we compared:
www.PlaySight.com
~$10-15K
www.StalkerRadar.com ~$1.2K
www.Bushnell.com ~$80
www.SKLZ.com ~$30
www.Athla.com ~$12

<SPOILER ALERT: RESULTS BELOW>

Here were the results:

We were impressed and proud of the results that Athla delivered.

As a few points of discussion regarding the results…

One might consider whether the Stalker II should be used as the “gold standard” for comparisons. If we were to simply use greatest agreement across radars as a measure – the Stalker still comes out as the winner.

Bushnell turns out to be more accurate than the results initially look on video. The correct speed was typical shown followed by a new speed as the ball landed on the other side (which was lower). This suggests Bushnell was seeing the speed then losing the speed as the ball went out of its upper range. It then saw the ball again as it landed on the other side. In our final calculations, we chose the more accurate reading we saw for the Bushnell.

Though the SKLZ lists tennis as a supported sport, their instructions also say the radar has problems with synthetic covers. Despite trying different angles and distances, we were unable to get better performance than you see.

The PlaySight is likely more accurate than the results suggest. It appears that the Doppler radars and PlaySight are looking at different locations to calculate the speed. The Doppler radars see speeds a few feet from the baseline. The PlaySight is likely calculating speeds by projecting them back to the baseline. This difference would account for PlaySight reporting speeds that were on average 1 mph faster.

We set up Athla Velocity so that it was seeing speeds at the same location as the Dopplers. Once we did the results were extremely consistent.

“GameLink” Guide for Athla Velocity

GameLink can be used to bring your speeds to the audience or closer to the player by mirroring Velocity onto another device. To start, just download the Free version of Velocity onto the device you want to use as the display.

For baseball, you can measure speeds closest to the pitcher or batter.

If you have an iPhone 6, you can place your device just 5 feet away and 20 feet to the side enabling you to use Velocity during a live game.

Speeds can then be shown to the audience…

…or on a soccer field during practice…

…or a tennis court during a game.

 

To begin GameLink, start a Play session on one device. Go to the GameLink section on the other device and touch Connect. Touch Done when the connection is complete.

You can filter speeds just of the batter, the pitcher, the server or the opponent. Go to the Settings page and choose which speeds you want to show.

Now with GameLink, the audience can experience a stadium experience almost anywhere.

What are the Fastest Baseball Pitches, Tennis Serves, Soccer Kicks, and Cricket Bowls in History?

What are the fastest baseball pitches in history?

108 mph (173 kph) 1974 Nolan Ryan Right hand pitch
107 mph (172 kph) 1946 Bob Feller Right hand pitch
105 mph (169 kph) 2010 Aroldis Chapman Left hand pitch
104 mph (167 kph) 2006 Joel Zumaya Right hand pitch
103 mph (165 kph) 2010 Neftali Feliz Right hand pitch

What are the fastest cricket bowls in history?
161.3 kph (100 mph) 2003 Shoaib Akhtar Pakistan vs England
161.1 kph (100 mph) 2005 Brett Lee Australia vs New Zealand
161.0 kph (100 mph) 2010 Shaun Tait Australia vs England
160.4 kph (99 mph) 1975 Jeffrey Thompson Australia vs West Indies
159.6 kph (99 mph) 1975 Andy Roberts West india vs Australia

What are the fastest soccer kicks in history?

There is no official record but here are shots measured by a Sky Sports Replay 2000 tracking machine.

114 mph (183 kph) 1996 David Hirst for Sheffield Wed @ Arsenal
98 mph (157 kph) 1997 David Beckham for Manchester Utd vs Chelsea
96 mph (154 kph) 1998 David Trezeguet for Monaco @ Manchest Utd
96 mph (154 kph) 1996 Richie Humphreys for Sheffield Wednesday
87 mph (140 kph) 1997 Matt Le Tissier for Southampton vs Newcastle

What are the fastest tennis serves in history?

164 mph (263 kph) 2012 Samuel Groth Australia
160 mph (257 kph) 2012 Albano Olivetti France
156 mph (251 kph) 2011 Ivo Karlovic Croatia
155 mph (250 kph) 2012 Milos Raonic Canada
155 mph (249 kph) 2004 Andy Roddick USA

“Selfie” Official Video Mode Guide

“Selfie” Video Mode is a new video capture feature in Velocity available only on iPhone 6/6+.

“Selfie” mode is only available on iPhone 6/6+ due to the immense graphics power needed

 

Here is how it looks.

Selfie mode captures 60 fps video automatically of your pitch, serve, or kick and video-stamps it with the speed. The video contains additional watermarks to help ensure the authenticity of the speed. Share the video with coaches for instruction, scouts to become discovered, or with friends to prove your speed.

Selfie-mode is in beta testing so please send any feedback about your experience to feedback@athla.com.

Here are a few tips to get you started.

(1) PLACEMENT IS CLOSER: Whereas in normal mode, you need to avoid being in the camera, in selfie mode, the camera needs to see you. Place your device 5 feet in front of you and 20 feet to the side.

Place your device 5 feet in front of you and 20 feet to the side for selfie mode.

Pitchers or batters can be tracked.

You can use the batter position to track the speeds of arriving pitches at the plate.

(2) TILT IS 70°: The optimal tilt from the ground is 70 degrees for selfie mode. There is a new tilt sensor that tell you exactly when you have the right tilt.

Use the tilt sensor to ensure you have the right tilt for selfie mode.

Videos will appear in your camera roll along with a random snapshot from the video.

Upload your videos to our coaching and scouting boards to receive advice on your technique and be discovered!

Tennis Setup

Quick Setup

The top speed detectable with Velocity Free is 40 mph (64 kph). Unlock a radar to detect speeds up to 110 mph (177 kph). Touch Settings below to learn your device’s capabilities. Download Velocity Ultimate to own all radars for one price.

To track your speed, choose the sport, touch play and place your device parallel to the court and in-line with the net pole.

You can share and compare speeds with friends worldwide, connect your entire team, or share your practices with your coach using FriendLink on the Statistics Page.

You can discover the speed of your first versus second serves, forehands versus backhands, your serve speed versus your opponents, and which of your serves holds the greatest amount of speed through its flight.



What are the fastest serves in history?

 

164 mph (263 kph) 2012 Samuel Groth Australia

160 mph (257 kph) 2012 Albano Olivetti France

156 mph (251 kph) 2011 Ivo Karlovic Croatia

155 mph (250 kph) 2012 Milos Raonic Canada

155 mph (249 kph) 2004 Andy Roddick USA

 

How to use GameLink?

Mirror your speeds on up to eight other devices within 30 feet by accessing the GameLink tab. You can use additional devices to share speeds with an audience, your oppenent, or to avoid the glare of the sun and better see the display.

What is the best location for your device?

Place your device on either side of the court in the placement zones below. The FaceTime front camera needs to face the court. 

Balls lose 5-15 mph in the arc of their flight so choose the zone of speed you want to capture.

What is the best direction to serve?

Hit down the midline, through the Accuracy Zone which is directly in front of the device, for the best accuracy. 

If you hit at an angle to the device, balls closer to your device will look faster. Correct for the amount angle as shown below.

How do you get the best performance from Velocity?

Velocity needs bright sunlight. Velocity is recommended for outdoor use only. Indoor lights, dusk or stadium lights generally have too little light for the camera.

Velocity prefers a background that is motionless. Movement in the background from wind in trees, crowds, or people on the court can result in Velocity discarding readings. Avoid motion in the Camera Zone shown below. Place Velocity on the side of the court giving it the most motionless background.

Troubleshooting



The most common reason Velocity will discard readings in tennis is because of too much motion in the background. Move Velocity to one side of the court or the other to limit motion from trees or an audience. 

A second reason for missed readings is that the tilt of the device is greater than 30 degrees. If you are using an iPhone, ensuring the tilt of the iPhone is between 0 to 30 degrees. Tilting it at the same angle as the Apple’s iPad Smart Cover is best. 

For additional troubleshooting, see the Settings page.

Soccer Setup

Quick Start

Choose your sport by sliding the sport carousel then hit Play. Set your device 20 feet away and 20 feet to the side as seen in the picture below. Your device tilt should be almost vertical so the camera can see the ball down low. Make sure that grass isn’t obscuring the view of the camera by using the “camera view” button on the Play screen.

 

The top speed detectable with Velocity Free is 40 mph (64 kph). Unlock a radar to detect speeds up to 110 mph (177 kph). Touch Settings below to learn your device’s capabilities. Download Velocity Ultimate to own all radars for one price. 

To track your speed, choose the sport, touch play and place your device 10 feet in from the corner of the penalty area and perpendicular to the line as shown. Kick from the penalty spot.

You can share and compare speeds with friends worldwide, connect your entire team, or share your practices with your coach using FriendLink on the Statistics Page.

You can discover the speed of your penalty kicks, left foot versus right foot kicks, kicks directed to the left and right corners of the goal, and your kick speed versus your team mates. Practice improving the power of your defensive returns to midfield just using a net.

 

What are the fastest kicks in history?



There is no official record but here are shots measured by a Sky Sports Replay 2000 tracking machine.


114 mph (183 kph) 1996 David Hirst for Sheffield Wed @ Arsenal

98 mph (157 kph) 1997 David Beckham for Man Utd vs Chelsea

96 mph (154 kph) 1998 David Trezeguet for Monaco @ Man Utd

96 mph (154 kph) 1996 Richie Humphreys for Sheffield Wednesday

87 mph (140 kph) 1997 Matt Le Tissier for Southampton vs Newcastle

 

Bring the Stadium Home



Mirror your speeds on up to eight other devices within 30 feet by accessing the GameLink tab. You can use additional devices to share speeds with an audience, your opponent, or to avoid the glare of the sun and better see the display.

What is the best location for your device?

You can use Velocity in a backyard, a field, or almost anywhere as long as players are around 40 feet (12 meters) apart and the device is 20 feet (6 meters) to the side. 

Place your device on either side of the field in the placement zones below. The FaceTime front camera needs to face the path of the ball.

Balls can lose 25 mph (40 kph) in the arc of their flight so choose the zone of speed you want to capture.

What is the best direction to kick?

Kick down the midline, through the Accuracy Zone which is directly in front of the device, for the best accuracy. 

If you kick at an angle to the device, balls closer to the device will register inaccurately as faster.

How do you get the best performance from Velocity?

Velocity needs bright sunlight. Velocity is recommended for outdoor use only. Indoor lights, dusk or stadium lights generally have too little light for the camera.

Velocity prefers a background that is motionless. Movement in the background from wind in trees, crowds, or people on the field can result in Velocity discarding readings. Avoid motion in the Camera Zone shown below. Place Velocity on the side of the field giving it the most motionless background.

Troubleshooting



The most common reason Velocity will discard readings in soccer is because the ball is too low for the tilt of the device. Sometimes the turf tilts the device too much up to the air. Try to ensure the tilt is almost perfectly vertical or less than or equal to 30 degrees like Apple’s iPad SmartCover. 

The second most common reason for missed readings is due to too much motion in the background. Move Velocity to one side of the field or the other to limit motion from wind in trees or an audience. 

For additional troubleshooting help, see the Settings page.

Cricket Setup

 

QuickStart

The top speed detectable with Velocity Free is 40 mph (64 kph). Unlock a radar to detect speeds up to 110 mph (177 kph). Touch Settings below to learn your device’s capabilities. Download Velocity Ultimate to own all radars for one price. 

To track your speed, choose the sport, tap play and place your device about 20 feet (6 meters) in front and exactly 20 feet (6 meters) to the side of you. 

You can share and compare speeds with friends worldwide, connect your entire team, or share your practices with your coach using FriendLink on the Statistics Page.

You can discover the speed of your fast bowling, spin bowling, leg spin and off spin. Learn how much you can vary your bounce or dip and maintain the speed of your bowling.

What are the fastest bowlers in history?



161.3 kph 2003 Shoaib Akhtar Pakistan vs England

161.1 kph 2005 Brett Lee Australia vs New Zealand

161.0 kph 2010 Shaun Tait Australia vs England

160.4 kph 1975 Jeffrey Thompson Australia vs West Indies

159.6 kph 1975 Andy Roberts West india vs Australia

How do you use GameLink?

Mirror your speeds on up to eight other devices within 30 feet by accessing the GameLink tab. You can use additional devices to share speeds with an audience, your opponent, or to avoid the glare of the sun and better see the display.



 

What is the best location for your device?

You can use Velocity in a backyard, a field, or almost anywhere as long as the players are at least 12 meters (40 feet) apart and the device is 6 meters (20 feet) to the side. 

Place your device on either side of the field in the placement zones below. The FaceTime front camera needs to face the path of the ball.

Balls can lose 15-25 mph (30 kph) in the arc of their flight so choose the zone of speed you want to capture.

 

What is the best direction to serve?

Hit down the midline, through the Accuracy Zone which is directly in front of the device, for the best accuracy. 

If you hit at an angle to the device, balls closer to your device will look faster. Correct for the amount angle as shown below.

 

How do you get the best performance from Velocity?

Velocity needs bright sunlight. Velocity is recommended for outdoor use only. Indoor lights, dusk or stadium lights generally have too little light for the camera.


Velocity prefers a background that is motionless. Movement in the background from wind in trees, crowds, or people on the field can result in Velocity discarding readings. Avoid motion in the Camera Zone shown below. Place Velocity on the side of the field giving it the most motionless background.

 

Troubleshooting



The most common reason Velocity will discard readings in cricket is because the bowling is too low for the tilt of the device. Sometimes the turf tilts the device too much up to the air. Try to ensure the tilt is almost perfectly vertical or less than or equal to 30 degrees like Apple’s iPad SmartCover. 

The second most common reason for missed readings is due to too much motion in the background. Move Velocity to one side of the field or the other to limit motion from wind in trees or an audience.

For additional troubleshooting help, see the Settings page.