Page 1 of 1

Laser training apps

Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2021 12:15 am
by AlterCocker
I tested the free versions of five laser target apps, with a Pink Rhino .380 cartridge. These are my preliminary observations, just my take on them. Your mileage may vary. None of the apps have yet convinced me that they are the one to stick with. Every one of these apps puts a heavy drain on your phone battery. Note the paid versions could be quite different, and I’d hope they offer more options for skipping setup procedures and saving results. Please give feedback, critiques, or requests for more detail.


iTarget
This app hasn’t been updated since 2017 and it shows. It’s a bit confusing at first because, unlike the other apps, it doesn’t announce that it is time to commence or give any cue that you can start. You can download a free target from their website; it works best with that; it works poorly or not at all with other targets, not seeing shots or automatically registering false shots when you aren’t even shooting. When things are ready, you click the forward arrow and when you see the thumbs-up you can start. It is very simplistic. It does give you a score and hit count, but those aren’t always accurate. It gives nice audio feedback for the shots and has a nice graphic of the bullet holes. The only way to save a target is by doing a screen capture, but be careful not to move the phone as you do that. The image of your bullet holes isn’t linked to the image of the target, so if you shift the phone the holes shift position.

Laser Hit
The most complex of the apps, and you have to click nine or ten things for setup each time you use the app. It’s faster if you turn off the voice prompts. There are also a number of custom settings available, like a timer, number of shots per session, hit size, and if you want to automatically start new sessions, the time between sessions. It gives lots of info- shot total, overlapping shots, time elapsed. You can start a new session remotely by shooting a designated area to the right of the target. It gives good audio feedback. You need to download and use their free target. It also works well with the free targets from iTarget, but it often fails with other targets, either not registering shots or recording ghost shots.


Strikeman
Gives the most extensive data, and one of only two apps that saves your sessions, and from which you can view your target images at a later date, and it also gives you a lot of session metrics that you can review. When you launch the app you have to go through a cumbersome and awkward multiple-step process to set it up for a session. If you don’t select through all the setup options, it won’t calibrate the screen or start a session. When you set it up, you can set a number of additional sessions automatically launch additional sessions, but if you do that, you can’t see your completed targets until you have finished all the sessions. It gives audio feedback for each hit. It works well with the iTarget target or other simple black and white targets. Sometimes it works well with the Laserhit target but sometimes produces ghost shots. With other targets, it often doesn’t see shots or registers loads of false shots. If your target has a red or orange bullseye it might see that as a laser hit and register ghost shots non-stop.

G-Strike
This is the easiest to set up and start using, and the most forgiving app in terms of using whatever target you want. It’s the only one that would work with a reactive black target with the orange bullseye (although it does miss occasional shots on those targets). After each session, you can swipe across the screen to review all your shots one by one. Other than that, it’s minimalist, no features, no options, and no audio feedback for your hits, and you can only save your results with a screen capture.

Mantis Laser Academy
Very easy initial setup. You need to download their free targets from https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0863/ ... gets_2.pdf
Four different free shooting options: open shooting, bullseye 5 shot, Duel-single shot, and shot from guard/low ready. It’s the only one I tried that doesn’t have a way to zoom in on the target to fill the screen, but it still seems to detect in high resolution. The graphic display of the targets is less compelling or visually appealing than in some of the other apps. Since it only works with their targets, it automatically senses them and doesn’t require the centering and alignment that the other apps need. It automatically saves all your targets and data to your phone. Initially, I had a few undetected shots and a number of ghost shots, but the more I used it the more ghost shots I got. I sent in a report, and the response was to use a dark background behind the target and make sure that the lighting is even. I tried a dark background; the light in the room where I shoot is generally even, with non-flickering natural light florescent tubes, and I tried multiple different lighting options but continued to get between 5 and 20 ghost shots for every ten actual shots.

Re: Laser training apps

Posted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 8:32 pm
by AlterCocker
Screen captures of the five apps. In all five cases I fired 10 shots from about 12 yards, the lighting was the same on all of these.

iTarget
minimalist app but nice graphic quality
Detected all 10 shots
Apr 24_iTarget Pro.jpg


Laser Hit
complex setup needs to be done for each session
Detected all 10 shots
Apr 24 Laser Hit.jpg

Re: Laser training apps

Posted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 8:36 pm
by AlterCocker
Strikeman
You can't zoom in during setup, so to fill the screen and get a close view you have to position the phone very close to the target.
Detected all 10 shots
Apr 24 Strikeman.jpg


G-Sight
Only detected 7 shots
Apr 24_G-Sight LTP.jpg


Mantis Laser Academy
Lots of ghost shots. i shot 10, this session shows 16. Note where it says 0 seconds between shots, those are the ghosts.
If you zoom on the image you can see that 1 and ghost 2, and 3 and ghost 4, are not close to each other. Doesn't seem likely that it's due to lateral laser movement during the trigger pull/strike.
Apr 24 Laser Academy.jpg

Re: Laser training apps

Posted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 9:20 pm
by cooper
Good post. I've been trying to figure out a good setup.