A few years ago, I set out to find the best bat sensor, or swing analyzer, as some people call it. I did an in-depth comparison of the best ones available at the time.
After my testing, the Swing Tracker from Diamond Kinetics rose to the top.
I initially liked it because it provided a lot more data than its competitors (here is the original review).
Since then, the Swing Tracker has changed a LOT, so I felt that an updated product review was needed.
Below, I’ll talk about the features, pros and cons of the Diamond Kinetics Swing Tracker.
Summary – What does the Swing Tracker do?
The Swing Tracker is a sensor that you can attach to any bat (or you can buy the Smartbat, which has the sensor built in… more on that below).
When you swing, the sensor sends important data about your swing to your smart phone or tablet.
- Learn about your swing (Measures 11 data points. My personal favorites are: Hand Speed, Barrel Speed, Approach Angle, Distance in Zone.)
- See a 3D video of your swing, with data points attached
- Compare side-by-side against your own past swings, or against friends (Track changes in your swing over time)
- Compare your stats against averages for your age group or skill level (Data provided by Diamond Kinetics)
- Share your swing data with friends, coaches, and instructors
- Get feedback, drill suggestions, and a plan for improvement from professional coaches via the app (free if you are a paid member)
See below for pros, cons, and my final take-away.
Features of the Swing Tracker
1. Tracks 11 different swing metrics
This is originally what attracted me to the SwingTracker over the Zepp sensor, was the better, more meaningful metrics available.
Applied power, Max acceleration, Impact Momentum, Max Hand Speed, Max Barrel Speed, Speed Efficiency, Trigger to Impact Time, Approach Angle, Hand Cast Distance, Distance in the Zone, Hand Path (More on what each of these are below).
2. 3D swing path tracker (with option to compare different swings side by side)
The swing analyzer creates a 3D image so you can track your swing visually.
You’ll be able to see important aspects of your swing, such as:
- How steep your bat angle is to the zone, or
- How long your barrel works through the hitting zone
You can change the angle of the image (open side, front view, back view, or over top).
Additional features of the 3D swing path image is you can compare 2 swings against each other and see how they differ.
Or, side by side comparison in 3D mode…
3. Video syncs with metrics and 3D
Inside the Swing Tracker app, you can access the the camera on your iPhone or iPad and take video of your swing.
The beauty of this feature is that the video attaches automatically to the swing along w/ metric points and 3D swing path image.
Adding a video can easily be done just by pressing the video icon inside the app.
Personally I only use the feature a few times during a session, just so I can see if my swing looks any different. Each swing is numbered in a session by date, so organization is easy and all swings can be easily retrieved.
You can create or join groups if you are part of a team, or to easily share all your hitting data with a coach or instructor.
While the group feature is available now, Diamond Kinetics is working toward adding a new dimension to this called “Challenges”
According to their website, this feature is “Coming soon – SwingTracker Challenges allows you to work on your game while also, bringing a fun, game-like element to practice. Challenge teammates to a Home Run Derby. See who can hit for the most distance. Create in-app leaderboards and more.”
5. Line Graph feature
This is an easy way to plot all of your swing data measurements and compares them against your own averages, or compare against the nationwide averages of other players in the your chosen skill level.
6. Easily track improvements over time
A calendar keeps all swings organized so you can retrieve or see old swings quickly & easily.
7. Cordless charging dock station
Just set the sensor on top of the charger. Super easy.
8. Access to DK Experts App
This is pretty cool. You can take your swing metrics & share them with hitting instructors who will interpret the data and provide content and drills to you personally, so you can see improvement in your swing. The plan & drills change along with your progress. (This comes with the monthly subscription)
9. Live support
Let’s be honest, this is a huge deal. when you need help, you don’t want to be digging through obscure webpages for contact info and then put on hold for hours, or wait days to get a response email.
Diamond Kinetics mades it easy to get help if you need it, which is huge plus for me. If you have any questions, the app gives you easy access to live customer support: 7 days a week, 12 hours a day.
10. Axon Sports App (Pitch recognition games)
When you subscribe to the DK monthly membership, you also get the Axon Sports app for free.
This is a pitch recognition app where you can choose different pitchers and practice seeing pitches out of their hand & decide if it is a ball or strike, & even what pitch is being thrown.
The app is pre-loaded with a bunch of different pitchers. So you choose your pitcher, and then choose the game you want to play.
The 2 games are:
- Pitch Recognition
There’s 15 different levels per pitcher. The faster you recognize the pitch, the more points you get.
Personally I really liked the Pitch Recognition more than the Ball / Strike game (it didn’t have the same feel as standing in the batters box).
But the Pitch Recognition game was fantastic, and I would recommend it for…
- Learning what different pitches look like out of the pitchers hand
- To work on recognizing the pitches sooner
- Practice different methods for pitch recognition, to find out what works for you. (For example, you might try soft focus vs hard focus.)
How much does the Swing Tracker cost?
The sensor is $99 (or you can get it for $89 if you use our discount code, ” pbi10″ )
Plus, there’s a Premium Hitter subscription you’ll need to pay for if you want access to all the features and metrics. More on that below.
Free vs Paid Subscription Options
What you get for Free / Without subscription
- 4 swing metrics (Max Acceleration, Barrel Speed, Approach Angle, Impact Momentum)
- History limited to last session only
- Unlimited reps on 1 pitcher with Axon Sports App
Monthly Cost: Free
What you get with the Premium Hitter Subscription
- Access to all 11 swing metrics
- All features including 3D swing path, Video, Damage Potential, & Groups
- Complete History for you to go back and review any time
- Access to DK expert
- Access to Axon Sports App (pitch recognition games)
Cost: $4.99 monthly per hitter or $54.99 annually
Pros & Cons of the Diamond Kinetics Swing Tracker
The Data. I really love the in-depth metrics offered by this sensor. It’s a powerful piece of equipment that provides a lot of useful data that you’d have no way of getting otherwise.
When compared to the Blast sensor, some of the metrics are the same, and some are not. If I were using the Blast, I would definitely miss the Swing Tracker’s Hand Path and Impact momentum metrics (Impact momentum is a calculation based on your bat speed and the weight of the bat. This is a good metric to study to see if you are using the best bat for your swing).
Also, coming in 2019, Diamond Kinetics will be adding:
- Exit Velocity,
- Carry Distance,
- Launch Angle
No equipment upgrades will be required to get the new feature.
As far as I know, Blast does not have any of the those metrics.
Ease of getting started and user-friendly. I used to consider this a con, but Diamond Kinetics has come a LONG way as far as being more user friendly and easy to use now than they used to be.
Using the Data. If you have the paid subscription, this is a pro. You’ll have free access to the DK Experts, who are top notch coaches (they also work with Major League teams) to look over your data and make personalized recommendations for improvement, as well as create a hitting plan with drills for you to work on improving those metrics.
I found that the video feature produced grainy compressed video. This wasn’t really a huge issue for me, since I’m after the info from the sensor and the video feature is more about knowing how the data syncs with your swing.
Occasionally the bluetooth connectivity was an issue. If I put the sensor down and came back to ten minutes later, I would have to “wake up” the connection. It really isn’t a difficult process, but still isn’t ultra convenient either.
Premium membership required to get all the features… Just so that you’re aware, you won’t get all the features listed in this review unless you are paying monthly for the membership.
When you purchase the sensor, you’ll get 12 months free for one hitter. After that, it’s $4.95 a month to get everything. If you decide to not to pay monthly, you’ll only get 4 of the 11 metrics and you can only see your more recent session rather than your entire history for all time. (Just FYI, the Blast sensor’s premium membership is also $5 a month).
Also, if you are using your sensor with more than one hitter, you’ll need a subscription for each person.
The Swing Tracker by Diamond Kinetics is a great tool for hitters. It’s a powerful piece of equipment that provides a lot of useful data that you’d have no way of getting otherwise. Plus the access to real coaches and pitch recognition software add a ton of additional value.
Where to get it?
Our product reviews contain affiliate links and discount codes. It doesn’t cost you anything extra, and it helps us keep the 100’s of pages of baseball instruction from the pros on this website free for everyone. So thank you for your support! Also, here’s my promise to you: 100% honest reviews, not swayed by any kickbacks. I have rejected many products who wanted to pay us to promote them. I only recommend the products that I have tested myself, or what other professional baseball players are using.
Coming soon: Detailed comparison of the Blast Motion sensor vs Diamond Kinetics Swing Tracker. (Now that Zepp has been forced to stop selling sensors in the US, due to a patent infringement lawsuit, that really only leaves the Blast Motion sensor and the Diamond Kinetics SwingTracker as the best swing analyzer sensors.)