You have your man cave, right? It’s perfect? Not without a putting green. How else are you going to disappear for hours without an excuse?

No man cave? We feel you. Not everyone can claim ownership of a personal sanctuary, but that doesn’t mean you can’t live the dream with our own in-house putting green.

To narrow our search for the best portable indoor putting green, we settled on a few basic requirements:

  • $600 or less
  • An actual hole for the ball to drop into
  • Putts of at least 6’ or more in length
  • True/straight roll (surface can be leveled)
  • Functional for both right & left handed players

Two putting greens met all of the requirements: the Tour Links PuttMaster and the Provoto Advantage.

Although our two choices are similar in design, there are some key differences between the two.

tale-of-the-tape-indoor-putting-greens

Best Overall

Provoto Advantage

0024_imh0741

Overview

Realizing that we all don’t have a room to dedicate to a permanent putting green in, the Provoto Advantage provides a solution that not only offers a small footprint when in use, it also folds in half into a standing position that allows for storage in a corner or closet with minimal effort.

The Provoto not only meets all of our requirements; the green includes a laser for alignment, a RoboCup for ball return, and is oriented in such a way (sloped) that even missed putts are returned.

Two knobs are used to adjust feet up and down to level the unit (a level is provided with your kit), and re-leveling after storing the green is a snap. The same knobs can also be used to create breaking putts.

The Provoto Advantage uses billiard fabric for a fast and true roll, so you can focus on line and speed with a stimp of 11-12.

0027_imh0749

The green measures 8’x14″ and includes a separate foot stand to ensure you are standing level with the putting surface. Also included in our kit was a laser that sits at the back of the green near the cup (this laser is used to provide you with a line for aiming and to ensure you are rolling your ball on line)

Cup reducers are included for those looking for a bit more challenge. The reducers provide sizes of 3″ and 2″ and easily drop in (the robot cup still works with the reducers in place).

0019_imh0733

Provoto offers greens in either 8′ or 10′ lengths.

The Pros

  • Easily stored.
  • Minimal footprint.
  • Returns each putt back to your feet.
  • Laser provides confidence that you are putting on line.

The Cons

  • Initial assembly/setup may seem a little overwhelming (it’s really not).
  • On tall carpet, standing on the foot stand may give a slightly unstable feel (minimal, but worth noting).
  • While the putting green is sturdy, it’s just delicate enough that I feel the need to put the green away when I know my 15-month-old will be looking for “new toys” around the house. 

Best for the Man Cave

Tour Links PuttMaster

The Basics

Built on a rugged plastic base, the PuttMaster is ready to handle any abuse you might throw at it.

Simple is the game here – the Tour Links green rolls flat, which leaves all putts sitting at the other end of the green. Some will argue this is an advantage as it forces you to take a break every few putts and then get into your putting stance/setup again.

The heft of the green means it’s a bit more of a permanent install. It’s not a landmark event to take it apart and move it, but it’s not designed for easy transport.

Given the solid base, you can set this green up on most any surface – just add some shims for leveling. 

The putting surface is an artificial turf that rolls true and has a stimp of 10.5. Included in the kit is a “stroke groover block” which aims to help you measure your stroke for consistency. There is also a cup reducer to create a smaller hole/target, and an alignment string with mounts for both ends of the green are included to help you see if your ball is on-line or if you’re even aimed/aligned correctly to start.

Oh, and a flag – because every green needs a flag to pull out before you start putting (though I think the purpose of the flag is so that you don’t have to bend all the way over to retrieve your balls).

Tour Links PuttMaster is offered in 7′, 9′ and 13′ lengths.

The Pros

  • Bomb-proof construction.
  • Permanent feeling once setup.
  • Fills out a man cave without entirely taking over.

The Cons

  • No ball return (could purchase a RoboCup on your own).
  • Takes up a decent amount of space.
  • Not easily stored if you need the space back.

 Final Thoughts

With allowances for potential configuration differences, the Provoto Advantage and Tour Links PuttMaster are similarly priced. We suspect you’ll be completely satisfied with either. Those looking for a semi-permanent fixture, or looking for the lowest price on a quality option, may lean towards the heavier and overall more solidly built Tour Links.

Overall we give a slight edge to the Provoto Advantage, and that’s based solely on features like its laser alignment system and fold-up storage; the latter making it a bit easier to stow it away when necessary.