Best Rangefinder Buying Guide – Top Reviews 2017

So, you’ve decided that you want to invest in a rangefinder for the longer term, and you want to be sure that your money will be well spent? This can be a surprisingly difficult purchase, even if you don’t have any special needs. Rangefinders are quite complex in their designs and the market offers a huge variety of solutions fit for different uses.

Finding the best rangefinder will depend on what you want to do with it. A golf rangefinder will be different from one used for hunting, for example, and even though there is some overlap in the functionality, there are certain design specifics that you can’t compensate for. Additionally, some high-end models can offer you the complete set of features needed in both types of applications, but it’s usually not worth spending the money on those unless you’re a professional.

Golf rangefinders

Golf rangefinders are typically configured to easily identify close targets and ignore everything in the distance. This means that your rangefinder will typically “lock on” to the flag and keep everything around it out of the picture, which is typically exactly what you want. The use of rangefinders on the field is still a controversial topic, but as long as you don’t try to bring it to any professional games, you should be fine.

The TecTecTec VPRO500 Golf Rangefinder is one of the best rangefinders on the market if you want something that works out of the box and requires little maintenance, while also not costing too much money. Its range goes up to 540 yards, and can scan for targets continuously without additional user action. The actual scanning accuracy is about 1 yard, which is a pretty impressive figure for a device in this price range. The display provides convenient and quick access to all important meters, and the UI is clear and readable.

Last but not least, the VPRO500 offers considerable portability and features a lightweight, compact design that makes it an easy addition to your golfing accessories.

If you want something slightly cheaper but not significantly less functional, the Nikon 8397 ACULON AL11 Laser Rangefinder is one of the top choices on the market at the moment. It’s renowned for its user-friendly design and great versatility, and it can be just as useful for golfing as it is for hunting. Take note that this model prioritizes long-distance targets, so it would be more suitable for golfing on a course with lots of bushes, trees and other obstacles that would confuse a close-range rangefinder.

Finally, we have the Bushnell Tour V4 JOLT Golf Laser Limited Edition Rangefinder, an excellent choice for those willing to splurge a little more on their purchase. It costs almost twice as much as the models above, but it’s extremely versatile and comes with many features that should please even the most pretentious users. Its range detection works at distances from 5 to 1,000 yards, and the model is specifically certified for use in professional tournaments. Calling it the best rangefinder in its class would not be a stretch at all, and it’s well worth its price for those who know what they’re looking for.

There are some special sports features as well, such as the high-speed focusing capability, and the included protective case. Long-term support is excellent as well, though this should probably go without saying for anyone who’s used a Bushnell product before.

Hunting rangefinders

Hunting rangefinders are the exact opposite of golf ones in their core functionality – they are designed to ignore objects close to the rangefinder and will try to lock on to something in the far distance. This typically requires more complex computations and may be a bit less precise, depending on the environment. A top-class hunting rangefinder will offer you enough precision to lock on to two objects that are close to each other visually.

The TecTecTec ProWild Hunting Rangefinder is a great starting choice if you’re not quite sure what kinds of features you need yet, and don’t want to invest too much. It still offers great quality over its competitors in this price range, and is more than acceptable for taking it out even in a more competitive environment. Its range goes up to 540 yards with a 1-yard accuracy in its measurements, and you can set up your shot entirely through the display. The model is great in the portability department as well, making it a good choice for hunters who like to pack light.

If you’re looking for something a little more advanced, the Bushnell 202208 Bone Collector Edition 4x Laser Rangefinder should work fine for you. For a little extra cash, you get additional weather resistance, simplified operation, and a fast and reliable device overall. This model does tend to find its targets a little more quickly than the ProWild, and most other models in its price range, but it might feel a bit limiting due to the variety of its configuration options in the hands of some professionals. Still, for those looking for a quick reading while they’re preparing their rifle, this should do the job perfectly well.

And if you have a little more money to spend and want nothing but the top, you should give the Vortex Optics Ranger 1000 with Horizontal Component Distance Rangefinder RRF-101 a try.

It’s the best rangefinder in its class, offering everything you’ll ever need in a device of its type, and even though the feature set can be a little overwhelming for beginners at first, it’s definitely worth familiarizing yourself with everything the device is capable of doing.

It works great in brightly lit environments due to its anti-reflective lens, for example. It can also prove to be a very rugged little device in all kinds of environments, even in harsher weather. Its battery can also last a lot longer than those of similar competing models, making the Vortex Optics Ranger 1000 the ideal choice for those looking to spend more time out on the trail. Overall a solid choice for those who know what they need and can afford to buy it, but probably not the ideal solution for a beginner.