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Knowing the precise distance between you and your target can be incredibly helpful whether you’re an archer, a hunter or a golfer. Impaired depth perception can make these activities tricky, particularly if like me, your vision isn’t exactly 20/20.
A quality rangefinder eliminates all of the guesswork; however, the numerous brands and slight differences between models can make it difficult to choose one.
In this guide, we will help you find the best rangefinder for your needs and budget in a simple, straightforward way. We also provide you with detailed reviews of the top five products, so head on down and see which rangefinders made the cut!
Top 10 Rangefinders Chart
Some Things to Set Your Sights On
- Budget. Many of the cheaper rangefinders are comparable in performance to more expensive models. Price certainly isn’t everything here.
- Additional Features. Many rangefinders will have additional features such as angle compensation and other to make the use of the unit great.
- Size and Weight: Aim for a rangefinder that is small, compact and easy to store/carry around on your neck, pocket or belt.
- Water/Shock Proof. It’s well worth the extra price to invest in a water/shockproof model, particularly if you are planning on hunting in adverse conditions.
- Range. Make sure the range capabilities are in line with what you want to use the rangefinder for (i.e. hunting vs. golfing).
- Eye Relief. Multi-layered lenses, anti-glare lenses provide a crisp, clear optics which translates to beautiful images which are easy on the eyes.
- Battery Type. Most rangefinders will be powered by some form of lithium-ion battery (ensure that it has one) which will provide hours and hours of use between charges.
Top 5 Best Rangefinder Reviews
First on our list of best rangefinders is the Optics Ranger 1000 with Horizontal Component Distance Rangefinder by Vortex.
This rangefinder is capable of measuring potential targets of up to a thousand yards. The great range of this particular rangefinder makes it a perfect product for both hunters, shooters and golfers alike. Its ergonomic and lightweight design means that its comfortable in your hand as well as hanging from your neck or clipped to your belt.
The rangefinder has multiple performance-enhancing features such as horizontal component distance mode (provides an angle-compensated distance reading), a line of sight mode (true line of sight distance reading) and scanning mode (useful when panning across a landscape or tracking a live deer). The readout can also be viewed in meters as well as yards.
The intuitive display and menu keeps its utility simple yet preserves its high performance, and the fully multi-coated, anti-reflective lenses provide optimal light transmission and brighter views. The high-quality diopter lens ensures that an out of focus image is a thing of the past.
The Ranger 1000 design boasts O-ring seals and rubber armor, which translates into a unit that is both waterproof and shockproof.
All in all the Vortex Optics Ranger 1000 with Horizontal Component Distance Rangefinder is a brilliant all round product.
Next on our list of rangefinders is the VPRODLX Golf Rangefinder by TecTecTec.
This premium range finding product is the ultimate toy for golfing enthusiasts. With its accurate 5 to 600 yard range it’s more than capable of satisfying even the pickiest golfer.
The high quality multi-layered, anti-glare lenses provide bright, crystal clear images creating a highly enjoyable experience. Plus, objects viewed through this rangefinder appears six time larger due to the 6X magnification monocular lens – a handy feature when planning your next shot.
Another useful feature in the VPRODLX Golf Rangefinder is its flag seeker capabilities. This feature is utilized highly sensitive PinSensor technology that can measure overlapping objects allowing you to locate and find the range to the pin.
Though not as rugged as the Ranger 1000, it has also been designed to be waterproof which ensure that you will be able to use the range finder even during the rainiest golf game!
The TecTecTec VPRODLX Golf Rangefinder is powered by a lithium-ion battery which is big enough to power the rangefinder for several rounds of golf without having to recharge.
So if you are an avid golfer, this rangefinder would be very useful to you.
Third on our list is the TecTecTec VPRO500 Golf Rangefinder – another strong contender for golfing enthusiasts.
This lightweight (7 ounces) rangefinder boasts three unique modes which are used to accurately locate the flagstick up to a distance of 540 yards away.
The first mode is otherwise known as the “first target priority” allows for the accurate range detection of the flagstick despite distracting backgrounds: this is achieved through the application of auto-target acquisition technology which ignores background signals. The second mode is termed “distance target priority” measures how far that “distracting background” really is. The third mode is called the “ProScan” and is used to measure other objects other than the flag.
Much like the VPRODLX, the VPRO500 is water resistant (not waterproof mind) with the battery pack being to prevent moisture intake and corrosion. Though lightweight, the VPRO500 is made of tough materials while the cushioned case prevents against impact damage.
The high-tech multi-coated optics boast a six times magnification and accuracy which is correct to within one yard facilitating high image resolution and clarity. The advanced circuitry, finger-intuitive control all contribute to the general ease of use of the rangefinder.
Next on our list is the Nikon 8397 ACULON AL11 Laser Rangefinder.
This rangefinder, like most commercial rangefinders, can be used by golfers; however, the Nikon 8397 ACULON AL11 mainly marketed as a hunting rangefinder. Whether it is used for golf or hunting the Nikon is certainly a case of more bang for your buck.
Nikon is widely known as a leading optics brand, and the company’s high-quality imaging technology has been seamlessly transferred into the ACULON AL11. Multi-layered coating facilitates high light transmittance across the entire light spectrum through a 20mm lens which is capable of 6 times magnification to visualize and measure up to 550 yards away.
The weather-resistant ACULON AL11 weighs in at a light 4.4 ounces, and its compact design makes it very comfortable to use when hunting or playing 18 holes. In fact, it is so compact that it’s smaller than most smart phones! It also comes with several useful features such as priority mode to better detect stationary objects behind moving grass as well as auto off capabilities to save power.
The intuitive display is simple to use, and the screen is basic and uncluttered. The settings do not have to be adjusted, simply point, and the ACULON AL11 instantly detects the distance farthest to the screen either as one measurement or a continuous read.
Last but not least on our list of best rangefinders is the Truth ARC 4x20mm Bowhunting Laser Rangefinder by Bushnell, a rangefinder specific for the archers among us.
The range of the Truth ARC with Clear Shot is 850 yards (impressive) even when targeting highly reflective objects. However, trees and deer aren’t typically reflective, and attempting to measure the range of these is typically limited to about 600 yard for trees 200 yards for deer.
The distance may put you off, but with Clear Shot (this mode also ensures your lane of fire is free from obstacles as well as angle compensation) you can trust the reading the first time around without changing modes.
For archers, the rangefinder’s bow mode will tell you both the range (7-200 yards), the angle to your target and even the highest point your arrow will follow through the air. The Truth ARC is also exception simple to use but can be complicated to setup. Calibration of Clear Shot requires you to set up the rangefinder to match the speed of your bow. Once set up it only has one button to switch between modes and well-placed buttons to zoom, and the CR2 provides thousands of reads between charges.
The unit is neither rain nor fog proof though it is sturdy enough to survive being dropped.