Golfers swear by their golf rangefinders! I, for one, don’t ever head for a game without my trusty device in tow.
But there was a time when I used to shy away from buying a rangefinder. They are too costly, I thought. I don’t need one, I reasoned. But as my performance in the game grew worse, I realized that I was really in need of one.
So today I’m ready to resolve all your doubts and after going through this comprehensive guide, you’ll be able to settle on the perfect product in no time.
*Jump to individual reviews for each of the golf rangefinders by clicking here.
Those looking to score a hole in one and improve their gameplay instantly will appreciate the TecTecTec ULT-X Golf Rangefinder. For starters, this product comes with a Target Lock Technology (TLT) that automatically enables you to catch flags up to a range of 450 yards. Moreover, its high-quality magnification is excellent for catching hazards up to 1,000 yards.
Continuous Scan Mode
One of the essential techniques you can use to score better and improve your game is gauging accurate distances of objects. The continuous scan mode on this Golf Rangefinder allows you to scan distances continually while producing precise readings in meters or yards – which can be customized according to your preferences.
Target Lock Technology With Vibrational Alert
Need help measuring the precise distance to flags in front of wooded areas? Use the Target Lock Technology, which efficiently measures overlapping targets while ‘locking on’ to them using the Pin Seeker. Furthermore, all background objects will automatically blur, enhancing the visibility of targets immediately.
The vibrational alert feature is fantastic for alerting you as soon as the pin seeker locks on your desired targets. This automatically enhances visibility, enabling you to experience better gameplay without distractions.
The next mode is also commonly called the Closest Distance Object Priority Function. You can use this to immediately detect the distance of the closest object to a target in the case of multiple objects. Moreover, you can use it to accurately calculate the elevated adjusted distance of an object close to a target.
Turn on the Slope Mode easily by pulling out the attached faceplate for quick and accurate readings. However, you can easily switch to the scan mode to get a quick overview of desired distances of objects near targets.
|High-quality, crisp images||The vibration during ‘lock into targets’ is not very strong|
|A quick switch from Scan Mode to Slope Mode|
|Lightweight and easy to handle|
|Moisture-resistant and rain-proof design|
Rangefinders are an essential tool in the golfers’ arsenal and can tell you the exact distance between your location and the target. This can help you to select the club type best suited for the hit, and hence nail that hole in one.
Rangefinders come in multiple shapes, sizes, technologies, and prices. For this reason, before settling on the right one, several factors must be considered. And that’s precisely why I prepared this guide for you.
After going through the entire material, you’ll be ready to make the right selection.
Factors To Consider
The first thing that you need to consider while choosing a rangefinder is the magnification level. I think the magnification level should be at least five times the normal level for the rangefinder to be useful.
For rangefinders that have pin-seeking technology, distant targets are not a problem. These types of rangefinders can concentrate on the pin, and ignore the other items in the surroundings. This makes them particularly useful for planning your shots.
The next thing that you need to consider when choosing a solid rangefinder for golf is battery life. Just imagine, you are about to take that last shot, and your rangefinder goes out. The frustration can be overwhelming enough to cost you that game. And surely, you don’t want that!
To make sure that this doesn’t happen, check out the battery capacity of the rangefinder before making the payment. If you are playing, say, 36 holes on any day, then you need a rangefinder that can hold sufficient power to last that long. After all, there’s no way you’re going to get a charging point in the middle of the golf course.
Golfing is an activity where you already have to carry around a lot of things (that’s why you have the caddy). On top of that, if you have to lug around a bulky rangefinder, then things can get inconvenient pretty fast.
For the best results, you need to settle on a rangefinder that can be easily carried in a pocket or in a golf bag. Also, before starting to use the rangefinder, make sure to become conversant with the instructions. This can come in handy when using the rangefinder in the middle of the game.
I consider myself to be a fair-weather golfer, which is to say I only play when it’s beautiful and sunny outside. But even then, you can get caught in inclement weather without prior notice. Especially in the case of competitions where you have no choice but to continue.
In such situations, it’s best to have a durable rangefinder that can withstand the elements and continue to give you the required service. Ideally, you should use a waterproof rangefinder that can protect the internal components from getting wet and damaged. Many rangefinders have rubber bodies that provide the dual benefit of waterproofing and secure gripping.
Further, in any sport, accidents happen. I, for one, am in the habit of dropping my rangefinder more often than not. Now I’m not implying clumsiness(though my wife would disagree!), but I think the make of your rangefinder should be durable enough to withstand common bruises.
Advantages Of Using Golf Rangefinders
So, now you know the essential factors that need to be kept in mind for zeroing in on the right rangefinder for your needs. But why do you even need one? That’s what we are going to discuss next.
They Are Accurate
Golf rangefinders allow the player to measure the distance to the target accurately. This makes for exceptional precision and helps the players improve their skills in the field. With rangefinders, you don’t have to depend on yardage books or markers to take stock of the distance.
They Complement The Human Eye
I am an architect by profession, and for me, the human eye is nothing short of a precision instrument. Still, at times even precision instruments need enhancements, and that’s exactly what the best golf rangefinders offer. By acting as a vision magnifier, they allow me to target better and see what the naked eye may miss.
Advantages Of A Golf Rangefinder With Slope
If you want to see an improvement in your game and tactics, get yourself a rangefinder. Previously, calculating a map of the golf course would have been done mentally because a rangefinder did not exist.
But with the presence of a golf rangefinder today, why would you go to great lengths in terms of mind mapping the place? Let the machine do its work while you practice your moves with clubs.
Learning your club ranges
A difference of a few yards would lead to overshooting or undershooting. The rangefinder helps to understand the range for each club, so my hits are always on point. This level of precision is almost impossible without this product. The extra information heightened my skill level as well as gave me a lot of confidence.
Pro golfers always indulge in a few practice rounds around the course to get the hang of it. They would want to know about the location of the holes and the distances between themselves and the holes. I always make sure to use a rangefinder with a slope calculation to understand the limitations of a location.
This way, you can decide to use the right club that fits your requirements. I have personally played with the wrong club and have faced significant difficulties and would advise you to check twice before the game.
Speed up play
It takes some time to find the mark, measure distances, and choose the right club accordingly and then shoot. With a rangefinder, I did it within 30 seconds. Once I found my mark, I would lock it, and according to the distance shown on my device, I would pick a club and shoot the ball. This actually keeps my partner happy, too, as he does not have to wait for too long.
What To Expect
The above must have made it clear that a golf rangefinder is a handy item. But as with everything, there’s a particular learning curve to this that must be crossed. It pays to get used to all the features and operations of your rangefinder before actually hitting the course.
To do this, the best path that you can take is to study the user manual that comes with the product. Even if there are not enough instructions on the box, make sure to use the web and check out some guides regarding how to use your particular model.
Another best practice that can be adopted is to check out YouTube videos on the topic. Search for the particular model you have bought, and then go through some instructional videos that can help you get acquainted with the nitty-gritty of using the golf rangefinder. For a guide on how to use a golf rangefinder, see the video below by Madi Brown:
Even so, don’t expect things to be super comfortable from the get-go. It takes some time to get into the swing of things, and you need to allow yourself that required practice. Start by measuring small distances, and then go ahead and measure larger ones.
If you are having issues with measuring stability then check my guide on how to keep a golf rangefinder steady when aiming.
But all things said and done, I’d suggest you never turn off your wits. Make sure you corroborate manual measurements with the rangefinder readings before taking the shot. After all, it doesn’t hurt to measure twice.
This is one of the highest-selling golf laser rangefinders which I came upon. With a stylish finish, I was impressed by how it looked as well as the superb operational capacity. The product is stacked with high-end features and it comes at an affordable price. Here’s everything I liked about it:
Accuracy and distance
Measuring the distance has always been of crucial importance while playing golf, and this laser rangefinder has a range of 540 yards. It is not very long but will cover up the majority of golf courses.
I only had to pull the trigger while pointing at the target, and if the goal was too far, I could use the 6x magnification for better vision. Once your target is pinned down with the PinSensor technology, it will be saved and locked so as there is no chance of you measuring extra distance beyond the point.
This budget rangefinder also comes with a slope function, which makes sure that the distance is adjusted accordingly, so you know what the shot will play like. This is an important feature, especially for fields where the terrain is rough and has many sloped surfaces.
If you’re not interested in the slope functionality, then check TecTecTec VPRO500 which is arguably the best golf rangefinder under $150.
The rangefinder comes with a pouch that is shock-resistant and weather-resistant. This pouch was extremely useful when the golf cart lost balance and fell over one of the days. I came out with a few scratches, but the device had no marks on it. Also, even without the pouch, the rangefinder is made with rainproof materials and will not get affected by adverse weather conditions.
|Affordable LASER rangefinder with pin-sensor technology||All plastic exterior belies the product’s durable build|
|Ability to turn off the slope measurement|
|Durable, portable, and lightweight build|
|Fully equipped with all accessories|
|Multiple scanning modes that are suitable for every situation|
|Accurate within a yard|
Those looking for speed and precision in a lightweight and compact body should consider the Nikon Coolshot 20. This golf rangefinder weighs only 4.4 ounces, enabling you to carry it in your pocket during any game conveniently. Furthermore, its compact size allows you to store it anywhere without any hassle.
First Target Priority Mode
There are multiple targets and objects on a golf course, making it challenging to gauge distances correctly. However, the revolutionary technology used on the Coolshot 20 zeroes in immediately on the closest target. This feature is especially beneficial when there are multiple objects, which can be confusing.
Continuous Scanning Mode
Using the continuous scanning mode on this rangefinder is incredibly straightforward. Begin by pushing the power button, which automatically starts up the tool. It will continuously scan for 8 seconds, giving you a precise reading of multiple objects, hazards, and pins in front of you.
Not only is the Nikon Coolshot 20 extraordinarily lightweight and compact, but it is also designed with weatherproof materials. This enables you to carry it during every game without any hesitation. Furthermore, it has a wide temperature tolerance, allowing you to use it even in poor weather conditions.
This tool has become a favorite amongst most golfers, thanks to its versatility of modes. You can use it during the entire gameplay by switching between various modes and features like the Tee Shot, Second Shot, and Approach Shot.
The different modes enable you to use the rangefinder no matter where you are in the game. Moreover, its advanced 6x optical monocular provides bright, crisp images at all times.
|Weatherproof materials used||It does not come with an instruction manual|
|It can be used during an entire gameplay|
|Nylon case and adjustable loop included|
This is one of my favorite gadgets, as it fits into my pocket so well. It is also waterproof and will not be affected by adverse weather conditions. I bought this rangefinder especially for times when I had to go to play post office work, and it would be difficult to carry too much around with me. Here’s what I like about it:
Accuracy and distance
This rangefinder comes with an effective range of 1,000 yards and an accuracy rate of 1 yard. This was a pleasant surprise considering the machine is compact and straightforward to carry around. It comes with an additional feature of scanning the boundaries and gives me accurate precision.
Slope and magnification features
Like the previous golf rangefinders, this one also comes with a 6x magnification feature, which would help to track down the target. Along with this, the toggleable slope function helps to calculate distances based on the inclinations and declinations.
The two issues that I had with this rangefinder are regarding the fact that it cannot be used to measure speed, and it uses CR-2 batteries. These are batteries that cannot be recharged, and you may face a deficiency in power. But these issues have been seen in the rest of the models, and should not be much of a deal-breaker.
|The range extends up to 1,000 yards||Non-rechargeable batteries|
|Accurate till 1 yard||Cannot measure the speed|
|Toggleable slop support to measure inclines and declines|
|Scanning feature to understand the background|
|PAT system to pinpoint better|
The next item that I have picked for you is the CaddyTek Golf rangefinder, which is yet another LASER-enabled golf rangefinder with pin-seeking technology. But what makes this golf rangefinder unique is the slope-compensate feature that allows me to take perfect measurements even over undulating surfaces. But wait, here are some more amazing features:
Magnification and accuracy
The device boasts of an IPX4 design with 6X magnification, which is ample for most measurements on the golf course. Along with this, the product has a massive 800 yards range, with an accuracy of up to 1 yard, which makes it one of the most precise rangefinders around.
Along with the above, this golf rangefinder also incorporates a flag-seeking technology that ensures background objects are ignored during measurements. This helps to maintain the integrity of the measured distance. Plus, the device also conforms to USGA, R&A Rules of Golf, along with USGA handicap guidelines with the slope compensation feature disabled.
Portability and easy slope on/off
And all of this comes in a neat little package which is remarkably light for such a power-packed device. I was pleasantly surprised by its handling and also impressed by the patented one-step mode switching feature that enables easy toggling between slope and non-slope modes. This makes this golf rangefinder suitable for both amateurs as well as professional players.
|Compact, waterproof, and lightweight design||The battery is non-rechargeable|
|Large, 800-yard range with FlagSeeking technology||Doesn’t have a confirmation signal like the Jolt technology|
|Patented mode-switching between slope and non-slope modes|
|Conforms to R&A and USGA rules|
|6X magnification for precise, error-free imaging|
As an architect, I’ve been using rangefinders for a long time. And I must say the people at Precision Pro have outdone themselves with this product. The Pro Slope rangefinder is one mighty instrument that packs a lot in a tiny but durable package. Just hear me out and judge for yourselves.
Accurate standard and slope measurements
The golf rangefinder has been crafted to provide precise and error-free measurements on both sloping as well as flat surfaces. The device’s unique Pro Slope technology makes selecting the right golf club a simple matter. While this is great for practice, there’s also the option of turning off the slope function for professional tournaments. This means you don’t have to carry around multiple rangefinders.
Quick measurements over long distances
With a 6X zoom and 400 yards range that’s correct up to one yard, this golf rangefinder can take measurements in both yards as well as inches. It even delivers a quick vibratory signal once you’ve hit the target. With clear optics and easy-to-use technology, this device is perfect even for people who have shaky hands.
Further, the product is robust, waterproof, and has been tried and tested by professional golfers who swear by it. Simple, easy to use, and portable, this is one golf rangefinder that can give you the confidence you need to get that perfect swing.
|Pulse vibration technology that alerts you to the right measurements||Sometimes the sensors fail to detect yellow flags, which makes it difficult to score|
|Waterproof, sturdy, and tested for accuracy by professional golfers|
|Free lifetime battery replacement, with a two-year warranty|
|Pro Slope technology with 6X zoom and crystal clear lenses for accurate measurement|
|Adaptive slope measurement technology with easy turn-off feature for professional tournaments|
Being a class 1 laser-powered rangefinder that runs on CR-2 batteries, the Bushnell Tour V4 is a treat to use. With a range of 1,000 yards, this was perfect for medium-sized golf courses. You should definitely give it a try because of these advantages:
I found it very efficient to carry around too with a high-quality zipper sealed carrying case. The case allowed no harm to come upon the device even when my son dropped it from the car.
I found that the slope could easily be measured with this golf rangefinder, and the angles could be set accordingly with the slope switch technology. Also, once you have placed your target, you can use pin seeker technology to track the pin so no extra distance is measured. A vibration will tell you if the pin has been locked.
I thought considering the features, the price could have been slightly lower. Powered by CR-2 lithium batteries, which can be a tad bit expensive, this golf rangefinder met all of my needs, but it was a somewhat costly affair.
|The range extends to 1,000 yards||Non-rechargeable batteries|
|Very accurate till 1 yard||Cannot measure the speed|
|5x magnification for clear vision|
|Presence of Pin seeker and Jolt Technology|
While not as cheap as some of the other golf rangefinders on this list, the Bushnell Tour V4 Jolt offers great value for money. For those looking for that perfect combination of size, speed, and accuracy, this is the device to go with. The V4 Jolt with pin seeker functionality boasts of Jolt technology, which gives the user tactile confirmation of the target being locked onto. This means nothing is left to chance, and you can be sure to hit the right target. Here are more incredible features:
Accessories and battery
What’s more, this golf rangefinder is a multi-coated one and provides Long Eye Relief at 21 mm. The package includes a protective skin, carry case, and CR2 battery. And with a class-1 LASER that consumes less than 0.5 mW on average, this device is a power saver as well.
Accuracy and distance
But the biggest draw (for me at least) is the massive 1000 yards range that this device boasts of. With a ranging accuracy of 1 yard, this product allows me to take perfect measurements on the course.
Another aspect of interest for me was the free access to the Bushnell Golf App that allows me to get accurate hole flyovers and layouts with distances. And along with that, I also get access to over 36,000 golfing courses that enable me to improve my gameplay.
Finally, the Patriot Pack even comes with the promise that a part of the proceeds will go to the Folds of Honor Foundation. This means that by purchasing one, you are also doing your bit for the brave men and women who protect our great nation.
|Massive thousand-yard range with accuracy close to 1 yard||Doesn’t have built-in slope detection technology|
|Battery and carry case included||Customer service is not optimal|
|Multi-coated, extra-long eye relief of 21 millimeters|
|Low power LASER that helps to conserve energy and lower your costs|
|Complimentary access to the Bushnell Golf App|
The final item I have for you is inexpensive, accurate, and allows you to take precise measurements even on those rainy days. This excellent rangefinder from Saybien is one of the best products that I’ve come across in this price range. Here’s why you might love it too:
Easy to use
The golf rangefinder is pretty intuitive to use and can handle distances of up to 500 yards. Although that’s less than the massive 1000 yards range provided by the previous product, the lesser price makes up for it more than enough.
Magnification and slope measurement
The device incorporates LASER finding technology and also has continuous scan mode as well as slope mode. Plus, the 6X magnification with a 2mm objective lens allows me to use it in any weather condition. Along with that, the durable rubber body promises waterproof operation, and even comes with a magnetic carry case for easy portability.
With a one-year warranty, flag lock technology, and complete package including a microfiber cleaning cloth, wrist straps as well as a CR-2 battery, this is one golf rangefinder that you’d be sore to miss out on.
|Waterproof rubber body that holds its own even in the toughest of conditions||Long-distance measurements can come out wrong more often than you’d like|
|High-level optics with a 2mm objective lens and 6X magnification||Foggy weather may interfere with measurements|
|Includes both continuous scans as well as slope modes|
|Incorporates flag lock technology for easy targeting|
|Slope mode can be easily deactivated to make it tournament legal|
And that was it! Now you know about the best budget ones that are available on the market. These are the best golf rangefinders suited for any golf course around the world and, what’s more, they can even be used for hunting trips in the forest.
Rangefinders can be excellent tools for taking your golfing skills to the next level. With advanced features, handy designs, and durable build, they are the perfect tools to take you from beginner to pro. You just have to choose one that is best for the money and provides top-notch features.
However, keep in mind that just buying the first rangefinder that you happen to see is not going to cut it. Each person has their own specific needs, and every rangefinder is better in one respect or the other. So for the best results, you should follow the buyers’ guide at the beginning and then make the right choice.
Finally, it all depends on the way you put your rangefinder to use. If you are an-all weather player, then you must go for a waterproof variety like the Saybien TR500 and Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro Slope models on the list. For undulating courses, you need to use one with slope detection technology; the Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro Slope and CaddyTek CaddyView V2 models on the list are good ones to go with.
And if the range is the only thing on your mind, then you must select the Bushnell Tour V4 Jolt. With its massive thousand yards range, this is one device that can honestly give you an advantage on the golf course.
And with that, I’ll take my leave. Till next time, Happy Golfing!