If you are not using a laser rangefinder on the course right now, you are making a huge mistake! If you really have no idea how far away you are from the hole, bunkers, water hazards, etc., this little electronic golfing gadget can take all of that frustration away. Have you ever been in a position where you’re not really sure which club to use, because you’re not sure what the distance is? This is exactly what these range finders are made for. Using laser technology, they can accurate measure the distance to any point on the course, and with the click of a button they can take a huge chunk of the guesswork out of your game. It’s basically like having your own caddie that knows the course like the back of his hand, and he’s giving you accurate measurements throughout your round. If you want to use a tool that will quickly change your golf game like nothing else can, you just have to get one of these!
Each of us in our little golfing group actually owns one now. We each have certain features that we really like, and none of us will admit to having a rangefinder that’s inferior to another one. But the fact is that they are not all made the same. There are certain features on some that just make them better and easier to use. Some are even more accurate than others. Some are made of a higher quality than others. So we decided to write up this little review to share what we could all agree are the best golf laser rangefinders in 2015. In no certain order, here they are:
Bushnell Tour v3 Laser Rangefinder: Bushnell is pretty much the leader in rangefinders, as they offer many models that are considered to be the top of the line in the industry. You can’t go wrong with their v3 series. The list price for it is around $467, but if you shop around you can find a much better deal. For instance, I just went online and found a deal for only $293. I know that’s still some serious money, but that’s about $174 off of the retail price! If that’s still over your budget, you can find a “like new” one online that’s lightly used. You can use this one with just one hand. It has 5 times magnification, so that your target appears 5 times its size in the viewfinder. It accurately measures the distance to any point from just 10 yards all the way to 1,000 yards. If you’re within 300 yards, it will accurately measure the distance to the pin within 1 yard. That’s amazing! If you’re trying to zero in on the flag, it can be set on Pin Seeker mode which will allow it to lock in on the flag. It comes with a 2 year manufacturer’s warranty. Greg (our golfing buddy) owns this one, and he loves it. He’s been using it for almost a year on the original battery, and he plays at least one round a year. He says that in his review he would point out that it’s waterproof, so you can take it out in the rain and not worry about damaging it. He also likes how easy it is to lock in on a bunker to get the distance. We also scanned some 350 reviews online for it and the overall rating was 4.7 out of 5 stars. That says enough for me!
Breaking 80 Golf Laser Rangefinder: The list/retail price on this one is about $330. Again, if you shop around online you can find a much lower price. I just did a 30 second search and found this exact model, which was brand new, for only $148. If you want to save around $182 off of the price that you would pay at your fancy pro shop, you just have to do a little shopping, especially at online sites. This one also has Pin Sensor technology that will help you to lock onto the pin. What’s amazing is that it will lock onto the flag, even if you have trees blowing in the background right behind it. The viewfinder can magnify your target up to 6 times, which makes it way easier to get accurate measurements of an object that’s 200 or 300 yards away from you. You can get really accurate distance measurements from 5 to 440 yards away. When you have it on flag seeking mode, it will just lock in on the flag. You can also set it to scan mode so that you can scan distances of multiple targets for up to 8 seconds. The scan mode is really useful when you need to get a fix on various obstacles such as water hazards and bunkers. What’s really interesting about the Breaking 80 range finder to me is that it is so waterproof that you can literally hold it under 3 feet of water for 10 minutes, and it will keep on working! It runs on a 3 volt CR2 battery that is included with it. It also includes a free carrying case and a belt loop so that you can wear it on your belt for easy access. Like the Bushnell Tour v3, it’s completely legal to use in tournament play. It also comes with a one year manufacturer’s warranty. Looking at over 70 reviews for it that we could find online, it has an overall rating of 4.1 stars out of 5 stars.
Nikon Aculon Rangefinder: The Nikon Aculon is one of the cheapest golfing range finders that you are going to find. I found the lowest price for it online at Amazon for only $190. Many of the reviewers that I found there said that it works just as good as the higher priced rangefinders, and is about half of the price of many of them. This one is really small, having measurements of only around 3.5″ x 3″ x 1.5″. This one is so small that you can literally just keep it in your pocket. It has just a single button on it that you click when you have sighted your target, which makes it extremely easy to use. You simply look through the viewfinder until you see what you want to measure, push the button, and read the distance on the screen. The Aculon will give accurate readings for distances of up to 550 yards, and they claim that it will get you within 0.1 yards! It also has 6 times magnification. You can set it to give your readings in yards or meters. It comes with one CR2 lithium battery, and it shuts itself down when it’s not in use for 8 seconds. That will really help to save your battery life. Looking at the 160 + reviews that we found for it online, it has an overall rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. Many of the reviewers commented on how they use it for much more than golf, including hunting and for measuring their land.
Simmons LRF 600 Laser Rangefinder: After doing a little shopping around online, I was able to find the best price on this one by Simmons for only $100. It will measure the distance to any point out from 10 to 600 yards. On the negative side, it only has 4 times magnification, which could make it harder to focus in on the 300 yards away objects. It is accurate within 1 yard though. It’s also very easy to use. You just focus in on a particular point on the golf course, press the single button, and read the display. It’s also very lightweight, coming in at only 9.8 ounces (just over half a pound). It has a housing that is weather resistant, meaning that a little indirect rain won’t hurt it, but you shouldn’t drop it in the water hazard or let it sit out in the rain. Unlike most other models, this one is powered by a simple 9 volt battery that is not included. It does come with a light carrying case. You can convert it from displaying yards to displaying meters by just holding the single button for 5 seconds. Looking at almost 450 reviews for it online, it has an overall rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars. Many of the reviewers said it works great, and they love the cheap price (compared to many other models).
Bushnell Tour v3 Slope Laser Rangefinder: With a list price of around $618, the v3 Slope is anything but cheap! Then again, this isn’t your average golf rangefinder either. The cheapest price that I could find for it online was $357, or a savings of about $260. Like the v3 Tour that we discussed above, this one by Bushnell is made with the highest of quality. What makes this one different though is that it can actually calculate the swing yardage that is required based off of the degree of the slope. So what the heck does that mean? Quite simply, Bushnell has patented this slope technology so that it will determine how far you really need to hit the golf ball. It will read the decline or incline of the hole to adjust accordingly. It can measure the slope within a 1 degree accuracy! It will adjust the required range using the slope calculations, the ball trajectory and the club that you will use. This can be critical on your approach shots, when you need to know how far the hole actually plays. To give you an idea of the difference that it can make, let’s say that you are 150 yards from the hole. Let’s also say that it’s a slight uphill shot. With any other rangefinder you would just use the distance of 150 yards. With the slope technology you would find out that there is an uphill angle of 5 degrees. The result is that the hole will play as 166 yards, and not the actual 150. Based off of that information, you can adjust to the extra 16 yards that you actually need to hit, and select your club accordingly. This is absolutely amazing! If it is within your budget (or your hidden golf money that your wife hasn’t found yet), just buy the thing. Looking at almost 120 reviews for it, this has an overall reviewer rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars.
There you have it. Have we missed any that you think should be included? Do you use a rangefinder for golf? What do you think about the one that you use? We would love any feedback!
P.S. To give you a better idea of how these laser rangefinders work, just watch the video below: