Best Archery Rangefinder
Optical lens manufacturers have finally begun to dial in on what bow hunters exactly want in an archery rangefinder. In the not-so-distant past, when there were very few options, we would have to consider dual purpose gears as well and when compared, quite often they were the better choice even for hunters who solemnly restricted themselves to bow hunting. However, the archery rangefinder market has evolved and grown with time, and thanks to modern lens technology, there are now all sorts and variants of well-designed rangefinders available in the market for the occasional archer or the bowhunter to choose from.
So, what is the best rangefinder for archery? The answer to this million dollar question is both deceptively simplistic and ruthlessly complicated at the same - it depends. Trying to find the best one can be a daring task. As there is a mind-boggling variety of options to choose from, from a deer range finder to a monocular range finder versus a binocular one, ultimately, the preference and need-in-focus happen to be the key factors to determine what the best one in the lot truly is. So, one small advice- aim accordingly.
Our Top Recommendations (check prices on AMAZON):
Nikon Archer’s Choice Max Rangefinder
While out hunting, archers are often met with extreme situations regarding variables like shooting angle and lighting conditions. When the archer is rather comfortable to hunt from behind a tree, the shooting angle toward a subject is possible to be vast in any given hunt. Moreover, though the “Magic Hour” of a day varies from hunter to hunter, often it occurs just before sunset or just after sunrise when the lighting conditions are a separate variable in the hunting zone as well.
The Nikon Archer’s Choice Max Rangefinder was designed to be compatible with the real situations archers come to face. With advanced ID technology, the Nikon Archer's Choice can automatically calculate for decline or incline shooting angles which are faced by archers in actuality and adjust accordingly.
Apart from the ability to determine needs based on shooting angles, the advanced technology of the Nikon Archer’s Choice Max Rangefinder uses something known as the Active Brightness Control Viewfinder (ABCV). It detects the brightness level on and around the target-in-focus, automatically adjusting the display visualized by the hunter to an LCD, keeping the options open on what will maximize the range-visibility for the archer. All of this makes this one a generic rangefinder for archers when hunting at early morning or late evening hours.
When hunting down that one rangefinder, Nikon Archer’s Choice Max Rangefinder is reliable and quite literally could be the ‘Archer’s choice’ in almost every situation.
Bushnell G Force DX 1300 ARC
The Bushnell G-Force DX 1300 ARC seems quite the package – a simple, sleek and deadly accurate laser range finder that is manufactured to work with both gun and especially, crossbows.
The G-Force DX ARC rangefinder is programmable for both rifle and bow modes. The bow mode gives you a projected travel point of your arrow so that one doesn’t need to keep into consideration the obstructions that might crop up in the arrow’s projected path. Switching between modes is easy, so it won’t take much time to figure out the set of controls.
The display is illuminated and red and is pretty bright in low light conditions. A standard black display like other rangefinders use is missing. Instead, you only get an illuminated red option. On sunny days, you might have difficulties to see, even on the highest brightness setting.
You can shoot your range, then point it into a shadowy area and you’ll read it well and fine. At far distances, you need to hold it pretty steadily to get a good reading. A tripod works well and is strongly advised for this since the rangefinder also sports a built-in threading.
Another positive aspect about this little buddy is its durability as well as portability. This range finder comes in a sleek, rubber-armored case that is entirely waterproof and still small enough to fit in your pocket. Hunters are always worried that the optical lenses will fog up, or somehow will get damaged, but this viewfinder has a protective coating over the lens that prevents scratches so you could just be wiping them with a gloved finger without fear of damaging the glass lens.
The rubber finish is practical for a secure grip, and the body is made of a sturdy metal/plastic material that assures you will hold up over time.
Simmons 801405 Rangefinder
Archers, when out on a hunt, are most likely to be comfortable when they’re not carrying the grocery store with them, with a limited capacity of storage to create for an efficient trip. The Simmons Rangefinder comes with a compact vertical design and the ability to increase in magnification range by 4x. The powerful lens capped within a weather-resistant frame result in a visually useful and sturdy rangefinder that can complement all the skill levels of an archer on a hunt.
The 4x magnification range and compact, portable design also allows for archers to lose some of the heap of equipment that is needed on a hunt. As the Simmons 801405 Rangefinder comes with a feature to be able to be doubled for viewing at distances up to 600 yards, helping to bypass the need for an additional set of binoculars.
The Simmons 801405 Rangefinder is increasingly valuable to archers for the ease-of-use that it provides. In those extreme moments that require fast reflexes and even faster decision making, the one-touch utilization system and the sheer simplicity of the Simmons 801405 become highly efficient.
As compared to some other similar rangefinders, the Simmons 801405 might not have the more advanced features, overly-complicated adjustments and buttons attributed to variables which can slow down the point-and-range operation that this product provides.
Moreover, on the availability of ease-of-use, the full LCD helps to calculate for the hunter, the exact distance of the targeted subject being viewed in a long range of 10 to 600 yards. Simplicity and accuracy are combined to create this highly effective rangefinder - one that is regarded highly by archers from Seattle to Scandinavia.
Nikon ARROW ID 5000
The Nikon Arrow ID 5000 laser rangefinder was designed to work as it speaks, and this baby has been a personal favorite for quite some time. Bearing a heavyweight brand name like Nikon, stalled with power packed features such as the very efficient Tru-Target Priority System and the Nikon ID (Incline/Decline) Technology, the Arrow ID 5000 give the impression that it is for those who are truly utterly serious about bow-hunting.
Moreover, this product comes with a waterproof casing that’s easy to grip, and a nice little carrying case to protect the unit. The cutting edge technology enables the hunter with an accurate distance measurement, even at angles as steep as 90 degrees!
Also, the rangefinder features a nitrogen-filled and O-ring sealed body for water and fog resistant performance in even the most extreme conditions. Combined with a 6x power magnification and Nikon’s signature multicoated optics for easy target acquisition and vivid, superior clarity picture.
To put a cherry on top of the cake, the display is powered with the ability to show the distance measurement in either meter or yard scale, depending on the archer’s preference with increments as minute as 0.1 yards/meters.
Plus, the small size of the ID 5000 makes it easy on the aspect of portability – you could easily carry it with you in your pocket and, at just 6.2 ounces, chances are it won’t weight you down.
Wildgame Innovations Halo X Ray Laser Rangefinder
The Wildgame Innovations Halo X-Ray is a highly advanced laser rangefinder that helps archers to range their shooting target by measuring distance with utmost precision at the moment of the shot. Specially manufactured to lower movement when the game is nearby, the Halo X-Ray is an excellent choice for bow hunters. Also, Halo comes with a scan mode for constant ranging feature which automatically indicates the distance of the target for deadly accuracy.
The size is compact and portable enough for a bow-hunter to use. The angle feature is an added advantage if you’re an archery enthusiast. It's easy to operate, but the distance reading from multiple measurements of one particular area might vary slightly at times.
The Halo X-Ray Z6X is compact, ergonomic and sturdy - making it an excellent archery companion for hunting trips when you will most likely seek to avoid carrying excess weight loads apart from your hunting accessories.
The Halo X-Ray happens to be one of the most inexpensive variants available on the market and my recommendation for amateur archers who are just starting to take aim at the Bluebird.
The Leupold RX-1000i TBR with DNA
The Leupold RX-1000i TBR has all the features that one might find in the Bushnell Scout but is a whole lot smaller, faster and better concerning optical quality.
True Ballistic Range or TBR (in case you were wondering what the abbreviation stands for) is a technology which takes into account the angle at which the particular object is located. Giving the hunter the specific range to aim for depending on angle and distance. This comes very handily when hunting in situations where the land surface is extremely steep such as that of canyons or downhill shots.
The Leupold RX has built in settings for use both with archery and rifle. You will be covered regardless of your choice of weapon and terrain. And did I mention that it’s waterproof and extremely durable? It is built to last whatever you might throw at it. My personal favorite thing about the Leupold RX is the extremely pleasant user experience.
It is of the perfect size and very well constructed. However, on the downside, there is a lot you need to know to use this rangefinder. The owner’s manual which comes with the pack has to be read carefully to understand how to use the plethora of feature they added into it.
This elitist approach could also turn away the casual user who wants a device that tells him the distance and nothing more. So, while the Leupold RX may tick all the relevant boxes regarding optics, light weight, durability, and pricing, its feature heavy approach may just not work for it.
Derivations of every nature happen each hunting season and they, in turn, all go out to prove the same thing- a quality rangefinder is among one of the most important pieces of hunting gear that you should carry with you. A rangefinder belongs in every respectable hunter’s bag pack.
One of the best reasons to carry around a rangefinder is its off-season uses. With a rangefinder, you could practice all summer long, and when hunting season arrives, you could be in the best of shapes.