Best Rangefinder: The Top 10 for Hunters

Technological advancements in hunting have exploded in the last twenty years at a rate our ancestors could hardly comprehend. From powerful spotting scopes to modern muzzleloaders, today’s hunter has options that simply did not exist 100 years ago. In this article, we’ll take a look at one technology that has fundamentally changed the sport—laser rangefinders. We’ll consider the best rangefinders on the market and help you decide which ones you can trust in the field.

Whether you’re high in a Mid-West tree stand or glassing for Western Antelope, it’s important to have the best rangefinder you can afford. In today’s market, however, you can spend a small fortune on what may be unnecessary features. With that in mind, we’ve considered the best rangefinders from a mix of the industry’s top brands to help you decide which one you’ll want with you when the moment of truth arrives next hunting season.

Best Rangefinder FAQ

1. What Is a Rangefinder?

A rangefinder for hunting is a device that allows hunters to quickly and accurately gauge the distance between their location and a specified target.

2. What Are Some of the Best Rangefinder Brands?

Many of the leading scope and optics companies on the market also make the best rangefinders. They include Zeiss, Leupold, Vortex, Bushnell, Leica, Wildgame Innovations, and Nikon.

3. How Do Rangefinders Work?

Laser rangefinders work by combining optical lenses with a laser. The user focuses the optical lens on a target and then presses a button to engage the laser. The laser is zeroed to meet the target exactly where the user has aimed. The distance is then digitally calculated and presented to the user in a digital interface.

4. Where Can You Buy Rangefinders?

Rangefinders are available through most outdoor retailers like Cabela’s, Bass Pro Shops, Midway USA, and Sportsman’s Warehouse. There are also many good options on Amazon.

5. What Should You Look for in a Rangefinder?

Every hunter’s needs and wants will be slightly different, but generally speaking, higher-end rangefinders will be more accurate and offer better visual clarity. If you’re a Western hunter spending a lot of your time behind optics, it could be worth the money to buy a high-end rangefinder. For those who hunt in denser forests, however, a lower-end model is probably fine.

How We Reviewed

LaserWorks LW1000PRO Professional-Class Laser Rangefinder 1

Image from Amazon

For this review, we selected a group of the best rangefinders that represent many features and price points. From ultra high-end optics with the utmost precision to value-priced products, we’ve checked them all out. We considered some features for each rangefinder as well as price, availability, and warranty. A quick list of pros and cons has also been provided as a reference.

In the end, we also selected one overall top pick from this list of the best rangefinders. While we understand that no single rangefinder is the perfect choice for every hunter, our top pick is a superlative combination of performance, quality, and price.

Overall Price Range of These Products (and Similar Products)

Prices for the best rangefinders can vary widely depending on the manufacturer, quality of components, availability, and even time of year. The rangefinders on this list run between around $100 and around $1000.

What We Reviewed

  • Sig Sauer Kilo 2200BDX Rangefinder
  • Leupold RX-Fulldraw2 Rangefinder
  • Nikon 8397 ACULON AL11 Laser Rangefinder
  • Leica Rangemaster CRF 2000-B
  • Wildgame Innovations Halo XRT Range Finder
  • Nikon 16210 Monarch 7I Vr Rangefinder
  • Bushnell 202208 Bone Collector Edition 4x Laser Rangefinder
  • Leupold RX-1200i TBR
  • Simmons LRF 600 Tilt Intelligence Laser Rangefinder
  • Vortex Optics Ranger Laser Rangefinders

Features

Sig Sauer’s Kilo2200BDX rangefinder is an advanced unit featuring some of the market’s top components. This rangefinder is compatible with Sig’s Ballistic Data Xchange app that allows users to sync data from their rangefinder and compatible rifle scopes. All this data is stored on the app and allows shooters to build a data-driven precise ballistic profile for their firearms.

Warranty

This unit is covered with a five-year warranty against manufacturing defects.

Pros

  • Ballistic Data XChange system
  • Lightwave DSP (Digital Signal Processing)
  • Angle modification processing for tree stand use

Cons

  • Requires mobile device for maximum functionality
  • Expensive

Features

The FullDraw2 with DNA Digital Laser Rangefinder from Leupold boasts superior accuracy with improved optics. The premier feature of this rangefinder is the Digitally eNhanced Accuracy optical lens. This provides improved color separation and definition in low light as you range potential targets at a long range.

Warranty

Leupold backs their range finders with a lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • DNA optics
  • High light transmission LCD
  • True Ballistic Range feature

Cons

  • Smaller grip and body could be easily dropped

Features

This rangefinder from Nikon provides some high-quality features in a package that is simple and easy to use. They have loaded this rangefinder with multi-coated lenses for excellent color definition and light filtration. Another feature that will appeal to some hunters is the one-button operation and long eye-relief. This will get your game in range without taking your eyes too far out of focus.

Warranty

Nikon covers all of their sporting optics including rangefinders with a limited lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • Premium lens coatings
  • Easy grip body
  • One-button design
  • Long eye relief
  • Good value for the price

Cons

  • Lacks some tech capabilities found in higher-end rangefinders.

Features

The CRF 2000-B Rangemaster from Leica is a premium grade rangefinder for those who demand the highest possible performance. This rangefinder boasts 7x high contrast, observation grade, multi-coated optics, 0.3 seconds response time, and a Hi-Vis red LED display. It will accurately range targets out to 1,600 yards and features a classic aesthetic akin to Leica’s legendary cameras and optics.

Warranty

This rangefinder is also covered with a limited lifetime warranty against defects.  

Pros

  • Super fast and accurate readout
  • Very long distance readings
  • Premium grade glass

Cons

  • Very expensive
  • More performance than most hunters will need

Features

Wildgame Innovations Halo XRT rangefinder provides precision within plus or minus one yard as well as 6X magnification. What sets this unit apart from the other best rangefinders is that comfortable ergonomic design. A stout handgrip and shape keep this unit comfortable even if you get pinned down by a deer and can’t move for extended time periods.

Warranty

Wildgame covers these rangefinders with a limited one-year warranty.

Pros

  • Angle compensation
  • High accuracy
  • Comfortable grip

Cons

  • More expensive than some of the best rangefinders with similar features
  • Shorter warranty

Features

The Monarch 7i Vr rangefinder from Nikon features any number of top-end options that are typically only found on much more expensive units. These include the optical VR (Vibration Reduction) system, which works similarly to image stabilization on high-end video cameras. Another nice feature on this rangefinder is that the distances are measures as low as .1 yards.

Warranty

Nikon backs this and other rangefinders with a limited lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • Vibration reduction
  • Small units of measure
  • Great quality for the price

Cons

  • Grip is less robust than comparable models

Features

This Bushnell Bone Collector edition rangefinder brings the quality and attitude you’d expect from its namesake, Michael Waddell. The outer casing of this rangefinder boasts the signature Bone Collection camo pattern in addition to an in-view LCD display. These features coupled with a 4X zoom make this a great choice for hunters who want maximum stealth and accuracy.

Warranty

Bushnell backs this rangefinder with a limited lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • Bone Collector camo
  • In-view LCD display
    4X zoom
  • Excellent accuracy
  • Good price

Cons

  • Marked up considerably just for the camo

Features

Leupold’s RX-1300i TBR rangefinder boasts some of the best features around for a price that will appeal to budget-conscious hunters. This unit features an advanced OLED display that can be adjusted depending on ambient light conditions. It is also incredibly accurate with MOA adjustment, a Milliradian adjustment, and equivalent horizontal distance. These features coupled with a 6X zoom make this one of the best rangefinders available.

Warranty

Leupold covers this rangefinder with a limited 5-year warranty.

Pros

  • OLED display
  • 6X zoom
  • MOA accuracy adjustment

Cons

  • Gold lettering on the housing may glint in sunny conditions

Features

Simmons has loaded their LRF 600 laser rangefinder with some impressive features to keep you on target in the field. The optics boast a liquid crystal display and 4x magnification that is accurate between 10 and 600 yards. This unit also boasts tilt intelligent technology to keep your range accurate even from a tree. True Horizontal Distance measures also ensure straight shooting on flat planes.

Warranty

Simmons backs their rangefinders with a limited one-year warranty.

Pros

  • In-view LCD display
  • 10-600 yard accuracy
  • Tilt intelligent readings
  • Great value for the price

Cons

  • Aesthetic design looks out of date

Features

Vortex’s Ranger laser rangefinder is a true Western hunting machine with accuracy ratings out to 1,500 yards. This beast features their proprietary Primary Horizontal Component Distance (HCD) display which will help you obtain the right distance whether you’re on a flat surface or at an angle. Users can also set this rangefinder in Line of Site (LOS) mode when you only need the most direct reading possible. An ultra-tough body and belt clip make this a great choice for hunters who demand great performance regardless of the conditions.

Warranty

Vortex backs this rangefinder with the unlimited lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • Horizontal Component Distance mode
  • Excellent body
  • Accurate to very long distances

Cons

  • More expensive than some rangefinders
  • Heavy

The Verdict

Like all hunting gear, choosing the best rangefinder will come down to a combination of price, features, performance, and fit. Much of the decision around rangefinders will depend on how much accuracy, visual clarity, and durability you will need for your style of hunting. If you’re an Eastern whitetail hunter than you can probably get away with something less expensive to make sure your shooting lanes are properly ranged out. For Western big mountain hunters, however, you’ll want something that will give you great readings and lots of zoom at a long range.

Our top pick from this list of the best rangefinders is the Vortex Ranger. This rangefinder comes in about the mid-point of the market in terms of price but packs some features that will appeal to both Eastern and Western hunters. If you’re a hunter who wants to get good quality gear but doesn’t need pro-grade, then this range finder will be worth a look.

Between the high-grade glass, ridiculously tough body, and unlimited lifetime warranty, the Vortex Ranger is a laser rangefinder that could fit well into any hunter’s backpack. For just under $350 it’s a piece of gear that could serve you well for years to come.

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

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