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Hey all. I gotta question. Is there really a difference between the higher priced range finders that they sell at the sport shops and the cheap range finders they sell for golfers?? It would be nice to have one for bow hunting (so perfect optics aren't a must), but I refuse to pay 200-400 for one. How bad could the 40 dollar golf one be? Just thought I would post to see if anyone has used the golf ones and if they do the trick.


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The golf ball ones and the regular range finders are not really even the same from the ones I've looked at. The golf ball one I looked at uses the pin on the green as a gauge to judge your distance. Many of the hunting orientated range finders use a laser to bounce information back to you from your target. I've been looking at rangefinders for some time. The prices have been coming down but they are still way down on my "need" list....


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I bought a Bushnell,forgot the model,but paid around 225 for it.My friend has a much more spendy Nikon for 350.I personally dont believe you need one that good for bowhunting.I use mine to range to different spots from my stand and deer out a ways from another stand on a field edge.

When rifle hunting on big fields,I will range deer to 300-400 yards,so the model I have works fine.It all depends on what you are looking for and how many bells and whistles you think you need.

Look at some of the options to see if it works in rain and other modes.I really believe my 200 dollar one is as good as the 350 Nikon, but 40 dollars isnt much so I personally cant tell you how well it will work.

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There is a difference in the strength of the laser, if you are up around the 500-1000 yard range the golf ones have a hard time reading off of a deer. You will hear people complain that they can’t get a reading; this issue in part comes from the laser.

I personal use a Nikon 440; I find that I don't ever range anything around here past 250 yards. When I go out west I use a Brunton 1500, it has a very powerful laser and can get me out a ways on a goat. I would be more than happy to set you up with a good deal on the one that I use, just give me a call. I give a pretty good deal to FM members.

Talk to you soon

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I have the Nikon 440 and I really like it. For bow hunting its all that I need. I got it new on Ebay for $170.

When I first get set up in the stand I will range the area and make mental notes. I never try and range a deer if its in bow range unless its grazing in an alfalfa field and I have all the time in the world. The problem is that now I have one less excuse for missing.


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  • 4 weeks later...

I own a Leica 1200 and love the thing. My primary use is for exploding prairie dogs at 400 to 800 yards. Used it once in Montana to shoot a whitetail at 420 yards. If all I was going to use it for was less then 400 yards I'd probably not bought this one. But it realiable gives me readings at any range out to 1200 weather or not the target is a grassy hillside or a rock.

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