Best Golf Range Finders of 2019: Buying Guide

There is nothing worse than not knowing your distance to the pin and I since we all don't have professional caddies, a golf rangefinder is essential. Whether you need to know the distance to the nearest hazard or you're just looking to see how far your drive was, these are essential for any golfer that wishes to lower their scores. You want the best golf rangefinder and I'm here to help

In A Hurry? Here is my top pick.

Nikon Coolshot Pro Stabilized Golf Rangefinder with Exclusive Deluxe Hard Shell Case
  • The second generation of Nikon exclusive stabilization technology. Stabilizes not only the...
  • Three easily changed ID technology (slope) compensating modes, including slope off. External LED...
  • Background contrasted Crystal clear red OLED display, with auto or manual brightness levels. Nikon...

Last update on 2019-12-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

It's no secret that Nikon makes incredible glass for cameras, but they are relatively unknown in the golf world. Don't let the fact that they aren't the "#1 on Tour" rangefinder fool you, they make the best lenses of any rangefinder that I've used and I would dare anyone to challenge that.

A rangefinder is only going to be as good as its ability to see objects at a distance clearly and its ability to lock in on those targets.

The Nikon is significantly smaller than all of its competition and with an external slope indicator, it's an ideal choice for competitions where you're not allowed to use slope. The image stabilization works wonders for golfers with shaky hands and won't leave you fumbling to get a distance while the group behind you is complaining about slow play.

Things We Like

  • Image stabilization is great for shaky hands
  • The optics are crystal clear at 300 yards
  • 5 Year Warranty
  • Great ergonomics. Fits in your hand like a glove

2. Bushnell Hybrid

Bushnell is a staple in the golf rangefinder industry, but that's not why you should choose this one. Its literally ALL the bells and whistles you could want in one device. Not only does it serve as a fully capable rangefinder, it has a GPS indicator on the side that gives you the distance to the front back and center of the green.

I think that feature alone, makes a it a great investment if you're not the type of person that wants to look at a phone or wear a GPS golf watch.

Sale
Bushnell Hybrid Golf Laser Rangefinder GPS
  • First ever integrated Laser/GPS display
  • Dual battery source (CR2 for Laser and USB for GPS)
  • PinSeeker with JOLT Technology

Last update on 2019-12-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Things We Like

  • The vibration when it locks onto the pin
  • Optics are great and some of the best in the market
  • GPS with front, back and center green distances

3. Precision Pro NX7

Sale
Precision Pro Golf, NX7 Pro Slope Golf Rangefinder, Laser Golf Rangefinder with Pulse Vibration, 400 Yard Range, 6X Magnification, Lifetime Battery Replacement
  • PRO SLOPE GOLF RANGEFINDER: The Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro Slope has been engineered to provide...
  • ADAPTIVE SLOPE TECHNOLOGY: Our NX7 Pro Slope golf laser rangefinder is infused with Pro Slope...
  • CLEAR, QUICK, PRECISE: Built with crystal clear optics, 6X magnification, and precise technology,...

Last update on 2019-12-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

While it may look like a generic brand, don't let that fool you. This is a capable rangefinder. The ergonomics are great and it has slope reading with vibration feedback for when you acquire targets like some other more well known brands.

I agree with the idea that you are paying a markup for a name with larger brands as they have marketing budgets and sponsorship deals to fulfill. This is a great option for all the features you would want in a rangefinder for half the price. It only goes up to 400 yards, but who's needing a distance longer than that?

Calm down long drive pro. While you may not be able to measure your drives that go past 400 yards, you're sure to get accurate distances for everything in between.

Things We Like

  • Great value for money
  • Typically quick at acquiring targets 
  • Simple and easy to use

4. Garmin Approach Z80

Sale
Garmin Approach Z80, Golf Laser Range Finder with 2D Course Overlays
  • Most accurate laser distance measurements, within 10” to the flag, up to 350 yards/320 meters
  • Full-color 2-D CourseView mapping is overlaid on the viewfinder for more than 41,000 courses...
  • Image stabilization reduces shakiness and makes it easier to find and range the flag

Last update on 2019-12-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Things We Like

  • The very cool visuals that allow you to see a map of the course
  • Laser Range Arc that draw a line on the digital map to where you are aiming
  • Green view gives front, back and center distances
  • This device represents the absolute best of technology in the marketplace

5. Bushnell V4 Jolt

Sale
Bushnell Tour V4 JOLT Golf Laser Rangefinder, Standard Version
  • PinSeeker with JOLT Technology
  • Accurate to 1 yard
  • Ranges 5 1,000 yards; 400+ yards to a flag

Last update on 2019-12-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Things We Like

  • Great value for a brand name device
  • Vibrates when you acquire the pin target
  • Simple and easy layout with an even simpler design

Notable Mentions

Who Needs A Golf Rangefinder?

Any golfer that has plays more than a dozen rounds of golf each year. It's extremely helpful to have distances to pins and to give yourself the assurance that you have the right club.

In fact, I would argue that it speeds up the pace of play as you will require less time to guess and that leaves you with more time to be committed to your shot.

You don't need to use it for every single golf shot, but it's great on approach shots that will require a full swing. If you're the type of golfer that's always looking for sprinkler heads or asking your friend with a GPS device, "What's the distance" then it's probably time for you to get a rangefinder.

Types of Golf Rangefinders

Rangefinders With Slope

You might have heard of a "slope" measurement. This is essentially a calculation of what distance you SHOULD hit in order to reach your target based on the elevation.  Just remember that slope reading is usually not allowed during tournament play and you should pick a rangefinder that has a visual indicator when slope measurements are off.

  • Objects that are higher than you will require a longer yardage.
  • Objects that are lower than you will require a shorter yardage.
Rangefinders With GPS

I often find that it's great to just have a front back and center green measurement when you also have the distance to the pin. Rangefinders with GPS give you the ability to really hone in on the exact location of the pin and determine your club selection based on where you want to land on the green.

How To Use Your Golf Rangefinder

  • Use your rangefinder to give you distances to clear hazards and trouble so you can know how far to hit your shot or often, how far you can't go.
  • It's great to use a rangefinder to get a distance back to the tee box after your drive so you can get a better idea of your club distances
  • User your rangefinder at the practice range to give you an idea of where certain targets are.
  • Use your rangefinder for practice and measuring out distances for wedge practice

Tips For Using Your Golf Rangefinder

  • Try and stand with your feet apart so you get a stable base and aim your target finder at the flag
  • If you're having trouble getting a distance to the flag, then go down the flag pole. Many courses have flag poles with reflective mirrors in them designed to help rangefinders pick them up easier
  • Be careful if the flag has trees obscuring it as you can get an incorrect reading. If you don't have a clear line, step sideways until you have a clear sight of your target and get that distance

Best Brands

Bushnell

Bushnell is the staple for golf range finders. They are easily the most recognized and they make a great product for virtually every type of golfer. They specialize in optics equipment for golf and hunting

Nikon

Many people know of Nikon from their cameras and while this is their primary industry, they are a leader in lenses and optics. It only makes sense for them to also foray into the world of golf optics.

Garmin

Garmin has a robust solution of GPS and golf related equipment. When it comes to GPS satellite distance, they are the most recognized brand in the world. Their golf range finders are easily some of the most sophisticated technology available if you can afford it.

Precision Pro

Precision Pro is a true business to consumer company. They made their entrance into the market via Amazon and have provided a quality product to the golfing community at a fair and reasonable price.


Wrap Up

Choosing the best golf range finder for you will ultimately depend on your budget, but you can't go wrong with any of these options that I've listed. If I had to pick the best, one-size-fits-all option, I would pick the Nikon Cool Shot Pro. It's the golf rangefinder that I currently use. It has great optics, it's easy to use, and the image stabilization works wonders.

My runner up choice is the Precision Pro NX7. It may not have all the features of the Garmin or the GPS readout on the Bushnell, but it's a great value product that will fit MANY golfers in the market.

Kennie Kat

Kennie 'Kat' Elerby is the creator of KennieKatGolf.com, a website created to share his journey, hold himself accountable and inspire other amateur golfers to improve. You can find my content on Youtube - KennieKatGolf