Which rangefinder is better: Bushnell or Vortex?
Whether you’re an avid golfer or a hunting enthusiast, it doesn’t hurt to have tools you can use to enhance your experience on the course or in the field.
Rangefinders are excellent tools for both golfers and hunters because they can help you gauge the distance to the green and lock onto animals. Bushnell and Vortex are two top rangefinder manufacturers, and while there are a few notable differences, they’re highly similar in functionality.
Bushnell is the innovator of laser technology for golf rangefinders, launching them back in 1995. They remain one of the most popular rangefinder brands and claim that over 98% of PGA Tour participants use their products. They also offer GPS rangefinders, but their laser rangefinders are more popular, as they boast industry-leading technology that delivers precision and accuracy.
Bushnell rangefinder pros
Bushnell rangefinders are compact, making them convenient for traveling and relaying distance information within a few seconds of locking onto a target. They’re easy to use, thanks to features like vibrational and a red ring lock-on confirmation that lets you know when you’ve connected accurately with your target. Many models come with five to seven times magnification so you can zoom in on your target and see it more clearly.
All Bushnell rangefinders are legal for use in tournaments, but some features may need to be disabled depending on the model. Additionally, most models are water-resistant, so you don’t need to worry about them getting wet on rainy days.
Bushnell rangefinder cons
The great thing about Bushnell is they offer several rangefinders, so you can choose something that aligns with your budget. The best rangefinders with premium features are relatively expensive, with some costing well over $400.
Also, depending on the model, some customers have reported focus-centric issues. However, such problems are often addressed quickly and corrected for subsequent models released.
Best Bushnell rangefinders
Bushnell Golf Tour V5 Rangefinder
This rangefinder is compact and easy to use, and it has several innovative features, such as Slope-Switch technology that accounts for the hole’s incline or decline and its distance. It also has a pin seeker with a visual jolt feature that alerts you when you’ve hit the pin for target lock-on confirmation. Sold by Amazon
Bushnell Pro XE Golf Laser Rangefinder
The Pro XE is Bushnell’s top-of-the-line rangefinder. It’s expensive, but you’ll get an array of premium features, such as Slope with Elements, which adds temperature and barometric pressure to Slope Technology for the most precise distance readings. It offers crystal-clear clarity and comes with a durable carrying case. Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods
Bushnell Prime 1800 6X24 Laser Rangefinder
This affordable model boasts an intuitive display and a feature that lets you hide background environments to focus on your target more easily. Ranges and distances are updated continuously, and the all-glass optical system allows for brighter vision. Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods
Vortex has been around since 1986 and is a top manufacturer of optic tools. While Bushnell focuses on golf products, Vortex makes optic accessories for various activities, including hunting, golf and military use. Their hunting rangefinders are available in a few styles, including monocular and binoculars that use either reticles or lasers for determining distances.
Vortex rangefinder pros
Vortex rangefinders offer excellent magnification, with most models amplifying vision by seven times. They also feature several ranging and target modes, with the most popular being line of sight range, pan and scan distance reader and a standard mode that provides the scope of the target with the strongest range result.
Vortex rangefinder cons
You’d be hard-pressed to find many flaws with Vortex rangefinders. However, several are expensive due to high-end features. It might be worth the money if you plan to use it for multiple purposes, but you may want to look elsewhere for strictly golf use. Still, there are some cheaper models you can consider.
Best Vortex rangefinder
Vortex Optics Razor HD 4000 Laser Rangefinder
This rangefinder has a 25-millimeter lens and offers seven times magnification for crystal-clear vision. It has four target modes, two range modes and a scanning feature that provides distances while panning over a landscape. Additionally, it works great in adverse weather conditions, providing accurate readings in foggy or rainy weather. Sold by Amazon
Vortex Ranger 1800 Rangefinder
This rangefinder has a 1,800-yard range and features a Horizontal Component Distance mode for accurate slope and angled distance readings. It has a multicolored lens for better adjustment in different lighting environments and, thanks to a secure O-ring seal, offers waterproof protection. Sold by Dick’s Sporting Goods
Vortex Optics Impact 1000 Rangefinder
This rangefinder is one of the most affordable, but it boasts angle compensation and works for up to 1,000 yards out. It has a convenient line-of-sight mode for measuring long distances and high-angle shots with optimal precision. It offers six times magnification and multicoated optic lenses for better readings in different lighting situations. Sold by Amazon
Should you get a Bushnell or Vortex rangefinder?
Both brands offer high-end products, but it really depends on how you intend to use your rangefinder and which features you find necessary or helpful. In terms of price, models that offer longer-distance readings and have an additional range and target modes are usually more expensive across both brands.
If you’re an avid golfer, you can go with either brand. However, it’s worth noting that Bushnell’s rangefinders have features focused on golf play and performance, so it’s arguably the better choice for golfers. Vortex rangefinders are suitable for both golfers and hunters, but none of them have any golf-specific features.
A Vortex rangefinder offers more diverse functionality for multipurpose use. However, a Bushnell rangefinder is your best bet if you want a tool with a streamlined approach for an enhanced golf experience.
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Kevin Luna writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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