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Best Binoculars for Birding Reviews

We’ve heard every reason in the book for purchasing a pair of binoculars; ranging from an older gentleman who wanted to save money by being able to buy cheaper seats at baseball games, to a younger lady who wanted to get a better view of the men at the beach down the street from her apartment. Buying a pair of binoculars for bird-watching might not sound quite as exciting, but to the contrary – it can be every bit as exciting when you finally catch a glimpse of a bird you’ve never seen before, but only birdwatchers will understand what it’s like.

Gotta Watch ‘Em All

pokemon birding

Is Pokemon-Go Birding?

These days, everybody is out there trying to catch these imaginary Pokémon, and granted it’s great that it’s getting people outside into nature and being active, but there’s been a real life version of this game that people have been playing for centuries, and you don’t need to worry about your GPS signal or your phone’s battery running out.

It’s called birding. All you need is some patience, and a pair of binoculars. In today’s digital world, it’s easy to constantly check our phones any time we become bored for even a split second, but that prevents us from ever truly being relaxed.

One of the greatest aspects of bird watching is the meditative state that it can put you in, but also the sudden rush you feel when you’ve finally spotted a bird you’ve been looking for.

We’re going to be taking a look at some of the best binoculars for birding, but first let’s go over some of the criteria:

  • Price: Typically, a higher price means better quality, but not always. We’re going to look at some options for every budget. Rest assured that every pair of binoculars on this page has one thing in common: value. No matter what it costs, you know you’re getting at least what you paid for – and in most cases, a lot more.
  • Quality: This also ties into value. We’re not going to suggest any binoculars for you to take birding if they’re likely to fail when you need them most. A good quality product should last you many years of worry-free use.
  • Magnification: The birding community can be quite torn as to whether 7x, 8x or 10x magnification is the way to go. The 10’s are better for watching birds that are further away like hawks, or birds that hang out over the water, or simply seeing greater details in closer birds. However, you lose out on some of the field of view that you’ll enjoy from 7’s or 8’s. It really comes down to a personal preference, and honestly if you’ve got room, maybe consider going with one pair of 7x or 8x, and another pair of 10x.

 

The 5 Best Birding Binoculars

Alright, with all of that preamble out of the way, let’s take a look at our top choices.

Zeiss Conquest HD Binoculars 10×42

zeiss conquest HD review

Click Here to Read User Reviews and Amazon Pricing

These are going to be the most expensive pair on our list. There are some other models out there that top the $2000 price range, but that’s really getting into the highest of the high end, and you reach a point of diminishing returns.

The Conquest HD model by Zeiss is made in Germany, has a water-shedding coating making it acceptable to use in any weather conditions, they’re very lightweight, and are suitable for people who wear eye-glasses as well as those who do not.

Now, if you’re more of a casual bird watcher and you don’t want to sell the farm to afford a pair, let’s look at some more reasonably priced binoculars next.

Celestron 71332 Nature DX

clestron binoculars review

Click Here to Read User Reviews and Amazon Pricing

These bad boys are available in a variety of sizes, are very highly reviewed, and come in at just over $100. They’re not the cheapest pair of binoculars out there, and they’re not even the cheapest ones we’ll be featuring on this list, but if you aren’t on too tight of a budget but still aren’t looking to spend hundreds, they’re going to be your best bet in terms of quality, optics, and overall value.

If you’re looking to spend under $100, here’s your best option coming up next.

The Bushnell Legacy WP 8×42

bushnell legacy review

Click here to Read User Reviews and Amazon Pricing

Bushnell has a long standing reputation as a maker of binoculars, and this Legacy model is a great place to start for a beginner birdwatcher. Are they are absolute best binoculars for birdwatching in the entire world? No, but at literally a fraction of the cost of some of the other choices out there, they’re really not a bad place to start if you don’t have more money to spend on your binoculars. They’re the best binoculars under $100, quite likely, and have hundreds of positive reviews over at Amazon to prove it.

Here’s another budget-pair that won’t break the bank but will give you some great sights.

Opticron Oregon 4 LE WP 8×32

Opticron Oregon 4 LE WP review

Click here to Read User Reviews and Amazon Pricing

Just over $100, these still fall well within the “budget” range. Now, we know there are binoculars out there for $20, $30, $40… but we would classify those as below-budget. That doesn’t mean they’re absolute trash or anything, but we’re assuming that anyone who is taking the time to go birding, especially if it represents a few special moments on a camping trip, is looking for something that will do at least a solid job, if not absolute perfection. When you spot that rare bird, “good enough” isn’t really good enough, so that’s why we’re skipping the very bottom of the barrel, so that you can rest assured that everything on here is nothing but pure quality.

We’ve recommended some cheaper options in the past, but one of the biggest concerns is quality control. You just can’t make a GREAT pair of birding binoculars at those prices, and we’re here to recommend the sure-things, not to take a shot in the dark on something that “may or may not be good enough”.

That’s the end of my little rant… we’ve seen too many people miss out on great views because they were tricked into buying a sub-par product, and that’s just not going to happen on our watch (no pun intended.)

Anyways, with that out of the way, there’s just one more pair to look at. They’re on the pricier side relative to this list, but compared to some of the most expensive models out there, they’re still an absolute bargain.

Best in Class: Nikon 7548 MONARCH 7 8×42 Binocular

Nikon 7548 review

Click Here to Read User Reviews and Amazon Pricing

These binoculars are absolutely incredible. You know the old saying “you get what you pay for”? Sometimes, you get a lot more. You get the peace of mind that they’re going to be ready to go when you need them the most, lightweight and easy to carry along, super-high quality glass for incredible visuals, high-grade anti-reflective coatings so you aren’t stuck staring at a glare, and those camping memories that will last a lifetime.

Normally, we might not recommend something at this price point to take with you on a camping trip, but they’re so durable and resistant that you’ll be just fine, and you’ll be glad that you have such a high-quality pair to get the best views that nature has to offer.

So there you have it, five great choices to fit most budgets. Bird watching can be a great addition to any camping trip, you don’t even have to leave your camp site in many cases. Lots of people like to keep a pair of binoculars at their lake, and a checklist of all the local species of birds that they’re seen and the ones that they’re still looking for. With that, we wish you good luck wherever your journey takes you!

Maxpedition

Maxpedition is a company based in California, which has been producing Military Specification nylon gear for almost fifteen years. They are committed to self-improvement and optimization of their product, which is obvious from their products they have created so far. They use only the materials of the highest quality, as well as the high-class craftsmanship. Since 2003, Maxpedition has been working on expanding their offer, so nowadays they produce a wide variety of products. In addition to bags and packs, they also offer a variety of pouches, pockets, traveling essentials and accessories, CCW bags, as well as a range of morale patches that can be added to your bag, backpack or even jacket.

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All of the products created at Maxpedition are high-quality and durable, and some of their offer is as follows:

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Backpacks – Maxpedition backpacks are created so that they fit, and even exceed military standards of durability and quality. In addition to high quality and waterproof materials they are made of, strong zippers you can choose between several types in a variety of colors and sizes – there are folding, double-strap and single-strap backpacks.

Belt packs – belt packs are also produced out of sturdy, waterproof materials and enriched with high quality zippers or Velcro, depending on the model. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes and colors, and they can be used for a variety of purpose and carrying all sorts of items.

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Gear bags – Maxpedition also provides a variety of gear bags for all purposes. Just like the rest of the products, they are also made of water and abrasion resistant nylon, covered with additional Teflon protection and equipped with high-quality zippers, Velcro and buckles. They are practical and allow good organization of the equipment, so they are ideal for the cameramen, photographers and all the people who have a lot of parts of the equipment to carry around.

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Gun cases – since Maxpedition produces the bags and cases that exceed the military quality, these company’s gun cases are the best choice for carrying your weapon, If you are a devoted hunter, you will certainly find a model for any gun or guns you may have, and you can be sure that it will be safe and undamaged if you carry if in a Maxpedition gun case.

Duffel bags – duffel bags are made for the adventure lovers and they are ideal for the outdoor activities. All of the models are equipped with water and abrasion resistant fabric, additionally protected with Teflon – which provides not only more resistance, but easier maintenance as well.

Briefcases – if you do want to have a non-standard and non-formal briefcase, Maxpedition is the right choice. Again, their briefcases come in a variety of shapes and sizes; there are also several different models and several colors to choose from. Due to the waterproof material they are made of, you can be sure that any important documents or electronics you carry inside will be safe and well protected.

Laptop, iPad and tablet bags – Maxpeditionprovides plenty of models of bags and cases for protecting and carrying your laptop or iPad/tablet. There are shoulder bags and backpacks for carrying a laptop, as well as cases and small shoulder bags for safely carrying a tablet or an iPad.

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All types of pouches and wallets – Maxpedition produces firm and durable pouches you can carry on your belt, and where you can safely keep any valuables such as your phone, compact camera or money. If you prefer carrying money in a wallet, there are several models to choose from, and they are not only durable and high quality, but also very stylish.

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Ka-Bar Becker BK-2

Choosing a knife for outdoor activities is not simple, and every experienced outdoorsman knows that it is usually necessary to have a set of different knives intended for different outdoor tasks. Smaller knives are usually intended for lighter tasks, usually related to fishing, camping and hunting, while bigger and heavier knives are used for more demanding tasks, such as cutting tree branches or even chopping smaller pieces of wood. What characterizes Ka-Bar Becker BK-2 is that it is a knife we can say is “in the middle”. It is not as small as traditional small outdoor knives, yet it is not bulky and large as those intended for heavy tasks.

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The first thing to be noticed about the knife is its design. It is well-designed and simple-looking, with total length of 10.5inches, out of which 5.5 inches is the length of the blade. When you pick up the knife, the first thing you will notice is its weight. Since it is designed to be somewhere between the small and the large outdoor knives, it is noticeably heavier than the other knives of the same or similar size. The handle of Ka-Bar Becker BK-2 is not only beautifully designed, but it is also ergonomically shaped, so it sits perfectly in hand and enables you to operate the knife with ease, safety and comfort. It is made of Grivory, which is the main resentment the users have about this knife.

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However, this material is the ideal choice for a knife like this, because it makes the handle lightweight, yet very durable and tough. Other than ergonomic design, there are no any sharp edges on the handle, which makes it even more comfortable for handling and operating. All the hardware is deep inside the handle, which adds to the knife’s durability.

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ka-bar-bk2_03-1024x664When it comes to the blade, it is ¼-inch thick, durable and sturdy. It is made of 1095 high-carbon steel, and has a powdercoating which is heavily textured. Even though the knife is well-designed and looks as beautiful as a knife canlook, do not let the looks fool you – the blade of this knife can perform a variety of tasks and it can endure more extreme conditions than other knives of the same category. Despite its size, it can be used for splitting wood, and you can even use it to collect a stack of wood for a campfire. On the other hand, you can also use it to make wood shavings you need for starting the fire.

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Other than preparing wood for the fire, you can also use this knife for all sorts of food preparation, no matter if you have done the hunting yourself or you need to open a can of food.

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In addition to cutting, chopping and carving, this knife can be used for another type of activities. It has a large pommel which can be used for hammering or for crushing things. In addition to the handle and blade unusually sturdy and tough for the knife of this category, Ka-Bar Becker BK-2 also comes with a sheath made of plastic and nylon. It is simple in design, very lightweight, and just like the knife – it is very sturdy as well. When you place the knife inside the sheath, there is no rattling, the sheath fits perfectly and you do not need to worry that the knife will fall out of the sheath. Additionally, there is a drain hole on the sheath to keep the knife dry.

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To sum up, if you are looking for a knife that can cover most of your needs as an outdoors man, then Ka-Bar Becker BK-2 is the right choice for you.

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Atax Knife

If you are a person who enjoys outdoor activities such as camping or going on various expeditions, you know the importance of the right gear and the tools that can help you survive in nature. Not to mention the situation when, due to a misfortunate event, you find yourself in need of surviving in nature on your own. In situations like this, a proper piece of equipment can be of utmost importance and provide you with great help.

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In case you intend to get yourself the most useful piece of survival gear you can imagine, you should definitely get Atax Knife.

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Atax is not only a knife, it is much more. It can be used as an axe, a wire cutter, range finder, compass, inclinometer, hammer and much more.  If you could have only one piece of equipment with you in the event of surviving outdoors, Atax would be the best choice you could make.

Despite being a multi-purpose and multi-functional piece of survival gear, Atax is only 5.5” long and 4.5” wide. It has a ¼” thick blade, made of 1095 tool Steel. In addition to being compact in size, it is also very lightweight for such a useful and versatile tool, and it weighs only one pound.

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Here are some of the possible uses of the Atax Knife:

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An axe– this is one of the primary uses of this tool. It can easily be added a handle in order to deal with chopping wood or even with heavy animal limbs.

A knife – since Atax is a form of a knife, its blade can be used for various kinds of cutting. It is also useful as a skinning tool, because it is designed so that it prevents puncturing the skin while working through the tissue.

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A hammer, a wrench and a wire cutter– the back side of the Atax knife can be used as a hammer, no matter if you need to pound nails or break nuts. In case you do not need to pound nails but you want to remove them, Atax is also equipped with a wrench you can use for this purpose. Just below the hammer there is a wire cutter – which you can use for cutting all sorts of fences and even barbed wire.

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A compass and a clock– the Atax is equipped with several graphics, one of which can help you determine the time of day or the direction. You will need a twig and the sunlight to determine the time of day, because it works on the principle of the solar clock, while adding a drop of water will help you determine the direction as well.

A rangefinder – one of the graphics on the Atax knife is used for range finding, which is especially useful for hunters or hikers.

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Looking through the viewer and reading the range will tell you about the distance between you and the observed object.

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Tops-Atax-Multi-Use-ToolIt can also be used as the assistance for bow hunting. You can launch the arrows through the rangefinder, but you can also attach a sling shot rubber to the Atax and use it for launching arrows.

An inclinometer – Atax is equipped with an inclinometer, which can help you estimate any danger from avalanche or even approximately determine your latitude.

A survival kit holder – under the Atax’s grip, there is a small compartment you can reach when you unscrew the grip.

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In summary, the Atax Knife is the most versatile survival tool on the market, and no matter if you need it for the outdoor activities, long expeditions or even as a help around the house – it is definitely a piece of equipment you must have.

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Katadyn Pocket Water Filter Review

katadyn pocket filter review

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Even people who live in modern, first world countries are aware of the fact that providing clean and drinkable water is a huge problem in many parts of the world. With pollution, natural catastrophes and lack of care for the Earth, this is slowly becoming a problem even in developed societies.

The Katadyn Pocket Water Filter can resolve a number of drinkable water supply issues, and one of its advantages is definitely that it is applicable to outdoor activities such as camping, trekking, hiking and other activities that require spending time in nature where you are far from clear water sources, as well as in situations when people need to survive in nature due to the unpredictable circumstances.

The Katadyn Pocket Filter works as a water filtration system, and it is able to filter particles up to 0.2 nanometers. It is intended to remove all parasites, viruses, bacteria and fungi from water, without using chemicals, boiling, UV power – or anything other than their filtration system.

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Knowing that the smallest known virus in the world is 25 nanometers and the Katadyn is able to filter particles up to 0.2 microns, we can say that the bar is set high for the water filtration system and technology.

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The Katadyn filtration system is rated for up to 13,000 Gallons of water. Meaning it is long lasting and guaranteed to filter harmful protozoa and other bacteria. The Katadyn water filter is the ONLY water filter to have a 20 year warranty.

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The bottle holds 750 ml of water at a time, and there are two models: LifeSaver 4000 and LifeSaver 6000. The difference between the two is that the first one gives you 4000 liters of clan water before the filter needs to be replaced, while the second one gives you as much as 6000 liters. This makes the LifeSaver Bottle ideal for long expeditions and for unpredictable situations that require survival in nature.

LifeSaver Bottle is very simple to use. First, you need to unscrew the base of the bottle and dip it into the water source, such as stream, river, lake or even a puddle. After this, replace the cap and pump the piston on the bottle several times in order for the water to pass through the filter. After doing this, you will have clean water which is safe to be consumed. When the filter is near the end of its usability, there will be more pumps needed to filter the water. When the water stops flowing through the system, it is time for changing the filter. This is a mechanism created on purpose, in order to prevent the users from drinking water that has not been filtrated.

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Since LifeSaver Bottle holds 750 ml of water, it means that it is not too big for being carried during outdoor expeditions. It can be stored in a backpack or attached onto it, or you can carry it in the side pocket of the backpack. Having a bottle like this during expeditions or in survival situations is much more practical than carrying water supplies in usual bottles, because it is not only lighter, but it also provides you with security that you will not use up the water supply any time soon.

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Mountainsmith Morrison 2

Choosing a tent is not any easy task, no matter if you are an experienced camper, or you are just entering the world of connecting with nature and sleeping outdoors. If you are a beginner in camping, or if you are more experienced but simply want a multi-purpose tent you will be able to bring to almost any terrain, we recommend Mountainsmith Morrison 2. It is created by Mountainsmith, a well-known manufacturer of outdoor and camping equipment with long tradition of manufacturing high-quality products. This is a well-designed and very comfortable tent, intended for two people and ideal for camping, backpacking trips, motorcycle tours, paddling trips and much more.

When it comes to the outer design of the tent, which is the first thing to be noticed, it is well-though, simple and good-looking. It is made in combination of light green and grey, which makes it quite stealthy on several different types of terrains you can use for camping. It is a free-standing tent with four corners, and very easy to be set up. It comes with two doors, which can be zipped-off almost entirely and provide you with fresh air and the view. On the other hand, if you need some additional warmth and less ventilation, there is an option of zipping up the nylon panel on the door.

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 The size of the tent is 92″x56″, which makes it spacious enough for two people. It is 43 inches high at peak, which allows plenty of head room for a tent. The tent comes with several pockets on the inside, intended for storing smaller items. The inner design is quite unusual, since the pockets on either side of the tent are placed on the opposite sides to each other. Also, the zippers on the doors open on different sides from one another. It is most probably intended for the campers who want to sleep in head-to-toe position, and it is ideal for this kind of sleeping arrangement.

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Setting up Mountainsmith Morrison 2 tent is very easy and suitable even for camping beginners. It is designed to have two poles with two master hooks on the top, and the poles are color-coded which makes the set-up even easier. There are also cord adjusters on the tent, which make it easier to tighten everything down for the final set-up.

The weather resistance of this tent is quite high, considering the materials used for making the tent’s floor and walls. The tent withstands the moisture very well, so it is suitable to be used when it is raining, or in case the ground is wet due to previous rainy weather. Since the tent has nylon panel on the doors that can be zipped up, it is also possible to withstand the wind and the cold weather, since it keeps the warmth and does not let the cold inside. Also, the nylon panel helps minimizing splash in cased of heavy rain.

Mountainsmith Morrison 2 tent is made of thick and durable polyurethane material, which makes it a bit heavy, but it provides high durability. Naturally, in order to maintain its durability and extend its life span, it needs to be properly dried out and stored, just like any other tent.

GG11_MountainSmith_Morrison_445x260Another great advantage of this tent is its price-value ratio. For the price of around $180, you will get a durable tent that has a lot of great features and which can be used in different weather conditions and temperatures. Therefore, if you are looking for a high-quality and multi-purpose tent, which is also affordable, we strongly recommend buying Mountainsmith Morrison, because it can meet most of the campers’ needs.

5 Best Rangefinders for Hunting (Jan. 2017)

best hunting rangefinder 2017

There are some purists who would be out there hunting with nothing but their bare hands if they could, but there’s something to be said about taking advantage of technology. Whether you like to hunt with a rifle or a bow, it’s very important to know the range of your target.

You can hunt and still be humane, despite what people might say.

It’s not always easy to eyeball how far away your target is. That’s where having the best hunting rangefinder can be very useful. Before you take a shot, you need to be sure that it’s from a distance that will kill the animal, instead of just injuring them. If they’re injured and they run away because you tried to shoot from too far, which can also drastically reduce your accuracy, then you’re going to have to chase that animal down, whether it takes hours or days, that’s your responsibility.

Here is a List of the Best Rangefinders of 2017

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Avoid situations like that by making sure you’re within the correct distance, depending on what you’re using to hunt. Having a low quality range finger can be worse than not having one at all, because it can give you a false sense of distance.

Thankfully, most of the ones on the market aren’t terrible, but there is still a noticeable difference between the best rangefinder and just an average one, and we’re here to help un-muddy the waters so that you can choose the perfect tool for the job. When the job is something this important, when we’re talking about the difference between potential animal suffering or not, as a responsible and compassionate hunter, the ball’s really in your court.

You’re not in it alone!

We’re here to help. We’ve taken a look at countless ranger finders so that we can bring you a handful of options to choose from. We’ve narrowed down your search, but at the end of the day its still up to you to make the decision. We’ve made that decision as easy as possible, by filtering out any range finders that lack quality, that are overpriced or overrated, that have too many negative reviews, or that simply don’t offer a good value.

You can be rest assured that any item appearing on this buyer’s guide is going to be a product of quality, that’ll last you many seasons, and that will do as good a job as possible. Still, not everybody has the same wants, needs, or budget, so we’ve broken things down to ensure that there’s something for everyone on this list, and that nobody is stuck using a product that’s anywhere less than great. If it made our list, you know it’s a quality product and a value buy.

Let’s start by going over a bit of basic information and explaining some of the features that these range finders may have. Knowing the difference between certain stats, and how that impacts the performance of the device, is crucial. You don’t have to be an expert, so we aren’t going to go super in-depth, but we’ll certainly provide enough information to help you make an informed decision.

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Choosing the correct magnification:

You’ll notice various levels of magnification while shopping for a range finder. From something like a golf scope with one lens, to an advanced hunting range finder with multiple lenses, it’s not always easy to pick the right one.

On top of that, a device with multiple lenses can have different types of coatings, that even vary between each lens. We’ll cover the different types of lenses in just a moment, but first you’ve got to decide how much magnification you’ll want, so let’s look at some of the pros and cons.

You’ll often see magnification ranging between 4x, 6x, or 8x. The higher the number is, obviously, the more of a magnifying effect you’ll have, which means you’re able to get a better view of your target. However, greater magnification leads to a decrease in your field of view, which can make it a bit trickier to actually track down your target in the distance quickly.

The distance for rangefinders usually starts at a few yards, meaning it won’t really be accurate for something that’s a yard or two away, but that’s okay because you’ll never need that. The maximum distance that a range finder can be accurate at will vary, however it’s usually up to around 1000-1600 yards. The accuracy level at these distances is typically within about half of a yard, which is plenty accurate. If you’re ever at a point where that 0.5 yards is going to be the deal breaker, just don’t take the shot, get yourself into a better position first.

Different types of range finder lenses:

There are numerous lens types available for rangefinders, which can assist them in working better in a variety of different environments. The lenses and their coatings have an impact on the amount of lighting that can get through, which impacts the laser’s strength and ability to travel to and from the rangefinder. The amount of light that the laser is able to transmit is determined by these factors:

Looking at the best laser rangefinders:

With some of the background information out of the way, let’s dive right into it now. Here’s a look at five different rangefinders. Some of them are more entry-level (But still perfectly capable of achieving a level of quality that you need), and some of them are higher end. If you can afford a better one, do it. If you can’t afford to spend that much on a rangefinder, don’t get discouraged – it’s not necessary.

As we mentioned in the introduction, everything on this list is a great product and a solid option – you can’t go wrong with any of them. None the less, we wanted to include options and variety to make sure that there’s something for everyone, without making any sacrifices to quality. As such, even the most affordable ones on this list aren’t the cheapest options out there. As we discussed, you should just skip the very cheapest options because this is a very important tool, and it’s your responsibility to get it right, so don’t take any chances.

bushnell michael waddell bone collecter review1. Bushnell Michael Waddell Bone Collector Edition 4x 21mm Laser Rangefinder

This is one of the top sellers, so it’s worth mentioning first. There’s a reason that so many people choose it. The price is right, that’s for sure. At under $150, it does a great job. It has accuracy of +/- 1 yard, which isn’t as good as some of the others we’ll be taking a look at, but again – if you’re in a situation where that extra .5 yards is going to make a difference, you’re in the wrong situation to begin with.

This rangefinder has a magnification of 4x, meaning you’ll have a larger field of vision when you’re trying to pinpoint your target, but you won’t be able to see quite as close up since it’s less magnified. An 8x rangefinder will have you seeing things a lot more closely, but again, at the expense of a greatly reduced field of vision.

This is a simple device with just one button, a weather resistant housing, and it comes with a case. One of the downsides is the fact that it’s only good up to 600 yards, whereas some of the devices we’ll be featuring can do a lot more than that. If this one suits your needs, all things considered, it’s a great buy – but if you’re at a greater distance, you’ll find exactly what you need further down on this list.

2. Nikon 8397 ACULON Laser Rangefindernikon 8391 aculon laser review

This model by Nikon is quite similar to the one we just looked at. It also sits well above the line of the bare minimum that we’d recommend. Again, there are less expensive options out there, but we can’t recommend anything lower than these because when it comes to something this important, it would be foolish to start shopping at the entry level – so we skipped right ahead to mid-level.

This rangefinder has a slightly lower maximum range than the Bushnell we just featured, at 550 yards. A nice thing about the Aculon is that it’s very compact, light, and portable. Also, Nikon is primarily known as a camera company, but what’s one of the most important features on every camera? The lens. So you know you’re getting a quality lens when you buy from Nikon.

It’s water resistant and rainproof, but you won’t want to take it swimming with you, obviously. If you’re aiming at multiple targets off in the distance, it is programmed to give you the distance of the furthest one, which can be useful if your target is slightly obscured by grass or something like that. It also features a simple one-button operation.

3. Vortex Optics Ranger 1000 with Horizontal Component Distance Rangefinder RRF-101vortex optics ranger 1000

We’re getting up there in price and quality now, this is one about twice as expensive as both options we’ve looked at so far. Is it twice as good? That can be a tricky question to measure. Also, often with these types of things, as you spend more and more, you aren’t necessarily getting an increase in value that scales directly to the price.

For example, something that costs twice as much isn’t necessarily going to be twice as good, it might be roughly 1.5x as good, but that’s the cost you have to pay when you get into higher-end items. There’s certainly a point of diminishing returns with anything that costs more money, not just the best rangefinders, but if you want that upper-level of performance, it’s just the price you’ve got to pay. It certainly doesn’t mean it isn’t worth it. In other words, the difference between a $50 and a $150 rangefinder is generally going to be more drastic than the difference between a $150 rangefinder and a $450 model. None the less, the $450 is going to reach heights that the cheaper ones simply cannot. So if you want that top tier of performance, if it has the features and the abilities that you need, you’re still getting your money’s worth either way.

Back to this model in particular – the rugged design means it’ll be reliable by your side when you need it without having to worry about it breaking easily. The distance varies depending on lightning, etc, but it’s going to be great at 600 yards and has been reported accurate at closer to 1000 yards, too. People use it for hunting as well as golf. It has 6x magnification, right in the middle sweet spot of magnification and field of vision, so you aren’t making any major sacrifices in either department.

4. Bushnell Tactical 202421 Elite 1-Mile ARC 7x26mm Laser Rangefinderbushnell tactical elite 202421 review

This rangefinder right here is serious business. It’s the most expensive, and the best, that we’re going to be looking at today. This is going to be plenty more than the majority if hunters will need, but if you factor in the amount you’re already spending on everything else if you’re a dedicated hunter and outdoorsman, it’s not a huge expensive considering you’ll be getting one of the best range finders available without dropping a small fortune.

Earlier, we talked about the point of diminishing returns. Making the jump from something in the sub-$200 range to this one that costs right around $400 can be a very worthwhile investment, however going from $400 to an elite-level range finder than might cost $600 or $800 isn’t going to have nearly as big of an improvement in quality, and is basically reserved for the professionals who make a living hunting and can afford to write-off the higher gear costs. Having said that, again, this guy right here is absolutely stunning and plenty more than most people will ever need – let alone being able to tell the difference between this or something higher-end.

In other words, if you can afford to drop $400 on this Bushnell Rangefinder, do it.

It’s fully waterproof, not just water resistant like a lot of the options on this list. That makes a difference!

Also, the total range from this one makes it the best rangefinder for longer distances compared to everything else we’re going to feature. It is accurate from 5 yards, all the way up to 1760, with accuracy of +/- 0.5 yards, and it displays in increments of 0.1 yards. It can calculate your bullet drop and compensate for that, and other factors.

The only downside compared to some of the other options, is that it’s a little bit bigger and heavier, but that’s because it’s a lot more powerful.

5. Bushnell® Trophy® Xtreme Laser Rangefinder with ARCbushnell trophy xtreme review

Now, if you were interested in some of the models we looked at earlier, but unimpressed with the 550-600 yard maximum distance, and not quite tempted by the Tactical Elite by Bushnell that we just looked at, here’s a solid unit that fits somewhere in the middle. It offers 800 yards worth of range, which is a great upgrade from 550, but still nowhere near the 1760 – but at less than half the price, and only a bit more expensive than the 550-600 models, if you need that extra bit of range, this is a very smart buy. It fits nicely into the middle ground.

The reviews are more than solid, the price is great, and it’s a Bushnell so you know it’ll be good. This is a fairly simple laser rangefinder, one of the best you’ll find at this price. It won’t be a top performer in lower light, and it lacks the Clearshot feature that the Bushnell Truth editions have, but it’s still a strong choice if nothing else on this list has captivated you yet.

Have you tried any of the best rangefinders for hunting, archery, golf, that we’ve mentioned on this list? Did you have a good experience with them, or did you have any problems? Make sure you let us know, because the options of experienced hunters help us to include the best products for our readers. If you know of another rangefinder that deserves a spot on here – don’t be shy – let us know!

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