At the crossroads of the long-range optics industry are the rare products called Rangefinder Binoculars. While still available to the general public, the rarity comes at an increased price. These optics combine the basic mechanics of binoculars with the acquisition abilities of rangefinders.
As with normal rangefinders, a rangefinder bino does require batteries. They may not be the large CR2 batteries that most rangefinders run on, but you will still have to spend some money every now and then to replace them.
The process to hybridize rangefinders and binoculars is very tricky, hence the larger than normal price jumps. These binoculars are fine-tuned during manufacturing to ensure that the rangefinding system is accurate and compatible with each size of objective lenses.
Laser rangefinders usually don’t use the x and y-axis markers that appear within the lenses. They use a laser acquisition system and a pointer reticle that simply tells you how far away each object is.
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The Hooway 7x50mm model is sort of your all-around tough and reliable set of rangefinder binos. The large, 50mm objective lenses are encased in non-slip rubber armor-making them shock-proof and waterproof. On the underside of the binos is a tripod adapter. A tripod may be ideal in situations where you plan to remain in one spot for a long time.
The rangefinder on this pair of binos uses a y-axis to determine distance. In this case, distance is approximate and measured in kilometers as opposed to laser rangefinders, which are usually dead on and give a more exact distance. The calculation is as follows:
Distance=(100)x(Object Size)÷Rangefinder Scale Reading
If you can approximate object height or width, you’ll get the object distance. Aside from the rangefinder itself, the binos are equipped with an internal compass for navigation and direction.
We like that Hooway’s objective lenses provide a wide FOV and appropriate zoom level, all for a very affordable price. The rangefinder may not be the best in the world, but it gets the job done and saves you the hassle of having to carry two different pairs of optics.
Aomekie’s set of 7x50mm binos are very similar to the Hooway model. They are a durable pair built to handle tough conditions, whether it be rain, fog, or humidity.
The rangefinder with these binos is nearly identical to the Hooway, and the same goes for the compass. The downside is that you won’t get the exact distance of an object to the “T,” but it will be very close. The tricky part is knowing or guestimating an object’s height or width.
One thing to note is that the product description is misleading-these binos do not come with night vision but do better in low-light conditions than the average pair. Aomekie has a couple of different colors available, but make sure that you remain on the 7x50mm pair.
The 10x50mm by USCAMEL increases the zoom by a factor of three. This gives it a little bit of an advantage over the Aomekie and Hooway models in terms of close up detail and target acquisition. The more chance of appropriately identifying the target, the more exact your rangefinder calculation will be.
We like that these pair of 10x50mm uses folding eyecups. This design makes viewing for users with glasses much easier. When conditions aren’t great, this pair of 10x50mm is durable and reliable for users of all ages and experience levels.
The FOV at 1000 yards with these binos is 396 feet, which is about the same as the Aomekie and Hooway models. The zoom level on this pair of binos will be key in identifying objects and animals on the water, where vision can be blurry and unfocused.
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The Snypex Knight is an 8x42mm model of binoculars with a laser range finder. This simplifies the overall process with the push of a button. The buttons are conveniently located across the top of the binos-one for power acquisition and one for changing the distance measurement.
With a hard rubber exterior, the Knight is built to handle tough conditions and the occasional high drop. A common laser rangefinder problem is inaccuracies when the laser is pointed at or through the glass. You can rest assured that the Knight has solved this problem and even allows for continuous ranging capability with moving targets.
The inclusion of the rangefinder and its batteries barely alters the overall weight of the Knight. In the end, it’s still covered protective armor, so you almost wouldn’t notice the difference until you actually used them.
The Bushnell Fusion 10x42mm pair of binos give a good introduction to higher-end rangefinder binos. Its powerful laser extends in a one-mile arc in front of the binos.
The internal display is actually pretty intuitive. Not only will the Fusion give you the distance to the target, but you can also switch between rifle or bow hunting focus and get the angle of elevation. For the hunter or outdoor enthusiast who is nitpicky with detail, these measurements are hard to pass up.
At maximum range, these Bushnell binoculars can acquire targets up to 1760 yards away. In particular, with the rifle mode, the Fusion has different settings that allow you to sight-in the binos at 100, 200, 300, and 400 yards.
While people may initially be wary of picking up a pair of rangefinder binos, Bushnell really sets the tone for the industry by including multiple ways to get the correct distance. It does this, all while providing the user with great light transmission through the lenses.
Nikon’s 10x42mm laser force binoculars are a sight to behold. Most rangefinder binos of this price range and above use lasers to get the distance to an object. They are more accurate than the cheaper pairs of binos that require you to do some slight calculations to get the approximate distance.
The Nikon Laser Force Rangefinder Binocular has a range of 1900 yards and can also factor in inclines and declines. This small but noticeable addition to the laser rangefinder will ensure that you are getting near precise measurements. In low light conditions, you can also adjust the intensity of the display within the lenses.
Like most rangefinders, the laser force can acquire a target range as it moves, but only up to 8 seconds. Overall, the laser force is one of the best all-around rangefinder binos despite the price.
We all know how popular Vortex can be, and they really knock the ball out of the park with the Fury’s. Their 10x42mm measurements give you an ideal FoV at 1000 yards and provide ample light transmission so you can study an object or animal closely.
The Vortex Fury HD rangefinder reticle is similar to the one you’ll find in a normal rangefinder. Like the Laser Force and Fusion, these binos utilize a laser to acquire distance. If your target is at an odd angle away from you, the Fury employs the Horizontal Component Distance (HCD) to compensate for those angles and ensure you are getting precise distances.
Aside from being a reliable range finding binocular, they are waterproof, fog-proof, and built to withstand the occasional drop or scratch.
If you want live streaming and HD video recording, then these are the smart binoculars for you. They allow for bright and crisp images, and the zoom feature is smooth, imitating your natural eyesight. These binos are multipurpose and can be used for hunting, outdoor sports, wildlife observation, surveillance, and even golfing.
The sharp sensors of these binos feature extended metadata, e-compass orientation, zoom level, distance to the target, and 3D gyroscope functionality. Even though they are packed with all these powerful features, these binos have low energy consumption and can be used for 16+ hours of active use.
For comfort and eye relief, interpupillary adjustments can be made, making these a good choice for everyone, even children. The 4K Ultra HD technology combined with the Dual Core Processor allows for a clear image, despite ambient light.
These binoculars can help you detect and identify prey and the built-in laser rangefinder helps you measure the distance easily and quickly. These binoculars offer great image stabilization, high-quality image production even in low light conditions, water-resistant construction, an ergonomic design, an inbuilt compass, and Wi-Fi streaming.
However, also keep in mind it only has a 220-foot field of view at 1000 yards, and these binoculars are prone to damage.
These binoculars are a great choice and come in at under $1,200, making them an affordable option for a high-quality product. They are ideal for broad daylight performance. They are lightweight, easy to use, and have an ergonomic design. They fit your hands nicely, and you won’t get tired of holding them.
The Sig Sauer binoculars are also weatherproof, so you don’t have to worry about pulling them out during rainy conditions. You also don’t have to worry about damage due to condensation forming on the lenses. They are well-constructed and are a value at this price point.
They offer a field of view of 320 feet at 1000 yards. The lenses are fully multi-coated, 10x magnification and the lens diameter is 42mm with an eye relief of 18mm.
The high-quality internal ballistics keep all your accurate data and help you while you are out on the field. However, they aren’t ideal for twilight conditions, so keep this in mind.
Advantages of Rangefinder Binoculars
When you use a pair of rangefinder binoculars, you can view distant objects and measure the distance between yourself and the target. If you are hunting, it can prove to be advantageous. When you choose to use traditional rangefinders, you can still look at objects in the distance, but you will have half the range you would have if you were to use rangefinder binos.
Rangefinder binoculars are also equipped with magnification that is almost double the power when compared to traditional rangefinders. Additionally, rangefinder binos are lightweight, so they don’t add much to your pack.
With rangefinder binoculars, you not only extend your visual range, but you also have the advantage of measurements. You will typically find a range capacity of 1700 to 1900 meters for objects that are reflective. For a non-reflective target, the range capability is approximately 1000 to 1200 meters. Along with the measurements is the magnification power. Most rangefinder binoculars are capable of 10x magnification or even 12x magnification.
If you are a hunter, then the ballistic configuration proves important. The ballistic information includes data about the current conditions in the field. You can learn more about ground slope, wind conditions, temperature, barometric pressure, and the altitude within a specific range.
A high-quality pair of rangefinder binoculars offer ballistic configurations for up to 1900 meters. This helps eliminate guesswork and eliminate inaccuracies. The data accuracy on the newer models is also far better due to the higher-quality lenses and prisms.
Field of Vision
The field of vision (FoV) and magnification are similar. If you want a wider field of vision, you want to have a set of rangefinder binoculars with a lesser magnification. With higher magnification, you will find that the FoV can become compromised. So, if you are a long-distance shooter, then go for a higher FoV. You can spot your pry and better target them within the lens.
How to Choose the Best Rangefinder Binoculars
Now that you know more about the features you should look for, here is how to find and choose the best rangefinder binoculars.
Always choose binos that offer high-quality lenses and optics. A larger diameter lens works much better at gathering light and allows for clear images. Lower light conditions warrant a 50mm lens for the best optical performance.
You can find rangefinder binoculars with different glass coating types. Some are meant to keep the water off the lenses, while others are strictly more anti-reflective, which is what you want for clear and sharp imaging.
A long-range shooter needs to have a long-distance or range and better magnification. Choose your magnification and FoV carefully, considering the kind of activities you will be engaging in.
If you want the exact location of your target, then a focus system will prove beneficial. Instead of manually focusing on your target, it auto-focuses instead and saves you time.
If you wear glasses, then eye relief will prove to be important. It is also beneficial if you find yourself using your rangefinder binoculars for long hours at a time.
Finally, since you will be using your binoculars outdoors, you want them to be durable. A hard plastic body and rubber casing are ideal and prove to be impact resistant.
Whatever rangefinder binocular you choose, make sure they are suitable for your activities. Having the best rangefinder bino allows you to have just one device that can provide you with a full range of findings, rather than having to wear several devices around your neck.
When finding your next pair, consider optical performance, magnification, FoV, and angle compensation, among the other factors we have already discussed.