Entry-Level Laser Rangefinders

  • A rangefinder is one more thing I need to check off on my Newbie list. These are on sale at a big discount right now:


    Of course, a big discount on a terrible product is still no deal. Does anyone have any experience with these? Or recommendations for other products in this performance/price range?

  • @flyinphill
    I have no experience with the Bushnell, but a friend of mine use the zig kilo and it has impressed me for the money. It ranged right along side my terrapin out to about 1200 yards on steel target roughly the size of human torso.

  • @bull81 said:

    I have no experience with the Bushnell, but a friend of mine use the zig kilo and it has impressed me for the money. It ranged right along side my terrapin out to about 1200 yards on steel target roughly the size of human torso.

    Brownells has the Sig Kilo 1250 on sale as well. Do you know which model he was using? They range from about $150 for the 850 all the way up to about $1500 for the top model.

  • @flyinphill
    I believe he has the kilo2000 model. Most rangefinders are not going to range targets out to their advertised range, you can figure on about half that. The advertised range is for perfect conditions usually on large reflective targets. So I would recommend picking one that advertises a much longer range than you intend to use it at. For example if you intend to use it say at max 1000 yards then I’d go with a minimum advertised range of 1500. All that said I really was impressed with the sig kilo he had, someone else can comment on the Bushnell I just have no experience with it.

  • @bull81 After doing a bit more looking, I think I would be better off to spend slightly more money and go for something like the Kilo 2000 ($400), Kilo 2200 ($500), or the Leica CRF 1600-R ($600). I am sure there are plenty others in that price range as well. The Amazon reviews on the Leicas are stellar, FWTW.

  • The kilo 2000 and leica models work well for their respective prices. Especially if you can get a good deal on one.

  • I have a bushnel elite 1600. I bought it cause it was a crazy good deal. I gave like $220 for it.

    I won’t say I regret it because it does a lot of what I need it to at minimal cost. It works pretty good out to about 600y on 2/3 torso. Much past that and it can’t pick the target out of the background. If you want to range a house or tree line then it will do that out to 1200-1300 yards.

    Last time I used it at Long range, my target was in the middle of a field. I couldn’t put it on the tree line cause I couldn’t see it due to a crest (irrigation pad). However standing at the target I could range the trees. Then back off to where I was shooting from and range
    The trees again and subtract
    The difference.

  • Is Vectronix selling to the civilian market again or still government only?

  • @hypo
    Yes you can get them from various online source but they don’t make the terrapin anymore. You can find them pretty easy used and in good shape though.

  • I just ordered the Kilo 2000 yesterday. Through the end of the day today it is on sale for $320 at DVOR. I have never purchased from them before but for that price was willing to give it a go.

  • I have the Sig Kilo 2000 and I love it. On reflective targets I have been able to range sides of houses out to 1600+ yds. Since I haven't taken it hunting, I don't know how far it will range deer or elk, but for the matches I go to, where the farthest target is about 1100 yds, it ranges it's fine. I do need to order the Really Right Stuff tripod bracket for it, because hand holding it while trying to range a target that far is a pain, especially because it's rather small.

  • I got my sig kilo 2000 today and I've got to say I'm pretty disappointed in its performance. I'm wondering if I was just expecting to much or I got a bad unit?

    I live on an open field. It was tilled last fall with a little bit of snow in the field but mostly you can see black soil. I have a tree line around 300 yards it picked up easily. Then a second tree line around 450 that it would only pick up maybe 1 out of 5 times.
    On the other end of the field there is a well developed tree line in the fence line separating the two fields. This tree line is less then 900 yards away. It doesn't touch any of those trees. There is a deer blind in that tree line also. Probably a 6'x6' weathered looking sheet of plywood that it also doesn't pick up.

    It was overcast this evening when I was testing it out and about 30 F for air temp. For advertising deer out to 1200 and tree lines out to 1500 I would have expected better performance than this.
    Is this all the better I could expect from this unit? Are the conditions just horrible for it to range? Or is there something wrong with my unit.

  • Sounds like you have a faulty unit. The one's I've played with can easily hit a IPSC at 800yds.

  • I agree with @orkan aounds like something is a miss with your unit. The one my friend has did well out to 1200

  • Yea that doesn’t sound very good, I’ve ranged with mine out to 1200.

    Make sure the it’s the 2000 and didn’t get switched with a cheaper one, and then maybe contact sig.

    The HUD should be red, the cheaper ones are black I think.

  • Got off the phone with Sig a bit ago. Mailing it back to them and they are going to take a look at it. If they can't fix it they will be sending me a Kilo 2200 as the 2000 is no longer in production.

  • I attended a seminar in the fall last year where a Defense contractor and scientist with a government contract related to rangefinding tech explained how Range finders work.

    He started with Beam Divergence. According to his presentation, a rangefinders have different size beams that they transmit. 2 mrad, 1 mrad, .5 mrad are commonly used. The more focused the beam and the less chance for noise from surrounding trees etc. Next is the shape of the beam. Some RF's have round and some RF's have rectangular beams. The point is if your beam is so spread out and your target is displacing a small portion of the beam at range, you will get noise introduced and less accurate readings. Power of the beam also affects the reading as well.

    Next he talked about Target Reflectivity. Paint on wood had about 60% reflectivity measured in Wavelength (nanometers) 60% at 500 yds that dropped to about 40% at 1500 yds depending on the color. Tree bark according to his tests were some of the lowest reflectivity surfaces 30% out to about 1700 yds. The reflectivity of trees was not consistent over distances out to 1700yds. Targets like deer he said are about 25% reflective so they're close to tree bark.

    There was a lot of information presented. The other key issues is holding the RF still.

    In his testing the Kilo 2000 read 20% reflective targets out to 900 yds and 50% reflective targets out to 1100 yds. Both targets were 2.5' x 2.5'. The Kilo 2400 read about 1200yds, 1400yds for the same targets.

    Hope this helps. If your RF has a 1 mrad beam it's likely that its picking up a lot of noise from surrounding objects surrounding your target and your target is displacing a small percentage of the beam at that range.

    My .02.

  • Shipped that Sig Kilo 2000 back and had them take a look at it. Got it back yesterday and is having no problems ranging the tree line at 900 yards now.