GOLF RANGEFINDERS VS. GPS DEVICES: WHICH ONE IS RIGHT FOR YOU?
There are two main options when it comes to determining distances on the golf course, golf rangefinders and GPS devices. Both offer their own unique advantages and disadvantages, and the choice between the two ultimately comes down to personal preference and playing style.
GOLF RANGEFINDERS use laser technology to measure distances to specific targets on the course. They are typically handheld devices that are easy to carry in your golf bag or pocket. Some rangefinders have additional features, such as slope compensation, which calculates the distance adjusted for changes in elevation.
Advantages of Golf Rangefinders:
- Accurate: Rangefinders are known for their accuracy, and they can provide precise distance measurements to specific targets on the course.
- Slope: Many golf rangefinders also provide distances that take slope into account. This can mean the difference between several club lengths on certain approach shots.
- Easy to use: Rangefinders are simple to operate and require minimal setup.
- Portable: Most rangefinding devices are compact and lightweight, making them easy to carry around the course.
Disadvantages of Golf Rangefinders:
- Line of sight: Rangefinders require a clear line of sight to the target, so they may not work as well in situations where obstacles block the view.
- Limited information: Rangefinders only provide distance measurements and do not offer additional course information, such as hole layout or hazards.
GPS DEVICES use satellites to provide golfers with distance information to various points on the course. They can be handheld devices or wearable watches and offer features such as hole layouts, hazards, and even shot tracking.
Advantages of GPS Devices:
- Comprehensive information: GPS devices provide detailed course information, including hole layout, hazards, and distances to various points on the course.
- Non line of sight: GPS devices do not require a clear line of sight to the target, so they work well in situations where obstacles block the view.
- Shot tracking: Some GPS devices offer shot tracking, which allows golfers to track their shots and improve their game.
Disadvantages of GPS Devices:
- Less accurate: GPS devices can be less accurate than rangefinders, especially in situations where signals may be weak or inconsistent. They also don’t take slope into account.
- Battery life: GPS devices require a reliable battery source, and some may need frequent charging.
- Price: GPS devices tend to be more expensive than rangefinders, and additional subscription fees may apply.
WHICH ONE IS RIGHT FOR YOU?
The choice between a golf rangefinder and a GPS device ultimately comes down to personal preference and playing style. If you value accuracy and precision, a rangefinder may be the right choice for you. If you prefer comprehensive course information and shot tracking, a GPS device may be the better option. Some golfers even choose to use both devices in different situations, such as a rangefinder for approach shots and a GPS device for hole layout information.
If accuracy is the name of your game, make sure to check out the complete line of Leupold Golf Rangefinders. We've packed a century’s worth of optics know-how into some of the most accurate and clear rangefinders on the market.