just my opinion from reading posts here and using several.
1) Newcon 3000 - from reading here - only 1 report - spendy.
2) Swaro - From reading here - good - spendy
3) Leica 1200 scan - I own one - really decent - not so spendy.
4) Opti-logic - from reading here but no magnification.
7) Nikon 800 - shootin' buddy has one. the Leica is at least 2X better than the Nikon
Have ranged deer in CRP (tall grass) @ 600. Bedded moose calf in snow @ 505. ROckchuck on rock @ 425. It was a large flat rock the edge of which ranged 423 and was repeatable, hand held.
Other than not ranging as well as the Swaro the biggest problem with the Leica is that if not held out of the way the neck strap tickles your nose, really...
I may be the slowest guy on the mountain . . . . but . . . . I'm on the mountain!
While I'm a firm believer in having way more rangefinder than you "need" such that when you really need it you have one that will perform the function...a deer at a little over 400 is not a difficult task and you don't need to spend much money to do that.
If I was in your shoes and that's all I wanted, even keeping with the "more than you need concept" I'd hunt for a used Leica 1200 scan, being sold by somebody who is upgrading to something more expensive. I think that would get you a great tool for the job and be a great bang for the buck as well.
The Bushnell compact 800 and the 1500 are worthy of a look. I do most everything with the 800. I have had many reading over 800. Even in bright daylight it will pull back off of tress at 700+. My biggest complaint is in low light it's useless. Better to get a good reading odf the area before the sun goes down.
__________________ Some kids want to be a fireman or a doctor to help people. I wanted to be a gunsmith.
The Swaro is the best, no real room for argument unless you bring those super expensive ones into the picture.
The leica 1200 is definantly the second best I have ever used. IT has a better ranging reticle than the Swaro and pretty nice glass also. It will range out to 800yds on bright days usually and will do over 1k in overcast conditions.
The nikon's are pretty nice except they use a black read out, which i hate. They will range out to 700yds usually and are a lot easier on the pocket than some others.
the bushnell i have only gotten to play with a little but it has a very fast read back and handles nicely.
for optimum long range ability right now the swaro is the king
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