Need Advice on shorter-range range finder


Well-Known Member
Sep 29, 2006
Santa Rosa, CA
I am in the market for a new range-finder that will work well out to 500 Yards. I plan to visit Cabela's later this month, prior to a coyote hunt in northern Arizona. I don't particularly want to spend big bucks on a Zeiss. That leaves perhaps the Nikon or Leupold. Cabela's carries both. Any advice on which model, the pros and cons, etc. would be appreciated. I have no clue to which model works well and which company will back up any warrantees. In other words, if something goes wrong with the range-finder, I want to be able to send it to the company and get it fixed without a lot of hassle.

I say this because I sent a pair of rather expensive binoculars to Leica for alignment over three months ago. Their ETA for repair is January 16, 2010 (over three months from the date I sent it to them), and the estimated repair bill is $150. I would expect that any range finder I purchase has a good warranty and that the company doesn't give me a ton of hassle if something is wrong with the thing, either right after the purchase, or within the warranty period.

Most of my hunting is within 300 yards for coyotes, so I don't need anything fancy. I want a reticle that is easy to use, and any other feature that is advisable. So.....what do you suggest for around $300 or so that would be easy to use, accurate and relatively trouble-free out to 500 yards?
I have had a Nikon 440 for a few years and love it, it will always range out past 400 yards in the field sometimes 500. Last month I bought a Leupold RX??? 1500 yard and it was horrible never got it to go past 807 and that was on a huge cliff face, most of the time it would only work out to the 500 range. I am returning it for the Nikon 1200 as it seems to be rated well in all of the reviews.

PS the leupold had way to many bells and whistles cluttering the screen making it hard to read as well.
You can find a used Leica 800 LRF or CRF for what you will pay for the Bushnell or Leupold. The Leica will outperform those units by a huge margin. NJS
NJS, I too have read posts from Leica users that they like their rangefinders, but I have never seen one or had the chance to compare the Leica to Nikon or Leupold rangefinders. Is the Leica more accurate, easier to use, have better features, more reliable, etc.? In other words, why do you like the Leica better than the others?
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