By Patrick Tuttle
on 7.20.09

bushnell_pro_16001

There’s little secret of my love for range finders. Gear Patrol has tested several. I stand firm on my conviction that range finders are as essential to your golf game as your clubs. Each year ushers in better models and Bushnell, the leader in range finder technology, is at it once again with the Pro 1600.

As the most widely used range finder among tour professionals, the Bushnell Pro 1600 needs little kudos from me to solidify its position atop the market.  Then again, I’ve never been shy about giving my 2 cents, so here it goes.

The Pro 1600 is by far the most complete range finder I have used. The addition of 7x magnification capabilities makes this range finder good up to 1,600 yards and 400 yards to the flag stick (accurate to within one yard). It also includes Bushnell’s Pinseeker and Slope Technology to give you the most accurate distances you could hope for. I’m notorious for under clubbing when faced with a change in elevation. Now I have a voice of reason when I reach for the wrong club. It drives me crazy when I hit a great golf shot, just to watch it land short of the green.

bushnell_pro_1600_2All of these benefits do come at a price; the Bushnell Pro 1600 is larger and heavier than any of the range finders I’ve used before. Though, admittedly, I’m not sure I really noticed the difference once it was in my bag. The unit is simple to use with a point and shoot set-up. The Pro 1600 will also scan distances as you pan. If you’ve used a range finder before than you know it’s not always easy to hit your target squarely. Sometimes your hands shake just enough to throw off your aim. The Pro 1600 adjusts for your inaccuracies and only returns the distance to the flag, instantly filtering out objects you may have hit in the background. An icon in the display lets you know if you’ve hit the flag dead on or if it had to apply a filter.

The Pro 1600 is an upper echelon entry into the range finder world, but one that’s well worth the investment given the cutting edge innovation Bushnell has packed into it. I bought a Bushnell range finder five years ago and it still works like I just took it out of the box. For me, longevity is key and is reassuring when considering dropping your hard earned coin on a product like this.

Cost: $399