GolfBuddy LR5 Laser Rangefinder Review

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50 Words or Less

The Golf Buddy LR5 laser rangefinder is an excellent choice for the budget-minded golfer.  Three modes which are all very functional and easy to use.

Introduction

For a long time, the gap between high-end and budget rangefinders was substantial.  Now, however, there’s very little functionality that you can’t get from a reasonably priced model.  A perfect example is the Golf Buddy LR5 laser rangefinder.  At only $250, this laser is accurate and has some unique modes that even top dollar models don’t have.

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Setup & Ease of Use

Like every laser rangefinder, the Golf Buddy LR5 is very easy to get started with: put the battery in and push the power button.  When you first start it up, it will be in the basic distance mode and it will display the distance in yards.

Where the LR5 impressed me was in how easy the adjustments were.  To switch from yards to meters, simply hold down the “Mode” button.  This is much better than flipping through menus and fidgeting with tiny buttons on the side of the laser.  If you want to use the Scan or Pin mode, push the “Mode” button once or twice.  Again, no menus to bother with, and the current mode is clearly displayed on the screen.

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Accuracy & Performance

When your slogan is “Accuracy Matters,” you need to deliver, and the LR5 laser rangefinder does.  It boasts accuracy that’s +/- 1 yard, and my testing bore that out.  While there are lasers that claim smaller accuracy tolerances, plus or minus a yard is as much as the average golfer needs.

The thing I really want to highlight is the variety of useful modes on the LR5.  I’ve used laser rangefinders for over 10 years, and I’ve never used anything but the basic distance mode on any of them.  With the LR5, however, I found myself enjoying the Scan and Pin modes so much that I used them as much as the standard mode.  In Scan mode, you get the distance to whatever you point the laser at for 10 seconds with just one push of the button.  This is much more pleasant than constantly punching the button, and it’s very useful when evaluating a cluster of bunkers or a line of trees.  The Pin mode will be a favorite among those with shaky hands.  Just like Scan, you push the button once, and it scans for 10 seconds.  The difference is that it only displays the shortest distance that it sees.  This is a huge benefit when trying to scan a flag that’s backed by trees.

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Value

Retailing for $250, the Golf Buddy LR5 laser rangefinder is on the lower end of the rangefinder price spectrum.  Despite the low price, it has some premium features like the three targeting modes.  It also comes with a high quality case that’s nearly identical to the one you get with the Bushnell Tour X – a laser that retails for double the price.

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Conclusion

With it’s budget-friendly price, I was expecting the Golf Buddy LR5 laser rangefinder to be awash in compromises.  What I found instead was an accurate, easy-to-use product that actually packs some useful new features.  If you’re adding or upgrading a laser rangefinder this year, don’t overlook the LR5.

Matt Saternus
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