The Professional Golfers’ Association of America doesn’t permit golfers to use rangefinders during competition on any of its pro tours, including the PGA, Nationwide and Champions tours. Players or caddies may use rangefinders on the course during practice to help create or modify a yardage book that they may consult during the actual tournament.
There are two types of golf range finders, also known as distance finders. A writer for Golf.com says that as of 2011, over 30 percent of avid golfers owned a range finder. "Rangefinders have been the hottest selling item in an otherwise down golf economy and competition is fierce," wrote Gary Van Sickle. If you are searching for a range finder, you have a choice between a laser device and a GPS device. Both have advantages and disadvantages.
There are two types of rangefinders available on the market for you to use to aide you on the golf course: GPS and laser rangefinders. GPS rangefinders require less time to determine your distance to the hole or other points on the golf course because they use measurements to known points about the course. They require the course to be mapped and sometimes require you to pay a monthly subscription fee, depending on the type of service that you choose. Laser rangefinders, on the other hand, do not require the course to be mapped. They can take longer to get a distance measurement than a GPS-based rangefinder and are only as accurate as the golfer using the device.
While there are other high-tech options, such as laser-sighted monoculars, or lower-tech options, such as built-in course yardage markers, a basic, reticle-based rangefinder is an excellent option for determining the distance to the pin. A rangefinder will give you an accurate read on how far it is to the pin, allowing you to always choose the perfect club.