Budget-Friendly Golf Watches

Below are our picks for the best budget-friendly golf watches. They may not pack as many features as the more expensive watches, but they sure do perform the basics as well or better!

Best Budget-Friendly Golf GPS Watches
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Bushnell Neo Ion Golf WatchRead Full Review

Although Bushnell is known for their laser rangefinders, they really seemed to have nailed it in the golf watch category as well. They have figured out that what a majority of golfers want is not bells and whistles, but simply a comfortable golf watch that is easy to use and provides distances to greens and hazards. The Neo Ion brings the same winning formula to a smaller, lighter, and better looking golf GPS watch. Best of all, the battery life will easily go three full rounds!

Rating: 4.47 (137 ratings)  Slope: No
USGA Compliant (local rule): Yes


Garmin Approach S2Read Full Review

The Garmin S2 offers doglegs, layup yardages and a digital scorecard. It gets excellent ratings, but if the scorecard isn’t important to you, also check the Bushnell Neo Ion watch which is newer and also provides distances to hazards.

Rating: 4.41 (924 ratings)  Slope: N/A
USGA Compliant (local rule): Yes


GolfBuddy Voice 2Read Full Review

GolfBuddy just keeps building on a winning theme. The GolfBuddy Voice 2 claims 14 hours of battery life. That’s four hours more than the GolfBuddy VS4! It’s water resistant, has the choice of male or female voice, and of course provides distances to the front, middle, and back of the green. It’s available in three different colors as well. If you want the watch band, order the bundle.

Rating: 4.40 (118 ratings)  Slope: No
USGA Compliant (local rule): Yes


Bushnell Excel Golf Watch Review

‘Bushnell Excel Golf GPS Watch’

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Our Bushnell Excel Golf Watch Review will be available soon!

We’re excited about Bushnell’s latest entry into the golf watch market because this is their first effort at adding a wider variety of features. However, we don’t think they will be retiring the highly-rated Bushnell Neo Ion anytime soon, because of it’s appeal to golfers who just want an easy-to-use watch which provides distances to their targets and not much more.

Although it’s clear Bushnell is still trying to ensure the new watch is simple to use, the Excel adds features that will appeal to golfers who want more.

No Ratings Yet No Ratings Yet

Let’s start with the Bushnell Excel key features:
  • Weather Information
  • Bluetooth integration with iPhone or Android smartphone for course updates without needing to sync with a computer
  • E-mail, text, and other notifications from your iPhone or Android smartphone.
  • The Swing Pro feature allows the user to monitor swing speed and swing tempo.This will be interesting for those who spend time on the driving range.
  • Book tee times (also works through the App)
  • Easy-to-Read Front/Center/Back Distances
  • Up to 4 Hazard Distances Per Hole
  • Pre-loaded with 35,000+ courses from 30 countries
  • Shot distance calculator
  • Auto Course Recognition
  • Auto Hole Advance
  • Pedometer and Fitness Trackers
  • Full front optical mounted color display with auto brightness adjustment
  • Stopwatch/Alarm/Timer
  • Waterproof
  • No membership or download fees
Included Bushnell App features:
  • App included with purchase of Excel Watch
  • Full color aerial views of hole layouts with distances
  • 3D flyovers with distances
  • Scorekeeping
  • Book tee times (also can be done on the watch)
  • Swing analysis stats
  • Pedometer and Fitness Trackers

The main features that Bushnell left off of the watch and put solely onto the app are the scorecard, stat-tracking, and full hole views with touch targeting. The Swing Pro features and weather information can found on the watch, but Swing Pro data can be analyzed more fully within the app. The idea of having to use the app during your round would seem to make the notifications component unnecessary, however we can see some users only using the app for it’s Swing Pro metrics on the driving range and still wanting notifications during the round. It remains to be seen if users will like Bushnell’s implementation of these advanced features, but we’re optimistic.

Bushnell Excel Golf Watch Specifications

Bushnell Excel Golf GPS Watch
Course Download Fees No
Pre-loaded with Courses Yes
Full Hole Views Yes
Slope / Elevation No
Battery Life 14 hrs
Battery Rechargeable
Size (Width x Height x Depth) 2.12 in. x 1.77 in. x .54 in.
Measure Shot Distance Yes
Screen Size .98 x .98
Resolution N/A
Display Type color
Weight 1.6 oz.
Rainproof Yes
Touch Screen No
Touch Targeting No
Manual Pin Positioning No
Stat Tracker No*
Digital Scorecard No*
Computer Analysis Tools Y*
Ground Verified N/A
Alternate Targets Yes
Green Rotates to your shot angle N/A
USGA Compliant (local rule) Yes
Notes Weather info. Bluetooth connectivity to iPhone or Android phone for notifications, course updates, and game analysis. Bushnell App is free to Excel owners and includes full hole views and distances as well as scorecard, stat-tracking & swing metric
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User Manual for Bushnell Excel Golf GPS Watch

Best Golf Rangefinders with Slope

Below are our picks for the Best Laser Golf Rangefinders with Slope. Most, but not all of these models are now legal for tournament play when Slope mode is turned off. We have noted that information at the bottom of each summary box.

Best LASER Golf Rangefinder (USGA Legal)
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Bushnell Pro X2Read Full Review

We’re very excited about the new Bushnell Pro X2! Bushnell was quick to adapt to the 2016 rule modification that made rangefinders with Slope legal as long as the slope mode could be turned off for competitive rounds. The sophisticated faceplate hardware change is not longer required, so Bushnell put a simple toggle switch on the side of the unit. The Pro X2 utilizes Dual Display technology that allows the user to choose standard black or red VDT for displaying distance information. Just press the logo on the side of the rangefinder while ranging to switch modes. This unit also features 6x magnification, is fully waterproof, has Jolt technology that vibrates when it locks the pin, and it ranges accurately to within a half yard.

Rating: 5.00 (6 ratings)  Magnification: 6x
Weight: 8 oz.   Legal: Yes* When Slope Switch is turned off.


Bushnell Tour V4 SlopeRead Full Review

There has been a great deal of shake-up in the golf laser rangefinder with Slope category in recent months. The Bushnell Tour V4 Slope was one of the first units out to comply with the updated USGA rule allowing rangefinders in competition. Oddly, shortly after releasing this model, Bushnell made a slight modification to it and released a nearly identical model, the Tour V4 Shift and stopped manufacturing the V4 Slope. For that reason, you won’t see this model around for much longer, but as of this writing, it’s significantly less expensive than it’s replacement. Although our top pick in this category is the brand new Bushnell Pro X2, the price of the Bushnell Tour V4 Slope, makes it a very compelling choice. The ratings are excellent and there may be a very short window for buying the Tour V4 Slope at this price.

Rating: 4.37 (93 ratings)  Magnification: 5x
Weight: 5.6 oz.   Legal: Yes, with Slope mode turned off


Leupold GX-2i2 Read Full Review

For the price, the Leupold GX-2i2 offers a lot of bang for your buck. It has Slope, an easy on/off switch to make it legal, and also can recommend a club based on your hitting strength, slope, and environmental factors. It takes a little work to set it up, but if you are a bit of a golf geek, you’ll love it. Even if you only use the Slope, the price of this model makes it a contender in our book!

Rating: 4.22 (13 ratings)  Magnification: 6x
Weight: 6.8 oz.   Legal: Yes, when the slope feature is turned off.


Bushnell Tour XRead Full Review

The Bushnell Tour X topped the ratings in its short run. Although Bushnell has discontinued this model in favor of newer models that don’t require a faceplate change to switch off Slope mode, however, there are still some of these units available and if you like the idea of making it completely transparent to your fellow competitors when Slope is turned off, this is your best bet because they can see the color of the faceplate from a distance. However, if you want Slope as an option, but don’t want to have to carry the extra faceplate, you may want to take a look at the brand new top of the line Bushnell Pro X2, the Bushnell Tour V4 Slope, and the Leupold GX-2i2.

Rating: 4.86 (179 ratings)  Magnification: 6x
Weight: 8 oz.   Legal: Yes, when the black faceplate is attached.


GolfBuddy LR5SRead Full Review

The early reviews on the GolfBuddy LR5 are really solid for a golf rangefinder with Slope in this price range. If you don’t need your rangefinder to be USGA local rule compliant, we highly recommend you consider. You would have to pay significantly more at this point to get a Slope rangefinder that has the required On/Off switch. We’re really excited to see GolfBuddy making inroads into the laser rangefinder market with some inexpensive, quality products. The GolfBuddy LR5 is the non-Slope version of this model. Note: This model is not legal under the USGA local rule. If you are looking to have both Slope and USGA compliance on a reasonable budget, check out the Leupold GX-2i2.

Rating: 4.55 (11 ratings)  Magnification: 6x
Weight: 7.69 oz.   Legal: No


Leupold GX-4i2 (Slope)Read Full Review

This model used to be worth the extra money, but now it has some competition and the price is just too high to justify in most cases. We only recommend this model to those who want both the easy to read red numbers AND the ability to factor in temperature and altitude for “plays like” distance when Slope is active. Otherwise, the Bushnell Tour X will give you the red numbers OR the Leupold GX-2i2 will handle the “plays like” distance. Both of those models have Slope that can be turned off to conform with the USGA local rule.

Rating: 4.32 (53 ratings)  Magnification: 6X
Weight: 7.9 oz.   Legal: Yes, when the silver faceplate is attached.

Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro Review

‘Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro’

$249.00
Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro
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Our Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro Review will be coming very soon. We are excited about the features and the price and will be doing a hands-on test very soon.

No Ratings Yet No Ratings Yet

This newcomer to the laser golf rangefinder market will be going head-to-head with the Bushnell Tour V4 Slope and the new Tour V4 Shift, as well as the Leupold GX-2i3.

All of these models have Slope but can easily be switched into a tournament legal mode by turning off the Slope feature. The reason you might consider the NX7 Pro over these better-known brands is that it will cost you significantly less.

The Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro will also be competing with the Leupold GX-2i2 for a little while. Although it is been discontinued, there are still a few available at a really great price.

Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro Features
  • Adaptive Slope Technology – Measures Slope (elevation) when this feature is turned ON. Can be turned OFF, making it legal for most competitive events.
  • Pulse Vibration Technology – Like all of the Bushnell models, the NX7 Pro will vibrate when it locks onto the target.
  • Target Acquisition Technology – Scans your field of view and locks in on the target to ensure you get the yardage to the target, not what’s behind the target.
  • Water Resistant Design – Ensures the NX7 Pro can be used in wet and rainy conditions without issue.
  • Shock Proof Design – Helps to survive the drops, tosses, any other impact on the golf course./li>
  • High Speed SD Laser – Picks up distance readings in under 1 second
  • Multi Distance Mode– Easily switch between yards and meters.
  • 2 Year Warranty– If anything happens to the NX7 Pro Rangefinder during the normal course of use we will quickly replace or repair the product for you.
  • Free Battery Replacements – Precision Pro Golf provides free battery replacement for the life of the NX7 Pro.
Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro Specifications
Precision Pro Golf NX7 Pro
Slope both
Vibration y
Size (Width x Height x Depth) 3 in. x 2 in. x 5 in.
Weight 7.5 oz.
Battery 3-Volt (free replacement)
Battery Life N/A
Display N/A
Rainproof Yes
Magnification 6x
Maximum Range 400
Minimum Range N/A
Notes -Adaptive Slope Mode can be turned off to make this model tournament legal. FREE BATTERY REPLACEMENT for the life of the rangefinder.
USGA Compliant (local rule) Yes, with Adaptive Slope Mode turned OFF.
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We work very hard to obtain the correct information about product features, but cannot make any guarantees about the accuracy. Please double check with the merchant or manufacturer before making a purchase.

Bushnell Tour V4 Replacement Battery

If you are looking for a Bushnell Tour V4 replacement battery, you will need a 3-volt lithium CR2. This applies to:

    • Tour V4 Standard
    • Tour V4 Slope
    • Tour V4 Shift

We suggest the 2-pack so that you can carry a spare in your bag! These Energizer batteries are very reasonably priced on Amazon.

Bushnell recommends replacing the battery at least every 12 months or as soon as you see the lo8 on the display. It’s code for Low Battery!
Bushnell Tour V4 Replacement Battery indicator

Here are the instructions for replacing the Bushnell Tour V4 battery:

      • Remove the battery cap by lifting the battery cap tab and then rotating counter clockwise
      • Insert a CR-2 3-volt lithium battery into the compartment negative end first
      • Replace the battery cap.


Bushnell Tour V4 Shift Review

‘Bushnell Tour V4 Shift’


Bushnell Tour V4 Shift
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Our Bushnell Tour V4 Shift Review will be coming soon, but here are our initial thoughts…

Bushnell Tour V4 Shift User Rating:
4.67 Stars 4.67 out of 5 (3 reviews)

Score compiled from multiple sources.

Our first look at the specs had us wondering what the difference was between the Tour V4 Slope and the new Tour V4 Shift. Overall, these units are almost identical. The size, shape, and weight are the same. They both have Pinseeker, Jolt, 5x magnification, and the ability to easily switch out of Slope mode to become legal for tournament play.

The difference is simply a change to the Slope switch. It’s small, but quite significant. On the V4 Slope, you simply pushed the Bushnell logo on the side of the unit to switch Slope mode on or off. The new V4 Shift changes the switch to a slider that covers up the word “SLOPE” when Slope mode is disabled. That does two things:

  1. allows your fellow competitors, opponents, and rules officials to see that you’re using a legal rangefinder
  2. keeps you from any uncertainty once you’ve teed off in competition. You don’t want to have to look into the viewer and shoot a target only to find out you had left the Slope mode turned on.

For that reason, if you ever compete in events where rangefinders are allowed, we definitely would pick the V4 Shift over the V4 Slope.

Bushnell has a long tradition of producing the highest-rated golf rangefinders on the market. We expect the Tour V4 Shift will be no different. In fact, we expect this model to become the best-selling golf laser rangefinder with Slope within a few months.

Bushnell Tour V4 Shift Features
  • Slope Switch – Allows you to use the Slope feature when you’re playing for fun and legally turn it off when you’re in competition. With Slope turned on, you can see the degree of elevation and an estimate of how much shorter or longer a shot will play.
  • Pinseeker Jolt Technology – This gives a visual indication on the screen, plus a vibration when it is locked onto it’s target.
  • Magnification: 5x
  • Accuracy: measures to within 1 yard.
  • Fast Focus
  • Stable-Grip
Bushnell Tour V4 Shift Features and Specifications

Bushnell Tour V4 Shift
Slope both
Vibration y
Size (Width x Height x Depth) 3.11 in. x 1.57 in. x 4 in.
Weight 5.6 oz.
Battery 3 Volt CR2 Lithium
Battery Life est. 1 Year
Display LCD
Rainproof No
Magnification 5x
Maximum Range 1000
Minimum Range 5
Notes -Slope Switch for easily turning the Slope feature on or off.
USGA Compliant (local rule) Yes, if Slope Switch is Down (Off).
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We work very hard to obtain the correct information about product features, but cannot make any guarantees about the accuracy. Please double check with the merchant or manufacturer before making a purchase.

User Manual for Bushnell Tour V4 Shift

Replacement battery for Bushnell Tour V4 Shift