In the really cool use of technology category is a brand new product from Bushnell. Rangefinders have been out for a while now. To me, they’re somewhat miraculous. Somehow a laser beam manages to reach out, bounce off a tree, rock or critter, and come back so range can be calculated. Nifty.
Bushnell has taken the process to a whole new level with their new Elite 1-Mile ARC CONX rangefinder.
With most rifles, shooting at any distance over a couple hundred yards requires correction for elevation holdover and windage. That pesky gravity law causes bullets to fall towards earth as they travel, so you have to aim higher as range increases. How high depends on a multitude of factors like range, wind, latitude, declination and whether that obelisk from 2001: A Space Odyssey is still transmitting.
Traditional rangefinders do exactly what their name implies – tell you how far away an object is from your position. You have to do the math to determine the amount of bullet drop for your specific rifle, cartridge, and projectile type. The new Bushnell Elite ARC CONX does all that for you. Using a Bluetooth-like wireless connection, the ARC CONX communicates with a free smartphone app to send distance and declination information. The app allows you to choose your cartridge and projectile information, for example, a .30-06 with 150 grain hollow point boat tail projectile. When the app receives range info, it calculates and displays exact holdover information for that specific range. Instantaneously, you have the information needed to make the shot clearly visible on your smartphone screen.
But wait, there’s more. So far, we’ve only talked about elevation adjustment based on distance. For longer range shots, you also need to consider things like wind speed, wind direction, altitude, humidity, heat index, temperature, and pressure. Wow, that’s a lot of info to process! Bushnell has partnered with the environment metering folks at Kestrel to integrate the Kestrel into the ARC CONX configuration. So, the rangefinder provides basic info like range and declination while the Kestrel provides environmental data to the smartphone app. The idea of all this data integration is to provide the maximum amount of information available to the ballistics application to enable a first shot hit.
While a single shooter can make use of this system, Bushnell also sees application for shooter / spotter scenarios. Whatever the purpose – tactical, law enforcement, hunting, or recreation, it’s a beautiful scenario for a spotter to handle the rangefinder and smartphone and call out windage and elevation adjustments to the shooter.
This is brand new stuff and Bushnell is producing units as we speak. You should see the rangefinder, the smartphone app and compatible Kestrel meters early this summer.