Another strong offering from the Gogogo lineup is the GS19. I wanted to review this particular model because it has a rechargeable battery – not a common feature for rangefinders!
Although the GS19 is marketed more toward the hunting market, it has included functionality to make it work on the golf course. If you are a hunter and a golfer, you may be able to “kill 2 birds with 1 stone.”
When pulling the GS19 out for the first time I noticed immediately the coating and profile of the unit. It is a more square, boxy shape than other rangefinders and is coated completely in a hardened green rubber. Although it is very light, the single piece construction makes it feel absolutely solid.
The included case is not what you’d typically see for a golf rangefinder: It’s a simple snap-top made of nylon material. I would not recommend hanging it off your bag as I don’t know if the snap would for sure hold over bumps. I plugged it in to charge the lithium-Ion battery and let it sit for about an hour. After that the green light indicated it was ready to go, so off to the course I went.
Putting it to the test
Here are my findings when using the GS19 on the course:
The eyepiece was nothing fancy, just a simple rubber ring, but it adjusted fine and the optics were sharp. Internal information is displayed using black font and is easy to read. There is a 6x magnification on the unit and I easily scoped objects 600+ yards out and beyond.
There are 3 modes that can be selected on the GS19 rangefinder:
- A hunting scan mode for picking up targets actively when moving the unit
- A golf mode with pin lock that has slope measurements
- A speed mode for determining how fast objects are moving
I spent most of my test time in the golf mode, which allowed me to lock on pins and actively scan by holding down the power button. This was actually a nice feature that meant I didn’t have to flip between modes to use both types of features.
The GS19 does not allow you to turn off slope, so don’t plan on using this device in any sanctioned events or tournaments.
I compared the measurements against 2 other rangefinders and found that the distance when scanning and using pin lock appeared to be within 2-5 yards of all other models.
This unit had the hardest time locking on to pins in all the models I tested, but I only had an issue 2 times during the round. I found measuring a distance provided different yardage numbers at times, but readings were typically within 5 yards of one another.
When there were a lot of background items behind a flag I sometimes had to shift angles to get a lock on the pin. During my testing the pin lock took about 2 seconds and the vibration was good.
With this being the first rangefinder I’ve ever used with a rechargeable battery, I’m not quite sure what to expect. There is supposedly a low battery indicator that appears on the unit, but I have not seen it yet after a few rounds of use and am not sure how many rounds I should expect to get out of the battery.
Either way, I expect there to be both pros and cons. First, a rechargeable battery means I won’t have to worry about finding one of those weird C-sized batteries that other rangefinders use. On the other hand, do I really need another thing to worry about charging?
Slope calculates true distance to the pin based on changes in elevation. Remember the last time you played an uphill par 3 and were determining club selection? You probably pulled a club based on the yardage listed on the tee box sign or sprinkler head near the tee. This should give you a general idea where to start, but not the actual yardage you want to hit. Consider this sample image:
As you can see, having slope available during a round can make a huge difference.
The GS19 is currently bargain priced at around $80.
If you are on the fence about whether you need a rangefinder or only play a couple times a year then this is the device for you. It is accurate enough for the average golfer and has the features you’ll need.
If you’re also a hunter then this is even more of a match for you! With the GS19 you can get one device to use for both hobbies and save yourself some money. I think overall the GS19 is a decent unit, especially for the low price, but I would not recommend it if you’re a low-handicapper or play more than a couple rounds a month. If that’s you, I would recommend a more significant investment in a model like the BlueTees Series 3 Max or Sureshot PINLOC 6000iPSM.
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