There are new technologies that Leupold built into the RX-Fulldraw 4 that has captured both the imaginations and skepticism's of the masses.
Is it everything you could want out of a bow hunting rangefinder?
Is it worth it as a $500 rangefinder?
Let’s range out if it’s as cracked up as it seems to be or if it’s overpriced.
What We Like: Archer’s Advantage software
What We Don’t Like: Battery life
Best Uses: Bow Hunting, Limited Rifle Shooting, Target Shooting, Long-Ranging
- Yard Range: 6-1200
- Magnification: 6x
- Objective Lens: 22mm
- Display Type: LED
- Dimensions: 3.8 x 1.4 x 3”/7.5 oz
- Waterproof/Fogproof: Yes
- Angle Compensation: Yes
Our Verdict: The RX-Fulldraw 4 is teched-out to the max with smart features and software that is worthy of its high price tag. The best thing about it, it’s not complicated to use, and it doesn’t have the messiness of syncing, connectivity, and lagging issues that really smart units have. In our books, that’s a 10-ring win on getting more without the fuss.
Who is the Leupold RX-Fulldraw 4 Best Suited to?
With the built-in technologies of rangefinders these days, it’s difficult to find flaws in high-end units when overall performance proves to be extremely convenient.
The Fulldraw is one of those units that does the trigonometry and algorithms for you so that you can spend more time doing what you came out to the treestand to do.
Rifle hunters won’t find much use for the arrow-specific features, but it will work in a jiffy for Scan, LOS, and TRIG modes. Really though, this should be one of those “only-bow-hunters” optics... Yeah, the RX-Fulldraw is cliquish.
How Does the Leupold RX-Fulldraw 4 Perform?
Need more precision? Want to calibrate your rangefinder to specific arrow, speed, and peep height measurements? How do you know if that tree limb is in the way?
Leupold is a step ahead of you. With Archer’s Advantage software, you can input ballistic data. With Flightpath technology, you can determine where your arrow will be at its highest, if it will clear, or if it means you need to move and/or change position.
Where would you need flightpath data? Honestly, any and every bow hunter can benefit from the information. Whether it’s a tree branch, a steep angle from a treestand, or the unknowns of a 3D tournament, you’ll always be aware of what could happen downrange when obstructions are present. Drop a knee if you have to or get in closer.
As a unit that’s waterproof, “smart” in a sense, compact, and lightweight, it can’t be said that it’s anything less than a bowhunter’s ultimate rangefinder.
Features & Benefits
Archer’s Advantage Software
This software is what is responsible for calculating the ballistics involved for angles, various distances, and specific specs of your bow, arrow, and sight setup. It’s what powers the BALL mode for error-free solutions when you need maximum accuracy.
Right off the bat, you will need to be ready to input arrow weight, velocity, and peep height. You can also use the same software for crossbows if it falls within the following parameters.
If your setup is outside the following: 220-550 fps, 200-900 grains, peep heights of 1-6”, the software will not be of use to you.
This is the new technology that Leupold has brought to their RX bow hunting rangefinders. It uses the ballistic data from the Archer’s Advantage software, so you must input the required info in order for the Flightpath tech to be effective. You won’t need to do anything more to get accurate arrow flight path trajectory than what’s needed to set up the Archer’s Advantage program.
What happens is, an illuminated horizontal line appears in the display to show the highest peak of the flight path trajectory. Since this is typically at 51% of the distance, you can determine if there are obstructions in the way of the arrow anywhere from arrow take off to bull’s-eye.
3 Ranging Modes
The RX-Fulldraw 4 has Scan mode. This is convenient to get a lot of information at one time. Oddly, Leupold exed Last Target Mode and Trophy Scale features from the new unit that was available on the FullDraw 3 rangefinder. In trade, you get the additional archery technologies for improved accuracy, precision, and decision-making.
BALL, LOS, and TRIG are your ranging options. BALL is the Archer’s Advantage software that takes into account your ballistics and also provides the Flightpath line feature.
You don’t have to use this feature if you all you want is LOS or TRIG. LOS is the line-of-sight distance directly to the target without any special data or algorithms involved. TRIG is the angle compensated distance to the target without any of the ballistics data involved. This would be the feature most will be familiar with.
As a bow hunting unit, it’s extremely accurate from 6-175 yards. The TBR (True Ballistic Range) which would be the angle compensation technology is only provided up to 175 yards while 0.5-yard accuracy is provided up to 125 yards.
The RX rangefinder is long-ranging because it has deer ranging capability out to 900 yards, trees to 1100 yards, and reflective targets out to 1200 yards. The extended yardage is necessary even on a bow rangefinder. You can close in when you’re too far out or you can use LOS and TRIG modes if you’re intimidated by the smartness of the Fulldraw 4. It’s never “too much” to have more ranging power than you think you need.
With three selectable reticles, you can tailor the user experience to best suit the need in the moment. Neither of the Plus Point reticle variations obstruct the target or clutter the display.
The RX series feature LED displays of some sort. The Fulldraw 3 has a transmissive OLED display while the Fulldraw 4 has a reflective OLED display. The difference in the latter unit means a brighter image downrange and a display that remains bright and easily visible.
It’s hard to get things right when it comes to user individual preferences. You either have an ambient adaptive display that people would rather have manual manipulation over or a manual brightness display and people wish they had adaptive brightness.
To eliminate the wonderings of your imagination, the Fulldraw 4 has manual brightness. Yes – you will need to take the few seconds to change it in the menu settings between dawn, afternoon, and lowlight conditions. By the way, there are three intensity settings: low, medium, and high. You’ll figure it out, it’s not hard.
Seems petty to be whining about battery life when there could be foreseeable tech issues involved. Well, the technology works. It’s accurate, and you also have the option of not using it since LOS and TRIG modes are also available. Besides, if the unit is faulty, it’s covered by Leupold.
So, back to the battery. Of course, you have a lot more going on here, and between the circuitry, laser, pulse durations, illumination, operator use, etc., you’re only expected to get approximately 3000 actuations out of a CR2 battery.
It might seem like plenty to begin with, but if you’re going to use the RX unit as it’s designed to be, you may find yourself using it all the time. Keep a spare on you just in case.
The Leupold RX-Fulldraw 4 comes with a 2-year warranty that includes the electronics. It may not compare to unconditional lifetime warranties, but the fact that the electronics are covered is worth noticing. Believe it or not, not all hunting rangefinders come with coverage of the electronic components.
The RX-Fulldraw 4 is not made in China. It is designed and engineered in the United States before being manufactured in Myanmar.
The Leupold RX-Fulldraw 4 provides measurement output in either yards or meters. It’s accessible via the Quick Set Menu, and you can toggle between either as necessary without powering down and reactivating the unit.
The RX-Fulldraw 4 does not have threading to be mounted to a tripod. There are aftermarket rangefinder mounting adapters, but the RX is designed to be used freehand with only 6x power.
Realistically, very few hunters are doing any real math in the field. All you need is the distance, right? But what about when distance data isn’t enough?
This is when you need a unit that can provide a little more than the average rangefinder without it being too decked-out with features like Bluetooth. The RX-Fulldraw 4 is smart enough, long-ranging enough, and cheap enough that it doesn’t detract from its credibility as a high-quality rangefinder.