Every hunting or shooting trip has a list of essentials, and at the very top of that gear list you’ll find things such as guns and bullets. But for many of us, it’s not very far down that list that you’ll find binoculars and rangefinder. Today we are discussing the Sig Sauer Kilo 3000 binoculars, which bring the laser rangefinder and binoculars onto the same line.
THE SIG SAUER KILO 3000 BDX
Built on a 10x42mm body, the Kilo 3000 BDX offers an integrated laser rangefinder that claims up to a 5,000-yard range. Using Sig Sauer’s BDX tech, the Kilo communicates with other smartphones and tablets via Bluetooth. BDX pulls data from weather stations like the Kestrel Weather Meter to offer accurate ballistic solutions. The system also uses the Applied Ballistics solver to give shooters the best prediction for a hit. The BDX system can be used in conjunction with Sig Sauer’s BDX equipped riflescopes to show holdover and wind holds in live time with illuminative points on the reticle.
The Kilo uses a single CR2 lithium battery for powers and, according to Sig, grants approximately 4,000 chances to measure the distance to your targets before the battery needs a change. The Kilo weighs in at 31-ounces, which is almost the exact same weight as is nearest competitor.
ON THE RANGE
The vast expanse of the Rocky Mountains is the perfect place to put a rangefinder/bino combo to the test. I spend a couple of days each week shooting in these beautiful landscapes; so, I headed up to one of my favorite trails to test the Kilo. Before I left, I suited up with the chest harness that ships with the Kilo so I could hike hands-free.
Having used quite a few different binocular chest-carry outfits, I think comfort is subjective. This one, for me, wasn’t too bad. Both the case itself and the binoculars are suspended from the shoulder straps individually. The bino straps are easily snapped free should you need to disconnect them to lend a fellow hiker. Overall, I liked how quick it was to bring the binos out of the case.
Hiking into the mountains
After a good sweat from the hot August sun, I found myself looking out across a steep canyon that worked its way back into the rocky and cavernous mountain range. It was a place I frequent fairly often so I already knew a lot of the distances available to me. I sat down and began to scan with the Kilo. My very first impression of the image quality was positive.
Check out my review of the Sig Sauer Kilo 10k binos when you are done with this one.
After using many LRF binos over the years, I would put the optical quality of the Sig Kilo right near the top of its price point class. It is similar to models from Vortex, Nikon, and Leupold in the same price range. Perhaps a little better than some, but not quite as nice as the top-quality optics we are accustomed to seeing from European manufacturers like Swarovski or Leica.
One thing I did find more convenient was the focus. Using other binos, I find I must frequently adjust the focus between my eyes to get a uniform image. With the Kilo, though, I only adjusted once and never touched it again. A small issue for some, but for me it’s almost reason enough to sell my other bino models and stick with the Sig Kilo. Like most modern binoculars, the Kilo 3000 features adjustable eyecups. Like the entire exterior of the binoculars, these are rubberized for easy gripping and the control surfaces of the binoculars have an added texture as well for better manipulation.
A good rangefinder is only as good as its ability to precisely confirm distance, so I was eager to investigate the Kilo’s laser dispersion. Laser dispersion becomes important when ranging a target with obstructions. Such as a tree branch or ridge between you and the target. Keeping the Kilo firmly fixed to a tripod, I measured the distance to several targets with surrounding obstructions.
Most targets inside the reticle of the Kilo registered the actual distance. But even something as insignificant as a leaf 380-yards away obstructing the view of a 950-yard target was picked up by the laser. All things considered, the Kilo’s laser gives a very accurate and predictable measurement. I used the Kilo both in its range-only setting as well as the incline output setting.
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The rangefinding capabilities of the Kilo were more than adequate for my purposes. I’ve found most rangefinders are rated for distances at the extreme envelope of their capabilities. Sig claims the Kilo can hit 5,000-yards. But I couldn’t find a target reflective enough to read that far during my testing. The Kilo did work great inside of 2,000-yards giving quick and repeatable readings for trees and even rocks in shadowed or sunny positions. I aimed it in town from my 6,000-foot perch and found that cars and buildings were ranged out to 3,000-yards.
The Kilo 3000 is yet another awesome product from the electro-optic branch of Sig Sauer. Outdoorsmen and women looking for a good pair of hunting binos would do very well with the Kilo 3000 in-hand. Having used many of its closest peers, I’d pick the Kilo.