Best Shot Timers: Things to Know About the Top 10 Best Shot Timers
One of the most essential training gear in gun shooting is the shot timer. It is very critical to advance your shooting skill since it will allow you to measure and gauge your ability. Best shot timers tell you the accuracy and the quickness of your shooting and the areas which you need to address and improve.
Time is a very essential factor especially in self-defense training , and this is where the shot timer comes in as it allows the shooter to determine how fast you are drawing and shooting, the time in between your shots and how quick your transition from one to target will be.
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Best Shot Timer Comparison
Our Top 10 Picks for the Best Shot Timers Reviews
Pistol Shooting Timer: CED7000 Shot Timer (Ced7000 Shot timer Review)
This features LCD screen and perfectly fits comfortably in the palm as it is minuscule which allows one to forget the big timers which everyone was used to. It Also comes with an integrated Par timer and includes a wrist watch and neck lanyard which makes it very easy to bring anywhere. It also has a rechargeable battery and comes with a charger. One can customize the LCD such as the splits, mode, date/time and review functions.
Also, it produces high-frequency loud beep and offers an option for silent operation such as stopwatch mode, soft beep for dry fire use that are fully adjustable and more! It has excellent menu functions and very easy to program. The only problem with this unit is it needs to be fully charged before using it since if it is undercharged, it will not last longer.
- Small, handy and portable
- Comes with an LCD screen
- Integrated Par timer
- Rechargeable batteries and comes with a charger
- Has high-frequency loud beep
- Battery needs to be charged before using since it drains easily
- No switch off button
Pocket Pro II Timer CEI700 also comes with three different display configurations. However, this one boasts a bigger and better display settings compared to its counterpart, the CEI001.It is considered to be an ideal training gear since it is attachable and portable. Its battery allows the user to use it for twenty hours and assures an easy replacement process for it.
This model comes with a belt clip and a separately designed sensor and buzzer that ensures an optimal performance every time it is being used. Also, it has an intuitive menu and navigation.
Thus, one can be assured that this unit is very durable and provides quality features that make it very easier and convenient to use during training sessions. One thing that one needs to remember is that this unit’s battery needs to be properly installed as it will affect its performance.
However, there are numerous feedbacks regarding this unit’s data recording feature as it does not offer a function which allows the user to erase the previous data aside from resetting the unit or removing the battery which would be very tiring and inconvenient for the user. Also, this unit will no longer record shots after ten minutes of inactivity as being indicated in its manufacturer’s note.
- Three Bigger and Better Display Configurations
- Comes with a Belt Clip
- Sensor and Buzzer features that assure optimal performance
- Intuitive Menu and Navigation Features
- Do not have any function to remove previous data
- Stops recording shots after ten minutes of inactivity
Pro Shot Timer features a large display in a numeric segment which assures the users for readability even for outdoor settings. It boasts its capability to review 50 shots whether in forward or reverse order allowing you to review your split times, shots and shot number directly. It allows the user to use it for twenty hours and has a low battery indicator which will give you an idea when to charge or replace them.
It may be the most expensive in the Competition Electronics series, but it highlights its adjustable sensitivity with par time intended for the second beep which indicates your time limit. It has a separate buzzer and tiny sensor and instant selectable switch.
- Readable display
- Direct forward and reverse review capability
- Twenty hours battery lifespan
- Has low battery indicator
- Adjustable sensitivity
- Separate buzzer and sensor
- Battery lifespan could be improved considering its price
This is one of the pioneering units of shot timers that comes with a large multi-function display. It is uniquely designed since the manufacturers have considered the buzzer and microphone to be unobstructed and made its ergonomic buttons sunken to avoid unintended activations. Its display also allows a direct review feature which makes it very convenient for the user to go back and review their preferred part.
Also, it also features sealed conducive rubber keypad with corrosion proof contacts. It is capable of displaying shot numbers, split times and total times simultaneously and boast its 100 shot memory that comes with automatic data compression, par time and automatic battery-saver.
This also offers less loud buzzers to the participants and spectators through its low frequency but loud buzzer. However, its interface is not intuitive and is tough to program.
- Easy to read and see
- Direct review feature
- Very compact
- Robust and sturdy for competition
- Low Memory
- Mic is too sensitive which usually ends up for the timer to record its beep
The Competition Electronics Pocket Pro Timer, Blue is a very reliable model and, according to one customer, is the default shot timer at their local range.
It features an ambidextrous design. So, you can use it with both left and right hand without blocking the timer’s sensor or buzzer.
However, while the ergonomics is great, the physical design of this timer still needs improvements. The housing is made from supposedly impact-resistant plastic, but it has a very flimsy feel to it. The exterior scratches quite easily and it has been known to expire from being roughly-treated before.
Therefore, if this is the model that you decide to go for, we highly recommend that you be gentle with it.
The interface is easy enough to use and consists of five buttons. The first and most obvious is the power button. Then, depending on how you want to measure your shots, you can choose for either an instant or a delayed start.
You also have different buttons to help you review shots, split times, and shot numbers. The internal memory of the timer can store up to 50 different shots, which isn’t quite as high as other timers on the market.
The screen is a bit on the smaller side, but it is bright and easy to read.
In terms of battery, the timer uses a standard 9V battery. After 10 minutes of inactivity, the timer is programmed to automatically shut down to conserve power.
- Ambidextrous, ergonomic design
- Convenient button arrangement
- Power-saving mode
- Flimsy design
- Low memory
If you need a timer that’s built for range work, the INDESIGN Tactical Shot Timer will be up to the task.
From the very first look, it is quite obvious that the timer is rugged and can withstand a lot of abuse. The housing is made from impact-resistant plastic. But, unlike the previous Competition Electronics Pocket Pro Timer, this one feels a lot more rigid.
It can be tossed, thrown, and dropped without much of an issue. The timer is also waterproof, so you can bring it out into the rain or drop it in a puddle without a problem.
Functionally, the timer is multi-purposed. Other than being a PAR timer, it can also be used as a normal stopwatch and countdown timer. You may also adjust the timer’s setting to suit your needs. It has an instant start, random start, fixed-time start as well as 4 other customizable practice modes.
For this exact reason, according to Special Pie (the manufacturer), the timer has been rated for use in sport competitions such as USPSA, IPSC, 3 Gun, and Steel Challenge. But there’s one more reason: the timer also comes with a Bluetooth module to connect with large LED billboards. It makes organizing such events a whole lot easier.
So, if we were to do a shot timers comparison right now, this model would win over a lot of best shot timers out there.
Unfortunately, not everything about this timer is great. The speaker has been criticized by a lot of users to be small and ineffective.
The screen sits prominently at the front of the timer. Not only is it large, the screen is also very bright and easy to read. To make it easier for you to view it in daylight, the screen is coated with a layer of anti-glare.
It has a pretty decent battery life, offering 7 days of use on a full charge. Unlike most timers which use removable batteries, the INDESIGN timer has a built-in rechargeable battery. From 0%, you can plug it in and charge it back to 100% in only 1.5 hours.
The timer automatically shuts down after a period of inactivity to save power.
Overall, this is a solid timer to use if you need a professional shot timer, if you can overlook the rather bad speaker that it comes with.
- Rugged design
- Impact-resistant and waterproof
- Bluetooth mode
- Bright, easy to read screen
- Good battery life
- Bad speaker
Similar to the INDESIGN, this gun shot timer from Special Pie is built with toughness in mind. Packed similarly densely with features, you can rely on it to track your shots and serve as the arbiter for your shooting competitions.
Design-wise, unlike the INDESIGN, this timer isn’t made to be roughly-handled. The design here focuses a whole lot more on lightness and compactness rather than durability. As a result, this timer will be a lot more fitting for use at an indoor range rather than outdoor.
Though the design is different, the functionality is mostly the same as the INDESIGN tactical timer.
Beside the PAR timer, you also get a countdown timer and a stopwatch. You will also get different timing settings for competitions like USPSA, IPSC, APSC, IDPA, 3 Gun, and Steel Challenge. These modes are useful for practicing if you intend on participating. They will also be hugely useful for range officers at these events.
This best shooting timer comes with a Bluetooth function to connect with larger LED billboards. It is also compatible with PractiScore — a smartphone app to track and analyze your shooting performance. Currently, only the Android version is available. The iOS version is said to be under development.
At the front of the M1A2 is a bright, blue screen LCD display. Its large size means you can read data a whole lot easier. For outdoor shootings, the screen is coated in a layer of anti-glare to keep your eyes from being dazzled.
Like the INDESIGN tactical timer, the battery used in the M1A2 is a rechargeable battery with a 7-day life. The battery can be fully recharged in 1.5 hours. Programmed to conserve battery life, the timer shuts itself off after a period of inactivity.
One common complaint that we have seen doesn’t relate to this gun range timer itself. Rather, it has to do with the instruction manual, which is very difficult to understand.
- Light, compact design
- Comes with many different features
- Bright, easy to read display with anti-glare
- Good battery life
- The design isn’t very rugged
- The instruction manual is very poorly written
The Mantis X3’s selling point is that it is basically a pocketable shooting coach. Its sensors can analyze your performance. The data is then used by the system to provide you with tips to help you improve.
Its design is completely different from the other best shot timers on the list. The Mantis X3’s sensor component is attached to the underside of your pistol. Connect the sensor to your smartphone through an app and voila, you got yourself an undermount fire tracking sensor.
Most pistols and rifles with a rail or an adapter will fit the Mantis X3. In very special cases, such as with the Glock family of pistols (17 and 19), you may need to purchase a separate adapter for the sensor to fit. You can find the adapter for these on the company’s website. Alternatively, you can just call their customer service to let them sort it out for you.
The sensor can track every movement of your pistol and record it to your phone. Later, you can review valuable pieces of data like your pre-shot hold, trigger pull, and recoil. The system combines these data to give you a summarized score to help you visualize your shooting performance.
It is a lot easier to train your technique and improve performance with this sort of data.
Now I know what you’re probably thinking. That’s great and all, but where does the shot timer come in?
It’s part of the app. Because the sensor is literally a part of your firearm, the Mantis X3 can record your PAR very accurately. Just select the timer mode through your smartphone.
The Mantis X3 functions via a built-in battery. It can last for a very long time. When the battery runs out, you can recharge it with the included Micro USB cable.
One downside is that the Mantis X3 requires a constant connection with your smartphone. As a result, connectivity issues could seriously hamper your session. A lot of people have reported a “Failure to connect to the app” message on their phone.
Other than this road bump, the X3 is an excellent pistol shot timer worth trying out.
- Accurate shot tracking and timing
- Smartphone app integration
- Built-in battery is good
- Has troubles with connecting to the smartphone from time to time
- In certain cases, the sensor wouldn’t fit your firearm without the proper adapter
While the Mantis X3 is designed like a firearm attachment, the Shotmaxx-2 assumes the form of a wristwatch. This form factor makes it an excellent gadget if you like to train on your own.
Shotmaxx-2 is comfortable and light on the wrist. As a result, practicing drawing and tactical movements will be easier with it on. And since it’s strapped to your wrist, you have full use of both of your hands unlike with other timers.
The watch is pretty rugged and can withstand a hard tumble. It is also waterproof. Nevertheless, we don’t recommend you to roll around in the mud with it.
The microphone in the timer can listen accurately to your shots. Customers have attested that even when they’re shooting in a busy range, the Shotmaxx-2 never mistakes them for the user’s shot. It is so sensitive, in fact, that it can differentiate between a dry fire and the real thing.
There are two measurement modes that you can switch back and forth between using the buttons on the device. The first mode is quite familiar: the Shotmaxx-2 will listen to the sound of your gun’s report. But when it’s turned to the second mode, the device uses an in-built accelerometer to feel for the recoil, instead.
This is a very unique feature that not many best shot timers have.
While the microphone is sensitive enough to tell the sound of your gun from others, in a busy range, it may give you a better peace of mind using the second mode, instead.
The speaker is loud and can be heard even through foam ear-pros.
Battery is excellent with a standby time of 2 months per charge.
This may sound nitpicky, but if there's absolutely one thing that we have to say that’s not in favor of the Shotmaxx-2, then it’s that the timer doesn’t have Bluetooth. The Shotmaxx-1 had it before it was discontinued. It’s not a big loss, but the feature would’ve still been appreciated.
- Rugged design
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Has multiple recording modes
- Loud speaker
- Good battery life
- Doesn’t have Bluetooth
How Do We Determine the Best Shot Timers?
Everyone who is shopping for the best timer and those who are planning to knows exactly how difficult the task is especially the decision making which requires you to choose which of the many choices to pick. So, what are the steps to know which one is the best shot timer among the many options that the market offers? This is the question that we will be addressing in this article. We will help you find out which one to get and what other things to keep in mind when purchasing one.
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Essential Features to Look For
The very purpose of the shot timer is to let you see and have easy access to data and information which you need during your target and shooting training. The display feature should be your top priority when it comes to choosing your timer.
The shot timer provides the data by recording your time, and it gives ydeerhuntingfieldou a signal to start your shooting session. So, when choosing your shot timer, make sure to consider the readability of the display feature, clarity, and portability.
2. Data Recording
As discussed earlier, shot timers allow you to record your progress and your areas to improve. It records the vital information which you would need to check and monitor your progress.
So, when choosing a timer, consider the one with excellent data recording capabilities and storage that will be able to perform readily and virtually take note your shooting skills, speed and other relevant information.
3. Battery Life
Since the shot timer is one of the most abused and used working gears in your shooting endeavor, it is vital to consider the battery life of your chosen shot timer. Battery life efficiency should be the number one on your list of things to consider before purchasing.
4. Quality and Durability
Shot timers, just like any other gears and accessories in the training and shooting field should be able to withstand the most unpredictable and the harshest weather conditions.
Above all the added features that a shot timer offers, you should make sure that it also provides durability and high quality which will allow you to make sure that you are purchasing a good investment and not just wasting your money.
This will also enable you to protect your statistics and other relevant data by making sure that the timer you got will be able to keep such data while you still need them.
Based on all the information provided and discussed in this article, we now have decided which of the best five shot timers own the top spot. This is in accordance with the factors that we have discussed and highlighted as important things to consider when choosing a shot timer.
After our thoughtful discussion, we have seen the edges of the CED7000 Shot Timer compared to the other four named units and named it the best shot timer 2021. It is very handy, making it easier for the shooter to carry it to the woods or the range. It can fit perfectly in a palm so it would not be very inconvenient on the part of the user to carry it anywhere especially that it comes with a wrist watch or lanyard.
Yes, it may be more expensive compared to the other brands, but one can be assured that it will only be a one-time out of the pocket experience. Consider it as an investment instead of buying the cheapest shot timers that you can find and having them replaced every week or so. That would not be at all practical.
One can be assured that all other factors are met, and this unit will be able to serve you for a long time. We also need not to mention the fact that it offers more convenience to the user as he need not bring spare batteries anymore since the batteries of this CED7000 are rechargeable.
After providing you with our most practical ways and guided steps to find the best shot timers, this article hopes that you now have the confidence and the clearest idea when choosing and purchasing one. Always take note of the factors that you need to consider when choosing the perfect shot timer for you. Always go for the one that will surely give you your money’s worth without regretting. Now is your time to go shopping and grab your ideal shot timer based on the reviews that we have provided.
Keep improving your shooting and targeting skills by learning and practicing more. By being here, we know that you are on the right track.
Take advantage of our guided steps and our reviews, and we are very confident that it will help you decide quickly as it will narrow your choices and eventually show you the way towards your preferred shot timer.
Also, keep in mind that these top five best shot timers are recommended for International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) and Competitions which assure everyone that these are top caliber shot timers.
Now, leave your comments and let us know if this article has been helpful to all of you. We would prefer to keep this interactive by letting us know what you think. We would appreciate your feedback and comments. Hope to hear from all of you soon!
Good luck on your shot timer hunting and enjoy shopping!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How Does a Shot Timer Work?
The way a basic shot timer (or shooting clock) works is simple enough.
When you first set up a timer, most will give you three options:
+ Instant start: the timer begins recording the moment the START button is pressed. This mode is often used if you have a buddy accompanying you to the range to control the timer.
+ Random start: the timer starts at a random interval. Great to train your drawing reflex.
+ Fixed-time start: the timer starts after a pre-programmed amount of time.
Whenever the timer starts, it will give out a loud, audible beep. That’s your signal to begin shooting. After a pre-programmed period, the timer will let out another audible signal to stop the session.
The timer records each of your shots with a microphone. Certain timers will use an accelerometer to detect the gun’s recoil to make a recording.
What Is PAR Time?
When the timer beeps to begin your shooting session, after a predetermined amount of time, it will sound off a second beep for you to stop. The length of time between the starting beep and the ending beep is called the PAR time.
Your goal as a shooter is to land as many required shots within the PAR time as you possibly can.
What Are Splits in Shooting
Splits are a very simple, but important concept. It refers to the length of time between each of your shots. The quicker the split, the more shots you will be able to make within the PAR time.
Most competitive firearms are semi-automatic (requiring individual trigger pulls to shoot). Splits will tell you exactly how quick your trigger finger is. With an accurate recording of your split times, you will be able to improve your shooting by working on lowering them.
Are There Any Shot Timer Apps?
With a brief search on the app market of your choice (Google Play or Apple’s App Store), you can find hundreds of different shot timing apps. All of them will claim the same thing: that they’re accurate and reliable.
But the truth is that you will be far better off with real, best shot timers than with any of these apps — even the best shot timer apps out there. This doesn’t mean that they don’t work. It’s just that they don’t work well.
Your smartphone’s microphone isn’t designed to pick up shots. As a result, if you shoot in a busy range, the app may mistake other people’s shots as yours. It’s not unheard of for apps to not record shots at all!
Additionally, the recordings that they make may not be very accurate. If you’re training for a competition, every millisecond counts. Your smartphone won’t be able to give you that, no matter which app you use. So, if you’re serious about logging your shooting performance, the best course of action is to invest in a serious shooting timer.
These apps do have their use cases, though. Let’s say your US Ballistics electronic shot timer suddenly ran out of battery, broke down on the range, or you just forgot to bring them with you, your smartphone could be a good stand-in. Don’t rely too much on the recordings, though. Like we said, they aren’t very reliable.
Can You Dry Fire With a Shot Timer?
You most certainly can. And there’s no need to search for a special shot timer for dry fire. Virtually all serious shot timers will have a mode to detect the click of the hammer in a dry fire. They will record the sound as a “shot” even without the gunpowder.
So, if you want to practice your drawing and shooting at home, these shooting timers have got you covered.