There are tons of ballistic solvers out on the market. A quick glance at the app store will bombard a shooter with choices. I recommend my students go with the one that is the most user-friendly for them and has the features they need. For me, this has been Applied Ballistics, because it is easy to set up and use and has a comprehensive bullet library. It is also the same solver I have been using in my kestrel NV 4500 since 2014 so I am familiar with it. If a shooter is looking for a free solver, however, I steer them towards Hornaday’s 4DOF program. It has been yielding very solid results and has BC (ballistic coefficient) data gathered via doppler by Hornady themselves.
As numerous as solvers are stand-alone weather stations/anemometers are equally limited. In fact, there is only one major player, Kestrel. So, when a shooter wants to get away from relying on their smartphone and all the pitfalls related to that, Kestrel is the obvious answer. Since Kestrel discontinued their Horus model, some variation of Applied Ballistics has been the only option as far as a solver is concerned. That is until now…
Here is a recent press release from Hornady talking about their latest partnership with Kestrel.
Hornady Kestrel 5700 Ballistics Weather Meter with Hornady 4DOF®
Hornady has partnered with Kestrel to put their 4DOF engine into the 5700 weather meter. Here is what they have to say about their new release.
Kestrel Ballistics, the leading brand in rugged American-built weather meters and long-range shooting accessories, has partnered with Hornady, premier manufacturer of bullets, ammunition, reloading tools and more, to launch an all new advanced ballistics weather meter for hunters and shooters. The Kestrel 5700 Ballistics Weather Meter with Hornady 4DOF will debut at the 2019 NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits in Indianapolis and be available to pre-order online. Visit the Hornady booth #5251 on Friday, April 25 at 12PM EDT to witness the unveiling of the all-new Kestrel 5700 with 4DOF($499) and learn about how this unit can help shooters achieve first-round hits at nearly any distance.
Combining reliable onsite environmental measurements with precise Hornady 4DOF trajectory solutions – this all-in-one, compact unit is fully functional as a complete, durable tool for long-range precision shooting. The integrated Hornady 4DOF Ballistic engine provides trajectory solutions based on projectile Drag Coefficient along with the exact physical modeling of the projectile and its mass and aerodynamic properties. Coupled with features like zero angle and aerodynamic jump calculation it is ideal for long-range calculations. Leave the phone behind, and forget about apps – now hunters and shooters can focus on the shot, without the distraction of fumbling with a phone in the field. Accounting for all environmental and ballistic variables that affects bullet trajectory over distance, the Kestrel with integrated 4DOF solver quickly and accurately delivers dead-on aiming solutions for any rifle or round.
- Accurate Environmentals – Measures wind speed and direction, temperature, altitude, and more
- G1/G7 Ballistics Solver – Large library of independently tested bullet data
- User-Friendly – Easy operation for outdoor use with large buttons for navigating screens and entering information along with bright, clear backlit display readable in direct sunlight or low light situations
- Rugged, All-Weather Durability — IP-67 Waterproof, MIL-STD-810 drop-tested, and backed by a 5-Year Warranty
- Long-lasting Power – Powered by 1 AA Lithium battery, expect hundreds of hours of use from a reliable tool that won’t quit when you need it most
- Load & Go Convenience – Set up a Gun Profile via the free Kestrel LiNK app, then the Kestrel unit is field-ready allowing users to calculate trajectories under any conditions, even in areas without cellular service
In the field, I prefer using a Kestrel over the smartphone because of its ruggedness and reliability and the built-in anemometer (wind meter). It is also very convenient to have bullet profiles preloaded into a device. I know Hornady has been doing a lot of work with their doppler array lately so I am fairly certain the profiles they have created will be very accurate even at extended ranges. Finally, coming in at $499 instead of the $599 price point of the Applied Ballistics version, the Hornady Kestrel will certainly attract the budget conscious and those who know they are going to utilize Hornady projectiles. For more information or to preorder go to https://hornadykestrel.com.
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