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  • Labradar

    Whats your experience with the LabRadar Doppler Chrono? How do you guys think it compares to a MagneetoSpeed chrono? Pros/cons? Thanks in advance.

    Actual

  • #2
    I've had a Labradar for probably 4 months now, I think its great. Its pricey for sure but if you take the time to set it up properly it functions very well. I don't really have any complaints about it to this point other than price. I went from the traditional chonograpgh using light to this and I will never look back. If you have it set up to read out to 100 yards you can get a rough g1 bc as well using a calculator. you can also shoot groups without anything effecting your barrel harmonics. The price is one of the big things to get past, but if you have the money I believe it is a good investment. I'm typically shoot at a range that has tons of trees and I don't get any interference. I don't shoot at a public range so I can't comment on how other shots effect the performance but I believe that can be tuned as well. I have used it for everything from 50BMG to a suppressed .22lr and Ive gotten it to work for me. If you're big into reloading and development I would recommend it.

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    • #3
      I had one and sold it, was finicky. Needs another generation to debug. I had one of the first megneto speeds - the first gen had issues and now look at the gen 3 --- awesome. I say wait.

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      • #4
        Thanks guys. My MagneetoSpeed crapped the bed and I've been seeing a lot of fellas running the LabRadar so I figured I would look into it. Thanks again for your input.

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        • #5
          I just finished my 3rd outing with my new Labradar and I love it. I had a hard time finding as many video reviews and Sniper's Hide reviews as I usually would like before buying something like this though. In fact, most of the YouTube reviews I found were negative reviews. I think the trend was that people weren't having it trigger properly, and then I talked to a guy at my local range that let me try his and I bought one that evening. The key is just making sure the LR is pointed aimed properly at your target. I think at ranges with more than one target to engage people have a tendency to aim the LR at one target and then it fails to trigger when they aim at a target in a completely different location. Just something to keep in mind.

          If your targets are all in enfilade (i.e. in line at 100, 200, 400 etc...), you wouldn't even have to worry about that.
          Knowing that - I have only had failures to trigger when maybe 3-4 times when I was first learning to use it. It didn't take long to learn.

          My other learning curve issue was the trigger sensitivity. I was shooting a suppressed/supersonic .308, but I was running the sensitivity on a 2. I was on the 200 yd range at my local club, and guys' rifles about 50 yards to my left were triggering the radar, but since there is a earthen berm between us - and we were shooting in completely different lanes - it obviously didn't record a shot. I ended up having to turn the sensitivity up to 4, and that seems to be my sweet spot. I've now had absolutely no issues shooting suppressed .308 and 5.56 on that setting, even with people shooting 2 benches down from me.

          I did buy the airgun trigger for the possibility of my subsonic/suppressed 300 Blackout not triggering it, but after using it my gut feeling is that I'll be returning the airgun trigger after shooting the 300 Blackout next weekend.

          I guess time will tell, there is only a 1 year warranty on the unit.. so that's another issue. I don't know what the MagnetoSpeed warranty is off the top of my head, but 1 year for the unit is disappointing. The reports it generates on an SD card are great.. I love them.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by CBO Actual View Post
            Thanks guys. My MagneetoSpeed crapped the bed and I've been seeing a lot of fellas running the LabRadar so I figured I would look into it. Thanks again for your input.
            CBO,
            What was the issue with your Magnetospeed? Which model do you have. My shooting partner has a Labradar and the other day it was giving inconsistent readings (way off) when compared the the MS V3 which were confirmed at distance.

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            • #7
              Ive had mine for about 9 months. Its been awesome. I run it on highest sensitivity and move the unit to different positions to suit different rifles(muzzle brake v. No muzzle brake). The beam size is so tall and wide, ive never found unit aiming to be very critical. My only gripe is the 3900fps max speed, which is easy to break out of with varmint rifles.

              I see guys at the range who hate theirs, but they do whacky stuff as far as unit placement.

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              • #8
                I have both, I would go Labradar hands down. Way faster to set up. Takes time to learn how to set it up properly, I found a sick little tripod on Amazon that places it at the perfect height for prone or off a bench. You just need to know where to place the unit to get it to read.

                Using a can makes it hard at times, but doable.

                Cons- battery life, I take an extended battery with me and just power it by the usb cord.

                Magnetospeed is great, takes forever to set up for different rifles, can move and come loose at times. I get a POI shift using it.
                But works wells , sometimes AR's with certain rails make it hard to get it to work because the unit can't fit on the barrel and attaching it to the rail makes the bayonet hit the muzzle.

                Get a friend and split the Labradar

                Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

                "When I pass, do not let my wife sell the guns for what I told her they cost" (SMDAVE)

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                • #9
                  With 22lr it really struggles. Subsonic ammo needed the optional mic attached to a stick and right next to the muzzle. At indoor ranges, I couldn't get it to just trigger on my rifle. The problem with failure to lock on is that with a failed string, you need to clear it by pressing a button, which upsets the aim of the unit, which makes it more likely get misaligned and miss the next shot, rinse and repeat. Only had it out three times. With 308, it works a lot better. Still learning.
                  I'll stop buying black rifles when my wife stops buying black shoes.

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                  • #10
                    I've had mine for about 6 months and love it! I had a V3 and had planned on keeping both of them but after using the Labradar I sold the V3. I have never ran mine on anything but external batteries so I cant comment on the battery life. Everything I shoot is suppressed and it took me a little bit to find the sweet spot on placement to get consistent readings but after I found the sweet spot I havnt had a single failure to read. I am fortunate enough to live in an area that I can shoot without having to go to public range so I have no comment on its performance around other shooters

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                    • #11
                      First, I am an old coot,tech dummy. I have used mine for a month now. It works great for me. I have learned tons about my reloads.Weather and light not an issue. I can use with several rifles with out going in front of firing line. No interference with a shooter sitting about 4 feet away. I hated putting up screens and fooling with them and having the whole set up stop working as lighting changed over a shooting session. Costs a bunch, but hours at the reloading bench, $$ for Lapua brass, Berger bullets, big$ glass, wth is another big chunk of change

                      big boys have expensive toys.

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                      • #12
                        Numbers are the same, you won't see better results vs the MagnetoSpeed

                        The Unit is Fragile ... now I consider it too fragile to both with. yesterday the wind knocked my unit over again, less than 1ft off the ground and it broke a second time. Parts inside rattling, and the blue light is blinking. The first time the wind knocked it off my car, then it fell 3ft and broke. This time it was on the tripod on the ground, and it broke. Plus my ground is dirt.

                        If you shoot suppressed, it's picky, if you shoot around others it will give you false readings and force you to reset it manually. The extra distance it reads is not helpful, it's just there. Eats batteries as someone else noted, external power can damage it too if you don't use the right one.

                        I like the unit to set it and forget it, but now I am just tired of it. A field device you cannot use in the field
                        Watch your thoughts; they become words.
                        Watch your words; they become actions.
                        Watch your actions; they become habits.
                        Watch your habits; they become character.
                        Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.
                        --Frank Outlaw

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                        • #13
                          I had one for a few months and then it stopped reading. They refurbished it and same thing. They sent me a new one and the same thing. Something changed where I shoot and we never figured it out. I shoot at the same range and from the same bench consistently and something just happened. I've just kept using my MagnetoSpeed and it just plain works. I really wished the LabRadar worked out for me.

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                          • #14
                            Love mine!

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                            • #15
                              Where have you found the location compared to the muzzle for braked and not braked rifles? I've only made it out once with mine so far. It triggered great with my braked 6.5cm but had problems with the other rifle. Other than that the only problem I had was forgetting to rearm it prior to shooting another string. I'm thinking about placing it directly under the muzzle as most of my shooting is from a bench anymore do to bad neck and shoulders.

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                              • #16
                                If you want to mess with it, it can be made to work well

                                If you just want to be able to shoot near others, suppressed, not finicky and eliminate a headache.

                                Get something else, not worth the $500 and all the Tylenol you'll need.


                                Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by trophyhunter View Post
                                  If you want to mess with it, it can be made to work well

                                  If you just want to be able to shoot near others, suppressed, not finicky and eliminate a headache.

                                  Get something else, not worth the $500 and all the Tylenol you'll need.


                                  Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

                                  My experience is totally opposite yours. A headache is setting up a traditional chrono, which will stop working at the drop of a hat, for no reason whatsoever. Then you have to wait for a line break to fix it, only to find that it still isnt working. Man i dont miss those things!


                                  The day I got my labradar, I took it to the back yard and shot a bunch of pellets out of a beeman spring air rifle past it. Worked like a charm.


                                  While there certainly room for improvement, this technology is the way to go in my opinion.

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Supersubes


                                    My experience is totally opposite yours. A headache is setting up a traditional chrono, which will stop working at the drop of a hat, for no reason whatsoever. Then you have to wait for a line break to fix it, only to find that it still isnt working. Man i dont miss those things!


                                    The day I got my labradar, I took it to the back yard and shot a bunch of pellets out of a beeman spring air rifle past it. Worked like a charm.


                                    While there certainly room for improvement, this technology is the way to go in my opinion.
                                    That's why I use a Magnetospeed, don't have to mess with the firing line, can shoot near anyone, can shoot suppressed, can have the controller within arms length.

                                    While I think the technology is superb, I just found it to finicky. If I shot suppressed i needed an adapter or it missed half the shots. If I shoot on a busy range, i pick up everyone else's shots. If I used the muzzle brake only, it moved off target and had errors. Just some small kinks they need to work out and it will be a fantastic machine. But for now, I'll stick with the magnetospeed.


                                    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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                                    • #19
                                      I've had mine over a year without any problems. It has fallen over one time in a 20 MPH wind and it still keeps on running perfect. Maybe its just me, but when you spend $500 on a chrono that is as sophisticated as labradar you should treat it with a little more care. I have over 1,000 rounds by mine, 22 LR to 300 Win mag suppressed. I had a few questions on the where to place the muzzle to get it trigger but after watching their YouTubes and talking to their tech support I never have a problem. This is without a doubt the best chrono i have ever had. Well worth the money, but learn to take care of your equipment and it will take care of you.

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                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Joe Friday View Post
                                        I've had mine over a year without any problems. It has fallen over one time in a 20 MPH wind and it still keeps on running perfect. Maybe its just me, but when you spend $500 on a chrono that is as sophisticated as labradar you should treat it with a little more care. I have over 1,000 rounds by mine, 22 LR to 300 Win mag suppressed. I had a few questions on the where to place the muzzle to get it trigger but after watching their YouTubes and talking to their tech support I never have a problem. This is without a doubt the best chrono i have ever had. Well worth the money, but learn to take care of your equipment and it will take care of you.
                                        Spare me...

                                        I was one of the first to get this unit, in fact months before anyone else and use it well beyond 1000 rounds, (closer to 5,000+) in fact I use it pretty well every week without fail. This is the second time it has broke, the rattling parts inside are unmistakable. The first time I was changing the batteries in the back of the SUV, the wind gust, knocked it off, and broke it. A bit higher but not much. Both falls are dirt too, no rocks, no gravel, dirt.

                                        How would you suggest I "Take more care" it's on a tripod less than 1ft off the ground, I am behind the rifle, a gust of wind knocks it over (Certainly not the first time) and BANG! it's has parts rattling again, and the blue light blinks when you turn it on.

                                        This unit is fragile, period !@#$@!$%

                                        Take more care, LOL

                                        How about I leave it home in it's padded case and call it good. My Magnetospeed is used under the same conditions and works great

                                        As some else noted, we can drop our phones and tablets, give them to little kids who drop them all day and they don't break with parts rattling around inside.

                                        You can drop proof electronics
                                        Watch your thoughts; they become words.
                                        Watch your words; they become actions.
                                        Watch your actions; they become habits.
                                        Watch your habits; they become character.
                                        Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.
                                        --Frank Outlaw

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                                        • #21
                                          Originally posted by Lowlight

                                          You can drop proof electronics
                                          A buddy of mine is an engineer. We used to discuss making a shock proof suspension system for PCs in rough use environments. As we were starting to get more serious my washing machine broke (be patient, this is going somewhere). Repair guy comes out (not really a repair guy -- more like flow chart follower and parts replacer, but that's another story) and he's got a funky looking notebook PC. I asked him about it and he said they're made to survive meathead abuse. Naturally I ask if they work. He said the crew he works with wondered too. So one of them finally threw one across the room on concrete. The computer kept working perfectly. The housing didn't crack. No rattles.

                                          No I'm not sure how much those things cost. But the point is, is the Labradar meant to be used in a lab, or in the field? If it's the field, it may, in fact, be possible to make them durable enough to be thrown across a concrete range -- at least the computational components and housing.

                                          Perhaps the V2 Labradar will get closer to finding the nexus between a reasonable cost the market can bear, and taking a one foot tumble off a tripod into dirt. Perhaps it doesn't have to be "meathead proof", but a little tougher than it is now?
                                          Last edited by Cartman; 05-31-2017, 09:58 PM.
                                          Please don't confuse me with someone else. I am not Hide member "Eric Cartman" or another member that incorporates "Cartman" into their name. I am, and have always been, just "Cartman".

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                                          • #22
                                            I look at this like any other electronic device. If it takes the right hit, it's gonna break. I'll use my iphones as an example. I've owned every one. I like making a spectacle by tossing them over my shoulder onto concrete. People freak the hell out and cringe when it hits the ground, but ive never broken one, and never cracked the screen. Yes, they are cased, but not some crazy vault-like otterbox. On the other hand, I have friends that cant go 3 weeks without breaking their phones. I'm not gentle with my labradar in the least, but it hasnt fallen over yet either, so I'll be extra careful about that. Frank, sounds like your's just took the right hit.

                                            Could the labradar be more robust? Sure. Is it less robust than the optical chronos we've been using all these years? I dont think so. Those were the definition of finicky, and were always in danger of blowing over, and then blowing up when they hit the ground. The labradar is just such a fantastic leap in the right direction, I have a hard time faulting them.

                                            I'm no radar tech, but it seems to me that the labradar is a fair bit bigger than it needs to be. Maybe it has to do with beam width/height dictating antenna size, but our radar units at work have antennas about the size of a soda can, and the counting unit is about the size of a TV remote. It would be cool if labradar V2 could be much much smaller. I think that would minimize the blow-overs, and just make it more conveinient to store and use.




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                                            • #23
                                              I bought the stand the company sells with Labradar. I put a weight on the base ( box of 50 loaded rounds or some ankle weights ) no problems so far. Its fairly big and shaped like a square sail so I assumed you needed a stable base to keep it from tipping over. also the muzzle brakes on some of my rifles have enough blast to knock over my coffee mug so again I figured a weighted base would be reasonable precaution. I'm still happy with mine after 5 range trips.

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                                              • #24
                                                Like my unit as well, mostly for being able to gather velocity/ES/SD numbers while doing ladder testing without influencing the ladder as my Magnetospeed V3 does. However, the Labradar is a bit finicky as others have noted especially if someone with a brake is shooting near you... it will false trigger off their muzzle blast and with the current firmware the only way to reset the unit after each false trigger is to press the enter button manually to acknowledge the "projectile not tracked" error message. A timeout/auto reset for that warning would be nice and I'm hoping they incorporate that on a new firmware update. .22LR and air rifle use needs the optional external mic to trigger and can also be touchy to setup, I had to take the foam "gust guard" off the mic for reliable triggering with my suppressed PCP air rifle. It also eats batteries like crazy, the internal AA batteries are a joke. I always run a 10,000mah external USB battery pack which will run all day, but I worry one day I'll accidentally snag the cord and damage the USB port in the Labradar.

                                                Also, I agree with Frank that it is fragile for the kind of environment it is used in. While mine has never tipped over or dropped, the case split from muzzle blast when doing load development on a 7 SAUM on a 32F morning. About 20 shots into the session I noticed that the had case cracked right around 2 of the bolts that hold it together. It started the day in one piece. It was positioned well away from the muzzle at the time (unit was placed right at the barrel/receiver junction about 5" from the side of the receiver and the muzzle brake didn't have rearward angled ports, only side facing ports. It still worked and gave readings with the cracked case, but I wasn't too happy about that. Labradar did repair it for free though.

                                                That said, even with the quirks and somewhat fragile nature I find it very handy to have for load development. I don't bother dragging my Oehler out anymore.

                                                For a Labradar "Gen 2", my suggestions would be additional durability, auto-reset of the "projectile not tracked" error when it triggers from someone else's muzzle blast, an upper end velocity of 4500+ fps for some of the varmint calibers, and use of higher capacity internal batteries like 18650 Li-on cells.
                                                Last edited by Kiba; 05-29-2017, 10:59 PM.

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                                                • #25
                                                  Several members of the club where I shoot have purchased them and use them regularly. Only complaint they have is that it doesn't give velocities beyond 30 yards. This is apparently due to overhead baffles that are installed to keep rounds from landing in a nearby housing development or the city just beyond it. Our range is in a heavily developed urban environment and the only way it has survived is by making sure there is no way for anyone to launch, inadvertently or purposely, a round off the range. It's a nice 80 plus acre range but these baffles ( 5 rows of 6"X4'X12' thick gravel filled boxes suspended just over the line of sight to the farthest targets and extending 60 yards from the firing line) make it like a tunnel and the "radar" doesn't seem to be able to pick up bullets out to it's max range. They even mess with the light so about the only chrono's that work are either those with infrared sensors or the Magnetospeed.

                                                  In short, the Labradar seems to be really sensitive to location although they probably work just fine if you can shoot in the wide open spaces without a shooter right next to you.
                                                  If you aren't willing to stand up for others now, who'll be left to stand up when they come for you?

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