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  • #16
    Originally posted by PigHunter View Post

    Maybe so, but those Leupolds will be double the cost of the Sig and others in the $125 price range. On top of that, there's not enough difference in field conditions to make it worth the extra dollars. The money saved can go towards ammo.

    Sure, I've got a couple of Leupolds and really like them. But so far I've not really needed that marginally better view to bring home the pork or venison.
    I agree. When the conditions are so bad a top end scope would help, you will find me back at camp with my feet up sipping on some Scotch.

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    • #17
      I hunted for 5 years with a $35 Bushnell 4x on my .308 and only had issues when it was in the last few minutes of legal shooting. Granted, back then I wasn't concerned about counting points on the hoof. That 4x was replaced with a $120 Tasco for another 15 years. Now the rifle wears a $450 Leupold just because I have the extra money to waste on glass I don't really need.

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      • #18
        pighunter, I'm aware that as much as I dislike Bushnell and Tasco scopes, some of them perform just fine.
        ....but I have also, working in a gun shop, seen both brands that wouldn't hold a zero if you looked at them sideways.
        A "good" scope can make a "bad" rifle shoot a bit better.
        A "bad" scope can't make even the "best" rifle shoot worth beans.
        I may be being a bit too critical, but it's just my experiences.
        I don't have to own a Rolls Royce, but I'd just as soon walk than drive a Yugo! LOL!

        p.s. - Hey! If they work, go for it!

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        • #19
          Originally posted by PigHunter View Post
          I hunted for 5 years with a $35 Bushnell 4x on my .308 and only had issues when it was in the last few minutes of legal shooting. Granted, back then I wasn't concerned about counting points on the hoof. That 4x was replaced with a $120 Tasco for another 15 years. Now the rifle wears a $450 Leupold just because I have the extra money to waste on glass I don't really need.
          I had one from a discount store in the '70's - fogged up. Took it back and got a Redfield Wide View - still using it. Also have had two Tasco World Class scopes. One broke a crosshair early on. Tasco replaced and I have never had another problem with them. Believe it on not, they will do a decent four corner tracking test.

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          • #20
            My old 2 1/2X Weaver scope was a big step up in class after years of shooting with metallic aperturec sights.
            But Jack O'Connor preferred 4X as the best all purpose fixed power magnification.

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            • #21
              Having tried a number of variable power magnifications, I now prefer the 2-7 x 33 mm Leupold, as it seems to balance better with small lightweight rifles like the Winchester Model 70 Classic Featherweight.

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              • #22
                I guess the top of the line on power would be an elephant caliber or .50 BMG Ma Deuce combined with some high powered astronomy scope.

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                • #23
                  I started out using Redfields for this purpose in the 1960s; then migrated to Leupolds as high quality hunting scopes until the early 2000s. My needs changed over that time. I found that light handling improvements gave me a much clearer aim early in the morning and late in the evening. I could also see better in dark forests. Then, I started using more high magnification scopes as I sought to extend my shooting range for varmints and targets out to 1000 yards or more. In the 2000s, I moved to Vortex scopes because of the quality, large field of view compared to other scopes and relatively low-in-class price of their scopes; but also because of the best transferable lifetime warranty among scope manufacturers. This allows me to buy used optics at half the price if I desire and it allows me to sell used scopes at a better price because of the unique 'transferable" nature of their warranty.

                  The common theme for me among all these has been a high quality and well renowned vendor lifetime warranty. I still have most of the scopes purchased over the last 50 years and they still do their job as they did the day I bought them.

                  We are fortunate to live in a time where we easily have about 25 vendors that produce high quality precision scopes. They are not all priced the same though and with most, if you have a scope issue, you will pay for repair or buy a new scope.

                  I just bought a new Vortex Crossfire (their lowest quality scope line) for $95 on sale at about 50% discount. I use it on my .22 but this scope is still better than my first Redfield by far. It would serve most deer hunters just fine in the 2-7x or 3-9x range. The Vortex Diamondback (next step in their product stratification) is a better scope and it is perfect for a lifetime of normal hunting duties. I consider it to be quite similar to the Leupold VX3 series in overall capability with a little larger field of view. I have several of their Vortex Viper series scopes for longer range hunting and target shooting. I buy them used or refurbished for around $500 or less on ebay or aaoptics.com when they have the refurb contract from Vortex. In my two day side-by-side test of the 6-24X version of that scope against a Nightforce NSX 5.5-20x, both scopes produced precision shooting results exactly the same with same group size at 100 and 300 yards and exactly the same number of hits at 450-750 yard variable range p-dog shooting in still wind over a 4 hour span. The Nightforce had slightly better clarity at highest magnification (but the Vortex was way more than adequate for 1000 yard p-dogs) and the Vortex had a way better warranty but otherwise, these 2 scopes do the same job with regard to precision shooting. I have returned one Nightforce for warranty work and I bought a used Vortex that needed warranty work. Both experiences were excellent however I was thankful the Nightforce was a new purchase and that was not second hand or I would have had to buy a new scope to replace the clunker.

                  I also use the Vortex 15-60X Golden Eagle for long range competition. I can buy three of them for the price of one Nightforce ATCAR. Both are great scopes and I currently feel more confident with my Vortex than I do with the Nightforce for competition (which doesn't require a zero stop since the targets are all always at a known range). If I lose to another precision scope manufacturer, I know it is ME losing; not the scope.

                  If you can, I would suggest getting to a store where you can look though each scope you are considering. Look for plastic (crap for precision and long life) parts vs aluminum, look at the field of view, eye pupil (how easy it is to see through the scope as you quickly raise the rifle to your shoulder for a quick shot), and clarity of the glass on high magnification. Check the warranty and look up warranty comments not made by scope competitors.

                  If you are seeking a tactical scope, check whether they have zero stops and are clear on highest magnification. Turn the turrets and see how visible they are. If you are buying a first focal plane scope, verify you can see the reticle sufficiently on lowest magnification / lowest light and that the reticle won't cover your long range target at highest magnification.


                  My top scope criteria are:
                  1) Highest value, most requirements for the price

                  2) Precision (they all look alike but they don't all shoot alike). Most critical is cross hair must stay on target as you move your head around behind the scope. Shoot groups if you can and go with the one that shoots the tightest groups.

                  3. Full lifetime warranty because I don't want to be scope hunting rather than deer/antelope, elk, etc. hunting. I want to buy used equipment for price savings to get more for my buck.


                  Last edited by DakotaMan; 08-12-2021, 09:17 PM.

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                  • #24
                    I sent a Burris back for a tight power ring. Don't remember if it was lifetime. They completely went through the entire scope and sent it back for no charge. Was just like new when it was returned. Also, very quick turn around time.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by jhjimbo View Post
                      What is your opinion of the lowest price, standard, center fire rifle scope for big game that might last a new hunter a lifetime. Just your opinion of the one best scope and approximately price. Manufacturer and Model.

                      Don't need to know all about your inventory of scopes - just name one you think is the lowest price that will do the job. I am asking for a friend. I know my thought, interested in what others think. (for example, for me to answer this question in the '60's would have been a Redfield Wide View I think at that time they were $125 ).
                      Whatever is on sale. Vortex always seems to be the cheapest in that price range. Bushnell? Nikon? The technology to make all glass has gotten so much cheaper, and better, that they are cranking out scopes, binoculars, and cameras that used to cost 8X as much. I can't see spending hundreds more for perhaps tiny bits of improvement.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by 99explorer View Post
                        My old 2 1/2X Weaver scope was a big step up in class after years of shooting with metallic aperturec sights.
                        But Jack O'Connor preferred 4X as the best all purpose fixed power magnification.
                        My favorite scope for hunting thick timber is still a 2.5x with a nice WIDE field of view. You can aim well with it out to several hundred yards and you can get a running deer in your sights quickly. Even if I am carrying a 2-7x it is on 2x while I'm hunting. I have no problem with a fixed power scope if it is the right power for the job.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by DakotaMan View Post

                          My favorite scope for hunting thick timber is still a 2.5x with a nice WIDE field of view. You can aim well with it out to several hundred yards and you can get a running deer in your sights quickly. Even if I am carrying a 2-7x it is on 2x while I'm hunting. I have no problem with a fixed power scope if it is the right power for the job.
                          You can hit running deer in thick timber at hundreds of yards ?

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by jhjimbo View Post

                            You can hit running deer in thick timber at hundreds of yards ?
                            Sorry jimbo... I didn't mean to imply that. Being able to acquire a running deer in your scope in dense cover is a capability I value and have used it many times. I also wanted to note that low magnification scopes do give you the capability to aim effectively at deer (however you shoot them) at ranges out to several hundred yards very predictably if you and your rifle are capable. Those are two separate things. I personally have never shot at a running deer at that range; especially with a brush gun (e.g. a .35 Remington).

                            The longest shot for me on a running deer has been about 200 yards or so and that was in the open with a 25-06 using a 6-24X scope dialed to 6X. Most of my running deer in dense timber have been between 5 yards and 60 yards. Typically you can't see them any further than that. I simply wanted to note that you don't need a high magnification scope to aim at a standing deer several hundred yards away... a 2-7X will get the job done. It and the good old 3-9X are quite versatile scopes for deer hunting. It's just that I personally like the 2X to 2 1/2X for close quarters. They have a large enough field of view that it's almost like shooting a shotgun.

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                            • #29
                              The higher magnification for me is helpful at the range during load development. It sucks trying to get good data with a 4x fixed. I tend to leave a scope on the lowest setting when hunting.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by PigHunter View Post
                                The higher magnification for me is helpful at the range during load development. It sucks trying to get good data with a 4x fixed. I tend to leave a scope on the lowest setting when hunting.

                                When I shot on a pistol team in college one exercise the instructor included with sight instruction was to turn the target around (usually a 12X12 target) and let the eye and your sights automatically center on the blank target. Then turn the target over and look at your group. Amazing how well you could do. Kinda like shooting a bow instinctively.

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