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$250 scope vs $500 plus scope for hunting

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/29/2011 at 21:41
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Been lurking for a while and  looking for a couple of scopes for next hunting season for my Savage .270 and 20 ga. USH.  Thinking about the Bushnell Elite line with firefly for both guns.  Wondering what higher priced scopes have to offer over the lower end scopes?    
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/29/2011 at 21:47
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I had a new redfield 4x12 for a few days(not a bad scope at all) upgraded to a new 4.5x14 VX-3. There is a large difference to my eye.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/29/2011 at 23:41
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I recently set up a Meopta Meopro 3-9x42 ($399 SWFA)with german #4 for a gentlemen in our hunting club and am of the opinion that there is no way this scope can be topped in that price range.Turrets performed flawlessly and low light performance was excellent.I would most certainly choose the Meopro over a Bushnell Firefly option.No using a light to fire up the reticle plus way better glass.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 06:26
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The age old question...is it worth the extra cash? IMO, yes. I've been upgrading all my scopes to eventually have all good glass vs. some o.k. stuff. I'd rather have fewer rifles that are scoped great vs. more with less. Just me I guess. Good luck.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 06:36
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There are pretty good gains to be had by going up in price, but only up to a point. For me that point is at the 4-500 dollar range in the 3-9x or 3.5-10x range. If you get up into higher magnification, that price point goes up to about $900. Above that, the gains start to get smaller..... But there is still a difference, if you can justify it. My next scope will go well over the $900 mark, but I have very specific wants, and needs for that scope.
 
This is a pretty lopsided case, but the other night I was glassing some deer, facing west right into the setting sun with my Dad's Nikon Monarch binoculars. When facing the sun, they completely flared, and washed out, and I could see nothing. I handed them back to him, and pulled up my Leica Geovids, and looked to the same deer without much problem. To me, those type of abilities are what you pay for in higher end optics. At 30 min. after sunset, the difference is night, and day. Literally.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 06:46
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I hunted with a Zeiss Diavari 3-12x56 last week and with my Bushnell 4200 firefly last night. I have also had several alpha class scopes. I personally feel like , if the money is a big concern, there is not a lot of difference for my style of hunting. The 4200 is very bright and great to hunt with. I hunted until the same time at dark with my buddy's Zeiss as I did with my 4200. It was pitch black when I left either stand.
 
There is a difference in the high end optics but I think a lot of times people make it sound like it's like looking through nightvision or something. The high end scopes are not really "that" much brighter IMO, but they are sharper,easier to look through for long periods at dark,etc. You might be able to tell a deer has a rack but not be able to count points, whereas a 4200 or something you may just make out the siloutte. That's why I went with high end bino's and bought Conquests and 4200s for the current guns I am hunting with.


Edited by cbm - December/30/2011 at 07:09
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 07:29
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Is the rain guard a big plus compared to other scopes? Charging the firefly doesn't sound like a big deal to me.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 07:39
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bowsNbugs

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IMO, hydrophobic coatings (Rainguard, LotuTec, Aquadura, etc.) are rather beneficial and very functional.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 08:18
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I agree the coatings can be beneficial at times. However I am not a big fan of the Firefly reticle at all.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 08:21
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I'm not a fan of bushnell at all. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 08:52
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Originally posted by SVT_Tactical SVT_Tactical wrote:

I'm not a fan of bushnell at all. 

what?? why?? the 4200 elite is one of my faves. wish i had a couple more 3x9's.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 08:54
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Rainguard-type coatings do add some visibility for those who hunt in "extreme" conditions.  My own testing with scopes with such coatings has been quite satisfactory.  If you get into heavy rains or rapid temperature changes, the coatings can provide an edge.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 08:55
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i know they work damn good up here in november when it can be -20 during deer season.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 09:18
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Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

Originally posted by SVT_Tactical SVT_Tactical wrote:

I'm not a fan of bushnell at all. 

what?? why?? the 4200 elite is one of my faves. wish i had a couple more 3x9's.
 
Just dealing with them if an issue comes up.  Its near impossible. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 10:20
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Thats not always true Graham, I have used their CS twice and have very positive experiences.  We mostly just hear about the bad ones I think.

Have you had personal bad experience with them?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 10:30
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Originally posted by supertool73 supertool73 wrote:

Thats not always true Graham, I have used their CS twice and have very positive experiences. 


ST,

Can you post your positive CS details?

They have some cool products coming out I would be interested in, if their CS has improved.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 10:39
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Originally posted by supertool73 supertool73 wrote:

Thats not always true Graham, I have used their CS twice and have very positive experiences.  We mostly just hear about the bad ones I think.

Have you had personal bad experience with them?
yes,  First time was with a bushnell scope, called, put on hold almost 30 minutes, finally got someone, they said send it back, told me a RA # and what address and said they dont' send call tags, so out of my pocket I paid to ship it back.  Then after about 4 weeks after I had delivery confimation they had it and still no word I called them, they had looked at it and would not be able to repair it nor replace it because they said it was user damange.  They did offer me a 50% off coupon to use to purchase any new item from their brand at their MSRP..... I asked that my scope be returned to me, I've yet to see it and multiple calls have resulted in nothing more than being put on hold for over an hour at times.  This was about 2 years ago.  I quit after the last person I talked to said it was a lost cause trying to locate my scope.
 
Next time was when I purchased some BC covers, 2 sets, they arrived and the first time I used them one broke, I put it back in the package and set it aside to call later, a few weeks go by and another broke, I called them again cause they cover BC now, i was told that to get them warrantied I'd have to pay to ship the broke ones back and pay shipping to get the new onesLoco more than just buying 2 new ones from SWFA with shipping would have been...... i vowed then i was done with Bushnell.
 
I don't doubt they make decent scopes,  the first 10X 3200 i had was great, but if you have a problem a company ought to stand behind their product better than that.


Edited by SVT_Tactical - December/30/2011 at 10:41
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 10:49
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I had a Legend and 4200 go down.  Both of these have been several years ago.  And not at the same time.  I called them up told them the problem.  Was told to box them up and ship them back with an explanation of the problems.  They both got real fuzzy at the higher mags.

About a month after I sent them I got them back repaired with a note explaining what was wrong and what they fixed.  In both cases parallax came out of adjustments somehow. 

I did have to pay for shipping both ways, that was my only gripe.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 19:17
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The firefly reticle I like a lot because it's really a great heavy duplex that tapers down.I think Bushnell used to call the non firefly versiona 3-2-1. I rarely have ever even illuminated mine and when I have it's only been a quick flash and not a full flashlight beam. A full flashlight beam will over illuminate it and you can't see crap until it dies down(in real low light situations). I shot a doe tonight with mine at last light with it not illuminated and it's right up there with some of the best stuff I have used !
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 21:13
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I'm also not a fan of Bushnell at all. Every Bushnell product I've had has left me disappointed in some way. That combined with their lousy customer service turns me away. This is what keeps me from recommending their scopes more. Their 4200 series has great glass and there is no question to that, but they don't seem to track well, and their customer service they are famous for (that's not a good thing btw), keep me from recommending or using them. I've since sold off all of my Bushnell scopes that I've had. That said, they have been good to me recently with the BC flip up's, but they just keep on breaking.


As for a $250 scope vs. a $500 scope, it really depends on what you are doing. If it's a scope that you plan to sight in and never touch again, I don't see any reason that you need to pay more than $250 for a hunting scope of that nature. You could go with a Burris FFII and have glass that's good enough to get you well past legal hunting hours, as well as a reliable scope. Same thing with many others in this price range, including the Elite 3200 and 4200's, the Monarchs, etc. The FFII is my favorite in this price range though. Although I will admit there are some in this price range with pretty lousy glass, reliability, and everything else. So you have to base it more on the particular scope than just the price. Then you can step up to the Zeiss Conquest that is $400 that has slightly better glass, and by slightly better, I mean very slightly. However, you already could hunt until the end of legal hunting hours. You also get better turrets, but if you aren't cranking on them repeatedly this doesn't matter much. So from this aspect, I don't see much need to spend the extra, because while you do get slight improvements they are very slight, and you don't really need them.


However, if you plan on shooting long range this is where the big difference is. If you are cranking on the turrets you want them to track perfectly and be repeatable. This is where many of the more expensive scopes shine. Many of the more expensive scopes have not only better turrets, but more features like a reticle matched to the turrets, some are FFP. Glass wise until you get into the $1000+ range, I still don't think you get much more over a couple of the good $250 scopes, but you certainly get more features.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2011 at 22:38
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My experience with Bushnell CS has been excellent to say the least. I think we only hear about the problems and not the majority of good resolutions. And I think there are probably times when every scope manufacture did not resolve an issue to the customers satisfaction. I can remember working in retail and a customer had an issue. We could have given them all their money back, a new one at no charge and shot the manager and they still would have been unhappy with us.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/31/2011 at 00:02
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Yea, you have to commit seppuku in front of them, as well.  THEN, they'll be happy...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/01/2012 at 22:16
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Not being able to adjust the brightness of the Firefly down, once charged, is a serious problem IMO. On the other hand, the reticles are fairly heavy and good in low light when not charged.
The higher end scopes aren't just about low light performance. The better lenses have better contrast and resolution balance. This allows you to see a lot more detail when getting ready for the shot. I have been hunting with Zeiss binoculars for almost thirty years. Many times I would glass game across marshes that were on the edge of cover. I had no problem viewing them with my binoculars. When I would bring my gun up, all of the branches that could have wounded an animal were gone. Better glass helps when picking an animal out of a group, also. For these reasons I have been upgrading.
I have used Bushnell CS for binocular repair with no problems.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/06/2012 at 12:14
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I love the 4200 but am not a Firefly fan.  I have found that when fully charged it can be way too bright and obscure vision.  Go with a 50 mm w/o Firefly reticle and you won't be disappointed.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/06/2012 at 12:22
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In the 250 - 500 dollar price range, Weaver Grand Slam and Sightron SII scopes shouldn't be overlooked.  I also have two Weaver SuperSlams that I caught on sale and am ecstatic with them.  They are 2 - 10 w/ 50 mm objectives.  One has a standard duplex reticle and the other the etched EBX.   If you can find one of them on sale don't be afraid to buy it.  Their normal price is outside this price range, but the GrandSlam is right there. My 3.5 - 10 w50 mm objective is clear, bright, tracks wonderfully, and has good (not great) eye relief.  Same for my Sightrons.  Hope this helps.
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