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2.5-10 x50mm verse 3-9 x40mm

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 09:12
Kobey View Drop Down
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Hi all,

So let me start of by saying I have read a lot about scopes but have never used one (only iron sights), and I think I have at least a beginners grasp of everything but was looking to sort of verify what I think I've got figured out.

Previously I've only shot a Ruger American 22lr bolt and have I guess you could say upgraded to a Ruger American .308.  And that is the rifle I am looking to put a scope on with a typical shooting range of 100-200 yards (though I could see myself trying to throw some rounds at paper / plates at 300-400 yards if I can).

Now everyone pretty much says 3-9 x40mm is the way to go and that could be 100% true but like I said I just wanted to confirm things and this seems to be the place to do just that.

Because I'm not at all used to scopes, and because I actually end up doing a decent amount of plinking in low(er) light, I was thinking a wider lens with a lower X might suit me better which is why I started looking for information on the 2.5-10 x50mm.

Also I had been trying to keep $$$ out of the comparison but really at the end of the day money is a legitimate factor in that (hypothetically) if I decide on a 2.5-10 x50mm for say $300 where does a equally priced 3-9 x40mm end up for quality?

Guess the flip side is equally valid in that if I can get a decent 3-9x40mm for $150 where does that leave me in a equally priced 2.5-10 x50mm and what would be the better value for the intended use?



Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 09:22
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Welcome to Optics Talk.

As simple as the question seems, the answer gets really convoluted.  I will say (and have, often) that better glass always beat more magnification.  In the stated price range, I can't be much help with specific brands/models, but I recommend you get the best glass you can afford.  There are many (MANY!) bad choices in that price range and only a very few good ones.

Assuming equal glass quality in both, the 50mm objective will be appreciably brighter in low light. On a range in full sun, same glass quality, you'll see no real difference.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 11:00
Kobey View Drop Down
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lol...ya I kinda figured that was going to be the case which is why I could not find a clear cut answer anywhere.

But the fact that the 50mm (or more generally, larger optics) will be noticeably better in low light is great to know.  Hard to tell from marketing numbers what the real difference would be never mind when they start talking about 40mm vs. 42mm vs. 50mm.

Too bad I cannot ask the store to lend me one each for a week to see for myself ;)

I've been looking at the Nikon Scopes and arbitrarily picking an exit dia. of 4mm or greater just because I needed to start narrowing things down with an arguably direct comparison and I came up with this list (prices are simply from Nikons site for comparison): 

 

MinMaxMMExit Dia.CostModel
27324.57$150 Prostaff
39404.44$175 Prostaff
39505.56$220 Prostaff
2.510404.00$230 Prostaff 5
28324.00$300 Monarch 3
2.510424.20$300 Prostaff 7
2.510505.00$350 Prostaff 7


I had hoped said chart was going to help and it did...my personal sweet spots seems to be the $225 range.  But its really come back to the better glass and coatings of a 40mm compared to the low(er) light gain of a 50mm.

And that begs the question of should I really be trying to extend my shooting in low light or taking better advantage of a wider variable range and optics? 

This is where I have no practical experience :(

Having said all that I think I'm going to go with a 2.5-10 x40mm and better glass which will be of more value in longer shots with better light.

...or I could over think it some more by asking...what magnification works best for 300+ yards?...


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 11:32
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"Low light" and "long range" don't go together, unless night vision is involved.  Set the rifle up for the shot that will be most often encountered or is most important to you.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 11:38
Kobey View Drop Down
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Ah sorry...no they do not.  I meant "extend" as in the amount of time I spent out opposed to the distance I was shooting at.


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 15:43
Kobey View Drop Down
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So I've spent another day humming and hawing about this and thought I was ready to jump in...but things were still nagging at me...

...and then...

I discovered the "Spot-On" section on Nikons site along with a 4.5-18 x40 Prostaff 5 (BCD) and my head sort of imploded...

And now I'm sitting here thinking I should start all over lol.

I mean with a .308 the min. I will be shooting is closer to 100-yards than not...and if / when I do try some 300-400 yard plates x16 with BCD would be a better lineup then x9 assuming I can hold the thing steady...but that's a me issue ;)

Guess what I'm starting to wonder is if I should pony up for a better scope to match what the rifle can do?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 16:21
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Best start scanning the SampleList here for better optics at great prices. There are many other than Nikon.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 16:27
Kobey View Drop Down
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No doubt...I was just trying to wrap my head around what specs I wanted before anything else and thats where I started to compare stuff.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 18:44
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first off, what are your parameters for this rifle?

Just shooting paper? Hunting in thick brush country or almost anywhere in the southeast? Hunting in open country where 400 yard shots are not uncommon? Humping it over hill and dale. All these factors come into play in one way or the other. Try to define what your primary task will be for said rifle, then secondary. Then set the parameters for the scope.  Those questions will direct you to what scope you want.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 18:51
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Here is in my opinion the best deal on the sample list for hunting here in the south. Just my opinion.

http://www.samplelist.com/Zeiss-2-10x42-Conquest-HD5-Rifle-Scope-DEMO-B-P78819.aspx
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 19:45
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I do not hunt (though like to think i could if i had too).

I am paper targets and steel plates in the back woods.

As i mentioned the rifle is a .308 Ruger Anerican and I have never used a scope before.

That link to the Ziess is a great price! Finding it too easy to up that cost since I started out at $250 and now I'm eyeballing $400-600.

Guess I'm worried i end up with an insufficient scope but again 100-200 yards typical. 400 yards would be a realistic max is my range. If i get into further id probably end up with a new setup.

Thanks for all the advice and help guys :)
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/27/2016 at 20:32
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Since you are not hunting I would consider a fixed SS 10x or a 12x. For $300 and a good set of rings.

http://swfa.com/SWFA-SS-10x42-Tactical-30mm-Riflescope-P499.aspx

http://swfa.com/SWFA-SS-12x42-Tactical-Riflescope-P53714.aspx
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/28/2016 at 16:12
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You could do what you want with a 6x. When I do that I usually use 10x. It is plenty for 200 yards. A scope that has good resolution and is easy to work with is more important than high magnification.

Thing with targets vs hunting at those ranges is it is important for the target scope to have good turrets. A hunting scope would need a variable range for field of view and appropriate glass for good low light performance. The turrets in a hunting scope aren't as big a factor because you typically just zero it and don't touch them again.

Spend your money on good adjustments first, good glass second and magnification last.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/28/2016 at 17:54
Kobey View Drop Down
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So some people have and angle on one shoulder and a devil on the other.

Me. I have more like karma and irony and they both love to torment me.

Went into the store today to see about the scope. Figured I had a good idea of what I wanted and a price range.

Talked to a couple guys working there told them my situation and so on.

One guy asked me if i ever shot 150-yards with my .22 and followed up with that was comparable to asking a .308 to travel 350+ yards. Then they got into the bullet ballistics verse rifle and how the scopes i was talking about wont be the weak link.

Long conversation later based on what I had and felt i wanted to do they suggested something i wasn't prepared for...they figured 2-scopes would complement both my rifles and lining up both would feel very similar.   

Nikon P-Rimfire, 2x7 x32 for $140
Nikon Prostaff 5, 4.5x18 x40 for $285

Turned out the one guy was the owner and he offered me BOTH for a combined price of $400+ tax.

...i went in for a $200-ish 2.5-10...
Karma and Irony having their way with me.

...i wanted to grab them and run...but haste makes waste so i balked...

They said they would hold the offer for me for 24-hours. And here I am asking you all. Is that a good deal based on what I'm looking to do?...$400 is double what figured to spend but...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/28/2016 at 18:26
Kobey View Drop Down
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Dang ... I'm actually more excited about the 2-7 for my .22.

Never felt the need or desire but after looking into things and talking with people...

Still not as sure about the 4.5-18. Seems like such a big scope. But everyone says better to get too much than not enough.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/28/2016 at 19:04
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I would look through that rimfire scope at objects as far away as the maximum distance your intend to shoot.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 09:42
Kobey View Drop Down
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So just wanted to follow up and let people know I spent the last couple of weekends with a bunch of awesome people who took me out to try various scopes.  I got to use a Vortex and Nikon and another one I forget in 2-7, 2-8 and a 2.5-10

 It was great and as a result I have to say I very much enjoyed the 2-8x32 scope I got to try.  My fun factor plinking with the .22 stunned me...like it was a whole new rifle. 

I very much enjoyed the 2x min compared to the iron sights and started to think that I could get a scope that I could move between the .22 and .308, but I was told that the "rimfire" versions are not sturdy enough to handle the recoil of larger calibers.  That made sense to me...but then I noticed a lot of the rimfire scopes actually weighted more then the "standard" rifle in the same category...which confused me (I assume it's a glass quality verse build structure type issue).

Also a lot of the "AR" scopes seem to be more of a marketing term near as I can tell and often overlap between rimfire and standard and I don't see any real way of telling things apart aside from the naming conventions.

Having said that I have a related follow up question regarding scopes in general I was hoping you could help me understand.

What is the difference between a "rimfire", "AR" or for lack of a better term "standard" rifle scope?





Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 09:48
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Rimfire scope typically have the parallax set to 50 yards where a standard scope may be 100 yards or have an adjustment to change the parallax.

I believe in most cases the erector assembly is designed stronger to deal with the heavier recoil. 

I have used standard rifle scopes on my rimfires my whole life.  They have never caused me a bit of grief as far as parallax is concerned.  I have shot many many pot guts and rabbits.

I have a 4x leupold VX2 and a 2-7 vortex viper on two of my ruger .22s now and they are excellent for them.  ANd if I ever need to move them to larger caliber rifle they will hold up just fine.  


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 09:58
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Thanks :)

That's sort of what I figured...I should just spend the extra bit and get a standard scope.

There is a 2-7x33 Leupold on the samplelist for $200 that I think is going to be just the ticket for me ;)

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 10:39
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There's a Vortex Diamondback 2-8x with side focus. The adjustable parallax from near to far would cover all your bases for rimfire plinking. Having parallax is nice when you're shooting up close, but it's more of hindrance when shooting far than shooting close with a scope pre-set at 100 yards or so.

There's no definite rule about how sturdy scopes are when intended for rimfire vs centerfire. A scope meant for light recoiling rimfire/airgun use will be more stoutly built than the average centerfire hunting scope.

I have a Ruger American in .308. It's a light, trim rifle. A heavy 50mm scope would be too much on that gun. I'd go for 40mm or less and light. To me 40mm objectives top out at 10x magnification in broad daylight. So, 3-9x40 is about right. If you're talking 400 yard steel, 9x is plenty if the glass is good. I was doing that yesterday with a Weaver Super Slam 2-10x40. It worked great.





Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 10:48
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I own that Diamondback 2-8x.  It is a dandy little scope, it is on my wifes .243.  That woudl be a great choice for rimfire IMO if you want the adjustable parallax
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 10:50
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Originally posted by urbaneruralite urbaneruralite wrote:



There's no definite rule about how sturdy scopes are when intended for rimfire vs centerfire. A scope meant for light recoiling rimfire/airgun use will be more stoutly built than the average centerfire hunting scope.



A airgun has a different type of recoil, the spring guns have a sharp forward impulse so it can mess up scopes that are designed for rearward recoil.

With semi autos you get both a forward and rearward impulse because of the bolt running.   
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 11:19
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As usual thanks everyone for the advice, insight and info!

I had read that about airguns just never thought about ARs being the same sort of movement but makes sense now.
 
And that Vortex looks very, very nice and with adjustable parallax seems like I could realistically use it for both until I decide on scope for the .308 at a later date.
 
Thanks again for everything everyone...lol...now to go deal hunting ;)
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 11:48
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That Vortex Diamondback 2-8 HP is pretty hard to beat for an all around scope. I have a couple of them.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2016 at 12:50
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I have a Vortex Diamondback HP 2-8x32 and like it a lot.  Adjustable parallax makes it very easy to use on anything from airgun to centerfire rifles.  It does have very long eye relief which makes mounting on some airgun rifles a little difficult.

To address an earlier question from this thread: for general plinking within a couple of hudnred yeards, i thin there is very little to differentiate 2.5-10x50 from a 3-9x42.  In very low light, you can use slightly higher magnification with a 50mm objective, but that is largely it.

Also, while I like man of Leupold's products, I am not a huge fan of their lower end lines (Rifleman, VX-1, etc).  I think Leupold starts getting decent by the time you get to VX-2.

If I were looking for a budget scopes for a 308 boltgun intended primarily for informal plinking, I would be looking at the following:

Vortex Diamondback HP 3-12x42 or 2-8x32 if you plan to move it from rifle to rifle (side focus is a good thing for closer ranges).

Vortex Viper 3-9x40 if you would rather not mess with side focus

Vortex Diamondback 2-7x35 or 3-9x40 if you want to stay in the under $300 range

Burris Fullfield II 2-7x35 and 3-9x40 perform very similarly to Vortex Diamondback and cost more or less the same.

Lastly, Sightron's S1 and S2 lines I worth looking at.

Ultimately, make sure you look at the reticle carefully.  With most hunting scopes these days, the reticles are made too thin, so as the light gets low, you may still see your target well enough but the reticle might not be visible any more.

From that standpoint, Sightron's HHR reticle in S1 and S2 3-9x scopes is a little bolder than those by Vortex and Burris.

ILya
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