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Glass in Weaver T-series vs High-end

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/16/2011 at 17:28
kds857 View Drop Down
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Hello folks, long time reader, first time poster.
** I've already used the search function and didn't quite find the answer I was looking for.

For this question, please keep in mind that I only do target shooting off the bench, and only at 100 yards for now.

For those with high-end high-magnification scopes I'd appreciate some insight regarding the following:

I traded my Vortex Viper 6.5-20x50 for a Weaver T36 for shooting paper at 100 yards.  I know you don't really need 36X for 100 yards, but since I do only target shooting, I like to see up close.  While 20X on the Viper was very bright and clear to my eyes, my view of the target still seemed "far" to me when trying to print little groups on paper- thus, my trade for a well-regarded 36x scope.

Most forums seem to agree that the Weaver T-series is one of the best high magnification scopes out there for the money, and that the glass is pretty good considering the price (plus, all made in Japan, at least my model).  

I knew that the Weaver would have a darker sight picture due to higher magnification and smaller objective lens than the Viper  (36x40 vs 20x44)... but it was LOT darker than Viper was at 20x-- like night and day, and the contrast seemed a LOT worse also (to my eyes at least).  Sorry for the lack of scientific terms, but the image was much hazier/foggier and less contrasty or punchy if that makes any sense.  

Basically my question for those that have compared the T36 to something like a high-magnification Sightron SIII 10-50, Nightforce BR, March, Schmidt & Bender etc., is the image brightness and contrast WAY better than the T36?  Can a March scope at 40 or 50x magnification be as "crisp" and bright as a Viper at 20x? or is that physically impossible no matter the quality of the glass, etc.

***I've read all of Mr. Koshkin's high-end comparisons, but I'm really looking for 30X and above, so I'm posting my question here. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/16/2011 at 17:37
supertool73 View Drop Down
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Even really good glass is going to be quite dark when the exit pupil gets that small.  With your Weaver you are looking a 1.1 mm of exit pupil, not much light can reach your eye through that little band.  YOu cut he exit pupil in more than half with the change you went to.  So it is definitely to be expected. 

Take a spotting scope for example.  I have both a Meopta and a Vortex Razor.  Both of them have very good glass quality, but when I hit 50 to 60x the image quality really goes down hill quick.  It is still usable, but just not like it is on 45x and below.  

I think Sightron S2 Big Sky glass is better than Viper glass.  So this may be one for you to try if you want to stay with the 36x scope.  http://swfa.com/Sightron-36x42-SII-Big-Sky-Riflescope-P9178.aspx

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/16/2011 at 18:03
kds857 View Drop Down
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Thank you for your suggestion!  I think I may have come across a posting for T36 vs. SII 36x before... but if the image is only going to be very very slightly better, I am not sure I want to change scopes.  I would rather pay an extra 1k or 1500 and get a super scope IF the image is that much better.  But from your Razor and Meopta observations, it seems like once you get to magnifications where the exit pupil is that small, the image will suck pretty bad even with higher-end glass.  

I will probably just stick with the T36 and accept that this is one of the better views I will get with 36x, or I may even go back down to a 20x Conquest or old school super sniper and get a brighter, crisper view and sacrifice the "up close" looks...

Last question- will 20x super sniper be crisper, brighter and more contrasty than Viper on 20x because it is single magnification with less lenses for light to pass through??  or will it be virtually the same image quality??  I also recall Mr. Koshkin or someone saying that the 16x SS has better glass, which means I'll see more detail in 16x than the 20x SS?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/16/2011 at 21:02
Bitterroot Bulls View Drop Down
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I think you will see more detail with the 20xss vs. the 16x, as long as the light holds up.

The best glass in a high magnification target scope I have seen was in a Nightforce BR 56mm scope, I don't remember the magnification.  It had impressive, spotting scope-like performance. 

I think a big objective would be pretty helpful at that kind of magnification.


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/16/2011 at 22:49
supertool73 View Drop Down
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It is not that the 16x has better glass, it is just that it has less magnification so more light travels through the scope to your eye. 

To have a nice bright image, the exit pupil needs to be as large as the pupil in your eye.  During the day a persons pupil will probably be right around 3 to 4mm.  So having a scope that is only putting a 1mm band of light to your eye is going to look very dark and eye placement will be very picky. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/17/2011 at 15:52
Poodleshooter1 View Drop Down
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Brightness is almost all exit pupil.
Contrast and resolution can be improved, aberrations eliminated, etc with better glass, but you can't force more light through that tiny exit pupil and make tiny objectives with high magnification any brighter.

A lot of local benchresters around here use Weaver T series and the Leupold fixed 36x target models. I suppose that fewer lenses of decent quality are quite sufficient for what they need. A variable just requires more lenses to have more expensive glass and more expensive coatings, and provides more opportunity for some part to screw up and more surfaces to reflect light away from your eye. All of those fixed 36x scopes are a bit dim, but then again, most of the shooting is done in bright, optimal light. They're also usually pretty clean sight pictures due to being fixed power scopes.

If brightness is a dealbreaker for you, I think you'd have to step up to one of those monster Zeiss Diavari 6-24x 72mm scopes, provided the lower magnification is acceptable.



Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/17/2011 at 16:23
koshkin View Drop Down
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To the original poster:

Apparent brightness depends on the exit pupil AND on the image quality.  It is not a matter of one or the other.  You need both.

If you need high magnification, then you should be looking at scope with fairly large objective lenses.

In the sub-$1k price range Sightron S3 8-32x56 and 10-50x60 are pretty much the only game in town.

I suspect either one of these will be a considerable improvement over your Weaver.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/17/2011 at 17:20
kds857 View Drop Down
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Thank you!  Exactly what I needed to hear.  Since the Diavari is a little over budget, I will look into purchasing the SIII... Once in a while I get lucky and also see some Nightforce BR older models go for right under 1k ...  Thanks guys- now my trips to Angeles range should be more fun.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/17/2011 at 17:28
koshkin View Drop Down
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Originally posted by kds857 kds857 wrote:

Thank you!  Exactly what I needed to hear.  Since the Diavari is a little over budget, I will look into purchasing the SIII... Once in a while I get lucky and also see some Nightforce BR older models go for right under 1k ...  Thanks guys- now my trips to Angeles range should be more fun.

When do you generally go to Angeles?

I will be there this coming Wednesday evening doing some tests.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/17/2011 at 18:25
kds857 View Drop Down
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Geez, totally wish I can go and check our your tests and (i'm sure) great gear... but work and a little one only allow me to visit on the weekends, if that!  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/17/2011 at 18:33
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Originally posted by kds857 kds857 wrote:

Geez, totally wish I can go and check our your tests and (i'm sure) great gear... but work and a little one only allow me to visit on the weekends, if that!  

I am out of town the next couple of weekends, but otherwise  I am usually there a couple of weekends per month along with Wednesday nights.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/17/2011 at 18:37
kds857 View Drop Down
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great!  would love to drop by and say hi one day.. I usually go either sat or sun mornings first thing.  I assume you're over there on the left side where the guys with the 50 BMGs are at.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/25/2011 at 21:24
kds857 View Drop Down
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Thanks Ilya- I followed your advice and purchased the SIII 10-50x60 with the mil/mil.  Should come sometime this week, so looking forward to seeing if there is any difference (at roughly the same magnification) between it and my Weaver T36 in terms of clarity and resolution.  There seems to be a little discussion about this exact Sightron on the Target Scope section, so it will be interesting to see if my eyes perceive the same thing as others...  I wish I knew enough about the science behind optics to write some sort of review but I don't know jack about any of the terminology... Cheers-
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