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is 30x enough?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2009 at 10:37
torowy View Drop Down
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Hi everyone,
 
I'm looking to get a new spotting scope for hunting. I am leaning toward the leupold gold ring compact 15-30
 
I don't think anything over 45x will be of much use to me, because I won't be able to steady it. But is 30x enough?
 
I hunt in utah at high elevation. Probably most of my glassing will be within 2 miles.
 
what do you think?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2009 at 16:35
JGRaider View Drop Down
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If you're sold on Leupold I'd get the 15-45x60 spotter before that one, IMO.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2009 at 17:19
silver View Drop Down
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Why do you have to have a Leupold?  Have you looked through one of the better Nikons, Pentaxs or Bushnells?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2009 at 17:47
torowy View Drop Down
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I can't afford the full size gold ring, and I don't like the sequoias.

Silver, I am not a fan of any of those brand. I have owned pentax and bushnell, I don't like thier glass. Also I want a compact scope for packing into the backcountry.

All I want to know is if people think 30x is enough magnification for a hunting scope.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2009 at 17:58
supertool73 View Drop Down
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Hey Torowy.  I live in Utah as well.  I have a Meopta that is 20-60.  90% of the time it on 35x or below.  I will use the zoom when I find an animal and really want to zoom up, but exit pupil and shake start getting bad on the higher powers.  I hardly ever us it over 45x. 
I think for the most part I could get a long with a 30x high end.  I do like being able to turn it down to 20x though, sure makes searching a lot easier.  Course the binos do that much better anyway.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2009 at 18:00
RifleDude View Drop Down
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Probably because the Leupy 15-30X50 Gold Ring is so compact and easy to pack, perfect for high altitude hunting, where you want to save every ounce and extra bulk you can from your equipment.  I think 30X is enough magnification for the majority of hunting situations.  It won't give you the reach or resolution at the highest power of a larger scope.  It won't equal the low light performance of a 60 - 85mm objective scope.  But, it gives you more reach than binoculars and is better than not having a scope at all.  Sometimes having reasonably good optics in a much more compact package trumps the optical superiority and higher magnification of a big scope.  Mountain hunting is one such scenario where you can make a strong case for "less is more."
 
In the compact scope category, I would also take a look at the Nikon Fieldscope 13-30X50 ED.  It has incredible image quality for its size.  It may be the best compact spotter you can buy optically, and I think it is a tad smaller than the Leupold 50.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2009 at 18:04
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 I used a Leupold fixed 20x for many years in the Rockies for deer, elk , sheep, bears, in conjunction with a set of Leupold Porro prism 9x35 binoculars. I really liked it, but there were a few times I really wished for 30x magnification, and a couple of times I really could have used 40X or a bit more. 
 30x is enough for most hunting, but not all of it, in my experience.
 
Of course, a lot depends on whether you need to really judge a trophy, or just want to see an animal a ways off.
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2009 at 19:37
lucznik View Drop Down
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I have the 15-30x50 Leupold.  It is a wonderful scope. 
 
Rifledude is correct that the Nikon ED50 is (slightly) optically better.  However, you will pay a pretty steep premium for that little bit of difference.  It's not worth it in my book.  The Nikon is also a little lighter (due to its all-plastic body) and maybe just a smidge smaller dimensionally - though that one I'm not sure about.  The plastic body, I'm quite sure, will mean that it will be less rugged of a scope.
 
I am very pleased with this scope as a hunting tool.  It has more than earned its place in my backpack.  I have used it before and after legal shooting light and in all kinds of weather and it has been an awesome performer. On rare occasion I have thought it would be nice to have just a smidge more magnification but; such occasions have been few and far between and I would not have been willing to pack a bigger/heavier scope to have that benefit. 
 
Even with my big 80 mm scope I use magnifications of 30x or less the vast majority of the time.  30x is definitely "enough" for most hunting.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/16/2009 at 10:03
torowy View Drop Down
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Thanks for the input everyone sounds like most people think 30x will be plenty most of the time.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/29/2009 at 09:33
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A 30x WW (wide angle) eyepiece on a 60/65mm spottings scope will give the best optical performance in this size spotting scope.  My MINOX 62 with the 30x eyepiece is fantastic! NV Hunter
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/20/2010 at 09:07
Azure1961p View Drop Down
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Is thirty power enough?

I think a better way to phrase your question is - can more be seen with 50x?  So long as you have a mount for it, the extra magnification shouldn't be an issue.  All in all, 30x is a little light if the scope can go better than that, and the scope you mention should be able to handle it.
It's not something you'd use all the time.  Sunny days and at noonish - nah...the ground is so warm the image is a flutter with turbulent air cells that just boil away the finer details.  Still, on cloudy days where its cool too, it could help noticably.  If you are observing across a lake or just general open water, the detail can be phenomenal.

In any good scope - thirty is good, but its a little light for those times when the air is steadier.

Pete
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