I recently purchased a new Minox ZA5 1.5-8x32 with Versa-Plex reticle. I've mounted it on a rifle but not yet fired it at all. To my surprise, I'm seeing strange blurriness symptoms:
When looking at distant sign on 8x, I cannot get the letters on the sign into focus. The focus also sometimes seems to shift when I cycle the zoom setting from from 8x to 1.5x and back; several times I got the letters as sharp as I could by adjusting the eyepiece focus, but then when I moved the magnifaction ring back and forth, the image was now way out of focus, completely blurry. Every once in a while, I'd seemingly get the sign into better focus and be able to actually read the letters, but then I'd lose it. Also, the image near the center of the reticle is almost always blurry but sometimes the image near the lower right corner of the reticle, just outside the Versa-Plex ring, was clearer, with the sign's letters in focus and readable, but only in that part of the lens.
At first I thought there was something wrong with my eyes or glasses, but then I got out two comparison scopes, a Vortex Viper 2-7x32 with Versa-Plex C3 reticle, and a Weaver 2.5-7x28 Classic Rimfire. Both were clearly superior in sharpness and legibility to my Minox, and didn't give me those weird "are my eyes playing tricks on me?" effects. Looking through the three scopes at the same sign, the Vortex Viper was the clearest, but I could still read the sign adequately with cheap $142 Weaver scope on 7x, which I generally could not do with the Minox on 8x.
That doesn't seem right. Any specific ideas what might be going on here? My only guesses are that the scope is defective in some way, or its range of eyepiece focus isn't enough for my eyes, causing my eyes to strain to focus the blury image (I am 36 years old) and thus making it seem to drift in and out of focus. I'm not sure how to distinguish between those two possibilities, but I don't have that problem with any of my other scopes though so I'm guessing the Minox is broken somehow. Is anyone here familiar with these sorts of symptoms in either Minox or other scopes? I don't see any way it could be user error on my part, but I'm definitely a novice when it comes to evaluating scopes.
Their website says that Minox repair in North America is handled in Meriden, NH, so I plan to contact them soon for warranty repair.