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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 19:20
mil169 View Drop Down
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Hi, all- new here and searched alot before deciding to post. So here goes.
 
I ordered a new rifle, a Winchester Model 70 in 7mm Rem Mag. But I need a scope, and have thought about it long enough that I don't know what I want and the search has ceased to be fun.
While at the end of the day it will be primarily a hunting rifle, I would like to dabble in shooting out to 500 yrds or so. Maybe longer if I can get the hang of the longer shots. I've thought about so many scopes I don't remember what they all were, and have gotten advice that covers the gammot.
 
So my question is, to all of you way more knowledgible, what is the best value for this task in the $300 to $500 range. Do I need a mil-dot, or just a BDC, or should I stay with the Duplex. My local dealer carries Sightron almost exclusivsley, and have been told about the Ziess Conquest, Minox ZA5, Lieca, Kahles, which all seem to be great, but out of my cap. I've almost settled on the Vortex Viper HS in the 4-16x44 BDC, but read some people like the 50 better, and others have had issues with the rubber by the magnification ring, others have said the crosshairs are too light. I don't have anywhere to look at one of these before ordering. PERPLEXING!!
 
So what do I need for zoom, parallax adjustment (and how do I set this for hunting), and what size of objective do I need. Is a 40 adequate, or do I find a 42,44, or 50?
 
HELP PLEASE and thank you.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 19:25
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Alright  forgot this. I found a Minox ZA5 4-20x50 with a BDC reticle on the sample list for $599.95. This is my absoulute limit.
 
Thanks again.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 20:20
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Im personally not a fan of BDCs in non dedicated systems (IE=ACOG and 62grain ammo) as being on the wrong power and snapping a quick hold for that shot at a 6 point bull and missing can really ruin your day.  With that said, if you become proficent with the system its very effective.  This does require a decent amount of range time to gather data and build a good drop chart for the different scope powers. 
-
Optics offerings in the past 5 years have come a long way and about any configuration is available.  First thing I would do is narrow down the features you want.  Then put them in order of most important to least important ... include your rings and rail in the budget ... then go shopping
 
 
Things to consider ...
 
FFP or SFP
Exposed target style or capped hunting style
MOA or MIL
Illum or No Illum
Weight
BDC / Duplex / MOA / Mil reticles
Side Focus / Adjustable Objective / Fixed Parallax
Zero Stops
 
500 yards isn't something that will require a 6-24x56 monster so you can get more bang for your buck in the 3-9x42 working fine, up to 3-15x50 range on the top end.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 20:26
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If your dealer has sightrons then look at the s2 series and check them out in person to see what reticle you like. Lots of options to look at. They have a good reputation for repeatable adjustments if you end up doing a little longer range shooting and go with a plex style reticle.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 21:16
mil169 View Drop Down
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I should have mentioned this earlier, but the post looks more like a book. I have a SII 3-9x42 in a duplex on a muzzle loader, and it has worked well. I do like the scope, but don't have anything to compare it to, other than an SI 3-9x40 which is not a very expensive scope.
 
I do like the looks of a Minox ZA5 3-15x42 or maybe the 3-15x50. Any body have any experience with them or know the history?
 
thanks
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 21:17
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I would suggest a 3-9x40 3-9x50 3,5-10x50 4-12x40 4,5-14x44 4,5-14x50 4-16x44 or 4-16x50 max, i have come to find out that you do not need extreme magnification for the 500 yd range. Getting a high magnification scope IE 20x, 24x,32x of lower quality can do more harm than good, especially hunting harder target aquisition and low light situations. The reticle is gonna be a personal preference, i have never used, nor do i know how to use a mil dot, so i cannot say anything about them altho i would love  to learn how to use them, I have a standard plex on my current rifle and have had ballistic plex reticle too, altho my error using the ballistic plex cost me the deer of a life time, used the wrong hash markCencored. Every one is different but the more familiar you become with your optics the better you will be able to use them. Which ever one you choose to get, you will just need time behind it. If you get the ballistic plex practice at every range. Find out where your gun is hitting at 200-500yds as most likely your gun will not hit exactly where the hash marks are. I would recommend staying away from the nikon bdc as it has circles for the hash marks and can make the longer distance aiming difficult. or atleast the ones i have used were. Hope that helps....
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 23:07
mil169 View Drop Down
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Last thing, do I really need an adjustable parallax? Like I said before, this is going to be primarily a hunting rifle with a little longer range practice use as well. Is the SF hard to keep set so it is clear at a variety of ranges?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 23:11
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If 500 to 600 yards is max range ... a fixed parallax scope will work fine. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 23:20
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I agree.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/29/2012 at 23:25
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thanks guys, anyone have an experience with a Minox ZA5 3-15x42 then? I am a believer in the KISS system.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2012 at 20:42
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If KISS stands for Keep it Super Sucky, then yeah.

I would stay away from Minox. The glass is okay, above average even, but IMO the rest of the scope is of very questionable quality and not that well designed. The eye relief is absurdly long.

I started out with a 3-15x42mm. It never seemed quite right. The ocular eventually came loose. Okay, some teething problems on a new scope line. Hopefully all my noted shortcomings were due to the loose ocular. The optics seemed decent, I just couldn't get it to focus at longer ranges.

Minox CS was just fine, got my scope fixed at no cost to me. When working "correctly", it was still a dog of a scope IMO. I couldn't get it to focus on targets at long ranges. The parralax past a couple hundred yards is just too much (like a foot worth of cross hair movement at 300 yards). The eye relief is way way too long.

So I called Minox, and for $100 they let me upgrade to a 4-20x50mm SF. I figured the 3-15x42's problem were mostly due to the lack of a sidefocus. Wrong. The european style focus was very lose. Unfortunately, the cross hair moves when that rear focus piece moves. The adjustments were not positive, plasticy even, and occaisonally it would skip some clicks. The side focus adjustment was not graduated even remotely close and had excessive slop in it. The only redeeming quality of this scope was that optically it did seem to equal the Zeiss Conquest.

The whole time I was comparing them side by side with my trusty Zeiss Conquests. The Conquest is far and away a better scope. This really drove home the eye relief thing. Even though the Minox had a bigger obj and more magnification, the Conquest always seemed  to have a larger brighter image that was easier to get behind. 3.5" of eye relief versus 6". Yes the eye relief is really that long. The eye relief on the Conquest is about perfect IMO.

Did I mention they have way way too much eye relief. So much so, that it detracts from the image quality.

I just picked up a Sightron SIII. Fantastic scope. Adjusmtents are rock solid. The fast focus eye piece has almost no play it. The side focus is tight.  If you can fit an SIII in your budget, do it. A Zeiss Conquest 4.5-14x44 SF would also be a good bet.

For hungting (deer I assume), a 4-16ish scope is the best crossover between hunting and target shooting.

I've been happy with all my Vx3s, Conquests, Sightron SIII, Weavers/Nitrex, etc. etc. The Minox ZA5 experience has left a bad taste in my mouth.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2012 at 20:52
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SWFA SS 3-9x42 Tactical 30mm Riflescope SWFA SS 3-9x42 Tactical 30mm Riflescope
Stock # - SS39X42MQ
  • Matte
  • Patented First Focal Plane Mil-Quad Reticle
  • 30mm
  • OK for .50 cal
  • 0.1 MRAD
$599.95 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2012 at 20:54
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Zeiss 3-9x40 Conquest Rifle Scope Rapid Z 600 Zeiss 3-9x40 Conquest Rifle Scope
Stock # - ZEI5214609971
  • Matte
  • Rapid Z 600
  • 1"
  • Etched Glass
  • 2nd Plane
  • Mail-In $50 Rebate
$569.95 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2012 at 20:56
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Leupold 3-9x50 VX-R 30mm Riflescope Leupold 3-9x50 VX-R 30mm Riflescope
Stock # - LEU112195
  • Matte
  • FireDot Duplex
  • 30mm
  • Custom Dial System
  • 1-Button Illumination
  • Vibration Sensor
  • Index Matched Lens Coatings
  • Lead-Free Edge-Blackened Lenses
  • Includes FREE Lens Pen & Alumina Threaded Lens Covers
$599.95 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2012 at 20:58
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Vortex 4-16x50 Viper HS 30mm Rifle Scope Vortex 4-16x50 Viper HS 30mm Rifle Scope
Stock # - VORVHS4307LR
  • Matte
  • Dead-Hold BDC
  • 30mm
  • Long Range
  • Waterproof
  • Fogproof
  • Shockproof
$599.95 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2012 at 21:14
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I listed four scopes that are all very solid choices and would all work well for you. Three of the scopes require that you dial in correction to shoot long range known distance targets. The Zeiss is the only one with a Balistic Reticle.  Using the Zeiss with balistic reticle you use the calculator program on the Zeiss web site to try to determine what power to have the scope on so that the marks most accurately represent the desired distance.  I had one in a 4.5-14x44 that I had to set on 10x for a 300 WSM. Since the Zeiss is a second focal plane scope the balistic reticle lines relpresent a different distance at each different power setting so long as one understands this it is a workable system.  The center X is always zeroed at either 100 or 200 yds and that is true at any power but the field of fiew changes as you change the power and in similar manner what the lines of the reticle represent change.
The Leupold has the "CDS" custom dial system you tell Leupold what rifle caliber and bullet and your elevation and temp etc and they engrave numbers on the top knob. 1 for 100 yds  2 for 200 yds 3 for 300 yds etc  This is idiot proof but is really what is going on with tactical / target knobs like the elevation knob of the Vortex HS LR and the SS scope.  The SS is the only one of the scopes that is FFP First Focal Plane which means that one can run a balistic chart http://www.jbmballistics.com/cgi-bin/jbmtraj_drift-5.1.cgi
with the bullet drop in MIL and since the scope is in MIL and the adjustments - clicks are 1/10 MIL per click one can use the mil marks on the reticle for known hold over AT ANY POWER or one can dial in correction using the tactical knobs or have blank knobs custom engraved 1 for 100 2 for 200 yds 3 for 300 yds etc.  http://www.kentonindustries.com/pics/ttctypes/ So pick one of these scopes and you should be able to be quite deadly out to at least 500 or 600 yds providing you do your part and use a solid rest and squeeze the trigger gently.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2012 at 18:21
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Thanks for the info on the Minox, I've found similiar posts on here regarding quality and the solidness of the turrets.
 
I think I've boiled down my choices to these:
 
Sightron SII Big Sky 4.5-14x44 SF Mil Dot - can be had for about$535
Vortex Viper HS 4-16x44 SF dead hold BDC- about $500
 
Was considering the Minox until recent developments. My question with the Vortex was how durable the rubber ring on the eye focus is, some have posted about that ring coming loose and falling off. Any thoughts.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2012 at 18:38
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Oh ya, I really like the Ziess Conquest in the 4.5-14x44 SF, but at nearly $800 it is above the limit. I guess if someone knows the best place to buy one, send me a P.M.
Thanks
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/05/2012 at 16:06
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A few comments:

1) Minox scopes: I have seen quite a few Minox scopes and there are some in my safe.  I have been quite happy with them and they offer a lot for the money.  The only dog in Minox line-up, IMO, is the 3-15x42.  3-15x50, on the other hand is pretty nice and if you are looking for lightweight scopes with a 50mm objective, it should b eon your list.

2) For shooting out to 500yards at targets the size of a big game animal, you really do not need all that much magnification.

3) For trajectory compensation, you can use either the turrets or the reticle.  If you plan to get a scope with a SFP reticle, I strongly suggest using the turrets (I think holdover reticles in SFP scopes are an idiotic idea, but I seem to be alone on that).

4) If you want to use holdover with the reticle, look at FFP scopes, with SWFA SS 3-9x42 being the one in your price range.

5) Between your final choices, I would suggest getting one of the LR scopes from Vortex' Viper HS line-up, with 4-16x44 likely being the most versatile option.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/05/2012 at 17:11
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Originally posted by koshkin koshkin wrote:


3) For trajectory compensation, you can use either the turrets or the reticle.  If you plan to get a scope with a SFP reticle, I strongly suggest using the turrets (I think holdover reticles in SFP scopes are an idiotic idea, but I seem to be alone on that).
 
ILya,
 
You aren't alone on that.  I like the idea of a well made FFP ballistic reticle that is useable at all powers.  However, there are a few considerations when using FFP scopes for holdover:
 
1.   Some reticles are so thin on low powers that they are unuseable for holdover in even moderately challenging lighting conditions.
 
2.  Some reticles are so heavy on high powers they obstruct smaller targets.
 
3.  You have only one subtension to use on a FFP reticle. 
 
On a SFP reticle subtended in MOA or MIL you can half the magnification to double the subtensions.  On my Swaro BRH reticle I have my drops in 1/2 mil (for max power) and full mil (at half power).  That way I have drops for most situations at max, and drops for low light at half power.  All with a nice even reticle thickness.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/05/2012 at 17:32
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Originally posted by Bitterroot Bulls Bitterroot Bulls wrote:

Originally posted by koshkin koshkin wrote:


3) For trajectory compensation, you can use either the turrets or the reticle.  If you plan to get a scope with a SFP reticle, I strongly suggest using the turrets (I think holdover reticles in SFP scopes are an idiotic idea, but I seem to be alone on that).
 
ILya,
 
You aren't alone on that.  I like the idea of a well made FFP ballistic reticle that is useable at all powers.  However, there are a few considerations when using FFP scopes for holdover:
 
1.   Some reticles are so thin on low powers that they are unuseable for holdover in even moderately challenging lighting conditions.
 
2.  Some reticles are so heavy on high powers they obstruct smaller targets.
 
3.  You have only one subtension to use on a FFP reticle. 
 
On a SFP reticle subtended in MOA or MIL you can half the magnification to double the subtensions.  On my Swaro BRH reticle I have my drops in 1/2 mil (for max power) and full mil (at half power).  That way I have drops for most situations at max, and drops for low light at half power.  All with a nice even reticle thickness.

FFP reticle design has its own challenges, certainly.  However, I have seen enough well-designed FFP reticle to be pretty certain that I prefer them.

For an example, look at SWFA's Mil-Quad.

If the scope is equipped with some well-thought out reticle illumination (simple single dot is my preference in most cases for high mag scopes), reticle design gets easier.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/05/2012 at 17:56
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I look at an FFP reticle on low power as being like a duplex (as long as the outer bars are thick) and am likely to be shooting at 150 yards or less on 2.5 or 3X. mil169, out of the scopes you have seen discussed here, I'd recommend the SS 3-9X as well because it is a solid scope, well-suited for hunting and for getting out to longer distances. I dial in elevation on anything 300 yards or over because I like the reticle to be dead center on target, but hold for wind. If you only shoot a couple loads, you can develop a drop table even without using a ballistics calculator or worrying too much about changing atmospheric conditions (which change air density and bullet drops). But JBM or other calculators are helpful. If you need advice on using one, just post in the reloading/ballistics section.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/05/2012 at 18:10
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I own a couple of SWFA SS 3-9x42 scopes, if that matters.  One with the original Mil-Dot reticle and another with the Mil-Quad.

Both work like a charm.

Come to think about, there is a grad total of six SWFA SS scopes in my safe.  I suppose that say something about my confidence in this product line.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/05/2012 at 18:11
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Originally posted by koshkin koshkin wrote:


FFP reticle design has its own challenges, certainly.  However, I have seen enough well-designed FFP reticle to be pretty certain that I prefer them.
 
 
I don't blame you for preferring them, and your opinion holds a lot of water in my view.  I have also used some of both designs and prefer FFP in some ways and SFP in others.  I was responding to the "idiotic" part.  I guess I don't like to see myself as an idiot, regardless of how others view me. Bucky
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/05/2012 at 18:14
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Originally posted by Bitterroot Bulls Bitterroot Bulls wrote:

Originally posted by koshkin koshkin wrote:


FFP reticle design has its own challenges, certainly.  However, I have seen enough well-designed FFP reticle to be pretty certain that I prefer them.
 
 
I don't blame you for preferring them, and your opinion holds a lot of water in my view.  I have also used some of both designs and prefer FFP in some ways and SFP in others.  I was responding to the "idiotic" part.  I guess I don't like to see myself as an idiot, regardless on how others view me. Bucky

I said that I thought it was an idiotic idea.  That does not carry any implications onto the people who use the products.

On top of it, the BRH reticle you use at least has consistent spacing which is not too difficult to scale with magnification.  Try it with typical holdover reticle where every successive hashmark is spaced differently.

ILya
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