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Optics for bolt .308 and AR

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/30/2010 at 12:45
lwrkeysfisher View Drop Down
Optics GrassHopper
Optics GrassHopper

Joined: May/30/2010
Status: Offline
Points: 17
I usually just read these forums and make a decision, but am suffering from analysis paralysis so I decided to post... I have a 16" stainless Noveske Recon, and am going to purchase either a savage 10PC or Rem 700 SPS (cut to 18" and threaded for suppressor) within the next month and am looking for optics for both. I have a max budget of $2k with a preferred budget of $1400-$1600 for both optics. I like illumination, but for something clearly superior I may give it up to hit the price point. 

I shoot quite a bit, usually 2-4 hours per week:
60% of my shooting will be at paper for groups at 100 yards, 30% of my shooting will be at ranges 200-600 yards both steel and paper, and the remainder will be hunting or something else. I have a Ruger PC4 with irons and irons on the Noveske for anything less than 100yards or SHTF.
I am active military and qualify for Leupold's discount program (1 optic per year).

Noveske 16" Recon:
I have tried a Trijicon TR24 green triangle and a Trijicon TR21 green dot. The TR24 did not have enough magnification to clearly see my point of aim (1 inch targets) at 100 yards. The TR21 seemed a little too big for the rifle, and the cross hairs a little too thick for target shooting. Sold the TR24, have the TR21 on my 6.8 hunting upper. I am leaning towards the Leupold Mark 4 Mr/t 2.5-8 ($900 w/ discount) but am afraid it will not be enough magnification, and I know there is better glass out there. What do you guys recommend?

.308 - dual purpose tack driver and supplemental hunting rifle:
I am lost, my thinking has ranged from SS3-9 to Leupold Mark 4 Lr/t 4.5-14 to Trijicon Accupoint  5-20. I like the Trijicon but would like a larger field of view at lower magnification for hunting and more elevation for longer range shooting (also weighs a ton for a handy .308), on the other end with the SS 3-9 I am concerned with reticle thickness and 9X top end for shooting small targets at 300+. I want a variable optic for the low-end and field of view when hunting. What do you guys think?

Sorry for the long post, but I wanted to provide the full framework for the decision(s). 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/30/2010 at 23:15
neilbilly View Drop Down
Optics Master
Optics Master

Joined: February/07/2010
Location: Sweeny TX
Status: Offline
Points: 999


You own and are looking for good gear. Sadly the type of gear you are looking at does not fall into my area of expertise. A lot of the guys here do shoot nice rigs with nice glass. I'm sure you'll get some help from the guys in the know.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/30/2010 at 23:54
koshkin View Drop Down
Dark Lord of Optics

Joined: June/15/2004
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 11798
For the boltgun, 3-9x42 S.S. is hard to beat.  9x is plenty to shoot anything other than varmints at extended ranges.  On the other hand, with FFP reticle an mrad knobs, ranging and dialing are a snap.  You could try one of the new Japanese FFP scopes like the Bushnell Elite 4200 3-12x44FFP or Weaver Tactical 3-15x42, but I would go with the S.S.  I beat the hell out of mine (intentionally) and it works like a charm.

For the Noveske, it sounds like you are want more magnification than 4x of the 1-4x24 Trijicon, without the extra bulk.  That is a tough order, but doable.

Sinc you qualify for Leupold's discounts, this is probably a decent way to go:

It does not have the best knobs for dialing in holdover, but it is nice scope with a little more reach than the 1-4x24 Trijicon.

You could also go for something like Burris XTR 1.5-6x40 (Burris also has LE/Military discount), but it is an appreciably larger scope.

Alternatively, you could use your discount on something like this scope:

And later add a micro dot sight to it:

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/31/2010 at 12:04
lwrkeysfisher View Drop Down
Optics GrassHopper
Optics GrassHopper

Joined: May/30/2010
Status: Offline
Points: 17
Thank you guys for the responses and welcome. 

It seems the Leupold Mr/t 2.5-8 (M1 knobs and illum. TMR reticle) will best fit the bill for the Noveske, I would have already purchased it if it came with the SPR reticle. 

As for the .308, I am still not completely sold on the SS3-9. Does anyone have a 9X reticle photo on a 500 yard 16x16 target (or similar)--I searched but could not find one? I would really like to see the reticle size. 

The reviews I have read on the Weaver and Bushnell (including yours form SHOT ILya) were not very flattering.

Also as a caveat, I don't see the FFP as too important because most of my shooting will be at known ranges. And I think the fun part of hunting is getting close, so most of my hunting will be dead hold.  

What do you guys think of the Zeiss Conquest 4.5-14X50 with target knobs, or since I'm not making the rifle purchase until next month the new Vortex PST 4-16? And lastly the Bushnell 6500 2.5-16 w/ Tactical knobs?

Thanks again,

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/31/2010 at 12:45
stickbow46 View Drop Down
Optics Master Extraordinaire
Optics Master Extraordinaire

Joined: January/07/2009
Location: Benton, Pa
Status: Offline
Points: 4676
  When the Dark Lord speaks listen,he has forgotten more then most people will ever know about optics including yours truly!
  I want to share this infow as it sounds like you & I are the same type of shooters.I have a remmy 5r ss milspec  in 308,it started with a Elite 2.5-16 x50 mil dot ,but with hunting turrets,it was replaced with a Conquest 3.5-10x50 z-plex which was now replaced with a SS10x HD.I have no problem seeing out at 320yds.
  Elite6500 now sits on my Anschutz1710H bb,Zeiss now sits on a remmy 700 police.All 3 scopes are excellent but if you can deal with a fixed 10x the SS is the best of the 3 scopes !
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/31/2010 at 20:03
Urimaginaryfrnd View Drop Down
Resident Redneck

Joined: June/20/2005
Location: Iowa
Status: Offline
Points: 14234
Id go with the Mk 4 in the 4.5-14x50 probably wiht the M5 knobs as it has 100 moa of internal adjustment or with  if I was to buy a Leupold and use the 40% discount.  However knowing what I know at this point I would have to think long and hard not to go Nightforce 5.5-22x56 with mildot and 1/10 mil adjustments.  I would have no problem buying a 3-9x42 Super Sniper and using it on either or bouncing it back and forth until I figured out where I liked it better as it was designed for the M-16A2 platform and any distances past what 9x will work for are also past what 5.56 will work for.  Side note the Leu 2.5-8x36 is really more like 3x on the low end so 2.5 is BS and you will find that in the fine print in Leupolds catelogue.  My favorite for an AR or M4 is a Trijicon TA442 amber triangle 1.5x which gives a little more magnification than Comp M4 and is always turned on which I like the amber can wash out a little pointed toward street lights at night so red might be a good choice also but amber is awesome in the woods.  Its always a hard choice and sometimes you have to base the decision on what you will get the most use out of but I would look long and hard at the Nightforce scopes before I made a selection and naturally the one I like is over budget which is why I dont have one.   I do really like the Trijicon 5-20x50 wiht green mil dot it is a very nice scope and has knobs similar to Nightforce height and size and the 50 moa of internal adjustment will do most of what one would want if a plus 20 moa base was used.  I certainly wouldnt be afraid to select it based on a low end of 5x as most combat ACOGS are 4x and that is only one power higher plus has the illumination factor.  Many is the critter that has fallen to a fixed 6x scope once you get past 6x its hard to get on target under 100 yds.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/01/2010 at 21:05
lwrkeysfisher View Drop Down
Optics GrassHopper
Optics GrassHopper

Joined: May/30/2010
Status: Offline
Points: 17
I wish the discount was 40% across the board, but it is fairly significant so you will never hear me complain. 

To switch course a little, since I only get one Leupold discount, which one to get becomes the question.

With the Mark 4 1.5-5, I know the top end is really 4.5, is it any better than the TR24 with the the german reticle and dot? I like the SPR reticle but do not want to "waste" my one purchase on something that will be essentially the same as the TR24 (and same price after Leupold discount).  

I would actually save more if I used my one purchase to purchase a Mark 4 4.5-14X50 instead or the 2.5-8 mentioned above. I like the Mark 4 4.5-14X50, my question is: are the M5 knobs and FFP worth the $200+ premium over the illuminated TMR with M1 knobs?

I'm sure a Nightforce will find its way into my toolbox before too long; I've been eyeballing the S&B 3-12 on the Sample list as well... I also like the Swarovski Z6i 1-6 for my AR. I think you hit the problem on the head, Urimaginaryfriend, so many options but limited funds and rifles to put them on....
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