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Sightron S2 Big Sky 1.25-5x20

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/11/2007 at 01:49
koshkin View Drop Down
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Another forum member (Wally) was kind enough to send me his scope for T&E.  Since the scope was not mine, I did not torture it mechanically, but I spent some time looking at the glass quality in varying lighting conditions from bright daylight to middle of the night with no moon.

I mounted it on two different rifles for a couple of trips to the range: a 223 semiauto and a 8mm Mauser.

First, a brief summary: It is a nice little scope.  I sufficiently like it to seriously consider buying one for myself.  The only thing I disliked it was the reticle.  I would have preferred a thicker reticle, like #4.  With the plex reticle it has, I was able to acquire the target with it in about as low of a light as I could with my Burris Fullfield II with #4 reticle.  Although the Sightron has far superior glass, I has a hard time seeing the reticle in low light against a reasonably dark background. 

Optically, the Big Sky seems to be a little better than the original S2 and about on par with Elite 4200.  It is hard to say exactly since I did not have a truly equivalent Elite 4200 to compare it with (I do have a 1.1-4x24 Elite 4200 on the way and I will compare it to the same scopes this SIghtron was compared to to get some idea).  It is certainly better than my 1.75-5x20 Burris Fullfield II and better than Leupold VX-3 1.5-5x20 that I had a chance to play with alongside the Sightron.  Based on some earlier comparisons I did, I would say that the Big Sky is better than the previous generation Nikon Monarch, which had a 1.5-4.5x20 model and better than Weaver Grand Slam 1.75-5x32.  I do not currently have Burris SIgnature Safari 1.75-5x32, but personally I would probably take the Big Sky over it, but it is hard to say offhand.

I did not see much of a parallax issue.  There was some parallax error I could detect at 25 yards when using 5x magnification, but very little of it.  Looking at various objects at various distances, it looked like the parallax was corrected at ~150 yards for the conditions I was in: 110F and dry as hell.  Not sure what the altitude was, but definitely lower than 1000ft elevation.

I was able to resolve 22 cal bullet holes at 100 yards, but with some difficulty and not in all backgrounds.  I do not recall ever being able to do that with a compact scope made in Japan and of similar cost before.  With IOR scopes I can typically see 22 cal bullet holes with 4x to 5x, but those scopes are more expensive.  I had a couple of IORs with me at the range (along with a few other scopes), so I think I got a reasonably decent idea of this scope's capabilities.

I did not see any flare issues when playing with it during sunset.  Off axis light sources did not produce any particularly objectionable image artifacts. 

Eye relief was pretty long and nearly constant at right around four inches.  Adjustments were spot on.  The scope passed the box test with flying colors and POI did not seem to shift perceptibly at different magnifications. 

I did not get a chance to properly test the hydrophobic coatings, but breathing on the lenses during a reasonably chilly morning did not prevent me from being able to see through the scope reasonably well.

All in all, I really liked the scope, but the reticle should have been thicker.  I do not quite understand why scope makers put thin reticles into low range variables, but then again, there are a lot of things I do not understand.

ILya


Edited by koshkin
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/11/2007 at 08:47
tahqua View Drop Down
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Thanks for the test, ILya. That is good news about the Sightron and it sounds as though the Big Sky models are a strong contender in the mid-range scopes.

I have the same reticle issue with my VarX-III 1.5-5. I don't see why these manufacturers put thin reticles on 2-7 or 3-9's, either. With high quality lenses there is not much need for illuminated reticles if they are heavy enough. The Kahles 7A, for example, allows shooting well past legal hours here in Michigan. The VariX-III is barely visible against a critter at last light.



Edited by tahqua
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/11/2007 at 09:25
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  Thanks for the heads up on the Sightron and kudos on the reticle issue...You ever try the old Pentax Whitetails Unlimited Twilight Plex reticle..I am happy to say I have 2, and  there is a very visible reticle..

Edited by martin3175
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/11/2007 at 12:21
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ILya,

 

Yesterday the little Sightron was mounted on a Marlin 45-70 Guide Gun. (This should test the recoil resistance!)  My Dad has fell in love with the scope, and wanted it on his "back-up, bad weather" elk rifle for this coming weekend.  I'm afraid I may have lost the scope.  He said it dialed in perfectly.  He is tickled. 

 

My Dad has had some eye problems, and needed corrective surgery.  For some reason, he seems to be sensitive about what scopes he can see through.  He couldn't brag enough about this Sightron.  His other favorite scopes are his Conquests, two of which happened to be mine.  I think there is a pattern developing here!   Oh well, he his having fun, and that's what counts, although I don't think I'm going to let him look through my Kahles KX!

 

I enjoyed your report as well.

 

Steve

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/18/2008 at 12:19
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ANyone have any experience with the Sightron higher mag scopes (4-16ish)?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/18/2008 at 12:30
koshkin View Drop Down
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What about them?  I've played with a number of Sightron scopes from one time to another.  Which exact model are you wondering about?

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/08/2009 at 12:01
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: October/07/2009 at 17:38
koshkin View Drop Down
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BTT.

I am applying for a "media" badge for the next SHOT Show which requires proof, i.e. industry relevant stuff that I have written and posted here.
I will bring several of my threads back to the top to make them easier to find.
Thanks
ILya

P.S. Boy, is this an old thread.  I have since looked at a couple more of these small Big Sky scopes and found them to be uniformly good.
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