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SuperSniper 10X HD vs. ________

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/02/2010 at 18:48
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The 10X HD came in today and Chris asked me to compare it to a few other scopes I had around.

For comparison, I looked at the 10X HD, a Hensoldt 3-12x56 (http://swfa.com/Zeiss-3-12x56-Tactical-Hensoldt-Telescopic-34mm-Sight-P41073.aspx) and a Premier Heritage 3-15x50 (http://swfa.com/Premier-Heritage-3-15x50-Tactical-34mm-Riflescope-P13018.aspx).

In fairness, the SS 10X HD sells for $799, the Hensoldt for $3119, and the Premier for $2790 - all prices are from the SWFA web site.


The variables were set to their "10X" mark for comparison.

Sadly, overall glass quality was comparable.  ("Sadly" because the Premier and Hensoldt cost so much more. )  Hensodt is a bit more clear edge-to-edge than the Heritage, and the Heritage a bit more than the SS, but just a little.  Hensoldt had better color than the others (but Premier and SS were almost indistinguishable) and gave objects a more solid appearance - not sure how else to say it.


Knobs on all 3 are very usable, with clicks well defined and audible as well as tactile.  I prefer the spacing of the Hensoldt best, followed by SS, followed by Premier (the usual gripe of the Premier.)

Getting behind the Hensoldt is so easy, it makes everything else pale in comparison.  At 10X, there is almost no tube visible, just pristine image.  With the Premier, there was a bit more tube, and with SS, there was noticeably more tube - not a terrible "tunnel" but more tube in the sight picture.  None of the 3 showed any ghosting or haloing with good site picture.  Eye position on the SS was slightly more critical than on the Premier, but not by much.  One big bonus to a fixed power is that eye relief never changes.  Variables are getting closer to this, but no one (that I have seen) has an actual fixed eye relief at all magnification ranges.

The SS is not illuminated - and I think I'll miss that.  As the light faded, I noticed the image was lost first in the SS, then the Premier, and last in the Hensoldt (though, in truth, with Hensoldt's outline reticle, without illumination, you can see the target long after the reticle has disappeared.  If you shoot in low light and buy a Hensoldt, keep an extra battery or 2 around.)

I'll have the rifles on the range in 2 days and will post some pics and range reviews of the SuperSniper.  For now, it seems to be great glass at a great price.  It doesn't have all the "bells-n-whistles" of the other 2, but at this price, it is a very nice, entirely serviceable tactical scope.

More to come.

(Lastly, a real pain in the butt: the Hensoldt does not have an indicator on the saddle showing which way is up and which is down when making elevation changes, the other 2 do.  I was disappointed the Hensoldt missed this but very happy the SS did not; it seems trivial, till the first time you go the wrong way.)


Pictures soon.


Edited by Rancid Coolaid - February/02/2010 at 18:52
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/02/2010 at 20:12
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Well, the SS10XHD going head to head against scopes that are 3.5X and almost 4X the price of it?  Gutsy, but I think it will be interesting with pictures.  I'm going to tell Nathan to check out this thread if I see him at the next match.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/03/2010 at 01:16
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Nice Thanks for the review.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/03/2010 at 05:37
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very nice start to the review.  look forward to your range report
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/03/2010 at 07:05
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It is good to see that your quality review reflects mine...
SS10xHD is an excellent scope, not just "for the money". 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/03/2010 at 09:07
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Originally posted by Steelbenz Steelbenz wrote:

Well, the SS10XHD going head to head against scopes that are 3.5X and almost 4X the price of it?  Gutsy, but I think it will be interesting with pictures.  I'm going to tell Nathan to check out this thread if I see him at the next match.




It might not (but should be) obvious from this and other posts that I believe Nathan's product to be the best on the market now (Nathan from Hubisco, right?).


Chris asked for a side-by-side and this was initial impressions, looking out my back door into the coming night.

The 10 X HD is nice indeed, but the Hensoldt will not be coming off any time soon.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/03/2010 at 12:41
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Thank you for your review!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/05/2010 at 05:11
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Quote
It might not (but should be) obvious from this and other posts that I believe Nathan's product to be the best on the market now (Nathan from Hubisco, right?).


Chris asked for a side-by-side and this was initial impressions, looking out my back door into the coming night.

The 10 X HD is nice indeed, but the Hensoldt will not be coming off any time soon.



Oh no question on that, I would agree with you whole heartily.  But I think it's unfair to put even the best middle weight fighter up against the World Champion.   LOL!

David didn't beat Goliath, God DID!   LOL!   Just sayin'
   
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/05/2010 at 06:29
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I think it is quite "fair" to compare the SS10xHD to the Hensoldt.  There will be areas where the SS is better and areas where the Hensoldt is far and away better, I think.  There are a number of reasons for Hensoldt's high price other than supreme quality.  That said, the only Hensoldt I have ever used was indeed a superior scope... at the time.  There are some "lesser" scopes out there now that would equal it...
I look forward to RC's review/comparison...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/05/2010 at 12:13
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If SWFA comes out with a SS variable with that kind of glass and a magnification range beyond 12X, look out! A couple observations: The spacing is much better on the Premiers with DT knobs. I did not like the 22 mRad ST. Also, I'm hesitant to mention it but I think it is common knowledge among most potential high-end customers, dealers don't charge MAP for the Premiers. (I don't know about the Hensoldts and won't ask). So that can be a factor in what someone ultimately decides when weighing the relative merits of one scope against another vs. the cost. At face value, it gets harder to justify the Premier when for another $600 you can have a Hensoldt. But if you can get it for a $1000 less (for argument's sake) then there's more of a distinction.

90% of the time, the glass in my lowly optics (Nikon ATBs, Leupold FX-11...even the ancient Bushnell 4X) are as useful as the good stuff. It's the occasional need for optimum performance combined with the constant requirements for repeatability and durability that has driven people to make the leap from the sub-$1000 market to the $2000+ market. SS, IMO, has owned the sub-$1000 space (or at least I would consider nothing else). In the gap between high and low FFP scopes there is only IOR and I just have read enough bad things to just say that life is too short to own one.

Judging by what people said about them at SHOT, the Vortex PSTs are not (unsurprisingly) the near-equal of the Razor or other high-end stuff, but I bet they will come close enough for most people. I'd consider one but am holding tight to see if a new SS variable comes out. I'll be hanging on to the Premier but can see selling off my NF for the SS.


Edited by jonoMT - February/05/2010 at 12:14
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/06/2010 at 15:51
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I finally got the 10X HD on the range today.  My prior comparison was to hensoldt and Premier; however, since Premier is slightly inferior in all ways to the Hensoldt, I just took the "king of the hill" and the 10X to the range for comparison.

Here are some observations:

1.  The 10X HD's edge-to-edge clarity is quite good with no feathering or softness anywhere in the field of view (FOV.)

2.  The FOV seems a bit limited, partly due to the mild tunnel effect, partly due to Hensoldt's very wide FOV.  It isn't as noticeable  till you move back-n-forth between the 2 scopes.

3.  Since I usually shoot lefty on the bench, I really like the rear parallax.  It moves with intention but not without. Resistance is about perfect.  Also, it seems fairly forgiving, more so than most scopes with parallax on the saddle.

4.  Turret adjustments were dead on (no box shot today.)  My first shot was 2.5 mils low as viewed through the scope, I clicked in 2.5 mils, next round was dead bull.  I do love mil/mil scopes.

5.  The scope is plenty bright in full sun, but the ARD darkens things allot, and low light really takes its toll on the 42mm objective.

6.  I really like the vertical indicator on the saddle as well as the "up-down" arrows facing the shooter, they make dope changes "almost" idiot-proof.  In that one regard, they beat the Hensoldt - who forgot to add those.

7.  Eye position is more forgiving than the older 10X.

8.  Color and contrast were not quite as good with the 10X HD vs. Hensoldt, but they are far from unacceptable.

9.  A guy on the range was very proud of his Leupold M4 10X, he ain't as proud now.  Comparing the M4 to the 10X HD is a joke, Leupold's glass is awful in every possible way.  If you own a M4, DO NOT look through SS 10X HD!

10.  My only real complaint (and it is more an observation than true complaint) is the tunnel effect.  Keep in mind, I'm comparing it to the cope with the least tunnel effect in the industry (and Swaro is right up there too)  but -when switching back and forth between the 2 scopes, before I notice the slightly lower contrast and the slightely softer image, I notice the tunnel on the 10X.  That is what makes this comparison so unfair.

In short, you get a few things for the extra $2300 the Hensolt costs.  You get variable magnification, illuminated reticle, easiest to acquire site picture in the industry, beautify edge-to-edge clarity and resolution and color, and no tunnel whatsoever. For a tactical weapon, are those necessary: absolutely not!  I am very confident this scope will take abuse without a problem, and will put rounds where needed so long as you do your part. 

A comparison of the 10X HD to a Leupold M4 10X would ahve been far more fair (especially since the Leupold is at least 50% more).  In the few minutes I looked through the Leupold and the 10X HD, the 10x HD beat it in every way: glass quality, site picture, eye box, and image fidelity.  I was, quite honestly, surprised at the huge dfference.

While on the range, I began to feel bad about comparing the Hensoldt to the SS, then the Leupold entered the picture and I felt really good about it.  The SS isn't as good as the Hensoldt, no one will argue that point; however, with its real competitor in this market, it is head-and-shoulders above what the Leupold is.

If you need a fixed 10X to beat hell out of, this is the scope.  The glass is much better than adequate (think Nightforce or Sightron S3 - and a little better than that) and the controls are all but balls-on perfect.  I love the parallax (especially shooting lefty) and like the shape of the turrets as well as their function.

It doesn't best the Hensoldt, but it bitch-slaps the Leupold.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/07/2010 at 13:54
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Originally posted by Rancid Coolaid Rancid Coolaid wrote:




I finally got the 10X HD on the range today.  My prior comparison was to hensoldt and Premier; however, since Premier is slightly inferior in all ways to the Hensoldt, I just took the "king of the hill" and the 10X to the range for comparison.

Here are some observations:

1.  The 10X HD's edge-to-edge clarity is quite good with no feathering or softness anywhere in the field of view (FOV.)

2.  The FOV seems a bit limited, partly due to the mild tunnel effect, partly due to Hensoldt's very wide FOV.  It isn't as noticeable  till you move back-n-forth between the 2 scopes.

3.  Since I usually shoot lefty on the bench, I really like the rear parallax.  It moves with intention but not without. Resistance is about perfect.  Also, it seems fairly forgiving, more so than most scopes with parallax on the saddle.

4.  Turret adjustments were dead on (no box shot today.)  My first shot was 2.5 mils low as viewed through the scope, I clicked in 2.5 mils, next round was dead bull.  I do love mil/mil scopes.

5.  The scope is plenty bright in full sun, but the ARD darkens things allot, and low light really takes its toll on the 42mm objective.

6.  I really like the vertical indicator on the saddle as well as the "up-down" arrows facing the shooter, they make dope changes "almost" idiot-proof.  In that one regard, they beat the Hensoldt - who forgot to add those.

7.  Eye position is more forgiving than the older 10X.

8.  Color and contrast were not quite as good with the 10X HD vs. Hensoldt, but they are far from unacceptable.

9.  A guy on the range was very proud of his Leupold M4 10X, he ain't as proud now.  Comparing the M4 to the 10X HD is a joke, Leupold's glass is awful in every possible way.  If you own a M4, DO NOT look through SS 10X HD!

10.  My only real complaint (and it is more an observation than true complaint) is the tunnel effect.  Keep in mind, I'm comparing it to the cope with the least tunnel effect in the industry (and Swaro is right up there too)  but -when switching back and forth between the 2 scopes, before I notice the slightly lower contrast and the slightely softer image, I notice the tunnel on the 10X.  That is what makes this comparison so unfair.

In short, you get a few things for the extra $2300 the Hensolt costs.  You get variable magnification, illuminated reticle, easiest to acquire site picture in the industry, beautify edge-to-edge clarity and resolution and color, and no tunnel whatsoever. For a tactical weapon, are those necessary: absolutely not!  I am very confident this scope will take abuse without a problem, and will put rounds where needed so long as you do your part. 

A comparison of the 10X HD to a Leupold M4 10X would ahve been far more fair (especially since the Leupold is at least 50% more).  In the few minutes I looked through the Leupold and the 10X HD, the 10x HD beat it in every way: glass quality, site picture, eye box, and image fidelity.  I was, quite honestly, surprised at the huge dfference.

While on the range, I began to feel bad about comparing the Hensoldt to the SS, then the Leupold entered the picture and I felt really good about it.  The SS isn't as good as the Hensoldt, no one will argue that point; however, with its real competitor in this market, it is head-and-shoulders above what the Leupold is.

If you need a fixed 10X to beat hell out of, this is the scope.  The glass is much better than adequate (think Nightforce or Sightron S3 - and a little better than that) and the controls are all but balls-on perfect.  I love the parallax (especially shooting lefty) and like the shape of the turrets as well as their function.

It doesn't best the Hensoldt, but it bitch-slaps the Leupold.
I agree there is some tunnel effect, but it isn't bad.  There is a small amount in my Ziess Victory Diavari...  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/07/2010 at 14:18
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Again, that's why I feel so bad about saying it: all scopes have it to some degree.  It just so happens that the one scope I compared it to (Hensoldt 3-12) has the least tunnel of any tactical scope I have ever used.  When going back-n-forth between the SS and the Hensoldt, it is the first thing I notice.  When going back-n-forth between the Mk4 and SS, it wasn't even close to the first thing I noticed.

With 10X Mk4's going for $1500+, the SS 10x HD is a steal.

having not played with any Swaro 10X tacticals or S&B 10X tacticals, I'd buy the SS 10X HD over any fixed 10X on the market (except maybe the USO, but only if I needed something really strange.  The glass in the 10X HD is better than USO glass.)
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/07/2010 at 15:40
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10x42HD is indeed a superb scope. There is a little tunnel effect, but part of that is simply due to the fact that the whole thing is really overbuilt and the tube walls are very thick.

And you are right, Hensoldt's image looks like it simply floats in the air.  You barely know there is a tube there at all.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/07/2010 at 15:46
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I know this is kinda un-related as far as glass goes but I think that the early Leupold M8 or (gold ring) fixed power scopes in the 10x 12x and 16x fixed are absolutely some of the best as far as what you guys are talking about sometimes you don't even think you are behind a scope just a little sliver of black...

I am not at all comparing the glass, brightness, clarity, color fringing/ or chromatic aberation, contrast or anything but the fact they are very easy to see thru and around...
 
It is kinda like just a very light light ring the newer fixed models are in no way the same design as the older models, I specifically look for old M-8'S for this reason...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/07/2010 at 21:02
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Great write up, thanks RC
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2010 at 10:18
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Great review! Thanks for sharing.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/27/2010 at 14:46
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Awesome write up.  One of my buds at work bought a SN3 US Optics.  I haven't looked through it yet but since I can't spend that many duckies on a piece of jewelry...I think the SS HD is in my future.  I was all proud of my straight 6 x 42 Nikon that I bought after my Aetec.  THEN I bought a A-Bolt with a Conquest 3x9 on it.  You guys are one hell of a bad influence as far as my wife is concerned.  I don't post much but I read the hell of the topics.  Thanks...I think!  Big Smile
 
Richard
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/27/2010 at 15:38
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I've pissed off so many friends' wives, I cannot begin to apologize enough.
 
I meet them, we shoot, they bring a Leupold, I bring a Hensoldt, next thing I know their wives are scraping for grocery money and they are showing me their new Zeiss or Swaro or Hensoldt.
 
Once you shoot really good glass, it is hard to go back.
 
The 10X HD is a fine scope, buy with confidence.  Your friend with the USO will probably comment on how good the glass is (having owned probably close to 10 USO products so far, I can say with some authority that USO glass ain't the best in the industry, and the HD will  beat it - probably. USO makes a great scope, and people buy it for other reasons.  The glass is entirely "good enough.")
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/27/2010 at 22:09
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Originally posted by Rancid Coolaid Rancid Coolaid wrote:

I can say with some authority that USO glass ain't the best in the industry, and the HD will  beat it - probably.


I was looking strongly at a USO 10x but maybe I will have to save some money and get the SS.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/28/2010 at 09:12
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Herein lies the rub: if you want or need something unusual or very specific, USO is a 100% custom shop for tactical optics; if you don't need something very unusual or very specific, I'm not always convinced it is the best bargain.
 
All that said, their EREK elevation turret is the best turret design ever, it alone is why I have bought the last 2 scopes.
 
Their 10x is a good scope, no question; and if building an accurate reprodution of an M40A1, it is a must.  If you can do without illumination, I'd put the extra money into range time.  The HD glass will be clearer.
 
WIthout the EREK, knobs are a toss-up.  The USO has illumination, the HD does not. The USO has mil dot or GAP, the HD just has mil dot.  That's really about it - and that equals 2X the price.
 
If you don't need illumination and you have never used an EREK, get the HD.


Edited by Rancid Coolaid - February/28/2010 at 09:13
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/28/2010 at 21:45
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Great review, thanks for all the effort both on the bench and at the keyboard. It's nice to know that a scope I am looking at is really good. Not as good as the scope I could not afford, but still a good piece of gear. 
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