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Trijicon Accupoint vs Swarovski Z5

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/13/2012 at 10:45
hopeisnotastrategy View Drop Down
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I am looking for guidance on a scope for my new rifle.  It is a Sako chambered in .270.

I will use it as a hunting rifle (as opposed to a long-range target rifle) hunting deer, pronghorn, bighorn sheep, elk, and other game in the western states.  

My first hunt will be in Colorado this fall and winter where I'll be hunting elk and deer.  My shots will be 350 yards at most.

I am torn between two scopes I really like: the Swarovski Z5 3.5-18x44 with BT 4W reticle and the Trijicon Accupoint 5-20x50 with amber mil-dot reticle.

When I look through these scopes at Cabelas the glass seems essentially the same.  Both produce a gorgeous, crisp image.

I have to confess that each scope has me enamored with a specific feature.  

The Trijicon illuminated reticle, to my eye, is awesome!  It brings me in focus very quickly and gives me a ton of confidence.  I also like that there are no batteries.

On the other hand, I really like the Ballistic Turret on the Swarovski.  Seems like it would be a great thing to have in Colorado when trying to dial in a 300 yard shot on a big bull.

The Trijicon is $500 less, so I'm trying to assess the value of the BT and potentially any low light superiority of the Swaro over the Trijicon's fantastic reticle.

What are your thoughts on the importance of the BT feature?  Is it that big a deal or could I easily do that without the BT?

I've only looked through these in a store.  Do any of you have experience with the low-light capability of one over the other?

Which scope would you buy?

Thanks in advance!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/13/2012 at 11:27
RifleDude View Drop Down
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If you're limiting your shot distance to 300 yds, you don't need a ballistic turret.  Simply zero your rifle at 250 yds, and using a modern spitzer style bullet with decent BC, bullet impact will never be more than about 3.5" high at close range and about 5" low at 300 yds, which will stay in an elk or deer's vitals with a dead-on aim in the center of the lung/shoulder area.

I own scopes from both series (actually I don't have a Z5, but I have a Z3 and Z6, which have similar optical qualities).  The Swaro has a bit better resolution and light transmission than Trijicon.  Trijicon has very good resolution and light transmission, however.  In this case, given equal magnification, low light performance is probably a wash.  The Swaro will provide a bit better detail recognition in low light due to better resolution and coatings better optimized for low light, but the Trijicon offers much better reticle acquisition due to illumination, and that fact alone may swing the pendulum toward the Trijicon despite the Swaro's optical prowess.  As far as speed of putting aiming point on target, the Trijicon has the Swaro handily beat.  Swaro has better control over off-axis light conditions that tend to induce veiling flare inside the scope.  It also has less (read almost no) "tunnel vision," whereas the Trijicon does suffer from some tunneling.  In daylight, what one will do, the other will do, though under heavy scrutiny, the Swaro will give you slightly better resolution. 

With the Swaro, you pay a heavy price for small increases in optical performance and because of the fact it's made in Austria rather than Japan, where labor is more expensive.  But... in an absolute sense, it's still optically superior, however slight.  Only you can determine if the steep price difference is worth it, based on what is important to you.

The Swaro is much lighter and more compact than the Trijicon.

I personally think you're way over-scoping your rifle given your intended purpose for the rig.  You don't need anywhere near that much magnification for your shot distances, so you're just paying extra for a larger, much bulkier scope than you need.  I would stick with a scope with an upper magnification of 9X or 10X max, if it were me... but I'm mainly speaking of the Trijicon 5-20.  The Swaro Z5 3.5-18 offers a good overall hunting package because it still has low enough magnification on the low end to give you good field of view for close-in work and the objective isn't excessively large.  Everyone has their own preferences, but personally, I don't want a huge, heavy scope on a general purpose big game rifle.  I personally don't like my scope's objective bell to be wider than the rifle's forend, where it hangs up in scabbards.  The additional weight up top spoils the balance of a light to medium weight sporter rifle, and large objectives mean high rings for barrel clearance.  I like to keep the scope snuggled in low and tight to the top of the rifle.

Since I can do anything that needs doing with 10X at your stated shot distances, I'm personally not willing to add more cost, more weight, and more bulk for a capability I'll seldom use.  This ain't a varmint rifle or a cross-canyon LR rig after all.  I say scope your rifle for the 95% shot opportunities, and sneak in closer for the 5%.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/13/2012 at 11:40
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Good question and excellent response.  I'm taking notes.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/13/2012 at 12:10
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Welcome to OT Hope! 
Rifledude is spot on ( as usual ).  It has been my experience that when he offers his advice, It's a damn good idea to take it. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/13/2012 at 12:23
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if you're dead set on the BT that swaro offers, you can also get it in the Z3 line for quite a bit less than the Z5... 3-9 or 4-12 if you'd like a little more mag.  But, as Rifledude said, you probably won't ever need it out to 300-350 yards.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/13/2012 at 12:24
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Originally posted by RifleDude RifleDude wrote:

If you're limiting your shot distance to 300 yds, you don't need a ballistic turret.  Simply zero your rifle at 250 yds, and using a modern spitzer style bullet with decent BC, bullet impact will never be more than about 3.5" high at close range and about 5" low at 300 yds, which will stay in an elk or deer's vitals with a dead-on aim in the center of the lung/shoulder area.

I own scopes from both series (actually I don't have a Z5, but I have a Z3 and Z6, which have similar optical qualities).  The Swaro has a bit better resolution and light transmission than Trijicon.  Trijicon has very good resolution and light transmission, however.  In this case, given equal magnification, low light performance is probably a wash.  The Swaro will provide a bit better detail recognition in low light due to better resolution and coatings better optimized for low light, but the Trijicon offers much better reticle acquisition due to illumination, and that fact alone may swing the pendulum toward the Trijicon despite the Swaro's optical prowess.  As far as speed of putting aiming point on target, the Trijicon has the Swaro handily beat.  Swaro has better control over off-axis light conditions that tend to induce veiling flare inside the scope.  It also has less (read almost no) "tunnel vision," whereas the Trijicon does suffer from some tunneling.  In daylight, what one will do, the other will do, though under heavy scrutiny, the Swaro will give you slightly better resolution. 

With the Swaro, you pay a heavy price for small increases in optical performance and because of the fact it's made in Austria rather than Japan, where labor is more expensive.  But... in an absolute sense, it's still optically superior, however slight.  Only you can determine if the steep price difference is worth it, based on what is important to you.

The Swaro is much lighter and more compact than the Trijicon.

I personally think you're way over-scoping your rifle given your intended purpose for the rig.  You don't need anywhere near that much magnification for your shot distances, so you're just paying extra for a larger, much bulkier scope than you need.  I would stick with a scope with an upper magnification of 9X or 10X max, if it were me... but I'm mainly speaking of the Trijicon 5-20.  The Swaro Z5 3.5-18 offers a good overall hunting package because it still has low enough magnification on the low end to give you good field of view for close-in work and the objective isn't excessively large.  Everyone has their own preferences, but personally, I don't want a huge, heavy scope on a general purpose big game rifle.  I personally don't like my scope's objective bell to be wider than the rifle's forend, where it hangs up in scabbards.  The additional weight up top spoils the balance of a light to medium weight sporter rifle, and large objectives mean high rings for barrel clearance.  I like to keep the scope snuggled in low and tight to the top of the rifle.

Since I can do anything that needs doing with 10X at your stated shot distances, I'm personally not willing to add more cost, more weight, and more bulk for a capability I'll seldom use.  This ain't a varmint rifle or a cross-canyon LR rig after all.  I say scope your rifle for the 95% shot opportunities, and sneak in closer for the 5%.


Well said Ted. What I dislike about the big Trij is just that...it's big and heavy. I too have a couple of Swaros and rank them at the top (considering all relevant factors). Obviously, either will work but I'd be inclined to go with the Swarovski. Big Grin



Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/13/2012 at 14:08
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If I were going with Trijicon on a general purpose hunting rifle, I'd get the 3-9X40.  I like the 2.5-10X56 power range better, but not the 56mm objective on that scope.  It does provide a low light performance advantage, but all considered, to me the negative tradeoffs -- increased weight, bulk, price, and requires high rings -- aren't worth that one positive benefit... for a deer/elk rifle.

Thanks very much for the kind words, guys.  I really appreciate that!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/13/2012 at 23:30
hopeisnotastrategy View Drop Down
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Rifledude - Thanks for the terrific and thorough response.  

Based on your advice, I've moved my decision "down" to the Swaro Z3 4-12x50 with the BT vs. the Trijicon 3-9x40.  

I don't want to put words in your mouth, but based on what you said above, would it be accurate to say you would lean toward the trijicon?

The Swaro is about $275 more than the Trijicon and the decision is kind of down to the same thing... BT vs reticle and low light performance.

The only new element is that in this comparison the Swaro has a 50 mm objective lens vs the Trijicon's 40 mm which could make an appreciable difference in low light.

Thank you again for your wisdom and investment of the time to assist me.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2012 at 01:04
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Welcome to the OT, hopeisnostrategy,
(cool nic, btw)

I'm a fan of Swaro glass and think there isn't too much that equals them, but Trijicons are sure trick.
Usually, one never notices the difference between the Alpha glass and the scopes a notch or two down in 'quality', unless doing a side- side comparison... now that's in the case of no glaring issues with the glass. One will see a difference in low light conditions.

Hmmm, my Swaro was just fine yesterday evening at the same time, what's up with this scope?

In your comparison, the 50mm will only make a difference at higher power settings. If you have the magnification dialed down, you'll have more light available than your eye can use, but the Swaro does have better glass and coatings, so will be brighter, all else being equal.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2012 at 08:04
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http://www.samplelist.com/-P55900.aspx 
Hope, this looks to be a good deal Thunbs Up Btw welcome to O.T
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2012 at 11:00
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Ok - Not to throw a wrench in the discussion but based on Rifledude's feedback I began looking at some different options and the Vortex Viper PST 4-16x50 got my attention.

I am going to Cabela's today to look through the glass side by side with the swaro and trijicon's mentioned above, but do any of you have feedback on how Vortex glass and quality compare with those two?

Thanks again.  You've all been really helpful.  Thank you also for the warm welcome to the forum.  I hope to contribute soon rather than simply ask questions.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2012 at 11:19
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Just sold a PST 4-16, it does not compare to my swaro z5 in the least.  I have the exact swaro you originally asked about.  By far my favorite hunting scope.  I ordered a custom BT from Swaro instead of the color coded notches and have a scope I can dial in and use for exact distances.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2012 at 12:01
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Originally posted by hopeisnotastrategy hopeisnotastrategy wrote:

I don't want to put words in your mouth, but based on what you said above, would it be accurate to say you would lean toward the trijicon?


Not necessarily.  I have both.Wink

It kinda boils down to whether you'd rather have the optical superiority and the optical benefits are worth the price premium to you, or you'd rather have a more visible, faster low light reticle and save the $.  Only you can decide which is a better use of your money.

Both are nice scopes, and I believe you'd be very happy with either.  I am.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2012 at 19:51
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Welcome to the OT!
 
Nothing to add it seems like it's all be said.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2012 at 20:34
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I would for a hunting rifle only stay away from any scope that has a parallax adjustment such as the Vortex you listed. It is not necessary in a hunting scope and is just one more thing to deal with before you can take you shot. Which may result in a missed opportunity.

I would stay with one of these either the Swaro Z3 4-12x50 with the BT or the Trijicon 3-9x4. I have an older Swaro 3-10 on my Sako Grey wolf in 270 and would not give it up for anything else.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/14/2012 at 22:30
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You should check out the Swaro Z3 3-9x40, it is a step up in optical terms from the 3-9x40 Trijicon, easy to mount and lighter compared to your other choices.
Illuminated scopes are not that useful unless you are going into the "dark forest" after critters that gore and stomp or bite and claw or bound swiftly thru the brush...trying to use a "overpowered" scope will not help you make the shot.
O'Connor and company were making long shots with .270's with 2.75x to 6x power scopes and did not seem to have any real problems..was at a gunshop when a guy came in looking for scope with 15x+ power for moose and the clerk, a friend, asked him how small a moose he planned to shoot!
The Swaro Z3 is a great scope at a decent price.
Spend the money you save on ammo and do some practice shooting at hunting ranges from a cold bore and at moving targets, that will help you much more than a higher power scope.
Good luck.
Art
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/15/2012 at 09:32
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Ok.  I'd all but settled on the Swaro, but I have one last comparison.< id="_clearly_component__" ="text/">#next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }

Do any of you have experience with the new Leupold VX-6 2-12x42mm?

If the glass is on par with the Swaro in low-light conditions it seems to offer a "no-compromise" scope.  It has custom ballistic turrets if I should want that in the future.  It has illuminated reticle.  It's in the sweet spot range for magnification.  

So it comes down to the glass.

I'd love your thoughts.

BTW - I'm purchasing a scope this weekend either way.  I'll post pictures and a video review once I get it.  

Thanks again for all your wisdom and expertise.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/15/2012 at 13:10
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Glass-wise, the VX- 6 is suppose to be very nice (although I've not seen it personally). It is a 30 mm tube and heavier than the Swaro and Trij...if that is a concern. In all actuality, any of the scopes you are considering will be fine. Big Grin
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+1 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/16/2012 at 17:14
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Just for some added input. 400yds is easy with my ss 3_9. Zeroed at 100, and use ballistics chart to dial in the mil adjustment.

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I was able to get some time with the VX-6 on a hunt in texas earlier this year.  Compared to the Swaro 3-9 that typically rides the rifle it was on the Swaro was better opitcally IMO.  The glass just wasn't there in the VX6 to me. 
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I have a VX6 2-12x42, Conquests, VX3's, and several others.  My neighbor has the Swaro A 3-12x50.  I've compared them all side by side many times.  The VX6 is optically on par with the Swaro, and superior to the Conquests and VX3's, which are both great.  The VX6 is the most user friendly variable I've ever used, especially at higher mags.  Few scopes can compete with the FOV and friendly eyebox of the VX6.  Since you're not concerned about longer ranges, most any of the good, medium priced stuff should work well.  As Rifle said, you don't need any fancy bells and whistles.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/17/2012 at 19:19
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Just so you all can sleep at night (roll eyes here) I wanted you to know that I just purchased the Swaro Z3 4-12x50 with BT and 4W reticle.  It's been mounted on my Sako and bore sighted.  As soon as the range opens Wednesday I'll be out there getting her zeroed in.  

I did find a VX-6 2-12x42 that enabled me to do a side by side comparison.  As is always the case, there was not any low light conditions for the comparison, but I did make the comparison outside in natural light under an awning.  To my eye the Swaro was a little crisper image.  At the lowest magnification they were both very close but as I dialed up the magnification, the Swaro (to me) was better.

I only live an hour from SWFA which is where I went to make the comparison since they were the only people to have a VX-6 in stock.  Interestingly the gentleman at SWFA who helped me has rifles scoped with both the VX-6 and the Z3, and on his wall were two deer heads that he had killed with each (one a piece).  He told me that having hunted with both he would choose the Swaro every time.  He said the low light performance of the Swaro was superior.  I know it's one man's opinion but I thought that testimony from real world use with both scopes was valuable.  

Thanks for all the help and feedback.  I hope to add value back to you on threads in the future.
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That's why it's imperative that you compare them for yourself, like you did.   Did you get a chance to compare FOV at all mags?  No flies on the Swaro that's for sure.  My Swaro A lost it's ability to hold zero at a crucial time......shooting at a big 190" muley buck.  I shot the poor thing to pieces 4 times, and finally killed it.  Kind of ruined the Swaro A (Z3) thing for me.  Bettin' yours will be fine though.    
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Originally posted by hopeisnotastrategy hopeisnotastrategy wrote:

I only live an hour from SWFA which is where I went to make the comparison since they were the only people to have a VX-6 in stock.  Interestingly the gentleman at SWFA who helped me has rifles scoped with both the VX-6 and the Z3, and on his wall were two deer heads that he had killed with each (one a piece).  He told me that having hunted with both he would choose the Swaro every time.  He said the low light performance of the Swaro was superior.  I know it's one man's opinion but I thought that testimony from real world use with both scopes was valuable.  

This "gentleman" as you use the term so loosely... was he a skinny little fella kinda short?  You can't trust a word that fella saysBig Grin .........  just kidding.  It was probably CFII (Chris Farris II)  He's active on here as well.  Did you get to check out his Chocolate Fallow he shot earlier this year?
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