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Old 07-15-2004, 09:55 PM   #21
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 10
Digler, I would like to point out that the "Outdoor Life " test that you seem so enamored with is a crock. Think advertising $$$$$ and personal sponsorship $$$$$$. This is the same test that gave BSA a stellar review. 95% light transmission is achieved by one scope and one scope only, Bushnell Elite 4200. That does not mean that it is the best scope, just the brightest. The Euros are way ahead of everyone on low-light lense technology, meaning you will pick out more defined shapes at dusk, dawn and at night with their scopes. In essence they give up a little bit in brightness for higher definition. During the middle of a fair weather day everybody is good. Unfortuneately, hunting trips often take place in poor weather and at dusk and dawn. Leupold and Burris are good scopes, but they are not the equals of the euros. Plastic caps don't mean anything to me, I have never had one break and I can assure you that Zeiss does not go cheap on the internals. The 4" of Nikon eye relief is only at one power setting, the Zeiss Conquest has a contant 4" of eye relief at every power setting.

ranburr
 
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Old 07-16-2004, 08:35 AM   #22
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 194
Let me caveat this by saying ithat this post is NOT directed at any specific poster here:

It's not unexpected that recommendations come from personal experience. It's unfortunate sometimes when personal experience means vicarious experience from reading or listening to other's comments and then simply passing them on or if one's experience is limited and passed on as broad--such as primarily shooting from at a range or on a reserve and implying that this is broader based. It surely is important to remember that much of what one sees in the gun press is geared to offering no offense to advertisers and companies who provide samples.

That being said, anyone interested in knowing more about telescopic sights should pick up a copy of the already somewhat out of date OPTICS FOR THE HUNTER by Barsness. It gives a fair foundation in at least understanding the issues.

I'm primarily a hunter rather than a target shooter, though I do believe that good hunters start with extended time on the range. I currently have mounted on rifles: Leupold, Swarovski, Zeiss, Kahles, a couple of old Redfields back when they were considered the "best" American scopes, a Kollmorgen BearCub, 3 old Lyman Alaskans, and a couple of old Hensoldts from the 30's. Even the oldest of the scopes works just fine for the hunting woods and I've never felt at all disadvantaged in the US given the regs on legal shooting light even by comparison with folks with those 50mm objective lensed beasts mounted on sporters.

The characteristic of all of my personal scopes less a 6X Kahles and a 3-9 Zeiss mounted on 300's, is that they are all low power straight tube rigs in either 2.5X, 3X, or 1.75-5X, plus a couple of the latter slightly bulged objective lesned 1.75-6X Leupolds). The common virtue of all of them is that they are well built, tough optics with minimal weight and bulk to reduce the shear factor in recoil. The steel tubed Austrian scopes are certainly heavier, but at least are the lightest of their breed. I've never felt significantly handicapped by light gathering ability with any of them and pretty much use them interchangeably depending on what calibre or particular rifle I select for the task at hand.

Matter of fact, when I get too carried away with optical clarity and resolution, I keep thinking of a recent bear hunt when I left the woods each day because it was too dark for TARGET DISCRIMINATION with a black bear in black woods. At that time, mind you, I could still see my sights (a Redfield sourdough foresight thru an old Lyman 65 rear aperture). Based on my binos, I don't think even one of the all-too-popular moon scopes would have helped in actually discerning a precise aiming point on a black bear.

Other times, I'm sure that quality optics have facilitated determining whether I was shooting at a something with hair and horns or bark and limbs placed just so.

I'm really not sure exactly what good it does to look thru scope tubes in a gun shop and make decisions about clarity, but I am sure that a good Leupold Vari-X III is a reliable tool. Unfortunately, one has to buy the optics and actually use them under varying light conditions to really know what one is getting. They are all about equal under average light conditions in mid-day--it's first and last light that quality optics really show up AND now that there are many cheaper scopes with more clarity than some of the best older scopes, the next question becomes whether the scope in question will stand up to use on a heavy recoiling rifle. I've never had one of the above scopes fair once it had been zeroed...I have had a couple that were faulty and it showed up during the zero process. From Leupold, it was an easy matter to simply replace the scope.

After going thru my fling with Austrian optics that lasted for several years, I figgered that for MY PERSONAL NEEDS, the Leupold Vari-X III was the optimal solution in the lower powered scopes which I prefer. I reverted back to Leupold figgering that the difference was so slight if any as discernable in the hunting woods, the deciding factor was that I could buy a scope AND a back up scope and rings for much less than a singlep scope from one of the Austrian makers. The difference in optics for my eyes wasn't really discernable in the woods and the quantum leap in cost didn't justify a comparatively small gain in target discrimination, any value at all in one-upmanship, the additional weight of the steel tubed Austrian optics as a potential weakpoint in shearing mounts, and the ever changing reticle size in the wrong direction for most of the Austrian scopes until quite recently.

If I wanted a scope for shooting in European low light conditions or a specialized scope pre-zeroed especially for hunting say leopard over bait, then I'd probably opt for one of the higher powered Austrian scopes. I do have one for the latter purpose.

There are some optics out there that are clearly excellent optics. The optics have changed so that many cheap scopes have good glass and coatings, the question is, will the coatings stand up to hunting in the field and will the apparatus stand up to recoil. Some of the low end scopes probably will for 06 and below sporters. Based purely on observation, a number will NOT when mounted on 338's and up and I'm not willing to take the chance. From my limited sampling, my chosen scopes have all worked flawlessly.

Like so many things, price is generally an indicator of quality, and I don't buy low end optics to save a penny. I also try to ensure that I get what I pay for and am not paying for customs duties or prestige names. Each individual has to make his own trade off's, but I'd rather invest in a good Lyman Aperture sight and a good foresight than in cheap optics. Whatever your personal trade off, a close and intelligent reading of Barsness's book is a good start to establish a foundation to make a choice.

Cheers.
 
Old 07-16-2004, 05:49 PM   #23
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 16
Best Optics for Big Bores

ranburr:

Check your facts. The link I provided to the Outdoor Life Editor's Choice for Riflescopes did not rank the BSA scope.

http://www.outdoorlife.com/outdoor/gear ... 21,00.html

Question, since you are so enamored with the Zeiss product, I'm sure you'll have the answer. Why would a scope manufacturer use plastic windage/elevation caps which maybe cost $0.20 each, when they could use metal caps for around $1.00 each. Tough question I know.

John Barness details issues with the early versions of the Zeiss Conquest having POI shift issues because they used metal-to-plastic internals in their errector tube assy. (But no, "Zeiss does not go cheap on the internals" as you stated.)

F.Y.I. the Burris Fullfield II, the Nikon Monarch Gold, the Bushnell Elite 4200 and the Leupold VX-III provide a minimum of 95% light transmisson. Find ONE spec. that details any euro scope that states 95% or better.

And thank you for bringing my gross error on eye relief specifications to light. You are right. The Nikon Monarch Gold eye relief is 4.0" only at one power setting. Their specs detail a range of 4.1-4.0 inches. We all know how critical that tenth of an inch difference is between high and low power.

I'll take a good old Nikon Monarch Gold, Bushnell Elite 4200 or Leupold VX-III over ANY euro scope.

Let me know if you want to buy any metal windage caps for your Zeiss.
 
 
Old 07-16-2004, 06:13 PM   #24
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 16
Best Optics for Big Bores

ranburr:

Here's the specs on the Nikon Monarch Gold 1.5-6X42. It clearly states eye relief to be 4.1-4.0" You were right!

http://www.nikonusa.com/template.php?ca ... uctNr=6615

That tenth of an inch difference in eye relief between 1.5 and 6 power is bothering me so much, I may just have to go out and buy a Zeiss (just kidding).
 
Old 07-16-2004, 07:13 PM   #25
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 10
Dear Digler, hope you are having a wonderful day. Now, I cannot say why Zeiss does the plastic cap thing. I am sure that it is a business decision that engineering agreed would not cause a problem. You might want to ask glock why they went cheap with a plastic frame. The Bushnell Elite is still the only scope with 95% light transmission all the way through the scope. The others are not measuring transmission through every lense, hence how Leupold will occasionally advertise 98% light transmission. The Euros don't advertise the exagerated transmission ratings. I cannot speak for the original Conquest scopes. The ones that have been in production in recent years go through the .375 simulation before ever leaving the factory (a number of companies do this test). At any rate, point of impact stays the same. The most recent Outdoor Life test did include BSA and I did exagerate a little, they gave a terrible scope a good rating. I think that if you actually check the Nikon for yourself you will see that a constant 4" is an exaggeration. Finally, I have owned most all the scopes that we have discussed and they are not bad scopes. But the euros are the top of the food chain. I am just curious as to how many you have actually used on a regular basis out hunting, at the range, etc. I get the impression that you have never owned any of the better euro offerings.

Hugs and Kisses

ranburr
 
Old 07-16-2004, 09:21 PM   #26
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 16
Best Optics for Big Bores

ranburr:

Thanks. Hope you are having a wonderful day too.

Nikon states "Ultra Clearcoat System for 95% light transmission"

http://www.nikondownload.com/products.a ... 66&pid=211

Bushnell does state 95% transmission through the scope. Correct again, sir.

Leupold states "Some of the new VX-III riflescopes have measured as high as 98 percent TOTAL light transmission, which means you’ll get brightness and clarity like you’ve never seen before."

http://www.leupold.com/products/VX-III_ ... uction.htm

Their LPS Series boasts a 99.7% transmission value for each lens (multiply .997 times .997 times .997 times .997 and you'll be close to total)

Burris states 95% with their Fullfield II (note, not their high-end series)

http://www.burriscompany.com/fullfield.html

Regarding your "You might want to ask Glock why they went cheap with a plastic frame." No, I wouldn't really care, because they are produced for under $90 and I wouldn't own one. I'm a Sig man.

I have owned and used the Kahles, because it is a good, solid scope for the money. I have considered the purchase of the IOR Valdada in 2.5-10X42, but because they would not respond to my REPEATED e-mails asking for light transmission specs, I decided on the Nikon Monarch Gold.

I have used Swarovskis. Nice, bright and light weight, but priced at least twice what they're worth, for the conspicuous consumer.

My collection includes lots of Burris', lots of Leupolds, 1970's era Redfields, lots of Baush&Lomb/Bushnells, Nikons and a single Kahles.

So, again I ask you to find ONE spec. that details any euro scope that states 95% or better light transmission. And explain to me again how "Leupold and Burris don't compare to the European optics." Maybe you meant price wise they don't compare?
 
Old 07-17-2004, 06:22 PM   #27
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 10
Digler, you are obviously someone that places a lot of emphasis on spec sheets and articles that you have read. Keep in mind that these companies write their own spec sheets and there are a lot of ways to fudge the specs. Secondly, articles are pretty much worthless for most anything other than fun. Reason being publications make their real money on advertising dollars and the guys writing these articles have personal sponsorships with the companies that they evaluate. Finally, for the right amount of money, I can get a good review in most any publication. If you are happy with second tier product, good for you. But don't chastise everyone else who wants something better.

ranburr
 
Old 07-17-2004, 07:05 PM   #28
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 16
Best Optics for Big Bores

ranburr:

I'm not chastising anyone.

I'm just asking YOU to back up your "expert" statements.

Do you really think Leupold, Burris, Nikon and Bushnell would sacrifice their credibility by purposely misrepresenting their products? All of the light transmission specs I provided are direct from the manufacturers' web sites. They are not biased ads or theory from some writer.

So, the request still remains unfilled. I ask you to find ONE spec. that details any euro scope that states 95% or better light transmission.

YOU were the one claiming that nothing beats the Euro scopes.

And again, let me know if you need any metal windage caps for your Zeiss Conquest.
 
Old 07-17-2004, 07:13 PM   #29
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 16
Best Optics for Big Bores

ranburr:

Here is one of your previous posts.

I'm asking you to prove your "expert" beliefs.

Quote:
I have six Zeiss Conquest, all are 3-9x40. Excellent scopes for the money. The difference between these scopes and more expensive Zeiss scopes lies primarily in the coatings used. The conquest line is very comporable to the Kahles 1" American line. The Kahles might be slightly better, but not enough to offset the difference in price. Swarovski is worth the extra money if you can afford it, but the higher end Zeiss are evey bit as good. The Conquest line is the best bang for the buck and is much better than say Leupold or Burris.

ranburr
 
Old 07-17-2004, 09:55 PM   #30
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 10
Digler, I appreciate you thinking that I am an "Expert". I don't claim to be one, but I do claim to have been fortuneate enough to own and use some of the better scopes out there. Do I believe that A manufacturer would use misleading advertising that favored their products; of course I do. WHat rock have you been living under? This happens in every industry and every market in the world. It is kind of like Ford vs Chevy vs Dodge trucks. They all claim to be tops in towing capacity. Under certain situations, each can legitimately make that claim. What you apparently do not understand is that just because a scope has a 95% light transmission rating (only Bushnell Elite) that is in a controlled test environment. That does not neccesarily mean that the human eye will see best with it in low light situations. That is when your polishing grinding and especially coatings come into play. Apparently you do not have enough experience on the subject to understand this basic principle. We don't live next door to one another so I cannot show you the difference. But try this, get a Leupold VXIII and a one of the Euro the same size and power rating and use them side by side. Not in a store. Focus on a branch or a fence post or whatever. See which one appears brighter to your eye and which one you can see out of the longest after the sun goes down. It will be the euro. The Leupold is a good scope, but only the LPS rivals the euros and unfortuneately you get a 1" guts inside a 30mm tube and it cost as much as a true 30mm euro. I have a great idea, why don't you prove me wrong.

ranburr
 
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