December 13, 2009, 03:29 PM
I need a spotting scope or two for trips to the local range. The two closest places to me have a max range of only 100 yards so doubt I'll need a $700 spotting scope. I shoot mostly 5.56 and 7.62x39.
What's the cheapest I can comfortably (i.e. see the 5.56 holes @ 100 yards) and reliably (i.e. not break) get away with?
I was thinking about the Nikon 16-48x65 ProStaff. But I wonder if even that is a little too much for what I'm using it for.
December 13, 2009, 04:02 PM
Got any Big 5 Sporting Goods stores nearby? They frequently have Barska spotting scopes on sale for ~$100. Yeah, it's a cheapo, but does the job.
December 13, 2009, 04:14 PM
Costco has the Mead Travelview:
Amazon has these:
Barska 25-75 x 75 Spotting Scope - $80.99 new
Over stock has this;
BarskaŽ 20 - 60x60 mm Waterproof Spotting Scope $54.97 new nAmazon.com
December 13, 2009, 04:40 PM
I'd think most anything over $75.00 & under $150.00 would suit your purpose. All you really need to do is see holes in paper at 100 yards, right? I used a cheapie for several years a decade or so ago myself. And when the wind caught the edge of the shooting rug on the bench & flipped it off onto the cold heartless concrete, there was no great loss. In fact, I should pick up another cheapie for just that reason.
December 13, 2009, 04:44 PM
Buying quality glass is never a mistake, but for 100 yard and in you don't need a world class spotting scope. The really cheap ones often won't show .22 bullet holes in the black very well, and some not at all.
December 13, 2009, 04:53 PM
I've been using an El Cheapo telescope from a big-box store for eons. It's nominally 20X to 60X, but clarity ends around 40X. It's plenty good for .22 holes at 100 yards. Heck, the tripod is more valuable than the scope. :)
My preference is the Redfield orange-on-white targets with the one-inch grid.
December 13, 2009, 04:53 PM
I am sure the Nikon is more than you really need, but could serve you well later if you needs became more demanding. You would not be disappointed with it as far as optical quality. It's a Nikon.
This Celestron (http://www.opticsplanet.net/celestron-ultima-65-straight-spotting-scope.html) will do all, and more than, you need, is relatively inexpensive, and is much better than any Barska you might get.
Is the Nikon twice as good? I don't know. I have never looked through that particular Nikon.
December 13, 2009, 04:59 PM
It's nominally 20X to 60X, but clarity ends around 40X. You will notice that in many lesser quality/ money spotting scopes. It is just a matter of the price of good glass.
I would not recommend a very high power in an inexpensive spotting scope simply for that reason. The higher powers are not really useful. (Yea, I know, the Celestron goes to 55, but it isn't a Barska either.) In reality, you will find yourself using less than 50X to 60X when using a spotting scope at short distance anyway.