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Spotting Scope vs Binoculars at the range

Discussion in 'Shooting Gear and Storage' started by *NOVA*, Jun 27, 2013.


At the range, do you use a Spotting Scope or Binoculars?

Poll closed Jul 27, 2013.
  1. Nikon Binos

    0 vote(s)
  2. Leupold Spotting Scope

    8 vote(s)
  3. Other quality brand or optical device

    4 vote(s)
  1. *NOVA*

    *NOVA* New Member

    Jun 15, 2011
    Reston, VA
    Doing a little math here and I realize a 16x50 power Nikon Extreme Action bino will make a 200 yard target look like it is 37.5 feet away. A Leupold 20-60x80 SX-1 Ventana Spotting scope costs 2.3 times as much money, but theoretically at max zoom that same 200 yard target will appear to be ten feet away, so I should be able to clearly see bullet holes very easily.

    I do not hunt, but I realize a good bino or spotting scope would be smart to include in a bugout bag - also good for nature walks and sports events.

    Which would you choose if the primary purpose is for a range where you need to see targets 600 feet distant and eventually maybe even targets at 900 and 1,200 feet? Binoculars or spotting scope? And do you have a favorite brand other than Nikon or Leupold? Price?
  2. loose noose

    loose noose Senior Member

    Feb 22, 2012
    Southern Nevada
    I use a Redfield Rampage Spotting Scope, 20-60X60mm, and it brings up the smallest bullet holes (.223) out to 200+ yards on paper. I've used it for hunting pronghorn in Wyoming, as well as Nikon Trailblazer pair of binoculars, for hunting deer.

    I've found both to be reasonably priced with excellent quality as far as clarity goes. Neither is very heavy so it doesn't bog me down.

    At the range I definitely use the spotting scope.
  3. taliv

    taliv Moderator

    Oct 23, 2004
    in the field, vortex HD models are OUTSTANDING value bino and monoculars.

    if you want to spend a bunch of bucks, the image stabilized ones are pretty sweet.

    if you are longer range hunting, then you need a laser range finder and may as well get one device that does both to save some weight.

    for the range, spotting scopes are much better.
  4. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Sep 17, 2007
    Eastern KS
    Anything over 10x cannot be hand held steady enough to take advantage of the power.
    Not only is the target magnified 16x, but so are your body shakes & heart beat.

    If you go binocs, plan on mounting them on a spotting scope tri-pod.

  5. wankerjake

    wankerjake Participating Member

    Apr 6, 2008
    Flagstaff AZ
    Past 200 yards for sure a spotting scope. Either one will have to be on a tripod to hold steady enough to see holes in the target at 200+ yards.

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