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Tactical Scope Reviews?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by TooTaxed, Nov 7, 2006.

  1. TooTaxed

    TooTaxed Well-Known Member

    I want to get a quality tactical scope to mount on a .308 Savage 10 or Rem 700 tactical rifle, but would like to see a comparative review of the models. I'd like finger-adjustable target knobs, side focus, and preferably lighted reticules. My sniper buddies at Fort Benning use Leopold, IOR, and Zeiss models. Is there somewhere an objective review of the top tactical scopes?:confused:
  2. cheaptrick

    cheaptrick Well-Known Member

  3. goalie

    goalie Well-Known Member

    Actually, Z. Smith has posted a sticky in this forum that deals with a comparision (and explanation) of long-range optics.

    It is well-written and accurate.
  4. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    Here is the link: http://demigod.org/optics

    For the purposes described in that article, I only discuss (at the end) first focal plane scope which meet certain criteria. The unfortunate side effect of that selection is that there are no choices less than about $1500. The best "practical" long-range/precision rifle scopes period come from Schmidt & Bender, and US Optics, which start around $1800 used and head up towards $2700.

    If it must be under $1000, I strongly recommend the Leupold Mark 4, 3-5.10x40mm or 4.5-14x50mm scopes with the M1 knobs, with the reticle of your choice (TMR or Mildot are good choices in Leupold scopes). If budget is even more of an issue, I strongly recommend finding one used instead of changing brands. At this price point, you get a second focal plane reticle, non-zero-stop knobs, and good but not great glass.
  5. TooTaxed

    TooTaxed Well-Known Member

    GREAT article on tactical scopes, ZAK!!!:D

    Do you have similar articles on stocks and rifles (I'm still focusing on .308)?
  6. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member


    Glad it's helpful.

    The answers for a 308 rifle for long-range shooting are pretty straight forward, and are mainly determined by your price point.

    1. Best choice at "cheapest": Savage 10FP
    2. Best choice at "under $1000 for rifle": Remington 700 PSS
    3. Best choice for under $3500: AI-AE, SAKO TRG-22, or custom from GAP, KMW, Surgeon
    4. Best choice at any price: AI-AW

    For the majority of recreational people, #2 will serve their purposes, and will shoot well enough from the factory to go to 1000 yards, or hit dimes at 100 yards. Make sure to get good bases and rings (usually means Badger).

    For stock, just make sure it fits you. This means that you can get a solid, stable position with no muscle tension, that you can operate the rifle (trigger, bolt) and aim it comfortably without stress. Most people will be able to configure a McMillan A5, AI-AICS "stock", or TRG stock to fit them well. Most standard bolt rifle stocks have a cheek "comb" that is way too low for scope use.

    hope this helps..
  7. polarcow

    polarcow New Member

    As far as scopes go I wouldn't forget about Hensoldt. They are still working on the exact setup as far as who will officially import (zeiss or hensoldt) these but I have one on the way and can give details as to their contacts in the US if anyone is interested. The one I will have is a 3-12x56 second focal plane with 137+ MOA of adjustment. They make 3-12 and 4-16 in both first and second focal plane as well as 6-24x56 SFP and 6-24x72 SFP. They also have the 3-12x56ssg-p with internal BDC indicator. They are at a similar price as s&b although some models may be cheaper and they have similar or greater adjustment ranges than s&b. Including a link to pics. Have not seen a review of them yet but perhaps SWAT or some other mag. will do one when they become officially available. Food for thought. Also, someone over at sniper's hide forum has indicated a shadowing problem with a s&b 5-25 although it is not clear if this is a malfunction or to be expected from this model.


  8. Sniper4Life

    Sniper4Life Well-Known Member

    What about the Barska SWAT scope? You can get it in varying magnifications and it is resonably priced. My friend sold his leapold Mark IV to get one. I have one on my savage .308 and I need nothing better. The SWAT scope I feel is made for the .308 because the mildot and the turrets adjustment comes out exactly to where you want it. And with a total of 110 veritcal clicks from the center it is good to a 1,000 yards. And it does have the side focus. Mine is the 6-24x-44 and It was more clear 10min before night than a brand new leapold 50mm. Enough said. Here is a link to where I got mine

    Enjoy, SWAT SCOPE:evil:
  9. hksw

    hksw Well-Known Member

    I also have a Barska SWAT, 10-40X. IMO, a good attempt, the Chinese are making strides in optics. However, they are still way short, IMO.

    There are Leupold Mark IV counterfits floating around nowadays. I've only seen them in photos on the internet until attending a gun show about 2 or 3 months ago (Medina, OH). One guy had one on the counter. From a distance and without picking it up, the scope itself appeared to be a Leupold Mark IV 16X. What gave it away right away for me without picking it up were the lens covers. They were identical to the Barsaka SWAT covers, who I am sure uses the same source as the counterfit for scopes and covers. I was happy to finally be able to examine one to see how they do. I had asked to pick it up to examined it and was allowed permission. Optically, it had the same problem as the Barska. The image size is smaller than the domestic brands (even the ones who source out internationally) and the Europeans. Could not discern any distortion and tell how sharp the image is as it was indoors and the distances viewed were short and the building was well lit. What was really a laugh was the click adjustments of the turrets. The amount of play was to the point where it did not click until you reached the next hash mark. The worst I've ever experienced. There was no marking indicating country of manufacture.
  10. pruav

    pruav Active Member

  11. MJ

    MJ Well-Known Member

    $400 rifle>$400 scope



    Five shot cold groups from three days.




  12. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    The Nightforce is probably the best choice under $1500
  13. JTW Jr.

    JTW Jr. Well-Known Member

    MJ..is that a Super Sniper ? if so what power ? 10 , 16 or 20x ?
  14. MJ

    MJ Well-Known Member



    It was shooting into 3" today at 300 yards. When I was done and snapped the scope off and tossed it into the bag the knowitall's fell off the fence.:neener:


  15. JTW Jr.

    JTW Jr. Well-Known Member

    running the rear focus 10x on my AR.. and have to call Monday to get a 10x ( maybe a 16x ) for my Tikka 308


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