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Leica Optics Worth of the $?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by CmdrSlander, Dec 8, 2012.

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  1. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Oh, BTW, took my last deer with iron sights on an SKS. Seems the eyes still work good 'nuf. :D I guess I'm not a serious hunter, though. I don't know that I've ever met a truly serious hunter, though, that wasn't a guide, perhaps. I mean if you're that serious, you'll drop your day job and do it full time, right?

    Is anyone more serious a hunter on this board than Caribou who posts in the hunting board? If he don't kill it, he don't eat, lives up in the arctic in a native American community. He hunts with an iron sighted Mosin Nagant and surplus ammo. :D He's the most serious hunter I can think of.
     
  2. hq

    hq Member

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    Twisting the analogy of "serious" to meaning an absolute amount of money spent, instead of a mindset of not cutting corners where better options are within reach financially, sounds like an attempt to intentionally misunderstand what has been said. I'm sorry but I'll have to ask you whether you're doing this on purpose and what, exactly and in detail, is the point you're trying to make?
     
  3. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Define "serious". To me, that's when you don't kill, you don't eat. That's the ultimate "serious".

    By your definition, "serious" has to do with hardware. I can be just as serious and swear off scopes, only use irons because to me, that's SERIOUS. Or, hell, some only use a bow. I met one serious fellow in New Mexico that dresses up in buckskins and hunts with his .58 caliber flinter every season. That's pretty serious. He's really into the black powder thing. :D That guy doesn't even LOOK at optics catalogs.
     
  4. hq

    hq Member

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    You still haven't answered my question about your point. As you, and you alone, limited the definition of "serious" to equipment, I'd be quite interested to hear the logic behind projecting that assumption of yours to others who in no way have implied or expressed anything like that. Especially when this thread is about rifle scopes. Don't be offended, I'm just questioning your wild imagination and trying to figure out your motives of bringing up unrelated subjects and your own assumptions to a scope discussion.

    Now we're already in bowhunting and an ascetic hunter-gatherer acquaintance of yours. What next, asking for a psychologist's certificate that someone is a "serious" person and can prove it? Please, stick to the subject and if you have assumptions that are as far-fetched as the ones we've seen thus far, just ask and they'll be easily corrected.
     
  5. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Member

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    "Seriousness" and socio-economic status are mutually exclusive. For one can be extremely serious about hunting inherited land with an inherited rifle and not have two nickels to rub together. Likewise, you can have a $6000 Dakota model 10 with all the options and a $2000 Schmidt & Bender and not be serious at all. The most "serious" hunter I know spends tens upon tens of thousands of dollars a year on hunting and is able to afford whatever he wants but it was not always so. Far as I know he has only two rifles and they wear Zeiss glass but I remember when it was an old used Remington with a Redfield.
     
  6. .333 Nitro Express

    .333 Nitro Express Member

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    DM,

    Please don't misunderstand my tone, because I wasn't trying to be polemical at all. :) I know Internet communication can lend itself to misunderstandings, but yes, I did read your post--I *always* read the posts to which I reply. You wrote:

    Anything i can see with my GOOD bino's, i can shoot with my Zeiss, can't say that for any other brand of scope that i own. That's important to those of us that take our hunting seriously!

    Put another way, I just wanted to emphasize that if hunter X shows up at camp with a Leupold, he shouldn't necessarily be taken to be a perennial amateur or at least someone who's automatically handicapped in normal American big-game hunting situations. That's all.

    Whether or not that's what you meant (and I don't believe it was--I usually very much agree with your posts!), this is the gist of the few posts after mine: unless you get a Zeiss-quality scope, you are selling yourself short. I really don't think to be the case.

    And point taken about the Conquest. I've been thinking about getting one.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2012
  7. DM~

    DM~ Member

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    Thanks for clearing that up.... I never ment to snub anyone just because they don't have a lot of money... Truth is, i don't have a lot of money either, i've always just took my hunting so seriously that i've been willing to go without "other" things, so i could have good hunting gear.

    There was a time in my life when, if i didn't shoot something to eat, there wasn't much to eat! I took my hunting pretty serious those days! lol

    DM
     
  8. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    I lived off the land for a while in college since I was hungry and had the opportunities. I did it because I was broke and my parents were working stiffs, lower middle class. I worked my way through school without loans or other assistance.

    I remember hunting with a .22 because shotgun shells cost too much. I certainly couldn't or wouldn't put my whole budged into something as trivial as optics! I was and am good with that .22, can hit a running cottontail most times with enough lead time. One summer in south Texas, there were lots of rabbits and I ate a few rattlers. No deer, out of season, but I killed one with a Savage 340 and an old Weaver steel tubed k4 that fall. That got me through the winter. I didn't even own a par of binos at the time, couldn't afford the Tascos at Gibson's Discount. :rolleyes:

    If one can buy Leica optics, one can buy a lot of big macs instead. :rolleyes: That kinda money could have paid for a semester back then. LOL
     
  9. buckhorn_cortez

    buckhorn_cortez Member

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    There are three things that Leica excels at in optics: optical design, glass formulations, and coatings. Leica scopes are designed to have the highest light transmission possible and the best contrast for the front objective size of the scope. You can see the difference in the scope if you know how to evaluate optics.

    However, where Leica scopes fall down in my estimation is in a poor choice of reticles, lack of magnification range, and small front elements. In high end scopes, Zeiss, Swarovski, Schmidt & Bender, US Optics are equal; and IOR, Kahles, and a couple of others are within a hair of Leica.

    While Leica no longer makes their own glass, they do have the glass custom formulated to their specifications and do all of their own lens grinding and coating.

    Leica learned a long time ago, that higher contrast in optics gives a better impression of sharpness and will trade off pure modulation transfer function (MTF) performance for better contrast.

    You can see this in their camera lenses where MTF performance on a specific lens may not be as good as another manufacturer's lens, but the contrast is far better. The ability to render microcontrast changes makes the image appear sharper because the edges are better defined.

    In direct optical goods (scopes and binoculars) this translates into giving the image a 3D look which goes beyond exit pupil size and twilight factor.

    Are they worth the money? Yes, if you can find the magnification range and reticle you want. The limiting factor with Leica scopes is that the front element on their scope will often not be as large as another manufacturer's scope and this reduces the brightness under dim lighting conditions. As an example, many of their scopes have a 42mm front element while you find 50mm or 56mm front elements on other manufacturers scopes.
     
  10. jehu

    jehu Member

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    I totaly agree with "Buy the best you can afford" when it comes to optics wether it is Bino's or scopes. I think that the best value in mid range priced scopes are Burris scopes and my rimfires and some AR's wear them now, but when it comes to killing Ground Hogs up to 300yds or White tails at the last minutes of shooting time and very low light the Alpha glass scopes don't make you a better shot, they enable you to make a better shot.
     
  11. Ken70

    Ken70 Member

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    From what I've read in the Gun mags and Gun Digest, low light conditions are really where the expensive glass makes a difference. But I don't shoot then, or go on a $30K safari. If I did, I'd buy the boutique glass. But I have 8 rifles, and I can't afford $5000 to scope them. So it's Simmons, Tasco, and NcStar. Another thing is the big name companies that buy the budget scope makers. If they made absolute trash, they wouldn't being paying multiple millions to buy them. Think about that.....
     
  12. buckhorn_cortez

    buckhorn_cortez Member

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    I did. I think if they wanted a low cost line without their name on it, they'd buy whatever fits the market niche they're after regardless of whether it's "trash" or not. They're trying to sell into a market that they don't have market penetration and if they can find a manufacturer with a significant market share - that's what they're after.
     
  13. hq

    hq Member

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    Price is a major selling point. There's a lot more money to be made by selling hundreds of thousands of $100 scopes than selling just thousands of $1000 scopes. Profit margin is also much higher, the cost of manufacturing a whole cheap scope is lower than making just one lens (out of typically 8-14) for a top quality scope.

    The sweet spot for a discerning consumer is somewhere in between. $300 buys a very good scope these days, even better than could be bought at any price 30-40 years ago. As long as you buy quality, not features.
     
  14. WALKERs210

    WALKERs210 Member

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    My son is a tech for that company. Even with his employee discount I still can't afford to buy the things I want from Leica. From what my son says about Leica, they don't cut corners, just about everyone from home office thinks Americans are dumb as heck and have no respect for us at all. Some of the optic tools they manufacturer can measure the hair on a fleas back from the next state. But for me iron sights, or a cheap Tasco still works great.
     
  15. Ken70

    Ken70 Member

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    It's price with some level of quality. If they were pushing a $100 scope that falls apart within the first mag, won't focus, won't adjust to get the bullets on paper, even with a low price they will rapidly go out of business. There has to be a given level of quality, suitable for the purpose, or it goes away. Tasco and Simmons and the rest have been around for well over 20 years, if you make what the glass weenies claim is crap, that just don't happen. Another thing to consider is one of the cheaper companies buying the boutique glass and reverse engineering it. The details of construction are pretty obvious; it's the makeup of the glass and coatings that are the hard things to figure out. But they can test their scopes against something that costs 5 times as much and see how it does. It's not impossible to make a scope that doesn't cost a fortune and still works. The DIY telescope market has disappeared because you can buy a ground lens that is quite good, at a good price.
     
  16. R H Clark

    R H Clark Member

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    I will not buy the low end Simmons,Bushnell,Tasco or anything made by NCStar,Barska,or BSA.

    On the other hand,I don't have to spend $1000 for a nice scope.$400-$500 will buy a nice hunting scope.$300 will also but you have to do your homework and look for deals.

    I hear guys say all the time that they can't spend more than $100 on a scope and brag how their blister pack special is (just as good).Most of the time thoes same guys spend money on tobacco,beer,and burgers.I learned a long time ago that $15-$20 a week would buy a nice scope every year.I just don't do the tobacco,beer,or burgers.
     
  17. MCMXI

    MCMXI Member

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    Low light and poor contrast can occur at any time of the day, particularly in the winter months, so I don't put much stock in the "good glass is only good after the sun goes down" argument. Good glass is good at any time of the day.
     
  18. hq

    hq Member

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    Has anyone wondered why the majority of the scope threads are started this time of the year, when days are getting shorter and it's darker, instead of earlier in the fall at the beginning of the hunting season? Christmas could explain something if people were buying them for presents and not for themselves, but there hasn't been much talk about presents lately. :)
     
  19. DM~

    DM~ Member

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    Same here, never drank, smoked or wasted money on some of those "pretty boy" expensive haircuts you see. ha ha ha OR you see guys with $50,000.00 pickups going to the store, and they wonder why they can't afford a good scope????

    Then you have those guys that whine they don't have money for a drcent scope, but they have 5 or more rifles... lol I'd rather have 2 rifles with really good glass than 5 with cheapo glass on them.

    It's the American way, buy MORE instead of really good!

    OK, go ahead and kick me now... lol

    DM
     
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