Originally Posted by Scot E
...I will be honest, I am not a big swaro scope fan. I love their binos and spotters but their scopes are not as good as they should be especially for the price. Their glass on them is great but their durability and turrets are not. I know many are going to flip a lid when they hear me speak this heresy but look at the names that they are competing with in the $1500 price range. They are not up to the standards of their competition IMO...
As always I would put durability and turret repeatability at the top and glass near the bottom. In today's market it is really hard to get poor glass that will in any way affect your shooting experience or abilities.
That's a pretty hard knock on Swarovski. I haven't heard that before, so I have to call you out and request you back up that statement. I don't have a pony in the race here - just very interested to know why you reached that conclusion (c'mon, you knew it was coming).
Regarding mechanical over optical quality, I agree for PDs and coyotes. Atmospheric turbulence usually limits resolution for PDs. Coyotes are usually called in close and sighted with the naked eye, so not much scope is needed.
For big game and especially deer, however, I would say optical performance should be at least as high a priority as mechanical performance. Targets are difficult to spot, illumination is often marginal, and turbulence is usually low. Good glass can make a difference, especially in the area of glare. Veiling glare reduces image contrast and that means reduced resolution. I'm seeing a wide spread in glare performance among scopes in the $400-1,000 MAP price range. Resolution over the field of view also varies quite a bit.
For a multi-use rifle like this one, I would let the most demanding scenario (in this case deer hunting) drive the scope selection process.