Head position at higher magnifications

Discussion in 'Long Range Scopes and Other Optics' started by drespecki, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. drespecki

    drespecki Well-Known Member

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    I am having a heck of a time looking for a new scope for my deer hunting rifle.... Right now, I am on the verge of a Zeiss Conquest 4-15x50 but it seems to require precise eye alignment to get a nice full view... I have an old Bushnell Trophy 4 power wide angle that is great to pull up and get an easy picture... Is there a certain brand or model in the $600-1800 range that is not so critical about eye alignment?
    Maybe I am being too picky or my old eyes are playing games on me?
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2011
  2. Poodleshooter1

    Poodleshooter1 Member

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    Re: Full field of view issues

    Are you comparing both optics on 4x to keep things even?

    At 15x, you have a 3.33mm exit pupil on that optic. At 4x, you'll have a 12.5mm exit pupil. Compare the difference in area between a circle with a 3.33mm diameter and one with a 12.5mm diameter, and you'll see why you can't move your eye around as much at 15x without the view winking or crescenting out.

    Or is the issue related to eye relief (back and forth movement)?

    Usually a scope with low magnification and longer eye relief will seem to have a better eyebox. It varies with construction between brands, though I'm not sure how to quantify that.
     

  3. drespecki

    drespecki Well-Known Member

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    Re: Full field of view issues

    I guess I am searching for particular brands or models that are more forgiving at medium to high magnifications (no scope shadowing on the edges beginning if you are not set dead nuts straight on with your head position)
     
  4. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Re: Full field of view issues

    The higher the magnification the more the head position becomes critical.

    When you are shooting prone the higher power you can use because you can adjust the cheek
    piece and the adjustable but stock.

    But for general hunting (All positions) you need to limit the power. I like 4.5 x 14 because it is
    low enough to take running shots. but high enough to take long shots.

    I recomend setting the eye relief at Max power and the lower power will be more forgiving.

    There is not a lot of difference in scopes (Normally they have 3'' to 4'' at max power)
    and go down from there.

    The proper height scope rings can also have an effect on this problem.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  5. drespecki

    drespecki Well-Known Member

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    I have read that for instance on the Hensoldt 4-16x56 (I know it is a LOT more $$$ ) the eyebox or head position (not necessarily the eye relief) is out standing and very noticeable.... Really hoping the Viper PST is good or better than good. The Swarovski habicht ph that I had really gave me fits and I had to be in the 'perfect' position to even see through it..
     
  6. Jon A

    Jon A Well-Known Member

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    Probably the most friendly eye relief/eye position, "eyebox" 20X+ scope I've used is the SS 5-20X50HD. A good 4" eye relief at 20X and very friendly. I haven't played with a Hensoldt yet. Also note any scope 20X and up is going to be more picky in head position than when it's turned down to 16X or so. So it's not always a fair comparison between 20X+ scopes and those that top out in the 15X range as the lower powered scopes have a natural advantage. Anyway....

    The Weaver 4-20 was pretty good. It also has long eye relief at 20X. I assume the 3-15 is similar but haven't played with one.

    The PST 6-24 is OK, but not as good as the SS. Much like Leupolds, its eye relief is reduced quite a bit at high power. Naturally the 4-16 seems more friendly at max power.

    The S&B 3-12 is pretty good on 12X but that's not as high power as the others so it's not quite a fair comparison.

    The Premier 3-15 is pretty decent. Not as good as the SS 5-20 on 15X, but perfectly usable.

    The 3.5-18X50 IOR is really good, especially compared with older IOR's such as the 3-18X42. Longer and more friendly eye relief.

    The March 3-24 is pretty good through the middle ranges. Eye relief is long and stays EXACTLY constant from 3-24X which is impressive. But naturally when cranked all the way to 24X the exit pupil gets pretty small and it gets picky, especially in low light situations. Of course if you turn it down to 15X to be a more fair comparison with the lower powered scopes it does pretty well. It's also a bit pickier on 3X than some of the others to get a sharp view from edge to edge, though it's pretty easy to get a "point and shoot" view which may be all you need on 3X. Over 4-5X that effect goes away.

    Those are just my personal impressions on some scopes off the top of my head. If this is a feature that is particularly important to you and you want a high powered scope, my advice is to go with the 5-20HD SS as it's really one of the best in this area, especially at high power and especially in that price range. And it's probably the best LRH scope for the money overall available right now with the $999 group buy.