A while back I posted asking about what some of the LR hunters on here were using for a spotting scope. For right now my needs aren't in the 2000 dollar Zeiss range. that is for now though. My needs at the current time were good glass, light weight, compact. From my earlier post the Nikon ED50 kept coming up. For some reason I was fighting it. Mostly due to the 13x-30x power. Needless to say I was hesitant. So I called Scott over at Liberty Optics and asked about Vortex Spotting scopes. I was asking if he could get in the Impact which is a 200 dollar scope. I figured no need for 600 when I will spend 2k later. Needless to say my mind got change rather quickly after talking about it with Scott. I must say I really appreciate his honestly rather than him just trying to sell me a crappy scope I am not going to find useful. One of the other spotters I asked about was a Brunton. I have had their big spotter in the past and really liked it. I have looked through their 50mm objective model before and thought it was just ok and not worth a 500 dollar price tag. So coming around full circle I decided to bite the bullet on the Nikon ED50. Now the pictures of it on the website don't do this thing justice. So I called my wife at home and asked if there was a package for me. Sure enough showed up yesterday like Scott said it would. I asked her how it looked. Not sure if she completely understood what I was asking but answered well enough. Luckily I got to duck out early from work to help a buddy with a early elk tag here in Idaho. This allowed me about 20 minutes or so to play with the new toy. Now here is why I stated pictures don't do it justice. Scott made the comment that it looks like a toy but is a great spotter. Without seeing it I couldn't fully appreciate what he meant. Sure enough though my first comment to my wife was "It looks like a toy". I try not to pre-judge things but I had the initial thoughts that this thing is just not going to be worth the money I spent for it. Boy was I WRONG! I can't say that I have a great eye or a super trained eye as far as optics goes, but man looking through the toy flat impressed me. Yesterday it was really overcast and rainy so I thought this might be a good test for the 50mm objective. Off my back porch I was looking at stuff 200-300 yards away, not to far. Man the clearity and color rendition was amazing. I couldn't believe it. The Brunton equivalent couldn't hold a candle to this scope. For a backpacking scope I have never looked through anything like it. This morning I was able to do some more testing at half mile or so. I didn't get out in as low of light as I wanted to, but man I am flat blown away at what this thing can do. The 13x-30x complements the 50mm perfectly. If they would have gone any higher they would have needed a bigger objective. I will keep playing with it this fall as I have a few more hunts left. So hopefully I will have more thoughts on this scope after Oct or Nov. But anyone looking for a mid level scope I would not hesitate to recommend this to anybody. I want to say thanks as well to Scott from Liberty. I definately appreciate the blunt advice on all the optics I was thinking of, I couldn't be happier with the Nikon. What a great guy to talk to about optics. Thanks again. More later.