zeiss or nightforce

Discussion in 'Long Range Scopes and Other Optics' started by DSMITH1651, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. DSMITH1651

    DSMITH1651 Well-Known Member

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    What has better glass a ziess conquest hd5 5-25 x 50mm or an night force nxs 5.5-22 x50. I like both scopes I like the z800 retical better then the comparable night force but I like the night force zero stop better and there is nightforces rep for long range. The conquest is 1150 +160 +shipping to have target turrents installed , the nightforce is 600 or so more but that's not the end of the world.
    What one to get for hunting
    Duane
     
  2. Sully2

    Sully2 Well-Known Member

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    To ME...for my eyes....nightforce scopes have FARRRR too busy a reticle. Buy the time I figured out what set of wires to use...the animal would have died of old age
     

  3. bruce_ventura

    bruce_ventura Well-Known Member

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    In this case, I think you get what you pay for. NXS and HD5 scopes use a fundamentally different objective lens design.

    HD5 scopes use a simple doublet objective lens, which starts to exhibit noticeable image blur when the elevation or windage adjustment from center exceeds about 25 MOA. Whether or not you notice the image blur depends on the bore sight alignment of the rings to the rifle bore for your rifle, and the elevation you need for your load and target range. The 5-25X scope has a max +/-36.4 MOA internal adjustment range, so it's possible to experience a degraded image when shooting long range.

    NXS scopes use a more expensive triplet objective lens that exhibits minimal image blur (good resolution) at large elevation/windage adjustment (>25 MOA). The 5.5-22X scope allows a large +/-58.3 MOA internal adjustment range, which is probably why Nightforce used a better objective lens design.

    Which scope you need depends in part on the max elevation and windage adjustment that you expect to use. Obviously, reticle selection, turret design, weight, warranty, etc., may also be important factors for you
     
  4. lightwind

    lightwind Well-Known Member

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    Bruce: that is an interesting observation. You mention dialing, but is the aberration due to looking at the edge of the view or only when dialing? The reason I ask is that with a BDR you are not dialing, but rather looking at a position of dead center for the scope.
     
  5. gilmillan1

    gilmillan1 Well-Known Member

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    I will do you a favor. If money is no concern, go for the nightforce. It will offer you more characteristics for long range than the HD5. I have had both of them, and I would never trade my NXS for an HD5. The HD5 is a great improvement among the conquest line. However, the NXS is in another level. The nightforce will offer you most of the characteristics you need in a scope for long range shooting. The NXS has better tracking, and hold its zero much better. You can bang the NXS and it will not lose its zero.

    Go for the NXS!!!
     
  6. bruce_ventura

    bruce_ventura Well-Known Member

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    Not an easy question to answer, but I'll try. Optical aberrations that cause image blur can occur in either the objective lens, the erector tube optics, the eyepiece, or all three. The optical aberrations that result from the objective occur when the target is more than about 25 MOA away from the scope tube axis. Such large elevation adjustments can easily be needed for long range targets (>800 yds), especially if there is a 5-15 MOA bore sight misalignment between the scope rings and the rifle bore in the wrong direction. Image blur resulting from this aberration is more apparent when the magnification is high, which is usually also the case for long range targets. It’s a limitation with doublet objective lenses that triplet lenses are able to overcome.

    The field of view is what your eye sees when you look into the scope and scan from top to bottom. This field of view is determined by the erector optics. There are other aberrations that occur in the erector tube optics at the edge of the erector field of view, but they are usually more apparent when the magnification is low, which is usually the case for short range targets. These aberrations add to the aberrations from the objective, especially for intermediate magnifications that are sometimes used with FFP scopes to allow the entire reticle to be viewed for long range shots.

    BDC reticles are not typically used for really long range targets. They are useful for up to about 10-15 MOA of bullet drop, which corresponds to about 600-750 yds in target range. Above that range, BDC reticles are difficult to make accurate at all ranges simultaneously. At these low elevation adjustments or hold-offs, optical aberrations in either the objective lens or the erector tube optics are typically too small to notice.