The highest power scope I own is an ATACR 4-16x 44mm on my .300win, but for 44 years I carried a rem. 700 in .270 caliber. My only optic during that 44 year time frame was a 4x Leatherwood ARTII, also 44mm, or maybe 42mm-don't recall offhand. In that time frame I've taken truckloads of deer and elk, but I never had any trouble being able to see to shoot and kill what I was hunting in any light condition. The optics are so good on that scope that I've never needed or wanted more power, or bigger objective. My question to those of you with the big 56-60mm objectives, at say 6-25X or more is why do you think you need that much power? Ok, a little background, I worked at a facility for years as an Optical Parts Inspector. We made optics for all branches of the US military, and I carried the appropriate D.O.D. clearance to do this work. My job was to measure all properties associated with any optic, including prisms and infrared/other optics, and coating chart analysis, and to insure it met the required specs. Later, I moved into an area where I was involved with final/non-destructive test of laser range and FLIR systems. My point is that I know a little bit about optics, but the question was actually spawned by the fact that of all of the world's leading military snipers, I can find no higher power used than 15-16x, in calibers up to and including 50 cal. Granted, special teams may have higher power scopes, but am saying this is apparently the general rule, with most countries at 10x or under.
I will add that what the world's military snipers use had no bearing on my latest 3-15x44 purchase, however. I bought it because it's all I believe I need. Anyways, I have no desire to change anyone's mind, and you won't change mine either. Just curious what you scope you guys hunt with and why? This question is directed at long range and ELR hunting applications, not paper punching-thanks in advance for your thoughts.