ffp or sfp?

Discussion in 'Long Range Scopes and Other Optics' started by rjackh, Dec 15, 2009.

  1. rjackh

    rjackh Well-Known Member

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    im doing a build and the gun needs to double for long range target and normal hunting. i always thought ffp would be the way to go, but i just thought about this: if im gonna shoot a deer thats not very far off and i want the scope on low power, say 3 or 4, i dont want to feel like im looking down a damn tunnel at the animal... in this instance, id rather have a sfp scope where the reticle (appears to) stay the same and i can zoom out for close shots and just use the X. i dont know where i can try out both ffp and sfp scopes to tell, anybody have input on this? thanks
     
  2. Buffalobob

    Buffalobob Well-Known Member

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    In general terms a FFP scope is simpler to use for holdover techniques where one uses the reticle hash marks as holdover points that have been calibrated to a given load. The SFP scopes are simply more traditional and must be set on a certain power to be used as a holdover scope. The normal method of using a SFP will be to dial the turrets such that the crosshair changes. Both scopes can be used to range animals with practice but the SFP requires once again an additional step.

    My advice is first decide what technique you wish to use to shoot longrange and then buy a scope appropriate to that technique.

    Second and unasked for advice is to set each and every rifle up exactly the same way so you do not get confused as to whether you have a 100 yard zero or a 300 yard zero rifle in your hand today and whether you are going to dial up or holdover.
     
  3. rjackh

    rjackh Well-Known Member

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    well the way i see it is when im taking a long shot, i will be on a high magnification no matter if the scope is ffp or sfp. but when im taking a 60 yd shot at a whitetail and i want the scope on low power, i dont want to feel like im looking through a tunnel when i mount the gun for the shot. does that make sense?
     
  4. Bravo 4

    Bravo 4 Well-Known Member

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    Looks like you answered your own question...

    However, it doesn't look like I'm looking down a tunnel in my FFP Falcon. My 3-18 FFP IOR was a different story.
     
  5. Longshot38

    Longshot38 Well-Known Member

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    I've had both and prefer a FFP. I have never felt "as if I'm looking down a tunnel" with a FFP optic. But this is all a matter of personal choice and hunting style. I hunt at distance nearly exclusively and for the brush I have my 30-30 with irons.
     
  6. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Well said BB !!!!!

    Very good advice also.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  7. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    BB summed it up pretty well. Here's my view on it. I zero my rifles 250-300 yds depending on bullet velocity. Any shot out to 400 yds is a no brainer set on low power (in my case 5.5x) Anything more than that and I will usually set the scope to max power (22x) which is what my 2 MOA reticle is calibrated for. If I choose 11 power, the reticle is 1 MOA and the math is easy. In most cases, a long shot will provide ample time to dial up and it only takes a few seconds more to dial. Ranging, doping, checking PDA or charts and getting set up take a lot more time. If you cant get the shot off in time, it's probably not because you didn't have a few seconds to dial. So for me it's a moot point.

    In the case of illuminted reticles, my question is, does the increased size of the reticle on low power in low light have a blinding or washing out effect?

    To each his own preference. I like the SFP.

    Mark
     
  8. Jon A

    Jon A Well-Known Member

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    It is true the reticle getting larger increases the amount of light, but this hasn't been a problem with the FFP illuminated scopes I've owned (Premier, S&B).

    On high power there's an illuminated cross in the center and on low power it pretty much just looks like a dot. However, it's not a problem the way you describe because the illumination systems are good enough that on the lowest setting they're so dim you can barely see them even in complete darkness so washing out is not a problem. You just typically set it a couple notches lower on high power than you do on low power.

    That may not be true with all brands though. For example the NF F1 where the entire reticle illuminates and you can't easily adjust the brightness in the field might not work as well as the above and may suffer from the washing out you describe. I don't know that's the case though--maybe if somebody here owns one they could comment.

    I've got a couple Vortex PST's on order (a 4-16 and 6-24) so it will be interesting to see how well they work. They illuminate more than a small center cross that the Premier and S&B do, but they still only illuminate the thin center lines. And of course the intensity is adjustable so I'll just have to see how dim they are at their dimmest. I'll let you know when they get here. ;)

    As far as FFP vs. SFP for hunting to the OP, I'm pretty sure we already have pages and pages of discussion covering it and that's a lot to retype. Go back and read those threads.

    The short version of my opinion is that if you're actually going to use the reticle for anything in the field, FFP makes life so much simpler. I simply find no reason I'd want a SFP other than cost--and hopefully scopes like the PST are going to make that less and less of an issue.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2009
  9. jonoMT

    jonoMT Well-Known Member

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    I haven't noticed any tunnel effect on the Premier 3-15 @ low mag. The regular Gen II mil-dot reticle is better than the XR for low-mag use. As for illumination, I've never noticed problem with my NF 2.5-10X32. The only time I ever had it on for hunting was 2 minutes before the end of legal shooting and it was probably on 4X with a deer about 120 yards away in dark brush under a slope facing east (sun setting behind the hill). There wasn't much light but I could see what I wanted to see quite well.

    I'd go with an FFP scope for longer ranges. But for shooting only out to 500, you could just as well use an SFP scope like the 2.5-10 because you'd be ranging at the max (index) power anyway.
     
  10. sp6x6

    sp6x6 Well-Known Member

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    How do you like the 3-18 IOR, IS IT mill/mill
     
  11. Bravo 4

    Bravo 4 Well-Known Member

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    Lets not go there with the IOR. All I will say about it is that it was the greatest scope that never was...all three replacements!:rolleyes: