Spotting Scope for 500 yds shooting...

Discussion in 'Long Range Scopes and Other Optics' started by deerhunter61, Jan 2, 2013.

  1. deerhunter61

    deerhunter61 Member

    Feb 8, 2009

    I need to know what I'm looking at in reference to cost and quality for a spotting scope that I will be able to see bullet holes at 500 yds. For at least 30 cal bullets and preferably also 7mm bullets.
  2. bruce_ventura

    bruce_ventura Well-Known Member

    May 22, 2011
    In a vacuum (no moving air), a good 50 mm scope would work. In practice, turbulence in the air will prevent any scope from actually resolving a 7 mm hole. Turbulence-induced blur is almost always the limiting factor at shooting ranges because of the flat terrain and proximity of the observer to the ground.

    Still, people often report being able to "see" bullet holes at such long distances. That's possible if the hole has good contrast against the target material. For the same reason that we can "see" stars in the sky that are too small for the eye to resolve, we can "see" high contrast bullet holes in paper at long distances.

    You will get the most consistent results using a 50-75 mm scope that has good contrast and resolution. A scope with "HD" or "ED" glass will have the best contrast and resolution under these conditions.

    A larger objective will not usually have higher resolution under typical range conditions (i.e., flat terrain and bright daylight). It will see more turbulent air, which actually degrades resolution.
  3. joseph

    joseph Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2009
  4. Gene

    Gene Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2007
    The camera suggested above is the certain way to go. I don't have one, because they cannot be used in competition matches.

    I do have Leica and Zeiss 20-60x 80mm spotting scopes. At 500 yds, bullet holes can easily be seen IF CONDITIONS ARE PERFECT. That means, no parallax and good lighting conditions.

    Another factor is your eyes. I have had cataract surgery on the right eye twice, and I have macular degeneration. My old eyes have problems spotting bullet holes with most any scope.
  5. joseph

    joseph Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2009
    Celestron is known for its telescopes and I have an 8" Schmidt-Cassegrain.

    If you can take a look at this one. It comes with a zoom eye piece, but I have found that single power eye pieces have less lenses and are much sharper and clearer. So you need to figure out what power you need and get a single. Also I used to compete in HIGH POWER with my Bushmaster AR-15 DCM and almost everyone use a 27 power eye piece to read the mirage which seemed to be the perfect power. "OOPS" I think I may be wrong about the power it might be 17 power to read the mirage. (sorry I would double check this I'm almost 70 and when you get up there you tend to forget stuff.) I also have a 88mm ED Kowa spotting scope which costs twice as much as the Celestron, but I think the 100 ED Celestron is better.

    Celestron Regal 100 F-ED Spotting Scope - 52303 - OPT Telescopes

    You might consider these also:

    Celestron Vibration Suppression Pads - 93503 - OPT Telescopes


    PS: The 100mm Celestron is BIG. It is like a 2 liter coke bottle. It would use the same eye pieces for my 8" telescope so you can get extra ones.

    I have compared my single power eye piece Kowa with two different Leica 80mm with the zoom eye pieces and they did not come close to my Kowa in sharpness, clarity or color. IMHO.

    Take a look at this. It really works on your scope for eliminating mirage.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jan 3, 2013
  6. MPeoples

    MPeoples Member

    Aug 1, 2012
    I have the older version of the Celestron Ultima 100mm ED works OK, the Pentax 100mm ED was much better but not made anymore. Celestron does offer Mirror type Spotting scopes also. the C-90 3.5" Mak. at 1200mm and the C-5 SCT, 5" spotter at 1250mm both would require a 8mm-24mm zoom eyepiece. Both would get you out there but would also be affected by the mirage like all scopes.