Spotting Scopes. Diminished Returns?

sp6x6

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I have 774 Kowa great shape with 20x60 eye,snug fit and padded case it came with ,cant find box.$1500
 

LeddSlinger

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Hoping Alex will chime in on this one…
For what reason exactly? There’s no secret that Athlon’s cheap Chinese glass will always fall short of top tier European and Japanese ED glass. Can’t change that. I even purchased their top of the line Cronus 20-60x86mm spotting scope last year to see how well it compared to the best European and Japanese glass. One quick 30 second scan of the mountainside by my house with the Chinese glass Cronus and I immediately called Cameraland to set up a return and refund for the spotter. It was so far off from true top tier glass I didn’t even bother to break out my Swarovski, Leica, and old Nikon Japanese ED glass for a side by side comparison.

If the Chinese do start using top end Japanese glass or German Schott glass then the prices would have to reflect that and they may no longer be very affordable for many people. But there’s more to it than just the glass used. The grinding, alignment, type of glass coatings and how those coatings are applied are probably the most important factor in creating an optical masterpiece. The top European and Japanese companies that have been doing it for many decades closely guard their secret glass coating compositions and the finer details of techniques used to create and apply them. So it’s not like any company can just go start using German schott glass and make an optic that will blow your socks off. It could take them many years of R&D with a lot of trial and error to get the full optical potential from the same glass other top tier optics manufacturers use to compete at that level of the market.
 
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BenelliHunter

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Haven’t looked thru that spotting scope. But I do have the new Burris Signature HD 5-25x50 riflescope on a 6.5 Rem Mag hunting rifle and the glass is really good. Better than anything else I’ve looked thru in that price point. In sunny daylight conditions, the Signature HD glass is honestly as good as some of my riflescopes that cost around $2k. Razor sharp and bright all the way to the edges at max 25x. I was actually blown away to see glass that nice on a scope in that price range.

Hopefully the spotting scope will have very nice glass for you as well.
In my experience, most scopes work well in bright and sunny conditions. I buy scopes for the first and last 15 minutes of a day.
 

LaHunter

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OP, mirage is one factor that will greatly effect image quality of your spotter. Another is air density. One person's opinion of 'heavy mirage' may be different than another person's, depending on where their experience is based. My Swaro spotter is a completely different optic in the mountain west at 9,000 ' ASL vs 100' ASL in the deep south with so much humidity and air density. At home, it can be tough to see bullet holes in paper at 400-500 yards on most days, unless conditions are really good. That being said, there is no substitute for high quality optics.
 

30BR

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For what reason exactly? There’s no secret that Athlon’s cheap Chinese glass will always fall short of top tier European and Japanese ED glass. Can’t change that. I even purchased their top of the line Cronus 20-60x86mm spotting scope last year to see how well it compared to the best European and Japanese glass. One quick 30 second scan of the mountainside by my house with the Chinese glass Cronus and I immediately called Cameraland to set up a return and refund for the spotter. It was so far off from true top tier glass I didn’t even bother to break out my Swarovski, Leica, and old Nikon Japanese ED glass for a side by side comparison.

If the Chinese do start using top end Japanese glass or German Schott glass then the prices would have to reflect that and they may no longer be very affordable for many people. But there’s more to it than just the glass used. The grinding, alignment, type of glass coatings and how those coatings are applied are probably the most important factor in creating an optical masterpiece. The top European and Japanese companies that have been doing it for many decades closely guard their secret glass coating compositions and the finer details of techniques used to create and apply them. So it’s not like any company can just go start using German schott glass and make an optic that will blow your socks off. ..

My March is a nice scope, but I would like to see 6mm holes at 600 yds all the time. The boosted Kowa 880 I use is great but I was hoping Alex might have some input on the Nightforce or Leopold or Swarovski or other unit that may be better for that purpose.
 
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BFD Guns

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I should be more specific as to what I'm trying to achieve. I would like to see hits on white painted steel plates to 1 mile. 90% of the time to 1000yds.
 

whirlwindjml

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Rathdrum Idaho
For years the amy snipers only carried 20 power spotters. Because mirage screwed them. Now I see they have much bigger stuff which probably has to do with better glass. But no matter what you have if your image is blurred or refracted then that will be the limit.....
 

Coyote Shadow Tracker

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Just started shooting 1000yds and 1 mile. Damned if I can see anything past 30X with a spotting scope. Mirage abound.

Advise.
I personally don't rely on scope due to mirage and other factors. When I need to look long range I use my Grandfather's Glasses. Usually good out to two miles with iron sights.
 

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asd9055

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I will not buy spotting scope or binos again that I expect to see far, unless I can check them out towards the end of day...I had bought the best Vortext HD binoes at the time, listening to people....didn't know what I was missing untill I looked through Leica and Swaros....yeah, Vortex was half the price, but its have the picture too...
 

LeddSlinger

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I will not buy spotting scope or binos again that I expect to see far, unless I can check them out towards the end of day...I had bought the best Vortext HD binoes at the time, listening to people....didn't know what I was missing untill I looked through Leica and Swaros....yeah, Vortex was half the price, but its have the picture too...
Yep. The Vortex Razors are a great value for the money with a great warranty but they do not compete with top end Leica and Swaro. The Meopta Meostar binos are a undoubtedly better than Vortex and give top end glass from Leica and Swaro a much better run for the money while still costing half the price. I owned the Razors then moved on Meopta. Meopta glass is awesome but not quite at the level of Swaro and Leica when it comes to binoculars. So I then purchased Leica Noctivid which was amazing but currently own Leica Geovid 3200.com because I wanted the integrated LRF. The new Geovid glass definitely equals the Noctivid. Might actually be the same glass but have not confirmed that yet.

However, Meopta has always been able to beat Swaro and Leica when they release an optic in a similar price point. Meopta glass easily beat the Swaro HD spotting scopes when they released the Meostar S2 HD spotter. That forced Swarovski to retaliate with the ATX/STX line to somewhat gain a little ground over Meopta once again. But now Meopta has finally gone on the offensive with the binocular line of optics. They have been working for a few years on a new Meostar “B2” binocular built to compete with the best glass available at any price point. They probably won’t be cheap but I’m sure they will hit a home run like they always seem to do. Can’t wait for the release.
 
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