Which Scope would you guys recommend?

Discussion in 'Long Range Scopes and Other Optics' started by Nikolakangrga, Dec 16, 2009.

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  1. Nikolakangrga

    Nikolakangrga Well-Known Member

    May 20, 2009
    VX3 4.5-14x40 OR VX3 4.5-14x40 CDS?

    Does anyone have any experience with the CDS model? Is it worth the money? I will be using this scope for mainly hunting. It will be mounted on my .300WM. What do you guys think?

  2. SBruce

    SBruce Well-Known Member

    Oct 31, 2009
    If you are usually hunting in the same area and around the same altitude and in nearly the same temperatures, and with the same load at the same velocity...........The CDS or other Ballistic compensating dials can work well out to 500; or maybe even 600 yds and further with the 300 mags and a flat shooting round.........assuming a big game size target. But if your conditions or your ammo changes, then they WILL BE OFF.

    Personally not a fan of BDC reticles or BDC knobs, simply for the reason that they don't work everywhere under all condidtions. They are much simpler than learning MOA or Mils and dialing your scope, but not nearly as precise.

    However, If they are set up correctly(correct conditions and load data); they are far better than just using "Kentucky" windage and elevation.
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2009
  3. john g duvall

    john g duvall Well-Known Member

    Dec 19, 2009
    Absolutely "Right On"!
  4. sp6x6

    sp6x6 Well-Known Member

    Dec 8, 2009
    John Burns of Greybull Precision shot a 356" bull at over 1000, 2 hit for 2, with his bdc dial
  5. phorwath

    phorwath Well-Known Member

    Apr 4, 2005
    And John Burns used a BDC turret that he personally designed and has used extensively. The average hunter could not realistically expect to execute a 2 for 2 on an 1100 yd shot with near the understanding, speed, accuracy, efficiency, and success of John Burns with the same scope, unless Mr. Burns himself dialed the turrets for the shot. My opinion is that BDCs are best suited to the elevation and bullet/load they were designed for out to approximately 650 yds, without the use of field-ready ballistic software. The more knowledgeable and proficient a person becomes with the BDC turret equipped scope and rifle combination, the more he might be able to stretch this range. If one practiced from a stand location over the 1100 yds to the hillside/opening and developed proven drops & turret adjustments for the shot before the killing shot on an animal later standing on the hillside/opening, then any scope can perform at longer distance well under those known environmental/atmospheric conditions and pre-proven turret adjustments. Move to another elevation, temperature condition, or angled shot and you'll be much less proficient using solely the BDC turret and a rangefinder.

    The videos showing the range, dial to the yardage number, and shoot can be misleading until a person gains a thorough understanding of external ballistics and the affects of differing environmental/atmospheric conditions and differing inclination or declination angles of shot.

    Of course, add a PDA or PPC with field ballistics program capability (as Shawn Carlock presents in his long range hunting video) to a BDC turreted scope and it could be as effective as any other moa or mil turreted scope at very long range, for an informed individual.

    Point is, a field ballistics program is a more accurate method of determining predicted drops at any extended range than simply using a custom BDC turret and range finder. The longer the distance, the greater the advantage to the PDA/PPC system compared to the BDC turrets only method. The only advantage to the BDC turrets is that for shorter to mid-range shots, the method can allow one to get off an effective shot more quickly. And there's no denying that advantage. It does no good to exactly determine the necessary turret adjustment if the animal has split by the time you're dial in. So there are pros and cons.

    If you're dedicated to preparing for, and taking truely long range shots at variable elevations and under variable atmospheric conditions and shooting angles, the PDA/PPC is really the only way to go about it. And at very long range, time is not usually of the essence. If you don't plan to specialize and prepare for the 700 plus yd shots, and are content taking game out to ~650 yds, the BDC turreted scopes could be a good match for your use.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2009
  6. Buffalobob

    Buffalobob Well-Known Member

    Jun 12, 2001
    If you wish to use either a BDC scope or a preprinted drop chart, the mechanics of making a 1000 yard shot are the same.

    When I leave Washington DC to go elk hunting out west I do not take a printer with me. All my drop charts are preprinted with estimated conditions before I leave home and I am usually gone for 45-60 days before I return home and will hunt in several different states. Some days I will take my PDA with me hunting and some days I will leave it in the truck and just take a drop chart. To me there is no difference in which I take irregardless of whether I am hunting at 5000 feet one day or 9000 feet the next.

    I spent some time trying to explain what it is that I do down in this thread. It involves knowing how to correct a BDC or drop chart for conditions.


    Out to about 1500 yards this is about as accurate as any method.

    If you are prone to get confused about the affects of altitude and temperature and do not want to do the math then you may want to get a PDA. When you add into it the correction for cosine you may find that you are keeping track of a lot of corrections. It is just up too you.