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Thread: Spotting Scope Suggestion

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Posts
    2

    Spotting Scope Suggestion

    Looking for recommendations on a long-range shooting spotting scope.
    I've been faithful to the Vortex and Emarth scope, but I'd like to hear some other suggestions.
    Your ideas will be very helpful to me.

    Thank You.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    CA
    Posts
    694
    I have spotted through a number of different scopes and have been the most impressed with Kowa.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    112
    What is the target ?
    Define "long range "?
    Steel plates or paper score/group ?
    The top of the line vortex work great for steel,
    have not tried one for a paper target.
    as has been mentioned top of the line
    kowa.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Northshore
    Posts
    273
    For seeing the paster and mirage and just in general Konus is about the most bang for your bucks.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Posts
    3
    Old school has me sporting a KOWA TS-1. It's not ED glass (primarily for low light conditions) but it really works well and is built like a tank.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    SW.Pa.
    Posts
    841
    What are you planning to use it for? see bullet holes? See mirage? what?? your scope is as good as you are going to get, but for seeing mirage that is a different story.... jim

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Location
    New Jersey,Clifton
    Posts
    2
    Most spotting scopes are labeled with three numbers. The first two numbers represent the magnification range and the last number is always the size of the front lens. For a 15-45x60 model, then, you have a spotting scope with a zoom magnification range of 15-45x with a front lens of 60mm diameter.

    Magnification

    Spotting scopes begin in magnification where conventional binoculars stop. The higher magnifications offered by a spotting scope allow you to view birds, wildlife, scenery and other objects that are well beyond the range of a conventional binocular. However, there are limits to magnification. Two things determine how much magnification you can use in a spotting scope.

    The first is the atmosphere. You must always factor in the seeing conditions of the atmosphere when using a spotting scope. Heat waves, dust, humidity, glare, wind and air currents during the day all reduce image quality and the greater the magnification, the more drastic the reduction in image quality. Simply put, there will be days when anything over 30x will appear as mush, but there will also be those clear, calm days when you can use 60x to good advantage. In general, high altitudes and dry climates favor high magnification whereas wet, humid, low-altitude climates discourage high magnification. Very few locations, however, allow you to use more than 60-80x during the day, so most spotting scopes stop at 60x. Many beginners make the mistake of buying an astronomical telescope that can magnify hundreds of times for day use, only to discover that the atmosphere still limits them to around 60x and quite often, much less.

    The atmosphere, for the same reason, also limits how much detail you can see at great distances. Seeing tiny detail, such as a person's facial features, at a mile or more through an ocean of turbulent, ever-moving air is simply not possible, no matter how much magnification you use or no matter how large or expensive the instrument. Spotting scopes are great, but they can't work miracles. On the other hand, it is quite possible to view large objects such as ships at this distance, though the image may be blurry or wavy.

    The second major limit on magnification is the optical system of the spotting scope, itself. Regardless of the model, there will always be some drop off in image quality as magnification goes up. This is determined somewhat on the design and size of the scope, but primarily on the quality of the optical system. Here you get what you pay for in a very visible way. Inexpensive spotting scopes, regardless of size or type, lose image quality quickly as magnification goes up, but premium grade scopes lose very little in image quality, even at the highest magnification. Be prepared to pay, however, if you want a spotting scope that is as sharp at 60x as it is at 20x. Only a handful of very expensive spotting scopes are capable of this.

    Most observing with a spotting scope, though, is done at lower magnifications, usually around 30x-40x. This is more than enough for most applications and all but the cheapest model will produce reasonable images in this magnification range.
    0 Yds.

    You might find the Canon IS Binocs perfect for everything, in 12 X and 16X powers. Powers above 10 X are hard to hand-hold without Image Stabilization, especially if You are Older, or just stopped climbing the Mountain. They are less than $1000 IIRC.
    I bought an old Vortex angled spotting scope several years ago https://thetacticalscopes.com/best-ar10-scope/ maybe 7 or 8. It was only 135 bucks and I was still buying cheap at the time. It never really focused very good. You could get it in focus but if you needed to adjust the focus for another target it would take a bit.

    Sorry for the long comment, if you knew how tired I am to write this ... I hope this helps

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    West central NH
    Posts
    390
    I have had a Celestron Ultima 100 for about a dozen years and I love it. Everyone who tries it is impressed. I have looked through a bunch of scopes at many events and have yet to see one I like better. Optics planet has the angled eyepiece version for $349. You can get the Regal ED version for about $849. If you want to spend 2 grand for a prestige scope, than that's fine, but you don't have to in order to get good performance.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    711
    80mm front lens for long range at minimum, as mag goes up field of view goes down along with intensity of light transmission. back when I was still competing in the national highpower matches the Kowa 80mm x20-60 was the most used unit- the Konus of the same parameters was a close second later on.. remember that for most of these matches we were moving from 200 to 300 to 600 yards after each relay- and of course the long range were at 800-900-1000 yards.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Albany, OR
    Posts
    136
    I have long thought that Kowas were the best bang for the buck, but Swarovskis were the ultimate.

    GsT

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    317
    Quote Originally Posted by GeneT View Post
    I have long thought that Kowas were the best bang for the buck, but Swarovskis were the ultimate.

    GsT
    The Fluorite Kowas are about as good as optics can get.
    They also cost a LOT.

    Their color rendition and contrast are simply unmatched.

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