Spotting scope opinions/suggestions...

daved20319

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Looking for a spotting scope for long(er) range shooting, mostly no more than 500 yards, although there's still that dream of reaching out to 1000 some day. Much as I'd like one with a reticle, I already know my budget won't stretch that far, I need to stay in the $500 or so area. I think I'd prefer a straight vs. angled scope, I've been using my old Meade astronomical telescope as a spotter, the erecting prism puts the lens at 45 degrees. Makes it a challenge to locate the target, especially at longer range and higher magnification. Not concerned with size or weight, it will be mounted on a heavy duty tripod behind the firing line, not packed around in the hills. Thinking power in the 20-60X range, and a larger front objective. I know there are several in that price range, from reputable manufacturers, but finding real reviews rather than ad hype is proving challenging. Thanks.

Dave
 
Picked up this for about $130, not perfect glass but works for what I need it for.

Gosky 2019 Updated Newest Spotting Scope with Tripod, Carrying Bag - BAK4 Angled Scope for Target Shooting Hunting Bird Watching Wildlife Scenery (20-60x80 Scope)
 
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daved20319

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Thanks for the suggestion, DB, but I've tended to shy away from those scopes. I don't particularly subscribe to the "buy once, cry once" philosophy, but I know you really DO tend to get what you pay for with optics. I also prefer going with a recognized name in the field, even if it means more money. Sorry for the delay in responding, but it's been one of those weeks :rolleyes:. Still looking for suggestions, guys & gals, thanks Later.

Dave
 

MechaNik

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I think Nikon makes one in the 500ish area? I'm off the opinion that I don't want to experiment so I'll probably spend a couple Grand when it's time but that's because I've been burnt on "great for the price" things before. If you CAN stretch your budget, things open up quality wise big time in a hurry past $500. Or so it seems.
 
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Keep your eye out for a Pentax PF80-ED straight spotting scope. You can find one used for ~$500-$600 with the Pentax 20-60x eyepiece.
After looking at Swaro (>$2000), Vortex Razor (~$1000) and Nikon (~$700), I saw a Pentax in Craigslist. Met the guy, and was reading a license plate holder at >300 yards. Bought it right there. At 60x, the clarity is just as good as 40x -- I can see 223 holes on black at 300. Don't need to buy any more splatter targets.
I'd put it between the Swaro and Razor.
Birders and amateur astronomers buy them, so you can check CL, birding and astronomy pages for listings. While I don't recommend it as a telescope, it is pretty amazing the number of stars you see with it that you cannot see with the naked eye. I'm just used to seeing Saturn's rings and the Great Red Spot with my 10" reflector.
My *only* complaint, and it's not much of one, is that it has no eye relief. You need to get your eye or glasses right up to the ocular.
If you're lucky, you can also find used Kowa scopes in the $800 range.
 
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daved20319

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May I suggest you save a couple extra duckets and double your budget? $1k will buy you something you’ll be happy with the first time..... that just means forgoing Starbucks for a month. ;)
Closest Starbuck's is 90 miles away, Stomper, and I was never a fan even when I lived in Seattle and there was one on every other corner :rolleyes:. You're probably right, but I really can't justify that kind of expense for my hobby, just buying ammo components is pushing things. Not much wiggle room in the budget when 2 are trying to live on one SSI check :oops:. Buying new toys generally means selling old toys, note my ad in the Classifieds, with another soon to follow :D.

For the rest of you, thanks for your suggestions, but I think I may have a no cost alternative that will do the job, at least for now. My current setup gets me about 31X mag, it's clear, but trying to spot hits at 400 yards was a challenge, thus this post. But I'd forgotten I have a doubler lens, that'll get me to 62X, so I'm going to give it a try next time out. Not sure when that will be, I woke up to snow this morning, with quite a bit more in the forecast over the next 24 hours. Hoping this isn't winter settling in to stay :eek:. Later.

Dave
 
Closest Starbuck's is 90 miles away, Stomper, and I was never a fan even when I lived in Seattle and there was one on every other corner :rolleyes:. You're probably right, but I really can't justify that kind of expense for my hobby, just buying ammo components is pushing things. Not much wiggle room in the budget when 2 are trying to live on one SSI check :oops:. Buying new toys generally means selling old toys, note my ad in the Classifieds, with another soon to follow :D.

For the rest of you, thanks for your suggestions, but I think I may have a no cost alternative that will do the job, at least for now. My current setup gets me about 31X mag, it's clear, but trying to spot hits at 400 yards was a challenge, thus this post. But I'd forgotten I have a doubler lens, that'll get me to 62X, so I'm going to give it a try next time out. Not sure when that will be, I woke up to snow this morning, with quite a bit more in the forecast over the next 24 hours. Hoping this isn't winter settling in to stay :eek:. Later.

Dave
See? I made you angry, which caused you to think, adapt, and improvise! Problem solved!



Yer welcome! :D;):s0155:
 
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daved20319

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Not angry at all, Stomper, I appreciated your input. But I do admit to a tendency to throw money at a problem first, even though I might have a solution in hand that I just haven't thought about :oops:. I think I'm getting better as I get older though, but maybe it's just that I think slower :rolleyes:. Later.

Dave
 

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