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Posted: 8/1/2009 1:10:44 AM EST
would like to practice some distance shooting and was looking for a sub $300 (w/ mount if possible) optic that i will use out to 300yds probably rather often and then 600 rarely. is variable ok? any reason not to go variable? will be using 16-18" brld uppers and just punching paper and will be using prvi match 69 & 75grn until i start doing some reloading - looking for a single stage setup for the moment as i build up my brass collection again.

also, this will be bench/supported shooting so either sandbags or a bipod.

brand suggestions would also be nice too

thanks,
bob
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 5:59:48 AM EST
The only negative to a variable is it will cost more but it will allow a better high end magnification with restricting the low end. Magnification is persoal preference. I like 1X per 25 yards. Your primary range of 300 Id find something over 10X, thought with good eyes 10X is fine. I just dont have great eyes. The bad thing is that optic quality and price go hand in hand, so $300 with mount is not something I can give suggestions on as I have accepted the fact that optics are hugely mportant for long range shooting and good optics cost money.

Just remember that options cost money, FFP reticle, mildot, illuminated reticle, target turrets... these things are pretty much OUT if you want quality glass at a cheap price. And to me learning to use those is as much of a part of practice as actually shooting at longer ranges and reading the wind. But to each his own. I am sure someone can reccomend a no frills 4-12x with decent glass. I would find a 3-9X lacking for punching paper for groups at 300 and certainly 600.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 7:11:27 AM EST
[Last Edit: 8/1/2009 7:15:35 AM EST by rick123123]
Check out Millett... You can get a TRS-1 for $299.95 at SWFA. It's 4-16x50 with a 30mm tube, illuminated mil dot reticle, target turrets w/ come-up counter. For the cost, it's a great scope, and the glass is actually very decent.

Thread with more info & pics here
TRS-1 Review at Sniper Central here
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 7:11:39 AM EST
Burriss FF2 3x9 is about the best you can do for your money.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 7:20:43 AM EST
Or you could save for a little longer a go for a Leupold or Nikon Monarch. I got a Monarch 2.5-10x42 for $370. Hard to beat Nikon's glass without stepping up to Nightforce, Schimdt and Bender, Ziess, etc.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 7:29:14 AM EST
Check out the SWFA Sample list. Often find a good Nikon for alot less. I bought a 4x16x42 Monarch for my AR, and they have it on the Sample list for $100 less than I paid.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 7:36:23 AM EST
With ammo costing what it does these days, I continue to be amazed by folks who set very low budgets for optics, particularly considering your anticipated ranges. Let's face it, shooting is expensive.

In response to your question, I own a dozen optics and none of them are over 10x mag; none of them are <$300 either. My typical application is a bit different than yours though as reduced ambient light performance is very high on my list of criteria. In good light, a lower quality device might perform satisfactorily, and higher mag might be appropriate off a bench.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 7:56:19 AM EST
Originally Posted By rick123123:
Check out Millett... You can get a TRS-1 for $299.95 at SWFA. It's 4-16x50 with a 30mm tube, illuminated mil dot reticle, target turrets w/ come-up counter. For the cost, it's a great scope, and the glass is actually very decent.

Thread with more info & pics here
TRS-1 Review at Sniper Central here


+1, I really like mine.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 8:23:47 AM EST
Originally Posted By murderman:
With ammo costing what it does these days, I continue to be amazed by folks who set very low budgets for optics, particularly considering your anticipated ranges. Let's face it, shooting is expensive.

In response to your question, I own a dozen optics and none of them are over 10x mag; none of them are <$300 either. My typical application is a bit different than yours though as reduced ambient light performance is very high on my list of criteria. In good light, a lower quality device might perform satisfactorily, and higher mag might be appropriate off a bench.


Yeah but you have those super expensive glasses to get away with less magnification.

My eyes suck.

Link Posted: 8/1/2009 8:24:48 AM EST
I have a Leupold vx2 in 1-4x on a LaRue spr mount an it moves between a couple AR's as needed. For me 4x is acceptable to 300 yards unless shooting tiny targets. The scope is about $300 but that mount is another $200. You could go with a simpler mount if QD is not required.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 8:30:38 AM EST
[Last Edit: 8/1/2009 8:31:08 AM EST by SubEclipse]
Originally Posted By BillSP1:
I have a Leupold vx2 in 1-4x on a LaRue spr mount an it moves between a couple AR's as needed. For me 4x is acceptable to 300 yards unless shooting tiny targets. The scope is about $300 but that mount is another $200. You could go with a simpler mount if QD is not required.


Good call on the mount... I'm using the same one. It's excellent, but it'll cost ya. What are your groups like @ 300 yards @ 4x? I have a 4x ACOG on one of my ARs, and I'm sure I could hit a man sized target @ 300 with it, but I don't think I could shoot groups with it very well at that range.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 11:10:01 AM EST
4x is fine for shooting groups at 300yds.
i've shot 1 MOA 5 shot groups at 300 yds with a millet DMS1 (1-4x).
you just need the proper sized target for the range you're shooting. it is very possible to shoot MOA groups at 300 yds with open sights. you'd just need a 36-48" diameter target, and good sights.
4x is good enough to center on the head of a life sized silluette target at 300 yds.
if you want to shoot pop cans, prairie dogs, or golf balls at 300 yds, more magnification would make aquiring target easier.

sounds like you have benchrest type shooting in mind here. if this is the desired role, then get a higher magnification optic.
you should be able to get a pretty good scope for $300. medium end leupolds, nikons, burris, bushnell are in that range. if you're gonna be shooting 3-600 yards, i'd recommend a good scope not only for better optical quality, but also for accurate, repeatable adjustments.
still need a decent mount too, another $80-200.

like the other guy said, "shooting is expensive". especially formidable calibers at longer ranges.

get as nice of a scope as you can, and you'll be be better off. nothing worse than trying to save a little money, and getting a piece of junk. i speak from experience.....should have took the family to dinner instead.
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 11:34:29 AM EST
[Last Edit: 8/1/2009 11:54:48 AM EST by bob332]
thanks for the input. i will try to bump the budget a bit and hit that swfa sample list. fwiw, imho i think i just need a no frills optic w/ good clear glass and would take a lower end model w/out an illuminated reticle, etc w/ better glass than going bells and whistles while the optic clarity suffered. plus this will be my first delve into the further distances so i know there will be a learning experience.

as far as a mount, i don't need qd or anything fancy, again, basic but quality. are there any issues w/ going w/ rings over an actual mount?

could you guys that are familiar w/ them rate the higher brand but lower priced models? say is one of the lower end zeiss models better than a lower end nikon or burris model? i guess i am looking for the low end of qualtiy optic is what i am saying. good clarity but at this point in time i don't need the extras and i for now will know the distances i will be shooting at +/-3ds or so.

looking forward for the heat to break and then will hopefully will start doing this type of shooting on a regular basis 4mos of hell and 8 mos of pleasure

edit to add - light will not be a problem, at the most it may be a bit cloudy and possibly overcast but all during the day, not dusk or dawn nor rain

edit2 - what do you guys recommend $$ wise for what i am wanting? i was looking around at my stuff and i didn't flinch when i bought an aimpoint nor reflex, so keeping it simple should i be looking at $400-$500?
Link Posted: 8/1/2009 11:53:14 AM EST
[Last Edit: 8/1/2009 12:11:28 PM EST by SubEclipse]
Originally Posted By bob332:
as far as a mount, i don't need qd or anything fancy, again, basic but quality. are there any issues w/ going w/ rings over an actual mount?


If you're using rings on a flat top upper, it's very likely that you'll need a 12 o'clock rail on the hand guards to provide the correct eye relief, (assuming you choose a scope with 3-4" or so).
Link Posted: 8/2/2009 1:42:29 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/2/2009 3:12:17 PM EST by gee223]
Negative. Never bridge the gap. Use a cantilever type mount like a Burris PEPR or LaRue, or use a scout type rail that extends past the flattop and some rings. I have a Millett TRS on a YHM riser and an Armalite mount. Its tall enough for iron back ups under it, and it sits just far enough forward with another inch possible.

A lot of guys like the Super Sniper Scopes, but they are fixed power. I wouldn't mind that on a bolt gun of the 30+ cal variety, but I like the 4x or less capability on the AR for faster close shots if necessary. My TRS is good and repeatable, shock resistant, and has very decent glass for the cash. It was $300. The riser was $50ish and the mount was $99 (should have just got the LaRue). SWFA has a new mount that would be slightly lower for $60 but is long enough you wouldn't need a riser. You could keep it under $400 easily.
Link Posted: 8/2/2009 3:13:50 PM EST
I love my Bushnell 3-10 mounted in a Rock River Arms Hi-rise mount. Neither are too expensive.
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