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Best spotting scope

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Best spotting scope

Old 07-09-2008, 10:17 AM
  #1  
Typical Buck
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Default Best spotting scope

Which spotting scope do you guys think is the best in the 600-800 dollar price range. I have Leupold binoculars(wind river cascades), but never looked at their spotting scopes. I am open to all suggestions I just want the best glass for my money.
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Old 07-09-2008, 10:25 AM
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

You may be able to find an upper end Nikon with ED glass floating around for about that $. Check EBAY. It's not like a Swarovski top end, but very nice indeed. I had one like that... is was a black tactical model.
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Old 07-09-2008, 10:29 AM
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

I forgot to add it was a Fieldscope and went up to 40 or 45 X as I recall. Nikon does have a new more compact model now that goes up to 30X I think. That should be in your price range.
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Old 07-09-2008, 02:33 PM
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

ORIGINAL: bugsNbows

You may be able to find an upper end Nikon with ED glass floating around for about that $. Check EBAY. It's not like a Swarovski top end, but very nice indeed. I had one like that... is was a black tactical model.
x2! If I had to make a Top 10 list of best deals I've ever scored, my Nikon 82mm from eBay would be on it. I got the angled82mm and a 30x DS ep for $788. Almost too good to be true. I love the scope and I'm sure that Swaros are a little bit better, but to me not worth 2-3x the price. Be patient and wait for a good deal. If you buy them separately I would recommend the straight model over the angled, and the MC ep over the DS ep. Good luck and God bless.


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Old 07-09-2008, 03:31 PM
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

I have a Cabelas Big Sky ED for that price range, its pretty awesome I must say, for that price range I think it would be hard to beat, IMO the nikons/leupolds didn't compete.


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Old 07-10-2008, 07:35 AM
  #6  
Typical Buck
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

How is this glass quality for scopes is this price range? I think I should just save up a few months and get some swarovski's. Do you guys think it would make a big difference?
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Old 07-10-2008, 09:59 AM
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

For glass quality, its not a normal distribution curve. Once you pass $700 (msrp) in the price ranges, you start getting into the ED (extra low dispersion)/flourite glass range. To that end, there is a huge quality increase from spending $800 on a scope with ED glass as opposed to a $500 scope that does not. However, the question as to whether a $1,300 scope is better than a $1,000 scope when both have ED is more personal preference and staunch brand loyalty than quantifyable science.

If I could do it over again, there's no way I'd go up to the Swarovski... If you have that kind of money it should be on top of your rifle, IMHO. Again, I'm sure its a bit better scope than the one I have, but I asked many bird watchers who own both the Nikon and the Swaro, and some say they're almost neck-and-neck as far as image quality. No offense to the Swaro diehards.

Also, you mentioned the Leupold's... I checked several out and one of the things I really didn't like was the small focusing knob. Just my personal preference, but I like the Nikon/Swaro/etc style of the large focus ring that wraps around the whole scope. As I remember, I think the eye relief also left something to be desired. Go to your local Cabelas or Sportsman's Warehouse and play around with as many as you can. I found that the large focus ring allows for quicker, more precise focusing than the small knob.

If you do like the small focus knob, consider the Pentax PF-II 65 or 80mm. They're in the price range you mentioned, and Pentax has the strenght of a vast array of eyepieces (astronomy, digiscoping, etc).

I spent literally months researching my scope purchase on my free time. No offense to hunters, but the birdwatchers have our butts kicked as far as scope and glassknowledge. Check out www.birdforum.net or a few others for some research. You can post questions there, but I wouldn't use the word 'hunting,' just 'wildlife viewing' hehehe
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Old 07-13-2008, 02:11 PM
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

Yeah bird watchers do haveour Butts Kicked when it comes to spotting scopes and optics knowledge go.
Back in the "Good Old Days" ya were allowed to just shoot the thing so you could thing,so you could havea closer look.
I think they called it SHOOT AND RELEASE.....
Sometimes I wish I lived in those days...[&o]
Anyways in the "BIRD WATCHING COMMUNITY", Kowa is known for some very very top end models, very high-end priced, and very very good quality.
Some of these bird watchers claim they are better than Swaro,the others claimthese Kowasevery bit as good as a Swaro.
Its Unfortionate its happened but ya,Japan is taking over this optical industry in every way.
Anyways Kowa has some mid-line priced models that just happen to fall at your price tag.Some of these modelsdo suit the hunters needs, it all depends on what you want in a spotter as far as objective size,overall-size,weight, clarity magnification and practical hunting situations and purposes.
This would be an optic to try as well.
I share a Leica and love it, 15-45 x66, it was the best optic available at for the price at the time, and was the best spotting optic suited for my hunting needs, but at this time there might be a better optic made elsewhere that suits your needs.
But see for yourself and give the Leica atest as well.
But your probably right in skipping the mid class all-together and go straight to the high end Swaro or Zeiss.
Consider the HD models,especially if its going to be a greater than 65mm-70mm objective lens, definately consider Hd at over 70mm.
Condider Hd, if the magnification is at all the same, or close to being the same as the overall objective size.eg 20x-60x65mm, 20x-60x x60mm
IF ITS A 15-45 POWERwitha 60 MM OBJ you can get away without the HD.




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Old 07-13-2008, 03:22 PM
  #9  
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

Nikons are good for the money. Burris and simmons are one of my favs. You can take a peek at different pics and stats to help you out: http://www.beebusyoutdoors.com/spotting.html

Hope this helps..
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Old 07-14-2008, 07:44 AM
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Default RE: Best spotting scope

Take a look at Leupold HD series spotting scopes. Note the higher you go on the price scale, you will also see improvements in clarity and lighting.
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