I have a 650 ...and I always have a powder check die installed ..and adjusted properly ...so it does what its intended to do ...so it tells you if there is a small variation.
I use a strong light / and mirror so I can look into the case as well....but if your target drop is 4.4 grains ...there is no way you can visually check or see if the press is only dropping 4.2 grains...in most powders. The powder check die, in most calibers, will pick up an issue of over 0.1 grain ...and on handgun rounds - where the min and max is often 0.4 grains apart on a lot of powders ...its good to know if the powder measure drops more than o.1 variation ..for any reason.
99.9% of the time, my press drops right on its goal ....but on one occasion, we were loading some .45 acp ...and the powder check die started alerting us to an issue. Turns out there was a nut and bolt loosening on the powder measure causing the problem. We kept using a scale on every case the press alerted us to ...until it started swinging back and forth - over 0.2gr deviation ... But because we had the powder check die installed ....we knew everything that passed thru the press was a good round ...and on goal for powder.
When we shut everything down ...took the powder measure apart ..we found the problem ..and everything went back to normal.
A visual inspection would not have caught the problem ...until it was way worse ( and beyond the min probably ) ...causing us to worry / and maybe having to pull a bunch of bullets - because of uncertainty.
If you have a 1050 press ...why not purchase and use the powder check die ...what would it hurt to be sure ..??
I also have a number of grandkids - that load some on my press...the powder check / or any beep alert ....lets me know there is an issue / without me hovering over their shoulder all the time - or no beep means that everything is being done correctly / so its worth its weight in gold as a training tool for young or inexperienced loaders....but even with experienced loaders...a visual inspection will catch any no-drops of powder or a big swing ...but is it enough ...especially in high pressure rounds like .40S&W ...no, I don't think so. So I use the powder check all the time ...and consider it a reason not to buy a press without it. It tells me, I'm 100% on my loads when I'm loading a high volume of rounds for handguns ...at 1,000 rds an hour...and peace of mind...that's my 2 cents...
The logic of having a press ...with a good tool ...that tells you if you have a powder drop problem ...and not use it makes no sense to me. But its your guns ..and your hands pulling the trigger....so I guess its up to you / but safety features are usually worth using ...because stuff happens...even on a good press that is 99.9% accurate...
Last edited by BigJimP; January 22, 2012 at 03:10 PM.