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Old November 1, 2013, 12:34 PM   #26
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Yes, and one other reason for me is that I feel optics are quite different under artificial light especially if it's halogen/gas lights not incandescent like many stores have. They look a lot different in natural light to me.

Also, OP, just reread your initial post and at the end you mention shooting at dusk. Early dawn and dusk will really show you the worth of an optic, and I like trying to shop at times when it is not bright outside. Also, a heavy overcast mid-day or even a light fog will tell you some of a scopes ability.
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Old November 1, 2013, 12:44 PM   #27
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Besides clarity, another important aspect of rifle scopes, applicable to all tasks I can think of, is the ability to hold zero and the ability to adjust in a predictable fashion.

If the scope does not hold zero it is not a bargain no matter how low cost. Ditto if the turrets do not produce at least somewhat reliable adjustments.

This can be a differentiator between lower-end and higher-end scopes, especially for rifles / calibers with high recoil.

Not all low cost scopes are poor at holding zero but some are (I experienced that with a low cost Barska scope).

I do not know how the banners are in terms of holding zero, they might be great, but it is another criteria to keep in mind.
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Old November 4, 2013, 06:24 AM   #28
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You don't need to see bullet holes at 100 yards to hunt.
I'll admit to having a large number of "lower end" scopes and being very successful using them. I have Bushnell Banner 3-9 scopes and if you can barely see the target at 100 yards, there's something wrong with the adjustment or your vision.
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Old November 4, 2013, 06:44 AM   #29
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I have used Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn scopes and find them perfectly adequate for a hunting optic. They are not perfect or ideal by any stretch of the imagination, but they are adequate.

First, put the magnification at 3x and adjust the scope in the rings so that when you shoulder your rifle the scope is where you need it to be, then tighten down the rings.

Second, go to the range, increase magnification to 9x, and at 100 yards zero your rifle with the ammunition you will be using to hunt. Do this from the bench or sled, and be very careful to not let the scope bite your forehead.

Third, crank the magnification back down to 3x and verify the zero didn't wander with a power change, and transition to the standing position.

Fourth, go hunting.

Machine guns are awesome until you have to carry one.
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Old November 4, 2013, 07:07 AM   #30
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I was a cheap scope buyer for many years,still am in so much as non comp shooting goes. The difference I have seen in great scopes and cheap scopes is tracking and very little to do with clarity. ( although it is there ). If you are getting one for just hunting,the cheap walmart one- Center point is more than fine. Sight it in a 100 or 200 yards and use hold over. Target shooting is a different story,you need to be able to adjust and know where that bullet is going to hit. I have a cheap NCStar 6-24 x 50 on my 223 for 4 years now. Never lost zero and never has failed me yet. I have it sighted in a 100 yards and use mil dot from there out. Dead,scary accurate. If i try to adjust the turrets up,lord knows where that bullet is going to go. Could be any where from 6 inches left to 6 inches right. Leave it where it is and bullet goes where I want every time.
You need to decide the purpose of your scope. Even when I was a deer hunter,I did not buy spendy scopes. I do not need to see the deer tick crawling on the deer,just where I want my bullet to go. A cheap scope will do that as good as a costly scope will. As for light and dark shooting. I can pull that junky NCStar out with the big boys in the early morning hours and still see my target very easy maybe or I should say for sure not a clear as them,but I can still see it very easy. Sure we would all like to have a Schmidt & Bender, but reality is you don't need one for deer hunting.
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Old November 4, 2013, 11:32 AM   #31
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If I spent 2-3 x on a scope what I did on the gun I would be a single man paying alimony... My thoughts are unless you're into serious competition or your life is routinely on the line, then its hard to justify that kind of dough for a scope/rifle setup.
au contraire mon frere

I think you'll do better if you buy the second most expensive scope you can afford and a rifle for the change

magnification can also be tricky with eyesight and age, older eyes or people with less than good eyesight my not be able to use the magnification availble i nthe scope
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Old November 4, 2013, 10:37 PM   #32
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A quality optic on a cheap rifle is a much better set up than a cheap optic on a quality rifle. The cheap rifles are now sub moa. An optic failing at an inopportune time is priceless.
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Old November 4, 2013, 11:35 PM   #33
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I am a bit confused. Magnification is magnification. 6x is 6x is 6x, whether the distance to the object is 10 yards or 10 miles. Now some scopes might be less well made than others, with differing sharpness. A scope that clearly distinguishes an object at 50 yards may show only a blur at 200 yards. That might be due to the scope or to other factors, like atmospherics, haze, etc.

And a scope that claims to be 6x or 9x may be 5x or 8x, no way to tell without a careful test. Today, most makers stick pretty close to the published figures, but at one time it was common knowledge that a well known brand of scope was well under its claimed magnification to the point where a 4x scope was really only 3 or 3 1/2x. But even if it was only 3x, it was 3x at any range.

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Old November 5, 2013, 07:44 AM   #34
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Reynolds357 is exactly right!! Also magnification might be equal but clarity,light gathering, and definition due to lens quality and coatings make a huge differance in low light conditions. Maybe not so much at 100yrds but at up to 600yrds it,s the determining factor between a sucessful shot or failure. All my Sakos are topped with Swarovski's. I would rather have one good rifle with a great scope on it than five good rifles with optic junk on them. And I would not own a Bushnell bathtub, but thats just me, smoke em if you got em.
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