What is a "top end scope"?

Discussion in 'General Airgun Chat' started by Jesim1, Mar 30, 2019.

  1. Jesim1

    Jesim1 Active Member

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    Okay, I know this will be subjective, but yesterday a member was kind enough to let me have a go of his March 8-80x60 scope, and I was impressed by the quality and brightness of the image - but it's £2.5k :eek:, and I don't need 80x mag, but 50 would be good.

    I'm used to £300/400 scopes for range work, and have had a lot of £700/£1000 scopes either now or in the past - typically Big Nikkos and Sightrons, but what is the next step up I would actually notice?

    What comes close to the March but cheaper? I've held onto BNs for a long time as I reckon they are excellent scopes and excellent value for money, but looking through the March was the first time I'd seen something noticeably better, but they are almost 4x the price:oops:

    So I know I'm being a cheap scape :D, but what's better than Sightrons/BNs, close to the clarity of a March, and cheaper?

    I'd prefer second hand, but at this stage the info is all I'm interested in to try and narrow the filed as my experience here is limited.

    Thanks

    James
     
  2. Welsh Wizard

    Welsh Wizard I'm sparticus ! Staff Member

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  3. C.Eaton

    C.Eaton Confirmed Anschutz Nut...

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    Ultimately you get what you pay for and currently March's are as top as you can get for quality and performance.
    ...However, not everyone needs that bullet-proof construction and biting clarity that a March provides so viable alternatives are:

    As Awesime says, Leupold. Plenty of top quality scopes around if you look and for not a lot of money. I'm biased but you can't beat a good Competition scope as long as you can work with the fixed mag. Also in the same stable is the 20-50, a little darker than the comp. due to the zoom mech, but perfectly useable.
    Sightrons you know about but take a long look at the new Falcon X50, a Sightron in everything but name. Great reticle & solid contruction with a JH side wheel as an option.
    Certainly ticks the boxes on paper though I'm itching to have a go with one having not even seen one yet.
    I understand that Optics Warehouse were getting some in.
    Nikkos are Nikkos, some very good, some dire, most inbetween, it's a bit of a Forest Gump moment with them....;)
     
  4. mrgeoff

    mrgeoff Active Member

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    If March is so bulletproof, why do they only come with a 5 year warranty?

    I was sooo close to dropping serious cash on a 10-60, but when I tried to talk to the rep about the manufacture support, especially when mounted on a springer, he went cold on me, probably scared of me damaging it, which dosnt say much!!!

    I bought a pair of 2nd hand Leupold Comps instead.
     
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  5. NeilM

    NeilM Well-Known Member

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    Good question. I am going to draw on something like 15 years of product reviewing here and say a top end scope is a combination of things.

    In FT / HFT primarily we need good optics, in the case of FT we also need as shallow a depth of field as we can get and not all scopes with good optics have that, and also not all scopes can cope with variable light conditions.

    Next you have material and build quality, big Nikko's are good optically, but if you put them side by side with a S&B or March and really look at them with an open mind and eye (very rare amongst competition shooters) you will see why the higher priced scopes cost what they cost.

    Controls. Twiddle the knobs and work the parallax (end to end, several times), this is where you will feel a huge difference between less expensive and more expensive scopes.

    QC. Anything that is made, can be made wrong or break. To be fair it is only when you get below the kind of price range that we are talking about do you find some real howlers (and some surprising peaches too), but in our case when something does go wrong, how is it dealt with and how long do you have to wait to get it fixed, this is where some 'names' really fall down.

    When all the stars align on that little lot, then in my opinion (which is all anyone can pass on) you are looking at / through a top end scope.

    Is it worth the price tag? Only you can decide.
     
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  6. RobF

    RobF Administrator Staff Member

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    Reason for the warranty explained here :

    March Rifle Scopes FAQ

    They’re springer proof. Brian Samson has been using one on his for some years now.

    Mine was the first used for FT, definitely in the uk, perhaps the world. I think it’s 10 years old and been used all season for all of them on pcp and springer. I’m sure no product never has a fault in production but being the only FT shooter to have spoken directly with March’s engineer I can say their focus is purely on producing an excelling product not shifting numbers. I think you’re likely to find a fault in 5 years and wear and tear is not something covered by warranties anyway so a longer one wouldn’t change that.

    I did see something saying March we’re doing lifetime, I know because i remarked how mine had just missed that. Perhaps they reverted or never applied it beyond the uk dealership.

    Mine will be going back for a service probably this year just because I think after that time and it’s use I think it’s prudent and now I’ve got my second one I can use that in the meantime.
     
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  7. Ratinator

    Ratinator 77.74

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    If you send a March scope back for a service after the first 5 yrs , the warrantee gets extended to 10 yrs , at least that’s what I was told when enquiring .
     
  8. Conor

    Conor Never been banned from sales Staff Member

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    Guys it’s a lifetime warranty, I think legally they can only advertise it’s for 5yrs. I’ve been using mine since 2011, it went back in 2012 to get the new reticle and they replaced every mechanical part inside even though it was only over 1yr old at the time.
    Turret clicks as positively now as it did when new. It’s NEVER moved zero on any of my foreign travels on a plane.
    I’ve always said it’s a price tag and scope that won’t hit you any more targets than a much more less expensive scope will.
     
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  9. Jesim1

    Jesim1 Active Member

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    So it terms of glass quality and magnification on top end scopes - say £1k upwards, what do you have to buy to get better? can those with experience of using them give me a rough scale assuming they are all "good" at the very least? I've only looked through the March 8-80x60 and it was very impressive, after that I'm more used to BNs and Sightrons which I find fairly equal clarity and brightness wise, but definitely a drop from the March - what's in the middle?
     
  10. Waldo

    Waldo Active Member

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    Been thinking about a Delta Stryker 5-50x56 HD SFP with the DLS -3 1/8 moa ret ,has anyone used one for Benchrest ?
     
  11. bootneckbob

    bootneckbob Active Member

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    I was thinking about getting a March myself but thought differently once I saw their warranty. No way I'm paying that kind of money without lifetime cover. Of course if you have plenty of spare cash that's different, and I would have one for sure. Perhaps I was genuinely misinformed when making my enquiry.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2019
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  12. bootneckbob

    bootneckbob Active Member

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    For the record, I don't have plenty of spare cash!
     
  13. Ratinator

    Ratinator 77.74

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    How much warrantee do you get on a £30K Jaguar ?
     
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  14. mrgeoff

    mrgeoff Active Member

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    Lifetime warranty on a the Porsche of scopes (Leupold), lifetime on the Mercedes of scopes (vortex) but only 5 years on the rolls-Royce or Maybach or however we want to cite the analogy?

    The warranty wasn’t the be and end of not getting a March, unfortunately if the rep was as keen on them as you guys are, he would have my money!
    I have no more scopes to buy now :p
     
  15. nemesis

    nemesis 55yrd standing expert, or was it 8 or 9?

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    If you think the march is bright you've obviously not looked through the schmidt bender pm11
     
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  16. Jesim1

    Jesim1 Active Member

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    Now your just messing with my head :D
     
  17. Ratinator

    Ratinator 77.74

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    The S&B has some class glass , by far the brightest scope I’ve looked through .
     
  18. nemesis

    nemesis 55yrd standing expert, or was it 8 or 9?

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    Not to mention the UK armed forces use them too.
     
  19. Ratinator

    Ratinator 77.74

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    Good job they don’t use them to range find .
    They leave that to leupold .
     
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  20. C.Eaton

    C.Eaton Confirmed Anschutz Nut...

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    I had a PM2 on a 7.62 and while the optics were first class the temp. shift was something else.
    I would waste about 25-30 rounds zeroing each time I used it so in the end it got replaced by a Leupold which hasn’t moved a click in five years.

    I have no idea how military shooters somewhere like Afghan get a one-shot hit at anything over 600yds. The military models must be more thermally stable or something.

    Luckily I got back pretty much what I paid for it so there are some redeeming features...
     

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