Rifle Scopes  ATI SAI 1-6x24 Review

Center Mass

Sergeant
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Minuteman
Jan 12, 2008
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Pa
So I picked one these up this week and I think it is an all around very solid optic. Of course I am not an expert, nor do I claim to be. This is just some of my thoughts and impressions that I will try to keep as orderly as possible. I will say that I am a bit of a glass snob and have a couple S&B's, a Tangent and a couple Kahles all for my long range needs. When it comes to AR platforms however, I do not consider it to be "precision" shooting so I tend to aim for best bang for the buck LPVO's.

IMG_20210409_083219875_1.jpg

Reticle- Starting off with the SFP vs FFP, I totally get both sides of this argument. Me personally, I can go either way. I prefer a FFP (because all my LR scopes are) but it seems like the reticles always fall short at one end or the other. I do not think an LPVO is really meant to be FFP but if the reticle is properly executed, it could be successful. My biggest complaint about FFP's is that usually the small low end reticle is almost unusable. This could be corrected by making the illumination "Aimpoint" bright but they never do.... except Vortex. So, if you happen to be in the scope business and are reading this, make your FFP LPVO's DAYLIGHT BRIGHT.

The CX900 is, IMHO, a really good balance. Again, I totally get the BDC vs MIL holdover thing but for me, I like simple. I think it eliminates some thinking to have a BDC for shooting under stress. One thing I really dislike is having to count down mil hash holdovers like on my K16I SC1. I think all mil hash holdovers should be numbered every other or so, again, to eliminate some thinking. I am sure a lot of you know this, but you can adjust your zero range to help the BDC to be more accurate. I have done this many times and it works well. I try to adjust my zero to be more precise at distance and maybe a bit more off at closer ranges. Having bad dope at 600 yds and being off by 2 MOA is a bigger miss than being of by 2 MOA at 200. I hope that makes sense... The beauty of the CX900 I think is the mil wind holds. With this, holding for wind is more versatile. For me, I will just use the Accuracy 1st rapid wind method so I can easily compensate for winds at almost any range. Although the FFP reticle is not daylight bright (more like daylight visible) it is still very usable thanks to the large bullet shapes marking in each quadrant that draw your eye to the center.

IMG_20210409_083006901_1.jpg IMG_20210409_083114983_1.jpg

Glass- It is very good...at the price point. Unfortunately my K16i was sent in for repairs so I cannot compare them side by side. Best I can recall, this SAI is very comparable to the Kahles as it seems like when you put them up to your eye, the only thing that changes it that a recticle appears. I am very pleased with the clarity and quality overall, but glass is so subjective so take it for what it's worth. At 1x, I am pretty certain that the SAI has a bit more fish eye than the K16i. It just does not seem quite as flat when panning.

Adjustments- The turrets seem very functional and are recessed a little into the housing. The clicks seem very precise and audible and have the ability to zero them out though I'm not sure why. One thing to note for sure is the zoom ring. it is incredibly smooth and easy to turn. Might be a no-go for some guys but it is super slick. It is lighter and smoother than my K16i for sure and it almost feels like it's broken. In other words like it's just turning and not really articulating with anything else. I really like it and a throw lever on this thing would be overkill for sure.

Overall- The SAI picks up on a lot of things that I just didn't like about other LPVO's. A very usable FFP reticle, hybrid BDC reticle, excellent glass, and the VSOR ranging that I didn't mention earlier is a really nice addition. Including Tenebrex caps and tethered scope caps are a really nice touch as well in my opinion. The initial offering in FDE I really like too, I get bored with black...

What would I like to see different? Daylight bright illumination of course! Also, the 1-6 offering is a bit 2018 as some have said and I totally agree with that. A 1-8x at least would have been a better start but for me, it's going to ride on an 11.5" SBR so 6x is very adequate I think. A little more zoom for PID could never hurt but for the weight savings, I am happy with it.

Went on a little longer than I thought, sorry about that. Thanks for putting up with me.

CM
 

Glassaholic

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Minuteman
  • Nov 30, 2012
    5,061
    4,025
    Black Forest, CO
    So I picked one these up this week and I think it is an all around very solid optic. Of course I am not an expert, nor do I claim to be. This is just some of my thoughts and impressions that I will try to keep as orderly as possible. I will say that I am a bit of a glass snob and have a couple S&B's, a Tangent and a couple Kahles all for my long range needs. When it comes to AR platforms however, I do not consider it to be "precision" shooting so I tend to aim for best bang for the buck LPVO's.

    IMG_20210409_083219875_1.jpg

    Reticle- Starting off with the SFP vs FFP, I totally get both sides of this argument. Me personally, I can go either way. I prefer a FFP (because all my LR scopes are) but it seems like the reticles always fall short at one end or the other. I do not think an LPVO is really meant to be FFP but if the reticle is properly executed, it could be successful. My biggest complaint about FFP's is that usually the small low end reticle is almost unusable. This could be corrected by making the illumination "Aimpoint" bright but they never do.... except Vortex. So, if you happen to be in the scope business and are reading this, make your FFP LPVO's DAYLIGHT BRIGHT.

    The CX900 is, IMHO, a really good balance. Again, I totally get the BDC vs MIL holdover thing but for me, I like simple. I think it eliminates some thinking to have a BDC for shooting under stress. One thing I really dislike is having to count down mil hash holdovers like on my K16I SC1. I think all mil hash holdovers should be numbered every other or so, again, to eliminate some thinking. I am sure a lot of you know this, but you can adjust your zero range to help the BDC to be more accurate. I have done this many times and it works well. I try to adjust my zero to be more precise at distance and maybe a bit more off at closer ranges. Having bad dope at 600 yds and being off by 2 MOA is a bigger miss than being of by 2 MOA at 200. I hope that makes sense... The beauty of the CX900 I think is the mil wind holds. With this, holding for wind is more versatile. For me, I will just use the Accuracy 1st rapid wind method so I can easily compensate for winds at almost any range. Although the FFP reticle is not daylight bright (more like daylight visible) it is still very usable thanks to the large bullet shapes marking in each quadrant that draw your eye to the center.

    IMG_20210409_083006901_1.jpg IMG_20210409_083114983_1.jpg

    Glass- It is very good...at the price point. Unfortunately my K16i was sent in for repairs so I cannot compare them side by side. Best I can recall, this SAI is very comparable to the Kahles as it seems like when you put them up to your eye, the only thing that changes it that a recticle appears. I am very pleased with the clarity and quality overall, but glass is so subjective so take it for what it's worth. At 1x, I am pretty certain that the SAI has a bit more fish eye than the K16i. It just does not seem quite as flat when panning.

    Adjustments- The turrets seem very functional and are recessed a little into the housing. The clicks seem very precise and audible and have the ability to zero them out though I'm not sure why. One thing to note for sure is the zoom ring. it is incredibly smooth and easy to turn. Might be a no-go for some guys but it is super slick. It is lighter and smoother than my K16i for sure and it almost feels like it's broken. In other words like it's just turning and not really articulating with anything else. I really like it and a throw lever on this thing would be overkill for sure.

    Overall- The SAI picks up on a lot of things that I just didn't like about other LPVO's. A very usable FFP reticle, hybrid BDC reticle, excellent glass, and the VSOR ranging that I didn't mention earlier is a really nice addition. Including Tenebrex caps and tethered scope caps are a really nice touch as well in my opinion. The initial offering in FDE I really like too, I get bored with black...

    What would I like to see different? Daylight bright illumination of course! Also, the 1-6 offering is a bit 2018 as some have said and I totally agree with that. A 1-8x at least would have been a better start but for me, it's going to ride on an 11.5" SBR so 6x is very adequate I think. A little more zoom for PID could never hurt but for the weight savings, I am happy with it.

    Went on a little longer than I thought, sorry about that. Thanks for putting up with me.

    CM
    Really appreciate that write up CM, it mimics a lot of my thoughts since I got the scope a few days ago, I'm looking forward to more time behind it for sure.
     
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    PremiumBepis

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    Minuteman
    Mar 30, 2019
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    Thanks for the review, I just found out about these. I'm kind of torn between getting this vs something like a NX8 1-8 or a Vortex Razor. It's always a gamble being an early adopter of a new product.

    Any comments on durability/build quality? What is the BDC calibrated for? How is the eye relief compared to other LVPOs that you have tried?
    Also, is there any chance you can re-upload the images to imgur or something? I can't seem to open the full size images and the thumbnails on the post are tiny.
     

    Moose

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  • Jul 3, 2005
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    Thank you for the review CM.It is funny that you mention no numbers on the K16i reticle because it is the same thing that bothered me about that reticle.
     
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    Center Mass

    Sergeant
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Jan 12, 2008
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    Pa
    Thanks for the review, I just found out about these. I'm kind of torn between getting this vs something like a NX8 1-8 or a Vortex Razor. It's always a gamble being an early adopter of a new product.

    Any comments on durability/build quality? What is the BDC calibrated for? How is the eye relief compared to other LVPOs that you have tried?
    Also, is there any chance you can re-upload the images to imgur or something? I can't seem to open the full size images and the thumbnails on the post are tiny.

    I was in the same boat with the Razor and the NX8. The NF is a great scope but the small FOV kinda turned me off of it. One thing that I absoloutly should have mentioned in my review is the massive FOV of the SAI. I don't have the numbers in front of me but I'm pretty sure is 129 feet. That blows the NX8 out of the water and handily passes the Razor. Anyone will tell you that you can't go wrong with the Razor Gen II, it is pretty much the gold standard. But again, I go back the reticles, simple is good, but neither or Razor's reticles excite me.

    As far as quality, it is easily on par with every other scope in it's price range, no complaints there. Durability is always a question with new optics or anything really, but I think it is important to consider where it comes from. Obviously it's a LOW scope and we all know they put out really good reliable optics. In addition, Armament Technology has a hand in it and their name is synonymous with quality and durability. While I haven't had a lot of time with it yet, the eye is very nice and forgiving. Not only shouldering the rifle but also aligning my cell phone for pics was a snap.

    I'll try the full images here for ya...

    IMG_20210409_083219875_1.jpg
    IMG_20210409_083006901_1.jpg
    IMG_20210409_083114983_1.jpg
    Screenshot_20210410-095702.png

    CM
     

    Hogrider2000

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    Minuteman
    Feb 23, 2017
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    that is a nice review and great pics.

    Would be a great CQB set up out to mid range of 300 with 5.56, and in.
     

    TonyTheTiger

    Like a Boss
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    Feb 14, 2017
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    I don't have the numbers in front of me but I'm pretty sure is 129 feet. That blows the NX8 out of the water and handily passes the Razor.
    Specs I could find say 38.8m at 100m. Which is about 114 feet at 100 yards, so in line with other good optics but not anything game changing.
    Any pics with the rear scope cap off? Hard to tell how much the tube disappears with it there.
     

    koshkin

    Dark Lord Of Optics
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    Minuteman
  • Feb 22, 2006
    3,776
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    www.opticsthoughts.com
    A couple of points:
    The FOV is comparatively normal for a good quality 1-6x24, but the eyepiece is very nicely designed and very well corrected. That makes it look bigger than it is.
    The BDC reticle is for a SS109 or similar ammo out of a 16" barrel to 600 yards. 700 and 800 yard holds are for a longer 20+ barrel that has higher muzzle velocity. Same BDC holds as the Elcan Spectre DR has. I've played with it a little and it seems to work well for my purposes. When I shoot with 5.56 beyond 600, it is usually with very different ammo anyway, so I end up recalibrating the reticle for 75gr or 77gr ballistics. However, since the wind holds are in mrad, I do not have to do anything hugely special there. It makes it a little more adaptable than a typical BDC reticle to me.
    I do have a "through the scope" video up:

    ILya
     
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    Center Mass

    Sergeant
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Jan 12, 2008
    288
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    Pa
    Thanks for the good info @koshkin

    @TonyTheTiger Here is the through the scope pic without the cap on. It is actually a bit better in person than it appears in the photo because I didn't quite get it centered as you can see. The eye piece may no disappear like a Razor, but it looks very good to me.

    IMG_20210411_170349596_1.jpg

    CM