Confused… NX8, RZR LHT, MK5

mrtoyz

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So I’ve been looking for two $2k’ish, 3-18’ish, tree reticle, illuminated scopes for my 17HMR and a LMT-H. At the same time my son wants a light hunting optic.
Had an opportunity to compare a MK5 3-18, RXR LHT 3-15 and an NX8 2-20.
Definitely going to recommend the RZR for my son. Fairly impressive glass. Controls will be fine. He doesn’t know any better.
Was ready to place an order for NX8’s as I’ve had good success with my two 4-32 NX8’s, until I compared it to the MK5… I’d been thinking the tighter eye box on the NX8 wasn’t going to be a big issue. It sure was when compared to the MK5. I’d looked through some MK5’s a few years ago at PRE and decided no thanks. I’m thinking that was probably because I was trying to compare it to Alpha glass. I want to say it was slightly more clear than the NX8 as well… parallax was definitely better on the MK5.
Well damn. MK5 only has one tree reticle model and it’s not illuminated. Guess I’m back to the drawing board.
I know Burris should be an option. Having a hard time with that.
Am I missing other options??
 

Birddog6424

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    No reason to have a hard time wrapping your mind around the Burris. Its an excellent optic, as good or better than the two you are considering.

    I have an illuminated XTRIII on my 300 Norma. I've run a bunch of rounds through it getting ready for my mulie and elk hunts. That's a 230gr Berger Hybrid over 92.6grs of RE33 at 3050fps. It's a boomer. The scope has been flawless.
     
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    4O6shootist

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    Have 3 nx8s, all been good for me! Had a MK5 for a bit, but sold it, didn't seem to do really well in low light. The HD lht in 4.5-22 I have has great glass! And extremely light. Has tracked well so far, but the turrets suck balls.
     
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    Raffy

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    If leupold's reticle dept would pull their head out they might do ok. They definitely dont pay much attention to their customers preferences. I like my mk5 3-18, but its far from my favorite optic. The glass is good, its super lightweight, the capped turret I like, moreso because the off set zero line on the windage is in the goofiest location. Its earned its place as a good hunting scope. If your looking for other disciplines for the usage I personally would go elsewhere, but it performs well on a hunting rifle. I have been very curious to get a look at the new burris gen3. If reviews are accurate its a better bang for your buck with equal or better performance than the mk5. I really like my 4-36 nx8 though and that is pretty close to the same weight as the mk5.
     

    Cr1775

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    Good bang for the dollar at camerland ,just picked up new XTR iii from the ups store today. Can't beat that price.. Leupold has better glass side by side shooting using my rifles with both scopes Leupold is better. The turrets are much better on the mk 5 not that i have admin hands, but christ Burris tone down the edges. They do both track no problem with both for years. I have both scopes can't say the Burris isn't any good but when the sun is behind the target i can still make hits with the mk 5 with the XTR iii i have problems.
    I'm not a scope snob, all i can say is that i can see my targets better with the mk 5.
     

    Birddog6424

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    To chime in on the glass comparison.

    I would bet everything I own there isn't anyone out there who has done more side by side glass comparisons to the XTRIII or XTR Pro than me. With the MK5 and Cronus probably being the most often compared.

    With no bias whatsoever I can tell you it's going to go both ways. My Cliff' Notes would be that they are so close that I definitely wouldn't use glass quality as a deciding factor. I've seen some MK5s that looked great, and some that didn't. Same for the Burris. They all however were good scopes for their price point of sub $2k. If a person went nuts and scanned posts on this forum you would probably find a 50/50 for who likes the Leupy versus Burris glass. Honestly it's just that close.

    I've never cared for the NX8, its shortcomings are well-documented, and the 20x is the worst of the two.

    The Burris is super hard to beat at $1200.
     

    StaveyIL

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    I would take a good look at which reticles are offered . This may help narrow it down . Aside from that I don’t think you can go wrong with any of the brands you’re considering .
     

    Huskydriver

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    Don’t think I can find one locally. My experience with Steiner has never been good. Lots of CA.

    The guys who have them in hand say they are just as good or better than the xtr pros. Pretty sure the t6 are made in CO too fyi.

    I will be playing with a 318 and 530 t6 later today
     
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    redneckbmxer24

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    I have an LHT 4.5-22 and really like it but I wouldn’t put it on anything but a hunting rifle. I don’t think the turrets are as bad as some make them out to be given the price point, but they’re not something you’re going to want to turn all the time either. I also wouldn’t go with the 3-15 as it’s not FFP.

    The MK5’s are amazing for the $$ but to get an illuminated tree you have to go with the T3 or H59 which that and illumination put you into an entirely different price point. I’ve had numerous 3-18’s and 5-25’s and unless you’re using it for hunting in low light you don’t need the illumination.

    No experience with NX8’s but I heard enough negative to push me away when I was deciding between them and the LHT. I’ve look at ATACR 4-16’s and 4-20’s too. They aren’t much over your budget at all. Euro has a 4-16x42 with the Mil-XT reticle that’s a like new demo which probably means they opened it in the showroom for someone to look at and is brand new for $2099. That’s $100 over you budget before tax.

    Between all the given options though I’d go for a MK5 non illuminated for your LMT and a LHT for the 17HMR.
     
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    Butterburger

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    I’d rather buy a 3.6-18 Mk5 than take a 2.5-20 NX8 for free. If you want a Nightforce, look for a used/demo 4-16x42 ATACR, which compares to the MK5 much better than an NX8.
     

    4O6shootist

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    I’d rather buy a 3.6-18 Mk5 than take a 2.5-20 NX8 for free. If you want a Nightforce, look for a used/demo 4-16x42 ATACR, which compares to the MK5 much better than an NX8.
    Have you looked at the recent 2.5-20? I just acquired one, it looks night and day better than the sample observed 2 years ago upon release of the newer nx8 stuff.
     

    mrtoyz

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    Have you looked at the recent 2.5-20? I just acquired one, it looks night and day better than the sample observed 2 years ago upon release of the newer nx8 stuff.
    Your post wasn’t directed at me but I’ll reply. Reportedly, there were some changes that affected the edge to edge clarity. I believe it was either @Glassaholic or @koshkin that had confirmed that. The scope I was writing about in my OP was a brand new off the shelf F1 model. For me the eye relief and very picky parallax where the real bummer. As I said above, I wanted that scope and flat just don’t after seeing compared to the other 2.
     

    Huskydriver

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    Man... These new steiners.....I think these are fantastic.... We got a zco and a TT out here to compare and I'm impressed so far...

    More to follow

    20221001_155914.jpg
     

    Glassaholic

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    Your post wasn’t directed at me but I’ll reply. Reportedly, there were some changes that affected the edge to edge clarity. I believe it was either @Glassaholic or @koshkin that had confirmed that. The scope I was writing about in my OP was a brand new off the shelf F1 model. For me the eye relief and very picky parallax where the real bummer. As I said above, I wanted that scope and flat just don’t after seeing compared to the other 2.
    That was my experience, but short bodied high erector scopes are prone to the very issues you mention (among other things) so I understand.
     

    Huskydriver

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    H

    husky, you have the 3-18x56! Looking forward to hearing more, that is the scope that intrigues me most. How is the eyebox?
    It wasn't mine but @Long Range 338 was kind enough to let me play with one and a 530. Loved them both honestly. I thought the eye box on both were great. If they prove reliable, these will be tough scopes to beat for the money

    20221001_160332.jpg
     
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    Glassaholic

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    It wasn't mine but @Long Range 338 was kind enough to let me play with one and a 530. Loved them both honestly. Had my zco 527 and his 525 TT out there too. I thought the eye box on both were great. If they prove reliable those will be tough scopes to beat for the money

    View attachment 7968097
    Brilliant! You and longrange should post up some comments in the Steiner thread
     

    jbell

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    To chime in on the glass comparison.

    I would bet everything I own there isn't anyone out there who has done more side by side glass comparisons to the XTRIII or XTR Pro than me. With the MK5 and Cronus probably being the most often compared.

    With no bias whatsoever I can tell you it's going to go both ways. My Cliff' Notes would be that they are so close that I definitely wouldn't use glass quality as a deciding factor. I've seen some MK5s that looked great, and some that didn't. Same for the Burris. They all however were good scopes for their price point of sub $2k. If a person went nuts and scanned posts on this forum you would probably find a 50/50 for who likes the Leupy versus Burris glass. Honestly it's just that close.

    I've never cared for the NX8, its shortcomings are well-documented, and the 20x is the worst of the two.

    The Burris is super hard to beat at $1200.
    Having spent a bit of time with both I completely agree. However weight is a factor for me so I am now testing a Razor LHT 4.5-22X50 and for me I like it better than both, disregarding the weight difference. The only complaint I have with the LHT is the turrets feel like trash. That said they are completely serviceable, I have yet to have a operational problem caused by turret feel.
     
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    Birddog6424

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    I'm not a fan of all the durability complaints on the LHT. It clearly has a glass jaw. The last thing I would want to have to worry about is my zero getting knocked off because I bumped my scope.

    In my experience, shaving ounces is the most overrated aspect of scope selection. I'm 56 and carry a 12lb rifle over hill and dale for mulies and elk here in Idaho. I hump about 30 to 35lbs of clothing, rifle and gear on any given day. 8 to 16ozs is nothing I would even notice between my rifle and all my gear. I know from experience that it takes a significant boost in weight to have any impact on how far or fast I can cover real estate. It takes some pounds to register. Having carried an 8lb rifle versus a 12lb, it makes no difference, I don't notice it. Ounces should never be an influencing factor. Run the gear you want, you won't notice the weight.
     

    4O6shootist

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    I'm not a fan of all the durability complaints on the LHT. It clearly has a glass jaw. The last thing I would want to have to worry about is my zero getting knocked off because I bumped my scope.

    In my experience, shaving ounces is the most overrated aspect of scope selection. I'm 56 and carry a 12lb rifle over hill and dale for mulies and elk here in Idaho. I hump about 30 to 35lbs of clothing, rifle and gear on any given day. 8 to 16ozs is nothing I would even notice between my rifle and all my gear. I know from experience that it takes a significant boost in weight to have any impact on how far or fast I can cover real estate. It takes some pounds to register. Having carried an 8lb rifle versus a 12lb, it makes no difference, I don't notice it. Ounces should never be an influencing factor. Run the gear you want, you won't notice the weight.
    I agree. MOST people dont realize its easier to trim weight with diet/exercise than trimming gear down. Its WAY cheaper too, but it takes discipline.
     

    redneckbmxer24

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    I'm not a fan of all the durability complaints on the LHT. It clearly has a glass jaw. The last thing I would want to have to worry about is my zero getting knocked off because I bumped my scope.

    In my experience, shaving ounces is the most overrated aspect of scope selection. I'm 56 and carry a 12lb rifle over hill and dale for mulies and elk here in Idaho. I hump about 30 to 35lbs of clothing, rifle and gear on any given day. 8 to 16ozs is nothing I would even notice between my rifle and all my gear. I know from experience that it takes a significant boost in weight to have any impact on how far or fast I can cover real estate. It takes some pounds to register. Having carried an 8lb rifle versus a 12lb, it makes no difference, I don't notice it. Ounces should never be an influencing factor. Run the gear you want, you won't notice the weight.

    I think they’re mostly bullshit. Some swinging dick at rokslide that hates vortex wrote a review about his supposedly shifting zero from dropping it like a foot onto a padded case. That’s bullshit. Then a bunch of people just parrot it.

    I was far meaner to mine and it didn’t shift zero banging it around. I’m also far from a Vortex fanboy, I generally don’t like the company how they’re a marketing company that makes mostly low and mid range junk and just replaces and replaces it with their “great” warranty. The Razor riflescopes are good though and the LHT’s are excellent for their price point. I like mine and won’t be selling it. In fact I’ll probably buy another in the near future. I paid $900 shipped for my 4.5-22 MRAD NIB.
     

    Glassaholic

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    I think they’re mostly bullshit. Some swinging dick at rokslide that hates vortex wrote a review about his supposedly shifting zero from dropping it like a foot onto a padded case. That’s bullshit. Then a bunch of people just parrot it.
    I appreciated ILya's response to all that voodoo magic, just too many variables at play to make their testing truly reliable. Sounded good though, they highly documented the process which sounded valid to many. I have my doubts/questions about their process, but seeing their responses to a few who know what they're talking about with this stuff has caused me to question the validity of their results and think, like you, that they may be biased more than they admit against Vortex.
     
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    Birddog6424

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    I knew someone did a drop test that didn't go well for the LHT, but i havent seen it. But I've seen several threads where people posted about losing zero.

    To give the benefit of the doubt though, in every thread I saw someone would reference that test. Maybe it's a bunch of Vortex haters with confirmation bias. It's hard to tell what's going on there. It's like the whole turret breakage thing on the Gen II PST. I've seen several of them myself, but some want to sweep it under the rug and say it's not a thing while others think it should be front page news.

    At the end of the day we pick the stuff we like and run with it, and hope it meets our expectations.
     

    jbell

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    I'm not a fan of all the durability complaints on the LHT. It clearly has a glass jaw. The last thing I would want to have to worry about is my zero getting knocked off because I bumped my scope.

    In my experience, shaving ounces is the most overrated aspect of scope selection. I'm 56 and carry a 12lb rifle over hill and dale for mulies and elk here in Idaho. I hump about 30 to 35lbs of clothing, rifle and gear on any given day. 8 to 16ozs is nothing I would even notice between my rifle and all my gear. I know from experience that it takes a significant boost in weight to have any impact on how far or fast I can cover real estate. It takes some pounds to register. Having carried an 8lb rifle versus a 12lb, it makes no difference, I don't notice it. Ounces should never be an influencing factor. Run the gear you want, you won't notice the weight.
    I do not disagree with anything you said, less the LHT having a glass jaw. Those rumors of them failing are what took me so long to even consider one. Then I had some people I trust test a few with great results, so now I am. Thus far I am impressed. Only time will tell…

    On the subject of weight, for me it isn as much about packing the rifle around as it is how the rifle handles and shoots. l have been trying to hit some specific build aspects and a low scope weight is helpful.
     
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    jbell

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    I knew someone did a drop test that didn't go well for the LHT, but i havent seen it. But I've seen several threads where people posted about losing zero.

    To give the benefit of the doubt though, in every thread I saw someone would reference that test. Maybe it's a bunch of Vortex haters with confirmation bias. It's hard to tell what's going on there. It's like the whole turret breakage thing on the Gen II PST. I've seen several of them myself, but some want to sweep it under the rug and say it's not a thing while others think it should be front page news.

    At the end of the day we pick the stuff we like and run with it, and hope it meets our expectations.
    Not to be an ass but if you haven’t either known someone you trust or seen it yourself then maybe dont spread rumors. This is what leads people to believe things like the LHT isn’t a reliable scope. Maybe in the long run it will turn out to be the case, but if Vortex’s reliability track record with the Gen 1 razor, Gen 2 razor, & AMG are a indication of anything then the LHT should be in pretty good shape.
     
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    Birddog6424

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    Not to be an ass but if you haven’t either known someone you trust or seen it yourself then maybe dont spread rumors. This is what leads people to believe things like the LHT isn’t a reliable scope. Maybe in the long run it will turn out to be the case, but if Vortex’s reliability track record with the Gen 1 razor, Gen 2 razor, & AMG are a indication of anything then the LHT should be in pretty good shape.

    With all due respect, I would hardly consider it rumor mongering to say I've seen posts on this forum and others of people having issues with the optic. Certainly enough first hand issues that would cause me concern. I did mention its not even that article that was the reason for my comments. I haven't seen it, I've only seen people reference it. Drop testing a scope in that manner seems the height of stupidity to me. Manufacturers have machines that test scopes for durability and recoil that are a far better test of durability than some dunderhead just dropping them on their head.

    These weren't people saying they had a buddy or they heard about it. These were people posting that their scope had issues. One guy tipped one over off his bipod and it broke. Not a rumor. I had my horse fall on my rifle and a $75 Bushnell Sportview and I didn't even lose zero. When you own a stupid horse, you need a tough scope 🤣

    And I understand where you're coming from, its not my intention to disrespect anyone or the brand. I also think the Razor line up is solid. I have Razor optics and like them. And I love the people at Vortex, they are phenomenal supporters of us PRS shooters. If there is an issue or a weak link in the optic I have no doubts that Vortex will or already has wrinkled it out. But it certainly seems like some folks have experienced some odd breakage thus far.
     
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    Bakwa

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    I think they’re mostly bullshit. Some swinging dick at rokslide that hates vortex wrote a review about his supposedly shifting zero from dropping it like a foot onto a padded case. That’s bullshit. Then a bunch of people just parrot it.

    I was far meaner to mine and it didn’t shift zero banging it around. I’m also far from a Vortex fanboy, I generally don’t like the company how they’re a marketing company that makes mostly low and mid range junk and just replaces and replaces it with their “great” warranty. The Razor riflescopes are good though and the LHT’s are excellent for their price point. I like mine and won’t be selling it. In fact I’ll probably buy another in the near future. I paid $900 shipped for my 4.5-22 MRAD NIB.
    I wouldn't discredit all of the supposed experiences of LHT's losing zero.
    I haven't done any fancy drop test, but my LHT 3-15 lost zero pretty bad once. I was a huge fan of it before that.
    I was even experimenting with it in matches, where repeatability really matters. After a match a year ago I took it on a hunting trip. Not sure when it would have happened, but after the unsuccessful trip I came back and went to confirm zero with my match load (which was almost the exact same zero as my hunting load), and I was almost a full Mil off. I couldn't believe it.
    I was something like .8 mil off in elevation and .2 mil off on my windage.
    Now my zero set was setup and my windage was capped. I didn't trust it after that so I sold it.
    I'm not making a claim like all LHT's are garbage. I hear that the 4.5-22 seems to be treating a lot of folks decently. But my example of one left a bad taste in my mouth.
     

    jbell

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    With all due respect, I would hardly consider it rumor mongering to say I've seen posts on this forum and others of people having issues with the optic. Certainly enough first hand issues that would cause me concern. I did mention its not even that article that was the reason for my comments. I haven't seen it, I've only seen people reference it. Drop testing a scope in that manner seems the height of stupidity to me. Manufacturers have machines that test scopes for durability and recoil that are a far better test of durability than some dunderhead just dropping them on their head.

    These weren't people saying they had a buddy or they heard about it. These were people posting that their scope had issues. One guy tipped one over off his bipod and it broke. Not a rumor. I had my horse fall on my rifle and a $75 Bushnell Sportview and I didn't even lose zero. When you own a stupid horse, you need a tough scope 🤣

    And I understand where you're coming from, its not my intention to disrespect anyone or the brand. I also think the Razor line up is solid. I have Razor optics and like them. And I love the people at Vortex, they are phenomenal supporters of us PRS shooters. If there is an issue or a weak link in the optic I have no doubts that Vortex will or already has wrinkled it out. But it certainly seems like some folks have experienced some odd breakage thus far.
    fair...

    I am not a brand loyal person. I just try to approach everything with an open mind. With all that I have said thus far in this thread I will say based on the 2 I have owned the US made XTR III are absolutely the best value out there. I would like to try the new illuminated version soon.
     

    redneckbmxer24

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    I wouldn't discredit all of the supposed experiences of LHT's losing zero.
    I haven't done any fancy drop test, but my LHT 3-15 lost zero pretty bad once. I was a huge fan of it before that.
    I was even experimenting with it in matches, where repeatability really matters. After a match a year ago I took it on a hunting trip. Not sure when it would have happened, but after the unsuccessful trip I came back and went to confirm zero with my match load (which was almost the exact same zero as my hunting load), and I was almost a full Mil off. I couldn't believe it.
    I was something like .8 mil off in elevation and .2 mil off on my windage.
    Now my zero set was setup and my windage was capped. I didn't trust it after that so I sold it.
    I'm not making a claim like all LHT's are garbage. I hear that the 4.5-22 seems to be treating a lot of folks decently. But my example of one left a bad taste in my mouth.

    Other than the rokslide review you’re the first account I’ve seen of anyone saying that they personally had an issue. All of the posts I’ve read is “they don’t hold zero” and so forth, no first hand experience just parroting what they read which could be the rokslide review or someone else regurgitating the same shit.

    There was a big thread on here about the time I bought mine earlier this year that was the same thing. I had sworn off buying one based on people with no first hand experience just spouting shit. I ended up getting it at a price that I knew I couldn’t lose any money on if it sucked.

    It’s the 4.5-22 that usually comes up as the one that “won’t hold zero”.
     
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    Bakwa

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    Other than the rokslide review you’re the first account I’ve seen of anyone saying that they personally had an issue. All of the posts I’ve read is “they don’t hold zero” and so forth, no first hand experience just parroting what they read which could be the rokslide review or someone else regurgitating the same shit.

    There was a big thread on here about the time I bought mine earlier this year that was the same thing. I had sworn off buying one based on people with no first hand experience just spouting shit. I ended up getting it at a price that I knew I couldn’t lose any money on if it sucked.

    It’s the 4.5-22 that usually comes up as the one that “won’t hold zero”.
    Gotcha. After my experience I looked into it and saw all of the people on the internet talking about how the LHT's loose zero, so I just thought it was a known thing that I was just then figuring out. I had no idea it's only happened to a few people. Sounds like it's a non-issue for the most part then.
    I do know a guy [in real life] who had a Razor Gen II not hold zero as well. Nothing crazy but would loose zero from time to time. His NF ATACR's didn't have that problem. It's an interesting [small] data point.
    It doesn't take much to put a bad taste in my mouth when it comes to gear, so I'll likely refrain from buying Vortex moving forward nonetheless.
    But anything made by the hands of man can fail. And will eventually.
     

    jbell

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  • Jan 16, 2010
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    nothing truer can be said.
    So true! On the subject of scopes not holding zero or tracking issues, I have had 3 different Bender 5-25 PMII fail on me over the years. Schmidt USA took care of me each time so I continue to own them.
     
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