Recommeded ELR spotting scope

Timsar

Private
Belligerents
Minuteman
Jun 3, 2017
33
5
N. Commifornia
Newbie here
My shooting partner and I are thinking about pooling our resources and getting a nice spot. scope.
Min budget $1k, max $2k

Any recommendations from you experienced folks?
 
  • Like
Reactions: ManOfAction

Daniel-01

Private
Minuteman
Dec 14, 2019
47
8
Far less experienced than many others here but I learned my lesson on spotting scopes ;)

I think your budget is good, don't go lower. I did by a bit and regretted it (vortex viper).

I hear the vortex razor HD scopes are good, not looked through one myself but many here seem to swear on it.

I went with the swarovski str80 25-50x now but thats priced a bit higher.

Read a lot here about meopta being good too.

Just one more note, clarity over max magnification. The higher the magnification, the more mirage.
 

jbailey

Gunny Sergeant
Belligerents
Minuteman
Jul 27, 2010
1,983
640
47
Arlington VA
For ELR, you will appreciate the reticle.

Yes, this is an excellent recommendation. A buddy of mine has one and these used to be the staple spotting scope at matches. Excellent overall package. And right in your budget.
 

ACK

Sergeant
Belligerents
Minuteman
Nov 20, 2004
337
133
So. Ca
i started with a budget scope and quickly regretted it. Went to a Meopta and was quite happy until I looked thru a Pentax PF80ED 20-60x80. Its resolution and color rendition are very good. it is a beast to carry.
Once set up my shooting buddies want to borrow it.
Use a suitable tripod. for optimum results.
 

oneshot.onehit

Trigger Puller
Belligerents
Minuteman
Mar 17, 2010
721
186
59
USA
Theres a variety of good equipment available these days, we have been satisfied with the performance and quality of the Vortex Razor spotting scopes. We like to use one with the Mil retical and one without when two spotters are allowed behind the shooter while at events pushing us out to 3500 yards.


oneshot.onehit
JH
 

86alaskan

Sour Kraut
Belligerents
Minuteman
Jan 18, 2019
316
93
33
STL
Shop for a used Swaro 80mm or something in that realm. you'll really appreciate the clarity. I've noticed that the added clarity and resolution of my swaro helps a lot over a long day. I've used other cheaper scopes before and the eye strain they cause can give you a head ache. The high line scopes are just that, and they're worth it. You can find a swaro 20-60 ats or sts for right around 2k
 

Diver160651

Who cares
Belligerents
Minuteman
  • Feb 7, 2013
    3,246
    3,610
    La Honda
    I have a Swaro ATX but out of your price range (the ATS is not worth the $$) In that case the Razor HD and some of the other top bird scopes are a better buy. Neither have the reticle like the STR. Personally I find todays Tier 1 25x+ scopes really close to the 40x spotters as soon as the mirage is up and better than just about anything 2nd tier.. So, if you do NOT have a Tier one scope I'd start there.

    Honestly, either way, I would look more into a ELR camera system than a spotter. You can do it for less and have way more info as well as instant replay with the correct system.
     
    Last edited:

    LastShot300

    Sergeant
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
    Feb 20, 2013
    741
    144
    I have a Minox MD 60 ZR (12-40x60) with MR2-S reticle and it's very good optical instrument, one you cannot go wrong with.

    1582183980057.png


    1582183961394.png
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Steel head

    Reverie Ranges

    11B3HB4 1997-2007
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
    Dec 16, 2019
    243
    175
    Vancouver, WA
    Again, I can't describe words on the trace these things can see...
    1582187055329.png

    NASA called me the other day wanting to know if I could check the exterior of the Space Station... I told them I was a little busy on the range...
     

    waveslayer

    Full Member
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
    Mar 6, 2012
    1,143
    295
    39
    CA
    I finally broke down and split a BTX with my old man. Best decision I have made. I just need a reticle eye piece now, but for overall spotting scope. You can't beat a Swarovski
     

    Peterpan

    Gunny Sergeant
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
    Jul 20, 2018
    643
    644
    I’ve got a mark 4 and I’ve been happy with it. It’s a nice compact package
     

    dski

    Sergeant of the Hide
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
    Jan 14, 2020
    146
    41
    Just switched from a Gen 1 Razor 20-60 to a MK4 20-60. I had the Gen 1 for almost 3 years and it has been a great spotting scope for me.

    Had the opportunity to compare them side by side at 100 yard targets. I also looked out 1500+. My reason for the switch was that I really wanted a reticle at full zoom (60x) for 1000+.

    The clarity difference up to 40x is not big. Above 40x, the MK4 has better resolution and is brighter. you could read the small words on the targets pretty easily where I couldn't read it on the Razor. If I were to give it a completely subjective score, I would give the MK4 a 7 and the Razor a 5 vs the Swaro I tried. (Can't remember the model but about $3500)

    Leupold Mk4 advantages- Better resolution at high magnification. Big for me since I shoot mostly 500-2000. FFP Milling reticle. I loved the TMR reticle. Made it soooo much easier for me to give corrections. (I am in the process of switching from MOA to MIL) Paid $1950 new

    Razor Gen 1 advantages - Price (you can get a used one easily for $800). Focus. The dual focus knobs are really nice for getting things crisp. You can get a milling reticle but it is fixed at 30x I believe. For the $, I really liked it. If it wasn't for only having a 30x fixed reticle it would have served me fine. Paid 1050 new 3+ years ago.

    Again, subjective and only what my eye told me.
     

    Rocketmandb

    Gunny Sergeant
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
    Nov 2, 2018
    915
    860
    The clarity difference up to 40x is not big. Above 40x, the MK4 has better resolution and is brighter. you could read the small words on the targets pretty easily where I couldn't read it on the Razor. If I were to give it a completely subjective score, I would give the MK4 a 7 and the Razor a 5 vs the Swaro I tried. (Can't remember the model but about $3500)
    I'm wanting to get the same Mk4, but I'm hoping/waiting for a sale. The Mk4 is really nice and clear, and I like the reticle.
     

    Steel head

    Feral kitten
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
  • Aug 3, 2014
    10,469
    24,148
    Washington
    I ended up cheaping out and getting a bushy legend T.
    looking at targets today past 1900 and possible target spots at 2400ish and it did pretty decent.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: goneballistic

    ManOfAction

    Private
    Minuteman
    Jun 2, 2020
    26
    9
    Far less experienced than many others here but I learned my lesson on spotting scopes ;)

    I think your budget is good, don't go lower. I did by a bit and regretted it (vortex viper).

    I hear the vortex razor HD scopes are good, not looked through one myself but many here seem to swear on it.
    What about the Vortex Viper was not up to par? I was thinking of getting one.
     

    Daniel-01

    Private
    Minuteman
    Dec 14, 2019
    47
    8
    What about the Vortex Viper was not up to par? I was thinking of getting one.
    Hard to put a name to it... I always felt like the clarity isnt the best... havent used it much. Had it set up next to me but ended up just using the NF NXS 8-32 on the rifle to look at my targets. Felt like i see a lot more and clearer through that. Maybe go a step up within vortex instead but its all personal preference. If you get the chance look through a couple of different ones and decide what feels best for you within the price range.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: ManOfAction

    pfl338

    Luv2#Steel....
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
    May 16, 2020
    146
    121
    Fort Worth TX
    Have had 2 Kowa's over the years and i am still using one. outstanding optics! clear out to 2000 yrds( furthest at my local range.) I also would recommend a champions choice scope stand and then add a 5-10 pound weight to the bottom, that really dampens any vibrations from wind or handling. And do not forget that the eye piece is usually sold separate on quality optics and they will set you back several hundred bucks.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: ManOfAction

    theLBC

    Shiftless
    Belligerents
    Minuteman
    Jun 21, 2019
    3,950
    7,367
    i have a 12-40 MK4 and it is nice to have a compact spotter with reticle that can fit in the pocket of a range bag.

    that said, if you need to see detail at 1000 yards or more, there is no substitute for 80mm+ sized scopes.
    it is just physics, mang.
    i have a sub $250 20-60x80mm spotting scope, and despite the price, it is still "fully coated" and has a BaK-4 prism etc...
    while obviously it is nowhere close to the resolution score of a $1500 scope, it is significantly brighter with more detail than the smaller Mk4 at x40.
    and of course on the bigger scope i can still go up to x60.

    so jmo, if you really need to see detail at ELR type yardage, especially in low light conditions, get a full sized scope in your price range.
     
    Last edited:
    • Like
    Reactions: ManOfAction