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Optics, Mounts, Rails and Sights If it aims your firearm, post about it here.

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  #1  
Old 01-27-2013, 9:59 AM
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Default Aimpoint/Eotech VS. Variable 1-4x

I am sort of looking at an optic for an AR. It has to be durable and a good brand that has a reputation for dependability. Most shots will be at 50 yards or less but occasionally out to maybe 100 yards max.

I was thinking of getting a 1x red dot like a Aimpoint or an Eotech but for the price of $400-500 used, I could get a 1-4x variable for around the same price if I went with a Burris, Vortex, Accupoint or maybe even a Nikon or Millet (The last two not being my best choices).

So why would I want to spend the money on a 1x if I could get the flexibility of a 1-4x variable for the same price? Or, what makes the Aimpoint or Eotech so special that they demand those prices?
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Old 01-27-2013, 5:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dart368 View Post
I am sort of looking at an optic for an AR. It has to be durable and a good brand that has a reputation for dependability. Most shots will be at 50 yards or less but occasionally out to maybe 100 yards max.

I was thinking of getting a 1x red dot like a Aimpoint or an Eotech but for the price of $400-500 used, I could get a 1-4x variable for around the same price if I went with a Burris, Vortex, Accupoint or maybe even a Nikon or Millet (The last two not being my best choices).

So why would I want to spend the money on a 1x if I could get the flexibility of a 1-4x variable for the same price? Or, what makes the Aimpoint or Eotech so special that they demand those prices?
First off I wouldnt put Vortex in the same bucket as a Burris, at least at the $500 range.

I did a near two month long research on a 1-4X. My requirements are nearly the same as yours. I expect to shoot out to 250 300 on small game, 100 and under for defense. I read many many reviews from at least 10 different websites and publications.

I quickly zerod in on Leupold. I was thinking of the Hog, but further research lead me to the Mark AR (1" maintube with P5 dials) and the Mark VX-R, (30mm main tube with standard dials) Both come with a red dot called a firedot at the cross hairs. The Mark AR comes with a SPR reticule with BDC. To get both the P5 dials and the SPR reticule in a VX-R, you need to jump up to a VX-R Patrol or Zombie Scope. Zombie comes with a green dot and flip up lens covers. The standard VX-R has just a 10MOA circle around the crosshairs with the firedot at the center.

Links to them here
VX-R Patrol $750 ($600ish retail)

Mark AR Mod1 $375 ($300 retail)

VX-R $560 ($450 retail)

Note the VX-R (standard) is a Gold Ring with life time warranty. I am not sure what the other two come with...possibly the same.

as soon as I get my mount from the vendor, I will do a review. I went with the VX-R.

Last edited by dieselpower; 01-28-2013 at 3:50 PM..
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  #3  
Old 01-27-2013, 9:04 PM
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I used to have a Vortex Viper. I bought it because it got great reviews and it had a built in range estimator. It also had a lifetime warranty and positive reviews on customer service as well as glass clarity. I DID end up selling it though because I wasn't really going to use the range estimator and the reticles were a little too busy for my taste.

I ended up with the Burris MTAC which had a BDC and was more of a red dot for fast target aquisition at close range, similar to maybe an Eotech reticle. The TAC30 or the MTAC are one's I am looking at but was thinking of getting something a little different since I already have one.

You make some great points though and I will look at the Leupold as well as others. Thank you for your reply and advice. :-)

Anyone else have any opinions as to why I would want to go with an Aimpoint or an Eotech with no magnification rather than a variable?
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Old 01-27-2013, 10:39 PM
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Originally Posted by dart368 View Post
I was thinking of getting a 1x red dot like a Aimpoint or an Eotech but for the price of $400-500 used
EOTechs start at around $419 for the low end model. I just picked up a new EOTech 517 for $449 today. You might be able to get an EOTech and a Bushnell 3x-4x magnifier for around $600 new.

EDIT: The EOTech I got with this Primary Arms 3x magnifier and 7mm raised mount come to just over $600.

http://www.primaryarms.com/Primary_A..._p/pa3xdlx.htm
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Old 01-27-2013, 10:50 PM
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Depends on use not distance. A reflex sight will always be faster than a tube sight. And with a scope you have eye relief to deal with.

1x optics allow for Iron sights.
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Old 01-27-2013, 11:06 PM
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My Aimpoint CompM2 is mounted on my M-4 here in Afghanistan. I zeroed it to 300 meters with my ironsights cowitnessed. At 50 meters in I just aim a bit lower if I have to but the rest center mass will hit even 300 meters. I qualified Sharpshooter with 34 out of 40 on the pop-up range and I wasn't really trying.

Don't really need zoom unless you want better target identification beyond 200 meters. The unit I'm with here are mostly on Elcan SpecterDR's now instead of ACOG's or the EOTech+Magnification combo. The SpecterDR has a lever that switches between being a 1X red dot Close Combat Optic (CCO) and a 4X ACOG with crosshair. It's a very awesome one piece optic.

They used to run with EOTech+Magnifier but having the magnifier pushed to the side blocks some view and also gets in the way as it sticks out. Many went back to just using an ACOG because they leave the magnifier on most of the time plus it weighs less as well as takes up less space. A few still use ACOG's since the SpecterDR's are still rolling out to replace the ACOG.

I want a SpecterDR but at $1900+ it's a bit out of my reach.

Last edited by Bouy; 01-28-2013 at 8:47 PM..
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Old 01-28-2013, 6:11 AM
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Excellent Posts guys. Thanks. All of those points make sense to me.
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Old 01-28-2013, 6:45 AM
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Eotech
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  #9  
Old 01-28-2013, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bouy View Post
My Aimpoint CompM2 is mounted on my M-4 here in Afghanistan. I zeroed it to 300 meters with my ironsights cowitnessed. At 50 meters in I just aim a bit lower if I have to but the rest center mass will hit even 300 meters. I qualified Sharpshooter with 34 out of 50 on the pop-up range and I wasn't really trying.

Don't really need zoom unless you want better target identification beyond 200 meters. The unit I'm with here all use Elcan SpecterDR's now instead of ACOG's or the EOTech+Magnification combo. The SpecterDR has a lever that switches between being a 1X red dot Close Combat Optic (CCO) and a 4X ACOG with crosshair. It's a very awesome one piece optic.

They used to run with EOTech+Magnifier but having the magnifier pushed to the side blocks some view and also gets in the way as it sticks out. Many went back to just using an ACOG because they leave the magnifier on most of the time plus it weighs less as well as takes up less space. A few still use ACOG's since the SpecterDR's are still rolling out to replace the ACOG.

I want a SpecterDR but at $1900+ it's a bit out of my reach.
Would like to hear more on the Elcans. When they were first issued to the SF troops, they stayed in the armory due to problems seen in training with them. They turned out to be unreliable and no one wanted to take the chance on real missions with them. You can search AR15.com for several first hand accounts.

Sounds like they may have worked the bugs out.

Now for a LEO or civilian, they are 100% good to go. There is no credible situation where either LEO or a civilian could find themselves where a Elcan wouldn't hold up.
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Old 01-28-2013, 8:51 PM
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I'm looking to put a Leupold Mk 6 Optic on my SCAR-H when I get back. I have heard a lot of great things about it. Mainly the 1-6X CCO to scope.

I've heard some Marine units are issuing those out. The Mk8 is over 2X the price for 1.1X to 8X.

I heard of the issues the SpecterDR's had early on with zeroing but it sounds like they've been all resolved.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dieselpower View Post
Would like to hear more on the Elcans. When they were first issued to the SF troops, they stayed in the armory due to problems seen in training with them. They turned out to be unreliable and no one wanted to take the chance on real missions with them. You can search AR15.com for several first hand accounts.

Sounds like they may have worked the bugs out.

Now for a LEO or civilian, they are 100% good to go. There is no credible situation where either LEO or a civilian could find themselves where a Elcan wouldn't hold up.
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Old 01-31-2013, 8:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dart368 View Post
Most shots will be at 50 yards or less but occasionally out to maybe 100 yards max.
I've got a 1-4x that's perfect for your "wants", but I don't think it's right for your "needs".

I'd put a 1-4 on a rifle I was planning to shoot 200 yards occasionally.

But mostly 100 yards, probably steels offhand? bench shooting on paper sometimes at 50 yards? That's a 1x red dot application.

The 1-4x is just weight and bulk for no real benefit.

That's the only downside I see. weight and bulk. If that doesn't bother you, go nuts. I think you'll be happy with either solution. But IMO, if weight and bulk are a factor, even if at the bottom of the list, for YOUR planned use? I'd buy a red dot.
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Old 01-31-2013, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bouy View Post
My Aimpoint CompM2 is mounted on my M-4 here in Afghanistan. I zeroed it to 300 meters with my ironsights cowitnessed. At 50 meters in I just aim a bit lower if I have to but the rest center mass will hit even 300 meters. I qualified Sharpshooter with 34 out of 40 on the pop-up range and I wasn't really trying.

Don't really need zoom unless you want better target identification beyond 200 meters. The unit I'm with here are mostly on Elcan SpecterDR's now instead of ACOG's or the EOTech+Magnification combo. The SpecterDR has a lever that switches between being a 1X red dot Close Combat Optic (CCO) and a 4X ACOG with crosshair. It's a very awesome one piece optic.

They used to run with EOTech+Magnifier but having the magnifier pushed to the side blocks some view and also gets in the way as it sticks out. Many went back to just using an ACOG because they leave the magnifier on most of the time plus it weighs less as well as takes up less space. A few still use ACOG's since the SpecterDR's are still rolling out to replace the ACOG.

I want a SpecterDR but at $1900+ it's a bit out of my reach.
Take a look at the SpectreOS 4x. http://swfa.com/Elcan-SpecterOS-4x-O...hts-C3190.aspx

It's a lot like the ACOG in the sense that this version doesnt have the switch between 1x and 4x. I know that's a big selling point, but you save a LOT of money. You can get this version from different places for around $1100 and it still comes with the much coveted Leica glass. Mount issues have been fixed from what I hear. I still dont like the idea much of external adjustments, but it sounds like they've worked out the kinks and many in SF are singing its' praises.
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Old 01-31-2013, 11:54 PM
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Thank you for all of your input. The other thing I learned is that the smaller the optic, the better field of vision for CQB type stuff, which is what I was looking to use it for.

I ended up with a great deal on an Aimpoint H1 with a AD QD Mount for it. I think that the light weight and size would be beneficial and as stated, would be suitable for CQB and shots out to 100 yards with most being at 50 or under. Thanks again for the posts guys.
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Old 02-01-2013, 8:11 AM
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Thank you for all of your input. The other thing I learned is that the smaller the optic, the better field of vision for CQB type stuff, which is what I was looking to use it for.
My EOTech has a better field of view than my friends Aimpoint CompM4. The red dot is also smaller at 1MOA, I shoot tighter groups due to that.

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Old 02-01-2013, 10:10 AM
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if you are shooting at paper targets, all you have to do is tailor the target size to the dot size and it makes no difference how big the dot is. Our eyes are AMAZING at lining circles up to be concentric. You could shoot one hole groups with an enormous dot. Really.
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Old 02-01-2013, 8:09 PM
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I preferred my EOTech 552 over my CompM4 for this as well however I shot my buddy's M-4 with his Aimpoint Micro T-1 and that thing is even better with regards to FOV. Also the T-1 is weights less.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JDay View Post
My EOTech has a better field of view than my friends Aimpoint CompM4. The red dot is also smaller at 1MOA, I shoot tighter groups due to that.

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Old 02-01-2013, 11:13 PM
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I'm very happy with Vortex Viper PST 1-4x24



Stout construction, clear glass... I love the illumined red reticle (quick acquisition like a RDS) - brightness settings aren't very concise - there are a few night vision settings that are basically "off" without NV - but every other click is true off which is a great feature, so once you are in the illuminated area, one click to off then click back to on (no hassle with extended turn to get proper illumination)...

Turrets have positive click adjustment, easy to read, and are stiff enough not to knock out of adjustment.

I have it mounted on an MR1, so it's hard to compare rail space to AR... but it's about the same as using an Aimpoint Pro (tube) style red dot with magnifier (might be a little shorter).

I really like this scope and highly recommend it! cheapest I found at the time was AIM - $450 shipped.

ETA: OP, I didn't realize you already made a choice - premature post... however, to address the question of why an Aimpoint/Eotech over a 1-4 mag scope - IMHO, it's primarily quickness... I use a flip to side magnifier on ARs - Aimpoint Pro w/Lucid 3X on a LaRue FTS mount and Burris X135 w/PSA 3X on an AR Pivot Ring (which is slow)... a variable magnified scope is a bit slower to dial in 1-3X than flipping a magnifier out of the way. So for that reason a RDS w/FTS magnifier is probably favored... in reality though, the small difference in time won't be an issue unless its for competition.

Having that been said, I would like to get a throw lever for the mag ring on the Viper - that would definitely offset the favor given to FTS magnifier with RDS.
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Old 02-02-2013, 4:59 PM
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What rifle is that? That looks SO evil and awesome!!!
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Old 02-02-2013, 6:02 PM
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What rifle is that? That looks SO evil and awesome!!!
lol, it is kinda Darth Vader looking... it's a Benelli MR1 - takes AR mags, so I guess it really is "evil"

crappy cell pics:


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Old 02-07-2013, 1:32 AM
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And it comes featureless out of the box so you can drop your mags like God intended
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Old 02-07-2013, 6:12 AM
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And it comes featureless out of the box so you can drop your mags like God intended
Yep, that's why I got it... but with this mornings events I'm not sure it matters (multi officer shootings with rifle) I'm concerned its the last straw and DiFi type restrictions may be shoved in our lives... which means even this rifle is at risk.

Just a hunch - I really hope I'm wrong.
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Old 02-07-2013, 6:51 AM
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LBD, don't worry about it. There are shootings EVERY DAY. Media can pick and choose what they report on.
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Old 02-07-2013, 12:05 PM
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LBD, don't worry about it. There are shootings EVERY DAY. Media can pick and choose what they report on.
I know you posted early this morning, so you probably didn't have all the info up there yet... but as your certainly know by know, "this" doesn't happen every day.

Again, I hope it doesn't happen - but I'd be shocked if the antis don't use this as another (bogus) reason to force their agenda.
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Old 02-09-2013, 8:09 AM
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I wear glasses and the AimPoint Pro is working great on my S&W Sport. At the range the other day I was out shooting a guy with an EoTech on a tactacool Colt at 100m.
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Old 02-11-2013, 7:59 PM
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I recommend the aimpoint pro. Inexpensive, very reliable, and quick sight picture. And in my opinion there are way more things that are easier to break in a variable power optic than a reflex sight. The more variables that go into building an optic the more that can go wrong in building it, if you catch where I'm going with this. Aim points and eotechs are better in my opinion. Ultimately it's your choice.
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Old 02-13-2013, 3:16 PM
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I put an Aimpoint PRO on my M1A recently and haven't been happier with it. Bought it brand new for $400 ($436 with tax) from Parallax Tactical well after the panic. It's super tough and I dig the night vision compatibility. Definitely fits the KISS standard as well since all it does put a little red dot in front of your face and not a single thing more.
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Old 02-13-2013, 7:46 PM
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Honestly OP, if you're only going to be shooting a max of 100 yards, there is no reason to put a big heavy scope or a red dot + magnifier on there. A red dot/reflex or holographic sight will do more than enough. Think of this: Even at 200 yards, if you have good eye sight, the Eotech center dot only covers up 2 inches.....do you need more precision than that? It's 1 inch at 100 yards. Many AR's dont even shoot that accurately, so often the Eotech will not be your limiting factor.

At 50 yards or less, I'm guessing youre not going to be benching this rifle. I could be wrong, but that's just not typical at that range. So is it fair to say that you will at least be standing, or even further, shooting and moving? If this is the case, there's no reason to get a 1-4x optic, or anything with magnification. It'll only add weight and slow you down. A 1-4x doesnt act like a red dot sight at 1x because the reticle doesnt move with your head/eye position. So for fast shooting, you'd be much better served with a red dot or Eotech.

And look at it this way: If I am wrong, Eotechs and Aimpoints hold their resale value very well, so you wouldnt be out much if you bought it and decided you didnt like it, then sold it and bought a 1-4x......especially if you buy it used from the get-go.
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Old 02-19-2013, 9:39 PM
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My MR1 is used now with a European 30MM Leupold 1.25-4x20

Works great with Leupold AR mount.
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Old 02-22-2013, 5:57 AM
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if youre shooting 100yds max you probably dont need magnification.

Eotech's provide the fastest sight acquisition at CQB distances and are the most durable sight you'll get for under $500.
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Old 02-22-2013, 7:36 AM
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I have the EoTech HHS II (EXPS2.2 & G33 Magnifer) I love it. Did not get it cause it looks cool (but kinda.. Rather that it is a true both eyes open optic for me. Plus I like the magnifyer so i can reach out and touch someone if I have to at 300yds. Anything after that then I'm just wasting rounds... I like the package. I'm looking for a different connection hardware for my HHS II. Anybody have any thoughts?
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  #31  
Old 02-22-2013, 10:38 AM
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I would go with the 1-4x scope for flexibility.

My Burris MTAC 1-4x can operate without a battery which is a huge plus. The illumination is there if I needed but it's nice to be able to pick up my rifle and aim right away. It also has generous eye box so I can acquire targets fast enough.
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Old 02-25-2013, 1:10 PM
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When I went through train fire in the Army, at 50 yards/meters we never even shouldered our M14's, and I always hit the popup. In Vietnam we used nothing but iron sights, when I got back a friend an I went shooting, he was amazed that I could hit a beer can or very close to it. Are they still teaching the skills or just relying on optics
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Old 02-25-2013, 3:10 PM
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1-4 if ya get the triji accupoint, i feel like getting a cheaper make is a waste, eotech still has my vote. iron sights are a close 2nd place too, stiff cheek weld and use the front post as your cqb sight, forget looking through the rears for speed.
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Old 02-27-2013, 9:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bouy View Post
I'm looking to put a Leupold Mk 6 Optic on my SCAR-H when I get back. I have heard a lot of great things about it. Mainly the 1-6X CCO to scope.

I've heard some Marine units are issuing those out. The Mk8 is over 2X the price for 1.1X to 8X.

I heard of the issues the SpecterDR's had early on with zeroing but it sounds like they've been all resolved.
Did you guys even read the OP's posting? MK 6 = 2-2.5K, Mk8 = 3k, DR= $2500, yada yada. You guys are full of crap, what are you gonna put those on? Bushmasters? LOL

Back to the issues:

The SWFA 1-4X is a nice scope with illuminated 1st focal plane reticle that is terrific for CQB as well as shots past 100 yards. But new they are like 700-$800. I have one and they are really interesting and flexible in use.

Vortex Viper PST 1-4X is a nice scope that many seem to like a lot. This is a rugged and popular scope.

You can save money by not buying an illuminated scope. You'll get better glass and better build quality.

I would not buy the Leupold Mark AR, these are just VX-IIs. The VX-R is a little nicer, but the auto illumination is troublesome for some folks. Maybe go with a non-illuminated.

The Trijicon Accupoint TR24R is one of my favorites with battery-less illumination, but they've JACKED the price up beyoind your stated budget. I have a TR24R and an older TR21R, these work well as both a fast 25-50 yard scope some medium range capability. A lot of 3Gun guys have run these.

Don't buy a Millet (waste of money). Some folks like Burris, I'm not a big fan. There are some really good scopes that do not have illumination out there.

Since you stated that the majority of your shooting will be from close up I'd suggest that a Red Dot type scope may fit your needs.

In your price range the HANDS DOWN best red dot scope for the money by a long stretch is the Aimpoint PRO at about $400. If you want a red dot get the PRO and you won't look back. This is a battle proven design with very long battery life. When it first came out it was sold to Law Enforcement and Military only. Now it is available to the masses. It is a $400 scope that should cost $550. It is a great deal.

Skip the goofy magnifier, I've got two of these, an Aimpoint and an Eotech and I never use them.

If you must try out the magnifier thing, just get the Primary Arms magnifier. I can pretty much promise you that the magnifier will sit in your bag 95% of the time.

If this is your only rifle, I'd get the Aimpoint PRO or maybe the Vortex.

There are optice specific forums like Sniper's Hide and the one at SWFA. (sorry moderator, jus tryn to help)

Cheers---

Last edited by ScottsBad; 02-27-2013 at 9:11 AM..
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Old 02-27-2013, 6:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottsBad View Post
Did you guys even read the OP's posting? MK 6 = 2-2.5K, Mk8 = 3k, DR= $2500, yada yada. You guys are full of crap, what are you gonna put those on? Bushmasters? LOL....


Good post and good advise!

After all is said and done, I've found that WEIGHT is my first consideration. Unless I can justify more weight, then a Micro Dot is my goto. Aimpoint T1/H1 if I can afford it on the rig, A Vortex Sparc or a PA Microdot/Bushnell PRS if I can't. At 4-6oz more, I can't justify using my Eotech anymore (nor it's pretty poor optic quality/spec 3x 2nd Gen magnifier). picking up a Pro is a good price to performance solution, if the extra durability over the cheaper and lighter solutions is really needed, yet you can't seem to spend the extra $300 for the durable and ideal weight Micro T1/H1.

I needed some magnification on a LR308, I went with a MTAC 1-4x w/PEPR mount... that thing is a PIG! 17oz scope and 9oz mount... that 26oz is 6oz heavier than my EoTech/3X Combo... ouch! Not a good solution for a carbine, that's for sure! I think NutNFancy's suggestions for using light 2-7x & 3-9x 1" scopes, along with some light rings, is a good way to go for a carbine: 12oz scope, 3 oz rings = light enough to keep a carbine fast. But that is ONLY if you really need magnification. For a primary personal defense rifle in an urban environment, I'd skip the scope and go microdot. I might not be able to ID a target at 400 yards with a red dot, but I can hit it quick if it's shooting at me!
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Old 03-09-2013, 12:14 AM
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Like one ranger master told me...enough ounces will end up equalling a pound or pounds. With that said, I went with an Aimpoint H1 and a Daniel Defense QD mount for it both used for a nice price. I just got lucky. Thanks for all the advice and comments.
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Old 03-31-2013, 12:00 PM
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I'm in the same boat as the OP. I'm looking for a scope/optic that I can use on the range for 50 to 200 yards, and that I can also use to occasionally hunt with. I've never been hunting but my father in law offered to go elk hunting in Utah this year.

My thoughts were illuminated 1-4x, or a illuminated 3-9x since I don't know what conditions we will be. But I also want the optic/scope to be useful in 3-gun competitions (ultimately what I see myself doing).

Can you use a 3-9x in 3-gun successfully (paired with 45 deg offset irons)? Or do I buy 2 scopes, 3-9x for hunting and 1-4x for range/3-gun?
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Old 03-31-2013, 5:17 PM
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The optics are important, so yes you get what you pay for on the glass. The burris lower end stuff $300 range is made in China, yer need to spend 500+ to get good optics and also how well the unit will hold zero

look at GG&G. package... you get the mount hardware plus the compM3
CompM3 + Cantilever Aimpoint Ring: $575.0
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Old 05-01-2013, 12:32 AM
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They are both great. Go to the store see which one you like. You may hate my acog. And love my eotech.... It's up to you
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Old 05-01-2013, 12:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grvv View Post
When I went through train fire in the Army, at 50 yards/meters we never even shouldered our M14's, and I always hit the popup. In Vietnam we used nothing but iron sights, when I got back a friend an I went shooting, he was amazed that I could hit a beer can or very close to it. Are they still teaching the skills or just relying on optics
we still learn using iron sights, then optics and no sights at all in case they both fail. in between all that we learn a lot of tactics used in defensive shooting, 3 gun and police academies. atleast thats how it was for combat engineers.
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