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NightForce Scopes - Are They Worth The Money?


Mack

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I am seriously considering remorgaging the Shed and purchasing a Nightforce Scope, probably the NXS 5.5 - 22 x 56 Model, reticle as yet undecided.

 

I have no experience of these Scopes and before I part with my cash and risk losing my shed, I would appreciate the opinions of those that do, both good and bad.

 

Are they as good as Nightforce would have me believe?

 

What are they like optically and how do they compare to the likes of Leupold, Schmidt and Bender, Swarovski, etc.

 

Are the Turrets 100% repeatable,

 

Do they have any faults, if so what is their warranty and repair service like,

 

Thanks

 

Mack

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They are excellent scopes IMHO. Glass is not as good as S&B, but then they are in a league of their own - in price as well! NF have much better reticules as well. My favorite is the NP-R2/R1 since they offer easy hold values and bracketing options with MOA turrets. 100% reliable tracking and bullet proof build. Plus their back up service is excellent. I chose one over a car!

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IMHO nightforce scopes are excellent. Optics are very good but not quite as good as schmidt or swarovski in very low light. If you shoot a lot in poor light you may find them better but you'll pay for it. I personally don't feel the need for those extra few mins at the end of the day so saved the money. Where they really excel is repeatabilty, toughness and a selection of great reticules. I shoot a lot at long range targets and they have never let me down. One warning though. I bought one and liked it so much I had to buy more for each of my rifles and a mate I shoot with bought 2 for his rifles after using mine. :wacko: Just MY opinion but hope it helps.

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:wacko:

I am seriously considering remorgaging the Shed and purchasing a Nightforce Scope, probably the NXS 5.5 - 22 x 56 Model, reticle as yet undecided.

 

I have no experience of these Scopes and before I part with my cash and risk losing my shed, I would appreciate the opinions of those that do, both good and bad.

 

Are they as good as Nightforce would have me believe?

 

What are they like optically and how do they compare to the likes of Leupold, Schmidt and Bender, Swarovski, etc.

 

Are the Turrets 100% repeatable,

 

Do they have any faults, if so what is their warranty and repair service like,

 

Thanks

 

Mack

I have both the big schmidt and nightforce5.5-22x56 the schmidt has better glass sako
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I can only speak for the one I had - excellent positive turrets and repeatability. Glass was good enough, not S&B PMII / Zeiss VM/V / USO quality, but good...... S&B, USO, Hendsold, Premier are really in a different price bracket.

 

A very good selection of reticles - good to get the reticle and turret in the same 'language' moa or mil. For me the NP-R2 reticle worked well but was a bit fine - but then I have crap eyes.

 

Illumination - on the NXS scopes, its on or off - adjustable by a screwdriver when you remove the cover - but it is behind the times compared to other illuminated scopes in that respect. The rotating ocular for the mag change is a bit naff - not exactly Butler Creek covers friendly

 

Issue - I traded mine because I could never get it in focus and parallax free at he same time (one or the other). I have not had this issue with USO or S&B. I really would try before you buy.

 

With the 32x and 42x they owned the F Class market until recently and the 22x (100 moa elevation) has proved itself on 50 cal stuff - so it is reliable.

 

In the power range you are looking at there are more options, USO and S&B I think are better, I have or have had a few of both. They come into their own with FFP reticles. Zeiss / Hendsoldt with 2FP reticles are also with a look - great glass, good controls. Hensoldt only have a 2 year warranty, intended for military 'field use'. Zeiss have a 30 year warranty.

 

The new dogs ###### is said to be the Premier Reticles 5-25x56 Heritage scope. Not cheap either.

 

David.

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I,ve got four. I,ve just sold my big schmidt [the 5-25x56 pm11] to buy another. The glass isn,t as good, but perfectly adequate in any situation. better ret choice, better mag choice, and 100% repeatable...every time. The big fault with the schmidt for me, is that the turrets rotate the opposite way to a normal scope. i kept misdialling mine, as i,m used to the normal nf way.

Not the greatest of value, since they went up in Jan, but an excellent scope none the less.They rule the roost in most target shooting comps, and are also used a lot on service rifles.

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I had a look at the NF, but decided for the cheaper conquest 6.5-20x50.

I need it for foxing / stalking and don't like the weight of the NF.

Optics, the zeiss might even be better.

I might change my mind in a year or so....

 

edi

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Guest varmartin

I only have one ..a NXS a 5.5-22x56....but soon to get another or three when the funds allow.

 

100% repeatable turrets and a large choice of rets....I use the NP2-DD.

 

Never had an issue with the quality of glass or the zoom/ocular adjustment..once set...its set .

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go for NP2-DD ret for field work ..brill i love mine..and no you cant have it ..i too am after another one for my deer rifle :wacko:

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Swapped mine, NXS 5.5-22x56, mildot ret, great scope in the daylight, done my head in at night or in poor light, too much farting about with the parallax and focus. Hated the mag adjustment, particularly with Butler Creeks fitted. I did a deal for another S/B and with one more scope to buy, all my rifles will have S/B on board which will cure any problems that some people have when dialling.

They're quite expensive, so my advice would be to play with one in all the scenarios you're likely to use one regularly and see if it completely suits your needs. If you shoot a lot in low light or at night, you may be better off with a high end European scope.

Nothing wrong with Nightforce but they just didn't work as I wanted them to, when I wanted them. There's a lot of real quality glass out there for similar money. Not sure whereabouts you are, but if you're anywhere near me, I can arrange for you to look through a large range of top scopes in all light conditions, including Nightforce.

Pete.

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It really depends on what sort of set up you want.If you`re after a long range rig with a lot of prone shooting they`re top notch.If however its for a lighter weight stalking/foxing set up theres better alternatives out there as Menial says

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to expensive for what they are, gave me a tight field of view feeling compared to my zeiss, 6.5-20x50,

 

don't like any of the over cluttered reticles.

 

looks like some kind of add on for a arcsoft toy military rifle.

 

heavy

 

turrets are a bit on the massive side.

 

other than that.

 

JUST MY OPPINION.............................. NOT WORTH THE HYPE OR THE MONEY.

 

bob.

 

hat

 

coat

 

and flack jacket.

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What are they like optically and how do they compare to the likes of Leupold, Schmidt and Bender, Swarovski, etc.

 

Are the Turrets 100% repeatable,

 

They blow Leupold out of the water!!! More robust than Swaro, but that wouldent be too hard....... Glass not as good as S&B, but better than most of the compatition and more than good enough 99.9% of the time.

 

Turrets have been 100% repeatable on every one i've used.

 

Are they worth the money? Yes.

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I have a nightforce 5.5-22x56 have had it 7-8 yrs now and am happy enough with it. Great for a varminting rig. like the turrets and return to zero is always spot on. As most of the others have pointed out the glass doesn't compare to the german stuff especially in low light. If you want it for late evening stalking I would look else where. The other problem I have with it is the weight, mine is 32oz. This compares with ~20 oz for the likes of a S&B 3-12x50. I think that the competition has caught up with nightforce ,the new zeiss 6-24X 56 is supposed to be in a different league again. I saw one of the new swaroszki 2.5-15X56 illuminated at the weekend and was very impressed.

Would I sell my nightforce probably not , would I buy another no (maybe a second hand at the right price)!

 

Dave ;)

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I have an IOR 4-14 x 50 Eldon, and its optically as good as anything i,ve owned, including the schmidt, so obviously better than the nightforce. I used it on a fox rig for years, but never dialled it, so cant comment on it that way. I,ve heard people have issues with dialling some of them however.

a friend just got one of the last of the current batch of tacticals from Border, and its truly excellent.They are going to go through the roof on the next order though, due to the Euro unfortunatley.

Nightforce are target/tactical scopes. If you need a lamping scope, or special low light use, nightforce aren,t it. You need German glass, and any of the big names would fit the bill.

A lot of the expense of an nf is unseen. Their tubes are bored from bar stock, unlike most others, which are extruded, and are up to 3 times as thick [hence the weight] this ensures no zero shift in heated conditions, and vise-versa. They also use titanium springs on the erector tubes, which gives the legendary repeatability.

The main reason they sell so well, is their choice. Its taken s+b many years to realise that people shoot at different things to deer and men with their scopes, and they have lost sales to nf because of it . The new 10-50 schmidt will be a big seller, and you can even specify which way you wish the turrets to turn. Still too many knobs, etc for a true lamp scope however.

The good old 8x56 schmidt still takes some beating on a flat shooting .22 centrefire for fox.

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Wow guys, what a response, all I can do is thank you all for your opinions. It's given me a lot to think about before I part with the cash.

 

The intention was to replace a fixed mag Schmidt on my .243, which I use for Deer, foxes and vermin. I love the clarity but just find the reticule a bit too thick for really precise shooting on smaller targets. I was looking for a 'Jack of all Trades' but the Nightforce may be a bit too specialised for my intended purpose.

 

Time for a good think.

 

Regards

 

Mack

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Well........ what can I say ;) I'm in the market for a new scope, was going to be an NF 5.5-22x56 but was then talked into looking at IOR and thought I'd got it right and now this thread.......................................................... Aaaaaarrrgggghhhh!!!!

 

What do I do?????? I want it for stalking primarily but whn zeroing need high mag as the old eyes are getting older.

 

I want a scope with BDC turrets that are repeatable what is the ziess 6-24 like? anyone got one?

 

OA

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I use a 5.5-22x56 with NP-2DD ret I zeroed it and after a summer of dialing in for varmints it is still on zero now, so its repeatability is superb. I like the positive clicks with the NF, I have tried Leupolds Mk3's and 4's and some are very wish washy.

The optics are good enough for what I want which is varminting out to 1000 yards and this is generally carried out in good light. I like the no fuss illuminated reticule for lamping foxes as there is not another turret to play areound with, far neater.

With regard to a stalking scope I picked up an excellent 2nd hand 3.5-15x56 NXS with the NP-2DD, this lets in bags of light at lower mags, but there is enough for zeroing at higher mags for dodgy eyes( I suffer the same problem)

All in all I rate them highly, excellent value if you keep an eye out for 2nd hand around the £750 mark. They are also very robust and a lifetime warranty.

Cheers

Dave

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Orka my situation seems to be a mirror image of yours.

I was sold on Nightforce and that was to be the next one. Another forum slated the returns policy as it turns out Ruag don't repair anything and it has to go to America. Obviously a lengthy wait.

Also I use butler creeks so that isn't a good combination. Do like their NP-R1 and 2 reticles though.

 

Then turned to IOR 3-18 or something like and that fitted the bill. Good glass, external turrets and robust construction.

 

Now the Euro has changed the next batch as Baldie said will be dearer so non are cheaper as such.

 

Are the IOR turrets reliable/repeatable as this is now my main worry?

 

What other options are there? Low light and external turrets.

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Surprised no one has mentioned first vs second focal plane.

 

Be sure you're happy with second focal plane before buying a NF. If you don't understand the difference do some googling!

 

My thoughts on NF (based on hands-on with them , S&B and swarovski and zeiss)

 

 

Bobjs is spot on with the limited field of view -because they have long eye relief, they have a narrow FOV in comparison to S&B et al.

 

The turrets are awful, the bizarre vernier type arrangement as per leupold; very easy to lose track of elevation turns applied. No zero stop -without modification. Old-tech.

 

Good glass -couldn't see a difference side-by side with PM2s; but spoilt by the narrow FOV.

 

Second focal plane. A show stopper. [Even US Forces have moved (USMC) and are moving to FFP, lots of lessons learnt from the ongoing unpleasantness, amongst them the sheer idiocy of having subtension marks in a zoom scope that only subtend correctly at one magnification]

 

Reread everything ds1 said. (I'd particularly underline his point on buying a scope with a Metric ret but Imperial clicks. That's in the same league as buying a SFP 'tactical' scope ;) . )

 

 

Would I buy one?

 

If I'm constrained to that price range I'd want to have a close look at IOR (which I've never used)....modern turrets; but wouldn't buy either unless mil ret and turrets and FFP.

 

Oh and did I mention FFP? ;)

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