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scope review Burris vs Leupy vs Nightforce

midnightrunpaintballermidnightrunpaintballer Member Posts: 2,233 ✭✭✭✭✭
Scope "review" OK so today I took out my 3 best scopes and did a side by side comparison looking at a bench rest target at 100 yards. Temperature was mid 30's to low 40's so no mirage. Overcast cloudy day so the brightness of the scope itself was really noticeable without any bright sunlight to enhance it. The three scopes were:

Burris Black Diamond 8-32x50 with 30mm tube
Leupold Competition fixed 36x45 (I think 45. Might be 42) with 1" tube
and of course the new Nightforce competition 15-55x52 with 30mm tube.

No shooting was done so no tests on tracking, return to zero, or any of that. Just an observation of clarity and brightness between the three.

Burris vs Leupold: The Leupold had the edge in magnification obviously which to my eyes made the target easier to be seen. But magnification aside, I honestly have to say they are tied dead even for clarity and brightness. The Burris has a larger objective and tube, but the Leupold makes up for it with better glass I guess. I could not distinguish a difference in brightness or crispness of the target between the two. The white target appeared to be bright white but had a sort of white halo around the perimeter. All black edges were nice and crisp. This was exactly the same for both scopes.

Burris and Leupold vs Nightforce: I turned the Nightforce down to 32x and 36x respectively for this comparison to keep it fair. The Nightforce was instantly noticeable as being brighter and clearer. The white halo was completely gone around the edge of the target. Nightforce was definitely better than the other two.

In my opinion, and for my uses, the Nightforce is the hands down winner. Not only is it clearer and brighter, but it can also keep increasing in magnification far past the other two and is just as bright and clear on max power as it is on min. People in other reviews have complained about the fussy eye relief on the Nightforce. It's roughly 3.5" of eye relief. Same as my other two within a quarter inch. They say it's touchy to maintain eye relief on max power. No crap. It's a 55x with a 52mm objective. That's the nature of the beast. Hold still. Problem solved! In case you don't realize the implications of what I just said, it means on a gun that you shoot free recoil, it's no big deal. On a gun that you shoot with a consistent cheek weld, it should also be no big deal. On a gun that you shoot standing off hand with zero support of any kind at a moving target.... It's a 55x! Nobody would do that. I guess I don't understand what they're whining about.

In summary, I'll make this analogy:

Have you ever hooked up a DVD player to an analog CRT TV in your bedroom? (Yeah, those "really old" ones with a picture tube) It actually has a really good picture! You sit there watching your movie thinking: "this is such a great picture I don't know why we ever upgraded from this. It's so clear, I'm not missing a thing. way better than that old grainy stuff we used to watch before these came along" Well, that is my Burris and Leupold scope.

Then you decide to get some popcorn. You walk through the living room where your wife/kids/whoever are watching a movie on the big screen HD plasma with a blu ray and 7.1 surround sound. There's a gun battle going on and you feel like you're in the middle of it. You tuck and roll behind the couch to take cover. Popcorn is forgotten. You think to yourself: "holy crap! This picture is so clear, I'm pretty sure I don't see things this clearly with my own eyes in real life. Now I remember why I upgraded. Duh." Yep, you guessed it. That's the Nightforce.

Will I be getting rid of my Burris and Leupy? No. They're still awesome scopes. The Nightforce is just a little better. Will I buy another Nightforce? I don't have any plans to at the moment, but if I ever build another rifle, I probably will.

The only thing I can do now is put it on the shelf until spring when it's warm enough to shoot without shivering. Then I can play around with setting the zero, doing box tests, returning to zero, seeing if the 1/8 moa clicks are REALLY 1/8 moa, etc. But with the reputation it has backing it, I anticipate no problems.

Comments

  • RobOzRobOz Member Posts: 9,085 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    How much more $ is the NF compared to the other two?
  • midnightrunpaintballermidnightrunpaintballer Member Posts: 2,233 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Burris retails for around $800
    leupold retails around $1200
    nightforce retails for $2300

    but i didn't pay retail for any of them.

    i paid $412 for the Burris used
    leupold was included on the 6mm ppc I bought used and at the price I paid for the gun, it was free.
    the nightforce was a demo model. I paid $1995.
  • RobOzRobOz Member Posts: 9,085 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Ok, the NF is a around 2-3 times the cost of the other two. I would hop it would out perform the other two. Enjoy your new scope.
  • midnightrunpaintballermidnightrunpaintballer Member Posts: 2,233 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Yes it is and I will enjoy it. When I was doing my research before buying the NF, reviews were difficult to find. I thought I would share my observations. I think the key point is that at 1/4-1/3 of the price, the Burris and the Leupold certainly are capable of holding their own. I wanted a scope clearer than what I already had with a max magnification upwards of 40x with a few other specific features. I'm very happy with the NF comp. But I also feel that the nxs would fit the bill nicely also. And the nxs is in the same price range as the Leupold.If I buy another NF in the future, I'll probably try that one.

    but you can't build a Ferrari and put a used set of mud tires on it and expect it to perform.
  • JustCJustC Member, Moderator Posts: 16,035 ******
    edited November -1
    once you get used to the Nightforce glass, you won't want anything else[;)]
  • midnightrunpaintballermidnightrunpaintballer Member Posts: 2,233 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by JustC
    once you get used to the Nightforce glass, you won't want anything else[;)]


    that's what my wallet is afraid of.
  • FrancFFrancF Member, Moderator Posts: 35,278 ******
    edited November -1
    174d946ebb5dad0420781372.jpg

    The hole you see in the well-used Nightforce 3.5-15 x 50 NXS riflescope was made by an enemy 7.62x39 round fired at a U.S. soldier.

    The bullet completely penetrated the erector tube-the heart of the scope's optical system. We're happy to report that the soldier was not injured, and the only casualty is the riflescope's magnification ring, frozen on 15x. Its focus, tracking, and all other functions work just fine. It holds point of aim like new.

    The soldier wrapped the riflescope in duct tape to keep out sand and dirt, and used it without a problem for the next three days, completing his mission. We receive many stories like this. Because Nightforce riflescopes are used in active theaters by most of the elite special forces worldwide, they are subjected to- and survive- the most brutal conditions imaginable.

    We won't say they are bullet proof, but there is one soldier who would argue otherwise.
  • midnightrunpaintballermidnightrunpaintballer Member Posts: 2,233 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    ohh rest assured. at $2000, mine will be babied its entire life.
  • skyfishskyfish Member Posts: 1,068 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    That is the "problem" with optics. When you spend more, you realize you get more. Then it makes all your other scopes not so good. Then you spend more and another cycle.

    I sure moved up from that Tasco on my rifle when I was 12.
  • Ray BRay B Member Posts: 11,822
    edited November -1
    So for the Rest Of The Story, what happened to the guy that shot the scope?
  • gunnut505gunnut505 Member Posts: 10,290
    edited November -1
    Lets hope he was using a Simmons.
  • sandwarriorsandwarrior Member Posts: 5,599
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by midnightrunpaintballer
    quote:Originally posted by JustC
    once you get used to the Nightforce glass, you won't want anything else[;)]


    that's what my wallet is afraid of.


    You better guard your wallet....it'll fall in love when it meets a U.S. Optics![:D][}:)][:D]
  • midnightrunpaintballermidnightrunpaintballer Member Posts: 2,233 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by sandwarrior
    quote:Originally posted by midnightrunpaintballer
    quote:Originally posted by JustC
    once you get used to the Nightforce glass, you won't want anything else[;)]


    that's what my wallet is afraid of.


    You better guard your wallet....it'll fall in love when it meets a U.S. Optics![:D][}:)][:D]


    my wallet is safe from us optics. They Dont make a scope with high enough magnification for what I want. Already looked. [:D]
  • JustCJustC Member, Moderator Posts: 16,035 ******
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by midnightrunpaintballer
    quote:Originally posted by sandwarrior
    quote:Originally posted by midnightrunpaintballer
    quote:Originally posted by JustC
    once you get used to the Nightforce glass, you won't want anything else[;)]


    that's what my wallet is afraid of.


    You better guard your wallet....it'll fall in love when it meets a U.S. Optics![:D][}:)][:D]


    my wallet is safe from us optics. They Dont make a scope with high enough magnification for what I want. Already looked. [:D]


    yep, all around the Nightforce is the "man" for magnification coupled with glass quality.[8D]
  • sandwarriorsandwarrior Member Posts: 5,599
    edited November -1
    It ain't about magnification, it's about 'SEEING' the target. I'll take my USO thanks. My Nightforce, while a great scope had too much magnification and not enough clarity. I do much better at one mile shooting with my ST-10 USO. Clarity counts more than magnification.
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