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  • Spotting scope questions

    I'm wanting to know what everyone's opinion on these three spotting scopes.
    Vortex razor hd 65mm
    Pentax ED2 65mm
    Leupold Gold ring non HD 60mm

  • #2
    Vortex makes a very impressive scope for the money. Anything non-ED is tough with variable lighting conditions. I don't think you can go wrong with the Vortex.

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    • #3
      While I have no knowledge of these scopes, a couple questions are in order: What will the scope be used for and what light conditions? If back packing then I would want a light weight scope and small light weight tri-pod. If I was going to be using a vehicle of some sort, then weight may not be a issue. As far as light conditions, I would want a scope that gathers light real well and that might mean a lager scope.
      While out hunting, talk with people to see what spotting scopes they are using, how they like them and see if they will allow you to look through it.

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      • #4
        When I was looking at scopes I compared the Vortex Razor 65mm HD to the Swaro 60mm HD and the Vortex gave the Swaro a run for its money....at about $800 less too. I can't speak for the other two you are looking at, but that Vortex was a very good scope.

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        • #5
          I have the razor 85mm. It is much better than my 20 year old Nikon........I don't have anything to compare it to.

          My razor binos in 12x50 are awesome.

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          • #6
            All good scopes, I bet you would be hard pressed to tell the difference between them. I would look at the weights and ergo's mostly. Vortex and Leupold have a better warranty then Pentax, though Pentax did repair my bino's that were dropped for free. All that being said, I have a Vortex Razor HD 65mm and I am happy.

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            • #7
              I have a pair of Pentax marine binoculars that are money. Excellent product and I wouldn't be afraid of buying their spotting scope.

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              • #8
                I've been using a Leupold 12x40x60 Gold Ring spotter for about 15 years. It works well and it's a nice size. I've been tempted to upgrade to a Swazi spotter, but I haven't yet.

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                • #9
                  Vortex warranty. Pulls me in every time. Cosmetically, I tend to like their products more than Leupold. No real reason why.

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                  • #10
                    I had a chance to use the Vortex 85mm angled spotter and the Leupold Gold ring spotters on this years moose/caribou hunt. I really liked the Leupold for spotting especially with the lower magnification of 12-40 and also the strait eye piece as well as the size/weight. I didn't like the that leupold did not have a sunshade. I liked the glass on the Vortex and the higher magnification range as well as the sunshade. I didn't like the size/weight of it or the angled eyepiece. My main use for it would be for spotting, judging the legality of moose, and possibly a sheep hunt in the future. I have heard great things about the pentax also, but am not sure I like the 20-60x eye piece that comes with it. I am leaning towards the Vortex over the other two due to the zoom range of 15-48, so it falls right in the middle of the other two, has HD glass and the warranty and price can't be beat. If anyone has any other suggestions please let me know. Thanks

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                    • #11
                      I have the vortex scope and got to use the warranty this fall. Got scope out for caribou hunt and heard a rattle. Figured it was lenses cover. Nope it was the lense inside and had come loose. Sent it to vortex and within two weeks I had a replacement scope on the door step. It looks like a refurbished scope but I went from a two or three year old broken scope to a functioning scope. Impressed with the warranty

                      Steve

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Steven_JR View Post
                        When I was looking at scopes I compared the Vortex Razor 65mm HD to the Swaro 60mm HD and the Vortex gave the Swaro a run for its money....at about $800 less too. I can't speak for the other two you are looking at, but that Vortex was a very good scope.
                        I'm sure it did in full light looking out the window of the store.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Dakota boy View Post
                          I'm sure it did in full light looking out the window of the store.
                          I actually checked them both out multiple times in multiple light conditions, at various distances, through all power levels, etc.

                          Yes, in the lowest light settings the Swaro outperformed the Vortex, but the margin was relatively small as compared to the price difference.

                          The Swaro also outshined in the fact that it went all the way to 60x (at a lighter weight if I remember correctly). At first I found the two focus knobs on the Vortex cumbersome, but now think it is a better set up, especially for getting that last bit of fine focus adjustment.

                          Overall I was very impressed with how well the Vortex compared to the Swaro at a significantly lower price and for most instances I think it is a fine scope, hence my recommendation in the initial reply.

                          Maybe I should have clarified that I did end up with the Swaro because of the higher power, lighter weight, and better light gathering ability...but this thread isn't about the Swaro and so I provided my experience with Vortex.

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                          • #14
                            love my pentax 65ed. Next glass purchase will probably be Vortex.
                            In 1492 Native Americans discovered Columbus lost at sea
                            _________________________________________________

                            If I come across as an arrogant, know-it-all jerk, it's because I am

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                            • #15
                              I just picked up a Vortex Viper HD 65 from Cabelas. Huge Bargain Cave deal because the eyepiece was loose. Brought it home expecting to send it back to Vortex and found that it was just in fact loose. Like it had a bur in the threads was all. Works like a champ now and smooth as silk. I like the glass. Nice and bright.
                              27' Wooldridge Super Sport Offshore Pilothouse PRIME TIME!
                              Kodiak Custom Fishing Tackle Pro Staff
                              Heavy Hitter Fishing Crew
                              MMSI# 338232859

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