Where do you guys scope " window shop"

Forums Optics, Scopes, Rings, & Mounts Where do you guys scope " window shop"

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    JoeWayneRhea
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    I’m down here in East Texas and for us if we want to scope shop in person it’s Walmart, Academy, and Gander Mountain. And if we are up for a 2.5 hour drive BassPro Shops but that’s about it ..
    I see all these brands MTC , Primary Arms , Clearidge, Sightron and others that seem intriguing simply because their names get mentioned here so often. Where do you guys go to look at them first hand ?
    Down this way these are brands we NEVER SEE at all !!

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    guod123
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    Your in gun friendly country, on Long Island NY the Walmarts stopped selling guns. It’s just bubble wrapped Bushnells, or Centerpoints. To view anything in person I go to Cabelas in PA.

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    Marksman3006
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    Hey Joe if you wanna make a window shopping trip…..give me a call. Im game. Been thinking of getting another scope anyways……because in the near future Im going to have another rifle.

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    zebra
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    “guod123”Your in gun friendly country, on Long Island NY the Walmarts stopped selling guns. It’s just bubble wrapped Bushnells, or Centerpoints. To view anything in person I go to Cabelas in PA.

    
If you’re in NY, just go to the City and head to B&H. They have a pretty good selection of everything with glass. I just went there to check out a Leupold scope. They have deals that aren’t available in their online store too.

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    Saltlake58
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    I don’t think there are many places to window shop and get hands on considering the number of scope brands out there.   I go to the local Sportsman’s warehouse, and a couple other shops.  

    Most people get online and shop there.  I hate to spend that kind of money for something I haven’t touched, but that seems to be the trend these days.

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    JoeWayneRhea
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    Salt you probably right , and there are guys here I very much trust . But no way I would spend over 300$ based on someone’s opinion . Did that twice in the last year or so . And got sick both times when I looked thru them the first time .
    An maybe it’s just having the one good eye makes me more critical ? Who knows ?
    But I do know when I look thru true quality glass , and feel quality in my hands I know it . When it’s not there all the tricky extras make no difference.

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    Calbarry
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    The two local gun shops have a decent selection of scopes and surprisingly SPORTSMAN’S Warehouse has a lot of scopes. Dick’s Sporting Goods is here also but I’ve never been in the store

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    zebra
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    “JoeWayneRhea”Salt you probably right , and there are guys here I very much trust . But no way I would spend over 300$ based on someone’s opinion . Did that twice in the last year or so . And got sick both times when I looked thru them the first time .
    An maybe it’s just having the one good eye makes me more critical ? Who knows ?
    But I do know when I look thru true quality glass , and feel quality in my hands I know it . When it’s not there all the tricky extras make no difference.

    
It’s like with many things in life, it’s all about expectation. We will put up with most things as long as we know about them in advance but unmet expection is the source of many issues.

    There are definitely a few people who can get a little over-enthusiastic about certain scopes by claiming that their $300 purchase is just as good as their friends $1000+ scope. That sort of thing can only leave people disappointed, especially if they have used real $1000 scopes.

    Our opinions are also heavily colored by the last scope we used. 

    Haven’t you ever thought a scope was crystal clear….until your saw a better one?

    This is why I think that people should state which other scopes they have to compare it to when expressing an opinion. An opinion’s value changes if you are comparing a scope to a Leapers vs a Zeiss. 

    People also need to understand some basic truths with scopes. E.g. A scope that is great for target shooters in CA might not be great for people who hunt small game in the dimly lit forests of NY. The needs are different.

    Similarly, it is possible for two people to buy the same scope and one of them gets a good one while the other looks like the lens is coated in tar and feathers. 

    When I was choosing my PA FFP scope, I based part of my choice on the fact that it had so many good reviews. I figured that 2 or 3 people could be wrong but 500 who almost all agree should mean something. 

    I always like to note the distinction between excellent and excellent for the money. I.e. For $230, I am delighted with the PA scope but if I had paid $600, I would feel differently. 

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    JoeWayneRhea
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    100% agree Zebra !!! Good for the money is a WHOLE differnt ballgame . I just sold a Hawke 2-7 and it was Very good for the money (80$) . My fixed 12 Power Leupold in my opinion is incredible for the money.(450$) . But someone used to the very highest quality scopes would be dissatisfied with either . I think the biggest concern is when someone who hasn’t personally owned a 1000$ scope compares a 300$ scope to it . When that happens …Well my Dad called it ” Talking outta your azz”. Lol.

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    zebra
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    Sounds about right.

    The other thing that has caused me some dissatisfaction is when I choose a scope based on the brand or the country of manufacture. I am so done with making assumptions based on those things.

    Not every scope that comes fro my Japan and Germany is automatically good or even acceptable. There are some major rip offs from those places at the lower end of the market. 

    Similarly, anyone who thinks a good brand name means anything should check out the Burris 4.5-14×32 timberline. I was expecting so much more but at that price range, you are better off with the Chinese stuff. I would describe it as the most disappointing scope ever (because I was expecting so much from a Burris). 

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    Ziabeam
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    zebra

    Not every scope that comes from Japan and Germany is automatically good or even acceptable… 


    Amen!

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    JoeWayneRhea
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    Guys it probably won’t do the guys outside the North Texas area much good… But SWFA has a storefront in the DFW area .
    PS you guys Z&Z make some great points !!!
    I have zero doubt Swarovski could make a 69$ scope if they wanted to just say screw quality all together .
    And at the same time , the Chinese shops can surely make a truly world class scope . But each concentrates in their market segment .
    And going just off ” brand ” name alone is another trap laying for scope buyers .
    Weaver , Bushnell, and MANY others have scopes from budget to incredible optics with a price to match .
    I spoke with a gunmaker in person one time that told me several things that have stuck with me . One was … Quality cost money , How much quality can you afford to spend ?
    Bill Ruger

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    John_in_Ma
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    I know you don’t go to many shoots, but I’ve taken the opportunity to look through many different brands and price ranges of scope that way. I’ve looked through hawke, aeon, optisans ect. I’ve looked through nikko, sightron and even a few march scopes(I will have one some day). So if for just this reason, get to a field target and/or bench rest match.

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    nced
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    Hummmm………..I simply “take the gamble” and order the brands in my price range and have good internet reviews.
    Some scopes work out and some are sold. An example is an older 4-12×40 Hawke AirMax that would shift the poi simply by focusing so it was returned to Hawke along with a couple extra dollars and upgraded to a 4-12×40 Hawke Panorama with etched glass reticle. This scope was just about perfect for me till I realized that it would focus sharply no closer than 12 yards at 12 power even though there was a 10 yard etching on the AO and that scope was also sold.

    One scope I bought for $350 based on internet reviews was the 3-12×44 Optisan Viper that I’ve used for a couple years, however the size and weight of the 30mm tube scope was rather klunky sitting on my R9 and I’m not really a fan of side focus scopes. Just for grinns I recently took delivery of a 4-12×50 Hawk AirMax with AMX reticle. Been using that scope for several weeks and I’m pleased in general with my only gripe the thinness of the etched glass reticle that will get lost on a dark target in a shaded lane. Still, being an AO scope, a couple ounces lighter and a couple inches shorter than my Optisan Viper I’m currently using the AirMax.

    I do know that there is no way to put a scope through it’s paces at a “sports store” because there are things such as “scope flare” under certain light conditions that never show up in a store. A perfect example of this is the 4-12×40 Vortex Diamondback AO I used for a couple seasons. Crisp optics, relatively small and light weight, would scope rangefind well at 12x (lets say as good as 12x will allow), had a nice BDC reticle, and was very tough scope for use with a springer. The issue came when I was sitting on a field target lane sitting in the shooting box in direct sunlight while aiming into the shadows. The light coming through the REAR lens caused so much flare that the target aimed at would be completely “washed out”. The only reason I stopped using the Diamondback was the extreme flare or I would still be using it.

    Anywhoo…hardly ever “window shop” at local retailers for scopes preferring to “takes my chances” with online retailers having a good customer service rating!

    As a side note………as john_in_Ma mentioned, I have looked through the scopes of other shooters at field target matches and that really does help evaluating a scope. Problem is that the “best” scopes I’ve had the pleasure of looking through cost more than my HW95 and scope combined, or are no longer available.

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    Saltlake58
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    I like to window shop on eBay, but, and it’s a BIG BUT, is counterfeits. I’ve been in touch with both Leopold and BSA about scopes on eBay, sold under their names.  Both customer service groups stated that most or all of the scopes were counterfeits.  Leopold scopes where the vendor states that the US support group doesn’t know about this model (Yes, some of the descriptions actually state that the US groups don’t know about this model), are obviously fakes.  Some of the fakes are VERY GOOD, but in all the wrong magnifications as Leopold never made those magnifications. Oh, the dead giveaway was illuminated reticles.  The color of the illuminated reticles were never made by Leopold.  

    With counterfeits, you may get lucky and get a good scope, but probably 99% of the counterfeit scopes are trash at best.  Any name brand scope that ships directly from China, well, you are taking your chances and the odds are against you.

     

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    Alan
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    I’m sort of in the middle of the road here. 

    Zeiss makes a high end one called the V8 series. Their 5x35x60 retails for $3,700! Even the low power version is over $2,600. Anyone who thinks a Zeiss V8 will help them shoot tighter groups at 100 yards than say a $500 Bushnell or Hawke are kidding themselves. Yes, everything about the Zeiss reeks of quality, right down to the 36 mm tube! Now if you’re hunting that once-in-a-lifetime Dahl ram, go for it! But save for a few of us who are into bench rest shooting, paying more than say $400 for a pellet gun scope is overboard in my opinion. Fact is, the $140 4x16x42 UTG I bought on Amazon, sees better than I can! 

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