Rifle scope in place of a spotting scope?

stan_wa

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I have a vortex razor spotting scope 10-33x the ( the little one) a great little spotter it comes in at 25 oz and a reasonable rifle scope vx3 hd 4-14x42 is 16 oz. (25+16=41oz) I am trying to save weight so I'm thinking I could ditch the spotter and go with a vx5 7-35 scope which is 25 oz. so I'm saving a whole pound. I will still carry the tripod and binos either way. Am I crazy to consider this? I live in Wa state where we have a lot of antler point restrictions. So you have to count the points before taking a shot. This is what i use my spotter for currently. I very rarely use the spotter for "scanning" i much prefer the binos for that. Here in Wa if its got the legal points in trying to take it down . Ill happy shoot the small 3 pt I just need the optic power to confirm its legal before chasing it across the canyon. Currently with my little razor spotter I can count confirm a 3 pt at about a mile in good lighting. At shooting distance (lets say) 500 yards I need to be able to confirm legal points in the rifle scope to feel good so the minimum power rifle scope must have that ability's IMO.

so....
option 1 small spotter average rifle scope (vortex razor spotting scope 10-33x and leupold vx3 hd 4-14x42)
or
option 2 no spotting scope and high power rifle scope (Leupold vx5 hd 7-35)
 

BluMtn

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I have a vortex razor spotting scope 10-33x the ( the little one) a great little spotter it comes in at 25 oz and a reasonable rifle scope vx3 hd 4-14x42 is 16 oz. (25+16=41oz) I am trying to save weight so I'm thinking I could ditch the spotter and go with a vx5 7-35 scope which is 25 oz. so I'm saving a whole pound. I will still carry the tripod and binos either way. Am I crazy to consider this? I live in Wa state where we have a lot of antler point restrictions. So you have to count the points before taking a shot. This is what i use my spotter for currently. I very rarely use the spotter for "scanning" i much prefer the binos for that. Here in Wa if its got the legal points in trying to take it down . Ill happy shoot the small 3 pt I just need the optic power to confirm its legal before chasing it across the canyon. Currently with my little razor spotter I can count confirm a 3 pt at about a mile in good lighting. At shooting distance (lets say) 500 yards I need to be able to confirm legal points in the rifle scope to feel good so the minimum power rifle scope must have that ability's IMO.

so....
option 1 small spotter average rifle scope (vortex razor spotting scope 10-33x and leupold vx3 hd 4-14x42)
or
option 2 no spotting scope and high power rifle scope (Leupold vx5 hd 7-35)
That is why I have high power scopes on my hunting rifles. So you can look at Deer and Elk and determine if they are legal. Your idea is sound, but why carry two scopes. You already have one on your rifle.
 
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stan_wa

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I never glass anything with the rifle I’m not hoping to be able to take a shot at. That’s what the Binos are for. The orange vest is pretty clearly not a 3 pt Muley. @USMC-40 i do understand your concern, I had guy who lost his buddy look at me his in scope to see my hand signals, and I was not happy.
 

WeiserBucks

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This should be good
I'll throw the first grenade.

Binoculars and spotting scopes are for looking at things. Rifle scopes are for shooting at things.

Only backwards, mentally challenged, inconsiderate, lazy retards use rifle scopes for looking at things. That's how hunters accidentally shoot each other every year, in every state. Don't be a backwards, mentally challenged, inconsiderate, lazy retard.
 

realunlucky

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I'll throw the first grenade.

Binoculars and spotting scopes are for looking at things. Rifle scopes are for shooting at things.

Only backwards, mentally challenged, inconsiderate, lazy retards use rifle scopes for looking at things. That's how hunters accidentally shoot each other every year, in every state. Don't be a backwards, mentally challenged, inconsiderate, lazy retard.
I think he pretty clearly stated he only pointed his rifle at things he wanted to shoot at

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stan_wa

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Maybe I can streamline the question, im asking for adivise on.
“Do you think a high power rifle scope could have comparable optical performance to a compact spotting scope?”
 

ChrisAU

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I think I can sum this up.

Will a Leupold Mark 5HD 7-35x56 be better at judging trophy quality at long range than say an SWFA 3-9x42? Yes.

Would that same Mark 5HD touch what a 55-65mm spotter designed for optical clarity and optical clarity alone as far as judging trophy quality at long range? No.
 

Goose2345

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At the risk of being called backwards, mentally challenged, lazy oh and retarded! I have made the switch on now two of my rifle scopes to a 7-35 atacr and won’t carry my spotter on some occasions! I always tend to carry my swaro 15s in my pack and a spotter then the 7-35 came out I grabbed one to try yes it’s a bit heavy but so is a spotter I didn’t carry my spotter much the first while to see if it could be affective well I have two of them now I feel that where I carry my 15s anyway I can glass deer up with them and if I need to see a little closer the 35 is most times enough to decide if I want to close the distance. I’m not by any means condoning laying down and scanning with a rifle scope I’m simply saying to be able to have an already must have optic attached to my rifle to take a closer look at a deer or elk I’ve already glassed up is a nice way to save a little weight and bulk in the pack!
 

Corvus Corax

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I’d find my pound elsewhere for several reasons, having a low end magnification of 7x being just one of them. I’d probably opt to go with a VX3i 2-8x32 and save only 4oz instead. A rifle scope isn’t built to be an observation piece, but an aiming device. I just don’t think it would optically compare to a spotter apples to apples.
 

slim9300

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4-32x50 NX8 is a better option with the low end power and FOV in my opinion. I tried the 5-40x56 March but the NX8 is better.

I think what you are asking is more than fair. You don’t put your rifle scope on something unless you identify that it’s an animal you have a tag for with your binos. I run 8.5x42 EL’s and I can clearly identify deer at 1-5 miles away on a tripod. The biggest sacrifice will be low light identification/clarity with the rifle scope on high power. You may have to give up a shot at a legal buck that a spotter would be able to identify. Thus you could make the shot on 10-15x with the rifle scope but not the higher powers.

I have thought about what you are suggesting for spring bear, but I really want the shot on video for anything past 500 yards to ensure the shot placement. I currently own the Kowa TSN-553, so that’s another option. The little scope weighs as much as a rifle scope but out performs them.


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slim9300

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Thanks slim for that answer that makes a lot of sense. I look at the nx8.

Another thing to keep in mind. You MUST have a position/terrain that allows you to get the rifle prone and totally stable to identify targets using high magnification. In many cases this will not be possible with a rifle scope (think steep terrain), but would be easy for a spotter/tripod setup.

For me when using a rifle scope to more closely identify/shoot animals at long range (400+ yards), that’s using a quality bipod in the front and a rear bag in the rear. I don’t think a pack alone is sufficient for stabilizing the rifle. With an Atlas bipod that locks in lateral movement and an UL rear bag like the one I always have with me, I think a rifle scope can get just as stable as a spotter on a tripod when the terrain/position permits (but that’s not an easy feat).

Tripod mounted rifle mounts are not stable in my opinion unless you are packing a very large tripod that isn’t conducive to backcountry hunting.


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couesbitten

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It's a pound. I carry an 80 mm HD Swaro spotter anytime I think I will need it. Why, because the optical advantages it gives me in looking at game at long distance and it saves me from having to get closer to see if it's an animal I'm willing to hang my tag on. Lose a pound in body weight, leave behind that tool, knife, or other gadget that you carry around because you might need it. Lots of ways to shed a pound elsewhere without leaving your spotting scope behind.
 

freddyG

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Maybe I can streamline the question, im asking for adivise on.
“Do you think a high power rifle scope could have comparable optical performance to a compact spotting scope?”
This is a for sure yes. The higher end scopes blow most spotters out of the water when it comes to image clarity.
 

NevadaZielmeister

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This is a for sure yes. The higher end scopes blow most spotters out of the water when it comes to image clarity.

Apparently spoken by someone who uses their Rifle Scope for spotting instead of using their Spotting Scopes for... um... spotting?
 

slowelk

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This is interesting, and I’m surprised there are such strong feelings. I’ve never been interested enough in another hunter to do more than look at them at 10x through my binoculars.
I had the same thought as OP, higher power scope for judging quality, and went with a maven rs3 5-30 on a new 300 wm.
 
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