Spotting scope - 65 or 80?

gcronin

Senior Member
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Oct 22, 2020
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I’m looking to buy a spotting scope for the first time and would love some advice on what to pursue between a 65mm and 80mm objective. I just purchased a quality pair of binos (Nikon monarch hg 10 x 42) and would love to round out my optics ahead of next season.

a few things to note:
- I’m looking to keep it under 1000 (vortex razor and maven cs1 are top of my list so far)
- I live and hunt in the west. Primarily in high country situations where I’m covering quite a bit of ground looking for elk. However, I also do a fair amount of antelope/deer hunting which is more glassing intensive.

what would y’all say the pros/cons are for size of scope? Recommendations on specific scopes are also welcome.

thanks in advance!
If weight is a concern at all I would recommend going with the 65 mm or even smaller. The one I run is the Razor HD 11-33x50. I use this spotter for hunting as well as for shooting long distance.

If weight isn't a concern, an 80 mm or 85 mm objective would be just fine! I prefer a smaller objective as it saves weight, gives a wider field of view(due to the less magnification), and will give you all the magnification needed for hunting situations.
 

sunooastspotter

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Jan 21, 2021
Messages
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Personal preference on how much you're willing to drag around.... I personally have a hard time going back to 65 after using an 82.
 

AK Troutbum

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Apr 22, 2012
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5,912
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Chugiak, Alaska
My personal preference, all things being equal, is an 80 over the 65. I just so happened to find a good deal on a Swaro 80, so that’s why I own that scope, but had it been a 65, than that’s what I would have bought. I’ve had the opportunity to compare both side by side under real conditions (both good and bad), and I like the 80 better. The difference in wt. between the Swarovski 65 HD and 80 HD is only about 7 oz., and absolutely worth it IMO.

20-60x65


20-60x80



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Spoonman

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Nov 2, 2018
Messages
376
Location
Olympic peninsula
It’s going to be a preference thing for everyone. I have ran a Razor 65 in the past and then went to the Razor 85. I’m don’t with the razor 85 (4.5lbs) and I’m going to the 25-50wx65 Swaro. It’ll do everything I need and be way way lighter and better quad well.
 

Deadfall

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Oct 18, 2019
Messages
552
If getting a spotter, atleast go 80mm. Big difference between tgat and 65. Also anything is better the vortex!
 

JRMiller

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 11, 2020
Messages
319
Used to pack an 85 but optical quality is a huge factor.
I do 65 now.
An awesome 65 can be better than a mediocre 80.
 

seanspade6

Junior Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2020
Messages
13
The 80 will take in more light overall giving better picture quality. What you'll see is cheap scopes with high zoom, they will have much larger lenses then the higher dollar scopes at the same magnification. Having a a swarovski you dont have to worry about that side of it though, there glass is top quality.
 
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