Vortex razor gen 1 vs gen 2 difference

Evilduck

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Apr 26, 2020
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Anyone know difference between gen 1 and gen 2 Vortex razor spotting scopes? Looking to get one but curious about difference.
 

Tahoe1305

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I personally have never looked through a gen II but I own a gen I 65mm.

The biggest difference is the focus mechanism. Gen I has fine/coarse two dial on top of the barrel and the Gen II has the single focus wheel integrated on the barrel (more common these days).

I personally prefer the dual focus because I think it’s easier to focus without shaking the scope but others will say it’s all the same.

There were some posts when the Gen II first came out that the glass was better. In my research I have seen as many saying it is the same or real close to the same.

If you can get a better deal on a Gen I I wouldn’t pass it up.
 

Rodéo

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Went down an optics reading rabbit hole last night and stumbled across another optics forum that might be of some help: http://www.opticstalk.com/vortex-razor-new-release_topic43226.html

The review one of the moderators gave in the link I posted praised the gen 2 razor over the gen 1 pretty heavily. I hadn't heard of much of a difference between the two until I read that post.

I have the 1st gen 65 razor myself and I have no complaints aside from some heat wave distortion on hot days past 750 or so yards. I think that is pretty common with most spotters, even higher end ones but I haven't confirmed that myself.
 

fatrascal

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A friend of mine once told me that all spotting scopes see heat waves and that me buying an expensive scope was dumb. I told him that he was correct but my heat waves look better than his heat waves. We had a good laugh and drank a beer. Fatrascal.
 
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Evilduck

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Apr 26, 2020
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I tried gen 2 razor ND was really impressed today. Much clearer then viper. Definitely leaning to razor now. Just got to decide if I want 80 vs 65 mm
 

Researcher

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Rokslide thread

take a look at the above thread where someone called and asked Vortex themselves.

From personal experience no real difference in the glass even though technically their may be. The gen2 focus wheel sucks. That alone would make me want to go with the gen1.

Viper 65 gen1, Razor 65 gen2 (hunting partmer had the gen1 at this time), to the Kowa 77 and now an ATX 65. I talked with the Kowa reps at the sheep show about the industry move from the dual focus to the wheel version and he said its not better, not lighter, and the only thing he can think of is its cheaper to manufacture that way. Dual focus is better and it may be why I go back to the Kowa.
 

Jalenweyker

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I was in this dilemma a few months ago and like stated above I found a lot saying that the glass was the same or maybe a slight edge better to the gen 1 glass. but most people agreed the dual focus was the big difference. so I opted to by a Gen 1 at a much cheaper price and roll with that until I can afford one of the high end spotters down the road. so if that's your two options you cant go wrong with either of them for the right price.
 
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Evilduck

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Apr 26, 2020
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thanks. Seems like gen 1 provides much better control. I personally like have two options for control vs 1 hammer approach. Now must track a gen 1 for sale
 

Tahoe1305

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Jun 9, 2019
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For reference I bought mine Gen I 16-48x65 on eBay four months ago new for $580. I was half expecting it would show up clearly used, but it was immaculate and I had no reason to believe it wasn’t new as can be. I bought the LER lens for it too and for $200 I think worth the added FOV and eye relief.

I haven’t seen a deal that good since I got mine but there are some used ones that float around here for $600 or so.

Quick look online sportsman’s has cheapest for $699 new and eBay and amazon had them for $799.

Hope that helps. I’d snag the one from sportsman’s warehouse and be done !
 

Ben RT

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A couple years ago I bought a Gen 2 85mm angled Razor HD, and a few good buddies had the Gen 1 85mms (one also had a Gen 2 for a brief time) so I got a decent feel for both of the 85mms anyway. My take was that the Gen 2 was brighter, had a wider field of view, possibly a little sharper (especially away from center), had the single-speed center ring focus wheel, and had the general appearance of a Swarovski copycat (similar outward aesthetics like colors, etc). The Gen 1 had a little narrower field of view, had the dual focus knobs, and looked more old-school. The biggest difference to me, and why I promptly got rid of the Gen2 was that it took a LOT of effort for me to get a good picture out of it. The brightness was really good and the sharpness was truly great (when I was positioned and focused just right), but it was like the stars had to align just perfectly for my eye to be in the correct position where it wouldn't go black on me.

If you're really after the Razor HD, then I'd say the big differences are the wider field of view with finicky eyebox and single speed focus (Gen 2) vs narrower field of view, but dual speed focus and a bit easier eyebox (Gen 1). There are LOTS of great spotting scope options out there these days...
 
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i'd go for the Gen II as well. I addition to all the newer features it sure makes choosing a mount with it's 34mm tube rather than the limited choice you have with the Gen I with a 35mm tube
 

Giannandreaj

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I love the focus knob on the gen I. I’m not sure why they ditched that. I got the gen I dirt cheap at sportsman’s warehouse. I’m sure over time I’ll drop it or do something dumb and vortex will send me a gen 2 lol.
 

gcronin

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I love the focus knob on the gen I. I’m not sure why they ditched that. I got the gen I dirt cheap at sportsman’s warehouse. I’m sure over time I’ll drop it or do something dumb and vortex will send me a gen 2 lol.
The main reason is durability and precision. The helical focus found in the Gen 2 will allow for more precise adjustments to fine tune the focus better. With the focus adjustment being built into the body of the optic it also protects it better from falls.

If you have any questions on either models, don't hesitate to reach out!
 

bigmooi

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I love the focus knob on the gen I. I’m not sure why they ditched that. I got the gen I dirt cheap at sportsman’s warehouse. I’m sure over time I’ll drop it or do something dumb and vortex will send me a gen 2 lol.
I got my Razor Gen 1 a few weeks ago and tried it out in the field a few times, then went to the store to look at the Gen2s. I will say optically it is better then the Viper, and feels equal to the Gen 2 Razor it optics, granted I thought the field of view seemed worse on the Gen2 throughout the zoom range (I know it is different on the low end of zoom 20 vs 27). I think the Gen1 is easier to focus with the dual knobs then with the helical on the Gen 2s, but I do not doubt the Gen 2 will take a fall better.

Now I am just trying to confirm which 30x WA eye pieces work in the Gen1 Razor to have options, best I can see right now is the Burris 30x WA Spotting Scope Eyepiece, works based on reviews.

I also hear Swarovski 30x WA eye piece works but I have not been able to confirm a model number yet...
 
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Tunsei

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May 24, 2021
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Interested in your results on different eyepieces in the spotter.
 

Touchdown88

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I've also heard the Swarovski eye pieces work on the Gen I Razor. Can anyone confirm that rumor with first hand knowledge?
 

Nethero

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Jan 16, 2020
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I've also heard the Swarovski eye pieces work on the Gen I Razor. Can anyone confirm that rumor with first hand knowledge?
Can confirm, this is a Swarovski 20-60 eyepiece from my ATS HD that is a perfect fit on my Gen 1 Razor HD.

Also, for what it’s worth regarding this thread, I have found the Gen 1 Razor HD to excel in sharpness and clarity over the Gen 2 Razor HD. Gen 2 has a noticeably wider field of view, but this was about the only noticeable improvement to my eyes.

While my Swarovski ATS HD handles chromatic aberration and delivers a sharp and clear image at maximum power much better than either Razor spotter, I would recommend the Gen 1 Razor HD hands down if for a sub $1,000 spotter.
 

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mullet_mitch

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Dec 29, 2017
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I have a gen 2 85mm I am looking to sell of you are interested. Finally saved up the money to jump to swaro. I never had any issues with the vortex other than for most of the hunts I do I’m far enough from the truck that I hate packing the 85.
 
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