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jkrispies

PRS: Lowest Viable Magnification Range?

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My learning curve for PRS is in its infancy, but I'm gathering that folks are gravitating towards higher magnification variable scopes.  I've always been one to preach that the average shooter tends to "over-scope" their rifles when it comes to choosing their variable power range, as higher magnification means a smaller field of view.  Personally, I'd love all of my scopes to start at 1x and go up from there... but I'm not shooting PRS yet!!!

 

So, my question to those who are actually shooting it:  what''s the lowest viable power range of scope that will work in PRS?  4.5-30x?  1-8x?  Somewhere in between?  

 

I know that this is extremely variable depending on individual shooter preferences as well as various match designs, weather conditions, etc., etc., but I'm also curious if there's a preponderance of folks who have 25x scopes and never dial them up higher than 15x in competition because the narrowed field of view hurts them too much when transitioning from one target to the next... or maybe there's a bunch of shooters with 14x scopes who really wish they had a 25x because there's so many little targets waaaaay out there.  Or maybe there's one crazy dude at everybody's club who shows up with a 1-8x on a .308 bolt, and he inexplicably kicks everybody's butt with it month in and month out.  THAT is the data/advice I'm looking to gather.

 

Thanks,

J

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I'm also relatively new to Precision rifle as a sport, but I've been shooting long range off of every possible prop or barricade I can find for a couple years now. I've never exceeded 15x on my 6-24x scope except during load development. I've only shot to 600 in a match (where the scope stayed at 12x) so it's possible more magnification helps further out and I just don't know it yet.

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So based on these couple of responses, something in theb16-18x range such as a Leupold VX-6 3-18x or Razor HD 3-18x might be ideal?

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Assuming that PRS stands for Precision Rifle "Shooting"?  I really don't know.

 

From my experience, it all depends on what you're trying to get out of your rifle.  I have made 1,000+ yard shots with a fixed 10x Leupold and (very recently) a 1,560 yard shot with a 6.5-20x50 Leupold.  In both cases the target was steel, not paper, and no score was involved.

 

If you're shooting for score, whether that is 600-1,200 yards, you'll likely want more magnification.  Many of those shooting that sport are shooting Nightforce in higher magnification ranges.

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6 hours ago, jkrispies said:

So based on these couple of responses, something in theb16-18x range such as a Leupold VX-6 3-18x or Razor HD 3-18x might be ideal?

Yes and no. Being a 3 gunner at heart I also wish all scopes started at 1x and went from there. And I do believe 3-18x is probably the most versatile mag range out there and could do everything from 50 yards to as far as I'll ever shoot. All that said, I've never shot my 6-24x on 6x, even though my brain keeps saying a 3-18x or 4.5-27x would be better because of the lower minimum magnification. And I hate to admit it but there has been a few times during load development that I was glad to have the higher top end.

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12 minutes ago, mpthole said:

Assuming that PRS stands for Precision Rifle "Shooting"?  I really don't know.

Precision Rifle Series.

It's really just a point series that helped bring a certain type of rifle shooting to the spotlight, and has now become synonymous for that kind of match. Kind of how for a while 3 Gun Nation was so big that people thought the 3GN moniker was a catch-all name for all 3 gun matches. Both sports existed before and will exist after the big name has gone, but for now the correlation seems inseparable.

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14 hours ago, TonytheTiger said:

All that said, I've never shot my 6-24x on 6x, even though my brain keeps saying a 3-18x or 4.5-27x would be better because of the lower minimum magnification.

So that begs the question of what folks are actually using for magnification on the very bottom end?  

 

Or maybe the more appropriate question might be:  what are the closer targets looking like in terms of distance and size?  I could more easily guesstimate my low end magnification with that info than far targets.   

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I went and asked some accomplished PRS shooters I know, the small group surveyed all have multiple guns that have 3-18x, 4.5-27x, 5-25x or 6-24x scopes on them and they all switch between optics without hindrance at either end of the mag range because they all use 10-16x in matches.

Sounds like the closest targets could be at 200 yards but would be small enough that you would still want 10x magnification at least.

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7 hours ago, TonytheTiger said:

I went and asked some accomplished PRS shooters I know, the small group surveyed all have multiple guns that have 3-18x, 4.5-27x, 5-25x or 6-24x scopes on them and they all switch between optics without hindrance at either end of the mag range because they all use 10-16x in matches.

Sounds like the closest targets could be at 200 yards but would be small enough that you would still want 10x magnification at least.

Now that's an answer!  ??

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There is a reason that a ton of top shooters have higher magnification on their scopes. Yes, most stages are shot around 14 power, but occasionally you will have the opportunity and need to turn one up. You can use a scope in the 3-18 range, and most of the time it will be ok, but there will be a point where you will want more. During load development you will probably want more. I went with a more affordable  model for my small AR, a Vortex HST with a max power of 16. It only had 5 mils on the top knob, so I was having to fight with remembering where I was revolution wise. This scope only lasted a few months on my rifle before it got passed to my son (fresh out of college and glad to get whatever he can), and the scope was replaced by what I should have bought the first time. This is no slam on Vortex, a ton of top shooters use the Gen II Razor, I just didn’t buy enough scope while trying to save a few dollars. There will be people who come on here and say you don’t need this or that, but there is a reason that the good shooters use the equipment that they do. I’m not an expert, but I have about 25 long range matches under my belt, including PRS matches, and have ROd several PRS matches this year, so I’m just passing along what I see. Bottom line-if you are going to play this game, you need to buy the best scope that you can. If you can’t afford something great, buy the best that you can, but if you DO buy something in the smaller magnification range, you will be looking for an upgrade before long. Go over to snipers hide and look in the for sale section for a used Gen I Razor or PST. You won’t be sorry. 

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On 10/12/2018 at 8:26 PM, mpthole said:

Assuming that PRS stands for Precision Rifle "Shooting"?  I really don't know.

 

From my experience, it all depends on what you're trying to get out of your rifle.  I have made 1,000+ yard shots with a fixed 10x Leupold and (very recently) a 1,560 yard shot with a 6.5-20x50 Leupold.  In both cases the target was steel, not paper, and no score was involved.

 

If you're shooting for score, whether that is 600-1,200 yards, you'll likely want more magnification.  Many of those shooting that sport are shooting Nightforce in higher magnification ranges.

 

2 hours ago, shooter steve said:

There is a reason that a ton of top shooters have higher magnification on their scopes. Yes, most stages are shot around 14 power, but occasionally you will have the opportunity and need to turn one up. You can use a scope in the 3-18 range, and most of the time it will be ok, but there will be a point where you will want more. During load development you will probably want more. I went with a more affordable  model for my small AR, a Vortex HST with a max power of 16. It only had 5 mils on the top knob, so I was having to fight with remembering where I was revolution wise. This scope only lasted a few months on my rifle before it got passed to my son (fresh out of college and glad to get whatever he can), and the scope was replaced by what I should have bought the first time. This is no slam on Vortex, a ton of top shooters use the Gen II Razor, I just didn’t buy enough scope while trying to save a few dollars. There will be people who come on here and say you don’t need this or that, but there is a reason that the good shooters use the equipment that they do. I’m not an expert, but I have about 25 long range matches under my belt, including PRS matches, and have ROd several PRS matches this year, so I’m just passing along what I see. Bottom line-if you are going to play this game, you need to buy the best scope that you can. If you can’t afford something great, buy the best that you can, but if you DO buy something in the smaller magnification range, you will be looking for an upgrade before long. Go over to snipers hide and look in the for sale section for a used Gen I Razor or PST. You won’t be sorry. 

So what’s the magnification range you would recommend?

Edited by jkrispies

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