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Swarovski Optics

Discussion in 'Anything Airgun Related' started by Zaytoon, Aug 16, 2014.

  1. Zaytoon

    Zaytoon Well-Known Member

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    I see for sale on websites and on Swarovski's site as well their range of optics be it scopes, binoculars etc. What I also see is the hefty price tag that could set you back the price of 4 brand new rifles :eek:. So I was just wondering are they really that much better than a standard scope or the top of the range Hawkes, Nikkos, Bushnells etc and worth what you pay for them? Has anyone ever used one and what is it like if so? Thanks :up:
     
  2. 177

    177 Donator

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    They are superb, however, my fat and forty something eyesight can't see that they're miles better than, say, S&B or Meopta.

    I know a couple of Swarovski shooters who have started buying Meopta on the basis that performance is (arguably) quite close (their words, not mine) meaning they cannot justify the massive price difference.

    An RFD chap I know recently said to me that the gap between manufacturers in rifle scopes isn't closing, it's closed. Once you get past a certain point the real world performance differences are a lot closer than many might expect.

    For some it is something to aspire to, for some it is something to be seen to own, for many they truly believe it is a different class of performance.

    I'm not entirely certain that's the case, but they are pretty incredible to look through.

    Some folks go weak at the knees about Zeiss - my eyes don't get on with them too well, which is great news for my wallet, however, I would rank a couple of Zeiss models at least as highly as the Swarovski counterpart and in at least one case I'd put the Zeiss ahead.

    We all have different eyes though, so this can be quite subjective and the important thing is to not allow product awareness to form bias which skews your perspective on a product.

    I wouldn't sink that sort of money into a scope any time soon, but I'd have no hesitation going for a Meopta Artemis 2000 6x42 with a 4a or 4b ret if you have to have multiple aim points. Having had one up against the 7x50 model I found the 6x42 a better combination and, to my middle-aged eyes, it seemed brighter than the bigger one.

    Anyhoo, imagine the difference between a VHS video playing on an old TV and one of the new curved HD TV screens. That's how it looks when you peep through a Swarovski compared to many manufacturers, and you can be shooting with one long after many other scopes have gone to bed...

    Air rifle scope buyers baffle me - there are a raft of £300 plus offerings that are variations on tarted up crap that folks are buying into in a big way (well done to the respective brand marketing strategies :rolleyes: ) yet most would be horrified at spending a similar figure on a scope with less 'stuff' on it.

    There are gems that are overlooked despite costing half that amount, and some truly superb offerings that don't need to break the bank but, again, they are more often than not overlooked on the basis that they don't have doodads and whatnbots on them...

    Swarovski are very, very nice to look through, but I'm not sure I'd buy into one unless they've changed their warranty - until recently both Leupold and Zeiss offered a better warranty. I deliberately used two manufacturers who Swarovski produce competitor products to compete with: Zeiss Conquest vs Swarovski Z3 for example. The irony is they are commonly compared yet the Swarovski Z3, although more expensive, is miles away from the top range Swarovski scopes...

    Nice if you can - hard to justify on a 40 - 50 yard bunny or pigeon air rifle IMHO :)
     
  3. Accuspell

    Accuspell Pro Poster

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    Yes, my deer rifles always wore Swaro scopes.My 7x64 had an old Nova 6x42 on it with duplex crosshair. this is an old steel tubed scope but the glass is the same Schott glass and the brightness of that scope allowed me to shoot foxes without a lamp, just by the light of 3/4 moon or greater. I could see foxes at 3 fields under a bright, full moon. Did plenty of field clearance with it for fallow (with a section 49 license before anyone tries to get clever) at night without a lamp. During daytime the best shot I made was on a red calf in the hills - I had shot the hind but instead of the calf staying with its mother for me to get it as well it got lifted by the herd. I HAD to get it. It was frosty and dead still, so i decided to try a long shot. This was before lazer rangefinders. I guessed the range and held 4 feet over its ears and clear in fron tof it nose to allow for the bullet walk and because I wanted a front end hit above all else. There was a long whistle as the bullet flew, we could hear it and then the thump as it struck home. The calf hunched and went over. b****r, I thought I had gut shot it from that reaction - it was dead by the time we got there. That was close to 780 yards - we lazered it a couple of years later as best we could, but the lie was right beside the corner of a wall, so we were within a yard a two of the right spot there and the rushes that grow out of the boggy patch beside the grass hillock the calf stood on are still there, so within 5 yards that was accurate measurement.

    Why are they so much better? There is a law of diminishing returns, of course, because as you climb the scale of performance in anything, it costs an aweful lot of money to gain any increase.......performance cars for instance, to gain an extra 5mph at the top end of supercars, probably requires an extra 200hp. The same goes for scopes - the quality of "standard scopes" is better now than it has ever been, thanks to the advances in technology and knowledge. The gap is narrower now than it used to be, and the cost of getting that advanatge is greater - BUT, top end scopes are cheap. A big chunk of cash, maybe, but they work out economical if you look at it objectively. For one thing they will still be fog free and crisp in 30 years time, they are built far stronger to withstand the recoil from high powered rifles, the accuracy of the adjustments is pinpoint, when you make an adjustment and take it back, the clicks are precise. The clarity of the sight picture and the ability to deal with tricky light - low sun in your face for instance, and you have paid £5000 to go on the hunting trip, you do not want the one chance at your trophy shot beig ruined by scrimping on a scope that flares or whites out and blinds you. Or if you have spent three days hiking in through the mountains in the Yukon or NW Territories and your trophy Rocky Mountain elk is just above the timberline at 1000 yards or more.You want a scope that will give you a very good chance of putting a fatal shot in there and then. You settle down, range the animal, dial up your Schmidt & Bender that has a dedicated, custom etched reticule for your ballistics, get a good lie and squeeze the shot away. The range was 1207 yards, the muzzle velocity of your rifle was 3400fps with a 160gn bullet - at 1200 yards it still retains a velocity of 1750fps. It is then going to take you the best part of all day to get down the mountain you are on, cross the valley and climb to your trophy...what will be left of it if the bears or ravens have found it. Likewise at last knockings, when that Sika stag comes out of the pines 1 minute before dark, you want a scope that can pick out his near black coat from the shadows at the base of the trees - and give you enough of a sight picture to place a killing shot. THAT your Hawke scopes will not do. When it comes to knocking feral pigeons off the rafters at 15 yards, is it necessary? No, it most certainly isn't. however, taking on pigeons in high trees at twilight, a scope that allows you to see better is most definitely an advantage - but there are scopes out there that will do that for around £200, you don't have to spend the 000s for a top end scope.
    Spend £2000 on the travel, then another $5000 on the actual hunting part of the trip....suddenly your £1500 for the scope that willlast you 30 years pales into insignificance. That is where their value lies - but even for the air rifle hunter, having a good scope will provide you with more opportunities by giving you a sight picture when other scopes cannot, last longer, hold zero better and have more accurate adjustments.
     
  4. Zaytoon

    Zaytoon Well-Known Member

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    I was honestly expecting like a two line answer at best when I posted this. You two my good sirs deserve medals. I love especially how you set the scene Accuspell it really helped me understand how and when a scope of that calibre would come into its own I think I'm getting it. Of course I think to really understand that difference in lighting and how well it can take such little light and magnify it into a crystal clear image I would have to see it myself but definitely sounds like these scopes are in a league of their own - and I understand the supercar metaphor only too well very true hundreds of thousands of pounds to get you from 0 to 60 0.1seconds faster.
    Not something for an air rifle though is it safe to say? Not a sub 12ft/lb one anyway right? I don't see hunting wood pigeon justifying this scope for sure no matter what anyone would say, unless you already had the scope for a deer rifle and felt like putting it on an air rifle you may also own, in which case you'd probably see each and every feather on the bird in High Definition haha.
    Also if you don't mind me asking another question, how well do these scopes retain their value? Do they depreciate a lot or do they sell second hand for still a very high price?

    Again thank you both for your VERY informative posts top marks :up:
     
  5. 177

    177 Donator

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    You could spend £250 - £300 on a second hand S&B 6x42 and sell it for about the same in years to come.

    My view is if you can afford them new, you don't need to worry about resale value...

    They hold their prices well though, and I imagine most who buy them hold onto them.

    Take a sneaky peaky at Doctor Optic and Kahles which are also outrageously good :)

    We really are talking night and day difference.
     
  6. Accuspell

    Accuspell Pro Poster

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    Lke anything, they depreciate at least 20% the moment you take them out of the shop...VAT. ;) The value in buying a scope of that quality is that you keep it. Take it off one rifle and put it on the next, so in that sense no it doesn't depreciate, only if you go to sell it - which means you can pick up very high quality scopes for much less than their new price if you buy used. Deer estates in Scotland with an estate rifle to rent to visiting hunters will invariably have a top end scope on it, whether that is Zeiss, Swarovski (Habicht), kahles, S&B, Nightforce....will depend more on the leanings of the stalker than anything else. We all have our preferences and those rub off on what we are responsible for...Hamish, go and get a new rifle for the gun cupboard please. We need a new rifle for guests. So the calibre, make of rifle, scope mounts and scope will down to that individual stalker and what they consider the most suitable at the time - which is why there are so many Manlicher 7x57s or 270s with Zeiss scopes in the estate gun cabinets. The estate rifle at The Black Mount is a Rigby 7x57 with a Zeiss 6x42 on top, it was built in 1933 and is still taking several hundred deer a year, of both sexes. That was a very economic buy that rifle! It owes the estate nothing.

    For air rifle shooting you still need to be able to see what you are shooting - you can only shoot as well as you can see. I like Nikon scopes and am proud to say I started a bit of trend with them a few years ago - plenty of people now use them too. I have a Monarch 3-12 x 40 on my Rapid .22, it says it only focusses down to 50 yards, but in actuality it focusses to about 38 yards- at 7x power I can head shoot rats at 20 feet with it and take long shots out to the limit of the range.The advantage it gives me is the extra time in the woods, even a Prostaff 3-9x40 will give half an hour longer shooting time than most other air rifle scopes - for the same money. Marketing has made airgun shooters demand all sorts of toys, bells and whistles on their scopes that simply eat up construction budget at the cost of the fundamental of a scope - the quality of the lenses. Nikon lenses have no fancy electronics in them, just good, old fashioned very high quality (the best) Japaneselenses and excellent internal optical design - that is another factor that affects the way a scope works. The way the lenses are put together and the optical path.Nikon provide 97% transmittance of light even in their base models, that Monarch (law of diminishing returns again) gives 98% - that extra 1% is visible at twilight and amounts to about another 10 minutes over the Prostaff- for £350 as opposed to £200...have a look at the Vortex scopes too, they have anything from budget, Chinese made, mediocre performance through to scopes that are vying for being the best in the world in that class - at commensurate prices with the other top names.
     
  7. Zaytoon

    Zaytoon Well-Known Member

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    Thats very true from the both of you if you can afford it you won't worry about resale, but I guess in my own experience unless I can get something new on a really good offer, I tend to buy second hand but must be as new condition no doubt. 177 never heard of Doctor Optic I'll give that a google/youtube look right now.
    Accuspell you really sound like a veteran haha. I agree about air rifle scope though I've had Hawke and Nikon in my short air rifle life and i must say the Nikon is much clearer and brighter. It may be attributed to the fact the Optical lens is a bit larger on my Nikon but I've had an EB which was exactly the same at 50mm and the Nikon was much better hence why Im currently selling the EB scope I had two because the manufacturers failed to parallax my first one :D
     
  8. JD

    JD Donator

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    I haven't seen any reference to Nikon using Japan made lens, all their scopes are marked as made in the Phillo's.
     
  9. Accuspell

    Accuspell Pro Poster

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    Assembly........using Japanese made components.
     

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