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Precision Rifle Series shooters: A scopesight magnification question. Login/Join 
Freethinker
Picture of sigfreund
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In a video about high end scopesights the narrator said that most of his shooting was at 12 power magnification, and that prompted this question:
If you are a PRS shooter, what magnification(s) do you use for the discipline?

And if you care to elaborate, I’d be interested in why you use the magnification setting(s) you do. I’m curious because if a top competitor uses something like 12×, it seems to me that’s in the midrange of what most scopes we hear about being used are capable of in terms of magnification. I know of course that lower powers provide wider fields of view and make it faster to find and transition among multiple targets, but are there other advantages and considerations to not cranking the power up to the scope’s maximum for that type of shooting?

Although this question is directed primarily at PRS shooters, any comments about what magnifications are best for other disciplines would be welcome as well.

Edited to make the topic subject clearer.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: sigfreund,




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 41174 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Truthfully, I am usually in the 12-18X range for most stages. Except for the mover stages (many don't have movers at the range), then it will be down around 10X. For truly long range stages (800-1200yds), then it will be up at 20-24X.

I like Kahles Scopes with the SKMR3 reticle. So that is my usual shooting plan with respect to power.

Andrew



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Posts: 688 | Registered: May 01, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'm almost always at 10-12x. Highest I've went up to is 15ish on a 100 yard stage because you had to shoot certain playing cards to make a specific hand. They weren't actual cards though, just lightly printed on a big sheet of paper making it difficult to tell what suit they were. As you mentioned, its harder to transition and find another target and also to spot your own shots if you've narrowed your FOV by zooming up to 25x, although I see people doing it all the time. Although I suppose running a gaming setup super heavy rifle in some sort of 6mm flavor with a massive 3 chamber break would allow you to dial up a bit more if you needed to without worrying about loosing the target to recoil.
 
Posts: 210 | Registered: June 04, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I was about to ask this same question as I am getting set up for more long rang shooting and will need to upgrade my scope.

I had read somewhere that most users weren’t going above roughly 15x usually. So why are the scopes marketed at PRS type shooting trending towards 30-35x on the high end?

Am I going to be missing anything if I get a scope with better glass that only goes to 20x?

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Rln_21,


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Posts: 3484 | Registered: September 19, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This reply is related to PRS and steel shooters - Some guys like "BIG" power, some do not. As mentioned, field of view is one consideration but there is also mirage and reticle jump. The higher the magnification the more mirage you will see. Also, high magnification will show even the smallest movement of the rifle in the reticle as it jumps around your POA.

This said, target size also has a role in what magnification to use and needs to be balanced with your preferences. I typically shoot 10 to 15 power. Even though my scope will go to 27 power, I only use 15 power when shooting out to 2000 yards at a 30" plate.

There's a saying that many use when purchasing a scope related to high power - "it's better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it".


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Posts: 573 | Location: CA | Registered: February 01, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Depends on the match, stage and target size.

Match with several on a squad, lots of time to scan targets with binos, make a mental map. 18-22X. If I were the first shooter on a stage, not as much time to study targets lower magnification. Stage with all long distance targets, probably not panning as much, 20-25X.

Match with no time to scan targets, like the Steel Safari's. Walk up on blind on the clock to find, range and shoot targets. 12-15X.

Match on a "square" range, easy to see all targets out in the open with naked eye, 20-25X

Few years back bought a 3-15X for 20" AR. Regretted not getting another 5-25X, sold the 3-15X. There are times I need more magnification with a low signature caliber to see impacts, hit or miss. Especially misses into shadows, grass, bushes. Not uncommon for math directors to place targets in front of tough to read misses. Match I've shot several times with the AR had a few sub-moa targets. Shot that match with both 3-15 and 5-25. Higher hit percentage on those small targets with a 5-25. Those small targets often separate 1st, 2nd, 3rd....

Shooting with my buddies, working up loads at 850yds and 1050yds.. 22-25X.

Practicing with my 22LR, even at just 50yds, 22-25X. Believe it's beneficial to shoot the 22 at that magnification to see any little movement through out the trigger pull.
 
Posts: 2700 | Location: 9860 ft above sea level Colorado | Registered: December 31, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Good point from Offgrid IRT the NRL/"field" type matches where you have to locate and range your targets. Personally, I'm usually all over the map with my magnification on that type of venue, trying to find targets or TRPs for team mates. I did a team match just a few months ago and found myself taking shots at higher magnification than I would normally. I'd also add that having a spotter also enables you to get away with higher magnification, especially if you're shooting a high recoil caliber.
 
Posts: 210 | Registered: June 04, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
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Thanks for the replies, and especially to offgrid for the details about how and when higher powers are useful.




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 41174 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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