It’s no secret I’m a fan of low power variable scopes for the AR-15.
After all, they let you turn your humble AR-15 carbine into a “do it all” rifle you can then use for everything from CQB to long-range “sniping”!
And technology just keeps getting better. Whereas 1-4x power used to be the standard, now it’s really 1-6x and many new 1-8x scopes are hitting the scene. Here’s two of my favorite new low power variable scopes I just saw revealed at SHOW Show 2017:
1. NEW! Burris RT-6 1-6×24
I have been running a Burris MTAC 1.5-6x42mm scope on one of my primary AR-15 rifles for quite a while now. It’s definitely one of the 3 Absolute BEST 1-6x Low Power Variable AR-15 Scopes For Under $400 as I’ve written before.
It appears that much like Vortex did with their 1-6x power scope, Burris is stepping up in a big way and releasing a new 1-6x power scope that looks to be a solid performer (given how well their MTAC products have done) at a low price point.
I got to spend a little hands on time with the Burris RT-6 1-6×24 and it is one sweet tactical AR-15 scope!
From a Burris press release, the scope features:
“Shorter than most 1-4x scopes, 3-Gun shooters will find the RT-6 is easy to handle and quick to point. The 6x zoom with true 1x setting allows eyes open engagement at close range, and the Ballistic AR™ mil reticle with trajectory compensation puts you on target out to 600 yards.
Features of the RT-6 1-6x24mm include:
* Illuminated reticle with 11 levels of illumination
* Integrated throw lever
* 30mm tube size
* Waterproof, shockproof and fog proof
* Nitrogen filled
* Matte finish”
One other cool thing I don’t want to forget to mention is that it comes with a built-in “throw lever” making it much easier to adjust from 1x to 6x power quickly when you need to change ranges fast (this is a nice touch!)
Now, let’s talk about the price. As you can see, from the picture I took the MSRP at shot show was listed at $549. In the video below, the only video I can find (taken at the same booth I was at during SHOT Show 2017), the Burris rep says it’s $419 MSRP. Add to that the only press release I could find that this new product was coming this year said MSRP was $419 as well. My guess (and hope!) is that this is Burris’s new scope to challenge the Vortex Strike Eagle as a sub-$400 scope for the AR-15 market.
Lastly, the reticle is the Ballistic AR™ that I was talking about before which I think is an improvement on their MTAC line of scopes:
And explained …
I was able to find the video below where a rep described some of his favorite features of the new scope at the Burris booth:
2. Trijicon Accupower 1-8×28
Trijicon is known for their military-proven, bomb-proof line of scopes like the Trijicon ACOG. They also have a reputation for producing really nice low-power variable optics like the Accupower series.
What I didn’t realize about this scope — even after handling it a lot and talking to the rep at the Trijicon booth — until I studied the brochure — is that this is a 1-8×28 power scope. It has a larger 38mm tube diameter (as opposed to 30mm) and a larger 28mm objective lens (as opposed to a 24mm).
What I DO know because I picked it up multiple times is that while it looked big and robust and it’s a 1-8x power scope, it was lightweight for its size. According to the Trijicon website, it’s only 25oz which is heavier than I would have guessed actually.
This is also a 1st focal plane scope. Trijicon is a pricier scope brand, but like they say, you get what you pay for and you’re investing in a military proven brand. MSRP looks to be at $1,699 from their website and check out the reticle below:
And here’s how it looks when you zoom in because it’s FFP:
The effect you get with this scope is at 1x the big red circles look easy to acquire like a holographic site, but then when you zoom in they’re “out of the way” enough that you can be very precise with the crosshairs. I really like it!
Somehow IraqVeteran8888 got their hands on this thing for a review already 5 days ago, check it out:
Those were the two new AR-15 low power variable scopes — NEW for 2017 — that I saw at SHOT Show. Are you excited about either of these?
Nice scopes. But then Anything that goes for over a grand should be good. But some are just ‘better’ than others for several other reasons, Cost of which is not the least consideration.
But the main consideration anyone on a budget should pay attention to is the ‘Bang for the buck’ principle and the actual pragmatic combat utility. The reticles are important. This Trijicon reticle is too complicated for the average Willy Wylde or Al Kalishnikov. And I never did like the ‘horseshoe or dot in circle style for anything other than a CQB reticle on something like a small reflex sight. I think that’s why they have them on tactical scopes for the supposedly dual function at low magnification use.
I can drone on about scopes having tried just about everything ever made. Bottom line is always ‘THE Bottom price line with accessories. If you can afford a better one, get it. But shop around, I would get the latest ACOG for tactical work before this Trijicon for about the same price. And it has a much more user friendly reticle.
Unless you think your SHTF situation would require a lot of long range shooting out to over 600 meters you don’t need either of these kinds of scopes. And then it should probably be on a 308, One of the small cheap tactical clones will do just fine for the average prepper. Sure they might not survive violent handling as well as a commercial Military Scope, but for the same price as the Burris, which won’t survive a bullet hit either, you can have 3 spares.
As far as tactical scopes go historically, the Russians always had the best reticles. These were the ones predominately on the Dragunov sniper scopes with fast target acquisition built in range finding on the reticle.
(don’t waste your time on a comment reminding me that some of these other reticles also have built in ranging and also mildot reticles have this capability) That’s true, but you have to Learn the proper way to use them until it becomes second nature.
If you’ve never checked the Dragunov reticle you should take a look at it. No touching the turrets, no mil dot math computations, just one quick target check looking through the scope, and then appropriate matching cross hair graduation on target and fire. The actual measurements are, in fact, milradian based. They just make it much more user friendly.
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