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Discussion Starter #1
What crossbow scopes are the best gathering light or using in low light situations?

After studying my trail cams over the spring, I'm moving one of my spots and need the best low-light sight I can get.
 

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What crossbow scopes are the best gathering light or using in low light situations?

After studying my trail cams over the spring, I'm moving one of my spots and need the best low-light sight I can get.
In that case I’d go with a 2-8x42 Zeiss Duralyt with the #60 illuminated reticle. I sold mine on the Fire earlier this year for $800 and he got a bargain at that. Most any Swarovski would do just fine as well.

Although most any scope that when adjusted to still give you at least a 5mm exit pupil and decent coatings to transmit light, you should be sufficient.
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I have a fixed 4 power Nikon Bolt XR scope that holds plenty enough light to be able to see thru during legal shooting hours.
 
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In that case I’d go with a 2-8x42 Zeiss Duralyt with the #60 illuminated reticle. I sold mine on the Fire earlier this year for $800 and he got a bargain at that. Most any Swarovski would do just fine as well.

Although most any scope that when adjusted to still give you at least a 5mm exit pupil and decent coatings to transmit light, you should be sufficient.
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I agree. I have the Duralyt mentioned on my primary hunting crossbow. Another Zeiss on my backup.
Very surprisingly, the EvoX (Ten-Pt) scope comes surprisingly close in low light capability. Yes, surprisingly.
 

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Leupold VXR is hard to beat
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In my opinion, the 3x9, 40 or 50 mm VXR is the most cost effective low light scope on an Optimizer/dial extension/Borkholder light. Getting deep into diminishing returns is the Duralyt mentioned. That’s on my primary xbow. However, the EvoX scope can be used equally well in low light, but doesn’t have all the advantage of the variable magnification.
The size and cost differences are the major differentiations in making the choices.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
What about an ATN X Sight 4K Pro 3-14x?

I found 2 bedding spots, both under the canopy and in thick brush. I’ll likely be hunting from a blind. It also records my shots, and it offers a rangefinder accessory... less things for me to carry separately.

To be clear: I have no interest in poaching or hunting when not allowed. If I took this option I continue to hunt during the legal times. I shouldn’t even need the IR light, as there will be enough light present to amplify.

To further clarify, I’m not hunting on the bedding spots, but rather setting up near routes to/from them. I hunt on public land, and it took me years of placing cameras and documenting results to track down these bedding spots. Yes, I’m a newer hunter (this is my 4th season, 2nd on public land), so I’m making my way around the tracking learning curve.






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An X-Sight is fine, but they are also very, very heavy.
For decades it has been the common thought that larger objective lenses "gather" more light. The reality is that it's not exactly true. What does make a big difference is the diameter of the scope tube with regard to the amount of light that passes through the scope. All else being equal, a 30mm tube will transmit more light through the scope than a 1" tube, and a 34mm will out perform a 30mm.

IMO, a quality LPVO with a 34mm tube is the best option w/o making sacrifices for weight and clarity. Primary Arms offers models that will do the job and not break the bank.
 

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In many states a scope that has night vision capabilities is illegal if night is not allowed. The same with electronic calling. Example: I’ve found that my most effective bobcat caller is on my Foxpro. Turkey hunting is over at least when 45 minutes of light is left. At that time I’d often use my Foxpro (bobcat in heat or fawn bleats, or a lost hen call) ) to try to call in Bobcats. Since electronic calling is illegal for turkey hunting, I couldn’t have any electronic caller with me regardless of intent. The IR capable scope may be illegal where you hunt.
 

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I have looked thru that ATN X-sight 4k pro at a store in KC. I was most unimpressed with it. I went there specifically to buy one for my rifle, and after looking thru it I no longer have that urge.

By the way, welcome to the world of hunting. I enjoy the peace as much as I do the hunt. Being in nature is restful and taking my game means an end to my relaxation.

IMO, stick to glass. You've been given many fine scope models to look at.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Got the ATN, works like a dream. Also complied with state rules so I’m good to go


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I have Leupold glass on two of my rifles. When I lived in TX I did a little night-time hog hunting, and blasted my first-ever hog at around midnight in the middle of the woods. It was a pretty full moon, but I tell ya I was surprised at how much light that scope was able to collect. I could easily see black hogs at night when they ventured out onto the lighter-colored trails that were around us.. took one at about 110y with a shot to the head.
 

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I believe it boils down to 2 things: the size of the exit pupil, and the quality (or lack of) the coatings on the lenses that transfers light from one end of the scope to the other.

If you have a 1-4x20mm, that’s a decent 5.0 exit pupil when set on 4x. If you have a 1-5x24mm, that is 4.8mm when on 5x and on the edge. If you have a 3-9x40mm, then cranked up to 8x should still give you a 5mm exit pupil but everything would depend on the coatings at that magnification.
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An X-Sight is fine, but they are also very, very heavy.
For decades it has been the common thought that larger objective lenses "gather" more light. The reality is that it's not exactly true. What does make a big difference is the diameter of the scope tube with regard to the amount of light that passes through the scope. All else being equal, a 30mm tube will transmit more light through the scope than a 1" tube, and a 34mm will out perform a 30mm.

IMO, a quality LPVO with a 34mm tube is the best option w/o making sacrifices for weight and clarity. Primary Arms offers models that will do the job and not break the bank.

I'm not being confrontal, but the tube diameter is NOT more important than objective lens diameter for light gathering. The MAIN advantage of the larger tube diameter is for increased turret adjustment for elevation & windage. Most 1000 yard shooters use 30 mm tubes, but most ELR (1 mile & 2 mile) shooters use 34, 35, and 40mm tubed scopes. (for the added elevation & windage adjustment) Night hunting is common in Germany, and many guys use rifle scopes with objective lens of 72mm . Visit SWFA.com forum and you can learn a plethora in optics.
 

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I'm not being confrontal, but the tube diameter is NOT more important than objective lens diameter for light gathering. The MAIN advantage of the larger tube diameter is for increased turret adjustment for elevation & windage.
Exactly.
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Crazy Ol' Foole
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I'm not being confrontal, but the tube diameter is NOT more important than objective lens diameter for light gathering. The MAIN advantage of the larger tube diameter is for increased turret adjustment for elevation & windage. Most 1000 yard shooters use 30 mm tubes, but most ELR (1 mile & 2 mile) shooters use 34, 35, and 40mm tubed scopes. (for the added elevation & windage adjustment) Night hunting is common in Germany, and many guys use rifle scopes with objective lens of 72mm . Visit SWFA.com forum and you can learn a plethora in optics.
We have no argument about the "main" reason for a larger tube. I chose my words carefully.
What I said, is that "all else being equal" the larger tube WILL allow for more light transmission, and that is a fact.
 

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We have no argument about the "main" reason for a larger tube. I chose my words carefully.
What I said, is that "all else being equal" the larger tube WILL allow for more light transmission, and that is a fact.

I stand corrected, and I should have read more carefully. You are 100% correct with "all things being equal".
 
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