January 21, 2023
By Darren Choate
While we still argue the thrill of the hunt is in getting as close to an animal as possible, it’s nice to have the skills, and the tools, to make that shot-of-a-lifetime at extended range. Optic manufacturers obviously agree as they continue to push products catered to the long-range-hunting trend. Here is look at our favorites from the 2023 SHOT Show.
Vortex Optics Strike Eagle 3-18x44 FFP
Featuring superior optic quality, the Strike Eagle 3-18x44 FFP bridges the gap between mid-range tactical and long-range hunting to offer competitive shooters and hunters a feature-packed scope at an affordable price. The riflescope’s main tube is crafted from a solid block of aircraft-grade aluminum, and features an oversized 34mm main tube, allowing a vast range of elevation and windage travel for shooters to make perfect adjustments for precision shots. The scope matches well with the new Vortex 34mm Pro riflescope rings – available in medium 1.10-inch height and a retail price of $120 – to achieve a rock-solid, precise mounting system.
The Strike Eagle incorporates the EBR-7C reticle, capable of speedy target acquisition through its magnification range and in any lighting environment. Coupled with its internal XD Optical System, the Strike Eagle is a leader in color fidelity and sharp images at all distances. The Strike Eagle is packaged with valuable accessories, including tethered lens caps, throw lever, CR2032 battery, 3-inch sunshade, and RevStop Zero Ring.
Bushnell Match Pro ED 5-30x56 FFP Riflescope
Using its original Match Pro as proof of a best-in-class riflescope, Bushnell has included enhanced features in its Match Pro ED 5-30x56 FFP, making it a premium optical performer for experienced long-range shooters and hunters. The Match Pro ED promotes its “best-in-class” performance by using extra-low dispersion prime 56mm objective lens wiht EXO Barrier coating for no-fail use in harsh environments. Its optics system creates sharp images with distinct contrast, all without image quality loss from blurring or color fringing.
Its main tube is 34mm to allow an increased magnification ratio (6X) in a versatile range of 5-30x, and it allows for an elevation range of 30 MIL or 103 MOA. The elevation and windage turrets lock in place; the elevation turret includes an integral Easy Set zero stop and 2-stage pop-up revolution indicator. The combination gives shooters the confidence to make repeatable shots at all ranges and return to zero. The Match Pro ED can conveniently be configured for left- and right-hand shooters with the 3-position power change lever. Its GRID-style reticle performs well, standing out against all backgrounds. A removable sunshade is included in the package as well.
Leica Amplus 6 3-18x44i L-Ballistic BDC MOA
Following up on its successful launch of the Amplus 6 MIL, Leica recently unveiled the Amplus 6 3-18x44 MOA. The Amplus 6 MOA combines high-quality optics, robust construction, and feature-rich inclusions for long-range performance. To complement its rugged design features, the Amplus 6 MOA features a 6x magnification range, a large exit pupil, a wide field of view, and an extremely sharp illuminated dot, all to provide high performance in adverse conditions. The Amplus 6 MOA features the Leica L-Ballistics reticle, enabling shooters to dial – using the available 130 MOA of travel adjustment – or use hold-over marks to acquire targets quickly and confidently make shots across a wide array of lighting environments.
Consumers can also order a custom-cut yardage turret to customize their rifle setup. The Amplus 6 MOA is highly compact and lightweight, with an overall length of less than 12 inches, and weighs in at a mere 23 oz. It features all metal internal components, its optics transmits more than 90 percent of gathered light, and the scope features eye relief at 3.54 inches.
MSRP: $1,399; leicacamerauas.com
Nightforce Dark Earth NX8 4-32x50 F1
The NX8 line from Nightforce is an established long-range performer. Its 8x magnification range (4-32x) provides quick target acquisition at close range and accurate aiming at the smallest targets at extreme distances. For 2023, Nightforce is offering the NX8 4-32x50 F1 riflescope with dark earth finish. The NX8 line provides stellar optics throughout the available models. The 4-32x50 F1 model offers superb clarity and high resolution throughout its highly versatile magnification range and superb target acquisition at all distances.
Nightforce ZeroStop and DigIllum reticle illumination and side parallax adjustment are standard features. To match its power versatility, the NX8 4-32×50 F1 weighs a mere 29 ounces and measures 13 inches in length, making it extremely lightweight and compact. All NX8 riflescopes include Tenebraex flip-up covers, power throw lever, multi-tool, cleaning fob, and optics cloth.
Zeiss LRP S3 425-50
To match the constant unveiling of new performance cartridge offerings, Zeiss developed its LRP S3 riflescope. Its design is purpose-built to work in concert with high-velocity bullets with extreme terminal downrange performance. Specifically, the LRP S3 optimizes elevation travel with the long-range shooter in mind. The LRP S3 425-50 model offers 160 MOA or 46.5 MRAD elevation travel. Its advanced optics system includes multiple ED glass elements and Zeiss T* (T-Star) lens coating, which provides 90% light transmission, and allows hunters to locate and confirm the target easily. Its all-metal construction, Zeiss Ballistic Stop, and overall robust design ensure precise adjustments with a repeatable zero in all shooting conditions. An external locking windage turret also allows wind drift corrections from a confirmed zero.
Additionally, the LRP S3 includes a daylight-visible illuminated reticle – with a user-selectable option of red or green illumination – for precision aiming in all lighting conditions. All riflescopes are built and tested to withstand 1,500 g-forces of shock over multiple impacts.
Leupold Mark 5HD 2-10x30
Leupold developed the Mark 5HD lineup with high-end optical performance for long-range shooters in mind. The Mark 5HD features Leupold’s Professional-Grade Optical System, allowing use in extremely low-light situations; its clarity extends edge-to-edge. For 2023, Leupold has expanded its Mark 5HD family with its new Mark 5HD 2-10x30 riflescope. The 2-10x30 maintains Leupold’s standards and traits but in a more compact, lightweight scope (11 inches long and weighs 24 ounces) explicitly designed for carbines and designated marksman rifles. Rare for a low magnification scope, the 2-10x features Three-Turn ZeroLock adjustments and has a side focus.
The Mark 5HD 2-10x30 is available in three configurations, all in FFP, including a TMR reticle and milliradian adjustments, an Illuminated TMR reticle and milliradian adjustments, and a PR1-MOA reticle and MOA adjustments. The Mark 5HD is designed, machined, and assembled in the USA, and is covered by Leupold’s Full Lifetime Guarantee.
Burris Veracity PH
After several years of research and development, Burris feels it has produced the perfect combination of reliability, technology and precise aiming into an all-around long-range riflescope. At SHOT Show 2023, Burris released the Veracity PH 4-20x50mm. With the introduction, Burris has its sights set on raising hunter confidence and performance to the highest level.
The Veracity PH is packed with revolutionary features including the Programable Elevation Knob (PĒK), a built-in heads-up display and Bluetooth connectivity for uploading custom ballistic data from the new BurrisConnect app. Built around its award-winning Veracity 4-20x50mm, the new PH boasts a 5x zoom system and high-performance glass for exceptional brightness and top-notch clarity. It weighs in at 27.2 ounces. Easy-to-use operation, intuitive data presentation and customizable ballistic profiles make the new Burris Veracity PH 4-20x50mm optimal for shooters of all experience levels seeking a fast, reliable and uncomplicated aiming solution in any hunting scenario.