View Poll Results: NXS vs Razor HD

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  • Nightforce NXS 3.5-15x56

    4 80.00%
  • Vortex Razor HD 5-20x50

    1 20.00%
  • Other (specify)

    0 0%
  1. #1
    Una Stamus

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    Nightforce NXS vs Vortex Razor HD

    I'm trying to narrow down my scope options for one of my many tactical rifles. My spending limit is under $2000, but the lower the better. Mil/Mil and Illuminated Reticle are mandatory. I'm torn right now between the Nightforce NXS 3.5-15x56 and the Vortex Razor HD 5-20x50.


    Specs:

    Link: NXS 3.5-15x56:
    0.1mil high-speed turrets
    30 mils total elevation
    Zero-Stop
    MLR reticle (mil-based)
    Second Focal Plane
    30mm maintube
    Proprietary glass components/coatings
    Established History and government contracts
    Japanese components (most)/assembled in Idaho/Company based in Idaho


    Link: Razor HD 5-20x50:
    0.1mil turrets
    34mils total elevation
    Zero-Stop
    EBR-2 reticle (mil-based)
    First Focal Pane
    35mm maintube
    High Definition (HD) Extra-low Dispersion (XD) glass
    Newcomer/unproven track record
    Japanese components (all)/assembled in Japan/company based in Wisconsin



    Both will cost me about $1800 each. Does anyone have any thoughts/ideas? Opinions??
    Other comparable options?
    "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."
    -John Adams


    Disclaimer: My statements are personal opinions, and in no way reflect those of my agency.

  2. #2
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    Diesel Kinevel's Avatar
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    I would personally go with the NF. The Vortex scopes are close to NF from what I have heard but, side by side I would go with the NF. They have been proven reliable for years. Not to mention they don't outsource as much as Vortex.

    -Z
    Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God (Matthew 5:9)

  3. #3
    Una Stamus

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    I talked to Bill Bracken from Nightforce's law enforcement department at length yesterday, and he did a fantastic job of selling me on the NXS. I do like the FFP option, and ideally I'd like to get the 3.5-15x50 F1, but for the $2200 it would cost, I could spend a few hundred more and get a Premier Reticles or just get a custom USO SN3 3.2-17x. That being said, I don't whether the USO or the Nightforce has better glass. From the sounds of it, it seems like Nightforce may be the king when it comes to non-German (i.e. Hensoldt) optical resolution and clarity?

    He made a good point that FFP makes if very difficult to see the reticle at low magnification, which then makes it pretty much impossible to use for ranging or shot adjustment. At least with SFP, you have the reticle always visible, though you can only use it for ranging on certain magnification settings (full, half...etc).
    The biggest point he made related to Nightforce being established and having those government and military contracts, as you pointed out. Vortex is relatively new and doesn't have those contracts, and they don't have the proven track record.

    See, I'm not sure if I want FFP or not. I'm still trying to figure that out. The mil/mil thing is a MUST HAVE for this scope, though.
    If I wanted FFP exclusively, I'd definitely go with the Razor HD over the Nightforce, simply because it would save me about $400-500. If I was going to spend $2200-2300 on a scope (NXS F1), I'd probably just save up a couple hundred more dollars over a few more months and get a Premier 3-15x DT.

    The NXS has the advantage of their reputation and a very excellent history, which Vortex doesn't have (they're too new).
    The RazorHD has the advantage of having HD glass.
    So the question is this: Is the HD glass better in terms of resolution than the Nightforce glass on a 56mm objective? Nightforce's main production objective is optical resolution, according to them. I don't know how they compare.


    This decision is pretty hard for me. Don't know what to do...
    "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."
    -John Adams


    Disclaimer: My statements are personal opinions, and in no way reflect those of my agency.

  4. #4
    Oh no, it's da Po-Po
    Blackdog F4i's Avatar
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    My USO SN-3 in the configuration it currently sits in would cost several hundred more than the MAP on a NXS F1 ($2290). I don't feel that there is that much of a difference in glass between the two, but I should be able to tell you in a few months. The F1 is what I will be purchasing for my AI.

    I am still attempting to get ahold of a Razor to give a review, but I will tell you that the 5x low end on the Razor will cause you problems if you work in an Urban setting. If you have nothing but open pastures in your jurisdiction then you may be OK. Our guys are bitching about the 4.5x low end on their Mark IV's.

    A SFP scope is not a deal breaker on a LE rifle. It's been done for a long time and will continue to be done. The simple reason is the vast majority of the LE engagements are going to be within the "point blank" range of the weapon. Holding dead on at 200 yards should only result in a 3.6" drop which will still incapacitate a target if you are taking a cranial vault shot.

    If you are interested in tactical competitions or long range shooting, the price difference between a SFP NXS and the F1 is slim. Remember the F1 also comes with rings. The SFP scopes do not.

    The reticle visibility is only an issue at low magnification in low light with the illumination off. At 3.2x in dim light I can still make out the full mil hashes and the two mil numbers in my GAP reticle in the SN-3. If you are far enough away that you need to hold, then you are far enough away to turn up the magnification and still see what you need to see. The F1 and Razor are both illuminated so that removes the single major handicap of a FFP reticle.

    Until I can get ahold of a Razor and kick it around I would have to suggest the Nightforce F1. If you have the cash and the time to custom order a USO, then you will not regret it. The only reason I am not getting another USO for my AI is because I need to diversify for comparison sake. It's not good when I get something to review and only have one scope for a side by side comparison. That and I really want to try out the "fast turn" turrets on the new F1.

    Nightforce has MAP pricing. It's unlikely you will find a F1 advertised for less than $2290 (I checked). However that doesn't mean that is what you will pay for it. If you are interested in the NXS F1, call Jonathan Mizner at SRT Supply (727-526-5451). He did me right on my AI and they sell Nightforce. I am betting he can do you a good deal. I will probably give him a call back when it's time to get the F1.
    Last edited by Blackdog F4i; 08-11-2010 at 09:29 PM.
    "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." - George Orwell
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  5. #5
    Una Stamus

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    I have considered the NXS F1, but I'm trying to do my best to keep the cost at around $1800 or less. If I spend $2300 on an NXS F1, I look at it as being a better idea of just saving another $400 and getting a Premier Reticles.
    I HAVE considered a USO, and I really want one. Even with the 10% LE discount, they still get really expensive really fast. I have been eyeing up the SN3 1.8-10x44, and if I get a USO, it'd probably be that one. How does the USO glass compare to Nightforce glass?

    If the Razor didn't have FFP or HD glass, I would never consider it. I've looked through both the Razor and a Nightforce 5.5-22x, but they weren't together and both were indoors, so I couldn't get a comparison. This isn't going on an operational rifle, just a training and possibly competition rifle. I really want the 3.5x of the NXS, and the 56mm objective is sure to give some spectacular resolution and light transmission. It's just a matter of figuring out if it can match or top Vortex's HD glass. I think the final showdown will be FFP and HD (Razor) vs. 3.5x and 56mm objective. ARGH!!
    "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."
    -John Adams


    Disclaimer: My statements are personal opinions, and in no way reflect those of my agency.

  6. #6
    Oh no, it's da Po-Po
    Blackdog F4i's Avatar
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    Well, I will have a Vortex Razor here Monday or Tuesday. Once I get it mounted up and put some rounds through the AE I will be able to better give my opinion.

    Unfortunately I don't have a Nightforce F1 to compare it to, but I do have the SN-3.
    "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." - George Orwell
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  7. #7
    Una Stamus

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    Yeah, let me know what you think of it. $1799 for Razor and Rings is a great deal, and I'm not sure I can pass it up. I looked at one on a rifle today at a LE expo, and it was still pretty cool. It had an ARD on, so it was kinda dark. Do ARDs really do that much to cut down the light transmission?
    "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."
    -John Adams


    Disclaimer: My statements are personal opinions, and in no way reflect those of my agency.

  8. #8
    Oh no, it's da Po-Po
    Blackdog F4i's Avatar
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    Some ARD's are horrible. Some are just fine. All will reduce light transmission to a point. How much will depend on how thick the material is and how large the cells are.

    I will be posting a ARD DIY in short order. A member on Sniper's Hide located a source for polycarbonate honeycomb used in photography. I ordered a 6x6 piece for $8 shipped. If it works out I will have a detailed how-to with photos and links.
    "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." - George Orwell
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  9. #9
    Una Stamus

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    Are you getting a test scope, or did you buy a Razor? If so, where from?
    "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."
    -John Adams


    Disclaimer: My statements are personal opinions, and in no way reflect those of my agency.

  10. #10
    Oh no, it's da Po-Po
    Blackdog F4i's Avatar
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    It's a T&E model. I have to send it back or buy it when I am done.
    "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." - George Orwell
    8541tactical.com - Ammo Wallets

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