Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

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Erniep123
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Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by Erniep123 »

I've been toying with the idea of replacing my current Leupold VX5-HD 2-10x42 with a S&B Klassik 2.5-10x56. I do a lot of low light hunting as we are allowed to shoot 1.5 hours past sundown in Germany. I haven't looked through the Schmidt yet but I've heard they are spectacular in low light. Does anyone have experience with both or something similar? Also open to other suggestions from Zeiss, Swaro, Kahles, etc.



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slugslinger
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Re: Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by slugslinger »

I suspect that you will get many opinions related to your question. The key factor you mentioned is low-light performance which indicated a scope with excellent light-gathering features. Where I live in Colorado, many game animals are active at dawn and dusk so we have the same light gathering challenges as you do (except our legal hunting hours are 30 minutes before sunrise until 30 minutes after sunset). My forty years of hunting experience leads me to the following guidance related to your question. Without doing a physics class on light transmission, lenses, and coatings, I suggest the following:

Buy the best optics you can afford - which usually means the more expensive models offered, regardless of manufacturer. Price tags get quite large for the best models so reducing your budget means dropping down through the available models until you find what you can afford. My recommendations include Swarovski (z6 is my overall favorite), Schmidt and Bender Polar, Kahles, Leica, and (some) Leupold. A specific recommendation that I love is the Swarovski Z6i 2-12x50 (BT) [with the SR rail if you can find it]. I suspect the Z8i 2-16x50 would be superb but its heavier and I don't "need" the 8X zoom range factor, and rarely the 16X magnification. Alternate example: I have a friend that hunts pigs at night (in just moonlight) and he loves the S&B Polar.

The features associated with quality lenses, Objective lens size, and even illumination can increase the weight of the scope. Sometimes this can cause you to drop in performance to reduce weight.

You also need to decide the right magnification range for you. And that is a whole different discussion!

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Erniep123
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Re: Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by Erniep123 »

Thanks for the info! I will definitely be looking at some of the models/brands you mentioned. As far as a magnification range, I think my current 2-10 is almost perfect. Ideally I would like to keep it under 2.5 power on the low end, as I do attend drive hunts and think the lower power is needed in those situations

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slugslinger
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Re: Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by slugslinger »

I agree about low power. I like a low magnification of 1.5-2 for walking around in case something "pops up" or I'm finding something relatively close in timber where field of view is important. At longer distances there is usually time to turn the power up.

There is a Swarovski Z6 that might work for you - Z6(i) 1.7-10x42 (BT) . . . it comes both illuminated or not. I have the illuminated one myself and I use it for the only hunts I do with moving animals (pigs).

Also, If you do driven hunts, the Swarovski Z8i (only) has an interesting switchable reticle option:
https://www.swarovskioptik.com/hunting/ ... WT.oss_r=0

I once visited my daughter's family near Stuttgart every year and I seem to recall that there is a cost advantage for buying German made products, or perhaps it was EU products, which is where most of the best scopes are from.

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Erniep123
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Re: Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by Erniep123 »

I have looked at that exact Z6i before. Haven't had a chance to look through a Z8 just yet, but I have heard great things. The switchable reticle does seem interesting! One of the reasons I'm considering a German optic is I can get them tax free here, which is nice

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Vaughan
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Re: Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by Vaughan »

Erniep123 wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:04 am
I have looked at that exact Z6i before. Haven't had a chance to look through a Z8 just yet, but I have heard great things. The switchable reticle does seem interesting! One of the reasons I'm considering a German optic is I can get them tax free here, which is nice
FWIW I have a Z8i 1-8x with the changeable reticle. I use it for running game. I don't find the ring any more useful than the dot. BUT I do love the scope!!! I also have a couple of Z6is, they are equally good but the 1-8x is something else if you spend a lot of time on driven hunts.. :dance: :dance:
/Vaughan

Erniep123
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Re: Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by Erniep123 »

Vaughan wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 12:46 pm
Erniep123 wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 9:04 am
I have looked at that exact Z6i before. Haven't had a chance to look through a Z8 just yet, but I have heard great things. The switchable reticle does seem interesting! One of the reasons I'm considering a German optic is I can get them tax free here, which is nice
FWIW I have a Z8i 1-8x with the changeable reticle. I use it for running game. I don't find the ring any more useful than the dot. BUT I do love the scope!!! I also have a couple of Z6is, they are equally good but the 1-8x is something else if you spend a lot of time on driven hunts.. :dance: :dance:
Good to know! I would say I spend a little more time in the stand than I do on driven hunts, but with the 8x I think it still may be plenty for the occasional 100+ meter shot

secondtry
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Re: Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by secondtry »

Anything in night hunting reticle beyond a dot is superfluous. All those other doo dads are nothing more than clutter.

I've shot quite a few sambar from a stand in moonlight and full dark without artificial light and have always found 8x to be adequate. Ranges are usually around 80yds to 120 yds.

A little more than 8x might be nice at times, but not really necessary.

EDIT: To clarify, I should have typed "illuminated night hunting reticle"
Last edited by secondtry on Fri May 22, 2020 7:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Gun Barrel Ecologist
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Re: Schmidt & Bender Klassik?

Post by Gun Barrel Ecologist »

I think the critical is a reticle that can be seen in moonlight against a black silhouette and a 56mm objective, because the 72mm Zeiss is no longer made.
At midnight 8x is going to be noticeably brighter than winding up to 10x if your eyes are young.
Doing the same thing as Secondtry I tend to use an old 2,5-10x56 East German S&B with a No1 reticle on my .45.
For their smaller genus mates a 2,5-10x56 Zenith with FD7 on my 8x57 works well. The FD7 has illumination low enough not to wash out the target

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