Blaser B2 Riflescopes
- By Chris Parkin
- 2 Comments
- Last updated: 21/03/2022
Blaser’s new B2 range consists of three scopes to encompass the bulk of hunting requirements, with interesting additions to accommodate both current and future technologies. Essentially, all three scopes offer similar internal mechanical core functionality, with [email protected] clicks on the elevation and windage turrets, the latter of which is on the left side of the central saddle. The right side shows illumination control. It’s a collar shrouding a CR2032 battery compartment that clicks out/in for on/off. Rotating it up/down controls the intensity of the single central dot on the 4A reticle in the second focal plane. The iC system is incorporated, so with a suitable Blaser R8, the illumination turns on/off as you cock/ de-cock the rifle. With the B2, Blaser now offers additional flip-up lens caps front and rear, the latter of which incorporates a removable magnet within, and on a non-iC rifle, turns the reticle on/off similarly.
The 2-12x50 option with similar controls and 6x erector tube for magnification range and reticle layout is now more acceptable to hunters over the 1-6x, which shows key functionality for driven game. The 2-12x can be fitted with the additional QDC+ option, which is a replaceable upper elevation turret, supplied with 10 ballistic rings to suit your cartridge. It offers 80 clicks of immediate elevation control to adjust for extended range shots out to 500m (calibre dependant). The standard turrets are under caps, whereas the QDC+ lifts to unlock. As well as 10 suggested setups and an easy to navigate ballistic menu, an unmarked turret dial is supplied to make your own. Blaser cleverly reminds you to test these ballistic solutions on targets and mention the possibility of 4 ‘negative’ clicks to compensate for ammunition changes.
The 2.5-15x56 variant will suit shooters looking to maximise low light performance, with the large objective lens and still relatively modest magnification. The adjustable parallax control is fitted on the right side (wrapping the illumination controls), with click detents at 50 and 100m, before moving to infinity.
Both the 2-12x and 1-6x show a fixed 100m parallax setting because of the lower magnification (although parallax error is always possible in any optic). It’s generally far less noticeable below 12x magnification and is more likely to be confused with focus, which is also less critical as magnification decreases.
Moving on, at this price, you get superb image resolution, contrast and colour rendition. Plus, razor-sharp reticle focus from the fast focus eyepiece at the rear and a nice bright picture. There are no broken vignettes in the spacious eye box, which shows 90mm of eye relief to suit most sporting rifles. There is no tunnelling and eye relief variation through the mag range is unnoticeable.
Blaser’s main marketing step here is to discuss in detail how they have on average (hard to ascertain with the broad range of optics on the market), generally shortened the scope’s overall length by 40mm. Compact is nice if no optical compromise is suffered and that would appear to be true here.
Blaser’s master step is to appreciate the likely limits of daylight optical technology from the decades’ long pursuit of glass quality and coatings. They have seemingly accepted (as the laws have changed, specifically in Europe and Germany), that front-mounted thermal for night shooting is the future. That may not sound too revolutionary, yet Blaser have hit the `X` and has publicly stated how zero shift is a problem, the retention of zero is difficult with collar wrapped/ clamped-up add-ons, there are ergonomic compromises caused by the long reach forward to control some of these thermal imagers, plus there is the physical likelihood of disturbing said attachment. I agree wholeheartedly, as it’s a point I have brought up for 5 years in my reviews and frankly, I take my hat off to Blaser for being the first to approach and attack this concept. This is why they have gone shorter and now offer a custom range of thermal adaptors for the B2 and Lemke thermal optics, which screw into the objective body, offering perfect alignment. There’s now no likelihood of clumsily nudging it offline when stretching for controls in the dark, and it gives the user the confidence to take it on/off as scenarios or legalities dictate.
These adaptors cooperate with the optional objective lens cap, no removal required, and the lens cap even has a rubber buffer to prevent it ‘tapping’ the scope body when casually flipped open - tiny details addressed again! Blaser guarantees 100% return to zero and although no Liemke attachments were available, I will trust them on this, as it’s a bold claim that they can’t make lightly. Secondly, all other manufacture throughout and specifically, the QDC+ turret configuration, has revealed intelligent design, minimised use of tiny components and smoothly cut threads, with an absolute precision feel. Even the Blaser logo on the windage turret cap realigns level every time! Does this matter? No. Does it indicate attention to tiny detail? Yes, absolutely.
Retaining a 30mm tube with blissfully smooth hard anodising makes for simpler, more compact mounting and there is also a rail option available for each model. Blaser saddle mounts return to zero reliably. Frankly, if you go in at the premium end, you must provide mechanical perfection to live beyond mere marketing association, a stage which Blaser (envy or not), seems to have gained. For example, the tolerances between the 30mm tubed scope and saddle mount are minuscule, literally the thickness of a £10 note. Clearance is mandatory but zero space is wasted.
Low-light performance while fox shooting was as good as I could have hoped for. Light transmission is marketed at 94% in daylight and 92% in darkness. I’m not able to test this outside of a laboratory but it’s not hard to believe as dusk descends. I’m looking forward to adding a Liemke thermal to further review the B2 concept, as I think others will now have to cohesively address the Blaser principle. I don’t personally mind windage on the left but I’m not a huge fan of parallax on the right, as I find it something most likely requiring adjustment during steady rifle and scope manipulation, but horses for courses, we all have some ergonomic sided preferences.
I didn’t deliberately immerse the scope but 4m submersion resistance is specified. What I can say is that the very wet weather did encourage appreciation of the ‘SLP’ (Smart Lens Protection) hydrophobic lens coating, which certainly shed the raindrops quicker than I expected.
Nitrogen purging is almost assumed from any scope, but I will add, the B2 seemed particularly resistant to fast temperature changes, although our winter has still not been particularly cold this year.
It was particularly notable on the 1-6x how flatly the image was portrayed in an optical variant so easily appearing somewhat globular in use when panning moving terrain or game. On the two larger optics, the full field of view remained totally ‘flat’, with no focal disruption around the circumference. Everything is comparable and I think seeing bullet holes in the paper when zeroing, especially among complex target prints (specifically darker black bullet holes within a black print), is a sure factor of optical resolution and contrast. Here is where the B2s jumped out at me from the first moment I began zeroing them in daylight. Pure image resolution was a contributing factor to my overall appreciation of all three opics, so ideally focussed on driven, driven/ intermediate and longer range/low light hunting requirements.
Blaser’s latest B2 range of riflescopes has to me, made a subtle and logical move in addressing riflescope market needs. Although we still like and appreciate the best quality optical and mechanical adjustment possible, the 2-12x and 2.5-15x models have notably addressed the likely acceptance that glass coatings will only get us so far in the darkness. The burgeoning world of digital capability is the future of low-light and no-light shooting as laws are changing. Making the scope physically more compact and adaptable to these additions is a notably logical step, one for which my respect level in any manufacturer increases as I see them step forward of the crowd, not just run to catch up.
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