This one is worthy
- By Chris Parkin
- 0 Comments
- Last updated: 06/10/2023
I have been a Minox ZP user and owner for almost a decade, and when a review rifle arrived last year with the NEW LR variant of the 5-25x56 already fitted, I wasn’t sure at first if it was simply a renamed optic, or an entirely new model. After three months of use on a few rifles and a bit more detailed research, there are indeed differences. These are very subtle and nothing at all detrimental, yet there is quite a significant price difference.
The Long Range (LR) scope has a 34mm main tube, allowing for significant elevation and windage travel. The former is 28 MRAD overall, and the latter is 6 in either direction. The turrets are both 42mm in diameter and feature significant amounts of knurling for easy grip, as well as clear, engraved markings.
Windage is marked left and right of the centre, and after initial zeroing, two grub screws on the perimeter are easily slackened, allowing the external dial to be aligned to the ‘zero’ position without any clicks that could be misinterpreted at this stage. Similarly, the elevation dial is fitted the same way, yet offers 7 clicks below the zero stop, which is set up at the same time as the external turret cap alignment, after ensuring the point of aim and impact coincide on the target.
Elevation runs anticlockwise for ‘up’ and offers 150, 0.1 MRAD (10mm @100m) clicks before you reach a tactile ramp in required pressure, at which point it crosses into the second rotation. The increased pressure comes from an internal mechanical activator, which reveals a white spot just below the dial to indicate the second turn, with appropriate white numerical markings on the dial. These turrets are some of the nicest I have used. They are simple, effective, accurate, and tactile, with clicks that can easily be seen, heard, and felt. The well-spaced and optimised detent weight makes overrun unlikely, and I have used the similar ZP scope long-term with no loss of feel. Tracking was perfect and when out shooting, it worked perfectly with previously tested DOPE.
As an example, once zeroed on my .223 Wylde, which includes a 20 MOA inclined Picatinny rail, the scope still allowed 16 MRAD of added elevation for longer-range shots. That’s equivalent to over 1100m for this rifle, which is well beyond its required capability.
The left side parallax dial runs from 50m to infinity and was smooth in motion, without backlash or any perception of any internal mechanics in motion. The extended illumination dial has 11 intensity settings with intervening off positions. It illuminates only the very centre of the reticle, allowing it to be used as a simple aiming and pointing tool at low magnification. There was no overspill of light or spattering reflection within the tube.
The reticle is in the first focal plane (FFP), so corresponds exactly at all magnification settings with the mechanical adjusters. It is not overly complicated, showing detailed MRAD markings to the left and right, plus lower elevation bars. It all remains quite subliminal unless you up the magnification to really view the details available, and it never interferes with your ability to see impacts on the target. An automated power-off feature preserves the life of the CR2032 battery, which sits under the illumination dial’s cap.
The hard anodised tube shows a smooth, matte finish that won’t aggressively rub skin dust from your fingers, and it retains a modest sheen in all light conditions. The eye relief is 90mm and there is 60mm of free tube space in front of the saddle and 70mm behind it for your scope mounts.
The zoom collar shows easily gripped grooves and a small wing for tactile positioning. It runs anti-clockwise from 5-25x magnification with a firm but smooth rotation that won’t get nudged. A fast-focus eyepiece sits at the very rear of the scope, and this has a knurled aluminium circumference for grip, which is one of the features notably different from the ZP (which also has a lockring). The advantage of not having a lockring on the LR is that the parallel ocular body makes it easier to fit clamped-on accessories/rear add-ons.
Minox has advertised its M* multi-coating to ensure excellent light transmission, contrast, and colour fidelity, and my belief is they have achieved this exceptionally well. Image quality is sharply focused with excellent detail visible throughout the magnification range and similarly, light transmission and especially contrast, appear linear throughout the magnification range, without any noticeable intensity or colour ‘steps’.
Other than slight differences in the field of view and exit pupil dimensions, which are almost impossible to discern unless specifically measured in testing, the LR scope offers mechanics that track repeatably and excellent turret dimensions for easy, ergonomic interaction.
The eye relief is maintained at 90mm through the entire zoom range, which as my regular readers will know by now, offers benefits for all but the heaviest of recoiling calibres in light rifles. This is a precision rifle or varminting tool, and it enables a more spacious eye box, so you feel more like a part of the visual environment than a spectator in the distance. The linear eye box generosity also allows maintained image and target viewing through recoil, without vignettes, as well as a less critical head position when shooting from a broad range of shooting positions.
Mine was a demo unit and the scope is normally supplied with Tenebraex flip-up lens caps, a manual, a battery, an adapter ring, and an optical cleaning cloth. It is rated waterproof to IPX7 with anti-fog and comes with a 10-year warranty (if registered). No specific light transmission figure was supplied but I have no doubts it is beyond 90%.
The Minox 5-25x56 Long Range Riflescope gets my vote for providing a visually relaxed environment, and as my eyes age, I appreciate this more every day! It is easy to set up and offers exceptional long range pest control capability, as well as repeatable aim-off accuracy at even longer ranges on steel gongs.