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Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 30 Jun 2013, 07:59
by NWmissouriman
I have a couple of these scopes and they seem to be gaining popularity, as they should, so I thought I would tell you all about my experience with them.

I have the 6-24x50 ffp MOA reticle on a custom 7mag and a 4-16x50 ffp MOA reticle on a DPMS bull 20.

These scopes, IMO, dominate the $1,000 market for a tactical/hunting line of scopes. They come loaded with features such as: zero stop, illuminated reticle (10 settings), FFP reticle, and your choice of a MOA or Mil Radian reticle.

My 7mag is probably my favorite gun, as I use it for deer hunting, long range target practice, and this past spring I used it to harvest an aoudad sheep in Texas, so needless to say it sees a lot of use.

In testing, I first shot a group of 3 shots at 100 yards. Upon completion I dialed the scope up to 800 yards and fired 3 more shots that all hit a 1'x2' target. Upon completion of that, I dialed the scope back down to 100 yards and fired three more, all of which were exactly where I was sighted in (3" high@100). After doing this, I used the MOA calibrated reticle to shoot 3 more shots at 800 yards. Once again, all 3 shots were on target. That being said, it is clear to me that the elevation tracking as well as the MOA reticle are very reliable. I have *not* done anything as far as windage tracking goes.

As for glass quality and clarity it is comparable to a Leupold VX3. I've used this scope from dusk to dawn and the light transmission is as good as any V3 that I've used, it however is not as good as my z3 swarovski.

I highly suggest looking into this scope for long range hunting and long range practicing. I would *not* purchase this scope for competion benchrest shooting, as the crosshairs in the ffp reticle get fairly large, IMO, for extreme benchrest precision.

The only issue I've ever had with either of my PST's was the illumination would not stay on. This happened on both scopes. The fix was simple. I called vortex and they shipping me two illumination caps that they had shimmed. This allowed more pressure to be put on the battery and thus fixed the problem. They done this for free and I had them in less than a week. Vortex customer service is exceptional and these scopes come in an unconditional lifetime warranty. The only thing they will not cover is if your scope is stolen. All in all I am more than satisfied with my PST's. A sidenote, my 6-24 *might* be for sale in a few months as I would like to try out some different scopes. I do this quite often. Hopefully someone will find this helpful and I am sure there is more I meant to say and forgot. If anyone has any more questions about these, please let me know and I will answer them. If anyone wants to know, I can tell you about some of my other scopes such as Leupold and Swarovski.

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 30 Jun 2013, 14:51
by flyingirish04
Good review. I own a PST and an HS (identical except for one has illumination). I also have two VX-3 Custom Grey Bull Precisions. You are dead on with the illumination, it isn't a great working system. In fact, I agree with all except the comment that it performs like a VX-3. Frankly, it really doesn't. Particularly in low light.

I would say you would be more accurate in saying it is close to an old Vari X-III, however Leupy's coatings on the VX-3 make the VX-3 noticeably better in low light than Viper. Their Razor exceeds it, but that is a much more expensive optic, and limited to two variable power options.

That being said, if you aren't concerned with low light shooting as much, there is no reason to buy a VX-3. Not with this on the market. It is far more scope for the money in every way and 95% of people will be fine with the Viper's performance in low light as it is.

I have a new custom 6BR that is in the works, and I have it rigged for medium range Varmint hunting, and the ViperHS 4-16 will be going on it. No question.

I completely understand you wanting to cycle scopes. I tend to do the same thing. What are you going to try next?

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 30 Jun 2013, 15:58
by NWmissouriman
You are probably correct with light transmission. I sold my 6.5-20 vx3l to buy my pst so I did not have the chance to do a true side by side. The vx3 is probably a little better, but i am satisfied with thr viper in low light. My next scope will be a Nightforce ATAC with the MOAR reticle. If all goes well i will get one in august, but will most likely have to sell my pst to justify it.

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 30 Jun 2013, 16:00
by NWmissouriman
:topic: whats your 6br made of? (stock,barrel,action)

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 30 Jun 2013, 22:40
by flyingirish04
NWmissouriman wrote::topic: whats your 6br made of? (stock,barrel,action)

Technically a semi-custom. Its a trued Rem700 SA, with a Dave Kiff PTG custom bolt, Krieger Barrel, 1-12 twist, Varmint Benchrest contour, McMillian A-3.

It is a friends old 6PPC barrel rechambered for 6BR because I don't want to deal with the case prep necessary for 6PPC. Had the extra SA laying around, so used that. A quick put together. Still waiting on the stock though, and a quick bedding and it will be done. Should be here any day now.

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 30 Jun 2013, 22:45
by flyingirish04
NWmissouriman wrote:You are probably correct with light transmission. I sold my 6.5-20 vx3l to buy my pst so I did not have the chance to do a true side by side. The vx3 is probably a little better, but i am satisfied with thr viper in low light. My next scope will be a Nightforce ATAC with the MOAR reticle. If all goes well i will get one in august, but will most likely have to sell my pst to justify it.
I don't blame you. Like I said, Viper is better buy for money, for sure. Better turrets, reticle, price, etc.

You will like the ATAC. I have settled on the fact that NF is probably the best glass for my money. Hensoldt, S&B are better built, glassed, but not in a way that I can justify cost. March, IOR, same thing. Swaro is great glass, but their scopes functionality leave something to be desired. My Lapua Improved has a NF on it. NXS G7 5.5-22X50. Love it.

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 01 Jul 2013, 04:25
by NWmissouriman
Ive been wanting a NF for a long time. I think even if i did have money to blow it would still be my choice. Ive never got my hands on a SB. I know they are anazing scopes and i dont douby they have a little better glass, but i dont think a scopecan be built any more durable than a NF. Any scope that can take a bullet in the tube and still hold zero in my mind, simply put, amazing. I also really like the user friendly NF reticles: moar, npr1&2, velocity 600 & 1000. Ive just always been impressed by NF.

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 01 Jul 2013, 08:08
by flyingirish04

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 01 Jul 2013, 08:55
by NWmissouriman
Sounds like your 6br is gonna be real nice. I put a green/black/white marbled mcmillan M40A1 on my 700 action and topped it with a shilen match grade select barrel. IMO, as far as assembly line actions go, the 700 is hard to beat. Ive also been very happy with mcmillan stocks. I have another mcm ultralight on a .280 ackley. They are just good stocks...period. Post a pic of your 6 when you get it done if ya get a chance. I love custom bolt actions.

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 23 Aug 2013, 18:51
by Litehiker
Just got a Bushnell ERS 3.5 - 21 X 50mm tactical scope.
>Front Focal Plane
>Horus H59 tactical mil reticle
>1/10 mil turret adjustments
>Zero Lock (zero stop)
>34 mm main tube
>Rainguard on exterior lenses (virtually no exterior fogging)
>very good glass (Not ED glass but close)

It goes on an HS Precision/Rem. .300 Win. Mag. with a Nightforce Unimount.

I'll put that scope up against any Vortex or Leupold scope in that $1,700. to $1,900. price range. :p

Re: Vortex Viper PST

Posted: 23 Aug 2013, 22:35
by flyingirish04
I am familiar with the ERS scope. I actually own one. It's currently on a 270 TC Venture. My father 'upgraded' his Sightron SII 3-9x40 that I put on the rifle when I got it for him for Christmas last year. I guess that is what I get for not using it for the 6BR build and leaving back in MT in the gun room. It does look a bit goofy on the Venture. My dad 'let's me' sight in or make sure the rifles are zeroed when I am home so I got to play with it a bit. Even shot a yote trying to scurry across the pasture.

It has a TON of features, don't get me wrong, and the turrets are surprisingly ok, something not previously possible with Bushnells. Coatings are very good for the price. HORUS system was very new when I was in service, so I hardly used it. Of the guys I know that have used it, half like it, other have hate it with passion. Either way, this is about the cheapest and still decent quality way to get that reticle, which is why I bought it. And I got a great dealer deal through my uncle.

But the glass isn't even as good as Vortex's Diamondback (Step below Viper) or Leupolds VX-2s. Much less one in the 1700 to 1900 dollar range (Of which there is exactly 1 model of Vortex that is priced in that range, the Razor). They basically glassed and coated it to get huge numbers in light transmission, but that's about it. Great for capturing light, no guarantee on definition. Sorry. It is a great scope for Bushnell and they have come a long ways. But you can't make that claim that it is a better than the Viper for the money. No way.

What do you mean by HS Precision/Rem??? I take you bought a stock Rem made on a HS stock? I had a 700P in 338 Lapua like that. I would recommend bedding that in order to take advantage of the the bedding blocks in stock. Otherwise you might as well have a stock ADL/SPS stock on it, as it will be just for looks, and won't make rifle shoot any better.

And if you really want to get tighter groups, invest in a rebarrel with a custom bbl from Krieger, Lilja, Bartlein, Hart, or Benchmark, or at very least a shillen , which depending on your luck of blank draw, could be every bit as accurate. And a hundred less. Bbls are the single most important item on a rifle when it comes to accuracy. If you want to improve it, improve the barrel.

OR if you really lucked out, your stock bbl actually was made well (Rare for Remington in last 20 years) and the gun is already a tack driver. It does happen, though not as often as it is claimed by everyone on internet forums.

Enjoy your rig though. Sounds like a fun setup.