Nikon Monarch 3 6-24×50 SF Matte BDC Review

I have been provided the materials needed for this review. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.

I had no clue Nikon made sport optics prior to going to my first SHOT Show. I only knew Nikon as the company who had made my last 3 digital cameras and outside of that I really didn’t know anything else.

The Nikon Monarch 3 6-24×50 SF Matte BDC

Nikon Monarch 3 6 24x50 Matte BDC Review

Specs

•       Magnification: 6-24x
Objective Diameter: 50mm
Exit Pupil: 2.1-8.3mm
Field of View: 4.2-16.8 ft @ 100 yds
Tube Diameter – Other: 1 in
Eye Relief: 4in
Objective Outside Diameter: 57.3mm
Eyepiece Outside Diameter: 44mm
Weight: 20.5 oz
Overall Length: 15.5 in
Adjustment Graduation – Other: 1/8 in
Max Internal Adjustment: 30 MOA
Parallax Setting – Other: 50 yds – ∞
Side Focus: Yes
Waterproof/Fogproof: Yes
Spot On Custom Turret: Yes
Parallax Adjustment: Yes
Matte Finish: Yes
Use: Centerfire Long Range
Reticle: BDC (Bullet Drop Compensator)
 
 
 

The Rifle and Scope Combo

I am not a distance shooter, but I enjoy the time spent practicing. With that said, I do not at this time, see a reason for me to spend $10,000 on a rifle and optics because I don’t shoot farther than 400 yards.
I just need a good bolt action and clear optic that will let me see 400 yards. I have mounted this Nikon Monarch 3 6-24×50 SF Matte BDC on my Mossberg ATR .308 which came with a inexpensive optic. The scope that came with the Mossberg was okay and worked out to 200 yards but it just was not a good scope for anything past that.
I wanted a scope to replace the old one and let me ring the gong at a distance.

In the Box

Nikon does not want to just give you the normal scope and paperwork. They want make sure you, the consumer, get what I like to call: the happy meal.
Open the box and be happy to see: Monarch 6-24×50 Side Focus Matte BDC, Nikon sunshade, Nikon low-profile adjustments with caps, target-style high profile knobs with caps and tapered easy grip knobs.
This means the scope comes with the inclusion of two additional sets of turrets.  One set is a high profile (tall) turret for target and tactical shooters, (it includes the appropriate size high profile turret caps). You also get a wider style turret, which gives the shooter more real estate to make quick adjustment (the wider turrets do not come with caps).

GearsofGuns Monarch3 review

(Scope not shown due to already being mounted to the rifle)

The Testing

While I had wanted to send this scope on an Elk hunt on the Wyoming/Colorado Border. We did not have the time to do this before writing the review.
We did not put this scope through any durability testing outside of the normal bouncing it gets inside the pelican case in the bed of the trucks on the dirt roads.
The scope stayed zeroed in every time we pulled it out of the case after driving to the range.

Bullet Drop Compensator Reticle (BDC)

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I like this reticle. Shooting a .308 bolt action using this scope made it easy to shoot at multiple targets at different ranges. 
 

The Turrets

If you have not spend much time behind a tube scope, the turrets on the scope are how you adjust for windage and elevation. The benefit to a scope with turrets is that it allows the shooter to zero the rifle to a distance (We will say 100 yards for the sake the explanation) and then reset the turrets MOA markings to the zero mark so you can always return your scope back to the distance you had it zeroed in for.

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The turrets are not mushy. Each 1/8 inch click is positive and audible making for very noticeable adjustments.
Price
This scope is $699.95 on Nikons’ website, but you can find it online for around $660. The price might not be what a newer shooter would want to spend for their first rifle. For someone who knows how to shoot at longer distance and is looking for a quality scope this price isn’t going to break the bank.
 

Overall Thoughts

Nikon has pleasantly surprised me with a clear, easy to use and affordable scope.
I was very impressed with how clear the glass was. I would say that it is fairly close to the Leupold clarity I have in the multiple scopes I own of theirs.    
The scope has three different style turrets for different types of shooters which is a big bonus in my book.
The quality of the scope meet the expectation set by the price.
I cannot speak to shooting past 400 yards but to that distance I can say this scope was clear and crisp.

Targetvision Short Range Wireless Spotting Scope Review

At SHOT Show 2014 I met Clay Rhoden one of the co-founders of TARGETVISION at media day at the range. Having just finished reviewing a similar short range target camera viewing system, I was interested in seeing what TARGETVISION had done differently. Two of the most noticeable things I first saw was that it was a self contained camera and wireless transmitter housed in a plastic tube vs. the tool box the other company uses. The other thing was the HD camera that they use.

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There were three items total that were shipped to me. The camera system, the charging cord and a small tripod that the camera screws into. This means there isn’t much to misplace. This is a big thing for me since I carry a large amount of gear to the range.

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When I first used the camera, the picture (seen below) was blurry. I called the company from the range and spoke with Clay at TARGETVISION. He, at first, thought it might have been a defective camera. After a couple of conversations, he wanted me to try some different things before we shipped it back. In the meantime, for whatever reason, the camera recalibrated itself when we got home and the next week we had a very clear and crisp video.

At the range
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A week later.

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I am a red blooded male and I admit I do not like to read manuals. As a reviewer, I admit, I should know better. TARGETVISION sent not one, but TWO guides. The 19 page manual and birthday card size quick start guide. Again, I did not read either of them and I thought more was wrong with the camera than really was. The camera tube is meant to be 10-15 feet away from the target and off to the side so you do not shoot it. We were use to my other system, which sits about 6 feet away from the target. Don’t be like me and skip reading the important information TARGETVISION sends you. It is not because they want to send you one more booklet for you to lose but so you know how to use your $595 targeting system.

Setting the System

As you can see in the pictures, there are no wires you have to mess with. The TARGETVISION System is pretty much turn the device on, connect to the devices to wifi, open the app and shoot.

App

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I used the system on my iPhone 4s, 6 and my android (don’t judge me) tablet. The system worked great across all three devices. I do prefer to use the tablet over the phones simply because of the larger screen.

Overall Thoughts

I am a big tech fan and I like seeing how new technology is helping me become a better reviewer and better shooter as we have more and more things to assist in giving us instant data to get the round on target better and faster.

I have to note that when the TARGETVISION system is sitting in a 100 yard long wind tunnel with 12 foot high walls of steel belted radial tires the camera does not always connect quickly or stay connected. I don’t spend much time in them so it wasn’t really a problem but it was worth noting. This has to do with how wifi signal carries and not the device.

A feature I would like to see is integration of a ballistic calculator in the app. Also on that note, I would like to see more community involvement so integration can be like the health app on the iPhone which allows you to better track your health with different devices all in one app.  The more data we can share all in one place the better and safer shooters we all become.

TARGETVISION is one of the companies who first had a product like this. I liked the camera for 3 reasons: It was easy to set up, easy to use, and all self contained. Being able to mark your shots is important but it is a feature on the other cameras so it doesn’t play as much of a factor into my review as that is the norm.

Poll: What does your range offer you?

Typically there are three different types of ranges a shoot can go to. A range open to the public, a range that is members only and requires a yearly or monthly fee or land you or a friend owns that you normally shoot on.

Today we are polling about what your range offers you and your shooting experience. If you shoot on your own land or a friends land please only answer that part of the poll.

What does your range offer you polll

The polls have been split between Public and membership ranges. Please select all that apply to your range.

 

Poll: Tech in Shooting

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I have noticed as I go to the range lately, I carry out about 75 pounds of gear. This doesn’t even include my guns and their respective cases.

Range Tech in the Range Bag

While a lot of what I carry to the range is related to reviews and just normal work equipment, I have noticed that over the past few years my distance range tech as increased and yet my range distance hasn’t.

I have observed more people with lasers and lights and camera mounts on their $700 M&P-15. I have asked a few why they have this mounted at all times and they tell me that they just need it. Mind you this is not your SWAT officers or Texas National Guard, I am talking to, but that guy who has been in the semi-auto rifle game for 2 years.

Constant Evolution

Like most every other industry, we are subject to constant evolution with the tech world. I carry out my electronic spotting scope for any shots over 25yds. I wear electronic ear muffs to help me hear and still mute the shooting. I use laser trainers at home to help me with my rifle and pistol skill. Tech is replacing the old school shooting world which is helping us with our shooting skills.

Old School

I look back to my grandfather’s era of hunting and shooting and how the trail cameras were the tracks you saw on the ground, the e-spotting scopes were binoculars and monocular spotting scopes, the laser trainers were tin cans on a fence.

It is interesting to me, to see the distance shooters at my local range who are much older and the worries they have are about the clarity of their glass on their high end scope and the twist rates of their bolt action rifles. Then I see the younger shooters looking for every piece of tech they can get their hands on to make them the next top shot.

Controversy

Personally, I love the tech. Even with how tech is changing and making some interesting splashes in the gun industry. Some tech is even controversial such as the Barrett Optical Ranging System (BORS) or the Tracking point systems giving shooter an easier time making the right calculations to hit their target out at 1000+ yards.

Shooting World has Room for All

Change can be scary to some people. All I know is that you can adapt to the new tech in shooting or not. Old school and new school, both have their amazing shooters who defy what we think is possible.