Viper PST Gen II 5-25x50 or 3-15x44

RMS65

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Both the Viper PST Gen II 5-25x50 EBR-2D and the Viper PST Gen II 3-15x44 EBR-2D are on sale for $700. Basically the same scope different magnification. I'm trying to determine,
1) if this is a good deal
2) which one is best for me
3) if they are an improvement in glass over my 3.5-14x40 Prostaff 5.
This is for my Tikka 223 Varmint that I mostly shoot paper with to 200yds. I really want to shoot steel, woodchucks and prairie dogs as far as I can. I already have out to 315 already and looking to go further. When I retire and relocate to more open spaces I'll get a real caliber. I want to start with this for now.
 
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RMS65

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It is not the same scope. 3-15x44 is a better scope than 5-25x50, although I like them both.

Both are a significant step up over your ProStaff. Pick the magnification range you prefer.

ILya
Forgive my ignorance what's different and better with the 3-15x44? I was leaning towards that one to begin with.
 
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beetroot

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I have a 5-25x50 and it is very long scope if thats a concern, but I find it's an excellent scope for the money.

I'd probably go for the higher magnification if you are planning on shooting prairie dogs and other small criters.
I'd say the lower end on the 3-15 would be of little use to you.
 
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Muley Buck

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It is not the same scope. 3-15x44 is a better scope than 5-25x50, although I like them both.

Both are a significant step up over your ProStaff. Pick the magnification range you prefer.

ILya
I too am curious as to why you lean towards the 3-15×44 being superior over the 5-25×50? I have a few ideas as to why, but still curious nonetheless.
 
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wade2big

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Side by side the 3-15x44 has a cleaner and sharper image. Three of us that were comparing all agree. Thats the only difference I could tell. Mechanically they should be the same. Both are very usable. The 5-25 is pretty good up to 20x but usable higher as well.
 

Muley Buck

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Side by side the 3-15x44 has a cleaner and sharper image. Three of us that were comparing all agree. Thats the only difference I could tell. Mechanically they should be the same. Both are very usable. The 5-25 is pretty good up to 20x but usable higher as well.
That was my suspicion. I thought that maybe the mag range might be a little to big for the glass's britches. As for the 3-15 would be more consistently usable throughout.
 

koshkin

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It is not so much the mag range, but rather how the whole system works together. Within any product line containing different configurations, some just work better than others, although they are all built to the same standard.

With PST Gen 1, 2.5-10x32 and 6-24x50 were clearly better than the other models.

With Burris XTR II, to my eyes 1-8x24, 2-10x42 and 4-20x50 are clearly better than the other models

With PST Gen 2, they are all pretty good, so there are no duds. However, 3-15x44, to me, is clearly the best one of the bunch.

If you need magnification, 5-25x50 will work better for you. It is a good scope and I routinely recommend it to people. However, if top end magnification is not critical, I am really impressed with the 3-15x44. So much so, that the way my recommendations for scopes in this size range go, I suggest people look at the 3-15x44 PST Gen 2. If that is not good enough, they should be stepping up to scopes that are in the $2k range.

In the $1500 range, I do not see anything similarly configured (3-15x range) that is meaningfully better than PST Gen 2 at the moment.

The wildcard here is the XTR III 3.3-18x50 which might be better, but I need to test it and update my recommendations list as required.

ILya
 

RMS65

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It is not so much the mag range, but rather how the whole system works together. Within any product line containing different configurations, some just work better than others, although they are all built to the same standard.

With PST Gen 1, 2.5-10x32 and 6-24x50 were clearly better than the other models.

With Burris XTR II, to my eyes 1-8x24, 2-10x42 and 4-20x50 are clearly better than the other models

With PST Gen 2, they are all pretty good, so there are no duds. However, 3-15x44, to me, is clearly the best one of the bunch.

If you need magnification, 5-25x50 will work better for you. It is a good scope and I routinely recommend it to people. However, if top end magnification is not critical, I am really impressed with the 3-15x44. So much so, that the way my recommendations for scopes in this size range go, I suggest people look at the 3-15x44 PST Gen 2. If that is not good enough, they should be stepping up to scopes that are in the $2k range.

In the $1500 range, I do not see anything similarly configured (3-15x range) that is meaningfully better than PST Gen 2 at the moment.

The wildcard here is the XTR III 3.3-18x50 which might be better, but I need to test it and update my recommendations list as required.

ILya
So you'd say $700 for the 3-15x44 PST Gen II is a good deal?
 

Muley Buck

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It is not so much the mag range, but rather how the whole system works together. Within any product line containing different configurations, some just work better than others, although they are all built to the same standard.

With PST Gen 1, 2.5-10x32 and 6-24x50 were clearly better than the other models.

With Burris XTR II, to my eyes 1-8x24, 2-10x42 and 4-20x50 are clearly better than the other models

With PST Gen 2, they are all pretty good, so there are no duds. However, 3-15x44, to me, is clearly the best one of the bunch.

If you need magnification, 5-25x50 will work better for you. It is a good scope and I routinely recommend it to people. However, if top end magnification is not critical, I am really impressed with the 3-15x44. So much so, that the way my recommendations for scopes in this size range go, I suggest people look at the 3-15x44 PST Gen 2. If that is not good enough, they should be stepping up to scopes that are in the $2k range.

In the $1500 range, I do not see anything similarly configured (3-15x range) that is meaningfully better than PST Gen 2 at the moment.

The wildcard here is the XTR III 3.3-18x50 which might be better, but I need to test it and update my recommendations list as required.

ILya
Gotcha, I understand what you mean. Thank you. I just bought a PST Gen II 5-25 and haven't even mounted it up and put it through it's paces yet. But I will soon.
 
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Muley Buck

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I bought the 3-15x44 EBR 2C G2 for $781, and thought that was a pretty good deal. I have mine on a Tikka Superlite and like it.
That's a nice combo for a lighter weight hunting rig. My wife's hunting rifle is a Tikka T3 X-lite topped with a Maven RS1 which is a 2.5-15×44. We looked at a bunch of scopes including the PST in 3-15. She liked the Maven most so that's what we went with, and it's a damn nice scope.
 

RMS65

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That's a nice combo for a lighter weight hunting rig. My wife's hunting rifle is a Tikka T3 X-lite topped with a Maven RS1 which is a 2.5-15×44. We looked at a bunch of scopes including the PST in 3-15. She liked the Maven most so that's what we went with, and it's a damn nice scope.
Off topic but hell I'm the OP.
I love the Tikka T3Xs. I got the 223 Varmint and a T3X lite 7mm-08 for deer. My girlfriend has a T3X lite compact in 243 for deer and Coyotes. What a great little gun. They all shoulder nicely (except the Varmint) and shoot well sub MOA. Not glamorous but unbelievable performers. The only rifles I've seen that can touch their performance per dollar is the Howas. I have a Howa Mini-action Ltwt 223 that rivals my Tikka Varmint in accuracy. At least for 5 rounds. Most importantly the Howa puts the first cold bore shot right at the POA. My son's $329 Howa 1500 lightning in 308 shoots half moa at 200 with factory 168 amax. Sorry for the rant but I love items that outperform their price tag.
 
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ncfireman83

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After a lengthy conversation with some other shooters, most don’t above 15-16 power. Specially the longer out the target the more your mirages are going to distort your image. I went with the 3-15x44 on my hunting build and can’t wait to to get it together!
 
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wade2big

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After a lengthy conversation with some other shooters, most don’t above 15-16 power. Specially the longer out the target the more your mirages are going to distort your image. I went with the 3-15x44 on my hunting build and can’t wait to to get it together!
You made a good choice if the scope will be used on a hunting rifle. The reticle on the 3-15x44 is thicker (.05 vs .03 mil). I didn’t mention that in my original post. This makes it much more useful on the lower power settings while the 5-25 isn’t very useful below 10x. Very noticeable difference on the low end
 
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Afkirby

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It is not so much the mag range, but rather how the whole system works together. Within any product line containing different configurations, some just work better than others, although they are all built to the same standard.

With PST Gen 1, 2.5-10x32 and 6-24x50 were clearly better than the other models.

With Burris XTR II, to my eyes 1-8x24, 2-10x42 and 4-20x50 are clearly better than the other models

With PST Gen 2, they are all pretty good, so there are no duds. However, 3-15x44, to me, is clearly the best one of the bunch.

If you need magnification, 5-25x50 will work better for you. It is a good scope and I routinely recommend it to people. However, if top end magnification is not critical, I am really impressed with the 3-15x44. So much so, that the way my recommendations for scopes in this size range go, I suggest people look at the 3-15x44 PST Gen 2. If that is not good enough, they should be stepping up to scopes that are in the $2k range.

In the $1500 range, I do not see anything similarly configured (3-15x range) that is meaningfully better than PST Gen 2 at the moment.

The wildcard here is the XTR III 3.3-18x50 which might be better, but I need to test it and update my recommendations list as required.

ILya
How would you compare the PST 3-15 vs the bushnell dmr2 at the same price?
 

beetroot

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Side by side the 3-15x44 has a cleaner and sharper image. Three of us that were comparing all agree. Thats the only difference I could tell. Mechanically they should be the same. Both are very usable. The 5-25 is pretty good up to 20x but usable higher as well.
In good light I've found mine on 25x to be fine, but as soon as light begins to fade it becomes very hard to use on 25x, knocking back to 20x brings it back too life.

It's a good point you raise about reticle thickness, if the OP intends to use the lower end of magnification more the the upper end then it is worth considering the 3-15.
 
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Mt_Hunt

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I have the 5-25 and it is a good scope for the money for sure.. Zero stop and tracking is very good. One thing I don’t like is it at full power it is dimmer and almost hazy to me...
I use it in the 15-20x range for most all my shooting at matches and practice, unless it’s past 1200yds I don’t ever go to full power.. I have a couple of the Vortex HSTs and a first gen pst and it gets the same way at 24x as well but I never use it there that much, and the HSTs are SFP and need to be at 18 for reticle subtensions to work so I never take them to 24 either.
They are all nice scopes and a definite step up from a pro staff or any cheaper scope. The only other scope that is the best bang for the buck and really good glass is the Athlon Tac 6-24 price is about 650 and is better on max power than the Gen 2 PST to my eyes anyway.. my .02 hope it helps.
 

koshkin

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How would you compare the PST 3-15 vs the bushnell dmr2 at the same price?
I do not think I have seen them for the same price, but there is a sale on open box Bushnells that kinda gets it close. In terms of pure optical quality, DMR II is a touch better than PST Gen 2 in terms of resolution. Contrast is pretty close.

The color is very different with them, so there is a lot of personal preference involved and it will look different to different people. PST Gen 2 has a warmer image. DMR II is neutral to slightly cold.

There are a couple of things about DMR II that I do not like: 75 yard closeo focus is not ideal. Also, there is tunneling below 4.5x or so making the FOV on the low end kinda narrow. Whether that is important really depends on the application. I also like to have reticle illumination on FFP scopes since on low power in low light it is very helpful. It is also quite heavy.

If weight is not an issue, you should also consider Sig Tango6 4-24x50 which can be sometimes found for good prices. I prefer the Tango 6 to DMR II.

It really depends on what is important for you.

ILya
 
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RMS65

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Sounds like the 3-15x44 would normally be the way for me to go. I'm going to be booking a Prarie dog shoot where shots over 300yd are common and opportunities out to 500 are there. I'm wondering if 15x is going to be enough for that. Anyone here have experience with this type of hunting?
Should I post that as a new thread?
 

wade2big

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Sounds like the 3-15x44 would normally be the way for me to go. I'm going to be booking a Prarie dog shoot where shots over 300yd are common and opportunities out to 500 are there. I'm wondering if 15x is going to be enough for that. Anyone here have experience with this type of hunting?
Should I post that as a new thread?
3-500 at Prairie dogs should be fine but I am not a Prairie dog shooter. If there is any doubt go with the 5-25. I was being critical while comparing the two but never intended to infer that the 5-25 sucks. It doesn’t. That may be a better choice for you.
 

Dev L

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One of my co-workers has a 3-15×44 another the 5-25×50, both purchased based off my recommendation. The 3-15×44 is in a better wheelhouse for the glass and the eyebox is less tight, but the 5-25×50 is what you want, for the type of shooting you are doing. While the eyebox is a little tight on the 5-25, it at least makes sure you have a good head position. I find 15x a little low for very small distant targets. I found the extra magnificatiin helpful picking out and shooting 4-6" plates at 420 yards.
 
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RMS65

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I decided to go with with a Vortex Viper HS-T 6-24X50. Optics planet had them 14% off and then they threw in a $150 gift card. Made a $650 scope effectively $400 plus tax. I ordered two. One for me and one for a bull barrel 223 Howa 1500 I just got for my girlfriend. Ultimately it came down to practicality. I'm not a competitive shooter and for the most part I'm shooting my 223 @ 200 yards or less. It's my understanding that this is a decent glassed Viper made more economical with a simpler second plane reticle and no illumination. I can live with both since I might only be stretching the rifles legs out further once or twice a year. If I made a bad choice please don't blast me, they're already ordered. As long as the glass is better and the reticle finer than my Nikon Prostaff 5 I'll be happy. Thanks all for your help.
 

Mt_Hunt

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I decided to go with with a Vortex Viper HS-T 6-24X50. Optics planet had them 14% off and then they threw in a $150 gift card. Made a $650 scope effectively $400 plus tax. I ordered two. One for me and one for a bull barrel 223 Howa 1500 I just got for my girlfriend. Ultimately it came down to practicality. I'm not a competitive shooter and for the most part I'm shooting my 223 @ 200 yards or less. It's my understanding that this is a decent glassed Viper made more economical with a simpler second plane reticle and no illumination. I can live with both since I might only be stretching the rifles legs out further once or twice a year. If I made a bad choice please don't blast me, they're already ordered. As long as the glass is better and the reticle finer than my Nikon Prostaff 5 I'll be happy. Thanks all for your help.
If you weighted yournpeos and con you chose good for you.. I have 3 hs-TVs and they all work good have the shim zero stop and it was the first scope I used to hit 1200 yards.
 
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insidetheten

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I have an HS-T. You will like it. I used the Vortex app to get the come ups for the different magnifications with my ammo. easy, and it was pretty accurate
 

jb1000br

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Anyone still after the 3-15 PST 2D deal, the mil versions are getting quite low, so I would grab them while you can - the 5-25 and other vortex deals are listed below as well :

VORTEX DEALS LINK
 

Steel head

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I decided to go with with a Vortex Viper HS-T 6-24X50. Optics planet had them 14% off and then they threw in a $150 gift card. Made a $650 scope effectively $400 plus tax. I ordered two. One for me and one for a bull barrel 223 Howa 1500 I just got for my girlfriend. Ultimately it came down to practicality. I'm not a competitive shooter and for the most part I'm shooting my 223 @ 200 yards or less. It's my understanding that this is a decent glassed Viper made more economical with a simpler second plane reticle and no illumination. I can live with both since I might only be stretching the rifles legs out further once or twice a year. If I made a bad choice please don't blast me, they're already ordered. As long as the glass is better and the reticle finer than my Nikon Prostaff 5 I'll be happy. Thanks all for your help.
I ran one for quite a while.

It tracked well and glass was usable.
 

patriot07

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JMHO...I think the PST2 for $700 is a much better deal than the HST for $400.

Honestly, you could probably sell the PST2 for $700 if you didn't like it. I'd consider picking it up along with your HST, comparing both and figuring out which you like best, and then selling the other. I agree with koshkin that the PST2 is one of the really awesome value scopes out there.

FWIW, unless you need the space between 3x and 5x, you might as well get the 5-25. The 5-25 is really awesome up through 20x, and that's a good bit more mag than the 15x tops out at. Making small holes at relatively moderate ranges will be tough to see without a decent bit of mag. But if the 3x-5x range is important at all, the PST2 3-15 is really an awesome scope.
 

koshkin

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JMHO...I think the PST2 for $700 is a much better deal than the HST for $400.

Honestly, you could probably sell the PST2 for $700 if you didn't like it. I'd consider picking it up along with your HST, comparing both and figuring out which you like best, and then selling the other. I agree with koshkin that the PST2 is one of the really awesome value scopes out there.

FWIW, unless you need the space between 3x and 5x, you might as well get the 5-25. The 5-25 is really awesome up through 20x, and that's a good bit more mag than the 15x tops out at. Making small holes at relatively moderate ranges will be tough to see without a decent bit of mag. But if the 3x-5x range is important at all, the PST2 3-15 is really an awesome scope.
Keep in mind that 3-15x44 is a fair bit smaller physically than the 5-25x50. That is one of the reasons I like it on gas guns.

ILya
 
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patriot07

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Keep in mind that 3-15x44 is a fair bit smaller physically than the 5-25x50. That is one of the reasons I like it on gas guns.

ILya
Yeah that's a really fair point - it also makes a great mid-level precision rimfire scope for the same reason IMHO. I thought about putting one on my 22, but my wife ultimately decided that there was no budget available for that.

But on a 223 Varmint bolt gun, the 5-25 wouldn't look out of place.
 

koshkin

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Yeah that's a really fair point - it also makes a great mid-level precision rimfire scope for the same reason IMHO. I thought about putting one on my 22, but my wife ultimately decided that there was no budget available for that.

But on a 223 Varmint bolt gun, the 5-25 wouldn't look out of place.
I only have three words for you: separate checking accounts. Or other three words: get a Tangent. Or eight: it is OK to sleep on the couch.

ILya
 

koshkin

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I only have three words for you: separate checking accounts. Or other three words: get a Tangent. Or eight: it is OK to sleep on the couch.

ILya
Also, if you feel that it is not safe for you to sleep in the house after purchasing a Tangent, I have a couch in the office in Carorlton where you can stay while weathering the initial storm. Generally, me moving the office to Dallas is likely to have a detrimental effect on your wallet.

ILya
 

patriot07

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Also, if you feel that it is not safe for you to sleep in the house after purchasing a Tangent, I have a couch in the office in Carorlton where you can stay while weathering the initial storm. Generally, me moving the office to Dallas is likely to have a detrimental effect on your wallet.

ILya
Oh man, this thread has taken a dangerous turn...
 
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ICU22250

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Seriously, why do your kids need a college fund? College is overrated anyway.

ILya
And too damb expensive... I have the 2D 3-15x44 as well and so far it seems to be a great value... would like to try the Midas Tac as well for a 22.
 

la angler

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Very good information in these post I am thinking about a new scope and this helps.
 

RMS65

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I got two viper 4-24x50 hst delivered yesterday and I honestly don't think the glass is any better than my Nikon Prostaff 5. And thats on any magnification. Btw I can really buy whatever I want, I'm divorced. No sleeping on the couch for me. Just the same I don't want to spend 3500 bucks to shoot woodchucks at 300yds and maybe prarrie dogs someday. I just want something better than what I have for under a grand. So far the best glass I've looked through was the Steiner p4xi. I just didn't like the mixed reviews on reliability and the ominous size of the thing. Does anyone know first hand if the viper pst gen 2 EBR-2D has better glass than the viper hst. I was under the impression that they were the same quality.
 

matchman

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PST Gen2 is substantially better than HS-T.

Ilya
Pst 2 is good .especially at $700.
Now the Bushnell DMR Pro at the open box price of $995 is a big jump in clarity .I think both will do the job just fine. That being said some will not find the extra $300 worth it. Me I do. But not more than that.
 

beetroot

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You've actually looked through both?
I have a HST 4-16x44 and a PST 5-25x50 and the difference between the two is night and day.
The HST isn't a bad scope for the money, but the Gen 2 PST has far better glass, wider FOV and most importantly a far more forgiving eyebox.
 
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RMS65

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I have a HST 4-16x44 and a PST 5-25x50 and the difference between the two is night and day.
The HST isn't a bad scope for the money, but the Gen 2 PST has far better glass, wider FOV and most importantly a far more forgiving eyebox.
Thank you that's very useful information.
 

Cs68

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Have you considered the swfa hd or Weaver tactical? I believe they're both LOW products, so I would assume the overall performance should be on par, or better than the PST G2.

Would anyone consider any one of these noticeably better than the PST? I'm in the same boat as the OP looking for a target/hunting scope. Also very drawn to the PST G2, but noticing some other appealing options. (SWFA, P4xi, Weaver)
 

wade2big

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Have you considered the swfa hd or Weaver tactical? I believe they're both LOW products, so I would assume the overall performance should be on par, or better than the PST G2.

Would anyone consider any one of these noticeably better than the PST? I'm in the same boat as the OP looking for a target/hunting scope. Also very drawn to the PST G2, but noticing some other appealing options. (SWFA, P4xi, Weaver)
The SWFA HD has a thicker reticle compared to the 5-25 pst which is a plus for a hunting crossover scope (.05 vs .03 mil). The 3-15 pst reticle is of equal thickness as the SWFA. The SWFA has clearer glass which may help determine that you have a spike in your scope and not a forked antlered deer at distance. The PST does have a wider field of view on the same power. The PST has better illumination. I prefer the illumination of the PST over the razor or AMG because the whole tree in the reticle doesn't light up. Only the main lines do which is a plus and much less distracting especially on low power which is where you would have the scope set for low light shooting. The SWFA illumination is adequate.

I like both scopes.