Scopes & Sights photo

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Here are two important facts to sear into your brain: First, if you have any pretensions to being a serious shooter, the amount of use you get out of a spotting scope justifies spending any amount of money on it. Second, as far as Meopta goes, whatever they make seems to be about $500 better than whatever they charge for it.

Anyway, Meopta, which is aware that some of us may be as strapped for cash as Hillary Rodham Clinton, has come up with a medium-priced spotter that comes in about $900 (list) below its top-of-the-line S2 82, which retails for $2,600. Thus, the MeoPro HD 80, which Mrs. Clinton could afford even after paying off Chelsea’s tuition.

Unlike the S2, which is assembled in Europe, the MeoPro is assembled here. It comes with a non-interchangeable 20X-60X angled eyepiece, and omits a few of the bells and whistles of its pricier brother. It features a fluoride objective lens, fast focus, Schott glass (not to be confused with shot glass; it’s a very high-grade optical glass made by a firm named Schott), full rubber armor and a highly scratch-resistant lens coating.

Like just about every spotter of this current generation, it’s compact, but pretty heavy at just over 67 ounces. Who cares? The image, which is what you pay for, is friggin’ gorgeous, bright, sharp, and dead-flat and distortion free from edge to edge. Take a look through this one and your own spotting scope will be reduced to rubble before your very eyes. As with all other gear of this quality, you will rejoice at how good it is long after you forget what you paid.