Leupold MK5HD Scope review by Ryan Furman

Wideback

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One thing to consider with this scope is to go with illumination or not. The illumination is an extra $500, has double the reticle width, and imo isn't worth it. I really wanted the illuminated version until i looked through it and i much preferred the finer reticle of the non-illuminated version. I too prefer this reticle with a dot center over the knightforce but would go with the nighforce if you want illumination.
 

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Solid review thanks guys. With the loss of zero, any chance the rings were the culprit? Did it ever repeat?
 

ShtrRdy

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Hey Ryan, how do you get an accurate measure of the distance from the scope to the target when doing a "tall target test" to check tracking?
 

rfurman24

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Solid review thanks guys. With the loss of zero, any chance the rings were the culprit? Did it ever repeat?
In many cases of my scopes loosing zero I can not guarantee the ring/mounting system was not the cause. In this case I can say with 95% confidence it was not the rings due to my testing method. In repeated removal and reinstallation the mount system did not cause a zero shift.
 

rfurman24

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Hey Ryan, how do you get an accurate measure of the distance from the scope to the target when doing a "tall target test" to check tracking?
I get a rough estimate with a range finder I then compare a measurement of distance on the target to the reticle. When they all line up I feel confident in the measurement. Example I dial 25 moa and the bullets impact ~26" at 100 yards and the bullets impact at 25 moa in the scope. This has been repeatable across numerous scopes. Like I said in the video each method has advantages.
 

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Hi Ryan, thanks for the great review. It was a shame to see the scope lost zero, but hopefully with more time behind the scope and field tests from others it will prove to be an anomaly. Time will tell.......

I am very interested between the Mark 5 5-25 and the Zeiss V6 5-30 for use as a hunting scope and occasionally on steel out to 1000m. Assuming the 60+ moa adjustment on the Zeiss is sufficient, would you have a preference between the two based on what you saw from your review of the 3.6-18 mk5?

Alternatively is there any chance of you doing a side by side comparison between the Mk5, V6 and NS8 scopes in the future?
 

rfurman24

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I have never had a V4 or V6 lose zero so...
Not likely going to be a 3 way side by side as this MK5 will not be in my arsenal much longer.

I can tell you the zero loss is not likely an anomaly because I know others in my close group of trusted friends that have experienced the same. Take it for what it is. It has many great features. I have to use what I trust.

I have shot behind the 18x V6. It is a great scope. If weight is a concern it would be near the top of my choices. I however would choose the NX8 if I need one of the three.


With the 25x range I am still in the NX8 camp.
 

hugheserj

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I have never had a V4 or V6 lose zero so...
Not likely going to be a 3 way side by side as this MK5 will not be in my arsenal much longer.

I can tell you the zero loss is not likely an anomaly because I know others in my close group of trusted friends that have experienced the same. Take it for what it is. It has many great features. I have to use what I trust.

I have shot behind the 18x V6. It is a great scope. If weight is a concern it would be near the top of my choices. I however would choose the NX8 if I need one of the three.


With the 25x range I am still in the NX8 camp.
Thanks for the comprehensive reply. One thing I didn't realise when I posted first is that in the USA it looks like the NS8 (USD 2,150) and the V6 (USD 1,940) are similarly priced.

However, here in New Zealand the prices are a lot different with the NS8 (NZD 5,100 / USD 3,650) costing significantly more than the Zeiss V6 (NZD 2,800 / USD 2,000).

Prices are approx and based on a quick scan of a few optics retailers in both countries however it's quite surprising to see such a difference!!
 

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I have never had a V4 or V6 lose zero so...
Not likely going to be a 3 way side by side as this MK5 will not be in my arsenal much longer.

I can tell you the zero loss is not likely an anomaly because I know others in my close group of trusted friends that have experienced the same. Take it for what it is. It has many great features. I have to use what I trust.

I have shot behind the 18x V6. It is a great scope. If weight is a concern it would be near the top of my choices. I however would choose the NX8 if I need one of the three.


With the 25x range I am still in the NX8 camp.
I am looking at the 3-18 V6 for my next rifle due to the fact it weighs 22oz, but haven’t ruled out an NX8. I wish I had pulled the trigger when red hawk had a demo or type 2 used V6 for something crazy like $1100. Another great review.
 
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Thanks for the comprehensive reply. One thing I didn't realise when I posted first is that in the USA it looks like the NS8 (USD 2,150) and the V6 (USD 1,940) are similarly priced.

However, here in New Zealand the prices are a lot different with the NS8 (NZD 5,100 / USD 3,650) costing significantly more than the Zeiss V6 (NZD 2,800 / USD 2,000).

Prices are approx and based on a quick scan of a few optics retailers in both countries however it's quite surprising to see such a difference!!
I could be mistaken, but I'm fairly certain this is due to ITAR export restrictions. In this case an export tax to release the product from US custody to an allied nation for retail sale, which is then transfered to the buyer as part of the sticker price. Zeiss being a German company is likely the reason you see such an inflated margin between the two.

Sent from my moto g stylus using Tapatalk
 

hugheserj

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I could be mistaken, but I'm fairly certain this is due to ITAR export restrictions. In this case an export tax to release the product from US custody to an allied nation for retail sale, which is then transfered to the buyer as part of the sticker price. Zeiss being a German company is likely the reason you see such an inflated margin between the two.

Sent from my moto g stylus using Tapatalk
Thanks that's a good explanation which makes sense.
 

Rich

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I have never had a V4 or V6 lose zero so...
Not likely going to be a 3 way side by side as this MK5 will not be in my arsenal much longer.

I can tell you the zero loss is not likely an anomaly because I know others in my close group of trusted friends that have experienced the same. Take it for what it is. It has many great features. I have to use what I trust.

I have shot behind the 18x V6. It is a great scope. If weight is a concern it would be near the top of my choices. I however would choose the NX8 if I need one of the three.


With the 25x range I am still in the NX8 camp.
Just
If you own a Lupy and you twist dials you better check zero a lot!
I know Ryan was doing a review on the mark 5 awhile back. Did he also have issues with the zero? I know he had issues with the parallax but nothing was ever mentioned that I saw about the zero/ tracking. Also, not saying you did, but is there any chance the 1.5MOA shift had anything to do with the 1.5MOA adjustment below the zero stop? I guess that still doesn't account for the horizontal shift, but could possibly explain part of the problem. Once again, not saying you did anything like that, just trying to rule out possible issues. Legitimate scope reviews are getting harder and harder to come by these days. The biases can be misleading at times for sure. At the end of the day, LRO is usually my final determining factor on whether to buy or walk away from a product. As I feel you guys give candide honest reviews on all products/ comparisons. I have been set on picking up a mark 5 for a long time, but I'm about to walk away.
 

rfurman24

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I tested this scope for two reasons. One to see if it was a legitimate option for me on one of my hunting rifles and two to see if the fanboys and/or the haters were right. When I was done the fact that it lost zero was a deal breaker for me. This happened during the same testing I do on every rifle scope that I test with consideration to using as a personal hunting scope. No turrets were turned when it lost zero/had a zero shift. The scope had an internal erector tube shift. I feel I am just rehashing the review but It does have many great features. I just need a scope I can trust. Some will choose to dismiss my findings and that is perfectly fine. I can only choose what I use not what others use. As to what Avery experienced I will let him speak to it.
 

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I might have missed it but could you tell me what rifle that was tested on?
 

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In many cases of my scopes loosing zero I can not guarantee the ring/mounting system was not the cause. In this case I can say with 95% confidence it was not the rings due to my testing method. In repeated removal and reinstallation the mount system did not cause a zero shift.
Hi Ryan,

Thank you for the review I have the same scope in the Mil version I had not noticed a shift in the zero in mine but have noticed a similar issue with another leupold scope Vx3-LRP. Was not sure what caused it on mine thought it was the rings vortex matched pair. But it has not done it since but this is a concern, as I have not loss zero on other scopes once set up. Have you contacted Leupold about this?
 

rfurman24

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Hi Ryan,

Thank you for the review I have the same scope in the Mil version I had not noticed a shift in the zero in mine but have noticed a similar issue with another leupold scope Vx3-LRP. Was not sure what caused it on mine thought it was the rings vortex matched pair. But it has not done it since but this is a concern, as I have not loss zero on other scopes once set up. Have you contacted Leupold about this?
It is on it's way back to Leupold.
 

Dave Wilson

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thank you for the review. i've had not one but 2 Luppy scopes not hold their zero. i will never buy another Leupold product.
 

blvette75

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I tested this scope for two reasons. One to see if it was a legitimate option for me on one of my hunting rifles and two to see if the fanboys and/or the haters were right. When I was done the fact that it lost zero was a deal breaker for me. This happened during the same testing I do on every rifle scope that I test with consideration to using as a personal hunting scope. No turrets were turned when it lost zero/had a zero shift. The scope had an internal erector tube shift. I feel I am just rehashing the review but It does have many great features. I just need a scope I can trust. Some will choose to dismiss my findings and that is perfectly fine. I can only choose what I use not what others use. As to what Avery experienced I will let him speak to it.
Ryan, I appreciate the review and candor as my hunts are few and far between. If a scope loses zero and there is no prediction of when, although I check zero annually prior to the hunt, I am thinking of moving on from this product brand, still interested in what Leupold says as my two Leupold scopes (I had thought) were my better scopes for long range hunting. At this weight range/cost what are other viable options.
 

rfurman24

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Ryan, I appreciate the review and candor as my hunts are few and far between. If a scope loses zero and there is no prediction of when, although I check zero annually prior to the hunt, I am thinking of moving on from this product brand, still interested in what Leupold says as my two Leupold scopes (I had thought) were my better scopes for long range hunting. At this weight range/cost what are other viable options.
If weight is a huge priority look at the 3-18 V6 from Zeiss. We have been using V4s and V6s since they came out with great experiences. I have a 3-18 on the way to put through the paces. I have lots of experience with the 5-30. I have also shot the 3-18 on test rifles but at the time the focus was on the rifles.
 

blvette75

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If weight is a huge priority look at the 3-18 V6 from Zeiss. We have been using V4s and V6s since they came out with great experiences. I have a 3-18 on the way to put through the paces. I have lots of experience with the 5-30. I have also shot the 3-18 on test rifles but at the time the focus was on the rifles.
Thanks appreciate it weight an issue for only one can go heavier on the second one was thinking nightforce for the heavier one.
 

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I've had my MK5 3.6-18 for over a year, and a 5-25 MK5 for over three I think now. I haven't had any issues with the scopes losing zero. Until I do, it is the only scope I am buying for my rifles because I am completely familiar with it. I've twisted on both of them a lot. I check zero at the range every time. They aren't babied, and have flown, been strapped to my pack, and hunted hard. I know other guys with them that are harder than me on gear. I do know that lots of people won't run anything but the MK5 or MK8 from Leupold because of issues.

I don't think I have heard any first hand experiences with failure before the two reviews. Its weird, so I'll be watching close. If it fails, I'll think I'll be going to the NX8 line. It wasn't out when I bought the MK5.

 

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