by Mike Schoby - Tuesday, June 2, 2009
To complement its extensive line of fiber-optic sights, several years ago TRUGLO began manufacturing several models of electronic, red-dot scopes. In 2005, TRUGLO introduced several models of traditional riflescopes, including an illuminated-reticle model, target/varmint model and a compact rimfire model. The company's newest model for hunters is called the Infinity.
The Infinity 4X-16X AO variable scope has a 1-inch tube and 44mm objective. It comes with threaded, metal ocular and objective lens covers. They are a nice touch and serve well to protect the glass during transportation. Also included is an extended threaded sunshade, ideal for varmint shooting in the midday sun. The crosshairs are fine with a small dot in the center.
I think it is important to note that this scope is made in China. Unlike Japan, which has a history of making fine optics, China is a relatively new player in the market, and, to be frank, a lot of what comes out of China isn't the best. But not only was I very satisfied with the mechanical operation of the TRUGLO scope, the optics were also very good and, as it turns out, the glass comes from a well-regarded Japanese optical factory.
I started shooting in broad daylight. The resolution was sharp and the adjustable objective was calibrated for range perfectly. I then compared it against several scopes of European and Japanese lineage in the fading evening light, using a black-and-white grid set in my back pasture as well as another set just inside the dark shadows of the woods. The TRUGLO rivaled them in terms of clarity and light transmission, which tells me that regardless of where their scopes are being made, TRUGLO is using good components and adhering to some strict quality controls.
For testing, I mounted this scope on my pet Rock River Coyote AR-15 in .223 because the rifle is a proven tack-driver. I started at 25 yards to sight in, making rough adjustments with the scope. I was pleased with the consistency of the adjustments. After getting it close, I moved to 100 yards. The target-style turrets were easy to adjust. After it was sighted in I tested their precision by firing one shot and then running the elevation all the way down and then back up the same amount of clicks before firing another shot. The two shots were within a half-inch of each other. From there I repeated the test, running the elevation all the way to the top and back down to the zero before firing another shot. The group still stayed within a half inch of the previous one. From this point I repeated the test, working the windage in both directions to their maximum range and returning them to zero-firing a single shot at either end. By the time I was done, the five-shot group had opened up to slightly over an inch, mainly due to minor discrepancies in the horizontal adjustments.
Then I "shot the square": I aimed at the bottom left-hand corner of the 6-inch orange square target and fired two shots. Since the scope has 1/8-click adjustments, I calculated that to hit the top of the 6-inch square (at 100 yards), 48 clicks would be required. I made the adjustments and fired two more shots. They hit right around the top of the square (5.9 inches of movement instead of 6); almost perfect. I then made 48 clicks of right adjustment and fired two more shots. The windage issue again displayed itself; the two shots came in at 6.5 inches, a bit out of spec, but not at all bad. I then made another 48 clicks down and the point of impact moved straight down 6.25 inches; almost perfect. The final leg of adjustments should've moved the scope back to zero, and it came darn close; the last two shots created a four-shot group that was 1 inch apart.
While I try to judge products simply on their merits and flaws and not price, this is not reality. Cost does factor into the equation for almost all of us. With a real-world retail price of around $149.99, the TRUGLO Infinity target scope is a great buy. It has good optics, excellent adjustments, and while it won't stand up to a soaking and a baking without scope caps, if you avoid locking it in the car in the Kalahari in the summer and then immediately scuba diving with it, it should never give you a bit of trouble. Since I destroyed this scope in testing, I'll have to come up with a different plan for this year's prairie dog shoot ... or for the price I could just go buy another TRUGLO.
Type: variable-magnification riflescope
Objective Lens Diameter: 44mm
Focusing Range: 15' to infinity
Eye Relief: 2.75"-3.25"
Exit Pupil: 11mm-2.75mm
Relative Brightness: 12.1-7.56
Field of View @ 100 yds: 5'-20'
Dimensions: tube diameter-1"; overall length-15"; weight-20.1 ozs.
Construction: matte black aluminum
Extras: sunshade, screw-on metal lens caps, cleaning cloth
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