In my previous TFB reviews of Meopta optics, I state that the Czech-made Meopta is the best keep secret in the mid-to-high end Euro optics. Meopta had been making optics for military and sportsmen since 1933. While for most of its history, Meopta was behind the iron curtain until 1990. Meopta is now owned by an American family with production facilities in both the Czech Republic and the United States.
As a follow up to their K-Dot (hunting) and MeoTac (tactical) 1-4x22mm, Meopta released their MeoStar R2 1-6×24 RD in late 2013. In its current form, the new Meopta 1-6x optic is a hunting scope and a successor to the original MeoStar R1 1-4x22mm RD (K-Dot) hunting model. Being just a hunting scope didn’t prevent the original Meopta K-Dot 1-4x from used by 3-gun shooters, or being used in combat by private contractors and the military. Since I’m not a hunter, I will be reviewing this new Meopta MeoStar R2 1-6×24 RD as a general purpose optic for the black rifles.
In this review, I will be comparing the Meopta 1-6×24 ($1600 MSRP) to three other premium 1-6x24mm scopes on the market: the Trijicon VCOG ($2400), Leupold Mk6 ($2200) and the Swarovski Z6i ($2600). The two 1-6x scopes that I will not include in my comparison are the Leupold VX6 1-6x24mm and the Vortex Razor HD 1-6x24mm model. While both of those are good 1-6x optics with a similar price range as the Meopta, but unlike the Meopta, those two scopes’ optical performance are not up to the same level as the premium 1-6x scopes. Another 1-6x optic that I’m skipping in the comparison is the Kahles K16i, which is essentially the tactical version of the Swarovski Z6i with an even higher price tag and harder to find in the USA.
I matched the Meopta R2 1-6x24mm RD with my test rifle, an Aero Precision M5E1 AR-10 pattern tactical carbine in .308 caliber. The Aero Precision features a Keymod modular monolithic upper, a chrome lined medium profile 16-in barrel, and all Magpul furniture. It’s a very lightweight and handy AR-10 carbine with nice build quality. The downside of such setup is that with the Aero Precision lightweight carbine firing a powerful full-caliber cartridge, it kicks like a mustang with lot of muzzle blast from the short barrel length. The Meopta 1-6×24 handles the recoil and everything else without issue.
At 11.34-inch in length, the Meopta 1-6×24 is a bit long. However, l found that like the old K-Dot R1 1-4x22mm hunting model, the newer R2 1-6×24 also has a substantial sun shade built into the front of its tube. Its objective lens is at least 1.25 inches recessed from the front of the scope. If Meopta is going to release a MeoTac tactical model of this 1-6×24, I would expect that the sunshade will be deleted to reduce the length to about 10-inchs, and a weight saving of an ounce or so from that.
At 1x, the Meopta 1-6x24mm offers a true 1-power magnification with a very generous eyebox and edge-to-edge sharpness. The field of view at 1x is bigger than both the Leupold Mk6 and the Trijicon VCOG. Only the Swarovski Z6i offers a slightly wider field of view at 1x, although at the trade off of having a substantially smaller exit pupil at 1x and $1000 more expensive than the Meopta.
I’m glad that Meopta is continuing to feature great 1x optical performance like that of their 1-4x22mm K-Dot and MeoTac line with their new 1-6x24mm. The Meopta 1-6×24 does has a 1.5x zoom setting for those that prefer it.
The Meopta R2 1-6×24 RD at 3x. I have found on the 1-6x scopes that the middle 3x zoom setting is actually useful for rapid target engagement from 100 yds to 300 yds with a nice mix of field of view, zoom and still relatively large eyebox. At the mid-zooms, the more expensive Leupold Mk6 and Trijicon VCOG have the advantage with their first-focal plane BDC reticles.
While the new K-Dot 2 reticle on the Meopta 1-6x24mm is great for tracking a fast target without obstruction. I found its horizontal and vertical guide lines are a little thin and could easily disappear on a busy background. The center 2-MOA dot in the Meopta R2 1-6×24 RD’s reticle has daylight bright illumination. The 8-level (with off positions in between) digital illumination system is powered by a larger CR2354 lithium battery. Two of the more common CR2032 batteries could be used in place of the CR2354 battery.
At 6x, the Meopta has a larger field of view than the Trijicon VCOG by 3 ft, equal to the Leupold Mk6, and just 1.4 ft less than the Swarovski Z6i. The Meopta’s exit pupil of 4mm is a bit better than the rest, which ranges from 3.8mm of the Trijicon VCOG, Leupold Mk6’s 3.3mm to a very tight 3mm of the Swarovski Z6i. Even the 4mm exit pupil is a bit on the small side and it makes the shooter’s head placement very sensitive. However that’s typical for the new crop of 1-6x scopes.
Being a top model in the Meopta high-end MeoStar line up, the R2 1-6×24 RD feature the MeoLux high-contrast lens coating, with the MeoDrop non-sticking hydrophobic lens coating and the MeoShield protective hard coating on top of its lens. The Meopta R2 1-6×24 RD is very bright scope in low light.
I mounted the Meopta 1-6x24mm scope on couple of my AR15s besides the AR10-pattern Aero Precision M5. The Meopta optic felt lighter than its stated 17.4 ounces weight, especially when mounted on the 3.37 ounces Aero Precision Ultralite scope mount. Since its K-Dot 2 reticle is not caliber specific, I had no problem using it with 5.56, .308, 6.5 Grendel, and even with .300 Blackout at a shorter range. I zeroed the center dot for the .300 Blackout supersonic load and using the top of the vertical subtension line for the subsonic loads.
Meopta MeoStar R2 1-6×24 RD Specification:
Tube size: 30mm
Exit Purpil: 1x = 11mm, 6x = 4mm
Eye Relief: 90mm
Field of View at 100 yds/M: 113 ft/37.1m @ 1x, 19 ft/6.2m @ 6x
Turret adjustment: 138 MOA for both elevation and windage
Adjustment per click: 0.5 MOA
Parallax: fixed 100 yds
Weight: 17.4 oz
Length: 11.35 inches
Warranty: Lifetime transferable
Estimated street price: $1400 +/-