The Schmidt & Bender 5-25×56 PM II riflescope which TFB reviewed recently has been setting the benchmark for optics for almost 10 years. If you follow TFB’s article, and especially photos of Snipers, you know that the Schmidt & Bender optics are very popular among Military and Police Forces around the World. Of course, competition shooters follow where they can and afford it.
In my opinion, as both those rifle scopes have the same list price, it makes more sense to buy the 5-45 as I don’t use these scopes for their performance on low power magnification.
I never took a shot in competition at less than 10 magnification (with these types of scopes), so if the performance starts at 3 or 5 is of low importance. You may make another judgment depending on your needs, but that is my reasoning.
So, apart from the more powerful magnification range, the optics of the 5-45 model has been improved over the “old” 5-25, which allows for a wider field of view on 5x magnification. I wouldn’t say that the tunnel effect on the 5-25 is disturbing, but the 5-45 has less.
Below: Press picture from Schmidt & Bender (5-45PMII).
Some of you may argue that the 5-45×56 PM II isn’t new. Correct, it has been shown before but it is not until now that private individuals got their deliveries. Perhaps S&B put their professional customers on priority? I couldn’t really blame them if that’s the case.
TFB has ordered an S&B 5-45×56 PM II High Power with the GR2ID reticle. When we ordered, there was a delivery time of a few months on these scopes. TFB’s plan is to get the scope tested both on the AR-system and bolt-action rifles during springtime. We will also dive deep into what the GR2ID reticle can do, or can’t.
The full product name of the scope that you see in the pictures below is: Schmidt Bender 5-45×56 PM II High Power LP MSR2 1 cm/.1 MRAD CCW DT II MTC LT / ST II ZC. So the reticle is MSR2 with 1cm/1 MRAD clicks, Counter-Clockwise, Doube Turn II tower, More Tactile Clicks, ZC Zero Clicks.
Now let’s look into the optic itself, from 550 meters up to 1000 meters in various magnifications.
This is what the normal 25 power looks like.
And at 35 power.
Has 30 or 45 power become the new 25?
I like to shoot at high magnification, or at least being able to use it before the shot (or after for checking the hit). Some don’t, and crank down the magnification. To each his or her own, but with the 45 power at least you have the possibility, and the performance of this scope seems to have enhanced overall at 25 power as well. You can only miss things that you don’t have!
Now we go to 1000 meters or 1094 yards. The center dot is very compact with 1×1 MRAD. (1 cm or 0,4″)
One thousand meters at 45 power. Note that the center dot is free, so the target isn’t blocked by the reticle.
All these excellent pictures of the S&B are from Pavol Blahut – www.longrange.sk LongRange.sk.
For a look at turrets, there are several different versions and options. We will have a quick look at two of them.
Schmidt & Bender New Generation Turrets – Picture below:
To the left: Double Turn II with a visual revolution indicator, MTC or ZC and lock. This turret has two turns and thus provides sufficient adjustment for shots at long distances. The transition to the second revolution is indicated in the window of the revolution indicator through a change from black to yellow. This turret also offers the advantages of the new square shape and is equipped with the Mode Lever.
To the right: Double Turn II+ with tactile turn indicator, MTC or ZC and lock. This is a flatter version with a tactile turn indicator that can be seen and felt as you transition through to the second turn on the turret. The flat design allows for the attachment of a red dot sight on the scope mount without obscuring the view through the turret. This turret has the advantages of the new square shape and is equipped with the Mode
MTC = More Tactile Clicks
ZC = Zero Click
TFB’s setup will have an Aimpoint Micro H2 or an Aimpoint ACRO on the 12 o’clock position. Not really for shooting, but to allow quick and rough aiming over the terrain, and once you approach your target you can let your eye dive down into a perfect magnified view of the target. This way you don’t have to zoom out to find your target and zoom back once you find it. This is such a time saver and should be compulsory on all high-end systems, another $500 isn’t going to break your bank, is it?
Below: Picture from Finnaccuracy. Sako TRG M10 with FDE Spuhr mount and another S&B 5-45×56 PMII with MSRII reticle.
If you have a deeper interest, please check the 2,1Mb pdf instruction for the MSR2 reticle.
The European list price (in 2019) for the 3-27 and 5-45PMII models started at €4,650 net.
If you’re a hunter, the Schmidt Bender 3-21×50 EXOS may be more of interest for you.