In the world of high-end optics, there are a number of options to choose from. Whether it’s German, Japanese or American companies building high quality of glass, there are a number of options on the market today. Vortex has just dropped their latest Razor HD Gen III variant with their new 6-36×56 FFP optic. This is the second optic to come out from Vortex in the HD Gen III line up after their Razor 1-10 optic I reviewed awhile ago on TFB. Let’s take a deeper look at the Vortex Razor HD Gen III 6-36×56 FFP scope.
The new Vortex Razor HD Gen III 6-36×56 is a larger variant of the Gen II 4-27 Razor that came out a few years ago. The new Gen III Razor is 15.3″ in length and weighs in at just over 45 ounces. Vortex went with a 56mm objective lens diameter with a first focal plane objective. Available in MRAD and MOA configurations, the Razor 6-36 comes with the EBR-7D reticle. This reticle gives the shooter a wealth of information for figuring out longer ranged shots as well as windage adjustments. Having an illuminated reticle makes the reticle much easier to use in both low and normal lighting conditions. For my testing I decided to go with the MRAD system since that’s typically what I prefer when it comes to long range shooting.
Finish and MSRP
Vortex’s new Razor comes in the classic hard anodized Stealth Shadow finish with an Armortek coating protecting the optic against scratching and debris from damaging the exterior lenses. Vortex also claims the Razor 6-36 is fog proof, shock proof, and waterproof to avoid having issues in tough terrain. As standard, the new Razor comes with locking turrets as well updated parallax ranges. This allows the shooter to make adjustments and lock it in to ensure the dials stay in place no matter what. MSRP on the Razor HD Gen III 6-36×56 scope is currently set to $3,999.99 and is beginning to be shipped out currently so they should be hitting store shelves very soon.
For this review I put the new Vortex Razor HD Gen III 6-36×56 scope on an 18″ SIG Sauer Cross chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor. I found myself comparing the 6-36 Razor to its smaller brother, the 4-27 GEN II Razor, that has been out for a few years. I have had that one on an M40 clone for a little over a year, so I found myself going back to that setup while doing this review. To start things off, the glass quality on the new Razor is fantastic. I am really impressed with how crisp and clear targets are when on the 32+ magnification. WIth high magnification on some optics you start to get clarity issues, but I am happy to report the Razor looks clear even at high magnification.
Turrets and Adjustments
When looking at the overall design, I think its fairly incredible Vortex managed to get higher magnification out of this new Generation of Razor while bringing the overall weight down by 3 ounces compared to the Razor 4-27 optic, which is fairly impressive all things considered. The overall length of the 6-36 Razor is 15 inches, which makes it slightly longer than other generations but the increased magnification as a result makes the longer length requirements. My first few range sessions with the new Razor made me truly appreciate the locking turrets and especially in cold conditions and moving around in the snow.
It may seem like a simple add on but having a quick turret on the illumination makes life easier. The parallax adjustment goes down to 10 yards now rather than the previous model only going down to 32 yards. This is typically extremely helpful when starting out on a rough zero and you can get it on paper closer than 30 yards if you really need it. It may not be a big change, but its definitely a nice plus.
Eye Box & Light Collection
The nature of the beast of high magnification is to give you the most magnification in the smallest package possible. Its no different with Vortex’s new Razor. Just like the Razor 1-10 that came out earlier, I have realized the 6-36 is very similar with the eye box and eye relief. Starting out the eye box can be tricky to get the hang of initially. After some practice, the eye box becomes easier to understand with a little range time. It’s not the most forgiving optic for eye relief I’ve used but it is definitely manageable with some practice to consistently get a solid clear picture through the optic.
In terms of light collection, Gen III is significantly better in low-light shooting than Gen II optics. Under low light conditions, doing a side by side comparison to the older generation shows just how much they have improved over previous models. There is a significant difference in overall light collection and brightness from the older models. The edge to edge field of view appears to be improved from previous models as well making the picture clearer and fill the scope more than other generations.
The standard reticle on the new Razor may seem busy to some, but it’s incredibly responsive when you start shooting at distance with any amount of wind. The EBR-7D reticle has a number of fine adjustments to counter wind or various distances depending on if you go with MOA or MRAD configurations. I typically like a simple style of reticle, but figuring out where to aim with wind at 500+ yards was much easier than trying to use a simple BDC style drop system. I didn’t find the overall size to be overwhelming or distracting like I find with most busy reticles. If you’re like me and shy away from busy reticles, I highly suggest giving this EBR-7D reticle a chance because it’s honestly very useful for the amount of information provided in the optic.
I haven’t had extensive time with the new Vortex Razor HD Gen III 6-36×56 scope, but so far I think it’s a drastic improvement over their previous generations when it comes to light collection and overall perceived quality. The high end Vortex optics are known for their quality as well as durability and I think this is another great example of this point. The only thing I think will take some people time to adjust with is the eye box and eye relief, but with a little practice it shouldn’t be an issue. If you are looking to build a dedicated long-range rifle or to get into PRS shooting, this is a great optic for you. I’m guessing once these come out, street price will be slightly lower than the MSRP which will be an outstanding value for money.
Let me know what you guys think about Vortex’s new Razor HD Gen III 6-36×56 scope. Is it a great long-range optic or is it too high powered for you? I’m very curious what you guys think about Vortex’s new offering and what optics you have from them in the comments below. If you have questions about optics or firearms in general, shoot me a message on my Instagram @fridgeoperator. Stay safe out there!
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