When a scope costs well above the $3,000 range, saying ‘it works just fine’ will not make you believe in the scope or compel you to buy. Some even think that knowing the specs of a scope, on paper, will convince a buyer to buy a scope. However, any long range shooter will know that a scope’s performance may greatly vary on field from theoretical perspectives. That’s why Scopelist has decided to help its users with a hands-on review on Nightforce BEAST F1 so that they can have a fair idea about the scope before taking a decision.
Few Words for the Starters
If you are a beginner in the long range riflescope market and don’t have much idea on the advanced Nightforce scopes, you may get baffled by the use of term B.E.A.S.T. However, it should be cleared at the beginning that it is not anyway closer to its appearance, weight, and size of the riflescope. BEAST is the short form of Best Example of Advanced Scope Technology, which has been designed by the Nightforce engineers to create an advanced scope, having features, capabilities, and advanced technologies for solving all kinds of inherent problems found in competitor products. It needs special mention that Nightforce Optics manufactured the scope as per the changing requirements of snipers of the U.S. military. BEAST was conceptualized and born to meet the ever-expanding needs of military snipers who have to bring down targets at battlegrounds in all weather conditions, ever-increasing ranges and extremely difficult target spotting conditions. You will get enhanced identification ability, optical performance and accuracy from BEAST, a combination that was earlier next to impossible to achieve.
Features That Left Us Overwhelmed
Nightforce 5-25×56 BEAST F1 is one of the few exceptionally good First Focal Plane (FFP) riflescopes that we have tested and used in a very long time. Nightforce Optics has incorporated a Double Turn turret in this scope, first of its kind in any Nightforce optics, which comes with a huge travel per revolution. This scope comes with the unique ½ click elevation switch design that gives a shooter one more reason to be absolutely sure before pulling the trigger. The manufacturer has accompanied this switch with locking turret knob to help shooters maintain the predefined adjustment or zero. This feature comes handy in the battlefield or long distance hunting when shooters have to concentrate on bringing down the target with successive quick shots; they can now do it without worrying about changing the predefined adjustment accidentally. We have seen many scopes where the locking turret design has become a nightmare for the shooters in the field because of the complexity. However, in case of B.E.A.S.T, the manufacturer has ensured that the lock doesn’t make the function cumbersome for pro shooters. We have checked this feature closely and didn’t have to worry about the ease of use during actual shooting on the mountain ranges. We would like to add that the inclusion of locking turret knob has indeed made the riflescope unusually tall. These features, including the FFP one, has made us place this optical device among the best long range riflescopes we have come across in quite sometime now.
The Best Aspects Of Nightforce 5-25×56 BEAST
Intelligence and Intuitiveness
i. i4F Technology
One of the technically advanced features that makes B.E.A.S.T better than most extreme long range riflescopes is incorporation of the intelligent 4-function elevation control – i4F. While testing the scope, we found out that elevation control is one of the most precise and fastest we have come across any riflescope. A shooter can make the initial adjustments (with .2 mid-radian or .50 MOA increments) very quickly with the primary elevation knob,. You can also get additional elevation adjustments (with .1 mid-radian or .25 MOA increments) with the help of integral fine adjustment lever.
ii. Zero Stop and 360° Brake Control
Shooters will get the patented ZeroStop technology as a standard feature in B.E.A.S.T. This feature allows instant reset to zero point at all times. Nightforce has also incorporated an improved 360° brake control that helps secure elevation adjustments rapidly. While testing the device on a mountain range, we suddenly noticed a moving coyote at a distance of around 750 meters away. We simply set the required elevation, activated the 360° brake control right by pressing control (mounted on the elevation knob), rotate-control knob on counter clock direction by 90 degrees, and established setting at 750 mts. in a fraction of a second. For disengaging the brake setting, we simply had to use the brake control function again and turn the control in clockwise direction at 90 degree. Bottom line? The mechanism here is instant as well as intuitive compared to systems from competitor brands.
iii. Nightforce DigIllum (a.k.a. Digital Illuminated Reticle Technology)
Another instance of intelligence and intuitiveness in Nightforce B.E.A.S.T. 5-25×56 F1 is the inclusion of DigIllum (a.k.a. digital-illuminated reticle technology). With this feature in place, you will get new standards or repeatability and, most importantly, convenience. You can choose the appropriate reticle brightness as per the prevailing lighting conditions. For saving battery power, illumination can be turned off when required. Once you decide to turn on the illumination, the setting (you last chose) will get chosen by default. This feature helps in keeping the night vision intact and the shooter is able to take a shot instantly. To enhance the intuitive and intelligence quotients of reticle illumination, auto-off and low-battery indicator features have been added in DigIllum. With all these features included, shooters can operate the shooting system with a single hand and aim the target intuitively, instantaneously and without any chance of fumbling (which may arise out of complicated mechanism). Therefore, you don’t get distracted from the target by the complexity of design as the predefined adjustments remain intact, negating the chance of accidental resetting.
2. Optical Clarity and Resolution
You will find many high magnification riflescopes in the market but most of them lack amazing optical contrast, crisp image clarity, and extreme resolving power. However, military snipers are required to identify threats and bring them down even in crowded places. The slightest of actions can kill innocents and spare legitimate threats. And that’s why razor sharp images are required by snipers to identify and bring down targets with zero margin of error. Nightforce Optics has taken this into consideration and added extra care in manufacturing the Nightforce BEAST scope. Their team of German and U.S. engineers have therefore developed optics that surpass clarity and resolution standards of any other long range scope available. The standards are so high that this category is among the very few ones where light transmission exceeds the 90% level. In fact, that is why shooters are able to aim targets precisely with a BEAST in all light conditions, whether it is dawn, dusk or afternoon.
3. First Focal Plane (FFP) Reticle
Pro shooters mostly prefer reticle placement in the first focal plane because the reticle size proportionately increases or decreases with increasing or decreasing magnification. Nightforce BEAST F1 5-25×56 comes with FFP reticle location, helping accomplished shooters get range estimation, windage leads, and target holdovers. Even in high stress environment, shooters are able to take accurate aim because of FFP reticle location. Horus TReMoR 3 reticle option is now available with BEAST F1 scopes along with reticle options like MIL-R F1, MOAR F1 – 20 MOA, and non-illuminated Horus H59.
To draw the conclusion, when the moment of decision comes, shooters can go for Nightforce BEAST 5-25×56 F1 as the preferred choice.