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Education / Training Aeon 8-32X50 AO scope with trajectory reticle: Part 1

Aeon 8-32X50 AO scope with trajectory reticle: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

BSA Supersport SE: Part 4

This report covers:

  • Is compact good?
  • The trajectory reticle
  • Thin reticle
  • Buy this trajectory reticle for targets, only
  • And the scope?
  • Brightness
  • Image area
  • Reaction to recoil
  • Do scopes need to be broken in?
  • Evaluation so far

Today I start looking at the Aeon 8-32X50 AO scope with trajectory reticle. We actually began our look in the final section of the BSA Supersport SE review, which is why there’s a link to Part 4 of that review at the top of this page.

For starters, I said this is the shortest 8-32x scope I’ve ever seen. I showed you a picture of the scope mounted on the BSA rifle, but the only comments that picture got were about the Diana Bullseye ZR recoil-reducing scope mount. Apparently not many of you own an 8-32X scope; and so when you see one that’s several inches shorter, it doesn’t make much of an impression. So, the first thing I’ll do today is show you the Aeon scope next to a UTG 8-32X (no longer made), so you can appreciate what I’m saying. The Aeon is 13.75 inches long, compared to 17.52 inches for the UTG.

Aeron8-32X50 with Centerpoint 8-32X50
The Aeon scope is on top. The UTG 8-32X50 is below. The UTG represents the size of most 8-32X scopes. Now you see what I mean when I say this Aeon scope is compact for its power.

Is compact good?

The Aeon scope is small, but is it also a good, clear scope? It costs a little less than an equivalent UTG, but the prices are fairly close. People shouldn’t buy it just because it’s short, regardless of the other features. I used this with the BSA Supersport SE I tested yesterday, and I learned a lot from that first experience.

The trajectory reticle

I asked for the trajectory reticle because I wanted to see what airgun applications it had. The point of a trajectory reticle is that the intersections of the crosshairs allow the shooter multiple aim points for different engagement ranges.

Trajectory reticles seem like a wonderful idea until you acknowledge that none of them — and I mean absolutely none — not even the ones in $5,000 sniper scopes that are made for specific 5.56 sniper ammunition — work right out of the box. All of them require the shooter to create a logbook of data on how that specific reticle performs on their specific rifle using one specific round of ammunition. Snipers and varmint hunters understand this. The general public does not. They believe that the crosshairs on the scope’s reticle somehow magically are all in the right places for the ammo they’ll be shooting — once the scope is sighted-in.

This is not a condemnation of the trajectory reticle! It’s just an advisory that the reticle is only the starting point. More work has to be done before you can begin to use all the features of this intricate reticle.

Aeon 8-32X50 reticle
This is the trajectory reticle. It’s very busy! The lines are super thin for precision aiming.

Thin reticle

I’m testing the scope with the trajectory reticle, so that’s all I can report on. The reticle lines are very thin, which I like in a scope that’s meant for shooting paper targets and small varmints at long ranges on sunny days. When the reticle lines are thin, I can see them sharp enough at 100 yards to gain an extra quarter-inch of aiming precision — or at least that’s what I believe.

When I shoot groups off a bench, I typically shoot at a hollow box target at 100 yards and 200 yards. A thin reticle line allows me to bisect that square very precisely. The closer I can get the intersection of the crosshairs to the same place on the target for every shot, the more consistent my aim. When the goal is to make the smallest groups possible, every advantage must be taken.

Aeon 8-32X50 hollow box target
My targets for shooting my AR-15 at 100 and 200 yards are hollow boxes like this. A thin reticle gives a lot of precision on this target.

BUT — and this is an important but — for almost all other shooting situations, a very thin reticle line is more difficult to see than one that’s bolder, and is, therefore, less precise than it could be. I think I encountered that yesterday in the SE test because I lost the reticle several times. I didn’t shoot until I could see it clearly against the bull; but with the concentration required for the optimum artillery hold, this was one additional frustration I didn’t need.

Buy this trajectory reticle for targets, only

My point is that the trajectory reticle is great for targets. When you have the time to pick out the thin reticle lines against the target, this reticle gives you all the precision you want. For general applications, this is not the reticle I would choose.

And the scope?

That’s enough about the reticle. What about the rest of the scope? Is this a scope to buy? Well, I want to test it more under different circumstances, but I’ll tell you what I see so far.

First, I mentioned that the point of impact seemed to shift when I changed the power from 8X to 14X. But, was that shift real or just imagined? I don’t think it was real, because look at how open that group was, and the very next group with the same pellet was tight. I think that big 2-center group was caused by the nut behind the trigger.

BSA Supersport SE targets

The target on the left shows 2 points of impact that might have been caused when the scope’s power was changed. I believe they’re due to the shooter, not the scope. That’s because the group on the right was shot with the same pellet and looks much tighter.

I do think I need to test this to find out for sure. Because if the scope was the cause, then there’s a serious problem. But I don’t think there was. I will test it by mounting the scope on an air rifle of known accuracy that also has no recoil — and no special scope mounts. I’m thinking of using my Talon SS after I complete its 50-yard test against the 10/22.


Next, I have to tell you that as the power of this scope is increased, the viewed image grows darker. I began to notice this above 20X, and it becomes pronounced above 24X. At 32X, the target has to be lit brightly to see the reticle at all. Fortunately, I had a 500-watt lamp illuminating the target so I could see what I was doing, but there’s no way that you’ll be able to use this scope in the deep woods above about  24X.

Don’t despair. This darkening of the image as the magnification increases is common to all powerful scopes — not just this Aeon. My Tasco Custom Shop 8-40X scope is unusable on bright days above 30X. And that scope cost over $600 in the late 1990s! This is where the 30mm scope tube comes into play and also where the 50mm objective lens helps. Larger lenses pass more light. Also, the lens coatings can help or hinder the situation.

The point is, when you buy a scope this powerful — and that’s almost any scope — you can bank on the top 20-25 percent of the power range being usable under only a few situations where the light is perfect. Maybe the hugely expensive Swarovskis and Schmidt and Bender scopes are better in this respect — I just haven’t got several thousand dollars to find out.

Image area

I find this scope to require a very careful placement of the head and sighting eye to see the full image. Go closer or farther away from the ocular lens, and the image gets smaller pretty quickly. Move your head to one side or the other, and the image goes dark just as quick. I find this is true on the best optics, so it isn’t a flaw — but it’s something a buyer needs to know.

Reaction to recoil

On 32X, the image did blur with every shot. That was the rifle’s moderate recoil and vibration moving the parallax focus ever so slightly. It probably happened on 8X and 14X, as well, but the image was so small I couldn’t see the blur. Now, this is a decision point. I own some UTG 8-32X scopes that don’t blur under moderate recoil. So, there’s something to think about.

And, lest we forget, the scope mount I’m using is supposed to take away the impact of recoil. So, perhaps, that’s where we should look with greater scrutiny. I certainly will!

Do scopes need to be broken-in?

This question was asked yesterday by blog reader RDNA. The answer is No. The kind of scopes we use today do not need to be broken-in. In the past, externally adjustable scopes made by Unertl, Lyman and others had anti-recoil features built into their mounts. Those features had to be adjusted to suit the rifles they were mounted on. While that isn’t a break-in procedure, it is something that had to be done to get the scope working its best. But today’s scopes don’t have such features, and no break-in is required.

Evaluation so far

I’m pointing out everything in this report, and you probably think that I don’t like this Aeon scope, but that’s incorrect. In fact, I like it a lot. The image is reasonably clear and bright on magnifications below 24. I especially like the fact that it’s so small for the power it offers. It does have some shortcomings that I’ve noted, but they’re shortcomings I can live with. Mounted on the right airguns with the right reticle and used the right way, I think this might be a very good scope to consider.

I’m not done with my test. I do want to return and test the tendency for impact shift when the power is changed, and perhaps to pit the results of this scope against those of a UTG scope for overall performance at 50 yards. So that is yet to come.

author avatar
Tom Gaylord (B.B. Pelletier)
Tom Gaylord, also known as B.B. Pelletier, provides expert insights to airgunners all over the world on behalf of Pyramyd AIR. He has earned the title The Godfather of Airguns™ for his contributions to the industry, spending many years with AirForce Airguns and starting magazines dedicated to the sport such as Airgun Illustrated.

85 thoughts on “Aeon 8-32X50 AO scope with trajectory reticle: Part 1”

  1. In the targets shown above, and in the previous article.
    One was shot at 8x, and 14x, the other was shot at 32x.

    I have encountered scopes in the past that the POI changes through out the zoom range, returning to zero at the ends of the zoom range, and sometimes in the middle as well.

    In my opinion, I think the scope zoom testing on the talon should be done at 1 distance, with groups shot in zoom increments of 2x.
    It’s a lot of shooting, but it would show if the scope reticle is a “floater”.

    Thank you for doing this review. I agree, there is a lot of clutter in the reticle, are different ones available in this scope?

  2. B.B.

    A couple of observations. But first I would like to point out that I do have quite a few 8-32 X 56 scopes, both Hawke and UTG. I just didn’t happen to think of anything particularly relevant to say about the length.

    First Observation – Although the scope is much shorter than the Hawke or UTG it weighs practically the same with only about 1 1/2 oz difference. I would have thought that being much lighter than other scopes of the same power due to it’s length to be a main selling point if that were true. But alas, no.

    Second Observation – Since you find the magnifications above 24 to be difficult to use with this scope then why pay for it. Just buy their scope that stops at 24X. But then I looked and saw their was almost no price difference. Something like $10. That seems strange to me.

    Last Observation – I really don’t like that the scope gets darker with increasing power. The Hawke doesn’t at all and the UTG doesn’t do it enough to cause problems. It could be that the Aeon scope only has a 50mm objective. Both Hawke and UTG have a 56mm objective. This may have a lot to do with the scope getting dark.

    I also like a thin reticle but no thinner than the Hawke scopes. Is the Aeon scope reticle thinner than Hawkes?


      • B.B.,

        The reason I ask is that some scopes have reticles so thin they are very difficult to see. I have heard people say this about the Weaver T36 fixed power scope for sure. Anyway, I would not want a reticle any thinner than the Hawke reticles. They seem to be about perfect.


        • G&G,

          The older vintage target scopes have ultra-thin reticles that require the sun behind you to see against a black bull. I have a couple of these. In fact one is mounted on the 10-22 I’m using in the test against the Talon SS. But that one has a dot at the center of the intersection.


    • I composed the following while at work, and emailed it home, so some comments may sound like I’m talking to myself…



      For airgun comments…

      For an 8-32×50 exit pupil will run 6.25 (8x) to 1.56 (32x)

      If one’s eyes no longer dilate over 5mm in darkness, one will not notice the added brightness in low light conditions; 10x (5mm) will pass all the light to that person’s eye, so 8-10x will all look equivalent – the extra light from 8x is blocked by the pupil.

      If one’s eyes contract to 2mm in bright sunlight, the match would be at 25x on the scope; higher magnifications may seem dimmer as one does not fill the pupil with subject light.



      Note that this IS conditioned on optics that use the entire objective lens light throughout the zoom range. If the optical design tends to cut off the edges of the objective at some settings, it changes the effective objective diameter. This is seen more in camera lenses that have constant apertures through the zoom range. I have an old zoom lens (and 80-200mm) for a camera that does just that. At 200mm the optics uses the full objective diameter (as can be seen by looking down the objective end of the lens). At the 80mm end, the inner optics has moved up to just behind the objective – the inner optics are much smaller in diameter, hence blocking part of the objective edge.

  3. I think when this scope is mounted to a gun without the bullseye mount it will produce excellent groups as it my opinion that the bullseye mount was the reason for the flyers you had with the BSA.


    • BB,

      I also think the blurring affect could be due to the mount recoiling instead of the scope.

      Buldawg suspects the mount is causing the POI to shift and though I think this mount deserves a thorough review in and of itself, I doubt it is doing such.

    • Sorry BD, that was meant to be a separate post, not a reply to you.

      I did intend to reply that there are many scopes and mounts that are spring mounted and are extremely accurate. Now it is possible that these are doo doo, but I doubt Diana would release them for sale, especially after waiting so long to do such after introducing them at the 2014 Shot Show.

      But, you never know. They might really be doo doo. They might figure us stupid Americans are going to mount them on top of cheap magnum sproingers that we cill not be able to hit anything with anyway, so we probably will not notice a little POI shift. 😉

      • RR
        I only say that the mount was the cause of the flyers since in order for it to recoil separately from the gun there has to be sufficient clearance between the round rods and the aluminum mount for the movement to occur and that clearance will affect the POI unless the sliding parts are of at the minimum of .0005″ tolerance and the only way to hold that close of tolerance and allow for free movement is for the rods to be supported in some form of bearing or oil impregnated bushings that are held to very exacting tolerances.

        I am not saying that Diana did not develop that mount to those very close tolerances but for 100 bucks it is very doubtful. Since they have not bothered to be concerned over their well documented barrel droop or bore misalignment issue for what 40 years now why would they get overly concerned about selling a recoiling mount that has excessive tolerances to not allow for the gun to shot accurately with any scope.

        I know from 11 years at Harley in research and development as a test mechanic I saw many issues that we reported to the engineers that we found that they just blew off due the added cost it would add to the final sale price of the motorcycle. So it is a wide spread problem in any manufacturing company as to the money required to build a product versus what the profit margin is as a final sale price.

        I have seen Harley bicker over a added cost of 5 cents per motorcycle to fix a known issue.

        Harley had used Timken bearing for supporting the left side of the crankshaft since 1930 and in 2004 Timken added to 10 cents to the cost of the bearings that had worked flawlessly for over 70 years as the Harley crankshaft system if properly maintained with oil changes and tune up would last for 1 million miles or more without any bearing failures. So they changed to a INA bearing that was a flat Roller bearing instead of the tapered Timken bearing design that has been used in just about any motorized vehicle or equipment for over 100 years. The 2004 Harleys had a very loud knock noise in the crankshaft left side due to excessive clearance between the roller bearing and the crankshaft and it took them a year to get the clearance correct to stop the hammering in the left side of the crankshaft and now those motors with the left side roller bearing are only good for between 100 to 150 thousand miles before they wear out and start making the hammering noise we documented in 2004.

        So for 10 cents per bike they changed from a system that was bullet proof to a system that has a definite failure time span.


        • BD,

          It is not so much the tightness of the tolerances of the rods in the holes that needs to be tight, but what brings it to an identical rest position. More often than not there is a tapered pin or perhaps a tapering on the end of the rods that guide it to the rest position. This allows for looser tolerances to allow for recoil action, etc.

          Now as for these particular mounts, I have been waiting for quite some time for BB to test them to see if they are indeed worth buying.

          As far as flyers and such, just maybe it is the rifle itself. This is a BSA. It has a pin, not a screw, for the barrel pivot. Just how tight is everything when it locks up? These type setups are famous for allowing the barrel to move around. That is why, though I have wanted one of the new BSA sproingers, I have not bought one. I know that if I do, I will have to have it machined to correct this issue. Why should I go to that expense when I can buy a very nice sproinger that is even better for less?

          • RR
            I did some research out on other forums and this mount is currently being put thru it paces by some Pro FT shooters right now and I also found that it uses a male/female conical bearing setup on the front of there rods so that when it returns to the at rest position it should be at the same place every time, read my post from yesterday to GHF1 on the BSA blog.

            I looked for reviews on the mount on other forums and it is being put thru the ringer by several pro FT shooters and one being Hector Medina so in a few months we will know for sure if it is indeed a good mount. One statement in the yellow forum stated the it had a conical male/ female joint at the front of the sliding rods on the mount so that it would in fact return to the exact same location after every shot.

            Then another post said that used on his 20 cal 54 that would kill a Bushnell trophy scope within 50 shots made it possible for the same scope to last for 500 shots. Another post stated that they were able to shoot 1/2 inch groups at 38 yards with the mount on a 54 but did not state which caliber. So time will tell but I still feel that for the 100 buck price it may work for a while but will eventually wear and start to go south.


  4. BB

    I have an offer to make to you.

    I just purchased a brand new Ruger American Rimfire rifle. This is the 22 inch barrel model with the raised cheek insert stock . I have already mounted a UTG Accushot SWAT 4-16X56 30mm tube scope on it. And, yes I did buy the scope and rings from PA. I have not even had a chance to try it out, so the scope is not sighted in.

    If you are interested, we could meet in the mid cities or at you place and I would loan it to you. All that you need to do is supply the ammo and sight it in. This would give you another 22lr rifle for your 22 lr vs air gun accuracy test.

    Let me know soon if you are interested. I would be interested in the results and I am sure the others on the blog would also.

  5. I have a Sun Optics 8-32 x 56 with an internal level that I picked up used recently. For what I paid for it, I think it is a pretty decent scope. However for my uses it is just waaaay too much power and it is humongomous! If I was shooting FT or if I was groundhog hunting I might could see it, but for tree rats and such, it is just too much scope.

    It does look kind of awesome on top of my Edge mini-sniper though. 😉

  6. BB,

    Now here is a scope I would really like to see you do a review on.


    This is more the size and power range that I am interested in. The low power, compactness and light weight would be a huge benefit on a woods rifle. This particular one also has a 35 yard parallax, which would be ideal for sproingers.

  7. B.B.,

    “Reaction to Recoil”…..”the image blurred with every shot”…..

    Simply asked, was the “blurr” noticed as the shot was taken, and, then returned to normal?


    Was the “blurr” noticed after the shot was taken, thus,….requiring a small adjustment of the parralex?

    I have the UTG 3~12×44, 30mm, SWAT w/mil dot and have not noticed any “blurr” during or after a shot, but then, never really looked for it either.

    I just want to be sure I understand.

    Thanks, Chris

      • BB,

        Thanks,..that’s what I thought, but did not know,..so I asked.

        On the above mentioned scope, I have not adjusted the parallax for over several hundred shots,..so I guess mine does not have that issue.

        I use graph paper to put bull’s on, so “focus” is very easy to discern.

        Thanks, Chris

        On a side note, have you ever thought about mentioning the price of the items you test? P.A.’s price for instance. While price does not always guarantee quality, more often then not, it does point you in the right direction.

        And in all truth, it is one of the biggest factors in most people’s purchase decisions.

        And yes, you are “aces” in providing the P.A. link to every item mentioned.

  8. BB,

    I also think the blurring affect could be due to the mount recoiling instead of the scope.

    Buldawg suspects the mount is causing the POI to shift and though I think this mount deserves a thorough review in and of itself, I doubt it is doing such.

    • I thought it must be the sliding mount right away when the blurring during each shot was mentioned, but the rest of the description says specifically it was the parallax adjustment. I’m assuming some rotation of the parallax knob was observed.

      I’m also skeptical of a scope mount that moves. Even very small play or wear would cause POI changes, I would think.

      • Really, it will depend on the quality of construction. As I pointed out to Buldawg, there are some very nice spring mounts and scopes to be had, many of which are designed for long range target shooting. BB is going to be showing us such a scope in the near future.

        • RR,

          THANK YOU for remembering this. Yes, some of the most accurate rifles in the world have scopes that move during recoil. Movement is not the problem that people think it is. What is the problem is when the scopes don’t return to the same place they started.

          There is no indication that the Bullseye mount does not return to zero with each shot. At least not yet. I can see that I will have to test for it.


  9. I’ve returned “compact” scopes because they don’t fit many of my rifles other than AR-15s! Yeah–I do my best to measure before ordering, but there are so many dimensions to consider, it can be tough to predict how things will work out with a short scope.

    As you know, I’ve evaluated several dozen scopes for undesirable reticle shift with parallax adjustments and found it to be a particularly common problem with AO (front) parallax adjust scopes. Magnification zoom controls can cause this problem too, but it’s less common for them disturb the reticle image relative to the object image than parallax adjusters–especially when zooming within intermediate power ranges and not “bumping” the limit stops of the zoom control.

  10. That reticle looks a bit busy for me, a low light hunter it’s not…..might be a bit too much for my tastes even doing FT, funny you mention having tables to use them effectively, I’ve got a couple of little 4 inch notebooks with the rifle/scope combination on the front and a “pellet a page” …..a picture, carefully done of the Mil Dot reticle, marking off the point of impact at specific metres.
    I thought I was being a bit anally retentive at the time, but I wanted a ready reckoner for in the field, if I was going forth to shoot rats at under 50 feet and wanted to use H&N hollowpoints….but only remember my impact points for the rifles favourite JSB’s…..then I could have a peek and compensate accordingly

    • Dom,

      Your notebook is exactly what a sniper does with his scope. They have to, because no scope made can be exactly what the manufacturer intends — nor can any rifle shoot any round of ammunition to a spot that isn’t confirmed beforehand thorough testing.


      • I won’t admit to the bit on the opposing page giving relative points of impact at 20, 30 and 45 degrees in trees for fear of looking like I had far too much time on my hands 🙂
        (i will say a 177 AA field zeroed for 30m in my Diana 52 requires a 15mm hold up for 25m at 20 degrees, but nothing more)
        There is one algorithm missing that I intend to address and that’s the different ballistic performance at range, I’ve found that even grain on grain some pellet designs hold energy far better at range than others, for instance at 40m I get more drop from a JSB exact than I do from an H&N FT, and the one time I did have access to a suitable chrono at range I found the H&N to be holding 12% more energy than the JSB Exacts, despite being 5% lower on energy at the muzzle (and somewhat less accurate tbh)
        If I do get hold of a bigger chrono no one’s going to hear from me for months.

        • Dom,

          No, your not crazy. I see myself doing the same as you, at least as much as I can.

          Just need to hit the lotto, retire, and shoot all day. I would get 2 years “work” done in about a month !

          Interesting note on 2 same weight pellets retaining different energy down range !

          I would not have expected that,.. but then again,.. the more I learn,…it is,.. that never expect… to “expect” anything !

          • I think the long tail of the modern pellets like JSB, RWS Superfield etc is both what gives them their stability and accuracy, but the drag that the principle relies on robs them of energy compared to a more traditional (and usually a bit less stable) pellet as the range stretches out.
            That’s not to say they are flawed, in fact accuracy is everything as you get out to range.
            But it is an interesting phenomenon and of course, I’d like to find a holy grail of accuracy and power retention…they may be mutually exclusive.
            When I have a year off I’ll do the study 🙂
            There’s someone on Youtube firing a 177 and a 22 UK spec (12fpe) HW100 at a chrono set up at 40 metres
            That’s an illuminating video, surprisingly little difference in retained energy.

      • I’ve also found that reticle features don’t always subtend the advertised and intended angles at the factory specified power setting. (The scope magnification setting is obviously irrelevant for 1st focal plane reticles, which are typically found only found on expensive scopes, and their reticle dimensions also tend to be accurate.)

        I’ve found mil dot reticles that were supposed to be calibrated at 10x power, but it turned out they needed 9-1/4x , or something like 10-1/2x in a another case, when using the 10x mark of the zoom dial graduations for reference. (And the graduations probably do not reliably denote actual optical magnification either!) These kinds of errors contribute to the data in a shooter’s notebook or “dope” sheet. For a scope that’s off by 7-1/2 or 5 percent like the fore-mentioned scopes, I determine the true zoom dial calibration point and paint a neat little white dot on the scope to supplement the unreliable and erroneous zoom ring markings.

    • I didn’t take time to dig mine out of the cabinet, but maybe you’d prefer


      My mind seems to insist that I have a few grids in the lower quadrants, not just L-shaped rulers.

      Unfortunately, the system is meant for 100-600 yard usage (the Leatherwood Camputer scopes have a, well, cam adjusted for the trajectory of the ammo being used. One is suppose to “measure’ the target with those rulers (or the hashes on the cross hairs) by zooming. Zooming rotates the cam which adjusts the scope elevation for the distance — which does mean one ends up using relatively low power for close in [100 yd] targets).

  11. I purchased the Aeon scope for my TX 200. The lenth is perfect for easy loading. I installed the three inch sunshade and it did not affect loading only I can’t see the loading port. Plus the added weight is not wanted.
    I have only shot out to 38 yards so far. The primary use will be Field Target and I am a little worried about the retticle. But so far it’s great. Last night I shot from the bench at eleven yards. I change the zoom setting often between shots and the point of impact did not change. I also did some clicking to adjust for different pellet weights. If it has any stiction I don’t see it.

  12. B.B.,
    What do you make of the reticle line spacing/divisions between the main horizonal axis line and the line
    marked/identified as 1? At first it looks to be broken down in 1/8 increments but, where is the 7/8 line?

  13. B.B.
    Very informative! Would an illuminated reticle have made the 32 power more usable? In your next scope review please talk about some scopes IR features, good, bad, and nonsense! Thanks.

    • Yogi,

      Yes! An illuminated reticle would make this reticle much easier to see against a dark background.

      IR scopes? I’m afraid I’m not the person to ask. I used IR sighting devices in the military and found them severely lacking in range. 50 yards would be the max if there is moisture in the air. A good thermal imaging scope is so much better!


  14. Short, high power, inexpensive scopes scare me. If you really think about what is happening inside you realize that if you get a good one you just won the lottery. The shorter the scope the more curve the objective lens must have and the more magnification you have the more curve you need in the eyepiece. In a well designed achromatic system the best you can hope for is that 2 of the 3 primary colors will converge and the focal point. (your eye). The 3rd color causes fringes or color bands which make the system look out of focus. The curve in the lens will cause distortion at any point that is off center and finally the scope must be collimated perfectly (the optical center of every lens must align perfectly with the optical center of every other in the system) or the resolution falls apart very quickly. Then there is the exit pupil (the cone of light the strikes you eye) it is the true objective diam. divided by the mag. so a 50mm scope at 25x puts out a 2mm beam of light at focus. In bright sun your pupil dilates to 2-3 mm so if you line up your eye perfectly you can illuminate you whole eye maybe but any higher and you start to only illuminate the center. The problem here is that your eye is sensitive to color in the center and low light on the fringes so now the image starts to look dark. and the darker it gets outside the larger your pupil gets and the worse the problem gets.
    The only way to cure some of this is to get low dispersion lens but I dont see them putting a $600 objective lens in a $400 scope.

  15. I need to tell a story that might be funny to my fellow blog readers.

    Last night my son and I were talking about this Aeon scope and trying to decide what rifle might benefit from the shorter length.  The word ‘stiction’ came up and my son started laughing.   He reminded me of an explanation I gave him while out shooting when he was 9 or 10 years old.  We were shooting paper targets and I noticed that he was adjusting his W/E after every shot trying to get dead on the bulls eye.  I watched him get frustrated as the POI drifted from one side of the target to the other and back again as he continued to shot and adjust after each try.

    I thought about how to explain this phenomena to a 10 year old without going into screws, springs, resistance friction and settling.  When I finally stopped him, the analogy that I gave him was that it was like getting into a shower that was too hot.  You adjust the faucet and just have to put up with it for a few seconds until the temperature got comfortable.  I told him he needed to just put up with it for a few shots until the scope caught up with the adjustments.   He accepted that and eventually got his rifle zeroed where he could consistently hit the bull.

    He is now 28 years old and last night he was making fun of me for such a ‘country hick’ explanation.  When I asked him what he was going to tell his boy to make him understand it when the time came he laughed and said he would probably have to use the same simple explanation.  I have to say that last night was a great father/son night! I’ve caught myself smiling a few times this morning when I think about it. 


    if the Diana Bullseye ZR 1-Pc Mount really work in keep a rifle scope from being damage that a high power spring gun, especially the Diana 54??? Mine 54 destroyed my Bushnell Trophy scope, and it has been sitting in my closet since.

    • Joe

      Reading the reviews sounds like others have had high power springers trash their Bushnell Trophy scopes. Ordering a different scope for your 54 may be a better answer then the Bullseye mount. I have a 3-12×44 Leapers SWAT on my Diana 460 Magnum that has held up just fine the the pounding of several high power spring rifles for over a year now.


      • Pa,
        Thank you for your reply. The Bushnell trophy is the most spring airgun recoil resistance that my airgun club knows. We don’t use any other brand except Bushnell for spring airguns. That scope held up to my RWS 34 for many years. Other in the club use it on TX and HW77/97 and R1 without any problem. The problem with the Diana 54 is that the Action slides back so quick that it generate a very sharp and hard jolt. So far, I am still waiting for a solution for the Diana 54, and perhaps THAT IS WHY DIANA CAME OUT WITH THE NEW Bullseye ZR 1-Pc Mount. So again I ask my question….
        if the Diana Bullseye ZR 1-Pc Mount really work in keep a rifle scope from being damage from a high power spring gun, especially the Diana 54???

        • Joe,

          Didn’t realise the 54 was harder then my 460 Magnum on scopes. But from what people say on the reviews here on Pyramyd I got the impression the Bushnell scopes were not as rugged as some others and therefore not the best choice for a magnum springer.

          I’m also interested in the Bullseye mount for my 460 Magnum since I think the scope sits too high with the UTG Drooper and Weaver rings. Guess we all have to wait to see how it does in B.B.s tests.


          • As I recall, UTG/Leapers billed themselves as one of the first scopes intentionally designed to handle the reverse recoil of a spring gun.

            The m54 is particularly bad because the sliding action means all recoil effects (in both directions) take place only on the barreled action, and do NOT have the mass of the stock or the shooter to buffer the velocity.

            Makes for an easier to shoot rifle, but killer on scopes that aren’t designed for spring gun reverse recoil. (My T01 edition still has less than 200 shots through it, and is on its third mount rings and second scope!)

          • Pa.
            Many years ago my club tested most rifle scopes for recoil except for the Leapers which are relatively new compare to other scope makers. So far NO one in my club mounted a Leapers scope on a high power spring airgun, and I don’t want to spend/waste my money doing so until I know someone mounted a Leapers on a Diana 54 and it is doing OK.

    • Interesting question. What kills most scopes in not the rearward recoil (they are built for powder burners in which recoil is ALL a shove to the rear). It’s the forward shudder when the piston bottoms out in the cylinder — that movement floats the inner tube/reticle off the support end.

      Note that the sliding action of the m54 is “normal recoil” direction, but the forward stop only affects the barreled action — not the stock — and is thereby “harder” due to less inertial mass.

      Looking at the mount, it does not slide during “normal” (rearward) recoil, but only during the forward phase. That may be most effective on the m54 as the scope inertia will be carrying it to the rear when the action judders forward.

      IOWs, this mount would have NO effect on a real firearm (you’d have to mount in backwards to take advantage of it for a rearward only recoil mode).

  17. I happen to own this very same scope with the trajectory reticle. I have it mounted on an Airs Arms s510. BB’s assessment is dead on. Up to this point I have only had UTG / Leapers scopes (4×32, 3-12×40, 4-16×40 and a 3-12×44 30mm compact).

    The lines are very fine and can be hard to see. I also tend to keep my magnification at 20x or less. I think I’ve only shot at 32x once or twice and that was in full-sun.

    I do like the clarity of this scope. At 20x or less it certainly does have a more clear image than the UTGs. However, at all magnifications it does show more chromatic aberration (purple fringing – https://photographylife.com/what-is-chromatic-aberration) than I’d like to see.

    One major disappointment was the utter lack of documentation / instructions available for this scope. The manual that came with it was pathetic and there’s next to no information about it online. And yes, I’m speaking of the reticle and how one is supposed to use it. 🙁

    Would I buy another? Maybe. Like I said in the beginning I have this scope mounted on my s510 and this happens to be my 1st PCP. I’m still in learning mode so it’ll be awhile before I’ve mastered the rifle and can move on to further test the scope. Gotta wait for the snow to melt some though!

  18. The reticle looks like mil dots gone wild, but the same principle is in play. It’s interesting that the numbered horizontal lines on the bottom could have completely different functions for different ammunition. But I suppose if you are consistent with your logbook they can serve some purpose.

    I would think that some questions about the short scope can be answered just by understanding the optics of scope length. No doubt there was always some reason why more powerful scopes have been longer. So the shorter length must mean that they have discovered some new principle, improved their materials, or are cutting corners. And I would think that would answer a lot of questions about the scope’s performance. The blurring effect is particularly puzzling to me. I assume that is not just a blurring of the reticle because of its thin lines but of the whole image.

    G&G, I had not heard about the wood-stocked Crosman, and it looks sharp. I have noticed that my 1077 looks like a toy, but I like synthetics. And the relative cheapness is actually more gratifying in view of the rifle’s accuracy. Still, the wood stock is handsome, and I expect you’ll enjoy it.


  19. B.B. I have been waiting to see if you would review these scopes before I asked and since PA started stocking them I figured it would only be a matter of time. They look interesting particularly as you noted the length being short for all the models PA carries. The price range is pretty good as well for the magnification options available. I will probably give one of these a chance soon on one of my rifles, my new Diana will need a scope eventually so the 6-24×50 model will probably be the one.
    As far as high magnification goes I have noticed the light decrease and some models have white out as well in the higher magnification but the blur effect I myself have not seen yet. I own a really expensive Bushnell 4.5-32×50 and the light is great at all nags but the white out and some blur does happen when you get in the 28-32x area. It’s relatively minor and I love the scope but it sits on my .25 cal Marauder so I have no worries about damaging it. Thanks again for the review. Ricka.

  20. I have my Aeon scope mounted with BKL mounts. It’s on a tuned TX 200. There is no bluring during shooting. I am always using follow through and was able to shoot tight groups with a black background. The reticle is not difficult to see. Bisey background are a little more difficult. After shooting this scope for As month I am very spoiled by the thin reticle.
    I had no change in POI with mgnification changes. I shot till I could not see the target changing everything. So far the scope is working for me.

    • Racer X,

      I can’t wait to see your new TX 200. As if you weren’t already enough of a terror on the FT course.

      It’s also good to know that airgunning is alive and well in my old stomping grounds on York Road. We had a heck of a time with the waves of rats following the Memorial Stadium demo. Lots of shooting; lots of rat-shaped notches in the fine plastic stock of my old Daisy 880. Of course, that was in that innocent pre-9/11 era when two ratters on a rooftop with air rifles could share a wave and a smile with passing BCPD officers.


  21. Thinking about the point of aim shift with changes to the magnification.

    On my TX 200 I have the Aeon 10-40×56 trajectory reticle scope. I don’t seem to have a POA shift, but I have a cant level and BKL mounts. I have also been adjusting and fiddling with it for months getting ready for competition. I have been setting up my Range chart at each yard. And testing different zoom settings. I don’t know if that might make a difference.

  22. Well I had planned to change magnification and try to keep the target picture the same but, I guess I will keep it to a minimum.

    Not that I have the money, but would a much more expensive scope be better?
    Or is it the nature of things?

    • Racer X,

      It depends. Some more expensive scopes will give a clearer, brighter picture that might add a couple points in a match. So, when you start shooting at the 90 percent level, it might be worth upgrading.

      But not every expensive scope is better. I’ve seen some very expensive ones that weren’t as good as the average scopes most people use.

      And preference plays a part in the decision. I have seen some people do well with scopes that I would never choose. They liked the features I disliked.

      So, it all depends.


  23. While I am no expert in optics, I do understand, I hope, the following: It was mentioned that there are scopes that do work like camera zoom lenses by moving a lens element forward and backward long enough distances to keep the brightness constant. I own an 8-32×50 Aeon that has the Du-Line Reticle (early version of the Trajectory). I know that it does not have the camera like zoom feature and it does darken at higher magnifications. Actually, it has to. Why? Because it is taking a small angle of available light and magnifying it to get a larger picture. At the same time it is restricting the exit pupil to contain just the small angle of light desired to avoid light dispersion which would diminish clarity of the image. If you think about it you will realize that exit pupil is extremely important. While you won’t see it, usually, for the reason stated above, there is actually light fall off from the beginning of the range. It only becomes apparent at the higher magnifications.
    As to movement, I had problems with my Aeon on a HW97K that were not resolved until I got a very firm mount. I have also not seen any diminishing of focus, ever. Now that I am using in on a PCP for both Benchrest and FT I am taking a lot of notes and refining them from time to time. It is a great scope that I have no intention of trading.

  24. I like the features of this trajectory scope, and thanks to B.B. for your fine pros and cons. I have several pellet rifles set up for target and varmints from 10 out to 30 yards. Beyond 30 to 75 yds, I use a Ruger 10/22, and beyond that a Savage 17HMR. The 17HMR has very little recoil, and was wondering if this 8-32×50 scope (rated for air rifles) would function well on this firearm. B.B.,you had mentioned something about a 10/22. Were you intending to test this scope on a 10/22 in the future? What are your thoughts of use on a 17HMR.
    I currently have a BSA 6-24×44 30mm, (purchased at PA) mounted on the HMR, because this Aeon was out of stock. The BSA is working fine, it’s only fault is size. The Aeon has more magnification, better radical, and more compact. Has anyone mounted this scope on other than an air rifle?

    • Most scopes that carry an “air rifle” clause carry it because they are internally reinforced to handle the /reverse recoil/ pulse of a spring piston gun.

      In common scopes, the erector tube (the part that carries the reticle and is shifted laterally to adjust PoA) is braced against the front of the outer tube of the scope, and held there by a coil spring pressing the the rear of the tube. Firearm recoil pushes to the rear, so the outer scope tube (fastened to the rifle) move to the rear. Inertial makes the erector tube want to lag behind — but since the front end of the erector tube is already fixed to a solid outer tube, it can’t shift.

      Put such a scope on a spring gun, and the forward pulse as the piston hits the front of the chamber causes the rifle — and outer tube — to jump forward. The erector tube is only held by a spring, and can shift to the rear in the main scope tube before getting repositioned by the spring. While thus shifted, the only real support are the windage/elevation adjustment screws pressing the erector tube sideways… Not much really holding it in place. A rifle with heavy spring torque also twists sideways during this recoil, and the sideways torque on a loose erector tube can cause the crosshairs (and tube) to rotate such that they no longer align with the elevation/windage axes.

      Unless made of plastic, I’d suspect any scope marked as being airgun compatible should have no problems with most firearms.

    • Glenn,

      Welcome to the blog.

      I’m planning on testing this scope on my TalonSS. In fact, that test is coming up soon.

      I don’t shoot the faster rimfires because as a reloader I can reload centerfires like the .22 Hornet for less than the rimfire cartridges cost and get better accuracy at the same time.


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