A Breakthrough Scope from Nightforce—SHOT Show 2014

Night Force6Nightforce Optics, Inc.

Nightforce has done the seemingly impossible. To understand the truth of that statement, you have to consider that, rather than compete with the big scope manufacturers that produce a broad range of products, Nightforce has focused on producing high-end scopes. Although one scope may look much like another on the outside, what’s on the inside is another story. There are many elements which go into producing the image that you see when looking downrange. Change one element, and it affects all the others. Such a small thing as the tiny spring that maintains pressure on the windage and elevation adjustments receives critical attention at Nightforce. Night Force5The company wants this part, like all of the others that go into making one of its scopes, to operate smoothly and positively for life. That’s a big order. The ability to produce precise instruments that can take the beating of magnum calibers and life in the field is what’s earned Nightforce the respect of the shooting community. You get what you pay for. High performance and low price is a seemingly impossible hurdle…until now. The folks at Nightforce had big grins on their faces when we stopped to see them at SHOT Show. The reason was their new 4-14×56 SHV. Wow! You would not believe how clear and bright a scope can be. But the big news isn’t the quality of the optics. Nightforce proved that point long ago. It was that you can buy this scope for $1,200! That may not be peanuts, but it’s the lowest price you’ll find on a scope at this performance level.Night Force3 Night Force4Night Force2 Night Force1

{ 9 comments… add one }
  • Diane C Lantz August 5, 2016, 11:22 am

    Awesome, That seems extremely specialist! Maintain the nice perform..!


  • DHConner January 30, 2014, 5:14 pm

    When you’ve got 44 million people on food stamps and 50% of them are the working poor, and somewhere near 15 million native born citizens out of work (the Labor Dep’t gives numbers Obama says to), you know that isn’t good for an industry that depends high employment to make it possible for people to buy products. Not many people are going to spend $1200 on a scope. They a: can’t afford it, and b: can’t justify it on a yearly use basis. I too have daydreamed of owning a very top-end Nightforce, but when I “built” a similar Leupold on their software, I was at $5000 and still climbing. The truth is, the 3 groups of people are going to own a top Nightforce are: those for whom money is not an issue, the guy who eats ramen noodles and hotdogs so he can save the money, and institutions who have need of the very best in optics, and usually have Uncle Sam’s wallet from which to draw all or part of the expense. When you look at a top end NF, a top end thermal, a top end IR, and a top end Starlight, you have just burned through somewhere around $20,000. Then there’s still the rifle, which may run up to $10k (Barrett) So I buy a reasonably good Leupold scopes, Savage rifles because they outshoot just about everything that costs twice as much, and give my dreams a quiet, decent, and respectful burial. I have read there are 85 people who own a high % of the world’s worth. 1/10 of 1%, including the 85, have about 2/3 of it. You can be sure I am not one of either group. The big object will pull light in like a magnet pulls on a nail, and may make the difference in poor seeing conditions (fog, low light, rain, etc,) between a hit and a miss, or no shot at all.

  • Lt. Dan January 28, 2014, 3:46 pm

    IMHO Nightforce sales are slowing down. In fact, locally there’s two gunshops that are stocking dealers but Nightforce is not selling. One shop bought 30-40 scopes about four years ago, most are still in stock. Same story with the other store but they sold only one this past year. Nightforce is just too big, too heavy and too expensive.

    Yeah I know they’re good, I’ve slobbered over them too but there’s truckloads of scopes that will fulfill the needs of 99.99% of scope buyers for less money, less bulk and just as reliable. I’m tired of the huge scopes, I want more choices in the trim and compact category.

    Even Leupold sales are down locally for the upper 3/4ths of their price line.

  • Mike January 28, 2014, 11:38 am

    Great article. Like most advertising today, told me almost nothing about the scope itself except I am supposed to relying Nightforce’s reputation. They are a good company, but tell me something about the scope.

  • Mike January 28, 2014, 8:05 am

    I already own two NIghtforce NXS scopes and looking through them is like optics porn. If these new ones are even half the quality of the NXS models then I am in.

  • JLA January 28, 2014, 5:25 am

    It’s a nice scope. I love the field adjustable reticle brightness, and would love to see that on all Nightforce scopes. I do, however, wish that Nightforce would offer their higher magnification scopes with smaller objective lenses. This would make a superb hunting scope, but you don’t need a heavy & bulky 56mm objective on a hunting scope! A 40-44mm objective would make it a much better optic for most big game rifles. A first focal plane reticle would be pretty sweet too! I’ve never understand why American scope manufacturers insist on putting a 2nd plane reticle in all their scopes. Any reticle with any type of ranging or holdover capabilities should be in the first focal plane every time!

    It’s a really nice scope, and I like the price, but it’s still not nearly as good as it could be.

    • Me January 28, 2014, 8:39 am

      “Any reticle with any type of ranging or holdover capabilities should be in the first focal plane every time!”

      I think it has to do with price JLA.. But yes, I agree. I don’t think I would ever buy a scope with this high of a magnification that was not ffp.

  • matt January 27, 2014, 8:56 pm

    I don’t know this is a tough call huskemaw $1400 5-22x includes ballistic matching turrret or $1200 nightforce 4-14. I’m leaning toward huskemaw higher magnification plus match turret and $200 to booot.

    • Corey January 28, 2014, 12:12 pm

      Is the Huskemaw first or second focal plane?

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