Arken is a relatively new company with six models to choose from. They offer magnification ranges of 5-25X56, 6-24X50, and 4-16X50. Each scope is available with either MOA or MIL adjustments. I tested the MOA 4-16X50.
All of Arken’s scopes utilize a 34mm tube so you will need to buy an appropriate mount. Arken offers a set of low rings and a single-piece precision mount. Both options are only $65. I used a set of their rings and found them to function well. Each ring is CNC machined from 7075 aluminum and is laser engraved with the proper torque spec.
The overall footprint of this optic is fairly large. The 34mm tube, 50mm objective, and large turrets all add to the optics size but not without reason. The 34mm tube and 50mm objective provide great light transmission which makes the most of available light at dusk or dawn.
The optic body feels well-constructed and has a nice matte finish. The weight is 36oz which seems a little hefty, but I suspect the durability will make up for that. This scope is rated for recoil up to 50BMG and it comes with a lifetime warranty.
It uses an MOA VPR reticle. This reticle features an open crosshair with a center dot. I really like the open crosshair concept. I think it helps with precision shots because the area around your point of aim isn’t as cluttered by the reticle. A full Christmas tree is included for elevation and windage holds. This is a first focal plane scope so accurate holds can be made on any magnification. The center of the reticle can be illuminated with six brightness settings but even the brightest setting is only visible in low light.
The windage and elevation turret adjustment are phenomenal. The turrets have crisp clicks for each quarter MOA adjustment and easy-to-read laser engraved markings. They do not lock, but the markings can be aligned to zero once the rifle is sighted in. A zero stop can be set on the elevation turret to keep you from adjusting below your zero.
The eye relief is 3.6in and the eye box is very tight. You will start seeing dark borders in your sight picture if you don’t have your head in the proper position. There is a slight distortion around the edge of the scope, but the rest of the image is clear. The ocular lens is adjustable to match your eye and the parallax is adjustable from 25yds to infinity via the left turret.
I think the Arken SH4 4-16X50 is a great value for only $415. The turret adjustments, light transmission, and overall build quality would be typical for a scope double that price. I wish the eye box was more forgiving and that the turrets were a little shorter but those are things I can live with. Check out arkenopticsusa.com for a complete spec sheet or to buy your own.
I have one of these, it was given too me by a gunstore to try out and keep. They wanted feedback before carrying them. Well…its chinese and that made me want to dislike it and there’s the fact I’m a Trijicon man myself. Pretty much every rifle I have has a top of line Trijicon on it. (13-14 of them them) I just didn’t really find anything to complain about with the glass, turrets and features. Its a pretty good scope. It’ll shoot a box so the turrets do track correctly. My reticle is brighter than the authors I guess, cause I can see mine. The only downside is size/weight. It’s BIG and heavy. It’s like the hubble telescope on top the 308 I put it on. I chose that gun because it’s a bench gun. The rifle weighs a ton too, so not one I lug around in the woods. So for that purpose it’s doing fine. I have a 50…I’m thinking one of these days I’ll put that 50 cal rating to the test. All in all, for the price I’m gonna say thumbs-up on the Arken.
PS: the 5-25 x has Japanese glass, not chinese. That glass is noticeably better, not that the chinese glass was bad but you will see an improvement in the Japanese glass.