Firefield 20-60×60 SE Spotting Scope Review
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- Inexpensive spotting scope
- Includes both hard and soft carrying cases
- Very durable
- Included tripod is cheaply made
- Short eye relief
- Fish eye effect and distortion at high magnification
Welcome to my review of the Firefield 20–60×60 SE Spotting Scope. Firefield is known for budget-friendly optics, but their products aren’t always the best quality-wise. Because of this, I began my review of this spotting scope with as open a mind as I could, but wary of poor results. Let’s see if I was wrong.
The eye relief on this scope is absolutely horrendous, ranging from 13.5mm to 17mm. Basically, you have to practically press your eyeball against the rubber eyecups to see the entire field of view. This isn’t good for eyeglass wearers, obviously.
The scope measures 13.78 inches long, and weighs a mere 1.41 pounds.
What’s Included With My Purchase?
Every purchase of this model of spotting scope comes with everything you need to get started glassing. You’ll find the following items in the box:
- The Firefield 20–60×60 SE Spotting Scope
- Lens and eyepiece caps
- Hard carrying case
- Soft carrying case
- Full-size (43.5-inch) adjustable tripod
The cases are both quite good, but the tripod is another one of those throwaways. It won’t hold the scope steady enough to keep on your target at the range, so you continually have to reacquire your paper to find your shot placement.
How Powerful Is the Firefield 20–60×60 SE?
This spotting scope provides magnification from 20X to 60X. Image clarity, sharpness, contrast, and color reproduction are excellent from 20X to about 40X, after which serious distortion sets in. You’ll notice a pronounced fish-eye effect as well as other forms of distortion from 40X to 60X. On the other hand, there isn’t a hint of chromatic aberration at any magnification.
This scope’s field of view ranges from 57 feet to 110 feet from 1,000 yards, depending on your selected magnification. That’s about average, so no complaints there. Minimum focusing distance is a bit far out at 15 feet, but it’s still quite serviceable.
How Easy is the Scope to Use?
The Firefield 20–60×60 SE is pretty easy to use, with the controls located exactly where you’d expect them to be. The magnification wheel, located on the eyepiece, and the center focus knob spin smoothly but with enough friction to keep you from bumping them loose.
How Well Does It Gather Light?
The twilight factor for this scope ranges from 34.6 to 60, demonstrating reasonably good transmittance for such an inexpensive scope. If it weren’t for the distortion at maximum magnifications, this would be great for stargazing or checking out the larger planets and moons of our solar system.
How Are the Optics and Focus on This Glass?
The porro prism construction of this spotting scope utilizes BaK–4 prism glass, with appropriate phase correction coating applied; there is little to no phase shift at any magnification. The lenses and other optical components are fully multicoated, maximizing light transmission and lending to a high quality image (at least at lower magnifications.
Focusing is quite easy, and achieving a sharp, clear image is quick and painless throughout almost the entire range of magnification. Only at 60X magnification does it become difficult to get a perfectly sharp image.
What’s the Housing Like on the Spotting Scope?
This model has rubberized armor covering the scope, giving you a non-slip gripping surface to hold the scope as well as protecting the inner workings from bumps and falls. It does feature a tripod mount, but said mount is fixed in place and cannot be rotated for different viewing angles. The scope is also camera adaptable, with an optional bracket, for digiscoping.