Page 1 of 5 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 46

Thread: My P4xi journey

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Lowcountry, SC.
    Posts
    1,793
    Feedback Score
    4 (100%)

    My P4xi journey

    Another user on here asked me my thoughts a couple months ago via PM on RDS vs Steiner LPVO. At this time, Ive been using my P4xi now that I feel like I am able to share my experience. This will be less a comparison, more of thoughts on the P4xi through the eyes of a previous skeptic. The more I use it, the more versatility it seems to have.

    Background:

    Ive used a variety of LPVOs professionally and recreationally over the past decade or so, starting with the Elcan and Short Dot. I didnt really like them back then, but my eyes are starting to age. So I bought a Steiner and a 3x Vortex magnifier for my Comp Ms maybe 9 months ago, and Ive been wringing them out. This is the first LPVO that I have purchased, unless we can count 2-7xs.

    Speed vs RDS:

    This is what everyone seems to be interested in. Ive noticed no practical loss of speed on 1x in any conventional position at any range. Im even a little faster at ranges past 25yds. This is because with the fine dot, and optional magnification, Im able to either shoot just as fast, but more accurately, or slightly faster with the same degree of accuracy vs RDS. I shot a carbine qual course with a small SWAT team a week or two ago with my P4xi and got a perfect score. I was also faster than a little over half the cops, all of which were using a RDS of some sort. Im not saying this out of ego, or because I think Im better than them, because I am not. Just for perspective on speed, because a LPVO is not slowing me down.

    Now, if were talking wazzoo positions like junkyard prone and such, yeah the RDS might be a bit faster, but not as much as you might expect. The pupil is easy to find at 1x.

    Weight:

    The P4xi in an ADM flip lever 1.93 mount weighs 1lb, 9oz. The Comp M4s in a Larue lower 1/3 with flip lever weighs 12.8oz. Comp M4s plus 3x weighs 1lb, 8oz. The numbers speak for themselves. If you have no need for magnification, the LPVO is a waste.

    Battery Life:

    Longer than expected. I have not measured it, but I would have expected much less. Obviously you cant leave it on for 3 years, but even if the battery dies, the unlit reticle works great.

    Brightness:

    Excellent. It is beyond daylight bright. If you use it to look directly at the Sun, trying to observe the transit of Mercury, the last thing you will see is two dots: the red dot of the reticle and the black dot of Mercury.

    Low Light Use:

    It works as well or better than any other optic I have used, except maybe my Zeiss or the Razor HD. It is certainly better than any other magnified optic I have used that is similarly priced. Unrelated note, I hate muzzle brakes. Im currently rocking A2s on almost every rifle I own.

    Reticle:

    This is the second reticle Ive ever truly loved, with the first being the old school ACOG. I left my wife for this reticle. Side effects include: priapism, muscular hypertrophy, inflated ego, increased IQ, greater sexual stamina, and your children will love you again.

    The dot is bright, fine, and easy to find. The crosshairs are heavy and taper to the center, which is a great feature in weak lighting. Or anytime you need to find the center fast.

    The BDC is what makes it awesome, with a caveat. Steiner literature shows a 100yd zero for the dot and the bottom hashmark is 500. Nein. The dot more closely coincides with 200yds and the bottom hashmark is 600. Ive tested this practically with several loads, and also run a bunch of numbers through Strelok Pro. Interestingly, the subtensions that Steiner publishes reflects my findings. They simply mislabeled the reticle diagram.

    I stock 4 types of 556 ammo, mostly. 68/69gr HPBT for target shooting at medium ranges, 70TSX for hunting, 62gr Fusion MSR for HD/Soviet invasion, and 62gr ball for close range blasting. These have been chosen to be cost effective and to have a similar POI at the distances appropriate to their purpose. With a zero at 300 yards using the first hashmark and match 68/69gr ammo, I can get first round hits with the same ammo out to 600yds using the BDC. I can then load up the 70TSX and get good hits on deer well beyond any range I would consider ethical, or Fusion MSR 62 and whack Cuban paratroopers. Or whatever crazy fantasy you may have.

    Point is, this reticles BDC follows my ammo perfectly using a 16 barrel. It is also auto-ranging on 18-19 wide targets. If you are shooting at E-types, just use whatever hashmark matches the width of the target most closely, hold into the wind if necessary, squeeze it off, then celebrate. Its that easy. Ive shot matches that use E-type pop-ups and steel out to 500, and its like cheating. I really like this reticle.

    For SBRs, you can probably get a similar level of satisfaction from the T5xi with .308 reticle, which Strelok tells me would be close to perfect with my 12.3. Run your chosen ammo through a ballistic calc before choosing. This thing does not like RA556B, for example. With the P4xi, you are looking for ammo with ~47.5 drop at 500 with a 200yd zero. With the T5xi .308, Strelok and Steiner say you want ~53.75 drop at 500 with a 200yd zero. Zeroing further out (300-400) with the appropriate part of the reticle will make most any ammo follow the reticle better, of course.

    Comments from Use:

    It has capped turrets, which I prefer. Aint nobody clicking DOPE with a 1-4x. The turret caps have not fallen off. Thats never happened with any other optic Ive used, but for some drunken reason it seemed noteworthy. The illum adjustment is kinda mushy. However (comma) I like that it has an off position between each setting.

    The mag ring rotates the opposite direction of pretty much any other scope I can remember. If you own other scopes, this might not be a good thing. But I dig it. With the throw lever, the mantra is: righty tighty, lefty longy. Or whatever similarly lame thing you use to remember. The reason I like it this way, is that at 1x, the mag ring wont get accidentally adjusted by my gear, since I am right handed. The ring rotates smoothly, but is stiff enough to help prevent accidental adjustment. You want the throw lever.

    Eye relief is excellent. No chance of getting whacked with this thing. Its basically the opposite of the ACOG, and I run my stock a click further out than I do with a RDS and magnifier.

    Its astigmatism-proof. Which is starting to be A Thing for me. This is because it uses a fiber to produce the dot rather than whatever wizardry other dots use.

    Durability:

    It seems durable enough. It retains its zero. I have not broken it yet. It (rifle plus optic) goes nearly everywhere with me and spends a lot of time in a case sliding around the bed of my truck; approximately 6-8hrs a week, driving way too fast on rough roads. The rifle has been treated like a beater, and has been used in force-on-force training and competition. This scope has gotten rained on, a lot, and has been submerged a few times. Its been painted. The cat has knocked it off the table. Did I mention that it retains its zero?

    Where Other Optics are Better:

    I have to nitpick on this one. I plan on replacing most of my current optics with Steiners. It is heavier than a RDS, and the RDS can be left on. The weight is negligible compared to a magnifier. I kinda wish it used a AAA or something battery somehow, but I dont think thats realistic. There are scopes with better glass and more magnification, that cost twice as much. Taenebraex does not make covers for the P4, but they do for the T5. The illum knob is mushy. The Comp M and Eotech are slightly better in funky positions that you are unlikely to use. Razor would be better for 3gun because of the JM1 reticle. I dunno; Im grasping at straws here.

    If this reads more like a glowing endorsement than a comparison, there is a reason for that. Its a really versatile optic, and is priced super low. I plan on re-equipping every non-clone rifle from 12.3 to 18 with either a P4xi or P5xi.
    Last edited by 1168; 11-23-19 at 09:23.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Lowcountry, SC.
    Posts
    1,793
    Feedback Score
    4 (100%)
    To continue:

    LPVO vs Magnifier:

    Magnifiers appear to be limited to 3x, practically, in my experience. The 6x ones have drawbacks that diminish their benefits. Magnifiers do not get you that autoranging BDC reticle that Ive been raving about. It does get you the benefits of 3x, but nothing more. If you need magnification sometimes, the LPVO is the winner here, and specifically the P4xi in my case.

    But is it truly 1x?:

    Of course not. Doesnt matter, either. Anything less than 1.5x is essentially as fast as 1x on whatever optic if you keep both eyes open. I suspect the P4xi is very close to 1x, though. I could still use it as a giant ghost ring if needed with my FSB. Not sure why I would need to.

    Backup Irons:

    Offset iron sights are a good practice with scopes, and this is no exception. As noted before, I can use this like a big ghost ring, much like an Aimpoint. However, because it has a reticle that works without illum, the sort of situation that would require backup sighting will require offsets. Something like straight up broken glass, which would wreck an Aimpoint, also.

    I should point out that red dots with magnifiers may also require offset BUIS, or simply not be compatible with them. An Aimpoint PRO in ADM mount with a Vortex 3x mag is compatible with Magpul MBUS. A Comp M4s in a Larue mount is not, due to lack of space on the receiver. Offsets will also not work, because it flips to the right.

    Focal Plane:

    Since the focus of this post is on an optic with an entry level price, Ill touch on focal plane, in case someone looking to purchase a first LPVO lands here via google. This is a second focal plane (SFP) optic. This means that the rangefinding and drop compensating parts of the reticle are worthless (except perhaps to an expert, which I am not) at any power less than 4x. This has not been an issue for me, nor has it been an issue with any other SFP optic I have used. If I need to compensate for range, I will need the magnification.
    The upside of the SFP reticle, and others that I have used, is that it is heavy and very visible at 1x. This is especially valuable when lighting is marginal. Additionally, I have noticed that SFP scopes have a tendency to have a good performance to dollar ratio.

    If youve been bored enough to read all this rambling, I hope that you found it useful.
    Last edited by 1168; 11-22-19 at 20:42.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    669
    Feedback Score
    6 (100%)
    Wait, you have a cat?

    Great write up. Ive been looking hard at these and Im sold.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Lowcountry, SC.
    Posts
    1,793
    Feedback Score
    4 (100%)
    Quote Originally Posted by CPM View Post
    Wait, you have a cat?

    Great write up. Ive been looking hard at these and Im sold.
    Love my cat. Shes a violent little sociopath that always acts like shes on patrol. Brings me fully grown rabbits.
    RLTW

    That is why there isn't an AK chart. -SteyrAUG
    They eat tide pods also so what's your point? Retrorevolver77

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    669
    Feedback Score
    6 (100%)
    Thats nice. I routinely, this morning included, watch all four of my dogs chase a rabbit around my backyard until it eludes them and they slam theyre faces into the fence the rabbit scoots under. But your cat cant retrieve ducks.

    Just texted a friend selling a PX4 I was on the fence about.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    656
    Feedback Score
    8 (90%)

    My P4xi journey

    I traded for one recently, havent had time to do anything but mount and look through it. I dig it though. Nice glass and simple reticle. Its going to go side by side with a Vortex PST 1-6.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Posts
    158
    Feedback Score
    2 (100%)
    I'm strongly considering moving this direction, your write up was really helpful and the price on these things is really quite attractive. Any word on how rugged/reliable/durable they are?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Posts
    158
    Feedback Score
    2 (100%)
    Could you comment on why this scope rather than the 5101-t5xi 1-5? It weighs two ounces more and literally costs twice as much. Does it offer noticeably significant better optics, glass, etc.?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Lowcountry, SC.
    Posts
    1,793
    Feedback Score
    4 (100%)
    Quote Originally Posted by CAMagnussen View Post
    Could you comment on why this scope rather than the 5101-t5xi 1-5? It weighs two ounces more and literally costs twice as much. Does it offer noticeably significant better optics, glass, etc.?
    The P4xis BDC is optimal for 16 barrels launching 68-70gr 556 or 62gr 223, or 13.x-14.x barrels launching 55gr 223 or 62gr 5.56.

    I have not used a P5xi. What I do know is that it has slightly more mag and different BDC reticle calibrations.

    I would not choose the 5101 (223 T5xi), unless I was putting it on an 18+ barrel or using 55gr. Its made for fast ammo. Even in an 18-20 barrel, if youre using 77gr, the 223 BDC reticle will be a bit off, and the P4xi will be closest.

    The T5xi 308 (5102) reticle is calibrated to work well in the 2500-2600fps range, the P4xi is set around 2700-2900, and the T5xi 223 (5101) should work at 3000-3200.

    Im going to try the 308 model (5102) on my 12.3 556 when I get it. Hopefully black friday.
    RLTW

    That is why there isn't an AK chart. -SteyrAUG
    They eat tide pods also so what's your point? Retrorevolver77

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    1,273
    Feedback Score
    7 (100%)
    I don't think you will find many saying the 5 is worth the price increase over the 4, but like 1168 mentioned the 7.62 reticle 5 would be a good match for a 12.5 or shorter. Course a 4 with a 7.62 would be sweeter. Good to see the price on the 5 coming down right now Botach (I know, I know) has it in stock for $1100.
    Last edited by mack7.62; 11-23-19 at 10:01.
    The Trump Doctrine is Were America, Bitch. Thats the Trump Doctrine.

    "He is free to evade reality, he is free to unfocus his mind and stumble blindly down any road he pleases, but not free to avoid the abyss he refuses to see."

Page 1 of 5 123 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •