Burris Signature Select Scopes

By Randy Wakeman

Burris Signature Select 3-10x40mm
Illustration courtesy of Burris

American consumers are a funny lot. Sometimes we do not purchase what we claim we want. We tend to make some peculiar choices when it comes to visual products. Everyone wants better, sharper, higher-resolution images, or so many of us say. Yet, it wasn't all that long ago when the markedly superior BetaMax format failed to VHS. 8mm, Hi-8, Super-VHS, and LaserDisc (twice) both promised and delivered better image and audio quality than good old VHS, and they all failed as the home entertainment medium of choice.

Sometimes, good enough is adequate and wonderfully successful as well. So it is with some of the features and benefits of the Burris scope line.

I can certainly say it is well known that "Quad Rings" are superior seals to "O-Rings." Quad Rings have a four-lobe design that offers twice the sealing surface of an O-Ring, requiring less compression to maintain an effective seal.

Burris scopes feature double-leaf springs that have proved more reliable and longer-lasting than the conventional single leaf spring arrays on most scopes. How many of us bother with technical details in our scope selection process is another matter.

The Burris Signature Select line includes the following models. The standard finish is matte black:

  • 1.5-5x40mm variable
  • 1.75-5x32mm Safari variable
  • 3-10x40mm variable
  • 3-12x44mm variable
  • 4-16x44mm variable
  • 6-24x44mm variable
  • 8-32x44mm variable

The reviewed scope is the Burris Signature Select 3X-10X-40mm Matte with Ballistic Plex reticle. It has all the standard Burris features: fully multi-coated lenses, quad seals, double leaf springs, steel on steel adjustments, quick focus, a one-piece main tube, and a one-piece ocular/power ring tube. In addition, the Signature Select line has what is best called "30 mm internals in a 1 inch tube," meaning internal lens elements that Burris states are some 65% larger than other 1 inch scopes.

The eye relief is both generous and tightly controlled at 3-3/4" plus or minus just 1/4" throughout the entire zoom range. The 1.75-5x32mm Safari model offers an extra 3/4" of eye relief to save your brow when shooting heavy recoiling safari rifles. Burris Signature Select scopes also offer very forgiving eye position. They are also quite tolerant of head movement without blinking out. The adjustments are precise, repeatable, and are both finger and coin adjustable.

Burris gives you the option of a standard plex, mil dot, or ballistic plex reticles. And there are other niceties that came with the Burris Signature Select: superior scope covers and a form fitting "Scope Coat" to keep your scope abrasion and dirt free.

There is one feature of the Burris Signature Select line that, while perhaps technically superior, I have mixed emotions about. That is the one-piece power ring/ocular assembly. I can certainly see the lwoer potential for leak paths. However, it also inhibits the use of flip-out scope covers. With Burris' utilization of quad rings, the leak path reduction seems a bit more theoretical than an actual advantage.

Our Signature Select review scope came with the Ballistic Plex reticle. For whitetail hunting east of the Mississippi, or hunting the coastal rain forests from California to Alaska, you may not need a ballistic reticle. However, if you do your homework with one, you will certainly be glad it is there if you need it.

Since Burris charges no premium for this reticle versus their standard Plex reticle, I can think of no reason not to get it (unless you prefer a simpler reticle). If you use it just once in a hunting lifetime, I believe you'll be glad you have it.

All I can say is congratulations to Burris on their new Signature Select Series. It has been a long time since I've been so totally impressed with a scope line as I am with their Signature Select series. If you seek the benefits of a trajectory-compensating reticle, these scopes are an excellent choice.

Back to the Scopes and Optics Page

Copyright 2005, 2012 by Randy Wakeman. All rights reserved.