Nikon Prostaff Rimfire Classic 4x32mm Riflescope
By the Guns and Shooting Online Staff
Nikon expanded their riflescope line downward in price with the introduction of the made in the Philippines Prostaff line. These medium priced riflescopes are apparently intended to compete with the likes of the Weaver Classic series and the Leupold Rifleman line. We here at Guns and Shooting Online have used Nikon Monarch and Buckmasters scopes for years, but this Rimfire Classic 4x32mm is the first Prostaff scope that we have reviewed. Thus, it was with considerable interest that we examined this new (to us) offering.
Our first impression was that the scope was shipped well packaged in an attractive Nikon Prostaff box. Included inside was the usual paperwork, the scope itself, lens caps and a set of tip-off scope mounting rings, a very complete package. There was even a nifty Prostaff window decal. Altogether, a good first impression.
The scope inside the box was an attractive, fixed four-power rimfire model. It is finished in a tasteful matte black with "Nikon" in small gold letters on the left side of the adjustment turret, the Prostaff logo on the windage adjustment cap and "Nikon Prostaff" in small gold letters around the front of the objective bell. Nothing garish or intrusive. The Prostaff Rimfire Classic is also available in silver and camo finishes complementing practically any rifle.
It incorporates fully coated internal lens elements with multi-coated external lens surfaces (front and back) and, like most rimfire riflescopes, is focused to eliminate parallax at 50 yards. Nikon claims up to 90% light transmission through this optical system.
The reticle is the Nikoplex, which is a Duplex type that incorporates a wider central "gate" than the original. It is a good choice for small or big game hunting, although we wish that the outer areas of the crosshair were a little finer. The field of view is 11.1 feet at 50 yards and the optimum eye relief is a generous 4.1 inches. The windage and elevation adjustment range is a very generous 80 MOA and the coin-slot adjustment screws click in ¼ MOA increments.
Focusing requires multiple turns of the ocular bell. There is a conveniently wide, knurled locking ring to retain the focus setting and a rubber "eyebrow guard" ring around the end of the ocular bell. This Prostaff scope is 11.2 inches long and weighs 12 ounces.
Like most modern scopes, the Prostaff Rimfire is dry nitrogen filled and O-ring sealed to ensure that it is waterproof and fogproof under all field conditions. It is covered by Nikon's Lifetime Full Warranty. Nikon USA explains the latter this way:
"If any Nikon riflescope is found to have defects in workmanship or materials, we will, at our option, repair or replace it at no charge, even if you are not the original owner. No time limit applies and no warranty card is required."
Here are the specifications for the Nikon Prostaff Rimfire Classic 4x32:
We were reviewing a Henry Lever Octagon .22 Magnum rifle concurrently with the Prostaff Rimfire Classic, so that rifle made a convenient test bed for the scope. Since the top of the Henry rifle's receiver is grooved to accept tip-off scope rings and a set of these are supplied with the scope, mounting was very easy. The layout and design of this scope are conventional and there is plenty of room between the adjustment turret and the front and rear bells for positioning the mounting rings.
The optics of this Prostaff scope are brilliant. It is very sharp, contrasty and well corrected for optical aberrations from center to edge, something that is easier to achieve in a fixed four-power scope than in the variable power models that are so popular today. Color rendition is very good. This is a nice scope to look through. It provides excellent views of the target. In the course of sighting-in the test rifle at 100 yards, we found the Nikon's adjustments to be adequately accurate and repeatable, with positive clicks that are easy to count.
We had the opportunity to compare this scope with several other rimfire scopes at the range and afterward at the office. Our subjective opinion is that its optics were superior to the other medium priced rimfire scopes and equal to the most expensive models we had on hand, which cost up to four times the price of this Nikon. Even better, we could not find anything to carp about, an unusual occurrence in a Guns and Shooting Online review!
It might be worth mentioning before we conclude this review that, despite the popularity of variable power riflescopes, a fixed four-power scope is about ideal for small game hunting with .22 rimfire rifles and a fixed power scope is usually more compact than a variable power model. A fixed power scope is thus often a better match in terms of size and weight for .22 LR hunting rifles. It can also offer superior optics compared to a similarly priced variable power model, as was ably demonstrated by this Prostaff 4x32.
For most of the staff, this Nikon Rimfire Classic 4x32mm scope represented our first experience with Nikon's popularly priced Prostaff line and we were very favorably impressed. Its optics are great and the price is moderate. It is a winner and we recommend it highly.
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