I’ve had the Argos BTR GEN2 6-24×50 scope on my Ruger Precision Rimfire for some time now, and figured I should share a review. This scope has a $449.99 MSRP, and can be found for around $400. That makes it popular for certain .22 rimfire competition classes, no doubt. But it’s a great option for anyone looking for big features at a reasonable price.
Description and features
The full name of the scope I reviewed is the Argos BTR GEN2 6-24×50 APLR2 FFP IR MOA. Some of the features are obvious, from the name. It’s got 6x to 24x magnification, with a bright 50mm objective. Argon purging provides thermal stability and fog-free waterprooof (30mm) matte finish tubes. There’s a a first focal plane (FFP) illuminated reticle (IR). Although a MIL reticle is available, I chose the MOA one, since that’s what I’m familiar with. Like most scopes, it’s assembled using 6061-T6 aluminum for a good balance between weight and strength.
Other features include the Precision Zero Stop System, which is one of my favorites. Dial in your adjustment via the audible and tactile clicks, then return to your zero without looking. Multicoated optics allow for a sharper and brighter image, even at higher magnification. Besides being waterproof and fog-proof, it’s also got an etched glass reticle. That and the overall design contribute to it being shockproof as well. So while it may be a favorite of rimfire enthusiasts, it will stand up to heavy centerfire calibers as well. Oh, Athlon includes a pair of flip-up covers, and a battery for the illuminated reticle too.
Specification by the numbers
As mentioned, it’s a 6-24x zoom, with a 50mm objective and 30mm tube diameter. Exit pupil goes from 8.2 to 2.1mm. Eye relief is a close 3.3 inches. And the field of view at 100 yards varies from 16.7 down to 4.5 feet. Now for the good stuff. Exposed turrets offer 0.25 MOA per click, with a total of 15 MOA per rotation, and a range of 60 MOA for both windage and elevation. On the side is a handy parallax adjustment that focuses from infinity down to a very tight 10 yards. It’s actually marked out to 500 yards, as a reminder it’s not just for rimfire. All this is packaged in a 14.1 inch scope weighing 30.3 ounces.
During the great “everything shooting-related” shortage of Covid-19, my LGS didn’t have a lot of rings to choose from. Being impatient, we just tried whatever they had that looked close to the right height. In the end, that was a set of UTG heavy duty rings. I installed the rings and scope using a Wheeler FAT wrench for accurate torque. There’s a tiny gap between the scope and the handguard, and it’s held zero from day one. That in itself is impressive, as after every shooting session, we usually give the “gun bus” a little workout. That’s high speed runs off-road, and sometimes a little air time. It’s as though I forget there are firearms in the back of my FJ Cruiser, until they make some noise on hard landings. My point is, the rings are fine for being on the budget end.
At the range
With 24x of magnification, and a bright 50mm objective, it was easy to zero this scope on my Ruger Precision Rimfire. The diopter adjustment is damped enough that it doesn’t easily get bumped out of focus. I found the side parallax adjustment to correspond well to actual shooting distances. This also makes compensating for that little .22 bullet drop really easy to calculate. A lever of the zoom ring might be appreciated when shooting with gloves, but it was fine in the bare-handed heat of summer. It’s also not the smoothest, but not objectionable. Just a little rough at some spots. From what I have read, the previous version didn’t always get high marks for the turrets either. I’ve never tried the old one. But the Gen 2 turrets are both audible and tactile.
Besides shooting our steel gongs, we’d look for large chunks of clays, empty cans, or even the stray golf balls that lay beyond 100 yards. Determine distance, adjust, and shoot. Repeat as necessary. Again, the zero lock just makes shooting a rimfire so much easier at various distances. I didn’t twist the turrets stop to stop to check tracking, but over something like 15 MOA, it stayed true. Of course, the etched reticle allows for quick adjustment via holdovers as well. For my shooting, speed is rarely an issue. But in competition, where it really matters, I don’t think this scope would let me down. By the time I got to the point where my scope was the weakest link, I’m sure I’d be due to upgrade some other equipment too.
In my other life as a photographer, I enjoy a lot of Zeiss lenses. Is the Argos BTR GEN2 6-24×50 APLR2 FFP IR MOA going to equal Zeiss glass? Of course not. You’d be kidding yourself to expect that quality at this price point. But just like in photography, manufacturing techniques and glass coatings have come a long way. For a retail price of about $400, I am more than satisfied with the image quality. It diminishes at the longer end of the zoom range, so don’t look for as much edge sharpness there. But remember that a little bit more sharpness is going to cost about double what this lens costs.
Who is it for?
The Argos BTR GEN2 series of scopes would suit a wide range of enthusiasts. If you’re just getting started in long range/PRS, it’s pretty budget-friendly. For those that need to keep their rimfire competition rig under $1k, it’s very popular. And if you’re like me, and just want some good glass to top a fun plinker, it’s competitive there too.
Athlon packs in lot of features for the price. A first focal plane illuminated reticle, and true Precision Zero Stop. Turrets that don’t feel mushy. Optics coatings that help maintain image quality at the long end of the zoom range. This is a value lens. Not the value that means “cheap” to some people. It’s the value that means “money well spent”. Check the shooting forums for both enthusiasts and competitors using this scope. You’ll read about people winning local competitions with one, or hitting some target out to hundreds of yards. It’s solid and reliable, and backed by an excellent warranty, in the unlikely event it fails on you, or requires service. For more info, head over to Athlonoptics.com.
I’d like to thank Athlon Optics for providing their Argos BTR GEN2 6-24×50 APLR2 FFP IR MOA scope for my long-term review. It’s been a great opportunity to try a different brand, and it did not disappoint.