August 31, 2023
Hunters glassing with the Vortex® New Razor® Hd 13-39x56 Straight and Angled Spotting Scopes

Why carry a spotting scope?

To cover vast landscapes, or to reach out farther than most binoculars can take you, a spotting scope is the perfect tool. If you’ve done any shopping already, you’ve probably seen there are two different shapes.

Straight and angled spotting scopes on tripods

Spotting scopes come in many different sizes and builds, but they’ll either be angled or straight.

We call these angled spotting scopes and straight spotting scopes. Pretty simple. What’s not so simple is knowing which shape is right for you. Today we want to take a quick look at each type and help you pick the right one for your needs.

Advantages of angled spotting scopes

By far, our most popular style is the angled spotting scope. Most commonly mounted on a tripod, angled spotters can be the more versatile option. This is perfect for hunters glassing big country, where you’re frequently seated for long sessions. Another perk for hunters? Angled spotters are far more comfortable for glassing upward at steep angles.

Another advantage to angled spotters is they can be used from the side, out of the way of your other gear. This is because adjustable mounting collars allow you to change the spotter’s positioning, turning the optic within the collar to get the best angle for your application.

Range shooters viewing target with the a Vortex angled spotting scope.

An angled spotter can be your best range buddy, staying out of the way and spotting impacts.

Finally, angled spotters are perfect when you plan on sharing the view with people of different heights. Simply loosen the thumb screw and turn the mounting collar for different angles, or adjust the height of your tripod.

Advantages of straight spotting scopes

One of the biggest advantages of a straight spotting scope, especially to those new to spotters, is it’s a much more intuitive way to glass. Unlike an angled spotter, your eyes are already pointed at your target.

Where straight spotters can really shine, though, is when we mount them on a car or truck window. This turns your vehicle into a mobile spotting station.

A new Vortex® Razor® HD 13-39x56 Angled Spotting Scope mounted with a car mount on a car window.

It’s simple to turn your car or truck into a mobile spotting station with a straight spotting scope and a car window mount.

On a tripod, straight spotters make glassing at a steep downward angle more comfortable, and when you’re done glassing, they slide into and out of your pack faster and can take up less space.

Which is right or you?

Your choice comes down to application. For most people, the angled spotter will be the more versatile choice, but straight spotters have their place, too. Remember that either way you go, these are powerful optical tools and need to be mounted to a stable platform to be effective. (Check out our full line of tripods.)

Checkout our latest spotter, the Razor® 13-39x56 spotting scope, a compact powerhouse perfect for western hunting.

It’s our hope you can learn and laugh along with the expert voices we feature on this blog. We want to be clear that the opinions you see featured here are just that: opinions. The content belongs to the authors and is not necessarily the opinion of Vortex Optics.

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