22 Best Athlon Optics Scopes, Binoculars, Sights & Rangefinders [Reviews]

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Athlon Scopes Reviews

Athlon Optics may be the best-kept secret, but we're about to expose them to all.

This American brand is deserving of more attention by hunters, wildlife observers, competition shooters, and avid outdoorsmen.

Athlon has a partnership with "one of the finest rifle scope suppliers in the world," and it shows.  Their flagship series of optics have every luxury feature you can think of that puts them on the top shelves with the best.  And, they do this all without the high-end cost consumers may be accustomed to, and yet, disappointed with.

To provide relief to your pocket, this brand delivers the most competitive prices in the industry with one of the best warranties you'll find.

With a wide variety of available optics, you'll find one priced right within your budget.  Leave disappointment at the door and cheer on Athlon.

Athlon Scope Reviews

IMAGEPRODUCTDETAILS
tt-table__imageCronus BTR GEN2 UHD 4.5-29X56
  • Magnification: 4.5-29X 56mm
  • Reticle: APLR5 MOA/APRS1 MIL/APRS6 MIL
  • Price Range: Under $2000
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tt-table__imageAres BTR GEN2 HD 4.5-27x50
  • Magnification: 4.5-27X 50mm
  • Reticle: APLR3 MOA/APLR4 MOA/APRS5 MIL
  • Price Range: Under $1000
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tt-table__imageMidas TAC 6-24X50 APRS2
  • Magnification: 6-24X 50mm
  • Reticle: APRS2 (FFP)
  • Price Range: Under $600
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tt-table__imageHelos BTR 1-4.5x24
  • Magnification: 1-4.5X 24mm
  • Reticle: ATSR3 SFP IR MOA
  • Price Range: Under $500
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tt-table__imageArgos BTR GEN2 6-24x50
  • Magnification: 6-24X 50mm
  • Reticle: APLR2 MOA/AMPR MIL
  • Price Range: Under $500
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tt-table__imageTalos 4-16X40 MIL
  • Magnification: 4-16X 40mm
  • Reticle: Mil Dot (SFP)
  • Price Range: Under $200
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tt-table__imageNeos 4-12X40 Center X
  • Magnification: 4-16X 40mm
  • Reticle: Center X (SFP)
  • Price Range: Under $150
CHECK PRICE

Athlon hits a home run with cost-conscious buyers looking for high-quality features in a rifle scope.  Their standard of quality is above par for the industry as all their scopes have a fully weatherproof build, FMC (Fully Multi-Coated) optics, and aircraft-grade aluminum construction regardless of how low in price they go.

While price points often resonate with the entry-level and mid-range market, Athlon also offers high-end scopes with big ticket prices.  We've reviewed the most popular tactical and hunting rifle scopes the brand has to date

1. Cronus BTR GEN2 4.5-29x56 UHD Review

Cronus BTR GEN2 UHD 4.5-29X56
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

Overall, the second generation of Cronus BTR rifle scopes have an improved turret design and full reticle illumination to see better, stay out longer, and trust that long-range shots are as accurate as can be. However, locking turrets is one feature that is not seen on the upgrade.

Pros:

  • UHD optics
  • FFP illuminated reticles
  • Crisp turrets
  • Zero stop
  • Metal turret design

Cons:

  • No locking turrets

The new Cronus scopes have UHD ED glass that is purportedly superior to other ED scope alternatives. With the addition of Advanced FMC coatings, the image is clear and bright with minimal CA towards the edges of the FOV.

The Gen2 scopes have illuminated, glass etched FFP reticles available in either MOA or MILs. The entire reticle is illuminated, except for the black posts, that is powered by a CR2032 battery. The illumination knob features intermittent ‘off’ settings and is located on the side focus that focuses to a minimum of 25 yards.

While Athlon has had a history of having soft, mushy turrets, they used a stainless-steel turret design that gives the Cronus BTR tactile, loud adjustments and true tracking. Adjustments are in 0.25 MOA and 0.1 MILs. They offer extreme long-range performance with 110 MOA elevation travel in the MOA scope and 32 MIL elevation travel in the MIL scope thanks to the huge 34mm tubes.

With exposed turrets and even with a Zero Stop, it’s a shame that they do not lock or that the windage is not capped. However, they have been reported to be stiff and require intentional adjustment to be moved.

With the Gen2 improvements, the Cronus BTR is a long-range, competition, and lowlight hunting scope for those who want the best from Athlon.

2. Ares BTR GEN2 HD 4.5-27x50 Review

Ares BTR GEN2 HD 4.5-27x50
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

The Athlon Ares BTR GEN 2 HD scope is closer to mid-range versus high-end, and it's a shock that it lacks ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass. However, the Ares BTR did get an upgrade on the inside that may make the difference in acquiring sub-MOA groups at the range to confident takedowns in the hunt.

Pros:

  • HD optics
  • FFP illuminated reticles
  • Crisp turrets
  • Zero stop
  • Metal turret design

Cons:

  • No ED glass

Bear in mind that since Athlon makes a distinction between HD and ED glass, it can be surmised that the Ares BTR GEN2 scope has low dispersion properties but does not have that “extra” that qualifies it as ED glass – likely the lack of calcium fluoride.

So, what is the upgrade? The primary difference between the Gen 1 and Gen 2 scopes is the upgrade to the moving turret mechanisms. To eliminate mushy, soft adjustments, Athlon gave the Ares BTR a new stainless steel turret adjustment system that is also seen on the Cronus BTR GEN2 scope. This feature alone provides excellent, tactile adjustments and tracking accuracy that can be relied on.

Turrets will be in either ¼ MOA or 1/10 MIL based on the reticle scope of choice. A total of 80 MOA or 24 MIL in elevation adjustment travel is available due to the 30mm tube. Turrets are exposed, the elevation has a zero stop, but neither are locking. They’re said to be stiff to prevent unintentional movement as is also true of the power ring. Hence, the power ring has a raised thumb grip.

The Ares BTR scope has 3.9” of eye relief, is 13.8” in length, and weighs 27.3 oz. The side focus is adjustable all the way down to 25 yards. As is expected of a mid-range scope, it’s completely shock, fog, and waterproof.

Having been redesigned and brought back as the Gen 2 line, the new Ares BTR turrets are appealing to those who have experienced the mushy ones of yesteryear.

3. Midas TAC 6-24X50 APRS2 Review

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Athlon Optics Midas TAC Riflescope 6-24x50 30mm APRS2 FFP MIL Reticle
114 Reviews
Athlon Optics Midas TAC Riflescope 6-24x50 30mm APRS2 FFP MIL Reticle
  • 0.1 MIL Click Value, 25 MIL Total Elevation Adjustment, 10 Yard to Infinity Parallax Adjustment
  • First focal plane reticle stays valid at all power settings allowing you to fully utilize the specially designed reticle that shrinks or grows along with your target as...

The Midas TAC series is known for its feature-loaded scopes, and the 6-24x50 model with the APRS2 reticle is the most popular of the lot.

Pros:

  • Price
  • HD glass
  • FFP reticle
  • Glass-etched reticle
  • Zero stop

Cons:

  • Non-illuminated reticle

To be fair, no scopes in the Midas TAC series has an illuminated reticle, but that hasn't been mentioned as a drawback for any of the highly satisfied buyers.  The other premium features it has far outweigh the lack of illumination.  Besides, no battery is needed, and no illumination failure will be cause to set you back in the field.

Maintaining its premium status, it has HD glass, a glass-etched reticle placed in the FFP, and a locked-down zero stop - all features indicative of high-end scopes.

The APRS2 reticle is a mil reticle that's simple, uncluttered, and allows precision shots at long ranges.  There is a .03 floating dot that draws your eye to the center and is surrounded by .2 mil hashmarks up to 6 mils on both elevation and windage crosshairs.  Want to dial in?  You have 25 mil of elevation travel and 15 mil of windage travel.  Clicks are in .1 mil with a travel rotation of 10 mils.

With high power and a large 50 mm aperture, you'll need a clear sight picture at all times.  Thanks to the HD glass, Advanced Fully Multi-coated lenses, and XPL exterior coating, you'll have that.

Don't let the low price fool you - this is premium quality in a mid-range priced scope.

4. Helos BTR 1-4.5x24 Review

Helos BTR 1-4.5x24
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

In general, the Athlon Helos BTR is purpose built for service rifle and high-power competitions. While it might not have the same optics as high-end Athlon alternatives, additional features and overall performance makes it a compliant, value scope for the competitor seeking distinguished points.

Pros:

  • SFP illuminated reticle
  • Side focus
  • ¼ MOA adjustments
  • Zero Stop & Revolution Lock
  • Competition scope

Cons:

  • Heavy

Most LPVOs have weights between 17-22 oz and the Helos BTR is on the heavy end of that scale. It may take some adjustment especially if it’s the first time incorporating a scope into CMP matches.

With no more than 4.5x power, a 24mm objective, adjustable parallax (side focus), ¼ MOA turrets, SFP reticle, and easily visible turret markings, the Helos is set up for compliance and to meet shooter preferences.

What else makes the Helos appealing to marksmen is its hard zero stop and revolution lock features. The entire adjustment travel is within one full revolution and the locking pin prevents you from overshooting it. No more wondering where you are on the dial.

With the ATSR3 reticle, you only have the option of an MOA system. The circle-dot and BDC drop crosshairs are illuminated but posts are in the black. The dot is 0.5 MOA in size at 4.5x magnification – small enough to still see the black and put that dot on the bull’s-eye. The reticle is glass-etched and is visible in daylight without illumination, though red-on-black is better for aiming visibility and is provided by the CR2032 battery.

For the beginner looking to move from iron sights to magnified optics for high-power and CMP matches, the 1-4.5x LPVO from Athlon was made for that purpose. This is where Athlon meets the balance between quality performance and affordability.

5. Argos BTR GEN2 6-24x50 Review

Argos BTR GEN2 6-24x50
Image Credit - Argos

On average, the Argos is one of Athlon’s better selling scopes for quality versus cost. With l0w-end, mid-range quality in mind, the Argos BTR Gen 2 rifle scope is a starter model for long-range disciplines or PRS competition.

Pros:

  • Price
  • 4x zoom
  • FFP illuminated reticles
  • Zero stop
  • Exposed turrets

Cons:

  • Only decent optics

To be fair, the new generation of Argos BTR scopes did see an upgrade in the optics. Gen 1 scopes had FMC coatings, but the Gen 2 models have Athlon’s Advanced FMC coatings. While not quite ‘HD’ quality and certainly not ED glass, it is an improvement. However, CA and loss of resolution at max power is to be expected.

The 30mm tube still only offers 60 MOA in total adjustment travel, but instead of 12 MOA per rotation, it’s now 15 MOA. Clicks are in ¼ MOA, and the turrets are oversized and exposed. They don’t lock, but they do come to a hard stop to your zero thanks to the zero stop on the Gen 2 models.

Reticles were changed up as well and the 6-24x scopes is available with either MOA or MIL reticles that are in the FFP and illuminated. The battery compartment slash illumination knob is located on the ocular bell – a rather utilitarian concept.

It has the widest FOV of all the high-powered Argos BTR Gen2 models, eye relief of 3.3”, and weighs a beefy 30.3 oz. All in all, it’s right around ‘right’ for its price point and configuration. It could have better optics, but you’ll have to move out of the Argos series for that. For most purposes, this mid-range higher-end, entry-level scope will do. For the money – it’ll more than do.

6. Talos 4-16X40 MIL Review

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Athlon Optics , Talos , Riflescope , 4-16 x 40 Second Focal Plane (SFP) 1' Tube,...
128 Reviews
Athlon Optics , Talos , Riflescope , 4-16 x 40 Second Focal Plane (SFP) 1" Tube,...
  • Fully multi-coated lenses gives you better light transmission to bring optimum brightness and true color across the entire light Spectrum
  • Reticle etched on the Glass that provides excellent backing support for complex reticle design and offers great durability and much higher shock resistance to Recoil

The Talos is a high-rated and affordable scope mounted to many 10/22 and AR-15 rifles.  Target shooting and small game hunting are popular pastimes the Talos will see you through.

Pros:

  • Price
  • High power
  • FMC optics
  • One-piece tube
  • Weatherproof

Cons:

  • No exterior lens coating

With high power, a 40 mm objective lens, and a heat-treated, one-piece tube but still manages to stay lightweight at 19.1 oz.  The aircraft-grade aluminum construction keeps it light without compromising on strength and robustness.

Edge-to-edge clarity remains crisp right up to max power.  You'll need this kind of FMC glass quality for low light hunting and reaching out to long-range distances for small targets like prairie dogs.  While no one has complained about this, it would boost effectiveness in the field if it had an exterior, protective lens coating.

As a hunting tool, it's shock, fog, and waterproof.  With a little longer eye relief than most other Athlon scopes, this one has up to 3.8" at 4x and Athlon's standard of 3.35" at 16x.  A third turret allows you to focus down to 15 yards.

The Mil Dot SFP reticle is super simple with a center cross aiming point and 1 mil incremental dots up to 5 mils across both crosshairs.  With 20 mils of adjustment travel, you can make .1 mil clicks with up to 5 mils per revolution.

Hunters - stay within budget with this 4x scope that'll get 'er done!

7. Neos 4-12X40 Center X Review

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Athlon Optics , Neos , Riflescope , 4-12 x 40 Second Focal Plane (SFP) 1' Tube,...
259 Reviews
Athlon Optics , Neos , Riflescope , 4-12 x 40 Second Focal Plane (SFP) 1" Tube,...
  • Fully multi-coated lenses gives you better light transmission to bring optimum brightness and true color across the entire light Spectrum
  • Reticle etched on the Glass that provides excellent backing support for complex reticle design and offers great durability and much higher shock resistance to Recoil

The Neos is designed to be everything a hunter and target shooter needs in a scope - accurate, easy to use, and cheap.

Pros:

  • Price
  • FMC optics
  • Aluminum build
  • Weatherproof
  • Side focus

Cons:

  • Short eye relief

With an eye relief of 3.15-3.11", it's on the short side, but if it's mounted to super low-kicking rifles with .22 or .223 cartridges, you'll avoid the ever-dreaded scope kiss.

For an entry-level price, we're impressed that Athlon maintains their standard of quality in the Neos with Wideband FMC optics, fully shock, fog, and waterproof build, and aircraft-grade aluminum construction.

With max power over 10x, the Neos features a side focus that focuses all the way down to 10 yards.  The Center X is the duplex reticle style with heavy posts that increase visibility especially in low light conditions.  This model has .25 MOA turrets with 60 MOA in elevation and windage adjustment travel.

True to hunting style scopes, it features capped turrets, a weatherproof body, and a simple SFP reticle.

Athlon Binocular Reviews

IMAGEPRODUCTDETAILS
tt-table__imageCronus G2 UHD 15x56
  • Field of View: 235 ft @ 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 18.5 mm
  • Price Range: Under $700
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tt-table__imageCronus G2 UHD 10x42
  • Field of View: 338 ft @ 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 19.3 mm
  • Price Range: Under $500
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tt-table__imageMidas G2 UHD 8x42
  • Field of View: 426 ft @ 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 17.2 mm
  • Price Range: Under $300
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tt-table__imageArgos G2 UHD 10x42
  • Field of View: 319 ft @ 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 16.1 mm
  • Price Range: Under $250
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tt-table__imageArgos G2 HD 12x50
  • Field of View: 257 ft @ 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 16 mm
  • Price Range: Under $250
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tt-table__imageNeos G2 HD 8x42
  • Field of View: 367 ft @ 1000 yards
  • Eye Relief: 17 mm
  • Price Range: Under $100
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Athlon continues their legacy of engineering optics with high-grade materials and putting them on the table at less than what its competitors can.  This is true of their binocular series that continue to satisfy bird watchers, hunters, avid wildlife observers, and traveling tourists.

Wide FOVs, long eye relief, compact builds, and specialized features are iconic factors that many binos in this lineup share.

We reviewed one model from each of their binocular series from bargain bino deals to high ticket ones.  Still, Athlon comes in with a better price every time.

1. Cronus G2 UHD 15x56 Review

Cronus G2 UHD 15x56
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

The Cronus UHD has been upgraded to the Cronus G2 UHD – Generation 2. However, changes may be in name only. Between the Gen 1 and Gen 2 Cronus binoculars, there are no significant differences. Even so, the Athlon 15x56 binoculars were and will continue to be a popular pair for big country glassing.

Pros:

  • Price
  • UHD optics
  • Abbe prisms
  • Magnesium chassis
  • Twist-up eyecups

Cons:

  • No locking diopter

Unlike the G2 10x42 that has a locking diopter, the 15x56 is without. The Gen 1 models were discontinued, and it’s unclear why. The only differences seem to be a new black color rubber armor and a loss of 3mm in the IPD from a min. of 56mm to now 59mm. All specs, features, and right down to the mold and armor design of the binoculars seem identical.

Besides the Gen 1 vs Gen 2 confusion, the Cronus G2 UHD is priced under $700 (approx. street price) and is considered affordable for a 15x56 bino. Fortunately, they don’t cost any more than the old models did.

Athlon gives the Cronus the works in the optics department complete with UHD (ED) glass for exceptional color rendition, contrast, and sharpness. Contributing to overall image quality are the field flattening E2ES System (Edge 2 Edge Sharpness), ESP dielectric coatings, and phase correction coatings. The optics are formed with ABBE prisms, as stated by Athlon, which in all assumption means Abbe-Koenig prisms.

Inside the magnesium chassis, the chambers have been purged with argon gas and O-ring sealed for waterproofness. It has decent eye relief of 18.5mm, is heavy but average for a 15x56 bino weighing in at 45.2 oz, and it has multi-position twist-up eyecups.

Though no notable differences are apparent between the 15x56 binos of yesterday and today, it remains true that it is a high-performing, high powered optic for big country hunting. With the G2, at least you have the latest model delivered by Athlon at no additional cost versus the gen 1.

2. Cronus G2 UHD 10x42 Review

Cronus G2 UHD 10x42
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

Out with the old and in with the new is the current approach Athlon is taking. The Cronus UHD has been improved and released as the Cronus G2 UHD. As an ever-favorite configuration, the 10x42 reigns as the all-purpose binocular for hunting, birdwatching, and recreational uses.

Pros:

  • UHD optics
  • Magnesium chassis
  • Twist-up eyecups
  • Locking diopter
  • Long eye relief

Cons:

  • Heavy

Though the binoculars lost some weight in the new model, it’s still on the heavy side for a pair of 10x42s weighing in at 27.8oz. The changes to the Gen 2 model are minimal but obvious. The new Cronus took on a black color on the armor with new texturing versus the old Athlon green/gray color. The knurling to the focus knob and locking diopter mechanism have been upgraded for improved functionality.

The rest of what made the Cronus UHD binoculars popular has remained the same. The optics are made with BaK-4 glass and UHD (Extra-low Dispersion) elements to produce the ultra-high-definition imaging quality. With the E2ES (Edge 2 Edge Sharpness) System, phase-correction, and dielectric coatings, the Athlon has better than expected optical quality. It maintains resolution throughout the entire FOV and very little to no noticeable CA is discerned.

The gen 2 model is just as tough as the older version having been O-ring sealed and argon gas purged, and it has a lightweight, strong magnesium chassis. One of the best features is the 19.3mm of eye relief that should be plenty for those that wear glasses. With a FOV of 338 ft, it’s on par for what can be considered standard for a 10x42 – not great but okay.

Though the Cronus G2 UHD models are the flagship binoculars for Athlon, it’s still within the mid-range market against other flagship alternatives. The difference is, you’re not paying the high prices that are attached to the alternatives.

3. Midas G2 UHD 8x42 Review

Midas G2 UHD 8x42
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

The Midas UHD binoculars were overhauled complete with new armor and color on top of what appears to be a chassis from a new mold. With obvious differences to its physicality, Athlon played it smart and kept what people loved about it the same.

Pros:

  • UHD optics
  • Magnesium chassis
  • Large FOV
  • Lightweight
  • Great value

Cons:

  • Decent eye relief

The primary difference between the Midas G2 UHD and the Cronus G2 UHD binoculars is that the Midas line lacks the E2ES System (Edge 2 Edge Sharpness) and a locking diopter. Though the Midas can’t optically make up for the lack of E2ES, it certainly can try in the form of lower price points and more available configurations.

The only thumbs down is really a nit-pick because the Midas G2 has 17.2mm of eye relief. Though it fits for those with glasses, if it had a couple millimeters more, it would be flawless. Its weight of 23.3 oz could be said to be heavy for an 8x42, but it shares the same mold with the 10x42 and that is practically perfect by today’s standards.

What the 8x model has over the 10s is the huge 426 ft FOV – significantly wider than the 10s and alternative 8x42s. When it comes to the optics, it has UHD quality which equals ED glass. Using ED properties with BaK-4 glass and coating the roof prisms with dielectric and phase-correction coatings gives the Midas a cosmic edge over entry-level and mid-range binoculars.

Just like the higher end binos from Athlon, it shares the same tough magnesium chassis and ruggedness from fog and waterproofing. Given its overall optical performance and low price, it doesn’t take much to see the value.

4. Argos G2 UHD 10x42 Review

Argos G2 UHD 10x42
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

Athlon has multiple tiers of binoculars categorized by quality and price point. Recently, the Argos was discontinued, and Gen 2 models released. Furthermore, the Argos G2 line was split in two, and the UHD represents the top line for the Argos series. What sets them apart are the UHD optics.

Pros:

  • Price
  • UHD optics
  • High-end coatings
  • Magnesium chassis
  • Physical upgrades

Cons:

  • Small specs

The eye relief is 16.1 mm and the FOV is only 6.1-degrees equivalent to 319 ft. These are not the worst specs for a 10x42, but they are on the short end of the stick. If you don’t wear glasses and you’re not following birds for extended periods of time, the Argos will serve most purposes well.

Now the real differences between the Gen 1 vs Gen 2 Argos binoculars are in the physical components. The most significant changes are the composite chassis to a magnesium alloy chassis, newly designed black rubber armor from the old green, and single-hinge ergonomics from the dual-hinge open-bridge design. There is also new knurling to the moving parts of the binocular that hints to better focusing performance.

The previous generation had all the same, excellent coatings as seen on the G2 such as dielectric phase-correction coatings, advanced FMC, and XPL on the exterior objective surface. Where the G2 differs is with the addition of UHD optics. This consists of ED glass for superior optical performance made manifest with good CA control, high contrast, and sharp resolution.

It’s worth pointing out that many alternatives with comparable quality will run in the $250-$500 range. Judging by its approximate $200 price line, the Argos G2 UHD is where Athlon performance and value is met.

5. Argos G2 HD 12x50 Review

Argos G2 HD 12x50
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

Overall, the difference between Athlon’s Argos G2 UHD and G2 HD comes down to the glass and the obvious color of the rubber armor of a new green instead of the new black. Even more changes are seen in the Argos G2 HD versus the Argos gen 1 line. The G2 HD is the new standard for entry-level.

Pros:

  • Price
  • HD optics
  • High-end coatings
  • Magnesium alloy chassis
  • Physical upgrades

Cons:

  • Heavy

The Argos G2 HD line do not have UHD optics, i.e., extra-low dispersion glass. Athlon makes distinctions between their UHD, HD, non-HD grade optics although explanations are vague. It can be surmised that the HD optics have the ‘standard’ amount of low-dispersion properties to separate it from the non-HD pack, but the HD models still lack the ‘extra’ that qualifies it as ED glass, i.e., calcium fluoride. Even so, its optical quality matches its price point.

To aid in providing optimal seeing, the G2 HD binoculars have ESP (Enhanced Spectral) dielectric coatings, phase-corrected coated prisms, and an exterior XPL (Xtra Protective Layer) Coating that keeps dirt and grime off the objectives.

Gen 1 models had a composite chassis, but magnesium continues to be a popular material for high-end chassis quality. As such, Athlon used magnesium alloy for a strong, lightweight housing to add to its value and ruggedness though it no longer has a dual-hinge open-bridge design.

On the specs side, it now weighs 31.5 oz. The eye relief of 16mm and FOV of 257 ft remains the same. Compared to other 12x50 alternatives, it’s narrow on the FOV, mid-range for eye relief, and is heavy.

The cost savings is obviously in the ED vs HD distinction, but it has the whole nine yards in coatings and build quality. For those who want to save some money but still demand better-than-average performance, the Argos G2 HD fits the need.

6. Neos G2 HD 8x42 Review

Neos G2 HD 8x42
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

On average, the Athlon Neos series has always been tailored to be as affordable and entry-level as possible. The Neos G2 HD line offers affordability and solid build integrity that those on a budget can depend on.

Pros:

  • Price
  • BaK-4 glass
  • Multi-coated
  • Physical upgrades
  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • Not HD

The Neos G2 HD line has much of the same optics as was seen in the first generation of Neos. It retains its BaK-4 glass to make the roof prisms that are multi-coated on air-to-glass surfaces. However, regardless of its “HD” distinction, no additional elements are used to provide HD-like benefits often associated with ED glass.

Under $100, the Neos G2 is the most entry-level model Athlon has to offer. It is rugged enough for outdoor use having been nitrogen-purged and O-ring sealed. This is about the same standard for what other manufacturers use in their mid-range offerings and considering that most budget binoculars are not gas-purged at all, the Neos has an upper edge in value and quality.

From the Gen 1 Neos binoculars, you can see an upgrade in physical configuration and armor. The composite chassis is now sleeker allowing a more ergonomic grip. The rubber armor not only has a new, green color but added texturing for a better hold. The focusing mechanisms also saw a slight upgrade in the knurling.

Though specs of 17mm in eye relief and 367 feet in FOV remain the same, the new 8x42 configuration is lighter at 21 oz and certainly meets the standard for lightweight binoculars in the mid-size category.

Overall, the Neos G2 HD binoculars are budget but have quality that many budget alternatives cannot compete with. Coming hand-in-hand with a lifetime warranty and price point under $100, Athlon offers a legitimate advantage for the pocketbooks of hunters, birders, and casual observers.

Athlon Spotting Scope Reviews

IMAGEPRODUCTDETAILS
tt-table__imageAres G2 UHD 15-45x65
  • Magnification: 15-45X 65mm
  • Configuration: Angled
  • Price Range: Under $650
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tt-table__imageArgos HD 20-60x85
  • Magnification: 20-60X 85mm
  • Configuration: Angled
  • Price Range: Under $400
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tt-table__imageTalos 20-60X80
  • Magnification: 20-60X 80mm
  • Configuration: Angled
  • Price Range: Under $200
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What makes a great spotting scope?

Being able to see targets and wildlife clearly and with definition at great distances.  Although simply said, it's a tall order to fill.  Not all scopes are equally made, and so many spotters will fall short of this requirement.

Fortunately, Athlon puts the best-of-the-best technologies and materials into producing their premium spotting scopes.  Almost all their lines of scopes have ED glass, Argon gas, and XPL Xtra Protective Coatings to promote high-definition sight picture quality.

But, don't worry if you can't meet the price tag - there are cost-conscious buys in this lineup yet.

1. Ares G2 UHD 15-45x65 Review

Ares G2 UHD 15-45x65
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

The Ares G2 UHD spotting scope has been improved on a massive scale. With APO optics, an aluminum chassis, and an interchangeable eyepiece system, the Ares G2 UHD embodies high-end quality at the entry-level price point.

Pros:

  • Price
  • APO optics
  • Eyepiece included
  • Rotating tripod ring
  • Fog/waterproof

Cons:

  • Max magnification

Athlon says they used an apochromatic lens system in the Ares G2 UHD spotting scope but provides no extra details about the specifics. To have APO, a triplet lens system is used to bring three wavelengths of light to the same focal point while correcting for spherical aberration at two wavelengths. The use of the UHD (ED) element also qualifies this as an APO setup. The Ares G2 is made to provide excellent optical performance.

For the price point, it does exceptionally well at providing contrast, sharpness, and color fidelity. We suspect that there may be minor, noticeable CA and loss of brightness at max power with some off-axis distortion along the very edges of the FOV. Because of the single focus helical focus collar that lacks fine adjustments, it may get tricky to acquire perfect sharpness at max magnification.

In all fairness, the Ares G2 is a very high-performing spotting scope, but its small performance issues are not uncommon to similar alternatives in its price range. The APO system alone is a major contributing factor to its value over competing spotters.

For a 15-45x65 spotting scope, it’s technically a compact model. However, its weight of 50 oz makes it heavier than others but can be justified due to the APO lenses. Specs include eye relief of 19.1-16 mm and a FOV of 171-81 ft.

The Ares has an interchangeable eyepiece system but the 15-45x eyepiece is included with the spotting scope. Argon-purged and waterproof, it’s ready to handle the outdoors, and the rotating tripod ring will allow for the most comfortable angle in various positions and terrains that you may find yourself in. For the money, the Ares is a highly recommended spotting scope.

2. Argos HD 20-60x85 Review

Argos HD 20-60x85
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

The Argos HD represents the 85mm line of spotting scopes. Priced for the entry-level market, it offers a big lens for maximum brightness. Though without bells and whistles, the Argos spotting scope offers ruggedness and Porro prisms for well-rounded performance in all recreational applications.

Pros:

  • Price
  • Porro prism
  • Phase-coated optics
  • Composite chassis
  • Fog/waterproof

Cons:

  • Heavy

Reasons to compare the Argos to the Talos include the low prices of both and the focus mechanism differences. The FMC and silver coating optics on the Talos may not be on par with the Advanced FMC and phase corrected Porro prism optics of the Argos, but the perceived optical performance between both may not be far off from each other. Though, the extra five millimeters on the Argos’ objective lens will provide a brighter image than the Talos.

What gives the Talos a focusing advantage is the knob that is designed to acquire sharpness with minimal movement especially at max magnification. Helical focus barrel-style collars as seen on the Argos at this price point tend to cause vibrations during focusing. The Talos is certainly lighter in weight and has a closer near focus distance.

The Argos 20-60x85 spotting scope has a wider FOV of 102-48 ft and slightly better eye relief of 19.6-17.8 mm. It’s a mammoth weighing in at 68.9 oz, so it’s not as portable as the Talos, but rather it’s well-suited to stationary observation.

It features an extendable sunshade and twist-up eyecup. The composite chassis is well-made and will hold up to moderate, recreational use. It’s also been argon gas-purged for protection against internal fogging, and it’s also sealed to protect against dust and moisture from getting into the interior.

Overall, you’re paying more for the Argos to have a brighter picture, wider FOV, modern focus collar, and argon gas instead of nitrogen. For observation from a deck, in lowlight or in less-than-ideal conditions, the Argos will serve you well.

3. Talos 20-60X80 Review

Sale
Athlon Optics Talos 20-60x80 Spotter Scope , Black
273 Reviews

This full-size spotting scope is made with K9 prism glass and offered on the table for under $200.  Is it worth it?

Pros:

  • Price
  • FMC optics
  • Fog/waterproof
  • Rotating ring
  • K9 Silver coated prisms

Cons:

  • K9 Silver coated prisms

Optical terms and abbreviations are confusing.  Between BaK4, BK7, and now K9 prism glass, it's easy to get lost.  Very simply put, K9 is BK7 glass.  The term used will depend on the borosilicate source (see this guide for more info).  It's nothing to worry about since many entry-level spotting scopes are made with K9/BK7 prisms like this Talos.  It may be cheaper to source and manufacture resulting in a lower price for the buyer.

The silver coating improves light transmission and reflectivity rates in a roof prism design, and it's fortunate that Athlon didn't forget this need.  With FMC coatings, you'll have bright and clear image quality that should allow you to see groupings at 100 yards and catch needed details at much greater distances, even in low light.

Equipped with a rotating ring, you can achieve convenient angled viewing.  Since it's nitrogen purged and waterproof, harsh weather and accidental submersion are challenges the Talos will easily survive.

Included with the spotter is a soft case and tabletop tripod.  A complete entry-level package for an entry-level price.  Gotta love it.

Athlon Red Dot Sight Reviews

IMAGEPRODUCTDETAILS
tt-table__imageMidas LE Gen2
  • Magnification: 1X
  • Reticle: Circle Dot/Circle/Dot
  • Price Range: Under $300
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tt-table__imageMidas TSP4
  • Magnification: 4X
  • Reticle: TSP4
  • Price Range: Under $300
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tt-table__imageMidas TSR3
  • Magnification: 1X
  • Reticle: TSR3 (2 MOA dot)
  • Price Range: Under $250
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Many 3-gun comp shooters, varmint hunters, and LEOs (Law Enforcement Officer) don't know that Athlon has some serious game in their red dot and prism scope weapon sights.  Their available models deserve some of the spotlight and we've given them a chance to shine here.

With adjustable brightness settings, FMC optics, aircraft aluminum chassis construction, knob controls, and full weatherproof protection, these Midas optics are ready for battle in the hunt, at work, or for home defense.

Fast target acquisition, bright dots, and versatility is what you can expect out of your Athlon red dot sight.

1. Midas LE Gen2 Review

Midas LE Gen2
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

In general, red dot sights have been getting better and more advanced, and the Midas LE Gen2 is proof that Athlon can compete. It has a HUD design with interchangeable reticles, ultra-long-lasting battery life, and motion sensor technology. It's ready for hunting, competition, and professional work.

Pros:

  • Heads-up display (HUD)
  • Multiple reticles
  • Motion sensor
  • Long battery life
  • Compact/lightweight

Cons:

  • No dual illumination

Not having dual (red/green) illumination is not a deal breaker, but because it’s practically flawless as a high-performing dot sight, there had to be a criticism somewhere. It does have red illumination that is adjustable with six brightness settings via the up/down buttons that also serve as manual on/off functions.

It has three interchangeable reticles featuring a dot with circle, circle only, and dot only. The dot size is 2 MOA, is powered by a CR2032 coin-cell battery, and is seen on the large 28 x 36mm display.

The Midas LE Gen2 is designed for short-range engagements and CQB. It has ½ MOA turret adjustments, 1x magnification, and should be effective for use with two eyes open. The entire unit is 3.4” long and 6.9 oz in weight. It’s O-ring sealed and nitrogen-purged for water and fogproof protection.

The Midas LE comes preinstalled with a quick detach mount for convenient mounting and dismounting. It features motion sensor technology that essentially is an automatic standby mode for instant activation when you pick up your rifle. Even with this professional-ready feature, it has a long-lasting battery life of 50,000 hours.

For the money, it’s a worthy purchase as the Midas LE Gen2 represents Athlon’s most elite, high-end red dot sight for professional, match, and hunting applications.

2. Midas TSP4 Review

Midas TSP4
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

Overall, the Midas TSP4 is the high-end model for Athlon’s prismatic dot sights. With 4x magnification, FMC optics, glass-etched reticle, and Smart Power Management, it’s an optic that gives you the benefits of a red dot and magnifier in one compact, unit.

Pros:

  • FMC optics
  • 4x magnification
  • BDC drop reticle
  • Smart Power Management
  • Dual illumination

Cons:

  • No shake-awake/auto-wake

The TSP4 has Smart Power Management that is an automatic power off feature completely different to shake-awake and motion sensor tech. After six hours, the TSP4 automatically powers off to conserve battery life. Great if you forget to manually power it down by holding the “Up” button for three seconds. Not so great if you’re consistently using it but have made no adjustments in that 6 hr timeframe - it’ll power off anyway.

Given that it has a glass-etched reticle, it does not feature interchangeable options. Multiple reticles can be considered a feature of unnecessary excess, and the ability to still see the reticle if illumination fails you is well worth the compromise. The TSP4 features a 0.5 MOA dot, 16 MOA circle, and BDC crosshair in red or green illumination. There are 1-10 levels for controlling brightness intensity.

Specs include 4x magnification, 30mm lens, 3.1” eye relief, 5.7” length, and 16.8oz weight. It’s not micro by any means, but it’s well suited to ARs and comes with a direct-to-rail Picatinny mount. Turrets are capped and the caps look to serve as the adjustment tool for ½ MOA clicks.

As a slicked-up magnified red dot sight, it has decent features suited to mid-range use and dependability for continued performance if the electronics fail. All in all, the TSP4 embodies the best of Athlon’s prismatic sights.

3. Midas TSR3 Review

Midas TSR3
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

The Midas TSR3 is on par with the Midas LE Gen2 but in closed, tube form. It has many of the same, great features but a few that are its own that sets it apart from the LE. As a high-quality red dot sight, the TSR3 is worth the investment.

Pros:

  • 1x magnification
  • 2 MOA dot
  • Motion sensor tech
  • Night vision compatible
  • Long-lasting battery life

Cons:

  • One reticle/one color

The TSR3 has some simple features and then some more complicated, high-end features. What keeps the TSR3 in the easy-to-use, simple category is its single 2 MOA dot illuminated in red only. No dual illumination and no multiple reticles – there’s no need for them if you don’t use them anyway.

In accordance with its streamlined simplicity is 1x magnification, ½ MOA adjustments, 3.73” length, and 10.6oz weight. It has FMC optics, 36mm lens, and it’s waterproof and gas-purged. Evidently, the TSR3 is well equipped for all-purpose use on multiple types of firearms with Picatinny rails.

More complex features include its motion sensor technology. This is the equivalent to well-known terminology for the same feature such as Shake-Awake, Auto-wake, etc. It automatically puts the TSR3 into stand-by mode after five minutes of undetected motion.

Even with the auto-wake feature, it has a rival-worthy, long-lasting battery life of 50,000 hours. It has a total of 13 illumination settings of which three are compatible with night vision. It comes with a direct-to-rail (fixed) Picatinny mount with a T1 footprint and sits at a 1.39” height.

While the TSR3 is a simple red dot sight, it has more than the basics presented in an easy-to-use format. It has exactly what most people want for their AR15.

Athlon Rangefinder Review

IMAGEPRODUCTDETAILS
tt-table__imageCronus UHD 10x50
  • Yard Range: 2600 Yards
  • Angle Compensation: Yes
  • Price Range: Under $1500
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tt-table__imageMidas 1 Mile
  • Yard Range: 1700 Yards
  • Angle Compensation: Yes
  • Price Range: Under $300
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tt-table__imageTalos 800Y
  • Yard Range: 6-800 Yards
  • Angle Compensation: Yes
  • Price Range: Under $200
CHECK PRICE

Athlon cuts the nonsense and only offers up rangefinders that will make a true difference in the many unpredictable terrains your next hunt will take you.  For that, you'll need both line of sight and true horizontal distance measuring systems.

To maximize cartridge potential or to determine if that buck is within shooting range, you'll need a rangefinder that can reach the distance.  To serve as a practical and effective tool, you'll need a compact and lightweight build.

The optic that fits the bill - the Athlon Midas.

1. Cronus UHD 10x50 Rangefinding Binocular Review

Cronus G2 UHD 10x50
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

Athlon competes in the rangefinding binocular market with their Cronus UHD 10x50. Capable of ranging out to 2600 yards with 1000 yards on deer complete with angle compensation, the Cronus is a long-range rangefinder but a binocular at heart.

Pros:

  • 2600 yards
  • LED display
  • ED glass
  • Magnesium chassis
  • Long eye relief

Cons:

  • Price

Rangefinding binoculars are not cheap, but there are similar alternatives that are cheaper than the Cronus UHD. Its effective range is limited to 2600 yards on reflective targets and 1000 yards on deer. However, this is more than acceptable for many hunters. It’s also limited in the fact that it lacks applied ballistics given its high price point.

The good news is that Athlon invested in the optics given that it must perform simultaneously as an effective pair of binoculars. The Cronus has ED glass with Athlon’s Edge 2 Edge Sharpness System, Enhanced Spectral Prism Dielectric coatings, and phase-corrected BaK-4 prisms. The exterior lenses feature their Xtra Protective Layer coating.

Since it can be assumed that you’ll be behind the eyepiece for longer than the average person given that it has a ranging engine, it has long 19.3 mm of eye relief. The FOV is 338 ft which is decent for a 10x50, and it has a larger 50mm aperture versus most 42mm ranging alternatives. It’s heavy at 38 oz – certainly more so than a separate rangefinder and 10x42 binos regardless of its magnesium chassis.

Each eyepiece has independent focusing – one for the rangefinder display and the other for binocular vision complete with a center focus wheel. It seems that neither focusing systems have a locking mechanism.

The Cronus UHD has the optical quality one must demand from high-end binoculars. Complete with a decent ranging engine that serves the long-range hunter well, it’s certainly a viable competitor in the market.

2. Midas 1 Mile Review

Midas 1 Mile
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

The Midas 1 Mile is a compact, long-distance champ for hunters needing a mid-range rangefinder. Even with its long-range performance, it remains an easy to use, uncomplicated tool for treestand, bow, and spot-and-stalk hunters.

Pros:

  • 1 mile range
  • Accurate
  • 1st & 2nd target modes
  • Multiple ranging modes
  • Compact/lightweight

Cons:

  • No tripod mount

For 1700-yard performance on highly reflective targets, it’s a disappointment that it doesn’t have tripod mounting compatibility. However, as a hunting unit that can range deer to 800 yards with 6x magnification, it’s certainly within one’s capability to handhold the Midas 1 Mile and acquire accurate, steady measurements. The minimum ranging distance is 5 yds.

As a rangefinder, it’s on the compact side of things with an overall length of 3.8” and a weight of 4.75 oz. It takes a CR2 battery to power the ranging engine and LED display. The reticle is an open circle, and with accuracy of 0.5-1 yards.

It has standard, first, and second target modes identified as Auto, Flag, and Deer modes. You also have multiple ranging modes allowing for scan, LOS distance, and vertical distance (angle compensation). The inclinometer is only capable of -/+70 degrees for down/inclines.

The optics are FMC coated, the LED brightness is adjustable by four settings, and it features a diopter for acquiring sharp vision of the display and reticle. With only 14mm of eye relief, it might be tight for most people and especially those that wear glasses.

Seeing as it is without Bluetooth, applied ballistics, and all other advanced gadgetry, it’s not a high-end rival. With its reasonable price point given its capabilities, the Midas 1 Mile is a quality, mid-range unit for the hunter that wants slightly more than the basics but doesn’t want to pay for every rangefinding perk that exists.

3. Talos 800Y Review

Talos 800Y
Image Credit - Athlon Optics

Overall, the Athlon Talos 800 Yard rangefinder is ideal for all-purpose applications for short-range use. As a basic and budget rangefinder, it serves as a beginner unit and fits beginner budgets for under $200.

Pros:

  • Price
  • 800-yard range
  • FMC optics
  • Angle compensation
  • Compact/lightweight

Cons:

  • LCD display

The Talos 800 is not a long-ranging unit as its max distance is 800 yards on highly reflective targets. Its effective range on soft targets like deer hides and elk is 300 yards. This is considered close-range use considering what rangefinders are capable of today.

However, the ranges are ideal for the hunter who doesn’t need the long-range performance. Perhaps those with a bow, treestand hunters, or ones who stalk through the brush and timber. The 300-yard performance is more than enough and with 6x magnification, it’s right on par for these types of hunts.

Auto mode essentially serves as second target mode that ignores foreground obstructions and pulls a reading on the furthest target often desired for field and timber hunting. Golf mode, though obviously suited to hitting flags/pins, can also be used for hunting when you want to ignore the tree line behind that elk and grab an accurate measurement on what’s in front.

The only thing that may hinder performance is lowlight and dim conditions. The LCD display means it lacks illumination and the black reticle and readings may become difficult to see against shaded, black areas.

The optics have FMC coatings and the unit itself is very compact. It’s 3.8” long and weighs 4.75 oz. It has eye relief of 14 mm and with the adjustable diopter, you may be able to compensate for your vision and sharpen the display.

It’s not a heavy hitter for long-range performance, but the Talos 800Y can serve the core needs in a hunt. Backed by a lifetime warranty, the Talos is a fully prepared, protected, and economical unit.

About Athlon Optics

Cronus-BTR-Riflescope-banner-11

Where Are Athlon Optics Made?

Athlon manufactures their optics in both Japan and China with Athlon's spec requirements.  The top-of-the-line Cronus series of products are made in Japan.

How Good is the Athlon Optics Warranty?

The Athlon Lifetime Warranty is on par with the best optics brands you can think of.  It's transferable and your optic is covered for life, no receipt or registration necessary.

Deliberate misuse, theft, loss, damage, and alterations including repairs outside of Athlon is not covered and may void the warranty.

How to Contact Athlon Optics? 

Athlon is an approachable brand that provides an email, contact form, phone number, and mailing address on their website.  They're also present on social media platforms that includes YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Is Athlon Optics a Customer First Company? 

Athlon takes great pride in being a customer first company.  This is evident through their many contact mediums, social media presence, and their Gold Medal Lifetime Warranty that is on par with the best optics warranties available in the industry.

Additionally, Athlon features a blog with instructional and informative articles, they encourage users and buyers to share their experiences, and they offer promotional giveaways to customers who upload pictures of their Athlon optics or groupings with their targets.

Who Owns Athlon Optics?

Athlon Optics is a U.S. company and manufacturer of sports optics and accessories based out of Olathe, Kansas.  They were founded in 2014 and are independent from any parent company subsidiary relationships.

Does Athlon Optics Offer a Military Discount?

To date, there are no available military, law enforcement, or first responder discounts offered through Athlon.  However, you may qualify for this type of discount through Athlon authorized dealers and retailers online and on the shelves nationwide.

What Optics does Athlon Make? 

Athlon manufactures rifle scopes, binoculars, and spotting scopes; laser rangefinders, red dot sights, and prism scopes.  They also offer magnifiers and optics accessories that includes a tripod adapter, binocular harness, and scope accessories.

Does Athlon Optics Sell Clothing? 

Athlon sells brand-name gear that includes beanies, caps, t-shirts, hoodies, and more. Check it all out here.

What does Athlon BTR stand for? 

BTR is a common acronym found on many Athlon optics.  It indicative of an optic with an illuminated reticle - Bright Reticle.

Do Athlon Products Include Accessories? 

Yes.  Almost, if not all, Athlon optics include additional accessories from lens caps, carry cases, cleaning cloths, instructional manuals, and straps.  Rings are not included with rifle scopes.

Does Athlon have Good Glass?

The Cronus line of optics are manufactured in Japan with Japanese glass.  All other optics are manufactured in China and are inspected at their Kansas facility.  Glass quality has been highly praised as worthwhile feature of Athlon products.

What type of Materials are Athlon Optics made from?

Athlon optics are made with either magnesium, aluminum alloy, or polymer composite materials.  One-piece body construction is a standard feature for rifle scopes and red dot sights.  To provide waterproof and fogproof protection to optics, argon gas is the most commonly used gas by the brand with nitrogen reserved for the entry level models.

Satisfy Your Optic Needs with an Athlon

Hungry for better optical quality, but you're conscious of the bill?  Eat your heart out with the most popular Athlon optics in our lineup.

The common theme with all optics we reviewed is the low price for what you get.  We see the high-end features, the happy buyer reviews, and the specs to judge the skeleton and meat of the optic.  Athlon continues to deliver a high value to cost ratio and that is worthy of positive attention in our books.

With an Athlon on the menu, you'll leave satisfied with the quality, warranty, and price - there's no better feeling than buyer satisfaction.

Images Source: AthlonOptics.com

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2 thoughts on “22 Best Athlon Optics Scopes, Binoculars, Sights & Rangefinders [Reviews]”

  1. Athlon customer service experience

    My experience dealing with athlon customer service warranty is below. I hope it helps someone decide where they should or should not spend their money when considering glass for a rifle

    April 21 at 2037 i sent an initial reporting my athlon helos had developed black specs in the focal field

    April 22 at 0553 i received a reply and form to fill out telling me to fill out and send for warranty check

    May 27th I mailed the scope fully expecting this to be the "normal" who knows how the hell long warranty service experience

    April 30 scope arrived olathe in am

    April 30 at 1453 I sent an email query asking about average turn around time expecting to use a spare scope for a hunt I have approaching

    May 1 at 1128 I received a reply from athlon telling me they received mine and had already mailed me a new scope AND gave me the ups tracking number

    May 5 just before noon, my doorbell rings and ups puts my new scope in my hands

    UNBELIEVABLE customer service by athlon. The scopes are excellent but the service alone is well worth the money spent purchasing an athlon.

    Reply

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