Bushnell Trophy XLT Compact Spotting Scope (20-60X65)

trophy-xlt-20-60x65Viewing Configuration: Straight
Magnification: 20-60X
Power Variability: Variable
Adjustable Eyepieces: No
Eyepiece included: Yes
Objective Diameter: 65 mm
Close Focus Distance: 32.8 feet
Length: 13.4 inches
Weight: 42.3 ounces
Field of View: 110-55 feet/1000 yards
Eye Relief/Exit Pupil: 18.3 mm/ 3.25-1.1 mm
Optics Coatings: Fully Multi-Coated
Glass: BaK-4
Focus System: Focus Knob/Single Focus
Waterproof/Fog-proof: Yes/Yes
Digiscope adaptable: No

Best Uses: Hunting, For the Range, Birdwatching

Our Rating:

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Bushnell Trophy XLT Spotting Scope Review

This Trophy XLT 20-60X65 spotting scope has fully multi-coated optics and compact dimensions on a Porro prism design. It’s also fully weatherproof with a full-body rubber armor construction and is sold as a kit.

As the most popular Bushnell spotting scope online, as far as review numbers goes, it has quite an impressive rating. And, that’s with dozens and dozens of reviews!

Needless to say, its excellent rating and reviewer base is what had this model earning a spot in our Bushnell spotting scope line-up. But, there will be a word or two on the other Trophy XLT 15-45X50 in this review.

So, for a little more power and a little more cost, let’s see how the Trophy XLT line holds up to a hunter’s standard in our Q&A.

PROs:
  • Price
  • High quality optics
  • Fully weatherproof
  • Rubber Armor construction
  • Complete accessories package
CONs:
  • Quality control issues
  • Poor tripod quality

 

Trophy XLT 20-60X65 Q&A:

What are the compact dimensions of this spotting scope?

The 20X60 weighs a little more than standard binoculars at 42.3 ounces and is 13.4 inches long. The smaller 15-45X50 weighs a light 31.7 ounces and is pretty much the same length at 13.2 inches long.

Yep – this is a compact Bushnell spotting scope.

 

What is the Porro prism design?

The Porro prism design is a special lens image erecting assembly that maximizes light reflections internally.

The optical path is usually in a Z-like pattern that requires a little more room and size to build compared to a roof prism assembly.

But, the internal reflections means less potential for light loss and less optical coatings are required. This usually means a cheaper price for you overall versus a roof prism optic.

 

What is the Trophy XLT 20-60X65 optical quality like?

Since we know it’s already set up to have optical prowess with its Porro prism design, let’s explore the kind of image quality you can expect with the Trophy XLT spotting scope.

It has better optical coatings than the Bushnell Sentry with fully multi-coated lens. Every air-to-glass surface has been treated multiple times to allow as much light to pass through as possible. And, it’s largest exit pupil size is 3.25 mm.

Those specs mean that the image is going to be bright and clear for several hundred yards. This is largely thanks to the fully multi-coated optics. If you compare it with the Sentry, you’re going from 100 yards of clarity to 800 yards plus!

Resolution, contrast, and clarity are going to diminish at 60X power, but that’s just what’s expected with most spotting scopes unless you’re paying over $1000 for one. So, don’t hold this aspect against it.

 

What are the differences between the 20-60X65 and the 15-45X50?

Other than size and weight, which we’ve already mentioned, the field of view of the 15-45X is much wider at 150-76 feet at 1000 yards with the latter spotter.

This will be great for trying to spot that moving herd. Also, the lower magnification makes the 15-45X a freehand-friendly device.

Also, I should mention that the 15-45X model won the Reader’s Choice Award in 2014. The Bushnell spotting scope was deemed worthy of the award by Game & Fish Sportsman Magazine.

 

Does this spotting scope provide good value?

For roughly $300, it has matching value. Its value comes from its optical quality. To be able to get some glassing done at the range or in the field for long distances, it’s exactly around the kind of price you’d want to spend.

But, if you’re thinking you’re getting a bargain for the included soft carry case, hard case, and the tripod, you might end up being disappointed. The tripod is most likely not up to your sturdy expectations and the cases aren’t made of sheepskin or anything like that.

But, if you like the scope, it’s a done deal.

 

What is the Bushnell warranty like?

The Bushnell Trophy XLT spotting scope is covered by Bushnell’s Limited Lifetime Warranty. Now, there have been complaints across the board of Bushnell’s notorious reputation with servicing Bushnell optics and how they deal with their customers.

While the product is guaranteed to be free of defects caused by manufacturing for the lifetime of the original owner, it’s known that Bushnell isn’t easy to work with.

It’s also an unfortunate truth that it’s a hit and miss with Bushnell optics. Some arrive perfectly fine and then break six months later, and others don’t even make it to the doorstep intact.

If you come across a review that says Bushnell tried to charge them for repairs that would end up costing more than the optic itself, or they were offered to buy a replacement or another optic at a discounted price, it wouldn’t be the first.

Some very cautious advice would be, if you end up with a dud in a few months, be prepared to write it off.

 

Noteworthy Features:

  • Fully multi-coated optics for highest rate of light transmission
  • Porro Prism design for ultimate optical performance
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Wrapped in rubber armor construction
  • Sold with tripod, compact soft carry case, and hard case
  • Fully weatherproof
  • Backed by Bushnell’s Lifetime Limited Warranty

 

Our Verdict

The scoop on the scope is, the Bushnell Trophy XLT is an excellent spotter if you land a perfect one. We would be misleading you if we didn’t mention that more than just a few XLT spotters have come with poor manufacturing flaws that somehow missed quality control. The tripod isn’t the best to brag about either.

On a better note, the Bushnell Trophy Xtreme 16-48×50 is more user-friendly for the hunter since it can be a hand-held device, and it’s cheaper than the XLT. For shooters at the range, you might miss out on the extra yardage, but these specs should be ideal for the hunter. Check it out here – https://www.targettamers.com/spotting-scopes/bushnell-trophy-xtreme-16-48×50-review/.

But, if you’re set on a 20-60X setup, consider the Vortex Diamondback spotting scope. It’s worth the extra bucks to have quality under your belt, plus it has the masses hording behind it.

When it comes to the XLT, Bushnell says it best – you’ll have “extra power for extra range.”

 

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