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fireblade_rrw

Laser Genetics ND3X50 Review

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Laser Genetics ND3X50 Review

 

I’ve been considering different ways to use a gun mounted light on my .243 for some time, so I could lamp on my own.

My friend used a Lightforce gun mount for a bit, but it proved to be a nightmare as you have to continually adjust it for distance – ie, angle between the light & scope. I’ll come back to this issue later.

 

I also flirted with some of the Cree LED lights, but they don’t seem to have decent illumination at range, plus the battery life isn’t really great – remember its foxes this is for, so distance is important. I also considered an NV set-up, but having looked at what was available, I decided that unless it was Gen 2> then it wouldn’t be feasible.

 

This led me to consider a laser illuminator, and of course there is only one on the market that diffuses the beam for use with a scope. For info, I use a Tikka .243, with T8 moderator, Harris Bipod, & a Docter illuminated, 3-12x56 scope, (which incidentally is superb in low light conditions (see picture)

 

I struggled to get any real objective information on the Laser Genetics-ND3x50, therefore in the absence of any real reviews on the ND3X50 lasers and after looking at one in a well known mail order firm, I decided to take the plunge and buy one.

 

Before I bought it, I managed to compare it to a Pulsar Gen+1 unit, and the ND3X50 seemed to be much better, albeit at close range.

 

So having used it now for a few weeks, and several outings to foxes here’s my verdict for the ND3X50:

 

Overall it’s a well engineered piece of kit, its robust and watertight. It comes supplied with 2 batteries, which as yet haven’t run out ! So the battery life is simply awesome ! I’ve bought 2 spare rechargeable batteries that I keep in my pocket for when the ones supplied decide to peg out.

 

The unit comes with a variation of mounts (Weaver type), for use on top of a scope, binoculars or tripod. The adjustable mount for the scope is simple not good enough ! It wobbles about and is easily knocked of the cross hair centre line. Having said that once you get used to it, it’s not quite so bad, but it definitely needs a re-design.

 

To use the laser, you have to adjust the centre point of the beam to coincide with the cross hair centre of the scope. The really good news here is, that you don’t need to continually adjust the beam, as the angle between the laser and scope is minimal, particularly so in my set-up, as the scope objective lens is 56mm. Here are some pictures of my set up:

 

photodgh.jpg

 

photo2bo.jpg

 

The down side is, that when you screw down the diffuser to a smaller beam for increased range, the scope actually picks up the laser track. Therefore, if you are trying to pin point something at range, with beam reduced, you can get a disturbing reflection of the beam in the scope – less than ideal, and actually blows out the distance performance figures quoted by Laser Genetics/BSA.

 

On the very positive side, I’d suggest that up to 150Yds, its brilliant ! and performs good up to about 250Yds. Greater distances than say 250Yds really requires the beam to be narrowed, and then you get this annoying ‘tracking’ from the beam. However, given that I’m not shooting foxes beyond this distance, overall it works well.

 

The <150Yds range is where it performs best, and unless you buy Gen 2 or 3 NV, I really can’t see it being bettered. It’s certainly hugely better than the Pulsar Gen1+ NV, which is in the same price bracket.

 

I also notice it works particularly well in dusk conditions. Last night I was watching 4 Does & a Buck where I shoot, and did some experimentation just before it was totally dark. I’d estimate the buck to be around 130-Yds, and with the scope on about 8 mag, I could pick on minute details on its head & coat. All I could see without the laser on was the Bucks outline, so quite a positive point. It doesn’t seem to disturb animals quite the same as a standard lamp.

 

Low temperature issues: Cant comment other than the only difference between the standard ND3X50 & the sub zero version is an insulated battery compartment. Scott country reckon they’ve had the unit in their freezer for an hour to test it, and it still worked fine. Don’t know if this is a red herring, but I can’t really make a personal comment yet. I also understand that Scott Country will soon be supplying a neoprene cover for the standard ND3X50 battery section.

 

The way I intend using this for foxes is, use the Lightforce for calling, and switch to the laser for final approach…ie from 250Yds in.

 

That all I can think of for now, so here’s a quick pro & con summary:

 

For:

• Works brilliantly up to 150Yds, and yes it does look like NV at this range !

• Works ok up to 250Yds

• Much better than Gen 1+NV, but I can’t compare with Gen 2 or 3, however there is a huge price differential

• Battery life is awesome

• Looks robust & watertight

• Easy beam adjustment

• It’s lightweight.

 

Against

• The scope mount is really bad, it moves all over the place, loses centre and takes ages to fit & remove. It ruins the whole unit. (there’s an MS1 torch mount available from another company, but its £45) here's a video of the mount movement:

 

http://img3.imageshack.us/img3/2839/pkp.mp4

 

photo3jd.jpg

 

• If you look closely at the allen screws in the mount, you can just see that both the back allen screws are slightly higher than the rest. They both bottomed before they tightened up, so I had to take about 2mm of the length. But they still sit higher and are quite tight. Pretty poor quality considering the cost. Six allen screws to secure this is just way over the top. Its begging for a quick release mount.

• When the beam is narrowed for range, you can get this annoying ‘tracking’ in the scope, which surprisingly isn’t mentioned in the literature – perhaps I’ve missed something here, but it really does affect using the laser with a scope at ranges beyond say 250Yds

• It will work beyond 250Yds, but with a very small beam. However, because of this annoying 'tracking effect', its just impractical to use beyond 250Yds.

• Can’t be used as a lamp for searching fields with the naked eye, unless it’s really close in. Its only for use with a scope.

• Cost: at £325, it’s quite a big investment. I’d have thought around £200 would been bore realistic, but I guess that’s up to individuals on whether they wish to pay that much.

 

 

Please remember, these are my personal opinions, where I’ve tried to be as objective as I can. I hope it helps to inform the debate. Sorry about picture quality, its from my iPhone !

 

Am I happy I bought it? Yes, mostly, and I would recommend it. There are a few design flaws and over-ambitious claims about its range made in the manufacturers literature, but overall, and within its range constraints, its a useful tool for night work.

 

I hope this helps add to the debate, or anyone thinking about purchasing one.

Edited by fireblade_rrw
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Thanks for the write up mate.

I'm sure there will be a lot of people interested in seeing some good quality pictures of it in use at night as there are not a lot of useful reviews about at the moment.

 

Happy hunting, I hope it does what you want it to do realistically.

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good timing chap, mine will be here in the next two days.keep me posted on how you get on and perhaps share some tips.it is normal for a review to apear just after i have pressed the buy now button,but normally its to say don't buy one :laugh: . so i'm hoping you get on well with it. :thumbs: if not please lie. :)

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Good one Mike and cheers for that review fireblade! That sounds like I could have saved £££'s buying that nd3 instead of my nv mono, because of the review it sounds like they'll do exactly the same job for me. I've been out a few times with the nv mono but Im doubting myself that Im scanning past mr fox as Im looking at cover and long distances. I can spot and shoot rabbits out at 150 easily but I've only been doing that to test the nv. I think I need to go back to basics and like yourself return to the lamp for spotting and switch to the nv for the shot, but it was great to hear a first hand review. Keep us posted on how you both get on with them over time! :thumbs:

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No worries, if anyone can supply advice on how to take pictures through the scope I'll have a go - mind all I have is an iPhone and an old Olympus 3.2 Mp camera !

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one point i haven't taken mine out yet but on opening the box first thoughts are if there was ever a good time for quick release mounts this product is crying out for them.would make taking off to put your gun in the cabinet easy and would allow you to change from one rifle to anouther.why allen keys?to be continued!

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one point i haven't taken mine out yet but on opening the box first thoughts are if there was ever a good time for quick release mounts this product is crying out for them.would make taking off to put your gun in the cabinet easy and would allow you to change from one rifle to anouther.why allen keys?to be continued!

good right up, i have 1 this past 3 months and cant fault it apart from the mounting system. You are correct, over and beyond 250 yrds is pushing the system, but at 150 range it does what it says on the tin.

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Here's the link to what looks a better mount, however there is no lateral adjustment:

 

http://www.gunmart.net/accessories_review/inovaTec_thrunite_catapult_v2_torch/

 

And this company seemingly sells them, although they are £45 and out of stock !

 

http://www.inovatech.co.uk/shop/home.php

 

and this lot are selling the ND2X50 for under £300 !!:

 

http://www.gunmart.net/guns_for_sale/2496/ND3x50-Laser-Genetics.html

Edited by fireblade_rrw

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Never heard of these! So you are usin your normal scope and the and the ND lights up the target? If so how wide is the beam at 200 yards and what weight is the unit cheers

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Never heard of these! So you are usin your normal scope and the and the ND lights up the target? If so how wide is the beam at 200 yards and what weight is the unit cheers

 

Yes it's used with your normal scope and it illuminates the target like NV, up to 150yds anyway. As it says in the review, the beam is adjustable to suit distance & scope. For exact weight, go to the laser genetics website.

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Here's the link to what looks a better mount, however there is no lateral adjustment:

 

http://www.gunmart.net/accessories_review/inovaTec_thrunite_catapult_v2_torch/

 

And this company seemingly sells them, although they are £45 and out of stock !

 

http://www.inovatech.co.uk/shop/home.php

 

and this lot are selling the ND2X50 for under £300 !!:

 

http://www.gunmart.net/guns_for_sale/2496/ND3x50-Laser-Genetics.html

 

I've just ordered the catapult torch on your top link but a v3 hope it's better than the v2, but I can't find that mount in the link for sale anywhere.

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Never heard of these! So you are usin your normal scope and the and the ND lights up the target? If so how wide is the beam at 200 yards and what weight is the unit cheers

 

 

the beam is fully adjustable so you can set the beam to just fill your objective lense, check it out nd3 on google video.

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So has anyone shot anything using one of these as yet or pointed it at a fox and if so did it spook it, would not buy one myself but like to know how users are getting on with them, most reviews by actual shooter in the UK are negative so will be interesting to see how it goes.

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So has anyone shot anything using one of these as yet or pointed it at a fox and if so did it spook it, would not buy one myself but like to know how users are getting on with them, most reviews by actual shooter in the UK are negative so will be interesting to see how it goes.

 

 

im out all night sat so will post my findings on sun.did take it out for a look the outher night and the one rabbit i saw stayed put long enough, i watched it through the scope for about thirty seconds before it sauntered off.had the word from laser genetics today,they are looking at a quick release system this year.or in outher words thanks for the idea we had not thought about it.the mount is shocking if you happen to fart it will move the zero on the laser.and i fart alot :laugh: like i say fitting it into the gun cabinet is hard and messing about with allen keys in the early hours is not cool.this lamp will have to impress the pants off me on saterday night to be worth the pound notes.

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