ZeroTech Thrive HD 2.5-15x50 review

Review: ZeroTech Thrive HD 2.5-15×50 scope


ZeroTech is carving out a solid niche for excellent value in the under $1000 range, and its Thrive HD 2.5-15x50mm is ideal for use on a versatile rifle that may be used up close at very low power all the way out to long-range shots at 15 power. 

It is not overly large but weighs in at around 700 grams, so it is no lightweight but with its 30mm tube it looks well balanced on most rifles. 

ZeroTech Thrive HD 2.5-15x50 review
The Thrive HD with 2.5-15x magnification is an extremely versatile scope

The six-fold magnification range is exceptionally handy, enabling me to wring the utmost accuracy from my rifle off the bench at distance, all the way down to popping a bunny at 20 metres away on 2.5 power.

The power ring has just the right amount of tension, turning freely when changing power, but never once moving even when being bashed around in the ATV or crawling through thick scrub chasing a wild dog. 

Same goes for the ¼-MOA adjustments for elevation and windage, which are protected under screw on caps once you remove the caps you find wonderfully tactile, audible clicks that inspire confidence and feel like those on a far more expensive scope.

ZeroTech Thrive HD 2.5-15x50 review
The power rings turns smoothly. Note standard-issue aluminium flip-up lens cap

CLARITY

the clarity is absolutely superb for a scope  with a suggested retail of $899 — midrange pricing with top-range glass. 

I used it side-by-side with several more expensive scopes and the ZeroTech is definitely up there in clarity and colour, with no blurring at the outside edges at all

It is just as clear at 15x as it is at 2.5x (this is where lower to medium price scopes usually disappoint), a big achievement at this price point. 

It is also very good in low light conditions with a great ability to make the most of available light, and when I used it with a light at night there was no dimming at the edges. 

There is a decent field of view at all magnification levels.

RETICLE

The PHR ll reticle is an excellent design for both fast target acquisition when hunting as well as super-precise shot placement when sighting in or competing at the range.

The PHR II reticle and the chart provided by ZeroTech to help you best use it

This is achieved by having three thick duplex-style bars at the top and sides to centre the eye, then thinner lines leading into a small floating dot in the middle, which enabled me to easily shoot tiny groups at the bench. 

When hunting I never notice the tiny dot as it is not needed, but at the bench on paper it is clear as designed.

Then it has the holdover stadia bars below the centre, allowing for more precise aim at longer distances. 

ZeroTech Thrive HD 2.5-15x50 review
Windage and elevation adjustments are precise and audible. They are secured under caps when not in use

Theoretically, the lines are at 1.1 MOA, 2.5 MOA, 5 MOA, then 10, 15, 20 and 25, and as tested we found them to be pretty close to that with various loads. 

You must of course test to see how the stadia work for your particular rifle and ammunition choice. For this, ZeroTech supplies a great chart with the scope that allows you to record the result for each line. It’s a great idea.

Overall, this is one of my favourite reticles for multi-purpose use. It’s open enough for fast and furious pest control while still having the ability to precisely place long-distance shots.

ADJUSTMENTS

ZeroTech Thrive HD 2.5-15x50 review
The 1/4 MOA click adjustments are not only extremely accurate but perfectly repeatable

On the left side is a parallax dial allowing you to get it perfectly focussed at any distance. It works well on anything from a .22 to a .300 magnum.

Elevation and windage adjust through 70 MOA (huge!). The clicks are audible and precise. In the ‘box’ test, which checks the ability of the scope to make precise and repeatable changes and still hit the spot, the ZeroTech aced it. 

The clicks proved  to be accurate at ¼ MOA and we gave them a lot of spins back and forth trying to find fault but they stayed true.

In magnification, the ZeroTech again performed flawlessly, with absolutely no shift in zero from the lowest to highest magnification levels. I put three shots into the same hole at 50 metres, the first shot at 2.5x, the second at 10x and the final at 15x. This gives me great confidence, especially as I’ve seen many scopes (some pricey) fail this test.

ZeroTech Thrive HD 2.5-15x50 review
Despite changing magnification between shots, the point of impact remained the same

LONGEVITY AND RELIABILITY

Over a few weeks the Thrive HD has had more use and abuse (in the name of science, of course) than most would in a year. It has held up perfectly.  

I already have confidence in the brand after I bought another model almost two years ago. It has been used on a farm gun that literally bounces around most days in a rack on the ute or ATV and has never let me down.

ZeroTech offers a full lifetime guarantee and it’s not from some foreign company that could vanish tomorrow, but from an Aussie company with a 50-year history here (ZeroTech is owned by TSA, which has been in the scope business here since the 70s).

At $899, this Thrive HD is seriously great value!

Fin out more and see the full specs at ZeroTech’s website.

 

 

 


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Graham Park

Graham is the President of Shooters Union Australia and is also a keen lover of all things that go bang. With over 40  years of experience in the firearms community and industry, Graham is well placed to share information on a wide variety of firearm related issues. He runs a cattle property and is also a well published writer, with an Australian best-selling book (health related) and many, many published articles in Australian and international media.

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