Manufacturer reputation and customer service should be a big factor in your purchasing decision.

You need to consider that at some point, through no fault of your own, you may discover a defect in the scope, or a defect could be introduced by normal usage.

Good customer service from the scope manufacturer is a big plus, and cannot be over-rated.

Ask about the warranty policy before you buy. Know what to do if there is a problem, and how long it will take to resolve.

If you have no after-market service, or recourse to rectify a damaged product, you've effectively thrown your money away and have to go buy a new scope.

A well priced, full-featured scope with no customer service backup is a gamble you must be prepared to lose.

Rather pay extra for the peace of mind, knowing that whatever defect is found, or problem with the scope arises, the manufacturer or supplier will repair or replace it within a reasonable time.

There is no customer service for cheap "shipped from China" scopes on eBay.

      For many years, Leupold had the best warranty in the business. Any scope bought anywhere from anyone, irrespective of age, is under guarantee from Leupold.

      That sounds great, until you find out how much it costs to ship a scope to Leupold in the US, and that rifle scopes are restricted export items from the US - they cannot send it back to you.

      Alternatively, buying a new Leupold scope from a dealer means the dealer will handle the process for you, but expect to be without a scope for several months.

      Vortex scopes have the same warranty as Leupold. They have a local presence in South Africa, so a scope does not need to ship to the US, it can ship local, and turn-around time is a matter of days.

      Based in Johannesburg, they respond to warranty issues quickly, turn around time can be a matter of days.

      Lynx scopes are completely under-rated in South Africa, they are every bit as good as imported scopes costing twice as much.