|After trying to get this scope sighted/settled in over two 6-hour range periods, two sets of rings, three different types of ammo (ranging from cheap to good), and some intense bench-maintenance time, I never got it where it should have been (1-2 inch groups @ 100 yds). I’ll be returning it. Pros: lots of nice, mostly useful features; inexpensive compared to other scopes of similar magnification and features; light gathering is generally good. Cons: clarity is very good from 4-7x magnification, but above 7x magnification, undergoes some unusual distortion that seems to be the result of uneven or poorly ground lenses. Distortion gets progressively worse from 7-16x magnification, but is still clear enough to ID and shoot at 16x (only just). Additionally, it has an uneven halo effect that seems to be associated with the uneven blur and distortion. Adjusting the focus moves distortion and blur around the FOV, but does not improve it. The eyepiece was mounted off angle. While it didn't affect function, it was off enough to be immediately noticeable. Clearly a QC issue and, unfortunately, is not something that can be user fixed without violating the integrity of the scope.
Neutral points: field of view is good at or below 7x magnification, but coupled with the unusual distortion at higher magnifications, makes the scope less than pleasant to use; it's big, which is a con, but for the magnification range and FOV, it is to be expected; I don’t use illumination much, but even if I did, I wouldn’t have use for 36 colors. It seems to be more of an advertising point than a useful feature.
Unknown: zero. I was never able to get this scope zeroed in. Difficult to tell if it was the scope or some other problem, but I spent enough time tweaking and tuning the rifle to suspect it was the scope. I did get the pattern to improve by 50% after switching rings, but it was still a 10-12 inch pattern at only 100 yds. After much more fiddling, tuning, and tweaking the rifle, scope and rings, the best I could do was about a 6-8 inch pattern, only slightly better than through my iron sights at 100 yds.
Overall rating: Features - 4.5, Performance - 2, Quality - 3, Ease of use - 4, Durability – Unknown (only put 200 rounds through it).
Recommendation: Give this one a pass. While the price is great, the clarity at higher magnification is disappointing and the zero questionable. I suspect this scope would hold zero fine on a .22, and possibly a .223 or 7.62x39mm, but it didn’t seem to be able to handle the abuse of a .308 Winchester.
If you want a variable magnification scope of this magnification or higher, I suggest one of the more expensive scopes, such as Simmons, Leupold, etc. While costing more, these have had numerous rave reviews for clarity throughout their magnification range, as well as the ability to hold zero. If you are willing to go to a lower magnification or can't afford one of the better "big" scopes, the UTG 4-12x40mm may be a better option. All the same features, but smaller, cheaper, and with a reasonably good review base.
Note: I may have just gotten a bad scope. I've purchased numerous UTG items including bags, scopes, rings, bipods, etc., and have generally had decent luck with them. For me, it seems that 1 out of 5 UTG products doesn’t quite seem to be up to snuff. Not really design flaws, but quality control issues. Individual items that shouldn’t have made it out of the factory. This scope definitely had one quality control issue, but it was more cosmetic and not something that should have affected performance. The clarity issue seemed to be a manufacturing flaw though, and not one of quality control. Even though it's not an expensive scope, I wouldn’t be willing to gamble on it again.