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Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope Review | Optics Trade Reviews

Arken EP5 5-25×56 riflescope has garnered a lot of buzz within the tactical community. Many people would like to know how Arken EP5 fares in comparison with the industry greats like S&B PM II or Nightforce ATACR 5-25×56 F1. This is why the Arken EP5 5-25×56 we tested in the field is the MIL-MIL model variant 5-25X56mm FFP MIL VPR. But fret not, we’ll cover everything there is to know about the scope, different configurations, and all.



Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Angle View
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Angle View

Arken Optics

Arken Optics is a new manufacturer on the scene that specializes in tactical scopes and rifle scope accessories. The company was founded in 2019 by people passionate about giving shooters the best possible quality of riflescopes made from the toughest materials but at an affordable price. Though they’re still a pretty small operation, Arken Optics has already captured North America’s shooting market and continues to grow its popularity across the globe.

The Arken EP5 line-up of tactical riflescopes is a serious contender for the best-configured tactical series of scopes below €1000.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Magnification Ring
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Magnification Ring

Physical Properties

Arken EP5 5-25×56 scope offers 5-25x magnification and a 56-millimeter objective lens. The scope is completely made out of metal. The aluminum tube measures 34 millimeters. 

Arken EP5 scopes have a fast-focus eyepiece, which is finely adjustable. The integrated magnification ring moves in a 180-degree turn from 5x to 25x. If you’re looking for quick adjustments, Arken Optics also makes throw levers that are easy to install. 

Wanna change magnification fast?


The outer objective diameter of Arken EP5 5-25×56 measures 66 millimeters. This is an important piece of information for users who are looking for better-quality lens caps or clip-on attachments. Not that the latter option is very likely with the 5-25×56 configuration. 

The scope is nitrogen purged, which means you can use the scope in very low temperatures. The purging with gas eliminates fogging of the lens. Arken EP5 riflescopes are waterproof and shockproof up to .50 BMG.

The Arken EP5 5-25×56 construction is quite short at 355 millimeters (14 inches). Compared to competitors’ scopes of the same magnification, Arken EP5 is shorter but also heavier. It weighs about 1100 grams (38.8 oz), which is a lot. 

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Objective
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Objective

Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Scope Mounts

There’s another thing that’s important to mention about the 34mm tube. The housing at the cross-section of W&E turrets protrudes out. The tube is much thicker here so the mounting rings have to be quite high to make up for the difference in tube diameter.

Not only is the tube thicker at this part, but there’s also the erector spring tube that juts out at an angle. That’s nothing out of the ordinary. Nevertheless, take it into account when looking for the right mounting solution. If you’re considering monoblock mounts, make sure the Arken EP5 retention spring won’t interfere with the mount design. Both the tube and the erector spring on Arken EP5 5-25×56  jut out for 5.5 millimeters individually, so 11 millimeters altogether.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Protruding Underside of the Main Tube & Erector Spring
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Protruding Underside of the Main Tube & Erector Spring

When testing the scope, we used a Tier-One monoblock mount and had no issues whatsoever. That’s because Tier-One monoblocks are narrower in the middle and the protruding erector spring tube was not in the way. But not all manufacturers of tactical mounts are the same. We can imagine that Spuhr mounts, for example, that are built with the same thickness throughout the base won’t be compatible with Arken EP5 models, if not appropriate height. 

Check out these Arken EP5 mounts!

  1. Arken Optics Halo Scope Rings, 34mm
  2. Arken Optics Rigid Precision Scope Mount, 34 mm, 20 MOA

Adjustable Parallax

The parallax setting of Arken EP5 5-25×56 is adjusted on the same turret as the illumination. The parallax goes from 25 yards (22.8m) to infinity. The mechanism is nicely done – the side turret glide is slow and precise. No chance of misdialling the clicks.

Truly, we can hardly imagine Arken Optics could’ve done anything better. Unlike most tactical scopes in this price range, Arken EP5 5-25×56 doesn’t run out of dial space when going beyond 200 or 300 meters. There is so much space in-between all distances listed, that the user doesn’t have to be persnickety to find the perfect spot for the correct parallax adjustment at any distance.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Elevation Turret Design
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Turret Design

Windage and Elevation Turrets

Windage and elevation turrets are also of superior ergonomics. The clicks are some of the very best on the market, not just for the price. The clicks are in 0.1 MILs or in 1/4 MOA, depending on the scope variant. We tested the coveted MIL-MIL model and can attest that one click at 100 meters is exactly one centimeter. 

Not only are clicks audible, but they are also tactile with a nice feel to them. It’s super easy to count every click without looking at the turret. This is what you want.

Note that windage and elevation turrets are of multi-turn type. In general, Arken Optics and other American brands manufacture CCW turrets. The total elevation range of Arken EP5 5-25×56 scope is 32 MIL. The windage turret allows for 16 MILs of travel maximum. In a full turret turn, you move the reticle for 10 MILs.

As you can see, Arken EP5 5-25×56 is a true MIL-MIL tactical riflescope. The clicks and the reticle are both configured in MIL. With the total reliability of Arken mechanics, reticle-reading is a pleasure. The user can look through the scope and adjust the turrets in sync with the reticle, no problem.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Elevation Turret with Visible Turn Indicator (3rd Revolution)
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Elevation Turret with Visible Turn Indicator (3rd Revolution)

Visible Turn Indicator

On a less positive note, there is no mechanical pin for a turn indicator. Instead, the user is guided by horizontal white lines beneath the Arken EP5 elevation turret. These lines could be more visible. We are also concerned that using Arken EP5 5-25×56  in combination with 20 MOA mounts will obstruct the view of the revolution guide lines.

Setting the Zero on Turrets

Setting the zero is easy, just different, and therefore less straightforward than with other scope manufacturers. Most riflescopes require the user to take down the elevation turret by unscrewing the middle screw. Don’t be confused because Arken EP5 5-25×56 sports no screw in the middle of the knob or an indentation for zero tool insertion.

Instead, look for 3 horizontally-positioned screws on the side of the elevation turret. You just unscrew these three screws but don’t have to take the whole turret down. Simply rotate the turret until your zero is aligned with the white dot on the main frame, facing the ocular. Tighten the 3 turret screws to secure the turret into place.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - 3 Horizontal Screws on the Elevation Turret
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – 3 Horizontal Screws on the Elevation Turret

Arken Optics EP5 Hard Zero Stop

Arken EP5 5-25×56 riflescope has a hard zero stop, as the turret rotation stops dead on the zero. It’s marketed under the name AZS Zero Stop System. This setting too is a bit different than what we’re used to with European brands.

How can you activate the zero stop on Arken EP5 scopes? When you are done setting your zero, rotate the elevation turret UP for 2 clicks. Now you can also enable the zero stop. On the top of the elevation turret, you’ll find 1 vertical screw that is aligned with one of the 3 horizontal screws, the one facing the eyepiece. Unscrew that horizontal screw but leave the others in place.

Gently screw the vertical turret in a clockwise direction until it tightens, then move the Allen key a quarter of a turn back to alleviate the tension. Secure the zero stop by also retightening the side turret screw. Now your zero stop is set and you’re ready for action.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Elevation Turret with 1 Top Screw
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – 1 Top Screw on the Elevation Turret

Optical Properties

At the approximately 1000-euro price range, this scope provides an exceptionally good viewing experience. The Arken EP5 series, as the name suggests, has a 5x zoom capability. The picture is clear and sharp, with no blurring or distortion visible. The image stays clear on the edges as well. No surprise here. This scope features low-dispersion Japanese-made glass, so the optical quality is up to standard.

The eye relief is 86 millimeters. The eyebox is also very comfortable and it is easy to stay on target or behind the reticle through the entire magnification range. 

As mentioned, the magnification is 5-25x, which makes this a 5x zoom scope. Thanks to the big-sized 56-millimeter objective lens, the image stays bright through all magnifications. That lets the user rely on the scope in low-light conditions.

Watch our Video Review!

Arken EP5 5-25×56 Field of View

The field of view at 5x magnification is 8.4 meters t 100 meters, which is quite a lot. When the magnification ring is turned all the way to 25x, the FOV is 1.63m/100m. (That’s 25.3-4.9 ft at 100 yards for our American readers.) In comparison with more expensive premium scopes, Arken EP5’s field of view stays generous at any magnification. What is more, there is no tunnel effect to speak of.

Arken EP5 5-25×56 Reticle

For this review, we took Arken EP5 5-25x56mm FFP MIL VPR to a shooting range. The reticle is positioned in the first focal plane. In other words, reticle dimensions change with magnification and their subtensions stay the same in accordance to the target. The reticle design is called VPR and has a typical Christmas-tree shape. The reticle is very practical as it has the same clicks as the turrets. This Arken scope is available in MIL or MOA configuration. So reticle is also made in MOA or MIL configuration, depending on the model variant.

See the VPR-MIL Reticle Substensions in Detail!

VPR MIL reticle
VPR MIL reticle
Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56: VPR Reticle Detailed
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56: VPR Reticle Detailed
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 – VPR Reticle

Illumination

The area of illumination is neatly limited for shot precision. The only reticle section that lights up with illumination is the 0.04 MIL dot in the center and the 0.1 MIL design around the dot. For shot accuracy, there is a clearly defined limit on the amount of light emitted.

The red illumination can be adjusted with the side turret.  Between each intensity setting, there is an off position, which is very user-friendly. There are 6 settings in total.

The illumination is not day-bright and is usable only in low light conditions. The illumination is powered with a single CR2032 battery coin. You can access the battery compartment by removing the illumination turret cap.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Open Illumination Dial
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Open Illumination Dial

Scope of Delivery

Let’s take a look inside the box with the product. The user receives non-transparent bikini lens covers. They are nicely made but flip-ups are the preferable lens caps for active use. The next addition is the sunshade, which is a must for a 5-25×56 tactical scope. Next, you get a zeroing tool (2mm Allen key), lens cleaning cloth, owner’s manual, and promo stickers with the Arken logo.  

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Scope of Delivery
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Scope of Delivery

Interested in more Arken EP5 accessories?

  1. Arken Optics Throw Lever, 34mm
  2. Arken Optics Bubble Level, 34mm
  3. Arken Optics Flip-Its Set of Lens Caps, 56mm
  4. Arken Optics Halo Scope Rings, 34mm
  5. Arken Optics Rigid Precision Scope Mount, 34 mm, 20 MOA

Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Warranty and Price

Arken Optics claims to be backed by USA engineering. The materials used are high-quality and rugged. Japanese glass gives them a leg up above many other North American brands that are new on the market.

The actual assembly is outsourced to China to keep prices low, but this does not mean that the quality of the product is sacrificed in any way. In fact, Chinese assembly often results in scopes that are more tightly put together than those assembled in the United States. This is because Chinese factories have a greater incentive to produce quality products, as their reputation relies on it.

Arken EP5 5-25×56 tactical riflescope costs €959. This isn’t exactly dirt cheap but still enlists Arken as an affordable alternative to big-money European brands like Schmidt & Bender, Zero Compromise Optic (ZCO), and the like. Obviously, Arken does not offer the same-quality physical features or brilliant view-through as them. But it still holds its ground when you factor in the slashed price.  

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Fast-Focus Eyepiece
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Fast-Focus Eyepiece

Pros

And now for a summary, what do we like about this Arken EP5 scope? First of all, the production standard it’s exceptional for this price point as the parts are completely made out of metal, It also performs well in terms of optical clarity and color fidelity. We also appreciate that the FFP reticle stays crisp at all magnifications.

As far as the build quality is concerned, this 5-25×56 scope is shorter than similar models from other brands. The parallax adjustment is nicely made and not too loose. The above-standard turrets deserve a special mention. Turrets clicks are precise, and won’t move by accident. You can hear and feel the clicks. Just perfect for no-look adjustments. Albeit done differently than competitor models, Arken EP5 zeroing proved to be no trouble either.

Pros Summary

  1. affordable price
  2. audible and tactile clicks
  3. 10 MIL/25 MOA per revolution
  4. hard zero stop
  5. reticle is true to clicks
  6. optical clarity
  7. no tunnel effect

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Non-Transparent Bikini Covers
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Non-Transparent Bikini Covers

Cons

Of course, this scope comes with small flaws that stand in a way of a perfect score. First of all, despite the short length, this 5-25×56 tactical model is nonetheless very heavy at about 1100 grams.

We also yearn for a mechanical turn indicator. The white lines under the elevation turret aren’t super visible as it is. Not to mention that they won’t be of much use if you mount Arken EP5 5-25×56 with a 20 MOA rail. In that case, the turret will move down even further and you won’t see the lines.

The bottom surface of the 34mm tube could do with a better design. It bulges out so much, for about 11 millimeters (that’s 7/16 inch). We can just see people’s dismay when the purchased monoblock mount cannot be fitted onto the scope.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope - Protruding Underside of the Main Tube & Erector Spring
Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Riflescope – Protruding Underside of the Main Tube & Erector Spring

Lastly, the turrets do not have a locking function. This is barely worth down-marking the overall scope value though. With the clicks so wonderful and reliable, you probably wouldn’t need to lock them into place anyway.

Cons Summary

  1. 38.8oz weight
  2. no mechanical turn indicator
  3. poor main tube design (7/16 inch difference)
  4. non-lockable turrets

Looking for an affordable MIL-MIL scope?


Final Thoughts on Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56

The Arken EP5 5-25×56 tactical riflescope is a great piece of equipment. It is built to a very high production standard and the optical clarity is more than adequate. The reticle is true to clicks and the turrets are precise. The only downside is that the scope is a little on the heavy side, but this can be forgiven thanks to its other features. Arken EP5 5-25×56 is one of, if not the best MIL-MIL scope in the 1000-euro bracket on the market right now.

Arken Optics EP5 5-25×56 Photos

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56 Riflescope
Author Rating
41star1star1star1stargray
Product Name
Arken Optics EP5 5-25x56
Price
EUR 959
Product Availability
Available in Stock

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1 Comments
  • Having read numerous reviews on the Arken EP% 5-25×56, I have no hesitation in saying loud and clear your review is the most informative and comprehensible of them all. Thank you!

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