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Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta Riflescope Review | Optics Trade Reviews

In 2023, Schmidt & Bender unveiled the 3-18×42 Meta riflescope. Users can select between models with or without the mounting rail, as well as choose between Posicon, BDC II turrets, and BDC II B turrets.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta Riflescope Review

Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta Rifle Scope | SHOT Show 2024 Report

About the Schmidt & Bender

Schmidt & Bender, a renowned manufacturer of premium riflescopes, has established a strong reputation in the military and police sectors due to its extensive selection of tactical riflescopes. Founded in 1957 in Biebertal, the company initially operated as an OEM producer until 1971, when it began marketing riflescopes under its brand name.

In 1997, Schmidt & Bender unveiled the PM II series of riflescopes, securing numerous military contracts worldwide. Renowned for their exceptional craftsmanship, dependability, and remarkable optical performance, Schmidt & Bender is also highly regarded for their hunting riflescopes.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42

The new Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta

The latest product from Schmidt & Bender is a 3-18×42 Meta riflescope which was announced in 2022 but finally introduced in 2023 at the Shot Show.

Schmidt & Bender Meta riflescope is a true all-rounder with a three times base magnification. The scope is well-suited for night vision and thermal attachments due to its 42-millimeter objective lens. Additionally, with 18 times magnification, this scope is also suitable for long-range hunting.

The choice of a 42-millimeter objective lens is intriguing because it strikes a balance between low-light performance and close-range capabilities. Featuring a 42-millimeter objective lens, this scope offers versatility and is perfect for a range of activities, including mountain hunting and hunting with a clip-on device.

Physical Properties

The Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta scope measures 328 millimeters, making it incredibly compact and short. However, with the inclusion of flip-up caps, the scope’s length extends to approximately 350 millimeters.

As mentioned earlier, due to its smaller objective lenses, the scope weighs a mere 680 grams, which is incredibly lightweight. When combined with the mounting rail, the total weight reaches just 700 grams. This significant weight reduction becomes apparent when carrying the rifle for extended periods, distinguishing it from heavier rifle scopes.

The scope is entirely constructed from metal, devoid of any rubber components. It is exclusively offered in black color. As expected from Schmidt & Bender this scope exhibits shockproof capabilities across all calibers, including the 50 BMG.

The scope can operate in a temperature range that spans from -40 degrees Celsius to 61 degrees Celsius. This means that you can use it in extremely cold environments without worrying about internal fogging, thanks to its nitrogen purging. Even in hot conditions, the scope guarantees a flawless and clear view. The rifle scope is also waterproof up to three meters depth.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42
Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42

European-style eyepiece

The Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta boasts a European-style eyepiece. Only the rear portion of the eyepiece is intended for diopter adjustment. The eyepiece offers a smooth feel, albeit slightly resistant to rotation, which, in my opinion, is ideal. Typically, the eyepiece requires adjustment only once, eliminating the need for constant tinkering. Loose eyepieces may accidentally shift, resulting in a blurred reticle.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42 Meta
Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta feature an European-style eyepiece

Magnification Ring

The magnification ring boasts an elegant finish, providing a satisfying grip at nine times magnification. A subtle bulge serves as a helpful indicator, pinpointing the midpoint of the magnification range. The magnification ring glides effortlessly, offering superior ease of rotation compared to the eyepiece.

Magnification ring with an indicator

LP7 Reticle

The Meta rifle scope features the LP7 reticle, positioned in the second focal plane. LP7 is a straightforward hunting reticle, closely resembling the widely acclaimed G4 reticle, particularly popular among European hunters. Currently, Schmidt & Bender exclusively offers the scope with the LP7 reticle, catering to the preferences of hunters in Europe.

LP7 Reticle
LP7 Reticle

Illumination System

The reticle illumination features a compact dot that is placed at the center of the reticle. With a range of 11 intensity settings, the illumination can be easily adjusted using the left-side turret.

The first six positions are optimized for low-light conditions, while the remaining settings are ideal for daytime use. Notably, the dot in the middle is exceptionally bright, particularly on the 11th setting, making it highly suitable for daytime applications.

The side turret also includes an indicator that shows the current illumination position. Unlike previous models where the indicator was positioned in the middle of the tube, in this model, it is located on the upper side of the left-side turret. This improvement allows for easier visibility of the current position when looking through the scope.

Battery

The battery compartment is located underneath the cap on the left side of the turret. To access it, rotate the setting to the maximum level and unscrew the cap on the turret. For operation, a single CR2032 battery is required.

Battery Compartment

Automatic turn-off feature

A notable feature of the scope is its automatic turn-off function. After six hours of inactivity, the scope will automatically switch off the illumination to conserve battery life.

The scope is fitted with a tilt sensor that conserves battery life by automatically turning off the illumination when the scope is tilted away from the shooting position. Additionally, it detects when the scope is returned to the shooting position and reactivates the illumination.

A notable feature is the flashing illumination, signaling low battery power. This instantly alerts you that the battery needs replacement.

The models equipped with the Posicon and BDC II turrets boast an added battery concealed beneath the cap of the right-side turret, guaranteeing uninterrupted power during hunting expeditions. If one battery becomes depleted, it can be swiftly replaced with a fresh one.

Models with Posicon and BDC II turrets feature an added battery beneath the cap of the right-side turret

Parallax Adjustment

The left-side turret also features a parallax adjustment ranging from 20 meters to infinity. It is designed with a comfortable grip, allowing for easy use with or without gloves. Overall, the parallax wheel provides a nice grip and functions effectively.

At the 100-meter mark, a subtle indication marks where the turret comes to a halt. This way, even in low light conditions, you can instantly determine your current position.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta

Turrets

As previously stated, the Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta offers a selection of three turret options for users to choose from:

  • Posicon CT / Posicon CT
  • BDC II LT / Posicon CT
  • BDC II B LT / BDC II LT
Turret configurations

Explanation of Acronyms:

  1. CT – Capped
  2. Posicon – Position Control
  3. BDC II – Bullet Drop Compensation II
  4. LT – Locking Turrets
  5. BDC II B – Bullet Drop Compensation II Ballistic

Scope with the BDC II / Posicon Turrets Configuration

The rifle scope used in this review features the BDC II locking elevation turret and the Posicon CT windage turret. The elevation turret features a 1cm per 100-meter click value and 100 clicks within a single revolution. The clicks on the turret are very tactile.

The elevation turret is effortlessly adjustable, requiring minimal force to make precise clicks.

The internal adjustment consists of 305 clicks, which equates to slightly over three meters at 100 meters. This generous amount of elevation allows for effortless fine-tuning, especially when using a 20 MOA mount.

Locking mechanism

The scope with the BDC II turret features a locking mechanism, situated beneath the turret. In the forward position, the turret remains securely locked. However, by rotating it, you can adjust the turret. The locking function works flawlessly in every position. Once locked in place, it remains steady and secure.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42
Scope with the BDC II / Posicon Turrets Configuration

Resetting the turret to zero

The elevation turret can be very easily reset to zero. You have just to loosen the two screws on top of the turret and then rotate the turret so that the zero is facing forwards. Once you have tightened the two screws, you are good to go.

The elevation turret can be adjusted two clicks below zero.

Windage Turret

The windage Posicon turret, just like the elevation turret, has a click value of 1cm at 100 meters. It offers a windage adjustment range of 305 cm at 100 meters, providing a total of 305 clicks. With its multi-turn design, it allows for multiple turns in each direction.

The turret is equipped with a protective cap, which, as previously mentioned, conveniently stores a spare battery. The Posicon turret features a small indicator in the center, providing information on the current position of your turret.

When the turret is turned to the left, the indicator points to the letter L, indicating that it is not at the midpoint of its elevation. As the turret is rotated back, the indicator returns to zero.

The windage turret can be conveniently reset to zero. Simply loosen the screw on top of the turret and adjust the silver part beneath it until it aligns with the dot on the side of the turret.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42
Windage Turret on Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42

Scope with the Posicon CT / Posicon CT Turrets Configuration

As previously stated, the Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta rifle scope is available for purchase with capped windage and elevation Posicon turrets. However, it’s important to note that the turrets on this particular model do not include a zero-stop function.

Each click corresponds to 1 cm at 100 meters, while the windage and elevation adjustment range covers 305 cm at 100 meters.

Scope with the BDC II B / BDC II Turrets Configuration

The third option is to order the scope with the BDC II B elevation turret, which is essentially the same as the BDC II turret but offers additional adjustment positions. These positions allow you to fine-tune your aim for different distances. For example, you can adjust to position two for 200 meters, three for 300 meters, and so on.

If you opt for the riflescope equipped with the BDC II B elevation turret, the corresponding windage turret will be the BDC II turret.

The click value on the elevation and windage turret is 1cm at 100 meters and the adjustment range is 100 cm at 100 meters.

Turret rotation direction

Both the elevation and windage turrets are intended to rotate in a clockwise direction. For customers in the United States, the scope can be requested with the option to rotate counterclockwise (CCW).

Optical Performance

The Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta offers a magnification range from 3x to 18x, complemented by a 42mm objective lens. Featuring a zoom factor of 6x, this scope offers a wide field of view. At 3x magnification, the FOV spans 14.5 meters at a distance of 100 meters, while at 8x magnification, it narrows down to 2.4 meters at 100 meters. The wide field of view is of great value, especially when utilizing a clip-on attachment, allowing you to perceive the complete FOV of the front-mounted device even at night.

The scope has no tunneling effect and the light transmission through the scope is 92%. The eye relief, so the distance to the eye, is 19 millimeters, and I have to say it is very forgiving. You can adjust your position relative to the scope and still capture a perfect image. The same is true with the eye box, it is very good at all magnifications.

One of the things I like about the Meta riflescope is its minimal edge distortion, allowing for a wide panoramic view. It makes looking through the scope extremely comfortable and enjoyable.

The optical quality of Schmidt & Bender is unsurpassed, as expected. The image quality is exceptional, with accurate colors and clarity from edge to edge.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42
Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42

Mounting Solution

The Meta scope comes with a Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 and offers two mounting options:

  1. a 30mm main tube or
  2. the LMZ rail, also known as the Zeiss ZM/VM mounting rail.

If you decide to order the scope without the rail, you will require 30mm scope mount rings to attach it to the rifle. However, if you choose the model with the LMZ rail, you will need a Zeiss ZM/VM rail mount for installation.

 Looking for a Scope Mount? Find it right below:

The objective lens has a measurement of 42 millimeters, while the outer diameter of the objective is 50 millimeters. The measurement of the outer objective diameter is very important if you are considering purchasing a clip-on mount for your thermal or night vision attachment.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42
Model with the LMZ Rail

Price and Warranty

Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta rifle scope is available at a starting price of 2,840 euros for the basic model, excluding the BDC turret and mounting rail. However, opting for the BDC II-B turrets and mounting rail will increase the price to approximately 3,550 euros.

The scope is made in Germany, and it comes with a 10-year warranty.

Scope of delivery

Inside the box, you will find a collection of items accompanying the scope:

  • Allen key for convenient turret adjustment
  • warranty certificate and card, providing you with all the necessary information regarding the scope’s warranty
  • user’s manual, with all the essential knowledge about your rifle scope
  • Schmidt and Bender stickers
  • cleaning cloth
  • Tenebrex scope covers
Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42
Scope of Delivery

Tenebrex scope covers

Tenebrex scope covers are easily mountable and highly durable. They are considered one of the top options in the market.

To install the front covers on the scope’s objective, simply screw them in place. The objective cover can also be locked to prevent movement and adjusted to various positions.

The same principle applies to the eyepiece. The covers on the eyepiece can also be adjusted to various positions, providing flexibility and convenience.

Pros

I appreciate the design of the riflescope. It strikes a great balance between a tactical and hunting riflescope. When you observe tactical scopes, you’ll notice a striking similarity in design, particularly with the ocular and other elements. However, the front of this scope leans more towards a hunting riflescope with its rounded edges and other features. I find the design of this scope quite appealing.

The build quality of Schmidt and Bender optics is exceptional, with remarkable optical quality. The shift in illumination placement to the side turret, instead of the end of the mounting tube, provides more space for scope ring mounting. A wide range of turret options, including Capped Posicon, BDC II, and BDC II B, are available for users to choose from.

I appreciate the versatility of the scope, which can be obtained with or without the mounting rail. Additionally, the inclusion of high-quality scope covers adds to its appeal.

Lastly, I believe opting for the 42-millimeter objective lens is an excellent choice. There are numerous night vision and clip-on attachments available. If you plan on hunting at night, a clip-on attachment is the perfect solution. Even with a larger 56mm objective lens, visibility at night is limited. Therefore, a big front lens is unnecessary when hunting during the night. The 42-millimeter objective lens makes the scope more compact, smaller, and lightweight. In my opinion, if you engage in night hunting, this is the optimal solution.

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42
Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42

Pros summary:

  1. great balance between a tactical and hunting riflescope
  2. great build quality
  3. great optical quality
  4. wide range of turret options
  5. LMZ rail option
  6. good illumination system
  7. compact design

Cons

I must admit that I haven’t come across any significant issues or areas for improvement with the scope, except for the rather high price.

The basic model, at 2,840 euros is quite expensive. If you opt for the BTC II B turrets and mounting rail, the price of 3,550 euros is very high in my opinion. But considering it’s a premium rifle scope from a top manufacturer, it’s understandable.

Cons summary:

  1. high price

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 Meta riflescope is a premium option for those looking for a high-quality, versatile scope. Its compact and lightweight design coupled with exceptional optical quality make it a top choice for both hunting and tactical use.

The wide range of turret options and LMZ rail mounting solution provide added flexibility for users. While the price may be considered high, it is expected for a premium product from a top manufacturer.

If you demand the best in reliability, performance, and versatility, the 3-18×42 Meta rifle scope is a worthwhile investment that will meet and exceed your expectations.

Looking for a Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42 META? Find it below:

Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42
Schmidt & Bender 3-18×42
Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42 Meta
Author Rating
51star1star1star1star1star
Product Name
Schmidt & Bender 3-18x42 Meta
Price
EUR 2839
Product Availability
Available in Stock

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