Gear Review: Atibal XP8 1-8×24 Scope

atibal xp8

Atibal Sights is a young brand that has experienced a rapid rise in popularity. And why not? Combining functional optics of good quality with affordable prices and a lifetime warranty is hard to argue with. Designed for 3-Gun competitors and hunters alike, Atibal’s XP8 riflescope transitions quickly from red dot-like zero zoom 1x up to 8x zoom for taking precision shots at longer ranges. TTAG got our hands on one and put it through its paces.

Clamped into Atibal’s affordable QD scope mount ($93 at Optics Planet), the XP8 dropped right onto my flat top AR upper at the correct height. The XP8 is 10 inches long with a 30mm tube diameter, and weighs in at 17.4 ounces.

Scope caps and a removable, extended throw lever are included with the XP8. This is pretty cool, as these are often add-on accessories even with high-end optics. Lever at 3:00 and the XP8 is at 1x, no zoom. Lever over the top to 9:00 and you’re zoomed in to 8x magnification. The magnification ring has a well-fit feel to it and moves smoothly. Not as smooth as a top-tier optic, but it feels good. Not too loose, not too tight.

Unscrew the turret caps to reveal 1/2 MOA click turrets. Grab the outside of the turret to dial in your elevation or windage adjustment with clean, fairly well-defined clicks that can be felt and heard. A free-spinning plastic disc can then be used to align the zero line with a dimple in the brass threads. The disc rotates with the turret, so it’ll always be easy to get back to your zero after dialing for farther shots or for wind conditions.

One of the turret caps will house a spare CR2032 battery to power the illuminated reticle.

Reticle brightness is adjusted via a left-side dial with 11 brightness clicks.

The XP8 uses what Atibal calls their Diamond CQB Reticle. It features a diamond shape with a half-MOA dot at center, both red-illuminated. This provides a lot of illuminated surface area for strong visibility at 1x with both eyes open, red dot style, while still allowing for the precision of a fine aiming point.

Horizontal and vertical hash marks provide holds for wind and distance. With a 100-yard zero on the center dot, vertical holds are calibrated for M855 ammunition. Each line is another hundred yards of range, with 4, 6, 8, and 10 labels denoting 400, 600, 800, and 1,000 yards. The bottom tip of the diamond is a 300-yard hold.

As the XP8 is a second focal plane (SFP) optic, the reticle remains the same size through the entire magnification range. These built-in holdovers will only work at 8x zoom. All of the reticle features are etched into the glass and visible whether illumination is used or not.

An advantage of SFP is that it’s lighter, less complicated to manufacture, and generally transmits more light due to using fewer lenses. Indeed, the optical clarity and brightness of the XP8 is pretty darn good. For its ~$340 retail price, it’s nice glass. Contrast and colors are good and the image is sharp except for a tiny bit of distortion around the extreme edge.

On 1x zoom, as seen above, it’s close enough to a true 1x that my eye doesn’t pick up a difference. I can move around, transitioning between targets or scanning an area, with both eyes wide open and see a fairly natural scene that just happens to have a red dot superimposed on it (illumination is completely off in the photo above, though).

Zoomed in to 8x magnification.

8x with the reticle illuminated. While it’s far brighter in real life than through the camera, which can’t help but subdue what it probably sees as a reflection error or red eye or something, it isn’t as bright as a dedicated red dot and will mostly wash out in full sunlight. Of course, the reticle is etched so in full sunlight the lines are particularly crisp and clear and obvious. I’ll also note that this reticle is brighter than that of the Bushnell 300 BLK 1-4x optic reviewed recently and shot back-to-back with the XP8 on at least one range outing.

Hitting the range with some IMI 77 grain OTM ammo, I set out to box test the XP8 and ensure its turrets were tracking acceptably well. Unfortunately, for safety reasons the range was allowing only 100-yard shooting so I couldn’t run the box drill at 25 yards as intended. With a whopping 120 MOA of elevation and windage adjustment, the idea is to run to each corner of the target while using as much of the adjustment range as possible. Though I did dial both turrets back and forth through their full range a few times, I wasn’t able to test them very far from my zero.

Anyway, there’s the box at 100 yards after using about 12 minutes of vertical and horizontal adjustment. It’s pretty square, although it looks like we saw close to a minute of vertical movement when the only variable that should have changed was 12 minutes of horizontal movement.

Here’s the box after firing the final three shots after returning the turrets to their original zero. And return to zero it sure as sh*t did. I couldn’t tell the difference between that and the previous target, either.

Some way, somehow, my final three shots went through the two holes from my first three shots, just barely and ever-so-slightly enlarging them. What are the odds? Good enough, I suppose, but it’s still kind of blowing my mind. At any rate, it’s fair to say that the XP8 got right back to zero.

At the end of the day, the XP8 leaves me with very little to complain about. I absolutely love a 1-8x magnification adjustment — especially so when the 1x truly doesn’t alter the image with a tiny bit of zoom or any fishbowl-like distortion. The glass is very good for the price and the fit and finish quality are also nice. Included “extras” like flip-up lens covers and an extended throw lever are a nice touch, too.

I suppose if I had my way I’d want brighter maximum reticle illumination — a wishlist item with nearly all 1x to 4/6/8x zoom scopes — and a nicer way to set turret dial zero. Then again, the whole point of having 1,000 yards of elevation hold marks built into the reticle is, in the immortal words of Ron Popeil, to set it and forget it.

Specifications: Atibal XP8 1-8×24 Riflescope

Magnification: 1-8x
Objective Lens Diameter: 24mm
Tube Diameter: 30mm
Eye Relief: 4 inches
Field of View: 105 feet at 1x, 12.45 feet at 8x
Adjustments: 1/2 MOA
Max Elevation and Windage Adjustment: 120 MOA
Weight: 17.4 ounces (scope only)
Length: 10 inches
Material: 6061-T6 aluminum
MSRP: $399.99 (about $340 shipped via Optics Planet)

Ratings (out of five stars):

Glass Quality * * * * 
Above average for the price. It’s crisp, clear, and bright with only the smallest bit of distortion at the extreme edges, and colors are great.

Reticle * * * 
The Diamond Tactical Reticle is clear and functional. I like how the diamond provides a lot of illuminated area while the half-MOA dot in the middle still provides a precise aiming point. Wind holds are handy and a BDC tape for a full 1,000 yards is pretty slick. I do wish the reticle illumination got brighter for red dot-like use on full sun days, though. And while the BDC function is there, this reticle simply cannot compete with the quick and intuitive rangefinding of the ACSS reticle found in the similar 1-8x optic from Primary Arms.

Turrets/Dials * * * 
Design typical of optics in this price range. Maybe a bit above average in the clean and precise feel of the adjustment clicks.

Quality * * * *
Atibal demands a lot of their overseas manufacturer and tests each and every unit at their U.S. facility before it’s approved for sale. They keep QC as high as they can in this price range, and feel comfortable backing that up with a lifetime warranty.

Overall Rating * * * * 
A full 1x to 8x zoom in a compact and lightweight optic for about $340 retail is a good deal. When it comes with nice glass, a useful BDC reticle, and a lifetime warranty it’s a solid, four-star piece of kit.

comments

  1. avatar Evey259 says:

    I’ve been kicking around the idea of getting this one, the Primary Arms 1-8, or splurging and getting the Primary Arms Platinum 1-8. I’ve tried the second one of the three and was thoroughly impressed, but the thought that I might like an FFP scope more made me eventually sell it. Now I’m stuck wondering whether it really would make a difference since, in any scenario where I’d have to range a target, I’d crank that sucker’s magnification all the way to 8x. Any of you have any input on the matter.

    1. avatar i1uluz says:

      If you shop around Trijicon 1-8×28 34mm tube first focal plane can be had for $1120 (forgot how much shipping was, but not OMG, I wanted it shipped, not buy the UPS truck) you have to submit a price match with themselves so they avoid Trijicon’s wrath of dipping below MAP. If you need help, Jeremy can contact me.

      Have to say this review has my interest for the next fun project setup.

    2. avatar Accur81 says:

      I have the PA 1-8x with the ACSS. It’s a good value for the money. The ACSS reticle is awesome. Why this reticle doesnt have wind holds is beyond me. I guess some folks shoot at 1000 yards with zero wind.

      Anyways, the platinum 1-8x version is much nicer, but then I wouldn’t have money for a Glock 43 and a Henry pump .22.

      1. avatar Accur81 says:

        There’s a bit of distortion at 8x on the standard model. Not bad, but a tiny bit. If you haven’t looked through a Mark IV, US Optics, or a Scmidt and Bender, you might not even notice it.

        1. avatar i1uluz says:

          Own some second focal plane Leupold MK IVs, the 1-8 was my first Trijicon scope. Nice to hear that the lower end 1×8 PA scope is a good value (vice a review that might have been planted), I have come so close a few times, had it in my cart then decided to wait. Have an older PA 4×16 on an plinker fun build AR, suggested it to a friend’s wife for her AR, equal if not better to Nikon at the same price point. I think Trijicon purchased the rights to use the ACSS PA reticle. Wonder if the higher end PA and the Trijicon 1-8 are not coming out of the same factory, both are made in Japan.

        2. avatar Jeremy S. says:

          I’m now the proud owner of a TA44 ACOG with the ACSS reticle in it. Trijicon is, indeed, manufacturing some optics with that reticle, but I think they’re only available through Primary Arms and aren’t sold anywhere else.

          As I also own the Primary Arms 1-8x ACSS (the $389 one), I’m planning a comparo to this Atibal XP8 fairly soon. My initial impressions from using them both (and I’ve had the ACSS one for over a year) but not actually taking them out at the same time to do a direct back-to-back comparison yet, is that they’re effectively identical. The PA has the ACSS reticle, which I really love, while the Atibal has a throw lever included, which is cool. PA bumped their warranty up to lifetime, likely to keep parity with Atibal, so they appear to be even on that point now. We’ll do a deep-dive soon.

        3. avatar Joe R. says:

          Would be good to read that comparison.

          + “XP8” ? ? ? ‘expiate’ – to atone for guilt or sin? Is there a back-story on the naming of this thing (hopefully nothing to do with low-light brown truck hunting)?

  2. avatar Gabe says:

    Looks decent for the price. They copied the reticle in the SWFA 1-4x.

  3. avatar No one of consequence says:

    Good review, thanks. One question …

    “Glass Quality * * * * Above average for the price.”

    That seems to be more and more the case… Or is it just my perception? Perhaps time to move the bar up a little? Just a thought, but but not everything can be above average if “the average” is to have any meaning.

    Or, alternately what are you using as a reference standard for an average quality scope for the price range? That would also be useful.

    1. avatar Felix says:

      Probably partly because no one reviews the below average optics. There are a heckuva lot of optics out there; why review the junk?

      But OTOH, does average mean “average of everything including the junk” or “average of what we review”?

      1. avatar No one of consequence says:

        Exactly … I need some standard “average” to compare to. Without it, “above” “below” or “about” average is pretty much meaningless.

        Also .. while usually nobody really likes reviewing lower quality stuff, having some guidance about what not to buy can save beginners a lot of time, money and headache. That can make the difference between one staying with the sport or not. Especially these days, if you’re a newbie, it can be pretty hard to find someone to help you through those first steps.

        1. avatar Jeremy S. says:

          There are still optics in the $300-$400 range that get dark and/or blurry at the upper end of their magnification range. With relatively low magnification I’d be disappointed if this XP8 wasn’t as nice and bright and clear as it is, which is mostly due to the fact that the glass coming out of China has improved a whole lot. The glass here is way, way above and beyond the quality of cheap stuff like Barska and NcStar and whatever else, and better than the low-end models of some of the major brands that have scopes priced in the $249 to $400 range for their budget line. I’ve found the “small brands” like Atibal to beat out the budget line from the big brands. Like the 1″ tube, especially if it has high-ish zoom, budget scope from the established, well-known company? It’ll probably have really cheap turrets and poor glass. It’s mostly compared to those established players that I find this glass to be above average. Compared to the new (last 6-ish years especially), smaller companies that came out of the gate trying to make the best quality they could for the lowest cost, the glass quality here is probably closer to average. But the average has moved up thanks to companies like Atibal.

      2. avatar Grrrnt says:

        Have to love it when folks have nothing better to do than troll… Atibal XP8 1-8×24 scope is a fine product and the value scares the sh*t out of competitors and their fanboys. It performs exactly as advertised and the price-point is unbeatable.

        1. avatar David says:

          Nobody is trolling. The two posters above your comment are asking a legitimate question not bashing the scope in question, they are simply asking for some kind of definition or example of what is “average”. If average isn’t defined than saying “above average” has no meaning. If I tell you my AR-15 rifle groups are above average does that have any meaning? Not really unless I’ve defined average as three inch groups at 100yds for example. Specifying what average is when it comes to rifle scopes would be very helpful in understanding how one scope compares to what else is out there. I also agree that reviewing garbage or inferior products would be great as it would be nice to know what to stay away from.

        2. avatar Joe R. says:

          + (mostly) I am not in the ‘immediate’ market for such an optic, but am in the market and am always looking. We all know the game, it’s a Mexican standoff between the Manufacturer, the Reviewer, and the Potential Buyers. Everybody’s looking to make it out alive, and asking for such clarification IMHO is part of the NEEDED tire-kicking.

          I can bull-in-the-china-shop anything, and [I don’t want anyone to unnecessarily beat on anything, BUT ! ] I would like to know it’s survivability. I (sadly) like the Rip van Winkle stories about how they found the bones of a 8 year dead hunter next to his empty flask and (his dog’s run off, BUT ! ) the scope still holds zero (on the remaining part of the rusted old barrel), and it continued to do so after towing it back, on a dragline, behind a hunting pack mule, the 16 miles and 2,300′ to base camp.

          Barring that, how good do you think it’ll survive some rough duty? Would you be scared if YOU took it to war, or if your ENEMY did?

  4. avatar NewWorldPatriot says:

    Say what you want, gotta do better than comparable to beat Primary’s customer service.

    1. avatar Dilon P. says:

      Atibal customer service is fantastic. They will take care of you 100%, even at their own cost. If you ever have to deal with them I’m sure you’ll be surprised at how willing they are go the extra mile.

      I’ve dealt with a lot of companies that claim a “no questions asked, lifetime guarantee”, but none that took it as seriously as Atibal. I had an issue with the illumination in one of my optics about a week before a match (not a major issue). When I told customer service I had this match coming up soon, they sent me a brand new unit (over night shipped) and a pre paid shipping label.

      Not saying there aren’t other companies that would do the same, but that is the best customer service I’ve dealt with in the optics market so far.

      1. avatar Joe R. says:

        @Dilon P.

        With all due respect (and then an additional 2x the same amount of respect thrown in as extra) you gotta be careful about your testimonials. Your recounting sounds ~ legit, but something about what you wrote came off as a manufacturer’s blog-plant. I think I’ve been guilty of the same thing (every few product now and then’s). It’s harder to avoid doing it when it is about an item that you’ve just used, or purchased after researching it a lot. But your response sounded canned, like the abbreviated customer testimonials that a manufacturer puts on their website home / product pages.

        1. avatar Bob Osbeck says:

          I can absolutely back up Dillon’s testimonial. I had an issue with a product, it was damaged, completely my fault. I called the company on Friday afternoon, a new optic arrived on Monday. I zeroed it Tuesday and drove to a match 3 states away on Wednesday. Lifetime warranty, no questions asked, saved me from having to borrow glass for a major match.

    2. avatar Bendod says:

      I own several atibal products, each one has been perfect for everything I need them for. I won several high need optics as well, crazy how close they are at 1/3 the price. Their warranty program is also too notch!

    3. avatar Christian says:

      If you a considering a PA over Atibal you are insane. Atibals optics hang with the best and have a lifetime warranty. The proof is in the pudding.

      1. avatar NewWorldPatriot says:

        If the definition of insanity is that I have a couple of PA products I’m quite pleased with and I hadn’t heard of Atibal until yesterday, get out the butterfly nets. Aside from that, you might want to keep your optics reviewin and puddin proofin seperate. Cleaning that off your glass would be a pain!

    4. avatar Bob Osbeck says:

      I’ve been running an XP8 for 3gun since early summer, and this thing is pretty awesome. I shelved a $1k FFP Burris 1-8x in lieu of the XP8, I liked it that much. The reticle is fast up close, but precise enough to handle business on 12″ plates at 400 with ease.

    5. avatar NewWorldPatriot says:

      Now that I have everyone angry, let’s review. Did I ding Atibal for their glass or their CS? No. What I’ll ding Atibal for is their business model.

      If all things are equal (not sure that’s fair since I can provide 10:1 positive Primary Arms CS feedback), what has been gained? What is the net effect of a price war for the “high end” Chinese glass market? The inevitable effect is reduced innovation, cheapening of current products and companies going out of business.

      So, we can all sit at our computers and fanboy all day long. However, for this to work, Atibal needs to bring something new or innovative to the table. If not, it’s just a downward spiral where everyone, companies and consumers, loses.

      1. avatar David B says:

        Ummm, I’m pretty sure Atibal was the 1st optics company with a 1-8x under $500 with a lifetime warranty. At the time PA 1-8x did not have a lifetime warranty on their 1-8x until Atibal offered it. So, you can thank Atibal for having PA up their warranty to a lifetime warranty. Let’s talk about your statement as a “business model”. I think Atibal has the upper hand as they offer lifetime warranties on all products not just some like PA. Innovative? Hmmm, and PA is? Here is another one, Atibal has 1-6x FRONT FOCAL PLANE under $500, which no one currently has for the price and quality http://www.recoilweb.com/atibal-releases-sub-500-1-6x-ffp-optic-131296.html

        I think the only fanboy on here is you. Comments left by Atibal “fanboys” are factual where you trolled a company that you never used. So, I guess I’m a fan boy too but I know for a fact the the XP8 beats out my PA 1-6x that I have in clartiy and light transmission.

        1. avatar NewWorldPatriot says:

          For a low power variable, I’ll keep my ACSS and you can keep your sub $500 FFP and we’ll see how it washes out with regard to innovation.

          With regard to business model, you actually made my point. One company forces another company to change it’s warranty. One company forces another company to lower it’s margins. Eventually both companies realize they have to reduce the costs of their components to keep up with their price reductions. Both companies become Barska.

          Neither Atibal nor Primary Arms are the primary manufacturer of their products. As such, they are unable to fully realize the benefits of production efficiencies, EOQ’s or other manufacturing cost savings. Their profits are strictly limited to the delta between the manufacturers sales price and the perceived market value. As that delta shrinks, things like R&D, QC and CS begin to fall away for company survival. Once that occurs, the perceived market value sinks and cycle continues to spiral downward.

          That’s why I mentioned innovation. Unlike warranty extensions and price cuts, innovation is what will keep the market segment vibrant because you don’t have to rely on the former if you have the latter.

          Innovation is Trijicon contracting to use your patented reticle. Non-innovation is waiting to manufacture and sell Trijicon technology when their patents expire.

    6. avatar 2581sPlt. says:

      I have 4 different Atibal products an XP8, MCRD II, Nomad 20-60×80 spotting scope, and I just got the XP6 1-6 FFP. Aside from some Nightforce optics I have had the pleasure of using, the Atibal’s have some of the nicest glass I have ever seen. Couldn’t tell you about their customer service, as I have yet to use it. I can tell you that I have spent less than $1500 for all these products and couldn’t be happier. Not a “fanboy” or an employee giving “canned” replies, as some experts have been confidently pointing out. I appreciate quality and value and all my Atibal optics have provided that for me.

  5. avatar Ben-jam-in says:

    Atibal puts out a solid product been waiting for this to come out to give it a try on my 300 blackout I’ve seen a few of their products on rifles in classes never a problem

  6. avatar Kerry S says:

    My son and I both use Atibal magnified optics for 3Gun Nation and club rifle matches. My son has the Atibal XP8, and I shoot with the Velox 1-4 FFP.

    Considering the product quality, warranty, and customer service, we couldn’t be happier with Atibal.

  7. avatar David Willis says:

    I have this on my AR and love it…fast cqb at 1x, then pop heads on targets out to 500 yards with ease at 8x..i don’t care about putting rounds into the same hole at range..this isn’t the Olympics. I care that my optics can keep me putting rounds into what I’m shooting with speed and accuracey enought to stop it dead as fast as possible. This does that for me.

  8. avatar Joe R. says:

    Is it just me, or does it sound like some of Atibal’s people wrote-in in a few places here.

    If not, I guess it’s a good thing (testament to the product), but. . .

    1. avatar David B says:

      No, when there a 102k Atibal followers on facebook (which is more than Primary Arms) expect there to be a response. It looks to me Atibal did share this review on their Facebook page.

    2. avatar 2581sPlt. says:

      It’s just you

  9. avatar Vic Nighthorse says:

    Jeremy, excellent work and good topic choice as usual. I keep looking for your Patreon page so I can chip in for all of the help you have given me.

    1. avatar Jeremy S. says:

      You don’t think that would be weird? I’d love to do a Patreon page to help fund the YouTube videos (they’ve de-monetized most of mine) and possibly eventually move away from the corporate world to be able to produce content lilke all sorts of written stuff for TTAG including as much objective product testing (like the muzzle device tests, drop-in trigger test, etc) as possible…but am not sure how it would be received. Of course, it makes maintaining complete independence even easier and would free up A LOT of time for testing and writing.

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