We all know by now that Athlon is doing good work in the realm of making high quality rifle scope for an affordable price. After reviewing a number of their scopes, I was really excited to finally get to the Athlon Helos BTR review.
I’d been looking forward to doing this review for a while, because the Helos BTR is by far one of the most feature packed scopes on the market. As you’re going to see in the features score, it dominates the field, and this is one of the Helos’ most redeeming qualities.
The Helos BTR will cost between 569.99-599.99 (not including the low power close range scopes, these are the 2 high mag models) depending on the magnfication range you want.
So, is it worth the money or is your hard earned cash better spend elsewhere?
I like to let data tell me the answer to these types of questions. Let’s get to it!
Athlon Helos BTR
Like mentioned above, the Helos BTR was released to create a feature packed Rifle Scope that doesn’t max your credit card out. The main focus here was on the features.
It has a lot in common with the Argos: Illuminated Reticle, Fast Focus Knob, Parallax, etc. But it has one important upgrade:
The locking turrets.
These are sweet. They allow you to make your adjustment then lock that adjustment in place. Perfect for competitions and hunting even.
We actually sell quite a few of these scopes. The market for the Helos is very into the price point and everything that comes with it.
Ready to see how it played out on the scores? Let’s get to it!
When it comes to features, all i can think of saying is DAMN.
The Helos came in with a 42/44 total points in the features score, giving it over a 95%. This stacks it up next to the Razor HD and Ares ETR as if they’re close relatives.
Now, keep in mind that there are plenty of things that differentiate the Helos from the Ares ETR and the Razor HD Gen II, which we will discover with the other two tests. These make them worth the extra money.
That being said, with locking turrets, ED Glass, the capability of a 34mm tube and 56mm Objective Lens, this is one feature packed optic.
And it is very very rare you find something with these kinds of features for anything near the price the Helos BTR is. Kudos Athlon, you won this round.
The Helos BTR scored very well in the tracking score as well, keeping well under the 1% error:
For the shot groups we missed only 3/30, and when we calculate the total inches off if the average and stdev of the errors were to be extrapolated over 1000, 500, 200, 100 and 50 yard shots, we get a total tracking score of 88%.
Note: this does not mean that it’s tracking at 88%, this just means the score itself got 88%. The scope is actually tracking above 99%, but we use this grade to tell the differences between the scopes in a way that’s easy to understand.
One thing I want to note here is that while doing the shot group tracking, I did lose my zero at round 3. I’m still not sure why, and I hesitate to blame it on the scope because it could be a number of reasons, but I wanted to state that up front as well.
Optical Quality Score
Much like the Argos BTR, the optical clarity score is the only real disappointing part of The Helos BTR.
And we sort of expected that, because the Helos and the Argos use the same glass (I have not confirmed this, but based on some research it seems like this is the case).
The issue really comes when you get to the higher magnifications. For some reason the lens gets blurry, and the parallax adjustment and fast focus doesn’t do much to help.
That being said, the optical score got a 75%, so not terrible, just not ETR or Cronus style.
Final Score and Wrap Up
Overall the Helos BTR scored a 620.64 out of 748 points, giving it just under 83% and a solid B.
I think this is a very representative score of the scope, because as outlined above, it has some fantastic features but also is lacking in some of the departments we would expect from an A scope.
The optical clarity is the Helos’ biggest nemesis. Not that we are necessarily expecting edge to edge clarity in a scope under $1000, but this score definitely brought the Helos down a bit.
That being said, it has solid tracking and the best set of features for a scope of it’s price that I’ve seen. Overall it’s a solid buy for people looking to get a feature packed scope but don’t want to shell out for something like the Ares BTR.
I hope this article helped you in your buying decision, and if you are ready to get the Helos BTR, we give 12% off your entire order if you are a new customer or an email subscriber. Head to the shop to take advantage of yours!