Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56 Review: Precision and Clarity

by Dave Chesson

February 13, 2024



As an optics enthusiast, I’m always looking for optics that strike the perfect balance between performance and affordability. That’s what led me to try Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2. Having owned both the first and second generations of Cronus scopes before, I was curious about the improvements in this Gen 2 model. In this Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56 review, I’ll share my hands-on experience and insights.

Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56 Specs

  • Magnification Range 4.5-29x
  • Objective Lens Diameter 56 mm
  • Focal Plane First Focal Plane
  • Weight 35.8 oz
  • Length 14.4 in
  • Field of view at 100 yds 4.5x: 24.8 ft, 29x: 3.83 ft
  • Illumination Yes
  • Tube Diameter 34 mm
  • Zero Stop Yes
  • Parallax adjustment Side focus
  • Eye Relief 3.6-3.8 in

Specifications and Background of Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56

Athlon Optics is a well-respected brand in the optics industry, which serves outdoor enthusiasts, hunters, and shooters alike. Founded in 2014, the brand has prioritized innovation and quality, earning a reputation for reliability and performance. The Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 is a notable addition to their product line, reflecting Athlon’s commitment to excellence. With a focus on durability and functionality, the company caters to a wide range of users, offering solutions tailored to their needs.

The Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56 is a high-performance scope with a magnification range of 4.5 to 29x. It features a 56mm objective lens and a 34mm tube diameter. The eye relief is between 3.6 to 3.8 inches, and it provides a field of view at 100 yards ranging from 24.8 to 3.83 feet. The parallax adjustment is from 25 yards to infinity. Turret adjustments have a click value of 0.1 MIL. This scope measures 14.3 inches in length and weighs 35.8 ounces. The reticle type is APRS6 FFP IR MIL. The scope is equipped with advanced fully multi-coated lenses for better light transmission. It also has a precision zero stop system that allows for a sharp and precise return to the initial zero position. This scope has a UHD glass to provide images with little or no chromatic fringe for better clarity.

Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56 Features

Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29x56 Features
1 UHD Glass

The UHD glass along with advanced multi-coating provides outstanding light transmission and color accuracy with little to no chromatic fringing.

2 Tactile Turrets

The exposed target style turrets have a nice knurling making them easy to adjust and a zero stop system.

3 Dual Purpose Dial

The side dial has two parts, one adjusts for parallax while the other adjusts brightness of the reticle.

4 Magnification Ring

The magnification ring has a nub to help adjust the magnification without having a large knob sticking out to snag on gear.

Review of Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56

Let’s start with the ergonomics of the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2. The scope felt sturdy and lightweight. It had a 34mm, one-piece, heat-treated, main tube with a 56mm objective bell which gave it a solid construction. Additionally, the etched reticle enhanced its durability and recoil resistance. The lenses are made of Japanese glass, and they are fully multi-coated HD lenses that are also XPL coated to repel dirt and oil. They also offer great protection against scratches. I also liked the adjustment ring on this scope. It was firm but smooth and it offered a good grip texture, and it also features a thumb wing for quick adjustment changes.


The Gen 2 turrets stand out as a major upgrade compared to the Gen 1 model. They are audible, tactile, and eliminate the mushiness found in the Gen 1 version. Intentional stiffness in the elevation and windage turrets prevented any accidental adjustment and gave me precision in targeting. The fast focus eyepiece operated smoothly despite the lack of a locking mechanism. Excellent serrations on the dials helped me make quick and easy adjustments. 

Glass and Reticle

The glass quality on the Cronus Gen 2 is excellent in low light conditions. I’d say it surpassed its competitors in the same price range, providing clearer and brighter images. There’s some chromatic aberration present towards the edges, but I don’t think that’s a big deal. The HD glass and fully multi-coated lenses contribute to excellent light transmission, which enhanced my overall shooting experience.

The Cronus BTR Gen 2 has an illuminated reticle, which is bright in the daytime and offers 11 different adjustment settings. The first focal plane reticle gives you consistent sub-tensions at all magnification levels. I found the Christmas tree-style reticle with a floating dot in the middle to be beneficial for precision shooting and load development, catering to both PRS enthusiasts and those engaging in group shooting.


The scope’s reliability impressed me. It has a high-precision erector system and a true zero stop, which contributes to its consistent performance. In my tests, the zero remained steady and it aced a five-point box test with perfect tracking. The re-zeroing system, which involves a simple screw on the top, which is user-friendly and adds to the scope’s dependability.

Speaking of value, the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 offers a lot for its price. It holds its own against other high-end scopes and includes a lifetime warranty, which shows how much Athlon cares about its customers.

Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56 Pros and Cons 

  • Warranty – Unlimited lifetime warranty
  • High Value – Great quality for the price point.
  • Target Turrets – Visible and tactile turrets make dialing easy
  • Reticle Options – Limited reticle options to choose from

Report Card


Great tracking and the zero stop was a great way to get back to base zero.


The glass does not disappoint at this price point, although there is better out there if you are willing to pay.


The two available reticles are good, but it would be nice if other options were available.


Tactile knobs for turrets and parallax adjustment are great and audible.


While not cheap, this is a very high value optic.

Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29x56 Final Grade

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Final Thoughts on Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 4.5-29×56

Having taken the Cronus BTR Gen 2 to the range, I can confidently say that it lives up to the hype. The glass clarity, precision tracking, and user-friendly features make it a top-tier optic in its class. That’s why I have ranked it 4th in my best 1000 yard scopes article. Whether you’re engaging in precision rifle series shooting or on a demanding hunt, this scope proves to be a reliable companion. 


Is the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 suitable for low-light conditions?

Yes, the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 is well-suited for low-light conditions. It comes equipped with UHD extra-low dispersion lenses, which reduces the effects of chromatic aberration while simultaneously improving image quality with sharp, vibrant colors.

How does the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 perform in poor weather conditions?

Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 performs well in poor weather conditions. Its waterproof and fog-proof design ensures reliability and clarity even in challenging situations like rain, snow, or fog. 

Does the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 have an illuminated reticle?

Yes, the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 features an illuminated reticle. This reticle can be adjusted to suit various lighting conditions, making it ideal for low-light environments.

Can the reticle illumination be adjusted according to different lighting conditions?

Absolutely, the illuminated reticle offers 11 different adjustment settings, ensuring visibility in various lighting conditions. The daytime-bright reticle ensures precise aiming, whether shooting in bright daylight or low-light environments.

What warranty does Athlon offer for the Cronus BTR Gen 2

You get a lifetime transferable warranty with your Cronus BTR Gen 2

Is the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 compatible with different mounting systems?

Yes, the Athlon Cronus BTR Gen 2 is compatible with various mounting systems. Athlon recommends using high-quality, appropriately sized rings and bases that match your rifle when mounting the scope.


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About Dave Chesson

Dave Chesson is prior Navy with a specialty in international arms dealing for the US government across multiple countries. Having traveled the world and abided by ATF and ITAR, Roy has a unique background in legal as well as practical capabilities of weapons deployment and use.

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