PO 3.5x21P 3.5x Magnification - BelOMO

MMW named Vavilov, logo

 PO 3.5x21P is a modern optic produced by BelOMO -- Belorusskoe Optiko-Mechanichesckoye Obyedinenie (Belarus Optical & Mechanical Enterprise) in Minsk, Belarus which has been recently adopted by the Venezuelan Army for the AK103. It is designed to be similar to the ACOG but with a breath-takingly wide  wide field of view that so far no other Russian optic has matched.

Optical clarity is extremely high and in my opinion is one of the brightest and clearest optics I've used...the image quality is very impressive. It is also one of the easiest scopes to zero due to the reticule design. Like many Russian scopes, the PO 3.5 has a 1.5m range finder for estimating distance to a standard height target but uncommonly it also has a 0.5m scale for prone targets as well. While the PO 3.5 has not been adopted by the Russian or Belarus armed forces it is a mil-spec optic and has recently been adopted by the Venezuelan Army for their AK103 rifles. While this is probably the heaviest optic I've used  at 2.2lbs (outside of the NSPU of course, 5lbs), the weight penalty is somewhat offset by the amazing field of view and the high glass quality.

The PO comes in a few versions - illuminated and non illuminated models as well as a variety of caliber specific types. Like many of the modern Russian and BelOMO designed optics PO 3.5 has no turrets to adjust for elevation or windage, the intent is to zero the weapon based on the 400m concept and then use the additional range chevrons for longer distances if necessary. There is no need to adjust anything when shooting, the rifleman only has to aim COM out to 400m and will have a reasonable chance to hit.

While not officially issued a GRAU number for Russian military service the PO 3.5 original has seen action in Chechnya and is in use with various units who have purchased them individually. The Venezuelan Army adopted the AK103 a few years ago and has also recently adopted PO 3.5x21P and PK-A for their rifles. The few PO and PKA that ended up here are overruns from a BelOMO military contract, I'm told that in the future BelOMO will not be releasing these versions to anyone except Venezuela.

PO3.5x21P Venezuela, PO 3.5x21P and PO 3.5x21P2

PO 3.5x21P2 Weaver on the ZenitCo B33 top cover

Review by Voron

The PO 3.5 is zeroed on the 400m concept and is probably the easiest of all the 5.45 scopes because of the design of the reticule. Instead of having to adjust point of impact to be approximately 22cm higher than point of aim, the PO has this distance built in to the reticule itself. All the shooter needs to do is align POI with POA by using the boresight cross at the top of the reticule. After confirming that the boresight cross is indeed where the rounds are landing at 100m, the shooter then uses the large chevron for center of mass aiming out to 400m. There are additional range lines for 700, 800, 900 and 1000m for the AK74 version.

Not shown here but there are also RPK and possibly 12.7 Kord HMG versions of the PO 3.5x21P, as well as the 7.62x39 model for the AKMC (below)

For 5.45x39 rifles
with this reticule pattern you can accurately aim from 100m to 1000m with a dedicated range line for each 100m
The boresight cross is for 100, 200 and 300m. Chevron 400m. The next two unmarked range lines are 500 and 600m



PO 3.5x21P is battery illuminated like many of the older PSO style illuminated optics. (CR123 type)


7.62x39 for AKMC and PO 3.5 Venezuelan

Non military reticule (courtesy Miglan-20)

PO 3.5x21P Venezuelan. AK103 / 7.62x39
34.4 ounces
Almost identical to the original but with a hammer grey finish instead of black, similar to older PSO optics.
1x CR123 battery

On the SGL31

Elevation is a simple + and - but windage is marked in Spanish
Der. Right
Izq. Left

For 7.62x39 if point of impact is 23cm higher than point of aim at 100m the trajectory will coincide at 300m. This is the same height of the boresight cross over the chevron at 100m, so if POA = POI with the boresight cross, using the chevron will adjust for the proper 300m zero.

AKMC reticule, Venezuelan is the same except not marked AKMC

 PO 3.5x21P in Venezuelan service, the first country to officially adopt the scope, shown here on the AK103

(Also shown is the PK-A/PK-AA red dot, the smaller optic on 3 of the 103's)


PO 3.5x21P2 AK74 / 5.45x39
42.8 ounces with NPZ mount, 34.4 without
2x AA batteries (Not CR123 like regular PO 3.5)

Battery compartment is very different than any Russian optic I've seen, takes 2 AA batteries and has variable intensity rather than on/off

Elevation (arrows are reversed from PSO type optics):
ВВЕРХ = Counter clockwise = Trajectory Up
ВНИЗ = Clockwise = Trajectory Down

P2 windage adjustment (arrows are reversed from PSO type optics):
ВПРАВО = Counterclockwise = Trajectory Right
ВАЕВО = Clockwise = Trajectory Left

PO 3.5 and P2 share the same reticule, both marked AK74

Interestingly PO 3.5 will cowitness with a T-1 style red dot when mounted to the Stormwerkz topcover on an AKSU rifle. This was not intended by any of the designers but it does work.

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