Best Rifle Scopes – Top 11+ Reviews, Guides, FAQs, More

best rifle scopes

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Hunting has been enjoyed for so long by so many, yet everyone knows that this sport is a tough one. Sometimes, it gets so hard to just take that one right aim. But, with the perfect scope you won’t miss the bull’s eye.

However, finding an appropriate scope for your rifle can be extremely challenging. Therefore, we have done the hard part for you and put together the best rifle scopes that you can get right now.

We tried many versions of scopes available in the market and today we will mention the ones that are a perfect fit. 

But, before that let’s look at our top picks.

Winner

Vortex Optics Crossfire II 1-inch Tube

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We love everything that this scope has to offer and we hope you are as intrigued as much as we are. It has a lot to offer, and you can get all these features at an affordable price.

Runner Up

Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600

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This Nikon scope is also great as it offers both long and short range shooting. Besides, it features consistent eye relief, precise BDC reticle, waterproof and fog proof body with high quality glass lenses. 

Also Great

Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope 

This one is an all in one. It withstands harsh weather and target conditions. It offers high light transmission, great performance and fast focus eyepiece that barely scratches the surface. 


Best Rifle Scopes – Top 20 Reviews


#1. Best Rifle Scope Under $1000 – Vortex Optics Viper HS-T Review


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This vortex scope is one of the best second focal plane rifle scopes you can get under 1000 bucks. It features XR coated lenses that provide optimal light gathering. Moreover, it won’t stop you from hunting in any weather conditions.

You’ll love its versatility, as it can be used for hunting, target shooting and tactical shooting as well. Also, its 24x magnification will help you at long distance hunting. Besides, it is a user-friendly scope with great adjustments and provides a wide field of view.

Features of Vortex Optics Viper HS-T

  • 6-24x magnifying range
  • 50mm objective lens diameter
  • Second focal plane 
  • VMR-1 MOA 
  • 15.5 inches long body
  • 30mm tube diameter
  • Aircraft grade aluminum body
  • XR multi-coated lenses
  • Extra-low dispersion lenses
  • Customizable rotational stop zero stop
  • Strong o-ring seals
  • Argon purging
  • Armortek coating for lens protection
  • Exposed tactical turrets

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Fog proof
  • Optimal adjustments
  • Smooth windage and elevation turret clicks
  • Durable
  • Ballistic Stop
  • Versatile
  • Clear optics
  • Long range scope
  • Bright and clear field of view

Cons

  • Eye relief is hard to meet
  • No illuminated reticle present

Best Rifle Scope Under $1000

The top recommended scope under $1000 is Vortex Optics Viper HS-T because it gives a tactical edge and will allow you to take shots with great precision and accuracy.


#2. Best Rifle Scope Under $500 – Leupold VX-3i 4.5-14x50mm Review


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If you like simple and plain hunting scope rather than a complex one, then this is the one for you. It provides easy turret adjustments and is consistent when used.

Not only this, it is also known for its excellent low-light performance. The twilight max light system will allow you to see the details even at dusk and dawn. It will provide a clearer brighter target image at a wider variation of low and bright lighting conditions.

Features of Leupold VX-3i 4.5-14x50mm

  • 4.5-14x magnifying power 
  • 50mm objective diameter
  • 1 inch tube diameter
  • Duplex reticle
  • Ballistic aiming system
  • ¼ MOA finger click
  • Aircraft grade aluminum body
  • Twin bias spring erector system
  • Twilight max light management system
  • Diamond coating

Pros

  • Good light transmission
  • Great performance
  • Long range scope
  • Durable
  • High light transmission
  • Lightweight
  • Water proof
  • Shock proof
  • Fog proof
  • Long eye relief
  • Lifetime warranty

Cons

  • Not a CDS scope
  • Precision is not great

Best Rifle Scope Under $500

Leupold VX-3i 4.5-14x50mm is the top scope under $500 because it ensures durability, lifetime warranty and can be used for a long period of time. Besides, its reliability is amazing.


#3. Best Long Range Rifle Scope Under $500 – Vortex Optics Viper HS SFP Riflescope Review


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Vortex Viper HS is one of the best scopes on the market. Its bullet drop compensator (BDC) reticle is great at shooting and hunting at different ranges where estimating hold-over is a concern. Whether you’re hunting elk or whitetail, it will aid you a lot.

We really liked its scratch resistant Armortek coatings that protect the exterior optics of the scope. Additionally, hard-anodized construction is quite durable and can withstand heavy recoils of a firearm.

Besides, you’ll also like its windage and elevation adjustments.

Features of Vortex Optics Viper HS SFP Riflescope

  • ArmorTek coating
  • 2.5-10x magnification range
  • 44m objective lens diameter
  • 30mm tube
  • Second focal plane
  • Dead-hold BDC 
  • XR multi-coated glass lenses
  • Argon purging
  • Quick-reset capped turrets 
  • 4x zoom 

Pros

  • Fog proof
  • Shockproof
  • Durable
  • Scratch resistant glass
  • Optimal adjustments
  • Clear and precise optics
  • Mountable on any rifle
  • Light-weight

Cons

  • Sub-optimal light transmission
  • Loose turrets

Best Long Range Rifle Scope Under $500

Vortex Viper HS SPF scope is a highly recommended long range scope under 500 dollars, as it ensures smooth and accurate shooting, and its high magnification will not let you down.


#4. Best Rifle Scope Under $400 – Nikon Buckmasters II 4-12x40mm Riflescope Review


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Nikon is one of the most trusted brands of rifle scopes among hunters. This amazing Nikon scope uses spot on ballistic match technology that allows you to discover all of the exact aiming points on the scope’s reticle.

Its incredible optics features clear and bright image quality. Its bullet drop compensator (BDC) reticle is also great and allows you to hold ‘dead-on’ at long ranges. Furthermore, it provides generous eye relief that will keep your brow safe.

Features of Nikon Buckmasters II 4-12x40mm Riflescope

  • 4-12x magnification 
  • 40mm objective diameter 
  • BDC 
  • Spot on ballistic match technology
  • 100-yards parallax setting
  • Anti-reflective fully multi coated glass lenses
  • Generous eye relief of 3.7 inches
  • 3.33 inches eyepiece length
  • 1.52 inches eyepiece diameter
  • Nitrogen purged

Pros

  • Clear glass
  • Great eye relief
  • Amazing brightness
  • Water proof
  • Shockproof
  • Fog proof
  • High quality resolution
  • Easy to use
  • Bright and clear images
  • Perfectly holds zero
  • Light-weight

Cons

  • Turrets are a bit tricky
  • Doesn’t come with a sunshad

Best Rifle Scope Under $400

Nikon Buckmasters II 4-12x40mm is the top recommended scope under 400 bucks as its amazing ballistic circles on the reticle will help you a lot while shooting at a long distance.


#5. Best Rifle Scope Under $300 – Vortex Optics Crossfire II 30mm Tube Scope Review


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Want a budget-friendly scope for varmint hunting? Then this Vortex model will not let you down. Its V-brite illuminated reticle is amazing that allows you to take shots in tough light conditions. 

You’ll love its large 56mm objective lens that provides parallax removal and excellent image quality and focus. Its easily adjustable turrets will not compromise on precision and accuracy. Moreover, aircraft grade aluminum ensures its shockproof performance and sturdiness.

This budget scope will be great for your day to day hunting, and won’t stop you from early evening to the first glint of dawn.

Features of Vortex Optics Crossfire II 30mm Tube Scope

  • 3-12x magnifying power
  • 56mm objective lens diameter
  • Second focal plane
  • 10 yards to infinity parallax setting
  • Anti-reflective glass lenses
  • Fully coated lenses
  • V-brite reticle
  • Adjustable MOA finger clicks
  • Aircraft grade aluminum body
  • Strong O-ring seals
  • Nitrogen purged

Pros

  • Bright and clear images
  • Waterproof
  • Shockproof
  • Fog proof
  • Easy reticle focusing
  • Perfect adjustments
  • Adjustable objective
  • Quick focus eyepiece
  • Allows to take images from heavy cover

Cons

  • Fogs up during snow
  • Does not gather much light 

Best Rifle Scope Under $300

Vortex Crossfire 30mm scope is the best scope under $300 because of its unmatched and clear shots. Besides, its V-Brite reticle and enlarged lenses help a lot while hunting in dark environments.


#6. Best Long Range Rifle Scope Under $300 – Vortex Optics Crossfire II 1-inch Tube Review


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With many scopes, the target image tends to get blurry at higher magnification. But with this guy you won’t face such problems. It provides a clear image quality even at higher magnification. Moreover, it is engineered for both shooters and hunters.

This is one of the high end scopes that you can get under 300 dollars. It will provide you with the highest levels of performance and reliability. Besides, its dead-hold bullet drop compensator reticle makes it an excellent choice for hunting at various ranges. 

Features of Vortex Optics Crossfire II 1-inch Tube

  • 3-9x magnifying range
  • 50mm objective diameter
  • Second focal plane reticle 
  • 12.7 inches long
  • 3.8 inches eye relief 
  • V-brite illuminated reticle
  • Anti-reflective glass lenses
  • Fully multi coated lenses
  • Single piece aircraft grade aluminum body
  • Capped reset turrets 
  • Max Elevation Adjustment (60 MOA)
  • Sealed O-ring 
  • Nitrogen purged

Pros

  • Fast focus eyepiece
  • Bright and clear image
  • Hard anodized finish
  • Holds zero perfectly
  • Amazing low-light performance
  • Durable
  • Generous eye relief
  • Affordable 
  • Great focus
  • Illuminated reticle

Cons

  • Unreliable crosshair

Best Long Range Rifle Scope Under $300

The best long range scope under $300 is the Vortex Crossfire 1-inch Tube because it provides great focus even at long distances and works incredibly well in low light conditions.


#7. Best Rifle Scope Under $200 – Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9X40mm Riflescope Review


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This budget scope features best optics that are scratch resistant. The glass is clear and provides crisp image quality. Moreover, the twilight management system reduces glare and adds up to 10 extra minutes of shooting light.

Its aircraft grade aluminum body adds up to its durability and makes it able to resist any rough usage. This scope can withstand any weather conditions, and is tested at -40ºF to 160ºF. 

Additionally, this scope is easy to use, and the duplex reticle is both crisp and clear. Even beginners can master it in no time.

Features of Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9X40mm Riflescope

  • 3-9x magnifying power 
  • 40mm objective diameter
  • Tri-MOA reticle
  • 3:1 zoom ratio
  • 4.17 inches eye relief
  • Twilight light management system
  • 1 inch tube diameter
  • Aircraft grade aluminum body
  • 1/4 MOA finger click adjustments
  • Scratch resistant lenses
  • Lifetime warranty

Pros

  • Withstands heavy recoil
  • Rugged performance
  • Great windage and elevation adjustments
  • Generous eye relief
  • Crisp and clear image quality
  • Waterproof
  • Fog proof
  • Shockproof
  • Light-weight
  • Unparalleled low or dim  light performance

Cons

  • Sloppy turrets
  • The reticle does not have holdovers

Best Rifle Scope Under $200

The best scope under 200 dollars is Vortex Crossfire 1-inch Tube because it provides great accuracy at any distance and offers a variety of magnifying power suitable for both short or long distance shooting.


#8. Best Rifle Scope Under 100 – CVLIFE Hunting 6-24×50 Review


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This budget scope is among the best scopes on the market. You’ll love its multi-coated lenses that deliver 95 percent light transmission for a clear bright image. Its well-designed turrets allow precise and consistent elevation and windage adjustments.

It’s ok if you’re near or far sighted, its adjustable eyepiece with dioptric adjustment lens will eliminate any image distortion. Its adjustable objective lens will also help you a lot by eliminating the parallax and proving the sharp target image.

Moreover, the eye relief it provides is amazing and it comes well within one’s price range.

Features of CVLIFE Hunting 6-24×50

  • 6-24x magnification range
  • 50mm objective lens diameter
  • ⅛ inch click value @ 100 yards 
  • 28 ft @ 100 yards field of view
  • 50mm objective lens diameter 
  • Illuminated crosshairs
  • Red and green illuminated reticle
  • Adjustable objective (AO) lens

Pros

  • Solid construction
  • Adjustable objective lens
  • Illuminated reticle
  • Reliable windage and elevation adjustments
  • Clear targeting
  • Shockproof
  • East to mount
  • Affordable
  • Adjustable turrets
  • Holds zero perfectly
  • Quick focus eyepiece 
  • Adjustable brightness

Cons

  • Is not mountable on every rifle 
  • Won’t withstand severe recoil of a firearm
  • Hard to meet precision aiming

Best Rifle Scope Under 100

CVLIFE Hunting 6-24×50 is an amazing scope under 100 bucks because it will allow you to keep up with your target and adjust your brightness according to your conditions. 


#9. Best Air Rifle Scope Under $100 – Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight 1x25mm Review


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If you are looking for a red dot scope, then this Bushnell scope is all that you need. You’ll love how compact and portable this scope is. However, this doesn’t mean that they have compromised on the built quality. 

Yes, that’s true, it has a durable built and strong construction. 

This amazing red dot is compatible with many rifles, shotguns, pistols, muzzleloaders, and many more. We were amazed by its 11 brightness settings which can be tuned by an easy adjustment dial.

Besides, this versatile scope can be used for a wide variety of activities from range shooting to hunting longbeards in the hardwoods.

Features of Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight 1x25mm

  • 1x 25mm objective lens
  • Multi layered lenses
  • Extended battery life
  • 3 MOA red dot-sight
  • 11 brightness settings
  • Matte black 
  • Nitrogen purged
  • Sealed O-ring

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Shockproof
  • Fog proof
  • Light-weight
  • Easy to mount
  • Unlimited eye relief 
  • Versatile
  • Easy adjustment dial
  • Fast eyepiece focus

Cons

  • Is not strongly built
  • Cannot resist high caliber rifles

Best Air Rifle Scope Under $100

The Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 is the best air rifle scope under $100 as it is easy to adjust too,  allowing the shooter to stay with the target.


#10. Best Rifle Scope For 1000 Yards – ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Review


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This budget scope features modern technology. It offers a bunch of features at an affordable price. If you want a high-tech scope, then go for this scope.

It comes with 4 dual core processors that ensures high resolution and vivid colors of the target image. This high-quality scope comes with the most interesting feature that is video recording and streaming. It can easily record all your shooting experiences inside the SD card which will allow you to go through the whole experience again and again.

Moreover, its incredible night vision mode will not slow you down in dark environments.

Features of ATN X-Sight 4K Pro

  • 5-20x magnification
  • Night vision mode
  • Ultra HD 4K sensor
  • Ballistic calculator
  • 4 dual core processor
  • Ultra low power profile
  • Recoil activated video (RAV)
  • Dual stream video recording 
  • 18+ hours of continuous operation
  • Built-in rangefinder
  • ATN quick detach mount
  • 30 mm standard rings
  • ATN battery pack 20000mAh

Pros

  • Water proof
  • Shockproof
  • Fog proof
  • Sturdy
  • Variable magnification
  • Sharp imaging
  • Great zero stop
  • Multiple crosshairs 
  • Night vision
  • Amazing turrets
  • Wi-Fi compatibility
  • Accurate rangefinder

Cons

  • Has trouble zeroing 
  • It is subject to freezing

Best Rifle Scope For 1000 Yards

The ATN X-Sight 4K Pro is the best scope for 1000 yards because it offers advanced features at a budget-friendly price.


#11. Best Rifle Scope For 30 06 – Nikon ProStaff 3-9×40 Review 


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This Nikon model is a great scope for medium to short range. It will help you in quick target acquisition and will stay on the target in any condition. Besides, it is known for its precision and ruggedness.

You will enjoy its fully coated lenses that deliver up to 98 percent of available light for bright, high contrast views. Moreover, its click adjustments are amazing and will maintain your settings even with heavy recoil. 

It also uses spot on ballistic match technology that discovers all of the exact aiming points on your scope’s reticle.

Features of Nikon ProStaff 3-9×40

  • 3-9x magnifying power 
  • 40mm objective lens diameter
  • Anti-reflex coating
  • BDC reticle
  • 3.6 inches eyepoint
  • Fully multi-coated lenses
  • Aircraft standard Aluminum body
  • Type 3 anodized surface
  • 12.4 inches long
  • Nitrogen purged
  • ¼-inch positive click
  • Sealed by O-ring
  • Instant zero resetting turrets
  • Spot-on ballistic match technology

Pros

  • Water-proof
  • Shock-proof
  • Fog proof
  • Durable
  • Thermal shock reliable
  • Quick focus eyepiece
  • Optical clarity
  • Holds zero perfectly
  • Easily adjustable windage and elevation knobs

Cons

  • Shows slight blur at 16x magnification

Best Rifle Scope For 30 06

The Nikon ProStaff 3-9×40 is the best scope for 30 06 as it offers a ton of features that will help you a lot during your hunting trips.


#12. Best Rifle Scope For Deer Hunting – Athlon Optics Argos BTR 6-24×50 (MIL) Review


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If you are into long range shooting then this is the scope for you. Its 24x magnification and large objective is ideal for shooting at a long distance. Moreover, its first focal plane (ffp) reticle stays valid at all power settings that will shrink or grow with the change in magnification.

This is one of the high end scopes that can withstand the wilderness and harsh conditions. 

Not only does this scope have an aluminum covered tube which protects the optics, its argon purging makes it more thermally stable and water resistant as well. 

Features of Athlon Optics Argos BTR 6-24×50 (MIL)

  • 6-24x magnifying power 
  • 50mm objective lens diameter
  • First focal plane reticle
  • Reticle adjustment at all powers
  • Re-sizeable reticle
  • Fully multi-coated optics
  • Glass etched reticle
  • Excellent Reticle backing
  • Aircraft grade aluminum tube
  • Argon purging

Pros

  • Built in throw lever
  • Thermal stability
  • Variable magnification
  • Illuminated reticle
  • Durable
  • Shock proof
  • Water resistant

Cons

  • Not great at holding zero
  • Turret tracking unreliable

Best Rifle Scope For Deer Hunting

The best scope for deer hunting is Athlon Optics Argos BTR 6-24×50 (MIL) because its 50mm objective lens diameter will be enough for optimal light transmission. Also, it won’t betray you in dark conditions.


#13. Best Low Light Rifle Scope – UTG 3-9X32 Review


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This scope features a range estimating mil-dot reticle for optimal aiming and shooting. Its zero lockable and resettable turrets are of premium quality with 1/4 MOA per click adjustment. Not only this, it also provides a wider field of view and accommodating eye relief that add up to its optimal performance.

It also offers an efficient red dot that switches from red to green color when the light comes on. Most hunters use it for Airsoft assault rifles. Besides, its locking system is also astonishing and locks your settings so that you can aim perfectly at any time.

Features of UTG 3-9X32

  • 3-9x magnifying power 
  • 32mm objective diameter
  • 1 inch tube diameter
  • Dual illumination – red and green
  • ¼ MOA click adjustment 
  • Emerald coated optics
  • Range estimating mil-dot reticle 
  • Adjustable objective from 3 Yards to infinity
  • Resettable turrets 
  • Red dot scope included
  • Nitrogen filled 
  • 2 lithium metal batteries included

Pros

  • Accommodating eyepoint
  • Parallax free
  • Waterproof
  • Shockproof
  • Fog proof
  • Sturdy
  • Large field of view
  • Easily mountable 
  • Optimal performance
  • Fast focus eyepiece
  • Illuminated reticle

Cons

  • Does not resist well to high caliber rifles 
  • Image diminishes at large magnification

Best Low Light Rifle Scope

UTG 3-9X32 is the best scope for low or dim light environments because of its unmatched and clear shots even in dim light like in dawn or dusk. All thanks to its illuminated reticle.


#14. Best Rifle Scope For 300 Yards – ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20 Smart Day/Night Riflescope Review


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Want a top aiming optic in the market? Then this ATN X-sight is the scope to get right now. Also, it comes well within one’s price range. It offers a breathtaking number of features and most of which are not offered by many other scopes.

This digital scope is one of the best scopes in the market. Also, it is a long range shooting scope that will help you to hit the target at a long distance – all thanks to its magnification power and large objective. 

Besides, it offers incredible light transmission and can transmit up to 98% light for a blur-free target imagery. However, make sure to read the users’ manual before getting started.

Features of ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20 Smart Day/Night Riflescope

  • 5-20x magnifying power 
  • 85mm objective lens
  • Ballistic calculator
  • Smart rangefinder
  • 1080p video recording
  • Night vision mode in HD
  • Recoil activated video (RAV)
  • Zero range: 100 yard
  • Works with IOS and android
  • E-Compass
  • Gyroscope
  • GPS
  • WiFi
  • Barometer
  • ATN battery pack 20000mAh

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Decent reticle options
  • Accurate 
  • Day and night scope
  • Great zeroing technology 
  • Smooth zoom
  • Fog proof
  • Long range

Cons

  • Heavy

Best Rifle Scope For 300 Yards

ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20 Smart Day/Night is the best scope for 300 yards because it provides a blur-free target imagery and can prove to be a vital asset for you.


#15. Cheap Night Vision Rifle Scope – Firefield NVRS 3×42 Gen 1 Review


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This Firefield scope is among the best digital gen 1 scopes. It offers high resolution and clear bright images. Its high powered IR illuminated reticle allows it to be used in dark environments. 

Additionally, it offers a large objective for maximum light gathering and offers a clear picture of medium- to long-range targets. Its illuminated red duplex reticle, with incremental brightness adjustment, allows the hunter to quickly adapt to his surrounding environment.

Features of Firefield NVRS 3×42 Gen 1

  • 3x magnifying power 
  • 42mm objective diameter
  • IR Illumination
  • Multi-coated lens
  • IPX4 Rating
  • Strong  titanium body 
  • 4.5mm eyepoint
  • Adjustable duplex reticle
  • Weaver rail mount system
  • 1 MOA shot group
  • 14 degree FOV

Pros

  • Durable
  • Ergonomic design
  • Shockproof
  • Water resistant
  • Light-weight 
  • Adjustable reticle brightness
  • Illuminated IR
  • High quality image resolution
  • Good battery life
  • Generous eyepoint
  • Carrying case included

Cons

  • Difficult mounting

Cheap Night Vision Rifle Scope

The Firefield NVRS 3×42 Gen 1 is the best cheap night vision scope as it provides the best hunting experience by taking down the targets easily. Moreover, it won’t stop you in dark environments.


#16. Best Barska Rifle Scope – BARSKA 3-9×32 Plinker-22 Riflescope Review


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This scope is well-suited for 22 rifles and rim-fires to provide striking performance. It is built to withstand tough outdoors and harsh weather. Besides, its duplex reticle is simple and easy to use.

Despite a bunch of features, it is still one of the cheaper options in the lineup of Barska rifle scopes. So, it’s a great option if you’re on a tight budget. Also, this light-weight scope offers 0.25-inch click adjustments to fine-tune for elevation and windage.

Features of BARSKA 3-9×32 Plinker-22 Riflescope

  • 3-9x magnifying power 
  • 32mm objective lens diameter
  • Second focal plane 
  • 3.5 inches eyepoint
  • 1/4 MOA click
  • 30/30 reticle
  • Fully coated optics
  • 12 inches long tube
  • Engineered specifically for use with .22 rifles and rimfires
  • Included mounting rings, lens covers, and lens cloth
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Pros

  • Adjustable windage and elevation turrets 
  • Shockproof
  • Waterproof
  • Fog proof
  • Versatile
  • Easy to install
  • Affordable
  • Light-weight

Cons

  • Small mounting rings
  • Crosshair can get slightly blurry at its highest magnification level

Best Barska Rifle Scope 

Barska 3-9×32 Plinker-22 is the best Barska rifle scope because of its incredible features, solid built and affordable price.


#17. Best Nikon Rifle Scope – Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600 Review


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This scope offers a generous and consistent eyepoint that keeps your brow safe from the recoil of the firearm. No matter how severe the shooting angle is, or how light-weight the rifle is, or how heavy the recoiling cartridges are, it will keep you safe from the scope bite.

Besides, its bullet drop compensator(bdc) reticle offers unique open circle aiming points and hash marks from 100 to 600 yards. Also, its parallax setting eliminates parallax that enhances the precision.

Features of Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600

  • 3-9x magnifying power 
  • 40mm objective lens diameter
  • Fully multi-coated optics
  • Polymer material
  • BDC reticle 600 
  • .223 Rem/5.56 NATO trajectory with 55-grain polymer bullet 
  • 3.6 inches eyepoint
  • ¼ minute of angle design
  • 100-yard parallax setting
  • Zero-reset turrets
  • Short/mid range AR scope
  • Nitrogen filled 
  • O-ring sealed

Pros

  • Generous and consistent eye-relief
  • Long range shooting scope
  • Clear optics
  • Swift change of angle
  • Waterproof
  • Fog proof
  • Light-weight 
  • Precise

Cons

  • Brightness may not be very great at night
  • Reticle markings are not precise

Best Nikon Rifle Scope

The best Nikon rifle scope is Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600 because of its long eye-relief, long-range, and fogproof lenses.


#18. Best Vortex Rifle Scope – Vortex Optics Diamondback Review


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This vortex model is great for both beginners and professionals. Its fully coated lenses and extra-low dispersion glass deliver a crisp, bright sight picture. Its side parallax knob and tactical turrets are excellent for long distance precision shooting.

Its first focal plane glass etched reticle is also amazing that keeps subtensions accurate throughout the 4x zoom range. Besides, it features a durable construction that is able to withstand strong recoils and impacts. Also, nitrogen purging and sealed o-rings ensures waterproof and fog proof performance.

Features of Vortex Optics Diamondback

  • First focal plane
  • Glass-etched reticle
  • 4x zoom range
  • 4-16×44 magnifying power
  • Exposed tactical turrets
  • Side parallax knob
  • 30mm tube diameter
  • Strong o-ring seals
  • Nitrogen purging

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Shockproof
  • Fog proof
  • Well-built
  • Withstand the rifle’s recoil
  • Easy and quick reticle focusing
  • Precise shooting
  • well-mounted turrets
  • Durable
  • Long range scope
  • Retains its zero
  • Eye-friendly reticle

Cons

  • The  crosshairs are too fine.
  • Reticle isn’t much visible against certain backgrounds.

Best Vortex Rifle Scope

The best Vortex scope is Vortex Diamondback because of its amazing features, and eye-friendly reticle. Surely, you’ll love this ffp rifle scope.


#19. Best Rifle Scope For Elk Hunting – Simmons Truplex 8-Point 3-9x50mm Review


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This scope offers high quality features at a budget-friendly price. It holds zero perfectly and the fast focus eyepiece provides quick target acquisition. So, with this little guy on hand you won’t miss your target.

It offers a wider field of view and long eyepoint that will make your hunting experience more incredible. 

Its clear glass will provide the quality image of your target. Also, the truplex reticle features such fine intersection of crosshairs that will aid you in getting the target in no time.

Features of Simmons Truplex 8-Point 3-9x50mm

  • First focal plane
  • Glass-etched reticle
  • 4x zoom range
  • 4-16×44 magnifying power
  • Exposed tactical turrets
  • Side parallax knob
  • 30mm tube diameter
  • Strong o-ring seals
  • Nitrogen purging

Pros

  • Great windage and elevation adjustments
  • Easy target acquisition
  • Waterproof
  • Fog proof
  • Shockproof
  • Clear optics
  • High contrast image
  • Long eyepoint

Cons

  • Difficult to adjust
  • Not great at holding zero

Best Rifle Scope For Elk Hunting

Simmons Truplex 8-Point 3-9x50mm is the best scope for elk hunting because of its clear optics and rugged performance.


#20. Best Leupold Rifle Scope – Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope Review


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This Leupold model is a great Leupold product. It is a plain and basic scope that works best in almost any hunting environment. So, if you are a beginner, you’ll master it in no time.

It has a durable construction as it is made up of aircraft aluminum. Not only this, its glass lenses are diamond coated for higher light gathering and transmission that aid in a clear brighter image. 

Features of Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope

  • 3i 3.5-10x magnifying power 
  • 40mm objective lens
  • 1 inch main tube diameter
  • Duplex reticle
  • Diamond coated
  • Matte black finish
  • 1/4 MOA finger click
  • Twilight max light management system
  • Aircraft grade aluminum body
  • 4.4 inches eye relief

Pros

  • Withstand harshest recoils
  • Great windage and elevation adjustments
  • Unparalleled low or dim light performance
  • Waterproof 
  • Shockproof
  • Fog proof
  • Lightweight
  • Rugged performance
  • Generous eyepoint
  • Withstand extreme climate conditions

Cons

  • Turrets can’t be reset to zero

Best Leupold Rifle Scope

Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope is the best Leupold scope because of its exceptional performance in low-light conditions, that makes it stand out in its price range.


Buyer’s Guide

rifle scopes best

Still confused between the best scopes in town? We’ve compiled a complete buyers’ guide to help you out. Let’s take a look at it.

How to choose a rifle scope?

Many might not know this, but choosing a scope is an important task. There are a lot of things that you need to take into account before finding the scope that will suit you and make sure to take these factors into consideration.

It happens time and again that you are not well-aware of the factors you need to take into account before buying the scope for your rifle and end up getting the wrong scope, which itself can be a massive headache. 

So, the factors you need to take into consideration are listed below and we’ll walk you through them individually.

Things you need to consider before getting a rifle scope

These are the primary things that you need to consider before getting a scope and it’s really important that you get it right:

  • Your firearm and scope compatibility 

The most important aspect is making sure that the scope you are going for, goes well with your rifle. Rifles can be of both high caliber and low caliber, which mainly refers to the recoil of the rifle when the shot is fired. 

Scopes should be shockproof so that when you shoot, the recoil does not hinder with your aim and cause you to miss. So, you have to be very careful in assessing whether the scope you are going for goes well with the rifle you have. Therefore, keep their compatibility and ease in mountability in mind before buying it. 

  • Reticle

Reticle are markings that allow you to aim down your sights and determine measurements from the place you are aiming for. In order to aim better and keep up with your target while aiming, reticles tend to help you keep up your focus.

Scopes come in with a variety of reticles and every reticle offers different markings for aiming. Choose the reticle you are most comfortable with and that helps you shoot well. A reticle should be readable and not too thin so just keep that in mind while looking up reticles with your scope. 

  • Magnification – variable or fixed?

Magnification basically allows you to zoom in your target while aiming down your sights. If you are far away from your target then the magnification of your scope will allow you to zoom into targets that are far away from your position.

There are two types of magnifications in scopes – variable and fixed. 

Variable magnification has a floor and a high ceiling to which you can magnify your scope to, so basically it gives you greater control over how much you can zoom in your scope.

On the other hand, fixed zoom is just a standard magnification that your scope comes with and you cannot change it at all. 

So, keep in mind that how and why you want to use your rifle and scope and decide accordingly. Though it’s safe to say that variable magnification gives you greater control over your scope and is a better choice. 

  • Objective lens size

Objective lens is directly linked to the light transmission of the scope. The bigger the objective lens, the more light will be transmitted. It will allow the image to appear brighter target imagery when you aim down your sights thus assisting you to keep up with your target.

Besides, the bigger the objective lens the better it is for your scope. Thus, keep an eye for the larger objective lens diameter while looking for a scope for your rifle. 

  • Parallax adjustment

This is really important in terms of keeping up with your target and for precise shooting. Parallax keeps your aim at center of the scope and shoots dead center of your target. If the scope does not possess parallax elimination then you will have some trouble in shooting in long ranges.

For short range targeting adjustment of parallax is quite necessary, but it’s very essential for shooting at a long range, so you will have to choose your scope accordingly. 

  • Turrets system

Turrets mainly are raised knobs that are used for adjusting the scope. The turret system is mainly composed of windage and elevation knobs that are vital in adjusting the scope.

The turrets system should be easy to operate and adjust the scope. A faulty turret system will cause only further problems for you. 

  • Multi Coated lenses

Multi-coated optics are responsible for providing vivid images and protecting visuals from getting damaged. Multi coating increases light transmission and elevates the contrast of target imagery in the scope.

It would be advised that you look for a scope whose lenses are multi coated as it would prove to be very beneficial. 

  • Your budget

This is probably the most decisive factor of all. The scope market is a big one and there are a variety of scopes out there. Every scope has a distinguished feature and offers many additional features apart from the basic ones.

You will have to keep in mind the money you have allotted for the scope you are going to buy. Keep this in mind having a low priced scope does not mean that the scope will not be great, because there are alot of scopes out there that work very well with your rifle.

Thus, keep a price range in mind and search for the best scope for yourself.

What are the types of rifle scopes?

Scopes themselves have 3 main classifications that create lines between them. There are three rifle scope types and they are as follows:

Long range scopes

Long range scopes have a lot to offer to its user and make it easier for you to aim down your sights on a target that is far away from your position. One cannot undermine the importance of long range scopes when it comes to both competitive and casual hunting.

As compared to traditional scopes, the long range scopes have a lot to offer to the shooter. Although the term long range varies from shooter to shooter but mainly if you are engaging a target with clarity at 1000 yards you are using a long range scope.

Scout scopes

A scout scope is a scope which provides a longer eye relief as compared to every other scope. The scope is adjusted far towards the barrel of the gun hence the longer eyepoint. It provides you with an accurate and precise aim without target acquisition, moreover, it’s also low powered without being heavy.

Besides, the scout scope is intended for shooters who need a working rifle and utilize the multi-purpose scout rifle. It is a different type of scope that is a high powered one and will prove very beneficial in the longer run.

Red dot scopes

A red dot scope is a typical classification for a kind of reflex sight for guns, and different rifles that require an aiming sight for target acquisition. It gives the shooter a state of point as an illuminated red dot. They are viewed as quick procurement and commonly used as an aiming sight in simple-to-utilize firearms for competitive shooting and hunting.

The red dot sight is the most commonly used aiming sight in the firearms market and is best for close encounters. The red dot scope comes in with both MIO and Mil dot reticles and gives the user fast target acquisition for close range.

Best hunting rifle scopes brands

  • Vortex Optics

Vortex optics is among the world’s leading and the most renowned hunting rifle scope brands. Its performance is versatile and offers multiple features. It provides your rifle with stability and a focused aim on your target. 

Its scopes come up with mostly BDC reticles making it convenient for shooting in various ranges and hunting. Furthermore, the company provides you with scopes that provide great eyepoint and allows you to hunt and shoot your target with precision.

Its fast focus will provide you with great ease and it  gives shooters  parallax removal and centralizes the target image for the shooter while giving a clear line of sight and anti-reflection.

  • Nikon

Nikon has produced its Buckmasters scope series that will assist you with your shooting skills while you are hunting. This hunting rifle scope comes with advanced features, and is also very budget friendly for hunters.

Its rifle scopes are tough which come with a multi-covered framework that allows a high light transmission. It comes with better accuracy and flexibility while allowing you to shoot targets that are beyond ideal distance. 

Its quick focus eyepiece allows a hunter to quickly bring the reticle into focus and assists him while aiming at the target. Nikon has done an incredible job with its scopes

  • Nightforce

The Nightforce Hunting scope line is an economical and high quality scope that is best for both amateurs and professionals. Its scopes are multi-coated making target imagery very clear and easy to focus on.

It’s optics assists both who are near sighted and far sighted shooters with its adjustable eyepiece.  Besides, its reliable windage and elevation adjustments will allow you to aim quickly at anytime and anywhere.

Moreover, its scopes are budget friendly and provide great eyepoint. 

  • Barska

Barska produces low price hunting scopes for your hunting rifles and airguns. Its scopes are amazing and help you hunt with clarity. Its scope eliminates parallax error with its state of the art parallax adjustment allowing you to hunt from wherever you deem fit. 

Its scopes give you greater focus on your target imagery and is great for hunting animals that are in medium range.

The Barska is the one of the scopes that will surely intrigue you and fulfill your needs.  

  • Bushnell

The most famous trait of Bushnell scopes is its budget-friendliness. It incorporates a ton of surprising central focuses that are expressly expected to give a better transmission of light and a clear picture in any occasion that also includes nightfall and sunrise.  

Its windage and height are effectively flexible permitting you to point down your sights easily and will keep going for a significant stretch of time. It might simply be the top-notch scope you require and can get it at a low cost.

  • Leupold

The Leupold scopes are renowned for their argon/krypton gas blend that reduces the diffusion of gasses in the scope and eliminates thermal shock entirely, giving you an enhanced quality of your target.

The scopes give you an amazing performance in every light condition and its enhanced target image makes locating the target simple and allows you to take very accurate shots

  • Simmons

Simmons hunting scopes are more inclined toward hunting airguns. It gives you a large field of view and is constructed to be rugged and tough which allows you to use it in harsh conditions.

Its scopes will give you greater control over the shots you take and make your hunting experience incredible. 

The Simmons scopes are tough compact ones which are worth your money and offer many features to its users.

  • Swarovski

Although the Swarovski is a brand that is fairly unknown, it’s basically an unsung champion in the scope market. Its scopes come with a fast focus eyepiece and fully coated optics giving you a bright target imagery and providing a longer eyepoint. 

Without a doubt, the features of its scopes have come as a great intrigue to everybody and its scopes are worth your money.

FAQs

What is a good scope for a rifle?

Some good rifle scopes include:

ProductMagnificationObjective Lens
#1. Vortex Crossfire 1-inch Tube Riflescope3-9x50mm
#2. Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 6003-9x40mm
#3. Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope3.5-10x40mm

What is the best magnification for rifle scopes?

Around 4x is considered as the best magnification for rifle scopes.

For mid-range to short range hunting, 4x or 6x magnification is great. Whereas, if you want to hit the target at a long distance up to 1000 yards, a 10x scope will get the job done. But the target should not be moving and should be large enough to get a clear bright image.

What should I look for in a hunting scope?

While buying a hunting scope for your ar 15, following things should be considered:

  • Magnifying power
  • Objective lens
  • Reticle
  • Eye relief
  • Turrets and adjustments
  • Price 
  • Construction

What distance is a 3 9×40 scope good for?

A 3 9×40 can see about 900 yards.

Moreover, according to the rule of thumb you get to see additional 100 yards, for every power of magnification. Thus, you can see about 900 yards with a 3-9x. Besides, a good 3 9×40 scope will be enough to take down the deer at 100-300 yards.

What is the best rifle scope under $500?

Following are some best scopes under $500:

  • Vortex Crossfire 1-inch Tube
  • Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600
  • Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope
  • Nikon Buckmasters II, 4-12x40mm
  • Cvlife Hunting Riflescope 6-24×50
  • UTG 3-9X32 
  • BARSKA 3-9×32 Plinker-22 Riflescope
  • Simmons 8-Point 3-9x50mm Riflescope 
  • Vortex Diamondback Riflescope
  • Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope

Is 50mm scope better than 40mm?

Yes, of course, a 50mm one is better than a 40mm one. Greater the objective lens size greater will be its ability to gather light. So, a 50mm objective transmits 55% more light than a 40mm one. However, a 40mm objective offers less parallax, lower cost, and a greater depth of field.

What is the best rifle scope money can buy?

Following are the best scopes for money:

  • ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Smart Day/Night Riflescope
  • Vortex Viper HS-T Riflescopes
  • Vortex Crossfire 1-inch Tube
  • Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600
  • Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope
  • ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20 Smart Day/Night Riflescope 
  • Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope

What is the best rifle scope for deer hunting?

Best scopes for deer hunting includes:

  • Athlon Optics 6-24 x 50 Riflescope
  • Vortex Crossfire 1-inch Riflescope
  • Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600
  • Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope
  • UTG 3-9X32 
  • Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope
  • ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Smart Day/Night Riflescope

How far can you see with a scope?

This totally depends on the magnification of your scope. Generally, scope magnification is divided into 5 categories. You can see up to 100 yards with a most basic and simplest one. However, other magnification ranges will allow you to see over 100, 300, 400, or over 500 yards.

What magnification do I need for 500 yards?

A 5x magnification scope would be enough for 500 yards.

5x is the minimum level of magnification you may need for a target 500 yards away. But, some hunters won’t be satisfied by this as it is a little on the low side for most of the shots. In that case, go for 10x magnification for a good shot.

What is the best long range scope on the market?

The best scopes for long range shooting are:

  1. Vortex Viper HS Riflescope
  2. Vortex Crossfire 1-inch Tube
  3. Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600
  4. Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope
  5. Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope
  6. ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20 Smart Day/Night Riflescope 
  7. Cvlife Hunting Riflescope 6-24×50
  8. Vortex Viper HS-T Riflescopes

What is the best cheap night vision scope?

The best cheap night vision scopes includes:

  1. ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Smart Day/Night Riflescope – Best Low or Dim Light Scope
  2. ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20 Smart Day/Night Riflescope – Best Scope for Long Range
  3. Vortex Crossfire 1-inch Tube – Best Versatile Scope
  4. UTG 3-9X32 – Best User-Friendly Scope
  5. Firefield NVRS 3×42 Gen 1 – Best Cheap Night Vision Scope

Do I need parallax adjustment?

Yes, the parallax needs to be adjusted every time the distance changes. 

Certainly, you want both the reticle and the target to be on the same focal plane. However, if you are shooting at 100 or 250 yards, the parallax won’t be an issue. Although, for long ranges you need to adjust the parallax of your scope.

What is the best reticle for hunting?

Duplex reticle is a great reticle for hunting. Whether it is big game hunting or shooting your pery in thicker bush, this reticle won’t betray you. It will provide you precision needed to strike the kill zone.

Why are first focal plane scopes more expensive?

First focal plane scopes are expensive as compared to the second focal plane ones. This is due to their complex construction as the crosshair is placed in front of the lens that determines the scope’s magnification. Moreover, it changes with the change in magnification.

Final Thoughts

All you need for an amazing hunting experience is a good firearm and a scope. Well, a scope can make or ruin your hunting experience. So, it is necessary to go for a high quality reliable scope.

These above mentioned scopes are all fantastic. However, we really liked the Vortex Optics Crossfire II 1-inch Tube, Nikon P-223 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600, and Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope. These 3 provide great value for money. But, we’d recommend you to go for the one that suits you best and satisfy your hunting needs.

We hope you’ve found our article useful. Happy hunting!