Athlon Optics Helos BTR GEN2 2-12×42 Rifle Scope Review

I have to say, I wouldn’t have picked the Helos BTR at first glance. It’s just not my type of scope for my hunting rifles. I like simple, no moving parts, and plain reticles. But after Athlon sent me this scope to try, I’ll admit that I became a convert. It’s more elegant than needlessly complicated, more elegantly durable than fragile. And the features it has, though not necessarily designed for what I’m going to use it for, are excellent.

This scope is in the mid range of the market, and has very high quality glass with Advanced Fully Multi-Coated lenses. The image quality from this scope was actually pretty shockingly good. So far I’ve only tested it at the range, but I’m really looking forward to using it in the field this fall. One thing really cool about this scope is the wide range of zoom settings. Starting at only 2 power, it can be used in very close up situations. It’s very rare that I’ve seen a scope go down to 2 power before, but I can imagine plenty of instances when it’ll be useful. And a 12 power on the high end is more than enough for my purposes, as hunting shots are never taken at super far distances. It also has a 42mm objective lens which gathers plenty of light and gives a good wide field of view without being overbearingly huge.

This scope is offered in a few different reticles, all of which fall into the category of complicated “christmas tree” reticles. That means they have a variety of hold points to account for both elevation and windage, and you can make accurate shots in a variety of situations without adjusting the turrets at all. In the past I’ve skoffed at such complicated reticles. After all, they do make the sight picture very complicated and harder to understand in the heat of the moment. My scope has the AHMR2 FFP IR MOA option. This reticle has hold overs that are designed for a variety of cartridges in 100 yard increments out to 700 yards, and can also be used to make distance estimates out to 600 yards based off of a deer’s body. After shooting this scope once, I can tell that my fears of complication were overblown that and that it’s going to make an excellent addition my arsenal. Here’s the scope reticle so you can see for yourself it’s versatility:

The scope has true precision zero stop and locking turrets, which are very intuitive and feel extremely solid. I have a much more expensive Night Force scope on another one of my rifles, and I think the Athlon’s are designed better. They are beefier, lockable, and seem ready to withstand the rigors of the field.

I mounted this scope using Talley one piece rings to my Tikka 6.5mm Creedmore, which has quickly become my go to rifle to hunt with. After getting it all dialed in, I took it to the range. I haven’t been able to do a ton of shooting with it yet (the ammo shortages have been making that harder and harder), but I did get it zeroed immediately thanks to the awesome and precise measurements from the turrets. It’s intuitive to use, and I’m looking forward to refining the scope and get it dialed in to take a mule deer this fall.

Overall, I would highly recommend this scope for a lot of people. It’s not a simple beginner scope like I would recommend to a new hunter, but if you have the budget for it and the desire to step up to a more versatile scope, this is a fantastic option.

 

Athlon Optics Neos 3-9×40 Rimfire Riflescope Review

Athlon has been impressing me lately with a lot of their quality sporting optics. One of their most popular items of late has been the Neos riflescope, particularly the version designed specifically for rimfire rifles. I’d been wanting to get my hands on it for a long time after reading some excellent reviews and seeing it climb the bestseller charts, and they sent me one to put through the ringer.

First off the basic details. This is a 3-9 power scope with a 40mm objective lens. It is fully multicoated to increase light transmission. It’s tube is constructed from a single piece of aircraft grade aluminum, and it’s waterproof and nitrogen purged for fog resistance. The scope is available in three different reticle options: Center X, BDC 500 IR, and the BDC22 Rim Fire that I tested out.

I was immediately impressed by this scope. I’d been looking to get a scope on my old Savage bolt action 22 (which was my very first rifle!), which hasn’t had a scope mounted on it since I broke the cheap one that I first put on it. The Neos was a perfect fit for this great old gun of mine. It mounted without issue, and zeroed in only a few quick adjustments at the range. It looks great, like a much more expensive scope, and is definitely one that I’m going to be showing off.

The reticle is designed specifically for use with a .22lr. When zeroed at 50 yards, it has bullet drop compensation marks for 75, 100, 125, and 150 yards. That definitely gives you a lot of great options for a caliber that you won’t be using beyond that distance anyway. The second focal plane design also means you can use those drop compensation marks at any zoom setting on the scope.

The scope is simple and very user friendly. After I’d zeroed it in at 50 yards, I handed the reigns over to a couple of teenagers who were out shooting with me. They easily and intuitively picked up how to accurately take shots with this scope/rifle combo and were shooting tight groups immediately, even though in one case he had never shot a rifle before.

Overall, considering this scope can be had for just barely over a hundred dollars, I would highly recommend it for anyone who wants a scope on their 22. It makes the joy of plinking more accurate and stretches your effective distance. It’s also an obviously very high quality scope that is built to handle large calibers, so it’ll be able to take a beating. You can’t go wrong with this scope.

The Best Scope for an AR-15 in 2021

best scope for an ar 15A high-powered rifle isn’t going to do you much good if you can’t hit your target. Spending the money upfront on a good rifle scope can drastically increase the effectiveness, enjoyment and reliability of your rifle. Sorting through the wide assortment of available scopes may seem like a difficult task, but provided you have a clear understanding of what to look for you can quickly narrow down your options. Factors such as the materials used in the build, the quality of the glass and the accuracy of the reticle are all important considerations when buying a scope. Scopes are small, portable and can easily be attached to the top of any rifle for the ultimate in portability. Additionally, red dot sights can be used on an AR-15 to increase your accuracy by creating a visual aid for aiming.

Features to Look For When Purchasing an AR-15 Scope

A lot of products on the market have the same basic features, but you can narrow down the available options by excluding scopes with components you don’t need. For example, you might be able to save some money and get a scope with a lower magnification if you don’t plan on shooting long-range targets. On the other hand, if you have the extra money, it might makes sense to buy the best scope you can get since your needs may change. The magnification, reticle, degree of parallax, scope to eye distance, and minute of angle are all important features you should understand before buying a scope.

  • Magnification: The level of magnification will determine the distance of a scope’s viewable range. Scopes can come with variable and fixed power magnification. The best scopes use variable magnification, since it allows for a better range.
  • Reticle: The reticle helps you to see objects at a distance. Reticles are also known as crosshairs, and they come in a wide variety of styles. Dot and duplex are the most common types. Duplex is good for camouflage operations, while dot works well for distant contact operations.
  • Parallax: Parallax occurs when you look at something from a different angle. Take the speedometer in a car for example. As a passenger, if you look at the speedometer, you’re going to see the needle resting on a different speed than the driver. The driver, who is sitting directly in front of the speedometer can view the needle as it was intended. Scopes that have a magnification of more than 10X will experience parallax, so it’s important to have an adjustable objective lens to counteract the parallax and get an accurate shot.
  • Eye Relief: The distance from the scope and your eye is known as eye relief. It’s important to have enough room so that if the rifle recoils when you shoot, the scope won’t hit you in the eye.
  • Minute of Angle: The minute of angle (MOA) allows for minute adjustments. The specification on the scope for MOA usually determines the amount of adjustment in inches. For a scope with a one-quarter inch MOA, the bullet will hit one-quarter inch from the crosshairs on the scope. This can be used for adjustments in windy conditions, or to account for other advanced adjustments that may be needed.

With those points covered, here are the scopes that come with the highest recommendations and the best prices:

Nikon P-223 BDC 600 Riflescope with Rapid Action Turret: Under $250

This is a high-quality scope that is unlikely to reflect light from the lens, which provides a clear and bright image quality. The exit lens is the perfect size for most needs, and uses Nikon’s multi-coating formula. The scope is lightweight and very portable, weighing in at just 2.2 pounds. The reticle includes the BDC 600 opening circle aiming points. The open circle is capable of adjusting according to the distance of the target. The one-quarter inch MOA allows for quick adjustments in the field.

The rifle is optimized to work with Nikon’s Spot On Ballistic Match Technology for increased accuracy and reliability. This scope is one of the best scopes out there in this price range, and it comes with a lifetime guarantee from Nikon. The large scope is built for distance, but red dots make it suitable for close-range targets as well. This scope stays honed in no matter what you throw at it. Bumps, shakes and off-road adventures won’t affect it’s ability to stay on target and give you an accurate shot.

UTG 3-12×44 30 mm Compact Scope: Under $150

If you want a stable, consistent and reliable rifle scope, this mid-range scope offers an ideal option. It has a consistent eye relief that helps to keep your brow and eyes safe from kickback. Super compact, the UTG  is a 36 colors Mil-dot with good accuracy. Coated lenses offer good clarity and light transmission.

If you’re operating with a limited budget but don’t want to sacrifice clarity, this is a great option. The majority of reviews are positive and the price makes it too good to ignore.

Vortex Optics Spitfire Prism Scopes: Under $350

If you don’t mind spending a bit more, this Vortex scope is worth the money. Multi-coated, anti-reflective coatings make these optics stand out. The Spitfire will work best in medium range shooting applications and it’s built for situations where speed is critical.

Many reviewers compare this favorably to the ACOG, at a much more wallet-friendly price. And, Vortex is well-known for offering excellent optics, so this scope is highly recommended overall.

Best Scopes for a Rimfire (.22lr) Rifle in 2021

Developed well over 100 years ago, rimfires’ technology has remained unchanged over the years, and rimfire bullets are still popular even after the invention of centerfire bullets.

The .22lr rifle is a fairly affordable and accurate shot, making it a favorite for many budget-minded small game hunters and target shooters. Its lightweight and minimum recoil also make this rifle a great beginner’s tool for youngsters, and overall; most people learn to shoot with a .22lr. It is a preferred option for target practice, plinking, and pest control because it is cheaper than shooting centerfire ammo.

Many shooters operate under the misconception that this rifle’s versatility allows it to be paired with any scope out there. Therefore, very few of them invest in a fitting scope which in turn limits their experience with this rifle. To make the best decision, you need to understand the rimfire rifle’s capabilities and limitations.

The need for a light cartridge and a thin base limits the .22lr’s accurate shooting distance to about 200 yards. Longer shooting distances are possible under the right conditions, but it’s not very effective because your bullet will drop about a foot or more at 100 yards. Since this is the case, you will find that you may not require a very high magnification optic. A powerful magnification at closer ranges causes both blurriness eye fatigue.

Outlined below are our top riflescope choices for a .22lr rifle after taking all of its specs into consideration, and then we further summarize key factors to look for when trying to select the right scope for your rifle.

Top Scopes for the .22lr Rifle

There are several viable options of scopes to select from, varying from optics for plinkers to those for competitive championships. Prices range from as little as $30 for standard makes to over $1000 for top-notch products, and our recommendations are not biased toward popular brand-name products; instead, they are inspired by the functional highlights that count most in rimfire scopes.

Here are our 7 favorite rimfire scopes at different price points:

1) Athlon Optics Neos 3-9x40mm (BDC22 Reticle)(Our top pick)

Athlon is a company that has been impressing many people in the optics world of late. Their quality products and affordability have been hard to beat, even for the larger optics companies. And in no area is that truer than in riflescopes set up perfectly for a rimfire rifle. The Neos is a simple, quality rifle scope set up for most shooters to use easily and accurately. And the BDC22 version of the scope couldn’t be better for your new .22lr rifle build.

This scope has fully multicoated glass, which is shocking and amazing in a scope at this price point. That means your vision will be exceptionally clear for your shooting. It also uses a single aircraft grade aluminum tube construction, so it can handle some bumps and bruises without any serious damage. Anyone who’s dropped a rifle and had its zero go way off knows how important that is.

There are a lot of good options for scopes these days, but I would seriously consider giving the Athlon scope a try. It’s tough to beat right now. You can see it’s current price on Amazon here, or find it on OpticsPlanet.com here.

 


 

2) Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9x40mm Riflescope, Rimfire MOA Reticle

The Leupold VX-Freedom offers quality optics with multi-coated lenses and 3:1 zoom ratio. Price, versatility, and material quality are favorable aspects of this scope when it is compared to many of the other rimfire scopes on the market.

This rimfire scope notably offers Twilight Light Management System, scratch resistant lenses, and 1/4 MOA click turrets. In addition to the zoom ration, the Leupold has ranges for windage and elevation which allows you to compensate for both wind and bullet drop.

In addition, the classic duplex reticle is highly versatile and minimalist. Overall, this scope comes with a solid set of features for the reasonable cost. Click here to check the current price on Amazon, or here to see it on OpticsPlanet.

 

3) Simmons .22 Mag TruPlex Reticle Rimfire 3-9x32mm Riflescope (Budget pick)

Simmons focuses on developing products that are dependable and extremely affordable, so their rifle scopes will only contain those features needed most by the shooter. Unlike most brands, Simmons specializes in simplicity and do not produces scopes with excess features.

The Simmons .22 Mag Riflescope does not offer the clarity of the Nikon or the ruggedness of the Leupold; what it offers is an affordable alternative with all the basic features that will suit the low budget shooter.

This rifle scope gives you ultimate control, featuring elevation and wind adjustment knobs that can be easily turned even while wearing gloves. It is also fitted with an adjustment knob for the objective lens to ensure that you see a clear, focused view at every magnification.

With an under $50 price tag, it is one of Amazon’s best-selling and best-reviewed scopes. For that price, you acquire a scope that performs impressively at distances below 150 yards. Its 32mm objective lens offers a crisp and clear field of view under the entire magnification range. Targets may appear a bit blurry at 9x magnification power, but that should be expected of a scope at that price range. Click here to see the current price on Amazon, or here to see it on OpticsPlanet.

4) Vortex Crossfire 2 Rimfire

Vortex is the company to watch in the world of optics; it is continually giving the bigger guns a run for their money with the production of better and more advanced scopes. Vortex Crossfire 2 rimfire edition is built to the same specs as its bigger centerfire sibling, but it is toned down for rimfire calibers.

The Crossfire 2 rimfire is a 2 to 7 power optic with a 32 mm objective lens. The Fully multi-coated lens offers bright light transition, and a clear, high-definition picture. The parallax is set for fifty yards and is adequate for most plinking and hunting operations. The 2x magnification is excellent for close range shooting and picking your shot on a small target.

The Crossfire 2 is made from aircraft grade aluminum and built from a single piece of aluminum to make the finish field-ready, waterproof, shockproof, and fog proof. This scope assures a sustainable performance and great value for the price. Click here to see current price on Amazon. You can also buy it from OpticsPlanet.

5) Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn 4-12x40mm Riflescope

I know that the inclusion of this scope in this list goes against our recommendation for low magnification power scopes for the .22lr, which is included in our list of recommendations when selecting a scope at the end of this article. However, as many of you shall find out, 4x magnification is perfect for the rimfire caliber, so this scope fits in just fine.

The other reason we included this scope is its price. It is an affordable scope that would be able to double as your “go to” rifle scope larger caliber hunting rifles without much damage to your wallet. This is the right scope for shooters who are after an above-average performance at a decent price range.

The fixed magnification keeps the Bushnell Rimfire 4×32 light and compact; it only weighs 15 ounces. Its constant 3.3″ of eye relief protects your eyes but still offers a clear view. The Bushnell 4-12x40mm offers a crisp and clear picture and much better magnification than most other scopes its class.

It is 100% waterproof and fog proof and offers proven durability. The manufacturer also offers an attractive warranty and world-class customer care. Click here to see the current price.

6) BSA Sweet 22 Rifle Scope

The BSA Sweet .22 Duplex Reticle Rifle Scope is a tool designed simply for reliably getting the job done. BSA has been in the scope industry for a very long time and is well known for high quality, low priced optics that can run with the big boys regarding features and quality. The Sweet 22 is no exception to that rule.

Designed for the .22 long rifle cartridge, and intended to be a top quality .22 scope, the Sweet 22 features interchangeable target turrets calibrated for all popular .22 loads. The magnification and turrets are optimized for a .22 with low profile movable turrets for adjustments.

Its waterproof and fog proof construction make it ideal for most weather conditions. Its large 40mm objective lens helps to maximize light gathering. This may very well be the best scope for .22 rifles for a budget-conscious shooter who wants to run a precision target scope. Click here to see the current price.

Selecting the Right Scope for Your .22lr Rifle

We have provided a number of scope options above at a wide range of prices, so if you are still trying to figure out what features are most meaningful to you when making a selection, here is a summary of all of the important features to review when selecting a rifle scope for your .22lr:

  • Weight – light, kid-friendly, and quite handy, most .22lr rifles weigh about 5 pounds in their stock configuration. So attaching a heavy optic throws it off balance and consequentially affects its ease of handling and speed of movement. This can act against you while hunting fast-moving varmints or small game.
  • Magnification – I cannot stress enough that a 16 power magnification scope is both impractical and wasteful on your 22lr. 3-9x or 2-7x power scopes are sufficient for rimfire rifles.
  • Reticle – it is not relevant to acquire a scope with adjustments for elevation and windage at over 100 yards because bullet drop is typically significant at these distances. Also, note that illuminated reticles can be too bright and the resulting wash out might make small targets difficult to see.
  • Adjustable Objective – this allows users to essentially adjust the scope’s parallax to facilitate hitting of excessively small targets. An adjustable parallax enhances accuracy at various ranges, as well as provides a clearer sight picture.
  • Lens size – although anything below 32mm will reduce the quality of the sight picture, lenses larger than 40 or 42 mm are too bulky for your rimfire .22lr rifle.
  • Dedication – any suitable, well-built scope can do the job but .22-dedicated scopes perform better at most times because they are correctly ranged and calibrated for the most common .22 rounds.

Reviews of the Best Rifle Scopes of 2021

The Best Rifle Scopes

Click to see bestsellers

Whether you are a hunter, or you just enjoy shooting for sport, you know that choosing a scope for your rifle will be one of the biggest factors in determining how accurately you’ll be able to shoot. A scope allows you to zoom in on your target, and precisely lock in exactly where you want your shot to land.

There are many scopes on the market from many different reputable manufacturers, so choosing the best one is a daunting task. In the end, the scope you choose will largely come down to personal preference and your shooting needs. This guide will help you figure out what the best scope is to suit your (and your rifle’s) needs.

My #1 Recommendation

Rifle scopes vary widely in their intended application, so it’s hard to pick just one. But for a shooter that wants all the features of a high end scope that is affordable and clear, I would choose the Athlon Argos BTR series. The 6-24x50mm offers big zoom, an illuminate reticle, a 30mm tube, and is First Focal Plane. Athlon is a company whose glass I’m always impressed with, and this scope is no exception. Click here to learn more and see it’s price.

The Athlon Argos BTR is a solid scope for a variety of shooters.

Best Rifle Scopes For the Money

Rifle scopes can range from $40 up to thousands of dollars depending on how much one is willing to spend. Depending on what the rifle scope is being used for, you can sometimes get away with or at least get the same results with a cheaper scope that you could do with a higher end one. You should always think about what is economically sound for you to spend on a scope, because a some scopes that are $100 might be all you need, and you can save money by purchasing these scopes instead of getting the highest quality scope that really doesn’t improve your chances anymore than the cheaper one. Below are just a few different scopes that are considered to be the best in their dollar range, but before choosing your scope, you should look at all the details in order to make sure it will provide you with a solution to all of your individual needs.

Best Rifle Scope Under $100

There are a lot of different rifle scopes that you can get for under $100, many of which you probably want to avoid. However the UTG 3-9×32 BugBuster Scope is one of, if not the best in this price range. It offers a lot of quality features, and has a sterling reputation with thousands of online reviews.

UTG 3-9x32 BugBusterFeatures:

  • Mildot reticle with both red and green illumination.
  • Lockable and reset-able turret design.
  • It comes with 3-9x magnification, and the objective lens is 32 millimeters.
  • Included with the scope are a 2″ sun shade, quick release rings, and flip cap covers.

While it won’t compare to the Zeiss and Nightforce scopes at the end of this list in terms of optical clarity and quality, this budget scope is perfect for getting the job done with a minimal financial burden. Click to see the price.

Best Rifle Scope Under $200

This is a very popular price range, and for good reason. It’s inexpensive enough that most new hunters and shooters can buy a scope in it for their new rifle. If you want a dependable choice, go with the Vortex Diamondback. Vortex is an incredibly popular brand of sporting optics, and for good reason. Their products are very high quality, and generally are in the mid range in terms of price. I like their 4-12×40 model scope personally, as it allows me to zoom in just far enough while still being able to make close up shots by cranking back the zoom. Click to see the price.

Best Rifle Scope Under $300

This scope price range was a little more difficult to narrow down, but in the end, the best rifle scope for under $300 came out to be the Athlon Optics Talos BTR 4-14×44. It offers a variety of different features that makes it stand out more so than the others in this particular price range.

Nikon ProStaff 5 BDCFeatures:

  • This rifle comes with 4-14x magnification, and it is equipped with a 44 millimeter objective lens.
  • This scope makes any rifle superior at long range shooting thanks to Athlon’s APLR2 FFP IR MIL reticle, a super advanced reticle.
  • The scope is waterproof and nitrogen purged.
  • It has fully multicoated glass for excellent image quality

As stated earlier, Athlon is one of the top brands on the market for making high quality rifle scopes, and this particular rifle scope is just one of the mid price range examples of why they made it to the top brand list. Click to see the price.

Best Rifle Scope Under $500

This category was a hard choice to make. Out of all the different rifle scopes in this price range, I couldn’t narrow down to just one scope, but I was able to narrow it down to the top two rifle scopes for less than $500.

The Vortex Viper PA 30mm Tube Rifle Scope – Although this brand didn’t make it in the top rifle scope brands, this particular scope could not be overlooked. It is one of the top rifle scopes on the market today. It has a variety of different aspects that make it this way, and it will surely get the job done efficiently and effectively.

Vortex Viper PAFeatures:

  • It comes with a one-piece tube that is 30 millimeters, which makes it easier to store without having to worry about loosing any removable parts.
  • It is actually made out of aircraft grade aluminum to guarantee it’s sturdiness.
  • It comes equipped with tall turrets which allows the shooter using it to quickly and easily make any adjustments.
  • There is also a side knob parallax adjustment for versatility. Click to see the price.

Top Rifle Scopes For an Unlimited Budget

When money is no object, all the rules of the game completely change. A lot of the scopes over $1000 are made by brands that are not seen at the lower budget products. There is a simple answer as to why that is. When most people think of the best brands, they think about the brands that the majority of people who buy a product actually purchase. That is why the higher end rifle scope brands may vary from the over all best and most popular brands. Seeing as this category in finances is so broad, below are two different rifle scopes that can be considered the best rifle scope for those that have an unlimited budget. You should also consider looking at Schmidt & Bender and Swarovski.

Zeiss Conquest Rifle scopes 5-25×50 Black Rapid Z 1000 – On average, this particular scope runs around $1100. It has a lot of different features, and it is manufactured by Zeiss one of the more popular brands among those that enjoy the high end and expensive rifle scopes. Below are just a few of the many features that makes this rifle scope stick out among all of the other unlimited budget scopes on the market today.

Zeiss Conquest Rapid Z 1000Features:

  • This scope comes with a 50 millimeter objective lens, and it comes with 5-25 magnification ability.
  • It is used mainly for hunting anything at long range, including predators, big game, and varmints.
  • It has a robust, one piece tube that is built to stand some of the worst recoils even on extremely demanding terrains.
  • For the rifles that have a harsh recoil, this scope has a 3.5 inch eye relief in order to help protect the shooter’s face from the rifle’s recoil.
  • The Zeiss Conquest rifle scope is one of the most ideal scopes for those that enjoy target shooting on the range.
  • One of the things that helps this be an ideal scope for long range shooting, it offers precision aiming with accurate holdover and wind-corrected information.
  • The lenses of this scope are MC multi-coated, and this help by achieving outstanding brightness regardless of low light situations that might arise on the hunt. Click to see the price.

Nightforce NXS Rifle Scope 30mm Tube 5.5-22x 56MM Hi-Speed – The Nightforce NXS Rifle Scope is a high speed scope that could not be ignored for the unlimited budget best category. Nightforce is one of the top brands for professional rifle scopes, and that is why it didn’t make the top brand list. Most Nightforce scopes cost way more than the average person would even think about paying for a sports scope for their rifle. This scope generally runs anywhere from $2,250 to $2,500. Generally, the price depends on where one purchases this scope. Below are just a few of the unique features that this scope has to offer someone.

Nightforce NXSFeatures:

  • The NXS Rifle Scope comes with 5.5-22x magnification, and it also has a 56 millimeter objective lens.
  • It has a 30 millimeter diameter tube.
  • The eye relief for the NXS Rifle Scope is 3.9 inches.
  • It has finger adjustable turrets and it has a click adjustment.
  • The field of view for this scope at 5.5x magnification is 17.5′, and the field of view at 22x magnification is 4.7′ at 100 yards.
  • The NXS Rifle Scope has a exit pupil diameter of 10.2 to 2.5 millimeters, and the scope weighs around 32 oz.
  • This scope can be recommended for just about all types of weather, because it is shock proof, water proof, and fog proof. Click to see the price.

 

Want more options? See the current bestselling rifle scopes here.

Types of Scopes

There are a lot of different types of scopes, but they can practically all be placed in two categories. It is important to understand the different types of scopes and the pros and cons to each one before purchasing one. Below are three of the different types of scopes, and they are the most common scopes on the market.

1. Variable Scopes – By far the most common, variable scopes are useful if magnification of the target is needed for a clean shot. With these types of scopes, the shooter can adjust the magnification of the target that they are looking at. These types of scopes come in a variety of magnification variables, and depending on what you are hunting, this could be extremely important. Sniper rifles often use variable scopes, because sniper rifles are used at a much farther distance than a normal hunting rifle.

2. Fixed Scopes – These scopes can be a little less complicated than variable scopes, but they are also only better if people know exactly the specs they need when shooting their gun. You cannot adjust the magnification on fixed scopes like you can on variables. Therefore, these scopes are only recommended in certain occasions and for certain types of firearms.

3. Night Vision Scopes – These are specialty scopes. They can be combined as a variable scope or a fixed scope. What makes these scopes different is the fact that they are used for shooting at night or at times of day when there is a small amount of light to naturally see the target. They are very expensive and bulky, so before choosing a night vision scope, make sure that you actually need to shoot during low light hours of the day.

How to Choose a Rifle Scope

buying a rifle scopeThe majority of rifle users want the best scope for their rifle in order to help with whatever it is they are hunting. In the past, the old metallic sights that were placed on rifles were a lot harder to aim with than the newer scopes on the market today. When using a rifle scope, one thing should come to mind: simplicity. The use of a rifle scope has made it a lot easier for the majority of people to be able to line up a kill shot on their target.

When using a rifle scope, all you have to do to get a kill on your target is line up your cross hairs or reticles on the target that you are aiming at. Learning to shoot with a rifle scope is an extremely useful skill. Not only is it easier to line up the gun to your target, but it also magnifies your target, making it easier to tell which part of the target you will actually hit. There are a large number of factors that need to go into thought when choosing the right rifle scope.

Is bigger and more expensive always better?

This can be a tricky question to answer when you are dealing with rifle scopes. The best way to answer this question is this. When you are going to look for your idle rifle scope, you should ask yourself what is it that you are going to be shooting at. In general, if you are a deer hunter, using anything over a 3-9x or 4-12x scope on your rifle would be overkill, and it could actually hinder you in the long run. Those are the average scope sizes for anyone wanting to go hunting, because they offer what is needed for the majority of rifle users.

You also need to figure in what kinds of shots you are planning on having to take. If you know that you are going to be shooting far away at your prey, then you will be using a different scope as opposed to shooting at something closer. This has a lot to deal with having the proper magnification on the scope that you choose in order to be able to perform the hunting that you wish to do.

What do the Numbers on a Scope tell me?

This is a good question to ask. Before you can properly choose a rifle scope, you need to know what the numbers on your scope actually mean. In order to help with this, I am going to reference you to a Vortex Diamondback 3-9x40mm rifle scope in order to explain the importance of the numbers on a rifle scope. The numbers when choosing a scope that are important are the 3-9×40.

In this particular number, the 3 means that any image that you look at through this scope will appear three times closer to you than it would to the naked eye. The 9 means the same thing. If the scope that you choose has a 9 like this one it means that you can see your target 9 times closer through the scope than with the naked eye. The last number, in this case the 40, is the objective lens diameter in millimeters. If you see a number like this, these scopes are classified as variable scopes. Basically, you can choose if you want your target to be 3 times magnified up to 9 times magnified. In general, the larger the magnification range, the more that particular scope will cost. This is because the wider the range the more versatile that scope will be.

Why is eye relief and light transmission important when choosing a scope?

A shooter’s age can affect the dilation of their eyes. People who are older will experience smaller dilation than someone of a younger age. An exit pupil is extremely important when choosing your scope. Basically, an exit pupil can be determined by holding a scope out at arms length from you. The small circle of light that appears in the scopes eyepiece when doing this is the exit pupil. The exit pupil is extremely important when thinking about eye relief because the larger the exit pupil is the less important head positioning in relation to the scope becomes.

When talking about eye relief in regards to rifle scopes, eye relief is the distance that your eye can be away from the ocular lens of the scope and still provide a full and clear picture of your target. Currently, four inches is the largest eye relief available for any standard rifle scope. If you are using the rifle correctly, four inches in plenty of distance for your face to be out of the way of any recoil your rifle might do. You should always pay attention to the amount of eye relief and exit pupil that a scope offers before purchasing it.

What should I look for in a scope in regards to the objective lens size?

On most medium variable scopes, the standard object lens size is anywhere from 40 to 44 millimeters. There are objective lenses on the market that are larger, but in most cases these larger lenses are not necessary. As a matter of fact, the larger the objective lens on a rifle scope is, the harder it is to be able to hold your rifle properly. These larger lens also can cause your rifle to be a little less comfortable to shoot due to the fact they can make the rifle feel unbalanced, clumsier, and heavier.

Why is Field of View on a rifle scope so important?

When speaking about rifles, field of view is generally measure at every 100 yards. What this means is the field of view is the amount that you are actually able to see from right to left at a distance through your scope. When adjusting the magnification of your scope, your field of view will be adjusted. In general, if you decrease the magnification of your scope your field of view will actually increase. This is generally more important with variable scopes, because the difference in magnification can change the field of view drastically. For instance, if you are using a 3-12×42 scope, if the magnification is set to 3 then your field of view will be the full 100 yards. However, if your magnification was turned closer to 12, your field of view would actually decrease down to somewhere around 14 to 10 yards.

For more about choosing the top rifle scope, watch the below video:

Best Rifle Scope Brands

  • Leupold
  • Redfield
  • Sightmark
  • Burris
  • Bushnell
  • Barska

revies of rifle scopesJust like any other product, there are a lot of different brands and companies that make rifle scopes, but just like with every other product, there are a number of brands that stick out in the market. Below are a list of the top six brands that make rifle scopes, and they all got on this list for a variety of reasons. Some have created special features that make their scopes better in certain aspects, and some brands have an all around aspect to their products that put them on top.

Leupold

A family owned company since its founding in 1907, Leupold & Stevens is without one of the highest quality optic manufacturers in the world. It’s scopes are used by the United States Marine Corps and Navy SEALs, which definitely is a major vote of confidence in their design and manufacturing. They make everything from simple hunting scopes to the incredibly powerful and adjustable tactical designs used by the military.

Redfield

Redfield was purchased by Leupold & Stevens, Inc. back in April of 2008, but they did not acquire any of Redfield’s capability of repairing their products that were made prior to them buying the company. However, Redfield is still currently one of the top manufacturers of rifle scopes on the market. Their motto is “No Excuses”, and they offer a full lifetime warranty to their customers on all of their non-electronic products like their rifle scopes.

Sightmark

Sightmark was founded back in 2007, and they have steadily been growing in the modern shooting market thanks to their products and rifle scopes. Currently, they are operated out of Mansfield, Texas, and there motto is “Make Your Mark”. They offer a variety of different products that are ranked top of the market, and they are known for making Triple Duty, Ezekiel, and Pinnacle rifle scopes that excel in performance.

Burris

Burris considers themselves specialists when it comes to making rifle scopes. They vow that they only employ the most passionate and knowledgeable engineers to manufacture their products. Burris products are not only used by the occasional hunter or sports shooter, but some of their rifle scopes are used by professionals throughout the entire world. Burris is best known for their scopes having lenses with larger diameters than most of their competitors.

Bushnell

Bushnell is one of the older popular rifle scope manufacturers with their products still on the market. They have been in business for over 65 years, and they pride themselves on providing only the best quality to their customers. The majority of their products are some of the more reliable and affordable hunting products, like rifle scopes on the market to date. Their shotgun scopes are also among the best.

Barska

Barska is currently operated out of Pomona, California, which is on the southern end of California. Their priority products all deal with sport optics, and they are considered to be one of the top brands that puts out rifle scopes on the market today. They actually have a global customer base. They have over 40 countries that they distribute their products too outside of the United States. They even offer products that can be individualized for their corporate customers if needed.

Athlon Optics Argos HMR 2-12x42mm Riflescope Review

I’ve tested a lot of Athlon’s binoculars over the last few years, as well as recently a spotting scope and a red dot sight. However, I hadn’t gotten ahold of one of their rifle scopes until just recently, and boy was I looking forward to putting it through the paces. Athlon is very proud of their riflescopes, and rightly so. That seems to be the area where they focus most of their energy, and customer reviews have been excellent on every scope I’ve looked at. So when they sent me their new Argos HMR 2-12x42mm, I was beyond stoked to test it out (and not only because it gave me an excuse to buy another hunting rifle).

The scope they sent me has the illuminated BDC 600A reticle in it, which is a fantastic reticle. In most of my guns I run a standard duplex type reticle, sometimes with re settable elevation turrets. However, such turrets are notoriously unreliable, and though I’ve never had any problems yet, I’ve always been tempted to try something like what this Athlon scope has. The various marks are set up to be your holds for 100-600 yards. Athlon advertises it working with a wide variety of calibers. I put this scope on a new 6.5 Creedmore Tikka Superlight, which of course shoots very flat, and the reticle isn’t perfectly dialed for it. However, it will work great for me with a 200 yard zero, with the next holds down being for 250, 325, and 415. Those are great holds for my purposes of hunting deer and elk. The illumination is also a great feature that really helps the reticle stand out. I initially had a difficult time getting focused when I first started shooting thanks to how thin the reticle is, however once I got the parallax and focus adjusted it worked great, and the illumination makes it that much better! The thin reticle of course is ideal for taking longer shots. My only complaint is that the reticle light dial is a little bit tough to move. It’s possible that it will loosen up with use, but I could imagine it being tough to work in the cold when my fingers are numb.

The Athlon Argos HMR on my new Tikka T3x Superlight in 6.5 Creedmore. This is proving to be a very deadly hunting set up!

This scope has a zoom of 2-12 power. What’s especially impressive here is that low end 2 power. The most common scope I see is a 3.9 power, so this scope not only has the ability to zoom in further, but also the ability to zoom OUT further, which can be instrumental when hunting in close quarters. It’s rare I see a scope that has that low of a minimum zoom, and I totally love it. The 42mm objective lens is also great, it keeps the scope light which is perfect for hunting purposes.

Zeroing and adjusting the scope was a breeze. I mounted it using a scope mounting kit and Talley one piece alluminum rings, which I highly recommend to create a bombproof seal between the scope and rifle. The first shots at 50 yards were almost dead on without any adjustment. After dialing in there, I went to 100 and then finally 200 to get totally zeroed in. The scope has easy to use 1/4 MOA clicks on large adjustment rings. They are also covered with screw on caps, which is by far my preferred style of scope adjustments unless you want a resettable elevation turret. I know this scope will stand up to the elements and abuses of hunting without any danger of it losing its zero.

The glass in this scope is excellent, and meets the standards of what I would expect for a scope in this price range. It doesn’t compare to something like a highend Nightforce or Schmidt & Bender, but of course it also costs a tenth of what those scopes do, and I wouldn’t dare bring something like that into the field. This scope definitely is in that sweet spot where it is a nice enough setup to do everything I need it to in the field, but it doesn’t cost so much that I feel like I need to bubble wrap the whole thing before I step out my door.

Overall, I was very impressed with this scope. I didn’t get to test out the long range holds built into the reticle yet as the ammo shortage limited my range time, but I’m looking forward to testing it more and then carrying it on some hunts in the near future! If you want to check out this scope, take a look at it on Amazon here.

Reviews of the Best Rifle Scopes for 2019

The Best Rifle ScopesWhether you are a hunter, or you just enjoy shooting for sport, you know that choosing a scope for your rifle will be one of the biggest factors in determining how accurately you’ll be able to shoot. A scope allows you to zoom in on your target, and precisely lock in exactly where you want your shot to land.

There are many scopes on the market from many different reputable manufacturers, so choosing the best one is a daunting task. In the end, the scope you choose will largely come down to personal preference and your shooting needs. This guide will help you figure out what the best scope is to suit your (and your rifle’s) needs.

My #1 Recommendation

If I had to pick one scope to recommend above all others, especially on a modest budget, the crown would go to the Vortex Diamondback. Vortex is an incredibly popular brand of sporting optics, and for good reason. Their products are very high quality, and generally are in the mid range in terms of price. I like their 4-12×40 model scope personally, as it allows me to zoom in just far enough while still being able to make close up shots by cranking back the zoom.

Best Rifle Scopes For the Money

Rifle scopes can range from $40 up to thousands of dollars depending on how much one is willing to spend. Depending on what the rifle scope is being used for, you can sometimes get away with or at least get the same results with a cheaper scope that you could do with a higher end one. You should always think about what is economically sound for you to spend on a scope, because a some scopes that are $100 might be all you need, and you can save money by purchasing these scopes instead of getting the highest quality scope that really doesn’t improve your chances anymore than the cheaper one. Below are just a few different scopes that are considered to be the best in their dollar range, but before choosing your scope, you should look at all the details in order to make sure it will provide you with a solution to all of your individual needs.

Best Rifle Scope Under $100

There are a lot of different rifle scopes that you can get for under $100, many of which you probably want to avoid. However the UTG 3-9×32 BugBuster Scope is one of, if not the best in this price range. It offers a lot of quality features, and has a sterling reputation with thousands of online reviews.

UTG 3-9x32 BugBusterFeatures:

  • Mildot reticle with both red and green illumination.
  • Lockable and reset-able turret design.
  • It comes with 3-9x magnification, and the objective lens is 32 millimeters.
  • Included with the scope are a 2″ sun shade, quick release rings, and flip cap covers.

While it won’t compare to the Zeiss and Nightforce scopes at the end of this list in terms of optical clarity and quality, this budget scope is perfect for getting the job done with a minimal financial burden.

Best Rifle Scope Under $200

There are a wide variety of scopes in this price range, including many from well known manufacturers, and it was Nikon that won here. For a price tag that is handily under the $200 mark, the Nikon P-223 3-9x40mm is of exceptional quality. It is designed for rifles chambered in .223 (although it would work for many others as well), and it is made by Nikon, which is one of the best rifle scope brands on the market (as well as optics brands in general).

Nikon P 223 3-9x40Features:

  • This scope comes with 3-9x magnification, and it has a large 40 millimeter objective lens.
  • 1/4 MOA tactical style hand adjustable turrets with reset functionality.
  • BDC 600 reticle designed specifically for .223 caliber rounds.
  • Nitrogen filled, water and fog proof design.

Also in this price range is the Vortex scope I recommended at the top of the article, which you should really consider (especially if you are shooting something other than .223).

Best Rifle Scope Under $300

This scope price range was a little more difficult to narrow down, but in the end, the best rifle scope for under $300 came out to be the Nikon PROSTAFF 5 BDC 3.5-14×40 Rifle Scope. It offers a variety of different features that makes it stand out more so than the others in this particular price range. The average price of this scope before taxes and shipping is around $279, but of course, that depends on where it is you purchase it from. It could be slightly more or even less if you search for a good deal.

Nikon ProStaff 5 BDCFeatures:

  • This rifle comes with 3.5-14x magnification, and it is equipped with a 40 millimeter objective lens.
  • With this rifle scope, adjustments are made extremely easy thanks to its Spring-Loaded Instant Zero Reset Turrets.
  • Thanks to being a Nikon product, which is one of the best rifle brands on the market, this scope is optimized to be used with Nikon’s Spot On Ballistic Match Technology.
  • This scope makes any rifle superior at long range shooting thanks to Nikon’s patented BDC reticle, which has see through ballistic circles.
  • Using this scope on your rifle will make bringing the reticle into focus quick and easy with its quick focus eyepiece.

As stated earlier, Nikon is one of the top brands on the market for making high quality rifle scopes, and this particular rifle scope is just one of the mid price range examples of why they made it to the top brand list.

Best Rifle Scope Under $500

This category was a hard choice to make. Out of all the different rifle scopes in this price range, I couldn’t narrow down to just one scope, but I was able to narrow it down to the top two rifle scopes for less than $500.

The Vortex Viper PA 30mm Tube Rifle Scope – Although this brand didn’t make it in the top rifle scope brands, this particular scope could not be overlooked. It is one of the top rifle scopes on the market today. It has a variety of different aspects that make it this way, and it will surely get the job done efficiently and effectively. On average, this scope is generally anywhere from $448 to $461 depending on where you decide to purchase it.

Vortex Viper PAFeatures:

  • It comes with a one-piece tube that is 30 millimeters, which makes it easier to store without having to worry about loosing any removable parts.
  • It is actually made out of aircraft grade aluminum to guarantee it’s sturdiness.
  • It comes equipped with tall turrets which allows the shooter using it to quickly and easily make any adjustments.
  • There is also a side knob parallax adjustment for versatility.

Nikon Monarch 3 4-16x50mm Side Focus Rifle Scope – Once again, Nikon makes the top! This variable scope is by far one of the top rifle scopes on the marketplace today price ranged under $500. On average, the Nikon Monarch 3 runs around $418, but that is mainly determined at where you decide to purchase it from, and that is not including any kind of tax or shipping. Nikon does not disappoint with this scope as it has many of the features that Nikon is known for using on their high end scopes.

Nikon Monarch 3Features:

  • The Nikon Monarch 3 comes with 4-16x magnification, and it also comes with a larger than normal objective lens. It’s lens is actually 50 millimeters.
  • It is renowned because of its Ultra Clear Coat Optical System which allows up to 95% light transmission.
  • It has a quick focus eyepiece that is meant to allow the shooter to instantly bring their reticle into focus.
  • It’s best feature is the MONARCH 3 Eye Box Technology which allows for a 4 time zoom range. It also allows for a four inch eye relief.
  • This scope is optimized to be used with the Nikon’s Spot On Ballistic Match Technology.
  • Last but not least, it is easily adjusted thanks to its Spring Loaded Instant Zero Reset Turrets.

Top Rifle Scopes For an Unlimited Budget

When money is no object, all the rules of the game completely change. A lot of the scopes over $1000 are made by brands that are not seen at the lower budget products. There is a simple answer as to why that is. When most people think of the best brands, they think about the brands that the majority of people who buy a product actually purchase. That is why the higher end rifle scope brands may vary from the over all best and most popular brands. Seeing as this category in finances is so broad, below are two different rifle scopes that can be considered the best rifle scope for those that have an unlimited budget. You should also consider looking at Schmidt & Bender and Swarovski.

Zeiss Conquest Rifle scopes 5-25×50 Black Rapid Z 1000 – On average, this particular scope runs around $1100. It has a lot of different features, and it is manufactured by Zeiss one of the more popular brands among those that enjoy the high end and expensive rifle scopes. Below are just a few of the many features that makes this rifle scope stick out among all of the other unlimited budget scopes on the market today.

Zeiss Conquest Rapid Z 1000Features:

  • This scope comes with a 50 millimeter objective lens, and it comes with 5-25 magnification ability.
  • It is used mainly for hunting anything at long range, including predators, big game, and varmints.
  • It has a robust, one piece tube that is built to stand some of the worst recoils even on extremely demanding terrains.
  • For the rifles that have a harsh recoil, this scope has a 3.5 inch eye relief in order to help protect the shooter’s face from the rifle’s recoil.
  • The Zeiss Conquest rifle scope is one of the most ideal scopes for those that enjoy target shooting on the range.
  • One of the things that helps this be an ideal scope for long range shooting, it offers precision aiming with accurate holdover and wind-corrected information.
  • The lenses of this scope are MC multi-coated, and this help by achieving outstanding brightness regardless of low light situations that might arise on the hunt.

Nightforce NXS Rifle Scope 30mm Tube 5.5-22x 56MM Hi-Speed – The Nightforce NXS Rifle Scope is a high speed scope that could not be ignored for the unlimited budget best category. Nightforce is one of the top brands for professional rifle scopes, and that is why it didn’t make the top brand list. Most Nightforce scopes cost way more than the average person would even think about paying for a sports scope for their rifle. This scope generally runs anywhere from $2,250 to $2,500. Generally, the price depends on where one purchases this scope. Below are just a few of the unique features that this scope has to offer someone.

Nightforce NXSFeatures:

  • The NXS Rifle Scope comes with 5.5-22x magnification, and it also has a 56 millimeter objective lens.
  • It has a 30 millimeter diameter tube.
  • The eye relief for the NXS Rifle Scope is 3.9 inches.
  • It has finger adjustable turrets and it has a click adjustment.
  • The field of view for this scope at 5.5x magnification is 17.5′, and the field of view at 22x magnification is 4.7′ at 100 yards.
  • The NXS Rifle Scope has a exit pupil diameter of 10.2 to 2.5 millimeters, and the scope weighs around 32 oz.
  • This scope can be recommended for just about all types of weather, because it is shock proof, water proof, and fog proof.

Types of Scopes

There are a lot of different types of scopes, but they can practically all be placed in two categories. It is important to understand the different types of scopes and the pros and cons to each one before purchasing one. Below are three of the different types of scopes, and they are the most common scopes on the market.

1. Variable Scopes – By far the most common, variable scopes are useful if magnification of the target is needed for a clean shot. With these types of scopes, the shooter can adjust the magnification of the target that they are looking at. These types of scopes come in a variety of magnification variables, and depending on what you are hunting, this could be extremely important. Sniper rifles often use variable scopes, because sniper rifles are used at a much farther distance than a normal hunting rifle.

2. Fixed Scopes – These scopes can be a little less complicated than variable scopes, but they are also only better if people know exactly the specs they need when shooting their gun. You cannot adjust the magnification on fixed scopes like you can on variables. Therefore, these scopes are only recommended in certain occasions and for certain types of firearms.

Night Vision Scopes – These are specialty scopes. They can be combined as a variable scope or a fixed scope. What makes these scopes different is the fact that they are used for shooting at night or at times of day when there is a small amount of light to naturally see the target. They are very expensive and bulky, so before choosing a night vision scope, make sure that you actually need to shoot during low light hours of the day.

How to Choose a Rifle Scope

buying a rifle scopeThe majority of rifle users want the best scope for their rifle in order to help with whatever it is they are hunting. In the past, the old metallic sights that were placed on rifles were a lot harder to aim with than the newer scopes on the market today. When using a rifle scope, one thing should come to mind: simplicity. The use of a rifle scope has made it a lot easier for the majority of people to be able to line up a kill shot on their target.

When using a rifle scope, all you have to do to get a kill on your target is line up your cross hairs or reticles on the target that you are aiming at. Learning to shoot with a rifle scope is an extremely useful skill. Not only is it easier to line up the gun to your target, but it also magnifies your target, making it easier to tell which part of the target you will actually hit. There are a large number of factors that need to go into thought when choosing the right rifle scope.

Is bigger and more expensive always better?

This can be a tricky question to answer when you are dealing with rifle scopes. The best way to answer this question is this. When you are going to look for your idle rifle scope, you should ask yourself what is it that you are going to be shooting at. In general, if you are a deer hunter, using anything over a 3-9x or 4-12x scope on your rifle would be overkill, and it could actually hinder you in the long run. Those are the average scope sizes for anyone wanting to go hunting, because they offer what is needed for the majority of rifle users.

You also need to figure in what kinds of shots you are planning on having to take. If you know that you are going to be shooting far away at your prey, then you will be using a different scope as opposed to shooting at something closer. This has a lot to deal with having the proper magnification on the scope that you choose in order to be able to perform the hunting that you wish to do.

What do the Numbers on a Scope tell me?

This is a good question to ask. Before you can properly choose a rifle scope, you need to know what the numbers on your scope actually mean. In order to help with this, I am going to reference you to a Nikon P-223 3-9×40 SF rifle scope in order to explain the importance of the numbers on a rifle scope. The numbers when choosing a scope that are important are the 3-9×40.

In this particular number, the 3 means that any image that you look at through this scope will appear three times closer to you than it would to the naked eye. The 9 means the same thing. If the scope that you choose has a 9 like this one it means that you can see your target 9 times closer through the scope than with the naked eye. The last number, in this case the 40, is the objective lens diameter in millimeters. If you see a number like this, these scopes are classified as variable scopes. Basically, you can choose if you want your target to be 3 times magnified up to 9 times magnified. In general, the larger the magnification range, the more that particular scope will cost. This is because the wider the range the more versatile that scope will be.

Why is eye relief and light transmission important when choosing a scope?

A shooter’s age can affect the dilation of their eyes. People who are older will experience smaller dilation than someone of a younger age. An exit pupil is extremely important when choosing your scope. Basically, an exit pupil can be determined by holding a scope out at arms length from you. The small circle of light that appears in the scopes eyepiece when doing this is the exit pupil. The exit pupil is extremely important when thinking about eye relief because the larger the exit pupil is the less important head positioning in relation to the scope becomes.

When talking about eye relief in regards to rifle scopes, eye relief is the distance that your eye can be away from the ocular lens of the scope and still provide a full and clear picture of your target. Currently, four inches is the largest eye relief available for any standard rifle scope. If you are using the rifle correctly, four inches in plenty of distance for your face to be out of the way of any recoil your rifle might do. You should always pay attention to the amount of eye relief and exit pupil that a scope offers before purchasing it.

What should I look for in a scope in regards to the objective lens size?

On most medium variable scopes, the standard object lens size is anywhere from 40 to 44 millimeters. There are objective lenses on the market that are larger, but in most cases these larger lenses are not necessary. As a matter of fact, the larger the objective lens on a rifle scope is, the harder it is to be able to hold your rifle properly. These larger lens also can cause your rifle to be a little less comfortable to shoot due to the fact they can make the rifle feel unbalanced, clumsier, and heavier.

Why is Field of View on a rifle scope so important?

When speaking about rifles, field of view is generally measure at every 100 yards. What this means is the field of view is the amount that you are actually able to see from right to left at a distance through your scope. When adjusting the magnification of your scope, your field of view will be adjusted. In general, if you decrease the magnification of your scope your field of view will actually increase. This is generally more important with variable scopes, because the difference in magnification can change the field of view drastically. For instance, if you are using a 3-12×42 scope, if the magnification is set to 3 then your field of view will be the full 100 yards. However, if your magnification was turned closer to 12, your field of view would actually decrease down to somewhere around 14 to 10 yards.

For more about choosing the top rifle scope, watch the below video:

Best Rifle Scope Brands

revies of rifle scopesJust like any other product, there are a lot of different brands and companies that make rifle scopes, but just like with every other product, there are a number of brands that stick out in the market. Below are a list of the top six brands that make rifle scopes, and they all got on this list for a variety of reasons. Some have created special features that make their scopes better in certain aspects, and some brands have an all around aspect to their products that put them on top.

Leupold

A family owned company since its founding in 1907, Leupold & Stevens is without one of the highest quality optic manufacturers in the world. It’s scopes are used by the United States Marine Corps and Navy SEALs, which definitely is a major vote of confidence in their design and manufacturing. They make everything from simple hunting scopes to the incredibly powerful and adjustable tactical designs used by the military.

Redfield

Redfield was purchased by Leupold & Stevens, Inc. back in April of 2008, but they did not acquire any of Redfield’s capability of repairing their products that were made prior to them buying the company. However, Redfield is still currently one of the top manufacturers of rifle scopes on the market. Their motto is “No Excuses”, and they offer a full lifetime warranty to their customers on all of their non-electronic products like their rifle scopes.

Sightmark

Sightmark was founded back in 2007, and they have steadily been growing in the modern shooting market thanks to their products and rifle scopes. Currently, they are operated out of Mansfield, Texas, and there motto is “Make Your Mark”. They offer a variety of different products that are ranked top of the market, and they are known for making Triple Duty, Ezekiel, and Pinnacle rifle scopes that excel in performance.

Burris

Burris considers themselves specialists when it comes to making rifle scopes. They vow that they only employ the most passionate and knowledgeable engineers to manufacture their products. Burris products are not only used by the occasional hunter or sports shooter, but some of their rifle scopes are used by professionals throughout the entire world. Burris is best known for their scopes having lenses with larger diameters than most of their competitors.

Bushnell

Bushnell is one of the older popular rifle scope manufacturers with their products still on the market. They have been in business for over 65 years, and they pride themselves on providing only the best quality to their customers. The majority of their products are some of the more reliable and affordable hunting products, like rifle scopes on the market to date.

Barska

Barska is currently operated out of Pomona, California, which is on the southern end of California. Their priority products all deal with sport optics, and they are considered to be one of the top brands that puts out rifle scopes on the market today. They actually have a global customer base. They have over 40 countries that they distribute their products too outside of the United States. They even offer products that can be individualized for their corporate customers if needed.

Nikon

Nikon is one of the more well known Sports Optics companies in the world. They have a variety of different products that they create, and they are well known in the hunting industry for both their cutting edge hunting optic rifle scopes. Some of their company strengths include their commitment to innovation, quality, and the performance of their products.

Bushnell Engage Riflescopes Review

On the hunt for a new riflescope? As a hunter or range shooter, you know how important a quality, easy-to-use scope is to your experience. With so many to choose from, finding the right one can be a difficult choice.

Selection can be even more complicated if you factor in price and quality. Who wants to deal with a cheap, underperforming scope? And who wants to spend half their paycheck on one?

If you’ve been struggling to find the right riflescope, here’s your answer. The Bushnell Engage Riflescopes are high-quality and affordable. They also boast a number of exciting features that will make your next hunt or day on the range a great one.

Construction & Options

The Engage riflescopes were designed to go to work with you. Everything, from the turrets to the lens, is waterproof and built to last. The scope is heavy enough to be stable, but no so heavy it’s not useable for long-range work.

They come in nine configurations, so whether you’re varmiting, game-hunting, or are out on the range, you can find the right model for you.

  • 2-7x 36mm
  • 3-9x 40mm
  • 3-9x 50mm
  • 4-12x 40mm
  • 6-18x 50mm
  • 5-10x 44mm
  • 3-12x 42mm
  • 4-16x 44mm
  • 6-24x 50mm

Find the 30 mm tubes here and the 1″ tubes here.

Optics

The Engage riflescope feature multicoated glass with Bushnell’s new EXO Barrier protective coating, which actively repels water, debris, oil, and fog. Even fingerprints–really! Everything just slides right off. The EXO really helps keep your scope clean and your vision sharp even, with rugged use.

No need to concern yourself about image quality. On each model, you’ll find multiple layers of anti-reflective coating and 90% light transmission. You’ll get great color, amazing resolution, and fantastic details, even well into dusk and even at night. If there’s a light source—even the moon—you’ll get a great picture through this scope.

These riflescopes are also O-ring sealed and nitrogen-purging for full protection against water and fog. You can count on an ultra-clear view, rain or shine.  The scope’s blackout interior keeps out any extra reflection. Plus, the adjustments feel clean and work well.

Keep in mind, the diopter doesn’t lock. So, if you may need to make a little mark on your setting in case it gets bumped.

Scope also includes an already-installed Butler Creek pop-open scope cover.

Reticle

Engage riflescopes include Bushnell’s new Deploy MOA reticle. This gives shooters 1-MOA windage and elevation hashmarks and can reach both short and mid-range targets.

Vertical and horizontal crosswires are marked at 1 MOA intervals, and bigger, thicker marks delineate each 5 MOA intervals.

The Bushnell Engage Riflescope offers a huge range of reticle correction. There are 20 MOA of reticle correction possible to the left and right. Above center to low hold, you’ll get 5 MOA of correction, and 30 MOA of correction below center to hold high.

Although the reticle is easy to read and use, the markings may be a little thin. If you’re running out of light, or are have a complicated background, you may lose reticle visibility.

Further, because the reticle is found in the second focal plane, you need to spend the time adjusting the magnification if you’re shooting at long range. The riflescope must be set at its highest magnification to apply the reticle marks correctly.

Bushnell obviously took their time on design. The MOA reticle can be used by hunters and target shooters across multiple calibers. If you’re looking for a scope that provides flexibility—this is the one.

Turrets

The turrets on these Bushnell Engage riflescopes are great. They are marked with very readable numbers with .25 MOA marks between each number. One rotation of the turret gives you 15 MOA of correction. Rotate the turrets as many times as you want, but you’ll eventually get passed the 50 MOA of built-in adjustment.

They also lock; to make an adjustment, pull up and twist. Then, press back down to keep in lock.

Once your scope is sighted, you can set the windage and elevation to zero without using a tool. Just unscrew the top disk. It’s a pretty cool feature! You can do the same to other turrets to return everything back to the original zero.

The side parallax adjustment is also easy to use. Depending on the scope you get, it will adjust all the way down to 10 yards and up to infinity, with graduations at 20, 30, 50, 100, 200, 300, & 500.  The short-range parallax adjustments are really nice if you are mounted on a .22, or are hunting in close range.

Value

The Bushnell Engage riflescopes are truly an incredible value. High-quality glass, sturdy construction, and clean design make these riflescopes on par with some of the most expensive on the market.

With their Engage line, Bushnell has proven you don’t need to spend half your paycheck on a ha great scope. It’s also important to remember the Bushnell Engage products come with an Ironclad lifetime warranty—for the scopes, it’s 30 years.

The Bushnell Engage line of products includes binoculars. Read more about them here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ozark Armament Rhino Rifle Scope Review

We enjoy talking about Ozark Armament’s products because they rarely come out with a lackluster product. Though on the cheaper side, their products are lauded around the web for being of great quality. Their Rhino 4x magnified scope is one of four different rifle sights they have and the first to have magnification.

Consider this scope if you’re looking for a shakeup from red dot or reflex sights. Its price is only a little higher than the most expensive red dot or reflex sights, so it’s definitely affordable if you trying to stay cheap.

 

Rhino 4x Magnified Optic

Purpose

To give hunters mid-long range sighting capabilities at a fraction of the price of the most popular riflescope manufacturers. Despite its all-metal construction, it weighs in at around a pound.

The top dial changes the illumination of all three reticle colors. Those who are upgrading from red dot or reflex sights may be used to having this dial on the side, so it may take a little adjusting.

  • The Picatinny mount comes with the scope, so you can try it on shotguns and rifles alike.

 

Stats

Magnification: 4X
Objective Lens: 32 mm
Exit Pupil: 8 mm
Field of View: 7.0 degrees
Field of View @ 100 yards: 36.8 ft
Eye Relief: 3.5″

 

Overall

Is the Rhino the best rifle scope on the market? Probably not, but its almost unbeatable as a beginner’s or budget scope. The tri-color illumination is perfect for those who prefer the choice and 4x magnification is powerful enough for ample viewing at 600 yards.

FOV at 100 yards is about 37 feet, which doesn’t seem like much at first, but it really depends on the target and terrain. If you’re tracking a moving animal, 37 feet is a modest range

Perhaps the most notable fact about the Rhino is its simplicity. It doesn’t try to be a higher-end scope with bells and whistles dominating the exterior. Its cheap, accurate, and clear, which is probably all you need in a good beginner’s scope.

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Vortex Viper PA 30mm Tube Riflescope Review

vortex viper pa 30mm tubeThe Vortex Viper PA 30mm Tube Riflescope is one of the best scopes for its price. Many users have stated that this scope is so good that you would expect to pay more for the purchase of it and that they are amazed at the affordability of the scope.

The Viper PA is what we would consider a premium scope, so there’s little doubt that this is one of the best on the market (especially when you factor in the price). It’s premium thanks to the high-quality ED glass, the superior build and durability, and fast, accurate focus. It is a 6.25-20×50 rifle scope that is perfect for use in tactical, predator or varmint, long range, and target practice.

Here are the key specs of the Viper PA:

  • Eye Relief: 3.1 inches
  • Field of View: 17.4-6.2 feet/100 yards
  • Turret Style: Tall Capped
  • Max Elevation Adjustment: 65 MOA
  • Adjustment Graduation 1/4 MOA
  • Travel per Rotation 12 MOA
  • Parallax Setting 50 yards to Infinity
  • Length 14.4 inches
  • Weight 21.6 ounces

We took an in-depth look at this riflescope so you can see a breakdown of the best features.

Features

Glass

It’s the glass in any optics that sets it apart from the competition —  and we believe it’s the most important thing of all. The glass on the Vortex Viper is professional extra-low dispersion (ED) glass and is comparable to the glass you’ll find on $1000 scopes. It features multi-coated optics with light transmission. A fast focus eyepiece completes the optical package.

There is no need to worry about re-coil, moisture, or darkness with the Vortex Viper PA 30mm Tube Riflescope. XR anti-reflective coatings ensure target clarity every single time. ArmorTek coating on the exterior glass helps protect it from damage and helps resist oil or dirt buildup.

Durability & Build

When choosing a scope, durability is an absolute necessity. The Vortex is one of the most durable out there, made of aircraft grade aluminum in a continuous tube. The scope is waterproof, making it an ideal scope for outdoor hunting. The turrets are tall and provide an easy adjustment, with smooth adjusting and audible clicks.

This scope will help you measure the windage, the range, and the bullet-holdover, making this a great scope to purchase. Dial in the appropriate windage and elevation and even through 500 rounds it still holds that number. Modifying the aim for wind speed, distance, and ammunition size is quick and easy, especially with the Mil Dot Reticle.

The viewing range runs around 6.2 ft from a field view of 1000 yards. This gives you a longer range of distance for site when hunting or target shooting.  The Mil dot reticle was designed for ease of use when out in the field hunting, which makes it a great addition to the scope. The precision heavy duty force springs, and the smooth as glass precision glide erector system are all features that add to the appeal and prestige of this particular optic. The MAG-View Bar is a raised section with the magnification on it, so you can simply glance at it without disrupting your positioning.

We particularly appreciate the accuracy and ability to use long distances. Again, when factoring in the cost, this is practically a steal. The consistency and clarity are marks of a solid scope for the best possible experience while shooting, and a must for effective and ethical hunts.

Verdict

It’s quick and easy to adjust and use, the warranty is outstanding, and the reviews are magnificent. So next time you’re in the market for new scope check out the great deals that are online for the Vortex Viper PA 30mm Tube Rifle Scope.


Take a look at the video review below for even more info.