Top Best Rifle Scope Reviews And Buying Guide

Target In Your Sight

If you have a rifle then surely you are also looking for the best rifle scope for your money. Who wouldn’t be? It guarantees accuracy no matter the environmental conditions giving you an advantage over most hunters. The problem is that the search is tedious and most people don’t know what they are looking for. Though a simple guide and a few rifle scope reviews and you will be shortly getting the rifle scope that best fits your needs.

Remember that a scope is the eyes of your gun and compromising on the strengths of this tool will mean awful results. This gives you more reasons to put a lot of effort on your search and not simply consider this as an easy task. Generally, a lot of people spend a lot of time on the search but you can cut down your time since I have compiled an easy guide as well as the best products in the market.

Top 10 Best Rifle Scopes For You

The table below will give you a clearer guideline on the different rifle scope reviews and what you are likely to get in the market today. Here are top 10 best rifle scopes that most rifle owners love using and are raving about:

Model
Magnification
Price
Customers Reviews

Nikon P-223 BDC 600 with Rapid Action Turret, 4-12x40
4x to 12x
$$$
4.8 Stars
4.8/5 stars
More 58 Reviews

UTG 30mm SWAT 3-12X44 Compact IE Scope
3x to 12x
$$
4.8 Stars
4.8/5 stars
More 334 Reviews
Nikon P-223 3-9x40 Mate BDC 600
3x to 9x
$$4.6 Stars
4.8/5 stars
More 148 Reviews
Nikon P-223 3x32 Matte BDC Carbine
3x
200-600 yards
$$
4.8 Stars
4.8/5 stars
More 133 Reviews
Bushnell AR Optics FFP Illuminated BTR-1 BDC Reticle AR-223 Riflescope
1x to 4x
$$$$
4.4 Stars
4.4/5 stars
More 46 Reviews

Nikon ProStaff 3-9 x 40 Black Matte
3x to 9x
$$
4.8 Stars
4.8/5 stars
More 148 Reviews
Vortex® StrikeFire Red Dot Rifle Scope
2x
$$
4.3 Stars
4.3/5 stars
More 227 Reviews

Nikon ProStaff Rimfire 3-9 x 40 Black Matte
3x to 9x
$$
4.8 Stars
4.8/5 stars
More 101 Reviews

NIKON M-223 BDC 600 8489 3-12x42SF Scope
3x to 12x
$$$$$
4.5 Stars
4.5/5 stars
More 50 Reviews
FSI Sniper 6-24x50mm Scope W front AO adjustment
6x to 24x
$$
4.3 Stars
4.3/5 stars
More 114 Reviews

Types Of Rifle Scopes

A rifle scopes is a piece of equipment that magnifies distant the targets and surrounding objects appears to be larger or to what you want to aim. It is recommended for a safer, more accurate shooting in the field that deals on the range. There are different types of rifle scopes that are used nowadays. Here are some descriptions of the type of Rifle Scope:

  • Compact Rifle Scope: If you are the type of person that wants lesser weight to bring, this one is suitable for you. It is light weight and compact rifle scope, this one is even in sizes less than 9 inches. The size doesn’t affect its efficiency. It is great accessory for handguns and mini-rifles.
  • Sniper Rifle Scope: If you are aiming to shoot targets from long distance, this one is good for you. It is a specialized telescope containing components that lay targeting reticule over the amplified image, to focus on where you want the shot to hit while taking into account many different variables.
  • Laser Rangefinder Rifle Scope: With this type of rifle scope, there is no confusion about the distance between you and your target. This popular and innovative scope measures the distance between you and your target.
  • Pistol Scope: If you like to get precision with their shots, pistol scope is popular for hand gun users. It is a low magnification power scope used for close range of pistols with enhancing features.

The type of rifle scope you need depends on the type of shooting you’re doing, the type of gun you’re shooting, and personal preferences of features like color and reticule type. The land around you will help determine how far away you’ll be from your targets. You can even find special night vision scopes that have infrared illuminator. 

After owning a best rifle scope, you’ll need to attach it to your rifle. Note, befo­re you mount the scope, you should hold your rifle in the position you’ll be using while taking aim.

Advantages of Using a Rifle Scope

  • You are a hunter: It is every hunter’s duty to shoot rapidly. Rifle scope can help you at the range or in the field. It brings distant targets and surrounding objects up close allowing you to shoot safe and accurately.
  • You are a sport shooter: It’s easier for you to target what you needed. A riflescope is a bullet’s point of impact and makes distant targets and surrounding objects appear closer. A riflescope is recommended for safer, more accurate shooting in the field and on the range.
  • You are defending your house and family: Of course you might need this to defend your family. It can help you target the alleged person without harming the person, shooting him on the right places, and hinting any of the people around you or one of the members of your family. You just position the target and then you shoot.
  • You want to replace a new scope: Rifle scope manufacturers don’t make scopes like they used to. Modern manufacturing have made today’s scopes cheaper, more reliable, and with better lens coatings. In deciding what rifle scope you want depends on the type of range you’re aiming. There are types of rifle scopes that can help you choose the right one.
  • And you are searching a best rifle scope for the money: Buy the best scope you can afford for the gun. Rifle scopes are like most products you buy, you get what you pay for. It still depends on the type of shooting you are doing. If you are an average hunter you can find good rifle scopes for $200-$800. You can shoot the rest of your life with a scope in this range and be very happy. If you are a professional hunter, real high magnification that gives a higher degree of precision.

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3 Best Rifle Scope Recommendations

Although there are many scopes for your choices, but I recommend 3 best rifle scopes for money, quality and brand.

Price: Under $200
Quality: From 4.7-5 stars.
Brand: UTG and Nikon

1. UTG 30mm SWAT 3-12×44 Compact IE Scope
2. Nikon ProStaff 3-9×40 Black Matte
3. Nikon P-233 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600

Review of 3 Best Rifle Scopes: 

1. UTG 30mm SWAT 3-12×44 Compact IE Scope:

A mid-range scope that has a standard barrel diameter of 30mm and an objective lens of 44mm. Just the things we want for a balanced performing rifle scope. Good on the resolution and magnification without risking too much in light transmission.

An average of 1 out of 15 people in amazon are not satisfied with this product which is a very small portion with the total people who are happy with it. A lot appreciate its compact design which goes great with tactical rifles as well as with sniper rifles. It even has a sunshade which is actually very simple in concept yet highly effective.

Compared to other rifle scopes, this has an advantage over the others with its innovative color-changing reticle. Rather than estimating the distance manually, the scope changes color accordingly instead. You save time from doing trial and error firings and adjusting the turrets is also made easier.

Overall, the scope is equipped with a lot of knobs for adjustment. You have three adjustment knobs plus another different parallax corrector knob for maximum accuracy. It is a highly technological advanced scope yet only comes with a price of not more than $122. At its price range, it is already the best and you are assured with performance since it is of a decent brand.  ( This product in Amazon Best sellers )

2. Nikon ProStaff 3-9×40 Black Matte

If you feel that a maximum magnification of 12x is too much then this smaller Nikon scope can compensate for the standard needs. Its maximum magnification is decreased as well as its objective lens. This is to normalize the ratio in order to guarantee the best resolution.
Despite the decreased size on objective lens, it still has achieved a 98% light transmission through its multi-coated lens thus guarantying bright images despite dim conditions. Theoretically, this is as high as the light transmission can go meaning, you can no longer find other scopes that will exceed the brightness of its images.

With brightness like this, you no longer have to be too concerned about light conditions. Be able to hunt during sundown or early sunrise, you can also set-up your scope in dimmer hiding places. This is what makes this scope so satisfying for a lot of users especially that there are more 107 five star reviews with only 2 one star reviews.

Personally, everything is balanced in this scope despite the lack of magnification, it makes up for it with light transmission which is a more preferred feature. For the brand and its capabilities, it is priced not more than $140.99 which is already a great deal.

3. Nikon P-233 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600

Still following the standard 40mm objective lens along with a 9x max magnification, this is highly similar with the other Nikon scope in this list. The only difference is that this is designed for accurate long distance shooting without the need of a lot of turret adjustments.
Decreased turret adjustments means lesser time spent on adjustment and more time on concentrating on your target. This gives the ability of versatility through its BDC reticle which has an effective distance of up to 600 yards. Also, since parallax is a threat, it is equipped with a feature that eliminates it.

If put against with other scopes in its similar specifications, this scope is a winner if you base it on its amazon ratings. Out of 133 users, only 4 was not satisfied and we are not crossing out the chances that this people were not satisfied because of factory defected products which is simply remedied with the amazing warranty service of Nikon.
With all these specialties, it is priced not more than $146.99 which is already a great deal for such a scope. You can find other competing products but nothing can beat Nikon for its technical services plus you have the “spot on” software to even increase the efficiency of your scope. This scope suit with AR15  rifles.  

7 Steps to choose a Right Rifle Scope:

Magnification range, Parallax error, reticle type and scope resistance,…. are some of the things overlooked by people looking for the best rifle scope. There are much to consider so here is a clearer guide for your convenience.

1. What will you use it for ?

you are hunter

You are a hunter Or You are defending your family.

  • You have a huge house and you need a self-defense or you are hunting for food or sport. A scope is important for you. If you are doing target practice, it really comes down to your preference, but you probably don’t need it.
  • If you are into close combat shooting then a tactical scope is right for you. Magnification is not too strong, compact design plus wide field of view with less accuracy errors. For long distance shooting otherwise are two categories that are usually interchanged: targeting and hunting scopes.
  • The two are nearly identical but the targeting scope is more designed for longer ranges. A lot of adjustments involved especially with parallax and MOA. Designed to be very long with consequences like versatility. If this is too much, you can always settle with its younger sibling the hunting scope.
  • Generally, the best AR-15 scope is usually powered between 4x to 10x and is effective within the 100 yard range. For 200 yard targets, go for 12x and beyond hunting scopes.

2. Changing Magnification Range

Changing Magnification Range

  • There are two kinds of best rifle scope in terms of magnification: fixed and variable. People prefer variable since it has lesser moving parts and is simple though you don’t have the ability to adjust your magnification.
  • The more complex one, the variable is usually written like this: 5-12×42. This means that this has a magnification range between 5x to 12x and has an exit lens of 42mm.
  • Changing your magnification is hard especially that it is tricky which one to use. A 3-9x scope is standard  if you are hunting a deer though you can go as much as 14x in wider open plains. For smaller games like prairie dogs, you need to maximize about up to 25x to assure a good shot.

3. Light Transmission and Eye-relief

  • Theoretically, you can only achieve 98% of maximum light transmission and this is available in the market but comes with an expensive price. There are also ones that have an effective transmission of only 95%, they are cheaper and is already great for its performance.
  • These specifications though are hard to find and the average light transmission capability for most scopes is 90%, give or take. 
  • It is also important for the eye to be distant from the scope as guns have recoils. Eye-relief as it is called is the maximum distance between the eye and the scope that still gives the viewer a complete image. The stronger the magnification, the lesser the eye-relief.

4. Parallax

Actual view at 10 yards

  • Parallax is not always present and can only be found with scopes that have a higher magnification power being usually prominent when going beyond 10x.
  • The best AR-15 scope does not impose this kind of problem since it goes less than 10x. For other stronger scopes, parallax can be minimized with the help of adjustments and correctors that are usually mentioned in rifle scope reviews to ease up the search.

5. Field of View

 

swarohelp2Scopes have pre-determined field of view ranges and depending what your game is, choose the one that will best fit your needs. Antelopes and deer don’t move that unless startles so it isn’t necessary to have large field of view. It’s the opposite though if we’re talking about eagles and soaring birds.

6. Turret Adjustments and Minute of Angle (MOA)

  • No matter how high-powered your gun is going to be, it will never break the laws of physics. For one, wind strongly affects the behavior of the bullet and despite the effective range of your scope, it will definitely be off your target. This is when turret adjustments come into action.
  • These are small knobs on the scope that click and are used to adjust the center of the scope and where the bullet lands. It is necessary to have these in your scope if you plan to hunt on varying environments though it will take up some time to learn these.

7. Brand and Price

I wouldn’t be writing this guide if people can afford buying all the best rifle scopes they want. Too bad that price is a limit for everybody and we need to get the best specifications for the least amount of money. Other than the specs, the brand also increases the price of a scope.

Settling on cheap brand less scopes usually result to unsteady performance. You are also in risk with quality and sometimes, the specified features don’t coincide with what was described. The money you put into the brand is an assurance fee for guaranteed performance.

I love Nikon and Leapers UTG. And you??

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Tips For You:

  • Do not put your eye on the scope unless if your gun is a gas blow back: The recoil system used to reload the gun can make your scope hit your eye.
  • Don’t use scopes for Airsoft guns. They probably don’t need higher quality products.
  • Buy a scope that has a magnification range is suitable for you. A 3-9x scope is standard if you are hunting a deer. For prairie dogs or long range target shooting, a 6-20X or 8-25X variable scope. A 2X scope is the most common for a handgun in a magnified scope

Conclusion

By now, you might have realized and listed the things you want and need from the best rifle scope. Also, you might now have realized how hard it really is to understand everything there is to know. Chances are, you will not find the things you need but you will at least come close. You might even find the products listed here to be too much or too less for what you are really looking for. Just remember the basics and fundamentals along with the help of a few rifle scope reviews, in the end, you will find a scope that will meet your standards.

However, if you don’t like above products, you want to search other products that suit you.

Click to Read More the Best Rifle Scope Reviews and Best Scope Brands

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