Top Best Rifle Scope Reviews And Buying Guide

If you have a rifle, then surely you are looking for the best rifle scope for your money. Who wouldn’t be? It guarantees accuracy in all 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. This short guide and rifle scope review will give you the information needed to buy the best 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 in your search. Generally, people spend a lot of time on the researching the best rifle scope. I have compiled an easy guide, as well as the best products on the market, to help cut down your researching time for the best rifle scope for you.

Table of Contents

Types Of Rifle Scopes

A rifle scope is a piece of equipment that magnifies the field of vision of a target and surrounding objects. Everything appears to be larger and closer to you. It is recommended for safer, more accurate shooting in the field that deals with a long range. There are different types of rifle scopes that are used today. Here are some descriptions of the types of rifle scopes:

  • Compact Rifle Scope: If you are the type of person that wants to travel light, this one is suitable for you. It is light weight and a compact rifle scope. They are available in sizes less than 9 inches. The size doesn’t affect its efficiency. It is a great accessory for handguns and mini-rifles.
  • Sniper Rifle Scope: If you are aiming to shoot targets from long distances, this scope is right for you. It is a specialized telescope containing components that lay targeting reticule over the amplified image. It focuses 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 your shots, a pistol scope is popular for hand gun users. It is a low magnification power scope used for close range on pistols with enhancing features.

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The type of rifle scope you need depends on the type of shooting, 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. A 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 safely and accurately.
  • You are a sport shooter: It’s easier for you to target what you need. A riflescope 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: You might need a rifle scope to defend your family. Scopes broaden and enhance your field of vision. This will allow you to scare away threatening animals before they get too close.
  • You want to replace an old scope: Modern manufacturers have made today’s scopes cheaper, more reliable, and with better lens coatings. Rifle scopes are built with a targeted yardage range in mind. A short yardage scope shouldn't be bought when the gun is used primarily used for long distances.
  • And you are searching a best rifle scope for the money: Buy the best scope you can afford for your 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, a scope with high magnification that gives you a higher degree of precision would be a better option.

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Comparison Table

Review of 3 Best Rifle Scopes:

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

This scope has an Amazon rating of 4.2 stars out of 5. It has a compact design, which goes great with tactical rifles and 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. You save time from trial and error firings and adjusting the turrets is also made easier.

Overall, the scope is equipped with multiple 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 not too expensive. At its price range, it is our favorite rifle scope available. 

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If you feel that a maximum magnification of 12x is a lot to handle, 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. This guarantees bright images despite dim conditions. Theoretically, this is as high as the light transmission can go. 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 86% five 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. Check it Out!

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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 less 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 up to 600 yards. Also, since parallax is a threat, it is equipped with a feature that eliminates it.

If put against other scopes with similar specifications, this scope is a winner. It has an overall rating of 4 stars out of 5 on Amazon.

With all these specialties, it is priced at xxx 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.

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 is a lot to consider so below is a clearer guide for your convenience.

1. What will you use it for

  • A scope is important for you. If you are doing target practice, it really comes down to your preference.
  • If you are into close combat shooting then a tactical scope is right for you. Magnification is not too strong. It has a compact design, plus wide field of view with less accuracy errors. For long distance shooting, there are two categories that are usually interchanged: targeting and hunting scopes.
  • The two scopes are nearly identical but the targeting scope is designed for longer ranges. There are a lot of adjustments involved especially with parallax and MOA. It is designed to be very versatile. If this is too much, you can always settle with a 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

  • There are two kinds of rifle scopes in terms of magnification: fixed and variable. People prefer variable since it has lesser moving parts and it is simple. With a variable scope, you don’t have the ability to adjust your magnification.
  • The more complex one, the variable scope is usually written like as 5-12x42. This means that this has a magnification range between 5x to 12x and has an exit lens of 42mm.
  • Finding the right magnification to use can be difficult. A 3-9x scope is standard if you are hunting a deer. You can go as high 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. This is available in the market but comes with an expensive price. There are also scopes that have an effective transmission of only 95%. They are cheaper and are already great for its performance.
  • These specifications are hard to find, and the average light transmission capability for most scopes is around 90%.
  • It is also important for the eye to be distant from the scope as guns have recoils. Eye-relief 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

  • Parallax is not always present and can only be found with scopes that have a higher magnification power. This is 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. They are usually mentioned in rifle scope reviews to ease up the search.

5. Field of View

  • Scopes have pre-determined field of view ranges. Depending what your game is, choose the one that will best fit your needs. Antelopes and deer don’t move unless startled so it isn’t necessary to have large field of view. It’s the opposite 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, it will never break the laws of physics. For one, wind strongly affects the behavior of the bullet. Despite the effective range of your scope, wind will affect your target line. This is when turret adjustments come into action.
  • These are small knobs on the scope that click that 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. 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 available. Like all products, branding determines the price for rifle scopes. Other than the specs, the brand also increases the price of a scope.
  • Settling on a cheap brand rifle scope usually results in unsteady performance. You are also in risk with quality. 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 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 with a magnification range that is suitable for you. A 3-9x scope is standard if you are hunting deer. For prairie dogs or long range target shooting, a 6-20X or 8-25X variable scope is recommended. A 2X scope is the most common for a handgun in a magnified scope.
  • If you are owning an air rifle, a 3-9x scope is a great choice for small hunting.


By now, you might have listed the things you want and need for the best rifle scope. Also, you might 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 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.

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