Best Rifle Scopes: Staff Picks

The Staff Rounds up their picks for Best Rifle Scopes

Best Rifle Scopes: Staff Picks
Photo courtesy of Nightforce Optics

Once you have a new rifle, one of the first things people start searching for is an optic for the gun. Rifle scopes are a diverse and wide spectrum field. With glass designed for super long range the choices are almost endless. There is also an equally wide spectrum of prices. With some optics hitting the $3000 mark it is important to know what you are getting before you hand over your credit card. Good optics do not have to break the bank, however. To help you swim though this ocean of optics, I will offer my thoughts on what some of the best rifle scopes available are!

The Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50mm FFP

This is a top-tier scope at an affordable price. With high magnification levels and large, fully multi-coated lenses, these scopes from Vortex are perfect for competition shooting and long-range precision shooting. The first focal plane reticle on the Vortex Viper PST scope allows fast, accurate holdover and ranging at all magnifications for faster follow-up shots and fewer math problems. Viper scopes are filled with Argon gas which makes them practically fog-proof in all kinds of temperatures. Acquire the Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50mm FFP Precision Riflescope for all the performance and features that tactical shooters demand. Shop Now >

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The NightForce 5.5-22×56 NXS

This high performance optic meets the demands of shooters and hunters by combining performance and innovation in a riflescope without sacrificing ruggedness, dependability, and craftsmanship. Developed for the military’s extreme long-range shooting and hard target acquisition, this rifle scope provides broad magnification and range, combined with a large field-of-view, four inches of eye relief and 100 M.O.A. elevation travel. This range of magnification and internal adjustment allow most .50 BMGs to achieve the 2,000-yard mark with accuracy. These NightForce NXS rifle scopes w/ MOAR-T Reticle are numbered among the most advanced field tactical scopes ever produced. The NightForce NXS SCope w/ MOAR Reticle is a major advancement in precision long-range shooting, with extremely fast aiming and easy viewing. (opens in a new tab)”>Shop Now >

Leupold Mark 5 5-25x56mm Riflescope

Leupold designed these riflescopes to be some of the best they offer. Each scope survives 5,000 impacts on the Punisher, Leupold’s recoil simulation machine that produces three times the force a .308 rifle emits. This optic is built to last and handle your rifle’s powerful blasts with each trigger pull. Plus, the Leupold Mark 5HD FFP riflescope is both waterproof and fog-proof to ensure precise performance even in adverse weather conditions. Through the power of the Twilight Max HD Light Management System, these optics add 30 extra minutes of shooting light while eliminating 90% more glare than competitors to provide premium edge-to-edge clarity with every glance down the tube. Easily focus the parallax with the adjustment on the side and quickly acquire the reticle with the Fast-Focus eyepiece. Scratch-resistant lenses protect the quality of your glass so that you can experience the power of possessing a top-shelf scope for years to come.

Bushnell Forge Scope

Bushnell’s Forge scopes are packed with features serious shooters demand. Forge riflescopes are weatherproof and waterproof, and equipped with the necessary tools to adjust to every shooting condition. They have exceptional clarity and some of the best resolution and contrast in all lighting conditions. Their Ultra-Wide Band coating enables optimum brightness and true color in every lighting condition. Side parallax knobs allow the shooter to correct parallax error without removing eyes from the target. The optic also has locking zero stop turrets and multiple ballistic options offer the ability to make quick adjustments as needed. They also come stock with Butler Creek Flip-Up scope covers that protect lenses from dust and debris.

Meopta Optika6

From one of the oldest optic companies in the world comes a new line designed to appeal to budget-conscious hunters and shooters who want European styling and quality in center-of-mass configurations with a variety of reticle choices. Meopta’s new Optika6 line includes low-mag 1-6×24 to versatile 3-18×50 to a big 5-30×56 built on a 34mm tube. “Hunting” configurations feature MOA-based reticles in the second focal plane, while “Shooting” models have MIL-based reticles in the first plane. Many models in the Optika6 line offer DichroTech reticle technology, Meopta’s patented coating that features a highly visible aiming point, no matter the light or background conditions.

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Trijicon AccuPower scope

These precision scopes were introduced in the second half of 2018 and feature a number of configurations, from carbine-ready 1-4×24 up to a high-mag 5-50×56. A more versatile magnification range is the 4.5-30×56, which is powerful enough for long-distance targets but can be backed down to reduce mirage and exit-pupil contraction. Most AccuPower scopes have a choice of first- or second-plane reticles, are built on 34mm tubes, and feature MOA controls. For the 4.5-30×56, I like the illuminated floating MOA crosshair in the second focal plane.

Nikon 1-6×24 Black Force 1000

Nikon’s BLACK FORCE1000 riflescope delivers extreme targeting speed, repeatable precision and superior accuracy for your AR/MSR platform. With true 1x magnification and 4x zoom designed for both-eyes-open engagement as well as aiming precision for extended ranges, this compact optic’s rugged construction and metal-capped turrets assure extreme durability and sighting confidence under the toughest conditions. The scope is very capable with a four-time zoom optical system built with Nikon’s renowned lead- and arsenic-free glass. The lenses are fully multicoated with anti-reflective compounds for consistently bright, sharp, high contrast sighting at all magnifications. The Black Force 1000is built with aircraft grade aluminum alloy 30mm main body tube and finished with Type-III hard anodizing surface finish for maximum ruggedness and long-term durability.

Zeiss Conquest HD5

Zeiss Conquest HD5 rifle scopes are made with a cutting edge, industrial design that offers a super compact low profile. Featuring state of the art reticles, precision mechanics, and advanced super-zoom, this rifle scope was crafted for today’s demanding hunters. Built to give you premium performance and maximum versatility, the Zeiss Conquest HD5 provides hunters with a superior 5x magnification, new ballistic turrets and improved Rapid-Z ballistic reticles all compacted into a sleek, 1-inch riflescope.

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