Top Best Rifle Scope Reviews and Buying Guide

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A rifle scope is the one rifle accessory that all gun owners should have. It improves accuracy and allows you to to have an advantage over other hunters. There are thousands of rifle scopes for you to choose from, but I am going to recommend my favourites and help you get the best rifle scope for the least amount of money. After reading my scope reviews and tips, I guarantee you will find a perfect and good rifle scope!

The Top 10 Best Rifle Scopes Comparison Table

I have compiled a list of my favourite and most recommended scopes in an easy to read table below. They range in magnification and prices but they are currently the top 10 best rifle scopes on the market.

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Although you may want to spend the least amount of money possible, it is very important that you don’t purchase a scope based on the price. If you do, it is very likely that the quality of the scope will be compromised and it wont have the results you are looking for.

You need to determine whether you want a scope of amazing quality or if you want to spend as little as possible. The rifle scope is the eyes of your gun, and it is directly related to the success you will have while hunting. Therefore, finding the right hunting scope for you is a bit of challenge.

But you’re in luck! After reading my scope reviews and recommendations, you will definitely find the right rifle scope to buy. My site will help you find your ideal scope and cut down on the time you spend sifting through various other low quality websites.

The Advantages of Using a Rifle Scope

In no doubt, I can tell you that if you are going to be using a handheld gun or rifle, using a rifle scope will vastly improve your skills and experience.

The main gun user that definitely needs to use a rifle scope is a hunter. Hunters need to be able to accurately and rapidly shoot animals from various distances. It is very important to hit the animal on the first shot, and using a rifle scope increases your chances. The best rifle scope for a hunter to use in one that includes a rangefinder so you can automatically determine distance and not have to worry about whether your calculations are right so you don’t scare the animal away if you miss.

A rifle scope is also recommended for sport shooters. It will make your target appear larger and it will improve your aim. Most rifle scopes feature a reticule that will help you know for sure that you are going to hit your target, whether it is on the field or in the range.


Most people don’t even think about it, but I also recommend to have a rifle scope on the gun you keep in your home to protect from burglars and criminals. It will help you accurately hit the target before he can get you and help you avoid hitting any people or objects surrounding the invader.

I highly recommend that if you are currently using a scope that was made over 4 years ago to replace your scope with a new one ASAP! The technology behind rifle scopes has improved exponentially over the past 4 years, making scopes more affordable, more accurate and longer lasting. If you keep using that old scope you bought a long time ago, your shots will not be as quick and accurate as they would be if you purchased a newer one.

It is very important that you do not purchase the cheapest scope on the market. You will highly regret after you keep on missing your target shot after shot, because they have terrible accuracy. The quality of your scope is directly proportional to the amount of money you spend. You get what you pay for. Fortunately, I will help you find the best scope in your price range. Read my reviews on the best rifle scopes ranging from $150 to around $800. These scopes will last a long time and you wont be missing any targets. They are well worth the investment for any gun owner.

Factors to Consider

When you finally decide that you are going to purchase a brand new rifle scope there a couple things you need to take into account.

  1. Price Point: Come up with the amount of money you would like to spend on a new scope and create a list of expectations you would like to have. Check out some of the reviews and products I have listed and determine whether you can find a scope that you like which has all the features you want. More often though, you will need to consider raising your budget to find a scope that has all the specifications and features you would like it to have.
  2. Magnification: What do you plan on using the scope for? Are you going to be using it for hunting, sport shooting or for a hand held gun? If you plan on spending the majority of your time using the scope whilst hunting, you need to pick a scope that has a higher magnification that will provide you with the accuracy you need to hit those far way animals the first shot. If you plan on using the scope for sport shooting, I recommend getting a scope that has a magnification that is in between a hunting rifle scope and a hand gun scope. For hand guns, it is best to purchase a scope that has a minimum magnification that will still provide you with the best accuracy.
  3. Features: If you dislike having to figure out the distance between you and your target manually, it is very important that you purchase a scope that has a built in range finder. It will automatically calculate the distance to your target and display it for you to use. Furthermore, if you want a scope that is lighter, you should lean more towards buying a compact rifle scope.

Overall, the type of rifle scope you decide to purchase all depends on the type of shooting you will be doing, the type of gun you will be shooting, and your personal preferences on features such as color and reticule. If you plan on using your gun at night, you should consider looking into rifle scopes that feature night vision with infrared illumination.

Types Of Rifle Scopes

Rifle scopes allow you to zoom in on your target and improve your accuracy on shots of longer distance. If you are planning on shooting a rifle, I highly recommend that you do so with the use of a rifle scope as it improves accuracy and safety.

There are four popular types of scopes that most rifle owners use:

  1. Sniper Rifle Scope: If your goal is to shoot targets that are very far away, then a sniper rifle scope will provide you the most accurate shot. This type of scope vastly amplifies the target image and superimposes target reticule that will guide you into taking the perfect shot while various factors such as wind are at play.
  2. Pistol Scope: The Pistol scope is the most popular option if you are purchasing a scope for a handheld gun. It provides accuracy with a low magnification for taking shots with targets and smaller distances.
  3. Compact Rifle Scope: This type of scope is perfect for a gun owner who wants a scope that is lightweight, yet durable and highly accurate. It provides the efficiency of a sniper rifle scope with the enhancement and smaller size of a pistol scope. Some compact rifle scopes are even smaller than 10 inches and yet they perform very well when attached to handheld guns and smaller rifles.
  4. Laser Rangefinder Rifle Scope: There is no question that this is the scope that will provide you with the most accurate shots. It automatically detects the distance to your target, allowing you to quickly and accurately hit your target. There is no need to take any trial and error shots to try and determine the distance between you and your target.

The 3 Best Rifle Scopes under $200

There are plenty of scopes that are priced under $200, but there are only 3 that I recommend to purchase. They are the only ones in that price point that provide great accuracy as well as top of the line features.

Check out all the rifle scopes that are available for under $200!

  1. UTG 30MM SWAT3-12X44 Compact IE Scope
  2. Nikon ProStaff 3-9X40 Black Matte
  3. Nikon P-233 3-9X40 Mate BDC 600

Review of our most recommended Rifle Scopes

UTG 30mm SWAT 3-12X44 Compact IE Scope: 

This product is recommended by 14 out of 15 people who purchase it. That is a 93.33% satisfaction which is very good for one of the best rifle scopes on the market. Most of the reasons why the other 7% disliked the product was due to the fact that they misread some of the facts and stats regarding the item.

Everyone has been raving about the sleek and compact design (plus the highly loved sun shade) which is suited to tactical and sniper rifle owners.

This rifle goes above and beyond other rifle scopes because of its new and innovative features such as a feature that allows you automatically determine the distance from its shade changing reticle. Say goodbye to struggling to manually determine the distance of your target. It allows you to save time and hit your target that would have otherwise got away if you had to trial and error firings to determine how far away the target it is.

The UTG 30MM is equipped with 4 knobs; 3 for adjusting the scope and a parallax correct knob which will vastly improve your efficiency. This scope provides everything you need and is very affordable. It is the perfect scope for anyone, whether you are looking for the highest of quality or the cheapest price.

Plus, this item is currently on sale, and if you purchase within the next 24 hours you are guaranteed to get an amazing deal!


Nikon ProStaff 3-9×40 Black Matte

This scope is smaller then the UTG 30mm which has a maximum magnification of 12x. The Nikon ProStaff has a lower zoom and it also features a smaller objective lens. This helps the scope provide you with a great resolution and an accurate shot.

Although decreased size may sound like a cutback from my previous recommended scope, the Nikon lens has been coated multiple times allowing a 97% light transmission and very bright images. There is no need to worry about going out hunting when there is little light during dawn or dusk.

The Nikon ProStaff 3-9X40 Black Matte’s 98% light transmission will allow you to easily see targets in darker conditions and from dim hiding locations. This item is very well rated, and other owners agree with me that this is one of the top scopes to buy in the under $200 range. It has over 200 five star reviews with only a couple reviews that aren’t so good.


Nikon P-233 3-9×40 Mate BDC 600

Like my two previous rifle scope recommendations in the under $200 category, the Nikon P-233 is a highly effective scope that provides you with great accuracy and all the features you need.

It features 9X magnification and 40mm objective lens. This lens is perfect for gun owners who planning on shooting at targets that are very far way such as 600 yards. This scope allows you to take very quick shots because of its reduced need for adjustments.

If you compare this scope with others in its price range, it is the #1 scope hands down. It is currently priced on for only $160 with free shipping. You are saving $39.97 (20%) if you purchase this deal right now! This item has 205 five star reviews and only a couple reviews that aren’t rated that well.

Overall this scoped is rated 4.7 out of 5 from over 308 satisfied customers. Check out some of these reviews:

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How to setup a rifle scope

Steps to choose the Best Rifle Scope:

There are thousands of scopes on the market, all with various features, magnification, parallax error, reticle type and scope resistance. There are lots of factors that determine whether a scope can be consider one of the best.

Here are the questions you should consider when determining which scope you would like to purchase:

  1. What are you going to use it for?
  2. Do you want a changing magnification range?

The most preferable option between variable and fixed magnification is fixed as it is the most simple and most easy to use magnification setting. It does not have as many moving parts, so it is less likely for a problem to occur, but you can not adjust the magnification.

Variable magnification is more complex, but it allows you to adjust and chose the magnification depending on your desired setting.

A 3-9x scope is recommended for dear hunters, and for smaller animals, I recommend that you increase the magnification. There is one downside to the variable option. It is often very hard to use and it can be tricky to adjust the magnification.

  • Light Transmission and Eye Relief

    The maximum amount of light transmission that a scope can have is 98%, but this is fairly costly. If you would like to save money, find a scope that has around 94% light transmission.

    Most scopes have around 89% light transmission. 
- Eye relief is the distance between your eye and scope which provides the gun user with the full image. The larger the magnification, the smaller the eye relief.

  • Parallax

    Parallax is found in rifle scopes that have higher magnification. It can be minimized by purchasing the best AR-15 scope or with adjustments and correctors which reduce the effect which does not cause Parallax.

  • View

    If you plan on using your rifle scope for hunting, it is important to pick a scope that has a big field of view.

  • Turret Adjustments

    Make sure to read the reviews and check if the scope you plan on purchasing has turret adjustment knobs that are fairly easy to use so you can balance out the forces that will cause your bullet to move away from the target. They allow you to adjust the scope and are definitely needed if you plan on hunting.

  • Price

    It is important that you get the best bang for your buck. If you purchase a branded scope, you will end up paying way more than if you buy a scope with a brand that isn’t as recognizable.

    But, I recommend spending the money on a scoop with a good brand that has a reputation of providing accurate and quality rifle scopes.

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