Best Rifle Scope For The Money – 2018 Buying Guide With Reviews

Best Rifle Scope For The Money

Everyone is looking for pinpoint accuracy out of their rifle. In order to achieve that, you need to make sure that you have the best rifle scope mounted to your gun. A well-matched scope is going to ensure that your sight picture is crystal clear & your patterns are as tight as ever. The problem? There are literally hundreds of scopes to choose from! How are you supposed to pick the best rifle scope with that many options?

Don’t worry! We are constantly looking into the best products on the market. Whether it’s the best rangefinder for long range shooting or that new scope you’re looking for, we will make sure to test all these products so you don’t get tricked into a poor purchase. We’re fully aware of different marketing tactics used by different companies. As such, we weed through the nonsense & make sure we take a look at the features that truly matter to you!

 

Looking At What Matters

 

The best rifle scope needs to be a quality made piece of equipment. Depending on the make & model of the rifle, these guns have the ability to kick like a mule. They will also experience real-life hunting situations where the scope is getting knocked around by brush & debris. With that in mind, they have to be a rock-solid platform.

In addition, you want enough variability in magnification on your riflescope to be able to play into the hunting situation. Having the ability to use a lower power to find a running deer or elk is critical. The best rifle scope for long range shooting will still have the ability to zoom in too.

Many hunters actually use their rifle scope as their binoculars to get a look at the wild game they’re hunting. Your hunter’s safety teacher would cringe at that, but we’re fully aware that this is an ability you want out of your scope. While we definitely think there is serious value in a good set of binoculars, but you don’t necessarily want to be fumbling around when that big buck is walking by.

To take things a bit further, different shooters have different preferences regarding different types of reticles. Many hunters prefer the simple, more traditional crosshairs while others like to change it up a bit. We’ll try to include various options in our list.

Below you will find our comprehensive comparison grid of each rifle scope. You’ll also find a detailed buyer’s guide that will help you identify key points to consider while buying scopes.

 

COMPREHENSIVE COMPARISON GRID:

BrandProductMagnifyObjective LensWeightRatingBudget
Banner Dusk & Dawn3x - 9x
40mm13 oz.$
Bugbuster3x - 9x32mm13.9 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️$
Lever-Action Rifle Scope3x - 9x40mm14.64 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️$
CVLIFE6x - 24x50mm22.2 oz.⭐️⭐️$
8 Point Scope3x - 9x50mm13.2 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️$
Diamondback4x - 12x40mm14.6 oz.$$
Prostaff3x - 9x40mm13.1 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️$$
Crossfire II 3-9x3x - 9x40mm15 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️$$
Engage4x - 12x40mm16.4 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️$$
Buckmaster3x - 9x40mm13.1 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️$$
Crossfire II 6-24x6x - 24x50mm23.6 oz.$$$
VX-23x - 9x40mm11.2 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️$$$
Trophy Xtreme X306x - 24x50mm23.7 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️$$$
P-3084x - 12x40mm17.5 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️$$$
PROSTAFF 52.5x - 10x40mm15.3 oz.⭐️⭐️⭐️$$$

Included  in the Matrix are 7 Columns:

2.Scope: Click to view more details and user reviews.
6.Rating: Our Rating of the Product
7.Price: These are approximate prices, as companies are constantly changing prices.  Generally Speaking: $ = under $100, $$ = $100 to $300, $$$ = $300 to $500, $$$$ = $500+

The rifle scopes included on this chart actually only begin to scratch the surface. So many manufacturers and models exist that there is no way that we could have listed everything.  We did our best to include the best rifle scopes to help you make the best purchase.

Feel free to use the quick jump menu below to make it easier to find the details that apply to you.

A BUYER’S GUIDE – WHAT TO LOOK FOR:

Today there are an incredible amount of marketing gimmicks out there. It can be almost impossible to decipher between a great feature & a useless one that simply has a proprietary name for that particular brand. Our comprehensive buying guide will walk you through the most critical features of a good rifle scope.

Magnification

This is the most obvious, and also one of the most important features of any good rifle scope. Rifle scopes adjust from zero magnification to 40X magnification, with some going even higher than that. However, most shooters aren’t going to have any use for a rifle scope that is at 40X. It’s important to know your shooting scenarios and base your buying decision accordingly.

We found that the best scope magnification for a rifle is 3X to 24X. Admittedly 24X magnification is likely a bit on the high side. It is nice to have that flexibility for long range shooters though.

To recap, magnification is one of the most important factors in buying a good rifle scope. Knowing your actual shooting situations are almost more important though. If you’re just looking for the best rifle scope overall, you are setting yourself up to be disappointed. Think before you pull the trigger on a scope for your rifle. Or, in other words: Ready, Aim, Fire!

What is Eye Relief On A Rifle Scope?

An often underestimated aspect of rifle scopes, eye relief is an important part of nailing tacks with your rifle. Eye relief is the distance your eye is from the rear lens of the scope to get the best possible sight picture.

Understandably this is difficult to test until you actually get your gun to your shoulder. However, it is a very important aspect of staying comfortable during your shot. You don’t want to be craning your neck in an awkward way in order to make the shot. That’s where choosing the scope with the correct eye relief comes in.

Not everyone has the same preference for eye relief, so it’s up to you to decide what you need. The best way to test this is if your rifle already has a scope on it. Bring the gun up to your shoulder (obviously unloaded) to a comfortable position & have someone measure the distance from your eye to the rear lens of the rifle.

The good news is that your scope rings are going to give you a bit of adjustability to fine tune the distance from your shooting eye to the back lens of the scope.

With this adjustability you will be able to fine-tune your rifle scope to a comfortable shooting position.

What is Field Of View On A Rifle Scope?

Field of View is another important aspect of your rifle scope. It is essentially the distance across of the viewing area that you are going to be able to see at a range of 100 yards with your scope turned all the way down.

In other words if you have a 4-12X magnification scope, the scope’s field of view will be the side-to-side distance that you can see at a range of 100 yards with the scope turned down to 4X.

This is less critical than other aspects such as magnification & eye relief, but could still be an important factor depending on your shooting situations. For example, someone just target shooting at long ranges might want a tighter field of view since their target is going to be relatively easy to find. However someone in a hunting situation trying to get their scope on a running deer would want a larger field of view in order to be able to find it better.

This is another example of personal preference & understanding what you’re looking for in the best rifle scope.

What is the Objective Lens Diameter on A Rifle Scope?

The objective lens diameter of a rifle scope is essentially the diameter of the light-gathering lens, typically expressed in millimeters (mm). While this may not seem all that important, you’d be surprised how critical this is in low-light shooting situations.

Essentially the larger the objective lens diameter is on a rifle scope the better it is going to be in low light shooting situations. It is going to let more light into the scope and will result in a better resolution in your rifle scope.

Again, knowing exactly what you are looking for is critical here. Most hunters prefer a slightly larger objective lens diameter, but don’t need something massive. Typically the legal shooting hours during gun deer season are going to dictate when your hunt is over, not your rifle scope.

What is your rifle scope made out of?

This goes without saying, but the construction of your rifle scope is vital to its lifespan. Typically the best rifle scopes are going to be made out of aircraft grade aluminum. This is ideal because they are relatively lightweight, and don’t rust or corrode over the years.

With that being said, you still need to take good care of your rifle scope. Make sure it is dry & clean when you put it into storage, and check on it every once in a while to make sure no extra moisture got into your gun cabinet. Always inspect your rifle scope before taking it out shooting or hunting. The last thing you want to happen is to get all the way out there and realize there is something wrong with your scope!

Lens Coatings

This is something that is going to be somewhat difficult to compare, as each company has their own proprietary names for their coatings. There is one thing that is for certain though. Lens coatings on your scope are critical to the quality of your sight picture.

Without lens coatings, each lens inside your scope is going to lose 4 to 6 percent of the light that passes through it. At first glance, that doesn’t seem all that bad. But take into consideration that modern rifle scopes can have as much as 16 lenses inside of them, and that adds up quickly.

In other words, without lens coatings you’re going to be looking at up to a 50% loss in light coming into the scope.

We won’t get into each particular lens coating in this article (we’ll save that for another one), but just know that lens coatings truly are worth paying for.

Best Rifle Scope Under 100 Dollars

If we’re being honest here, you’re going to have a really hard time finding a quality rifle scope for under $100.

However we do know that everyone is on their own budget, and yours may dictate that you get the best under $100. We did our best to track down the top candidates, but you will definitely want to see if you can find a few extra bucks to upgrade to something a bit nicer.

BUSHNELL BANNER DUSK & DAWN RIFLE SCOPE 3-9X 40mm

Bushnell Banner

First on our list of the best rifle scopes under $100 is the Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn 3-9X 40mm scope. Bushnell is one of the premier manufacturers of optics in the outdoor industry, and rightfully so. Our Bushnell Banner scope review of the Dusk & Dawn 3-9x 40mm scope showed that this product was no different. 
Coming in at a price point of under $100, this is quite possibly the best rifle scope under $100. Featuring the quality you’d expect from Bushnell without a ton of bells and whistles, this scope can definitely get the job done.

The reticle on this scope isn’t anything fancy but accomplishes what you’re looking for. There aren’t any batteries or anything like that needed with this Bushnell scope, and that’s just how we’d like it.

Our Bushnell Banner scope review revealed that this scope is the best rifle scope under $100. We’re happy to give this our “Editor’s Choice” badge for the “Best Rifle Scope Under 100 Dollars” category!

DetailSpec
Weight13 oz.
Length12"/305mm
Click Value@100 yards (in)1/4"
Field of Vision (ft)40' - 14'
Magnification3x - 9x
Objective Lens40mm

UTG BUGBUSTER RIFLE SCOPE

UTG Bugbuster

Second on our list of the best scope under 100 dollars is the UTG BugBuster scope. UTG is well known in the shooting industry for manufacturing some pretty good budget-friendly rifle scopes. Our UTG scope review of the BugBuster showed that this product was no different.

Coming in at a price point of under $100 but including features that you would expect for well over that, the BugBuster does a pretty good job trying to squeeze as much value into this lower price point.
The reticle on this scope can illuminate to either green or red, or it can stay unlit. This is a nice feature for low light environments, although you may want to be careful that you don’t mess up your night vision with the sudden burst of light.

Worth noting is that since the scope reticle can illuminate, the UTG Bugbuster does require batteries. You’ll need to make sure you have some CR1620 3V batteries on hand & an extra few in your pack to make sure you are always good to go.

Our UTG scope review revealed that this Bugbuster scope is a pretty nice piece of equipment. If you’re looking for a lighted reticle in a scope under $100, this isn’t a bad choice at all!

DetailSpec
Weight13.9 oz.
Length (in/mm)8.1"/206 mm
Click Value@100 yards (in)1/4"
Field of Vision (ft)37.7' - 14'
Magnification3x - 9x
Objective Lens32mm

CABELAS LEVER ACTION RIFLE SCOPE

Lever Action Rifle Scope

When many people are looking for the best rifle scopes they are looking for name-brand recognition. That may or may not be the way to go depending on how you look at it, but Cabelas certainly fits that bill. While they did just sell to Bass Pro Shops for a staggering amount of money, the quality of their products remains unchanged.

The Cabela’s lever-action rifle scope is a pretty solid product, and falls just
barely under the $100 mark as we’re writing this article. It features a 3-9X magnification, which is pretty good for a well-built rifle scope under $100.

The reticle is the standard crosshairs that you see on most rifle scopes, with extra markings at 200 & 300 yards. This allows you to accurately compensate for drop.

The thing about Cabela’s products is that they are typically just private labeling another brand’s products. That doesn’t make this a bad scope by any means, but we still feel that the best rifle scope under $100 is the Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn model. You even save about $30 by going with that model, and who doesn’t like saving money!?

DetailSpec
Weight14.64 oz.
Length12.9"
Click Value@100 yards (in)1/4"
Field of Vision (ft)30.55' - 9.6'
Magnification3x - 9x
Objective Lens40mm

CVLIFE HUNTING RIFLE SCOPE
CVLIFE Scope

If you’re just looking for a dirt cheap rifle scope to get you through this year, CVLIFE’s hunting rifle scope has your back. By no means is the best rifle scope on the market, but it’s such a cheap rifle scope that you may not care.

Featuring a 6-24X magnification range, you may be mistaken to think that this scope actually gets you a better look at the target than Bushnell or Simmons. Not so fast…

Remember what we were saying about rifle scopes under $100 & how we don’t like to have electronics in them? Well, this CVLIFE product is a rifle scope under $50. Chances are quite slim that the illuminated green & red reticles will hold up through bad weather & a tough life.

We included our CVLIFE scope reviews because we know people are going to be tempted by such a low price point. If you’re looking for the best rifle scope under $50 this might be it, but it’s definitely not the best rifle scope under $100.

DetailSpec
Weight22.2 oz.
Length15.7
Click Value@100 yards (in)1/8"
Field of Vision (ft)28'
Magnification6x - 24x
Objective Lens50mm

SIMMONS 8 POINT 3-9X 50 mm RIFLE SCOPE
Simmons Scope

Fourth on the list of the best rifle scope under $100 is the Simmons 8 Point 3-9X 50mm scope. Like Bushnell, Simmons is one of the leaders in the rifle scope industry, along with other products like binoculars & rangefinders to name a few. Our Simmons 8 point review of the 3-9x 50mm scope showed that Simmons is continuing to solidify their name as a great manufacturer of optics.

Featuring a price point well under $100, this is right up there with Bushnell’s Banner for the best rifle scope under $100. Featuring the quality you’d expect from Bushnell without a ton of bells and whistles, this scope can definitely get the job done.

Like Bushnell’s Banner scope, there aren’t any batteries required with the Simmons 8 Point scope. We prefer it this way, because the chances that the electronics are well-built in the rifle scopes under $100 aren’t very high. In our opinion you’d want to stay away from electronics until you reach the $300 price point.

DetailSpec
Weight13.2 oz.
LengthN/A
Click Value@100 yards (in)1/4"
Field of Vision (ft)31.4' - 10.5'
Magnification3x - 9x
Objective Lens50mm

Best Scope Under 200 Dollars

Vortex Optics Diamondback Scope

Diamondback Scope

If you’re looking for the best scope for the money, this is it right here. Vortex Optics is quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with in the rifle scope industry, and the Diamondback scope proves it.

Made from a one piece aircraft grade aluminum design, you know the Vortex Optics Diamondback scope is well made from the moment you pick it up.

This scope feels virtually indestructible, and is clearly made to withstand magnum recoil.
The Diamondback rifle scope is also waterproof & fog proof due to the argon purging process used during manufacturing. The reticle is on the second focal plane (read more about that here), which is the preferred style for rifle scopes.

The lenses are all fully multi-coated, allowing you the best possible resolution in your rifle scope. The 4-12X magnification is great for hunting & long range shooting situations alike. The Precision-Glide Erector System also uses premium components in the zoom lens mechanism to ensure smooth magnification changes under the harshest conditions.

Our Vortex Optics Diamondback scope review revealed that this scope is the best rifle scope under $200. We’re happy to give this our “Editor’s Choice” badge for the “Best Rifle Scope Under 200 Dollars” category!

DetailSpec
Weight14.6 oz.
Length12"
Field of Vision@100 yards (ft)32.4' - 11.3'
Magnification4x - 12x
Objective Lens40mm
Turret
-Adjustment Graduation
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
-Max Windage Adjustment

-1/4 MOA
-15 MOA
-60 MOA
-60 MOA

Nikon Prostaff 3 Rifle Scope

Prostaff 3

Talk to anyone that gun hunts for a few weeks each deer season, and there is a darned good chance they have a Nikon Prostaff mounted on their rifle. The Nikon Prostaff is well known by hunters for being a reliable, affordable rifle scope that will stand the test of time.

Our Nikon Prostaff reviews revealed that this scope has a 3-9X magnification, which is about what you’d expect from a rifle scope in this price range.

The 40mm objective lens lets in plenty of light, and the multi-coated optics ensure optimal light transmission through the scope for the best possible resolution.

The zoom lens mechanism is nice and smooth, although we did note that it gets somewhat difficult to operate in cold weather conditions compared to Vortex Optics’ Diamondback scope.

While we made sure to do our due diligence for the Nikon Prostaff scope review, the truth is I’ve had one mounted to my Winchester .270 for years for gun hunting.

I recently upgraded, but it had more to do with wanting to take a step up than it did with being unhappy with the Nikon Prostaff. If you’re a weekend warrior type hunter or simply like occasionally going to the range to shoot a bit, the Nikon Prostaff rifle scope may very well be for you!

DetailSpec
Weight13.1 oz.
Length12.4"
Field of Vision@100 yards (ft)33.8' - 11.3'
Magnification3x - 9x
Objective Lens40mm
Turret
-Adjustment Graduation
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
-Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/4 MOA
- N/A
- 80 MOA
- N/A

Vortex Optics Crossfire II : 3-9X 40mm

Crossfire II

If it seems like we have a little bit of a man-crush on Vortex Optics, well that’s because we do! After working with Vortex Optics for a while to review all their gear & meet their team, we can’t even begin to describe how great this company is. They produce top quality products that are manufactured almost exclusively in the USA, and they don’t take themselves too seriously. One look at their marketing videos will show that they strike a perfect balance between badass & funny, much like the guys from Black Rifle Coffee Company.

While the guys & gals from Vortex Optics are pretty funny, the Crossfire II demands to be taken seriously. A small step below the Diamondback scope, the Crossfire II is a solid scope without many bells & whistles.

The Vortex Optics scope reviews of the Crossfire II showed that this rifle scope has that same 3-9X magnification range that we’ve come to love so much. The reticle is a Second Focal Plane reticle, meaning it remains ideally sized as you zoom in and out.

While we prefer the Diamondback over the Crossfire II due to its Precision-Glide Erector System, the Crossfire II does zoom in and out relatively easily.

If you’re looking for one of the best scopes under 200 dollars, the Crossfire II is a great option!

DetailSpec
Weight15 oz.
Length12"
Field of Vision@100 yards (ft)34.1' - 12.6'
Magnification3x - 9x
Objective Lens40mm
Turret
-Adjustment Graduation
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/4 MOA
- 15 MOA
- 60 MOA
- 60 MOA

Bushnell Engage Rifle Scope : 4-12x 40mm

Bushnell Engage

It shouldn’t come as any surprise that Bushnell keeps popping up on this list, and you should expect to see more rifle scopes from them as well. This Bushnell Engage rifle scope is certainly up there with the best scopes under $200. With a sturdy construction & such a strong track record, we simply had to include it on the list!

After giving the Engage a try it was readily apparent how easy it was to zero in on our Winchester .270. The resolution on this scope is also great, as would be expected from Bushnell.
This scope is slightly different than the others on our list of the best rifle scope under 200 dollars so far. The magnification range is actually 4-12x with a 40mm objective lens. This is a little higher powered scope than what we’ve done reviews on so far. Depending on your shooting situation this could be a good or bad thing. The low end is very close to the other scopes, so you don’t lose much regarding the field of view at 100 yards.

All things considered there really isn’t much to say about this rifle scope, which in our eyes is a good thing.

It’s a solid, middle of the road rifle scope for under $200 & it definitely gets the job done.

DetailSpec
Weight16.4 oz.
Length12.8"
Field of Vision@100 yards (ft)29' - 10 in
Magnification4x - 12x
Objective Lens40mm
Turret
-Elevation Adjustment
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
-Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/8 MOA
- N/A
- 50 MOA
- 50 MOA

Nikon Buckmaster 4-12X 40mm

Buck Master

Rounding out our competition for the best scope under 200 dollars is the Nikon Buckmaster 4-12X 40mm rifle scope. Like the other scopes on this list, this rifle scope is very popular with the “weekend warrior” type hunters. They want a quality product that is nice and reliable, but they don’t want to have to take out a second mortgage.

This is one of the lower priced scopes in this price range, although you don’t feel like you’re sacrificing too much by saving some money. The scope features the same 4-12X magnification as the Bushnell Engage, and has the same 40mm objective lens.

The lenses on the Nikon Buckmaster are all fully multi-coated, and you get up to 98{209bd58f90af0ceb66889e2480632d3a9918d39fd8a1f6558651adb42d8fa97c} light transmission through the scope. Resolution seems to be pretty good, although it isn’t as good as we had hoped in low light situations.

All things considered this is still a nice scope, but we’d probably opt for a few less mornings at Starbucks in order to save up for the Vortex Optics Diamondback.

DetailSpec
Weight13.1 oz.
Length12.3"
Field of Vision@100 Yards (ft)33.8' - 11.3'
Magnification3x - 9x
Objective Lens40mm
Turret
- Elevation Adjustment
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
-Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/4 MOA
- N/A
- 80 MOA
- N/A

Best Scope Under 300 Dollars – Our Top 5

As we step up the price a bit, we again see a drastic increase in quality for our options of rifle scopes.

We’ve been on the lookout for the best scope under 300 dollars, and we’re pretty confident we found it! Keep reading to see what our pick for “Editor’s Choice” is, along with four more quality options!

Vortex Optics Crossfire II 6-24x50mm

Crossfire II

Another category, another Vortex Optics scope review! Here we’ve got another Vortex Optics Crossfire II, but this scope steps it up a notch. The 6-24x magnification on this scope combined with the 50mm objective lens separate it from the previous Crossfire scope we reviewed.

There are also a few other pretty exciting features about this particular Vortex Optics Crossfire II scope. This scope is the first on our list with high quality turrets that are critical if you are wanting to do any long range shooting. You can reference the spec table below, but there is a pretty significant amount of adjustment that you can achieve for being a relatively low cost scope.

The combination of increased magnification, introduction of the turrets for windage & distance compensation, & top notch Vortex Optics quality make this scope our “Editor’s Choice” for best scope under 300 dollars!

DetailSpec
Weight23.6 oz.
Length14.5"
Field of Vision@100 yards (ft)17.3' - 4.4'
Magnification6x - 24x
Objective Lens50mm
Turret
- Elevation Adjustment
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
-Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/4 MOA
- 15 MOA
- 40 MOA
- 40 MOA

Leupold VX-2 3-9X 40mm
VX-2

We’ve had our sights on the Leupold VX-2 scope since we started this article, and we’ve finally gotten to the price range where we can include it! Our Leupold VX-2 review showed that this rifle scope is a feat of engineering. Each scope is 100% waterproof & fog proof, ready for a lifetime of abuse out in the field.

Leupold is incredibly well known as one of the premier manufacturers of quality rifle scopes in the world, and they’ve shown that they have the ability to make the best scope under 300 dollars.

This scope is capable of 1/4 MOA precision, which is far better than most rifles are capable of. Leupold also uses their DiamondCoat lens coating system on all exterior surfaces, which allows for incredible light transmission & resolution through the scope.

If you are looking for the best scope under 300 dollars, this could certainly be your winner. The 3-9x magnification might not seem like much, but when you’ve got such high resolution in a scope like this you’d be surprised how “far away” you can be & still put your shot on target.

DetailSpec
Weight11.2 oz.
Length12.6"
Field of Vision@100 yards (ft)34.6' - 14.6'
Magnification3x - 9x
Objective Lens40mm
Turret
-Elevation Adjustment
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
-Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/4 MOA
- N/A
- 52 MOA
- 52 MOA

Bushnell Trophy Xtreme X30 6-24x 50mm
Trophy Xtreme

By now you’re likely noticing a common thread, and that’s that the same companies seem to keep popping up over & over again. We haven’t quite gotten to the ultra-pricey scopes yet, so expect to see some more reviews on Bushnell, Nikon, Leupold, & Vortex Optics. If you’re looking for the best scope under 300 dollars, these are likely going to be one of your choices.

Here we have Bushnell popping up again with their Trophy Xtreme X30 6-24x 50mm rifle scope. Our second scope with turret adjustments, the Bushnell Trophy Xtreme X30 gives you up to 50 MOA of both elevation & windage adjustments in 1/8 MOA increments. For a scope under $300, that’s quite a bit of adjustment!

The thing holding this rifle scope back a bit is the fact that while it does have the finger-adjustable turret adjustments, it doesn’t have a zero stop. In fast paced or limited movement situations that zero stop really comes in handy, and we were a bit disappointed that this scope didn’t have it.

All in all this is a great scope, but there was too many moving parts & not enough safeguards to keep from second-guessing yourself during your shot. We need to feel 100% confident in the shot we’re taking, and we don’t want to be second guessing whether we’re adjusted correctly when it’s crunch time.

DetailSpec
Weight23.7 oz.
Length14.3"
Field of Vision@100 Yards (ft)18.5' - 4.1'
Magnification6x - 24x
Objective Lens50mm
Turret
-Elevation Adjustment
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
-Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/8 MOA
- N/A
- 50 MOA
- 50 MOA

Nikon P-308 4-12x 40mm

P-308

Here we’ve got the P-308 4-12x 40mm scope by Nikon. This is a really nice scope, especially for those that are big fans of Nikon products. There is excellent clarity with the P-308, and the BDC 800 reticle that it uses is a nice, all around reticle for both hunting & long range shooting.

This is the third scope on our list with adjustable turrets, and we were pleasantly surprised when we noticed there was a zero stop to be able to use.

The adjustment is a bit larger than the Bushnell scope listed above at 1/4 MOA, but it gets the job done for most shooters in this price range. There is some serious adjustment available with this scope, as it offers 60 MOA for both elevation & windage adjustments.

While the turrets are a great feature in this scope, the one major knock on it seems to be for the same reason. For a scope under $300 we were expecting the highest quality, but it looks like people have actually been having issues with the caps & screws falling off. While we didn’t have this issue & it could be user error for the people having issues, we didn’t feel right ranking it as the best scope under $300.

DetailSpec
Weight17.5 oz.
Length13.5"
Field of Vision@100 Yards (ft)23.6' - 7.9'
Magnification4x - 12x
Objective Lens40mm
Turret
-Elevation Adjustment
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
-Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/4 MOA
- N/A
- 60 MOA
- 60 MOA

Nikon PROSTAFF 5 : 2.5-10X 40mm

Prostaff 5

Last but certainly not least on our list of the best rifle scopes under $300 is the Nikon ProStaff 5 2.5-10x 40mm. This is simply a very high quality, relatively basic scope that is going to get the job done when it’s called upon.

The ProStaff 5 features super easy adjustability with their spring-loaded instant reset turrets. Fully multi-coated optics round out this scope nicely, and for a price under $300 I’m really not sure you could go wrong here. We loved our time with the Nikon ProStaff, though we would likely opt for the Vortex Optics Crossfire listed above or even the Leupold VX-2.

All things considered you really can’t go wrong with this scope. Just because we feel there is more value higher up on our list doesn’t mean that it isn’t a high quality rifle scope. You’ll be happy with it for sure, just don’t borrow your buddies rifle with one of the scopes above. You’ll wish you took our advice & got one of those instead.

DetailSpec
Weight15.3 oz.
Length12.6"
Field of Vision@100 Yards (ft)40.4' - 9.9'
Magnification2.5x - 10x
Objective Lens40mm
Turret
-Elevation Adjustment
-Travel Per Rotation
-Max Elevation Adjustment
- Max Windage Adjustment

- 1/4 MOA
- N/A
- 70 MOA
- 70 MOA

Always Free Standard Shipping When You Spend Over $50 Dismiss