Best Long Range Rifle Scope Review

Best Long Range Rifle Scope

So before we go through the list of best long range rifle scope, it is essential to understand what is a long range rifle scope?

Well the answer to this question lies with you. A long range scope can mean something for you and something else for somebody else. But still we need to set a benchmark so as which scope qualifies as a long range rifle scope and which does not. So I consider 300 yards as the starting point for a long range scope.

Any rifle scope whose distance of shooting is less than 300 yards would not be considered as a long range rifle scope. Some other features that your long range rifle scope must have are good turret adjustments, the reticle type should be BDC, magnification power should be at least 10x and last but not the least the optics should be good and should have parallax focus.

Best Long Range Rifle Scope Quick List

Product ImageProduct NameCheck Price
Vortex Optics Razor HD Gen II First Focal Plane Riflescopes
Night force Optics 5.5-22×56 NXS Riflescope
Night force Optics 5-20×56 SHV Riflescope
Vortex Optics Viper PST First Focal Plane Riflescopes
Nikon Black X1000
Leupold Mark 5HD 5-25X56
Swarovski Z3 4-12X50
Vortex Viper PST Gen II 5-25X50 FFP EBR-2C MRAD
Barska 30/30 Varmint 4-16X50 AO
Nikon Black FX1000 6-24X50SF FX-MOA
Burris Eliminator III 4-16X50

Best Long Range Rifle Scope

Here are some of the best long range rifle scopes. Each scope review is detailed with the pros and cons of the scope. Each rifle scope has its own features and specifications.

1. Vortex Optics Razor HD Gen II First Focal Plane Riflescopes

This scope is a second generation scope, with amazing optics like a maximum magnification range of 27x and an objective lens of 56mm in diameter. It offers a wide range of reticle options to choose from, there are almost 4 to 6 different types of reticles available in this scope. It is available in all versions of MOA or MIL radian which is perfect for long range hunting and shooting.

The tube of this scope is filled with argon which makes it fully fog proof. Turrets in this rifle scope are low profile and have L-Tec turret system, elevation and windage turrets are also available.

Talking about optical clarity, this rifle scope has an index matched APO lens system, plasma tech coating, fully multi coated and anti reflective glasses and lenses and extra low dispersion glass.

This rifle scope also has the first focal plane advantage which helps for long range shooting. First focal plane reticle basically helps and adjusts according to you and your target. When you either increase or decrease your magnification the reticle also increases or decreases and hence this helps you to see and aim better.

Pros

  • Very durable
  • High magnification 
  • Fully weather resistant

Cons

  • Heavy 
  • Too many controls are there to master and understand

2. Night force Optics 5.5-22×56 NXS Riflescope

Night force is one of the first rifle scopes making companies, whose scopes are accurate and precise at all magnification. Magnification factor of this scope is very wide, that is, 5.5x-22x, which provides long range accuracy. It is highly effective and accurate at all magnification ranges even at the lowest which is 5.5x. It uses a second focal plane reticle, which means that when you increase or decrease your magnification, the reticle size will not change.

Length and weight of this scope is 15.2 inches and 32 ounces respectively. Eye relief and exit pupil is about 3.9 inches and 10.2mm respectively. The elevation and windage knobs are oversized, you can make 20 MOA adjustments in one revolution.

This rifle scope has a Hi-Speed turret system which means that you will be able to get the same level of elevation but just with a fewer number of clicks. The diameter of the internal tube is about 30mm, which means that it allows for greater internal adjustment range for those long shots of about 1200m or more.

Pros

  • Wide magnification range
  • It has an integrated power ring
  • The reticle is glass etched
  • Waterproof and shockproof
  • Reticle is illuminated

Cons

  • It has second focal plane reticle
  • Heavy 
  • Rings are not included

3. Night force Optics 5-20×56 SHV Riflescope

This is a budget friendly scope which does not compromise on quality, it is one of the top value scope manufactured by Night Force. It is a SHV package scope. The lenses are fully multi coated which are aligned very close to each other to give a perfect hunting or shooting experience.

It is a second focal plane scope. It has a side focus adjustment for parallax setting, the parallax correction of this rifle scope is upto 25 yards. It is built to withstand both extreme cold and hot temperatures. If you do not know what SHV stands for, it is shooter, hunter and varmint hence this rifle scope is specifically designed for shooting, hunting and varmint.

The second focal plane reticle helps you to track and aim at predators and animals at long distances too. Want to hunt in low light conditions? This scope is for you. It has an objective lens of diameter 56mm and a MOAR center illuminated reticle which is very precise and accurate in low light conditions.

Most scopes have a blurry image at their highest magnification but not this one. Even at the magnification of 20x, the image quality is bright, crisp and clear.

Pros

  • Reticle is illuminated
  • Extremely durable
  • Parallax side focus

Cons

  • Rings are not included
  • Expensive 

4. Vortex Optics Viper PST First Focal Plane Riflescopes

The Viper by Vortex Optics has one of the most versatile features. The acronym PST in its name stands for Precision Shooting Tactical, well this means that this scope has the best quality of glass, reticle design, internal mechanical systems and construction.

It has a magnification range of 6-24x, fully weather resistant, highly durable, the reticle type is MOA or MRAD first focal plane reticle and the turrets are resettable to zero. There are three turrets in this rifle scope and all are located about the midpoint of the scope and are very easy to rotate and control.

The outer body of this scope is made from a single piece of aircraft quality aluminum, which makes it very durable. It has been sealed and hence is also waterproof and shockproof.

The diameter of the objective lens and the tube are 50mm and 30mm. This scope is made for low light hunting because it has 10 illuminated settings which can be controlled by just a single click along with an illuminated reticle. The tube is filled with argon making this scope fully fog proof.

Pros

  • Reticle is illuminated
  • Fully weatherproof (fogproof, shockproof and waterproof)
  • First focal plane reticle
  • Affordable 
  • Glass etched reticle
  • 10 illuminated settings

Cons

  • Heavy 
  • Rings are not included
  • Reticle issues

5. Nikon Black X1000

Nikon is one of the top ranking companies which produces all types of rifle scopes from long to short range shooting, this particular scope by Nikon is not behind in anything. It has a wide magnification range of about 6x to 20x which is accompanied by high quality glass.

Glasses and lenses of this scope are at par with some of the most expensive scopes out there. The reticle present in this scope can be either MOA or MIL radian, though the turrets are present only in MOA type. The main tube of this Nikon optic is made from high quality aircraft grade aluminum, which makes it very durable and completely weather resistant (waterproof and fog proof).

Talking about the glassware, Nikon uses some great quality glasses for its lenses, the glasses are very well coated with anti reflective coatings for maximum light transmission, the coating improves the contrast and color of the image of the target.

This is a second focal plane reticle scope, which means that the reticle size does not change when you increase or decrease the magnification. The reticles are glass etched which means that they will not break like cheap wire cross hair. The elevation and windage turrets have spring loaded instant zero reset for simple field corrections.

Pros

  • Affordable 
  • Fully weatherproof
  • Parallax adjustment is present on the erector for a better performance
  • Designed for military use

Cons

  • No zero stop features
  • Turrets are not enhanced

6. Leupold Mark 5HD 5-25X56

This is a first focal plane scope. It is a lightweight scope, it is almost 20 ounces lighter than most scopes of this quality and range. Though it has a huge aperture because it has a large inner tube with a diameter of about 35mm, overall it can be considered as a lightweight scope.

It has a series of reticles and the type of these is MIL reticle. If you want to choose the reticle according to your preference it can cost you more. Many reticle options are available in this scope, the main ones are illuminated and non illuminated.

The turret clicks are audible, made from aircraft grade aluminum and a fast focus eyepiece is some other features that this rifle scope is equipped with. It is equipped with a side focus parallax setting which is up to 50 yards.

This scope is equipped with the throw lever which helps you change between magnifications without any difficulty. The 1/10 MIL adjustments provide extreme accuracy and precision for those long range shots that you were always scared to take.

Pros

  • Comes with a lot of accessories like thread on sun shade, manual and rubber flip caps
  • Reticle is illuminated
  • 30 mils in just 3 revolutions
  • 100% weather resistant

Cons

  • Expensive 
  • Rings are not included

7. Swarovski Z3 4-12X50

This scope by Swarovski has a very compact and elegant design which makes it easy to handle and portable. It not only has a ballistic turret but also is equipped with a ballistic reticle. This type of turret is accompanied with two different types of ballistic reticles, one is the standard duplex style reticle and the second one is a windage compensation reticle. This amazing combination of ballistic turrets and reticles gives you an unforgettable experience.

The ballistic turret technology equipped in this rifle scope is something new and exciting. It enables you to set up four different zeros at any given magnification range.

Although this is a brand new technology, it is very easy to set and control it. Since this scope is manufactured by Swarovski, you can expect the best glass quality. The lenses and glasses are fully multi coated which means that it gives you a very good and clear picture quality. Even at full power, that is 12x, the image of your target will be crystal clear.

The objective lens of this rifle scope is of diameter 50mm and it has a light transmission of about 90%, hence there will be no blurriness or any other type of disturbance at any magnification.

Pros

  • Lightweight and compact
  • Windage reticle available
  • 90% light transmission
  • Good image quality even in low light conditions
  • Submersible

Cons

  • Reticle is not illuminated
  • Rings are not included
  • No parallax correction

8. Vortex Viper PST Gen II 5-25X50 FFP EBR-2C MRAD

When it comes to Vortex you can expect everything from quality to price, same is the deal with this particular rifle scope. For an American, Vortex is like a common name. It has a wide magnification range of about 5x to 25x, which is suitable for all types of hunting and shooting activities.

The center reticle of this scope is illuminated and also this is a first focal plane scope. This scope has all the features for a 1000 yards shooting adventure. The glasses are XD glasses and are XR coated, which means that it will have the best quality of the image of your target; it will give you a crisp, clear and distinct image of your target.

Turrets in this scope are nice, they have good quality clicks to them, and are medium sized. Since it is a little heavy, it is best suited and recommended for extremely long range hunting and shooting activities. Illuminated reticle and the anti reflective coatings on the lens make this scope perfect for low light hunting and shooting.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • High magnification
  • Glass etched and illuminated reticle

Cons

  • Heavy 
  • Zero stop adjustment

9. Barska 30/30 Varmint 4-16X50 AO

If you are looking for something which is durable and can withstand all weather conditions, then look no further because you have found your match. This scope by Barska is completely weatherproof (waterproof, shockproof and fogproof) and very durable.

This scope has many features from price to quality. It is perfect for all long range activities and is accompanied with a large objective lens which gives amazing image clarity. This scope also features large elevation and windage turrets which are very easy to rotate and use, they are finger clickable as well.

The reticle type in this scope is duplex along with fully multi coated optics. This is a great scope for shooters who want all the features of a good scope but for a little less price.

Outer body of this rifle scope has a stunning matte black finish. The elevations as well as the wind age turrets are large and easy to control and use, also they are finger adjustable and clickable. Not to forget the lifetime warranty of Barska this scope is backed and protected by.

Pros

  • Reticle is illuminated
  • It has a large objective lens
  • Affordable
  • Fully weatherproof

Cons

  • Rings are not included
  • No BDC reticle 
  • Sensitive for use with large rifle scopes 

10. Nikon Black FX1000 6-24X50SF FX-MOA

When it comes to Nikon, nothing is compromised. You will get everything in a rifle scope manufactured by Nikon from quality to performance. It is an extremely accurate rifle scope which works very well in low light conditions because of its illuminated reticle. The illumination settings have 10 different types of levels, hence you can change them according to your surrounding.

Turrets also feature a return to zero function. The o-rings are sealed with nitrogen to make this scope completely weather resistant (water proof, shockproof and fog proof). Some other amazing features of this scope are an illuminated, glass etched and first focal plane reticle.

This scope is pretty light weight, it is about 24.5 ounces. Best uses of this particular scope are bench resting and target shooting. For an added or more amount of brightness, you can change the level of illumination, since this scope has about 10 levels of illumination.

Pros

  • Illuminated reticle
  • FFP reticle
  • Extremely accurate
  • Works well in low light conditions
  • High magnification

Cons

  • Loss of reticle at maximum power
  • Random quality control issues

11. Burris Eliminator III 4-16X50

This scope by Burris is one of the most technologically advanced scope in this category. This particular type technology can be found in some of the most expensive laser rangefinders and rifle scopes out there.

The updated model of this scope has a remote control with it, this basically is a Remote Cable Switch with which you can activate the on/off button from any convenient or comfortable position. The cable of this switch is pretty flexible, it is about 12 to 24 inches long, hence you can easily stalk your target from a pretty long distance. Although this cable will cost you a little extra money, it is definitely worth it.

The range of this scope is more than 1200 yards, some even said it is an 1800 yard. This scope is made for long range hunting, and it is a little difficult to master and handle, it has a lot of controls and features.

Pros

  • Reticle is illuminated
  • Wind measurements
  • Angle compensation

Cons

  • Rings are not included
  • Expensive

HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST LONG RANGE SCOPE?

Before you choose the best long rifle scope, consider some of these points:

  • Magnification: A good long range scope should have a magnification of at least 10x, which means that your scope will magnify your target by 10 times hence the magnification range of your rifle scope can be anywhere between 5x to 15x.

    Therefore the variable magnification of your rifle scope is, it will increase the size of your target from anywhere between 5 times to 15 times. There are some scopes that have a magnification of more than 25, which means that it will magnify the image of your target by 25 times. These scopes are extremely accurate, it’s just you cannot hunt with them.
  • Objective lens: The diameter of the objective lens of your rifle scope should be at least 40mm. anything between 40mm and 45mm is good for maximum light transmission. But be careful that the objective lens of your rifle scope should not be too big, since it will only increase the weight of your rifle scope and hence the scope can be difficult to handle and take care of.
  • Lens coatings: they are basically chemicals and some other materials that your rifle scope lens is coated with to prevent it from damage, dust and moisture.

There are four types of coatings:

  1. A single coating of a chemical on the objective lens
  2. All optical surfaces of the lens are also coated with a single layer of chemical
  3. Multiple coatings of different types of chemicals on the objective lens
  4. All the surfaces of the objective lens have multiple coatings of different types of chemicals

A better quality coat will ensure a better clarity and hence a better aim. Good quality optics which is coated with a good quality of chemicals can ensure a better performance of the rifle scope.

Eye relief: It is basically the distance at which you can keep your eye away from the eyepiece and still enjoy the whole field of view. A person who wears glasses needs longer eye relief.

An eye relief of at least 3 inches is a must. Anything less than 3 inches can give you a black eye or damage your eyes in some other way. Hence before buying your new rifle scope check for a generous eye relief with which you are comfortable.

Weather resistant: Your scope should be fully weather resistant which means that it should be completely water proof, fog proof and shock proof. To make it fog proof, the tube of your scope should be purged with nitrogen or a combination of argon and krypton.

For water and moisture proofing, the scope’s outer body should be made up of a material which is water and moisture proof. The material should also be tough and durable, since you are going to use your scope in rough conditions.

Tube size: remember the tube size of your optic should be around 30mm. A 30mm tube will give your scope some good shape and toughness. 

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO MAKE THE SMART BUY?

The long range rifle scopes are a little difficult to handle and control. It is just that they have a lot of controls and other features. They have a lot of knobs and also some aims that you have to learn how to master. Mastering a long range scope is a lot of work sometimes.

There are wind controls, mirage, turret adjustments, scouting and many long range scopes are a bit heavy when compared to other scopes.

Remember that the reticle type should be BDC, because BDC reticles are made for long range hunting and shooting activities. Turrets should be well targeted and should have smaller knobs for better adjustment. They should have windage and elevation controls in them. Make sure your turrets are resettable to zero also.

A variable power optic is the best choice for a long range scope. The angular adjustments that are MOA and MIL also depend upon you and your environment. One MIL is 0.36 inches at 100 yards and  1 MOA is about 1.047 inches at 100 yards.

CONCLUSION

The best long range scope for you definitely has to be decided by you. The features that you need in a long range scope depend upon your environment, weather, your hunting and shooting experience and so much more.

Hence the best choice can only be made by you. Long range rifle scopes should have some particular features, hence in this article everything is explained with great detail.

Read this article multiple times for better clarity. Consider this article as your buying guide since it covers almost everything from what you should expect from a long range rifle scope and a detailed review about many good quality scopes.

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