Find Your Perfect Shot with These MustHave Hunting Rifle Scopes
Hunting with a rifle requires precision. Ensure success by choosing the best scope for your rifle. A hunting scope is designed with features that improve accuracy. It can be hard to pick the right one. We've made this guide to help you find the perfect shooting scope!
From fixed power scopes to long-range optics, get all the info you need to make a wise decision. Whether you're aiming at targets or animals, here are our favorite must-have hunting rifle scopes. Let's learn about these top-rated scopes now!
Types of Rifle Scopes
When picking a hunting rifle scope, lots of types exist. From basic ones with one magnification setting, to more complex ones with multiple magnification settings plus features such as illuminated reticles, adjustable turrets and parallax adjustment. Let's examine the different types of rifle scopes more closely:
- Basic rifle scopes with one magnification setting
- Complex rifle scopes with multiple magnification settings
- Rifle scopes with illuminated reticles
- Rifle scopes with adjustable turrets
- Rifle scopes with parallax adjustment
Fixed Power Scope
Fixed power rifle scopes are known as “non-variable” scopes. They feature a set magnification that doesn't change. For example, if the variation is 4x, the shooter can't adjust the view. They must manually change lenses or use an external zoom lens.
These scopes have one main advantage; they're usually much cheaper than variable scopes. Plus, they have longer eye relief distance and are less bulky. Ideal for hunting in tight spaces. The image quality is also better, since there are fewer components.
Fixed power rifle scopes are great for hunters needing precision accuracy on short-range targets, like deer stalking or small game shooting. However, their limited variability can be a disadvantage when attempting to hit targets from far away, since more variability is needed to observe finer details from greater distances.
Variable Power Scope
Variable power rifle scopes give shooters the ability to maximize their accuracy at different ranges. As their name implies, these scopes adjust power or zoom for greater magnification. This allows for accurate aiming in many situations. Different from fixed power scopes which only offer one magnification level, variable power scopes can be adjusted from minimum to maximum magnification.
Most variable-power rifle scopes come with two control knobs. The “power ring” adjusts the magnification. An “objective diameter” control knob adjusts the degree of light transmission through the scope. The adjustable zoom range of these scopes usually starts near 3x optically (at its lowest setting). It ends between 10x and 30x optically at its highest settings.
Compared to fixed zoom scopes, variable-power scopes offer more flexibility. With their combination of low and high magnifications, they're great for shooting different game at various distances. Plus, the adjustable nature of these rifle optics increases precision. You can use them for close-up or long-range target shooting on one setting without difficulty.
Night Vision Scope
Night Vision Scopes are specialized rifle scopes that help shooters spot, aim, and engage threats in low-light settings. They gather available light and increase it, creating an image for the shooter. This offers a great tactical advantage.
Night Vision Scopes come in 4 generations. Generation 1 is an entry level, offering 4-6x magnification and 40° field of view. Generation 2 increases to 5-8x magnification and up to 50° field of view. Generation 3 adds resolution and range, plus better clarity at a distance. Generation 4 offers the most sophisticated technology. It allows clearer images at greater distances, while decreasing energy consumption by 50%.
Some scopes have additional features. Manual brightness control, zoom, built-in laser sights, and mounts are all available. Knowing the scope's tech is essential for making an informed decision.
Thermal Imaging Scope
Hunters and marksmen in search of revolutionary ways to upgrade their experience in the wild can count on the thermal imaging scope! It uses heat radiation to provide real-time infrared images, so even in total darkness, fog, rain, or snow, you'll be able to identify your target accurately.
This scope amplifies light like no other. Poor weather and bad lighting won't be a problem when you need to take a precise shot. You'll get a long-range field of view plus superior accuracy compared to traditional scopes. Its high sensitivity makes it easy to spot your target, even from a distance. So don't worry about steady hands or difficult angles – the thermal imaging scope will get you the perfect shot every time!
Features to Look for in a Rifle Scope
Hunting? New or experienced? Get the right features for your rifle scope and take down your target swiftly. What features do you need? It depends on the type of hunting and the environment. This article will help you find the perfect rifle scope with the right features for you.
Magnification is vital when choosing a rifle scope. Low to moderate power is best for hunting. A scope with higher magnification gives more stability and accuracy for long shots. Commonly, 3-9X magnification is used, but 1-16X is available. For long distances, variable power focusing is advisable – it gives more flexibility to target acquisition.
The objective lens is the glass at the end of the scope. It's furthest from the hunter's eye. Its job is to collect and direct light. So pick it carefully!
Objective lenses come in sizes 18-50mm. It depends on your hunting style. If you hunt small game in dense forest, get a smaller lens (18-25mm). For low light or open fields, get a larger one (40-50mm).
Besides size, you must decide which type of coating your scope has. Fully multicoated lenses are best. They give superior light transmission, reduce glare and offer better contrast. Single-coated lenses are cheaper but have poorer image quality.
Also choose an objective lens diameter that lets you hunt with both eyes open when possible.
Eye relief of a rifle scope is important for activities such as hunting and target practice. It is also known as the “danger area” or “safe zone“. This is how far your eye can be from the ocular lens when you fire your gun, so that you don't get hurt.
The further away your eyes are, the more comfortable it will be to look through the lens for a while. And you will have clearer images, which means better accuracy and precision when shooting.
When buying a rifle scope, you should consider what type of eye relief you need. This can depend on recoil levels and barrel length. Scopes with longer tubes usually have higher levels of eye relief. Generally, you should expect between 4-6 inches of eye relief. But this may differ from manufacturer to manufacturer. So read the product information carefully before buying a rifle scope.
Reticles are the point you look at when you use a scope. Different types exist, and which one works best depends on your gun and what you're using it for. Some scopes call it a crosshair, others may call it a duplex or mil-dot reticle.
- Crosshairs have lines that run from the top and bottom, and left and right, of the lens center. This gives you four quadrants and lots of aiming points. The lines are usually thin, so you can still see your target in low light.
- Duplex reticles have thicker lines near the edges that gradually get thinner towards the center. This gives you visibility without taking away from the target.
- Mil-dot reticles have dots that intersect. These help with range estimation and holdover/wind drift adjustments. Each dot has a measurement based on milliradians, which helps you be accurate at small distances or higher magnifications – great for snipers or target shooters.
Turrets are the two dials on a rifle scope that can be turned to adjust the windage and elevation. When buying a scope, think about how simple and precise these adjustments are.
Most turrets come in two styles: mechanical or zero-resetting. Mechanical ones are dependable, but you have to count clicks as you adjust. Zero-resetting ones are popular as they let you return the point-of-impact to the ‘zero point' with one click. A few models have micro-adjusting turrets for extra precision.
Before buying, consider:
- How easy the adjusters are.
- How accurate your shots will be.
- If you need micro adjustments.
Look into models from trusted makers and read reviews to find the one that fits your shooting style best.
Hunting for a rifle scope? Make sure you know your gun's size, the distances you usually hunt, and the size of the game you're targeting. Research first – there are a lot of scopes out there! From budget to pro-level, you can find one for every hunting fan.
Choose the features that meet your hunting needs and match them with the right scope. Have fun hunting!
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. What type of hunting rifle scopes do you recommend?
A1. We recommend using a variable power scope for most hunting scenarios. Variable power scopes offer the flexibility of zooming in on your target from different distances.
Q2. What is the best way to mount a rifle scope?
A2. The best way to mount a rifle scope is to use mounting rings that fit the diameter of your scope and rifle. You should also make sure to properly align the scope with the rifle's bore.
Q3. What should I look for when buying a rifle scope?
A3. When buying a rifle scope, you should consider factors such as the type of reticle, the power of the scope, the magnification range, the size, and the weight of the scope.