Whether you are a sport shooter or a hunter, there is a thrill that comes with long-range shooting. Taking shots from hundreds to thousands of yards away is not only challenging but fun too. At some point in time, you will need to go for something more just standard when it comes to scopes. This is where the best long-range scopes come in.
What are Long Range Scopes?
A long-range scope is a telescopic device that is used on rifles to get a clear shot of a target of hundreds or even thousands of yards away. The specific range of a rifle varies from one scope to another or rifle to another and even hunter to hunter. Therefore, just how long a range is will primarily depend on the rifle barrel length and the chosen caliber.
With this in mind, then you understand that different rifles are suited for taking on different maximum ranges. In essence, there is no operational range that you can certainly define as ‘long’. Therefore, the ballistics of your rifle will help you understand your specific ling-range needs when out looking for a long-range scope.
The market is flooded with many different long-range scopes, coming with different configurations. Making a choice of one out of these many scopes can be very challenging. That is why this post has rounded up 5 of the best long-range scopes to make it easy for you to find out that suits you best.
Best Long-Range Scopes Review
Although Schmidt Bender is not a common name you will hear when the names of the most common scopes manufacturers are thrown around, this scope by the manufacturer is certainly worth a mention.
The scope features a wide magnification range between 5x and 25x coming with a 56mm objective lens. This feature is very instrumental in enabling the scope to collect enough light when getting ready to get those long-range shots. With its reticle placed on the first focal plane of the scope, you are sure of getting an amazing field of view lying between 5.3 and 1.5. This primarily depends on the zoom level.
Another cool attribute about the scope is that you get an incredible eye relief of approximately 3.5 inches even when you zoom it to its maximum level. Since most of its body is made of aluminum construction and the body covered in matte black, you are sure of keeping your position without exposing yourself to your target. Furthermore, you can easily illuminate the reticle between 11 different settings. Moreover, there is a 100% light transmission, and all the lenses in the scope benefit from it.
One of the most incredible features on the scope is the innovative turret design that gives you amazing elevation adjustment and windage. It also includes a parallax turret in separate that is important in giving you the chance to compensate from ranges 10 meters to infinity. Another excellent feature in this regard is the unique double turn elevation knob that us color-based. It functions to give you a quick idea to where the target’s elevation is set, giving you the opportunity to instantly compensate in case your target starts moving up and down. This is the best feature to use when hunting in hilly areas.
- Offers excellent eye relief overall.
- You get an adequate light transmission from the lenses.
- The elevation turret is uniquely designed.
- Comes with superb body construction.
- 11 different reticle settings.
- It is quite expensive comparatively.
Leupold is a pretty common name in the scopes industry. It is known for manufacturing some incredible rifle scopes, this scope is no different. To start with, it is fog proof optic and at the same time 100% waterproof. Additionally, it comes with extra shock damage protection. There is a first focal plane reticle on the scope that is responsible for magnifying alongside images. This gives you the chance to have a better estimate of the range while tracking your target when they are far away from your position.
This is one of those super light scopes that can easily pair with many different types of rifles. Furthermore, it is better suited than many other scopes to disperse the recoil energy. Therefore, if you have a high-powered rifle that can shoot up to 1000 yards, this is the perfect scope to go for.
The most outstanding feature about this scope with the proprietary Twilight Max Light Management System. This system incorporates full-spectrum coatings and premium lens clarity to give you 20 extra minutes of enough lighting for shooting. Therefore, if you are out hunting at dawn or dusk, this feature will come pretty handy.
- The Leupold quality scope.
- The reticle is just spectacular.
- It is not only lightweight but also very durable.
- Offers great eye relief between 3.7 inches and 5.3 inches.
- You may experience some parallax.
As mentioned earlier, Leupold always builds the best of scopes in the market, and this model too doesn’t disappoint on any level. It has magnification capabilities ranging from 5 to 25x, coming with a 56mm objective lens. This is the reason why the scope provides you with amazing light transmission at any of your chosen zoom levels.
Just like many other Leupold scopes, the reticle is situated on the first focal plane. Furthermore, the lenses in the scope don’t easily scratch because they are boosted by military-standard scratch resistance. For instance, if you want to go for some desert sport shooting, the scope will perform impressively because it functions even in sandstorms.
Additionally, it features an aircraft-grade aluminum construction body that makes it very durable, weatherproof, and all round. Despite this, it remains lightweight in nature and still holds the ability to disperse the recoil energy. Therefore, if you prefer high-powered rifles, this scope will work well for you. It also comes with a very steady turret. With only 3 three revolutions, the turrets can offer you up to 30 Mils of adjustment.
This model also features the proprietary Twilight Max Light Management System. If you are going hunting in places with limited light, you will find this scope amazing. Without the presence of this proprietary system, you wouldn’t otherwise get clear sight of your target in long ranges in poorly lit environments. 20 minutes of extra shooting light is pretty amazing.
- Very steady turrets.
- Impressively withstands recoil.
- Features proprietary light management system.
- Well-coated lenses.
- The construction is made with superior quality materials.
- It is rare for eye relief to reach 4 inches.
This Primary Arms scope comes with an adaptive long-range optic, featuring variable magnification settings from 6x to 30x. Furthermore, there is a 56mm objective lens that includes a first focal plane reticle. The feature is an updated and optimized variant of the classic dot version. For extra durability, the lenses are coated. This also gives it a better light transmission.
The whole scope construction is made of high-quality materials and top-tier Japanese glass, making it very durable. However, you have to note that this scope is a little bit heavier than average because it weighs over 38 ounces. Nonetheless, it will offer stellar performance in any weather. It also comes with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer that covers any defects on the scope. Therefore, even if it is pricey, it is a great value for money.
The noteworthy feature is the illuminated reticle that is compatible with night vision even though it is bright red in color. The support for night vision accessories makes the scope a great option when going for tactical operations or night time hunts. It still works well even during the day. For added value, it comes with matching flip caps and sunshade.
- It comes with a lifetime warranty.
- All-round illuminated reticle.
- Great clarity lenses.
- Made with heavy-duty materials.
- Comes with some minor accessories.
- It is heavier than average.
If you want to spend less but get more, you should be thinking Vortex optics Viper PST FFP. The manufacturer is renowned to building top-tier scopes at just a fraction of the cost. The scope features a multi-coated and very clear low dispersion glass, delivering a bright and crisp field of view. It is very hard to even realize that you are getting your view through a lens. It provides impressive optical quality, nothing you can compare to any other similar models in the market.
The lenses are multi-coated to increase their durability while protecting them from dirt or scratches. Furthermore, it is argon purged to ensure that the lenses remain clear of condensation and fog. This is also made possible by the O-ring seal. Although many other scopes come with this all-weather feature, none of them are as affordable as this model.
The turrets are great and are probably the most outstanding features on this scope. These turrets are designed for long-distance hunting expeditions. Moreover, they are laser etched. That is why they are great for people who may need to adjust for bullet drop or wind compensation. You also have the chance to adjust parallax with the capability of setting the turrets to a zero-stop. Since these turrets also feature fiber-optic rotation indicator, you have the ability to easily keep track of the position of the turret.
- Provides up to 3.4 inches of eye relief.
- The lenses are incredible.
- You can compensate for parallax.
- The turrets are very easy to use.
- It can work in any kind of weather.
- The eye window is a bit smaller.
What to Consider Before Buying
There are many important factors you should consider before buying a long-range scope. Some of the are:
- Objective Lens: the size of the scope’s lens affects just how much light is allowed inside the tube. A wider lens allows more light thus a better sight picture. The opposite is also true. Furthermore, the wider the objective lens, the wider your field of view will be.
- Reticle Type: You can choose either from a range of focal planes. However, the most common ones are the first and second focal planes. Sizes seem to change every time you change the magnification levels. For instance, when using scopes with first focal plane, you won’t have to do mental math since they represent a similar distance. The second focal plane, things don’t change even when you change magnification powers. They are often fixed on one setting, mostly the highest power.
- Magnification: It will show you just how far the gun can reach, depending on the rifle and calibre of bullets used. In most cases, rifles have a magnification of about 10x or higher. Therefore, when looking for a scope, the magnification settings should start around there.
- Fixed/Variable Magnification: There are some scopes that come with one setting and there are those that come with different zoom levels. The difference in these scopes will mostly be seen on the price levels. However, the best option would always be to go for the scopes with variable settings.
- Eye Relief: This is a very important factor to consider, especially for rifles having lots of recoil. The best scopes have a relief of around 3.5 inches at least. Always look for scopes that give you some relief.
Different scopes cater for different needs. There is no one scope that is perfect for everyone. Therefore, when out looking for the best long-range scope, go for a model that meets your specifications and why you want it. Furthermore, the aspect of budget should always be kept in mind. Always go for a model that offers you great value for money. The best long-range scope is the Vortex Optics Viper: