Bullet Costs – Detailed Price Analysis

How Much Does Ammo Cost?

Let’s face it: Recently, ammo has become much more expensive. In addition, the COVID pandemic’s impact on supply disruptions has forced us to deal with severe ammunition shortages.

A couple of factors determine the cost of ammunition, namely.

  • Caliber
  • Type
  • Manufacturer
  • Availability of ammunition

Price ranges for ammunition include $0.08 for a 22LR cartridge and $3 for a  .50-caliber round. The cost of the ammunition is significantly reduced when cartridge casings are reused.

We’ll look more closely at the many aspects of ammo pricing in this post.

Average Ammunition Prices

The table below lists the average bullet prices for some of the most common ammunition types in January 2022.

Ammunition Type Ammunition Class Average Price (Per round)
9mm Handgun $0.30
22LR Handgun $0.08
22WMR Handgun $0.31
357 Magnum Handgun $0.66
40 S&W Handgun 0.36
5.7x28mm Handgun $0.8
10mm Auto Handgun $0.64
45 ACP Handgun $0.38
5.56 NATO Rifle $0.47
223 Remmington Rifle $0.43
22LR Rifle 0.08
243 Win Rifle $1.46
5.45×39 Rifle $0.36
308 Win Rifle $0.62
7.62×39 Rifle $0.49
7.62x54R Rifle $0.64

How Much Does Ammunition Cost?

A modern ammunition round consists of the following components:

  • The bullet, also known as the projectile
  • The cartridge case, which holds all the individual components together
  • The propellant, which is either smokeless powder or black powder
  • The rim allows the cartridge to be extracted from the barrel once fired.
  • The primer burns and ignites the propellant inside the cartridge.

I will look at two of these components to give you an idea of how the materials used for manufacturing these components affect the price of ammunition.

Bullet Composition Versus Cost

Due to its low cost of production and malleability, lead is typically used to make the cartridge’s usual projectile. The cost of lead is $0.83 per pound as of the writing of this article. A metric ton of lead costs about $2,274.

It is important to note that during the past few years, lead prices per ton have dramatically grown. The price of lead increased by 10.76% from January 2018 to January 2022.

To lessen the number of lead deposits that build up on the projectile, a harder metal, such as copper, is occasionally utilized at the base of the projectile. Sometimes, a jacketing material like steel, copper alloys, gilding metal, or cupronickel is used to surround the projectile’s lead core.

Lead is replaced by other metal alloys that are safer and less harmful to the environment, such as bismuth and tungsten. One of the strongest metals and one of the most expensive is tungsten.

Tungsten is not a naturally occurring metal; rather, it can be found in other iron ores like scheelite and wolfram. China is the primary producer of 85% of the world’s tungsten, but Russia also produces roughly 3,600 tons of the metal. Tungsten costs roughly $3.25 per ounce.

Cartridge Composition Versus Cost

When using shotshells, the projectile is either held inside the cartridge or at the front of the cartridge by the cartridge casing. The bullet’s shape is determined by the cartridge’s casing, which also serves as a propellant container. Additionally, this acts as an additional layer of defense from the elements.

Historically, paper was used to make cartridges; however, in current times, metal and alloys are used to make the casings. Copper is the most widely used metal for making cartridge casings because it resists corrosion.

Sometimes in plinking rounds, steel casings are used instead. About ten years ago, a pound of copper would have cost $1.37. A pound of copper today costs $4.50 per pound.

Ammo Caliber Versus Cost

In most cases, when we talk about caliber, we’re talking about the gun’s barrel diameter. The bullet, to put it simply, is the thing that will strike your target. The cartridge serves as the basis for the entire weapon, whereas the bullet is just the metal projectile that moves through the barrel. All remaining ammunition does is help the projectile or bullet get to its objective.

A 308 caliber has a diameter of 0.308 inches or 7.82mm, and the average cost for a .308 caliber round is about $0.62.

A larger caliber round, such as a .50 caliber used on an M2, M3, and M85 machine gun, would cost around $3 a round. You will find these bullets in packs of 50 to 100 rounds. A 50-caliber is an armor-piercing round used on military sniper rifles.

A .700 Nitro Express (17.8x89mm) caliber round, such as the one used on an H & H 700 Nitro Express Rifle, will set you back about $80 to $120 for a single round, not a box! This large-caliber ammunition is only used for large game hunting. So always keep in mind that the bigger the caliber, the more expensive it is.

Bullet Types And Cost Per Round

The next factor that we should consider when thinking about the cost of ammunition is the bullet type. There are four different ammunition types that we should be aware of. These are:

Soft Point – A Soft point bullet (SP) is an expanding jacketed bullet made of soft metalcore. A stronger metal jacket covers the core left exposed at the front tip. A Soft point round will cost you in the region of $1.30.

Armor Piercing – An armor-piercing (AP) round has an alloy core that is not always made from lead. These bullets are meant to pierce through thick armor. An armor-piercing round of ammunition will cost you around $10.

Boat Tail – A Boat Tail (BT) bullet tapers around the base of the cartridge that allows the projectile to remain stabilized when it is fired. The cost per round of BT is $4.26.

Boat Tail Hollow Point – A Boat Tail Hollow (BTHP) point is a mix of the hollow point and the boat tail. A round of BTHP would cost you about $3.50.

Another aspect when considering the cost and type of ammunition is choosing between Rimfire and Centerfire ammunition. In a Rimfire rifle, the rim of the cartridge is struck to ignite the primer.

With a Centrefire rifle/gun, the center of the cartridge is struck by the firing pin, igniting the primer. Rimfire cartridges are the least expensive rounds, costing only a few cents per round.

Availability Of Ammunition Versus Cost

Ammunition costs have increased and there have been shortages for American gun owners since the COVID outbreak in 2020.

Ammunition supply disruptions have occurred all around the world as a result of import/export restrictions and lockdown situations that manufacturers and sellers had to deal with.

Due to the shortages in all ammunition categories, this has a negative impact on local gun shops and gun owners. Additionally, they had virtually doubled in cost because there was ammo available!

As a result, hunters were forced to accept insufficient ammo or pay excessive costs for ammo that was previously available for only a few cents.

Notably, though, we are beginning to see ammunition prices steadily return to normal as the pandemic’s effects begin to fade. Employees of manufacturers are now back at work, and some nations have relaxed import/export restrictions.

Market considerations such as supply and demand may be important factors in determining the cost and availability of ammunition. We will observe a complete return to typical ammo pricing once suppliers resume their usual manufacturing schedules.

How Much Does Handgun Ammunition Cost?

The table above lists the average prices for the most common types of handgun ammunition. These are the latest average prices as of January 2022.

Ammunition Type Average Price (Per round)
9mm $0.30
22LR $0.08
22WMR $0.31
357 Magnum $0.66
40 S&W 0.36
5.7x28mm $0.80
10mm Auto $0.64
45 ACP $0.38
380 ACP $0.37

Looking at the average prices for each of this handgun ammo over the last twelve months, we can see how ammunition prices have settled down after peaking twelve months ago.

What Kind Of Ammo Does My Handgun Use?

I believe it is vital to describe the numerous kinds of handguns that are accessible before we explain the various types of ammunition for handguns.

There are only two basic categories of handguns: revolvers and semi-automatic pistols. A pistol that fires semi-automatically has a single chamber and barrel. For each squeeze of the trigger, the handgun will fire a chambered round, extract and eject the spent case, and then load a fresh cartridge into the chamber.

Another pistol with a rotating cylinder and five to nine chambers is a revolver. The cylinder of the revolver would turn on its axis to line up each cartridge in turn with the barrel. Six-shooter is another name for a revolver.

The ammunition is kept inside the revolver’s cylinder, which enables it to shoot again without needing to be reloaded. A semi-automatic pistol, on the other hand, stores each cartridge in a magazine that is integrated into the handgrip.

A semi-automatic pistol’s magazine can contain up to fifteen rounds of ammunition, and some models can hold up to twenty-three! There are three different handgun sizes available in the semi-automatic pistol category: full-sized, small, and sub-compact.

The Most Popular Semi-Automatic Ammunition Calibers

I’ve listed below some of the most popular calibers of handgun ammunition and an explanation of each. Refer to the table above for the respective pricing of each of these ammo calibers.


The .22LR or Long Rifle rimfire cartridge is often used for training and sports shooting. These rounds are used both for Rifle rounds and some handgun types. The caliber of the .22LR is perfect for first-time gun owners.

380 ACP

The 380 ACP or Automatic Colt Pistol is also commonly known as the “three-eighty” and is a common choice for small handguns.


The 9mm caliber round is probably the most widely known and common caliber used worldwide.

40 S&W

The 40 Smith and Wesson is larger than the 9mm and a lot slower.

45 Auto

A 45 Auto round is larger and slower than a .40 caliber round but with more recoil.

45 GAP

45 GAP or “Glock Automatic Pistol” equals the .45 Auto in firepower but is somewhat shorter, making it easier to fit into a compact semi-automatic pistol.


The 10mm round has a longer range than the 45 Auto and is faster

357 Magnum

A 357 Auto round is longer than the 40 calibers and is known for its stopping power and accuracy.

How Much Does Rifle Ammunition Cost?

In the table below, you will have an indication of the average price per round for each of the ammunition types for your Rifle.

Ammunition Type Average Price
5.56 NATO $0.47
223 Remmington $0.43
22LR 0.08
243 Win $1.46
5.45×39 $0.36
308 Win $0.62
7.62×39 $0.49
7.62x54R $0.64

If you are getting into Rifles, you start talking about firearms like an AR-15 Assault Rifle, Ak-47s, and Bolt-action and Lever-action Rifles.

With these rifle types, you’re looking at larger caliber ammunition, and therefore the prices for these rounds can get a little expensive.

Final Word

The aforementioned details make clear that a variety of elements, including the projectile, the casing, and the kind of bullet, affect how much ammo costs. Due to the COVID epidemic in 2020 and how it impacted the availability of ammunition, prices have also increased significantly.

It is unclear whether ammunition prices will begin to normalize given the rising costs of the metal alloys used to create the cartridge and bullet core.

Ammunition producers will begin mass production when ammunition demand rises once more, which will result in a market oversupply and a decline in ammunition costs.

As gun owners, we must practice patience, attempt to save our ammo, and avoid wasting it. If we have more ammunition to spare, we should use it to help others when we can.

Mauser Identification Guide

How To Identify Mauser Rifles

What’s so different about Mauser rifles compared to others? For a start, they were first designed and engineered by the German Mauser brothers Peter Paul and Wilhelm for the German military. They came from a family of German gunsmiths who were particularly good at their craft. The rifle is a powerful, well-built weapon with a smooth bolt action that many other gun manufacturers, even in modern times, have envied and emulated since 1898.

Identifying a Mauser rifle can be done with reference to the name of the manufacturer, the details of an import stamp, its caliber, the first few digits of its serial number, and the place where it was made. It also helps to know a bit of the brand’s history as it is one hundred and forty years old.

The 1898 model is 49.2 inches in length, long for a rifle, weighs nine pounds, and has a rotating bolt action that many other rifle manufacturers have since copied. The claw extractor at the end of the bolt is what primarily distinguishes the classic Mauser from other rifles today.

Mauser Rifles Are Going Strong

The Mauser brand still exists even though the Mauser brothers are long gone. The civilian side of the business was purchased by investors Ortmeier and Lüke. Mauser Hunting Weapons Ltd (Mauser Jagdwaffen) is in southern Germany and produces rifles exclusively for the sporting and hunting sector. In the year 2000, Mauser Jagdwaffen merged with a couple of sister companies in Europe under the name SIGARMS.

In 2007, SIGARMS changed its name to SIG Sauer, now known worldwide for its firearms production. Modern Mauser rifle models are still manufactured in Isny im Allgäu in Germany and sold under the Mauser Jagdwaffen brand.

The Mauser 98 Magnum is prized for big game hunting and uses six .375 H&H Magnum or five .416 Rigby Magnum rounds. Despite the existence of comparable sporting rifles, such as the CZ 550 and Winchester Model 70, which owe some of their design features to the Mauser, many professional hunters in Africa still prefer the Mauser 98’s reliable action when up against large and dangerous animals.

An authentic German Mauser M98, which still uses Peter Paul Mauser’s design, is an expensive rifle and a different beast entirely from other budget bolt action weapons. The Mauser M18, launched in 2018, is a new design and much more affordable but doesn’t use the classic bolt action developed by Mauser.

Not every Mauser thus uses Peter Paul’s bolt action system. So the Mauser brand and Peter Paul Mauser’s unique bolt action system are not necessarily the same thing. When buying a Mauser, you must decide whether you want a rifle that uses that famous bolt action, e.g., the M98, or whether you just want a gun with the Mauser brand name, e.g., the M18.

Other Rifles That Use The Mauser-Type Action

Many other manufacturers use the Mauser-type action these days but don’t have the non-rotating claw extractor on the side of the bolt like the M98.

The Mauser-type action consists of a turning bolt with locking lugs at the front. In an M98, the ejector is fixed to the receiver, but in most other rifles, a spring-loaded plunger seated on the face of the bolt operates as the extractor.

Aside from the Mauser bolt action design, there are three other main ones – the Lee-Enfield design, the Remington-700, and the Mosin-Nagant system. The Mauser bolt action system with its controlled feed is the most common.

Non-German variants on the Mauser are the vz. 98/22, made in Czechoslovakia, the M1924 Zhonsheng rifle made in China, the Karabinek wz. 29 made in Poland, and the M1943 Spanish short, with the Spanish Air Force eagle or the words “la Coruña” stamped into the receiver. Similar rifles to the Mauser were also made in Argentina, Chile, and Belgium.

One of the Chilean models is the Chileno 1895 Mauser, with an action that is not as robust as the M98’s action. The Karabiner 98 Kurz, or K98k, was produced in Belgium from 1946 onwards and is based on the Mauser M98 system.

How To Identify The Type Of Mauser You Have

There are three basic things to look at when identifying a Mauser. The first is the location of manufacture, while the second is the caliber of the rounds it uses. Lastly, look for any other stamps or marks on the receiver and the stock.

Where Is It Made?

The Mauser rifle was initially made in Germany, and contemporary models are still produced in the southeastern German town of Isny im Allgäu. However, they have also been manufactured in Poland, Czechoslovakia, Turkey, Sweden, Chile, and Argentina. Armorers often included markings on the rifle indicating the factory location.

The Argentinian Model 1909 was based on the Mauser Gewehr 98 (M98) and fired 7.92 x 57mm cartridges from a five-round stripper clip magazine. In the Argentine model, the tangent leaf sight replaced the Lange Visier sight of the German model and used rounds of a different caliber. The 7.65mm rounds used by the Argentine Mauser are actually Belgian.

What Caliber Rounds Does It Use?

The original German Mauser was designed for 7.92 x 5 mm rounds, but rifles using the Mauser system and Mauser rifles themselves have since been used with rounds of other calibers. For instance, the following models all use 7.65x53mm rounds –

  • 1891 Argentine;
  • 1909 Argentine, Spanish 1893
  • Chilean 1895
  • Swedish 1896

By contrast, the Spanish and Chilean models, such as the Mauser Model 1893, use the 7×57 mm round. The Boers also used this model against the British in the Second Boer War in South Africa.

The Belgian Mauser, Model 1889, was used by the Belgian army and was made by Fabrique-National (FN). An unusual feature of this model was the thin sheet steel jacket over the barrel intended to prolong the rifle’s life.

It also used the 7.65 x 53 mm cartridge but was the first Mauser to have a charger-loading integral box magazine. When the first found was chambered by the bolt, the charger ejected, leaving the five stacked rounds inside the fixed magazine.

Rifle Manufacturing Codes

Manufacturing codes are assigned to the various firearms manufacturers. Over the years, when these companies changed ownership or merged to form new companies with new names, they were given different manufacturing codes and used serial numbers that started with different digits. This also helps to identify how old the gun is.

For instance, in 1934, only two manufacturers made the K98, while in 1945, there were seven.

For example, some Mauser K98 manufacturing codes are –

  • 660 for Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG, Steyr
  • 42 for Mauser AG Oberndorf
  • 147 for J.P. Sauer & Sohn Suhl
  • 27 for Erfurter Maschinefabrik

If a rifle is imported into the US, its place of origin is usually indicated by an import stamp on the barrel. The stamp also shows the model number, year of manufacture, and caliber. You can also look for any other markings on the stock or receiver that may indicate the manufacturer.


There are several ways to identify a Mauser, namely the date and place of manufacture, the name of the factory, proof markings and maker codes present on the barrel, receiver or headstock, and the import stamp.


How Far Does A 22 Bullet Travel?

Speed of.22 Bullet

Although the 22 bullet is comparatively weak, it’s still one of the most popular rounds for training, hunting, and sport shooting. Nevertheless, your bullet can still travel long distances while remaining lethal if you miss the target. So, how far can 22-bullet travel?

A high-powered 22 LR bullet shot from a rifle with the correct barrel elevation can travel over 1.3 miles. However, a 22-caliber rifle is only accurate to 300 yards. Arc range, bullet style, cartridge power, barrel length, and weather will all affect the distance a 22 bullet can travel.

Read on to learn what a 22 bullet is precisely and how to get the furthest distance when shooting one. We’ll examine the different types of 22 rounds and how shooting them from a pistol or a rifle changes their range. Not only that, but we’ll also show how accurate a 22-caliber rifle can be when appropriately shot in realistic circumstances.

What Exactly Is A 22 Bullet?

Understanding what a 22 bullet is will help us determine how far it can travel. In addition to the 22 bullet’s small size, these rounds have several features that make them function differently from other rounds.

A 22 bullet has a .22-inch caliber, or 5.6mm. The suffix that comes after the 22 refers to the length of the cartridge.

Because of their small size, 22 bullets have a lower muzzle velocity than other rounds, reducing their lethality, plus their recoil and the loudness of the report.

The 22 bullets we’ll discuss are rimfire, meaning that the primer is on the lip of the shell casing alongside the primer compound. Instead of hitting the center of the round, the firing pin strikes the rim, igniting the compound. In turn, that ignites the propellant. Being rimfire also allows the bullets to be smaller and cheaper, at the cost of being complex to reload.

The four main types of 22 bullets are:

  • 22 short
  • 22 long
  • 22 LR
  • 22 WMR

While the 22 short is the tiniest round (designed for pocket pistols and revolvers), the 22 long and 22 LR are rifle rounds. However, you can also find many pistols chambered for 22 LR. The difference between these two rounds is that the 22 LR has more propellant than the 22 long, and so will travel further.

On the other hand, the 22 WMR is a high-powered magnum round with heavier bullets and more propellant.

Now that we know the main types of 22 bullets and what makes them unique, we can figure out how far they can travel.

Factors Affecting the Range of Bullets

Arc Range

Arc range is the angle you raise the barrel before shooting. According to the NRA, an arc range of about 30 degrees is best to shoot a projectile at its maximum range.

Of course, this won’t be very accurate, making aiming difficult. But then again, shooting 22 bullets at extreme distances is precise (unless you’re a trained sniper).

In normal circumstances, you would hold the barrel parallel to the ground. You would keep it horizontal while aiming, then fire. For most distances, this is best since a bullet losing altitude won’t be an issue, and you won’t need to compensate with your scope.

However, if we’re trying for maximum range, this issue matters. Gravity impacts bullets. For example, if you shoot your gun flat style 1m off flat ground at the range, the shot can only fall a meter before it hits the ground and stops moving.

On the other hand, if you raise the barrel 30 degrees and then shoot, the bullet will travel upward and forward, so it can fall a greater distance before hitting the ground.

Barrel Length

We all know that longer barrels are more accurate, but this applies to a bullet’s maximum range. Shooting a 22 LR bullet out of a pistol will have different results from shooting it from a rifle.

See, a longer barrel means that the propellant’s explosion can act against the bullet for a more extended period. And obviously, a faster bullet will travel further before losing its altitude and hitting the ground.

Once a bullet leaves the barrel, it quickly begins decelerating, so any increased acceleration from within the barrel is vital to reaching a 22 bullet’s maximum range.

Bullet Style

The style of the bullet you’re shooting is also important to consider. Not all bullets are equal, and round-nose bullets are less aerodynamic than those with a pointed tip. The sleeker the shot, the less air resistance it faces. It will decelerate at a slower rate.

The bullet grain (weight) will also impact how far it can travel. Heavier bullets travel at a slower speed since they have more mass, absorbing more energy from the propellant. So, more power is required to speed them up to the same velocity as a lighter bullet.

Furthermore, heavier bullets are also blown off course by wind more efficiently. We won’t be factoring wind into account for this article, but this accuracy problem is good to know.

Now, most 22 rounds are LRN (lead round nose) bullets, while a smaller number have copper plating. Because of this style, 22 bullets are not exceptionally aerodynamic. However, to compensate, they are light, weighing in between 27 gr. (1.8 g) and 50 gr. (3.2 g).

Copper plating is also an essential factor. Unlike lead, copper can act as a lubricant and reduce the projectile’s friction inside the barrel, letting the bullet travel further.

Cartridge Power

More propellant will increase the speed of the bullet. This acceleration is most noticeable in magnum rounds (22 WMR) and hyper-velocity rounds.

Hyper-velocity 22 bullets also use slow-burning powder, which increases the amount of time the bullet spends inside the barrel. This slow-burning powder allows the bullet to accelerate more as the expansion force of the propellant behind it lasts for a longer time.

Weather and Other Factors

Some factors affecting bullet range are out of your control, like the weather. Unfortunately, atmospheric conditions play a significant role in bullet range.

Wind, rain, or snow can reduce a 22 bullet’s range by significant amounts or blow it off course entirely. Likewise, temperature, air density, and gravity also play a role.

However, nobody can change the weather. So, we’ll always assume that you’re shooting on an open range under suitable conditions for this article. While this ideal scenario won’t always be the case, it is the best-case scenario.

How Far Can the Different Types of 22 Bullets Travel?

22 Pistol Rounds

Although its original designers intended it to be the only round for pistols and revolvers, manufacturers often chamber modern handguns in 22 LR instead of 22 short. You’ll find that this is especially common in sports shooting.

Regardless of which 22 bullets the pistol shoots, however, one major issue across them all is barrel length. With a standard short-length barrel and a 22-short round, your shot will travel between 150 and 200m before it hits the ground.

That distance is, of course, if you shoot the gun from a standing height (like you would if you wanted to hit a target). However, we can go far further with an improved firing arc and a 22 LR round.

The Physics Factbook estimates that a 22 LR bullet shot at a muzzle velocity of 1,255 fps will travel 2000 yards before hitting the ground with a good barrel elevation. That’s nearly two kilometers. However, this theory is untested (shooting guns into the air is hazardous, and 22 bullets are hard to spot on the ground).

Realistically, a 22 LR shot from a pistol with a great arc range would travel 500m.

Of course, a pistol will lose accuracy far before its bullet has traveled 500m. Most are accurate to only 50m, and that’s before we factor in our skill.

22 Rifle Rounds

Although the 22 LR is more popular, some 22-long rounds are worth noting. The CCI stinger is a hyper-velocity round that combines a highly lightweight copper-plated bullet with an increased powder load to achieve a muzzle velocity of 1,640 fps.

A CCI stinger (or similar hyper-velocity 22 long or 22 LR bullet) can travel over 1.3 miles or slightly further than 2 kilometers when fired from a long-barreled rifle at the ideal angle.

However, the rate at which the bullet falls is essential to remember, so I stress that we need a good arc range to shoot a 22-round so far. Shooting a high-powered 22 LR cartridge from a rifle at standing height will give far less impressive results.

Suppose you shoot the rifle 1m off the ground (straightforward at most open ranges). In that case, you wouldn’t see it fall until it had traveled about 125 yards or 115m. Only then would it fall a few inches.

It drops rapidly afterward. It would take just 250 yards, or 230m, to fall about a meter for a 22 LR round. And if that’s the height you shot the rifle from, that’s all the distance you’d get.

That isn’t impossible to account for, though. Using your scope properly and firing from the same 1m height, you can factor in the drop and hit bullet travel distances closer to 450 yards, or 365m.

We’re not saying your bullet will be very accurate at that distance (because wind still matters in real life). However, it is a realistic maximum range for a 22 LR rifle that still gives you a chance of hitting something.

22 WMR

A 22-magnum round is more powerful than your standard 22 bullets. However, it has a heavier and, therefore, slower shot. Nevertheless, if we do the math, we can find that if you fire a 22 WMR, you can expect it to travel 10-20% further than a 22 LR.

The increased power compensates for the heavier bullet. Overcompensates, even. At 100 yards, while a 22 LR has a 1 ½ inch drop, the 22 WMR doesn’t fall whatsoever.

Suppose we carry over this principle to our earlier calculations. In that case, we can assume that a 22 WMR round fired from a rifle 1m off the ground will travel 20% further than the 22 LR. In that case, it’d be accurate to about 275 yards, or 250m.

If you fired it with the correct arc range, you could expect the 22 WMR to travel roughly 1.56 miles or 2.5km.

How Accurate Are 22 Caliber Rifles?

One thing that’s important to consider is that effective range is different from maximum range. While effective range is the distance within which a bullet will still be lethal, the maximum range is how far it travels before hitting the ground.

Therefore, while a 22 caliber rifle might be accurate at long distances, it won’t necessarily be effective. Good to know before trying to snipe your next deer.

Account for the bullet drops and zero in your scope correctly. You can be surprisingly accurate with high-powered rounds using a 22 rifle. For example, if you can get a ¾ inch group at 50 yards, you’d get:

  • A 1-inch group at 100 yards
  • A 3-inch group at 200 yards
  • An 8-inch group at 300 yards
  • Inaccurate past 400 yards (but can still penetrate over 1 inch of wood)

Therefore, we’d say that a 22-caliber rifle is effectively accurate at 300 yards. With a 3-inch group, you might not be able to shoot a rabbit in the eye, but you can shoot a deer in the head. After that distance, however, it isn’t worth taking the shot.


To conclude, a 22 LR round shot at the ideal arc range from a rifle could travel over two kilometers. However, it would stop being effective long before that.

A 22 caliber rifle has an effective range of roughly 300 yards, assuming you’ve zeroed your scope, are using a high-powered round, and account for bullet drop.

How to Clean a Blackstone Griddle

Blackstone Griddle Cleaning

The Blackstone griddle is a multi-purpose cooking surface that can be used for both frying and grilling. It’s reasonably priced, and if properly maintained, it’s simple and easy to use. You actually require it if you enjoy spending time outside. This article will demonstrate how to clean a Blackstone griddle.

Why is the Blackstone Griddle so well-liked?

The Blackstone’s popularity stems from two factors: its versatility and ease of use. If you enjoy Hibachi-style foods or meat (like me), you can be up and running (in a sophisticated manner) in minutes with no special tools or preparation. Aside from that… Cleaning it after use and preparing it for the next time (we’ll see how that goes) –

Items Required to Clean Your Blackstone Griddle

To clean your Blackstone Griddle properly, you’ll need:

  • Water
  • Scraper with Sponge and Stone
  • Paper Towels
  • Sponge
  • Oil Cleaning Spray (Exterior)

The griddle will be filthy after a long griddle session. All of the old food and crust must be removed, and the griddle must be cleaned and prepared for the next use. The good news is that it is extremely simple. AND it’s easier if you do it immediately after using it. However, I understand… you want to eat, so don’t worry, it’s not a big deal.

Cleaning a Blackstone Griddle

The best way to clean a Blackstone griddle is to start with the cooktop and work your way out. The cooking surface is located in the center of the grill. So, before moving on to the other parts, devote all of your time and energy to it.

Let’s get into the specifics of cleaning and seasoning your Blackstone Griddle.

Preheat your griddle (get it hot)

You want to heat up the Blackstone griddle so you can pry the last meal away. If you don’t do this, you’ll be doing far more work than is necessary. Turn on all of the burners.

Scrape the crust with the scraper.

We bought this scraper (shown below), and it’s fantastic. It not only has a flat end for scraping, but it also has a replaceable sponge and stone.

Sponge Scrapper

The sponge is excellent for removing extra dirty water.

Stone Scrapper

The stone is ideal for resurfacing after extensive use.

Spray the griddle with water while it is still hot.

The water aids in the release of more greasy leftovers. Have you ever heard of steam cleaning?

Make another pass with the scraper.

When you oil the griddle after cleaning it, you are protecting it. Oil is required for proper Blackstone maintenance.

Make one more pass through to remove anything you can. You’re getting ready to season the griddle, but you don’t want to taste that burnt aftertaste. You’ve only been playing for a few minutes. Easy!

Grease the griddle

Turn off the heat and season the griddle for the next time you use it. At our pavilion/camper, we keep a bottle of Avocado Oil on hand. You must use an oil with a high smoke point; otherwise, the oil will burn. The oil helps season the griddle, and then you add more oil when you’re cooking your next meal. This prevents the food from sticking to the griddle.

All other surfaces should be cleaned.

Now that the griddle is ready for the next use, go over all other surfaces with your de-greasing cleaner and make sure everything is shiny. This will keep your Blackstone looking fresh and ready for food.

When cleaning your Blackstone Griddle, avoid using soap.

When cleaning your Blackstone Griddle, there is no need to use soap. Using soap will ruin the taste of your food. You will lose your seasoning if you use soap that removes oil. Remember that a good clean (hot with water) and proper oil after use will help keep future flavors perfectly balanced.

Answers to Blackstone Cleaning and Seasoning Questions

How often should my Blackstone Griddle be seasoned?

After each use (and after cleaning your Blackstone with heat and water), use a paper towel to apply a high smoke point oil (such as Avocado Oil).

The first seasoning layer is critical to achieving a flawless nonstick cooktop. If you do it correctly, cleaning and maintaining your flat-top grill will be a breeze.

If you don’t thoroughly clean and season your grill the first time, it will become sticky, causing food to burn on the cooktop.

To prevent rust from forming, make sure there is no residual moisture on the grill surface.

What kind of oil do you put on a griddle?

Avocado oil has a smoke point of 520 degrees and is ideal for use on a griddle. Any oil you’re comfortable with is fine as long as the smoke point (IMO) is higher than 400 degrees.

Cooking oil and charred food particles accumulate on the cooktop when you don’t clean your grill properly, causing food to stick. Furthermore, over-seasoning your grill cooktop with oil can cause it to become sticky.

What is an oil smoke point, and why is it important?

The smoke point of a cooking oil is the temperature at which it begins to degrade and emit smoke. The lower the smoke point, the more prone the oil is to deterioration at high temperatures.

The smoke point is important because it can affect how your food tastes, and you want to use an oil that will not degrade into carcinogenic molecules.

Can you clean a Blackstone griddle with steel wool?

A griddle stone is a better option for cleaning hard to remove food residue and buildup from a weathered griddle than steel wool.

Is it safe to use oven cleaner on a griddle?

No, you should not use oven cleaner on a Blackstone griddle. You should never eat off a surface like that.

Best Pistol Scope Reviews – Handgun Scopes

10 Best Handgun Scopes Review

We are still advancing in technology, and the aiming scopes are not left behind. That is why, apart from rifle scopes, you can get one too for your handgun. The problem comes in when sorting out the factors to land on the best one from the already flooded market.

There are more issues to consider when selecting the best handgun scope than in rifle counterparts. It’s therefore not easy to just pick out a company that is offering the latest scope specs. On the other hand, there is less competition when considering the topic in the discussion when compared to rifle types

The main reason why you will need a suitable handgun scope is that pistols have a tougher job to do when you need the bullet to go further. So, if you are looking for the best 22 pistol scope, for example, read on to see what we came up with after extensive research.

1. Leupold FX-II 4x28mm Handgun Scope

Leupold Company has been manufacturing gun scopes for a long time, and their efforts have seen them stand out one of the best optics designers. Now, they have made something to use with the small guns, the Leupold FX-II 4×28 Handgun Scope.

The reason why we choose it as the best is its ability to withstand the recoil activity on pistols. Its super solid while on top and you will enjoy the view from the DiamondCoat 2 coated lenses. That is what assists in light transmission and excellent image clarity.

The FX-II comes with a fixed magnification, which is 4x. The benefit here is that you will get the same optical quality regardless of where you are aiming. The flaw is that you will not be able to shoot longer distances that require higher and maybe varying magnification.

Since the objective is only 28mm, that means you will have a smaller body with less weight on the handgun. With that, it’s okay to use the 1mm rings if your weapon does not have those thick barrels.

Using the duplex reticle is easy. The thicker lines on it minimize your aiming loss while the thinner ones allow you to concentrate on the point of impact. It is not one of the best though if you want to compensate for bullet drop at longer distances.

On the other hand, the turrets give yo­­­u up to 60MOA for both windage and elevation. You have to take care though of how you dial them since the rotating caps are smaller, especially if you were using a rifle scope at first.

As for the body, it waterpr­­­oofs and fog proof with the help of argon/krypton gas blend purging and a sturdy but lightweight outer covering with a matte finish.

2. Weaver Classic 2.5-8×28

If you want to adjust the magnification as you increase the shooting distance, the Weaver Classic 2.5-8×28 scope is one of the scopes to consider for that. This one comes in black with sturdy materials used in construction.

It’s fully multicoated to allow better light transmission, especially at higher magnification. It is, however, weaker in low light since it’s difficult to see the crosshairs. It is yet tested to make sure you don’t experience zeroing due to heavy recoils.

As we said, you can increase the magnification here, but the objective has 28mm diameter allowance. At higher magnification, you will experience what my friend calls a tube view. It’s like viewing via a tunnel.

To help you in aiming, you need the reticle. The Weaver Classic model uses the dual-x type. If they add some illumination on it, it will not be difficult to shooting before dusk or slightly after dawn. The good thing is that with proper light conditions, you can aim better using the ¼-click MOA turrets.

The parallax is set for 50 yards, and eye relief ranges from 16-22 inches depending on your mounting position. Like all scopes, forward mounting this model will give you better results.

When it comes to construction, the body is purged with nitrogen to make it fog proof while materials aid in withstanding shock and waterproofing. You will want this scope if you are hunting using the pistol.

3. Simmons Prohunter 4×32

Simmons is another company with a broad series of optics that range from rifles to handguns. They have been doing for the last thirty years, and one of the latest releases is the Simmons Prohunter 4×32 handgun scope.
Simmons Pro Hunter 4x32mm Truplex Handgun Scope - 807738
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To aid in you in seeing clear and non-distorted images, the lenses are fully multicoated and anti-reflective too. The magnification is however fixed here, so you don’t get variations here. The vision is clear, though, despite the distance through the 32mm objective. At just 8 ounces, we can say it’s not that heavy while on the small weapon.

The military aluminum tube is only one inch so you can any suiting rings to mount. It will withstand the recoils with the help of TrueZero feature that prevents the turrets from adjusting as you shoot. Speaking of turrets, you can adjust for both elevation and windage with ¼-click increments up to 75 MOA.

The triplex reticle is what helps you in getting the target. The eye relief maintains at 20 inches throughout your shooting to give you a quick target acquisition. It also has a raised power tab to provide a better grip as you adjust. For durability purposes, it comes waterproof, shockproof, and fog proof.

To testify on being anti-recoil, the Prohunter is tested with 1000 rounds using a .375 H&H magnum rifle before you get the delivery.

4. Simmons Prohunter 2-6×32

The difference between this model and the above one is the varying magnification. There is also a slight variation in the magnification knob. Otherwise, they both have the same silver color before leaving the Simmons’ factory.

Lighting in the scope is aided by the lens multi-coating feature and some high-quality glass. You don’t struggle after placing your handgun at arm’s length. Via the 32mm objective, you can adjust the magnification from 2-6x without having the through-tunnel look experience.

Just like the model above, the power knob is raised for a better hold. However, in this model, it’s slightly separated from the eyepiece with small numbers between.

You can mount using any compatible 1-inch rings though most of the users go for the Leupold low/medium mounting rings. Aiming for the bull’s eye needs you to use the Truplex reticle while adjusting for the windage and elevation makes use of the side and top turrets, respectively. You also get ¼-click MOA increments here as you dial.

To prevent zeroing the scope after recoils, the turrets possess the TrueZero feature that locks them in place after adjusting. Just like its predecessor, it also got 1000-round test before getting to final consumers. To conclude on this Prohunter, it’s also waterproof, fog proof and shockproof for those who will be hunting or training with it.

5. Hammers 2-7×32 Scope

Here is another scope that has varying magnification and includes some mounting rings. The Hammers 2-7×32 will assist in viewing further, and it appears smooth, dark, and shiny on the outside.

Some have gone ahead to try it on a rifle, and it works well too. The view from the lens is clear, and the 32mm objective is not mean as you increase the magnification. It, however, does not perform well in low light times. Working with it reveals having a better view if you are holding the handgun with two hands.

It does not match what you would want in a shooting competition, but since the handgun is better at shorter distances, it will work for practice sessions. For the mounting rings, that’s an excellent job from Hammers. They work on weaver rail, but we cannot blame you if you wanted better ones. Most customers have complained about mounting issues and steadiness.

The 4 plex reticle can be viewed via the 13-17 inches relief. The turrets are ¼ click types, and you can comfortably adjust the windage and elevation using your finger. The magnification knob is also stripped to increase the grip as you change. You will, however, witness sighting issues after shooting with it for a while. The reticle is affected by the recoils, and that’s something the designers should sort.

6. Burris Handgun Scope 2-7×32

Made in the US, this is another scope with varying magnification, and it’s also known to withstand heavy recoils, from handguns to rifles. The Burris Handgun scope 2-7×32 can be a versatile sighting tool if you would like to switch between pistols and bigger guns.

The tube is 1-inch, which is the same for most scopes while the magnification varies from 2-7x via the 32mm objective. The matte black model, however, has a different reticle, the ballistic Plex type but it’s in the second focal plane like most of the scope we have already reviewed.

The view is clear from the polished multicoated glass, and it passes through rigorous testing before getting to you. That is why it’s a suitable instrument on your Magnum revolver and other known big pistols. At only 2x magnification, the relief seems to be too much, but that does not prohibit you from quick target acquisition.

To make it lightweight, it has aluminum body while nitrogen purging and O-ring sealing make it fog proof and waterproof. Lower magnification gives you an eye relief of 11-21 inches while high power goes low to provide you with a range of 10-14 inches. That is why it’s barely enough at higher magnification, especially if you are going above 4x.

The turrets are finger adjustable to allow you to dial in the elevation and windage. The ¼ MOA clicks go all the way to 64 MOA.

7. Nikon Force XR 2×20 Handgun Scope

From Nikon scopes and optics, you expect better light transmission, a quality view through the lenses and ability to withstand the recoils. The Nikon Force XR 2×20 scope will give you all that but with lesser magnification.

The Nikoplex reticle gives you better target acquisition with thicker lines on the outer parts, which get thinner at the center to show you where to aim. The multi-coating on the glasses gives in 95% light transmission, making it a better performer in low light conditions.

The only thing deprived is the magnification, which is only 2x. On the other hand, expect it to perform better via the 20mm objective. You don’t need varying magnification from such a diameter. You get a 1-inch tube here, and mounting is better with the 1-inch rings.

Adjusting the elevation and windage turrets gives you ½ MOA increments, and the internal adjustment allows for up to 120 MOA. Due to clear viewing, the reticle can be used to aim even at smaller targets making it an ideal solution for those chasing varmints.

​To make it withstand all the abuse you subject it to, it comes as a waterproof and fog proof instrument, tested using the S&W 500. Overall, if you want a handgun scope that will allow you to practice and hunt at the same time without a high magnification, this Force XR model is for you.

8. Bushnell Trophy 2-6×32 Handgun Scope

Still from the US, here is the Bushnell Trophy 2-6×32 scope that comes with a cover cap for the objective and eyepiece. While it’s an excellent addition, you can remove it if flipping it upwards is not enough. Bushnell has a reputation in scopes and range finders so this one is not going to fail you.

Clarity is an essential specification in any scope and Bushnell goes ahead to make your image is superior, and there is enough light transmission for your enhanced view. Something worth noting is that it comes in many variations since what we have here is silvery. There are black models too that don’t come with covers for the lenses.

Adjusting the magnification from 2x to 6x is comfortable via the 32mm objective and the 1-inch tube offers just the right view regardless of the power increase. You need to note that it requires the 1-inch rings as opposed to 30mm sizes. There is some confusion in the description.

You can adjust for the windage and elevation as the Multi-X reticle helps you in getting the target. The eyepiece allows for fast focusing. The eye relief is also adjustable from 9-26 inches to give room for those using higher power values.

Bushnell is known to test their scopes before selling, so be sure to get a quality instrument that can withstand the shock forces and what the weather throws on it. They also have a lifetime warranty on their products for those of us who want to test it beyond what it can do.

9. BARSKA 3-9×42 IR

If you are on a budget but want something that will give you more significant results from a small gun, then BARSKA 3-9×42 IR has some attributes worth looking into. It has underperformed in various uses, but that depends on the application.

First, it comes with multi-coated optics for better light transmission, and the objective is quite large, at 42mm. That means more weight on your handgun, but you can cope if weight is a non-issue. You get a 3-9x magnification from it which again works better with a bigger objective. The objective also has a built-in sunshade for those extra bright days.

Mounting is not an issue on handguns since it works with most rings. Where you are bound to face a problem is using the mil-dot reticle. It’s a nice addition for small guns, but the illumination on it is not proper when there is too much light. On the other hand, you get to choose three shades of red and three shades of green to cub the lighting effect.

The eyepiece allows for focusing on the reticle while the turrets give you ¼ MOA increments. The turrets are well calibrated with non-slip grip as you dial. You can also adjust for the parallax using the side knob near the rear view position, but tests have proved it not to be effective despite giving you the ¼ MOA increments too.

With higher magnification, it’s also possible to wish for a larger eye relief since this model only gives you 3.9 inches. There are also complaints about the scope fogging after a short period of use.

Apart from the few things that the company should address, buying this scope comes with accessories such as mounting rings, caps, a cleaning cloth, and battery. In case of any defects, it comes with a lifetime warranty.

10. Barska 1-4×28 IR

The last one on the list goes to an optic that you can switch between handguns and rifles. It’s still from Barska, but this one has 1-4x magnification via a 28mm objective, making it the smaller version of the one above. It quite rugged from appearance and there is more weight to it.

Once appropriately used, which includes applying Loctite on screws before mounting, you will not experience zeroing even after firing the too many rounds.

The lenses are multicoated for maximum light transmission. Actually, for the view, it’s much better while using the illuminated reticle and there are no light shading issues here.

The objective also possesses a shade, and there are included covers for both lenses. Adjusting the magnification to 4x is accessible via the non-slip dialer so you can adapt for your close to mid-range requirements.

It comes with mounting rings that fit well on rails. The mildot reticle has red and green adjustments, but if you like using it without the batteries, the reticle remains dark like other scopes. For illumination adjustment, there is a side knob for it. The rest are turrets for elevation and windage adjustment. You have room for up to 50 MOA with ¼ click increments.

The construction is rugged with waterproof and shockproof qualities. Therefore, don’t worry if you accidentally knock it over after it withstands all the recoils.

Handgun Scopes Buyers Guide

Now that you have seen the variety to choose from for your small gun, it is still not advisable to go picking any, especially if you yet don’t know much about scopes and shooting.

Handgun scopes differ from the rifle types when you look at the recoil withstanding ability, the eye relief (more extended in the prior) and how you mount not to mention the size and weight.

Before you point out the one to shop for, here are a few things you need to know about.

How to Choose a Handgun Scope

Weight and Size

Handgun scopes come with smaller objectives ranging from 20-32mm though we have some going all the way to 42mm. The tube is mostly 1-inch meaning they are also narrower. While that limits using them in low light conditions, it contributes to having less weight on the small gun, which is vital.

Eye Relief

In riflescopes, anything larger than 4 inches is excess. The same cannot be said for handgun scopes due to how you hold the gun. Since there is increased distance here from the eyepiece to the user’s eye, you are bound to get reliefs going all the way to 30 inches to fit the arm’s length.


This is a tricky part when it comes to handgun-based optics. Generally, handguns do not require the extra power as seen in rifle substitutes. That is why most of the featured ones have fixed magnification ranging between 2x and 4x.

You are also bound to get some with varying magnification if you want something that suits the pistols and revolvers. They are, however, known to compromise other vital features that will affect the shooting ability.

The varying ones in the reviews are there because they attain the most basic shooting requirements despite having the ability to increase/decrease the magnification.

Caliber Type and Recoils

Handguns, in general, have different recoil actions from the rifles. Also, in the small gun’s category, the revolvers will behave differently from the shorter pistols. We cannot ignore how you mount since it’s based on what your gun permits. It is, therefore, a factor that can significantly affect the shooting results and how the scope works.

When it comes to the caliber, smaller guns such as the Magnum .22 will have less recoil than its heavier substitute. On the other hand, the vibration pattern will be the same, which means there are desired and undesired scopes for the action. The heavier the vibration, the stronger you need the scope to be especially at the mounted level.

How to Mount a Handgun Scope

How you attach the scope on your handgun will affect your shooting results. It may seem obvious to you until it’s time to do it. Wrong mounting will bring sighting issues, and that’s one thing you don’t want to deal if you just bought an expensive optic.

We have witnessed customers saying they can’t zero using the current scope and go ahead to take it to a gunsmith who will remove it using their hands. That implies something was not correctly mounted.

While most of what we have reviewed can use the 1-inch rings, there is a need for heavy duty mounts and use of Loctite on the screws before driving them in the barrel or on the rings.

Before you can tightly fit the screws, it’s advisable to sight first to make sure that the scope is mounted correctly. After that, you can now tighten them down.

Before you can tightly fit the screws, it’s advisable to sight first to make sure that the scope is mounted correctly. After that, you can now tighten them down.

For tightening tips, you should first tie them loosely with a few turns on each before going to the next one. After that, you can tighten each as desired. This gives you the ability to tighten them in the same manner and avoid tightening one of the screws more than the other.

Once you tighten, the scope should be seated on the gun in such a way that it does not wiggle or move in any way. You also need to make sure it’s level. As you tighten, you can use a button level to make sure the front and rear sides are perfectly inline.


Now, you know that you can equip you small pistol with the best handgun scope. The question that remains is, what does your handgun need?

Since we now have something for the single-shot pistols and the revolvers, the only thing remaining is to look at your weapon specs and select the scope that best matches the needs.

All our selected scopes are suitable for a variety of handguns, which means it’s common to find one that can suit various guns. Some even go to the extent of enabling you to switch between the pistol and the rifle. They can all withstand the recoil activity on the small guns too.

No matter what you choose, always engage in the best gun practices to overcome the shooting inability. Once you memorize how your gun performs, adjusting appropriately will not be a problem.

10 Best Scopes for 17 HMR

10 Best .17 HMR Scope Reviews

The past decade has recorded a boom of new, cartridge-specific riflescopes boasting even reticles dedicated to load solely.

The .17HMR (Hornady Magnum Rimfire) cartridge designed in the early 2000’s and officially introduced by the ammunition company Hornady in 2002 deserves a purpose-built riflescope.

The .17HMR was developed as a necked down version of the .22 Magnum to take a .17 caliber (4.5 mm) bullet, but soon it captured the imagination of a whole sector of the shooting community by storm.

Reaching muzzle speeds of 2,650 fps, the .17 HMR attains a higher velocity, flatter trajectory and farther range over the .22.

Shooters with rifles chambered in this tiny rimfire caliber easily can triple the typical distance of standard .22 rimfire cartridges and shoot even further.

With performance like that, a .17 HMR is a viable small game round out to 200 yards. While this diminutive rimfire is known as a small varmint vanquisher, its full capacity you will gain only with an adequate riflescope.

We have made an informative guide and best scope for 17 HMR review to help you find appropriate optics to maximize the HMR rifles’ power and potentials.

1. Vortex Viper PST 1-4×24 TMCQ

Unlike top-tier riflescopes of Razor HD series made in Japan, Vortex Optics produces this vortex 17 hmr scope in the Philippines and this is a primary reason for a Viper`s lower price.

The Vortex Viper PST (Precision Shooting Tactical) line boasts the same Razor`s features such as open style turrets; argon filled housing for fog proof properties, adjustable reticle illumination and standard waterproof qualities.

The Vortex variable zoom Viper PST 1-4x24mm is a compact tactical riflescope intended for close range uses but 4X magnification will allow the marksman to reach out to targets up to 200 yards away.

The traditional use of two eyes for target acquisition when the adjustment is put down to 1X power turning this scope into a red dot sight. The potential scenarios like tactical and home defense shooting or for a big game hunting and especially drive ideal hunting field of use.

Additionally, the constant eye relief of 4 inches gives your eye space for the recoil from powerful magnum rifles.

Constructed from a solid block of aircraft grade 6061-T6 aluminum, the 24mm Viper has a one-piece 30mm tube that provide ample windage and elevation adjustment.

Tactical style exposed knobs provide fast and accurate adjustment in a ½ MOA increments. The Tactical Milling Close Quarters reticle (TMCQ) is illuminated, etched in glass and seated in the second focal plane.

This unique close-quarters hash marked ranging reticle has a segmented and illuminated circle around one minute-of-angle dot. While TMCQ set up allows the scope to function as a red dot when unmagnified it is not as easy to use at the range as some counterparts.

Anyway, having the ability to use the optic at short distances is essential for any type of hunting or short-range engagement and Vortex feature-rich Viper PST 1-4X delivers the performance at an affordable price.

2. ​Vortex Crossfire II 4-16×50 AO

Vortex Crossfire II is one of the best budget riflescopes that have a good reputation.

The Vortex can serve you well for hunting applications and as a range gun. One thing’s inevitable Vortex has made some significant improvements on the optic that stands out for all shooters.

Furthermore, the collection offers many combinations of magnification and sizes in the range, and the 4-16×50 AO is one of them. The optic has loads of features, and one of them is the durable weatherproof construction.

You can use it in any environment, especially outdoors when hunting and wanting to make long distance shots. You will not have to be concerned about the scope fogging up or getting a knock.

Furthermore, you can quickly adjust the focus of the reticle with the fast focus eyepiece when the time comes to take the shot. All you need is a simple twist of the focus knob making sure you have a crisp crosshair in view.

Another thing you will love it for hunting is the multi-coated lens that helps with light transmission as it reduces the glare making the color appear brighter. By reducing, the haze and the colors that pop out you are more accurate when making the shot.

Further, you have multiple reticle options but the 4-12×50 AO (adjustable objective) riflescope has a dead-hold BDC crosshair that suits hunting and target shooting. So you do not need to estimate the bullet drop and windage corrections as the optic does it for you.

You can use it to shoot at various distances and capable of shooting in different wind conditions. On the other hand, with the adjustable objective, the image focus improves and removes parallax and gives you a long eye relief.

The turrets you reset with your fingers using the MOA clicks and makes it easy to reset to zero after sighting it in. The controls easy to use and suits any level of the shooter, and there are turret caps to protect the setting.

One thing’s sure you are getting a reliable optic and can mount it on a bolt-action hunting gun, AR-10 & AR-15 platforms for hunting and target shooting. Alternatively, you can also find different mounting options available.

3. Leupold VX-3i 4.5-14x40mm CDS

Debuted in 2016, the Leupold’s VX-3i family of scopes features, as the name says, a versatile 3:1 zoom ratio erector system making it a perfect tool for hunting. As the upgraded version of the discontinued Leupold VX3, the leupold 17 HMR scope is appreciated for other benefits hunters are looking for.

Typically, hunting usually occurs in low-light situations, so the hunters would appreciate other specifications like the and fully multi-coated lenses and Twilight Max Light Management System gives you the best possible sight picture even in the pure light of dawn and dusk.

Matching intensive contrast across the entire field of view and light wavelengths balance provide maximum brightness in all colors.

The rugged design is supplemented with DiamondCoat 2, an ion-assist lens coating to withstand all abuse that is being done during hunting.

The 6061-T6 aluminum body consists of 30mm maintube which housing a Twin bias spring erector system. Dual spring precision adjustments exert up to 30 percent more holding force on the erector to resist recoil and to maintain zero.

The larger central tube provides a 113 MOA of windage and elevation adjustment range. The capped turrets offer a 1/4 MOA per click with match grade precision.

Utilizing the classical Duplex style reticle with thick posts and a thin crosshair that won’t obscure the target, the Leupold developed new Wind-Plex reticle with a solid vertical crosshair featuring a graduated horizontal for wind holds.

The Wind-Plex reticle is positioned on the second (rear) focal plane and is non-illuminated. The scope includes a Custom Dial System (CDS), based on the ballistic information of the specific cartridge and load shooter plans to use.

Leupold VX-3i 4.5-14x40mm SF CDS comes with a side-parallax adjustment turret and a slightly oversized power selector that can be easily turned even with gloves on.

Moreover, one-piece housing is filled with proprietary Argon/Krypton particular gas blend to provide waterproofing and to prevent internal fogging at sub-zero degrees.

While this lightweight and durable VX-3i riflescope will handle your short to long distance shooting needs, the only objection may refer to the small field of view of 29.8 feet while the competitors feature a standard 33 or even a large 40 feet field of view at 100 yards.

4. Vortex Optics Razor HD 5-20×50

This vortex 17 hmr scope has quite a few different series of riflescopes that fit just about any budget and the Razor is their upper tier Japanese made optics.

The Razor HD is considered the most advanced of the Vortex line of scopes since it is packed with more than a dozen optical features, as one would expect from a high-end scope.

A 5-20x wide zoom range and 4x power ratio classify the Razor HD scope as a higher end tactical scope built to meet the demanding needs of precision shooters.

The scope construction is based on an unusual 35 millimeters diameter tube (note it is not ordinary 34mm) milled from a single block of 6061-T6 aircraft grade aluminum so that it can withstand shots fired with a .50 BMG rifle.

The bigger main tube diameter will not allow for more light transmission, but due to more room for the erector assembly to move, larger scope tube will allow a more extensive range of elevation and windage adjustment.

The Vortex Razor HD 5-20×50 is a true tactical riflescope with exposed turrets for quick and easy adjustments. In fact, the turrets are huge and the elevation knob at 1.5 inches is taller and wider than it needs to be.

However, these tactical style turrets have rapid zero return feature, which is mandatory on an exposed turret optics that will be used in low light.

As our model is equipped with EBR-2 reticle (Enhanced Battle Reticle), you can choose between a MIL or MOA version of this precision-etched first focal plane reticle.

Depending on reticle type you order, the turrets will have matching click values. For Minute of Angle (MOA) based reticle you will get a ¼ MOA graduated dials and for a milliradian (mRad) Reticle, you’ll get a 0.1 mRad graduated dials.

The reticle is illuminated with 11 levels of brightness for precise aiming under low-light conditions. A low profile illumination control knob is placed offset to the left and in front of the eyepiece to remain out of the way for the most part.

As a standard, this excellent Vortex offering in the top-end scope market is waterproof and filled with Argon gas for fog-proofness.

The lenses are fully multicoated, while all of the outer glasses have Armortek coatings to protect them from scratches, oil, and dirt.

The Razor HD is large and heavy but it could serve well on a long-range platform such as your varmint precision rifle in .17 HMR.

5. ​Nikon Monarch 3 SF FFP M BDC Rifle Scopes

Nikon always sets the bar higher when it comes to riflescopes. They have done it again with the Nikon Monarch 3 SF FFP M BDC model. You get an affordable multipurpose optic providing you with unrivaled image quality, precision, and durable construction.

While there are three scope lines available, the Monarch 3 works well if you are a day-to-day hunter in need of a reliable optic for short ranges. You get variable magnification that is great for hunting to make those close-range shots with powerful rounds, and you can shoot out to long distances.

In the Monarch 3 series, you can get three different magnification levels ranging from the 3-12×42, 4-16×42, and 4-16×50. So you can adjust the zoom best suited for your FOV allowing for easy targeting when tracking an animal.

Another thing you will love is the BDC Distance Lock Reticle that keeps everything in the first focal plane. Therefore, the crosshair remains the same size as the target. Alternatively, you can still use it with the favored Spot on Ballistic Match Technology from Nikon.

To add to the functionality of the optic, you get a fully multicoated optical system. When hunting from dusk to dawn, you can feel assured, you are getting the best light transmission.

Therefore, if you want a hunting riflescope that holds constant out to 250-yards and more, this is the one to have.

The only difference between the Monarch 3, Monarch 5, and Monarch 7 series is the seven series have a 30mm tube, and the latter comes with a one-inch tube.

Furthermore, you get a 4-inch eye relief that is impressive to use with high-powered rifles and rounds.

Also, with the incredible clarity of the target, Nikon has set a new benchmark not found in much optics in the price range.

6. Athlon Midas BTR 4.5-27×50 mm

Athlon 17HMR scope has listened to market demands and recently launched their high-zoom 4.5-27x50mm Midas BTR (Bright Tactical Reticle) riflescope.

The scopes with so impressive 6 times magnification range request a strong, heat treated single-piece tubes, built out of aircraft grade aluminum, and the Midas utilizes just like that; a 30mm hammer-forged 6061-T6 aluminum tube for extreme hardness and resistance.

An extended 6x zoom ratio makes this optics extremely versatile and eliminates the needs for multiple scopes for various hunting scenarios. The robust scope housing features exposed direct dial knobs without zero stop and no locking mechanism.

Also, there is a side parallax-compensating knob with integrated reticle illumination control. However, there is a problem with the graduated windage and elevation turrets, since the markings on the dials do not line up with the line on the body of the riflescope.

The term Bright Tactical Reticle in Athlon BTR series designates a ranging reticle dubbed as APLR1 MIL reticle. This x-mas tree like illuminated reticle is seated in the second focal plane to maintain the same size throughout the magnification range and will not to obstruct the target at large magnification.

Another highlight is the HD – high definition glasses that are fully multi-coated to enhance target appearance at all distances and even in the faint dawn and dusk hours.

Additionally, the exterior lenses have also been treated with the proprietary XPL coating (“Xtra Protective Lens”) for protection from scratches and dirt.

Like other scopes from Athlon Midas series, the Midas BTR is argon-gas-purged to prevent any internal fogging and protected for water- and fogproof performance.

7. Burris Fullfield E1 3-9×40

The Burris Fullfield E1 3-9×40 is a great hunting scope with a matte black finish. Therefore, there is no glare when hunting for your trophy, and it has a compact design making it handier to use.

Another added benefit Burris has made is you receive a ballistic chart to help you set up the range you plan to shoot. For entry-level shooters, this is a fantastic feature and a big help.

Furthermore, you can mount it on a powerful rifle like a Ruger model 77, and it will handle recoil well and provide you with accuracy at the same time. No matter what distance you want to use it, the riflescope gives you the added range out to 300-yards quickly.

Alternatively, it can handle any lighting condition when setting at different powers and the clarity and resolutions excellent. On the other hand, you can use it for short to long distance shooting making the 3-9x40mm magnification versatile to use in any situation.

You can use it as a hunting, competition, and tactical optic and provides something for everyone. Another highlight is the reticle that lights up in red, and you can set the brightness when moving from a poor lighting condition to a brighter one.

The feature helps to save battery power, and while hunting, there is no need for stopping to adjust the lighting. As we said, the riflescope offers versatility as even the crosshair is fine to shoot at small objects and aim out too long distances.

So if you need an excellent optic, the Burris line is one of the best riflescopes to consider.

Even the Forever Warranty covers most things, and you can find loads of accessories to use with the scope.

8. Nightforce Optics 5-25×56 ATACR F1

A relatively new company in the optics industry is a US manufacturer Nightforce Optics. Nightforce riflescopes are bulletproof and ideal for law enforcement professionals, competition shooters and hard-core hunters.

Their ATACR line is the successor of the rugged NXS, one of the most robust riflescope series from the company Nightforce.

Nightforce ATACR (Advanced Tactical Riflescope) riflescopes are overbuilt because their housing is two to three times thicker than other to ensure the best protection and deliver benchrest precision even under the harshest of conditions.

The 34mm aluminum alloy main tube feature rugged and incredibly watertight and shockproof construction, which is able of handling even the strongest calibers like the .50 BMG.

However, due to the magnification range, the ATACR 5-25x eye relief of 3.54 inches is not as forgiving, so you need to set up the rifle to fit you properly.

The ATACR 5-25x56mm is packed full of features like its fully multi-coated extra-low dispersion glass (ED glass) which results in superb light transmission and clear, crisp sight picture at near and far distances.

As the premium level tactical riflescope, Nightforce ATACR features exposed elevation turret and capped windage adjustment knob to prevent accidental adjustment in the field.

As you would expect from this top-end .17 HMR scope values at turrets and reticles are always matching, regardless of whether they are MOA or MIL. Since our model`s name contains the letters ˝F1˝, the MOAR reticle is set in the first focal plane. MOAR crosshair is MOA-based reticle extremely accurate range-finding and hold-offs.

The parallax adjustment knob s coupled with DigIllum digital reticle illumination button by only pushing that button you can adjust brightness or change the illumination from red to green.

With up to 120 MOA of elevation adjustment and 5x power ratio, this ATACR riflescope can cover virtually any situation. Utilizing an integrated Power Throw Lever (PTL) for making a fast magnification adjustment, the Nightforce ATACR 5-25x magnification range negates the need for additional optics to fill specific magnification needs.

9. Swarovski Z3 4-12x50mm Riflescope

A name Swarovski is well-known to every gun enthusiasts on the planet, especially those who appreciate tried and tested optics. The Z3 line from Swarovski is the natural successor to their old Swarovski 6×42 and it is the forerunner to the newer Z5 and Z6i lines.

With its trim profile and clean, unobtrusive look, the Z3 4-12X50 mm riflescope is perfectly complementing traditional mountain rifles and today`s lightweight rifles without representing a burden to the hunter.

Even with an objective lens of 50 mm diameter, its slim construction allows Z3 to be mounted close to the barrel making it suitable for virtually every type of firearm.

The Z3`s 3x zoom factor and versatile 4x-12x magnification range tend to replace classic 3-9x scopes, enabling shooters to use this Swarovski for Varmint hunting, big game hunting, target shooting or tactical use.

Unlike other Swarovski series, the Z3 line is configured with a 1.0″ main tube, but even in the 1-inch class with the help of fully multicoated lenses, you will be able to see crystal clear images that are unrivaled in the optics industry.

Applying a meticulous nitrogen-purging process, the entire riflescope is fully waterproof and fogproof. Additionally, all exterior lens surfaces have been covered with a scratch-resistant Shower Door protective coating.

The Z3 4-12x50mm maybe not the flagship line from Swarovski, but it offers sizeable 50mm objective diameter lens, 12X power and the ballistic turret (BT mark) making it an excellent combo for poor light conditions and longer distances.

It is available with two different reticles, Plex, a standard duplex style and 4A, Swarovski’s windage compensation reticles. While both of them are set in the second focal plane, unfortunately, they are non-illuminated. The low-profile, capped turrets offer ¼ MOA value click-stop correction and the parallax correction is factory preset at 100 meters.

This very compact and a lightweight construction Swarovski 17 HMR scope represent the entry level into the world of high-end optics brands, but surprisingly it’s not going to cost you an arm and a leg. Actually, the Z3 is half the price of the newer Z5i and Z6i series.

10. Steiner GS3 Review: 2-10x42mm Scopes

Steiner is a relatively new company in the industry, but they have built a world-class reputation for producing binoculars and riflescopes that are rock steady shot after shot, and are crystal clear.

A stout, but compact design of the Steiner GS3 line compromises of five models. Our candidate for the .17HMR rifle is 2-10x42mm riflescope, the smallest version built on a 30mm tube milled from solid aluminum stock as others and featuring a 5X zoom range and nitrogen-filled housing to keep a fog-proof and waterproof capability.

The selling point of the Steiner GS3 (Game Sensing) 17 HMR scopes is their proprietary CAT (color-adjusted transmission) lens coating developed mainly for hunting applications. Whereas the Steiner calls these “Game Sensing Coating”, the lenses treated with CAT multi-coatings amplify contrast in the peak human vision sensitivity range with apparently emphasized reddish colors.

The GS3 is Steiner’s lower-priced line but its 5 times range allows you are hunting from brush countries to the vast open areas without the need for another scope. In addition, the 2-10×42 GS3 riflescope sports the 42mm objective, which offers more than adequate visibility in most lighting conditions.

The Steiner GS3 riflescopes come with two bullet-drop compensating reticle types called S1 and S7. We prefer the S1 for its simplicity since in the field this multi-point “Christmas tree” reticle presents a clear, no-fuss sight picture without cluttering the sight window.

The capped, low profile knobs for windage and elevation are resettable and provide 70 MOA elevation adjustments and windage adjustments with a 1/4 MOA point impact correction.

The eye relief of 3.5 to 4.3″ is very generous throughout the whole magnification range, which can be easily adjusted via a small lever on the zoom ring.

What is the Effective Range of a 17 HMR?

The Hornady Magnum Rimfire replaced the 5mm Remington Magnum Rimfire round to mimic the ballistics. Then they took it even further, taking the .22 Magnum shell, and made it smaller creating the .17 caliber bullet and made the weight 17 grains.

By doing, this Hornady can push the muzzle velocity to 2,550 feet per second. Now with this mind, what is the effective range of the 17 HMR?

It all depends on what the outcome is, and what range is sufficient for you. A fact is that you can shoot varmint using the 17 HMR out to 400-yards depending on the wind condition.

However, to achieve this, you need loads of skill, and the majority of hunters reach out to 300-yards.

.17 HMR Scope Magnification Requirements:

There are many things to consider in finding a great scope for your 17 HMR. First off, you need excellent magnification power when hunting for varmint and small game.

Furthermore, it needs an excellent objective lens diameter when hunting at low light conditions. Alternatively, it needs to have a durable construction. However, when it comes to magnification power, you need variable power between 3-9X and 4-16X and made for hunting small game.

On the other hand, if you want to keep the good meat and need to make headshots, you need to be able to zoom in precisely. For this, you need a 9-14X to take the shot while a 5-10X helps scan the perimeter of your target.


There is a myriad of the best scope for 17 HMR purpose-built for .17hmr rifles and range from cheap junk to some of the best, high end and expensive scopes available. However, not all rimfire optics make the proper choice for .17HMR-chambered firearms.

In the above article, we have made a short guide to the middle- and high-class telescopic sights adequate for almost any possible situation, rifle owner could be engaged.

MOA Range Estimation with your Riflescope

How to Range a target using MOA

At the moment the bullet leaves the muzzle of a barrel, its trajectory (or path) is somewhat straight, but as it continues to fly, its path becomes an arc.

While a bullet accelerates within a barrel owing to rifling, the moment it leaves the muzzle, it loses energy and slows down as the distance grows, partly because of gravity, air resistance and wind drifts.

In other words, at some distance, which is usually 100 yards, the bullet begins to drop below the straight path. And the drop grows larger as the distance increases. The extent of drop depends on the behavior of your gun and cartridge.

In some, the bullet drop is larger at the same distance. Larger rounds seem to have bigger drops than smaller counterparts. For example, consider the extent of drop of .308 Winchester round compared to a smaller round like .2.

Anything greater than 300 yards is considered long-range, although it starts at between 500 yards and 1000 yards, depending on the experience and sight of the shooter.

The effects of bullet drop and wind drifts become more apparent with distance. That’s partly why the margin of error is bigger at greater distances. For a long-range shooter, it’s crucial to make hold-overs and hold-offs.

To compensate for bullet drop, you must tilt the barrel upwards when you fire rounds. Technically, this is holding over (the barrel). But there are crosswinds, which can sway your bullet from side to side.

These crosswinds have different values, which range between 0 and over 10 miles per hour (we are going to consider how to gauge wind speed and direction later in this article). You must account for wind drifts if you want to shoot on a windy day.

To compensate for wind drifts, you must know the direction and strength of wind. Then, you can hold off, or make necessary hold-offs (shooting against the wind direction).

Fortunately, you no longer have to make these adjustments manually. With the aid of a good scope, you can make necessary adjustments, but only if you understand what hash marks (or sub-tensions) on your reticle and dials on your turret mean.

There are different types of reticles, but the most popular ones include minute of angle (MOA) and milli-radians (milrad).

However, the focus of this article is MOA: what it is and how to range your targets on MOA scope. Let’s learn more.

What’s Minute of Angle (MOA)

To understand the minute of angle, let’s consider an hour.

One hour has 60 minutes. Hence, a minute of an hour is one-sixtieth (1/60) of an hour. Then, what about a minute of what angle?

A minute of a degree.

But there are 60 minutes in a degree. Therefore, a minute of a degree is one-sixtieth of a degree (1/60°). And just as in time, one minute has 60 seconds; hence, there a second of an angle is 1/3600°.

You’ll cover 360 degrees going round a circle. Therefore, if you go round a full circle you’ll cover 21,600 minutes (1,296,000 seconds).

How to Understand Minute of Angle?

Consider an arc of a circle, which subtends an angle of 1/60° at the center. This angle is too narrow to measure using a protractor, though, but we can imagine.

The arc is a curved distance between two points on the circumference. When you draw a line from either point to the center of the circle, the length of the line gives you the radius. Both lines converge at the center but diverge at the circumference to form an arc.

The straight distance between the two points is the chord – it’s what we’re interested in when determining the size of targets and range. The chord and the arc subtend the same angle at the center: 1/60°.

So, how does this concept apply to hunting?

You want to determine the distance between you and the target: the range, right?

Imagine your vantage point is the center of the circle. When you drop a perpendicular from the center, it’ll divide the chord into two equal parts. The perpendicular is the range (the distance between you and the target).

Interestingly, the perpendicular also divides the angle subtended at the center by the chord, which, in this case, is 1/60°. Thus, the angle between the radius and the perpendicular (range) is 1/120 °.

Now, imagine that you’re firing shots from your vantage point. Your position is the tip of a cone whose size ever increases with distance.

At a particular target distance, the diameter of the circular part of the cone is equal to the chord of the circle that subtends1 MOA at your position. This principle is applicable in making corrections for windage and elevation in scopes (we’ll see that later on).

Now, let’s go back to basic trigonometry (you’ll need it for long-range shooting).

We’re interested in the length of the chord, but we can only find half its length using trigonometry. To do that, we need to find the tangent of 1/120 °.

The side opposite to the angle is half of the chord. The adjacent side to the angle is the range.

Let’s take the range to be 100 yards.

We want to find the length of the opposite side to the angle (x).

But, 1 yard=36 inches

Therefore, x=0.01454 ×36=0.5236 inches (rounded off to 4 sf)

Hence, the length of the chord = 2x = 1.0471 inches (rounded off to 4 decimal places)

So, why is 1.047” significant?

It’s because it’s a length (chord) that subtends 1 MOA at the center (which is your vantage point, by the way).

Thus, famously, 1 MOA is equivalent to 1.047” at 100 yards.

And the beauty of this angular measurement is that it’s independent of the range.

As in, an angle doesn’t change with range, but the chord grows longer in proportion to the distance.

At 200 yards, 1 MOA is 2.094”. At 300 yards, it’s 3.141”, and so forth.

MOA ​Range (yards) ​Divergence (inches)
​1 ​100 ​1.047”
​1 ​200 ​2.094”
​1 ​300 ​3.141”
​1 ​400 ​4.188”
​1 ​500 ​5.235”
​1 ​600 ​6.282”
​1 ​700 ​7.329”
​1 ​800 ​8.376”
​1 ​900 ​9.423”
​1 ​1000 ​10.47”

Notice that that divergence increases with range.

Most shooters prefer to round off the divergence. For example, 1 MOA at 300 yards is 3”. However, at longer ranges, the margin of error increases significantly.

Hence, for distances longer than 500 yards, it’s important to not round off. At 1000 yards, an error of .47 is huge and can affect your accuracy by a big margin.

Now that you’ve understood what MOA is, let’s see why it’s used in scopes and what they mean for your turret adjustment.

Most scopes come as ¼ MOA. That means “at 100 yards, ¼ MOA is equal to ¼ inches”. But you’ll find some scopes calibrated as 1 MOA, 3 MOA and 6 MOA.

​What MOA Means for Long-range Shooting

As said, the bullet’s downrange flight doesn’t follow a straight trajectory – the bullet travels in a curve or an arc.Wind swings bullet sideways as it drops under the influence of gravity while at the same time overcoming air resistance.

And so, when you fire a shot, the bullet will fly out of a muzzle following a straight curve initially, but when it hits a 100-yard mark, it begins to drop consistently until it hits the ground. Then there is wind drifts to account for.

The extent of drop and drift is of interest to a long-range shooter, because it affects your precision.

It’s important to note that you zero your rifle before going outdoors to hunt or shoot targets.

​When zeroing, you:

  • ​Perform bore sighting
  • ​Set up known targets e.g. bullseye, at a chosen distance, say, 25 yards
  • ​Fire a three-shot groupingat a bullseyeas accurately as possible
  • ​Note the spacing between the point of impacts of the three shots
  • ​Measure the average deviation (in inches) from target – it could be above, below, left or right of the bullseye
  • ​Make corrections for windage and elevation based on the correction
  • ​Fire a three-shot grouping again
  • ​Repeat the procedure if there’s deviation

It’s also during zeroing that you’ll understand the behavior of your cartridge and gun. That is, you’ll understand what deviation from target your round would make at a certain longer-range distance than 100 yards.

Let’s say you fire a shot during zeroing, and the bullet hits 2” below and 6” left of the target or bullseye at 300 yards. What does this mean?

You need to move the point of impact of the bullet 2” above and 6” right to be dead-on at 300 yards.

1 MOA at 100 yards is 1”. Thus, 1 MOA at 300 yards is 300 yards.

If you’ve got a scope with a ¼MOA calibration, then ¼ MOA at 100 yards is ¼”.

¼ MOA at 300 yards would be ¾”.

​How many ¾” pieces fit in 2”?

So, when you round off, you get approximately 3 pieces.

Thus, to move the point of impact 2” above, you need to rotate the turret to hear 3 clicks (or ticks) to make that correction.

​How many ¾” pieces fit 6”?

You need 8 chunks. That means you need to rotate the turret to hear 8 clicks to make that correction.

Corrections for Wind Outdoors After Zeroing

After zeroing, you go outdoors to shoot targets or hunt. You mustn’t postpone hunting or target shooting on a windy day. It’s important to learn how to make windage corrections if you want be a consistent hunter.

Crosswinds have different values. Winds that run in a perpendicular direction to the bullet trajectory can have a significant impact in moving it away from the target in that direction.

Half-value winds move at a particular direction to the bullet path, and their impact on direction may not be significant.

But how do you gauge the strength and speed of a crosswind?

A reliable way is to find a mirage using your scope. And the good thing is that a mirage would be present as long as heat is present.

A mirage with a vertical heat wave indicates a weak crosswind. Experts say that wind speed could be between 0 and 3 miles per hour.

As the heat wave of the mirage becomes more diagonal, so is the wind strength.

​Speed can range between 5 and 7 mph. A completely horizontal heat wave indicates a strong crosswind whose speed is beyond 10 mph.

​The constant depends on range, and reduces with range. Over 500 yards, a constant of 10. Let’s take a look constants used for each yards.

Range (yards) ​Constant
​100 ​14
​200 ​13
​300 ​12
​400 ​11
500 and beyond ​10

If you know wind speed and range, you can determine MOA.

For example, if you estimate that a crosswind has a speed of 6 mph and your target is 400 yards away, how far will your bullet deviate from the target?

You need to hear 9 clicks to make the correction.

​How to Estimate Distance to Target Using Your MOA Scope

Reticles on MOA scopes have hash marks or sub-tensions. You can use these calibrations to estimate the distance between you and your target. The marks are scales you find on your ruler, caliper or screw gauge, but, instead of being in cm or mm, they are in MOAs.

Most hunting scopes lack hash marks. However, for a hunter who wants to take down game at long-range, precision is important.

You must have previous knowledge of the average size or height of your target. For example, if you intend to shoot deer at a distance of 600 yards, you must know that deer stand 18” high on average. The width is usually half of the height. Hence, in this case, it’s 9”.

Ensure the origin (center) of the reticle is in contact with your target. Then, you can begin counting the hash marks.

For example, if you determined that deer’s height is 2.6 MOA on your scope’s reticle, the width must be 1.3 MOA.

​Use the W.E.R.M formula,

​So, the deer is about 661 yards away from your position.

​Use Cosines to Resolve Uphill or Downhill Distances

​Sometimes, the target is uphill or downhill from your position. In most cases, your line of sight; hence, scope won’t always straight toward the target. Your barrel doesn’t have to be in line with your scope (making turret adjustments tilts the barrel).

  • ​Determine as usual distance to your target
  • ​Determine the angle between the horizontal distance to the target and the hypotenuse
  • ​Resolve that distance by multiplying it with cosine of the angle

​Performance of MOA at Long-range Shooting

At a longer-range than 500 yards, rounding off values of bullet deviation can make you miss a target by a mile, because the margin of error increases. Most shooters hate the math and decimals. However, if you want to take down targets at long-range, you’ll need to do math – lots of it.

In a fast-paced environment that requires quick reaction, MOA calculations can be a big letdown, considering time you’ll take. It can be challenging to do the calculations for yardages, which don’t carry zero.

Unfortunately, many hunters aren’t good in math. Unit conversion can be a big problem if your scope uses MOA and your turret is in milli-radians. Always ensure your scope and turret are all in MOA or otherwise, if you’ve got a spotter, ensure she uses the same units.

​For a tactical (precision) shooter, like a sniper or spotter, who doesn’t need to switch positions (because he’s hidden), MOA is king.

Use a MOA calculator

Once you understand the math behind the calculations needed for MOA shooting, it’s best to use a MOA calculator, to avoid spending time calculating instead of focusing on the game.

More information

Check out this NSSF video with more information about MOA math:


MOA reticles are suitable for tactical or precision shooting. It means you’re not shifting positions. There’s lots of math involved, and that’s a problem in and on itself. You’ll be in problems if a target spots you from a distance, and especially if that target is dangerous and wants to take you down, too (as in case of snipers). If that target is close enough, it’ll take you down before you’ve even completed your calculations, unless you’re a very quick mathematical thinker.

It’s advisable that before you go outdoors at great distances, you’ve a record of the bullet drops at various distances, so you don’t have to calculate them again. All you need to worry about is making corrections for crosswinds. ​Bottom line: MOA favors long-range shooters or hunters who’re hidden and who’ve time to make corrections to take down targets precisely.

Best Scope for the 300 win mag

Top 10 .300 Win Mag Scopes in Our List

Since its introduction in 1963, the 300 win mag (aka 300 WM or 300 Winchester Magnum) has become one of the most popular rounds that have surpassed the popularity of even an American icon – .30-06 Springfield. No wonder, because the same energy that venerable .30-06 delivered to 100 yards, the new .300 Win Mag, submitted to target at 200 yards. From the point of usability, though a .300 Winchester Magnum became standard military sniper round, it really shines when it comes to the big game hunting. The reason is simple: this flat shooting, the potent round is perfect for both bush work and long-range hunting of medium to large-sized game.

A hunter carrying a .300 Winchester Magnum rifle should consider several important features before he decides what the best scope for 300 Win Mag would be. Although many arms enthusiasts accentuate the long-range potential of the 300WM, without a doubt this versatile round can be used effectively in close range big game hunting where low magnification riflescopes with a wide range of variable power like 1-4x or 2-7x seem to be a suitable choice. For hunting and shooting on long-range distances, magnification will depend on the desired range and target size, but there is rarely any need to go beyond 16x.

Of course, .300 Winchester Magnum rifles are quite capable of engaging even more distanced targets, so the elite marksmen may require high powered top-quality optics for extreme long-range work that will provide the utmost confidence and precision. An essential feature for any scopes is durability, that is, the ability to hold zero, lens and body endurance and precise turrets adjustment over time. This feature is at the top of the list when shopping .300 Scopes for rifles chambered in such powerful calibers. Hard hitting .300 Win Mag delivers tremendous recoil, so selecting the scope with right eye relief is critical.

An appropriate eye relief compatible with the .300 Winchester Magnum should between 3.5” – 4.2” to keep your eyes and eyebrows safely. There are many other features which should be considered when selecting a riflescope for .300 Win Mag such as tube size, type of reticles, parallax option, glass and lens coating but they depend on your preference and budget. Taking into account all of these factors we have omitted the inexpensive entry-level scopes and prepared this .300 Win mag Scope Review with proven and worthwhile scopes for .300 Winchester Magnum rifles.

1. Steiner P4Xi 1-4×24 P3TR

Steiner P4Xi 1-4×24 is an award-winning optics designed for use in close quarters; both eyes open shooting with a true 1x, to mid-range shots.

Though belongs to the series of low- to mid-range tactical scopes, this Steiner tactical optics allows shooter 400-yard accuracy at the highest magnification. Initially, the P4Xi riflescope was designed to be a first-rate choice for patrol rifles and AR platforms, but soon its supremely functional illuminated reticle recommended it as an excellent choice for self-defense, hunting and 3-gun-type competitions.

The Steiner’s 1x-4x scope comes with high-contrast optics and superior lens coatings to deliver outstanding results under poor light conditions.

The scope anodized aluminum housing is built from the one-piece 30mm tube for increased strength and shock-resistant construction so it can take some abuse. As a standard, the scope body is nitrogen purged for waterproof and fogproof ability.

The new Steiner P4Xi 1-4×24 tactical scope boasts capped, low-profile turrets with 1/2 MOA impact point correction and a maximum of 100 MOA windage and elevation adjustments.

According to Steiner, generous eye box is paired with descent 3.5 to 4 inches of the eye relief.

While it comes with illuminated P3TR reticle, a Steiner’s rendition of a BDC reticle calibrated to handle with both 5.56 and 7.62 NATO, the P4Xi 1-4×24 offers an excellent upgrade for the .300 Win Mag rifles utilized in stalking and driven hunting.

2. Burris MTAC 1-4×24

The 1-4×24 has proven to be the perfect optics for short-range hunting, stalking or driven hunts and Burris MTAC 1-4×24 is no exception. This Burris scope is ideal for big game hunting and situations which require the hunter to acquire the target rapidly.

With its wide field of view and Ballistic CQ reticle, the 1-4x24mm MTAC riflescope checks all the boxes needed to be the best scope for 300 Win Mag.

The resilient MTAC 1-4x24mm is made of tough 30mm, solid 1-piece aluminium tube and features double internal spring-tension system for resistance to shock, recoil, and vibrations.

In addition, the scope tube is nitrogen-filled to prevent glasses from fog in cold and rain so that it can handle the harshest shooting environments.

The Burris MTAC 1-4x comes with a Hi-Lume fully multi-coated optics for glare reduction and light gathering for low light situations.

The sleek and snag-free profile is also contributed by the finger-adjustable MTAC mil-rad target knobs that offer 130 MOA Windage and elevation adjustments in 1/2 MOA clicks.

Set in the rear focal plane (SFP) illuminated Ballistic CQ reticle will enable you quick engagement of close targets or precise aiming out to 600 yards with trajectory compensation for the 5.56 mm and 7.62 mm cartridges.

For even greater versatility, this compact model is offered with a red dot sight, making this superb combo solution for 3-gun shooters, law enforcement or big-game stalking.

3. Vortex Diamondback 4-12X40 BDC

Another extremely popular riflescope from Vortex Optics is a Vortex Diamondback 4-12X40, a choice of big-game hunters, varminters and other long-range shooters.

Since this lower priced Vortex scope doesn’t skip out on using a higher-end optic and mechanical components it definitely deserves its place in this .300 Win mag Scope Review.

Featuring 3x zoom ratio and almost ideal 4-12x amount of magnification, Diamondback 4-12X40 is the real successor of classic 3-9×40 universal riflescopes.

Solid single-piece aircraft-grade aluminum alloy construction makes the Vortex Diamondback highly resistant to magnum recoil and a very tough scope that can withstand the hunting in harsh conditions.

The Diamondback 4-12x40mm owes rugged reliability also to the precision glide erector system placed in a one-inch aluminum housing that is O-ring sealed to stop moisture and argon purged for fogproof performance.

Glasses of the scope are fully multi-coated to allow for maximum light transmission and provide crystal clear, tack-sharp images.

Turrets on this Vortex come with caps and feature a zero-reset option. While the scope comes with ballistic Dead-Hold BDC MOA reticle, the matching turrets allow for a ¼ MOA adjustment for each click.

However, this reasonably priced scope has a relatively short maximum eye relief of only 3.1 inches that can be pretty unforgiving and difficult to manage, especially with larger caliber weapons.

4. Vortex Crossfire II 6-18X44 Ao BDC

The new improved Vortex Crossfire II line consists of many configurations and 6-18×44 Adjustable Objective scope is one more suitable for your .300 Win Mag rifle.

This model features a long eye relief ranging from 3.7 to 4.4 inches and an ultra-forgiving eye box for quick and easy target acquiring.

The Crossfire II comes with an adjustable objective (AO) that provides parallax removal from 10 yards to Infinity.

Vortex Crossfire II 6-18X44mm also provides redesigned, finger adjustable, zero resettable low-profile capped turrets graduated in 1/4 MOA per click. The scope maximum windage and elevation adjustments are 50 MOA.

The ample magnification is suitable for most hunting and target shooting distances while the fully multi-coated glasses provide good and decent picture quality for the price. The mid-sized 44mm objective lens offers a solid light transmission and clear sight picture for hunting in good conditions.

This basic and functional second focal plane scope is built on 1″ the central tube from single-piece aircraft-grade aluminum billet to ensure strength and shockproof performance needed for the .300 Scopes.

The aluminum housing is nitrogen purged and O-ring sealed for waterproof and fogproof performance.

The Vortex model CF2-31033 comes with ballistic non-illuminated Dead-Hold BDC (MOA) reticle designed to eliminate guesswork on holdover and windage corrections.

This affordable optic is great riflescope for somebody starting to play with the .300 Win Mag, offering perfect lens alignment even after intense recoil of thirty magnums.

5. Swarovski Z3 3-10×42 Plexex

Up next, we have got another very high-quality optics brand which coming across the pond. Actually, Swarovski Z3 line of riflescopes are manufactured at Swarovski North America and if you are looking for a less expensive Swaro riflescope, then the Z3 3-10X42 Plex could be an excellent choice.

Utilizing 3x power ratio, 10X magnification and 42mm objective lens, the Z3 3-10x is designed for low to middle range use making it well suited to many hunting situations.

As an upgrade of famous Swarovski AV-series of scopes, the compact Z3 3-10x42mm riflescope provides better light transmission and excellent twilight performance due to the anti-reflective SWAROTOP coatings. All external glass surfaces are coated with scratch-resistant SWARODUR coating.

This streamlined model owes its rugged and slim construction to the 1-inch lightweight alloy central tube, which is thoroughly water and fogproof thanks to a meticulous nitrogen-purging process.

This Z3 riflescope is configured with low-profile turrets offering .25 MOA click-stop corrections and maximal adjustment range of 58 MOA for both windage and elevation correction. This Swarovski precision optical instrument comes with a Plex reticle equipped with four long; medium weight tapered posts, excellent for aiming against dark backgrounds.

Although some users are complaining that Z3 3-10×42 does not have enough eye relief, its 3.54-inch eye relief allows for reasonable concentration on the shot.

The slim, sturdy, reliable Z3 3-10×42 riflescope is a very quality proposal for the .300 scopes because Swarovski stands out for its robust optics with its lightweight design.

6. Athlon Argos BTR 8-34×56 FFP

Athlon Optics gave a perfect option for those seeking a first focal plane scope with illuminated reticle. This solution is called Argos BTR 8-34×56 FFP model, a riflescope packed with features, usually found only on scopes that are more expensive.

All Athlon BTR (Bright Tactical Reticle) scopes have reticles set in the first focal plane and 4 times magnification range.

Using 56mm optic lenses, the Argos BTR has fully multi-coatings on inner lenses for vivid colors image at dusk, dawn, better light transmission, and contrast. The outer lens has protective Athlon`s XPL coating to ensure glasses clear from dirt or grease and to protect them from scratches.

This long-range optics comes with illuminated MILRAD reticle named APMR FFP IR MIL reticle. Unlike other reticles, Athlon Mil Reticle features the “Christmas Tree” pattern, which is not so complicated and busy. There is the choice of reticles, but they all are matched with Mil/Mil or MOA/MOA turrets.

The exposed style turrets are placed on 30mm housing and provide total elevation and windage adjustment of 18 MIL or 60MOA, which is preferably a small adjustment range

While the Athlon Optics Argos 8-34×56 is tailored for the newbies in the world of tactical shooting, it indeed suffers from some of the weaknesses such as “tight” eye relief of 3.3 inches or somewhat mushy turrets that do not have a firm click between adjustments.

Anyway, the Argos BTR tactical scope is tagged as one of the best scopes for 300 Win Mag and one of the best deal in this price range of ballistic optics.

7. Nightforce BEAST 5-25×56 F1

The “Best Example of Advanced Scope Technology” or B.E.A.S.T. for short is our next candidate in this .300 Win mag scope review. Initially designed for the Government end-users and designed according to military specifications, the B.E.A.S.T. from Nightforce was made without cost in mind, and purely constructed for performance.

Built around huge 34mm body tube and featuring 56mm objective lens the B.E.A.S.T. is a big scope but at just 15.37″ length, it is very compact compared to its power.

The B.E.A.S.T.’s 5-25x magnification range provides versatility indispensable on today’s battlefield where elite sharpshooters are typically looking for fast, precise adjustments in rugged scope for dynamic shooting environments.

The Nightforce Optics B.E.A.S.T. 5-25×56 riflescope bears in its designation F1 mark, which means it has a first focal plane located Mil-R reticle particularly effective for target holdovers and effective first-shot placement as well as quick follow-up shots. The reticle is illuminated using Nightforce DigIllum digital technology.

Another highlight is its i4F intelligent four-function elevation control with patented Nightforce ZeroStop system and new 360-degree brake control to secure elevation adjustments.

Elevation tactical type turret sports the primary elevation knob with .50 MOA/.2 Mil-Radian increments and an integral fine adjustment lever allows further elevation adjustments in .25 MOA/.1 Mil-Radian increments.

Utilizing XtremeSpeed adjustments shooter has an available maximum of 120MOA/34.9 Mil-Radian for elevation and 80 MOA/ 23.7 Mil-Radian for windage adjustment.

The Nightforce B.E.A.S.T. 5-25x56mm is a rifle sight with multi-scope capability applicable to any tactical environment, which provides distinct advantages to the accomplished shooter.

8. Leupold VX-6HD 3-18×50

Launching the improved iteration of their VX-6HD 3-18×50 scopes, Leupold is following the newest trend to the evolving wants of American hunters to take game at long range. Leupold VX-6HD 3-18×50 is mainly designed with long range in mind, but its 6:1 zoom ratio offers the versatility a hunter may want for both short- and long-range shots.

This top-of-the-line hunting optics is packed with features making it one of the Best Scope for 300 Win Mag. While the robust 30mm scope body has thicker, stronger walls, it also provides more elevation and windage adjustment range. The VX-6HD has a maximum adjustment range of 75 MOA with a 1/4 MOA impact point correction

The VX-6 comes with exposed, resettable, locking elevation and windage dials marked in .25-MOA increments, to match the 2nd focal plane FireDot Duplex illuminated the reticle.

Another noticeable feature of this optic is the High-Definition lenses and the Twilight Max Light Management System that enhances resolution, maximizes transmission of the light and balances other colors to provide contrast.

Besides, all external lenses received Leupold’s ultra-hard DiamondCoat2 protective coating, whereas the scope’s interior is purged and filled with Leupold’s Argon/Krypton gas blend and sealed.

Thus, with optics protected from scratches and housing crafted from an ultra-durable and lightweight 6061-T6 aluminum alloy, Leopold’s 3-18×50 VX-6HD provides hunters bright and crisp views throughout all shooting hours.

The only complaint is that the rather large eyepiece can interfere with the handling of the rifle’s bolt handle when cycling rounds.

9. Bushnell Elite 1.25-4×24

Bushnell Elite 4200 E1224 1.25-4 x 24 Rifle Scope

Despite its low magnification range, this Bushnell Elite certainly belongs to this .300 Win Mag Scope Review since it has the ability to withstand the effects of the recoil because of the Magnum recoil-proof design.

Its robustness is visible at every step, starting with one-piece 30mm, main tube recoil tested with 10,000 rounds of 375 H&H, larger body dimensions, up to the heavy overall weight of 15 ounces, which is a noticeable heavier than other brands.

The Elite 4200 1.25-4×24 optics is completely protected with Bushnell`s patented hydrophobic (water-repellant) lens coating called Rainguard HD. Their fully multi-coated optics combined with this protection also provides a useful anti-fog technology and a higher percentage of light transmission for the clearest, brightest picture.

This compact, low profile riflescope from Bushnell with 1.25-4x magnification and 24mm objective lens is perfect for close- to medium-range shooting in the harshest environment.

The Bushnell Elite 4200 1.25-4×24 sports a 4A reticle with an illuminated dot, which is about ¼ MOA at 100 yards.

However, the user’s level of comfort is somewhat limited with a 3.3″ eye-relief, which may not be of much use if you are shooting hard kicking rifles like .300 Win Mag.

10. Nikon M-223 3-12x42SF BDC

The growing popularity of AR weapon platforms has affected Nikon to develop two new lines of riflescopes explicitly calibrated for the .223 Remington cartridge: the M-223 and P-223. At the very beginning, we will clarify that these riflescopes really shine on an AR-15, but they will also work on any rifle chambered in other calibers.

This 3-12x42SF version of the M-223 comes with second focal plane (SF) BDC 600 ballistic reticle matched with Rapid Action Turret technology calibrated for the ballistic data of a 55 gr 223 bullet, which allows you accurate shooting anywhere from zero out to 600 yards.

While the BDC 600 reticle for the .223 Remington is also usable with the .308 Winchester, for other calibers, you will have to ignore the marked elevations and go to the scale on the elevation turret.

The new M-223 riflescopes feature Nikon’s famous Ultra ClearCoat optical system with fully multicoated lenses to provide the hunter with a bright, sharp, incredibly flat sight picture.

The M-223 3-12×42 boasts a very favorable eye relief of right around 4 to 3.7 inches depend on magnification while the usable eyebox shrinks significantly towards the top end of the magnification.

The Nikon M-223 3-12x42SF riflescope provides the shooter with an impressive 4-zoom range and integrates the same level of quality as the flagship Monarch series of scopes.

Scope body is nitrogen-filled and O-ring sealed for protection against moisture, shock, and fog. The Nikon M-223 3-12x42SF is built of one-piece main body tube of 1-inch diameter for minimum weight and maximum durability.

The quest for the best scope for .300 Win Mag involves an elimination process that begins with taking into account the type of shooting you’re dealing with, because switching between long, medium, and short ranges require optics that are adjustable and optimized for every distance.

Ultimately, it all comes down to your own knowledge of the topic and preference of certain brands. However, you should stay out of cheap scopes under $100 as they probably will not withstand the punishing demands of the .300 Winchester Magnum.

5 Best Thermal Scopes

What are the best thermal scopes for the money?

When you search for the best thermal scopes for the money on the web, you’ll discover that websites have different choices. And so, what constitutes ‘best’ becomes a hot topic of discussion. We understand how tough it can be to pick from an endless list of products that continue to flood the market every day. Wallow in confusion no more while choosing a rifle scope.

Go ahead and read our guide to understand what are the best scopes for your need. Discover why your situation and budget determines your choice. In this guide, we’ve picked a few choices based on our experience and the top variables to consider when buying a new thermal scope. Of course, you don’t have to choose what we’ve picked.

1. ATN Thor HD 384

If there’s one scope that can assist you to spot targets that hide behind light cover (e.g. brush, thicket, grass, etc.), whether it be a predator, pest, or hog, this is it. It’s simply one of the best thermal scopes for the money.

On top of that, whether it’s a misty, foggy, dusty or snowy condition screening your target, you can rely on ATN Thor to sense its heat signature irrespective of the time of the day.

With a thermal sensor resolution of 384×288 and a display resolution of 640×480, you can zoom in on your targets without having to worry about images getting blurry at a higher magnification.

What makes ATN Thor versatile is its variety of magnifications to choose from. And so, smaller, lighter optics can serve a hunter who moves for miles and whose main concern is weight.

Whilst bigger, heavier optics can serve a law enforcement officer who doesn’t need to move for long distances. Besides, the thermal scope is easy to carry as it weighs 2 lbs.(1000 g).

And if you’re the type that wants to watch your hunting expedition later, Recoil Activated Video (RAV) enables you to record high-definition (HD) images.

ATN Thor also has a built-in rangefinder and a ballistic calculator to determine the target range and a bullet’s point of impact, respectively. It’s one of the best thermal scope for coyote hunting.

2. ATN Thor 4 Smart Thermal Scope

A contemporary of ATN Thor, this Generation 4 scope is an upgrade with digital zoom. When you zoom in or out, the optics don’t adjust, although the large display resolution of 1280×720 compensates for the low magnification range 1.25-5×.

What you gain is a large field of view even when you zoom in. Just as its predecessor, the thermal sensor resolution is decent.

At 384×288, it can serve you perfectly when you want to scan targets who are near. Whether it’s daytime or nighttime, you can quickly spot that coyote, hog, pest or varmint who hides behind a cover of mist, dust, fog or snow, whether it be in a bush, thicket or bush.

If you want to catch live action or record for later viewing, the scope has a camera embedded with RAV. What’s awesome, battery life lasts as long as you’re out there.

Furthermore, a ballistic calculator is present to save you from headaches of calculating wind, elevation, angle, temperature, humidity and other parameters, which affect bullet flight and point of impact.

But ATN’s smart thermal scope isn’t just ordinary, anyone with no shooting background can use it. The scope automatically constructs a crisp and clear heatmap or thermogram of the target whose shape and form is easy to make out.

3. ATN X-Sight 4K Pro

Whilst you’ve two magnification ranges to choose from – 3-14× and 5-20× — X-Sight 4K Pro remains an awesome camera for anyone who’s bootstrapped but wants to experience the thrill of hunting in poor light. We’ve included it in the list of the best thermal scopes for the money because it’s well balanced between price and quality.

The sensor resolution is extra-large, although the display resolution is smaller. In pitch darkness, though, for a camera that is more or less a night vision apparatus, the scope may be of little help, as it works to amplify the existing light conditions.

You don’t have to be a genius to use ATN’s X-Sight because the built-in rangefinder and ballistic calculator do all the math.

On top of it all, you can stream live or record hunting activities because Wi-Fi and RAV facilitate them. One thing is clear about ATN’s batteries – they have a decent life that can serve you as long as your hunting expedition lasts.

And so, X-sight can be great for a daytime and late afternoon hunting in a thick brush or forest where little light is available.

You can also carry it around the whole day, and your muscles won’t wear out, as it weighs 2.1 lbs. (1050 g). Not to mention, you can operate the scope in a cold or hot weather without any technical hiccup.

4. ATN Thor LT Thermal Rifle Scope

For many hunters, it can be difficult to wade through heavy vegetation where game normally hides. Sadly, the most sought-after game is nocturnal and hibernate during the day.

For ATN understands your concern. It doesn’t matter whether it’s pitch dark, snowy, dusty or foggy, Thor LT has a sensor that captures variable temperatures of the surrounding, displaying them in a vividly colorful thermogram.

And with that heatmap, you can easily identify what animal hides behind a thick cover – it can be a dangerous predator like a coyote, or a whitetail buck – your treasure target. With that in mind, you can choose your target wisely.

Whether it’s extremely hot or cold, your camera won’t break down. Weight is awesome, at 1.4 lbs. (650 g). You can hunt the whole day without the need to recharge or replace battery. Wielding Thor LT can help you beat predators and preys at their own game.

What’s particularly unique about this thermal scope is its “one shot zero,” which enables you to zero in simply by moving the center dot reticle to the first point of impact.

In that way, you conserve time and ammunition. Mounting to a 30mm ring of rifles is equally easy. ATN ensures you get all these features without breaking your bank.

5. Pulsar Core RXQ30V

Pulsar’s Core RXQ30V has an optical zoom instead of a digital zoom. And so, when you zoom in or out, the optics adjust.

With an optical diameter of 22mm and a magnification range of 1.6-6.4X, Core RXQ30V makes for a remarkable but expensive product. But the price is worth your money, especially if you want a durable scope.

For any hunter who tracks preys and predators for hundreds and thousands of yards, this is a perfect tool. Not only does the thermal scope capture heat signatures of targets present in pitch darkness and behind barriers, but its lightweight and compact design contributes to your speed and ease of handling, respectively.

Furthermore, its sensor resolution of 384×284 is neither too big nor too small – it’s just the right size for your money.

Even when you zoom in, the crispiness and clarity of the image remain at higher magnifications. And so, you may not need bigger optics and sensors, as Pulsar’s Core fulfils almost everything you desire for scanning targets at that price.

When it rains, your optics won’t fog up. Neither would water enter. What’s more, you can vary screen display between green sapphire and white/black-hot modes. In that way, you can scan targets for long periods without eye strain.

10 Best Rifle Scopes

Rifle Scope Comparison

If you’ve just bought an AR15 rifle, or are upgrading one you already have, you’ve probably wondered what are the best rifle scopes, and what contributes to deciding what makes one scope better than another. Well, the answer is rather complex and depends on a number of factors, including the type of gun you are shooting, your budget, the primary use you have for the scope, under what conditions you are using it for, and really just what feels best to you. The need of somebody who only shoots at tin cans in nice weather with a handgun will be radically different from that of a person hunting with a .308, in need of a powerful scope.

Best rifle scopes: our reviews

Yes, its a thing to be worried, how to find out the correct scope for a rifle that fits all of our needs within a budget.

In this review, our experts team pull out top ten most popular scopes from the current market that fits the budget and the requirements. Let’s read the explanation of the top picked scopes..

1. Vortex Razor HD GEN II Review – 4.5-27×56 FFP MOA

Perhaps one of the all time best rifle scopes made, the Vortex Razor HD is an extreme high end, long range tactical and hunting scope. We loved basically everything about it.

The illuminated reticle, first focal plane design, high density optics, a glass etched reticle, high quality construction for use even with heavy recoiling cartridges, easy to use and understand controls, including illumination and side parallax controls, lockable target turrets, and so much more

Much like the Vortex Viper we looked at a moment ago, the Vortex Razor HD is built to last, and to stand up to regular, hard use.

One big drawback of this scope is the oversized 56mm objective lens. At this size, finding scope rings can be difficult, and your selection will be somewhat limited.

We also have to come to grips with the fact this is a scope that costs more than even a high end precision rifle. In other words, this isn’t an optic you buy just to go deer hunting with on nice fall days.

This is a professional grade scope for people who fling lead at very long distances into little tiny groups for a living, or who have mastered the art of long range precision shooting.

Or are working very hard to master that art. Suitable for long range tactical or sport shooting, and hunting in extreme conditions at great distances, the Vortex Razor HD is a fine scope- for those who can afford it and make use of its many advanced features.

2. Steiner T5XI Review – 3-15×50

Another scope billed as “tactical” the Steiner T5Xi is a high end rifle scope that is perhaps best suited for target shooting over anything else.

Featuring a proprietary “Special Competition Reticle” that allows for more accurate shots, the T5Xi also has an illuminated glass etched reticle, 3-15 power magnification, and is advertised as a high quality, medium range scope.

One thing that stands out as problematic is the 34mm tube body. This off standard tube size will be difficult to source rings for, although they certain can be had.

The oversized tube will improve light transmission, and make for a clearer, crisper image, which is made even better with the large 50mm objective lens.

Steiner has built a scope that really is a good all around rifle scope. Suitable for benchrest shooting, hunting or even the much advertised “tactical” uses, you’d be hard pressed to find a better scope in this price and feature range.

We really like the compact nature of this scope. Often target scopes are long and ungainly, but Steiner managed to make a nice, more compact match target rifle scope by going with the large 34mm tube.

This probably is enough to justify the “tactical” moniker, and it certainly would be an excellent choice on a precision tactical rifle.

3. Vortex Viper PST GEN II – 5-25×50 FFP

The Vortex Viper PST Gen II is a very impressive scope. While the price tag might be offputting for some, we think the Vortex Viper justifies it with the many features.

While no scope is perfect, we find that the basic second focal plane construction allows for a higher grade scope at a lower price compared to other competitors.

Getting a first focal plane scope for this price is already a pretty good deal, and when you add in the advanced target turrets, side parallax adjustment, and other high end features, the Viper looks pretty darn good.

We really liked the attention to manufacturing detail with things like O-ring sealed and nitrogen purged construction, along with superior quality multi coated optics, and the incredible long range potential that comes from a 5-25×50 scope.

There are of course some downsides. Big scopes are not always best for all situations. This isn’t something you’d want to stick on your M4 style AR-15 for instance, and it’s a bit overkill for common hunting tasks.

It certainly excels as a long range target scope, but that also makes it a superior choice for a long range hunter, especially where distance shots are the rule, rather than the exception.

The Vortex Viper may also be at home on certain kinds of tactical or precision rifles.

Law enforcement agencies would be well advised to consider it as a scope on a sniper rifle, while private citizens who live in rural areas will appreciate the wide field of view and long range abilities when dealing with predatory animals or violent criminals.

All in all, despite a price tag around that of a halfway decent target or hunting rifle, there is an awful lot to love about this scope, and very little to dislike.

4. Leupold VXR 4-12x50mm Review

Leupold has been building fine rifle scopes for generations, and the VXR line of optics, represents some of the best rifle scope for the money that you can get anywhere.

These American made scopes are built to serve the needs of discerning hunters and target shooters.

Featuring an illuminated reticle, a modest 4-14 magnification with a 50mm objective lens, “one turn” fast focus, special nitrogen/argon gas filled tube, and much more.

What we liked was the overall simple design, which made this generalist scope suitable for people who do more than just one task with their gun.

The VXR really is capable of serving as a target scope, hunting scope, or a high powered tactical scope where such application is called for. Of course, as with any generalist design, it may be good at a great many things, but does not master any one of them.

This is ok though, as few shooters are so specialized as to require a one trick pony optic. In reality, Leupold built this to be an outstanding hunting scope, and an excellent all purpose scope. While the price is a bit high, you get what you pay for.

A Leupold scope is a lifetime investment that you can pass on to your children or grandchildren. The 4-14 magnification won’t give you serious reach out and touch something, but for the ranges most people shoot most guns at, it is all the scope you’ll ever need in this lifetime.

5. ​Nikon Monarch 3 Review: 6-24×50 BDC Scope

The Nikon Monarch offers a lot of the performance of a dedicated bench rest scope, like 6-24 magnification, and a generous 50mm objective lens.

However, it lacks some of the hyper precise external controls that typify the dedicated match target scope.

This is a good thing in this case, because what we are looking at here is really one of the best scopes for hunting. Fine adjustable target turrets and side parallax adjustment are great things when you are trying to make one hole groups.

However, it is a fact of life that a hunter or even a sniper really isn’t concerned with that extreme level of precision.

Of course these extreme specialization comes at a cost. What is optimized for one thing may not work as well for another.

This is because there are multiple inches wide targets on an animal that will result in a quick death. There is simply no reason to care about extreme accuracy when your target is six inches wide.

We like the reasonable price for the high quality construction, but it is high enough to pause over.

Given the price point this optic sells at, your really have to be a dedicated, long range hunter and have a rifle to match. Otherwise, you are investing in more optic than you really need.

That said, hunters who are looking for the ultimate hunting rifle scope would do well to pay close attention to the Nikon Monarch.

It should also work nicely for tactical shooters who need a rugged, no nonsense scope with some real reach out and touch something ability.

6. ​Athlon Argos BTR 6-24×50 FFP

The Athlon Argos is among the best rifle scopes for a budget. Extremely affordable and loaded with high dollar features, we were pleased with the illuminated, glass etched reticle, fast focus knob, parallax adjustment, side focus and more.

The Argos is an example of how to build an affordable scope that is packed with advanced features normally found on scopes costing three times as much.

We can see a careful attention to detail in all aspects of this scope, and are convinced it is an equal to comparable “big name” scopes.

The question then is what can you do with the Argos? Its a pretty good all around scope, and a rare case of being very good at a lot of things.

As suitable for hunting as it is for long range target shooting or tactical work, the only real drawbacks shooters might find is the large 50mm objective lens can be a bit awkward in the woods, but that isn’t even really enough to notice.

We would favor this scope the most when engaged in precision shooting, as it is optimized for the kind of scope adjustments long range target shooters engage in, and with that in mind, we’d consider it as much at home on a police sniper rifle as on a match quality benchrest rifle.

Regardless of your final end use, you’d be hard pressed to find any real shortcomings with the Athlon Argos, and should be quite happy with it on any rifle you mount it.

7. ​Bushnell Elite Tactical Review – 6-24×50

We like the Bushnell elite for a number of reasons. Bushnell is one of the best rifle scope brands on the market today, and their quality and performance is readily apparent when examining the Bushnell Elite.

This particular model is billed as a tactical scope, although these days it’s pretty easy to slap that label on most any piece of gear.

More like a 6-24×50 scope much like similar optics on the market with an illuminated reticle, the Bushnell Elite is about as tactical as it is target, or hunting. It certainly can serve any of those roles, and really any task you might have for it.

Taking the tactical moniker into consideration, we can see that the target turrets are more rugged in construction than scopes made for bench shooting.

This certainly is a positive, as it makes it unlikely to lose your zero when lugging your rifle through brush or over rough terrain.

This might make it tactical, but we think it makes it practical for any shooter who wants benchrest levels of adjustment on their scope, but actually takes their rifle out into the real world.

Somewhat modestly priced, this is one of the best all around rifle scopes we’ve seen, and there are certainly worse choices you can make.

There are better choices you can make too, but if you need a happy medium between entry level and high end, we think you’ll enjoy the Bushnell Elite for hunting, target shooting, or yes, even for tactical uses.

8. ​Burris Veracity Scope Review

The Burris Veracity competes with the Bushnell Elite in terms of price range, features and quality. In fact on the surface the two scopes are largely identical. However, there are a few differences that are noticeable in the Burris.

Instead of 6-24 magnification, the Burris Veracity offers either a 5-20 or 5-25 power magnification with a 50mm objective lens. The differences are largely trivial, but there are some features that Burris offers that do allow it to stand out from the competition.

The tall target turrets and side parallax adjustment knob are ruggedized, making them suitable for non bench rest shooting, and the scope ships with a nice sunshade.

Some think the optical coating and overall construction are a bit higher quality than similar scopes, which certainly matters when shooting under demanding conditions.

We couldn’t find much wrong with this scope, or much to get excited over. It is another scope with decent magnification, and built to combine the best features of target and hunting scopes.

Unfortunately, the market is full of similar scopes at similar prices, and the best we can say about this sort of scope is that it clearly works very well for there to be so many nearly identical competing products.

If you are loyal to the Burris brand, or just happen to like it looks, or feels, then this is going to be the best rifle scope for you. Either way, it is worth taking a close look at, even if you move on to other scopes.

9. Nightforce SHV 5-20×56 Review

This delightful, and high grade scope is probably the best rifle scope for the money, as long as you don’t mind dropping the bucks to get a premium grade scope.

NightForce is known for making high end optics that are designed for use in low light conditions and well, at night.

Originally designed to serve the needs of hunters who hunt at night, NightForce has evolved into a brand that serves the needs of tactical, sport, hunting and target shooters, all with the same no compromise scopes.

We really liked the 5-20 magnification which serves well for any purpose other than the most extreme long range shooting.

The zero resettable target turrets are to be expected on a scope of this quality, and this non illuminated reticle model is intended for daytime shooters, which is something of a change of pace from NightForce’s usual products.

We noticed the 56mm objective lens will require buying larger than normal scope rings which could be a problem on some guns, but it really isn’t an insurmountable obstacle. This scope will be perfect for hunting, target shooting, or long range tactical rifles.

You might not want to take it through really heavy brush in case the exposed target turrets get knocked out of zero, but this scope is really at home at the range above all else.

Reasonably priced for how feature rich it is, the NightForce SHV will provide years of good service for most any shooting task you might have in mind.

10. ​Swarovski Z8i Review – 2.3-18×56

One of the highest end rifle scopes sold today, the Swarvoski Z8i represents the pinnacle of rifle scope optics and manufacturing.

Certainly one of the best scopes ever made, the Z8i has an enormous 56mm objective lens, illuminated reticle and amazingly crystal clear optics.

While you might think this is a pointless feature, remember, hunting accidents do happen, and wouldn’t it be nice if your scope kept working after falling into a river or stream, and not just your rifle?

2.3-18 power magnification ensures sufficient magnification at most hunting and target distances for precise, accurate shooting.

Ruggedly built, and featuring a fast focus knob, this luxury grade rifle scope is without a peer on the market.

Which is also the main problem with it. Just what do you do with a scope that costs as much as a used car?

While it is true this is an amazingly high end optic, there are other scopes that can do exactly what it does and at a more approachable price point.

Instead, the Z8i is an optic that is both a luxury good and an extreme hunting rifle scope. Because you can get a target turret add on, the Z8i is also a great benchrest scope for those who demand the absolute best of their scopes.

The 56mm objective lens is going to be a bit hard to find a variety of rings for, but there are plenty of good ones on the market.

If you are building a high end custom fitted benchrest or hunting rifle, this is the scope for you. It certain could work for tactical use too, but there are better and cheaper scopes out there. Really, the Z8i is a lifestyle choice as much as it is a rifle scope.

​Rifle Scope Buying Guide

Understanding Eye Relief

To put it simply, the eye relief of a rifle scope is the maximum distance you can place your eye from the rear lens and still acquire a complete, full sight picture. Move it further back than that, and the picture grows smaller and distorted.

Eye relief is important, because it dictates where on your rifle you mount your scope. Too far forward, or too far back and you can’t get a comfortable hold on the rifle while looking through the scope. This degrades accuracy and makes shooting more difficult. And imagine fighting with eye relief on a thermal scope. Crazy!

To get the most out of your scope, first determine where you place your cheek when you shoulder your rifle. Then check the eye relief of your scope, and install it so that it is compatible with how you hold your rifle.

Of course some fine tuning may be needed, but that is to be expected. You’ll find that you can quickly shoulder your rifle, and get a quick, natural and easy sight picture each time.

Objective Lens and Main Tube Selection

We will start with the main tube. There are two diameter measurements for it – 30mm or 34mm diameter. The larger the tube, the higher the range of adjustment. If you are a long distance target shooter, the Steiner T5XI has the 34mm tube that you need.

On the other hand, you have to handle the weight that comes with such tubes and the rings used in mounting them are also costlier. That is the reason why most people prefer 30mm tubes.

A scope is meant for outside world use which implies that it needs appropriate protection measures. Consider waterproof options and argon or nitrogen purging to prevent internal fogging.

When considering the objective lens, it is the number on the right of the magnification specification. Anything between 40-50mm is enough to gather the light needed for your shooting expedition.

Larger objective lenses are much better at light-gathering especially in low light conditions,but you also need to know how to mount them higher and deal with the weight too. To attain better accuracy, consider an objective that is not too large.


Coatings help in bettering the light transmission. That is why multiple coated lenses are expected to perform better than those with a single coating.

The market, however, is manipulated to contain multiple coated optics that still under perform so, it is advisable to check out on the brand you pick. In general, these are the coating variations you accepted in the rifle scope niche:

  • Single coated: Coating on at least one side of the lens
  • Multicoated: More layers on one or both surfaces of the lens
  • Fully coated: One layer of coating on the outer surfaces
  • Fully multicoated: Multiple layers on surfaces in contact with outside air

Reticles Explained

These are the small tiny lines, dots or hashmarks that aid you in aiming at the target. Some of us will call them crosshairs.

They are different depending on the scope you select,and companies have customized them to have a unique one that identifies by their brand. Here, we are going to explain what some of the things mentioned in the reviews about the reticle.

Wire Reticles vs. Glass Etched Reticles

The creation of crosshairs came a long way from using human hair to using actual wires. Wires are strong and durable,and they can offer different thickness dimensions depending on the cut.

The use of platinum and tungsten is common,but they are vulnerable to damage since they support themselves. Issues such as pressure on the lenses, and dropping can distort them and wires, in general, are limited to how you can flatten and bend them.

They still serve as the best on-target guides,but the etched glass reticles came in to rectify some of the drawbacks.

High-end scopes such as Athlon Argon and Vortex Razor contain the etched glass specification. While there might be different methods to make such a reticle, most brands utilize the laser method – laser cutting into the glass.

While such reticles are found in expensive rifle scopes, some people disagree on whether they are safer to use than the wire reticles. Glass etching makes the reticles seem feeble, and some users can’t trust the glass to guide your target truly.

To counter the criticism, they are made durable by having thin layers of glass on surfaces of the etched glass for extra protection.

Due to using a laser engraved glass, the resultant scopes become costlier than those with wire reticles.

First Focal Plane and Second Focal Plane

You have already come across these terms in the course of reading the reviews. When we say that a Vortex Razor is a first focal plane rifle scope, for example, it means the focal plane or the view gets smaller or larger as you decrease or increase the magnification.

Therefore, the reticle zeroing and ranging will be consistent with the set magnification level. First focal plane reticles are suitable for estimating the range and evaluating the hold-over in long range shooting.

The only flaw with the firsts is that the reticle tends to grow as you increase the magnification. At times, it’s not possible to take a clear shot if you are targeting from long distances. That is why they are meant for bigger targets. An elk hunting scope, for instance, can apply the first focal plane principle.

Second focal plane reticles are conventional, and you find them in cheaper riflescope models. Here, the focal plane is the same size regardless of the magnification. That means the reticle will remain the same size it was when sighting.

If you zero the rifle at 3x magnification, at 100 yards, as an example, the reticle will retain the same magnification for accuracy. Using such a reticle to shoot at longer distances can be a challenge.

On the other hand, a varmint hunting scope can make use of such since the reticle remains thin while over the target. You’ll, therefore, be able to shoot smaller targets.



You see it all the time; 3-9×40, or some other combination of numbers used when describing a scope. What those numbers refer to is the magnification range of the scope, and the size of the objective, or forward facing lens.
Using that common 3-9×40 scope configuration, we can break it down and see what is going on. The 3 refers to magnifying an object three times larger than it appears without magnification.

This is the lowest setting on the scope. You will always see an object magnified at least 3x with this optic.

9 refers to the maximum magnification, which means the scope will show an object up to 9 times larger than an magnified image of your target.
It also means that your scope is adjustable to any magnification between 3x and 9x. Sometimes magnification is referred to as “power”, and people will speak of a “3 to 9 power scope”.

The objective lens size is important to note, because it tells us how big of a sight picture we get, and how clear it will be.

The larger the lens, the bigger the sight picture, and the more light that can be transmitted through it, which improves optical clarity. So as you can see, these numbers are very simple to understand once you break them down the first time.


After seeing the reviews above, some terms may not yet be clear, and that may confuse some of us who need a proper scope for different reasons. We need to know what factors to consider when picking a deer hunting scope or an instrument that will aid in target shooting over long distances.


You may use your weapon to hit targets, self-defense or as a hunting companion. Consider how far away your shooting position isand how clear you need to see your target. In the defending case, a rifle scope will suit you if you have a big land.
Otherwise, it will always get in your way. For target shooting, a scope that aims at 100 yards target will be less useful when you need to shoot longer distances.
If you are hunting, think about the environment. Somebody hunting in the forested areas will need a scope that zooms at least 10x due to the thickness of trees and bush cover. If you are in a park, you may need something that views further.


While choosing the best riflescope needs to be able to handle recoil, you also need to consider the magnification for different shooting situations. Here are our recommendations:

Shooting Long Range : Whether you want to take prey down in the distance or want to snipe out to 1000-yards, there is a scope available for you. As necessary, as caliber is, you need an optic to get you out to those long distances. We advise you look at scopes with a 4-16X, 5-20X, 5.5-22X, or 6-24X range.

Shooting Medium Range: For the all-around hunter who wants to put food on the table to shoot a deer out to 300-yards mounting a 3-9X40 is an excellent choice. You will be able to kill a coyote at 70-yards to a whitetail standing at 130-yards.

Shooting at Close Range: Now if you are not into long range hunting and need something for the close range, we recommend you look at the 2-7X, 1-4X, and fixed 3X riflescopes. You will get a larger field of view that is just as important.  However, if you do plan to do Varmint hunting, we recommend you look at the 1-4X or fixed 3X magnification instead.


There are a great many rifle scopes on the market, and we looked at some of the all time top rifle scopes available to the consumer at any price. These are suitable for budget consumers, as well as for shooters who have no worry about budget. We looked at some of the best target scopes, and some of the best premium tactical scopes for serious shooters. Each scope was selected for proven quality, manufacturer reputation, and real world uses. All that is left is for you to decide which one is best for you!

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