With a large number of choices available on the market, finding the best tactical scope can be a challenge, especially if you are looking for the right scope for under $500. We’ve taken a better look of dozens of the latest and top-rated models as well as picked our favourites that are all less under $500. This just shows that you can still stay under budget without sacrificing the quality of your tactical scope.
Here is a list of the Best Tactical Scope under $500
A scope is used to help you get a better vision on your target with a precise lock on where your shot needs to land. Whether you enjoy shooting or an experienced hunter, knowing that scope to choose is one of the most important factors in determining the accuracy of your shot.
The numerous scopes available are from the many reputable manufacturers, which make choosing which of the best scope will depend on your shooting requirements and personal preference.
Common Types of Tactical Scopes
With the many various kinds of scopes, learning the differences between each type before your purchase will help you understand your needs. These are the most common scopes available.
These are commonly used as it is useful for magnification that shooters will need for a clear shot. A variable scope will allow the shooter to have the ability to adjust the zoom on the target. It comes in a large variety of different settings of magnification and depends on the target that you are shooting at. Sniper rifles are often used with variable scopes as they are used in a farther distance when compared to normal rifles that are used for hunting.
Fixed scopes are less complicated then variable scopes though it only works better when users know what the exact specs that they will need when they shoot. Unlike with the variables that can adjust magnification, fixed scopes won’t. This means that fixed scopes are only used for specific types of rifles and occasions.
Night Vision Scope
These specialty scopes can be paired with a fixed or variable scope. Night vision scopes are quite pricey and larger in size – so make sure to determine if this will be the right scope if you plan on shooting during the darker hours. What makes them different is at they are specifically made for shooting during the night or times that there is very little light to get a clear aim at the target.
Choosing a Scope
The key to choosing the best tactical scope is simplicity. With the latest advancement, it has become easier for shooters to line their shot on the target as you just have to line up your cross directly towards the target and shoot. It is recommended to learn how to properly shoot using a tactical scope as it helps you develop better aim and grabs a clear vision of your target – making the shot more efficient.
Is Bigger Always Better?
To help you this answer, you should first ask yourself what you are planning to shoot at. For example: if the shooter is planning to hunt animals such as a deer, to use anything over a scope that magnifies at 4-12x, it might be overkill and actually hinder your performance. It is the average size of the scope for anyone planning to hunt as it offers what rifle users usually need.
What do the numbers actually mean?
Before you decide on which scope to purchase, is important to understand what the numbers actually mean. Let’s take a look at the Bushnell Banner Dusk & Damn 4-12x40. The 4 means that your target will appear to look 3 times closer that with a naked but twelve times closer than the naked eye. For the last number, which is 40, would be the diameter of the objective lens in millimetres. Generally, you can decide if you want your target to be three times – 12 times larger, as the closer the magnification is, and the more the scope will cost.
What to look for in terms of objective lens size
The standard on most variable scopes is between 40-45 millimetres as there are objective lenses that are large though it is often unnecessary for most users. Another factor with larger lenses is that it would be harder to properly hold your rifle – especially if you aren’t used to the size as it would make your shoot less comfortable and make you feel heavier, clumsier, and unbalanced.
Why is the FOV important?
Generally, it is measured at every hundred yards. This means that is the amount that you can see from left to right. If you adjust the magnification, your FOV is also going to be adjusted. Once you lower the magnification, the FOV increase. This makes it important as the difference can drastically change the FOV.
Best Tactical Scope under $500
As tactical scopes can range from $50 and up to over $1000, the price you pay will depend on what type of rifle scope you will use and what you will need in a scope. Buying the most expensive scopes doesn’t mean it will improve your shots more than the lower priced one, so take a look at a few of these different scopes below to help you consider what are the best values under $500. Always be sure to look at the specs and details and meet your shooting needs.
Here are the best Tactical scopes under $500:
Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Riflescope
This scope is one of the best as it provides quality features for its price range. It offers a fast-focus eyepiece to measure at a length of 12 inches and comes with an elevation adjustment and a ¼ MOA fingertip wind age. This model is said to be a low-light rifle scope as it comes with a four to twelve x magnification along with a 40 millimetre objective lens. The eye relief is used for the scope as it measures at 3.3” and offers great durability being both 100% fog proof and waterproof.
Overall, this is a great deal as it costs less than $100 and offers the performance in its range.
This great quality scope has a large variety of features that makes it ideal for various rifles as it comes with a 4-12x magnification and a large objective lens that is 42 millimetres. The versatile 4-plex type reticule comes with an exclusive in-scope type ranging system.
Nikon PROSTAFF 5
The scope has a 3.5-14 x 40 magnification and offers great features that will actually make it stand above the rest of the models in its range. It is also equipped with an objective lens of 40 millimetres with adjustments that are easy to use and its turrets of spring-loaded instant zero reset. The patented BDC reticule provides superior long range shooting and is optimized with Nikon’s very own match technology.
Nikon is considered as one of the top leading brands on the market and known for making great quality tactical scopes – which the Nikon PROSTAFF 5 BDC Scope is one of.
Vortex Viper PA 30mm Tube Rifle Scope
Though the Vortex is one of the top brands for tactical rifle scopes, this model should not be ignored as it is among some of the top scopes out available out on the market. With an array of features it comes with a 1 piece 30 millimetre tube, which makes storage easier without the hassle of losing any small, removable parts. The scope is constructed of aircraft grade aluminium that is set to guarantee its top graded materials for sturdiness. It is also provides tall turrets to allow the shooter to use it quickly and make any fast adjustments.
Our #1 Recommendation: Nikon Monarch Scope
The Nikon Monarch variable scope takes the lead as it is among the best scopes on the market with a price under $500. It comes with a 4 to 16x magnification with a large 50mm objection lens. This model is highly acknowledged for the Ultra Clear Coat Optical System and eyepiece. This allows shooters to place their reticule for full focus. One of the best features in the Nikon Monarch 3 is the Eye box technology as it allows a 4x zoom range along with a 4”eye reliever. It can be adjusted very easily with their featured spring loaded instant zero reset turrents and spot on ballistic match technology.
Choosing a scope for a lower budget does not necessarily mean you are sacrificing a high quality tactical scope; though the higher price ranged scopes do offer extra features. If a simple tactical scope is all you need to fulfil your rifle’s needs – then one of the top best tactical scopes under 500 will surely fit your shooting needs.