For the avid shooter wanting to buy a new tactical scope, it can be frustrating finding a quality product. We have compiled 5 of the best tactical rifle scopes on the market to get you started on your purchase.
We can all agree that not all guns were built for the same purpose. You wouldn’t take a .22 handgun out to hunt bears, would you? Likewise, not all scopes were built for the same purpose. If you are a hunter, you probably know from first-hand experience that most deer aren’t going to walk out past about 100yds. If that’s the case, then why are you loading out your kit with a scope meant for 1,000-yard long-distance shots? You’re going to lose crucial time trying to adjust your scope to make a shot that you could easily make with a different scope, such as the top tactical rifle scopes available today.
That’s where the tactical scope comes in. There’s a lot of debate on the web about what qualifies a scope to be classed as “tactical”, but, the consensus is that these are wide lensed, low magnification scopes built to give you a wider field of view to work with. But, if you’re in the market for the best of the best tactical scope, you might not know what to look out for or where to start. Considering that there are quite a lot of products out on the market now, knowing what’s quality and what’s not can take a lot of research. To help you get started on your search, we have gathered 5 of our favorite tactical scopes. If you’re ready, let’s get started with these reviews!
Vortex Optics Diamondback Tactical First Focal Plane Riflescope
We’re starting out this list with a bombshell of a scope from Vortex Optics. If you don’t know who these guys are, you really are missing out. In recent years Vortex Optics has become one of the leading manufactures of outdoors and sporting equipment and they’re based right here in the United States of America! This scope is a perfect example of the craftsmanship coming out of Vortex.
The Vortex Optics Diamondback tactical riflescope is made of premium quality extra-low dispersion glass that’s been fully multi-coated with an antireflective coating. This means you’re getting more light into the 30mm aluminum tube instead of it getting reflected off the outside of the lens. You get a nice, crisp, bright, high-contrast image of whatever you’re aiming at.
The Diamondback comes in two different sizes—a 4-16x44mm lens and a 6-24x50mm lens. Of course, you’re going to get more light and more magnification out of the larger 6-24x50mm lens but both are still fabulous options.
This is a first focal plane scope, so, the reticle is etched closer to the front of the lens meaning that it will also move as you zoom into the image. However, the magnification is incredibly smooth thanks to an added precision-glide erector system.
The Diamondback is also O-ring sealed and purged with dry nitrogen gas to make it completely water and fog proof and the durable aluminum body is built to absorb any shock or recoil from a higher caliber round. Coming in at $499.00 for the larger lens or $349.00 for the smaller version, you’re paying a higher price but what you get for that price is an amazing piece of optics from one of the best manufacturers out there today.
- Sturdy construction built to take abuse
- Easy-to-use magnification
- Guaranteed repairs under Vortex warranty
- Some users have reported that the reticle does not show up well against a white background
UUQ 4-16x50 Tactical Rifle Scope
Of course, this list wouldn’t be complete without a few high-tech options thrown in. We know that not everyone is a strict traditionalist when it comes to their gear so we like to share a few bits of gadgetry with the mix. The first of these gadgets is the UUQ 4-16×50 tactical rifle scope. This scope really does have it all so it’s hard to pick one place in particular to start. As the name suggests, this scope is built around a 4-16x50mm lens but on top of it sits a holographic sight and also a green laser sight, so, let’s go ahead and break down each part one at a time.
The optical lens on this scope uses a rangefinder reticle that you can customize with 4 different styles of dots. And if that’s not enough customization for you, you can also pick between red or green and 5 different brightness levels. This lens is designed to let you quickly judge the range of a shot so that there’s no hesitation before you fire the weapon. Using the optical scope, you can easily target out to 100yds.
The holographic sight on the top of the tube is a 33mm reflex sight built for quick snap-to targeting of anything in your forefront. Like the glass lens, you have the choice between a red or a green reflex reticle and 5 different brightness levels. As for the laser sight, it shoots a laser beam out to 300m letting you aim and hit with amazing precision. If it’s too bulky for you, though, the laser sight is completely detachable.
Thanks to a built-in rail, you can easily mount the UUQ 4-16×50 tactical rifle scope to any 22 or 11mm Picatinny or Weaver rail. And, like the Vortex Diamondback, this scope is completely waterproof and shockproof thanks to a durable design, O-ring seal, and nitrogen purging. Amazingly, you get all of this gadgetry—the laser sight, a holographic sight, and a 4-16x glass lens—for only $109.99. Simply amazing!
- We simply cannot stress enough the amount of equipment you get with this scope
- Highly customizable reticle options
- Quality glass makes for a clear and crisp image
- Some users reported that the battery is tricky to install
- May not be suited to AR-15 rifles
TRUGLO TRU-BRITE 30 Series
Next on our list is an option from TRUGLO. If you liked the look of the Vortex Optics scope that we shared earlier, but you’re not sure you want to spend that kind of money just to try out a tactical scope, this is the perfect option for you. The TRU-BRITE 30 Series has a few tricks of its own that will leave you shocked by the price but we’ll leave that for the end.
With the TRU-BRITE 30 Series, you get an amazing 3-9x42mm lens built with just about the same level of strength and durability as a Vortex scope. Its one-piece tube design is cast from aircraft-grade aluminum and then O-ring sealed and dry nitrogen purged to make it complete fog proof, waterproof, and shockproof.
The TRU-BRITE 30 Series uses a MIL-DOT reticle that’s perfect for quick distancing and aiming. You also get a quick zoom lever to make aiming even faster. The lens is also rheostat controlled to regulate brightness. This scope even comes with two BDC turrets that are already calibrated to .223 and .308 calibers. This is the perfect tactical scope for an AR-15 rifle or a high-caliber hunting rifle.
So how much does all of this cost, you ask? Surprisingly not too much. At only $127.99, you get a scope built to last that also comes with a few hidden extras to make it that much better. This would make a perfect option for anyone wanting to try out a quality tactical scope without spending the money for a professional optic.
- Comes with a reversible offset 30mm scope mount
- Has a comfortable 4in of eye relief
- Can hold zero after hundreds of .223 rounds
- •Instructions for setup are not easy to understand
Vortex Optics Diamondback Tactical Second Focal Plane Riflescope
We know what you are thinking. Didn’t we already show you the Vortex Optics Diamondback? You are right, but also, you’re not. We love this scope so much that we had to share another variation of it before we could call this list quits. This scope comes from the same Vortex Optics we were raving about earlier and it lives up to all the acclaim.
This is the Vortex Optics Diamondback tactics second focal plane riflescope. Not only is it a different lens entirely, with its 4-12x magnification and 40mm lens, but it has a completely different style of reticle. We know not everyone likes their reticle to move as they zoom in and out and so do the folks over at Vortex Optics. To address this problem, they came out with an option where the reticle is etched further into the lens to keep it from moving in and out as you zoom.
That’s not all they changed, though. The reticle is also completely different. On this model, you get a VMR-1 MOA reticle that’s perfect for judging ranges on long shots. It’s also great for moving targets like a darting whitetail. On top of that, Vortex Optics also added an instant zero reset feature that makes it much simpler to re-zero your sights.
Other than that, this is the same first-class aluminum tubing with O-ring seals for water and fog proofing. It will mount to all the same rifles as the Diamondback tactical first focal point as well. But how’s the price? Hold on to your seats because this is actually a much less expensive option at only $249.00! That’s $100 less than the first focal plane version with added benefits!
- Quality Vortex warranty
- Added instant zeroing
- VMR-1 MOA reticle for long-distance shots
- Turrets may be stiff when first unboxed
- Some users reported it to be sensitive to eye placement
Twod Rifle Scope Tactical 6-24X50mm
Before you closed out this list, we wanted to include one more bit of gadgetry. This isn’t quite as high-tech as the UUQ option we shared earlier but it’s still more than the average aluminum tube with some glass. The Twod tactical 6-24x50mm is a great option if you liked the UUQ 4-16x50mm but were not so crazy about all the add-ons to it.
With the Twod tactical riflescope, you have the same option between a red or green illuminated rangefinder reticle and a variety of different illumination levels. It also has a front focus adjustment for the eyepiece to help you shoot faster and more precisely. Included with the eyepiece, you also get a useful sunshade for those bright days.
The glass on this lens is fully multi-coated like on the Vortex models, so you get a bright, clear image when you look through the lens. And, just to round out your purchase, Twod also throws in a set of flip-up lens covers for you. This isn’t the most advanced option on our list nor the finest-tuned but, for only $55.99, if you want to try out a tactical scope with more to offer than just a standard glass tube, this is the scope for you.
- Customizable reticle color and brightness level
- Comes with ring mounts and Allen wrenches for assembly
- Great price point
- Large size may be too bulky for some users
- May not be suited to high-caliber rounds
No matter what you’re buying to modify your gun, always check to see that it matches your intended purpose. You don’t want to be the guy walking through the woods with a scope built for long-distance target shooting when a whitetail jumps 40yds in front of you. With a tactical scope, you’ll get a wide field of view with the right amount of magnification to take down most everything you’ll encounter in the woods.
But remember, a single modification your kit isn’t going to make you Annie Oakley. You always want to read through the user manual and familiarize yourself with the equipment before you jump out into the field. No matter what you do end up buying, though, if you choose one of these fantastic tactical scopes, you won’t go wrong. We hope you enjoy our list and we wish you all the best with your shooting!