How to Find the Best Types of Scopes for Your Rifles

The Best Types of Scopes for Different Uses

If you are a fan of mid range to long range shooting, you have asked what are the best types of scopes multiple times. Whether it is for civilian or military use, this question is very common, and that’s very typical if you want the best for your shooting experience. With some options that you have like optics, electronics, and otherwise, you will be struggling with finding which type you should go to.

Whenever accessories are discussed among those individuals who are into shooting activities, the best type of scope is often brought up since it can affect the overall experience. In this review, we will give you some useful ideas about the sights and scopes of rifles. We will discuss the different information that you should know about scopes and how they can maximize your shooting games.

What The Different Types of Scopes

Before going further to knowing the best types of scopes, let’s also go to what are the different types of scopes that you can find in the market.

Iron Sights

If you are a fan of rifles, you are aware that the factory commonly provides iron sights. However, some rifles do not come with iron sights at all. Iron sights are often made of metal, and it features two components, which are the front sight and the rear sight.

For the sights’ formation, it can be open or aperture. With the open sights, it is using a bump, notch, or line in the rear. While for the aperture sights, it will be using a circular hole. In flip-up iron or adjustable sights, the rear one is commonly adjustable for windage and elevation. If you are looking for iron sights, you may find some products that are made from polymer, aluminum, or steel.

Reflex Sights (aka Reflector)

This type of sights has been used since the 20th century for various purposes. This is impressive because reflex sights have been part of WWII and history. The reflex sights use an aiming point, like a bullseye or crosshair, which superimposes on the field of view of the shooter. This feature can be achieved with the use of reflecting glass components and this is giving the shooter the chance to focus on a single thing – the target. You don’t have to align anything. Even though the eyes of the shooter move, the image will stay on the target, which is excellent eye relief.

Laser Sights

This type is very straightforward. Laser sights are using a laser beam that will be emitted from the sight, and the beam will bounce off the shooter’s target. When you are using this, a small dot will be visible on the target itself. Laser sights’ beam is powerful, and the red or green dot will show on the target despite the distance. While many claims that the laser beam is known to be accurate, it cannot deal with the changes of range, ballistics, windage, target movement, and many more.

Holographic Sights

During the year 1998, the first holographic sights were introduced by EOTech. The holo sights idea was like a reflective sight, which is a reticle that is superimposed on the field of view of the shooter with the use of advanced photography. Two pieces of glass will be used, and the photograph will be placed between them. With the holo sight, no reflective coating was used, which is opposite with the reflective sight. This means that the standard light’s path is not curved or otherwise distorted.

Common Parts of Different Types of Scopes

Once you get the chance to see the different rifle scopes available, you will notice that they all look the same from each other: the black tube, one end bigger compared to the other, and some knobs that can be found on the scope’s side and top. The mechanics and internals of the scope parts are also the same for almost all rifle scopes. For more understanding, here is a detailed overview of the common parts of scopes.

External Parts

  • Objective lens – objective lenses are large, circular glasses found at the front area of the scope, and it allows light to enter the tube.
  • Tube – this is considered the main body and length of the scope; rings comprise the tube to be mounted to the rifle.
  • Objective bell – the large front end of the scope that houses the objective lens assembly.
  • Turrets – the knob found on top of the scope is referred to as the elevation turret; knob located on the right side is called the windage turret.
  • Power/Magnification ring – a rotating ring that controls magnification levels.
  • Eyepiece/Ocular – a smaller, circular glass found at the back of the scope that you look through to see an image.
  • Diopter adjustment/Focus control – a stiff ring that will allow you to focus on the reticle.

Internal Parts

  • Focus assembly – it contains objective lenses and ocular lenses that can be fixed or adjusted to focus the scope and correct for parallax.
  • Erector tube – works with springs to enable adjustments among the turrets to coincide with the reticle; larger tubes may permit for more adjustment travel to do longer-range shots.
  • Image erector assembly – prisms are utilized to create an upright image.
  • Reticle – the crosshairs utilized to aim at a target; its location on the scope will depend on if it’s in the first focal plane (FFP) or the second focal plane (SFP).
  • Magnification lenses – magnification lens moves with the power ring to accommodate a zoomed-in/out image.

Now that you have seen the essential parts of a rifle scope and their rights reserved, you will understand that this accessory does a lot of things. Some moving components are included, and the potential to improve one or more parts of the riflescope can bring a huge difference to your shooting experience and success.

What are the different components that make a rifle scope expensive?

Since most hunting scopes look the same and they share the same internals and mechanisms, you will wonder why the other model is more expensive than the other.

Let’s give you a scenario about cars that can be compared to this concern. A 4-door Honda civic can accommodate the same number of people as a Cadillac CTS-V. But if you will study further about these two models, you will realize that there is a huge difference when it comes to their internals and mechanism. While they share the same fundamental internals like engine, wheels, and transmission, one model is finer-tuned compared to the other, faster, and yes, more expensive. The same principle applies to rifle scopes. Here’s a real difference that you need to know about the prices of the scopes.


Although all scopes come with a glass with rights reserved, these glasses are not equal. Aside from considering the manufacturer and the source of their glass, you need to think about the process of grinding and polishing that they used to make the ocular and objective lenses. More expensive scopes used the finest engineering and craftsmanship in making the glasses used for their production.

Rifle Scopes Explained

Lenses are the most important parts of the best rifle scope since they can offer eye relief. The larger lens is the objective lens, the larger objective lens placed at the end of the scope, which is farthest from the rifle’s stock. It is used to transmit light back to the ocular lens – the lens closest to the eye of the shooter. The scope’s part that houses the larger objective lens is called the objective bell, while the section holding the ocular lens is called the eyepiece. Almost all lenses, objective lens and ocular lens, of rifle scope are waterproof and fog-proof.

The rifle scopes are working like those telescopes that are commonly used by scientists. The point found inside the scope will focus on the light that passes through the objective lens. With the help of the ocular lens, the light will be magnified from the first focal or second focal point. If you try looking through a scope, you will see the image, which is also known as the light. The reticle found in rifle scopes is also called crosshair. The markers’ purpose is to show the shooter where the shot will go as soon as he pulls the trigger.

You will find scopes that feature multiple settings. This means you will be allowed to see targets at various magnifications. Some scopes will give you the chance to view your target from 3X to 9X better compared to your normal vision. If you try to set the rifle scope to 3X magnification range scope, the object that you will see using the scope will become three times larger than their actual look with your bare eyes. This feature of rifle scopes is referred to as a power ring. When you tune the power ring, the magnification range setting of the scope will change according to your desire.

The AR platforms, which are using 300 AAC 300 blackout scope systems are getting more popular for military units, competition shooters, hunters, and sportspeople. With its very popular 5.56 NATO and 7.62X39, you get the best of both worlds. The slimline design on the grounds of the 5.56 is also giving the 300 Blackout a lot less drag for longer distances, yet the punch is more powerful when compared to 7.62. To make it simple, with a 300 Blackout, you will have a faster barrel and speed compared to old favorite calibers.

There are more reasons why many people are switching to 300 Blackout. One of them is the variable used together with suppressors and flash hiders. These rounds were designed for using subsonic and with no changes to the gas system. This is making the 300 Blackout Scope extra effective when it comes to suppression. If you do the shooting correctly, you will have a louder sound of the bullet hitting the ground compared to the report of the actual rifle.

Scope Reticle Types

For those who are not familiar with reticles, these are the aiming point of a rifle scope, also called a crosshair. You are using this internal part of the scope if you want to set the target that you want to shoot. This has thin lines that are meeting in the center, and that is the center that you will use when you are aiming at your point or target.

But some crosshair style reticles come with thicker lines, and sometimes, they are called duplex reticles as well as German numbered reticles.

What is a BDC Reticle?

This is known as a modified duplex style, and the BDC means bullet-drop compensating. This features a marking found below the center of the crosshairs, and you can use it with anticipating bullet drop over a long range scope

The Mildot Reticle

The Mildot Reticles are other options for a modified duplex style. This type is using milliradian dots on both crosshairs’ axes as a measurement. With a mil-dot, you can find the calculated distance of your target like 100 yards, 200 yards, and more. Some people are confused with the math behind this, but that’s how it works as a general.

A Dot Reticle

Dot reticles fall under the tactical style commonly called “red dot sight.” This is using a single dot in the riflescope, and this serves as the aiming point.

The Illuminated Reticle

This is known as the reticles that are using a specific type of light to achieve its purpose. An illuminated is either a fiber-optic scope or battery-operated dot, and it will give you the freedom to see better at night. Some colors also help during the day.

What are the different types of scope reticles?

Right here, we will talk about the most popular rifle scope reticles that you can find in the market. We have considered some of the reviews about these reticles as well as the manufacturing methods and popular layouts.

  • Crosshair Reticle
    You will never find anything sophisticated with a crosshair. Companies that manufacture this reticle are using thin crossed wired, which is helping the shooter with acquiring the aim point. But there is something ironic about this type because it was based on different sophisticated models.
  • Holographic Reticle
    From its name itself, the holographic is using a holographic image that you can set at a finite range. A collimated laser diode illuminates this kind of instrument, the major benefit being the elimination of the parallax. The professional military models generally feature this kind, and it is getting more popular with those people who practice shooting for recreational reasons.
  • Duplex Reticle
    Duplex is known as the most popular type for professionals and amateurs. This features a thin crosshair center, and it gets thicker on the edges of the riflescope. This kind of design is giving the shooter eye relief and focus on the aiming point alone.
  • Mil-Dot Reticle
    Mil-dot reticle is using the same layout of the Duplex, but it comes with additional features that will get your interest. With this, you will find small dots that are aligned along the reticle lines, and these dots have spacing that is corresponding to a specific angle, which allows the shooter to identify the range of his target if the target's size is known. The MIl-dot layout is known as the standard for law enforcement and military snipers.
  • BDC Reticle
    BDC is also referred to as Bullet Drop Compensation. This type is trendy because it can make an accurate target acquisition at various ranges without making any adjustments to the scope's elevation settings. The purpose of BDC is achieved with the use of a dot system that is the same with the mil-dot type.
    Keep in mind that BDC reticles are highly recommended for short and middle-range use like 100 yards and 200 yards. When you try to use this type for distances about 500 yards, you will see a significant drop with their performance.
  • Wind Drift Reticle
    While this type is considered the most complex to understand, it is still trendy thanks to its impressive tactical features. If we talk about a hybrid reticle, we can say that this Wind Drift stands for it. This is using a combination of dots, crosshair lines, and horizontal lines, and it is ideal for those shooters who want to acquire a moving target or establish the wind drift.

What are the scope magnifications?

One of the most important factors for crisp, clear image quality and excellent low light capabilities is a high-quality glass with a great magnification lens. If you are looking for a higher-priced optic, you need to focus on ED or Extra-Low Dispersion glass so chromatic aberration will be minimized, and the image contrast and sharpness will be enhanced.

Another vital feature for 1-6X scope is if it genuinely 1x, which can make the target acquisition faster in a close quarter battle. But the engineering used to make 1x capable scope together with a magnification lens is very costly and complicated. If you find cheaper optics that claim they are 1x magnification lenses, this is most likely not true because they often have 1.1 to 1.5x magnification levels. According to industrial standards, the actual “1x” magnification lens means that shooters can use the riflescope with both eyes open.

What does four 12x50 mean on a scope?

A 4-12X50 scopes are also known as long-range hunting rifle scopes that are very popular for big game hunting ranges such as deer, sheep, antelope, and elk. This scope is also used for hunting predators like coyotes and bears.

If your reason for getting a new scope is for hunting purposes, then you should check out this 4-12X50 scope and its magnification lens. This will help you in maximizing your hunting experience and will give you a better shot for your targets.

What is a 4x32 scope?

Scope sights are getting more popular with rifle users because a proper scope can wring the last bit of the gun’s accuracy. A scope also helps with getting rid of common sighting errors since you can see the target clearly and aim for more accurate shooting. However, we need to understand that no scope is perfect for its work. Getting to know the basic terminologies and understanding what they mean will help you with choosing the right scope that will meet your needs.

With the model name 4X32, the number 4 is referring to the scope’s magnification lens. This means that you have a 4-power scope, and it can enlarge the image four times. While for an 8-power scope, the image can be enlarged for eight times so you can see the target closer compared to the 4-power scope. The idea may seem great for you, but there are various drawbacks that you need to know when it comes to power.

If you have a higher magnification of your scope, you will have a lesser field of view when you are looking through the scope. Another thing is the higher magnification also minimizes the amount of light. With an 8-power scope, you will see a darker image compared to a 4-power scope.

With this information, we can say that knowing your needs will help you determine what the best magnification lens for you is.

Why do you need scopes rifles?

Regardless of your reason why you are using a rifle, you are fully aware that having the best hunting scope will have a huge help with determining the accuracy of your target. Whether you are into hunting activities or you just enjoy some shooting sports, you need a scope that will go with the performance of your rifle. With the best scope, you can zoom in your target and aim for the area where you want to shoot. Using a rifle with no scope is very bare. If you’re going to experience a better hunting day, you need to find the best types of scopes for you.

Fortunately, there are many great scopes available in the market, and they came from reputable manufacturers. You will only have a hard time looking for the right scope for your needs because of the vast choices that you have. The best thing you need to do before shopping for a scope is to decide about your preference and shooting needs. Through this, you can figure out the best scope that is suitable for you and your rifle.

What are scopes guns?

For those who haven’t got the chance to research more about scopes guns, we will give you a brief idea about this. Scopes guns are tubes that come with objective lenses for magnification, and they are used to see longer distances, which is a significant eye relief for shooters. It is using a reticle or also called a crosshair so you can aim your target better with as you use the scope. Scopes guns have been used for many years, even before the Civil War. Right after World War II, manufacturers of scopes have made some improvements with their products for rifles, so shooters and hunters will have a reliable accessory that they can use for long-range shooting.

Today, scopes are not made for rifles alone. It can be used for almost all firearms and shooting weapons that you can think of like handguns and hunting bows. The new scopes guns are an excellent addition for many firearms regardless of its purposes, such as dedicated target shooter, military weapon, seasonal hunting tool, and home defense.

How much are weapon scopes?

Once you have prepared your rifle, the next thing that you want to do is find an upgrade with it before you go for your next hunting. One of the top recommendations that you will get from professionals is getting the best budget red dot sights that will enhance your accuracy, especially for ranges that are close to moderate. If you think that a red dot scope is a fancy upgrade, you should think again. Many hunters for short ranges prefer red dot sights.

Now, asking about how much are weapon scopes can be tricky. There are many options available in the market like red dot sights, and if you want to find the best rifle scope that comes with excellent features or design choices without breaking your bank, you will have quite a trouble here. If you are looking for scopes that will give you advanced features, you will need to spend some cash on it. But there are best rifle scopes under 1000$, and they are great deals as well. When you are trying to look for a scope for your rifle, just keep in mind to prioritize your needs, and you will find the right one for you.

When to use target scopes?

While target scopes are popularly used nowadays, you need to know that this accessory should not be used all the time. Some scopes are great for sniper use in Afghanistan, but this is not a right choice if you need a scope for your local friendly range. The same idea goes with Humvee since this is not an appropriate choice if you are commuting in crowded streets during rush hour.

Again, you have to assess your needs and situations and be smart when using target scopes.

What is the best gun scope?

The best gun scope will depend on your needs. Some shooters may need a gun scope that comes with advanced features, while others can have a primary scope. Since there are many scopes available in the market, you need to determine your needs and preferences before you shop for the best gun scope.

What is the most powerful rifle scope?

You may think that scopes with higher magnification settings are the most powerful. But depending on the purpose of your scope, a product with 50X magnification will give you a better view of your target and precisely aim the area where you should shot. Also, you need to remember that your scope can be affected by the misty air and mirage, so you have to learn how to use your scope well.


With this review, you have learned that there are many types of scopes that you can choose for your rifle. All of them have their good and bad sides. But more than buying the most expensive scope, the most important thing is learning how to use it. You may have the best scope from the market, but if you cannot use it properly, it will have no use for you.