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8 Best AR 15 Scope Mounts in 2021 — Reviews & Top Picks

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rifle with scope_D_Van_Rensburg_Pixabay

One problem that you’ll run into all the time with scopes is a low-quality ring system.

While you can spend a ton of extra money finding a scope with a decent mounting system included, a more cost-effective option is to invest in a high-quality scope mount.

That’s why we created these reviews of the best options out there to help you make your decision!

If you’re still not sure, we also developed a buyer’s guide that will walk you through everything that you need to know before making a purchase.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Nikon P-Series Riflescope Mount Nikon P-Series Riflescope Mount
  • Picatinny mount
  • Two-piece mount
  • affordable
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Monstrum Offset Cantilever Scope Mount Monstrum Offset Cantilever Scope Mount
  • Affordable
  • Picatinny mount
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    American Defense AD-RECON Riflescope Optic Mount American Defense AD-RECON Riflescope Optic Mount
  • Picatinny mount
  • Lifetime warranty
  • clamping power
  • Vortex Optics Sport Riflescope Mounts Vortex Optics Sport Riflescope Mounts
  • lifetime warranty
  • 2 offset sizes to choose
  • 2 sizes to choose
  • Ade Advanced Optics PS001C Rifle Scope Mount Ade Advanced Optics PS001C Rifle Scope Mount
  • Aerodynamic design
  • Lifetime warranty
  • affordable
  • The 8 Best AR 15 Scope Mounts — Reviews 2021

    1. Nikon P-Series Riflescope Mount — Best Overall

    nikon P series mount_Amazon

    If you’re looking for a rifle scope mount that combines affordability and performance, it’s hard to beat the Nikon P-Series Riflescope Mount. Unlike many other scope mounts, this is a two-piece scope mount that gives you maximum flexibility and customization.

    Each ring set mounts onto a Picatinny rail, and it has a low-profile design that gives your rifle a sleek look. However, keep in mind that if your rifle has a raised iron sight, it might block or distort the view from your scope.

    Overall, this is the best AR 15 scope mount available this year. If it fits your rifle, it’s a great choice!

    Pros
    • Good mix of affordability and performance
    • Picatinny mount
    • Low-profile mount
    • Two-piece mount offers maximum flexibility
    Cons
    • Low-profile design does not work with all rifles

    2. Monstrum Offset Cantilever Scope Mount — Best Value

    monstrum scope mount_Amazon

    If you’re looking for the best AR 15 scope mount for the money, then you want the Monstrum Offset Cantilever Scope Mount. It’s an affordable option that you can get in two different color options. It mounts directly onto a Picatinny rail and comes with a lifetime warranty!

    Additionally, it has 2 inches of forward extension for greater eye relief and versatility while shooting. You need to be careful not to strip the screws when tightening the rings, though the more significant concern is the lack of quality in the construction. You’ll likely find a few burred edges, and the paint will start to peel over the years. That said, these issues are primarily cosmetic and won’t affect the long-term use of your scope mount. We think this is the best AR 15 scope mount for the money.

    Pros
    • Affordably priced
    • Two color options to choose from
    • Picatinny mount
    • 2″ of forward extension
    • Lifetime warranty
    Cons
    • You have to be careful not to strip the screws
    • Not the best quality, but it works great

    3. American Defense AD-RECON Riflescope Optic Mount — Premium Choice

    AD 30 STD mount_Amazon

    If you’re willing and able to spend a ton of money on a top-notch mount, it’s hard to beat the American Defense AD-RECON mount. You can make any adjustments that you need without any tools, and it clamps tightly with each use, so you don’t have to worry about it sliding out of place.

    While this mount might be a little more expensive, it does come with a lifetime warranty, so you won’t have to worry about purchasing a new one if something should happen to this one.

    As a final perk, you can configure the locking lever on either the front or rear of the mount, which allows you to slide it out of the way no matter what you’re shooting or what type of scope you have.

    Pros
    • Tool-free adjustments
    • You can configure the locking lever on either the front or rear
    • Extremely tight clamping power
    • Picatinny mount
    • 2″ of forward extension
    • Lifetime warranty
    Cons
    • Expensive option

    4. Vortex Optics Sport Riflescope Mounts

    vortex scope mount II_Amazon

    Vortex Opticsis known for great scopes, but its scope mount isn’t bad either. Just like its other products, this mount comes with a hassle-free lifetime warranty. If anything ever happens to your mount, Vortex Optics will repair it free of charge!

    Vortex Optics offers several different mounts for you to choose from. It has a 2″ and a 3″ offset option, as well as one with 1″ or 30mm rings. This means that you’ll be sure to find a mount that works for whatever scope you have.

    It is more on the expensive side, but it’s the last scope mount that you’ll ever need or want.

    Pros
    • Two offset sizes to choose from: 2″ and 3″
    • Two sizes to choose from: 1″ and 30mm
    • Great lifetime warranty
    Cons
    • More expensive option

    5. Ade Advanced Optics PS001C Rifle Scope Mount

    Ade advance mount_Amazon

    The Ade Advanced Optics PS001C Rifle Scope Mount provides a great mix of affordability and performance. The mount gives you 6,500 pounds of clamping power, so you don’t have to worry about it sliding out of place when you fire your weapon.

    Moreover, it doesn’t have any protruding knobs or dials that can get in your way or cause your rifle to snag. But the best part of this mount is the fact that it comes with a lifetime warranty. It’s the last rifle scope mount that you’ll need to buy, and you’re going to love it.

    The only downside is that you’ll need tools to make adjustments, but that’s a minor inconvenience in the end.

    Pros
    • A great mix of affordability and performance
    • Lifetime warranty
    • 6,500 pounds of clamping power
    • Aerodynamic design
    Cons
    • You need tools for adjustments

    6. Aero Precision Ultralight Scope Mount

    Aero 30mm mount_Amazon

    While Aero Precision might not be on the same level as Vortex Optics or Leupold, it’s still a great brand, and it has a great scope mount. This one is a lightweight design at only 3.27 ounces, but it’s still extremely durable and precise.

    This mount gives you an extra 1″ of eye relief with its extended design, making it a great choice. But while this is a great lightweight scope mount, it has quite the price tag. If you can spend this much, there are better options out there.

    Pros
    • Extremely lightweight design, at 3.27 ounces
    • Precise design
    • 1″ extended design for better eye relief
    Cons
    • More expensive for what you get

    7. Leupold Mark Scope Mount

    Leupold scope mount_Amazon

    Leupold is a top-notch American brand that excels at making pristine scopes, so it’s no surprise that it makes a great scope mount. It’s American-made and extremely durable, but it’s also a bit too expensive for what you get.

    If you can spend this much, you might prefer a Nikon or Vortex Optics mount, as this one costs more than both of those. This is still a great mount, and you’ll never run into problems while you’re using it — it’s just expensive.

    Pros
    • American made
    • Picatinny rail design
    • Durable construction
    • Will never move
    Cons
    • Expensive option

    8. Division G4 M556 Scope Mount

    G4 M556 series_Amazon

    The Division G4 M556 Scope Mount is an extremely affordable option that gives you a 2″ extended design, but it’s simply not the best choice out there. It’s low-priced but also low quality.

    You’ll likely run into minor defects in craftsmanship, and if those small defects turn into big problems, you won’t have a warranty to bail you out. Furthermore, you’ll need a Torx wrench to make all of your adjustments.

    This mount will certainly get the job done, but it may leave you wishing that you had invested in a higher-quality mount.

    Pros
    • Affordable
    • 2″ extended design
    • Rigid option
    Cons
    • Torx wrench needed for all adjustments
    • No warranty
    • Low-quality desig

    Buyer’s Guide – How to Select the Best AR 15 Scope Mounts

    If you’re new to scope mounts, you’re bound to have a few questions. That’s why we came up with this comprehensive guide that’ll walk you through everything that you need to know before you make a purchase. You’ll know exactly what you’re looking for and be able to pick out your next rifle scope mount with confidence.

    Why You Should Invest in a Better Scope Mount

    Most, but not all, scopes come with mounting rings, so why should you invest in something that you already have? The answer is simple: Most scopes that come with mounting rings skimp on quality.

    It makes sense, as the primary focus is the scope that you’re purchasing. You’re looking at the specs of the scope, and the mounting rings are an afterthought — but they shouldn’t be.

    If you invest in a low-quality scope mount, you’re going to find that your scope is constantly losing zero after firing a few rounds. So, when you need it most, you might find that your round flies wide. But if you take the time to invest in a high-quality scope mount, that’s one less thing that you’ll need to worry about.

    Of course, if the scope you are looking at purchasing or already bought doesn’t have mounting rings, you’ll need a scope mount to use your scope!

    Mounting Your Mount

    It might sound like an oxymoron, but you need to mount your mount. Most of the mounts on this list mount onto a rifle that has Picatinny rails. So, if that’s what’s on your rifle, you should be good to go!

    But other typical rifle mount types include weaver or dovetail rails, so double-check what’s on your rifle before making any purchases.

    Checking for Fitment

    adjust scope_dimid_86_Shutterstock

    Image Credit: dimid_86, Shutterstock

    You need to not only ensure that your scope mount will mount to your rifle but also that your scope will mount to the scope mount! Different scopes are different sizes, so it’s not surprising that you’ll need to verify the rings’ fitment.

    When you’re looking at ring sizes, there are two standard sizes that you’ll typically come across: 1″ and 30mm. Most scopes fit these dimensions, so as long as you know your scope’s size, all you need to do is find the right size mount.

    If you’re looking at Vortex Optics scopes, you’re in luck because it has designs that fit both sizes. For others, you’ll need to have a scope that fits the rings. We recommend finding your scope first, then getting a top-notch mount that fits it.

    This way, you’re not pigeonholing yourself with a mount and unable to get the best possible scope for your rifle.

    What to Look For in a Scope Mount

    Just because everything fits doesn’t mean that it’s the best choice for you. That’s why we compiled a few more questions that you’ll need to answer before selecting your next scope mount.

    Do You Want an Extended Design?

    eye relief 2_Riot1013_Wikimedia

    Image Credit: Riot1013, Wikimedia

    Extended designs undoubtedly have a few perks over flush fitments, but they’re not perfect. Let’s start with the good first. Because they push your scope farther up your rifle, they help with eye relief. This refers to the distance between your eye and the scope, and if you don’t have enough, your scope will end up smacking you in the face.

    While more eye relief is always good, you’ll need a scope that gives you enough to compensate for the added distance that the mount pushes it forward. You have to be close enough to your scope to see through it accurately, and this distance varies by scope.

    So, before you invest in a mount with a 2″ extended design, ensure that your scope has enough eye relief to work with this design.

    Keep the Warranties in Mind

    Warranties matter. They’re the manufacturer’s promise that the product it’s selling you will last, and if it doesn’t, it’ll make it right for you.

    That’s why so many people want products like the Vortex Optics and American Defense rifle scope mounts. Once you’ve bought them, you don’t have to worry about replacing them a few years later. So, while they might be a tad more expensive now, they’re almost always a better deal in the long run.

    Does the Weight Matter?

    This primarily comes down to personal preference. For some shooters, the mount’s weight doesn’t matter at all, but for others, they want it as light as possible so they don’t feel it.

    If you’re not sure if the weight will bother you, it’s best to go with a lightweight option. This way, you won’t end up installing the mount and attaching your scope only to realize that you don’t like it.

    Making Adjustments

    secure top_Guy J. Sagi_Shutterstock

    Image Credit: Guy J. Sagi, Shutterstock

    When you’re making adjustments, you want it to be as easy as possible, and mounts that require tools complicate the process from start to finish. While this isn’t a huge deal if you get a high-quality scope, it is still an added headache that you need to worry about.

    That’s why premium options, like the mount offered by American Defense, are so popular. All it takes is a twist of a knob to make adjustments, which makes it easier than ever to set up your mount.

    However, what’s more important is that everything will stay in place after you’ve made your adjustments. The last thing that you want is a scope mount that keeps shifting out of place, even if you don’t need tools to put it back.

    Stylistic Preferences

    Some shooters want everything on the weapon to flow and look aesthetically appealing. The good news is that there are scope mounts in different colors and styles, though you might have to pay more to get them.

    You’ll have to be honest with yourself here when you’re deciding what matters to you. If you want everything on your rifle to match, you might have to pay a bit more.

    scope crosshairs divider 1

    Conclusion

    Finding an excellent rifle scope mount can seem like an overwhelming task if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Hopefully, this reviews guide has helped take some of the anxiety out of the situation and given you the confidence that you need to make your next purchase.

    There is plenty of excellent rifle scope mounts out there, but the ones on this list are among the best!


    Featured Image Credit: D_Van_Rensburg, Pixabay

    About the Author Robert Sparks

    Robert’s obsession with all things optical started early in life, when his optician father would bring home prototypes for Robert to play with. Nowadays, Robert is dedicated to helping others find the right optics for their needs. His hobbies include astronomy, astrophysics, and model building. Originally from Newark, NJ, he resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where the nighttime skies are filled with glittering stars.

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