Last Updated on May 13, 2021
It’s no simple task to hit a target at 300 yards, and that challenging task quickly becomes impossible if you’re using the wrong scope. That’s why we tracked down eight of the best rifle scopes for shooting distant targets. This way, you can save yourself a ton of frustration.
We also took the time to review each scope before diving into a comprehensive buyer’s guide. With any of these scopes, you’ll be nailing targets at 300 yards in no time.
|Best Overall||UTG 3-12X44 30mm Compact Scope||
|Best Value||Monstrum 2-7x32 AO Rifle Scope||
|Premium Choice||Vortex Optics Diamondback Tactical Riflescopes||
|Nikon M-Tactical Rifle Scope||
|Simmons Whitetail Riflescopes||
When you’re looking for a great combination of performance and affordability, look no further than this UTG Compact Scope. It has an outstanding magnification range, starting at 3x and going all the way up to 12x.
With a parallax-free design after 10 yards, it’s an excellent choice for short-, mid-, and long-range applications. Moreover, it comes with a lifetime warranty, so it’s the last rifle scope that you’ll need to purchase. But while there is a ton to love about this scope, it’s not perfect.
First, the eye relief is a bit sharp, ranging from 3″ to 3.4″. From there, you need to double-check your scope as soon as you get it. While these are great scopes, there are a few problems with quality control. But if you do run into any issues, the company will gladly fix them for you.
If you’re looking for the best rifle scope for 300 yards for the money, it’s hard to beat the Monstrum AO Rifle Scope. It’s an extremely affordable option with a good magnification range that starts at 2x and powers up to 7x.
Furthermore, it has an illuminated reticle with five different brightness settings, and it has decent eye relief, ranging from 3.5″ to 3.8″. However, it only comes with a 1-year warranty, and if you’re not an experienced shooter, it can be challenging to hit targets 300 yards out with only 7x magnification.
The illuminated reticle helps, but hitting a 300-yard target is hard enough — with a lower magnification setting, it’s even more challenging.
Vortex Optics is well-known for making high-quality optics, and its Diamondback Tactical Riflescope line is no exception. There are two magnification ranges to choose from, and both excel at hitting targets 300 yards out. You can pick either a 4x to 16x magnification range or a 6x to 24x range.
Both options are expensive, but they come with a lifetime warranty, so this is the last scope that you’ll need to purchase. Even better, it utilizes a first focal plane reticle, and there are side parallax adjustment knobs that give you maximum precision no matter the distance of your shot.
Finally, you can choose from two different reticle options when making your purchase, which gives you even more versatility to find the perfect scope for you.
An outstanding rifle scope option is the Nikon M-Tactical. Like other top options, it comes with a lifetime warranty, but it is more expensive. You do get tons of features with the higher price, which more than justifies it.
Nikon uses a multi-coated coating that gives you a bright view, and the 4x to 16x magnification range is an outstanding choice for 300-yard targets. Moreover, it has a quick focus eyepiece that allows you to change magnification levels with ease.
But getting Nikon to honor its lifetime warranty can be a bit difficult. Nikon makes tons of products, and its riflescope line isn’t at the top of the list. So, when someone calls about a faulty product, it can be challenging to get support.
An affordable rifle scope option is the Simmons Whitetail Riflescope. But it only comes with a 1-year warranty, so don’t expect this one to last forever.
But there are tons of choices to choose from, with six different options, all with varying ranges of magnification. Those ranges start as low as 1x magnification and go all the way up to 24x power, so no matter what you’re looking for, Simmons has a scope for you.
However, all the scopes come with a second focal plane reticle, and the eye relief varies from 3″ to 4.5″. They’re not the best rifle scopes out there, but if you’re on a tight budget, they’re great.
The Athlon Optics Argos BTR Riflescope is an expensive option, but it comes with a lifetime warranty that helps justify the cost.
Furthermore, this sight uses a first focal plane reticle, has a side parallax adjustment knob, and has an illuminated reticle. This sight is incredible for longer shots with a minimum magnification of 8x and a maximum setting of 34x.
The eye relief is a bit sharp at 3.3″, but all things considered, it’s a decent choice for hitting long-range targets.
Bushnell is a brand known for making long-lasting optics, and its Engage Riflescope fits that narrative. It comes with a lifetime warranty and a great magnification range that starts at 2.5x and maxes out at 10x power.
Even better, it has 3.6″ of eye relief and a side focus parallax adjustment knob. However, while this is a more expensive option, it doesn’t have an illuminated reticle, and doesn’t use a first focal plane design. These aren’t deal-breakers, but for the price, we wish that it had these additional features.
But this is a long-lasting rifle scope that can easily get the job done up to and over 300 yards if you know what you’re doing.
We can only recommend this Barska Interchangeable 30/30 Rifle Scope if you’re shooting a .17 Magnum Rimfire Rifle. That’s because this scope utilizes technology that allows you to adjust for bullet drop with the turn of a knob.
The magnification range on this scope is an impressive 6x to 18x, and the scope itself is affordable and comes with a lifetime warranty. However, the eye relief is extremely sharp at 3.1″. It does have a multi-coated lens that gives you a bright image, and if you shoot a .17 Magnum Rimfire Rifle, this is an outstanding choice.
When you’re trying to hit distant targets, we know that it can get frustrating quickly. If you don’t have the right scope, it can take you a while to figure out if the problem is with your technique or your equipment. But by following this advice, you’ll be hitting your targets in no time.
For most applications, you don’t need a ton of magnification — but shooting targets at 300 yards out isn’t most applications. Most of this comes down to skill, though we recommend at least 10x magnification to have a chance.
Keep in mind that a 10x magnification is like shooting a target that’s 100 yards away without any magnification. That’s why for a 300-yard target, it’s hard to have too much magnification. Even a 20x magnification scope will be equivalent to shooting a target 50 yards out without a scope.
Also, hitting targets that far away is about more than magnification, as even the smallest movements can leave your round flying well off target.
If you’re going to have any chance of hitting a 300-yard target, you need to have a perfectly zeroed scope. Think of it this way: A scope that’s 3″ off zero at 100 yards is 9″ off zero at 300 yards.
That’s why it’s so essential to zero your scope correctly the first time.
Other factors that you need to consider when shooting a target 300 yards out are windage and elevation adjustments. These always matter, but they matter even more when you’re shooting targets at longer distances.
That’s why good rifle scopes allow you to make windage and elevation adjustments, with at least a .25 MOA adjustment with each click. That equates to ¼ of an inch at 100 yards or ¾ of an inch at 300 yards.
Before you take your shot, ensure that you make the proper adjustments. Otherwise, you’re not going to hit your target.
When you’re selecting a scope, you’ll notice that it has one of two options: a first focal plane or a second focal plane. The difference between the two is simple to understand, but it can make a big difference in practice.
First focal plane reticles always appear the same size regardless of your magnification level. This makes it easier to adjust your shot to the right distance, since all the hashes adjust to the current magnification level.
Second focal plane reticles only appear at their full size when you’re at maximum magnification. This means that if you’re using the dash marks, they don’t mean a thing unless you’re at maximum magnification.
With enough experience, you can use a second focal plane reticle with effectiveness at longer distances. Still, a first focal plane reticle will always be far easier to use for beginners and experienced shooters alike.
Parallax refers to the distortion that you see when you’re looking through your scope. This is especially true when you’re using a scope with higher magnifications. Having the ability to adjust for parallax allows you to remove that distortion when you’re at different magnification levels, which helps you aim and hit your target.
Having the ability to adjust for parallax matters more when you have a high-powered scope — just like the one that you would need to hit targets that are 300 yards out.
Every company tells you that its product will last. But only those with a warranty guarantee it. The gold standard of warranties is the lifetime warranty, and most of the products on this list provide one.
Companies that offer a lifetime warranty on their scopes guarantee that their optic will last for as long as you want it to, which means you won’t ever have to purchase another scope.
Moreover, the company doesn’t want to deal with the warranty process any more than you do, which is why the chances of you getting a quality product increase drastically if you get one that comes with a lifetime warranty.
There’s no way around it: an illuminated reticle is a nicety, not a necessity. But if you’re planning on shooting during low-light conditions, it can be the difference between hitting your shot and heading home empty-handed.
This is especially true at longer distances like 300 yards because if you don’t account for the correct distance using the hash marks on the reticle, you’re not going to make your shot.
It doesn’t matter which scope you get if you can’t mount it to your rifle. The good news is that all of the scopes on the list utilize a Picatinny/Weaver mounting system, which is the most popular system for rifles.
However, if your rifle uses a Dovetail or other style of mounting system, you’re going to need an adapter to mount your scope.
While this list has eight different options, you’re going to be hard-pressed to find a better choice than the UTG 3-12X44 30mm Compact Scope. It has an outstanding mix of performance and affordability. But if you’re on a tighter budget, the Monstrum 2-7×32 AO Rifle Scope is a great choice too, even if it doesn’t come with a lifetime warranty.
Hopefully, after reading through this guide and the reviews, you’ve found the perfect rifle scope to hit your 300-yard targets.
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Featured Image Credit: ddefillipo, Pixabay
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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