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5 Best Scopes For M1A in 2021 – Reviews & Top Picks

Last Updated on April 28, 2021

M1A weapon

An M1A is one of the best rifles that money can buy. Its popularity precedes it, no wonder most of the people who are looking for rifles tend to gravitate towards it regardless of its hefty price tag attached. It is a great weapon to add to your arsenal for those hunting game as well as for general target shooting.

When it comes to performance, we can see why it’s a favorite. This beast is a semi-automatic rifle that can shoot up to 300 yards with great precision. However, if you intend to shoot at a distance exceeding that, you will need a scope.

With a plethora of scope brands in the market, finding an ideal one for your MIA rifle may be difficult.

We took up the challenge and extensively reviewed several scopes and then narrowed them down on a five best list.

scope crosshairs divider 1

A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7x32 Riflescope Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7x32 Riflescope
  • Multi-coated lenses
  • Durable
  • Waterproof and fog proof
  • Best Value
    Second place
    BSA Optics TW3.5-10X40 Riflescope BSA Optics TW3.5-10X40 Riflescope
  • Great for law enforcement
  • Has a 30 mm tube
  • Comes with a mil-dot reticle
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Hi-Lux Optics M1200 Art Scope Hi-Lux Optics M1200 Art Scope
  • Has an ART cam system
  • Red illuminated reticle
  • Has a vast array of magnification options
  • Bushnell 614124 Banner Dusk & Dawn Riflescope Bushnell 614124 Banner Dusk & Dawn Riflescope
  • 40 mm objective lens diameter
  • Can be used for dusk and dawn hunting
  • Magnification range between 4x and 12x
  • M1SURPLUS Optics Kit for M1A M1SURPLUS Optics Kit for M1A
  • Has an illuminated reticle
  • Wide range of magnification power options
  • 50 mm objective diameter
  • The 5 Best Scopes for M1A – Reviews 2021

    1. Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7×32 Riflescope – Best Overall

    Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7x32 Riflescope

    Vortex optics was our best overall pick. Starting from the construction, it features a tube that is made from a strong aluminum alloy for durability. The aluminum is also lightweight so that it does not exert too much weight on your rifle.

    The material is also rust-resistant and shockproof. The tube has been filled with nitrogen in addition to the O-rings that are used in sealing. That ensures that the scopes remain fog-proof and waterproof, making them suitable even in bad weather.

    Vortex optics boasts a V-plex reticle to help you spot your target easily. With the capped turrets, you can reset your scope back to zero after sighting.

    The lenses are multi-coated for efficient light transmission throughout the tube. They are instrumental in achieving clear and sharp images, improving your shooting. They are also anti-reflective. With an objective diameter of 32 mm, enough light can get into the ocular lens. You can also adjust the magnification powers between 2x and 7x.

    Pros
    • Multi-coated lenses
    • Durable
    • Waterproof and fog proof
    Cons
    • Not best in low lighting conditions

    2. BSA Optics TW3.5-10X40 Riflescope – Best Value

    BSA Optics TW3.5-10X40 Riflescope

    If your focus is on using the rifle as a tactical weapon, this is your go-to option. It is specially crafted for use by law enforcement officers and by military personnel.

    BSA optics is also an excellent buy for someone interested in what their money can offer.

    This scope has an array of magnification options that can be adjusted depending on the distance between you and the target. Precisely, it varies from about 3.5x up to 10x, which is the maximum magnification power.

    Also, this BSA optic’s objective lens has a diameter of about 30 mm. It is wide enough to let in sufficient light to ensure you see clear images.

    The mil-dot reticle makes shooting your target even much easier since you can easily locate it (it makes target acquisition easy). With the turrets, you can also adjust your scope to get rid of any parallax errors.

    Pros
    • Great for law enforcement
    • Has a 30 mm tube
    • Comes with a mil-dot reticle
    Cons
    • Has an eye relief of 4 inches

    3. Hi-Lux Optics M1200 Art Scope – Premium Choice

    Hi-Lux Optics M1200 Art Scope

    If you are interested in a high-quality and superior performance M1A, Hilux optics will be your knight in shining armor. We only ranked it third because it is quite pricey.

    Hilux is one of the potentially limited scopes that come equipped with an automated cam system. This system ranges the target and works out the trajectory your bullet will take. With this kind of accuracy, your shots will less likely result in misses.

    It also comes with very impressive magnification power options. The minimum power is 6x, while the maximum stands at 24x. For someone shooting long distances, this scope is perfect.

    It has been fitted with an adjustment knob to adjust the windage and elevation settings as you wish. Also, the red illuminated reticle makes target acquisition easy for the shooter.

    We were pleased by the fact that the scope can be mounted to Picatinny or Weaver rail.

    Pros
    • Has an ART cam system
    • Has a vast array of magnification options
    • Red illuminated reticle
    Cons
    • It is expensive

    4. Bushnell 614124 Banner Dusk & Dawn Riflescope

    Bushnell 614124 Banner Dusk & Dawn Riflescope

    Do you like hunting down your game during low lighting conditions like at dusk or dawn? Bushnell 614124 has been specially designed for that purpose.

    The objective lens used in this Bushnell scope has a diameter of 40 mm. This is probably one of the largest we came across. The advantage is that it can let in enough light.

    Another supporting feature has to do with the quality of the optics used in constructing the lens. It boasts high-quality multi-coated lenses to effectively transmit light through the tube.

    Bushnell also has magnification powers ranging between 4x and 12x, and you can adjust this depending on the distance from which you are shooting. It is also fog-proof and waterproof.

    Pros
    • 40 mm objective lens diameter
    • Magnification range between 4x and 12x
    • Can be used for dusk and dawn hunting
    Cons
    • 3 inches of eye relief

    5. M1SURPLUS Optics Kit for M1A

    M1SURPLUS Optics Kit for M1A

    In the fifth place, we found these M1SURPLUS scopes, which are very pocket-friendly yet are still up to the task when used with your M1A.

    The scope comes with a pretty amazing objective lens diameter of 50 mm, the largest of all in this list. That means more light getting into the ocular lens and clearer images, especially when the environmental lighting conditions are at their lowest.

    In addition, the scope has a pretty impressive magnification power range, starting off at 8x and ends at 32x. This enables you to shoot your target from yards away.

    The only challenge that you might encounter as you continue to increase this magnification power is that the field of view will become smaller. That may make it harder for you to locate your target.

    M1SURPLUS also comes with an illuminated reticle that can estimate your range and tell you exactly when you should shoot. It will also be delivered with some scope rings made from aluminum for mounting.

    Pros
    • Has an illuminated reticle
    • 50 mm objective diameter
    • Wide range of magnification power options
    Cons
    • Can’t be mounted to all rifle rails

    Buyer’s Guide

    Going through the product section is never enough, as you may not have landed on the scope that’s right for you. Below, we have a buying guide to help gear you towards the right scope for your M1A rifle.

    You may want to go through this section before proceeding to the market.

    Important Features in a Scope for M1A

    1. Magnification Options

    The basis of this should be the range from which you intend to shoot your targets. How far away is it?

    As you probably already know, the scope’s magnification power brings the target closer for you to shoot with ease. So, unless you are a close-range shooter, you want to settle for a variable scope instead of a fixed one.

    2. Quality of the Optics

    For superior performance, the lenses used should be of an equivalent match. What is the test for this quality?

    You want to look at aspects such as the coatings. A good scope should have multi-coated lenses that will not reflect light. These will also be useful in transmitting light within the scope. The result will be clear and sharp images, which will make your target acquisition and shooting relatively easy.

    Rifle Scope Diagram

    3. Weight of the Scope

    If you asked shooters, they would tell you how difficult it is to walk around with a heavy rifle. The worst mistake that you can make is purchasing a heavy scope. Since you have to mount it to your rifle, the weight will be twice as much.

    4. Durability

    The material used to construct the scope will determine its durability. A sturdy and strong material will stand the test of time and take whichever punishment you throw at it, like bad weather. You need a scope that won’t break after falling, and it should be scratch-resistant as well.

    Also, you will want to ensure that the scope is fog-resistant and water-resistant too. Always go for materials like aluminum alloys or stainless steel.

    army using M1A

    Image Credit: Pixabay

    5. Price

    In most cases, the price always determines the quality of the product. However, ensure you are getting quality for your money. Don’t just settle for a scope because the brand name is huge in the market. You may find yourself paying for the brand name and not the product itself.

    If you conduct due diligence, you can always find a similar product at a more affordable price. Also, do not go for scopes costing too little, as you may end up with a substandard one. We recommend that you work with a budget.

    6. Objective Lens

    There are two sides of the coin when it comes to the objective lens of your scope. A large objective lens will be an asset since it will let in more light into the scope, ensuring that you get clear and sharp images. If you love hunting in low-light conditions, this is your go-to option.

    On the flip side, a larger objective lens will mean more money. It may not be the best buy if you are working with a budget. It is also likely to slow you down since it tends to be more cumbersome. Don’t settle for such if you do a lot of moving to get your prey.

    7. Eye Relief

    Ideally, the distance between the ocular lens and your eyes will also determine whether you make accurate shots. It affects your field of view and your viewing comfort. What works for you may not work for someone using eyeglasses, so that is left to your preference.

    prism eye relief_Piqsels

    Image Credit: Piqsels

    8. Type of Reticle

    Your purpose for buying a scope will lead you towards the type of reticle you will need. Some reticles are specifically designed for hunting while others are meant for tactical shooters.

    The main types you will come across will be bullet drop compensation (BDC), mil-dot, duplex, and dot reticles. Depending on your purpose, select one that best assists with your aiming.

    If you go hunting at dusk or dawn, an illuminated reticle is what you are looking for. However, they will cost more than scopes with average reticles.

    9. Turret Adjustments

    Sometimes, it will be necessary that you zero in your scope. This ensures that your reticle is in alignment with your target. Turrets will allow you to make those windage or elevation adjustments to the desired degree. You will also need to check if the scope comes with a parallax adjustment turret.

    There are two types of turrets to choose from: capped and exposed. Our advice would be that you go for capped turrets. They have a metal cap covering to prevent inadvertent movements after making adjustments.

    How Do You Choose Your Mounts?

    At some point, you may have to choose between M1A models that utilize subpar scope rings and those with rail mounting systems. You might want to settle for those with quality mounting systems since they will affect your rifle’s zeroing and, worst still, how well they can hold the zero.

    Plastic rings are not an option. Also, always be keen to settle for rings that do not consist of one-type mounting systems. The more diverse they are, the better.

    scope crosshairs divider 2

    Conclusion

    Finding the right scope for your rifle has never been easier. You will always be torn between taking one model or the other, especially because the numerous features are almost identical. We hope that by now you can make an informed decision when it comes to the best scopes.

    In summary, Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7×32 Riflescope is the best overall M1A scope. The scope has been built from a strong aluminum alloy material that makes it strong and specially adapted to adversities.

    The aluminum is shockproof, rust-resistant, lightweight, and easy to clean. The product also has its tube purged with nitrogen and sealed with O-rings to eliminate any fog accumulation chances. This also makes it an all-weather scope.

    If you’re hoping to avoid breaking the bank, the BSA Optics TW3.5-10X40 Riflescope is the way to go.

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    Featured Image Credit: 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.