There’s never been a better time for hunters and shooters to buy optics. Being able to purchase a virtually unlimited amount of options online has driven prices down and made products better. This new level of competition has made for excellent Scopes across the board.
Best Rifle Scopes for Under $200
Here are the best Rifle scopes for under $200 and why you should have one on your rifle when you head into the field.
Nikon P-223 3-9x40mm
Nikon makes some of the best rifle scopes in the world. They combine their knowledge of manufacturing some of the highest quality optical equipment in the world for a variety of uses with firsthand knowledge of what shooters need. If you spend any amount of time looking through different manufacturers scopes you will quickly discover that Nikon has the best compromise between price and optical quality.
That is why they are one of the go-to scopes for high optical quality, but high-value options. This is why their P-223 scope lineup is so awesome. Purpose designed for .2 to 3 cartridge they offer specialized features that aren't found on other scopes.
Starting off is a 3 to 9X power scope offering a tailor-made BDC reticle for the .2 to 3 cartridge. This allows you to shoot out to the very edge of this cartridge’s ballistic range. The large 40 mm objective bell helps with accuracy out to this range by giving you maximum situational awareness and field-of-view throughout the entire magnification range.
The first thing you notice about the scope when looking through it is how crisp and clear the optics are all the way through the range. Even in low light, the large objective bell gathers light and forces it through the fully multicoated lenses for maximum brightness and color correction.
You can’t go wrong with this scope for a lightweight AR 15 or bolt action rifle tailored for varmint or medium game hunting. Once you pick up the scope and try it you’ll never look back!
Leupold VX-1 3-9x40
Leupold make some the finest sportsmen optics on the market. They make a ton of different models of scopes including many high-speed military models that are used by elite units in both military and law-enforcement circles. This is their basic lineup that is not budget-oriented but still comes in much cheaper than many of their other models.
It is a classic 3-9x40mm scope that performs exceptionally well in the field. Be it a bolt action rifle for deer hunting, or a .22-250 varmint hunting rifle, you can’t go wrong with this all-around scope. Leupold is known for providing some the highest-quality scopes in the world, and this is no exception. It inherits their excellent attention to detail and proprietary technologies.
Things like argon waterproofing and one of the best warranties in the business set this scope apart as being one of the best all-around scopes for under $200. While there are other scopes that offer slightly better features, like slightly better optics or more ruggedized designs, there is no better all-around scope for this kind of money. If you are unsure what kind of scope to get, or getting a scope for a backup rifle or a youth’s first rifle, this is an excellent start.
It is a balanced, well thought out and well-designed scope. You’ll rarely find anything wrong with the quality from the old, and if you do those certainly take care of you in the end. This is the scope for people who don’t really care about scopes.
Vortex Diamondback 4-12x40mm
Vortex is known for having some of the most rugged designs on the market. Therefore thinking a company that provides innovation at all levels of the market regardless of budget. Some of their newer designs are purpose driven scopes designed for AR 15’s or shotguns, but this is an excellent budget minded scope that inherits all of the technology and manufacturing experience that Vortex has gained.
Vortex has set this scope apart by keeping a relatively slim 40 mm objective Bell but adding up to 12 power magnification. This provides an excellent slim and trim rifle scope for long-range hunting. As far as optics are concerned, you won’t find better at this price range. The quality of Vortex can be judged against the best on the market and will consistently perform just as well.
Thanks to enhanced technology going into the scopes they are virtually unbreakable and carry with them some of the best proprietary features on the market. Those technologies like special waterproofing and fully multicoated lenses combined with the best warranty you can buy make for an excellent scope.
If you are looking for a hard use scope, one that will be in and out of the field constantly banged and thrashed on, this is the one to get. Simply because it is more rugged than any other brand out there, and Vortex is known for honoring their warranty no matter what.
A great example of where the scope would do great is on an elk hunting rifle. Especially for a new hunter or someone who doesn’t want too expensive of equipment to be used in the backcountry hunt. You have plenty of magnification and a big bright objective Bell that gathers light well, and you don’t have to worry about breaking the scope. I can’t recommend this scope more!
Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot
The best AR-15 red dot under 200 dollars
Bushnell has probably the widest range of scopes on the market. You can find their scopes on the rifles of elite military units as well as on the shelves of Walmart. That being said, they produce some of the best sportsmen quality optics you can buy. Bushnell has paved the way for many other companies to copy their designs and features but still innovates faster than any other company.
This is an excellent example. It is a simple red dot optic optimized for sportsmen. It follows the form factor of the major red dots offered by the major manufacturers but brings the price down low enough that you can put one on virtually any firearm. Especially for an AR 15 red dot under $200, you can’t find a better option.
This sight, in particular, has been popular with hunters looking for a red dot for a long time. The combination of small form factor and effective cost means that more people have been able to put this through the ringer out in the field. It has quickly become a cold favorite of hunters.
Whether you’re going to put one on an AR 15 or shotgun the integrated mount built into the ruggedized housing means you won’t have any problems with spacing or height. All you have to do is get this site and co-witness it with your other iron sights and head into the field.
The only drawback to this site is the odd battery uses. When you order it online make sure you stock up on batteries. The last thing you want is to be in the field with such an awesome red dot sight and not be able to use it because you can’t find any batteries!
For more, check out our Bushnell TRS-25 Review.
Nikon ProStaff 3-9 x 50
Best varmint scope under 200 dollars
Varmint hunting requires excellent optics. Especially if you be shooting small targets at extended ranges. This is where you need excellent light gathering ability combined with superior optical quality and no other company brings value to this segment of the market like Nikon. Overall this is one of their absolute best varmint scopes for under $200.
It's from the pro-staff line of riflescopes that fit in between the very high-end and the budget-minded options. It has adjustable 3 to 9X power magnification and a massive 50 mm objective bell. You don't have to worry about shooting on the edge of legal light with the scope. That huge bell on the fully multicoated lenses work great together and project light. Colors at extended ranges are still easy to see until it is pitch black outside.
The magnification range is easy to adjust with a large fin, even with gloves on. Small refinements like the attention to detail on the exterior coating and the way Nikon assembles their scopes with double O-ring nitrogen purged construction, mean that you won’t be missing any quality compared to the more expensive options.
If you are looking for one of the best varmint scopes, especially if you don’t have a lot to spend check out this one from Nikon. You won’t be disappointed with any of their products but this scope, in particular, stands out as one of their best offerings.
If you’re looking for the best rifle scope under $200 you’re in good company. Most hunters love this price range because you can get an excellent scope for hunting, plinking and light competition without breaking the bank. This price range is the bread and butter for most manufacturers and you can’t go wrong with any of these models on this list.
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