10 Best Air Rifle Scopes 2023

If you want to make sure you hit your target every time, you need an air rifle scope that is accurate, clear, and dependable.  We’ll walk you through important considerations such as fixed versus adjustable power and objective lens size and help you find the best air rifle scope to suit your shooting needs.

Why do you need an air rifle scope?

Although you don’t typically shoot at long ranges with a pellet gun, your targets are often shooting and well camouflaged.  A good scope can make a big difference in picking up your target and hitting it.  Many air rifles come with subpar scopes or no scope, so be prepared to upgrade if you want quality, durability, and accuracy.

Can you use a conventional scope on an air rifle?

A conventional rifle scope may break when used on some air rifles.  Spring-powered air rifles create two-way recoil that differs from the unidirectional recoil of a conventional rifle.  They have an initial recoil when the piston or spring is released, followed by the snap forward when it reaches its full length.  This extra recoil is a lot for the delicate internal parts of a conventional rifle scope to handle. Air rifle scopes are designed to roll with the extra jarring motion of that extra recoil and therefore offer consistent and accurate air rifle shooting.

How do you mount an air rifle scope?

You can use scope rings or a one-piece mount to attach a scope to your air rifle.  Most guns have scope-mounting rails.


Top 10 Air Rifle Scopes Table

PictureNameMagnificationPriceRating (1-5)
1. Hawke Vantage 3-9x40 AO Scope with Mil-Dot3-9x$$$$4.6
2. Hammers 3-9x32AO Air Rifle Scope with One Piece Mount3-9x$$4.2
3. CVLIFE 3-9X40 Optics R4 Reticle Crosshair Scope with 20 MM Free Mounts3-9x$4.4
4. CVLIFE Hunting Rifle Scope 6-24X50 AOE Red & Green Illumination Scope with Free Mount6-24x$$4.4
5. Sniper MK4-16X50 SAL Hunting Rifle Scope with Red/Green Dot Illuminated Mil Dot4-16x$$$$4.5
6. Hatsan Optima 3-9X40AO Scope3-9x$4.2
7. Sniper MT4-16X50AOL Hunting Rifle Scope Red/Green Illuminated Mil Dot4-16x$$$$4.4
8. SVBONY SV120 Rifle Scope with Reticule Crosshair3-9x$4.1
9. CenterPoint Optics CP4032 4x32mm Duplex Reticule Airgun & Rifle Scope4x$$4.2
10. Hammers 4-12X40AO Air Gun Rifle Scope (for High Power Air Rifles)4-12x$$$3.9

How to Choose the Best Air Rifle Scope

Don’t just jump right into your air rifle scope purchase without reading this section!  Here, we will go over a few basic things you need to know before you choose one.

Choosing between Fixed Power and Variable Power Ocular Magnification? Ocular magnification refers to the eyepiece lens (the end you look through) and is the first number in the scope magnification. So for a 4×32 scope, the “4” indicates that the eyepiece lens magnifies objects four times what the naked eye sees. A higher number indicates a higher level of magnification.

Higher magnification is handy for more distant targets. It is important to remember, however, that a higher magnification creates a narrower field of view. Think of your scope like the lens of a microscope; the greater the power of magnification, the smaller the area you can view through the lens.

Fixed air rifle scopes tend to have lower ocular magnification, and therefore a larger field of view, making them a great option for shooting closer ranges and sighting moving targets. As a bonus, their lack of moving parts increases their field durability.

Variable air rifle scopes have a range of ocular magnification: this makes them a more versatile choice with the option of a low magnification for close range or moving target shooting as well as the higher magnification necessary for sighting long-range. The typical numerical designation would be 3-9×32, indicating that the eyepiece lens is capable of being adjusted to magnify three to nine times what is seen with the naked eye.

What is Objective Lens Size? Objective lens size refers to the piece facing away from the eye. It is the second number after the “x” in scope magnification. For example, in a 4×50 scope, the 50 refers to the size of the objective lens. There are two important things to consider when deciding on the objective size of your scope.

    1. The larger the objective, the more light that can enter the scope, therefore enhancing image brightness and assisting in low-light shooting.
    1. The larger the objective, the more clearance the scope needs above the rifle. Scopes with higher objectives tend to be bulkier and heavier.

Top 3 Best Air Rifle Scope Reviews

1. Hawke Vantage 3-9×40 AO Scope Mil-Dot Riflescope

Hawke Air Rifle ScopeWe like the Hawke Vantage because it has more than enough magnification for an air rifle with variable power and a large 40mm objective lens size and the Mil Dot sight has multiple aim points allowing for hold-over and hold-under.  The clarity is very good, making it easy to pick your target out of a blended background.

This is a feature-rich scope with that includes 11 layer coated optics, a fast-focus lens, rounded turrets to prevent snags, and a stiff zoom ring that won’t move on you.  The scope is waterproof and shock proof and can be used on both air rifles and small caliber rifles.  A CR2032 battery is also included in the package.

2. Hammers 3-9x32AO Air Rifle Scope

When describing the Hammers 3-9x32AO Air Rifle Scope with One-Piece Mount, the first thing that comes to mind is “easy.” Its one-piece mount provides easy installation. The scope’s zoom and AO adjustments are available on either side, making it easy to operate. The focus is easy to adjust with the eyepiece focus ring, and the price makes it easy to afford.

The Hammers 3-9x32AO Air Rifle Scope comes with mil-dot range estimating reticle, which helps the shooter make easy range estimations and is great for shooting at a variety of distances.  The only downside to this scope is the average objective diameter, but the clarity is very good and it is easy to pick up targets.

3. CVLIFE 3-9×40 Optics R4 Reticle Crosshair Scope

CVLIFE Air Rifle ScopeCVLIFE makes some great rifle scopes and this is no exception.  The 40mm objective diameter is an upgrade over the average scope and it has more than enough magnification for an air rifle.  CVLIFE claims that the scope has a 95% light transmission rate.  Testers found brightness to be very good.

The CVLIFE 3-9×40 Optics R4 Reticle Crosshair Scope is constructed using duel nitrogen filled, sealed, aluminum tubes.  The design makes it shock resistant, able to withstand the recoil from any air gun or rifle, water resistance and fog proof.


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