10 Best Rifle Scopes Under $300 of 2021

Whether you are a hunter or you just enjoy shooting, choosing the right scope for your rifle is a huge factor in how accurately you shoot, especially at longer ranges. Having the right scope for your shooting needs could mean the difference between hitting your target and hitting only air.

There are numerous rifle scopes on the market today, and most of them are expensive, so it can be a difficult for the budget-conscious shooter to know how to find a quality dependable scope within their price range. We’ve done the work for you by compiling this guide to the best rifle scopes under $300. Use this handy guide to help you figure out how to choose the best budget scope to fit your shooting needs.

Before You Buy…

Remember to take these things into account before you purchase a rifle scope.

  • No equipment will compensate for poor shooting. Practice is the best way to improve shooting accuracy whether you’re shooting with a scope or without one.
  • No two guns are exactly alike. While most scopes work well on many different gun models, what works well on one gun, may not perform well on another.

Top 10 Rifle Scopes Under $300 Table

PictureNameMagnificationRating (1-5)
Rating (1-5)
1. Vortex Optics Crossfire II 4 - 12x40mm AO Riflescope, DEAD-HOLD BDC4 -12x404.9
2. Leupold VX-2 3-9x40mm Rifle Scope, Matte Black, Duplex Reticle 1107973-9x404.8
3. Nikon PROSTAFF 5 BDC Riflescope, Black, 3.5-14x40 3.5-14x404.8
4. Redfield Revolution 2-7x33mm 4-Plex2-7x334.8
5. Burris Droptine Riflescope with Ballistic Plex .22 Reticle 2-7x354.8
6. Zeiss Terra 3X Riflescope with Hunting Turrets Plex Reticle3-9x424.8
7. Primary Arms 4-16X44 Illuminated Mil Dot Scope, Black 4-16x444.7
8. SWFA SS 10x42 Tactical Riflescope 10x424.6
9. Bushnell Optics Drop Zone 223 BDC Reticle Riflescope with Target Turrets and Side Parallax, 4.5-18x 40mm4.5-18x404.5
10. Mueller Target Rifle Scope, Black, 8-32 x 44mm 8-32x444.5

Types of Scopes

Most rifle scopes fall into one of two categories, each with advantages and disadvantages.

  • Variable Scopes. This is the most common variety of rifle scope. This type of scope allows the shooter to adjust magnification. Choose this type of scope if you will find yourself shooting from multiple distances.
  • Fixed Scopes. The magnification on a fixed scope cannot be adjusted; this can be limiting under some circumstances, especially when shooting from very long distances, but their simplicity makes them very easy to use.

What the Numbers Mean

If you’ve looked at rifle scopes at all, you’ve noticed that manufacturers use a series of numbers, such as 10×50, to classify their products. Knowing what these numbers mean will help you make accurate comparisons between different rifle scopes.

  • Power. The first number in the series, located before the x, refers to magnification. The higher the number, the higher the power of magnification the scope provides. When using a scope with a first number of 10, you will see an image ten times what the naked eye sees. If you are using a variable scope, you will see a range of numbers before the x.
  • Objective. The number that follows the x in the series refers to the diameter of the objective lens. The objective lens is the lens that is opposite the lens you look through. Larger objective lenses are bulkier, but they offer a larger field of view. A larger objective lens also allows more light to enter the scope which creates a clearer sight picture, especially under low light conditions.

Top 3 Best Rifle Scope Under $300 Reviews

1. Vortex Optics Crossfire II 4 – Riflescope

The first thing you will notice about the Crossfire II Riflescope is that it is well built, feels good in your hands, and is easy to install. Also, sighting it in is a breeze, so you’ll be all set and ready to shoot in no time.

Despite its affordable cost, this scope is durable and dependable. It can take a licking and keep on ticking. Even with rough treatment, it still holds zero. The lens is crystal clear at both long and short distances, and it won’t fog, even under extremely humid conditions.

This is a solid scope for the money. With this kind of performance, you’ll wonder why anyone needs a super-expensive optic. The no-nonsense features, easy installation, and dependability make this the best rifle scope under $300 on the market today.

2. Leupold VX-2 3-9x40mm Rifle Scope

Leupold has been known for quality and reliability in optics for years, and they really deliver with their VX-2 Rifle Scope. Filled with an Argon/Krypton gas, this scope is waterproof and won’t fog even under the wettest conditions.

It is easy to use and has brilliant clarity. You won’t see any of the fuzziness around the edge of the sight picture like you do in some other budget rifle scopes. Everything is clear and sharp, even at longer distances. If you’re looking for rugged dependability and performance, you don’t need to look any further than the Leupold VX-2 3-9x40mm rifle scope.

3. Nikon PROSTAFF 5 BDC Riflescope, Black

Made from sturdy aircraft-grade aluminum, the Nikon PROSTAFF 5 BDC Riflescope is as durable as it is dependable. This scope features several technology upgrades from Nikon, a world leader in quality optics, including spring-loaded instant zero-reset turrets and a quick focus eyepiece. All the optics are multi-coated to enhance light transmission, ensuring a bright and clear sight picture, even in low light conditions.

One of the best features is the patented BDC reticle with see-through ballistic circles which makes for easy target pinpointing, and with the clear, undistorted image that you get through this scope, hitting your target at long ranges is a breeze.

With all the features and technology of this scope, you will forget what you paid for it. You’ll swear you’re using a much more expensive scope.

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