10 Best Rifle Scope for The Money – Reviews and Buying Guide

Best Rifle Scope for The Money

Choosing the right scope for your rifle makes a huge difference when it comes to accuracy, and this is regardless of whether you are a hunter o sports shooter.

And because like guns they come in different types and have varying applications, you should always aim to get the best rifle scope for the money you are willing to spend.

For most shooters, $400 is the point where they draw the imaginary line when it comes to budget scopes. At this price range, you will not only get to save some cash but also get a feature-rich scope that is designed to be easy to use and highly accurate even for long range shooting.

But even as you shop for a scope that will give you the best value for your money, you will need to choose from several models and brands. In this piece, we make this choice easier by reviewing 10 top rated budget rifle scopes and with a detailed buying guide.

You can also read other rifle scope reviews such as rifle scope under $300rifle scope under $500air rifle scopescout rifle scope.

10 Best Rifle Scope for The Money – Reviews

Product Name

Magnification

Field of View

Eye Relief

Rating

Current Price

1. Simmons 511039 Rifle Scope

3-9x

10.5 to 31.4 ft at 100 yds

3.75 in

4.2

2. CVLife Hunting Rifle Scope with Free Mount

6-24x

28 ft at 100 yds

3.52 in

4.1

3. UUQ 4-16x50 Tactical Rifle Scope

4-16x

9.9 to 29.1 ft at 1,000 yds

unlimited

4.4

4. Tasco MAG39X32D Rifle Scope

3-9x

6 to 17.75 ft at 100 yds

3 in

4.1

5. UUQ C4-12X50 Rifle Scope

4-12x

9.9 to 29.1 ft at 1,000 yds

3-3.4 in

4.3

6. BSA Sweet Duplex Reticle Rifle Scope

3-9x

13 to 40 ft at 100 yds

3 in

4.1

7. OTW Red and Green Rifle Scope

3-9x

N/A

N/A

4.2

8. Nikon BDC 150 Rifle Scope

2-7x

6.4 to 22.3 ft at 50 yds

3.8 in

4.6

9. Leupold 110797 VX-2 Rifle Scope

3-9x

14.6 to 34.6 ft at 100 yds

3.7-4.2 in

4.8

10. Weaver V16Mdt Rifle Scope

4-16x

6.8 to 26 ft at 100 yds

3.23 in

4.4

Under $100

1. Simmons 511039 – Best Affordable Huntsman Scope

Simmons 511039 Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: 3.75 inches
  • Field of View: 10.5 to 31.4 feet at 100 yards
  • Length: 12 inches

As an avid huntsman looking for a reliable but still affordable rifle scope, Simmons 511039 is as good as it can get as you need to spend a lot more cash for anything better.

This is also a multipurpose scope that can also work well for recreational users or even for military purposes. And it will offer a magnification range of 3-9x and a generous 3.75 eye relief.

The scope uses a quick target acquisition eyepiece to make sighting a quick and simple process so that your target never gets time to get away. And it uses some high-quality and fully coated optics that will deliver brighter and clearer pictures.

Adjustment when on the field has also been simplified by the SureGrip surface that will be easy to use even with wet hands or when wearing gloves.

The scope will come with dovetail mounting rings which make it highly convenient, and it features a more durable one-piece main tube construction.

There seems to be a slight distortion around the edges of the field of view especially for high magnification settings but this will not affect the quality of image significantly and for such an affordable scope, it is something you can live with.

Pros:

  • High-quality and fully-coated lenses
  • Comes with free dovetail mounting rings
  • Simple adjustment in any condition
  • Quick target acquisition eyepiece
  • Durable one-piece tube construction

Cons:

  • Slight field of view distortion around the edges
  • Turret’s tactile clicks are not very noticeable

2. CVLife Hunting 6-24x50Best Illuminated Scope

CVLife Hunting Rifle Scope with Free Mount
  • Magnification: 6-24x
  • Eye Relief: 3.52 inches
  • Field of View: 28 feet at 100 yards
  • Length: 15.7 inches

For an illuminated rifle scope, this model by CVLife is probably as cheap as it can get. If you are shopping for the best rifle scope for the money and prefer something with illumination, you will not regret investing your money on this one.

It is a dual illumination scope with 5 intensity levels for both red and green, and so you can be certain that this is a highly versatile scope that will be useful for a variety of shooting conditions.

Also, the 6-24x magnification range is wider than what you will get with most other under $100 scopes, and it also enhances the versatility of the scope.

The main tube also features a solid and rugged one-piece construction designed to withstand any environment and give you many years of service. When you buy the scope, you will also get some free mounts.

Focusing and zooming might take quite some effort when you are new to this scope, but once you get used to the knobs and with a few trial and error episodes, you should have an easy time.

Pros:

  • Wider magnification range
  • Dual red/green illumination
  • Solid and rugged main tube
  • Free mount included

Cons:

  • Focusing and zooming takes quite some effort
  • A little too long for some rifles

3. UUQ 4-16x50 – Best Cheap Tactical Rifle Scope

UUQ 4-16x50 Tactical Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 4-16x
  • Eye Relief: Unlimited
  • Field of View: 9.9 to 29.1 feet at 1,000 yards
  • Length: 12.7 inches

The design of the UUQ 4-16x50 rifle scope makes it look complicated and expensive, and it is hard to believe that it is an under $100 scope. And it also has the features to go with the look.

This rifle scope is also illuminated with 5 intensity levels of green and red illumination. Also, it has an easily adjustable magnification range of 4-16x to offer versatility.

With the newly designed electronic control system, this rifle scope will allow for easy and quick set up and you will also get unlimited eye relief.

Durability is also assured with this rifle scope as it will feature T6061 aluminum construction and is also designed to be totally shock, water, and fogproof. Adjusting both windage and elevation is made easy by the fingertip turrets.

The clicks made when adjusting the elevation are not very loud, but this is only so before you get used to the scope. After a few uses, you should master the adjustments and the sound they make.

Pros:

  • Easy and quicker setup
  • Unlimited eye relief
  • Durable aluminum construction
  • Wide and easily adjustable magnification range

Cons:

  • Elevation adjustment does not make audible clicks
  • Quite a heavy scope

4. Tasco MAG39X32D – Best Scope for .22 Rimfire Rifles

Tasco MAG39X32D Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: 3 inches
  • Field of View: 6 to 17.75 feet at 100 yards
  • Length: 12.75 inches

If you shoot a .22 rimfire rifle when hunting or punching the paper targets, you need to buy this scope as it will make a huge difference to your shooting accuracy. 

The scope has been specifically made for these rifles and will also include rings to make mounting quicker and easier.

Also, this scope includes multi-layered lens coating and the optics are fully coated to ensure that you get bright and clear images.

Another thing that makes this one of the best affordable rifle scopes is the fact that it features a full-size monotube construction to make it solid enough and highly durable.

You can also use the scope in any weather condition with confidence as it is designed to be completely water and fogproof. This scope is quick and easy to sight in, and it will also come with a beautiful matte finish.

The included rings are by far not the best quality, but they still work well enough and if you do not like them, you can easily get cheap replacement ones.

Pros:

  • Fully coated optics
  • Full-size monotube construction
  • Completely water and fogproof
  • Easy to sight in
  • Beautifully matte finish

Cons:

  • Included rings are not the best quality

5. UUQ C4-12X50 – Best Moving Targets Rifle Scope

UUQ C4-12X50 Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 4-12x
  • Eye Relief: 3-3.4 inches
  • Field of View: 9.9 to 29.1 feet at 1,000 yards
  • Length: 12.7 inches

Shooting a moving target is not easy even for highly experienced shooters, but with the UUQ-C4-12x50 scope, things should be easier as it is designed specifically for this. But, it will also work well for rapid and normal shooting.

It is a dual illuminated scope with 5 brightness levels for both the red and green illumination, and it will also offer 4 different dot sizes for increased versatility and use for a variety of shooting situations.

Mounting it on your rifle is also a hassle-free operation as it will come with a built-in 22mm rail and you can mount in on almost any gun.

Windage and elevation adjustment should not take a lot of effort thanks to the audible click stops and fingertip turrets. Other things like the ergonomic overall design, high-quality matte finish and the complete water, shock and fogproof construction also make this an amazing scope.

Although this is a relatively heavier scope when compared to many others, given its features and performance, there is probably no way to make it lighter.

Pros:

  • Dual illumination with multiple brightness levels
  • Hassle-free mounting
  • Easy windage and elevation adjustment
  • Ergonomic overall design
  • Perfect for moving targets and rapid fire

Cons:

  • Relatively heavier scope
  • Optics are not very good at high magnification settings

6. BSA 22-39X40A0Best for Beginner Shooters and Hunters

BSA Sweet Duplex Reticle Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: 3 inches
  • Field of View: 13 to 40 feet at 100 yards
  • Length: 13.7 inches

The ergonomic and easy-to-use design of this BSA scope makes it the best budget rifle scope for beginner hunters and shooters as it will give them a super easy time.

It is also relatively more lightweight when compared to what other brands have to offer, and it also features durable one-piece construction to ensure you get great value for money.

Adjusting both the windage and elevation is quick and easy, and the scope also includes fully-coated optics to provide bright and clear images and quick-change turrets to accommodate three different bullet grain options.

The rifle scope is completely water, shock, and fogproof, and it will also come with some free lens covers that will be quite handy.

Low light performance is quite marginal, but for such an affordable scope, it is probably as good as it can get.

Pros:

  • Easy hand-adjustable windage and elevation
  • Lightweight and durable construction
  • Absolutely water, fog and shockproof
  • Quick change turrets
  • Comes with free lens covers

Cons:

  • Marginal low light performance
  • Turrets are a little too sensitive

7. OTW Red and Green 3-9x56Best Rifle Scope under $50

OTW Red and Green Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: N/A
  • Field of View: N/A
  • Length: 12.6 inches

Being the cheapest scope in our reviews, this OTW scope is our top recommendations for both beginners and pro shooters that want a top quality rifle scope and wish to spend as little cash as possible.

Despite the small price tag, this is still a well-built rifle scope that features an anodized aluminum material that will offer you great service for years to come and the design is also completely shock and fogproof.

This 3-9x magnification rifle scope also has dual illuminationans with 5 intensity levels for both the red and green which is similar to what you get from scopes that cost way much more.

The fast focusing eyepiece makes it easy to acquire your target and with the 20mm weaver rail ring mounts, this is a convenient scope to mount and you can be certain it will remain stable on the rifle.

Although you might need to do a little more sighting in and the pins that hold the caps are a little too loose, these are minor drawbacks for such an affordable scope and should not prevent you from trying it out.

Pros:

  • Different intensity levels for red/green illumination
  • Long-lasting anodized aluminum construction
  • Convenient ring mounts included
  • Super fast focusing eyepiece
  • Highly affordable scope

Cons:

  • Pins that hold the caps in place are a little too loose
  • Requires a little more sighting in

Under $200

8. Nikon BDC 150 – Best Rifle Scope under $200

Nikon BDC 150 Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 2-7x
  • Eye Relief: 3.8 inches
  • Field of View: 6.4 to 22.3 ft at 50 yards
  • Length: 11.5 inches

While it is not the cheapest rifle scope on our list, Nikon’s BDC 150 is one of the best you can get in the market for under $200.

There are many things that earn it this reputation and key among them is the solid polymer and aluminum construction as it makes it perfect for the abuse that comes with hunting. And so it is also one of the best hunting rifle scopes for the money out there.

This top-notch quality rifle scope is made with a fully multicoated optical system that will ensure maximum light transmission so that you always get bright and clear images all day long.

Also, the lenses are designed to be more eco-friendly as they are made with no lead or arsenic, and so this is what you should buy if you are conscious about the environment.

Adjustment when on the field is also simplified by the zero-reset features, and this is also an easy scope to sight in and will hold zero well.

The edges of the field of view can be a little fuzzy at long distances or when you are more than 80 yards away, but this is not a drawback as the scope is calibrated for 50 yards.

Pros:

  • Solid aluminum and polymer construction
  • Fully multicoated optics
  • Eco-friendly lead and arsenic free lenses
  • Simplified field turret adjustment
  • Fast and easy sighting and holds zero well

Cons:

  • A little fuzzy at longer distances

Under $400

9. Leupold 110797 VX-2 – Best Rifle Scope Brand

Leupold 110797 VX-2 Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: 3.7-4.2 inches
  • Field of View: 14.6 to 34.6 feet at 100 yards
  • Length: 12.6 inches

Every shooter and hunter is justified to expect nothing short of the best rifle scope for the money from a highly reputable brand like Leupold. The good news is that this VX-2 model even goes beyond expectations.

The lightweight and compact scope offers a versatile 3:1 zoom ratio that is designed to allow shooters to adapt to different situations for more accurate results. But there is still more to it than this.

It also features a durable but lightweight aircraft-grade aluminum alloy construction that will ensure you get many years of great service and with more spacious 30mm main tubes.

Windage and elevation adjustment is also made super easy by the precise finger click adjustments. And the scope also has one of the best optics systems that also include DiamondCoat lens coatings for maximum abrasion resistance.

The material used to make the turrets looks like cheap plastic, but given that this is a Leupold scope, you can buy it with confidence as the company is famous for using only top quality materials in all their scopes.

Pros:

  • Easy and dependable windage/elevation adjustment
  • Durable and lightweight aluminum alloy construction
  • Versatile zoom ratio
  • Spacious main tubes
  • Full lifetime guarantee

Cons:

  • Turrets are made from a cheap plastic material
  • Finish needs some improvement

10. Weaver V16Mdt – Best Affordable Long Range Rifle Scope

Weaver V16Mdt Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 4-16x
  • Eye Relief: 3.23 inches
  • Field of View: 6.8 to 26 feet at 100 yards
  • Length: 14 inches

Hunters and shooters that do some long range shooting a lot will benefit greatly from this Weaver scope thanks to its parallax-free view from 30 feet to infinity.

Sighting in this scope is also quick and easy, and it also a generally straightforward scope to use even for the inexperienced shooters and beginners.

The solid, one-piece main tube will ensure that this scope remains stable on your rifle and also offer many years of service.

With this scope, you get fully multicoated lenses that will provide maximum light transmission for brighter and clear images. The scope also features semi-target turret, adjustable objection, and the tubes are nitrogen purged to make it completely water, fog and shockproof.

Although it does not come with caps for the lenses, this is not a deal breaker because they are standard size, and so finding fitting caps should not take a lot of effort or cash.

Pros:

  • Easy to sight in and use
  • Solid, one-piece main tube
  • Parallax-free view from 30-feet
  • Fully multicoated lenses
  • Completely water, fog and shockproof

Cons:

  • Does not come with caps

How to Buy the Best Rifle Scopes

How to Buy the Best Rifle Scope

Shopping for a rifle scope on a budget might narrow down your choices but the truth of the matter is that you will still need to choose from several models.

Because not all cheap rifle scopes will work well for you, provide the accuracy you need or have a durable construction, you need to take extra precaution when shopping. But, you should be able to get a good one if you keep the following things in mind when shopping.

1. Purpose

Before you start even shopping for a rifle scope, you need to be clear about how you intend to use it. While it is true that some rifle scopes can be versatile and ideal for various shooting situations, some are designed for very specific purposes.

If you want a scope for use on your self-defense rifle, you should go for something that will allow for rapid target acquisition because in many instances the rifle will be used in close range encounters.

For hunters, the scope needs to hold zero or remain perfectly tuned at all times and ready to use even as you are hammering through the woods. Also, weatherproofing is vital for these kinds of riffles as they will be mostly used outdoors.

As you think of the purpose, you also need to take into account the environment you will be shooting in because things like humidity, moisture, temperature, and overall weather conditions will have an effect on the performance of the scope.

2. Magnification Level and Range

Magnification is the range up to which you can multiply the vision of the naked eye. In simple terms, magnification is the ability of the scope to enlarge the image for enhanced targeting and accuracy, and it is one of the most crucial aspects of a rifle scope.

When it comes to magnification, one of the first decisions you need to make is whether to go for a fixed or variable scope. Variable scopes are the most common and they are the kinds that allow you to choose from a range of magnification options while the fixed ones only have one option.

Although magnification is often more preferential, it also depends on where and what you will be shooting. For hunters that shoot moving targets like deer from 100 yards or less, a 3-9x magnification range is often good enough.

However, if you are a sports shooter that wants to hit the bullseye from 750 yards or more, you need a scope with a magnification range of at least 5-30x as it will provide better results.

3. Light Transmission

Light transmission is important in ensuring that you always get bright and clear images and the higher it is the better the scope will be for use in different conditions.

In reality, a scope can achieve a maximum light transmission of about 98% but models with such light transmission are quite pricey, and so they will not be for shooters shopping on a budget.

However, there are also some affordable models with up to 95% light transmission which is often good enough for most shooters. These are more affordable scopes but will still offer great performance.

When shopping on a budget but do not want to compromise on your scope's light transmission, you should aim to get something with at least 90%.

4. Lens Quality

The size of the objective lens and the coatings are the two most crucial things to keep in mind when it comes to the lens quality.

Regarding the size of the objective lens, the larger the diameter the better as it means that it will allow more light in and produce brighter images. However, scopes with larger lenses are often pricier than those with smaller ones.

Because the coating affects image brightness and clarity, you need to make sure that your lens has the best. Here you need to choose from four options which are coated, fully coated, multicoated and fully multicoated.

Fully multicoated lenses are by far the best as they will ensure excellent light transmission which will lead to brighter and clearer images.

5. Construction

Even if you are on the market for the cheapest rifle scope, the construction still matters a lot and will be a grave mistake to overlook it when making up your mind on what to buy.

The size of the scope or its main tube is one of the key factors to consider when it comes to the construction, and here you will often need to choose between 24, 30 and 34mm tubes.

Scopes with larger tubes will increase the range of adjustment and provide lots of space for more interior components.

Also, check the material used to make the tube and a solid metal that is argon or nitrogen-purged to make it fog, water and shockproof will be the best.

Conclusion

The best rifle scope for the money for you will ultimately depend on your budget and personal preferences. However, there are still some vital things that you need to take into account when shopping for a scope whether it is a budget or high-end model.

These things include the purpose of the scope, magnification, lens quality, light transmission, and its overall construction.

The good news is that there are many cheap but high-quality rifle scopes in the market that will work for all kinds of situations from hunting and self-defense to sports shooting. All you need to do is pick one that suits your needs.

Picking an ideal scope should also now be a quick and easy task for you as our 10 budget rifle scopes above should provide more than enough recommendations. And the best thing is that they all cost under $400 and so you will not need to spend a lot on your scope.

Jeffrey Wilson