7 Best Scopes for 17 HMR – Reviews and Buying Guide

Best Scope for 17 HMR

Over the last decade or so, the .17 HMR (Hornady Magnum Rimfire) has become a highly popular Rimfire rifle for hunting or shooting small varmints and game. And this is mostly thanks to its high accuracy, especially from close range.

With the best scope for 17 HMR, you can make it even more accurate and versatile and hence ideal for taking out all kinds of small animals.

The 17 HMR came into the market back in the early 2000s and it was designed to offer a better functioning alternative to the .22 when it comes to hunting small game.

This scope offers the advantage of having a higher velocity, flatter trajectory and a farther range than the .22. Also, this rifle will have greater accuracy than the .22, and this is more so if you have a good scope mounted on it.

A good scope for 17 HMR must enhance the shooter’s ability to hunt varmints and small game. And in case you are wondering which is the right scope for your 17 HMR, our top 7 reviews and buying guide below will provide the answers to your query.

You can also read other product reviews of rimfire scope, 22LR scopescope for 308scope for M1Ascope for AR10scope for ruger 10-22scope for 30-06scope for 30-30scope for AK47.

Product Name

Magnification

Eye Relief

Field of View

Rating

Current Price

1. Nikon Buckmasters II Rifle Scope

3-9x

3.6 in

33.8 to 11.3 ft at 100 yds

4.6

2. Leupold VX-1 Compact Rifle Scope

3-9x

3.7-4.2 in

34.6 to 14.6 ft at 100 yds

4.7

3. Vortex Optics Crossfire II Rifle Scope

2-7x

3.9 in

42 to 12.6 ft at 100 yds

4.6

4. Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Rifle Scope

3-9x

3.3 in

40 to 14 ft at 100 yds

4.5

5. Nikon ProStaff 3-9x40 Black Matte Rifle Scope

3-9x

3.6 in

33.8 to 11.3 ft at 100 yds

4.5

6. BSA 3-12x40 Sweet Rifle Scope

3-12x

4.0 in

33 to 8.3 ft at 100 yds

4.2

7. Barska AO Hot Magnum Rifle Scope

6-18x

3.1 in

14.5 to 4.5 ft at 100 yds

3.8

1. Nikon Buckmasters II 16338 – An Incredibly Amazing Scope with BDC Reticle

Nikon Buckmasters II Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: 3.6 inches
  • Objective Diameter: 40mm
  • Field of View: 33.8 to 11.3 feet at 100 yards

Nikon's Buckmasters II is an incredibly amazing .17 HMR scope that uses patented BDC reticle to offer a great advantage for long range shooting.

With its fully multicoated optics, this rifle scope will provide superior sight picture quality by ensuring maximum light transmission from dawn to dusk. And it also has a generous 3.6-inch eye relief, and with an amazing 100-yard parallax setting.

Zeroing in the scope is a quick and easy process thanks to the precise hand turn 1/4 MOA adjustments, and it will maintain your preferred settings even under heavy recoil.

And like most other Nikon scopes, it has been optimized for use with their Spot On Ballistic Match Technology for exact aiming points according to you ammunition and load.

Nitrogen purging and O-ring sealing make this scope completely water, fog and shockproof and Nikon will back it with their limited lifetime warranty to give you some assurance that it will last.

There is no side focus on this scope, but this should not be a big deal as it has a 100-yard parallax setting which means shooters will hardly ever need to worry about parallax.

Pros:

  • Fully multicoated optics
  • Optimized for use with Spot On technology
  • Easy to zero in and will maintain the setting
  • Up to 100-yard parallax setting
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Cons:

  • No side focus
  • Tube is quite short

2. Leupold LP113874-BRKDurable, Light and Top Quality Scope

Leupold VX-1 Compact Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: 3.7-4.2 inches
  • Objective Diameter: 40mm
  • Field of View: 34.6 to 14.6 feet at 100 yards

With a versatile 3:1 zoom ratio, this top-rated scope for 17 HMR by Leupold will be highly useful in almost any situation.

The rifle scope uses a Multicoat 4 lens system that will deliver a bright and extremely clear sight picture throughout the field of view and you get this even in low light conditions.

Generally, this is also a well-built scope that features a durable but lightweight aircraft grade aluminum alloy construction that will make it tough and rugged enough to handle any environment.

Leupold also uses a proprietary nitrogen sealing process on this scope to ensure absolute water and fog proof integrity. And with the generous eye relief (up to 4.2 inches) and 1/4 MOA finger click adjustment, this is also generally an easy scope to use and adjust for windage and elevation.

Although it is relatively pricier when compared to others on our list, this scope still comes at a great price when you compare it to others with similar quality and features.

Pros:

  • Repeatable and dependable adjustment
  • Rugged and durable overall construction
  • Extremely clear and bright sight picture
  • Absolute water/fog proof integrity
  • Generous eye relief

Cons:

  • Relatively pricier
  • Adjustments need some fine tuning

3. Vortex Optics CF2-31003 – High-performing and Reliable Scope

Vortex Optics Crossfire II Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 2-7x
  • Eye Relief: 3.9
  • Objective Diameter: 32mm
  • Field of View: 42 to 12.6 feet at 100 yards

Vortex Optics makes their Crossfire II scope to be a versatile rifle scope for hunting and shooting from various ranges and with a dead-hold BDC to help you deal with holdover estimation.

The scope is made with a single piece of aircraft grade aluminum to provide strength and ensure a shockproof performance throughout the lifespan of the scope.

The anti-reflective and fully-multicoated lenses also help to make this one the best scope for 17 HMR as they ensure maximum light transmission for bright and vivid images in most light condition.

Also, it has a fast focus eyepiece that ensures that focusing the reticle will be an almost effortless task, and it also has capped reset turrets that are finger adjustable and with MOA clicks to make windage and elevation adjustment easier.

Many shooters will also find the 3.9 eye relief long enough and the eyebox is also very forgiving to make it easier to acquire the target. And this is also a nitrogen-purged and O-ring sealed scope to ensure maximum fog and waterproof integrity.

The 2-7x magnification and 32mm objective diameter are both the smallest on our list but still more than enough for use when hunting varmints and small game from close range.

Pros:

  • Durable one-piece main tube
  • Fast focus eyepiece
  • O-ring sealed and nitrogen-purged
  • Anti-reflective and fully-multicoated lenses
  • Longer eye relief and more forgiving eyebox

Cons:

  • Relatively smaller magnification range and objective diameter

4. Bushnell BS613948 – A Dusk and Dawn Scope You can Rely on

Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: 3.3 inches
  • Objective Diameter: 40mm
  • Field of View: 40 to 14 feet at 100 yards

Because most wild animals are active at dusk and dawn Bushnell makes this scope with special dusk and dawn brightness multicoated lenses to make sure that it will be perfect for hunting in these important times of the day.

But besides its special lenses that deliver HD clarity at dusk and dawn, this is also a well-built scope that features durable one-piece construction and is nitrogen-filled to make it 100% fog, water and shockproof.

The up to 40 feet wide field of view is one of the widest among our scopes for 17 HMR reviews and this is also the cheapest model on our list.

With this 17 HMR scope, you also get a fast focus eyepiece and 1/4 MOA fingertip adjustments for windage and elevation to allow you to fine tune it to suit your shooting condition.

The crosshairs seem a bit too thick and this is more so when at the high magnification settings. but the beauty of it is that they do not obstruct the target significantly and most users will hardly even notice the issue once they get used to the scope.

Pros:

  • Wider field of view
  • Relatively more affordable
  • High-quality optics with HD clarity
  • Fast focus eyepiece
  • Solid and durable one-piece main tube

Cons:

  • Crosshairs are quite thick
  • Eye relief should be a little longer

5. Nikon ProStaff 3-9x40 – Compact and Lightweight Scope by Nikon

Nikon ProStaff 3-9x40 Black Matte Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-9x
  • Eye Relief: 3.6 inches
  • Objective Diameter: 40mm
  • Field of View: 33.8 to 11.3 feet at 100 yards

With a compact and lightweight scope like Nikon’s ProStaff, you can be confident that your rifle will still maintain great balance and still be easy to aim and shoot.

This Nikon scope for 17 HMR uses some fully multicoated lenses that will deliver up to an impressive 98% light transmission for bright, vivid and crisp images.

It also has zero-reset turrets with spring-loaded adjustment knob to ensure easy and quick windage and elevation adjustment.

Focusing the reticle is also easy to ensure you never miss your target thanks to the fast focus eyepiece, and this is also a nitrogen-filled and O-ring sealed scope to make it 100% water, fog and shockproof.

Plastic turret caps look cheaply made and the adjustments are a little stiff when the scope is new. However, the caps still do their job flawlessly and the adjustments should be okay after a few uses.

Pros:

  • Spring-loaded and zero reset turrets
  • Nitrogen-filled and O-ring sealed
  • Quick focus eyepiece
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Fully multicoated optics with a super high light transmission

Cons:

  • Plastic turret caps look cheaply made
  • Adjustments are a little stiff when new

6. BSA S17 3-12x40 – For a Parallax-free Performance

BSA 3-12x40 Sweet Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 3-12x
  • Eye Relief: 4 inches
  • Objective Diameter: 40mm
  • Field of View: 33 to 8.3 feet at 100 yards

The parallax-free performance of this BSA scopes makes it not only one of the best scopes for your 17 HMR Savage but also for any other Rimfire rifle that it can fit. But, it is important to note that it has been specifically calibrated for 17 HMRs .17gr and .20gr bullets.

This scope also offers a generous 4-inch eye relief that is designed to be consistent to ensure easy and more comfortable shooting.

With the fully multicoated optics, you can also be sure of always getting a bright and clear enough sight picture as they ensure maximum light transmission.

Sighting in the rifle scope is also quite a quick and straightforward process and shooters will love the fact that it holds zero well. And the scope also offers a rugged and durable construction that can withstand the outdoor environment.

This rifle scope is a bit on the heavier side but the weight is still acceptable as it will not affect the rifle's balance.

Pros:

  • Long and consistent eye relief
  • Fully multicoated optics
  • Easy to sight in and holds zero well
  • Rugged and durable enough
  • Easily adjustable parallax

Cons:

  • A bit heavy
  • Thicker crosshairs

7. Barska AC10850 – The Best 17HMR Scope for Short and Medium Range Shooting

Barska AO Hot Magnum Rifle Scope
  • Magnification: 6-18x
  • Eye Relief: 3.1 inches
  • Objective Diameter: 40mm
  • Field of View: 14.5 to 4.5 feet at 100 yards

Barska engineers this rifle scope model specifically for the 17 HMR, and it is also designed to offer unmatched accuracy for short and medium range shooting.

The scope uses some high-quality glass that is designed to deliver edge to edge clarity at different magnification settings, and the multicoated optics ensure that you always get a brighter view.

Also, the scope uses bullet drop technology and offers pre-calculated trajectory compensation from 100 yards all the way to 300 yards to ensure that your shots are always accurate.

With the adjustable objective lens, parallax correction is an easy task to ensure you always get a parallax-free performance from all distances. And this is also a 100% fog and waterproof and with an extra rigid construction to make it shockproof.

The 3.1 inches of eye relief is the smallest among our scopes for 17 HMR reviews, but for short and medium range shooting, it is way more than enough and hence not a deal breaker.

Pros:

  • Simple parallax correction
  • Multicoated optics provide a brighter view
  • Pre-calculated trajectory compensation
  • 100% water, fog and shockproof
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Cons:

  • Smaller eye relief
  • Comes with minimal instructions

How to Buy the Best Scopes for 17 HMR

How to Buy the Best Scope for 17 HMR

It is true there are dozens or even hundreds of scopes in the market designed for the .17 HMR, but the truth is that they are not built the same and hence not all will offer the results you want.

Hence, to make sure that you find a good scope for your rifle or make an informed decision when picking from the several options in the market, it is vital to consider the following things when shopping.

1. Magnification

Because the main purpose of the .17 HMR is to hunt small game and varmints, magnification is crucial when it comes to choosing a scope. Any scope that you buy needs to provide sufficient magnification power or capability.

With the small game, you have to take headshots so that you can keep most of the meat edible, and so your scope needs to be able to zoom in and out to pinpoint the target. This means that a scope with variable magnification is way much better than the fixed types.

When it comes to the actual magnification range of the scope, the right one for you will depend on the distances you will be shooting. However, the scopes with at least 2-7x magnification range seem to be good enough.

2. Eye Relief and Eyebox

Eye relief measures the distances between the eye and scope. For most scopes, the longer it is the better as it means you can see through the scope comfortably without having to lean in too much.

However, given the low recoil of the .17 HMR, the eye relief will not be a big issue. Hence, even a smaller 2.5-3.5 inches eye relief can still be acceptable.

The eyebox, on the other hand, is the amount of wiggle room that your aim eye will get. A larger eyebox means faster target acquisition even at higher magnification settings, and so it is always the best option.

3. Diameter

Larger objective diameter is a must-have if you will be hunting at low light conditions such as dawn and dusk which is when many varmints come out of their holes. And this is because a larger objective diameter means that the scope will allow more light in for clearer images.

Scopes with adjustable objectives are even better because you can fine-tune the amount of light they let in to suit any hunting or lighting conditions.

But, the downside to a larger objective lens diameter is that it often translates to a more expensive scope that is also heavier in weight.

4. Reticle

The best scope for 17 HMR for you is one that has a good reticle. Like with any other scope type, you will need to choose between duplex, mil-dot and the BDC reticles.

Your preferences as a hunter or shooter will have a vital role to play when choosing the right reticle, but it is also important to understand what each type has to offer for your 17 HMR.

Duplex reticles seem to be the most popular because they are simple to use and they work well even for low light conditions at dusk and dawn.

For 17 HMR shooters that want to estimate the range when shooting varmints, the evenly spaced dots on the mil-dot reticle makes it the best choice. And the BDC reticles are generally the best for long range shooting despite the fact that they have a steeper learning curve.

5. Weight

A heavy scope can take your 17 HMR rifle off balance and hence make it harder and awkward to aim which will affect your accuracy significantly.

As you shop for a scope, you should not overlook the weight. While the lighter it is the better, this will also depend on the size of your particular 17 HMR model because the larger and heavier ones can accommodate heavy scopes.

Also, note that the more feature-rich scopes with several handy components tend to be the heaviest. Hence, it is all about striking a balance between the size and features that the scope has to offer and amount of weight it will add to the gun.

Conclusion

Regardless of the 17 HMR rifle brand or model that you own, you need to make sure that you have a good scope mounted on it for easier target acquisition and more accurate shots.

Finding the perfect scope is a simple process with the right information in mind as you only need to consider factors like magnification, eye relief, reticle and the overall weight of the scope.

With a little research and help from this guide, getting the best scope for 17 HMR rifles should now be an effortless task as we also provide some detailed reviews for recommendations.

Jeffrey Wilson