Best High-End Rifle Scope: These Are 2019’s Ultimate Hunting Optics for Quality & Power

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Scopes More Than 1000

Warning: Must keep hands in pockets and away from wallet.

If you’re already sweating buckets in nervousness that you might buy something today that will land you in the dog-house, tread on carefully.

If you’re ready for jaw-gaping, heart-pumping prices for the best rifle scopes in the world, let’s continue. You’re about to be exposed to what luxury rifle scopes really are, and how much they really cost.

You’ve been warned.


Best Rifle Scopes Under $2000

Now, who can benefit from a premium rifle scope? This is your cue to raise your hand, along with practically everyone else’s hand too.

These are the scopes that have you researching and reading every single review about it online. These are the scopes that have you obsessing about whether or not you should spend this kind of cash on one.

So, again you hit the search engines to read everything until there is nothing but that purple highlighted title from Google telling you you’ve read all there is to read on this heck of a brilliant scope.

This is all of us. From the varmint hunter to the extreme long-range precision shooter, the best high budget scopes are going to require some deep pockets that will prove to be money well spent.

In deciding what scopes made this top 4, we had to slim down the margins – a lot. We considered the availability of multiple reticles, illuminated options, and a few extra perks that you’ll discover with the top 4 reveal!

tt-table__imageNightForce SHV
  • Magnification: 5-20X 56mm
  • Reticle: MOAR-20 MOA Center Illumination
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.15–3.54 inches/ 8.7–2.5mm
tt-table__imageSwarovski Optik Z5 3.5-18X44 P (BT) L
  • Magnification: 3.5-18X 44mm
  • Reticle: 4W
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.74 inches/ 10–2.4mm
tt-table__imageLeupold VX-6HD
  • Magnification: 4-24X 52mm
  • Reticle: Illuminated Varmint Hunter
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.70 inches/ 13–2.17mm
tt-table__imageBurris Eliminator III
  • Magnification: 4-16X 50mm
  • Reticle: Plex, Ballistic Plex
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.1–3.8 inches/ 13–5mm
tt-table__imageBushnell Elite LRHS
  • Magnification: 3-12X 44mm
  • Reticle: G2H
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.74 inches/ 12.1–3.7mm
tt-table__imageMeopta MeoStar R1r
  • Magnification: 3-12X 56mm
  • Reticle: C4, CK
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.54 inches/ 14.8–4.6mm



Our 4 Top Rifle Scopes Less Than $2000 (+ 2 Honorable Mentions)


NightForce SHV 5-20X56

nightforce-shv-5-20x56mm-riflescope30mm-250-moamoar-center-illuminated-reticleThe NightForce SHV 5-20X56 is not a scope to be toyed with. This $1300 rifle scope has the illuminated MOAR reticle on pristine and incomparable glass that sits in a gorgeous 30 mm tube body that hunters are seduced into loving.

For a world-renown tactical brand, NightForce sure pumps out a more than decent rifle scope specifically for us hunters. The wide range of variable power, the large objective lens, and the glass etched reticle speaks volumes in hunter-speak.

If you want to fall in love with everything this scope has to give, our fully detailed review will make those sparks fly.

Read Full Review




Swarovski Optik Z5 3.5-18X44 P

swarovski-z5-3-5-18x44mm-riflescopeThe Swarovski Z5 3.5-18X44 P is a souped-up rifle scope that is worth giving up your arm and leg for, and although its only around $1600, it’s quality is that of a higher price range. Its 4-coil spring system, ballistic turret technology, and light weight and compact build make it a winner in every field.

The Z5 has a generous power range and side focus system that will enable you to adjust your scope settings for various hunting conditions – the open plains, or wooded forest areas.

It also has a super low profile and weighing in at just under a pound, is lighter than most other rifle scopes in this power range with a 1″ tube.

If value for money is the aim of your search, you won’t be disappointed with this sweet Swarovski.

Read Full Review



Leupold VX-6HD 4-24X52

Leupold VX6 4-24x52mmThis Leupold VX-6HD 4-24X52 is your ultimate pure-blood, American-made, long range rifle scope that can get you out past 700 yards with ease.

The Xtended Twilight Light System, Diamondcoat 2, illuminated reticles, and Twin Bias Spring Erector System gives this optic an unparalleled edge in quality, light transmission, and shockproof-ability.

With Leupold’s Custom Shop only a shipment away, the modularity of this scope offers extreme versatility to fit the needs of the extreme long-range shooter, the low light hunter, and the serious varmint and big game regulator.

At a killer $2000, I can guarantee that you won’t regret a penny from the golden child brand, America’s favorite – Leupold & Stevens.

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Burris Eliminator III 4-16X50

burris-200116-eliminator-4-16-x-50-x-96-scope-blackThe Burris Eliminator III 4-16X50 is a beast of a rifle scope, but I think that’s what makes it such an intriguing device. To have such large dimensions, 15 inches long and 30 ounces, it’s got to be jam-packed with loads of cool and advanced technology, right? Well, to make into our top 4, it’s a must.

This whopping $1400 Burris scope took everyone here at Target Tamers for a pleasant ride. The laser rangefinding button and remote switch literally eliminates the need to carry an extra device in the field… seriously you read that right – a remote cable switch!

The X96 reticle works on any magnification, and of course you’ve got a built-in integrative inclinometer to compensate for angle shots uphill or downhill… of course, right?

Read Full Review



Honorable Mentions

The Bushnell Elite LRHS 3-12×44 rifle scope was almost featured in the top 4, but “almost” isn’t good enough. Its 4X zoom, 30 mm tube body, Mrad measurements, long range capabilities, and FFP reticle are still show-stoppers in their own right.

And, then there’s the Meopta Optics MeoStar R1r 3-12X56 RD that might just be the cheaper counterpart to the Zeiss Victory HT scopes. It has a very comparable and notable center-illuminated, SFP, glass etched reticle that is one of the best that you’ll find.


Best Rifle Scopes Under $3000

Now these are the rifle scopes that we mere hunters only wish we could afford. One or two of us might just give up both kidneys to sport one of these babes on our rifles for just one day – they’re definitely worth it. But, if money is the only variable in this “who’s it for?” equation, then these rifle scopes are reserved for those with even deeper pockets than previously needed or for those willing to mortgage their house – for a second time.

Trying to determine which scopes earned a spot in our top 3 was relatively easy since scopes in this range represent a considerably smaller market than more affordable ones. We took into account high end features such as FFP reticles, ballistic turrets, and even better glass with exceptional light transmission quality.

Even more specifically, we had to closely examine these features. Why? Overall user-friendliness is a big reason since an excess of high end features can easily complicate things.

We also scrutinized the one feature that makes these high-end scopes worth paying for to see if they actually improve your hunting experience.

tt-table__imageSwarovski Optik Z6i P
  • Magnification: 3-18X 50mm
  • Reticle: 4W-I, 4A-I
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.74 inches/ 9.5–2.8mm
tt-table__imageZeiss Victory HT
  • Magnification: 3-12X 56mm
  • Reticle: #60
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.54 inches/ 14.9–4.7mm
tt-table__imageNightForce NXS
  • Magnification: 5.5-22X 56mm
  • Reticle: #60
  • Eye Relief / Exit Pupil: 3.9 inches/ 10-.2–2.5mm



Our 3 Top Rifle Scopes Less Than $3000


Swarovski Optik Z6i 3-18×50 P

swarovski_optik_z6i_3-18x50_p_rifle_scopeThe Swarovski Optik Z6i 3-18×50 P is a show-stopper and the kind of scope you don’t dare touch if you found it on a shelf in a store.

It’s long ranging and low light specs make it a winner straight off the bat since we already know that Swarovski is an authority in providing crystal clear glass. But, the noteworthy feature of this Swaro is definitely the incredibly easy and intuitive ballistic turret technology with the three extra color coded rings for setting up three original zeros.

Everything about this rifle scope is built with precision and attention to painstakingly small details with hands-on expertise. That’s why this rifle scope is a dream scope maxing out at an astronomical $3000.

Read Full Review



Zeiss Victory HT 3-12X56

carl-zeiss-optical-victory-ht-3-12x56-20-plex-reticle-rifle-scope-with-asv-elevation-and-windage-turretThe Zeiss Victory HT 3-12X56 happens to be one of my favorite rifle scopes on the market. If this was a biased review, it would have taken the number one spot in a heartbeat.

It’s all because of the center-illuminated reticle – #60. There is not another illuminated reticle that can compare with this pure and fine dot. While the MeoStar does a nice job at attempting to, there’s just not anything that can compare to a Zeiss.

There’s also the Schott HT glass and LotuTec, the ASV+ Elevation turret with nine extra metal distance rings, but I’m still hooked on the #60. Once you get a sneak peek at it, you’ll be just as obsessed as I am – even with a price tag of a whopping $2500!

Read Full Review



NightForce NXS 5.5-22X56

Nightforce Optics 5.5-22x56 NXS RiflescopeThe NightForce NXS 5.5-22X56 has earned the number three spot in this price range. The amount of abuse this rifle scope is capable of is the first and foremost reason that this NightForce scope made the top 3.

Forget its incredibly wide power range, the glass etched reticles, the Hi Speed 20 MOA turrets, and the list of reticle options available – even getting you out past 1000 yards no problem.

The most impressive feature of the $2000 NXS is the harsh, punishing, and brutal abuse this scope can take. Do I dare say bullet proof? You’ll have to read the entire review to discover the answer to that.

Read Full Review


What to Look for in a Premium-Priced Rifle Scope

Is there really a way to justify spending this kind of money on a rifle scope? If so, we’d love to hear your legitimate excuses, as we’re sure your other half is too. But, if your heart is set on giving up a limb, organ, or whatever it takes to get one of these scopes, then let’s help you. We’ll start by preventing the aneurysm you might have when you start shopping for one by giving you some much needed info first. Make sure you look for nothing but the best when it comes to:

  • Quality glass: Includes premium glass elements Ex. ED, HD, etc.
  • Quality glass coatings: Includes layered coatings, mirror and phase-correction coatings, and weather, scratch, and debris repellent coatings.
  • Ballistic reticles: Premium usually means long range, and long range tends to include all those necessities like holdovers, wind compensation, and the like. Shop for the most practical and accurate reticles you can find.
  • Eye relief 3″+: Without decent eye relief, your rifle scope is going to let you know what a real black eye is.
  • Ballistic turrets: You never go without ballistic turrets if you’re shooting out to extremely long distances.
  • Parallax correction: Premium scopes can mean long range, and long range means you’re going to need a parallax correction turret or objective. Don’t skimp or you’ll miss the bull’s-eye.
  • Quality warranties: Have the assurance that your premium rifle scope is fully covered for any unforeseen damage.


You Don’t Need to Trade in a Limb!

You might think you need to trade in a limb, an organ, or even your first born to justify buying a high-end rifle scope, but you don’t. You just need to know how to maximize value in your buy.

While name brands definitely have the upper hand in this arena due to their very-deserved reputations, there’s always a brand that can offer it a better price. You’ve just got to be prepared to the skinning and the gutting when it comes to comparing the scopes side by side. Keep your bodily parts and family intact and check out our reviews instead. You might yet be allowed to sleep in the house after all!


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