Best Long Range Rifle Scopes Review and Buyers Guide 2017
A rifle scope is a sighting device which relies on a refracting telescope. The best long range rifle scope is equipped with a graphic image pattern which is mounted in the optical system to form a precise aiming point. There are different types of telescopic sights such as iron sights, laser sights and reflector sights. Optical components are combined with optoelectronics, and they form a night scope.
They are classified according to their optical magnification and objective lens diameter, for example, 10*50 meaning that they magnify objects up to ten times and they have a 50mm lens. Large lens diameters provide bright images at the eyepiece as they can gather a lot of light. The rifle scope's objective diameter and magnification power should be chosen according to its use.
Some telescopic sights have a variable magnification which can be manually varied by using a zoom mechanism. They increase flexibility when shooting at different ranges, light and target conditions as they offer a full field of view when at low magnification settings. However, some old telescopic models have a unique classification whereby the last part of the designation indicates the scope's light gathering power the magnification factor also affects image brightness.
Long Range Rifle Scope Parameters
Hunting rifle scopes are specially designed for scouting. They have different models that have particular optical parameters which include;
The telescopes' linear magnifying power is calculated by dividing the eyepiece's focal length ratio to the objective's focal length. Its magnification amount depends on the designed use of the telescopic sight. Low magnifications cause minimum shaking susceptibility while greater magnifications cause a small field of view.
- The objective lens diameter
It influences the amount of light that the lens can gather to create an image, and it is usually indicated in millimeters.
- The field of view
A telescopic sight's optical design determines its scope of view. It is expressed in a linear value such as the number of meters which can be seen from 100m or in an angular value indicating the number of degrees that you can view.
- Exit pupil
A rifle scope focuses the light that the objective gathers into a beam and the exit pupil. The pupil's diameter is a product of dividing the objective diameter by the lens' magnifying power. To get the brightest image and maximum light-gathering, you should equalize the exit pupil to the diameter of a fully dilated human eye iris. It is usually 7mm, but it decreases with age. The light that is larger than the exit pupil does not provide information to a hunter's eye.
A large exit enables you to place your eye at a position in which it can quickly receive light which is usually within its cone of light. It prevents the occurrence of a darkened view as a result of partial blockage of the light path. This facilitates quick image location that is essential when focusing on swift game animals.
A narrow exit pupil causes fatigue as a hunter is forced to hold the rifle precisely before his eyes to form a clear image. Telescopic sights in Europe are mostly used at night, dusk or dawn when the exit pupils are large. The universal standard of the pupil is one which is greater than 4mm.Most hunters tend to prefer large telescopic sights that have wide exit pupils due to their comfort and ease of use.
- The eye relief
It is the distance from the exit pupil to the rear eyepiece lens. The eye relief shows how far a hunter must place his eye behind the eyepiece to see a clear image. An excellent eye relief is formed by a long eyepiece focal length. Telescopic sights for long range hunting rifles should be longer than 100mm for a clear image to be formed.
Rifle scopes with long eye reliefs are ideal as they prevent eye and recoil facial injuries. They are efficient in instances where a person can't hold an eyepiece steadily. The eye relief is vital for most eyeglass wearers as their eyes are far from the eyepiece which limits their scope of the field of view.
- The central tube
Rifle scopes have varying main tubes which are different in the surface finish, material, size and the production process. The outer diameters may range from 19.05mm to 1.57inches.a main tube's internal diameter affects the space in which light passes through, the lens components, additional parts which can be mounted, the number of internal elevation parts and how far the windage can be adjusted. A wide main tube makes it possible for the tube walls' thickness to be increased without reducing the internal diameter.
How to Use a Long Range Rifle Scope
Rifle scopes increase firing precision at long distances by enlarging your target's image. It provides you with a reticle which indicates where the gun is aimed. When using a long range scope, you need to apply the same practices as those of shooting with traditional sights. There are various range models some of which provide up to 50* target magnification. Follow these steps to use a rifle scope effectively.
- Mount and Understand Your Rifle Scope
- Purchase the suitable mounting equipment: Many modern hunting rifles scopes are tapped or pre-drilled for a base, or they come with grooved sections to mount attachments. It is important to buy mounting hardware which matches with your scope's design. If it needs mounting rings, purchase those with a correct internal diameter as the scope's body will be installed in the ring.
- If you are uncertain about the hardware, consult a retailer to help you in choosing the appropriate mounting hardware. Alternatively, gunsmiths can also mount and bore sight your rifle scope at a fee.
- Adjust the eye relief and align the rifle's reticle: Your scope's reticle is the image seen on the scope lens, and it shows where the gun is pointed. Some appear as a cross while others are exes and circles. Loosen the mounting rings and rotate your scope until its reticle faces upwards or it is aligned. You can then adjust the scope's lens distance from your eye to prevent it from hitting you when the rifle recoils.
- You should mount the scope slightly in front of you to prevent it from being damaged during firing or getting an injury. Ensure that it is visible in your usual firing position.
- Get accustomed to the scope's components: Learn the name and function of each part of your scope. A scope usually comprises of an eye piece, objective lens, a body, windage, shoulder, parallax and elevation knobs.
- -The eye piece is where you look through while an objective lens creates a target's magnification.
- -The shoulder is where you increase the diameter to hold objective lenses.
- -Elevation and windage knobs enable you to rotate the reticle.
- -Parallax knobs don't need frequent adjustments as they affect the reticle's movement.
- Check if the scope has a variable or single power lens: A variable lens scope contains a ring that offers you an option to choose different magnification levels while a single lens scope has one magnification level. Most of them have single lenses but if you are uncertain about the type of your scope, check a selector ring between the scope's shoulder and its objective lens. It enables you to choose a suitable magnification level.
- If you are using a scope with a variable lens, zero the rifle and keep it in that state up to when you completely zero it. During a hunting expedition, set variable power lens to the lowest magnification power. This will help you to have a full field of view.
- Assess your scope's magnification level: Look at your scope's model number to determine its strength. It includes the magnification level and the objective lens' diameter. High magnifications form dark target images as only little light can penetrate. Lenses with a large diameter form bright images as more light can pass through.
- Aim and Make Adjustments
- Determine an ideal eye relief distance: A substantial scope magnification necessitates a narrow eye relief for you to accurately view your target. If the magnification is powerful, you will have to place your eye closer to the eye piece for you to capture a clear image.
- Many scopes have an eye relief that shows the range within how far your eye should be on the eye piece. However, you should not keep your eye too close to the scope as it might get hit when the rifle recoils. If the scope doesn't indicate an eye relief, you can determine it by looking through it when mounted on a rifle and adjusting it until a visible picture appears.
- Establish a beautiful sight picture: This involves placing the reticle in the middle of your field of view and placing it above your target. A perfectly centered circle should be formed at the other end of your scope. If it is blurred on one side, adjust the rifle until it is centralized.
- Make adjustments according to your rounds: You should be consistent when firing at your target as you also assess the impact. Each round should cause an impact on the same spot. Adjust the windage in the opposite direction to that of the impact created. The windage knob adjusts the impact spot of your rounds from left to right while elevation knobs adjust your target vertically. The extent to which each click of elevation knobs and the windage is indicated on the scope's manual.
- Carefully adjust the parallax: This is the target's movement which relates to the reticle when moving your eye away from an eyepiece. A faulty parallax could make the reticle and the target to appear on different optical planes.
- Zero the rifle: You can do it by selecting a known distance and setting the scope such that the reticle lies where your rounds impacted the target. The windage knob can help in moving the impact spot horizontally while the elevation can adjust it vertically.
The Best Long Ranger Rifle Scopes
- Leupold Waterproof VX-6 7-42*56mm Side Focus Rifle
It is a quality long range rifle with a full field of view.
-It is efficient in hunting.
-Clients are given a factory warranty upon buying it.
-Payments can be made within one year.
-It is expensive.
- NightForce ATACR 5-25*56mm F1 ZeroStop Rifle Scope
It is sold at $3000, and it is shipped to clients within two days without extra charges.
-Customers can pay within one year.
-The rifle has Elev-89MOA/26MIL and Wind-60MOA/18MIL internal adjustments.
-It has a 34mm main tube diameter and a 3.54-inch eye relief.
-NightForce has a 160m mounting length and an 850gm weight.
-Its high price makes it unaffordable to many clients.
- US Optics ER-25 MDMOA FFP Illuminated Rifle Scope
The rifle is sold at $3100, and it is delivered to clients within two days after placing an order and without extra charges.
-The rifle has an Erector Positioning Elevation Knob which is patented, and it has 110 adjustment clicks per revolution.
-There is 1min of angle based scope reticle that exhibits detailed red illumination and sub tensions with many intensity settings.
-It offers clear images, a high light transmission, and resolution.
-There is a Front Focal Plane that allows precise reticle holdovers and unique ranging capabilities at different magnification settings.
-US rifle has a rugged 3-hard bullet proof and anodizing construction.
-It is costly and not affordable to most middle-income clients.
- Swarovski X5 3.5-18*50-BRM 79011
Customers are charged $2600 when buying it and it is delivered within two days after placing an order.
-You can pay for it within one year.
-It is efficient in scouting.
-The price is high, and it is unaffordable to many people.
Spotting fast, wild animals could be a challenging task. You need to choose one of the best long range rifle scopes for your hunting expedition to be successful. Care should be taken when using a rifle as it could accidentally injure you or other hunters. There are a variety of high-quality long range rifles that both new and experienced hunters can use.