Top 5 Best Rifle Scope under 500 Dollars – Reviews

Best Rifle Scope under 500

Are you looking for a way to improve your marksmanship? Are you into hunting or target shooting? Then you’ll need a quality scope to enhance your aim and shot. 

It’s not that hard to find one online, but the problem has always been the cost. And that’s why we compiled these reviews of the best rifle scope under 500

One of the biggest misconceptions when it comes to rifle scopes is that you need to spend a lot of money. Yes you do get what you pay for, but in these instances you’ll get some pretty good scopes. Buying a scope for less than 500 bucks does not mean settling for low quality. 

As the following will show, you can get a lot of value for your money if you know where to look. For someone who has never bought a rifle scope before, the process seems confusing, but it’s not.

Name

Magnification & OL

Reticle

FOV

Price

Vortex Viper PST 1-4x24 Riflescope

1-4x24

TMCQ MOA reticle

27.5 - 98 ft at 100 yds

Vortex Viper PST 1-4x24 Riflescope with TMCQ MRAD PST-14ST-M

1-4x24

TMCQ MRAD Reticle

98-27.5 feet/100 yards

Yukon Nvrs Tactical 2.5X50 with Night Vision

2.5X50

Adjustable lit red-on-green reticle

15-degree field of view

Nikon MONARCH 3 BDC Riflescope

2.5-10x42

BDC Reticle

10.1 - 40.3 ft @ 100 yds

ZEISS 522741-9980 Terra Rz8 Riflescope

4-12x 50

Duplex Crosshair reticle

27-9 feet(@100 yds)

Our Picks

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Vortex Viper PST 1-4x24 Riflescope

Score: 4.1  Andrew Garfield

The Vortex Viper is a top of the line scope for hunting and target shooting. It has high performance lenses for better clarity, and the XD glass really comes into play. What the glass does is boost the color and resolution so even if the target is some distance away the sight is clear.

It also has the patented XR multi coated lens so light transmission is clearer. Not only is the scope clear, but it is also durable. Its 30 mm tube is stronger than the typical 1 inch tube and also provides for better adjustment. The scope is made from one piece so there’s greater rigidity and power.

The Vortex Viper is waterproof, fog proof and shockproof. You can also use the scope in damp weather since it has O ring seals to prevent moisture and fog. The scope is also filled with argon so there is no fogging inside. Overall, the quality and built of the scope is right up there.

Features:

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    The Vortex Viper is equipped with a TMCQ MOA reticle. This provides a clear view even if there’s little light.
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    The scope has O seal. These are here to prevent debris, dust and moisture so you’ve always got a clear view.
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    The Vortex Viper is built out of 30 mm tube. This is a deliberate choice because it adds strength and durability.
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    There is an extra low dispersion glass (XD). With this you’ll get sharper images, better color reproduction and optimum light transmission
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    The scope is equipped with indexed lens for genuine reticle application. With this you’ll get maximum brightness and sharpness.

Pros

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    Sharp and clear optics
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    Easy to adjust 
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    Waterproof
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    Ideal for low lit environments
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    Fog proof 

Cons

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    Reticle may be too advanced for beginners
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    Twisting takes some effort at first
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    A bit heavy

The Vortex Viper is a beautifully designed and versatile scope. Its optics are clear and the fog and waterproofing add more value.

Vortex Viper PST 1-4x24 Riflescope with TMCQ MRAD PST-14ST-M

Score: 5  Andrew Garfield

This Vortex Viper differs from the standard scopes because it has TMCQ MRAD. The TMCQ reticle is hash marked for easy use, while the sub-tension lines are MRAD base. Together the two provide options for adjusting the windage and other settings.

The eye relief is adequate, and the CRS Zero Stop gives you full control over the elevation and windage adjustments. What this means is the feature sets are comparable to more expensive rife scopes. With its 30 mm tube, you’ve got a powerful scope that’s machined to a high degree of precision.

The magnification is excellent for its class with no notable blurring, and it woks well with the eye relief. There are brass shims for the zero stop and it works fine. The construction is easy enough for beginners, but it also has enough advanced features to keep an advanced user happy.

Features:

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    The PST 1-4x24 scope provides a 1-4x and a 24 mm objective lens. Together they make it easier for you to hit the bull’s eye.
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    It has a 4.0 inch eye relief and a 98-27.5 ft @ 100 yards FOV. This gives you the best possible view.
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    The PST 1-4x24 scope has a Tactical Milling Close Quarter or TMCQ. This is ranging reticle that utilizes MRAD to adjust the windage, holdover and range.
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    Its got a Tactical CRS Zero Stop turret style. This enables you to make adjustments quickly.
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    The scope is built of solid materials. It means you can use this scope for shooing, hunting and other activities.

Pros

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    Good eye relief
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    Sharp, clear optics
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    Durable and waterproof
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    Easy to use even for beginners

Cons

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    MRAD reference and crosshair are small
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    ​A little heavy
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    More suited for short and medium shooting

The Vortex Viper is a powerful scope that you can use in different ways. With its flexible magnification and durability, it’s easy to give this our recommendation.

Yukon Nvrs Tactical 2.5X50 with Night Vision

Score: 4  Andrew Garfield

The Nvrs Tactical night vision rifle cope is equipped with a red on green reticle for accurate aim. The scope is also fitted with a high res intensifier and an on/off switch so it’s more convenient to use.

Its optics have been enhanced so you can use it in different situations. The entire scope has an ergonomic feel so you will be more comfortable even when using this for an extended time. Its flip up lens covers provide protection for the reticle and the optics. The scope also has a Pulse infra red illuminator built in for better performance.

The scope is designed to limit battery drainage. The Nvrs is also compatible with digital cameras. With its long mount you’ll be able to use it with a lot of rifles and not worry about compatibility, and with its carry case you will be ready to go.

Features:

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    The scope is made from titanium. This is a light but durable material fit for long term use.
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    It has 2.5x magnification and 15 degree field of view. This provides the shooter with a good view and lots of detail.
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    The scope is equipped with a multi coated optics and good sized objective lens. Together they provide you the best possible image.
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    It has an IPX5 rating. This means greater water protection compared to regular rifle scopes.
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    There is 1cl = 20mm / 100m windage and elevation adjustment. If you need to make adjustments to your aim, just tweak these settings.

Pros

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    Several adjustment options
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    Easy to operate
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    Comes with a carry case
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    Precision controls
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    Reticle is adjustable

Cons

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    Discharging takes time 
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    More suited for right handed than left handed users
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    IR illuminator is not adjustable

The Yukon Nvrs is an advanced scope that should suit both beginner and advanced users. Its night vision is very effective and accuracy level is high. For target shooting and more, the Yukon Nvrs is an outstanding choice.

Nikon MONARCH 3 BDC Riflescope

Score: 5  Andrew Garfield

The Monarch 3 is the biggest rifle scope the brand has produced, with a good mix of power and ease of use. It comes with several magnification options, and the Monarch 3 lets you zoom in on a target without losing detail or compromising your aim.

The biggest highlight is its use of Eye Box Technology. When combined with the eye relief, you will have greater eye relief so you can focus on your target. Fully compatible with the Spot On Ballistic March Technology, the scope also ensures light transmission is at the highest possible level.

The Monarch 3 not only comes with a lot of features, but it is also compatible with most unit rifles. Mounting is not difficult to do so you’ll be using this in a matter of minutes.

Features:

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    The Monarch 3 has 4 time zoom range and the Eye Box Technology. Together you get an eye relief of up to 4 inches.
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    It has a spring loaded zero reset turrets. This allows for quick adjustments while you’re shooting.
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    There is a quick focus eyepiece built in. What this means is you will have the ability to to focus the reticle.
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    The Monarch 3 is made from durable parts. This means it’s gong to last and be more effective than other scopes.
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    The Monarch 3 also has an Ultra ClearCoat Optical System built in. This leads to more powerful light transmission so it’s easier to use.

Pros

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    Generous eye relief
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    Easy to adjust turrets
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    Reticle is quick to focus
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    Excellent light transmission
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    Easy to mount on rifles

Cons

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    Manual could have had more information
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    Maybe too large for some users
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    Adjustment controls a bit tight at first

The Monarch 3 is not only the largest riffle scope in the Nikon line, and it’s also packed with a lot of features. Whether you’re into target shooting or hunting, the Monarch 3 can handle whatever you throw at it.

ZEISS 522741-9980 Terra Rz8 Riflescope

Score: 4.1  Andrew Garfield

The Zeiss is another all around rifle scope that earns a spot in our list for quality. The first things we can say bout the Zeiss is its ease of use. It only takes a few minutes and you’ll be able to use the Zeiss with an assortment of rifles.

Its duplex crosshair has been specially designed so it’s easier to use. After the scope is mounted on your rifle, it’s just a matter of making a few adjustments here and there and it will be ready to use.

Any good scope can be used in low lit conditions and the Zeiss is no exception. The scope is also ideal for target shooting as the reticle and crosshair help you keep an eye on our target. While there are no fancy features on the scope, it is still effective as far as performance is goes.

We also have to say that this scope also ranks up there as far as durability goes. And while it has a lot of features beginners will like, it’s also for advanced users.

Features:

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    The Zeiss is equipped with a duplex crosshair reticle. The reticle posts draw and taper, making it more convenient to use.
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    The Zeiss is made from a single piece. This means the scope won’t snap or break even if you use it consistently.
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    The posts are designed so it’s easy to use in low lit environments. This makes the scope ideal for use at dusk or dawn.
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    The hairs are thinner than those on other scopes. What this means is they won’t get in the way of your aiming.
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    The scope is constructed with emphasis on compatibility. You can mount this scope on most rifles without any problems.

Pros

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    Good for low lit areas
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    Compatible with different types of rifles
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    Light
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    Improves shooting accuracy
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    One piece tube construction

Cons

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    User guide could be more comprehensive
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    The scope is a little longer than the average
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    No fancy features

The Zeiss is a well made rifle scope and works for beginners and homeowners. It’s simple and effective, just what most people need.

How We Wrote This Review

We considered several factors when we wrote these reviews and guides. You may have read other reviews and wondering if there’s anything different here. 

Aside from focusing on rifle scopes for less than $500, we also did a lot of research on these rifle scopes. We thoroughly examined each scope, taking notes of the most important features. We also made sure to point out any shortcomings – if any – and included them in the review. 

We also took into consideration the feedback from various users who bought and used the scope. We also consulted experts on rifle scopes, and we used their input in deciding what rifle scopes to include in this list. 

We also made certain only experts wrote these reviews, people people who are familiar with rifle scopes and how they function. In other words we made sure to cover all the bases.

Spending 500 Bucks For a Rifle Scope, How  Worth it is?

The most obvious benefit of buying a rifle scope for less than 500 is savings. There is really no need to spend thousands of dollars on a rifle scope when there are more affordable alternatives.

Another benefit is quality: the scopes in this list are all high quality and enhance your aim. The optics are high quality, bright, crisp and clear. They’re also versatile, suitable for hunting, taking out varmint and shooting rounds at the range.

Purchasing a high quality scope is also a good investment: the ones covered in these reviews are made from durable tubes so it’s going to last for a long time. We also have to add that these scopes are waterproof, fog proof and shockproof.

Bottom line: purchasing a rifle scope for less than 500 dollars doesn’t mean going cheap, only that you’re being practical.

How We Chose the Top 5

There are several factors that we took into account when we picked these products. Obviously the primary criterion we chose those that are under 500 dollars, but we also looked into the following.

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    Clarity: we only chose scopes that have clear, bright optics so the images are sharp.
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    Versatility: rarely will you use a rifle scope for just one purpose, as it’s good for varmint, hunting and target shooting.
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    Durability: we only selected scopes that are meant for the long term. All five scopes here are made for long term use.
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    Features: essential features depend on your personal needs, but the most important are accuracy, waterproofing, shockproof and maximum performance.
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    Feedback: we also took into consideration the opinions of those who bought the product.
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    Reliability: this one doesn’t need a long explanation. We only chose products you can count on.

Who Should Buy These Scopes?

These scopes are built for specific purposes, so they are aimed at a particular segment. If you’re not sure, check the following.​​​​

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    You want a rifle scope that costs less than 500 dollars.
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    You need a dependable rifle scope.
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    You require a rifle scope that provides versatility.
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    Need a scope that has reliable features, durable and easy to use.

Conclusion

We mentioned earlier the importance of having a quality rifle scope. The one built in most rifles are just adequate, so getting an upgrade is going to improve your shooting. 

And as we pointed out here, there are a lot of good scopes for less than 500 dollars. Hopefully these reviews have made it easier for you to choose. 

There are a lot of reasons to get a quality rifle scope, and we don’t have to go all over them again. But it should be clear by now that a good rifle scope makes a huge impact in terms of results. 

Lastly you’re probably wondering which of the five rifle scopes here we will recommend. We won’t recommend a single scope, as all five have something to offer. While all off them are good, only you can decide which of the five is the best rifle scope under 500.

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Andrew Garfield
 

Andrew is a predator. Have years of experience in hunting with a lot of expert knowledge in hunting technique, rifle, scopes and other tools of types of equipment that used for hunting.

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