Top 9 Best Spotting Scope for 2018: Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Best Spotting Scopes

If you’re looking to find one of the best spotting scopes, you should come to the right place! 

This particular guide and review will help provide you with all of the information to make your decision about which spotting scope to buy. 

First, you’ll find product reviews broken up into different categories to help make sure you buy the right spotting scope. 

Second, you’ll get all the information regarding what you should look for in a spotting scope.

Name

Magnification & OL

Eye Relief

FOV

Price

Celestron 100mm Zoom Spotting Scope

100mm

18 mm

94 ft - 52 ft / 31 m - 17 m

Celestron Regal M2 65ED Spotting Scope

16-48x65

20mm

131-68 ft / 43-23 m(@1000 yds)

Firefield 20-60 x 60 SE Spotting Scope Kit

20-60 x 60

13.5 - 17 mm

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Kowa Prominar Ed 88mm Scope

88mm

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Vortex 20-60x85 HD Spotting Scope

27 - 60 x85 mm

16.7-17mm

Range 68 - 117 ft at 1000 yds

Emarth 20-60x60ae review

20-60x60

17-13.5mm

39-19m/1000m

Simmons Prosport 20-60x60 review

20-60x60 mm

17 - 13.5 mm

132 - 68 ft (40.2 - 20.7 m) at 1000 yd

Celestron Regal m2 80ed review

27x80

32 mm

110 ft / 37 m (@1000 yds)

USCAMEL 20-60x60 Spotting Scope With Tripod

20-60x60

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Our Picks

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Best Spotting Scope for Birding

One of the most popular reasons for purchasing a spotting scope is for birding. There are plenty of people that choose to use spotting scopes because they allow you to initially scan the area for birds and then you can closely zoom in on the birds once you have located them. If you plan on using a spotting scope for birding, below is one of the best scopes that you can buy. 

Celestron 100mm Zoom Spotting Scope

Score: 4.4  Andrew Garfield

If you want to use your spotting scope for birding, you won’t find a better option than this one, and as an added bonus, it is considerably cheaper than a lot of the other scopes we have reviewed throughout this entire post.

This scope is available in both the angled and the straight option so that no matter what you prefer, you can make sure that you get what you want from this scope.

It features multi-coated optics so that you can get a great looking view every time that you look through the lens. Depending on where you are at in reference towards what you are looking at in your scope, it might be helpful for you to have a zoom so you can see it more clearly. 

The zoom eyepiece on this particular scope is perfect for that and can zoom at a magnification rate of up to 66 times! All of these features help ensure that this scope is one of the best options on the market when it comes to trying to find a scope that you can observe nature with and see the true beauty around you. 

The sight tube on the scope helps make sure that you can easily and quickly find your target. With your purchase, you get a soft carrying case so you can bring the scope with you wherever you go and the limited lifetime warranty helps keep your protected at all times.

Pros

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    Comes in both angles and straight bodies
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    Magnifications up to 66 times
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    Multi-coated optics

Cons

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    Only really great for use as a range spotter
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    Not great quality considering the price

Best Spotting Scope for the Money

To find a good spotting scope, prepare to dish out some money. If you’re going to spend the money, then you want to make sure that the scope you’re buying is at least worth the price. The following are the two best spotting scopes you can buy for the money.

Celestron Regal M2 65ED Spotting Scope

Score: 4.3  Andrew Garfield

This scope offers different features to make you realize how great it is and how easy it is to use. It features an ED objective lens to help minimize chromatic aberration and it ensures you get accurate color reproduction and with increased resolution and contrast. 

Essentially, this lens is specifically designed so you can get a great look and a high image quality. In addition, it also has XLT coating for fully multi-coated optics. When it comes to the zoom eyepiece, you get a magnification of around 16x to 48x to make sure that you’re getting a great magnification so you can see all you want to see. 

The eyepiece is a standard 1.25” and the linear field of view at 1000 yards is 131-68 feet. The close focus is about 16.4 feet, so you can easily use this scope on objects pretty close to you. 

The construction of this scope is great because it comes with a magnesium alloy body. This material is incredibly strong and durable and will make sure your scope holds up over time. 

The material is incredibly lightweight so it will not weigh you down like traditional aluminum alloy would. Lastly, the rotating tripod mount helps make it easy for you to place the orientation of the eyepiece in the best viewing position depending on how you plan on using this particular scope.

Pros

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    16x to 48x magnification zoom
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    XLT coating
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    Strong magnesium alloy body
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    Rotating tripod mount

Cons

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    Trouble completely focusing in some situation
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    Doesn’t produce a razor sharp image
Firefield 20-60 x 60 SE Spotting Scope Kit

Score: 4.2  Andrew Garfield

If the scope reviewed above was too expensive, this particular spotting scope kit is one of the best choices for you. It comes with an all black finish that gives you a great looking scope and in addition, you get a nylon and a hard case to carry the scope when you are not using it. 

This particular scope is one of the best scopes you can buy when you consider the price and the features offered. The wide magnification range helps make it perfect for shooting or tracking game at long distances. 

Additionally, the fully multi-coated lens and durable body are standard with this scope. It also comes with a comfortable eyepiece so you enjoy a comfortable experience all the time. Lastly, this scope features a nitrogen purged body and a built in sunshade. 

This means you’ll be protected from a sun glare or rain so that you can still use the scope. Combine that with the durable construction, and you get a scope that is designed to last a long time.

Pros

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    Excellent low price
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    Nylon and hard case included with your purchase
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    Nitrogen purged body

Cons

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    Poor image quality
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    Minimum magnification capabilities

Best Spotting Scope for Hunting

If you plan on using this scope for hunting, look for something a little bit different than what you would look for in other types of situations. For example, if you’re hunting, chances are good that you may encounter some weather, so finding a scope that is weatherproof is a great place to start. Below are the top two scopes when it comes to hunting.

Kowa Prominar Ed 88mm Scope

Score: 4.7  Andrew Garfield

If you want to have the best of the best, then you need to be ready to spend some money. This scope is going to cost you a serious amount of money but you’re also going to have one of the best scopes that you can buy on the market.  

This scope is available in both angled body or straight body, so you can choose the perfect format depending on your body and what style you prefer over the others. 

Additionally, this high performance scope comes with a rugged construction to hold up in most situations and the specifications on the scope are all high-end as well. This scope is constructed using strong and lightweight polycarbonate materials along with a rigid structure to help make sure that you get the most out of this scope. 

It is also waterproof to JIS class 7 standards and is filled with a dry nitrogen gas which helps prevent the lens from fogging in certain types of weather. The angled eye piece is a great choice for anyone that wants to have a comfortable experience for a long period of time when they use this scope. 

In terms of the measurements surrounding this scope, it weighs in at a little over three pounds and has an overall length of 13.5 inches, so it is the perfect height to bring with you on a trip. It comes with a manufacturer lifetime warranty as long as it is purchased from an authorized dealer.

Pros

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    Available in both straight and angled body
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    Strong, lightweight polycarbonate materials
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    Waterproof and fogproof for enhanced durability

Cons

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    No noticeable cons to speak of when purchasing this scope
Vortex 20-60x85 HD Spotting Scope

Score: 5  Andrew Garfield

While this scope is expensive, it is still considerably cheaper than the one reviewed above and the features offered by this scope help make the price worth it. With this scope, you get a premium, high-quality extra-low dispersion glass that helps deliver the maximum resolution possible from a scope like this. 

Additionally, the ultra hard coated Armor Tek helps protect the exterior lens from scratches, oil and dirt to help make sure that you don’t accidentally damage the lens in any situation. 

Furthermore, the dielectric prism coatings are capable of providing you with the clearest, brightest and most color-accurate images that you can have from a scope and the XR anti-reflective coating helps increase the light transmission so that you get maximum brightness when you look through your scope at any time of the day. 

Lastly, the triplet apochromatic lens helps reduce the amount of chromatic aberration that the lens faces and the Porro Prism helps ensure that you get maximum image quality and performance at all times. 

In terms of weatherproofing, the o-ring sealed optics helps prevent moisture, dust and debris from getting into the lens and the Argon gas helps reduce internal frogging.

Pros

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    Armor Tek protects the exterior of the lens against everything
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    Sealed optics prevent moisture, debris and dust
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    Dielectric prism coatings provide clear and bright images

Cons

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    Glass quality is not great
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    Very big and heavy

Best Cheap Spotting Scope

Money isn’t everything. Just because you spend the most amount of money you can on a spotting scope doesn’t meant that you are going to get the best spotting scope you can buy. The quality of a product can be reflected in the price but often times, great scopes can be found at low costs as well. The following are two of the best scopes you can buy at some of the lowest prices you can find.

Emarth 20-60x60ae review

Score: 4.6  Andrew Garfield

As mentioned above, trying to find a great scope for a low price is not that hard to do. Especially when you come across a scope as great as this one here. One of the best features of this scope is the fact that you automatically get a tripod included with your purchase. 

Using a tripod is a great way to look through your scope and doing so without having to buy a tripod separately is a great feature. In terms of the scope itself, you’re going to get a great performing scope despite the low price.

This angled scope has a variable magnification range of anywhere from 20x to 60x so you can always find the right zoom. Additionally, the 60mm objective lens and dynamic lens focusing system help make it easy to zoom in and out. 

The multi-coated optics provide a clear view of the entire field you’re looking at. 

Lastly, this scope is completely waterproof and fogproof so it can be used in any weather situations without risking damage. It is ergonomically designed with shock absorbing rubber armor to help give you great handling of the scope and to protect it in case it suffers an unfortunate accident. With your purchase, you get a 30 day money back guarantee and a 12-month warranty along with a lifetime support guarantee.

Pros

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    20x to 60x magnification
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    Completely waterproof and fogproof for ultimate durability
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    Shock-absorbing rubber for protection and great grip

Cons

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    Image is not as clear as it should be because it is difficult to focus
Simmons Prosport 20-60x60 review

Score: 4  Andrew Garfield

Similarly to the product that was reviewed above this one, this is another great, low cost alternative to buying an expensive scope and it is still going to pack in some great features to help make you realize just how great this particular scope can be for the money. 

Similar to the one above, this one also includes a tripod so that you can easily use it to help look through your scope without needing to hold it.

This scope comes with quality optics to give you stunning HD clarity and the 100% quality materials have been used in the construction of the scope. 

The 20x to 60x magnification allows you to easily zoom in on your target and the BK7 prisms with fully coated optics provide you with bright and sharp images all the time. Since you never know what conditions you might face, this scope comes with a rugged non-slip, shock-absorbing rubber grip that can also provide you with a firm grip at all times. 

The Simmons Passport is 100% waterproof and fogproof and the built-in sunshade helps reduce the glare you experience. With your purchase, you will receive the tripod, a soft case and a hard-shell plastic case to help transport your scope wherever you go.

Pros

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    Stunning HD clarity thanks to quality materials used
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    20x to 60x magnifications zoom
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    Non-slip rubber grip for shock absorption and good grip

Cons

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    Not great overall but understandable for the price
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    Doesn’t focus great at high magnification

Best Spotting Scopes for Target Shooting

While there have been a lot of different reasons for you to purchase a scope, one of the last reasons that you can buy one is for target shooting. If you are looking for a spotting scope to use specifically for target shooting, then one of the two products below is sure to be the right one for you.

Celestron Regal m2 80ed review

Score: 4.1  Andrew Garfield

In terms of finding a scope that you can depend on for a pretty solid price, you’re going to have a hard time finding a better deal that you will find with this scope right here. Despite the price, this is still one of the best values given the price. inside.

The 80mm extra-low dispersion objective lens helps make sure you get a great view from your scope every time. In addition, the proprietary XLT optical coatings on both the spotting scope and the LER eyepiece help increase the overall performance. 

The eye piece also includes t-threads so that you can easily attach a camera to it if you want to. In terms of the construction, the body of the scope is made from a strong and durable magnesium alloy that has a stay-on case to protect the scope at all times. 

The long eye relief offers a relief of 32 mm so that you can easily look through your scope without needing to adjust your position or remove your protective eyewear. This scope is rich with superior optics to give you the ultimate viewing experience and the body is fully waterproof and nitrogen filled to prevent any fog on the

Pros

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    80mm objective lens
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    Long eye relief for 32mm of relief
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    Magnesium alloy body for strength and durability

Cons

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    Tough to get the scope to stay set
USCAMEL 20-60x60 Spotting Scope With Tripod

Score: 4.2  Andrew Garfield

Without a doubt, this is the cheaper scope reviewed out of the two under this category and despite the cheap price, there are still plenty of great features that help make it one of the best choices, especially when you consider the price factor. 

This is an angled scope rather than a straight scope and it comes with a variable magnification lens between 20x and 60x and has a 60mm objective lens as well. The powerful and precise zoom helps ensure you can easily find your target and the fully coated lens with BAK 7 prisms ensures a crystal clear image every time. ​​​​

This scope is a 45-degree angled scope so you can easily use it for a long time without experiencing discomfort. The large eyepiece is 2.36 inches long and it features an extendable sunshade. The sunshade helps to reduce the glare and shields the lens from raindrops that might fall on the scope. 

In the instance that this scope does get wet, you won’t have to worry because it is 100% waterproof and fogproof. With your purchase, you will also receive a tabletop tripod with a handheld mount so that you can quickly and easily use this scope whenever you need to. 

Additionally, you will receive a soft carrying case with your purchase so that the scope can go with you wherever you go.

Pros

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    60mm objective lens
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    20x to 60x magnification
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    Dynamic lens focusing system makes it easy to zoom

Cons

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    Tough to follow instructions when it comes to using the scope

Understanding the Features Before Buying a Spotting Scopes

When you go to buy a scope, it’s important you understand the different features you’re going to see in a scope. If you don’t have previous knowledge, you might not know exactly what you’re looking for. Fortunately, the information below discusses some of the top features of a spotting scope and what you should look for.

Magnification

While it’s going to vary, the magnification power of a spotting scope is around 15x to 60x. In order to change it, you can use an interchangeable eyepiece or a single zoom eyepiece. Normally, you’re going to use a lower magnification when looking for the birds. Once you’ve spotted them, you can easily zoom in further.

Objective Lens

The objective lens is at the end of the spotting scope that is positioned the furthest from your eye. It essentially helps determine how wide of a field of vision you are going to have when looking through the scope. Objective lenses are typically 40mm to 100mm in size.

Close Focus

The close focus of a scope refers to the minimum distance an object must be from the end of your scope for it to be in focus. There are some exceptions, but the majority of spotting scopes are not going to focus on anything closer than 20’.

Eye Relief

Eye relief is especially important if you wear glasses. The longer relief you have, then the further back the focal point is going to sit behind the eyepiece. The eye relief is a measurement given in millimeters. Typically, 12-15 mm is a great eye relief for most eye glass wearers.

Lens Coatings

It’s no secret that the lenses and scopes made today are far better than anything that has been made in previous years. A lot of this has to do with the lens coating. You’ll find coatings such as anti-reflection, reflective, phase-correction, anti-fog and abrasions-resistant. All of these coatings are designed to help increase your performance using the scope and accomplish different things.

Image Quality

The image quality refers to how good of an image you’re going to see when you look through the scope. You want to try and find a lens that offers you a clear image so you can easily identify what you’re looking at through the scope.

Conclusion

In this guideline we tried to explain the features for the people to get a best spotting scope as their requirements, In the market there are various types of spotting scopes are available. But all the scopes made differently by activities and performance.

If you read the general rules to choose a spotting scopes on top of this article, it will help you a lot to select a best scope as you want. The review section explained the features, pros and cons of a product of our top listed scopes. So it will help you to get the correct one without spending a lot of time to research.

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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.