Low power scopes?

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Aug 14, 2012
Is it a phygment of my imagination or is there a noticeable lack of low power rifle scopes that aren't designed to go on an AR or similar platform? Looking for something in the 1-4 or 1.5-5 range that is decent, light, and preferably American made. Any ideas?
Two that I have and really like are the Leupold VX-2 1-4x20 ($299 Midway) and Weaver Classic 1-3x20 ($189 Midway).
Most of 1-4 x20 and 1-4x24 scopes are marketed toward ARs.
Leupold and Redfield Revolution are put together in the U.S.
Nikon has a 1-4x20 Monarch.
When you include the scopes in sizes like 1.75-5X32, 2-7X35, and 2-8X32, you have a lot more options. All the major brands sell those.

I think the OP wants to avoid AR-oriented scopes.

Leupold VX-3; 1.5-5X
It's my favorite scope. It's on a Ruger M77MkII Hawkeye "Alaskan" in .375Ruger. I mounted it with vertical adj turret to left and right on top to leave loading port more open.

Very, very good scope.

I bought my first one used on a used rifle. Scope was bad so sent it to Leupold. Scope was an older Vari-X III. They didn't have parts to fix it so they sent me a new scope !!!
Expect to pay ~399.00 but they are worth it.

My second option would be a "Rifleman" in 2x-7x. About $199 currently.
I got a "too good to be true" deal (that was true) on a Bushnell Elite 4200 1.25-4x on ebay a year ago.Illuminated German (three thick bars) reticle. None of the silly turrets or graduated reticles associated with the AR centric scopes.

Be wary of Leupold's mag ratings, i.e. their 1.75 - 6x is actually a 1.9-5.5x. I don't know why they feel the need to lie about mag ratings -- look on their website for the actual magnification ranges. I have no trouble with both eyes open shooting at 1.25x.
It would be worthwhile searching for a Kahles Helia CL 2-7X36mm rifle scope. $ 550 - 700.
Burris makes a couple of 1x4s in the MTAC line, one illuminated, one not. They also have a 1.5x6 MTAC as well. Will be around $250-$350 range.
Leupold has 1-4x20 in the VX-1 and VX-2 lines, as well as a 1.5-5x20 and a 1.75-6x32 in the VX-3 line.

Corn picker is right that they list "nominal" magnification ranges for the scopes. My suspicion is because they want them to be "equal" to others on the market for comparison.
Leupold VX6 1-6 if it fits in the budget. Illuminated dot at 1X for close up work and up to 6x magnification for long distance duty. Great option.
I started with a 2-7 Leupold that won't hold zero, left a bad taste in my mouth. I know that Leupolds are supposed to be great and all, but don't care to go there again.

I actually forgot about Trijicon. I was thoroughly unimpressed with their clarity, particularly for there price tag, but may be worth a second chance. Folks seem to like them.

The Kahles I don't know much about.

Also don't know much about the old weavers... But I've heard good things. Have an old Bushnell 3-9 on it now that is great, but eye relief is pretty unforgiving. Putting this on a 6 lb .358 Win, so has to be something that will take a beating and won't put one on my face.
Did you send the Leupold in to be repaired?

I'm not going to try to talk you into getting another one, but scopes are mechanical instruments, and even well made ones are subject to failure. Some of the others mentioned, like Trijicon and Vortex, are typically pretty well made scopes and have a reputation for a good warranty.

You don't want to go with a less reputable company and still have scope problems. They may not be as likely to fix them.
I have this guy http://www.vortexoptics.com/product/vortex-diamondback-1-75-5x32-riflescope-v-plex-reticle mounted on a 10/22. it is a much brighter scope with a wider field of view (at same magnification) as my burris ff2 2-xx32 made in the phillipines though I believe. (which is sort of part of the us isn't it? a territory maybe?)

this one http://www.midwayusa.com/product/62...-rifle-scope-175-4x-32mm-duplex-reticle-matte has also interested me. I have his more powerful brother (s1 in 4-12x) that is roughly on par with the aforementioned FF2.

the banner http://www.midwayusa.com/product/74...-15-45x-32mm-wide-angle-multi-x-reticle-matte was recently redesigned and has always been fairly popular for a lower end scope.

and this http://www.amazon.com/Bushnell-Multi-X-Reticle-Riflescope-1-75-5x32mm/dp/B006UJ01ZE was the other option I looked at when I was buying the vortex.

that weaver v3 was a pretty decent scope too, though I sold it because I never ever used less than 2x mag, and often wished I had more than 3x. Anything less than 2 and you start seeing a lot of barrel in the scope, which bothers me. (actually my only complaint with the vortex is that the FOV is so wide I see more barrel as 2.5x on the 10/22 than I did at 2x with the burris)
I think it's mostly imagination.
Outside of a few scopes with built-in mounts, every one I can think of does just as well mounted in rings on a rifle as they do mounted in rings on an AR's Picatinny rail.

One that I've been looking at lately has been Leupold's Hog Hunter, the only thing turning me off from it is the "Hog Plex" printed on the reticule.


I have gone through this exercise for over the last year scoping or re-scoping all of my rifles.

My conclusions and purchases:

1. Swarovski Z6 1 x 6. German # 4. Unbelievable field of view, crystal clear optics. This is on my go to hunting rifle and I really do not know how it gets better than this. I absolutely am so pleased with this scope. I could only afford one. They are around $2,500.

2. Leopold VX6 1 x 6. German #4. You can definitely tell the difference between this and the ZX 6, but for the $1,500 lower price, that difference is small compared to the savings. I have not bought one yet but will definitely have at least one.

3. Nikon Monarch 1 x 4. German #4. Without a doubt this is the hands down winner for price versus value and I recently bought another from Amazon for $226. From my own research this is the best scope in the class for the money. Others have their own educated opinions that are valid but do not pass this one over. Take a look at one.

4. Weaver V3. 1 x 3. Standard Plex type. The leader for low price versus quality. If you shop you can get one for around $160. I use these on all of my .22's and keep one as a back-up for my go to hunting rifle. Gives the leopold 1 x 4 a definite run for their money with FOV, weight, and it is about half price.

If you can spend $1,000 on a scope the Leopold VX6 is the winner in that price range. For value the Nikon 1 x 4 Monarch is going to be very tough to beat.
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