Everyone who has ever shopped for a rifle scope will likely agree with me when I say that finding a rifle scope with impressive features and/or design choices without having to break the bank can be really difficult.
Or is it?
Well, as it turns out, there still are a few quality scopes with more advanced features that are reasonably priced below $1000. It only requires several hours of research to sieve them out of the crowd, like picking gold needles from a haystack.
So, if you’re in the market for the Best Hunting Scope Under 1000, keep reading as I will share the list of our top 7 hunting scopes with you, making your search for a hunting scope under $1000 infinitely easier.
Let’s get started then!
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- Top 7 Best Hunting Scope Under 1000 Reviewed 2022
- Buying Guide To The Best Hunting Scope Under 1000
- FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- How Does A Hunting Scope Work?
- What Is Magnification? And How Do I Read Scope Magnification?
- How Much Scope Magnification Do I Need?
- Should I go for the First Focal Plane or Second Focal Plane?”
- Is the quality of the riflescope important?
- Which adjustment mechanism is better: MOA vs. MRAD?
- Do I need a fixed or zoom riflescope?
- What is a riflescope reticle?
- What is parallax?
Top 7 Best Hunting Scope Under 1000 Reviewed 2022
Vortex Optics Diamondback Tactical
The Vortex Diamondback Tactical scope is uniquely designed for demanding shooters and hunters. These scopes were built by Vortex to meet the demands of tactical professionals but are also suitable – and a popular choice – for hunters due to their high user-friendliness. These riflescopes offer peak levels of reliability and performance. Vortex’s Diamondback Tactical scope is constructed using a 30 mm aluminum tube of the highest grade.
This scope is not only excellent for shooting vermin or a visit to the shooting range, but it is also ideal for hunting large game. Its 6-24x magnification enables you to get close to your quarry to shoot in a highly targeted way. It’s the second best tactical scope under 1000 on this list.
But here’s the deal breaker!
This best rifle scope under 1000 not only has the standard 6x-24x magnification, but it also has reticle magnification settings since it uses the First Focal Plane (FFP) model. What this entails is that, as you zoom, the size of the reticle scales with you, ensuring that the hash marks are kept unchanged in respect to the game being hunted.
- Quality of Construction: This scope is built from a 30mm shaft of aluminum – aircraft-grade.
- Excellent optics: The optics are scratch-resistant, and hence won’t be defaced quickly. They also provide you heaps of contrast, allowing you to aim at your target effortlessly as they’re built tack-sharp.
- Value For Money: This scope isn’t just less than $1000. It is also less than $500, which makes it a great deal as the features it offers are an excellent addition to any hunting trip.
- Lifetime warranty: You’re covered in the case of a defect, as Vortex offers a lifetime warranty on this scope.
- The reticle is a little dim.
Nikon P-Tactical .223
This scope is considered the go-to scope for going hunting in the wild western USA. This long-range scope is a very solid buy at its price tag, which blows all competition away. It was invented by Nikon engineers to offer not only shooters quality construction but also great glass and magnification.
Not many scopes can handle the recoil and stress of being used on the big magnum. However, the Nikon P-Tactical handles this recoil and stress just fine – admirably, I might say.
This scope has an illuminated glass-etched reticle located on its second focal plane. This means that ranging, holdover corrections, and other measurements should be done at 18x magnification, using the indicated subtensions.
The best part?
- Quality of Construction: Constructed using aircraft-grade aluminum alloy, this scope is a reliable piece of equipment for your hunting trips.
- Waterproof, Fog-proof, and shockproof: The scope is purged of nitrogen and fully sealed to prevent moisture. This combination ensures that it never fogs up! It is also shockproof, which means you should not be bothered about the recoil.
- Value For Money: At its price, the Nikon P-Tactical is a great option to include in your next hunting trip purchase.
- This scope is not optimized for the highest power magnification as the reticle is positioned on the SFP (Second Focal Plane SFP).
Bushnell Trophy Rifle Scope
The Bushnell Trophy Rifle Scope is another popular option when searching for hunting scopes under $1000. One of its standout features that differentiate this scope from others is its Throwhammer Lever (more on that below). This scope is amongst Bushnell’s advanced design scopes currently in production and is one of the best rifle scope under $1000.
This riflescope includes fully adjustable target turrets, perfect for sharpshooting target conditions. Its 6-24X magnification is placed on its 50mm objective lens face. Bushnell Trophy scope uses hash marks in MOA mil-dot display, and its subtensions are printed in the first focal plane. This scope also has side focus controls, with its turrets built on a large 30mm tube housing.
The Throwhammer lever and why it matters!
Now, let’s talk about its main standout feature – The Throwhammer lever! This allows you to apply magnification changes quickly by simply flicking the lever with your finger. This innovative design feature is exclusive to Bushnell, and I think it’s a gamechanger!
- Quality of Construction: Scratches are effectively prevented, as the lens has a molecularly bonded protective coating which repels oil, water, dust and all form of debris.
- Value for Money: This scope offers you great value for money. as the quality of its construction and its optics ease of use match other, more expensive alternatives.
- Warranty: Bushnell offers their Bulletproof Warranty on this scope.
- No locking turrets or zero-stop
- Lack of illuminated Reticle
- Slight vignetting at 6-24x magnification scale
- Elevation knobs and windage are not the most accurate
Vortex Optics Viper HS-T
Vortex Optics is a well trusted brand for quality scope sights for rifles. While a new player to the riflescope business scenes, Vortex has been on the fast track to quality. This scope here is fitted with the Vortex VMR reticle (MOA), and its subtensions are excellent for both tactical operations and hunting. When it comes to farther range target use, precise distance judgment is most vital.
That’s not all!
This rifle scope has earned its spot in the best long range scope under 1000 list with its exposed target adjustments style turret. The turret holds a positive zero stop technology that allows the shooter to be alert when the scope is at the right zero elevation or windage. Located conveniently at your left hand is its side focus system, perfect when lighting conditions are not the best or when you’re trying to capture a clear image at a long range. A fast-focus eyepiece is essential when trying to make the best of a target picture at a far distance.
Its reticle is laid on the FPP (First Focal Plane). Hence, as with other scopes with similar placement, it boasts accurate hash-marks across every magnification setting, and not with just one particular setting. The scopes’ design affords you with unobstructed access to its turrets, located on both sides.
- Quality of Construction: This scope was designed to withstand the harsh elements, as it is both shockproof and waterproof.
- Value for Money: This scope is actually a bargain at this price.
- Warranty: Vortex boasts of a really excellent warranty offer across all their products, and this scope isn’t an exception as it comes with a lifetime warranty.
- It’s a little on the heavy side.
Leupold VX Riflescope
Leupold VX-3i’s scope reticle is a multi-dot MOA setup, meaning that you can run minutes of angle using its sight’s sub-tensions for corrections in elevation based on D.O.P.E data generated from a computer.
This Leupold scope is set in FFP (first focal plane). This allows the crosshairs to grow in magnitude along with the magnification. This is a military-style, long-range system. For shooters addressing these types of targets at range, this device is standard.
The turret settings are revealed, and the zero stop setting is retained so that when making a change in windage or height, the shooter will return to the proper zero.
You’ve probably already read this before, so here’s something new!
As part of Leupold’s unique lens system design, the VX-3i LRP scope boasts of a low light management system. For sharpshooters and hunters alike, this scope is simply perfect. When adjusting magnification settings, this scope uses a single throw lever mounted behind to raise the firing speed.
- Waterproof: This scope is waterproof and fog-proof.
- Great adjusters: Also lovely are the windage and elevation adjusters, clicking audibly for every use. Durable lenses: Extremely durable, and for a long time to come, they can stay dependable.
- Effective Twilight Max Light Management System: This is Leupold’s specialized method of styling the lenses inside many of its scopes. This twilight light management system adds a solid 20 minutes of shooting time at dusk or dawn while also reducing the flare you feel in bright light conditions.
- This scope’s turrets cannot be set to zero.
ZEISS Conquest V4
You’ll be glad to hear that the Conquest V4 4-16x 44 scopes are under $1000 if you’ve been a Zeiss fan for a while but have never been able to buy one of their hunting scopes. AT $949, it’s by no means a cheap scope, but it definitely has a more reasonable price tag than many of the $2000+ scopes. The Conquest V4 series of high-performance riflescopes incorporates a robust and practical architecture with the tried and tested ZEISS optics philosophy. For all kinds of shooting, their lightweight size and a great combination of a small field of view and a large magnification range are optimal. The V4 models are fitted with a 4x zoom and mechanical parts that are practical, high-precision, and totally reliable.
A ballistic turret with a large reticle modification set has unique versions (elevation and windage). As a result, the hunter has the versatility needed for several diverse methods of hunting. Optional ballistic reticles allow the hunter to make elevation and azimuth corrections easily with no mechanical adjustment needed.
Here’s the thing about this particular Conquest hunting scope
The Conquest V4 4-16×44 is suitable for successful shooting and hunting in the mountains because of its compact and lightweight size. This V4 is an excellent option for medium and long distance shots with its zoom range.
- 4x Zoom Range: The 4x zoom range enables hunters to distinguish information perfectly and provides an exceptional overall view for a safe and precise shoot.
- 90% Light Transmission: Higher-definition glass achieves 90% delivery of light to the eye, outstanding low-light output, and excellent target resolution over the entire magnification range.
- Not illuminated and no FFP reticle choice.
ATN X-Sight 4K Pro
Of course, the ATN X-Sight makes our list of best hunting scope under 1000. To transform this Day/Night rifle scope into a complete powerhouse, ATN has fitted their latest scope with the Obsidian II Heart, HD optics, and the earliest HD micro-display, which enable you to make your shots at ranges previously impossible, whether during the day or at night. The X-Sight is a digital day/night rifle scope that is especially famous in the field of night vision.
You are probably wondering what the One Shot Zero attribute is
The One Shot Zero attribute ensures that your second bullet gets to the target. Is it sorcery? No, without having to dial for it, it digitally corrects the point of purpose. Multiple color options and reticles are available. Night vision mode lets you see in the dark, and it requires an IR illuminator.
Standard 30 mm rings are still included with the order, and a Picatinny rail ring is tossed in. Both your hunting videos and data can be stored with a micro SD card and is included in the order. ATN gives you basically everything you might need to shoot the moment you get your scope.
- Smart technology: Owing to its digital features, the X-Sight is capable of sincerely A LOT! A ballistic calculator, a Smart Range Finder, and an E-barometer are included with many built-in modes. It comes with Bluetooth and WiFi capabilities too. It captures broadcasts and plays video clips that can be taken either on the bench or in the field.
- Fairly priced
- Day/night scope
- 2-Year warranty
- Firmware issues: With lots of digital features and the use of electric batteries to depend on, at some stage, there is bound to be a power failure.
- Price: While the price is affordable for a digital rifle scope for night vision, it is definitely in the upper class price category for conventional scopes.
Buying Guide To The Best Hunting Scope Under 1000
The factors to keep in mind before buying a scope.
Planning and purchasing a hunting scope for your hunting trip can be quite challenging. Whether you are ready to roll out the big bucks or working with a thin budget, getting the best deal should always be the focus. I’d at this point say that with hunting scope, the price is no indicator of a perfect scope. You shouldn’t pay $2000 for a hunting scope and assume that because you paid $2k bucks for it, it’s the best option!
To save you from making a wrong decision, I have put together a list of the factors to keep in mind when searching for a hunting scope. Armed with this information, you should be able to make the right decision in your search for a hunting scope.
Let’s jump right in!
It should be made up of premium glass elements, Ex. ED, HD, etc.
Quality Glass Coatings
It requires layered coatings, coatings for mirror and phase reversal, and coatings that repel weather, scrape, and dirt.
Premium typically means long range, and all those necessities such as holdovers, wind reimbursement, and the like tend to be included in the best long range scope under $1000. Always go for the most precise reticles available.
Eye relief 3″+
Your rifle scope will let you know what a real black eye is without decent eye relief. So, unless you are into black eyes, go for one with decent eye relief.
When you intend to shoot from very long distances, you never go without ballistic turrets.
Premium scopes may mean long range, and long range means that a parallax adjustment turret or target would be required for you. Don’t skimp, or you’d miss the target.
To justify their asking rates, the best rifle scopes below $1000 should be reasonably durable. Ensure that you know what kind of coatings is being used to protect the scope’s lenses, and go for the one that makes it most durable.
Fog and water proof
You would also want to verify whether a rifle scope is designed to be waterproof or fog-proof. These scopes are suitable for hunting in any season.
Innovations and Features
Gone are the days when all a scope did was magnify a target. Scopes priced at $1000 should understandably have some outstanding and standout features. Ensure you check the unique feature each scope provides before deciding on the one that best suits you.
Finally, think about the warranty from the seller that comes with each hunting scope on offer. A good warranty provides you with peace of mind and should always be taken into account when deciding which scope to buy.
Are you going to Coyote Hunting instead? Flexibility is a significant factor for a coyote hunting rifle, and this article lists the best scopes for coyote hunting.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How Does A Hunting Scope Work?
Hunting scopes are simply elongated spaces that contain magnification lenses. Its primary goal is to increase the line of sight on your target through this magnification, and they work kind of like high-tech magnifying glass. The central part of the riflescope is called the main tube. This part holds the magnifying lenses that actually make the scope function properly. They also typically have some type of reticle for noting the point of impact of a bullet on the target. Riflescopes are attached to the top of the rifle and have an erector tube working between the reticle and adjustment knobs. This is how the scope adjusts its views, as the tube is moved back and forth by the shooter by the knobs. The shooter can zoom in on the target to their preference, finalize their aim, and take the shot. This Youtube video also helps explains this in detail.
What Is Magnification? And How Do I Read Scope Magnification?
The easiest way to read lens magnification is to decide how amplified you want your view of the target to be. Focus on the whole sequence of numbers used to identify the rifle scope if you want the target to look closer and also be larger in your vision.
Can 3 degrees of magnification be provided by the lens, rendering the target highly visible from hundreds of yards away? You will find that as you read the magnification of the lens, the variables multiply. This is because each of them complements the other’s work to have a stronger shot. Read the list as you read your weapons summary. 3-9×40 is equivalent to 3x magnification, 9x closer to the shooter, all Viewed by a 40-millimetre diameter lens. Again, here is a YouTube video to further aid understanding.
How Much Scope Magnification Do I Need?
The level of scope magnification needed mainly depends on how far the target is going to be out. You’ll want a low-power rifle scope for smaller targets that do not severely shift the target’s vision. This causes the target to look more as it is, with subtle changes to hone in on just where you expect it to be shot. In compliance with targets going more and advanced, or if the targets are extremely small, you’ll want to elevate the levels of magnification. Smaller targets need to be amplified to make them look bigger than they are, helping you to fire where you intend to strike the target directly. Watch this YouTube video to find out more.
Should I go for the First Focal Plane or Second Focal Plane?”
The simple answer here is: go to the second focal plane. Here is why: The second focal plane fits well under most general circumstances. It’s economical, and – although the first focal plane does – it won’t block your vision. That said, if you are a long-range shooter (10X+ magnification), the first focal plane would be ideal for you. And the reason is that when you go up in magnification, it’s more detailed when the reticle scale changes. Barring such a condition, you should go for a second focal plane for most general scenarios. It will not fail you. Here is a Youtube video that buttresses my point.
Is the quality of the riflescope important?
You may think that you don’t need to have a good riflescope just because your rifle is made of the finest material; however, the fact is that it can be just as valuable. There are also times when it is okay to use a mediocre rifle as long as you have the right riflescope, since having the right riflescope would help you better check out your game.
Which adjustment mechanism is better: MOA vs. MRAD?
The simple answer? Not any of them. None. Like miles per hour and kilometers per hour, they work vice-versa. Only pick an alteration system that your friends use. If you have no idea what your mates are doing, just opt for the MOA. This is due to the fact that it’s simpler and more common. This Youtube video helps explain this better
Do I need a fixed or zoom riflescope?
Riflescopes come with either a set magnification or a magnification zoom or variable. There are pros and cons of each style of scope, and whether or not you want a fixed or zoom magnification riflescope will depend primarily on what you use the scope for and personal preference. You will want to go for a fixed magnification scope if you intend on using your scope and rifle at a certain distance and want one that is easier to use. A zoom scope is a perfect option if you are planning on aiming at varying distances or targets.
What is a riflescope reticle?
The visual marker used inside a riflescope is a riflescope reticule that provides a shooter’s target point. Reticles come in a number of sizes, and it is crucial that you select a reticle suitable for the operation for which you intend to use your scope and the distance you plan to fire.
What is parallax?
The reticule of your riflescope might occasionally seem to move subtly, especially when you are sighting distant targets. This is called parallax. Parallax happens when the eye is not fully matched up with your riflescope reticulum, which is physically on one of the lenses on your scope’s inner tune. The majority of scopes are designed to guarantee that the cross hair of your reticle is at those firing lengths. The reticule is precisely matched to the target you are looking at, so the parallax does not impact your shot (usually 100yd).
In summary, all of the above-listed Best Hunting Scope under 1000 will make an excellent choice for most rifles, no matter what, when, and where you are hunting. There are, however, special features unique to some scopes, so remember to consider these features, as well as whether you will make use of these features when choosing which is most worthy of your money. Happy hunting!