There’s a lot of different scopes on the market today. Getting the right scope is important if you want a complete shooting experience.
This is particularly true if you’re going to be hunting it’s important to have a scope which enables you to pick out your targets easily or quickly switch to another target should an unexpected animal come across your path.
At A Glance: Our Top 3 Scopes For 22 Rifle Of 2020
In this article, we’ll take a look at the best 22lr scopes on the market today and what you can expect from each one. By the end of the article, you’ll have a good understanding of what each type of scope offers and how you can get the best of each one. Although we review 9 rifle scopes in this detailed guide, we highlight the most outstanding models below.
The Best 22lr Scope: Vortex Optics Crossfire II
Our Winner: Vortex Optics Crossfire II [star rating=”5″ numeric=”yes”]
Our pick for the best 22lr scope is the Vortex Optics Crossfire II. Vortex has managed to produce a high-performance scope that is also affordable. The scope is suitable for different types of shooting due to the magnification and zoom levels. Vortex also makes a special mention that the scope excels when hunting at short or medium range.
Vortex has included full instructions on how to operate the site and how to fix it to your rifle so you’ll be ready to use the scope straight out of the box. Overall, the Vortex Optics Crossfire II is an excellent scope that will last for years to come should you decide to pick on up.
- The 2-7x32 Crossfire II Rimfire riflescope is one of many configurations in the Crossfire II line. The V-Plex reticle is a popular all-purpose hunting reticle intended for a variety of hunting...
- With long eye relief and an ultra-forgiving eye box, you'll be able to quickly get a sight picture and acquire your target. The fast focus eyepiece allows quick and easy reticle focusing.
- Anti-reflective, fully multi-coated lenses provide bright and clear views for the user.
- Capped reset turrets are finger adjustable with MOA clicks that can be reset to zero after sighting in.
- A single piece tube constructed from aircraft grade aluminum ensures strength and shockproof performance. O-ring sealed and nitrogen purged, the Crossfire II delivers waterproof and fog proof...
The Vortex Optics Crossfire II is a high performance yet economical scope. The Crossfire II is built to exceed the performance standards of similarly-priced riflescopes. The scope has a lens diameter of 32mm and an eye relief of 3.9 inches. This level of eye relief allows you to get a sight picture and acquire your target quickly, and the optical quality is good for a scope of this price range.
The scope has a total length of 287 mm. The scope is quite slim and weighs just 14.3 oz making it very lightweight. The Vortex Optics Crossfire II delivers shockproof performance, and the sight comes with a full life-time warranty, which gives you peace of mind that you’re covered should anything happen to the sight. The reticle is also clearly marked with three drop marks so you can clearly judge where your shot will land.
The scope is primarily designed for hunting at short to medium range, and the sight is perfect for compact hunting rifles. The scope has a zoom range of 2-7x, which gives you a high level of control over the level of zoom you want. The Crossfire II is also waterproof and fog proof, so it can be used in all weather conditions.
Top Performer: Nikon ProStaff Rimfire Scopes
The Nikon ProStaff Rimfire is a compact riflescope with 4 to 12x magnification and a 40mm objective lens. The fully Multi Coated optical system transmits up to 98% of available light. The sight comes with an eye relief of 3.7 inches, so your eyes shouldn’t be strained when you’re using the scope. The scope is nitrogen-filled, contains an O-ring-sealed housing for waterproof and fog-proof performance, so the sight can be used in all weather conditions.
- Compact Riflescope with 4 to 12x magnification and 40mm objective lens
- Fully multicoated optical System transmits up to 98 percent of available light
- Zero-reset turret with spring-loaded adjustment knob; 3.7 inches of Eye relief
- Nitrogen-filled, O-ring-sealed housing for waterproof, fog proof performance
- BDC reticle; quick-focus Eyepiece; measures 14.1 inches
The scope has a professional matte black finish that covers the entirety of the scope. One of the first things you’ll notice about the Nikon ProStaff Rimfire is the clarity of the lense and an excellent reticle that aids you in being able to focus on the centerline. The BDC Reticle is the perfect optic for long-range guns and combines Nikon’s Fully Multi Coated optical system with the rim-fire specific BDC 150 reticle.
The scope weighs just 13.6 oz, so it’s nice and lightweight, should you need to transport it into the field with you. The turrets on the scope are very easy to reset, simply sight-in as usual and lift the spring-loaded adjustment knob, rotate to zero, and re-engage. Nikon 22lr Scope has also included a no-fault policy with this scope, which gives you a degree of cover.
Budget Option: BSA Sweet .22
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The scope comes with metal lens covers, so you can protect the lens from any scrapes and scratches. The BSA Sweet .22 also has three adjustable turrets for three different 22 bullet sizes; there’s a 36 grain, a 38 grain, and a 40 grain. All you need to do is set the right grain level for the specific bullet you are using.
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The level of magnification you choose to use will be determined by the type of object you are shooting. If you are target shooting, then the magnification level may be different from if you’re using the scope for hunting. The good news is the BSA Sweet .22 is perfect for both as you can choose the level of magnification you want to use.
The BSA Sweet .22 has an eye relief of 3’’ so your eyes will be comfortable when you’re using the sight. One of the main advantages of the BSA Sweet .22 is how versatile it is, and the fact that it can be used for different types of shooting means the scope certainly provides value for money.
Bushnell Optics Drop Zone-22
The Bushnell Optics Drop Zone-22 aims to provide maximum accuracy and reliability to master every tactical scenario by giving you optical precision, rugged reliability, and uncompromising performance. Like with all good riflescopes, the Bushnells Optics Drop Zone-22 comes in a completely matte black finish. The scope is fully waterproof and fog proof, so it’s fine to use whatever the weather conditions.
The scope has bullet drop compensator built into the reticle, with most rifles you need to aim slightly above where you want to hit on the target, but with the Bushnell’s Optical Drop Zone-22, you can use the bullet drop compensator to judge where you’re shot is going to land on the target.
- Fast focus eyepiece
- Drop Zone 22 LR Bullet Drop Compensating (BDC) reticle
- Side focus parallax adjustment for adjustable long range accuracy and a fast-focus eyepiece
- Target turrets (1/4 MOA click value) for pinpoint precise adjustments
- Fully multi coated optics for incredible brightness
If you zero the main crosshair at 50 yards, the first dot down will set to 75 yards, the second dot down will be 100 yards, and the next dot down will be 125 yards. It’s worth noting that this feature works best when you’ve got the scope set to its maximum magnification.
The sight has a magnification level ranging from two to seven, which makes the scope very versatile. A lower magnification level is useful if you’re out hunting and need to fire shots at short notice. In comparison, a higher magnification level is better for if you’re in a stationary position like shooting at the range. This feature allows you to shoot at targets quickly and confidently and have a high level of control over where your shot will land.
The Leupold VX-Freedom is a particularly lightweight scope, weighing just 11.1 oz and measuring 11.04 inches. It has eye relief measurements between 3.7 to 4.17 inches. With the Leupold VX-Freedom being so lightweight, it won’t add too much weight to your rifle and can be easily transported if you’re heading out into the wilds for a round of hunting.
As with the other scopes reviewed so far, the Leupold VX-Freedom is entirely water and fog proof and gives 100% shockproof performance. Leupold has also included its twilight management system into the scope. This system provides you industry-leading brightness and clarity.
- Model #174179 - VX-Freedom Rimfire 2-7x33mm Riflescope with a Rimfire-MOA reticle and Matte finish
- 100% Waterproof, fogproof, and shockproof.
- Parallax adjusted for 60 yards, ideal for rimfire cartridges
- Twilight Light Management System - Adds up to 10 extra minutes of shooting light and reduces glare for crisp image quality
- Precision 1/4 MOA finger click adjustments for windage and elevation offer absolute repeatability and dependability over a lifetime of extreme use
This feature aims to balance light transmission, reduce glare, and ensure a crisp image in any lighting condition. The result of this is that the twilight management system gives you around 10 minutes of extra shooting light, which is perfect if you’re heading out for a hunt at dawn or later in the day.
Leupold also states that every riflescope is designed to perform between negative 40 to 160 Fahrenheit, so wherever you are in the world, the scope will work well in virtually all weather conditions.
The lenses are scratch-resistant to enable a clear sight, and the zoom ratio on the scope is 3:1. Completed with a matte black finish, the Leupold VX-Freedom is a great lightweight scope to use.
The Burris Droptine comes in a few different sizes. The smallest and the one we tested is the 2-7 x 35mm scope; this size of scope is designed to match the needs of the .22 caliber model rifles.
The lens is made with high-grade optical glass that provides excellent brightness, clarity, and lasting durability. This model has the lens focussed at 50 yards, and it’s calibrated for .22 LR ammo. The scope has parallax adjustment on the objective lens.
- Model 200015 -this is the smallest Droptine model at 2-7x35mm. 200015 has the focus set at 50 yards, and is calibrated for . 22 LR ammo.
- Features the Ballistic Plex reticle, the most simple, effective, and elegant trajectory-compensating reticle for hunting
- High-grade optical glass provides excellent brightness, clarity, and lasting durability
- Model 200016 has the focus set at 75 yards, with reticle calibrated to match slug gun rounds.
- Index-matched, high-lumen multicasting aids in low-light performance and glare reduction, increasing your success rate
One thing we did notice is that we did have to mount the scope slightly higher than anticipated. The objective lens is quite large, so you want to make sure the rings you are using to fit the scope lift the lens of the barrel of your gun, so there’s no friction caused between the scope and your gun.
The Burris scope uses the Ballistic Plex reticle, which is a simple, easy to use reticle. The reticle has three stadia lines on the elevation cross-hair below the center point, which helps to give a sense of the distance of the shot. The scope is suitable for entry-level hunters and those looking to ease their way into shooting or hunting.
The zoom ranges from 3-9x, so it’s suitable for stationary shooting if you’re looking to shoot a target, but also if you’re going to be using the sight for hunting. Burris also covers the scope with their forever warranty, so you’re covered should anything happen to the scope.
Best 22lr Scope For Target Shooting: UTG 3-12X44
The UTG3-12X44 is an impressive rifle scope. The magnification of the scope can range from 3x to 12x. If you select the 3x magnification level offers a full 34-foot view, while the 12x magnification level measures at 8.4 feet. This level of visibility that the scope provides is useful for both stationary target shooting and if you’re out hunting shooting at live targets.
The scope comes with a full 36-color EZ tap reticle; this reticle includes adjustable color illumination, which makes the mil-dot reticle easily visible against any backdrop and in any light condition.
- 30-millimeter SWAT 3-12X44 IE tactical range estimating scope with mil-dot, full 36-color EZ Tap reticle
- 30-Millimeter tube built on True Strength Platform: sealed and nitrogen filled, shockproof, fog-proof, and rain-proof
- Best in class multi emerald coated lenses; integrated angled front sunshade complete with flip-open lens caps
- Special circuit and housing design for uninterrupted illumination even under heavy recoil
- Premium zero locking and zero resetting target turrets with most consistent and precise adjustment; lifetime warratny
This means that the scope works well whether you’re using it day or night. For example, if you find yourself using the scope indoors or in a wooded area, then a bright orange or yellow optical would work well if you’re out in the open in the sun, then you may want to set the reticle to be darker.
The turrets on the scope are easy to adjust, and they integrate into a durable wheel clutch system. The emerald coated lenses allow for a reasonable amount of light to come through. The scope can be used in all weather conditions as it’s completely water and fog proof. The scope also comes with a lifetime warranty, so you’re covered should anything happen to the scope.
Simmons 511039 3
The Simmons 511039 3 is a sturdy scope finished with a completely matte black finish. The Scope is entirely waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof. The HydroShield lens coating ensures image clarity no matter the weather conditions.
The scope is particularly lightweight weighing just 10.8 ounces, so it can be easily transported around. This also makes the scope maneuverable, leaving you to be more competitive if your shooting at ranges or at hunting expeditions. The scope provides 3.5 inches of eye relief, and the lens is focussed at 50 yards as the pre-set.
- Features Truplex Reticle. Waterproof, fogproof and shockproof
- Parallax correction preset from 50 yards to infinity
- Rimfire 3/8" dovetail mounting rings included
- HydroShield coating ensures a clear sight picture
- SureGrip rubber surfaces simplify adjustments under any conditions
Not only the Simmons Rimfire Scope is optimal for 22lr’s, the scope is perfect for hunting small game but can also be used for shooting stationary targets. The scope also comes with lens covers so you can prevent any dust or scratches from forming on the lenses of your scope.
The 3.5 inches of eye relief that the scope provides is pretty comfortable, so your eyes shouldn’t feel strained as you use the lens. One slight downside to the Simmons 511039 3 is that it lacks night vision enhancement. This may not be a concern; it all depends on when you’ll be using the scope. Overall, though the Simmons 511039 3 is a durable scope that you can use daily, safe in the knowledge that it’s a well-manufactured piece of equipment.
The final scope of our review is the Primary Arms classic series rifle scope. It comes with a three-year warranty as standard, so your scope is protected. Primary Arms note that each scope is inspected before it leaves their facility in Houston to ensure all their products are premium quality.
The scope comes in a slick matte black finish and will certainly add an element of style to your rifle. The full name of the Primary Arms scope includes the letters ACSS, which stands for Advanced Combat Sighting System, this shows that the Primary Arms scope is designed for high-pressure situations. This means that the scope can be used for stationary target shooting or live hunting, particularly if you need to switch targets at short notice.
- 6x second focal plane riflescope features a non-illuminated ACSS 22LR reticle ideal for plinking, hunting, or competition
- ACSS 22LR reticle design utilizes bullet drop compensation correlated with range estimation and wind holds all in one system
- Increases first hit ratio and decreases time on target specifically designed for range clays, cans, bottles, and more
- Low profile, capped finger adjustable turrets allow for quick elevation and windage adjustments
- Covered by a 3 year manufacturer warranty for defects due to materials, workmanship or normal wear and tear
The reticle used on the sight starts at 50 yards and goes all the way to 200 yards, so you have plenty of control over the length of your shot. The scope comes with clear instructions on the scope can be set up. You’ll also find clear instructions on what to do if there is wind present when you’re shooting.
The scope weighs 12 oz, so it’s relatively lightweight, and it’s easy to maneuver. The scope is 9.25 inches, and it’ll fit easily onto your rifle. The scope has a focus ring on the back of the sight, so you can adjust the scope so that it’s comfortable with your eye.
The scope has an eye relief of 3.1 inches. It’s a solid scope and works really well for if you’re target shooting, clay pigeon shooting, or live hunting.
What Makes a Great 22lr Scope?
As you can see from the scopes reviewed in this article, nearly every scope is lightweight and easy to move around with. Ease of movement and agility are key if you’re going to be hunting out in the wild as circumstances can change quickly, and dangerous situations can arise.
Having a scope that is easy to use, easy to maneuver, and gives you a clear sight of your target are musts for any great 22lr scope. You also want to make sure that the scope you buy is comfortable for your eyes. It’s important to remember that safety is vital with every firearm, and having a scope that is comfortable your eyes will not only make your whole shooting experience more enjoyable but will also help with the safety of your shooting.
Points to Consider When Purchasing a 22lr Scope
There are a few key points to consider before you make a purchase; the first is how much do you want to spend? If you’re new to shooting and you’re purchasing your first scope, then going for a slightly cheaper sight would be beneficial. You’ll want to make sure that the scope is easy to use and easy to configure.
Every scope that we looked at came with clear instructions on how to set up the scope and how to use it. If you’re an experienced shooter and you know how most scopes work, then you may desire a scope with greater functionality.
If you’re a beginner, it may be worth heading down to a gun store with your rifle and scope to make sure that it’s configured correctly and that it’s ready to use. You could also consider getting some lessons at a shooting range to hone in your skills, particularly if you’re going to be hunting.
Having a scope with a wide range of magnification means the scope is optimized for different types of shooting: e.g., stationary target shooting, clay pigeon shooting, or game hunting. Think about the kind of shooting you’ll be carrying out when you’re deciding what scope to go for; doing so will help you keep in mind what features you’re looking for in a scope.
A lower magnification level is useful if you’re out hunting game, in this environment you may have to switch targets quickly or reposition your firearm at short notice. A higher magnification level is useful if you’ll be shooting at stationary targets.
You should take into consideration the lens size of any scope before you buy one. The lens on your rifle helps to focus natural light so you can view the target at hand. Some scopes also come with illumination systems that allow you to shoot at night or in the day.
Do you plan on shooting at night or just in the day time? If at night, then you’ll want to make sure that your scope has an illumination device built-in. If you’re only planning on using the sight for day use, then an illumination device isn’t as important.
Water and Fog Proof
Making sure the scope you buy is water and fog proof ensures that your scope can be used in all weather conditions. Each cope we reviewed is water and fog proof, but also shockproof. This is great if you plan on shooting in different climates or weather conditions, and it doesn’t limit you to only being able to use the scope in specific weather conditions.
Each scope has some sort of warranty that comes with it. The level of warranty can depend on the type of scope that you buy. It’s always worth checking out the warranty which a manufacturer offers before you buy a scope so you can make sure the warranty suits your needs.
Make Sure You Buy The Best Scope For 22lr
Our Winner: Vortex Optics Crossfire II [star rating=”5″ numeric=”yes”]
Hopefully, by, you have a good idea of what to look for in a 22lr scope. It’s important to keep in mind what you’ll be using the scope for when you make a purchase and what kind of shooting you’ll be carrying out. For us, the Vortex Optics Crossfire II was the clear winner and works well no matter what kind of shooting you take part in.
The good news is that all the scopes we reviewed come with detailed instructions on how to set them up and use them, so you can get down to business right away after you receive your sight.
Once you’ve set your sight up and you’re happy with the configuration, you can head out and start shooting!
Last update on 2020-12-02 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API.