Just because you are on a budget, it doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy your hunting and target shooting adventures. With the best rifle scope under 1000, you will still be able to enjoy the same high quality performance and durability you would get from a high-end scope.
The best part about these affordable scopes is that you will be able to find any type you want – whether you are looking for a long range hunting scope or a night vision one. Whilst they will not offer the extra luxury features that come with expensive scopes, scopes under 1000 still offer a value-adding investment – lasting you for quite some time. So, below is the list of the 8 top picks for the best rifle scope under 1000 to help you find the perfect option.
1. Simmons 3-9x32mm .22 Riflescope
What makes the Simmons 3-9x32mm .22 Riflescope is its impressive truplex reticle design. The truplex reticle features crosshairs that make it easy and quick for you to acquire the target without having to make any adjustments to the scope settings. Additionally, the scope features a smooth parallax correction that allows you to reset it from 50 yards to infinity.
Its single-piece construction helps to significantly reduce its weight whilst enhancing its strength. The single-piece tube is also fully sealed to give the scope a waterproof and shockproof finish. In the interior, the scope tube is filled with nitrogen to prevent moisture build up to keep it free from fog. On the front end of the tube, the scope features a 32mm objective glass lens that is treated with a HydroShield coating.
Thanks to the HydroShield coating, the lens offers superior picture clarity. On the back end of the scope tube is a patented Quick Target Acquisition eyepiece. As the name suggests, the eyepiece is designed with a generous eye relief that allows for easy and quick target acquisition. On the surface of the scope tube is a SureGrip rubber material coating which makes it super easy to adjust the scope – even in the harshest conditions.
- HydroShield lens coating for better picture clarity
- SureGrip rubber surface for easy adjustability even in wet and rough conditions
- Truplex reticle makes it easy to acquire a target without making adjustments to the scope
- Single-piece tube construction for added strength, durability, and reduced bulkiness
- The wide viewing angle of between 31.4 and 10.5 feet per 100 yards
- The eye relief is not as comfortable
2. Vortex Optics Crossfire II Second Focal Plane Riflescope
If you are looking for an all-purpose scope to use in a range of lighting conditions, the Vortex Optics Crossfire II Second Focal Plane Riflescope is what you should invest in. Fitted with a V-Brite Illuminated MOA reticle, the scope integrates battery-powered electronics that illuminate the center dot for enhanced low light performance – making it perfect for hunters in extra low light conditions.
Its second focal plane design on the other end maintains the same target appearance even at different magnifications. This is because as the scope magnifies the target, the reticle remains the same size. Furthermore, this affordable scope is built with long eye relief and ultra forgiving eye box which allows for quicker target acquisition and clear picture sighting.
Furthermore, the riflescope integrates a fast focus eyepiece for more convenient reticle focusing. The objective glass lens on the other end features an anti-reflective and multi-coating to accentuate the clarity of your target image. The finger adjustable capped reset turrets with the MOA clicks facilitate easier reset to zero after sighting in.
- Long eye relief for easy target acquisition
- V-Brite Illumination MOA reticle for increased targeting and shooting precision in extra low light conditions
- The second focal plane allows the reticle to maintain the target size at any magnification
- O-ring sealing and nitrogen filling for waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof performance
- Single-piece aluminum tube for added strength
- 1-inch tube design is not as strong and light-absorbing as a 30mm one
3. BARSKA 3-9×32 Plinker-22 Riflescope
Built with a lightweight and durable aircraft-grade aluminum housing, the BARSKA 3-9×32 Plinker-22 Riflescope improves your plinking and general hunting performance whilst withstanding knocks from the rugged outdoor conditions. This riflescope is specially engineered to accommodate .22 rifles and rimfires. Its simple 30/30 cross hair reticle design on the other end allows you to easily aim at your target.
The 3-9x magnification range on the other allows you to get closer to your target without pixelating your view to make short to mid-range target shooting a breeze. Furthermore, the riflescope under $1000 is built with a wide field of view at up to 36 feet per 100 yards on the 3x power – allowing you to sufficiently zoom on your target without missing out on its surrounding details.
Its 3.5-inch eye relief on the other end allows for easier and quicker target acquisition whilst protecting your eyes against fatigue or injury that may be caused by heavy recoils. To protect your lens and keep them clean when not in use, the scope is attached with lens caps and comes with a lens cloth. Furthermore, for easy mounting, the riflescope comes with 3/8-inch dovetail rings and scope caps.
- 5-inch eye relief for easy and quick target acquisition
- Wide field of view of up to 36 feet per 100 yards at 3x magnification
- Specially designed for 22 rifles and rimfires
- Integrated lens caps to protect the lens when not in use
- Crosshair reticle for easy target aiming
- Some issues with the quality
4. UTG 3-12X44 30mm Compact Scope
For those long hunting trips in the deep brushes, the UTG 3-12×44 30m Compact Scope is a perfect option thanks to its lightweight and compact build that make it easy to travel and carry with you. Furthermore, the scope is specially built to work in any lighting or weather conditions. Integrating the patented EZ-TAP Illumination enhancing System, the scope offers two types of color options. You can opt for the traditional dual-color red/green mode.
Alternatively, you can opt for the multi-color mode with a choice of up to 36 different colors; allowing the scope to cater to a wide range of lighting and weather conditions. Its military-style mil-dot reticle design on the other end powers the scope with exceptional range finding abilities. In fact, this scope features a uniquely designed range estimating reticle design.
Unlike regular mil-dots, the UTG mil-dot reticle is designed with 9 dots on either cross hair direction to give you 19 aiming points for increased accuracy. It’s premium lockable and resettable turrets on the other end provide precise windage and elevation adjustments whilst maintaining adequate stability to prevent accidental adjustments. The side wheel adjustable turret on the other end allows for parallax adjustment from 10 yards to infinity.
- Larger separately sold wheels of various sizes available for even finer parallax adjustment
- EZ-TAP IE technology to accommodate the scope in a range of weather and lighting conditions
- Range estimating mil-dot with more aiming points for added shooting and targeting accuracy
- Compact and lightweight build for easy travel
- Integral sunshade to prevent glare from the sun
- The reticle is a little thick
5. Vortex Optics Strike Eagle Second Focal Plane Riflescope
Integrating an EBR-4 MOA reticle with a second focal plane style, the Vortex Optics Strike Eagle Second Focal Plane Riflescope is perfect for hunters and target shooters. The EBR-4 MOA reticle makes it easy to determine the range, holdover, windage corrections, and moving target leads – thus, improving your overall long range shooting performance. Its second focal plane design on the other end allows the scope to maintain the same target appearance at any magnification power.
Thus, as the scope magnifies the target, the reticle remains the same to retain the target size. The 4-24×50 scope features an ergonomic side parallax knob with a built-in illumination which offers a choice of up to 11 brightness levels to cater to different lighting and weather conditions. It’s wide zooming range offers up to 6x variety to accommodate short to long range applications. Its zero resettable turrets on the other end are marked with clear adjustment indicators which allow for easy and accurate adjustments.
To ensure maximum strength and ruggedness in the rough outdoors, the scope features a 30mmt tube construction that is fully sealed with O-rings and filled with nitrogen. This construction also gives the scope waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof performance. The Strike Eagle is amongst our top rated affordable scopes – so we’ve included its full review.
- EBR-4 MOA reticle allows for easy range estimation, holdovers, windage corrections, and moving target leads
- The second focal plane retains the target size at any magnification
- Generous eye relief for quicker target acquisition and sighting
- Side parallax knob with built-in 11 brightness levels for different lighting conditions
- Wide zooming range to accommodate short- and long-range applications
- The eye box becomes smaller at higher magnifications
6. ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Smart Day/Night Rifle Scope
If you are looking for a scope that is particularly designed for night time use, the ATN X-Sight 4K Pro Smart Day/Night Riflescope is an option worth considering. The night vision scope is built with an ultra HD sensor with the Obsidian 4 Dual Core processor which offers a higher resolution, even in total darkness. As if this mechanism is not enough, the scope is also built with a separate night vision mode to power it in the dark.
For accurate shooting parameters, the scope is also built with a ballistics calculator. Using an integrated calculator, you will be able to determine the range, wind, multiple weapon profiles, humidity, and temperature, just to mention a few. The riflescope is also designed with a dual streaming video recording which allows you to stream videos on your smartphone via wifi connection whilst saving the footage in the included SD card.
Its Recoil Activated Video technology has you covered in case you forget to hit the record button as it automatically prompts the scope to record before and after you shoot your target through its recoil sensitive mechanism. To ensure you don’t miss out on any of the shooting opportunities in the brush, the scope is powered with a battery that allows it to operate for up to 18 hours uninterrupted – it most certainly makes it to our list of the best affordable night vision scopes.
- IPX7 waterproof rating protects the scope even when submerged in water, 1 meter deep, for up to 30 minutes
- Low profile and low battery power consumption allows the scope to operate for up to 18 hours
- Dual streaming design on the smartphone and SD card
- Ballistics calculator to track humidity, temperature, wind, range, and many more
- Dedicated night vision mode
- Difficulty with holding zero in some instances
7. Vortex Optics Diamondback Second Focal Plane Riflescope
Using the Vortex Optics Diamondback Second Focal Plane Riflescope, you no longer have to do any guesswork when it comes to determining bullet hold over a long distance. The Dead Hold BDC reticle allows you to determine the estimated range, holdovers, and wind drift correction. Its versatility on the other end means that the scope can work effectively with high powered rifles, black powder rifles, rimfires, and even slug shotguns.
This also means that you can use the riflescope over a wide selection of short to long range applications including big game and varmint hunting. Furthermore, the 4-12x40mm scope is fitted with a fully multi-coated lens for crystal clear images. The 40mm lens size allows for adequate light transmission to complement the scope’s clear image viewing whether it’s during daytime, dusk, or dawn.
Its metal-on-metal precision turrets allow you to easily reset to zero after sighting in. A precision glide erector system ensures consistent repeatability whilst the fast focus eyepiece allows for expedited and easy reticle focusing. For guaranteed durability, the riflescope is O-ring sealed and filled with argon for a waterproof, shockproof, and fog-proof performance.
- Parallax setting from 100 yards to infinity
- Metal to metal precision turrets for easy zero reset after sighting in
- Precision glide erector system for consistent repeatability and tracking
- O-ring sealed and argon purged for full waterproof fog proof and shockproof performance
- Dead Hold BDC reticle improves long range applications
- Smaller 1-inch tube construction
8. Night Owl Optics NightShot Digital Night Vision Riflescope
Integrating a built-in IR illuminator, the Night Owl Optics NightShot Digital Night Vision Riflescope delivers exceptional performance even in total darkness. The night vision scope features a 100 to 200 yards range which makes it perfect for nighttime hunting. Furthermore, the scope boasts a choice of 3 different reticle styles which can be configured to black or white to suit your shooting environments.
Additionally, the 3x scope features a 2.7-inch eye relief which allows for comfortable viewing and target acquisition when compared to its size. Its 5.6 degrees field of view allows it adequately accommodate the target and its surrounding details.
Featuring a battery-powered design, the scope under 1000 can operate for up to 17 hours without any interruption when fitted with lithium batteries with the IR off. However, with alkaline batteries, it can only go to 11 hours. For easy fitting, the night vision scope is compatible with both Weaver, Picatinny, and Dovetail rail mounts.
- Built-in IR for easy viewing even in total darkness
- Focusing distance of 10 feet to infinity
- 3 types of reticles with black and white settings for enhanced target accuracy
- The 100-to-200-yard range makes it perfect for nighttime use
- Compatible with Weaver, Picatinny, and Dovetail rail mounts
- Plastic tube construction
Will a Riflescope under 1000 Still Function Well?
Yes, the best rifle scope under 1000 is designed to perform exceptionally well. After all, high prices don’t necessarily mean quality and durability. Sure, you may not enjoy the extra features that come with high-end riflescopes; however, they won’t limit your performance in the outdoors.
What Are the Best Affordable Riflescope Brands in the Market?
You can find a wide range of affordable brands that offer good quality products. However, our recommendations for the best brands include Vortex, Simmons, UTG, ATN, and Night Owl.
What Does 3-9×40 Scope Represent?
All riflescope lenses come with these three values. The first two, in this case, 3 and 9 represent the magnification range so, it is 3x to 9x. The final number represents the objective lens size, in this case, the size is 40mm.
At what Distance Is a 3-9×40 Most Effective?
A 3-9×40 riflescope is designed to cover a range of between 100 and 300 yards. This type of scope is perfect for big game hunting when you are targeting animals such as deer or elk.
What Is the Best Reticle Type for Long Range Shooting?
Many shooters favor an EBR-2C reticle. This is because this reticle style delivers accurate range estimation and holdovers compared to other reticle types; making it a widely sought-after option.
What Is the Difference Between a 40mm and 50mm Scope?
A 50mm scope refers to a scope fitted with a 50mm objective lens. In general, the larger the lens size, the better. This means that the 50mm scope is typically better than a 40mm one. A large lens size means that the lens will have the ability to collect more light thus, it provides a better image resolution and clarity. However, for some long range hunters and shooters, 40mm scopes are also viable options as they allow for more range when it comes to reticle adjustment.