Whether you are a hunter or just shoot as a sport a scope for your .22LR rifle is of utmost importance as that helps you determine how accurately you hit the target. I know .22LR rifle is accurate enough, but you can take its accuracy to the next level by using a good scope. A scope helps you to zoom in on your target and lock it precisely on where you want your shot to land (off course you know). Choosing the best scope for your .22LR rifle depends upon your personal preference and your shooting needs and of course your budget. It is often a daunting prospect as there is a wide range of rimfire rifle scopes available in the market offering a wide range of features.
Depending on your budget .22LR riflescopes are available in a wide price bracket from$40 up to thousands of dollars. Buying an expensive scope sometimes might be a waste of money because your purpose might be solved in buying a cheap rimfire scope. That’s why We are going to review top 5 rimfire scopes that come under $200. Buying a high-end rimfire scope does not necessarily mean that you get better results. So get your money’s worth and buy a rimfire scope that suits your requirements perfectly taking into consideration the features that are offered by each product.
Best 4 Scopes for rimfire (.22LR) Rifle Under $200
1. Nikon PROSTAFF RIMFIRE II 3-9X40 BDC150 – Best for Rimfire Rifle
This particular model has been developed for the trajectory of hypervelocity.22 rifle rimfire roundand as one of the top rimfire scopes under $200. This is a fantastic choice for beginners who are on a tight budget. So what’s a better scope than the Nikon Prostaff Rimfire II 3-9×40 BDC150 which has been tried and tested?
New Precision for Rimfire Rifles
This rimfire comes with a perfect optic for long range guns and provides for accurate shooting along with complete enjoyment and thus is popular among shooters.
Nikon’s BDC 150 Reticle: This BDC 150 reticle has been specifically designed for shooters to hunt at extended distances for accurate target hitting. This reticle has unique transparent ballistic circles that provide an amazing advantage to long-range shooters, also allowing a normal sight picture for short distance shots where the crosshair itself is the target. It comes with drop markings of 50,100 and 150 yards that give you good control over a standard rimfire range.
Multi-coated Optical System: Every glass surface has been coated with multiple layers of anti-reflective compounds which contribute to bright and vivid pictures and maximum light reflection from dawn to dusk.
Spring Loaded Instant Zero-Reset Turrets: To make field adjustments easier Nikon offers this feature in the riflescope. Just sight-in and then lift the spring-loaded adjustment knob, rotate it to your zero and re-engage. In the same simple way, that field adjustments can be made dial-in your subsequent range.
Spot on Ballistic Match Technology: This spot on ballistic technology of Nikon allows you to discover the exact aiming points on the scope’s reticle for specific ammunition and load at various yards making target acquisition easier.
Parallax: The scope is set to be parallax free at 50 yards. Further to that, there are two adjustment turrets for windage and elevation.
Precise, ¼ inch @50 Yards Hand Turn Adjustments: The positive click reticle adjustments get you zeroed in faster and help you maintain your settings even with heavy recoil.
Waterproof/fog-proof: This particular scope is nitrogen filled and O-ring sealed thus it performs extremely well in not so ideal weather conditions which might be encountered while hunting.
Lifetime Repair/Replacement: The Company offers lifetime repair and replacement but this excludes lost or stolen products and damages caused intentionally.
2. Simmons Truplex – Cheapest .22 Mag Riflescope
This is America’s most popular rimfire scope and is reliable and rugged apt for any hunting application. This Budget Magnum Rimfire Rifle Scope delivers big game performance, is easy on the pocket and a good buy offering a multitude of features.
One Piece Tube: This scope comes as a one-piece tube constructed for lighter handling. It offers greater strength and durability.
Fully Coated Optical Glass: The optical glass is made of hydro shield lens fully coated and made of high-quality material to give sharp and bright images and high contrast.
Parallax: Parallax correction offered by this model is present from 50 yards to infinity
Turrets: The turrets give positive clicks that make you realize that you are getting on target with each and every shot.
Eye Relief: This scope has the Quick Target Acquisition (QTA) eyepiece with 3.75 inches of eye relief for quick and instantaneous sight picture.
Dovetail Mounting Rings: This scope comes with 3/8” dovetail mounting rings.
Waterproof, Fog-proof and Shockproof: The scope is shockproof, waterproof and fog-proof making it dependable in adverse situations.
Suregrip Rubber Surfaces: The scope has Suregrip rubber surfaces due to which adjustments are simplified under different conditions.
3. Leupold FX-I Rimfire – A High-Grade Duplex Scope for Rimfire Rifle
A high-quality variable scope is perfect for any situation. Although it is a midrange rimfire scope, it is well worth the price spent on it with the wide range of features offered by it.
Magnification: The fixed magnification offered gives the same optical quality in a lighter package at a lower price. It has a 4X fixed magnification scope which is excellent for small game hunting.
Lens: This scope hasa28mm objective lens which is comparatively small but the multi-coated optics makes the most of the light that enters the scope. For higher light transmission and a greater level of abrasion resistance, the exterior lens is treated with DiamondCoat 2 which is an ion-assist coating. It gives greater brightness, clarity a contrast.
Duplex Reticle: The reticle here combines both finer and thicker crosshairs thus the thicker outer posts help to acquire targets faster while the thinner central section allows for precise aiming at long ranges.
One Piece Tube: This scope has a one-inch main tube which is lightweight and fits more legacy rings and is durable and compact.
Waterproof, Fog-proof: The scope is completely waterproof and fog proof and is ideal for adverse weather conditions that may be the case many a time while hunting. The scope is made with Leopold’s nitrogen sealing process and the lenses are O-ring sealed.
Eyepiece: This scope’s eyepiece is a classic standard fast focus one with a low profile lock ring that makes reticle focus easy to achieve and maintain.
Eye Relief: The scope boasts of a generous eye relief of 4.5 inches that allows the hunter some flexibility for where on the rail the scope is mounted and gives you an outfit for comfortable shooting.
Micro Friction Dials: The scopes micro-friction dials are marked in ¼ MOA increments clicks for easy windage and elevation adjustments.
4. Sightmark Core SX 3-9×40 – Another 5 Star .22LR Rimfire Riflescope
This scope series has been designed to offer a multitude of features keeping in mind the need of the shooters and is the best rimfire scope under $100
Single Piece Tube: The scope is a single piece one-inch tube made from aircraft grade aluminum. It has a hard anodized finish.
Reticle: The reticle holdover points out to 200 yards and so is perfect for game hunters and target shooters. This scope has a .22 LR BDC reticle calibrated for 40gr standard velocity and 29gr high velocity that increases accuracy.
Resettable Capped Turrets: This scope comes with resettable capped turrets that make it more resistant to being accidentally rotated or knocked over. Thus it allows users to make adjustments only when the turret has been removed making it ideal for hunters.
Multi-Coated Optics: Due to this feature offered the glare is reduced and therefore there is better light transmission and sharper contrast.
Eye Relief: The scope has an eye relief of 40mm.
The Importance of a High-Quality Rimfire Rifle Scope
There are a lot of hunters and shooters who will spend a lot of money on good rifles but will not bother about buying a scope. The scope is important to buy if you are a serious shooter. You can certainly manage by not mounting one on your rifle. But this will definitely limit you as you will only be able to shoot at close range and the level of accuracy that you need, will not be there. A high-quality scope should also be the best budget rimfire scope and possess some of the following features to help you enjoy your hobby more.
While some rifle scopes have fixed power magnification others have variable power magnification. Scopes with variable power magnification help the shooter to achieve a higher level of accuracy and different ranges which scopes with fixed power magnification do not.
Low profile turrets are common in most.22 LR specific rifle scopes. The high profile turrets make it easier for the shooters to adjust the point of impact for different ranges and easily come back to the zero points.
Shooters have to withstand all types of weather conditions, thus the scope should be waterproof and fog-proof. Most scopes are purged and then filled with nitrogen. Some scopes are filled with Argon/Krypton gas mixture which is a better choice as this makes them less likely to migrate from the hypertonic atmosphere inside the scope tube to the hypotonic atmosphere outside the tube.
The rifle scope should be durable and made from high-quality material that can endure different environmental conditions. The scope should be lightweight as it will be placed on a .22 rifle which is lightweight and so a heavy scope can throw off the balance.
The lens coating in a scope affects the amount of light transmitted through the scope tube and the clarity of the picture. There are four types of coatings available. The simplest coating is the one called ‘coated’, which is just a single layer coating applied to the objective lens which controls the glare and the amount of light that enters the scope. The ‘fully coated’ have a single layer of coating on all optical surfaces. ‘Multi coated’ lens has several coats of different chemicals applied to the objective lens of the scope. The ‘fully multi-coated’ lens has each lens coated with multiple chemicals to increase the brightness in the scope. The scope with many layers of coatings has amazing picture clarity and is also more expensive.
What Magnification do you need in rimfire scopes?
Magnification depends upon the type of shooting you need to do. Magnification is a great tool to make your target appear larger and clear so that you can attain the ultimate shot. If you are hunting, then you will need a lower magnification setting depending on the size of your target and the distance. For target shooting, on the other hand, you will require a higher magnification also depending on your target and support.
Magnification can be fixed or variable. Some people prefer fixed power scopes because they are simple to use and have fewer moving parts and are less complicated. These scopes are powerful and reliable. If you have to use the same rifle for different shootings like long range or a short distance on the same day it is not feasible to carry multiple scopes. In such a case the variable setting scope is a better option. These scopes offer changeable settings in 4x, 5x and 6x. The disadvantage of using the variable setting scope is that the image is not as sharp as that of a fixed power scope and that they are also usually more expensive and also fragile due to the multiple lenses.
The different aspects of scope have been discussed in detail along with the mention of a few choice products and their features. It is also important to take into consideration that any modern well made rifle scope will have to be durable. They are made with high-quality materials and the only failures are generally caused by accidentally dropping the rifle on a hard surface which can result in a dent in the scope tube or crack one of the lenses.
The price of any product is not always a measure of the quality offered by it. Purchasing the best rimfire scope for your .22 LR rifle is dependent on the features which are more suited for you and then decide whether it suits your budget. Hope it helps you in reaching a decision to purchase a good Rimfire Rifle Scope.
James is the founder of Tactical1Equipment. He is a former Major of US Army. He started the website to provide values to the readers who have interests in Tactical Equipment. Feel free to message him via the contact page if you need to discuss with him about anything.