Then there are 1-inch tube scopes, 30mm, 34mm and — from our friends at Vortex Optics — 35mm tubes. Will you need a lot of elevation and windage travel for complex solutions to hit at long-range? Or will you sight-in your rifle once a year so you can shoot that buck on opening morning like you always do — from your stand on the edge of the pines at 75 paces?
There are other things. I like a 40mm objective on a low-sitting scope, but 50mm and 56mm are common choices, too. Does a big objective really let in that much more light? It’s a choice you’ll face.
If all this strikes you as overwhelming (it is) then take a deep breath and ask yourself a few simple questions: What is the most demanding task you will require of your rifle? Under what conditions do you expect to use your gun and optics? And how important, really, is brand loyalty at the end of the day?
Only you can answer these questions. And these are but a drop in the bucket of all the things you can and should consider. The main thing is, if you’re in the market for a new scope and feeling overwhelmed faced with so many options, all I can say is, welcome to the club.
And it’s a great club to be in — a genuine good problem to have. It means that we modern day shooters are blessed with innumerable quality scope choices for which we can window shop to our heart’s content. We truly are kids in the proverbial candy shop.
So, take your time, be realistic and study, study, study. Buy the thing and then forget about it. It’s time to get on with life. It’s time to go shooting.
Free Download: Reticle Handbook
This handy 82-page reference contains diagrams of tactical reticles from all the major optics manufacturers. D. Andrew Kopas shares the digital handbook with members of tacticalgearmag.com and scout/snipers in all branches of the armed forces, police marksmanship units and civilian long-distance shooting disciplines.