What is the Best Air Rifle Scope?
The best air rifle scope complements your eyesight and ensures you hit your target every time you aim.
It is accurate, easy to use, and holds zero exceptionally well. Therefore, it distinctly draws the line between hitting your potential kill and just shooting in the air.
Now, assuming you are using an air rifle scope with higher magnification and a wide field of view (FOV). This type of scope allows enough light to go through it and increases pin-point accuracy. It increases the chances that you are going to hit your target. And most of the time, you will hit your target.
We all want this type of scope because it is the best air rifle scope, and among other things, it increases accuracy, enables us to take longer shots, and boosts our self-confidence.
But there is a dilemma.
I experienced this dilemma when I was shopping for a scope for my .357 caliber Benjamin Rogue.
There were just too many scopes that I was spoilt for choice, and it was not fun.
So, I had to go out of my way and conduct extensive research because I am passionate about air guns and their power.
I honestly wanted to know how I could identify the best scopes and even went an extra mile to test them.
How to Shop for The Best Air Rifle Scope
Choosing the right air rifle scope cannot be stressed enough.
Most likely, it will depend on the type of shooting you want to undertake; whether it’s small game hunting, big game hunting, sports, or just casual shooting.
I discovered that identifying the best air rifle scope is not a walk in the park. It’s an undertaking that overwhelms even the best hunters and marksmen. This is mainly because technology keeps changing and the technical aspects of choosing a scope become ambiguous.
In addition, air guns are unique, and so are their needs. But what is important is that the scope should match the power and the accuracy of your air gun.
During my mission, I singled out the most important things that you need to look out for:
- The lenses – they are in charge of the magnification. A good number of scopes have a 3-9x magnification. This means they can enlarge an object up to nine times. Scopes with a higher magnification require an air gun pro. Generally, you will need larger magnification if you are going to hunt larger game at longer distances.
- The Reticle – This is the crosshair you see when you look through your scope. It does not determine accuracy, but it is crucial. Its purpose is to enable you to aim the gun with the scope, and it will also assist you in estimating the distance and the wind.
- Light Transmission – This is the amount of light that enters the scope through the objective lens and leaves through the ocular lens. Great scopes allow enough light (95% of light). Basically, get a scope that will transmit as much light as possible. Keep in mind that the diameter of the objective lens is responsible for the amount of light that enters the scope and how that light is transmitted over to the ocular lens.
- Coating – Coatings are supposed to ensure the scope is usable in all weather conditions. Therefore, you need to find a coat that will protect the entire scope while also giving you a clear sight of your target. The best choice is to go for a coating that is appropriate for all weather conditions and does not have reflections.
- Field Of View (FOV) – This is the area that is visible in the scope. A wider FOV means you are going to get better results. The FOV changes with different magnifications, and as you increase magnification, FOV reduces.
- Adjustments – If, for example, you are taking part in shooting contests, you will need accurate targeting, and this may only be achieved if you are able to adjust your scope. A proper scope should have adjustments for your crosshairs, windage, and elevation.
- Scope tube length and weight – The length of the tube and the weight of the scope will affect accuracy and will determine the usability of the scope.
- Repeatability – This is how reliable the scope is in making several shots without the need to make any adjustments. One scope gave me a hard time because it could not cope with the recoil. There was either too much light coming in, or the elevation kept changing after firing just 20 rounds. Fortunately, it did not make it into my top ten list.
Those eight are the ones I picked and based on them; I chose ten of the best air rifle scopes.
SWIFT SRP686M Premier Airgun-Rated Riflescope
UTG 3-12×44 30mm Compact Air Rifle Scope
BARSKA 3-12x40 AO Airgun
Daisy Winchester 4×32
UTG 3-9×32 Compact CQB Bug Buster AO RGB Air Rifle Scope
UTG 4X32 1" Hunter Scope
UTG 4-16×44 30mm Air Rifle Scope
CVLIFE Tactical 3-9x40 Optics R4 Reticle Crosshair Air Sniper Hunting Rifle Scope
CVLIFE 4x32 Compact Rifle Scope Crosshair Optics Hunting Gun Scope
Hammers 9x32AO Air Rifle Scope
1. SWIFT SRP686M Premier Airgun-Rated Riflescope
•Magnification range of 6.5-20
•6.5-20x44mm High Recoil Scope
•Has a coil spring system for withstanding the heaviest recoils
•The internals are made of brass to make the scope durable and long lasting
This Swift Premier Airgun Scope is excellent for both target and long-range shooting. It was pricey, but that is because it is powerful and has the capability of achieving high accuracy.
It felt bold and dominating, and I was confident this was going to be my favorite choice when going for some serious shooting competition. This is mainly because of its insane magnification.
I noticed that the 44mm objective lens allowed enough light both indoors and outdoors, which made my targets clearer.
My only concern is that this scope is too long and may seem big for smaller airguns. I was using a Big Bore .40 caliber Badger Air Rifle, and I can tell you there was ‘competition.’
- Weight: 23.6oz/669g
- Eye Relief: 2.7 in/68.6mm
- Length: 15.6in./39.6cm
- FOV (at 1000 yds. /m): 19ft./6.3m, 6.5ft./2.2m
2.UTG 3-12×44 30mm Compact Air Rifle Scope
•Parallax-free view from 10 yards
•3-12x44 magnification scope that is shockproof/ fogproof/ rainproof
•Caps for your lens
•Zero resetting target turrets
•Has EZ-TAP function that allows colorblind shooters to find their preferred color. Those who aren’t color blind can see in the harshest conditions like snow or torrential rain
•Special circuit and housing design to ensure the lighting is uninterrupted even during heavy recoil
UTG is part of the Leapers Company that is famous for powerful and durable scopes, and they have done justice to their UTG 3-12×44 30mm Compact Air Rifle Scope.
It comes with some of the best features in the market, yet it is affordable. It also has a solid design, and it is easy to adjust because it is light.
I fired in the open field, though I tuned the the elevation and windage to my preference. I achieved insane accuracy, and I shot objects that were less than an inch apart, 50 yards away. After firing 200 rounds, I was surprised that the scope was still accurate.
- Weight: 23.2oz
- Eye Relief: 3.4"-3"
- Length: 10.4 in.
- FOV: 32'-10'
3.BARSKA 3-12x40 AO Airgun
•Objective lenses that can be adjusted for parallax
•Entirely coated lenses
•Reverse Recoil Technology for withstanding heavy recoil
•40mm objective lens that is fog proof/waterproof/shockproof
•1 tube construction
•Barska’s Limited Lifetime Warranty
This is one heck of a scope coming from a company that has made its name in the scope industry.
Barska built in on a 1” tube and made it affordable. They enabled it to take in more light to give the shooter the much-needed clarity.
To achieve precision, I generously used the magnification and reticle adjustments. I missed three shots because of some parallax issue, which was corrected using the adjustments.
The 40mm lens allowed for some high zooming because enough light was coming in and there were no visual distortions or glare as was the case with other scopes.
I would again pick this for competition and recreational shooting, primarily because of the Mil-Dot type reticle, which is perfect for tough shooting and range-finding.
- Weight: 18.1oz
- Eye Relief: 4.2 in
- Length: 13.66inch
- FOV (ft@100yds / m@100m): 35/11.6 @ 3x, 9/3 @12x
4.Daisy Winchester 4×32
- Crosshair reticle
- Adjustable windage and elevation
- Color corrects
- 4 x 32 adjustable objective for sharp images
- Shockproof/ fog proof
This scope is designed by the Daisy airgun company and is built shockproof to accommodate any unique recoil or spring-action. In addition, the scope is also fog proof to provide a clear view in wet weather.
It felt smaller and lighter; I think because it has a fixed power optic. I did test it in the woods, and I think its 32mm is an excellent choice for a 4x magnification. I’d certainly use it for hunting.
It’s a simple scope that I found easy to mount, and at 40 meters, I was easily able to hit my targets with ease. This is because it has an impressive array of features for its price and it has been made using high-quality materials.
I am confident that both the casual and professional shooter can enjoy it.
- Weight: 16.8 oz.
- Eye Relief: 3 in
- Length: 11.5"
- FOV: 25ft at 100 yards
5.UTG 3-9×32 Compact CQB Bug Buster AO RGB Air Rifle Scope
•1-inch tube (emerald coating); sealed and filled with Nitrogen
•Parallax-free view at 3 yards
•Red/Green Dual Illumination
•Flip-open lens caps
•Adjustable Objective lens
•3-9x32 magnification power
•Resettable turrets with ¼ MOA adjustments
•RGB side wheel illumination
This UTG scope is affordable and is great if you are on some budget.
Since it has 9x (instead of a 12x), it is ideal for shooting smaller targets at close range.
Mounting it was a breeze, and it was lightweight enough during the firing. I could tell because I did not need extra strength and my arms were not tired afterward. But you need to ensure that all the screws are tight.
For the first try, I hit the bulls-eye 90% of the time at only 35 yards. I went on and fired more than 200 rounds, and to my surprise, the scope did not need any adjustments. It was a bit chilly, but the clarity was insane.
I also have to commend the light gathering technology that UTG has used for this scope. There was no point where I felt the light was too much or too little.
- Weight: 13.9 oz.
- Eye Relief: 4.2" to 3.2"
- Length: 8.11"
- FOV: 37.7 ft. to 14 ft. Field of view @ 100 yds.
6.UTG 4X32 1" Hunter Scope
•Mil-Dot range-estimating Reticle
•Adjustable windage and elevation
•Flip-open lens caps
•Angled front sunshade
•Tube is completely sealed and filled with Nitrogen
•Parallax adjusted at 35 yards
•Finger Adjustable Turrets
The UTG Hunter Scope comes with plenty of extras that make it a favorite pick.
I found it rather tempting, probably because I love myself a mil-dot and I find the straight crosshairs too mainstream.
When I held it for the first time, I could immediately tell that it is slightly bulky, but not too big to add weight to your gun. For the quality of material used, I’d say UTG gave its consumers a moderate price, which is okay coming from a well-known manufacturer.
There was clarity, so I guess enough light was coming in.
- Weight: 13.1 oz.
- Eye Relief: 3.4"
- Length: 12.20”
- FOV: 32' field of view @ 100 yds.
7.UTG 4-16×44 30mm Air Rifle Scope
- Mil-dot reticle
- 30 mm tube that is sealed and filled with Nitrogen
- EZ – TAP illumination to accommodate all lighting and weather conditions
- ¼ MOA adjustments
- 1-Click Technology for accessing the color and brightness in your reticle
- Shockproof/ waterproof/ fog proof
- 4-16X power
- Flip-open Lens Caps
- Zero Resettable Turrets
- Emerald coated lens to ensure maximum light transmission
- Side Wheel Adjustable Turret
- Zero Lockable
- Parallax-free from 10 yards
4-16x44 magnification? Whoa!
I think that’s too much for the casual shooter. But that explains the price.
Funny story is I used all the magnification power to plink cans, though I could feel I was wasting the capability of this rifle scope.
I used it in an area that was not well lit, and I observed that it needed more light. However, the assistant advised me to use the EZ-Tap illumination to rectify any light issues, and it did wonders.
I noticed that this device needs more light, especially when used in areas that are not well lit. If you find yourself in such a situation, use the EZ-Tap illumination to rectify any light issue and get a clear shot.
It holds zero pretty well, just like other UTG models. And I mean upwards of 300 rounds without the need to make any adjustments. Neither did I have to worry about hitting my bulls-eye.
This must be the best scope if you are shopping for a scope with a high level of magnification, but I’d advise you use it with a high-end rifle.
- Weight: 21.8 oz.
- Eye Relief: 3.4in-3in
- Length: 283mm
- FOV (at 100 yards): 26.2ft-7.85ft
8.CVLIFE Tactical 3-9x40 Optics R4 Reticle Crosshair Air Sniper Hunting Rifle Scope
•Comes with free mounts
•The tube is sealed and filled with Nitrogen to make it fog proof and rain proof.
•Smart design to make the scope shockproof and to provide accurate windage and elevation adjustments
•Made with scratch-resistant coating to protect exterior lenses
•Unique inner and outer structure
•Built on an inch, ultra-strong aluminum tube
•Comes with lens cover and Allen key
•Great color contrast
This is a remarkable sniper hunting tool, and I could tell when I held it for the first time.
The material used to make the scope is high-quality, and this only means long-lasting reliability. This is why the scope is shockproof while still enabling the shooter to make the necessary windage and elevation adjustments.
I bet more than 90% of light was coming in because my targets were crystal clear.
- Weight: 0.76lb (345g)
- Eye Relief: 69.1mm-85.09mm
- Length: 12.20"(31cm)
- FOV: 13.41'~40.38"'@100yards
9.CVLIFE 4x32 Compact Rifle Scope Crosshair Optics Hunting Gun Scope
- Crosshair reticle
- 32 mm
- 20mm free mounts
- 4x magnification
- Fog proof/ waterproof/ shockproof
- Fully coated lens. Coated using scratch-resistant coating to prevent scratches, oil, and dirt
- Has finger adjustments for windage and elevation
- Made using high-strength aluminum alloy to make it durable
I could right away tell that it is meant for hunting.
It is so compact, and it has a fixed magnification. I found it useful when you want to acquire a target quickly, which was a plus because I like to hunt small game using low bulk equipment. These features make it easy when moving and aiming.
The lenses were coated, and this helped with the brightness and clarification of my target. Generally, the scope is reasonably priced, and since it has fixed magnification, it has been equipped with adjustable windage and elevation for accuracy and precision.
- Weight: 12.8 oz.
- Eye Relief: 4.13" (105mm)
- Length: 7.48"(190mm)
- FOV: 23
10. HAMMERS 3-9X32A0 AIR RIFLE SCOPE
•Variable 3x-9x magnification
•Anodized black matte finish
•One piece mount with stop pin
•Mounting screws for the dovetail clamp
•32mm Parallax adjustable objective
•1-inch one-piece tube
•Shockproof/ waterproof/ fog proof
The Hammer Air Rifle Scope offers a better target view and is affordable.
I fell in love with the matte black finish that is apparently made using sturdy material to ensure it can withstand rough environments. Again, it has a mil-dot reticle that should help you adjust your accuracy when aiming at your target, especially in long-range shooting.
You should achieve better and clear vision with the help of the 32mm 3-9x zooming.
While the zeroing feature is easy to use, I did fire several rounds, yet I did not need to adjust the scope. I did not have a problem with the magnification; both for objects that were near (30 yards) or far away (90 yards). The secret is to find a comfortable zoom level and voila!
Please use the removable stop pin to ensure the scope stays in place when shooting. I am sure this scope qualifies for both shooting and hunting.
If you have a magnum air rifle, my guess is you will get the best results.
- Weight: 20.2 oz.
- Eye Relief: 3.1" - 3.3"
- Length: 12.8"
- FOV (@ 100 yds.): 39.3’ at 3X, 13.1’ at 9x
The best air rifle scope is one that will help you achieve the highest hits with little inconvenience.
But it could cost anything.
However, all of my picks are great choices mainly because there is a great balance between their features, quality, and price. Furthermore, they can be used by beginners and advanced shooters alike.
Most importantly, go for an air rifle scope that you are fully aware of. If you get that quality scope, you will have an easier time, and you will enjoy your shooting experience.