Best Mil-Dot Scope Under $500

In order to make more accurate shots with your rifle, a mil-dot scope is a very good choice for any shooter. If you do not know this already, the term ‘mil’ is short for milliradian, which refers to 1/1000th of a circle’s total radius. In these scopes, the reticle uses dots evenly spaced along both axes, with the amount of space in between each dot being equivalent to one mil. The dots help you to make the correct shot from a distance with ease. Whether you are a hunter or in a shooting competition, the right scope can add a lot of enjoyment to the shooting process.

Before buying, you need to know that a scope consists of multiple aspects and there is a lot to learn about it, especially if you are a first-time buyer. With a variety of scopes in the market, it can be difficult to make the right choice. In the next section, we are going to talk about some of the factors that you need to consider while choosing a high-quality mil-dot. Further to that, we will review some of the best scopes in the market to help you make the right purchase.

Buying guide for the best mil-dot scope

These are the few factors that you need to consider while buying a mil-dot scope for the first time.

Build quality

This is a factor that can never be overlooked. The scope should be able to function in a variety of conditions including adverse ones that you might find yourself in. Ideally, it should be durable, tough to withstand weather conditions and deliver a long-lasting performance. Even if hunting or tactical use is not your priority, this is a factor that you should not compromise with. Most of the top brands deliver good quality and if you stick to them you can be assured of a scope that will serve you for years.

Magnification power

The magnification of most scopes come between 3x and 25x. For competitive and long-range shootings you need to use a scope with a higher range of magnification. Generally, scopes above 15x magnification are only needed if you’re planning to use them competitive shooting, long-range target shooting or training at distances above 1,500 yards. Also keep in mind that a rifle scope with higher magnification will allow you to see further, but will be less effective in low light conditions and will reduce your field of view to some extent.

Lens quality

The scope is only as good as the type of glass that is used in it along with the coatings that are applied to the glass. Apart from the high quality of glass that the top brands ensure, modern chemical engineering has developed coatings that deliver better clarity and brightness by filtering out particular wavelengths of light. Most companies use their own variety of coating and the scope which is termed as ‘Fully Coated’ has a single layer of coating on all optical surfaces. On the other hand, ‘Multi-Coated’ lenses have several coats of different chemicals applied to the objective lens of the scope. The ‘Fully Multi-Coated’ lenses offer the best performance but they are more highly-priced.

Eye relief

This is a factor that is very important for the safety of the shooter. It indicates how far your eye can be away from the scope and still allow for proper view through the scope without parallax error. If you use glasses, the eye relief should be a minimum of 14 mm. In addition, a large caliber rifle can have a heavy recoil that may cause the scope to hit the eye. Anything smaller than a .270 is probably safe with normal eye relief but with higher values, you need to consider greater eye relief ranges.

Vortex Optics Viper PA Second Focal Plane Riflescopes

This is a rugged and tough hunting riflescope that offers top-class performance and reliability along with excellent durability that makes it last for years.

Vortex Optics Viper PA Second Focal Plane Riflescopes

Overview

This scope is made from premium quality glass that has enhanced light gathering capability for excellent clarity. The easy to use features and a fast-focus eyepiece lends it the right amount and user convenience and it offers excellent value on the whole.

Features and Benefits:

Good build quality

The scope is constructed from a 30mm main tube with a hard-anodized finish that lends it good durability. The material used is aircraft-grade aluminum for strength and rigidity.

Excellent optics

The extra-low dispersion (XD) glass increases resolution and color fidelity and the multiple coatings on all glass surfaces increase the light transmission.

Advanced engineering

The unit uses premium components in the zoom lens mechanism to ensure smooth magnification changes along with a superior erector-spring system.

Weatherproof

While it can withstand recoil and impacts, the unit is also O-ring sealed and argon purged making it waterproof and fog-proof for use in adverse weather conditions.

Key Specifications:

  • Weight: 1.35 pounds
  • Length: 14.4 inches
  • Magnification:6.5-20x.
  • Eye relief : 3.1 inch
  • Tube size: 30 mm

Pros and Cons:

Pros
  • Good quality optics.
  • Heavy-duty Precision Force spring systems.
  • A second focal plane reticle.
  • Single-piece aluminum tube.
  • Fast Focus Eyepiece for easy focussing.
.
Cons
  • Loss of clarity at full zoom.
  • Eye relief could have been better

Conclusion

This is a premium grade lens that is well suited for hunting and target practice and offers a solid build quality along with good dependability.

Bushnell Tactical Rifle Scope, Mil-Dot Reticle

Developed with inputs from professionals, this riflescope offers unfailing reliability and optical precision that will keep you satisfied in a variety of shooting conditions.

Bushnell Tactical Rifle Scope, Mil-Dot Reticle

Overview

This is a top-class product from Bushnell that offers good performance as well as reliability. While it is easy to use for new hunters, it also offers enough advanced features to satisfy pros. The superior’s black finish helps to conceal it from animals while hunting.

Features and Benefits:

Good build quality

The scope is constructed from a one-inch body tube that was purged with argon to promote long-term reliability. It is durable and is also rigid enough to withstand shocks.

Excellent optics

The high-quality protective lens coating molecularly bonds to the glass, repelling water, oil, dust, debris and preventing scratches on the glass surface.

Versatile optics

The ultra-wideband coating is designed so that you can see easily in the early dawn and late evening hours, allowing you to shoot even in low-light conditions.

Weatherproof

The unit is also O-ring sealed to deliver an IPX7 waterproof construction that allows immersion in three feet of water for up to 30 minutes. The argon-filled optics provide excellent fog proofing.

Key Specifications:

  • Weight: 425 gm
  • Length: 11.8 inches
  • Magnification: 10 x.
  • Eye relief: 3.4 inches
  • Tube diameter: 1 inch

Pros and Cons:

Pros
  • Multi-coated optics.
  • Ultra Wide Band Coating
  • Superior grade construction
  • Easy to use features
  • Limited lifetime warranty
.
Cons
  • No parallax adjustments.
  • Offers only fixed magnification.

Conclusion

This is a dependable lens that offers good value for money and is suited for tactical use while offering precise target acquisition through the reticle.

 

Leupold VX-Freedom 1.5-4 x 20mm Riflescope

This is a budget-friendly scope that provides versatility and performance that makes it an ideal choice for hunters as well as shooters.

Leupold VX-Freedom 1.5-4 x 20mm Riflescope

Overview

Leupold has been an extremely dependable brand and this scope is no exception. The VX-Freedom line delivers top-class performance along with all-weather and all-terrain capabilities. The unit is also simple to use and compact in size, which makes it easy to handle.

Features and Benefits:

Durable quality

The scope has been tested in the recoil simulation machine to survive 5000 impacts. The lightweight design also allows it to disperse recoil energy effectively.

Excellent optics

The unit offers a twilight light management system for low light performance. It also offers excellent glare reduction and superb contrast to deliver a crystal clear image.

Easy use

The polymer turrets are clearly marked and offer easy adjustment through the Leupold’s finger click dial system. The adjustments for windage and elevation are extremely dependable through the years of use.

Weatherproof

The unit is also water and fog proof and has been tested in depths up to 33 feet. It is also capable of functioning between -40ºF to 160ºF and withstand extreme weather.

Key Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.6 oz
  • Length: 9.35 inches
  • Magnification: 1.5x – 4x.
  • Eye relief: 3.74 to 4.17 inches
  • Tube diameter: 1 inch

Pros and Cons:

Pros
  • Offers excellent durability
  • Good low light performance
  • Easy to grip power selector
  • Versatile 3:1 zoom ratio erector system
  • A lightweight and compact design
.
Cons
  • A limited magnification range

Conclusion

This is a well-designed scope that offers some great features and keeps the quality on the higher side while keeping the price within the affordable limits.

 

Primary Arms Classic Series 4-16x44mm SFP Rifle Scope

The superb quality and excellent performance of this scope redefines the term “entry-level” and makes this a great scope to choose for prolonged service.

Primary Arms Classic Series 4-16x44mm SFP Rifle Scope

Overview

Designed specifically for the budget conscious and the new shooters this scope offers excellent value for money. The specifications are impressive and in addition, you also get responsive customer service. On the whole a really capable scope at a very good price.

Features and Benefits:

Superior reticle

The scope comes with an illuminated duplex reticle with 12 brightness levels and is great for hunting or shooting practice, making this unit a versatile one that is durable too.

Excellent optics

The scope offers very good image quality through the high-quality glass that has been used. The clarity, contrast, and brightness of the image is very impressive

Easy use

The turrets are very easy to adjust and no tool is needed to move them. The side-mounted parallax adjustment knob is another feature that is very useful while in action.

Weatherproof

The unit is fog resistant, water-resistant and shockproof. This makes it a great choice for using in outdoor situations even in detrimental weather conditions.

Key Specifications:

  • Weight:1.63 pounds
  • Length: 14.75 inches
  • Magnification: 4x – 16x.
  • Eye relief: 3.30 to 3.50 inches
  • Tube diameter: 30 mm

Pros and Cons:

Pros
  • A red illuminated reticle
  • Good optical performance
  • Easy to use and handle
  • Comes with a limited lifetime warranty
  • Value for money product.
.
Cons
  • The eye relief could have been better
  • Some users found the glass nor clear at higher magnifications

Conclusion

With the right range of features and durable build quality, this is a scope that you can surely invest in, especially if you are a first-time buyer.

 

Nikon PROSTAFF 5 Mildot Riflescope

This scope brings a lot to the table along with a higher degree of performance and reliability that matches up to the manufacturer’s reputation.

Nikon PROSTAFF 5 Mildot Riflescope

Overview

While Nikon’s Prostaff line offers budget range scopes, you can get enough value to be fully satisfied with it. The optics are very good and the reticle offers good levels of accuracy in your shots. The reticle also interfaces with the Nikon Spot On Ballistic Match Technology.

Features and Benefits:

Great optics

With multiple layers of anti-reflective compounds applied on the glass, the unit offers crystal clear images and excellent light transmission. It also excels in low light conditions.

Good features

The quick focus eyepiece allows the shooter to instantly bring the reticle into focus while the spring-loaded instant zero-reset turrets make adjustments easy.

Shockproof

The unit is remarkably shock-resistance, giving you a product that’s very rugged and capable and will easily be able to withstand shocks from drops or impacts.

Weatherproof

The optics chamber on the Nikon Prostaff 5 is nitrogen-purged and the lenses are O-ring sealed, so the whole setup is both waterproof and fog proof.

 

Key Specifications:

  • Weight: 18.2 oz
  • Length: 13.6 inches
  • Magnification: 3.5x – 14x.
  • Eye relief: 3.70 to 4.0 inches
  • Objective diameter: 40 mm

 

Pros and Cons:

Pros
  • A quick focus eyepiece
  • Excellent light transmission
  • Fully multicoated optics
  • Spring-loaded zero-reset turrets
  • A versatile and dependable scope
.
Cons
  •  The images can be blurry at higher magnifications

Conclusion

The scope is perfect for the range and the hunting trips and will also leave you with some extra cash to spend on the ammunition.

 

Conclusion

So these are the best mil dot scopes under $500 that will offer you excellent service through the years. These units are developed by reliable brands that offer the right level of quality both in terms of construction and optics. The durability of the scopes is excellent and they are weather-proof to ensure versatility. The image quality is impressive along with ease of use and at their price range, these units offer excellent value for money. Among these units, the Vortex Optics Viper PA second focal plane riflescopes are our top pick from these units.

The unit from Vortex optics delivers excellent image quality through the multi-coated lens. The high-quality glass ensures a low dispersion of light to provide excellent image quality. The unit is constructed from aircraft-grade aluminum and the anodized finish makes it look good and also ensures that the surface remains durable. The features are well-balanced to provide total ease of use through the premium grade materials and the unit is also weatherproof and shockproof to make even more effective. On the whole, this is a scope that ticks the right boxes and is a great choice for first-time buyers.

Leave a Comment

DMCA.com Protection Status