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Best tactical scope for $500-1,000?

5168 Views 12 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  Temujin
I'm looking to put a tactical scope on my Savage 10FP-LE1 and 10FP-LE2.

I'm looking to spend between $500 and $1,000 per scope (this is not an absolute limit).

Gotta Haves:

Mil-Dot Reticle
Target Turrets
Zoom Magnification (Approx. 3 to 10, but again, this is not hard and fast)
Matte black finish


Side focus adjustment
To not have to use super high rings due to a huge objective bell

Don't care:

If it's 30mm or 1 inch diameter
If it has an illuminated reticle or not

What I'm looking for most of all is good quality. PLEASE report your problems with various brands, or tell me how satisfied you are with various brands. Thanks.
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Premier Reticles Leupold Mark 4 3.5x10 matte black with Gen 2 Mil-Dot. $888.00

I have owned one of these scopes for several months and it performs perfectly, just as promised. All with Leupold quality and warranty. Cannot recommend it highly enough.

This is the website:,51202,51203&uid=5465&gpoid=

Go to and look in the classified ads, there's two Mk-IV's for sale in the optics section. The guy is asking $800 each, not a bad deal if you can catch it.
The Mark 4 is a great scope or you can go with an M3LR by Leupold as well... You won't find a better scope for the money anywhere.

Ditto, ditto, ditto .......
I don't know about Nightforce myself from personal experience but I ahve heard of them too. I do know though that Nightforce were the scopes of choice of a couple of Marines who requested these scopes when they sought assistance upgrading their equipment to be brought to the sand box. This request was sent to Kim Du Toit via his web site some months ago. If you do a search of "Nightforce" on his site it will give you the details about the Marines requersting those scopes. For further info on the Nightforce Scopes them selves go to:
For me, there is simply only one name in optics:

Schmidt & Bender

Try them out and you'll be damn glad you did ;)
Temujin said:
For me, there is simply only one name in optics:

Schmidt & Bender

Try them out and you'll be damn glad you did ;)
Are they .50BMG capable? What is eye relief like?
Rich Z said:
Are they .50BMG capable? What is eye relief like?
Yes, Schmidt & Bender has made .50 BMG capable optics for years. The eye relief for the Schmidt & Bender 3–12x50PMII 50 Caliber is 3.7". They also make a 4-16x50 model as well with an eye relief of 3.7".

They are extremely expensive pieces of equipment, but after you you use one you'll see just why that is. Sometimes you can get them used for fairly reasonable prices (600-1300 bucks depending on model).
That basic price range is what I have paid for just about every other scope I have mounted on my .50s. I guess I need to look into them one of these days. Heck, I still have a Leupold 6.5x20 and a Swarovski 6x24 looking for rifles to live with, though. Not really in the market for a new scope at this time.

But from shooting photographs through Nikon lenses for years, I have found that I am rather sensitive to bad glass, and just cannot tolerate cheap scopes. Color aberrations and uneven focus will be highly distracting to me. I guess there may be one out there, but from my experience there is really no such thing as a good cheap scope. Those two descriptors don't belong in the same sentence when talking about rifle scopes.
Aah, but is there a good inexpensive scope for tightwads like me?
Glenn Bartley said:
Aah, but is there a good inexpensive scope for tightwads like me?
Glenn, if at all possible, try looking in classified ads and going to local gunshops and even pawnshops to look for a Schmidt & Bender. The difference in quality between them and just about anyone else is staggering in my opinion. I've seen certain S & B's go for as little as 400 bucks used (1/3 to 1/5 of the original price) -- in my book that is grand theft! - but it does happen fairly often.

Zeiss also makes some super-fine optics that you can definitely find at reasonable prices used. You might see more of those used than S & B's. One nice thing about Zeiss is that the warranty is transferable. Buying used isn't a big concern with Zeiss.
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
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