Scopes & Optics

Best 1-4 Rifle Scopes: Upgrade Your Shooting Gear!

Best 1-4 Rifle Scopes

Good 1-4x rifle scopes have become more and more popular over the past several years. Whether hunting, competition shooting, or protecting your home and family, having a good scope is essential. We will take you through the pros and cons of the 1-4 scope and then go over what I think are some of your best options on the market right now.

There are a lot of scope options, and the price range varies. To narrow down the field and stay affordable, we will provide scopes that are around $500 or less.

Why Choose a 1-4 Scope?

Scope

A 1-4x scope is a scope that offers both close-range precision and enough magnification to allow you to handle mid-range targets well.

These scopes work for hunters, target shooters, and are becoming more and more popular with competition shooters. You will often find them mounted on AR-15’s, shotguns and bolt-action rifles.

Before you make a purchase, consider some of the Pros and Cons of the 1-4x scope.

Pros

  • Reflex Shooting with both eyes open where the gun is moved quickly into place and the shooter does not use magnification to shoot. This is similar to the red dot, except there is no dot.
  • Improved accuracy over mid ranges.
  • Very good for hunting and competition shooting
  • Self-defense and home protection

Cons

  • Size & Weight have to be taken into consideration with any scope having magnification.
  • Adjusting in close range with a lot of moving targets can be frustrating. You will have to adjust magnification after each shot.
  • Eye relief can be a challenge to determine the most frequent distance and mount your scope accordingly.
  • The price is high compared to less expensive red dots; the price can be high for the 1-4x.
  • The AR platform is too small for many 1-4x scopes, leaving them without enough offset.

Our Top Picks

ProductWeightReticleDefining
Feature
Price
Primary Arms Illuminated17 ouncesDuplex dotSecond Focal PlaneShop Here
Vortex Optics Crossfire II16 ouncesV-Brite illuminated reticle (MOA)Fast focus eyepieceShop Here
Firefield Close Combat14.2 ouncesRed/green Mil Dot reticleHard anodized finishShop Here
Mueller Speed Shot17.6 ounces4 MOA illuminated dot reticleFully multicoated lensesShop Here
Barska IR Hunting16 ouncesRed / Green illuminated Mil DotLifetime warrantyShop Here
Monstrum Tactical11 ouncesGreen/red glass rangefinder reticleCrystal clear opticsShop Here
BSA Optics Tactical14.1 ouncesMil dotLimited lifetime warrantyShop Here
TacFire Tactical1.8 ouncesGreen/Blue/Red illuminated Mil Dot Shock resistant housingShop Here

Additional Features to Consider

Best 1-4 Scope

There are several features to consider before purchasing a 1-4x scope. Ensure you buy the proper scope for your gun and the scope that fits your needs the most. It’s easy to go with high magnification, but this is not always the best option.

For this article, I’ll assume most buyers understand the basics of choosing a scope, and I’ll offer a few of the sometimes overlooked tips.

Adjustments

Being able to make adjustments without a tool is important when using a 1-4x scope. You will likely need to adjust your scope quickly in many situations, so make sure you have “finger adjustable” adjustments per click. Having easy-to-use turrets with clear, defined “clicks” is also important to many shooters, especially in a fast-moving environment.

Tubes

Although pretty standard in the industry, a nitrogen filled tube is important to reduce fog in cold or rainy weather. Also consider the size of the tubes. One inch is a common size, but a larger tube will provide greater light transmission.

Warranty

Scopes can be expensive, so a good warranty is important. Burris provides an excellent Warranty, but they are not the only manufacturer that stands behind their products. Check the warranty before making a purchase.

Glass

High-quality glass is a critical feature of good scopes. High-grade optical glass and multi-coated lenses are important when shooting in low-light environments, and they reduce glare on the scope. If you want to upgrade your overall experience and enhance your targeting skills, make sure you consider your glass selection.

Reticles

There is a lot to consider with reticles, so you need to choose what works for you. Are they illuminated? How long does the battery last, and is there a battery saver? Is the reticle black, red, or green? What size are the circle and crosshair? Are there mil-dots, and how are they set? Do you have a clear picture? Many of these are personal preferences but important when making a choice.

Mount

You can ruin your scope if you don’t use the right tools. A few important tools include the Hex Bit tool, Torque Wrench, Cantilever Scope Mount, Bubble Level, Rubbing alcohol for cleaning, and a gun vice.

I like to keep the “Real Avid Gun Tool” on hand.

Most sellers will tell you which rifles they fit, but we advise you to double check the specification anyway.

Top Product Reviews

Below are reviews on our top ranked scopes. If they are currently out of stock then we have included links to other scopes from that manufacturer. The hope is that they will be back in stock by the time you order, but if they are not there are other good options.

Monstrum Tactical Rifle Scope

Monstrum Tactical

Weight: 11 ounces

Materials: 6061 aircraft grade aluminum

Objective lens diameter: 24mm

Tube diameter: 30 mm

Specific features: Glass rangefinder reticle, crystal clear optics, made from aircraft grade aluminum, nitrogen charged tube for resistance to fog and water

Best use: Shooting, hunting

The Monstrum Tactical Rifle Scope comes with a Rangefinder reticle which can be viewed in green or red illumination, not to mention multiple brightness intensities. These are good for sight image no matter what in what kind of environment or lightening is used.

If you are looking for a high performance tactical scope, this is a good choice with it’s clear optics and four times magnification for mid and close shooting range. Made from aircraft grade aluminum, this Monster tactical rifle scope is both lightweight and sturdy. It also has a nitrogen charged tube (1 inch sealed) which makes it resistant to fog and water.

A set of offset rings is included in the package and its extension is over 1.5 inches.

PROS:

  • Lightweight
  • Sturdy
  • Good quality for the price
  • 1 year warranty
  • Resistant to water and fog
  • Durable
 CONS:

  • It might happen that the elevation adjustment loses contact

Related: Many buyers also purchased the Flat Top Offset One Piece QD Scope Mount with Quick Release Cam Locks. This is a good quick release scope mount for an AR platform.

Shop Here

Primary Arms Illuminated Rifle Scope

Primary Arms

Weight: 17 ounces

Material: Aluminium

Objective lens diameter: 24 mm

Tube diameter: 30 mm

Specific features: Second focal plane, flip up lens caps included, illuminated duplex dot reticle, illuminated center dot, waterproof, fog resistant

Best use: Shooting, hunting

The Primary Arms Illuminated Rifle Scope is a good scope in this category. It is made from a one-piece 30 mm aluminum tube, is fog resistant and waterproof, and comes with a one-year warranty. This scope features a duplex center dot reticle and is coated in matte black. Its price and quality put it into a good mid-range category.

On the left side of the tube, brightness illuminates the center dot and has twelve different brightness settings. The ocular is adjustable which makes the reticle sharper. Turret caps cover are also adjustable with ½ MOA per click.

This is one of the longer 1-4s scopes on the market. It’s also a little heavier, but if you’re willing to give up a few ounces this is a good bargain for the features.

PROS:

  • Well built
  • Adjustable
  • Accurate
  • Good quality for the price
  • 1 year warranty
  • Resistant to water and fog
  • Durable
 CONS:

  • It’s a bit longer and heavier on the side

Related: If you’re looking for an inexpensive, no frills mount, then we suggest this CCOP MNT-1516 Rifle Scope Mount. It is a very solid mount and holds zero really well for a very low price.

Shop Here

Barska IR Hunting Rifle Scope

Barska

Weight: 16 ounces

Material: Aluminium

Objective lens diameter: 24 mm

Tube diameter: 30 mm

Specific features: Easy grip target-style elevation and windage, lifetime warranty, adjustment knob, waterproof, fog-proof, shockproof, low profile, compact size

Best use: Hunting

The Barska IR Hunting Rifle Scope is a compact, low-profile scope that many professional hunters and shooters rate as an excellent scope.

The scope has lockable elevation and windage turrets. The tube is fog-proof, waterproof, and shockproof. It has a green or red illuminated Mil-Dot reticle and fully multicoated optics. It also comes with a limited lifetime warranty which is great considering that it is less than $200. A battery, flip-up scope cover, and 1-inch dual cantilever ring mount are also included.

This is a popular scope by Barska and delivers quality and high end optics at a good value. Whether you use it for hunting or shooting, we definitely recommend this scope.

PROS:

  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Adjustable
  • Accurate
  • Good quality for the price
  • Waterproof
  • Fogproof
  • Shockproof
  • Durable
 CONS:

  • Mount not as good as advertised
  • Might happen that it doesn’t hold a true zero

Related: If you’re looking for a great attachment to keep your rifle steady we suggest the CVLIFE Tactical Bipod. It comes with Picatinny Mount Adapter, is made from aircraft aluminum alloy, is strong, lightweight, and easy to fold.

Shop Here

BSA Optics Tactical Rifle Scope

BSA Optics

Weight: 14.1 ounces

Material: Aluminium

Objective lens diameter: 24 mm

Tube diameter: 30 mm

Special Features: Two sets of interchangeable turret caps, haze filters, limited lifetime warranty, resistance to fog, water, and shock, mil-dot reticle, composed of two-piece body (aluminum), fully multicoated optics

Best use: Hunting, competition, defense

BSA Optics Tactical Rifle Scope has produced another product that won’t let you down. Its fully multi-coated optics are fog proof, waterproof, and shockproof. The scope comes with a lifetime warranty, so it has a definite advantage over some of its competitors.

Tactical optics are a bit different from the optics you use for hunting, so it’s best used when you need to shoot at longer ranges. For rifles like the TW-223 and AR-15, this scope is a good scope.

The one thing missing is a cap to go over the windage turret once you have it zeroed.

PROS:

  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Lightweight
  • Price
  • Waterproof
  • Fog proof
  • Shockproof
  • Durable
 CONS:

  • Comes with 300 Blackout elevation thimble installed, which might be difficult to remove
  • The adjustment might take time
  • No cap

Shop Here

Vortex Optics Crossfire II Rifle Scope

Vortex Optics Crossfire II

Weight: 16 ounces

Material: Aircraft grade aluminum

Objective Lens Diameter: 24 mm

Tube diameter: 30 mm

Specific features: Fast focus eyepiece, hard anodized finish, fog proof, waterproof, shockproof, aircraft grade aluminum, fully multicoated, illuminated center dot

Best use: Shooting, hunting

The Vortex Optics Crossfire II Rifle Scope comes with a fast-focus eyepiece, long eye relief, and fully multicoated lenses. There’s no compromise on the Crossfire II with MOA turrets. It’s bright, tough, and clear. The Crossfire II is a brand that offers value-priced scopes with top-notch parts for durability.

This scope comes with a lifetime warranty. The tube is made from a single piece of aircraft-grade aluminum, is nitrogen purged, and has sealed O-rings to ensure the scope is fog-proof and waterproof. The single piece of aluminum ensures rigidity, accuracy, esthetics, and strength.

Lenses are fully multi-coated, which increases light transmission on glass surfaces. The scope has a second focal plane reticle that provides precise targeting and shooting under dark light conditions with an illuminated center dot.

PROS:

  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Accurate
  • Strong
  • Waterproof
  • Fogproof
  • Shockproof
  • Possible to aim under low light conditions
  • Durable
 CONS:

  • Price
  • Weight

Shop Here

Firefield Close Combat Rifle Scope

Firefield Close Combat

Weight: 14.2 ounces

Material: Aluminum

Objective lens diameter: 24 mm

Tube diameter: 30 mm

Specific features: Fast focus eyepiece, hard anodized finish, fog proof, waterproof, shockproof, aluminum material, fully multicoated lenses, red/green mil dot reticle, lightweight and compact, exposed turret

Best use: Wide range shooting, hunting

Less expensive than the previous scope, the Firefield Close Combat Rifle Scope is another good choice.

The optics are fully multi coated with ¼ inch click adjustment (MOA) and green or red illuminated Mil Dot reticle which makes this scope good for range finding and tactical shooting. Shooters and hunters can use the reticle for windage correction.

Elevation turrets, open windage, and easy-grip can be found on the side of the scope, and shooters can fine-tune the reticle quickly, which provides better accuracy. The scope is well constructed, solid, and easy to use, so it’s a scope that we definitely recommend.

PROS:

  • Accurate
  • Construction
  • Waterproof
  • Fogproof
  • Shockproof
  • Price
  • Durable
 CONS:

  • The zoom can be hard to turn
  • Stiff controls

Related: This CCOP MNT-1516 Rifle Scope Mount Rings is the ideal item to buy alongside the sight, especially for Picatinny Rails. It is well made with solid construction for its price.

Shop Here

Mueller Speed Shot Rifle Scope

Mueller Speed Shot

Weight: 17.6 ounces

Material: Aluminum

Objective lens diameter: 24 mm

Tube diameter: 30 mm

Specific features: Fully multicoated lenses, Fast focus eyeball, fog proof, waterproof, shockproof, 4 MOA illuminated dot reticle

Best use: Shooting, hunting

The Mueller Speed Shot Rifle Scope is one of the fastest-growing target acquisition scopes for Mueller. This scope has some new, amazing features, professional-grade construction and proven hardware. It has an incredibly bright reticle and a variable zoom.

With its new, improved illumination system, you’ll be able to see everything on hot, sunny days, thanks to a bright center dot. Also included are a fast-focus eyepiece, wide-angle view, and 4 MOA dot reticle for better large area vision around the scope.

This scope features a 30-millimeter tube that is sturdy and big enough to fit almost all rifle rings. It has elevation turrets and windage that will provide accuracy in any weather condition and at any height. If you’re looking for a well illuminated, fast targeting and accurate scope then is a great choice.

PROS:

  • Accurate
  • Construction
  • Waterproof
  • Fogproof
  • Shockproof
  • Fast targeting
  • Durable
 CONS:

  • Weight
  • Price

Related: People who bought this riflescope also bought this Butler Creek Flip-Open Scope Cover that has a fast flip-open design.

Shop Here

TacFire Tactical Rifle Scope

TacFire

Weight: 1.8 ounces

Material: T6 6061 aluminum

Objective lens diameter: 24 mm

Tube diameter: 30 mm

Specific features: Fogproof and waterproof with shock resistant housing, multicoated lenses, scratch resistant, nitrogen purged with O-ring sealed

Best use: Shooting long range

The TacFire Tactical Rifle Scope comes with a green, blue or red dot laser Mil-Dot reticle (etched Glass) to provide the best quality for light transfer and clarity. The scope, which is a good fit for Weaver Picatinny rails, is made from one T6-6061 Aircraft grade aluminum piece that is solid and durable.

The scope is fog proof, waterproof and shockproof, not to mention that the lens is scratch resistant. The finish is anodized matte black, making it a sharp-looking scope. The scope comes with a mount that is easy to detach and has adjustable tension.

The tube is nitrogen charged with seals that are weather resistant.

The package includes a battery, cloth for lens polishing and removable flip up covers.

PROS:

  • Scratch resistant
  • Waterproof
  • Fogproof
  • Shockproof
  • Holds zero perfectly
  • Durable
  • Adjustable
  • Weight
  • Price
 CONS:

  • The switch for the illuminated reticle might be difficult to turn
  • It might happen that it will turn colors on its own

Related: Many buyers also purchased the Pyramex I-Force Anti Fog Goggle. Pyramex Safety goggles are sporty and lightweight and provide additional protection.

Shop Here

About the author

Andrew McKay

Andrew McKay is a seasoned hunter and fisherman from Anchorage, Alaska. Andrew thinks that he is the luckiest person in the world, as he lives in the most gorgeous place in United States and does what he loves to do. As a member of Alaska Professional Hunters Association and International Hunter Education Association, he is always looking for the ways to improve his skills and to teach people around him.

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