Custom made AR-15 .556/.223 AR-15 with Zeiss 3.5-10×50
Custom made AR-15 .556/.223 AR-15 with Zeiss 3.5-10×50https://legitgunshop.org/product/custom-made-ar-15-556-223-ar-15-with-zeiss-3-5-10×50/ has become one of the USA’s most popular hunting rifles. In the standard .223 caliber, it’s ideal for small varmints and predator control. The AR-15 is a reliable, light, and inherently accurate weapon. Still, we needed to find the best AR-15 scope to match.
When paired with the right accessories, the AR-15 is perfect for the job of bringing down a wide range of game. One of the most important accessories is finding the best AR-15 scope, depending on how you plan to use your rifle.
If you are the type of person that likes to skip a detailed read and get right to the point, we’ve picked out our nine favorite AR-15 optics for you and condensed them into the grid below. If you want additional details, we’ve put together a comprehensive MONSTER guide that looks at 23 of the best AR-15 optics in depth.
Our buyer’s guide and top picks are sure to put you on the right path to picking the best AR-15 scope.
Features are another area of consideration that you should be thinking about. Not all AR-15 scopes are created equal. Features can sometimes trump budget if you are buying your scope for a specific purpose. This is where you can justify spending the extra money. If you are going to operate your AR-15 in low-light areas, you will specifically want a scope that’s designed to let more light in. If you are planning on only using your AR-15 in the daytime, you have a little bit more latitude. Again, you can even stick with iron sights if you plan to do some closer range hunting and don’t need anything for distance.
If buying a red dot scope makes sense for shorter distances, you’ll want an AR-15 scope with a clear reticle. If you are looking at a red dot scope, the good news is that you can also purchase magnifiers to make the dot extend in distance, lessening the need for multiple optics. It’s worth noting that a lot of magnifiers won’t leave enough room on your AR-15 if you plan to run iron back-up sights or flip-up sights (BUIS).
Again, you also want to consider that you may end up buying more than one type of scope for your needs. If most of your shooting is short-medium range, spend your money on an AR-15 scope that can help you comfortably hit targets in that range, and spend less on a long-distance scope.
The type of AR-15 rifle you have will also dictate the hardware you can equip it with. The good news is, mounting a scope is easy on most modern ARs. Unless you have an old-style Colt rifle with the carrying handle cast integrally with the upper, there will already be either a rail or fittings to mount one. The most common option today is a 1913 rail running the length of the receiver.
Even if you do have a carrying handle, it’s possible to mount a scope on it, but ergonomically that’s a nightmare – the sightline is far too high to get a good cheek weld, and canting the weapon causes significant accuracy problems. For hunting with an AR-15, always go for a flat-top receiver with a rail, this makes mounting an AR-15 scope a breeze.
It also makes sense to look at the cost of your rifle. Unless you have put 10,000 rounds through your Bushmaster and absolutely love it, why equip a $600.00 rifle with a $2,000.00 scope? Spend the money and upgrade the quality of your rifle first, then spend the money on the optics when it makes sense.
As noted above, carrying handles can limit your AR-15 scope options and make it less comfortable to shoot. There are plenty of flat top receivers and tactical rails that you can equip on your AR-15 to make them more flexible to equip.
Bottom Line: We prefer a flat-top receiver with a rail for most uses, especially for hunting. You can always buy a sling to carry it.
AR-15 optics are not universal. You need to plan for how you intend to use your rifle, and sometimes owning multiple scopes makes sense. if you intend to use your rifle for tactical urban warfare drills in a survivalist training camp, a Red dot scope like an Aimpoint or a holographic scope like an EoTech are your best bet. Even for short-range varmint hunting, a red dot or holographic sight is perfect. For longer range, you want something with magnification settings that you can adjust depending on your windage and elevation, just like other long-range rifle scopes that may outfit a 30-06 or a .308.