Best Scopes for 308 Rifle: Top 3 Picks Reviewed by Experts

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By Dennis Howard •  11 min read

If you are in search of the best 308 scope, then keep reading. We’ll be taking a look at the three best scopes that we’ve handpicked specifically for the use of a 308 rifle. The rifle itself is a preferred caliber among many hunters (especially those who hunt big game).

Best Scopes for 308 Rifle

A good scope is a must for when you want to hit your targets at a much farther distance. But it will take the right kind of scope based on some of the features you are looking for along with your personal preferences. Although no scope is made the same, there usually is one that stands out better than the rest.

Before we unveil the list of scopes, we’ll go over the buyer’s guide that you might find useful. Indeed finding a scope can be tough. But choosing the correct scope is better than just grabbing one right off the shelf at random.

How To Choose? Factors To Consider?

If you have trouble finding a scope, you’re not alone. It comes down to considering some of the following features that we’ll be looking at. Taking a closer look at each of them below may help you choose the best scope (such as a larger objective, reticle, magnification, etc.).

Here are some things to look for:

Objective: If you are looking for a scope that can work well in low-light conditions, chances are the objective size will play a role here. A large objective will gather in more light as opposed to smaller sizes. This will also allow you to see more in front of you. Remember, your field of view is wider with larger objectives. But the magnification power will be on the lower end.

Magnification: The magnification power is important because it allows you to get an up-close look at your targets. This can help you land a precise and accurate shot. Whether it’s the kill zone of a big game target or a bullseye, the magnification can help. As mentioned before, more powerful magnification will come from scopes with smaller objectives and a more narrow field of view.

Reticle: The reticle or the crosshairs will make every shot as accurate and precise as possible. They will come in different shapes and sizes. But the concept is still the same. You want a reticle that will allow you to keep focused and be able to keep your shots in line. You should also have a reticle that is easy to adjust in the event of your shots not hitting exactly where you need to be. If you are looking to shoot straight and sharp, a good reticle will do the job.

Turrets: The adjustment turrets will be useful for windage, elevation, and parallax. The important thing is to keep your scope straight so your shots go exactly where they want to go. A shot that is slightly off can make the difference between mortally wounding a big game target in one shot or spending time tracking them down to see if they dropped somewhere.

Durability: Most scopes will have a solid body made from aluminum. It’s designed to make sure that your scope can maintain the zero settings if and when dealing with multiple episodes of shock. There are plenty of scopes made from high-quality military grade aluminum or similar. The more durable it is, the less likely it will allow you to reset your zero settings after a minimum of 100 shots. Also, you want a scope that can take not just abuse, but whatever nature throws its way.

Things To Consider About .308 Rifle

Now that we’ve got some of the more important features listed, we remind you to take some other things into consideration as well. While the features will help with the performance and the results you want, there are other things to think over about what you want to get out of it. Let’s take a look at the following:

What will I use my .308 rifle for?

The first question that needs to be asked is what you plan on using your .308 rifle for. Will you use it for hunting? Or will it be for target shooting or recreation?

Either way, there’s a scope that might prove itself useful for one application or another. If you are a hunter, you’ll want a scope that will allow you to make the right adjustments in the quickest amount of time possible. So it would make sense if you get a scope that has adjustable turrets that are easy to turn.

What is my budget?

Indeed, the price tag can turn someone off. That’s because they don’t have a clear budget for the scope they want to buy. Therefore, you’ll want to consider how much you are willing to spend on a scope. Think of a price range that is reasonable and then find the best scope that you can afford in terms of quality and performance.

How far should I shoot?

The farthest a .308 round goes is 1000 yards. That’s actually not a bad distance, but it’s not necessarily a long-range round like a 6.5 Creedmoor. At this point, a scope that can allow you to hit your targets with effective accuracy from 200 to 1000 yards (or somewhere in between will be sufficient).

What are my usual times for hunting?

If you are a hunter, you’re at the field at dawn and you wrap it up by sunset. The point here is that you want a scope that will work great for any light condition. If you are looking for something that will give you excellent visibility when it’s dawn or dusk, a scope with a large objective will perhaps be your best option.

Best Scopes for .308 Rifle: My Top Three Picks

We’ll now be taking a look at the best .308 scopes that are considered the best on the market thus far. If you’re looking for a scope that will perform well, this is your starting point. However, you’ll want to pay attention to the differences in features from one scope to the next.

To make it easier, make notes of some specs and features if you want to make comparisons. Also, pay attention to the pros and cons. You might like something about the scope or you may find a con that could be a deal breaker for you.

Without further ado, let’s get started:

Nikon P-Tactical .308 4-12×40 Scope – Best Overall

Nikon P-Tactical .308 4-12x40 Scope

The first scope is our best overall choice. This is the Nikon P-Tactical .308 Scope. If you are not familiar with Nikon scopes, you will be amazed by one of the best features this scope has to offer.

The image quality is perhaps one of the best in the business. It’s in high-definition and it’s very crisp. It’s as if you are watching everything in front of you on a really expensive plasma TV.

Beyond that, this scope includes spring-loaded zero reset turrets. You get the easiest adjustments possible in the event if things look a little off. If accuracy and straight shooting is what you want, you’ll get it with this scope.

This also has a good amount of eye relief, which is good since the .308 does have a bit of a kick to it. Plus, eye injuries are all too common for those who look a little too close at the scope itself. It’s durable, can handle the weather and shock, and is certainly the .308 hunter or target shooter’s best friend.

If you want excellent image clarity, reliable accuracy, and easy adjustments on the fly this is the scope to go with.



Nikon P-Tactical .308 4-12X40 Matte BDC800
  • The BDC 800 reticle offers Shooters unique open circles, dots and hash marks aiming from 100 to 800...
  • One inch body tube

Last update on 2024-02-20 at 19:23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Athlon Optics Riflescope – Runner Up

Athlon Optics Riflescope

Next we have our runner-up, the Athlon Optics Riflescope. Right off the bat, we noticed that this scope is super tough. That’s because the tube body is made with military grade aluminum, which is tough as nails. This scope can handle abuse, rain, snow, shock, and everything under the sun.

It takes a tough scope to last long, no matter what you use your .308 rifle for. This has fully multi-coated lenses, which will bring out the best light transmission possible. If you are looking for a scope that can really enhance the image quality as a whole, this scope will definitely wow you.

This scope offers excellent waterproofing and thermal stability. In plain English, it can handle almost any kind of weather imaginable. You’d be surprised what kind of weather hunters deal with on a regular basis. It can be hot and dry or cold and wet.

The Athlon Optics Riflescope is the perfect scope for any hunter that want something with a little bit of power, precision, and toughness.



Athlon Optics , Argos BTR , Riflescope , 6-24 x 50 First Focal Plane (FFP)...
  • First focal plane reticle stays valid at all power settings allowing you to fully utilize the...
  • Advanced Fully Multi-Coated lenses gives you better light transmission to bring optimum brightness...

Last update on 2024-02-20 at 19:23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Primary Arms SLX 4-14x44mm FFP Rifle Scope – Best For The Money

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Our final option is the Primary Arms SLX FFP Rifle Scope. We’ve picked a good one here for those looking for a .308 budget scope. This has variable magnification levels ranging from 4 to 14x.

The reticle comes with red illumination with five different brightness settings. You can find the setting that works comfortable with you and take your shot whenever the opportunity arises. This can actually work out just right in low-light conditions.

This is a rugged scope that is waterproof, fog resistant, shockproof and will handle so much recoil from a .308. After all, it’s made from 6063-aluminum which is pretty dang tough. If you want excellent reliability, a clean and sleek design, and superior durability for a price that is worth a steal, look no further.



Open Questions About .308 Scopes

How far can a .308 shoot?

A .308 rifle will usually hit targets with ease that are situated at 500 yards away at max. This is a reasonable range for big game targets like deer, elk, and other animals. However, this is the distance it can go without a bullet drop.

Can a .308 reach 1000 yards?

It will depend on some of the factors like weather conditions and bullet weight. On average, a .308 round can drop 389 inches when reaching 1,000 yards.

At what distance should you zero in a .308?

Like most scopes, you can be able to zero in a .308 scope at 100 yards. At that distance, you can be able to hit the center of a target at 200 yards.

How far will a .308 kill a deer?

An effective distance for a .308 hunter to kill a deer would be about 300 yards out. However, it would be possible to kill a deer at 500 yards, even with a minimal bullet drop.


While there are so many .308 scopes out on the market, there are some out there that will be perfect for various applications. But if we had to make a suggestion, the Nikon P-Tactical scope is what we recommend.

The scope is perfect for hunters and target shooters alike. With excellent image quality, easy adjustments, and the ability to accurately hit your targets at 300 yards this scope is true to form and worth every penny.

Simply put, almost any high quality scope that will hold a zero after you fire off hundreds of rounds will do great for your rifle.

Dennis Howard

A life long hunter, fisherman, and outdoorsman, after surviving a devastating tornado in his home town, he saw the effects on people's lives as they struggled to cope. He built his first bugout bag a few weeks later and has been a dedicated prepper/survivalist since that time. After a career as a fireman, Dennis opened a retail store (FFL approved) catering to the military, law enforcement, and like-minded individuals. The store built their own AR platforms. Furthermore, Dennis was also an NRA instructor in both long gun and handgun as well as a certified range safety officer. Read his full interview here.