Best 22LR Scopes for Target Shooting In 2022 – Top 5 Ranked Reviews

For more than a century, .22LR (that’s short for .22 long rifle) has been popular with target shooters, law enforcement, hunters, and the military alike. First introduced to the market in 1887 by the USA-based weapons and ammunition manufacturer J. Stevens Arms & Tool Company, it has become increasingly popular ever since.

It is now the most shot cartridge in the continental United States for target shooting, although its popularity for other applications has decreased over time. But we all know that a great rifle is more than just the gun itself or the ammo it shoots. A scope is also needed, especially when it is being used for target shooting.

So, without further ado…

I present to you my list of the best 22LR scopes for target shooting (although all these scopes pair perfectly with this round for a large range of other applications). And stick around until the end for a handy buyers guide in case you need some more info before you make a purchase.

Let’s get started with the…

22lr scopes for target shooting

Top 5 Best 22LR Scopes for Target Shooting In 2022 Reviews

  1. Burris Scope Fullfield 3-9×40 E1 Ballistic Plex Muzzleloader 200347 – Best Affordable 22LR Scope for Target Shooting
  2. Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9×40 1in Riflescope – Best Value for Money 22LR Scope for Target Shooting
  3. Trijicon AccuPoint 3-9×40 Rifle Scope – Best Premium 22LR Scope for Target Shooting
  4. OpticsPlanet Exclusive Firefield RapidStrike LPVO 1-6×24 SFP Riflescope – Best 22LR Scope for 3 Gun Competitions
  5. Primary Arms 5X 5.45×39 Prism Scope – Best 22LR Prism Scope for Target Shooting

1 Burris Scope Fullfield 3-9×40 E1 Ballistic Plex Muzzleloader 200347 – Best Affordable 22LR Scope for Target Shooting

Burris. Is there a more trusted name in the scope game? The company has been producing top of the line rifle optics for over 40 years, and the Burris Scope Fullfield 3-9×40 E1 only adds to that lineage. This mid-range priced precision optic is the perfect accompaniment to any .22LR setup.

Specs:

  • Objective Lens: 40 mm
  • Magnification: 3 – 9 x
  • Field of View: 33 low – 13 high (ft. @ 100 yds.)
  • Eye Relief: 3.1 – 3.4 inches
  • Reticle: Ballistic Plex
  • Attachment/Mount Type: Ring
  • Optical Coating: Hi-Lume® multi coating
  • Illumination Type: Non-illuminated
  • Adjustment Click Value: 0.25 MOA
  • Windage Adjustment Range: 50 MOA
  • Elevation Adjustment Range: 50 MOA
  • Weight: 13 oz (368 grams)
  • Length: 14.85 in (377 mm)

Although, as the name suggests, this scope was initially designed for muzzleloading rifles, it works perfectly with any .22LR rifle. Overall, this is a pretty simple scope without all the bells and whistles you may find on higher-priced items. However, there are a few features that I believe will work really well for the majority of target shooters.

Ok, what are these features then?

The key here is simplicity. The Ballistic Plex reticle offers an easy to understand system that has yardage holdover points for 100, 150, 200, 250, and 300 yards, which works really well with the .22LR round. Sure, some shooters may prefer a reticle that offers more information, but I think that the Ballistic Plex gives a target shooter more than enough to make accurate shots.

The build quality is absolutely top-notch. The main 1-inch tube has been milled from a single piece of aluminum and is rated for much heavier recoil than the .22LR round. This tube is fully sealed with O-rings and nitrogen purged for great all-weather protection and fog proofing.

Quality glass…

All glass components have been coated in Burris’s proprietary Hi-Lume® multi-coating, which does a fantastic job of eliminating any glare issues and keeps aberrations and distortion to an almost undetectable level.

The turrets offer 0.25 MOA adjustments and are easily finger-adjustable, making fine-tuning during competitions quick and simple. And the eye relief is generous enough for any shooter at 3.4 inches.

The best part?

Burris’s signature “Forever Warranty.” You don’t have to worry about holding onto your receipt, and even if you have bought a second-hand scope, you are still totally covered. Forever. Crazy stuff.

The Burris Scope Fullfield 3-9×40 E1 is easily one of the best low cost .22LR scopes available right now!


Pros

  • Burris’s “Forever Warranty.”
  • Simple yet effective reticle.
  • Generous eye relief.
  • Top-notch build quality.
  • Perfect magnification range.
  • Burris’s proprietary Hi-Lume® multi-coating.

Cons

  • Some shooters may like a reticle that offers more info.

2 Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9×40 1in Riflescope – Best Value for Money 22LR Scope for Target Shooting

Leupold is another rifle optic brand that is extremely well trusted, and for good reason! All of Leupold’s range of scopes are completely designed, machined, and assembled in the United States. That’s not to say that units designed and assembled overseas are always inferior, but there is a feeling of security when buying a scope that’s completely homegrown.

Specs:

  • Objective Lens: 40 mm
  • Magnification: 3 – 9 x
  • Field of View: 33.1 – 13.6 ft at 100 yds
  • Eye Relief: 4.2 – 3.7 inches
  • Reticle: Multiple Available
  • Attachment/Mount Type: Ring
  • Optical Coating: Twilight Light Management System
  • Illumination Type: Non-illuminated
  • Adjustment Click Value: 0.25 MOA
  • Windage Adjustment Range: 60 MOA
  • Elevation Adjustment Range: 60 MOA
  • Weight: 12.2 oz (345 grams)
  • Length: 12.4 in (314 mm)

Ok, so you may be thinking that from the specs, this is a very similar scope to the previously reviewed unit. And you wouldn’t be wrong in thinking that. In fact, there are a few more 3-9x scopes coming up, and although there are similarities between all of these scopes, they do all come with their own list of advantages and possible disadvantages when comparing them.

So, what sets the Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9×40 1in Riflescope apart from the competition?

First up, the price. This is a bit more expensive than the other scopes on this list, with the exception of one that we will get to in a minute. Trust me, though; it is certainly worth the money.

Every single Leupold scope model is well and truly put through the wringer before being offered to the public. The company uses its “Punisher” testing machine, which produces the same force as three times the recoil of a .308 round, and it is tested 5000 times! Only once it passes this test is it allowed on the market. It also comes with a full lifetime guarantee.

Great for dawn and dusk use…

The “Twilight Light Management System” is also a big selling point. Leupold claims that it is able to add up to ten extra minutes of shooting light. And I would be inclined to agree with this claim. The overall sight picture is clear, vibrant, and true throughout the entire magnification range, which is not something that can be said about all scopes (especially budget offerings).

The eye relief is super generous; there is a dual focusing system for rough and fine focusing, and the adjustment turrets come capped for security and are finger-click adjustmentable, so no tool is needed.

I could go on, but it’s time to move on to the next scope. Without a shadow of a doubt, this is one of the best value .22LR scopes available today and is therefore highly recommended!



Pros

  • Although a little more expensive, it is still great value.
  • Full lifetime guarantee.
  • Capped turrets that are finger adjustable.
  • Multiple reticles available.
  • Top-notch sight vision.
  • Excellent amount of eye relief.

Cons

  • Turret system is not my favorite, although this is a personal preference.

3 Trijicon AccuPoint 3-9×40 Rifle Scope – Best Premium 22LR Scope for Target Shooting

Next up in my Best 22LR Scopes for Target Shooting review, we have the last 3-9x variable magnification rifle scope option. The Trijicon AccuPoint 3-9×40 is again a jump up in price from our previous two offerings, so let’s take a look at what you get for the extra money.

Specs:

  • Objective Lens: 40 mm
  • Magnification: 3 – 9 x
  • Field of View: 33.8 – 11.3 ft at 100 yds
  • Eye Relief: 3.6 – 3.2 inches
  • Reticle: 3 Options – Triangle Post, Duplex, MIL-DOT
  • Attachment/Mount Type: Ring
  • Optical Coating: Fully Multi-Coated
  • Illumination Type: Fiber Optics/Tritium
  • Adjustment Click Value: 0.25 MOA
  • Windage Adjustment Range: 50 MOA
  • Elevation Adjustment Range: 50 MOA
  • Weight: 12.8 oz (362 grams)
  • Length: 12.2 in (309 mm)

The first thing that jumps out…

Is the fact that this is an illuminated reticle scope, with the other 3-9x units being non-illuminated. This first-class scope from Trijicon is lit-up by utilizing fiber optics and tritium, which allows for a bright and clear aiming point without ever needing batteries.

This dual-illumination arrangement is able to automatically change aiming-point brightness to suit the ambient light conditions. While this feature is aimed more at hunters, I found it also worked really well for target shooting and just adds to the versatility of the scope.

Simple adjustments…

Three reticles are available. I received a MIL-DOT to test, and I loved it. Super easy to read and, when combined with the finger adjustable turrets system, make the correct adjustments quickly.

The sight picture is superbly bright and clear. At least on par with the Leupold VX-Freedom, maybe even slightly better. I was not able to see any form of distortion, even when fully zoomed in at 9x.

More than enough eye relief for the 22LR…

You may have noticed that the eye relief is a little lower than the last unit. Not to worry, though, as there is still more than enough for a comfortable and safe shooting position.

Overall, one of the best 3-9x scopes at any price point and certainly a scope that will not disappoint.


Pros

  • Illuminated reticle without the need for batteries.
  • Three reticle options to choose from.
  • Beautiful sight picture.
  • Built to withstand a beating.
  • Easy to adjust and maintain zero.
  • Great value for money, even though it’s slightly pricier than the rest.

Cons

  • The illumination isn’t as strong as I was hoping for, but still adequate.

4 OpticsPlanet Exclusive Firefield RapidStrike LPVO 1-6×24 SFP Riflescope – Best 22LR Scope for 3 Gun Competitions

While researching this article, I stumbled across a pretty killer deal. This scope is usually priced much higher, but right now, OpticsPlanet are offering an awesome deal on the Firefield RapidStrike 1-6×24. But don’t hang about, it might not last long!

What does the LPVO stand for in the title?

Well, this refers to the magnification range. Low Powered Variable Optics have become increasingly popular with target shooters recently, especially those that like to compete in 3-gun competitions. They allow for quick close-combat engagements with the added benefit of zoom for target acquisition up to 200 or so yards.

This makes them super versatile, in fact, this is one of the most versatile 22LR Scopes you can buy, and it can be used in a bunch of different competitions and in real-world situations.

Specs:

  • Objective Lens: 24 mm
  • Magnification: 1 – 6 x
  • Field of View: 102 – 18.2 feet at 100 yds
  • Eye Relief: 4 – 3.6 inches
  • Reticle: 3 Options – Circle Dot with Hash Marks
  • Attachment/Mount Type: Cantilever Mount
  • Optical Coating: Fully Multi-Coated
  • Illumination Type: LED
  • Illumination Color: Red, Green
  • Adjustment Click Value: 0.5 MOA
  • Windage Adjustment Range: 100 MOA
  • Elevation Adjustment Range: 100 MOA
  • Weight: 14.5 oz (411 grams)
  • Length: 9.8 in (248 mm)

The Firefield RapidStrike LPVO 1-6×24 offers shooters fully multi-coated, anti-reflective glass elements with a choice of either a red or green illuminated second focal plane Circle-Dot BDC reticle.

Circle-Dot BDC? What is that all about, then?

This is one of my favorite features of this scope. It incorporates a few different reticle options and combines them together perfectly. The upside-down horseshoe and center dot provide a clear aiming point, and the hash marks below help with bullet drop compensation.

In terms of build quality, it features a durable 30mm 6061-T6 aircraft-grade aluminum body which provides first-class resistance to drops, bumps, and heavy recoil. The scope is also completely fog proof, dustproof, and is rated IP67 waterproof.

Comfortable to use…

The cantilever mount does a great job of providing a comfortable shooting position, and this combined with a lot of eye relief and a wide field of view.

You simply can’t ask for a whole lot more from an LPVO 1-6×24 scope, especially when there is such a great deal on offer right now!



Pros

  • 30mm 6061-T6 aircraft-grade aluminum body.
  • Illuminated red/green circle dot reticle with hash marks.
  • Locking turrets that pop-up.
  • Fully fog proof, dustproof, shockproof, and waterproof.
  • Versatile and easy to use.
  • All glass elements are fully multi-coated.
  • Great value for money.

Cons

  • Three-year warranty – not terrible, but as long as many competing scopes.

5 Primary Arms 5X 5.45×39 Prism Scope – Best 22LR Prism Scope for Target Shooting

I’ll keep this one short and sweet as this is a fixed magnification prism scope, and although it is not “classically” suited for target shooters, it does have some advantages over a traditional scope. If you want to know more about prism scopes, head down to the buyer’s guide underneath this review.

Specs:

  • Objective Lens: 36 mm
  • Magnification: 5x
  • Field of View: 18.8 feet at 100 yds
  • Eye Relief: 3 inches
  • Reticle: Primary Arms 5x Scope Standard ACSS Reticle
  • Attachment/Mount Type: Picatinny
  • Optical Coating: Fully Multi-Coated
  • Illumination Type: LED
  • Illumination Color: Green, Red
  • Adjustment Click Value: 0.333 MOA
  • Windage Adjustment Range: 60 MOA
  • Elevation Adjustment Range: 60 MOA
  • Weight: 18.4 oz (521 grams)
  • Length: 5.81 in (147 mm)

If you suffer from astigmatisms and find it hard to see through a normal scope, then a prism scope might be exactly what you have been looking for! They eliminate almost all issues and make sighting down a scope much easier for people with astigmatism issues.

They also have fewer glass components which make them inherently more sturdy and robust, but they do not incorporate variable magnification.

Simple targeting…

This scope is 5x powered, which makes it perfect for target shooting at 100 yards up to 600 yards, and the Primary Arms 5x Scope Standard ACSS Reticle is a great tool for targeting. It combines components of BDC and MIL-DOT reticles to offer the shooter easy range estimation figures.

Build quality is exactly what we have come to expect from Primary Arms, which is top-notch. The fully multi-coated prisms and lenses ensure that light transmission is maximized with aberrations and distortion kept to a bare minimum.

This all makes this one of the best prism scopes out there for .22LR shooters and a great option if you don’t want a ‘traditional’ scope.


Pros

  • Perfect for shooters suffering from astigmatisms.
  • Fully water, fog, and shockproof.
  • Great reticle for target shooting.
  • Generous eye relief.
  • Priced to please.

Cons

  • Only a three-year warranty.

Best 22LR Scopes for Target Shooting Buyers Guide

All the reviews in the world won’t help you choose the right scope if you don’t understand the important features and specifications of the one you are thinking of buying. Scopes are precision instruments that come with a whole lot of confusing figures for the uninitiated, so to help out, I have listed the most important specs in each review.

In this buyer’s guide, I will guide you with an in-depth look at what each of these figures actually means, and all the other important to know info you need to take into account when it comes to finding the best 22LR scopes for target shooting.

What to Look For in a Scope for Target Shooting?

When you are looking for a scope with target shooting as the main priority, there are a few things you want to make sure it can handle. First things first, you want to match the magnification to the distance that you are targeting.

It’s also important to make sure the optics capture enough light so that you have a clear and undistorted, aberration-free sight picture throughout the entire magnification range of the scope.

You should also consider what sort of reticle will suit you and your shooting style best. And lastly, check to see if the scope is rated to handle the caliber of ammunition you are shooting. With a .22LR, you don’t have to worry too much about that because it is a low power round.

22lr scopes for target shooting reviews

Range and Magnification

The .22LR round comes in a few variations, but normally, you will not want to use this round for targets further than about 100 yards, as the round drops quickly after this distance and makes compensating difficult. When shooting a 40 grain round (the most common) and zeroed at the standard 100 yards, the bullet has a rise of 2.7 inches at 50 yards and a drop of 10.8 inches at 150 yards.

Wait, What is Zeroing?

Zeroing simply refers to sighting the scope at a certain distance. If you “Zero” your scope at 100 yards, then the center of the crosshair is where the bullet should land after traveling 100 yards.

Since the round is most suited to close-range targets of 100 yards, you will not need a scope with 20x magnification. Even 10x for 100-yard targets is overkill. In general, I would suggest a variable magnification scope and one that is pretty low-powered. The 3x to 9x category is extremely popular, but a 1x to 6x would work well also. Any magnification over 10x is too powerful for this round, in my opinion.

Eye Relief

Eye relief is the term used to describe the longest distance that you can place your eye away from the ocular (rear-facing) lens while still seeing accurately through it. The larger the eye relief, the further away you can place your eye, or the further up your rifle you can sit your scope.

This is an important and sometimes overlooked factor that everyone who is buying a scope should take into account. If you have too little eye relief, then not only will your shooting position be uncomfortable, there is a high chance of the rifle kicking back, leaving you with a black eye.

In general, I suggest at least three inches of eye relief, with three and a half inches or more being preferable.

Reticle Type

This is the most personal factor to consider when buying a scope, as different shooters look for different types of reticles.

If you are new to target shooting and have no idea where to start, then go for a BDC (bullet drop compensator) or a MIL-DOT reticle. These will provide you with the info needed to make the adjustments at the range that will help you quickly improve.

Again, not a hard and fast rule as some shooters prefer a much simpler Duplex reticle.

Build Type and Quality

As you are here looking for a scope for target shooting, in particular, it is probably best to go for a variable magnification scope. In this case, a prism scope won’t work for you, as they are fixed magnification scopes. But they do come with some inherent advantages over traditional scopes, such as etched reticles, fewer components, and they work better for people who suffer from astigmatisms.

Therefore, I have listed one prism scope to cover all bases, with the rest of the choices being variable magnification traditional scopes, as these are more suited to target shooting.

Build quality is always something to consider. Always look for scopes that use high-grade aluminum, fully multi-coated glass, O-ring sealed, gas purged, and are constructed by reputable companies for peace of mind. Which leads nicely into our consideration…

22lr scopes for target shooting review

Price and Warranty

In recent years there has been a trend to move away from top-end scopes to more budget-friendly options, and while I like the fact that the overall price of scopes seems to be decreasing across the board, they are still precision instruments that come with a list of intrinsic costs.

You can definitely find a decent scope at the $100 mark, or sometimes even lower. And it’s great to have these cheaper options available, but always make sure to check the warranty. Higher-priced scopes usually come with a pretty comprehensive warranty – so while you might save a bit of cash at the time of purchase, you may be setting yourself up for a bit of wallet pain in the long run when you have to replace the whole scope on your own dime.

I have chosen a range of price points to highlight in this list, and all come with at least a few years’ warranty, if not more. I have also tried to keep the units within the price range of what most average shooters would find affordable.

Windage and Elevation Adjustments

A crucial feature of any scope, but especially for the best quality .22LR scopes for target shooting, are the windage and elevation adjustment turrets. Here are a few quick points to consider.

Windage and elevation are usually measured in MOA (Minute of Angle). A single full MOA is equal to 1 inch of bullet shift at 100 yards. So if you adjust the elevation turret 0.5 MOA up, then the bullet should hit the target half an inch higher at 100 yards than it did before.

Most scopes these days will incorporate adjustment turrets that offer at least 0.5 MOA, but for target shooting, I prefer turrets with even finer controls. 0.25 MOA turrets is good; 0.125 is even better.

For hunting, 0.5 MOA or 0.25 MOA is fine, but at the shooting range, time is usually not a factor, and you want to give yourself as much of an advantage as possible. However, being great for target shooting, 0.125 MOA is too finicky for ‘real-world’ use, in my opinion.

Mounting Options

This is actually one of the first things you should consider when picking out a scope. There are three common mounts – Picatinny, Weaver, and Dovetail – but just because these are the most popular, it does not mean that your rifle uses one of these three.

Some scopes come with multiple mounting options, while some are more specific. So, always make sure your scope fits your rifle before you spend that hard-earned cash.

Are You Interested in Some More Quality Scope Options?

Then check out my in-depth reviews of the Best Scope for Hog Hunting, the Best Simmons Rifle Scopes, Best Mini 14 Ranch Rifle Scopes, the Best 308 Rifles Scopes, the Best Scout Scopes, the Best Vortex Scopes, as well as the Best Ruger AR 556 Scope you can buy in 2022.

Or, take a look at our reviews of the Best Scope for 6.5 Creedmoor, the Best Handgun Scopes & Optics, the Best Scopes for AR15 under 100 Dollars, the Best 300 Win Mag Scopes, the Best Scope for AK-47, the Best Air Rifle Scopes, or the Best Rimfire Scopes on the market.

So, Which of These Best 22LR Scopes for Target Shooting Should You Buy?

Well, that’s not the most straightforward question to answer as it really depends on the type of target shooting you are looking to compete in. But, if you are in the market for a super versatile .22LR scope that’s a great all-rounder, then I suggest you grab the…

Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9×40 1in Riflescope

It really does cover all the bases and is the perfect scope for the .22LR round! Highly recommended!

Happy and safe shooting.

5/5 - (123 votes)
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About William Taylor

William is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran who served two tours in Afghanistan and one in Iraq. His duties included Security Advisor/Shift Sergeant, 0341/ Mortar Man- 0369 Infantry Unit Leader, Platoon Sergeant/ Personal Security Detachment, as well as being a Senior Mortar Advisor/Instructor.

He now spends most of his time at home in Michigan with his wife Nicola and their two bull terriers, Iggy and Joey. He fills up his time by writing as well as doing a lot of volunteering work for local charities.

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