One of the fastest-growing events in shooting sports is 3 gun. It gives shooters the opportunity to master marksmanship skills across three weapon disciplines. This includes demonstrating ability with a rifle, pistol, and shotgun in both fluid and dynamic settings.
Given the variety of skills required for these events, finding the perfect scope can be difficult. It must be able to perform accurately and reliably in a vast range of environments and situations as well as being versatile.
So, I decided to take a look at the best 3 gun scope and optic options that are currently available and find the perfect one for you.
Top 5 Best 3 Gun Scope and Optic To Buy In 2023 Reviews
1 Bushnell AR Optic – Best Affordable 3 Gun Scope and Optic
The Bushnell AR Optic is a traditional scope that offers red dot-like performance while also providing variable zoom. With a zoom range of between 1x and 6x magnification power through its compact 24-millimeter objective lens, it is suitable for almost any circumstance.
This is one of the latest product lineups from Bushnell and was created specifically for use with .223 platform firearms. With the AR-15 being easily the most popular choice in the rifle discipline, it makes sense to check out this great value compact scope.
Speed and accuracy…
One of the features that make this scope a great option for 3 gun competitions is the illuminated BTR-1 reticle. Being glass etched at this affordable price point is certainly a nice touch, but that’s not all there is to get excited about.
Using LED technology, the center dot as well as the surrounding donut are illuminated in red for ultra-fast target acquisition. To aid in accuracy, there’s also a bullet drop compensator for taking full advantage of that extended 6x magnification power.
Control over power…
Already installed on the Bushnell AR Optic is a short PTL (Power Throw Lever) along with an additional long lever in the box. When not in use, they fold out of the way but are ready almost instantly when quick zoom adjustments are necessary.
Adding to the already great value are some further features like an IPX-7 water and dust resistance rating. The lenses are also fully multi-coated for enhanced light transmission as well as reduced glare and reflections.
- Great value scope that is designed specifically for the AR platform.
- Fast and accurate illuminated BTR-1 reticle.
- Both a short and long PTL included for fast zoom adjustments.
- Not a true 1x magnification scope.
- Windage and elevation turrets aren’t lockable.
2 Vortex Strike Eagle – Best Zoom Range 3 Gun Scope and Optic
One of the most popular compact tactical scopes available on the market is the Vortex Strike Eagle. It has a huge zoom range of between 1x and 8x magnification power for close to mid-range engagement.
The scope is durable, being built to withstand almost any type of condition and environment, making it a perfect match for 3 gun events. It is also packed with useful features that will give you an advantage over the competition.
Crystal clear clarity…
The glass used on Vortex’ Strike Eagle is crystal clear, giving users a bright, sharp, and detailed image throughout the entire zoom range. For added protection, the lenses include plastic flip-up covers attached to the scope.
Multi-coating has also been added to the lenses for use in both low-light and bright sunny conditions. There’s a generous 3.5-inches (89-millimeters) of eye relief along with true both eyes open targeting at 1x magnification.
BDC3 illuminated reticle…
Engaging targets during 3 gun competitions can be done using the illuminated BDC3 reticle. There are 11 different brightness settings available for use in most lighting conditions. Best of all, the BDC (bullet drop compensator) has been tuned for .223 ammunition use.
The Vortex Strike Eagle allows users to concentrate on their target with its strong and durable construction. Aircraft-grade aluminum makes up the shockproof body, while O-rings and nitrogen purging provide waterproof and fog-proof operation. All this adds up to a superb option of Best Scope for Three Gun Competitions.
- Excellent zoom range of between 1x and 8x magnification power.
- Crystal clear glass clarity throughout the entire zoom range.
- Illuminated BDC3 reticle is tuned for .223 ammunition.
- No auto turn-off feature can waste the battery.
- Higher illumination settings are difficult to see during the day.
3 Trijicon AccuPoint – Most Accurate 3 Gun Scope and Optic
When it comes to glass clarity, durability, reliability, and accuracy, most shooters head straight for Trijicon products. Widely used amongst elite military units and specialized law enforcement agencies, this is the top of the market.
There is a zoom range of between 1x and 6x magnification power through the 24-millimeter objective lens. This is perfectly suited for the close to mid-range targeting shooters will experience during 3 gun events.
Battery free operation…
While the other scopes here offer illuminated reticles, they don’t offer battery free operation. Using fiber optics, the Trijicon AccuPoint will always remain illuminated with the perfect amount of brightness for the current surroundings.
During low to no light conditions, you’re still covered, thanks to the tritium phosphor lamp for endless illumination. Another advantage of fiber optic and tritium technology is that zero illumination can be detected from the objective lens.
I can see clearly now…
The glass used for the lenses in Tirjicon’s AccuPoint scope is superior quality and provides perfect clarity across the entire zoom range. A true 1x magnification power setting also allows for effective both eyes open targeting comparable to red dot performance.
Even the toughest of conditions are no match for this scope with almost indestructible construction. Only the highest quality aircraft-grade aluminum has been used with shockproof, waterproof, and fog-proof performance.
- Battery free illumination using fiber optic and tritium technology.
- True 1x magnification for both eyes open targeting.
- One of the toughest and most durable scopes available.
- The highest quality components and latest technology aren’t cheap.
- You’ll want to use this scope for everything.
4 Vortex SPARC Solar – Best Compact 3 Gun Scope and Optic
Next in my review of the Best Three Gun Competition Scopes, while compact scopes provide a higher level of accuracy and a longer range, red dot optics can be much faster. Therefore, for shooters that are more confident, a more lightweight and compact solution might be what they prefer.
The Vortex SPARC is a fantastic red dot that harnesses the power of the sun to provide illumination. There is still a battery for backup, with the life being dramatically extended due to the clever use of this technology.
Measuring only 5.9 x 2.6 x 1.6-inches (150 x 66 x 40-millimeters), the compact size helps with rifle control and maneuverability. The optic also only weighs 5.9-ounces (167-grams) which is something a traditional scope simply can’t compete with.
The disadvantage is the loss of any magnification power when using a red dot, making longer-range shots less accurate. An LED illuminated 2 MOA red dot is small enough to place accurate shots while still remaining visible.
Unlimited eye relief…
A huge advantage of red dot optics is the unlimited eye relief and true 1x magnification power. This allows users to engage targets with both eyes open, providing the ability to remain alert to their entire surroundings at all times.
There are 11 different illumination brightness settings for use in all types of conditions, with two settings compatible with night vision equipment. Motion detection and an automatic shut-off feature also assist with up to 150,000 hours of battery life.
- Extremely compact and lightweight for superior firearm control and maneuverability.
- Up to 150,000-hours of battery life thanks to solar technology.
- Motion detection and automatic shut-off feature.
- Less accuracy than a traditional scope.
- No zoom ability with limited range capability.
5 Burris FastFire III – Most Versatile 3 Gun Scope and Optic
Once you get the hang of 3 gun events, you might want to try your hand at an open competition. This allows competitors to add red dot sights to their pistol along with other accessories like lasers.
The Burris FastFire III is a great value and versatile red dot optic that can be used on both rifles and pistols. Part of the MRDS (Micro Red Dot Sight) class, this is a tiny yet effective aiming solution that is sure to impress.
Durable and lightweight…
At only 1.9 x 1 x 1-inches (48 x 25 x 25-millimeters) and weighing only 1.5-ounces (42.5-grams) this optic really is micro. This makes it more suitable for pistols but can still be an effective solution for a rifle in 3 gun competitions from an economic standpoint.
There are two models available with either a 3 MOA or 8 MOA red dot reticle. The smaller 3 MOA version provides a higher level of accuracy, while the larger 8 MOA offers higher speed. I would recommend the 3 MOA for 3 gun events.
Fast and simple adjustments…
Making adjustments to the windage and elevation is fast and simple, with no special tools required. This will ensure that your optic is always fine-tuned for the highest possible levels of precision and accuracy.
Despite its tiny size and weight, the FastFire III is still incredibly durable. Constructed from aircraft-grade aluminum and finished with a hard-anodized coating, it can take accidental drops and bumps. It’s also waterproof for use in all types of weather conditions.
- Can be used on pistols for open 3 gun competitions.
- No special tools required for windage and elevation adjustments.
- Built tough from aircraft-grade aluminum with waterproof construction.
- Can be used for rifles but isn’t as accurate as other products.
- More suited to experienced 3 gun competitors.
Best 3 Gun Scope and Optic Buying Guide
Even with the huge range of scopes and optics available narrowed down, it can still be difficult to make a choice. And each of these products has something different to offer in its own unique way depending on your style and needs.
That’s why I decided to include this handy buying guide so you can make the most informed and confident decision before committing to that final purchase. By identifying some of the key differences, it should help you narrow things down a little further.
You have to start somewhere…
If you are new to 3 gun competitions, your best option would be to pick a product that is as versatile as possible. This will help you decide what type of features you should focus on that will best suit your style.
Both the Bushnell AR Optic and the Vortex Strike Eagle won’t make you completely broke while also providing a great range of features. A wide zoom range, illuminated reticles, and PTLs will give beginners a great advantage. The Bushnell AR Optic will struggle with both eyes open targeting, though.
Always the professional…
For shooters that are looking for something a little more advanced, there are options here for you too. The Trijicon AccuPoint is certainly not the most affordable option, but it is also an amazing piece of equipment. Enjoy red dot-like performance with the added ability to zoom in up to 6x magnification power.
If shooting in open 3 gun competition is something that interests you, then you’ll need a pistol optic. The Burris FastFire III is a highly affordable yet accurate and reliable option. Plus, it can still easily be used on your rifle if needed.
Looking for More Quality Scope Options?
Then check out our in-depth reviews of the Best Scope for AK 47, the Best Mini 14 Ranch Rifles, the Best Mil Dot Scopes, the Best Night Vision Scopes for AR-15, the Best Scopes for M&P 15-22, or the Best Long Range Scopes under 1000 Dollars in the marketplace in 2023.
Alternatively, take a look at our comprehensive reviews of the Best Marlin 336 Scopes, the Best .308 Rifles Scopes, the Best Deer Hunting Scopes, the Best Scopes for AR15 under 100 Dollars, as well as the Best Shotgun Scopes you can buy.
So, Best 3 Gun Scope and Optic?
With such a wide variety of options to choose from, making this decision has been difficult. That’s why I’ve considered the following aspects – the best scope for 3 gun competitions must be accurate, reliable, durable, and versatile.
The product I believe performs best in all these areas is the…
Even though this is the least affordable option, it is also the most effective. You’ll never run out of batteries mid competition, it is virtually indestructible, and you’ll never lose zero. Plus, it can perform like a red dot and scope in one. All very impressive, making it easily the best scope for your next 3 gun comp.
Happy, safe, and accurate shooting.