Shotguns are one of the most commonly used firearms, especially during hunting season. They are used to fire both shots and slugs while keeping the gun at the shoulder. Shotguns are mostly used for smaller target, moving fast. They have low penetration and can only shoot at targets within a small range but on the other hand, have great stopping power. Adding a best shotgun scope will definitely be beneficial for many reasons. It helps improve the accuracy of the shot, even if the target is medium-range. Furthermore, the magnification of the scope gives the hunter a clearer view of the oft-moving target, making it easy to take it down.
As, shotguns are usually used to shoot birds. However, they can also be used for hunting larger game, like deer or turkey hunting due to their versatility of shooting larger projectiles such as slugs.
7 Best Shotgun Scopes to Buy in 2020
Even though using a scope with a shotgun is not a necessity and in most cases, one can do without it, it is still worthwhile to look at some of the best shotgun scopes for 2020. This article helps you decide which scope is best for your shotgun and will befit you most for hunting season by listing top 7 picks of the year. From fixed shotgun scopes to variable shotgun scopes.
1-Simmons 517793 Prodiamond – Best Shotgun Scope
The Simmons Prodiamond Riflescope is one of the popular shotgun scopes for beginners and has some outstanding qualities. It retails on Amazon at $52.99
The Simmons scope has finger adjustable turrets with a sleek design. It weighs about 8.6 ounces which is pretty lightweight for scopes in general and comes in the colour matte black. It has an 8mm exit pupil with 4 inches of eye relief and a 32mm objective lens. All lenses are made with the finest quality glass and are mutli-coated for a clearer image. Its field of view is 23.6 feet @ 100 yards with an adjustment range of 70 inches @ 100 yards. It comes with a 4x magnification.
The scope provides truezero windage with elevation adjustment so the scope stays locked in even at hard recoil. It also comes with the coveted Quick Target Acquisition (QTA) feature and is water/fog proof. The recticle is the classic Prodiamond recticle that many customers favour.
Overall, Simmons Prodiamond Shotgun has great performance. It is easy to handle for beginners and a positively surprising found for seasoned hunters. Its lightweight construction is a favorite among most buyers.
The 4-inch recoil takes it home for the Simmons Prodiamond. Other than that, it’s excellent for shooting at 75-100 yards and performs well in low-lighting Other than that, its lightweight.
For some customers, however, the scope could not handle hard recoil. It failed to accomplish 30 rounds of 3030s, for example and also had a less clear image than other scopes. These cases, however, are usually exceptions and the customers are sent a replacement or are fully refunded in such a case.
If you’re a beginner, this is a great scope to get for your shotgun due to its various ease-giving features. Also recommended for seasoned shotgun hunters.
2-Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope, 1x25mm, Black
The Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 is a calling for the hunter looking for a variable shotgun scope. It works well with a wide range of firearms and delivers its best with each.
Standing at just 2.4 inches with a weight of 3.7 ounces approximately, Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 is a low profile, small scope perfect for small range target acquisition. It comes in black with a matte finish. It provides unlimited eye relief and field of view with a 70 in @ 100 yards adjustment range. The minimalistic design makes it undetectable unlike some other scopes. The lenses are multi-coated and made with high quality glass. The design is parallax free.
The scope comes with a 3 MOA red dot reticle which helps in quick target acquisition and is responsible for the unlimited eye relief. It is constructed with Amber-Bright optics and is water proof, shock proof and fog proof. It features a dry-nitrogen-filled housing, and a CR2032 battery which can be changed.
The scope is great to be used in low-light conditions. The red-dot frees the hunter from worrying about eye relief. The red dot however, needs to be adjusted according to the lighting or else it’ll be blurry. It does not consume a lot of power and can hold zero.
Most customers found the Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 to be a great optic for the medium range price it demanded (retailing at $95.99 on Amazon). It also holds zero and can withstand hard recoil.
The only major concern with the Bushnell is that the new version with white lettering has a red dot which blurs from the sides of the field of view. It also shifts from the centre for certain movements. For some users, the scope was too low-profile and they needed to purchase an extra riser with the set to be able to adjust the scope to their level.
The Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 is certainly one of the newest generations of scopes that provide durability, accuracy and clarity. It is also a variable shotgun scope so its use isn’t restricted to your shotgun only. From a price point, it provides excellent specs in under $100 which is as good as it gets. Great for training and target shooting.
3-TRUGLO 4x32mm Compact Rimfire and Shotgun Scope Series
TRUGLO is a renowned name in the firearms optics industry. Their Compact Rimfire and Shotgun Series has two outstanding scopes under $50 dollars. The price point is a bit startling and might make the purchaser doubtful but the scope packs in heaps of amazing features.
TRUGLO Compact Rimfire comes in 2 models; the 8504BR includes 3/8″ rings for rimfire and air rifles, while the TG8504BD/CD includes weaver-style rings. It comes in “black” and “realtree Xtra”, the latter of which is a camouflage style scope. The scope lens has a rubber guard and pre-installed rimfire rings. With a 4-inch eye relief and 32 mm objective lens, TRUGLO’s Compact Rimfire is a standard scope for shotguns. Furthermore, the lens is fully coated providing great clarity. It is made from aircraft quality aluminum and has a diamond as well as a duplex reticle.
It has finger-tip elevation adjustment and can hold zero on hard recoil. It features durable leaf spring for windage and elevation adjustments. Its water proof, shock proof and fog proof.
The scope is perfect for hunting bigger ground game such as deer or turkey. It gathers enough light to hunt in low-light conditions, such as dawn and dusk.
For its price, TRUGLO Rimfire is an excellent optic. The crosshairs on the reticle are nice and sharp and the scope stays zeroed in even after hard recoil. Customers found it easy to install and adjust.
To others, however, the quality of the glass was sub-par and the tightening design seemed a bit defective.
If you’re looking to spend some money on an inexpensive shotgun scope for turkey hunting season than the TRUGLO Rimfire might just be it. It retails for about $49.99 which is great for such features.
An answer to a commonly asked question: What Scope Do I Need for 300 Yards?
4-Vortex Optics Venom Red Dot Sights
Another low profile scope like the Bushnell Trophy TRS-25, Vortex’s Venom Red Dot sights are a standard, high-performance scopes. They come with two different red dots, 3 MOA and 6 MOA. They retail at $217.49 on Amazon.
The optic has a length of about 1.9 inches and weighs 1.1 ounces. It has 1 MOA windage and elevation adjustments. The red dots are sleek and visible. It has an auto-brightness mode through which the red dot intensity automatically changes according to lighting conditions. There are 10 brightness levels to manually choose the power and dot intensity from. This can be done by using the controls on the left side of the scope. It also houses a CR1632 battery. The lens glass is high-quality and lenses are fully multi-coated, providing the ultimate clarity of image. It has adjustable elevation and windage dials with 1 MOA clicks. It has unlimited eye relief.
The scope comes with a Picatinny mount. It allows up to 150 hours of use at highest setting and up to 30,000 hours on lower settings. It is considered parallax free and has edge-to-edge resolution with is wide-field lens. It’s compact and lightweight. Its shock and water proof and comes with mounting screws.
The scope has a crisp red dot and works great for shooting game with its 1x magnification. It can be used with a wide range of firearms such as rifles, handguns, shot guns, glocks etc.
Also check out the red dot sights for turkey hunting!
The Vortex Venom is highly accurate and withstands hard recoil easily. Even though, it’s an expensive shotgun scope, the product is worth the investment.
However, some customers complained about the quality of the battery cover and a consequent need for replacement. Due to the low –profile some hunters may require a riser.
Vortex is one of the best companies out there for firearm optics. After the suspension of the Viper Red Dot, the new Venom is perfect for short-range hunting expeditions.
Find out How Far Should a Scope be From Your Eye while using it!
5-CVLIFE 1X22X33 – Shotgun Scope with Reflex Sight
CVLIFE is a new company that’s known for its low-priced shooting accessories. Their product is cheaper than other shotgun scopes, but some user reviews show build quality issue. Its price starts from $30.
It has a minimalistic design and comes in black. It’s made of aluminum alloy with anodized finish and weighs 130 g. The overall length is 82 mm while the screen size is 22 mm x 33 mm. The scope fits 20 mm Picatinny and Weaver rail mounts. It also has a 0.15 inch metal lock bar that works only on Picatinny and Weaver rails.
It has 4 options for reticles (Circle Dot, Cross, 10 MOA & 3 MOA) that can be quickly selected by the help of a knob. These options in turn have 2 colours: red and green. There is 5 level illumination control. There are Allen adjustment screws for windage and elevation. An Allen wrench and battery come out of the box.
The CVLIFE reflex sight is an inexpensive scope that works well for its price, but doesn’t come to par with the scopes that come in the higher price range. Customer reviews show that holding zero would be an issue for this scope because of its build quality.
It’s an inexpensive option with normal quality. Build quality is the biggest con for this scope. Another issue is that it would only fit Picatinny and Weaver rails; doesn’t work with any other rail. Some people have used it and said it’s good enough for a pistol only, and any firearm with more recoil than a pistol would end up making it lose zero.
Inexpensive option for a scope, but cheap build quality spoils its potential.
6-Vortex Optics Crossfire – 2 MOA Shotgun Scope
Vortex Optics is a name we can always trust for gen accessories. Their Crossfire Red Dot is no exception. It has a 2 MOA dot, precise for targets that are at a distance. It retails for about $220.
It has a standard tube design. The scope comes in black with orange or blue options. It is made from hard anodized finish and weighs 147 g. the overall length is 2.5 inches. Skeletonized mount offers two height options (Low and Lower 1/3 Co-Witness). There are 11 level brightness adjustment on right side. Windage and elevation adjustments are in the form of knobs.
The build quality of the Vortex Crossfire is its biggest feature. 11 levels of brightness help adjust brightness according to need. The 2 MOA dot gives top tier precision. The scope is parallax free. It also has unlimited eye relief. It comes with T10 Torx wrench, battery and lens covers in the box.
Known for its quality, Vortex has made quite a well-received scope. The two height adjustments allow it to be mounted to any AR-15, shotgun, or pistol, making it a nice accessory if you have different firearms. It holds zero even after quite some rounds. The only issue observed by users is in the brightness levels.
Quality is loved by customers – Vortex lives up to its name. It’s a good option for the price. It has adjustable knobs for windage and elevation. Holds zero easily after quite a number of rounds.
Brightness adjusting knob, which also holds the battery, could be better.
A worthy inclusion in scope rankings with its build quality, 2 MOA dot, precision, and option to mount on different types of firearms. Fits its price by giving many features.
7-Ozark Armament Rhino – Shotgun Scope with Red Dot Sight
The Ozark Armament Rhino is one of those scopes that seem too good to be true due to the price their being offered for. Retailing at just $39.99, the scope combines all the features of a high quality scope. Moreover, it comes with a Picatinny mount in the box.
The scope body has a telescopic design with two lens covers on either side to prevent the lens from getting dusty or injured. It weighs about 9.7 ounces. It’s made from aluminum and comes in the colour black. The scope offers a reticle with 4 MOA Red/Green dot and has 5 brightness levels that the user can adjust the dot to. It has no magnification and an objective lens of 28mm. Moreover it houses a CR2032 battery. It has an easy windage and elevation adjustment.
The Rhino is made to withstand harsh treatment. The company offers a no questions asked life time warranty. It maintains zero through countless rounds and fits more than one firearm moreover, it offers co-witnesses with all Ozark Armament iron sights and standard iron sights. It is waterproof and fog-proof.
The Rhino has top-notch performance. Its varying brightness levels enable the user to hunt with it in a wide range of lighting conditions. It has unlimited eye relief which is always a good thing. Moreover, the scope provides a wide field of view and parallax free glass.
The price point is big advantage to Rhino users. The scope itself packs a punch and delivers well.
Some customers have had problems with sighting it in on zero and others have found that their red dots are not accurate. However, the pros outweigh the cons by sheer number.
An excellent choice for hunting and training. If you’re a beginner and don’t wanna invest too much, this is a great scope for you.
Buying Guide – Points to Consider
Whether you’re looking for a new scope for your shotgun or following up on a popular shotgun scope, you’ve heard much about, the list above will help you make an informed decision about which scope is best for your shotgun.
We recommend both the Simmons 517793 Prodiamond Shotgun Prohunter Riflescope and the Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope for their versatility, durability and attractive price point.
There are numbers written on a scope usually, learn what do these numbers mean?
What to Consider When Buying the Best Shotgun Scope?
You must consider these points if you are planning to buy a shotgun scope in 2020.
1-Type of Scope
There are different scopes specialized for firearms such as rifle scope for a rifle and shotgun scopes for a shotgun
It is very common to know that rifle scope can not be mounted on a shotgun because it’ll not work. Some scopes however are variable and can be adjusted on a range of different firearms.
It is important to keep in mind the gun and activity you intend to undertake. It’s the only thing that will determine the features you look for while buying new scope. One way of doing this is by checking out the recommended scopes for your gun
Shotgun scopes are usually stronger than say, rifle scopes. This is due to the fact that the recoil of a shotgun (the springing back action) is greater and more intense than that of a rifle. This is also why it is not advisable to use a rifle-scope on your shotgun. They just aren’t cut out to handle that sort of force.
Make sure that you’re not buying a weak optic for a shotgun. The damage may not be noticeable immediately but the recoil of the shotgun will damage the scope from the inside if it’s not durable and it will not serve you for a long time.
The two lenses present on a scope are the ocular lens (closest to your eye) and the objective lens (farthest from eye, closest to the target). Different scopes have different lens diameters depending upon certain factors such as lighting conditions, distance of target from the scope and required field of view.
For shotguns, there’s no need to buy scopes that provide a long-range clear image or a large field of view because they’re mostly used to target small game at less than 100 yards. In this case the objective lens, which is responsible for gathering light and providing a clear image, should be around 32mm~40mm in diameter.
Durability is one of the most crucial features in a shotgun. As previously discussed, shotguns have an intense recoil force and can damage a poor quality scope.
The best way to ensure that you’re buying a durable, reliable shotgun scope is to buy from a renowned company. Don’t go for cheap optics as they will most definitely have cheap construction. Furthermore, some scopes are made for specific guns such as a 20 gauge shotgun scope will be slightly different from a 10 gauge shotgun scope. Look up recommend scopes for your shotgun to make sure you avoid getting the wrong scope.
Eye relief refers to the least distance between the ocular lens of the scope and your eye which allows you to obtain a clear view of your target. For shotguns, a greater eye relief is recommended for a few reasons.
Shotguns are available is a number of different gauges such as ten gauge, twelve gauge and twenty gauge. These have varying degrees of recoil and a short eye relief can lead to a case of a scope bite (eye injury)
At least, a 3.5-4 inch eye relief is optimal in most cases of shooting slug loads more other even more intense. It gives the shooter just enough room to escape the recoil force of the shotgun while getting a clear view.