Compare 12 of the Best AR-10 Scopes for 2018

The AR-10 was originally built as a modern battle rifle for the military. It is very similar to the popular AR-15 rifle but it is chambered for the larger .308 Winchester round. This means it has a different set of criteria when looking for a riflescope that would be suitable for getting the most out of it.

In the last few years the AR-10 has started to grow in popularity after it has really been largely ignored by shooters who have favored the AR-15 far more. The .308 rounds that it uses give it the capability for being used when hunting larger animals such as elk.

The greater power of the AR-10 also means that it is a rifle that is designed for long distance shooting and this means that a good quality scope is going to improve your shooting performance tremendously.

​The simple fact that the range is so much further means that it makes sense to install a scope on your AR-10. It is important, though, to be a little selective when deciding on which scope to choose because they are not all the same, they offer their own particular strengths and weaknesses and they are suitable for different shooting scenarios.

​For this reason we have combed through a broad range of AR-10 scope suggestions that are considered suitable for mounting on an AR-10 rifle. They are presented below in a comparison list where they can be lined up against each other. Further down the page is a more descriptive review of each of the scopes including a list of specifications and the various strengths and weaknesses that customers have mentioned. We have also provide the Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price for each scope which should be used merely as a rough price guide.

Comparison List of the Best AR 10 Scopes​

Make / Model

Mag.

Objective
Lens

Field of View
(ft @ 100 yds)

MSRP

Leupold Mark 4 LR/T

8.5 - 25x

50mm

4.4 - 11.2

$1819.99

Vortex Razor HD Gen II

3 - 18x

50mm

6.25 - 37.8

$2999.99

Trijicon VCOG

1 - 6x

24mm

15.9 - 95

$2800.00

Nikon Prostaff

4 - 12x

40mm

7.3 - 23.6

$219.95

Vortex Diamondback

4 - 12x

40mm

7.9 - 23.6

$399.99

Nikon M-308

4 - 16x

42mm

6.3 - 25.2

$499.95

Primary Arms FFP

4 - 14x

44mm

7.85 - 27.2

$229.99

Vortex Viper

6.5 - 20

50mm

6.2 - 17.4

$489.00

Nightforce SHV

4 - 14x

50mm

7.4 - 25.1

$1250.00

Bushnell Elite Long Range Hunter

4.5 - 18x

44mm

6 - 23.5

$1124.99

UTG Compact

3 - 12x

44mm

10 -32

$169.97

Burris AR C4 Wind

4.5 - 14x

42mm

7.5 - 22

$479.00

​Description of AR-10 Rifle Scopes

Now that we have had a chance to take a brief side-by-side look at a range of rifle scopes for the AR-10 we will take a more detailed look at each model. Below is a short review of each scope along with product specifications and listed features plus any noted strengths and weaknesses. Read through the details of each to get a better understanding of what it is that differentiates each product as well as which one might best meet your needs.​

​Leupold Mark 4 - LR/T 8.5-25x50mm Rifle Scope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 8.5 - 25x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 50
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 4.4 - 11.2
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.7 - 5.3
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 14
  • Weight (ounces): 22.5

The Mark 4 LR/T scope from Leupold is favoured by the elite gunmen in special operations and armed services around the world. It is solidly built with some good heft to it and it will handle being knocked around without suffering from the mistreatment.

It is a 30mm diameter scope tube that widens out to finish with a 50mm objective lens, giving it tremendous light gathering capabilities. This means the brightness is exceptional and it also has quite a wide field of view.

The scope weighs in at 22.5 ounces which is quite heavy when compared to some of the other scopes used with the AR-10. It is also quite long with a measured length of 14 inches.

The magnification power of the scope is impressive to say the least. It ranges from 8.5x to 25x and has the capability of being able to spot targets out to 600 yards distant.

If you are looking for a reliable scope for great precision over long distance shots this is an outstanding option. There is little doubt that you would find this among any list of top 10 long range scopes published today.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Leupold Optics website.​

Vortex Razor HD Gen II 3-18x50mm Rifle Scope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 3 - 18x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 50
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 6.25 - 37.8
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.7
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 14.4
  • Weight (ounces): 46.5

The Razor HD Gen II scope has been specifically designed to provide great accuracy over long distances in extreme environments. The scope is equipped with a range of features that all help to achieve the highest of performances.

The tube is a 34mm diameter single-piece aircraft-grade aluminum that will provide both strength and enhanced accuracy. It has a hard-coat anodized finish to achieve a low-glare matte surface and it has an ArmorTek protective scratch-resistant coating that will ensure the exterior lenses are protected from scratches.

Features worth highlighting include the Apochromatic objective lens system to correct color, Optically Indexed Lenses to ensure the image sharpness and brightness is as good as possible from edge to edge. The lenses are fully XR Plus multi-coated which is a premium proprietary coating that results in the highest level of light transmission. In short, the optics are as good as you could possibly get.

The reticle has also been given plenty of attention too with a First Focal Plane reticle meaning the scale will remain in proportion to the zoomed image. It is a glass-etched reticle to allow for an intricate design which is protected between two layers of glass.

The scope is waterproof with O-ring seals to prevent moisture and dust from getting in and it is fogproof with argon gas purging keeping it clear through a range of temperatures.

There are still more internal features built in such as L-Tec Zero Stop, Maximized Turret Adjustment, Micro Adjust Zero Setting, Friction Reduction System, low-friction Turret Screws and the Erector Tube System.

For an entire rundown on all of the features that have been created for this top of the line rifle scope, it is well worth the visit to the Vortex Optics website.

​Trijicon VCOG 1-6x24mm Ballistic Reticle Rifle Scope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 1 - 6x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 24
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 15.9 - 95
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 4.0
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 10.05
  • Weight (ounces): 23.2

The VCOG (Variable Combat Optical Gunsight) is another tough and durable scope with the housing constructed from forged 7075-T6 aircraft-aluminum alloy. It’s uses indicate that it is versatile as well as strong being just as capable at close quarters as it is for long distance marksmanship.

The scope features an integrated dial that makes it as easy as possible to rotate through the magnification range and it has a constant eye relief so that the head position does not need to be changed.

The scope features a Red Horseshoe Dot / Crosshair .308 pattern that can be viewed at any of 6 different brightness settings. The scope led reticle is powered by a single Lithium AA battery which has a significant life span of over 700 hours.

This is a scope that will provide quick target acquisition and the reticle has a number of different measurements that will help to reference point of impact. It is easily capable of holding zero and it is simple to mount using the thumb screws that will lock it into place.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Trijicon website.

​Nikon Prostaff 4-12x40mm Black Matte Riflescope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 4 - 12x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 40
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 7.3 - 23.6
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.7
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 14.1
  • Weight (ounces): 23.2

This is the scope that AR-10 shooters were hoping to see as a quality optic alternative that sits in a reachable price range. It provides those shooters who are operating on a limited budget the opportunity to hold ‘dead-on’ at impressive ranges.

The scope features a Multi-Coated optical system that enables light transmission to the extent of up to 98%. It is a feat that means it is possible to be faced with an extremely bright sight picture in all types of external conditions including low light situations.

As with other scope options, the Prostaff is waterproof thanks to the O-ring seals and fogproof courtesy of the nitrogen filled spaces. It also features Zero Reset Turrets and the scope has been found to hold zero better than many of its contemporary rivals.

The scope uses the patented Bullet Drop Compensator (BDC) reticle which is a unique see-through system that will provide you with ballistic circles that will be invaluable when shooting over long distances. It will also be just as effective over shorter distances when using the crosshair.

This is a 1-inch diameter scope that provides you with many of the features that is expected in a far more expensive model. It is well suited to the recoil shock that comes from repeated rounds fired over long distances.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Nikon Optics website.

​Vortex Optics Diamondback 4-12x40 with VMR-1 Reticle Scope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 4 - 12x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 40
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 7.9 - 23.6
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.8
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 14.2
  • Weight (ounces): 16.2

This is another example of a great value for money AR10 scope that combines high performance with plenty of durability and toughness. It is a tactical scope that features exposed turrets and a zero-reset feature.

The scope tube measures 1 inch in diameter and is constructed from a solid block of aircraft-grade aluminium. It is both strong and rigid and will withstand the high recoil and impact of repeated .308 rounds. It has the hard anodized low-glare matte finish expected of a tactical scope.

The optics has been given special treatment too starting with the Extra Low Dispersion (XD) glass in the lenses that increase resolution and color fidelity. They are also fully multi-coated for greater light transmission after it enters the 40mm objective lens.

The scope also features a second focal plane VMR-1 MRAD reticle that is designed to maximize long distance shooting capabilities.

As you would expect the scope is waterproof, fogproof and shockproof with O-ring seals and nitrogen purging to ensure the performance is consistently high no matter where you take it.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Vortex Optics website.

​Nikon M-308 4-16x42mm Riflescope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 4 - 16x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 42
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 6.3 - 23.2
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.7 - 4.0
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 13.5
  • Weight (ounces): 19.0

This is a scope that has been designed to handle the heavy recoil of the .308 cartridge. When you are looking for a solid AR 10 scope that will handle recoil and also provide long distance scoping, the Nikon M-308 fits the brief very nicely.

The scope has power magnification ranging from 4 – 16x and the optics is fully coated for Ultra ClearCoat optical system for optimal light transmission. It also features a quick-focus eyepiece that will aid the process of gaining fast target acquisition.

​It comes with tactical-style turrets that provide a zero-reset feature. The body of the scope tube is a one-piece construction to ensure it has the best possible strength and durability while keeping the weight of the scope to a minimum.

​The scope is available either with a BDC reticle or Nikoplex reticle. Either will be suitable for aiming over long distance and both have been designed to be easy to use.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Nikon Optics website.

​Primary Arms 4-14x44 FFP Scope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 4 - 14x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 44
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 7.85 - 27.2
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.14 - 3.22
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 13.0
  • Weight (ounces): 24.0

This scope is another great value for money scope that competes very well with far pricier competitors. It is a Front Focal Plane scope that uses a Mil-Dot reticle. It stays true through the magnification range of 4x to 14x.

The optics are bright and clear through the entire magnification range as well as over extended distances and it holds zero through numerous rounds. The parallax adjust knob helps to keep the image sharp and clear over long distance.

The scope is a 30mm diameter tube and is waterproof, fogproof and shockproof and will continue to prove solid after multiple rounds put through it. There have been some reports of customers experiencing some problems with focus under recoil but the company will quickly resolve these issues with a replacement if you contact them.

This is one of the more popular choices for owners of AR 10 rifles with the vast majority happy to give the scope five stars for its performance and ease of use.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Primary Arms website.​

​Vortex Optics Viper 6.5-20x50 Scope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 6.5 - 20x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 50
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 6.2 - 17.4
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.1 - 3.3
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 14.4
  • Weight (ounces): 21.6

The Viper has been designed as the workhorse of the range with a capability to perform strongly in all types of conditions. It will be able to handle the recoil of an AR-10 without any difficulty and will provide outstanding performance over long distances.

The fully-coated optics means that light transmission is outstanding and features such as glass smooth Precision Glide erector system for liquid smooth magnification adjustment and a heavy duty Precision Force spring system for greater repeatability which will ensure all parts will be operating in smooth synchronization.

It is constructed from solid block aircraft-grade aluminum and the 30mm diameter tube is designed for its strength and rigidity. It has a hard anodized finish that is finished with a low-glare matte finish for greater stealth.

The scope features side knob parallax adjustment with range numbers visible while you are in the shooting position. There are also tall capped turrets to make adjustments in the field incredibly easy which will allow re-indexing of the turret to zero after sighting in..

It comes with a choice of three different types of reticles for you to select. You can choose from the Dead Hold BDC, V-Plex Wide or the Mil Dot reticle.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Vortex Optics website.

​Nightforce SHV 4-14×50 MOAR Riflescope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 4 - 14x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 50
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 7.4 - 25.1
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 2.8 - 3.1
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 14.8
  • Weight (ounces): 30.0

The SHV range of scopes has enjoyed a great deal of success and, out of that, comes an enormous popularity for the scopes. This is a First Focal Plane scope that gives the shooter the option of holding for elevation and wind no matter what the magnification level might be.

The large objective lens of 50mm means that a substantial light will be entering for great light transmission no matter what time of day it is. The tube is a 30mm diameter tube and it allows for a maximum adjustment range of 90 minutes or 26 Mil-radians.

The scope has a ZeroSet feature which allows for rapid return to zero for any distance. The elevation adjustment also means it is easily accessible. The parallax adjustment is possible from 25 yards to infinity. Also standard on the scope is a fast focus eyepiece design.

You can get the SHV riflescope in a choice of either the MOAR or MIL-R reticle and they are standard with illumination.

This is a high quality piece of equipment that should be well suited to handling the power and precision needs of the AR-10.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Nightforce Optics website.

​Bushnell Elite Long Range Hunter 4.5-18x44 Riflescope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 4.5 - 18x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 44
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 6 - 23.5
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.94
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 14.2
  • Weight (ounces): 26.5

The Elite Long Range Hunter scopes are designed as the best possible answer to the needs of a hunter who intends on taking long range shots. The scope features First Focal Plane (FFP) reticles to allow ranging at any magnification.

This particular model has a power magnification range of 4.5x to 18x and the 44mm objective lens means that there will be a high level of light transmission. The optics feature fully multi-coated lenses and RainGuard HD lens coating as well as Ultra Wide Band lens coatings. In short, a great deal of effort has been put into providing the best clarity possible.

Features of the scope include a RevLimiter zero stop on elevation turret to allow immediate return to zero. On top of the scope is a 10-mil per revolution target-style elevation turret and a resettable, capped windage turret.

This is a high quality scope that is designed to provide tactical performance, able to perform repeated precision shooting over distances exceeding 600 yards.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Bushnell website.

​UTG 3-12X44 30mm Compact Scope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 3 - 12x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 44
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 10 - 32
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.4 - 3.0
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 10.4
  • Weight (ounces): 23.2

Just to prove that there is a viable option at every price point, the UTG Compact is a particularly interesting prospect. It could be considered the best AR 10 scope for the price and will certainly serve a good section of the hunting community very well.

It is a tough and durable scope that will withstand the knocks that come as part of traversing rough terrain. It is shockproof to the point where it will withstand recoil coming from repeated .308 rounds. It is also fog proof to ensure the picture is sharp and clear.

The tube is 30mm in diameter and it opens out to a 44mm objective lens to allow a great deal of light to enter and create a bright picture. The power range of 3x to 12x magnification means that it will be possible to zoom right in over a wide distance.

The scope is extremely simple to use when in the field and when it has been zeroed it is capable of holding zero very well. It can be taken out to a distance of just under 1000 yards without having a problem with the focus.

Although the cautionary addition will always include the phrase “for the money” this is still a very worthwhile scope – even if it were used as your backup.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Leapers website.

Burris AR 4.5-14x42mm Scope Review

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Specifications

  • Magnification: 4.5 - 14x
  • Objective Lens Diameter (mm): 42
  • Field of View @ 100 yards: 7.5 - 22
  • Optimum Eye Relief (in): 3.1 - 3.8
  • Click Adjustment Value: 1/4 MOA
  • Length (in): 13.0
  • Weight (ounces): 18.0

This is a tough scope that has been designed for the .308 round and is specifically built for the AR platform. It is constructed from a solid one-piece tube to make it durable enough to handle the rough treatment in the field.

The high-grade optical glass ensures that the image is displayed with exceptional clarity and brightness. The precision-ground lenses are large and provide excellent light transmission. It also comes with index-matched Hi-Lume multicoating aids for good low-light performance.

The scope features parallax adjustment for better long distance accuracy. The windage and elevation turrets are finger-adjustable and provide good solid click adjustment. It also has a double internal spring-tension system that enables the scope to hold zero through the strongest of recoil shock and vibration.

It is possible to match the elevation adjustment to the ammunition you are using thanks to the customized adjustment knob. It has a C4 Wind MOA reticle with 1-MOA tick marks up to 10 MOA on each side to make it possible to compensate for the wind without too much trouble.

There is a lot going on in yet another great value for money scope option that is suitable for the AR-10 rifle and it is made to suit tactical shooters and hunters alike.

Find out more information about all of the products produced by the company as well as this particular scope by visiting the Burris Optics website.

Factors To Consider When Choosing A Scope for the AR-10

​We need to put some level of thought into the type of scope that we are buying for our AR-10. Remember, we are essentially looking for a .308 scope for long range shooting, something that is capable of handling the punishing recoil without losing zero.

We have listed 5 of the more important factors that should be considered acknowledging that there are other aspects that some people might also consider to be very important in their thought process.

  • ​Lens Clarity
  • The Reticle
  • Scope Dimensions
  • Materials
  • The Price

Lens Clarity

​This almost goes without saying but, of course, I’m going to say it anyway because it is important. The clarity of the lens is very important, particularly for a scope on the AR-10. Because it is a rifle that is designed for providing superior accuracy over longer distances, a clear and bright image that is completely unobstructed in a must.

​Although you can get by with a lower priced scope, it makes a lot of sense to spend the extra money on a higher quality scope. The reason for this is because it is usually the quality of the glass that accounts for the higher cost.

​You will find that the top of the range scope manufacturers will put all kinds of features into getting crystal clear lenses with super sharp resolution.

The Reticle

​There is a growing number of different reticle options available, each purporting to provide you with an edge in accuracy and methods of calculating range.

​It needs to be accurate, it needs to be sharp and it needs to be clear. When taking long distance shots it is essential that the reticle does not block out the target and that it makes it possible to hold steady for greater accuracy.

​The reticle that you use should ideally be one that you are familiar with or, at least, be easy to use and to become accustomed with after a short period on the range.

Scope Dimensions

Both the length of the scope and its weight are important considerations that must be taken into account. The AR-10 rifle is designed for faster shooting and it will create significant recoil. The scope that is matched with it must be able to withstand this.

A larger, heavier scope is going to be able to withstand the recoil shock better than a smaller, lighter scope.

Materials

There is no real way of getting around it, it will be essential that the scope is made from the best possible materials to ensure that it is durable. Look for scopes that are built from high-grade aluminum and, preferably, one-piece construction.

It is all about the long-distance capabilities of the AR-10 and the precision that is made possible by the superior shooting platform. The durability and the strength of the materials of the scope will be a crucial aid to the shooting performance that is possible.

The Price

​This is clearly an issue with a good proportion of people. For many of us, price is an issue when trying to assemble a complete package of hunting products. Although it makes sense that the finest pieces of equipment such as the top line long distance scopes are going to be very expensive, not everyone can afford it.

​Fortunately, there are options available that offer a good alternative at a fraction of the price. This will give everyone the chance to buy what will be for them, the best AR 10 scope for the money, no matter what their price point might be. By all means for some people, this is a more than workable option and they should take advantage of it.

​The key is to set yourself a realistic budget and then stick with it to come up with a hunting package that works for you and your hunting needs.

Finding a suitable scope for the AR-10 isn’t a particularly difficult task. In fact, there are quite few options available that will serve you very well. Deciding on which one will best suit your needs is the tricky bit. What we have also been able to achieve is a great start for finding the best rifle scope for .308 long range shooting.

If you have found a scope such as the ones that have been discussed above, you should be considering a large objective lens to get as much light for greater clarity as possible. You should be considering the reticle size and the magnification as well.

Ensure the mounting system is compatible to your platform and, once it is properly mounted you should be confident that it will lock tight and maintain the zero that has been tuned into it.

From this point on you should be planning a few trips to the range to familiarize yourself with your new AR-10 compatible rifle scope.

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