Let's delve into the topic of the best fixed power scopes for long-range shooting. We'll start by clarifying a couple of terms.
Fixed power scopes have a specific magnification power and lack the ability to adjust magnification. On the other hand, variable power riflescopes allow you to increase or decrease the magnification as needed.
Best Fixed Power Scopes for long-range shooting
For most hunters, it typically refers to shots beyond 400 yards. However, seasoned marksmen consider distances ranging from 800 to 1,000 yards as true long-range shooting. In fact, experienced long-range shooters often engage in extreme long-range shooting, surpassing distances of 1,000 yards and beyond.
Best Fixed 4X or 4.5X Power Scopes
One old rule applies to the category of 4x fixed-power scopes: “aim small, miss small.”
One of the most popular and the longest-lasting riflescope configuration is a scope with the "fixed 4x" magnification. Leupold's fixed power FX series is a super lightweight and ultra-simple scope line designed for hunting and casual target shooting.
Leupold FX-II 4x33 is a typical old school riflescope based on 1" diameter main tube machined of 6061-T6 aircraft quality aluminum. The sturdy construction combined with a generous eye relief of 4", enables the FX-II 4x33mm to withstand the recoil of 12Ga shotgun and any recoil force of up to a .375 H&H caliber.
Though of robust construction, the 4x fixed design keeps a low profile, making Leupold FX-II small enough to be an excellent hunting scope on compact and handy carbines.
This little, classic scope weighs only 9.3 ounces and is only 10.5 inches long. All of the FX-II scopes are waterproof and nitrogen purged to prevent lens fogging.
Leupold FX-II 4x33mm comes with standard Duplex reticle placed in a 2. focal plane. It features capped, finger click turrets for windage and elevation. The turrets are marked in 1/4 minute of angle increments (MOA), and the adjustments range is 80 MOA.
The Leupold FX-II uses Leupold's Multi-coat 4 lens coatings to optimize light transmission for an exceptionally bright field of view.
At 4x, Leupold FX-II 4x33mm provides you all the magnification you may need for shots out to 300 yards.
Like most fixed parallax scopes, the Leupold FX-II 4x33mm is parallax free at a distance of 150 yards.
- Compact and lightweight all-around 4x riflescope
- Multicoat 4 lens system for using in low light conditions
- 1/4 MOA windage and elevation adjustments
The US market is overflooded with lower price 4x and 4.5x magnification scopes that people are opting for surplus military rifles. However, for trendy NRA service rifle matches where the fixed 4.5x magnification is the maximum allowed one, the Nightforce company introduced the new highly specialized Competition SR Fixed 4.5x24 model.
Nightforce made this scope from 30mm aluminum body to accommodate internal mechanism with 100 MOA of both elevation and windage adjustment. NightForce fixed power scopes boast the exposed large, target turrets that provide precise 1/4 MOA clicks with a reassuring tactile feel.
The Competition SR Fixed 4.5 x 24 model features a handy ZeroStop technology on the elevation knob that allows an instant and repeatable return to the shooters chosen zero settings from any elevation adjustment.
Fully Multi-coated lenses are covered with the finest coatings to deliver surprisingly bright and clear picture for only 24mm objective.
Purpose-built for Service Rifle Competition, new Nightforce 4.5x24mm scope is available with two non-illuminated reticle types. While both reticles boast bold main lines and a fine crosshair at the center, the SR-1 reticle sports 10 MOA center circle with eight MOA crosshair, whereas SR-2 reticle has a smaller crosshair of 6 MOA inside a smaller circle of 8 MOA inner diameter.
The Competition SR Fixed 4.5x24 comes with parallax fixed at 200 yards, providing a parallax-free image for all service rifles.
Measuring at 9.9 inches in length and weighing just 15.4 ounces, this compact scope is a perfect accessory for any classic or modern service rifle.
- Parallax adjustment is set at 200 yds.
- The crosshair and circle center section allows easy corrections and holds
- The reticle is located on the second focal plane
- Maximum elevation & windage adjustment is 100 MOA
Best Fixed 6X Power Scopes
Fixed scopes with 6x magnification usually are classified as universal, big game hunting and shooting scopes. They are generally mounted on rifles chambered in all-around cartridges such as the .308 Win, .30-06, .260 Remington and similar.
Leupold FX3 6x42mm Fixed Power Rifle Scope
If you plan to use a fixed power scope for dual purposes like long-range shooting and hunting, the Leupold FX3 6x42mm riflescope would be a perfect choice.
Leupold is known for a range of fixed power riflescopes, and among other configurations, the FX-3 line encompasses 6x scope series, which is one of the most popular fixed magnifications. This Leupold FX 6x line also includes a fixed power scope with adjustable parallax.
In its FX-3 6x42 model, Leupold combines a higher power magnification and exceptional optical quality. Whether you are hunter or shooter, applying an upgraded lens coating called the Xtended Twilight Lens System, an FX-3 riflescope will extend your shooting time and eliminate 80% more glare than the competition.
The Leupold FX3 lenses feature the DiamondCoat 2 coating for superior clarity, light transmission, and upgraded scratch resistance. Moreover, blackened lens edges provide better resolution and improved contrast.
Leupold FX-3 fixed power riflescope has a rear focal plane Wide Duplex reticle to allow you a lightning-fast target acquisition, even on a moving target.
The FX-3 6x42 is one inch a single-piece tube made of aircraft-grade aluminum and filed with Argon/Krypton gas mixture for waterproofness and fog-proof performance.
The Leupold FX-3 is shockproof and it can take on an impressive amount of recoil. Hence, mounting it on heavy magnum rifles shouldn’t worry you, because scope offers a very comfortable eye relief of 4.4 inches.
With an overall length of 13.2 inches, it comes in at only13.6-ounce weight, making it perfect combo for lightweight rifles and medium-range varmint hunting.
- 2nd Generation Argon/Krypton for fog-, and waterproofing
- Multicoat 4 lens coating for more light gathering resulting in brighter images with increased contrast
- Capped windage and elevation turrets with ¼ MOA finger click adjustments and an adjustment range of 64 MOA
Best Fixed 10X & 42X Power Scopes
A fixed 10x magnification riflescope isn’t for everyone as it belongs to more dedicated shooting niches .10x and larger fixed magnification scopes are not as popular as 6x fixed scopes.
Still, they also have a substantial number of followers who have long been specialized in long-range shooting.
Positioned at the midrange price point, Bushnell Elite Tactical 10x40 is a perfect entry scope for more advanced shooters at the budget.
Although you can use it for long-range hunting, the Bushnell Tactical 10x is designed with sniping in mind. It has a couple of tactical features that most regular hunting optics do not come with.
The Bushnell Elite Tactical 10x40 sports exposed tactical turrets that can be re-zeroed and a Mildot reticle typical for the long-range sniping optics. A Mil-Dot reticle, located in the second focal plane, has dots on the vertical and horizontal crosshairs to estimate windage, elevation, and range distant targets.
The turrets are finger-adjustable with repeatable audible 1/4 MOA clicks.
As for the optics, all Elite Tactical scopes come with fully multi-coated glasses that have been treated with Bushnell's Rainguard coating.
While the ˝Ultra-Wide Band˝ coating at lens surfaces delivers very good light transmission, the RainGuard HD anti-fog coating provides outer lenses to stay clear regardless of the weather condition.
The construction of the Elite Tactical features one-piece housing made of aircraft aluminum-titanium alloy tube with a blacked-out finish for concealment.
The 40mm objective lens and a one-inch main tube, the Bushnell Elite Tactical 10x fixed power scope has an overall length of 11.7 inches and weighs 15.5 ounces making it an elegant and stylish addition to any classic rifle.
- Fully multi-coated lenses for enhanced clarity and light transmission
- Argon-filled for fogproof, waterproof and shockproof performance.
- Resettable tactical-style windage and elevation turrets with .0250 MOA clicks
The Nightforce Competition Fixed 42x44 riflescope was developed for a specific type of competitive shooting by only cutting the variable magnification features of the popular NF Competition scopes.
Without interfering with optical glass quality, Nightforce thus created featherweight scope for the lightweight requirements of short-range Benchrest.
At just 20 ounces in weight, this fixed Nightforce model is almost 20% lighter than NF Competition legendary model 15-55x 52 scope. As its name says, the Competition Fixed 42x44 riflescope is purpose-built for the competitions and target shootings.
A 44mm objective lens and the 30mm tube diameter are credited for the well-balanced scope body line. The scope is machined from a single piece of aircraft-grade aluminum and weatherproof.
Combining premium ED glass color with exceptional contrast and robust internal mechanics, the NF Competition Fixed 42x44 scope provides a winning combination.
As with all Nightforce riflescopes, the Competition family this model has target knobs that offer 1/8 MOA per click adjustment. The maximum available elevation adjustment is 45 MOA, whereas the maximum windage adjustment is 35 MOA.
Designed for short-range competitive shooting, this Competitive 42x scope comes with CTR-3 (fine line with dot reticle) reticle set in the second focal plane (SFP).
Competition 42x44 provides an unparalleled precision not only for large caliber and long-range applications but also for its lightweight construction. It's an excellent choice for rimfire and air gun competitions.
- It was built explicitly for the short-range competitive shooting.
- High-quality ED glass enables bright images of the smallest target at extreme ranges.
- Rear focal plane reticle because its size doesn't change with magnification
- Side focus parallax knob allows for adjustments from infinity to 10 meters.
Although most young shooters consider fixed power scopes to be obsolete devices, many experienced marksmen and military snipers can easily accomplish any shooting task and easily use classic fixed power riflescope.
We’re hoping the above overview is offered you quality information and convinced you that fixed-power rifle scopes aren’t an inferior alternative to variables.
Check Out More: Best Low Power Variable Optics
Nesa Ristic is a military historian enthusiast and hobbyist, war veteran and an avid hunter with more than 30 years of experience.
He began reviewing firearms for publications in the mid 1990s and have been fortunate to make many friends in the industry. He has continuously improved his firearms skills and knowledge, which is a never-ending journey.