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  • Post last modified:January 13, 2024
Browning x bolt medallion rifle

If you're a deer hunter looking for the best scope for Browning X Bolt 270 rifle, we have created this guide for you.

Whether you are new or experienced. These options won't break the bank.

Best Riflescope for Browning 270 X Bolt Series Rifles

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  • Best Overall
  • Best 25X For The Money
  • Best 16X For The Money

Vortex Optics Diamondback 4-12X40 - Best Overall

Browning 270 x bolt hell canyon with vortex diamonback scope
Image Referenced Guns International
  • Magnification - 4-12x
  • Objective Lens Diameter - 40 mm
  • Adjustment Graduation - 1/4 MOA
  • Eye Relief - 3.1 - 3.4 inches
  • Tube Size -  30 mm
  • Focal Plane - Second
  • Length - 11.9 inches
  • Weight - 14.6 oz

When it comes to optics for hunting, the Vortex Diamondback is an absolute gem that offers exceptional value for your hard-earned money. With years of hunting experience under my belt, I can confidently say that the Diamondback 4-12X40 SFP scope is a top choice for those looking for quality without breaking the bank.

One of the standout features of this scope is its dead-hold BDC reticle. Now, I've used my fair share of reticles over the years, and the dead-hold BDC is a game-changer, especially when you're out in the field. It simplifies those crucial shots, making precision hunting a breeze.

But what truly sets the Diamondback apart is its construction. Crafted from a single piece of aircraft-grade aluminum alloy, this scope is a true testament to durability. I've put this scope through its paces, and it's virtually indestructible. Whether you're dealing with heavy recoil from magnum rounds or rough handling in the field, the Diamondback stands up to the challenge.

Now, let's talk magnification. The 12X magnification on this scope is more than enough for those long-range shots and hunting scenarios. What's impressive is the Precision-Glide Erector System, a feature that ensures smooth and seamless zooming through all magnification ranges. No jerky movements or frustrations—just pure precision.

When you're out in the wild, simplicity matters. That's why I appreciate the capped turrets for elevation and adjustments. They're designed for outdoor protection, and you can easily manipulate them without the need for any additional tools. It's all about making your hunting experience smoother and more enjoyable.

And here's the icing on the cake—Vortex backs the Diamondback with their signature unlimited lifetime warranty. That's peace of mind that money can't buy. 

Vortex Viper PST Gen 2 5-25X50 SFP - Best 25X For The Money

vortex 5-25x50 viper PST Gen 2
  • Magnification - 5-25x
  • Objective Lens Diameter - 50 mm
  • Adjustment Graduation - 1/4 MOA
  • Eye Relief - 3.4 inches
  • Tube Size -  30 mm
  • Focal Plane - Second
  • Length - 15.79 inches
  • Weight - 31.2 oz

Vortex Optics has become a well-known name in the industry, loved for its extensive range of shooting optics. Let's delve into why their products, especially the Vortex Viper PST 5-25X50, are so popular.

This second focal plane scope stands out for its crystal-clear glass quality, ensuring that colors remain true with no distortion. It also excels in light transmission, outperforming many other scopes in this aspect.


The Vortex Optics Viper PST Gen II 5-25x50 is a notable upgrade from its predecessor, offering enhanced durability and improved features. The glass quality is superior, and the design includes a larger eye box and more comfortable eye relief.

A significant update in the Gen 2 model is the turret adjustment system, now akin to the high-end Razor line, which eliminates the need for shims when setting your zero stop.

Moreover, the Viper PST EBR 7C reticle is incredibly versatile. It's not just for hunting; this scope is well-suited for a .270 caliber, competitive shooting, and tactical applications, showcasing its adaptability beyond traditional hunting uses. This versatility is a key reason why people appreciate Vortex Optics, as they offer a scope that's capable of handling a variety of shooting activities.

  • Magnification - 4-16x
  • Objective Lens Diameter - 50 mm
  • Adjustment Graduation - 1/4 MOA
  • Eye Relief - 3.4 inches
  • Tube Size -  30 mm
  • Focal Plane - Second
  • Length - 13.6 inches
  • Weight - 20.4 oz

The Vortex Viper HS is an excellent choice for a .270 deer rifle. We particularly recommend the 4-16X model with a Dead-Hold BDC reticle. This scope is perfect for hunting up to 500 yards. Plus, if you're at a rifle range looking to do some precision shooting, you have the option to zoom in up to 16X.

vortex dead hold bdc reticle

One of the key benefits of this scope is its construction. It features straightforward, capped windage and elevation turrets. This design choice not only simplifies adjustments but also reduces the weight, making it more convenient for hunters.

The scope's design includes a 30mm main tube and a 50mm objective lens, which are great for capturing light in low-light conditions, like hunting at dawn. The Viper series is a popular choice for various activities, including competition shooting, hunting, and long-range precision shooting. Those who own it often share positive feedback, noting its high quality without being overly expensive.

In terms of value, the Viper HS stands out. Priced at just under $1000, it offers quality that's hard to match in its price range. If you're interested, don't hesitate to check out this scope.

Browning X Bolt 270 Scope Guide

Browning X bolt max long range rifle

The .270 is known for its accuracy in hunting, especially for distances ranging from 500 to 1000 yards. When selecting a scope for such a cartridge, it's important to consider specific features that enhance shooting performance over these distances.

Key aspects to focus on include magnification, weight, eye relief, objective lens size, and reticle type, among others. In the following sections, we'll delve into each of these elements in detail, helping you understand how they contribute to a successful long-range hunting experience.

Check out: Best Long Range Rifle Scopes For 1000 Yards

Range & Accuracy Of A .270 Winchester

The performance of a .270 rifle, including its accuracy and range, hinges on several ballistic factors. These include the twist rate of the barrel, the power of the cartridge, the ballistic coefficient of the bullet, and the muzzle velocity, among others.

When it comes to hunting, especially in areas where the terrain is a mix of woods and open spaces, the typical shooting distance is usually within 400 yards. For such scenarios, a scope with 4X magnification generally works well. It's not just about choosing the most accurate scope, though. It's also important to understand the capabilities of your .270 Winchester in relation to the rifle you're using.

The .270 ammunition comes in a variety of weights, ranging from 90 grains to 180 grains. The choice of bullet weight should be based on the type of game you're hunting, your budget, and the shooting distances you expect to encounter. Each weight has its own advantages and is suited for specific hunting situations.

Cross Over Usage

browning 270 x bolt max long range scope with leupold scope

The Browning .270 is a popular choice among hunters and precision shooters. Therefore, selecting a scope that you're comfortable with is crucial.

The .270 is known for its moderate recoil. You'll certainly feel the kick, which means you need a durable scope that can maintain accuracy, or "hold zero," even after hundreds of shots. This durability is essential to ensure your shots remain precise over time.

For hunting, your scope needs to be tough enough to withstand the rigors of outdoor use. It should be resistant not only to the usual bumps and scrapes but also to moisture, which is a common challenge in outdoor environments. A scope that can handle these conditions will be more reliable in the field.

A ballistic reticle is a great feature for both precision shooting and hunting. It helps in estimating distances and adjusting for bullet drop, making your shots more accurate. The weight of the scope is another important consideration. For hunters who spend a lot of time moving around in the woods, a lighter scope is preferable for ease of maneuverability. However, weight is less of an issue for those who primarily do stationary range shooting. 

Related Content: Best Riflescopes For 308 & Other Hard Hitting Calibers

What Magnification Do You Need For Deer Hunting

deer hunting scope magnification

Magnification is a key factor influencing the cost of a scope. Understanding your typical hunting range—whether it's long, short, or mid-range—is crucial in choosing the right magnification. There's no need to invest in a high-powered scope, like one with 12X magnification or more, if your hunting doesn't require it.

Another aspect to consider is the use of the scope for target identification. If you prefer not to carry additional binoculars to save on weight and enhance mobility in the woods, a scope with a higher magnification can double as a spotting scope. This dual functionality allows for more flexibility in the field, enabling you to observe and identify targets at greater distances without extra equipment.

Deer hunting is an intricate and challenging pursuit that demands efficiency and accuracy from all your gear, including your scope. Most hunting scenarios, especially in deer hunting, occur within 500 yards. For this range, scopes with 1-4X or 3-9X magnification are ideal. They are not only suitable for deer hunting but also versatile enough for use at a flat shooting range.

While taking a shot from 1,000 yards might be an aspirational goal for some hunters, the reality is that most successful shots and kills are made within a 200-400 yard range.

Lightweight Scope

Deer hunting joe rogan

Scope weight indeed plays a more significant role for hunters compared to stationary long-range shooters. When you're on the move, especially in hunting scenarios, every ounce counts. Lightening your load can save energy and make a considerable difference during a long hunting trip.

Considering the Browning .270 weighs around 7 pounds without a scope, aiming to keep the entire setup under 9 pounds for hunting is a sensible approach. This ensures that your gear is manageable and doesn't become a burden during extended periods of movement.


However, it's important to remember that every hunter has different preferences and capabilities, so it's essential to choose a setup that suits your individual needs and comfort.

For those who engage in stationary long-range shooting, the weight of the scope is less of a concern. In these situations, the primary focus is on the scope's features and performance rather than its weight. As long as the weight doesn't negatively impact your shooting experience or cause discomfort, it's generally not a major factor to consider.

Sun Shade To Block Lens Glare

Most scopes are designed with threads on the objective lens to accommodate various adapters, and some even come equipped with a sun shade adapter. This feature is particularly useful for shooting in bright sunlight.

The sun shade accessory can be a valuable addition to your scope, depending on your hunting style and environment. When you're out in the wild, conditions can vary significantly, and bright sunlight can create glare or reduce visibility. A sun shade helps mitigate these issues by reducing glare and improving the clarity of your sight picture. It's especially useful in open areas or during specific times of the day when the sun is at its peak.

If you frequently find yourself hunting in bright, sunny conditions, investing in a scope with a sun shade or the ability to attach one can enhance your shooting experience. It's a simple yet effective tool that can make a noticeable difference in your visibility and accuracy.

Eye Relief - Protect From Scope Bite

Having an eye relief distance of 3.5 to 4 inches on a scope is indeed beneficial, particularly for protecting against the dreaded 'scope bite' while ensuring a clear and unobstructed view without any scope shadows.

Nightforce NXS 5.5-22x56 hs scope on bolt action rifle

In hunting scenarios, where quick reactions are often required to acquire a sight picture and shoot at a moving target, a generous eye relief is crucial. It provides enough space between your eye and the scope to prevent injury from the recoil, especially when shooting a caliber with relatively strong recoil like the .270 Winchester. This recoil can cause the scope to move back swiftly towards the eye upon firing. Adequate eye relief allows you to maintain a safe distance from the scope, reducing the risk of getting hit.

Objective Lens - Larger Diameter For More Light

Alongside magnification, clarity and brightness are crucial attributes to consider when selecting a scope. The diameter of the lens plays a pivotal role in this regard. A larger lens diameter enhances the scope's ability to capture light, which is incredibly useful for hunters, particularly in low-light conditions often encountered in outdoor settings.

The capacity of a scope to gather sufficient light under dim conditions not only improves visibility but also aids in accurate target identification and shooting precision. This feature becomes even more practical when combined with a hunting color flashlight in darker environments. The flashlight can illuminate the area, while the scope's light-gathering ability enhances your view through it, allowing for better visibility and target acquisition.

ballistic calculator thermal scope

For night shooting, a different approach is recommended. In such conditions, thermal scopes are highly effective. These scopes detect heat signatures, providing a clear image of warm-bodied targets like animals, even in complete darkness. They are an invaluable tool for hunters who engage in nocturnal hunting activities, offering a significant advantage in low visibility situations. 

Parallax Adjustment

Having parallax adjustment on the scope is important for aligning the reticle plane to the target plane to avoid aiming error, which also gives the shooter a more flexible head movement.

Usually higher magnification scopes offer parallax setting adjustment, and the lower magnification scopes don't.

Reticle For Hunting - For Faster Target Acquisition

Reticle crosshair on deer

Hunters commonly opt for reticles like the duplex, mil-dot, or Bullet Drop Compensator (BDC). These types offer a balance between simplicity and functionality, providing essential information without overwhelming the shooter. It's generally not necessary to choose highly complex reticles like the Tremor 3, which are designed for extreme long-range shooting and can be overly complicated for typical hunting scenarios.

In situations where quick action is required, such as when a target is moving, reticles with hash marks can be invaluable. They allow for rapid range estimation and enable the shooter to make a swift and informed shot. This feature can significantly enhance the effectiveness of a hunting scope.

Another option to consider is the Advanced Combined Sighting System (ACSS) HUD DMR reticle. This reticle is designed for faster ranging of both stationary and moving targets. Its intuitive design aids in quick target acquisition, making it a suitable choice for hunters who need to react rapidly in dynamic situations. Always remember to choose a reticle that not only suits your hunting style and the .270's ballistics but also one that you're comfortable using under various conditions.

Durable Construction

When mounting a scope, particularly for a rifle like the Browning .270, it's essential to pay attention to the torque specifications for the scope rings. This ensures the scope is securely mounted and maintains accuracy over time. Here's a guide on proper torque specifications for common scope rings:

General Torque Recommendations: Most scope ring manufacturers recommend a torque of 15-20 in/lbs for mounting the scope rings onto the scope. However, this can vary, and it's essential to check the manufacturer's specifications.

Specific Brand Specifications:

  • Giessele Super Precision: 15-18 in/lbs
  • Vortex: 15-18 in/lbs
  • Seekins Precision: 20 in/lbs
  • Nightforce: 25 in/lbs
  • Leupold: 15-17 in/lbs
  • Warne: 25 in/lbs
  • Spuhr: 15-25 in/lbs.

Focal Plane

The choice between SFP and FFP depends largely on your hunting or shooting environment and preferences. If most of your shooting will be at known distances or closer ranges, an SFP scope might be more suitable. Conversely, if you're engaging targets at varying or longer ranges and need more precision without adjusting the scope's settings, an FFP scope could be the better choice.


The cost of a scope is influenced by several factors, including magnification, focal plane choice, and overall build quality. If high quality and precision are top priorities in your hunting experience, investing in a more expensive scope is often necessary.

By opting for a scope with lower magnification, suitable for the typical hunting ranges you'll encounter, you can find many excellent and affordable options. It's entirely possible to select a high-quality hunting scope without spending over $400, especially if your hunting activities are mostly within 500 yards. This range covers a wide array of scopes that are perfectly adequate for typical hunting needs.

How Far Can You Shoot A 270?

The Browning .270 X-Bolt Bolt action rifle is capable of reaching distances of at least 1,000 yards. However, for practical hunting purposes, distances between 300 to 500 yards are more realistic and manageable. This range is an important consideration when selecting the right magnification level for your scope.

Bullet weight significantly impacts the ballistic performance of the .270, as with other rifle calibers. Let's look at two examples to illustrate this:

150 gr .270 Bullet Performance at 500 Yards:

  • Velocity: Approximately 1674 feet per second (fps)
  • Energy: Around 940 foot-pounds (lbs)
  • Bullet Drop: About -52 inches (or approximately 4.3 feet)

130 gr .270 Bullet Performance at 500 Yards:

  • Velocity: Roughly 1904 fps
  • Energy: About 1050 lbs
  • Bullet Drop: Around -42 inches (or approximately 3 feet)

These statistics show that even at 500 yards, a .270 can maintain significant velocity and energy, with manageable bullet drop. The choice between a 150 gr and a 130 gr bullet will depend on your specific hunting needs, such as the type of game and environmental conditions.

Note: Learn and master your rifle system will make you a lethal hunter using any ammo type.