6 BEST SCOPES FOR RUGER PRECISION RIFLES & NEW PRS SHOOTERS

Ruger Precision Rifle

The Ruger Precision Rifle is one of the most popular entry-level rifles for long-range precision shooting, and with good reason. 

Ruger ignited a nationwide interest in precision shooting with this affordable, well-designed chassis rifle, and was the first “mainstream” manufacturer to release this style of gun at a budget-friendly price.

But of course no matter how competent this rifle may be, it’ll only ever be as good as the glass you have on top of it. That’s why it’s important to have the best scope for the Ruger Precision Rifle you can get.

But which scope to pick?

I get this question a lot, especially as PRS and other long-range shooting sports grow more popular. So I wanted to do a deep dive into what the best options out there are, as well as provide a little info on how to choose the best one to meet your needs.

Let’s get started with...

PRODUCT

DETAILS

Products

Athlon Midas Tac HD

Athlon-Optics

Athlon Midas Tac HD

  • Magnification:6 - 24 x
  • Diameter:50 mm
  • Weight:26.3 - 1.64375 oz

Vortex Viper PST Gen II FFP

Vortex-Optics-Viper

Vortex Viper PST Gen II FFP

  • Magnification: 5-25x
  • Diameter: 50mm
  • Matrial:Aircraft-Grade Aluminum

Bushnell Elite Tactical XRS II

Bushnell-Elite

Bushnell Elite Tactical XRS II

  • Magnification: 4.5-30x
  • Diameter: 50mm
  • Weight:37 oz

Bushnell Elite Tactical XRS II

Kahles-K525i

Kahles k525i

  • Magnification: 5-25x
  • Diameter: 56mm
  • Weight:970 g 34.2 oz

Nightforce ATACR

Nightforce-Optics

Nightforce ATACR

  • Magnification: 5-25x
  • Diameter: 56mm
  • Color:Black

Vortex Razor HD Gen II

Vortex-Optics-Razor

Vortex Razor HD Gen II

  • Magnification: 4.5-27x
  • Diameter: 56mm
  • Weight:48.5 oz

A Little Background On The Ruger Precision Rifle

As I mentioned above, the RPR is the first mainstream chassis-style rifle produced by a major manufacturer. Several years ago when it was released it started an absolute firestorm of interest in long-range shooting sports like PRS, and precision shooting in general.

Nowadays, many manufacturers including Tikka, Savage, Remington, SIG Sauer and others are making precision rifles on a chassis platform. 

This sea change in the industry has lead to hundred of thousands of chassis rifles being sold for long-range shooting, but through it all Ruger has remained fairly dominant thanks to the fact that they got the RPR out first (and the fact that it just works so damn well). It is now one of the most popular long range rifles around.

Now you can get new barrels and handguards (as well as other accessories) designed just for the RPR, which makes it a good option if you want to tweak your setup. And of course you have that big rail on top to easily mount whatever scope you want.

Speaking of scopes, let’s talk about how to pick the best scope for your shiny new Ruger Precision Rifle.

How Much Should I Spend on a Scope for a Ruger Precision Rifle?

First and foremost, only you know what your finances are like, and how much room you have in your budget for a rifle scope. I was once a broke college student trying to get into precision shooting on the cheap, so I totally get it.

For all you out there that balk at the idea of spending $1000+ on a scope, I've got several budget-friendly options on here that won't break the bank.

That said, you get what you pay for and I am a strong proponent of spending as much as you can on a scope for this kind of shooting. Yes, some of the options on this list cost as much as the rifle itself and that's fine.  Some of them cost almost twice as much. 

Nightforce Beast rifleshooting

Lookin at you, Nightforce.

The reason for this is simple: cheap scopes don’t do so well at 600 yards+, and the RPR can reach out to a mile in the right hands, and with the right ammo.

At the end of the day, the two limiting factors on your performance when starting out are going to be your own skill set and your scope, because a low-quality scope can actively hold you back. 

Cheap glass makes it harder to see your target, cheap turrets make it harder to actively dial your elevation, and poorly-designed reticles will slow you down on your target transitions.

Bottom line, you get what you pay for, and spending $1200 on a rifle and then putting a $150 scope on it is absolute madness in my opinion. Most people buying the RPR are just getting started with precision shooting, and I'd wager most of them haven't reached out beyond 600 yards before.

If that sounds like you, you probably don't have a huge basis of comparison when it comes to high-end scopes but trust me, a crappy scope is going to make learning the ropes of long range shooting much, much harder, and you don't need that extra hurdle, especially when starting out.

For that reason, you won't find any super cheap scopes on this list because they will actively hinder your performance. 

Not that slapping a high-end scope on something is exactly guaranteed to improve your performance, but it does give you fewer hurdles to jump over when you're learning. Most of the time.

If you're that worried about your budget, get a Ruger American Rifle in 6.5 CM, throw a Vortex Diamondback Tactical scope on it, and you'll be ready to start learning how to shoot at longer ranges for less than $1,000. 

If you're trying to jump in with both feet and you've decided on the RPR (or a similar mainstream chassis rifle) then spend the extra dosh on a good scope. You'll be glad you did. 

With that said, I’ve got some $400ish options on here, and I’ve specifically picked ones that will work well on other rifles later so if you upgrade to a better scope in the future, you aren’t stuck with an extra scope (of course you could just sell it, but that’s up to you).

On the other end of things, if you have the cash to spend and think you might really like this precision shooting thing, go big and get something really nice in case you end up upgrading your rifle later. 

However, with that said, spending $2500 on a Nightforce or S&B isn’t going to make you Gunny Hatchcock or Bob Lee Swagger. For most people, an $800-$1500 option is going to be the way to go, as it’ll be awhile before you can outshoot the RPR with a scope in that price range on it. 

When you’re starting out, if you’ve got the extra money, you’re better off spending it on ammo, and if possible taking a class from a reputable instructor. .

Other Things to Look For In a Scope for a Ruger Precision Rifle

In addition to not cheaping out and buying some piece of crap scope, there are some other things to keep in mind.

Quality Construction

As always, we want something that is made with care and competence from quality materials.

athlon-6-24x50

 That means waterproof and fogproof o-rings, a gas-purged tube made of aircraft-grade aluminum, and a shockproof design that can stand up to the recoil of some of the larger calibers you can get the Ruger Precision Rifle and Ruger Precision Magnum chambered in.

Glass Quality

Glass quality or clarity can be very subjective, which is why I will always recommend trying to find a way to look through the scope you're thinking about before you buy it. Even if you're going to buy online from somebody like Amazon or OpticsPlanet, try to hunt down a way to check the glass out for yourself.

In general though, most scopes from reputable manufacturers making products for this kind of shooting are going to be free of things like chromatic aberration and are going to have solid multicoated lenses that will make it easy to see mirage (key for judging wind). 

Reticle Style

The Ruger Precision Rifle is, well, a precision rifle, so you want an appropriate reticle. Your standard crosshair in your duplex reticle ain’t gonna cut it here. 

At a bare minimum, you’re going to want a MOA or Mil dot reticle, and in my opinion you should go with a more tactical-style “Christmas tree” reticle that has both windage and elevation lines to make it easy to quickly shift from target to target and to quickly make adjustments based on changing winds. 

athlon_midas_tactical_6-24x50

You also don’t want a bullet drop compensator (bdc) reticle. They’re too limited for this type of precision shooting and more geared towards a short-range or hunting scope. We’re going to be dialing our holdover with the elevation turrets for this kind of long distance shooting. A true long range scope will have a Mil or MOA reticle. 

And because we’re going to be using our scope reticle to measure elevation and windage, we need it to be the same relative size at all magnification ranges, which of course means we need a first focal plane reticle instead of a second focal plane option. 

Zero-Stop Target Turrets

One of the biggest things you need to look at for this kind of shooting is tactical or target style turrets. This means finger-adjustable turrets that you can use to dial your windage and elevation adjustments as opposed to turrets that you adjust with a coin and then leave alone after you’re done zeroing.

athlon_midas_tac_review

One thing to consider is whether or not you have a capped windage turret. You still want one that’s finger adjustable, but in general most people (myself included) just compensate for windage with the reticle as opposed to dialing it. 

You only really need to dial windage in really heavy winds, or when shooting well beyond typical PRS ranges, so having that cap over the windage turret can be good for keeping the turret from getting bumped accidentally. 

Finally, zero-stops are adjustable set screws or other mechanical devices that allow you to quickly return to your original zero without dialing past it. After all, you don’t really adjust for a shot nearer than your zeroing distance with your turret, so this lets you dial back to that original setting almost immediately, and without looking. 

Magnification Range

This is the really controversial one among long-range shooters.

Some people will swear you only need 9x magnification to shoot at 1200 yards. Some will say you can make shots at a mile with iron sights. I mean, our great grandfathers did it in WWI with volley-fire weapons, why can’t we? 

The truth is, for actual precision shooting instead of just making educated guesses, you need a decent amount of magnification. The bare minimum I’d consider acceptable would be a max magnification of 14x or more preferably 18x, but I’ve seen people run up to 35x scopes very comfortably. 

That kind of magnification can be expensive though, so you’ll see most scopes for this type of shooting in the range of 5-25x or so. The one thing I will note is that you can always dial a 35x scope down to the 25x range, but you obviously can’t do the reverse. For some shots, you might find that you want that extra zoom. This is up to your preferences and budget however.

I started out my precision shooting journey with the Ruger Precision Rifle, and since then I’ve been lucky enough to try a number of different scopes on this platform. I also took a number of these options out for a test drive when writing this buying guide just to collect my thoughts and eliminate some options because I wanted to keep this to a reasonable length.

So, here, in no particular order, are the best Ruger Precision Rifle scopes.

1. Athlon Midas Tac HD

Athlon is a relatively new game in the optics world, but they’ve already made a huge splash in the realm of affordable, high-quality scopes.

athlon-tac-6-24x50

The Midas Tac is one of my new favorite options from Athlon, and it’s actually what I have on my RPR right now (I still use it as a test bed). You can read my full review of the scope here, but the short version is this is a very good scope.

It competes with the Vortex Viper PST which we’ll discuss in a minute, as they’re similarly priced and perform pretty comparably, though the Midas Tac is a little bit cheaper. The APRS 3 MIL reticle is perfect for PRS, and that’s what I’d recommend going with for any kind of competition, or even long range varmint hunting from a static position. 

The glass is clear and bright as well, and frankly much better than a lot of the more expensive options out there. I like the 5-25x5 version for the longer magnification range and the larger objective lens, but the 6-24x is solid too. Both have a 34mm main tube. 

Overall, this is a great option in the sub-$1000 price range, and might just be one of the best in that price bracket. 

Athlon-Optics

Athlon Midas Tac HD

The price of the Athlon Midas Tac HD varies, so check the latest price at

2. Vortex Viper PST Gen II FFP

The Vortex Viper PST Gen II is a more established option compared to the Midas Tac, but they fill basically the same role.

ruger precision rimfire

They’re both competent, mid-range (pricewise) options that fit the general budget of someone buying an RPR. These scopes both just make sense on top of a Ruger Precision Rifle.

The Vortex Optics Viper Viper PST has an overall length of 15.79" and its shockproof construction and almost 4" of eye relief combines to make it a good option if you think you might one day upgrade to .300 WM or .300 PRC. 

The multicoated lenses here offer slightly better light transmission than the Midas Tac, giving you a brighter sight picture in low light conditions, making this a better option if you're using your RPR to try to snipe the occasional prairie dog.  It has a 30mm tube diameter and a fast focus eyepiece. 

The illuminated reticle is a nice bonus as well, and is great if you prefer that brighter center dot (another features hunters love). 

It is a few hundred bucks more expensive than the Midas Tac, but it's also a little more tried and tested over the years. This is one of the most popular Ruger Precision Rifle scopes for a reason, and you'll likely see many of them at your local PRS matches.

Finally, like all Vortex scopes, you get a solid lifetime warranty so even if something does go wrong, you’re covered. Just make sure you get the FFP version and not the older SFP or Viper HS-T ones. They’re great scopes, I just wouldn’t recommend them over the Viper PST.

Vortex-Optics-Viper

Vortex Viper PST Gen II FFP

The price of the Vortex Viper PST Gen II FFP varies, so check the latest price at

3. Bushnell Elite Tactical XRS II 

Bushnell's Elite Tactical series has done well in the precision shooting sports world, and the XRS II can be found on rifles that have won the King of Two Mile competition, as well as many other precision shooting championships and PRS events.

The crystal-clear E.D. Prime glass is treated with Bushnell's EXO Barrier coating that helps cut down on static and repels water, while still giving you a beautiful true-color sight picture, even in low light.

The locking windage turret is a good nod to the fact that almost nobody dials windage, but we still want the ability to adjust it on the fly. Still, the fact that it locks and unlocks easily keeps it from getting bumped accidentally when you're moving around a stage.

Bushnell-Elite

Bushnell Elite Tactical XRS II

The price of the Bushnell Elite Tactical XRS II varies, so check the latest price at

4. Kahles k525i

The Kahles K525i is another popular sight at PRS matches, and when you look at the features it's easy to see why.

This is a scope designed for competition and tactical shooting, there's no question about it.

It has some of the best glass on the planet, and the turrets are as crisp and repeatable as anything I've used. The adjustments are very tactile, making it easy to dial your shot in quickly. 

The ambidextrous windage is great as well because you don't have to break a firing grip to make your windage adjustments, even if you're a lefty. The patented parallax adjustment is actually built into the elevation on top of the scope, making it ambidextrous as well.

It takes a little bit of adjusting to if you're used to a side-focus parallax knob like you find on basically every other scope, but that's why we train with our gear, right?

Kahles-K525i

Kahles k525i

The price of the Kahles k525i varies, so check the latest price at

5. Nightforce ATACR

The Nightforce ATACR is the most popular optic among professional PRS shooters. Originally designed for military and police shooters, this legendary optic has found a loving home with all types of long range shooting enthusiasts, from hunters to pro competitors. 

scope for ruger precision rifle

This bulletproof scope is designed to work in even the most extreme conditions, and can easily handle recoil all the way up to semi-automatic .50 cal in a combat situation, so your 6.5 Creedmoor is going to be basically nothing for it. 

It has a little bit higher maximum magnification than the also-popular Nightforce SHV, but both options work well for this kind of shooting. Yes, Nightforce stuff is expensive, but it’s hard to argue with the durability and performance.

The turrets are crisp and have some of the best tracking I’ve ever tested. There was absolutely no deviation even after a full day of shooting about $1000 of .338 Lapua, which isn’t as many rounds as you might think, but still. 

If you’re looking for the most rugged and dependable option out there, accept no substitute. 

Nightforce-Optics

Nightforce ATACR

The price of the Nightforce ATACR varies, so check the latest price at

6. Vortex Razor HD Gen II

The Vortex Razor HD Gen II is another extremely popular Precision Rifle Series scope, and one of the best overall Ruger Precision Rifle scope options. 

ruger precision rifle scopes

This is part of Vortex’s wildly-popular Razor HD line, and until they release a 6-24x as part of their Razor HD GEN III lineup, this will probably be the most popular Vortex optic among professional precision rifle shooters. 

It comes in both MOA and Mil flavors, but I strongly recommend going with the Tremor 3 or Horus H59 options unless you’re totally unwilling to learn the Mil system. Honestly, these are some of my favorite reticles for this kind of shooting, so learning to use them early in your precision shooting career would be a good investment of your time and training ammo. 

For your money you get excellent glass, Vortex’s great L-Tec turret system that is as good as anything out there under $3,000, and of course Vortex’s lifetime warranty that is one of the very best in the industry. If you want to jump straight to a high-end option, but don’t quite have Kahles or Nightforce money, this is the option that I would recommend. 

Vortex-Optics-Razor

Vortex Razor HD Gen II

The price of the Vortex Razor HD Gen II varies, so check the latest price at

Parting Shots

The Ruger Precision Rifle is a great gun if you have the right scope for it. With these scope options, you’ll be able to get the most out of this great rifle, especially if you’re just starting out with precision shooting or PRS. 

I’ve used (and abused) all the scopes on this list, and they’re great for this platform, and many of them are perfect options for more advanced rifles if you choose to stick with the sport.

Which of these scopes do you like the best? Is there one you like better than the others? Let us know in the comments! And be sure to check out our list of the best scopes for .300 Win Mag and best ruger mini 14 scopes for other similar options.

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