6 Best Scopes for 30-06 [2020 Update]

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Today I’m going to show you the best 30-06 scope for your rifle.

In fact:

I’ve personally owned and tested every single one of these scopes. And I know, from first-hand experience, these are the absolute best.

Read on…

Why should you trust me?

I actually test the scopes I preach.

How many people can say that? Not many.

But I didn’t just test them, mind you. I actually researched the (excuse my language) HELL out of each scope.

I read every single shooting magazine, forum post, 30-06 guide and every ‘expert’ recommendation online. I left no stone unturned.

Then, I bought every scope and spent countless hours testing it. It hurt my pocket (real bad) and took some time, but it was well worth it.

Because I finally found the best scope for 30-06 I wanted. And I hope you find the 30-06 scope you’re looking for down below!

The 6 Best Scopes for 30-06

If you’re pressed on time, here’s a quick list of the top 30-06 scopes:

  1. Vortex Viper HS-T 6-24×50: Best Scope For Ultra Long Range
  2. Vortex Diamondback 4-12×40: Best Scope for Hunters
  3. Nikon Prostaff 3-9×40: Best BDC Reticle Scope
  4. Burris Fullfield E1 4.5-14×42: Best Mid-to-Long Range Scope
  5. Nikon Buckmaster II 3-9×40: Best Scope for the Budget
  6. Leupold VX-1 3-9×40: Best Short-to-Mid Range Scope

1. Vortex Viper HS-T 6-24×50: Best Scope For Ultra Long Range

If you made a list of every cool feature a scope could possibly have, the Viper PST would have them all.

It’s fully multi-coated, made with special low light dispersion glass, and machined to the highest standards.

Vortex Viper HS-T rear optic glass
Via: The Daily Shooter

Sighting through the PST is extremely clear, regardless of the weather or lighting conditions.

The fiber optic lighted reticle allows you to see your mark in low light, and their Customizable Rotational Stop system makes it easier to account for elevation corrections on the fly.

Vortex Viper HS-T reticle
Via: Gavintoobe

The Viper PST also has an eye relief distance of 4 inches, so you won’t bonk your face after painstakingly lining up a shot.

Vortex Viper HS-T eye relief
Via: The Daily Shooter

This scope does have some issues with its parallax adjustment dials. They can be hard to turn and can be prone to sticking, especially in cold weather.

Vortex Viper HS-T parallax dial
Via: The Daily Shooter

Another warning: the price.

The Viper PST is the most expensive scope on this list. It’s well worth that expense for the lighted reticle and Rotational Stop System alone.

Vortex Viper HS-T scope mounted
Via: The Daily Shooter

Add in the high-quality glass and great build quality, and it more than justifies its price.


Is the Viper-HST for you?

If you’re a shooting enthusiast that’s willing to spend big to get the best, then this is the scope for you.

It may be expensive, but it’ll also be the last scope you’ll ever need.

The features offered with the PST is unmatched. Additionally, the build quality is superb.

If you want to get full use out of the range that the .30-06 offers, this is going the best scope for 30-06 rifles for you!

Vortex Optics Viper HS-T 6-24x50 SFP Riflescope VMR-1 MRAD
417 Reviews
Vortex Optics Viper HS-T 6-24x50 SFP Riflescope VMR-1 MRAD
  • The Viper HS-T 6-24x50 is one of multiple configurations in the Viper HS-T (Hunting & Shooting Tactical) line. VMR-1 Reticle (MRAD) is perfect for accurate holds at extended ranges.
  • Incorporating our premium, fully multi-coated, extra-low dispersion lenses brings excellent resolution and color fidelity. The XR coatings provide enhanced light gathering capability while Armored...
  • The exposed target-style turrets are constructed for precise and repeatable finger-adjustable clicks. A CRS Zero Stop allows for reliable return to zero capability after dialing temporary elevation...

Also, if you’re into long-range shooting, you might want to check out my best ar-10 scope article.


2. Vortex Diamondback 4-12×40: Best Scope for Hunters

Vortex is known for making stellar scopes, and the Diamondback is no exception.

And by “stellar,” I mean you could use this scope as a telescope if you wanted to (just joking)!

The Diamondback has the same exacting build quality as Vortex’s top of the line scopes, without the top of the line cost.

Vortex Diamondback scope
Via: Shooting Utah

This scope is a great pick if you’re looking for something that’s a step up from entry-level, without trying to spend more on your scope than you did on your rifle.

Vortex diamondback zoom dial
Via: Shooting Utah

The reticle on the Diamondback is a unique and functional mix of Duplex simplicity combined with BDC accuracy.

It’s simple to use and doesn’t take much getting used to.

Vortex diamondback reticle
Via: Shooting Utah

Vortex’s great glass and finishes also contribute to the excellent quality.

Add in the generous eye relief of 4 inches, and you’ve certainly got a real contender for the best scope for 30-06 rifles.

Vortex diamondback eye relief
Via: Shooting Utah

The Diamondback does have some difficulties with focus and light transmission at higher magnifications.

However, that’s only compared to much more expensive scopes. Compared to other scopes in its price range, it performs just fine.


Is the Vortex Diamondback for you?

If you’re looking for something that’s as good on the range as it is in the woods, this is the scope for you.

With the Diamondback on your rifle, you’ll be able to take on just about any shooting scenario.

The magnification levels are made with the hunter in mind, though if you want to try your hand at sharpshooting, the upper levels are there.

This is the scope for your 30-06 if you plan on doing a lot of deer hunting but want some flexibility for the future.

Vortex Optics Diamondback 4-12x40 Second Focal Plane Riflescope - Dead-Hold BDC Reticle (MOA) with Baseball Hat
244 Reviews
Vortex Optics Diamondback 4-12x40 Second Focal Plane Riflescope - Dead-Hold BDC Reticle (MOA) with Baseball Hat
  • The Diamondback 3.5-10x50 riflescope is one of multiple configurations in the Diamondback lineup and is ideal for big game, predator/varmint, slug shotgun, and long range applications
  • Dead-Hold BDC reticle is good for any hunting or shooting at varying ranges where estimating hold-over would be a concern
  • Lenses are fully multi-coated for crystal clear, bright images from dawn till dusk The fast focus eyepiece allows for quick and easy reticle focusing

3. Nikon Prostaff 3-9×40: Best BDC Reticle Scope

The Prostaff is a great choice if you’re looking to take a step up from entry-level, without taking a step over your budget!

This scope also comes with the same Nikon Spot-On App functionality as the Nikon Buckmaster II.

However, the Prostaff is a step up from the Buckmaster in many ways.

Nikon ProStaff 3-9x50 M Rifle Scope Photo slideshow 0-13 screenshot
Via: Optics Trade

The Prostaff boasts better glass clarity and improved light transmission compared to the Buckmaster, but these differences will be most noticeable at night.

Additionally, this scope features standard full multi-coating, as well as Nikon’s Quick Focus feature that allows you to bring your target into focus quicker.

This feature is particularly useful if you’re shooting small to mid-sized game and need to get your shot off quick before they scamper out of sight.

Nikon Prostaff glass
Via: My Extreme Hunting & Fishing

That’s why this scope would work great on a 17 HMR.

However, the eye relief on the Prostaff, like the other Nikon scope on this list, is a little short at 3.6 inches.

Nikon ProStaff 3-9x50 M Rifle Scope Photo slideshow 0-57 screenshot
Via: Optics Trade

While that length is definitely doable, with the kick of a .30-06, it’s something to take into account.

There’s also some blur at full 16X magnification. However, this is only noticeable because all the magnification levels up to that point are crisp and clear.

Nikon Prostaff reticle
Via: My Extreme Hunting & Fishing

The Prostaff’s glass also means there’s no issue with light transmission through all magnification levels.


Is the Nikon Prostaff for you?

If you want to try bagging deer at night with confidence in your shot, then the Nikon Prostaff is the scope for you.

The BDC reticle and Nikon’s coatings take this scope to the next level.

With excellent glass and a great app, the Prostaff is a favorite for long range and night hunting.

Overall, this is the .30-06 scope for you if you want something that’s a cut above the standard.

Nikon 3-9x40 BDC Reticle Black Riflescope (16558)
89 Reviews
Nikon 3-9x40 BDC Reticle Black Riflescope (16558)
  • Multiple Layers of Anti-Reflective Coating maximize light transmission, brightness and contrast for an extremely bright sight picture.
  • Constructed of Aircraft-grade aluminum with Type-III hard anodizing surface finish for maximum strength-to-weight ratio and optimum ruggedness.
  • Positive-1/4-inch click adjustments get you zeroed in quicker and maintain your setting even with heavy recoil

4. Burris Fullfield E1 4.5-14×42: Best Mid-to-Long Range Scope

If you like to be the first one of your friends try out the newest and hottest tech products, then the Fullfield is the scope that will scratch that itch.

Burris has developed one of the most unique reticles out there.

It’s designed so that you can quickly center your target, but it also provides bullet drop lines.

Therefore, you’ll get all the information that a typical BDC reticle can provide, but much faster.

Burris Fullfield E1 reticle
Via: That Tech Guy

Additionally, this scope will also allow easy parallax adjustment from the side, making it even simpler to dial in your shot.

Compared to a top adjusted parallax, side adjustment can make all the difference to dialing in the shot comfortably.

Burris Fullfield E1 glass clarity
Via: That Tech Guy

However, the new reticle design will take some getting used to, especially if you’re used to shooting with a Duplex reticle.

The ideal scope ought to have all the precision that a BDC can offer coupled with the simplicity of Duplex. With this in mind, the Fullfield’s reticle is a perfect blend if you’re willing to put in the time to adjust.

Burris Fullfield E1 zoom dial
Via: That Tech Guy

The casing also is prone to scratches. This doesn’t affect the use of the scope at all, but if you like your loadout to look snazzy, it’s something to consider.


Is the Burris Fullfield for you?

If you’re an early adopter and like to try the newest innovations, then the Fullfield might just be the scope for you.

It’s got a brand, spanking new reticle along with great glass.

With magnification starting at 4.5, this scope is powerful on even the lowest setting, which makes it an undeniably good fit for the .30-06’s range. 

Taking into account all the little “quality-of-life” features, the Fullfield E1 could be the game changer for you!

Burris Fullfield E1 4.5-14x42mm Riflescope w/ Ballistic Plex E1 Reticle - 200338
33 Reviews
Burris Fullfield E1 4.5-14x42mm Riflescope w/ Ballistic Plex E1 Reticle - 200338
  • High magnification extends your long-range shooting capability
  • Features the Ballistic Plax E1 reticle, a quick, simple, accurate reticle
  • Trajectory-compensating technology and cascading dots to compensate for wind drift

5. Nikon Buckmaster II 3-9×40: Best Scope for the Budget

Nikon and Buckmasters teamed up to make the highest quality scope possible built with hunters in mind.

With fully multi-coated lenses, this scope will keep going in adverse conditions.

Nikon Buckmaster eye box
Via: Adventures In Living

The knobs provide satisfying tactile feedback, so you’ll never have to guess if you’ve adjusted it – you’ll know from the click.

Nikon Buckmaster scope
Via: Sportsman’s Guide

The BDC Reticle is perfect for the .30-06, and it gets better. Nikon offers an app called the Nikon Spot on App

Nikon Buckmaster spot on app
Via: SPADEZILLA – Sports & Outdoors

You input your loadout, including what type of ammunition you’re using, and the app will tell you how to sight the BDC reticle.

It takes the guesswork out of using a BDC, so you get the perfect shot every time, no matter the bullet drop.

On the downside, in low light conditions there are some focus issues, but in daylight, it performs wonderfully.

Nikon Buckmaster reticle
Via: Sportsman’s Guide

The Buckmaster is also somewhat light on features.

It has no side focus, and it lacks adjustable parallax.

However, it’s also one of the least expensive scopes on this list. It’s obvious that Nikon chose to put their effort towards their glass and easy to use app rather than an extensive features list, and they’ve delivered a great scope at a low price.

That’s why it’s on my best 308 scope list.


Is the Nikon Buckmaster II for you?

If you’re looking for a BDC scope but are spooked by the amount of math that might involve, then the Buckmaster II is the scope for you!

Nikon’s Spot-On app is great for beginners to BDC, or pros looking to take it easy on the calculations.

The Buckmaster lets you utilize the range of the .30-06 without breaking the bank, making it one of the best scope for 30-06 rifles.

It’s a great choice for your first scope or your 50th, so check out the Buckmaster and go master those bucks – without spending too many of your own.


6. Leupold VX-1 3-9×40: Best Short-to-Mid Range Scope

If you’re going from iron sights to a scope for the first time, the Leupold VX-1 will make that transition smooth and painless.

The Duplex reticle is extremely simple to use:

Leupold VX1 reticle
Via: Shooting Utah

Put the crosshairs on the target and pull the trigger, no math involved.

However, the BDC reticle does offer some advantages, especially on a .30-06.

That said, after using your .30-06 for a while, you’ll be familiar with the bullet drop, and at short enough ranges it won’t matter very much.

Leupold VX1 scope
Via: Sportsmansnewstv

Additionally, it boasts one of the longest eye relief distances for a scope in its price range, though that distance does decrease on higher magnifications.

Leupold VX1 eye box
Via: Sportsmansnewstv

The Leupold VX-1 does its best work at short to mid ranges.

At shorter ranges, this scope shines because of its superior clarity. As a result of its multi-coat glass, looking through is a joy.

Leupold VX1 multi coated lens
Via: Sportsmansnewstv

Though it can go up to 9X, it performs best at 3X, with some loss of field of view and brightness at higher magnifications.

There are also some issues with the adjustment knobs.

They can be a little hard to turn, especially right out of the box. However, after using the scope for a while, the knobs do loosen up considerably.


Is the Leupold VX-1 for you?

If you’re looking for a great entry level scope with everything you need to start out, the Leupold VX-1 is a great choice.

You can hook it on your rifle (or your 300 blackout scope build) and head out hunting without spending a lot of time fiddling with adjustments.

It’s simple to use and offers a lot of features that are great for newcomers, including a simpler reticle and increased eye relief distance.

The Leupold VX-1 is the scope that will do everything you need it to do, all without breaking the bank – or your brain.

Leupold VX-1 3-9x40mm Compact Waterproof Fogproof Riflescope, Matte Black
324 Reviews
Leupold VX-1 3-9x40mm Compact Waterproof Fogproof Riflescope, Matte Black
  • A versatile 3:1 zoom ratio erector system that is ideal for virtually any situation.
  • 1/4 MOA precision finger click adjustments for windage and elevation offer absolute repeatability and dependability over a lifetime of extreme use.
  • Absolute waterproof and fog proof integrity – each is ready for a lifetime in the field, in all conditions.

Conclusion

It all comes down to what you need.

The .30-06 is one of the most flexible cartridges out there, and this list reflects that variety.

With scopes for every situation, in every price range, and with hordes of features, which one are you dreaming about?

Whatever you pick, it’s sure to take your shooting to the next level!

1 thought on “6 Best Scopes for 30-06 [2020 Update]”

  1. P3 3×9×40 scope Is it a good scope for 30-06 browning A bolt 150 grain bullet for mule deer , but with nikoplex reticle I don’t like the BDC ones. Will it hold recoil from this rifle

    Reply

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