Anyone with a rifle knows that technology doesn’t stop for anyone. Prism scopes are the rage at the moment, and this is due to their unique performance and ease of use.
Let’s compare the prism scope to a conventional scope. A conventional scope uses a series of lenses to articulate an image of a distant object, magnifying it and placing a dot or sign to pinpoint when the shot should be taken.
Top-Rated Prism Scope List:
|1. Vortex Optics Spitfire 3x Prism Scope - EBR-556B Reticle (MOA)||The EBR-556B reticle (Enhanced Battle Reticle) designed for 5.56 x 45 cartridge||See Deal|
|2. Monstrum Tactical P330-B Marksman 3X Prism Scope||30mm objective lens||See Deal|
|3. Trijicon ACOG 4 X 32 Scope Dual Illuminated Horseshoe Dot 6.8||Bullet drop compensation with ranging reticles||See Deal|
|4. Sig Sauer Bravo 4 Battle M1913 Rail Sight, 4 x 30mm||The centerline of the Optical Axis at 1.535” Above the Top of an M1913 Picatinny Rail||See Deal|
|5. Steiner M536 Prism Sight 5x36, Reticle 5.56, Black 8786-556||Withstands 1,000 Gs for shock and recoil resistance||See Deal|
The lenses on a standard scope have two names, the one near the eye is the ocular lens, and the one at the front end of the scope is called the objective lens.
The objective lens is larger, and this is mainly to allow for more light. Light passes through the objective lens and is pinpointed on an internal lens which is seen through the ocular lens, which is adjusted for magnification.
A prism scope also has an objective and ocular lens but uses prisms instead of lenses.
A prism is basically a block of glass that allows the light to travel at right angles, as such, a prism scope can be more compact and even boxy, rather than long and cylindrical. Another feature is that prisms have both etched and illuminated reticles.
The downside of a prism scope is its magnification factor, which is generally lowered than that of a standard scope, and their range is between 1x to 5x.
As such, prism scopes are in fact a preferred scope for tactical rifles such as AR-15’s where the size and eight of the scope are a key factor in performance in the field.
A prism scope will provide you with both an illuminated and etched reticle, which you don’t get in a standard red dot scope.
The prism scope gives great middle range magnification, so it outperforms long range scopes used for tactical weapons.
Prisms are also large enough to have complex reticles etched on them, giving you higher degrees of targeting information.
The disadvantages of a prism scope in comparison to a red dot scope are that a prism scopes eye relief is limited, and a prism scope will always come with a parallax.
Due to its advantages for AR-15 type applications over standard scopes, and the lower price range, prism scopes are becoming a popular alternative to standard scopes, and in fact, every AR-15 owner should really own one prism scope as well as a standard scope.
The differences in performance will make both useful for specific applications.
In this article, I bring you the best 5 prism scopes on the market today, and this means great value for money with great versatility and functionality.
Best Prism Scope Reviews:[toc]
The Vortex Spitfire™ 3X prism scope is a rugged, high-performance optical system that sits perfectly on an AR-15.
The Vortex Spitfire™ 3X comes with a Fully Multi-Coated anti-reflective treatment on all air-to-glass surfaces which delivers exceptional light transference. The Prism-Based Design comes with excellent etched reticles that provide immediate solutions.
This is a Single-Piece Chassis that is both compact and lightweight, machined from aluminum alloy and sealed with O-rings to deliver a waterproof and dustproof performance.
The system is nitrogen gas purged to provide full anti-fogging properties.
The aluminum body is designed to be extremely rugged; it is covered in a hard anodize matt finish, providing shockproof properties that handles recoil as well as field conditions.
The prism system uses Variable Mount Heights and comes with a lower 1/3 co-witness height of 40.4 mm from the optic center to base surface.
There are five adjustable lightness levels, and you get red and green illumination settings.
The battery life is around 250 hours at maximum brightness and can reach up to 3000 hours when used rarely or set to minimum brightens.
The scope magnification is 3x, and the eye relief is set at 2.8”. FOV is 31.5 feet, and the MOA comes with ½ adjustments, while the Parallax Setting is set to 100 yards. The overall dimensions are 5.5” long, and the weight of this model is 15.4 ounces.
What can I add, this is a great, near perfect prism scope that comes with a high-end prism scope price tag. If you own an AR-15 and want a high-end scope at a reasonable price, don’t hesitate, buy this one and be extremely happy.
The Marksman 3×30 Prism Scope is a sleek next-gen prism scope that delivers on all fronts. In fact, if I didn’t believe it myself, I would think that this is a joke, but it isn’t, and the price is really as low as you can get.
The Monstrum Tactical S330P 3X Ultra-Compact Prism scope is designed to make people jealous of your success without actually having to spend a fortune. This is a low-cost, high-performance scope that is conquering the market.
What makes this scope stick out are all its features and functions. To start off with its design is so far out there you would think you are on a Star Trek set.
This is a heavy duty, Hard Anodized 6061 Aluminum construct that uses an Illuminated Circle Dot set in a 3x magnification 3×30 prism system.
There is a black reticle with red or green crosshairs, and the reticle is visible with or without illumination.
This model uses a CR2032 Battery and comes with Picatinny mounts. Eye relief is 3.5 inches to 3.8 inches, and the scope range is 25 to 200 yards, which makes it a perfect AR-15 companion.
I don’t know where to start, so I will say Price, and then Price, and after that Price, and then look at the features and say Price.
Do you get the drift of my meaning? This is a great starter scope, a great scope for backup, and a great scope for tactical use if you cannot afford those pesky expensive models.
Oh, and did I mention the price?
The Trijicon ACOG 4×32 Scope with Red Horseshoe BAC Reticle that is calibrated for 6.8 SPC flattop rifles out to 800 meters, and comes with a tritium sight for night time sighting.
The Trijicon ACOG is a battery-free illuminated reticle this means that it’s a light charging reticle that uses a combination of light sensitivity and tritium to create a nighttime solution that outlasts all other scopes for energy efficiency.
This is a waterproof scope and is preferred by the US marines for its amazing optics and rugged durability even when used at sea, it can be submerged up to 100 meters.
This is also a testament to the solid construction, and a testament to this is a story of a marine that had this scope on his AR-15, it took a direct hit from an AK round, and the scope stopped the bullet, saving the marines life.
This model comes with a flattop mount, a LENSPEN® (TA56) which is used to clean the optics.
Yes, the price is a factor, and this is one hefty scope with a hefty price. BUT, this is a preferred marine model and is in every theater of action where marines fight.
This is an amazing scope with amazing capabilities and should not be discarded due to price. You pay for what you get, and this one is a Maybach of scopes.
The Sig Saur BRAVO4 provides you with an exceptional 10º FOV; this is 43% wider than standard 7º sights. It also comes with their aspherical lens eyepiece patented MegaView™ and their abrasion-resistant coatings LensArmor™.
The Sig Saur BRAVO4 is a battlefield tested sight and is used by professionals, soldiers, and amateurs that seek the best solution that comes with an affordable price.
For prism scopes, this one comes at a hefty price but is by far not the most expensive. In comparison to the price you actually get much more in ratio than most other scopes.
notably flat, distortion-free image boasts an unprecedented edge-to-edge clarity by means of a combination of Low Dispersion (LD) glass and aspherical lens design.
Lightweight yet durable magnesium housing with integrated Picatinny top rail for additional accessories such as MRDs and lasers.
Adjustable eyepiece with +/- 2 diopter correction. Dependable IPX-8 waterproof (to 400 mbar or 13 ft) and fog-proof performance. The BRAVO4 was engineered with the centerline of the optical axis at 1.535” above the top of an M1913 Picatinny rail interface for night vision compatibility.
Let’s start with the advanced prism and ocular design system they term MegaView™; this system provides 43% greater field of view than competitors.
The LENSARMOR™ system is an abrasion-resistant lens coating for rugged optical durability that combines with their LENSHIELD™ method, which is a Mil-Spec oleophobic coating designed to sheds water, oil, and gunk ensuring a clean image always
The SPECTRACOAT™ treatment is an optimized ultra-wide broadband, anti-reflection lens coating that reduces surface reflections.
The MOTAC™ (Motion Activated Illumination) turns on when motion is detected and will power the unit down when the system is inactive.
The distortion-free image comes from the combination of Low Dispersion (LD) glass and aspherical lens design that delivers edge-to-edge clarity.
The eyepiece is adjustable with +/- 2 diopter correction, and the whole system is constructed for IPX-8 waterproof standards, and the system is gas purged to be fogging proof.
There is a fine line between expensive and cheap; the middle ground is where you will find all the best products.
This Sig Saur sits respectfully in that middle section, being a Sig Sauer you are getting the best from an established German engineering company that produces high-quality products.
The price reflects the brand and image as well as the performance.
The Steiner M536 is a mid-range scope designed for fast, clear aiming in all light conditions. This scope has an oversized, 36 mm objective lens with 5x magnification out to 700 meters.
The Steiner M536 is a close to mid-range scope, it is designed for AR-15 rifles and comes with a top Picatinny/Weaver rails that allow you to attach lasers, cameras, flashlights, and secondary optics units, and delivers an overall magnification of 5x out to 700 meters.
This model comes with multi-coated BAK4 prisms and lenses. The sighting uses a 7.62 Rapid Dot Reticle with a T-shaped solid crosshair, and a brilliant red dot at the cross, with receding ballistic sub tensions at the vertical line below the center.
These sub tensions provide compensation for 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, and 700 m, and the crosshair horizontal wingspan is equivalent to 10 MRAD, 100cm, and 36 MOA. Windage is set at 60 MOA, and elevation ranges come at 1/2 MOA clicks.
This is a very reasonably priced model and is a mid-range scope, it is versatile and lightweight and is perfect for hunting and range shooting.
It has been used in the field of combat, but actual results and testaments are not yet realized. The bottom line is this is great value for money, priced in the lower range.