Hunting with a .22lr is great fun and training for larger game in the future. .22lr is cheap and effective for ranges within 100 yards. This means the vast majority of scopes used for the Ruger 10/22 firing the .22lr cartridge are going to be specifically made for ranges you’re most likely going to use.
With the best scope for Ruger 10/22 being value driven, purpose made scopes. All you have to do is look for reviews and choose one that fits your set up. Here’s the best five we’ve been able to come across.
Best Scope for Ruger 10/22 - Comparison Table
Rimfire vs Centerfire
The differences between a rimfire and centerfire scope is normally the distances the parallax and BDC’s are set to and the durability of the scope. Traditionally rimfire scopes have been made to withstand the lesser recoil impulses of rimfire scopes.
There’s no reason you can’t use a centerfire scope on a rimfire rifle like a Ruger 10/22, it’s just overkill. If you have a favorite scope, go for it! However, the best rimfire scopes have been scaled down for use on a rimfire rifle. They weigh less, they have less magnification and are made for closer ranges and less recoil.
Features & Benefits
When you look for a scope for your 10/22, figure out what you’re going to do with it. When it comes to reticles, magnification and optical quality, it doesn’t matter nearly as much with a rimfire scope as it does for a centerfire scope simply because the range you’ll be shooting at are much closer and you much less likely to be taking a high stakes shot with a rimfire rifle.
Look for ways to get a lot of features cheaply, included rings and bases are a great example. Getting scope with turrets calibrated for a .22lr adds almost no bulk or weight but will do a lot for you in the field, so will a BDC reticle.
The key is not to try and maximize your scope for everything and end up with a bulky hard to use rifle scope on a slim and fast rifle like a Ruger 10/22. Keeping the rifle lightweight and nimble in the hand will be more useful than any scope you can buy, for a .22lr at least.
Our Pick for the Best Scope for Ruger 10/22
This is a favorite online because it comes from a company known for its excellent optical quality for cheap glass. The quality of this glass and it’s coating is superior to all others in the same price category.
The overall size of this scope is larger than other rimfire scopes but it won’t be a problem. It’s light enough and small enough to not make a huge difference, especially considering all of the features and qualities you have at your disposal when you have this scope.
The adjustments through the scope are calibrated for the .22lr with a click being a ¼” at 50 yards, instead of 100 yards. A very good feature that many manufacturers overlook. It does make a difference in how you can set your rifle up.
The target turrets on this scope are zero reset, one of the few rimfire scopes to have it, and are calibrated to work perfectly with the .22lr. Meaning dialing in your reticle for long distance shooting is easy and fast enough to do while hunting, a huge benefit.
This is an excellent scope for people who’ll be hunting a lot with their 10/22. It’s fast focus eyepiece, lifetime warranty and exceptional optical quality makes the ideal choice for quick shots on small game, even out to extended ranges.
- Exceptional optical quality
- Zero stop turrets
- Purpose made features for .22lr
- Larger than other options
Favored by shooters on a tight budget this is an exceptionally well selling model online. Look around and you’ll see that several manufactures have made almost exact clones of this scope because it is so well balanced and the features here are so useful.
The overall form factor of the scope is small enough that you won’t throw off the balance of a Ruger 10/22 when you mount it. That includes having a full 40mm objective bell that gathers light well and is very good for a cheap hunting rifle or a youth’s first gun.
The magnification is good, and easy to adjust but leaves a little to be desired, although can be excused because of the price. It won’t win any quality or beauty contests but you will certainly get a usable scope if you buy this one.
A person who buys this will likely be buying for cost over anything else and this is an exceptional scope to buy for that purpose. You won’t beat it, especially when you consider this scope comes with rings and bases, all for one of the cheapest scopes you can buy online.
- Very inexpensive
- Includes ring and mounts
- Full 40mm objective bell
- Low build quality
- Questionable durability in field use
Vortex is known as a company not afraid to take risks when it comes to putting products together. They made different levels of optics but they’re all innovative and all high quality.
This is their finest rimfire scope, an excellent all around rimfire riflescope that is purpose driven and excellent for the task at hand. Starting from the fact the glass is extremely high quality and put into a single piece of aircraft grade aluminum for strength and durability.
From the longer eye relief and fast focus eye piece, that you can use for quick shooting at game or plinking targets, to the resettable turrets and V-plex reticle used for really dialing in at targets at a distance, this is as close to an all-around scope as you can get for a .22lr.
Try not to get wrapped up that this scope tops out at 7x power because you can easily nail squirrels out to 150 yards with 7x power magnification. Probably further than you should be hunting with a .22lr anyway!
Get this scope if you’re going to do a lot of hunting with your 10/22. This is an ideal rimfire hunting scope!
- Extreme durability
- Purpose driven design and features
- More expensive than others
Bushnell, the low-price leader, is a giant in optics and are probably best known by being the most commonly sold cheap scope both online and in sporting good stores, and even stores like Wal-Mart.
They make some decent options, even very high end scopes for military and police use, and this is one of them. It is scope made specifically for rimfire rifles like .22lr Ar15 variants but will sit atop a Ruger 10/22 just as well as any other rifle.
An excellent option for people who want a full featured scope for cheap. It has everything you could want, fully multi coated reticles, tactical and large turrets, BDC reticle for .22lr cartridge and excellent overall build quality.
This is a good option for people who will be shooting their 10/22 at the range at tin cans and plinking targets more than anything else. This scope is bulkier than others with its huge turrets and long body.
It’ll just get in the way when you head into the field. However, for a target rifle there’s only a few better options out there. Don’t be deterred by the AR in this products name, it’ll work well on any rimfire rifle.
- Huge tactical turrets
- BDC reticle
Right off the bat, yes this scope is designed for the .22 mag cartridge, which the Ruger 10/22 is NOT chambered in. However, this is such an excellent value, you could press this scope into service atop your Ruger 10/22 despite having to overcome one obstacle.
This scope is an excellent value because not only does it have everything you need, it is a quality piece of kit and works well for the money. The controls of the scope are tactile and work well as well as having a grippy surface coating that makes the scope easy to grab and manipulate even with gloves on.
The parallax adjustment for this scope is one of the best things about it, set to a nominal 50 yards you won’t ever have a problem with parallax with this sight.
The rings required to mount this scope are included and work well to hold your zero, especially considering they’re designed around a heavier recoiling cartridge than the 10/22 will dish out.
Overall this is an excellent scope for people who want a decent scope for little money that’ll last a lifetime.
- Includes rings
Best Ruger 10/22 Scopes - Buying Tips
Keep Weight to a Minimum
A .22lr isn’t a heavy recoiling reticle, it doesn’t need weight to tame it. Keep the weight to a minimum, especially if the rifle is for a youth, the lighter it is the easier it’s going to be to carry it through the woods and the easier it’ll be to shoot from the bench.
If you’re building a specialty target gun, a little weight can help you hold on target, but don’t go overboard it’s still a .22lr!
Keep it Balanced
.22lr rifles are light and nimble rifles, excellent for all day carrying. However, when you put a big honking scope on top of the receiver you mess up the balance of the gun.
Mount the scope low as you can, which on a 10/22 is pretty darn low, and keep close o the shoulder so you don’t ruin the carrying qualities of the rifle.
Don’t Buy for Just a Brand
Scopes get expensive fast! Look out for good deals or for off brand scopes that work well. Don’t trust a bad manufacturer or use a defective product for the sake of saving money, but don’t overspend for an expensive sticker.
Many optics manufacturers charge a premium and brand themselves as “premium” but offer almost nothing in the way extra features and quality. Buy for purpose, not for brands!
Practice, Practice, Practice
Don’t’ assume a scope will make you a better shooter. It won’t if you were a bad shot before a scope won’t help. A scope merely allows you to see better while simplifying the aiming process. If you don’t have good marksmanship fundamentals before, you won’t have good fundamentals after!
Consider a Centerfire Scope
If you really love a centerfire cousin to a scope on this list, many do have direct centerfire counterparts, then go for it. You lose nothing performance when you switch to a centerfire cope. Just add in a little more cost and weight to the rifle scope.
Get a Warranty
Make sure that if in the event you break your scope there’s at least some time when you can get it replaced. Under normal use conditions you can expect a scope to last almost a lifetime for a quality unit. Otherwise you’ll want to get it replaced.
The American firearms industry is one of the best in the world when it comes to honoring warranties. Make sure you get one just in case!
Rimfire ammunition is beginning to come down in price, making shooting .22lr in bulk range sessions is becoming more feasible. If you compete in rimfire competitions, hunt often or just appreciate a fine scope for your rifle you’re in luck. The market is flooded with high quality products and the best scope for a Ruger 10/22 is now just a matter of picking out the right one for the job at hand.
Whichever scope you get for your rifle, you can’t use from the couch! Get in the field and enjoy your new equipment.