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Outdoor Optics Scopes

Best FFP Scope for the Money – Budget Scope in 2021

The human eye has a limited vision range. For that reason, aiming at a distant target with your naked eyes may affect your shooting accuracy. Fortunately, FFP scopes could easily help solve that problem. These devices can give you the vision of an eagle, increasing your chances of success whether you’re at the range shooting targets or in the wild hunting game animals.

First Focal Plane (FFP) scopes are specially designed for long range shooting. In this case, the scale of the reticle gradually varies with magnification changes. That way, the reticle marks never disappear from your vision range and you can aim more easily.

Finding the best FFP scope for the money isn’t that easy; especially when it’s the first time you’re buying one. We reviewed today’s finest choices and added a comprehensive buying guide so you can find your perfect match.

Top First Focal Plane (FFP) Scopes for the Money: Comparison Chart

Pick NameThumbnailProduct NamePrice
Best FFP scope under $200Monstrum G2 1-4×24Monstrum G2 1-4×24Check Price
Best FFP scope under $300Primary Arms SLX 4-14x44mm FFP Rifle ScopePrimary Arms SLX 4-14x44mm FFP Rifle ScopeCheck Price
Best FFP scope under $400Athlon Optics Argos BTR RiflescopeAthlon Optics Argos BTR RiflescopeCheck Price
Best FFP scope under $500Vortex Optics Diamondback Tactical FFP RiflescopeVortex Optics Diamondback Tactical FFP RiflescopeCheck Price
Best FFP scope under $1000Vortex Optics Viper PST Gen I FFP RiflescopeVortex Optics Viper PST Gen I FFP RiflescopeCheck Price

5 Best Ffp Scope for the Money

1 Monstrum G2 1-4×24

Monstrum G2 1-4x24

Monstrum G2 can provide sharp and crystal clear images of targets at a maximum distance of 300 yards. It has a 24-mm objective lens and 4X of magnification, putting you face-to-face with your prey. The barrel is made of aluminum, which makes it resistant to scratches and high impacts.

This rifle scope uses a FFP reticle. That means, the reticle size grows or shrinks when the magnification changes. So, this scope is perfect for long range shooting, where you need the highest precision. The reticle is also illuminated for enhanced visibility in low light conditions.

You can change the reticle light color to red or green. Best of all, the batteries for the illumination system are included with the product. This scope includes a practical honeycomb filter. This filter prevents dazzled eyes when the objective lens is exposed to sun rays.

One of the most interesting features of this scope is its precise adjustment system. The windage and elevation dials rotate at ½ MOA per click. In addition, you can reset the dials to zero by simply removing their caps.

We also like this scope because it eliminates parallax error. Parallax distortion may cause your bullets impact slightly away from the target. That problem increases the chances of missed shots when you’re shooting from a long distance.

Monstrum G2 includes its own set of scope rings. That means you won’t have to spend extra money on new rings. Neither will you waste your valuable time visiting gun shops to find the right rings for your riflescope.

Specifications

  • Objective lens: 24 mm
  • Magnification: 4X
  • Weight: 1 lb
  • Made of aircraft grade aluminum
  • Illuminated reticle
  • Nitrogen sealed

Pros

  • Fog proof
  • Waterproof
  • Durable and resistant
  • Lightweight
  • Accurate
  • Low price

Cons

  • The windage and elevation dials may get stuck
  • Mounting rings not compatible with some rifles

Our Verdict

Aircraft grade aluminum construction, 1-4x magnification, Nitrogen-purged tube, generous eye relief, easy-to-read range digits, holdover correction & dial-controlled illuminated reticles (red & green), it shouldn’t take you long to understand the deal if you know that all of that you are getting under 160 bucks. Needless to say, Monstrum G2 is one of the most accurate rifle scopes that you can find on the current market. Besides, the images are so clear that make you feel you’re just a few steps away from your prey. With all the advanced features, it is the perfect scope for long range shooting. We give a big thumbs-up for this one

2 Primary Arms SLX 4-14x44mm FFP Rifle Scope

Primary Arms SLX 4-14x44mm FFP Rifle Scope

Primary Arms SLX uses an advanced ACSS HUD DMR reticle in their PA4-14XFFP308, which is more precise than most reticles. This kind of reticle helps you determine the bullet drop compensation up to 1000 yards. This rifle scope has a 44-mm objective lens and 14X of magnification. That’s enough to get the clearest image at a maximum distance of 600 yards.

The FFP reticle is illuminated in red color. You can adjust the brightness level depending on the external lightning conditions. The scope barrel has a black matte finish to prevent reflection. It’s sealed and filled with nitrogen, making it waterproof and fog resistant.

The tactical style turrets let you adjust windage and elevation with superior precision. That way, you can better aim at small targets located at long distances.

We highly recommend this rifle scope because of its 3-year warranty. In case your unit fails before the warranty time, you can get a new one at no cost. However, the warranty only covers damages caused by defective materials or poor workmanship.

We also like the Primary Arms SLX because of its rugged construction. It’s incredibly resistant to high impacts. So, you can be sure the lenses and the barrel will suffer no damage if you accidentally drop off your rifle.

Specifications

  • Objective lens: 44 mm
  • Magnification: 14X
  • Made of aircraft grade aluminum
  • Illuminated reticle
  • Nitrogen sealed

Pros

  • Precise adjustment system
  • Rugged construction
  • Resistant to high impacts
  • Waterproof
  • Fog resistant
  • Improved visibility in low light

Cons

  • The turrets may misadjust after shooting
  • The red light of the reticle may cover the entire lens

Our Verdict

Primary Arms SLX is perfect for night hunting. Its illuminated reticle is clear and easy to see in low light conditions. The high magnification of this scope makes it the perfect match for powerful rifles. It has a sufficient eye relief to protect your face from the impacts of high recoil.

3 Athlon Optics Argos BTR Riflescope

Athlon Optics Argos BTR Riflescope

Argos BTR provides vivid and color-corrected images, thanks to its multicoated lenses. With 24X of magnification, this rifle scope can give you a clear view at a maximum distance of 1000 yards. Its barrel is made of aluminum, which has excellent mechanical properties.

The aluminum is heat treated to increase the resistance to high impacts. For improved visibility in low light, the Argos BTR has an illuminated FFP reticle. The reticle scale varies with magnification changes, allowing you to make precise shots. Additionally, the barrel is filled with Argon that helps prevent fog and considerably decrease the weight.

We like this scope so much because it’s incredibly precise and easy to use. Usually, cheap scopes have small turrets that may be hard to handle. When dials are too small, it’s more difficult to make precise adjustments. However, that will never happen with this scope, because the turrets are bigger.

This unit eliminates parallax error, which is common in long range shooting.

Specifications

  • Objective lens: 50mm
  • Magnification: 24X
  • Made of aircraft grade aluminum
  • Illuminated reticle
  • Argon sealed
  • Multi-Coated lenses

Pros

  • Sturdy design
  • Easy to adjust
  • Easy to use
  • Superior accuracy
  • Fog proof
  • Waterproof

Cons

  • Images may look too blurry after 10X of magnification
  • The scope has problems to hold zero

Our Verdict

Athlon Optics Argos is another excellent budget scope for powerful rifles. It has 24X of magnifications, which is too much for a regular rifle scope. In addition, it’s easy to use and you can handle the turrets so easily. However, the image quality may decrease after 10X of magnifications, which is a big con.

4 Vortex Optics Diamondback Tactical FFP Riflescope

Vortex Optics Diamondback Tactical FFP Riflescope

Vortex Optics Diamondback is one of the most popular rifle scopes among hunters. It has a 44-mm lens and 16X of magnification, providing impressively sharp images. Its multi-coated lenses prevent light reflection and correct image colors. That way, you get the most realistic images without distortion.

This scope includes an adjustable eyepiece that lets you correct the reticle focus. It also has a parallax correction knob for precise long-distance shots. The windage and elevation turrets are precise and easy to zero. The entire barrel is made of aluminum, guaranteeing superior resistance to high impacts.

In addition, the barrel is completely sealed and filled with nitrogen. So, the scope is completely fog-and waterproof. The o-rings around the lenses are thick and resistant. This prevents any possible gas escape if your scope accidentally hits the ground.

We like the Diamondback scope because of its sturdy design. At first sight you can see this unit can withstand high impacts without trouble. Everything seems so durable and strong. The materials are the best of the best.

The tactical style turrets are also a great feature. They slide so smoothly, letting you make precise adjustments without effort. The turrets rotate at ¼ MOA per click, making aiming at distant targets a piece of cake.

Specifications

  • Objective lens: 44 mm
  • Magnification: 16X
  • Made of aircraft grade aluminum
  • Nitrogen sealed
  • Multi-coated lenses
  • Parallax correction knob
  • Fast focus eyepiece

Pros

  • Rugged construction
  • Easy to use
  • Durable and resistant
  • Fog resistant
  • Waterproof
  • Accurate

Cons

  • The reticle becomes hard to see when aiming at a dark background
  • The crosshairs are too thin

Our Verdict

If precision is important to you, Vortex Optics Diamondback will never let you down. The turrets are precise and easy to handle. It fits AR scopes superbly. In addition, they don’t get stuck with temperature changes, as it usually happens. Certainly, a great tool for hunting in extreme weather conditions.

5 Vortex Optics Viper PST Gen I FFP Riflescope

Vortex Optics Viper PST Gen I FFP Riflescope

Viper PST has an EBR-1 reticle which is incredibly useful to make precise corrections. It has a 50-mm objective lens with 16X of magnification, improving light gaining. The 30-mm barrel is made from a single block of aircraft grade aluminum. The heat-treated metal is also resistant to high impacts and friction.

This rifle scope uses multi-coated lenses to correct color distortion and prevent reflection. So, the images always look sharp and crystal clear even with the lenses exposed to sunlight.

The illuminated reticle improves your vision in low light conditions. You can adjust the brightness level by turning the knob above the ocular lens. The windage and elevation knobs are slightly bigger than normal for maximum control.

Under 1000 dollars, it’s an overkill. We highly recommend this scope to experienced hunters and competition shooters. The EBR-1 reticle is a powerful tool. It helps you correct your shooting angle and determine the bullet drop. That way, you can aim at the right point so the bullet impacts where it has to.

Specifications

  • Objective lens: 50 mm
  • Magnification: 16X
  • Made of aircraft grade aluminum
  • Argon sealed
  • Multi-coated lenses
  • Illuminated reticle

Pros

  • Accurate
  • Rugged construction
  • Improved night vision
  • High quality image
  • Fog resistant
  • Waterproof

Cons

  • The adjustment turrets may misadjust after shooting
  • The parallax adjustment may be not 100% effective

Our Verdict

Vortex Optics Viper PST is all about precision. The EBR-1 reticle is so precise and easy to use. It helps you know the exact point where you need to aim at. That way, you can get consistent results if you already know the drop of your bullets. A must-buy option for long range shooting. Under 1500 dollars, this is an unbeatable ffp scope up for sale.

Best Ffp Scope for the Money: Buying Guide

budget ffp scope

  • Lens coating

Usually, scope lenses are made of glass or quartz. When light passes through these materials, it commonly separates in beams of colors. This phenomenon is commonly known as light dispersion.

On the other hand, part of the light is reflected when it hits the lens. Light dispersion and reflection are the common cause of image distortion. When this happens, image may look blurrier, darker and uncolored.

To prevent this, high-end scopes use a special material known as extra-low-dispersion glass. ED glass prevents dispersion, focusing all the light in a single point. ED glass is covered with multiple layers of magnesium fluoride to reduce reflection.

Untreated glass lenses reflect up to 5% of light. On the other hand, multicoated lenses only reflect 0.25% of the same light.

  • Magnification

The magnification indicates how big objects look through the ocular lens. Commonly, magnification is designated with a number followed by an “X”. For example, a 16X magnification indicates objects look 16 times larger than normal.

Choosing the right magnification is important to get the finest image quality possible. In this case, there’s a simple rule. You need 1X of magnification per every 50 yards. For example, if your prey is 300 yards away, you’ll need at least 6X of magnification to get a clear image.

Depending on how you use your rifle, the following magnification ranges are recommended:

  • Long range shooting: 16X-20X
  • Hunting: 5X-12X
  • Close range hunting: less than 4X
  • Objective lens diameter

The objective lens is the biggest lens of your scope. It’s located at the end of the barrel, in front of the ocular lens. The objective lens is the place where sunrays are concentrated. In this case, the size of the lens determines the light gathering of the scope. The bigger the lens, the more the light it enters.

By having more light, the images look sharper and clearer, even in low light conditions. Also, bigger objective lenses give you a wider vision range. That means your eyes can cover a greater area. However, big lenses also have a big con. They considerably increase the weight and size of your scope. So, scopes with big lenses aren’t that easy to handle, carry and store.

The power of a scope is determined by two numbers – the magnification and the objective lens diameter. For example: 4X24. As said before, the number followed by an “X” is the magnification (4X). On the other hand, the number that follows the “X” is the diameter of the objective lens in millimeters.

If you already know the power of your scope, you can easily calculate the exit pupil of your unit. In theory, the exit pupil is the length of the light beam that escapes through the ocular lens. To know the exit pupil, you just have to divide the objective lens diameter by the magnification. For example, for 4X24 of scope power, the exit pupil is 24/4 = 6 mm.

Normally, the human pupil reduces its diameter to 5-9 mm in low light conditions. In this case, the exit pupil of your scope should be higher than your pupil diameter. That way, your eyes will be able to see clear images in low light.

  • Reticle

Reticles are so diverse. You can find a wide variety of scopes with different reticle types. In this case, the final choice depends on you. Just make sure the reticle doesn’t interfere with your vision.

If you wear glasses or suffer from poor vision, don’t choose any MIL-Dot reticle with thin cross hairs. In case you’re using your scope for night hunting, always opt for illuminated reticles. However, illuminated reticles become useless when the batteries are discharged. In addition, if the LED light is too intense, they can cause double vision.

To prevent this problem, pick black reticles with LED backlights. They evenly distribute light on the lens surface and reduce eye strain.

Why You Need FFP Scopes

Without a doubt, only the best FFP scopes for the money can help you improve you shooting accuracy. However, there are a lot more benefits these devices can give you. Here’s a list with some of them:

  • Shoot from a safe distance

Keeping a prudent distance between you and your prey will help you go unnoticed. It will protect you from any possible attack. FFP scopes allow you to watch your prey from a distant position, making hunting safer.

  • No more missed shots

Every missed shot you make gives your prey a chance to escape. The chances are even higher when you depend on your naked eye to shoot. FFP scopes can improve your shooting accuracy, reducing the number of missed shots.

  • Be a better hunter

When you finally learn to dominate your scope, you become a more accurate and lethal hunter. You also gain self-confidence, investing less time in reloading, aiming and shooting. That means more prey shot down in a single hunting journey.

Other Notable Models

We encountered tons of other brands and their popular ffp scope models that didn’t make it to our list for one reason or the other. Let’s name some of the noteworthy brands and their scope models:

Visionking (known for 1-8 FFP models), Nikon (prostaff 5, Monarch 3 SF FFP for 500 yards shooting), Bushnell (3-9×40 DZ 223 Reticle, 4X FFP AR 223), Leupold, Marcool Optics, Nightforce ( known for models compatible with 22LR), Optisan Optics, Quake Buzz (BSA TMD 4-14X44), EOTECH (VUDU 3.5-18X50MM with H59 RETICLE), Kahles, Valdada Optics, Sniper, Steiner Optics, Burris Optics, Hawke Optics (Frontier), and Hensoldt.

Other hot sellers:

Vector Optics, Marksman, ALPEN, BARSKA, Crimson, Wheeler, Meade, Pentax, TASCO, Vanguard, Kowa Optimed, Celestron, WestHunter, Konus, Trijicon, Hi-Lux Optics, Leapers Inc., Pinty, Hammers, Feyachi, LUXHMOX, Lion Power Optics, Sig Sauer, Centerpoint, HIRAM, T-EAGLE, Osprey, Xgazer Optics, DB TAC INC, Meopta.

FFP Scopes – Care & Maintenance Tips

To keep you scope in optimal conditions, you should apply a maintenance routine. Here are some valuable tips you can’t forget:

  • Use a small microfiber cloth to remove dust from the lenses. Dust may contain abrasive particles that may scratch the lenses. When the wind blows, these small particles may get into your eyes.
  • Dip a microfiber cloth in alcohol to remove the dust and other debris from the barrel. Some cleaning solutions for this purpose help protect the external coating.
  • Remove the gunk accumulated around the lenses and difficult corners using a q-tip. Pay special attention to small spaces around the rifle rings.
  • Change the batteries of your scopes when necessary. Don’t wait too much to do it, because the acid inside the batteries may spill inside the scope.

A Word from RangerExpert

As you can see, there are a lot of things you have to consider in order to find the best FFP scope for the money. First of all, think about the use you’re giving to your rifle and then choose the most appropriate reticle type. Make sure the crosshairs are visible on a dark background. In case you’re hunting at night, choose the best illumination system.

Also, choose the correct magnification depending on the distance to your target. Consider the natural light conditions in order to choose the best lens diameter.

FAQs

1. What are the main differences between FFP and SFP scopes?

Ans. In FFP scopes, the reticle is located in front of the magnification lens. So, the scale of the reticle varies when magnification changes. On the other hand, Second Focal Plane or SFP scopes (also known as dual focal plane scopes) have the reticle behind the magnification lens. For that reason, the reticle size remains the same when magnification varies.

2. Can you use FFP scopes for hunting?

Ans. Yes. You can use FFP scopes for hunting. Just make sure to choose the right magnification depending on the distance to your prey.

3. FFP or SFP? What is preferred most by snipers?

Ans. Without a doubt, FFP scopes are a sniper’s first choice because they are more accurate than SFPs.

4. FFP or SFP- what to choose for long range shooting?

Ans. FFP scopes because of their superior accuracy and magnification. The marks on the reticle allow you to better aim at small targets located at long distances.

About the author

Erik Himmel

A Part-Time Firearm Instructor

Hi, this is Erik. We all know firearms are dangerous, but only when one doesn’t know how to use and care for them. I have 15+ years of experience with different types of guns and for the last 10 years, I have taught numerous people how to hold and shoot a gun while staying safe and keeping the surroundings unharmed. My neighbors are some of my biggest admirers who enjoy talking to me about their guns, firearms safety and maintenance.

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