The AR-10 is the older brother of the insanely popular AR-15. It’s also bigger and more powerful (and arguably cooler) than its baby brother. Because the capabilities of the AR-10 differ significantly from those of the AR-15, you can’t just slap the same optic on both rifles and expect the same results. The best scope for AR-10 will help you milk every ounce of long-range performance, this awesome sporting rifle is capable of delivering.
If you don’t have time for the details, check out the list below for the best rated scope for AR-10:
- Vortex Optics Strike Eagle 1-8x24mm – Best Under $500
- Monstrum 1-6×24 Alpha Series – Best Under $200
- Sig Sauer BRAVO3 Battle Sight – Best Prism Scope for AR-10
- NightForce 2.5-10×42 NXS Illuminated Compact Riflescope
- Trijicon 1-6×24 VCOG Riflescope
- EOTech Vudu 3.5-18x50mm Precision Rifle Scope
- Nikon M-Tactical .308 4-16X42SF Riflescope
- Leupold VX-R Patrol 3-9×40 Riflescope – Best Under $1000
- ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20x – Best Night Vision Scope for AR-10
- ATN ThOR 4 – Best Thermal Scope for AR-10
Table of Contents
- Understanding the AR-10
- Choosing the Right AR-10 Scope
- Best Scope for AR-10 on the Market Reviews
- 1 Vortex Optics Strike Eagle 1-8x24mm – Best Under $500
- 2 Monstrum 1-6×24 Alpha Series – Best Under $200
- 3 Sig Sauer BRAVO3 Battle Sight – Best Prism Scope for AR-10
- 4 NightForce 2.5-10×42 NXS Illuminated Compact Riflescope
- 5 Trijicon 1-6×24 VCOG Riflescope
- 6 EOTech Vudu 3.5-18x50mm Precision Rifle Scope
- 7 Nikon M-Tactical .308 4-16X42SF Riflescope
- 8 Leupold VX-R Patrol 3-9×40 Riflescope – Best Under $1000
- 9 ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20x – Best Night Vision Scope for AR-10
- 10 ATN ThOR 4 – Best Thermal Scope for AR-10
- Final Thoughts
Understanding the AR-10
First introduced in the 1950s, the original AR-10 was developed by Eugene Stoner. Modern versions of the AR-10 are mostly scaled up versions of the iconic AR-15 (also developed by Stoner). Today, there are few consistent standards, which makes assembling an AR-10 from parts is often problematic. However, attaching a good scope is still fairly simple. With flat top uppers and Picatinny rails, you can easily add almost any optic to your platform build.
Choosing the Right AR-10 Scope
Although attaching a scope is simple and easy, choosing one isn’t quite so cut and dry. The AR-10 is capable of shooting more accurately and at much longer ranges than the more popular AR-15. This is especially true when you swap the traditional 7.62x51mm NATO chambering for blistering long-range performers like the 6.5 Creedmoor or .338 Lapua.
Choosing a scope for your AR-10 largely depends on how you intend to use it. Although Stoner designed his creation as a battle rifle, modern shooters use the versatile platform for hunting, benchrest shooting, and 3 Gun competition, as well as tactical applications.
The AR-10 makes a great auto loader for hunting whitetails, especially when topped with a variable power in the 3-9x magnification range.
If you’re looking for a precision shooter, the AR-10 is a more than capable option. It is often chambered for extreme distance cartridges, and when you add a high-end optic with generous magnification, it is an outstanding option for long range target shooting and sniping.
Best Scope for AR-10 on the Market Reviews
Here are a few of our favorite models to pair with a modern AR-10 sporting rifle.
1 Vortex Optics Strike Eagle 1-8x24mm – Best Under $500
Vortex Optics are well-known for their rugged durability and affordable price tags. The Vortex Strike Eagle is a great all-around optic for budget conscious shooters, and it offers a ton of value for the money.
While the 1-8x variable power isn’t enough to make precision shots at extreme ranges, it is enough to handle the most common hunting ranges. The magnification also works well for a DMR (designated marksman rifle), if that’s more your shooting style.
At the lowest magnification (1x), the optic allows for quick and easy close-range target acquisition. However, you can easily dial up the magnification for targets at longer ranges.
The illuminated BDC reticle is located on the second focal plane and is designed to focus the shooter’s eye to the target quickly. However, it also lets you make fast and accurate holdover adjustments at known ranges out to 650 yards.
2 Monstrum 1-6×24 Alpha Series – Best Under $200
Somehow, Monstrum Tactical manages to produce some seriously high-quality scopes at shockingly affordable prices. We don’t know how they manage to do it, but we’re glad they do. If you’re looking for a scope that offers some serious bang for your buck, you have to check out Monstrum’s Alpha Series 1-6×24 FFP model.
This top-quality tactical optic is perfect for engaging targets out to 500 yards. It works especially well on whitetails and other deer-size targets, and when paired with an AR-10 chambered in .308 or 6.5 Creedmoor, it provides plenty of accuracy for ethical kills at those ranges.
All Monstrum Alpha Series scopes have fully multi-coated lenses, and they offer sharp contrast and stunning edge-to-edge clarity. They also feature butter-smooth turrets that provide easy and accurate holdover and windage adjustments.
3 Sig Sauer BRAVO3 Battle Sight – Best Prism Scope for AR-10
Although this high quality prism scope only has 3x magnification, it makes a great optic for hunting, tactical applications, and 3 Gun competition. It has a massive field of view (FOV) that is 42 percent wider than other comparable optics. This wide FOV allows for rapid acquisition of fast moving targets, and it doesn’t sacrifice precious situational awareness.
The BRAVO3 is made with low dispersion glass and a unique spherical lens that creates a flat, distortion free image with stunning edge-to-edge clarity. It also features a durable magnesium housing with an integrated Picatinny top rail, so you can easily add additional accessories.
The illuminated reticle is a traditional horseshoe dot with BDC hash marks. Highly versatile, the scope features eight daytime brightness settings and three extra settings for use with an NVD (night vision device).
4 NightForce 2.5-10×42 NXS Illuminated Compact Riflescope
Nightforce is a regular go-to brand for distance shooters, including law enforcement and military personnel. This NXS model features a compact design perfect for semi-auto AR-10 style weapons, where rail space often comes at a premium.
With a generous 2.5-10x magnification range, the NXS is perfect for medium range shooting. When held in the hands of a competent shooter, it provides pinpoint accuracy out to 800 yards. The optic also features incredible glass quality, a 30 mm main tube, and an ample 42mm objective lens. These features combine to deliver bright, clear images, even in low light shooting conditions.
The NightForce NXS has a housing constructed from a single piece of high-quality, aircraft grade aluminum. The housing is o-ring sealed and nitrogen filled, making it one of the most durable and dependable optics on our list.
5 Trijicon 1-6×24 VCOG Riflescope
Trijicon is best known for its battle-proven Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight (ACOG for short). The ACOG was originally designed for the military’s M16 rifle and M4 carbine. The company released the VCOG (Variable Combat Optical Gunsight) in response to the military’s demand for a variable powered scope, and this optic does not disappoint.
The VCOG’s 1-6x magnification range works well with the AR-10 platform. This version even has a BDC reticle designed specifically for .175-grain .308 rounds.
While making sniper level long-range shots with the VCOG isn’t likely, it works well for CQB, and medium range shooting out to 800 yards. If you plan to use your AR-10 as a DMR (designated marksman rifle), this is a near perfect scope for the job.
Shooters will appreciate the high-quality multi-coated glass, illuminated FFP reticle, and rock solid construction. The VCOG is built like a tank and is practically indestructible.
6 EOTech Vudu 3.5-18x50mm Precision Rifle Scope
Tactical shooters have fallen in love with EOTech’s famous holographic sights. It’s just as easy to fall in love with the company’s phenomenal line of variable power riflescopes. Made specifically for the battlefield, the EOTech Vudu makes the perfect partner for your AR-10.
Made for rugged tactical conditions, the EOTech Vudu is as durable as they come. It is made from high-quality aircraft grade aluminum, which is as lightweight as it is durable, so you don’t need to worry about your optic weighing you down in the field.
Tactical shooters will also appreciate the scope’s easy-to-use tactical turrets. The Vudu also features a side-mounted parallax adjustment dial, an illuminated SFP reticle, and XC high-density glass for maximum light transmission and incredible optical clarity.
7 Nikon M-Tactical .308 4-16X42SF Riflescope
Nikon makes some fabulous riflescopes, and this one is engineered specifically for the .308 Winchester/7.62 NATO rounds, which is the most common chambering for AR-10s. The scope even features a reticle designed specifically for use with 168-grain Open Tip Match projectiles. If you want to achieve match-grade accuracy with your AR-10, this is the scope you want mounted on your rail.
The M-Tactical .308 features Nikon’s proprietary multi-coatings over premium glass. Designed to maximize brightness, this glass/coating combination produces a beautiful, high contrast sight picture. The image quality stays consistent through the optic’s entire magnification range.
The shooter will also enjoy the scope’s generous, consistent eye relief and quick focus eyepiece. Built for durability, the Nikon M-Tactical is o-ring sealed and nitrogen purged for total shockproof, fogproof reliability.
8 Leupold VX-R Patrol 3-9×40 Riflescope – Best Under $1000
Leupold is a superstar in the outdoor optics industry, and their VX-R Patrol scope is one of their best offerings. Both rugged and reliable, the VX-R Patrol is perfect for hunting or tactical shooting, especially when used in rough environments.
Shooters will love the illuminated ballistic FireDot reticle. This intuitive reticle features highly visible crosshairs that allow you to line up with your target quickly and easily in any lighting condition.
Another great feature is the optic’s MST (Motion Sensor Technology) feature. Designed to extend the life of your batteries, MST automatically turns the illumination off when the optic has been still for more than five minutes. However, when movement is detected, it automatically powers up, guaranteeing the scope is always ready to go when you are.
The VX-R Patrol rifle scope is made with Leupold’s premium glass and patented lens coatings. Like all Leupold scopes, this one provides levels of brightness, clarity, and contrast you’ll never be able to experience with the naked eye.
9 ATN X-Sight II HD 5-20x – Best Night Vision Scope for AR-10
This digital optic from ATN is far more than a simple riflescope. Packed with tons of high-tech features, the X-Sight is a virtual computer you can mount right on top of your AR-10.
It comes with an on-board rangefinder, a ballistic calculator, an HD display screen, and RAV (recoil activated video) recording. RAV is an exciting feature for coyote and hog hunting. It is a feature that automatically records all the excitement of your hunts.
The ATN X-Sight HD has both a day and night mode. Unlike traditional night vision, this optic lets you shoot in any lighting condition, allowing you to seamlessly transition from daylight to nighttime without swapping out your optic.
10 ATN ThOR 4 – Best Thermal Scope for AR-10
The AR-10 is perfect for hunting hogs, especially when it’s paired with a high-quality thermal optic like the ATN ThOR 4. Don’t be fooled by the traditional look of this scope. It comes packed with tons of high-tech features.
Powered by an internal dual core processor that reduces image pixelation and increases thermal sensitivity, the ThOR 4 delivers some of the sharpest, clearest thermal images on the planet.
However, the ThOR 4 is much more than a simple thermal scope. It also comes with an integrated ballistic calculator that provides immediate angle-to-target trajectory adjustments. It even adjusts for ambient temperature and humidity levels. These are incredibly handy features when making those tough, long range shots the AR-10 is capable of.
ATN also included convenient RAV recording on their ThOR 4. The device records the excitement of your hunts onto an internal hard drive. However, you can opt to stream the high-resolution video directly to your smartphone or store it on a removable SD card.
This scope is durable enough for rough hunting or tactical conditions. It has an ultra low profile and a surprisingly long battery life. And although some shooters might balk at the price tag, we think the ATN ThOR 4 is well worth the investment.
Although not quite as trendy or prevalent as its younger brother, the AR-15, the AR-10 continues to gain popularity among civilian shooters. This highly versatile modern sporting rifle can be used for everything from big game hunting to fast-paced 3 Gun.
While any of the scopes on our list will enhance your shooting, choosing the best scope for AR-10 depends largely on your budget, shooting style, and the intended use of your rifle.