When Hornady introduced a brand new rifle cartridge to the world back in 2007, no one could have predicted just how popular this round would become.
In the beginning, the round was not exactly well-received when it came out. Then, as long-range shooting increased in popularity, so did the 6.5 Creedmoor. Now, the 6.5 Creedmoor is quickly becoming the go-to shooting round that was developed in the 21st century!
Contrary to other popular big-game rounds in the USA, the 6.5 Creedmoor was specifically made for competitive long-range shooting, and not as a military round.
Going the Distance: Maximize Your Shooting Range
In a 24″ barrel, the 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge can shoot to about 250 yards with less than 1″ bullet drop.
Since a 6.5mm is a relatively large cartridge, it certainly can go much farther. However, what scope you choose to use the rifle with will significantly affect your distance.
A Quick Guide to Distance: How Far Will Your Bullet Go?
For the 6.5 Creedmoor in a 24″ barrel, keep these measurements roughly in mind:
- Long Range: 700 yards and above
- Medium Range: 300 – 700 yards
- Close Range: Under 300 yards
In comparison with other calibers, 300 yards is pretty long. However, that does not mean you’re ready to go without some magnification. So, what can you expect out of your 6.5 Creedmoor?
What Magnification Do You Need?
If you’re a hunter hoping to test your personal limits, you’ll need the best scope for 6.5 Creedmoor. Although some scopes are more powerful than others, they’re not always ideal for every type of shooter.
Generally, increased magnification will assist you in shooting further. Check out our guide on magnification to learn more about it.
How far do you want to take the 6.5 Creedmoor?
Long Range (700 yards and above)
At a long-range, you’re not likely to be doing much besides target practice. You will want at least 15x magnification or more.
Medium Range (300 – 700 yards)
The 6.5 Creedmoor is perfect for shooting on medium ranges. If you mainly shoot on such distances, a 9-15x magnification should be enough. For smaller targets, you may need more than 15x.
Close Range (Under 300 yards)
Close range is considered to be under 300 yards. With a 6.5 Creedmoor scope, you can decimate anything on sight. At this range, if a scope is preferred, you will need around 5-9x power.
If you’re a marksman that shoots at a variety of distances, don’t worry – there are plenty of options for you. However, remember that each scope serves a different purpose. This is to accommodate the variety of shooting styles out there.
So, which one are you?
The 5 Best Scopes for 6.5 Creedmoor
- Vortex Optics Crossfire II 6-18x44mm AO (The Best for Short to Medium ranges)
- Athlon Optics Argos BTR Riflescope 6-24x50mm Gen 2 (The Best Long Range Scope for the price)
- Vortex Optics Viper HS-T 6-24×50mm SFP Scope (The Best Vortex 6.5 Creedmoor Scope)
- Leupold Mark 5HD 5-25x56mm FFP Riflescope (The Best Scope for Long Range Shooting)
- Burris Optics Veracity 5-25x50mm RifleScope (The Best Burris Scope for 6.5 Creedmoor)
We’ve given you plenty of reliable names to choose from. Mounting any of these is guaranteed to be a fantastic choice for the 6.5 Creedmoor.
Below are reviews of each scope that will give you insight into the best scopes for 6.5 Creedmoor rounds, as well as a list of the pros and cons of each one. Hopefully, after reading this guide, you’ll gain some perspective on which scope will suit you the best.
1. Vortex Optics Crossfire II 6-18x44mm AO – The Best for Short to Medium Range
Vortex has gone above and beyond with their constant innovation and improvements in products. Not only do they strive to make a durable product, but the price is also unbeatable.
With practically zero parallax and an anti-reflective lens, the Dead-Hold BEC MOA has a custom-designed hashmark. This helps the shooter to eliminate any guesswork on windage corrections or holdover. It is a nice feature to have for varying ranges where holdover is a significant concern.
The magnification of this lens is 6 – 18x, with a diameter of 44 mm. It seems like the Crossfire II truly takes the average hunter into consideration when designing what they need. Also, being nitrogen purged and having a sealed O-ring allows for optimal water and fog-proof performance.
This scope was truly designed to be used on your average day of hunting and shooting. It’s durable, reliable, and all any hunter could ask for. With the scope only being 19 oz, it’s an excellent addition for any beginner as well.
Despite a few complaints about the scope’s eye relief, there’s not much more you could need.
As mentioned above, Dead-Hold BDC is one of the most significant aspects of this scope. As a result, it makes pointing and shooting any target a no-brainer. Best of all, the fast-focusing eyepiece allows the hunter for easy and quick focusing.
- Waterproof and Fogproof performance
- Fully Multi-Coated Lenses
- Fast-Focus Eyepiece
- Dead-Hold BDC Reticle
- Finicky Eye Relief
The Final Verdict
Generally, the Vortex Optics Crossfire II has a commendable list of appealing features. Vortex makes quality products that are both durable and affordable. An excellent choice for your 6.5 Creedmoor rifle, if you do not want to shoot too far.
2. Athlon Optics Argos BTR Riflescope 6-24x50mm Gen 2 – The Best Long Range Scope for the Price
The word Athlon has Greek origins meaning “medal” or “prize.” Athlon, as a company, works incredibly hard to make each one of their products feel as if you’re holding success in your hands.
As soon as the scope is mounted, you’ll notice how smooth and straightforward the controls for Argos BTR is. The company also offers a shooter everything in adjustments from magnification, illumination, elevation, windage, parallax side focus, and fast focusing.
Let’s not forget about the aircraft-grade aluminum that they use to make the tube impressively durable, and any internal pieces can take whatever you try to dish out on it. Indeed, even with the reticle etched on the glass, it provides excellent support and high shock-resistance.
As far as eye relief goes, the Athlon Argos BTR offers a little over three inches. However, recoil can become quite scary when the scope gets a little too close for comfort. Athlon ensures that customers are comfortable, even going so far as to add additional for eye relief instructions to their user manual.
The reticle used in the Argos BTR is a first focal plane (FFP). This means it is located in front of the image and lenses. The advantage of having the reticle in this position is that it is magnified along with the image. The traditional thin-wire reticle becomes much larger at higher power.
Overall, this means the size of the reticle stays the same in relation to the target! Talk about making tracking a whole lot easier on the eyes.
- Illuminated Reticle
- Great Light Transmission
- Advanced Fully Multi-Coated Lenses
- High Resistance to Recoil
- Use of Argon for Waterproofing
The Final Verdict
Athlon Optics has shaken up the market a little with its stunningly affordable and functional line of rifle scopes. Value-wise, it’s hard to question the Argos BTR 6-24×50 as the best scope for 6.5 Creedmoor rounds. Simply put, no other scope delivers as much for as little. This scope also features in our best long-range scopes guide.
3. Vortex Optics Viper HS-T 6-24×50mm SFP Scope — The Best Vortex for 6.5 Creedmoor
Vortex has gone above and beyond when designing this sleek and stunning piece. As a result, the Viper HS-T mixed with the VMR Reticle is fantastic for accurately shooting at long ranges.
The clear view of the reticle is hashmark-based and has a second focal plane. This is to help maintain the relatively same-sized appearance of the target. Overall, it’s designed to help maximize long-distance shooting and ranging ability against windage, holdover, and moving-target conditions.
The parallax works from 50 yards to infinity and requires one lithium metal battery in order to function. However, it’s not a bad idea to pack an additional source of power when going out on a hunt!
Speaking of, parallax, when referring to scopes, is when the target image does not fall on the same optical plane as the scope’s reticle. This can cause the need for movement of the reticle in relation to the target. This mostly occurs when the hunter’s eye is off from the crosshair’s center.
There’s one more feature that we would love to highlight.
Customizable Rotational Stop (CRS)
One of the most amazing features on the Viper HS-T is the hands-down the CRS.
The design of the customizable rotational stop allows the hunter to easily and quickly return to an original point of zero. Also, this is great in parallel with using the elevation turret to hone in on any temporary bullet-drop corrections.
These features are particularly useful when attempting to dial large multi-rev corrections. However, if this feature didn’t exist, you would have to manually and very carefully pay attention to your number of revs. Clearing this problem from the hunter’s mind allows them to focus on what they need to be truly doing – shooting.
- Great for long ranges
- 4-inch Eye Relief
- Amazing sight picture clarity
- Clear mag power from 6–20
- Robust and responsive turrets
- CRS Zero Stop
- Adjusting mag power requires force
- Blurry sight picture at 24 mag
The Final Verdict
The remarkable CRS technology mixed with such versatile applications of the scope makes the slightly higher price tag worth every penny. As a result, Vortex has been known to impress continually and paves the way for scope technology. Honestly, it has definitely earned its spot on our list of best scopes for 6.5 Creedmoor. It would fit the AR-10 and 338 Lapua Magnum, as well.
4. Leupold Mark 5HD 5-25x56mm Riflescope – The Best For Long Range Shooting
Leupold is one of the best names in scope manufacturing. The proof is seen here, with this 5-25x scope that includes a 56 mm objective lens. Such a lens is great for using a 6.5 Creedmoor at as far a range as you can since it’ll collect more light and improve resolution and color quality for your sight picture.
Furthermore, the reticle is placed on the first focal plane to let it magnify with your image. This helps you land distant shots. The lenses are scratch-resistant, even to military standards, so you can use this scope in inclement weather without worrying. The rest of the scope is similarly durable, even though it’s lightweight overall and can help dispense recoil energy for even better performance. Since 6.5 Creedmoor weapons have a bit of kick, this is a great addition.
The scope also comes with several low-profile turrets; this prevents them from snagging on your clothing or other accessories. Each of them provides 30 Mils of adjustments in three revolutions, and they’re constructed with both visual and tactile indicators. Thus, you won’t easily get lost with your windage, elevation, or parallax settings, even if you aren’t looking as you make adjustments.
Twilight Max Light Management System
This is one of the big things that separates Leupold scopes from the rest of the pack. In a nutshell, through excellent glass glare reduction, lens coatings, and an intricate interior scope system, you’ll benefit from an additional 20 to 30 minutes of shooting light. When combined with the stopping power and accuracy of a 6.5 Creedmoor rifle, you’ll be able to take down hunting targets more reliably even during dusk or dawn.
- Includes Twilight Max Light Management System
- Lenses are scratch-resistant
- Scope is lightweight and durable
- Helps control recoil
- Turrets are well designed and low-profile
- Eye relief can be a bit low for comfort at higher zoom
The Final Verdict
All in all, there are few 6.5 Creedmoor scopes that can compete with this one given its durability, recoil control, and light management system. You won’t be disappointed if you choose it for your set up.
You might also be interested in which is the best scope for 6.5 Grendel.
5. Burris Optics Veracity Rifle Scope 5-25x50mm – The Best Burris for 6.5 Creedmoor
Burris Optics has impressed us once again with another quality rifle scope. This one is particularly well-suited for 6.5 Creedmoor weapons. It can magnify between 5x and 25x and features a 50 mm objective lens. This allows you to push out your effective accuracy with your 6.5 Creedmoor rifle, as zoom settings this high are often used for long-range shots up over 500 yards! Indeed, this rifle is predesigned for action up to 700 yards.
The magnification settings rotate smoothly and rapidly and enable you to take advantage of a large field of view at close ranges or better target acquisition at farther ranges. The lenses collect lots of light and are bolstered by the high-grade optical glass. This glass provides you with even better brightness and clarity even in low light hours of the day. Thus, it’s a great hunting scope since many common hunted animals are most active at the beginning and end of the day.
It’s also a durable scope overall, featuring a waterproof and fog proof design. You can take this outside and inclement weather and not have to worry about it failing you in a pinch. We also really like how lightweight the scope is: it only weighs about 12.8 ounces in total, making it one of the lightest 6.5 Creedmoor scopes you can find.
Multi-Turn Target Knobs
This scope comes with windage and elevation adjustment turrets like most other scopes. But these are particularly smooth and offer up to 15 MOA per rotation. This enables you to compensate for lots of windage and elevation, effectively letting you hit far away targets with more confidence. It also comes with an ergonomic side focus that lets you adjust for parallax between 50 yards and infinity. The only downside is that these turrets aren’t as well marked as we might like.
- Very lightweight
- Features smooth and tactile turrets
- Easily lets you adjust for parallax
- Made with great lenses overall
- Great for shooting out to 700 yards
- Turrets aren’t very well marked
The Final Verdict
This top-tier scope is a great choice for use with any 6.5 Creedmoor weapon, especially if you plan to use the rifle at the edge of its effective range and take down long-distance targets.
Frequently Asked Questions
How many rounds is a 6.5 Creedmoor barrel good for?
Some shooters like to complain about a barrel’s longevity, claiming that the 6.5 Creedmoor will only last for 2-3,000 rounds whereas the . 308 Win will be good for as many as 10,000 rounds.
What is a 6.5 Creedmoor best for?
The 6.5 Creedmoor is among the best-selling 6.5mm cartridges for both hunting and target shooting. It’s versatile, efficient, cost-effective, and low recoiling. It’s a favorite deer and elk cartridge among the MeatEater crew, and it’s taken enough big game to disprove initial doubters.
How far can a 6.5 Creedmoor shoot accurately?
6.5mm Creedmoor can provide sub-half-minute of angle accuracy from factory ammo. The cartridge stays supersonic and maintains its accuracy to past 1,200 yd.
How much will a 6.5 Creedmoor drop at 500 yards?
At 500 yards the 6.5 Creedmoor drops 2.1 mil with .6 mil drift in a 10mph crosswind compared to 2.5 mil of drop and .9 mil of drift for the 308.
How far does 6.5 Creedmoor stay supersonic?
Studies have shown that the 6.5 Creedmoor will remain supersonic out to 1,400 yards and is quickly becoming the most popular long-range, big-game cartridge in the world.
How far can you shoot a deer with a 6.5 Creedmoor?
The 6.5 mm Creedmoor carries enough energy to kill a deer at 1000 yds. if the shot is placed perfectly. It is recommended to not take a shot beyond 500 or maybe 600 yds.
Which is better: 270 or 6.5 Creedmoor?
The .270 Winchester has more velocity and kinetic energy than the 6.5 Creedmoor out past 500 yards, the advantage possessed by the .270 narrows from 515 foot pounds of energy at the muzzle to just 189 foot pounds of energy at 500 yards.
Where Does 6.5 Creedmoor Get Its Name?
The 6.5 Creedmoor is named after Creedmoor Sports, a name that can be traced back to early NRA competitions in upstate New York in 1874 on the site of the “Creed” farm. The surrounding farmland reminded visiting British and Irish shooters of their own country’s “moorlands,” hence the name “Creedmoor.”
Is a 6.5 Creedmoor bigger than a 7mm?
6.5 Creedmoor bullets are smaller in diameter and more aerodynamic than 7mm-08 Remington rounds. Both cartridges have a similar trajectory, however at ordinary hunting ranges, the 7mm-08 maintains more kinetic energy than the 6.5 Creedmoor, but the 6.5 Creedmoor has less recoil.
What is the difference between the 6.5 Creedmoor and the 260 REM?
When you compare it to .260 Remington ammo, the 6.5 Creedmoor has a stronger long-range performance. The Creedmoor’s bullet arrives at 1000 yards 0.09 seconds faster than Hornady’s 147-grain ELD Match 6.5 Creedmoor load, despite the fact that it starts out 5 percent faster. To put it another way, that’s around 5% faster.
Concluding our 6.5 Creedmoor Scopes Guide
Hopefully, this guide has helped you narrow down your search for the best scope for 6.5 Creedmoor. Now it’s up to you to pick a favorite. Each of these scopes is a top-quality product so that you won’t go wrong choosing any one of them.
Before you start choosing, it’s essential to take into account the price, safety, and also what magnification you’re looking for.
If you’re looking for the most affordable scope, go for the Vortex Crossfire.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a scope with FFP, an affordable price, and great features such as precision and durability, the Athlon is a perfect choice.
Finally, the Leupold may be the priciest of among the five, but it still offers great features.
The Vortex Viper and Burris veracity are other solid choices.
In the end, 6.5 Creedmoor rounds have built a solid reputation in the world of long-range shooting, and any of the scopes on the list would be a great choice.