Best Shotgun Scope: The Complete Guide 2023

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Shotguns are highly favored weapons for home and personal defense in the United States. If you’re a resident, it’s likely you already have one stowed away in your home. However, despite their effectiveness for close-range combat, you might be wondering if they’re useful for hunting.

From my experience, they’re exceptional for small game hunting, particularly over shorter distances. Surprisingly, with the appropriate scope, you can accurately hunt up to a distance of 300 yards!

Does that sound too good to be true? After extensive testing, I’ve narrowed it down to five of the absolute best scopes. Among them, one stands out significantly when it comes to long-range accuracy.

Read along to find out which.

Things to Keep in Mind Before Buying a Shotgun Scope

But before diving into these recommendations, let’s discuss the factors you need to consider when buying a shotgun scope. These points will help you identify the scope that best fits your needs.


Goes without saying, the quality of the optics can significantly impact your shooting experience. One reliable way to discern the quality of a scope’s optics is to check its coating type.

Scopes with fully multi-coated optics are often the highest quality available. However, they’re typically more expensive than multi-coated or fully coated optics. If you’re deciding between multi-coated and fully coated optics, I would generally recommend opting for multi-coated.


One of the most prevalent reticle designs for shotgun scopes is the diamond reticle. It’s a straightforward design that functions quite well up to a distance of 75 yards. However, for long-range shooting (200 – 300 yards), the Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Multi-X Reticle Riflescope, 3-9X 40mm, is a fantastic choice.


Always choose scopes designed to withstand extreme weather conditions. Therefore, before purchasing your next shotgun scope, ensure it’s waterproof, fog-proof, and shockproof. Additionally, check the scope’s recoil resistance.


Shotgun scopes can vary significantly in price, depending largely on the optics’ quality and the brand. Hence, I’d suggest determining a price range before you start comparing features to identify the scope that best meets your needs.

The 5 Best Shotgun Scopes

1. TruGlo 4x32mm Shotgun ScopeTRUGLO 4x32mm Compact Rimfire and Shotgun Scope Series, Diamond Reticle, Realtree Xtra

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TRUGLO definitely makes one of the best shotgun scopes on the market today: a compact rimfire model with several excellent attributes.

My Feeling After Using This Product

TRUGLO’s compact rimfire scope is affordable, first and foremost. That alone makes it a great choice for budget-minded hunters or beginners to firearm accessories. If you don’t know what you like or what you would prefer with your shotgun, you can spend money on this model – getting some good value all the while – without having to break the bank. That makes it a stellar choice, in my eyes.

However, this is also a stellar shotgun scope thanks to the high-quality, fully coated lenses. The lenses maximize brightness, clarity, and color contrast, enabling you to hit your targets far away and pick out your targets, even if they blend in with their backgrounds. That’s a great choice if you plan to use your shotgun for activities like duck hunting or pheasant hunting.

However, this shotgun scope also comes with a rubber eye guard. It’s durable, scratch resistant, and non-reflective: all excellent elements that make it a top-tier accessory for your shotgun of choice. This rubber eye guard will protect your eye from being injured if you accidentally hold your shotgun too close to your orbital bone.

Product Highlights

I was especially impressed by the duplex reticle, which is streamlined and simplistic yet still helpful when trying to hit a moving target. More importantly, if you choose the diamond variety of this scope, the diamond reticle is specifically designed for shotgun hunting. It’s the perfect kind of reticle for deer or turkey hunting.

Suffice it to say that the reticle just cements this compact rimfire scope as a go-to shotgun accessory for hunters of all stripes and experience levels.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

On the downside, the eye relief is 3 inches, which can be a little lower depending on the shotgun model you choose to use. This is offset somewhat by the above-mentioned rubber eye guard, but it’s still a bit of a downside. You can eventually get used to this level of eye relief after spending a decent amount of time with the scope, though.

Key Features

  • 4x magnification
  • 32mm objective lens


  • Excellent eye guard
  • Very affordable
  • Good lenses
  • Has reticle designed for shotgun hunting


  • Eye relief could be a bit better

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer TRUGLO
Eye Relief 3”
Weight 11.4 oz
Magnification 4x
Field of View 24’

The Bottom Line

All in all, this shotgun scope from TRUGLO is a top-tier choice, particularly for budget-minded hunters or shotgun users who want a scope and reticle tailored to their firearms of choice.

My rating: 4.9/5

2. Konus AimPro 1.5-5x32mm Rifle ScopeKONUS - KonusPro 7249 - 1.5X-5X32mm Shotgun Scope With Engraved AimPro Reticle

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The Konus AimPro scope is another great choice for shotgun users and hunters, especially if you are looking for something fairly affordable.

My Feeling After Using This Product

In my testing with this shotgun scope, I was immediately impressed by the high-quality materials. The optic overall is designed to be functional in any weather, as it is made with a nitrogen purging process. This makes it waterproof and fog proof, plus it provides ample resistance against the high recoil and shocks common to shotgun use.

On top of that, this shotgun scope comes with multicoated optics that can enhance light transmission. I really appreciated the boosts to color contrast and clarity that the lenses brought to the table. The lenses enhance the fantastic reticle, which I break down in more detail below.

As if that wasn’t enough, the scope comes with top-tier finger adjustable turrets for windage and elevation, helping you to compensate for these variables in the field. These are very easily dialed in, even if you have gloved hands, and the shotgun scope comes corrected for parallax out to 75 yards.

Product Highlights

As noted above, the reticle is the standout feature of this shotgun scope. The 7249 scope comes with a special AimPro reticle, which is etched directly onto the glass. This exclusive design has an inner diamond to show you the exact aiming point for use with your shotgun: a major benefit that you don’t see very frequently elsewhere.

I also discovered that the special reticle works as a rangefinder for hunting turkeys or deer. In this way, it can help you hit those long-distance, hard-to-make shots. It’s a stellar feature for committed shotgun hunters who like to stretch the effective ranges of their firearms as much as possible.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

On the downside, the Konus scope’s reticle isn’t illuminated, and it can be a bit difficult to spot in low-light environments. Due to this flaw, I would not recommend the shotgun scope for nighttime shooting or for hunting in lowlight environments. The reticle is simply too difficult to pick out amongst the background or the rest of the lens.

Of course, you can avoid this flaw entirely by only using the shotgun scope in daytime hunting scenarios or target training exercises. In addition, the eye relief is under 3 inches, which could feel a little cramped compared to other shotgun scopes on the market.

Key Features

  • 1.5x-5x magnification
  • 32mm objective lens
  • SFP scope


  • Excellent shotgun-tailored reticle
  • Very reasonable price
  • Good windage and elevation turrets
  • Optics are enhanced for light transmission
  • Durable design


  • Reticle can be difficult to see in low-light environments
  • Eye relief can be short

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer Konus
Eye Relief 2.9”
Weight 14.8 oz
Magnification 1.5x-5x
Field of View 20’-60’

The Bottom Line

All in all, I’d recommend the Konus AimPro shotgun scope as a perfect choice for daytime shotgun hunters and enthusiasts, especially since it is not very expensive.

My rating: 4.8/5

3. OZARK ARMAMENT Rhino Red Dot Sight for Rifle – Shotgun ScopeOZARK ARMAMENT Rhino Red Dot Sight for Rifle - Shotgun Scope, 4MOA Rifle Red Dot Sight, Red Dot Scopes for Rifles & Shotgun Scopes with Green Dot Sight & Red Dot Optics for Rifles, Reflex Sight

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Ozark Armament’s Rhino Red Dot Sight is another top choice for shotgun hunters and enthusiasts, and not just for its price.

My Feeling After Using This Product

This is one of the most affordable shotgun sights on the market, but it’s also a fantastic red dot optic, thanks to its co-witnessing capability. It’s designed to co-witness with other optics mounted on your shotgun thanks to its included cantilever mount. It’s very easy to use and sight in, and I particularly love easy-to-mount optics since they’re great for hunters of all experience levels.

The reflex lenses are well-designed and provide a very wide field of view, especially if you use a 12-gauge shotgun. The lenses are parallax collected and offer unlimited eye relief, which can improve the accuracy you bring to the field on your next hunt.

There’s also the guaranteed lifetime durability, as the shotgun scope is very well-designed. The Rhino Red Dot Sight is made with quality materials and components, so it should work in any inclement weather or hunting environment. It’s waterproof, dustproof, and fog proof. It’s even designed for high-recoil shotgun shots, as it has very rigorous shock resistance. It features a matte black anodized finish for added stealth and corrosion resistance.

Product Highlights

The most important element of the Rhino Red Dot Sight, however, is the illuminated optic itself. You can choose between red or green dots for your next shotgun hunt, which means you’ll be able to pick out the optic even in lowlight environments or against backgrounds where your target blends in.

This is a great feature for shotgun scopes, so I was glad to see it here. A pair of flip-open lens caps allow you to protect the lenses and the red dot optic itself in dusty weather.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

The windage and elevation turrets, while functional, have to be adjusted using an Allen wrench. Since these are not finger adjustable, they aren’t as easy to use or favorable as the turrets seen on other shotgun scopes. This can be compensated for by bringing an Allen wrench with your hunting pack, but it’s still a notable downside.

Key Features

  • Red dot optic
  • 28mm objective lens


  • Lens caps included
  • Very easy to mount
  • Meant for co-witnessing with other optics
  • Supremely durable
  • Excellent illuminated red or green dot


  • Windage and elevation turrets have to be adjusted with a tool

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer Ozark Armaments
Eye Relief Unlimited
Weight 9.7 oz
Magnification 1x
Field of View Infinite

The Bottom Line

The Rhino Red Dot Sight is a phenomenal tactical optic for your shotgun of choice, given its recoil resistance and excellent illuminated red dot reticle.

My rating: 4.7/5

4. Dead Ringer 2.5 x 20mm Shotgun ScopeDead Ringer 2.5 x 20mm Shotgun Scope in Clamshell with Mounts, Compact Gun Scope, Black

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If you’re looking for a great zooming shotgun scope, check out this model from Dead Ringer, which magnifies and impresses in other ways.

My Feeling After Using This Product

The Dead Ringer shotgun scope is affordable and a stellar choice for shotguns and handguns alike. The 2.5x magnification power is perfect for short to midrange hunting and target shooting, especially for small critters that you may have to get up close to in order to take down. The scope comes with a built-in mounting system, so you can quickly attach it to your shotgun without having to purchase extra accessories.

I was especially impressed with the eyepiece, which is responsive, agile, and great for helping you locate and follow a moving target. The scope is also lightweight and very easy to use with any shotgun or pistol, so you don’t have to worry about it offsetting the balance you have memorized previously.

On top of those features, the shotgun scope is durable and built to last, featuring resilient components in total waterproofing. You should be able to use this in any inclement weather or hunting environment without seeing any changes in terms of its performance or consistency.

Product Highlights

The metal reticle is truly unique and interesting. The reticle is embedded into the lenses, so it stabilizes and does not shake or shudder each time you pull the trigger of your favorite shotgun. That’s a big benefit, in my experience, since it means that you can use this optic even with high-recoil weapons. The metal reticle also means there’s no chance of it flickering or fading away after repeated use.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

Of course, the metallic nature of the reticle also implies a necessary downside: it’s not illuminated, and it can fade in against the background from time to time. During my testing, I found it to be a little less than stellar and less consistent than I would like on certain hunts. Keep this in mind, and be prepared to swap this scope out for an illuminated variety if you like to hunt in lowlight environments or during dusk and dawn.

Furthermore, the Dead Ringer shotgun scope’s eye relief is very poor, usually at less than an inch. Therefore, you’ll want to be very careful about where you position your head.

Key Features

  • 2.5x magnification
  • 20mm objective lens


  • Reticle is very durable
  • Good construction
  • Lightweight
  • Comes with mounting system


  • Reticle can be difficult to see in low-light environments
  • Eye relief is lacking

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer Dead Ringer
Eye Relief 0.33”
Weight 8.64 oz
Magnification 2.5x
Field of View N/A

The Bottom Line

In the end, the Dead Ringer shotgun scope is a good shotgun optic for daytime hunting or for shotgun users looking for something durable and resilient.

My rating: 4.6/5

5. Feyachi Reflex SightFeyachi RS-30 Reflex Sight, Multiple Reticle System Red Dot Sight with Picatinny Rail Mount, Absolute Co-Witness

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The Feyachi Reflex Sight is, as its name suggests, a reflex optic for shotguns. Let me show you why I would recommend it.

My Feeling After Using This Product

The Feyachi Reflex Sight is affordable and durable right from the get-go, as it is made from high-quality aluminum alloys and similar components. This keeps the weight down while also enabling you to use this reflex shotgun optic in a variety of hunting environments without worry.

In addition, it comes with an integrated mount, which you can use with either Weaver or Picatinny 20mm rails. This flexibility and versatility is a major plus in my eyes, as it means you’ll be able to use this reflex optic on practically any shotgun you choose.

The tubeless design of the reflex lens aperture lets you quickly acquire your target and maintain a wide field of view, maximizing your situational awareness. I liked that the scope was also parallax corrected and offered unlimited eye relief. You can adjust its height, brightness, windage, and elevation all from its housing.

Product Highlights

The reticle of this reflex optic is the standout feature, in my opinion. That’s because you can choose between four different reticles and five different brightness settings. No matter which brightness setting you choose, the battery only takes a little bit of power, so it should last for several thousand hours before needing to be replaced.

Changing between the different brightness settings and reticle options is easy with a built-in selector located on the side of the optic housing. Each of the reticle choices is useful and valuable when in the field, as I tested each of them.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

While the Feyachi Reflex Sight has a lot to like, it also has one big downside: the windage and elevation adjusters have to be turned with a coin or special tool. Thus, they aren’t the easiest to use, and it can be difficult to make process adjustments in the field and on the fly with this optic.

Key Features

  • Reflex optic


  • Very lightweight
  • Can be mounted on any shotgun
  • Several selectable reticles and brightness settings
  • Good battery life


  • Windage and elevation adjustments can be tricky

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer Feyachi
Eye Relief Unlimited
Weight 5.4 oz
Magnification N/A
Field of View Infinite

The Bottom Line

All in all, the Feyachi Reflex Sight is the best shotgun reflex optic, so use it for tactical target shooting scenarios or for hunting situations when you want to maintain your field of view.

My rating: 4.7/5

Frequently Asked Questions

What Do the Numbers Mean on a Shotgun Scope?

The 3 in a 3-9×40 scope stands for three power, or 3x. The image you see through the scope seems three times closer (3x) than it does with the naked eye. The number 9 denotes that it is nine times (9x) closer than it appears to the human eye. The objective lens diameter in millimeters is forty (40). 

The higher magnification range you have, the more you’ll pay, but you’ll get a more adaptable scope. In many circumstances, a versatile scope implies that you can use one optic for numerous purposes rather than purchasing a new one.

What is Field of View?

At that distance, this is the amount of view you get through your scope from right to left. FOV decreases as magnification is increased. FOV increases as magnification is reduced. A common 3x variable scope, for example, may have a FOV of a little over 30 feet at 100 yards, and a FOV of roughly 14 feet at 9x. These statistics will not change if the objective lens diameter is increased. The architecture of the eyepiece has a direct impact on the field of view.

Why would a shotgun have a scope?

The sight, like the scope on a rifle, aids in boosting accuracy. A shotgun with a sight is more usual, but I’ve seen one with a scope. Some of the specialized slugs are generally fired using a scope, making them the equivalent of a large caliber rifle.

Can you use a regular scope on a shotgun?

Yes, in a word. As long as you can physically place a rifle sight on a shotgun, there’s no reason why you can’t do so. Since the purpose of a scope is the same on any type of gun, any type will work just fine on a shotgun as long as you can properly and safely keep it in place. 

What is shotgun range?

Shotguns, often known as scatterguns, are long guns or shoulder-fired weapons that discharge shot shells rather than bullet-tipped cartridges. The distance between a projectile weapon and its intended target is known as range. A shotgun’s effective range is roughly 45 meters.

Do you need an optic on a shotgun?

Optics aren’t commonly found on shotguns. Precision isn’t normally necessary because they fire numerous projectiles at once. They’d definitely do more harm than good if you’re doing any kind of wing shooting or smashing clays, forcing you to aim when you should be concentrating on following through.

How far are slugs accurate?

Any box of slugs you buy in a store should have a range of accuracy of roughly 50 yards. This is the standard range for a field rifle with a smooth barrel and a bead sight, firing any brand of ammunition at random.

How Much Magnification Do You Need?

This is very depending on how you use your shotgun. If you plan to use your gun mostly for small game hunting or homestead defense (within 100 yards), choose a magnification of 1–4x. Opt for a scope with a set power. It will speed up your close-range engagements.

Final Thoughts

Well, that about wraps up my reviews of the best shotgun scopes available on the market today.

In my opinion, if you want to convert your shotgun to a rather versatile weapon, you should certainly go for the Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Multi-X Reticle Riflescope, 3-9X 40mm. However, if long-range hunting isn’t your cup of tea, any of the other products should do the job just fine.

If you end up purchasing one of the above products, do share your experiences with me. I would love to hear from you.

Till next time! If you like long range shooting, check my 6.5 Creedmoor guide.