Scopes

Best Crossbow Scope {Top 5} – Buying Guide & FAQ

Turkey season is approaching, and what better way to ensure you are ready for this exciting crossbow hunting trip than by treating yourself to a new crossbow scope? As you may already know, a crossbow scope improves your accuracy and effective killing range.

There is an abundance of crossbow scopes available, but finding the right one can be challenging. Therefore, we have compiled a list of the best crossbow scopes currently available, as well as a helpful buying guide. After extensive testing, the Vortex Crossbow Scope was my #1 choice!

 


Best Crossbow Scope For Precision & Hunting

HuntersHalt: #1 Pick
 
 
5.0
4.5
4.5
Pros:
  • Rugged and extremely tough
  • Multi-coated lenses with exceptional light transmission
  • Affordable
  • XBR reticle
Pros:
  • Compact and agile
  • Multi-color display
  • Range finder
  • Laser locate feature
Pros:
  • Pro-5 step reticle system
  • Budget-friendly
  • User-friendly adjustments
  • Multi-coated lenses enhance light transmission
HuntersHalt: #1 Pick
5.0
Pros:
  • Rugged and extremely tough
  • Multi-coated lenses with exceptional light transmission
  • Affordable
  • XBR reticle
4.5
Pros:
  • Compact and agile
  • Multi-color display
  • Range finder
  • Laser locate feature
4.5
Pros:
  • Pro-5 step reticle system
  • Budget-friendly
  • User-friendly adjustments
  • Multi-coated lenses enhance light transmission
Lasso Brag

1) Vortex Crossfire II 2-7×32 Crossbow Scope

HuntersHalt: #1 Pick
Vortex Crossfire II 2-7x32 Crossbow Scope
5.0
Pros:
  • Rugged and extremely tough
  • Multi-coated lenses with exceptional light transmission
  • Affordable
  • XBR reticle
Cons:
  • Cheaper options are available for beginners
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When it comes to quality scopes, Vortex is leading the pack – and the Crossfire II Crossbow scope is no exception. The scope is exceptionally well built, featuring an aesthetically pleasing design that is tough as nails. It is waterproof, shockproof, and fog proof.

However, a scope’s main feature is to provide visual enhancement for the shooter and extend their range – the Crossfire II does just that. The scope features a multi-coated 32 mm objective lens diameter, a magnification of 2-7x, and an XBR-2 reticle providing both red and green illumination.

Vortex crossfire crossbow scope

The scope is designed to be zeroed at 40 yards but is capable of providing holdovers anywhere between 20 and 100 yards. In my opinion, it is one of the Best Vortex Deer Hunting Scopes that I’ve used. To top that, the Crossfire ii can be adjusted based on the crossbow’s feet-per-second ratings – fine-tuning the reticle to match the FPS.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Rugged and extremely tough
  • Multi-coated lenses with exceptional light transmission
  • Affordable
  • XBR reticle

Cons

  • None

My Experience With Vortex

Even though I predominantly hunt with rifles, I enjoy my yearly crossbow turkey hunting expeditions. And when I do go hunting with my crossbow, the Crossfire II is my crossbow scope of choice. Its lightweight and optical clarity features impress me the most – it provides fast target acquisition and is extremely accurate.

 


2) Garmin Xero X1i Crossbow Auto-Ranging Digital Sight

Garmin Xero X1i Crossbow Auto-Ranging Digital Sight
4.5
Pros:
  • Compact and agile
  • Multi-color display
  • Range finder
  • Laser locate feature
Cons:
  • Premium price point
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Garmin is not only good at manufacturing smartwatches and GPSs – as is evident with the Garmin Xero X1i. This crossbow scope is definitely our bells and whistles scope of the list, with some amazing features to boost a shooter’s capabilities. This is an extremely compact crossbow scope measuring only 6.2 inches in length. I also found that Garmin makes some of the Best Night vision Crossbow scopes that I’ve used.

The scope has a 3.5x magnification with an auto-ranging feature that automatically ranges your target to 250 yards. Additionally, the scope also has an auto-brightness mode – adjusting your scope’s brightness level based on the ambient lighting conditions. Like the Crossfire II, the Xero can automatically calibrate your aim points up to 80 yards.

picture of garmin xero crossbow scope

A really nice feature on this scope is its Laser Locate waypoint projection feature. This feature works in combination with compatible Garmin devices (like smartwatches) to pinpoint and show you where your target was located when the shot was taken. The Laser Locate feature is great if you want to track your game or even find a stray bolt.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Compact and agile
  • Multi-color display
  • Range finder
  • Laser locate feature – helps locate stray bolts and track game by identifying the location of the target when the shot was fired.

Cons

  • Very expensive

My Experience With Garmin

Aside from Garmin’s smartwatches, I only had the opportunity to test the Garmin on one hunting expedition. But, boy, was I impressed with its technology. The scope really does all the hard work for you. All you have to do is get sight on target and shoot accurately.

However, this can be a blessing and a curse, as I feel it takes away the challenge associated with the hunt. It’s nice to hunt one or two times with this scope, but after a while, you feel you want to resort back to the more “traditional” scope. All things considered, this is an exceptional scope with some high-level ingenuity from the people over at Garmin.

 


3) Leapers UTG 4x32mm Crossbow Scope

Leapers UTG 4x32mm Crossbow Scope
4.5
Pros:
  • Pro-5 step reticle system - Range finding and dual illuminated reticle capabilities
  • Budget-friendly
  • User-friendly windage and elevation adjustments
  • Multi-coated lenses enhance light transmission
Cons:
  • Bulky design
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The UTG crossbow scope is another great crossbow scope. The scope is built to withstand harsh elements – it is rainproof, fog proof, and shockproof. Leapers UTG measures 8.19 inches, has an eye relief 0f 3.8 inches, and weighs 12.3 ounces. It also feels much more accurate than most of my Henry Big Boy scopes that I’ve tested.

The UTG has a 4x magnification and a 32 mm objective lens diameter. It also features an Illuminated reticle system termed the “Pro-5 step” – providing both red and green illumination. Additionally, the reticle system also has integrated range finder lines and is calibrated for a 300 fps crossbow. The scope also features zero-resettable and zero-lockable windage and elevation adjustments.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Pro-5 step reticle system – Range finding and dual illuminated reticle capabilities
  • Budget-friendly
  • User-friendly windage and elevation adjustments
  • Multi-coated lenses enhance light transmission

Cons

  • Bulky design

My Experience With Leapers

One of my most memorable turkey hunting trips was with the UTG crossbow scope. The anti-glare design of the scope allowed fast target acquisition, and the reticle system made it easy for me to estimate shot placement accurately. I would recommend this scope to anyone who is on a budget and wants to get an upgrade from the basic crossbow scopes.

 


4) TruGlo CrossTec Compact Scope

TruGlo CrossTec Compact Scope
3.5
Pros:
  • Durable scope
  • Multi-coated lenses
  • Most affordable on this list
  • Illuminated reticle
Cons:
  • Lens quality could be better
  • Less adjustability
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When I think of TruGlo, I think of red dot scopes for turkey hunting. TruGlo definitely has a presence in the short-range hunting sector. The CrossTec is an excellent little crossbow scope for turkey hunting. The scope is extremely durable and has fully coated lenses to increase clarity and reduce glare.

The CrossTec also has three reticle systems to choose from, two of which are illuminated – red, green, and black (no illumination). The reticle system also has trajectory compensation to increase distant shooting capabilities. This scope has a 32mm objective lens diameter and a 4x magnification.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Durable scope
  • Multi-coated lenses
  • Most affordable on this list
  • Illuminated reticle

Cons

  • Not as clear as some of the other scopes

My Experience With TruGlo

The CrossTec is probably one of the first illuminated crossbow scopes I had the privilege of testing. To summarize how I experienced this scope: The scope did not compromise my crossbow’s agility, it survived the elements even though it felt like a hurricane type of weather, and at the end of the day, I got to bag some turkeys. I would recommend this scope for anyone who is new to the crossbow experience – it is cheap and easy to use.

 


5) Hawke Sport Optics Hawke 1.5-5x32mm Crossbow Scope

Hawke Sport Optics Hawke 1.5-5x32mm Crossbow Scope
3.5
Pros:
  • High light transmission - thanks to its large objective lens size and 11-layer fully coated lenses
  • Adjustable brightness
  • Nitrogen purged to boost durability
Cons:
  • Reticle design could be better
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The last crossbow scope we have on this list is Hawke’s take on the crossbow scope. This crossbow scope measures 8.3 inches in length and has an eye relief of 4.02 inches, and weighs 13 ounces. The scope has a 36 mm objective lens diameter and a 1.5-4.5x magnification range. I also found that Hawke makes some of the Best LPVO Budget Optics that I’ve tested.

The scope has all kinds of neat features. The first is a speed adjustment to easily match the scope with the bow – the scope works with bows that shoot speeds between 275 and 425 fps. Additionally, the scope is fitted with a red and green illumination reticle and has 10-yard aim points for distances between 20-100 yards. Finally, you can also adjust the brightness between 5 levels to best match the ambient light conditions.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • High light transmission – thanks to its large objective lens size and 11-layer fully coated lenses
  • Adjustable brightness
  • Nitrogen purged to boost durability

Cons

  • Not a fan of the reticle design

My Experience With Hawke

There are two specific reasons why I chose the Hawke to be featured on this list – options and adaptability. First, you can adjust the magnification depending on the target’s distance – not many crossbow scopes have this feature. Second, you can adjust your brightness level to match the conditions around you. Finally, the scope is suitable for a multitude of crossbows, shooting at different speeds.

When I tested the Hawke I had the option of choosing which crossbow I wanted to mount it on. Thanks to the brightness and magnification adjustability, I could also shoot just as well in the woods as in the open. The scope impressed me a lot, and I found it to be a well-rounded scope.

 


Crossbow Scope Buying Guide

Benefits of A Crossbow Scope

When I think of the benefits of a crossbow scope, there are three that almost immediately come to mind, they include:

  • Accuracy – A crossbow scope has better aiming points that an iron sight. This means that you can shoot with higher accuracy at any range.
  • Range – A crossbow scope is equipped with a magnification. This allows you to shoot at further distances and increases your probability of bagging a turkey. Remember, the best magnification for hunting scope will depend on what you’re hunting!
  • Brightness – Most crossbow scopes are equipped with an illuminated reticle, making sight on target much easier. Additionally, some scopes also have variable brightness levels – allowing you to shoot even when the lighting conditions would limit an iron sight.

How We Rate Crossbow Scopes

When we rate crossbow scopes, we rate them around the principle of practicality for a shooter and hunter. It doesn’t help if the scope has a magnification of 10x but is as heavy as the crossbow, and the crossbow might not even make an ethical kill at a 10x range. Therefore, we follow a set of guidelines revolving around the hunter when we rate crossbow scopes. These guidelines include:

 

  • Value – Is the scope worth the price you pay? Does it have features that justify its price? Is it priced competitively with the rest of the market?
  • Features – The scope should be equipped with features that actually help the shooter. Features like an illuminated reticle, aiming points for shooting at different distances, variable power scopes & speed adjustment for different crossbow speeds, etc.
  • Construction – The manufacturer should always take practicality into consideration when designing a scope. The scope should not compromise the crossbow’s agility and maneuverability.
  • Additionally, the scope should be extremely durable and can survive all kinds of harsh elements. The manufacturer should also design the scope to be ergonomic – limiting the shooter’s eye fatigue when aiming at something.
  • Accuracy – We test crossbow scopes by taking them to the range, and if we have the opportunity, we go hunt with them. A scope’s main function is to improve the accuracy of the shooter. The scope should at least repeatedly shoot close to or in the bullseye at 50 yards.

Different Types Of Crossbow Scopes

There are three main types of crossbow scopes:

  • Red dot – Providing a single illuminated red dot that shooters use to aim with.
  • Magnification scopes – Similar to a rifle scope, these scopes have a magnification to extend the range, the reticle is usually illuminated, you also have variable brightness levels, and the scope is fitted with aiming points or drop-compensating lines to help the hunter shoot accurately at different distances.
  • Iron sight – They do not provide a magnification, you align the front sight with the rear sight when aiming and use that as your reference to make accurate shot placements.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a good scope for crossbow?

A good scope for a crossbow is the Vortex optics Crossfire II. It is a very versatile scope and provides the shooter with accuracy and a high level of optical clarity.

What is the best range to sight in a crossbow?

That depends on your use case, hunting environment, and crossbow's capabilities. Normally, I sight my crossbow scopes in at 20 yards.

What are the different types of crossbow scopes?

You get a red dot scope, iron sight scope, and then normal magnification scopes similar to that of rifles.

Can you put any scope on a crossbow?

No, although some rifle scopes might be compatible with a crossbow scope, it is best to choose a scope specifically designed for a crossbow. Your performance will be better as the scope is designed for use on a crossbow.

How far out can you shoot a crossbow?

You should limit hunting to within 40 yards to ensure you make an ethical kill. However, some modern-era crossbows can shoot up to 500 yards but should never be attempted to hunt anything at that distance with a crossbow.

How close can you shoot a crossbow?

You can shoot a crossbow as close as 1 yard. Remember always to pay attention to your surroundings when firing potentially lethal projectiles.

Final Thoughts

So there you have it, the scopes listed are the best crossbow scopes currently available on the market. If you want the best versatile scope option, then go for the Vortex. If you are one for bells and whistles and the price doesn’t bother you then, the Garmin is the scope for you. Whichever scope you plan on buying will be a good fit for your crossbow – guaranteed! After you buy your scope, you will need to sight in your new scope, feel free to follow our detailed guide here.

HuntersHalt: #1 Pick
Vortex Crossfire II 2-7x32 Crossbow Scope
5.0
Pros:
  • Rugged and extremely tough
  • Multi-coated lenses with exceptional light transmission
  • Affordable
  • XBR reticle
Cons:
  • Cheaper options are available for beginners
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About the author

Patrick Howard

I have been working as a gunsmith for 20 years. Rain, fog, moisture, high temperature, or even snow are all the things a product must withstand in order to be recommended by me.

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