The Best ACOG Scope for AR-15 – Our Top Picks
ACOG scopes or Advanced Combat Optical Gunsights are low-power telescopic scopes for most modern sporting rifles like the AR-15. ACOG scopes are manufactured by Trijicon (great brand) and have reticles that are illuminated by phosphor.
You’ll find ACOG scopes in magnifications from 1.5x to 6x. Most ACOG scopes also have daylight reticle illumination that is facilitated by an external fiber optic or a battery.
If you’re new to the world of ACOG scopes, we recommend you check out our article on how ACOG scopes work first.
In this post, we’re going to go over several of our favorite ACOG scopes that we think are best for the AR-15 rifle platform.
Here’s our picks for the best ACOG scopes for AR-15 and other AR platform rifles below:
If you want a bare-bones ACOG, this is about as simple as it gets. No battery, like most ACOG scopes, the ballistic reticle is illuminated by a nuclear source in low lighting conditions. If it doesn’t look like the typical ACOG, that’s because it doesn’t have the fiber-optic filament running along the top.
That said, it still performs. 4x magnification, and a wide 32mm aperture come standard on most ACOG scopes. This one in particular doesn’t come with a rail, so you will have to pick one up for a few extra dollars to mount it on your AR15. But for the price, you really can’t beat this humble scope.
This is more like the ACOG you are used to seeing. The glowing red ballistic reticle is tuned for bullet drop from a typical .223/5.56 round. The magnification optic is the standard 4×32 setup, and it comes with a rear mount if you want to add a reflex sight later on.
The red fiber-optic tentacle will add an imposing character to your AR15, and the reticle will have you punching targets out to 300 yards without any problems. It doesn’t come with anything fancy, but as with all ACOGs, if there’s some feature that you would like to add later, you can, like an anti-reflection cover for the main optic, or a reflex site onto the included mounts.
This model comes with a chevron reticle, so the sight picture is that familiar inverted ‘v’ above the bullet drop compensator that ACOG is known for.
Let’s face it, red isn’t for everyone, and neither is a Chevron sighting reticle. I’m actually a fan of the horseshoe design, featured on this scope. The little dot centered in a ring (closed or not) is my favorite way to sight a target quickly. You can get this scope in one of three different colors; red, green, or amber. Personally, I’d go with the green one.
The optic is typical of an ACOG, with a 4×32 design that works well on an AR15. The scope features a mounting bracket for a reflex if you should feel the need, and will look fantastic on your AR15. If you like the horseshoe reticule, then this is the ACOG for you.
Get everything in one package. This sighting system features a 4×32 ACOG with a red chevron ballistic reticle, the mount, and the piggyback reflex site. If you are going to keep your AR15 ready to defend your home, this might be the sight you are looking for. The reflex sight is perfect for covering short hallways, corridors, and other close-quarters areas. Meanwhile the dual-illuminated scope gives you accuracy at a distance. This is a powerful combination for the AR15 that needs to serve multiple uses.
When I think of an ACOG package, this is the setup I picture in my mind. It doesn’t come with a anti-reflection screen, but they can be picked up at a low cost and mounted easily.
For those wanting less magnification, you don’t have to go with a cheaper battle scope or a clone. These 3×30 scopes are terrific ACOGs for closer ranges. For good eyes, 3x is perfect for punching holes out to 100 yards, and some people can keep shots on a pie plate at 200 with low magnification.
Any magnification is better than irons when you are shooting at longer distances, and lower gives you a much wider field of view, whether you are scanning for animal movement or counting enemy troops.
This humble scope also supports the ACOG reflex and has the mounting bracket integrated near the eyepiece.
With a 30mm aperture at this magnification, your target will come in with perfect brightness, as much as your eyes can handle, even in the dark.
The 10mm exit pupil is great for delivering all the light you can see, straight to the back of your eye. This scope is especially good for popping varmints at sunset, though lower magnification isn’t the best for everyone.
Believe it or not, the best price for this awesome ACOG for your AR-15 is on Amazon right now.
I’ll kick this part off with the older looking, ACOG ECOS. Don’t let the looks fool you. That’s still a tritium powered lamp in there, guaranteed for 15 years of illumination.
Trijicon scopes have a lot in common with one another, so let’s take a look at this one in detail. The illuminated crosshairs give the feel of a standard scope. None of that funny chevron or horseshoe business. If you like a regular crosshair, and don’t care for the flashy fiber optic on top of the sight, then this might be the one for you.
The backup reflex site mounted on top of this package offers a close quarters solution when you don’t need the 4x magnification. The dot on the reflex is 3.5-4 MOA, so it’s perfect for putting shots quickly to pinpoint accuracy at close range, or keeping them in a three or four inch circle at 50 yards. For everything past that, you have a rugged 4x scope. This is your AR15 battle scope. The color is good for desert backgrounds. The downside, of course, is it won’t be as bright during the day as the fiber-optic assisted versions.
When you want to reach out and touch something with your AR15, you need a little more magnification. At dusk or in low light conditions, you want aperture. But you need a big scope for that, right?
Wrong. Trijicon keeps big scope features in a fairly small package with this one. Bigger than the standard ACOG, it contains the same setup that we are used to seeing. The light collecting fiber-optic collector boosted by a tritium lamp.
Designed for higher magnification, it has the same mount holes on the eyepiece that you expect on an ACOG, so you can optionally pick up a battle sight for close quarters, if you like, to add some more versatility to your AR15. The reticle is a chevron, basically and upside-down v at the top of your distance ticks.
In my opinion, the features on this scope make it perfect for turning your AR15 into the ultimate Texas hog-hunting weapon. You could optionally mount one on an AR10 for use as a deer rifle.
The TA31F is exactly what you expect from an ACOG. Chevron reticle illuminated by fiber-optic and tritium, easy windage and elevation adjustment, water and fog proof, but without any fancy extras. When I see this ACOG, I see everything I expect in a basic ACOG without the additional pieces.
The magnification on this guy is 4x, and it has the standard 32mm lens on the front to collect plenty of light for that magnification. (It gives an 8mm exit pupil, if you want to know why it’s plenty of aperture for this scope)
This ACOG will feel right at home on any AR platform.
Notice anything different about this scope? You might, but your enemies downrange wont, because of the glare killing screen that comes included. Keep your squad safe by tossing this on your M4 before you go into combat. No reflections, no glints of light giving away your position.
You can add an anti-reflection piece to the front of any scope, really, but if you need it, why not get it included from the start? And why not get a scope that was purpose built to the specs provided by the Marine Corps? This scope is tough, ready for battle, and if you still want the close quarters reflex sight, you can toss that on top too, though the extra glass of a reflex could cause glinting, which is probably why they didn’t include it.
There’s something I really like about a peep and post sighting system, and this sight has one mounted right on top of the scope. Pretty much an ordinary Trijicon ACOG in every other respect; 4×32, adaptable with all the normal accessories (but you will have to remove the peep sight to mount a reflex), no batteries, 15 year warranty on the tritium, etc.
The sight distance on the peep sight doesn’t really work to it’s advantage, giving you slightly better than pistol accuracy from your rifle if you use it (small sight distance but your eye is closer). But hey, it’s kind of cool, and it’s cheaper than mounting a reflex. This one made the list because it’s different, and variety is my favorite spice, especially when it comes to rifle optics.
Is it Time for an ACOG Scope?
In short, the answer is yes! ACOG scopes are built like tanks, they’re fun to shoot with (really quick target acquisition) and the optical clarity is outstanding. If you own an AR with high quality parts and upgrades and are looking for a military-grade scope to match, go with an ACOG.
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