Best Scopes For 17HMR -2020 Buyer’s Guide

The 17 Hornady Magnum Rimfire (HMR) is quite a popular rifle caliber that is commonly used in varmint hunting and plinking. 

However, an important aspect of any rifle depends on the scope used for accurate targeting and precise shoots. 

This article will discuss the very best scopes you can get for your 17 HMR.    

Comparison Chart of the Best Scopes For .17HMR

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • 3 - 9x magnification and 40mm objective lens
  • Multicoated lenses for brightness and clarity
  • Waterproof and fogproof
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  • Long lasting and durable
  • Fixed inner ring and inner drum markings
  • Comes with 17gr turret drums
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  • Best for the Money
  • Objective is fully adjustable
  • Superior stability and strength
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  • Best Scope for Savage 17 HMR
  • 3.5 - 10x magnification and 36mm objective lens
  • Quick-focus eyepiece with 1 inch tube
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  • Best Leupold 17 HMR Scope
  • Waterproof, shockproof, and fogproof
  • Dependable over lifetime of heavy use
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  • Best Vortex 17 HMR Scope and Best 17 HMR Scope with Bullet Drop
  • Forgiving eye box and long eye relief
  • Finger adjustable capped reset turrets
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  • Best Bushnell 17 HMR Scope
  • Comes with eyepiece covers
  • Repels oil, water, fog, debris, and dust
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  • Best Varmint Scope for 17 HMR
  • Multi-coated optics for great clarity
  • Includes lens cloth and scope caps
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What Makes a Scope Suitable For a .17 HMR? 

A good scope is one that is suitable for different rifles and is diverse in use. Here are some factors worth considering. 

Magnification

This factor determines how much you can zoom into your shot and hence be precise. The 17 HMR is used by hunters and range shooters as well, so a magnification of 1-2x is helpful. The best scopes provide magnification up to 12x as well.

Objective

The lens objective is the diameter measurement outside the lens. Larger objectives are great for longer distances, but anything too large can be distracting.

Reticle

The reticle is the dot in the center of the scope and is something that differs from hunter to hunter. Basic crosshair reticles to complex ones are available; it all depends on your need.  

Parallax Adjustment

Ensuring the reticle and target are on the same plane is done by parallax adjustment, and this enforces clear shots. A 100 or 150-yard parallax setting is ideal in any scope for the 17 HMR. 

Material 

Aircraft-grade aluminum is the best material for any scope since it is studied and will last long without bending. 

When hunting, you could face many different environmental conditions, so your scope should be resistant to any extremities. Scopes that have hard anodized coatings and are water and fog-proof are your best bet. 

As long as moisture does not seep into the interior, the scope will last long. It is also worth ensuring your unit is sealed with O-rings for better longevity. 

How Accurate is a .17 HMR? 

The .17 HMR is one of the most accurate rimfire rifles on the market. It is much more precise than many others used for hunting. Usually, the rifle shoots accurately till about 200 yards. It depends on the target, the bullet, and the weather conditions. The ammo used affects the accuracy; its weight, and the way it is shaped both play a role in this. Different kinds of powders can have different burning capacities, so that is something to keep in mind.

Quick Take | Best Scopes For .17 HMR

Just looking for the three best scopes for .17 HMR? Here they are:

  1. Bushnell 3-9X 40mm
  2. BSA S17-618X40SP 6-18X40
  3. Hawke Riflescope Vantage IR

Review of the Best Scopes For .17 HMR 

Here are some of the best scopes for .17 HMR reviewed in detail to help you find an ideal unit. 

Best Overall:
Bushnell 3-9 X 40mm

Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Multi-X Reticle Riflescope with 3.3-Inch Eye Relief, 3-9X 40mm

PROS

  • Has a magnification of 3x to 9x
  • 12-inch long fast-focus eyepiece
  • Has a Multi-X reticle with elevation adjustments
  • 100% waterproof and has 3.3-inches of eye relief
  • Great clarity and brightness with Dusk and Dawn Brightness multi-coated lenses

CONS

  • Very difficult to get the scope to hold zero
  • Some users have complained about the crosshairs getting unleveled too soon

What Recent Buyers Report

For the price, buyers find this to be an excellent buy. If you want to shoot about 100-150 yards in the distance, this scope is quite precise. It gives good clarity and a field of view, even in low light, something many hunters have praised the unit for.    

Why it Stands Out to Us

Primarily, it stands out to us because it is an excellent scope for shooting in low light that is during the dusk and dawn times when the animals come out, and you can hunt without difficulty. The Dusk and Dawn Brightness multi-coated lens give great clarity and brightness with precise 1.4 MOA clicks.

Some other incredible points to note about its construction are the 12-inch long fast-focus eyepiece and that the scope is waterproof, shockproof, and fog proof. It can also withstand strong recoils and even offers 3.3 inches of eye relief. 

With all these incredible features and such an economical price, the Bushnell 3-9 X 40mm has great value and is definitely our top scope on this list.   

Bottom Line

The main or standout feature in this scope is that it allows you to shoot at dusk and dawn, as the name states. That is something hunters would know to be precious, and at such a low price, you can’t say no! 

BSA S17-618X40SP 6-18X40 Sweet 17 Rifle Scope with Side Parallax Adjustment and Multi-Grain Turret

PROS

  • Great for the price
  • Offers parallax adjustment
  • Comes with 17gr turret drums
  • Quite accurate especially on the .17 HMR
  • Zoom ring is designed with an inner drum with markings and fixed inner ring with a window cutout

CONS

  • Does not hold zero easily
  • Customers have complained about its eye relief

What Recent Buyers Report

.17 HMR users really love this scope. It provides clarity for shooting at least 200 or so yards in the distance and is quite long-lasting as well. In fact, some elderly buyers who have weak eyesight have praised the scope for brightness and easy shooting and adjustment.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The BSA Rifle Scope is one with side parallax adjustments and multi-grain turret. It is built specifically for the .17 HMR, so if you own one of these rimfire rifles, you ought to get the best use and experience out of it. 

The scope’s adjustable parallax allows you to shoot with precision, and the best part is that the duplex reticle has an incredible design to offer further accuracy. Moreover, the zoom ring is designed in a way that the inner drum has markings while the fixed inner ring has a window cutout. This ensures that you can zero in with ease and view your target.  

Bottom Line

Overall, this is rated as the runner-up on our list since it is curated perfectly for the .17 HMR. With great precision, the BSA Rifle Scope will allow you to shoot a good 200 yards’ distance. 

Best for the Money:
Hawke Riflescope Vantage IR

Hawke Vantage IR 4-12x40 AO IR Riflescope, 1 in, Rimfire .17HMR (14241)

PROS

  • Magnification of 12x
  • Offers lifetime guarantee worldwide 
  • Objective is adjustable for parallax correction
  • Lenses have eleven layers and are multi-coated 
  • Has a one-inch mono-tube chassis for durability

CONS

  • Difficult to clear the crosshairs and target at the same time
  • Crosshairs are not true to 90 degrees, as some users notice

What Recent Buyers Report 

Considering the price, there aren’t many scopes out there with 12x magnification, which makes this one a popular choice amongst hunters. Unlike many other units, this one can zero quickly as well and gives clear images without blurriness. Most buyers love this model and praise the customer service quite a lot, too.  

Why it Stands Out to Us

It is difficult to find a good scope with high magnification for the .17 HMR that also costs reasonable. Luckily, we have found the perfect one for you. Hawke’s Riflescope Vantage IR scope boasts more features than any we’ve listed above. It is constructed to be shock and waterproof, and the optics are dry nitrogen-filled to avoid misting.

The 12x reticle is a programmable ballistic reticle that is designed specifically for Hawke. Zeroing in on your target has never been easier with excellent downrange accuracy.

Moreover, the optical is adjustable, which allows for parallax correction from ten yards to infinity. 

Bottom Line

With high magnification and so many more features to offer, Hawke’s IR scope will give you the best bang for your buck. It is the ideal model for shooting long distances with your .17 HMR, so you might not want to sleep on this one!

Best Scope for Savage .17 HMR:
Bushnell 613510A

Bushnell 613510A Rimfire Optics Scope with Multi-X Reticle, 3.5-10 x 36mm, Matte

PROS

  • Has multi-x reticle
  • The body is light and durable
  • Features a quick-focus eyepiece
  • Allows 3.5x to 10x magnification
  • Comes with a 36mm objective lens which is adjustable

CONS

  • Holding zero is a difficult task
  • Crosshairs are difficult to view

What Recent Buyers Report

Most buyers like this scope for its parallax adjustments, especially those who have weak eyesight. The picture and reticle are quite clear and allow you to shoot about 150 yards in the distance. All in all, it is quite a durable scope. Users have particularly liked the customer service.

Why it Stands Out to Us

What we love about this scope is that it provides a range of magnification. Moreover, with a multi-x reticle, the image is pretty sharp, and clarity is ensured. Since the objective lens is 36mm, you get quite a lot of brightness.

The best part is that it works nicely with the .17 HMR (the Savage 17 HMR). Mounting rightly is important, and then you’re good to go. The objective lens is adjustable down to about 11 yards, and the turrets are adjustable as well.

Durable and made of good quality, there isn’t much to fault out on this one.   

Bottom Line

The Bushnell 613510A is the best Scope for Savage 17 HMR for a good reason. Buyers have loved their experience with it and recommend it greatly for the price. So if you’re looking for something durable with a good magnification range, this is a fairly great choice. 

Best Leupold .17 HMR Scope:
Leupold VX-3i 4.5-14x50mm

Leupold VX-3i 4.5-14x50mm Riflescope

PROS

  • Lightweight and rugged
  • Made with aircraft quality aluminum 
  • 100% fog proof, waterproof, and shockproof
  • Can perform in weather extremes, i.e., -40ºF to 160ºF
  • DiamondCoat 2 is an ion-assist lens coating for better light transmission

CONS

  • Does not have enough eye relief
  • Some users have had issues with customer service

What Recent Buyers Report

There’s a lot that users praise the Leupold model for. From fox and coyotes to bobcats, hunters have been able to get them all. It is extremely clear and has a great light transmission, especially during dusk and dawn, when it is needed the most. All in all, buyers highly recommend it. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This lightweight yet rugged riflescope is another model that you shouldn’t sleep on. Made with aircraft-grade aluminum, the scope is quite durable and long-lasting. However, what makes it stand out is the incredible DiamondCoat 2. The ion-assist lens coating on this rifle provides the highest level of abrasion resistance and allows for light transmission. 

Moreover, the scope is equipped with a precise ¼ MOA finger-click adjustments for elevation and windage. 

The best part about this unit is that it is tested to withstand extreme weather conditions, and by extreme, we mean -40ºF to 160ºF. So if you’re looking to hunt in the Alps, here’s a pick for you.

Bottom Line

There’s a reason why Leupold offers a lifetime guarantee with this one. If you have been looking for a scope that can accompany you in the snow, this model is a great choice. Along with many other features, it is definitely worth a go.  

Best Vortex .17 HMR Scope and Best .17 HMR Scope With Bullet Drop:
Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7x32

Vortex Optics Crossfire II Second Focal Plane, 1-inch Tube Riflescopes

PROS

  • Capped reset turrets are finger adjustable
  • Constructed with aircraft-quality aluminum
  • Ideal for shooting at various ranges, short or long
  • Waterproof and fog-proof as it is nitrogen-purged
  • Offers long eye relief and has a fast-focus eyepiece

CONS

  • Users have complained the reticle is canted

What Recent Buyers Report ​

An excellent scope that is quite capable of holding zero, most buyers think the Vortex 2-7x32 scope is worth their purchase. It is helpful when shooting about 200 yards in the distance and works perfectly in low light conditions. Users highly recommend this model. 

Why it Stands Out to Us 

This riflescope is great for either long or short-range shooting, making it a versatile model and definitely worth your dollar. It has strong construction as Vortex has used aircraft-quality aluminum for its built. This ensures the scope is shock-proof, while the nitrogen purging allows for a fog proof, mist-free lens.

The quick-focus eyepiece, with long eye relief, adds to the precision of this scope. You can easily get a great view of your target that is also clear and bright. The finger adjustable capped reset turrets make it convenient to use.   

Bottom Line

Vortex is known for its brilliant riflescope models, and the Optics Crossfire II 2-7x32 is no short of amazing either. Although a little is more expensive, you can find many users who find it worth the purchase. Depending on your needs, you will certainly be pleased with this model for your .17 HMR.

Best Bushnell .17 HMR Scope:
Bushnell Engage Riflescope 4-16x44mm

Bushnell Engage Riflescope, 4-16x44mm, Matte Black, Model Number: REN41644DG

PROS

  • Oil, fog, dust, debris, and waterproof
  • Lens is coated with premium material
  • Has a side-mounted dial for parallax adjustments
  • Anti-reflection coating ensures maximum light transmission
  • Features 1-MOA windage and elevation hash marks and can reach short and mid-range targets

CONS

  • Crosshairs are not clear
  • Some users complained it does fog up

What Recent Buyers Report

The brilliant, crisp glass is something many users like. The lens is quite clear, and it becomes easy to narrow down your target and aim perfectly. Even though the crosshairs are quite fine and therefore unclear, those who hunt often did not find this to be a major problem. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

With a maximum magnification of 16x, the Bushnell Engage Riflescope provides all the features you need in a good riflescope. The high magnification is worth the price, while the exquisite lens gathers enough light to be able to aim your target just right.

Made with great material, this scope is built to last. This is why Bushnell offers a lifetime warranty. The reticule is “dazzling,” as some users claim, and the finger-adjustable turrets are highly appreciated. 

We also like that the unit features 1-MOA windage and elevation hash marks and can reach short and mid-range targets for better ease.

Bottom Line

Not many brands offer a lifetime warranty, so you know this one is good. A rugged model that is ideal for shooting long or short-range, the Bushnell Engage Riflescope is definitely worth the price.

Best Varmint Scope for .17 HMR:
Barska AC10048

Barska AC10048 Varmint 6.5-20x50 Rifle Scope Target Dot Reticle Adjustable Objective

PROS

  • Quite affordable
  • Withstands reverse recoils 
  • Offers maximum magnification of 20x
  • Waterproof, fog-proof and shockproof
  • Comes with scope cap and lens cloth too

CONS

  • Difficult to hold zero
  • Users have complained about the eye relief

What Recent Buyers Report

This is a scope many beginners have liked since it is easy to mount and use. At such an incredible price, the crosshairs on it are very thin, while the glass is clear as well. Zooming in and making adjustments is easy, and therefore, most users highly recommend this varmint hunting scope.

Why it Stands Out to Us 

Here’s another model with high magnification; only this time, it is quite reasonably priced. There are many features Barska has installed in this one scope, so let’s go over them.

The adjustable objective ensures parallax errors can be avoided while the fine crosshair reticle calls for precision when hunting. The scope comes with a 1/8 MOA solid windage and elevation adjustment with turret caps for your ease. 

Since the Barska AC10048 is constructed to last for long, it is shock, fog, and waterproof, making it quite durable and rugged. Barska also sends this model with complementary lens caps and a lens cloth for your ease.

Bottom Line

Barska’s AC10048 is a fantastic model to pick targets out in low lighting. The reticle is illuminated in either green or red for a better aim. It can also focus on the target without the sun’s glare. There’s a lot more to this scope, and we highly recommend it. 

Best Nikon Scope for .17 HMR:
Nikon Buckmasters II 3-9x40

Nikon Buckmasters II 3-9x40 Riflescope BDC Matte

PROS

  • Shockproof, fog-proof and waterproof
  • Great build, is long-lasting and durable  
  • Ideal for both short and long-range shooting
  • Positive click reticle adjustments help with zeroing in quickly
  • Has a feature called “Spot On” which helps in perfecting your aim

CONS

  • A bit on the pricey side
  • Parallax adjustment is not easy to get

What Recent Buyers Report

Most users say this scope is easy to mount and gives a clear view of the shot. The fact that it allows for great eye relief makes it comfortable to aim your target. When it comes to Nikon, buyers love the Buckmasters II 3-9x40 and highly recommend it.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Nikon’s 3-9x40mm riflescope is a great choice for deer hunting in particular. This is because the multi-coated lens allows for more light to come in, and therefore, you can get a perfect aim. There are many layers of anti-reflective compounds on every glass surface for maximum light transmission and vivid images.

Dusk and dawn are the timings when you can spot your prey easily, especially deer. The low lighting situation can make it difficult to aim, though, and hence this scope is the right pick as it provides ample lighting.

The amazing ballistic match technology in this model further helps with aiming, so there’s almost no way you won’t be able to easily get your target.

Bottom Line

If precision and accuracy are your priority, there’s no other option to consider than Nikon’s Buckmasters II 3-9x40mm scope. Durable and long-lasting, the technology Nikon has used in this model is something you can’t get past. It is a phenomenal choice, and we highly recommend it.

Should Any Scope Be Used on a .17 HMR?

As elaborated above, there are certain factors to weigh in when getting a scope for your .17 HMR as not any unit can give you the same results and might be a misfit for your rifle. 

It is good to ensure the scope has high magnification to shoot at longer distances, above 200 yards, particularly for smaller targets. However, anything with a magnification above 16x is pretty useless since the .17HMR has a limited range. 

Furthermore, the objective lens, reticle, parallax adjustment, and material should all befitting for your .17 HMR to optimize the scope’s use.  

How Far Can a .17 HMR Shoot? 

Usually, a .17 HMR can shoot up to 150 to 200 yards. This is the case when wind and other weather conditions are stable. The .17 HMR shoots the bullet at a high velocity, rendering it almost unaffected by wind drift. 

It is best to use the rifle at 100 yards, but some users claim they have been successful shooting 400 yards in the distance as well. This, of course, requires quite precision and accuracy. You need to be a skilled shooter to use the rifle for longer distances. 

Conclusion 

We hope this article has elaborated all that you need to know not just about the perfect riflescopes for .17 HMR, but also more about the rimfire .17 HMR itself. We listed our top picks for you to go through, and we believe our reviews can help you find a scope that suits you best!

People Also Ask

There may still be some queries you might need to clarify, so let’s get into some of the most frequently asked questions people ask.

How Powerful is a .17 HMR?

The .17 HMR is one of the most powerful rimfire rifles, especially when compared to many similar ones on the market. It shoots at velocities over 2,600 fps, which makes it ideal for both short and long-range shooting. It is one of the deadliest rifles for hunters.

What Does HMR Stand For in .17 HMR?

The HMR in .17 HMR stands for Hornady Magnum Rimfire and was developed by Littleman in 2002.    

What is a .17 HMR Good For?

The .17 HMR is known for both short and long-range shooting. However, it is mostly purchased by hunters for small-range shooting and varmint hunting, as that is what it is best known for. The ammo used in the rifle, combined with the rifle’s velocity and precision, makes it great for killing raccoons, possums, rabbits, bobcats, and more.

Will the .17 HMR Kill a Deer?

If you have enough experience, expertise, and skill, nothing is impossible. You could hit the deer in the abdomen at a close range, but that would only injure it. If you have a great aim, you could shoot behind the ear and kill it; it all depends on precision, distance, and skill.