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11 Best LPVOs (Low Power Variable Optics) Reviewed: (2020 Guide)

If you are fond of AR carbines or tactical carbines then it is very necessary to choose the best LPVO scope.

It is an ideal combination of accuracy and speed.

It is said to be an effective solution whether in self-defense or any competition which helps you in turning your rifle into a short or long-range solution.

It urges the need of shooters to have an alternative that can act better than a red dot and a conventional scope at the same time.

This allows you to trigger the targets effectively and increase the magnification faster to stretch the rifle’s leg more conveniently to shoot the target more flexibly.

Here in this article, we will discuss the best low power variable optics and how you can choose the best one among such exceptional designs in the market.

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Let’s start with the guide:

What is a Low Power Variable Optic (LPVO)? 

LPVO is a scope that bridges the gap between traditional rifle scope and red dots.

It has the magnification range of from 0 to more than 10 times depending upon how you utilize it and the nature of the cases whether extreme or not.

Moreover, many of them are in the range of 1-4 which is very beneficial in terms of increasing the accuracy and range of a rifle.

In addition to this with the developing technology and upcoming advances in it, you can now get options like 1-10x,1-8x, and 1-6x easily. 

Many of the LPVO has an illuminated reticle and it depends upon the size of the reticle and the scope that is used to be employed for 1x red dot and more specifically if its a first focal scope.

Such scopes are mostly used in a competition like 3-gun  as it makes it easy to aim at the target that is less than 50 yards away along with accurate shots that are away from you. You barely see any other optic in such competitions than an LPVO.

600 Yards is Easy?

A bullet drop compensator (BDC) is another great advantage that these optics offer to the shooter. In the majority of LPVO’s, BDC style reticles were designed to offset bullet drop in certain distances.

This allows you to adjust the fly target point to allow more precise shots at extreme distances. By using a BDC it is not out of the realm of possibilities to shoot the man-sized target accurately at 600 yards. 

In reality, compared to red dots, red dots with louvers, or other fixed optics, you have a greater chance of being more accurate in the long run.

Such options usually have the magnification of 3 to 4x power while LPVOs can easily cater up to 6x to 8x.

But you must be thinking how can you be accurate to determine the range of the target from a long-distance?  BDC reticles have a lot of additional features which includes the exceptional finding range technology.

It is a simple phenomenon like a crossfire on a specific range at some distance on a horizontal line along with a predetermined length that allows you to cover the range of 18’’ easily. 

In addition to this, primary arms ACSS is the best in terms of this as it has multiple options to find a range along with windage holdovers and target lead points that are integrated with a reticle.

When you first see it you find it very difficult to function but with the help of helpful youtube tutorials, you can easily function it and become intuitive.

LPVOs Won’t Do What?

Any device you buy for your gun is misconceived to make you a better shooter automatically. Not so for LPVOs or some other kind of equipment.

Low-power variable optics require you to get a good zero, learn how to use the optics effectively and take time to comfortably function with them. If someone’s used to red dots, LPVOs can be very different. 

One thing that varies from red dots for LPVOs is that the upper recipient needs a sum of real estate. A low-power optic requires 2-3 times the space needed.

Red dots also permit the view of the iron to be co-witnessed, so that the optic is redundant.T he time taken to familiarize yourself with it can be calculated, depending on the type of revision the LPVO is furnished with.

Optics with BDC reticles can take longer to calibrate, while reticles of single points may require a practical application to deduce how rounds impact the objective at different distances.

Most LPOVs can be attached to allow foldable backup views, but due to their size, it may or may not be possible to co-witness.

Optic mounts with Quick Disconnect (QD) lever are a mitigating factor in combating this problem. The QD mounts allow the user to remove the optic when iron sights are required if it is inoperable or damaged.

Second Isn’t Always the First Loser

While buying LPVO you must keep this thing in mind: which focal plane you should buy first or second scope? Well, it’s not that difficult to choose between them.

You can go for the first focal plane scope for the layman as they have the reticle that can increase and decrease in size as the magnification increases or decreases. 

As for the second focal plane scope, it has the reticle that will remain static without the concern of magnification.

Here arises a question: how both of them are beneficial?  When it comes to FFP the major advantage is that they can use BDC illuminated reticles to any magnification.

Moreover, many FFP is used as a red dot at 1x magnification. But these advantages depend upon the user who is functioning with them as many of them don’t find it useful.

If the illumination on a sunny day is not bright enough, it may be challenging to find a small dark target point.

FFP scopes may also have higher magnification ranges such as 6x, 8x, or 10x power options than parallax problems, in particular with LPVOs.  

The second focal plane scope is the perfect option for those having vision issues. As having the reticle that will remain the same and the magnification has no impact on it will help your eye to focus easily and aim your target more quickly.

Your right to use a bullet drop allowance is negated with a broad static reticle unless it is improved at a minimum. 

In addition, the variations between the configuration of the first and second focal plane optics tend to be sharper at higher magnifications.

So choose wisely according to your requirement and the scope that you are more comfortable to use

Best Low Power Variable Optic Review:

There are many LPVOs in the market and each one of them is work efficient and exceptionally designed on their own.

In this way how will you choose the best of all? We would suggest you choose an optic that is in your budget and fulfills your requirements.

There are different magnification ranges that make a difference in terms of pricing because of their range specification.

Quite possibly your favorite optic may not be in the list of the best low power variable optic but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth it because, in the end, the choice is all yours.

As mentioned earlier there are many exceptional designs in LPVO and there are many competitors of them as well but don’t worry if you haven’t bought the LPVO before or it’s your first time then this list will help you a lot.

Here this list will show you the analysis for the best low power variable point from a starting point to exploring what a market is providing in terms of this. 

LPVO Options – 4 Best 1-8x Scopes:

1. Trijicon AccuPower 1-8×28 Riflescopes

 

When it comes to top optics production, Trijicon’s name tops the list. The AccuPower 1-8 FFP scope is an example of their brilliance.

If you are looking for something for competition shooting then there is nothing better than this, a versatile piece suitable for both home protection for hunters.

Moreover, you get the read and green reticle option in AccuPower 1-8 FFP scope, which lets you use the scope similar to the red dot at 1 power for closer targets.

The best part is that MRAD or MOA reticle can be used for multiple calibers, barrel lengths, and bullet weights making it ideal for hunting.

On the other hand, it uses a CR2032 battery for the 11 illumination settings which easily gives you a run time of 31 hours of non-stop use. 

If the illumination fails, the reticle is grafted into the glass and will not go away, it is a very useful feature on all LPVOs.

Ultimately, this optics is one of the best for lighting with high visibility and brightness with its 28 mm objective lens and 34 mm tube.

2. Burris 201018 XTR Iix 40mm

 

The Burris XTR is a wonderful option that offers features that compete with good offers. The Burris provides two different forms of reticles unlike the Trijicon AccuPower 1-8.

One is the reticle of the ballistic dot, while the other is the dot reticle of the ballistic circle.

Both are BDC reticles that quickly aim distance targets. An illuminated ring is included in the ballistic circle point reticle, which works much like a red dot with 1x power around the .1 MRAD target point.

The BDC is, however, equipped with a 16 “barrel of 5.56 mm M855 ammunition.

Moreover, it includes a 24mm objective lens which is one of the best for lighting with high visibility and brightness.

For better brightness and visibility, it includes Japanese HD glass.

3. Vortex Optics Strike Eagle Second Focal Plane Riflescopes

 

If you are looking for something great in quality and cost-efficient then this is your best option. This Vortex Optic scope is one of the most widely used one among the competition shooting people.

With the comparable characteristics of higher-end options, this optic is worthy of consideration with features offered at this price point. 

The Vortex Optic scope also provides great clarity and decent picture quality from one end of the range, at 8x capacity, with a fully polished lens.

The ability of Vortex to obtain the newer reticle BDC2 in 1-8x is one of the great features offered by Vortex.

This reticle with a compensated MOA drop provides a small target point between 20 and 200 yards along with graduation between 300 and 600 yards

4. Primary Arms SLX 1-8x24mm SFP Rifle Scope – Illuminated ACSS-5.56/5.45/.308

 

Similar to the above option, Primary Arms SLX has become one of the great options in the list of affordable optics that are of high-quality.

The Advanced Combined Sighting System (ACSS) is one of the major aspects of variable optics on the Primary Arms.

The ACSS incorporates many principles into a unified framework that is simple to use. Including 5.56 mm NATO, 5.45×39 mm, and .308WIN without optical changes, it is very flexible for different calibers.

The PA Silver Series 1-8x has several different characteristics, along with ACSS reticle. This Primary Arms SLX  is a multi-coated and waterproof, nitrogen-purged lens to combat fogging. 

Another interesting thing about Primary Arms is its lifetime warranty for material, manufacturing, or normal wear and tear defects.

It is definitely one of the best options available out there under $400. 

LPVO Options – 5 Best 1-6x Scopes:

1. Vortex Optics Razor HD Gen II-E 1-6×24 Second Focal Plane Riflescopes

Next in line is the Vortex Razor 1-6×24. This optic scope, despite its incredibly high efficiency, the Vortex Razor 1-6×24 is one of the most requested LPVOs.

Almost always, comparable options cost much more. Glass clarity is the first feature of its reliability.

The “HD” Razor really gives a clearly defined picture. Some also assume that at 1x power, the optics improve what can be seen through the naked eye. 

The same people contend that glass clarity is higher than 8x power rivals at 6x power. The Razor has all variable optics with the highest edge-to-edge visibility.

It has also an unbelievable field of view even if the objective lens is 24 mm.

Due to its durability, The Vortex Razor has been widely used by Law Enforcement and Special Operation Community. It is therefore tested for battle and can manage many waves of abuse.

2. EOTECH Vudu 1-6x24mm Precision Rifle Scope

 

EOTech is another popular name when it comes to quality optic scope production. The best thing about them is that their holographic red dot sights are considered to be one of the best and battle-proven.

They have introduced Vudu 1-6×24 which made it to the list of best LPVO options. 

The foremost feature of an optical scope is its visibility power and you would be happy to hear that it has a large view field and an eye relief that competes for head to head with Vortex. 

Apart from this, it includes 3 different reticles all of which have a licensed 68 MOA aim ring located in its holographic sight.

An MOA crosshair for adjustment of the wind and height for each caliber is included in the SR1 reticle.

The integrated BDC package for a 7.62 bullet drop compensation is included in the EOTech SR2 reticle.

3. Primary Arms SLX 1-6x24mm FFP Rifle Scope – Illuminated ACSS-Raptor-5.56/.308

 

Another product of Primary Arms made it to this list and only because of their quality production and affordability. The ACSS Raptor reticle is used for his first focal plane optics.

The Raptor is a smaller deal with limited choices than the regular ACSS reticle.

Nonetheless, the ability of Raptor to use the BDC in any magnification would be a big benefit between Raptor and ordinary ACSS reticles.

If you have to cover allowances for a 4-x power drop, you can compensate for the full magnification of SFP ACSS reticles.

Moreover, Raptor can also carry three different calibers, which give it the same versatility as its bigger companion, as the PA 1-8x ACSS reticle.

The PA 1-6×24 ACSS Raptor is a strong rival with almost a third of EOTech Vudu and Vortex Razor. 

It also includes 11 brightness settings which make it one of the brightest affordable LPVOs in the business. 

4. Vortex Optics Strike Eagle Second Focal Plane Riflescopes

 

If you are looking for something great in quality and cost-efficient then this is your best option. This Vortex Optic scope is one of the most widely used one among the competition shooting people.

With the comparable characteristics of higher-end options, this optic is worthy of consideration with features offered at this price point. 

The Vortex Optic scope also provides great clarity and decent picture quality from one end of the range, at 8x capacity, with a fully polished lens.

The ability of Vortex to obtain the newer reticle BDC2 in 1-8x is one of the great features offered by Vortex.

This reticle with a compensated MOA drop provides a small target point between 20 and 200 yards along with graduation between 300 and 600 yards

5. Primary Arms SLX 1-8x24mm SFP Rifle Scope – Illuminated ACSS-5.56/5.45/.308

 

Similar to the above option, Primary Arms SLX has become one of the great options in the list of affordable optics that are of high-quality.

The Advanced Combined Sighting System (ACSS) is one of the major aspects of variable optics on the Primary Arms. The ACSS incorporates many principles into a unified framework that is simple to use.

Including 5.56 mm NATO, 5.45×39 mm, and .308WIN without optical changes, it is very flexible for different calibers.

The PA Silver Series 1-8x has several different characteristics, along with ACSS reticle. This Primary Arms SLX  is a multi-coated and waterproof, nitrogen-purged lens to combat fogging. 

Another interesting thing about Primary Arms is its lifetime warranty for material, manufacturing, or normal wear and tear defects.

It is definitely one of the best options available out there under $400.

LPVO Options – 2 Best 1-4x Scopes:

1. Trijicon RS24 AccuPower 1-4×24 Riflescope

 

Again Trijicon made an entry on the list of the best optic. The best part about Trijicon RS24 is its unique reticle which you cannot find on any other option on this list, it includes tritium and fiber optic illuminated reticle.  

The TR24 comes with three different reticle types, including the German ° 4 Crosshair,  BAC Triangle Post and Regular Duplex Crosshair.

The BAC Triangle Post is the most commonly used and prominent as it resembles the ACOG reticle.

Another interesting thing about this product is that it does not need a battery to operate on. Moreover, with just 14.4 ounces weight, it is the most lightweight optic on this list.

And since it does not have a bullet drop compensator reticle. Long-distance shooting from 500 to 600 yard can be challenging with no reticle’s ranging point 

2. Burris 200437 MTAC 1-4 x 24 Illuminated Scope (Black)

 

Burris has a broad range of optics from high-end, laden feature models to standard budget products. One of the budget choices to fill the gap between high value and affordability is the MTAC 1-4×24 optic.

The MTAC is one of the lighter choices with a weight of 17 ounces. The Burris MTAC performs very well in the box with an outstanding mount and returns to zero checks. 

With good glass clarity, the MTAC has a simple yet intuitive BDC reticle. As the magnification increases, it will have minimal darkening on the edges.

Honestly, the Burris is a good option on the list of LPVOs for those who want to buy high-end optics without spending much on the.

3. Bushnell 1-4×24 AR Optics FFP Illuminated BTR-1

 

Bushnell is well-known for its quality production. Bushnell 1-4×24 being high quality also checks the most affordability box. This is the best option for those who are planning to go to 3-gun shooting competitions.

The biggest difference from any other on this list for this optic is the integrated throwing lever on the magnification ring.

Bushnell also cares about the design of the throw lever, helping you to fold it for storage or avoid snapping while training or in the field. 

This BTR-1 is a simple but simple BDC reticle which enables the horizontal crosshairs to range estimates for between 300 and 500 yards. 

FAQs on LPVOs (Low Power Variable Optics):

FAQ #1: What is an LPVO?

The full form of  LPVO is a low power variable optic which is used to magnify the range in a rifle scope starting from a 1x to something closer than that.

You will find them in the stable of every manufacturer very easily, maybe one or more than that.

FAQ #2: Who Should Buy LPVOs?

It is used by the AR-15’s and other sawed-off shotguns to see the combination of close quarters, mid-range engagements, and fast-moving shooting mostly.

It is more versatile as compared to red dots and holographic sights which is the best thing about LPVO. In the modern firearms and training of the ammunition is said to be the all in one weapon.

This is mostly used by the military as their training is advanced and they have the accuracy to perform and capability to function it at its best. 

FAQ #3 Is an LPVO right for you? Which is better: LPVO or Red Dot?

Well, red dots are said to be faster optics especially for beginners and those who have no such experience with the magnified optics.

In addition to this red dots allows you to aim a close range of the target easily and you can shoot out to 400 yards or more with the help of a red dot.

As for LPVO then many of them have an illuminated reticle and it depends upon the size of the reticle and the scope that is used to be employed for 1x red dot and more specifically if its a first focal scope.

Such scopes are mostly used in a competition like 3-gun  as it makes it easy to aim at the target that is less than 50 yards away along with accurate shots that are away from you.

FAQ #4 What to Look For In An LPVO?

There are two types of lower power variable optics with different magnifications that is FFP and SFP.  How are both of them beneficial? 

When it comes to FFP the major advantage is that they can use BDC illuminated reticles to any magnification.

Moreover, many FFP is used as a red dot at 1x magnification. But these advantages depend upon the user who is functioning with them as many of them don’t find it useful.

If the illumination on a sunny day is not bright enough, it may be challenging to find a small dark target point.

FFP scopes may also have higher magnification ranges such as 6x, 8x, or 10x power options than parallax problems, in particular with LPVOs. 

As for the second focal plane scope, are the perfect option for those having vision issues.

As having the reticle that will remain the same and the magnification has no impact on it will help your eye to focus easily and aim your target more quickly. So choose the one that you are comfortable with. 

FAQ #5 How Far Can You Shoot With a 1×6 Scope?

Well, it’s simple according to the rule of thumb which says “Distance with iron sights x the scope of the spectrum you are comfortable.” For instance its  600 yards with the 1×6 scope.

FAQ #6 How Far Can You Shoot With a 1×4 Scope?

Well apparently if you focus on the thumb then you get to know that it appears to be 150 yards away, using 4x magnification. The maximum distance I can take from the previous segment is 150 yards.

When targets are fired at 400 meters, a lens of 4x magnification appears to be 100 meters away.

FAQ #7 Fixed or Variable Scopes: Which One Should you Choose?

The fixed scope is better as they do not have many lenses and have a fixed power scope which gives a clearer view. It has a specific design with a single specific power that you cannot change.

  Fixed scopes are said to be more reliable than variable scopes. Fixed-large models often gain in a shorter eye because of the lower power-changing lenses that allow them to be mounted higher on the action.

FAQ #8 What Magnification Should I Use At 100 Yards?

When targets are fired at 400 meters, a lens of 4x magnification appears to be 100 meters away. Shooting at a target of 200 meters (4x) seems 50 yards away.

FAQ #9 What Magnification Do I Need For 200 Yards?

For 200 yard magnification, the best range for the shooting is 3x to 7x for fixed magnification. In terms of variable magnification ranges from 3x to 9x are good options.

FAQ #10 What Magnification Do I Need For 300 Yards?

For 300 yard magnification, the best range for the shooting is 4x to 6x depending upon the size of your target.

Conclusion:

Having said that, the guide to low power variable optics came to an end.

We hope that we were able to educate you with the important aspects of LPVO and the alternatives we have discussed are beneficial for you.

For more guides like this, you can contact us as we truly value your feedback.