5 Best Scope for 17 WSM Reviews 2021

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The 17 Winchester Super Magnum is a powerful rimfire round, the most powerful modern rimfire in the .17-.22 caliber range by miles. It is a relatively new rifle and was designed for the purpose of being capable of shooting flat and carrying farther than any other current rimfire offering. It has an important role in varmint eradication, and is a good in-between cartridge for when overshooting is a concern. 

Retaining the simplicity and compactness of a rimfire, a notable feature about the 17 WSM is that even high-grade scopes are easily affordable for this rifle, compared to the heavier built centerfire counterparts. Since this rifle is suitable for hunting and long-range shooting, naturally, anyone who has a 17 WSM will look deeper into scopes to improve their precision and visibility. 

Finding the right scope before the next hunting expedition can be tricky. It requires extensive research and we have done just that for you! There are tons of scopes out there so we have some advice about getting the right scope too. Irrespective of your chosen scope, the optic that you prefer makes firing your go-to weapon an even more enjoyable affair. Included in this article are the five best scope for 17 WSM available in the market today.

Best Scope for 17 WSM in 2021 – A Quick Comparison Table 

Image Product
BSA Optics 17SM4514x44AORGBCP 17 Super Mag Riflescope
  • Adjustable objective lens
  • Adjustable objective lens
  • Eye relief of 3.7 to 4 inches
VIEW ON AMAZON →READ REVIEWS →
Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7x32 Rimfire
  • 2-7x32mm range of magnification
  • Makes use of V-Plex MOA reticle
  • Fully multi-coated lenses
VIEW ON AMAZON →READ REVIEWS →
BARSKA Varmint Mil-Dot Riflescope
  • 50mm wide adjustable objective lens
  • Magnification range of 6.5X – 20X
  • Eye relief of 3.5 inches
VIEW ON AMAZON →READ REVIEWS →
Vortex Optics Crossfire II Second Focal Plane
  • Includes Dead-Hold BDC reticle
  • Has capped reset turrets
  • 2-7x32mm range of magnification
VIEW ON AMAZON →READ REVIEWS →
Vortex Optics Viper 6.5-20x50 PA SFP Riflescope Mil-Dot MOA
  • Built on a 30mm main tube
  • Uses a Mil-Dot reticle
  • Includes ED glass in the structure
VIEW ON AMAZON →READ REVIEWS →

1. BSA Optics 17SM4514x44AORGBCP 17 Super Mag Riflescope

Quick Summary

  • Adjustable objective lens 
  • RGB illuminated reticle 
  • Eye relief of 3.7 to 4 inches 
BSA Optics 17SM4514x44AORGBCP 17 Super Mag Rifle Scope, 4.5-14x44mm

Out of the very few pieces of equipment custom-built for the rifle, BSA 17 Super Mag scope is one of the best scope for 17 WSM. Famous for high-end optics at an extremely budget-friendly cost, BSA has included a large 44mm dimensioned objective lens in its construction that can resist shock, fog, and water attacks. This scope has been recommended for varmint hunters. 

The ballistic reticle of the scope is calibrated for bullets of 20 and 25 grains. This reticle has holdover marks for bullets of both these weights. Hash marks and dots offer holds in progressive increments of approximately 50-yards, all the way up to 400 yards. This occurs mainly at a 20 grain load and 350 yards is possible a higher rating - 25 grain load. Remember, an assumption of a 100-yard zero is considered. Regarding bullet-drop compensation, the impact of the bullet remains within 2.5 inches of the point of aim from 150 to 350 yards. This showcases excellent adjustments for windage and elevation aspects of the scope as well. 

Normally, to assist in the factors of precision and accuracy while aiming at targets, the reticles hold markings on the eye-piece itself. This is no normal reticle though, it has a multi-color illuminated reticle in three colors, namely, green, blue, and red. This feature allows the hunter to aim and shoot targets much more accurately, being most effective during night-time hunting sessions. 

Also, the adjustable objective lens is useful in eliminating parallax. The large dial surrounding the objective lets the user fine-tune the parallax from 10 yards to infinity. This way, it gives a sharp reticle on the target. The muzzle velocity of the 17 WSM lets varmint hunters reach out to 200 yards and even beyond. Certainly, this is a great candidate for the best scope for 17 WSM. 

What We Liked
  • Fast-focusing eyepiece with a ballistic range reticle for 20 grains and 25 grains 
  • Magnification range of 4.5X -14X with an adjustable objective lens of 44mm
  • Makes use of an illuminated RGB – green, blue and red glass-etched reticle
  • Consists of a dual grain turret
  • Manufacturer gives a limited one-year warranty 
What We Didn't Like
  • Some scopes showed a problem with the windage control 

2. Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7x32 Rimfire 

Quick Summary

  • 2-7x32mm range of magnification 
  • Makes use of V-Plex MOA reticle 
  • Fully multi-coated lenses
Vortex Optics Crossfire II 2-7x32 Rimfire, Second Focal Plane, 1-inch Tube Riflescope - V-Plex Reticle

The Vortex Crossfire II 2-7×32 Rimfire is without much doubt a good choice for the 17 WSM rifle. It is a top-notch and modernized rimfire riflescope with a construction that is hefty enough to sustain and manage rounds of high calibers. With an exceptional range in terms of width, this scope offers a minimum field of view of approximately 42 feet per for an average of every 100 yards and a maximum of approximately 12.6 feet for the same distance. 

Incorporating an optical system with present-day scoping capabilities, the product has lenses that are tri-coated with anti-reflective coating to offer a hassle-free, disturbance-free, and static-free view. The eye relief is almost 4 inches long which makes it comfortable to use and avoids injuries due to recoil at the same time. With a magnification range of 2X - 7X, the shooter gets a clear view of the target far away. 

The scope has a standard one-inch tube which is manufactured to heighten the abilities to be precise and accurate. Additionally, it increases the maximum possible alignment of the weapon, granting impeccable visual performance. It is also water-resistant and offers much-needed protection to the lenses from most types of wear and tear.

Also, the turrets rarely suffer from mild and even harsh impacts, allowing the shooter to re-index it to its original, a.k.a. zero position, after locking on the target. This makes it a powerful and handy riflescope with a clear reticle that deserves to be on the list of the best scope for 17 WSM rifle. 

What We Liked
  • Repeatable windage and elevation adjustment feature
  • Great adjustment turrets for easy adjustments
  • Exceptional clarity for identification of targets
  • Easy to mount and zero in
  • Backed by Vortex’s VIP unlimited lifetime warranty
What We Didn't Like
  • Some users report poor image quality at higher magnification 

3. BARSKA Varmint Mil-Dot Riflescope

Quick Summary

  • 50mm wide adjustable objective lens 
  • Magnification range of 6.5X – 20X
  • Eye relief of 3.5 inches 
Barska AC10048 Varmint 6.5-20x50 Rifle Scope Target Dot Reticle Adjustable Objective , Black

With thin crosshairs and glasses with great clarity, BARSKA has managed to create one of the best scope for 17 WSM. Being one of the top names in the field of sporting optics, the customers of the brand are the ones who look for high-end features in their budget scopes and BARSKA does not disappoint. This waterproof, fog-proof, and shock-proof scope has been constructed keeping in mind to minimize the reverse recoil impact given out by rifles.

The click value is measured in 1/8 MOA clicks and thus, unlike a standard long-range riflescope, this scope can be used for varmint hunting and can take down big game predators as well. When mounted on a powerful rifle like the 17 WSM, this scope can truly show its potential. It also has large elevation and windage turrets that are easy to adjust. 

They can be quickly and precisely adjusted without using any tools and these turrets have clear and numbered references for easy use too. With a magnification range of 6.5X - 20X, long-range hunting is simplified. The 50mm objective lens can make adjustments to the parallax errors, that arise with such a wide range of magnification. 

Additionally, the objective lens has also been designed to increase light transmission in the scope. The Target Dot reticle used here makes the scope suitable for any kind of shooting and at the same time, it endears this product to long-range shooting enthusiasts. 

Read more: 10 Best Scope Bubble Level Reviews

What We Liked
  • Contains a fine crosshair reticle with 1/8 inch MOA click adjustments
  • Magnification range of 6.5X – 20X
  • Has a quick access magnification zoom ring
  • Incorporates an objective lens of 50mm that helps in parallax adjustment 
  • Has easy-grip turrets for fast adjustments
What We Didn't Like
  • Some users find the recoil a bit too strong 

4. Vortex Optics Crossfire II Second Focal Plane

Quick Summary

  • Includes Dead-Hold BDC reticle
  • Has capped reset turrets 
  • 2-7x32mm range of magnification
Vortex Optics CF2-31015 Vortex Crossfire 2 4-12x44 Riflescope Deadhold BDC MOA , Black

This scope is suitable for hobby hunters and is one of the best scope for 17 WSM, thanks to its Dead-Hold BDC reticle and long eye relief. This is a state-of-the-art scope made of a  single-piece aluminum tube for unbeatable durability, on-point focus, and rarely acquired accuracy. 

The tube is free of nitrogen components and is sealed with O-rings, eventually assisting to avoid fogging of the lens and keeping moisture at bay. It has many features that will add to the hunting experience, especially in windy conditions. In order to give the shooter the ability to sight in on the quarry with ease, regardless of wind conditions, the Dead-Hold BDC helps eradicate issues linked to correction of the windage and also holdover estimation. 

The manufacturer also uses a proprietary coating layer on the lenses to fight problems related to glare and reflection. Thus, light transmission is increased with the help of these fully multi-coated lenses and it results in higher visibility. A clear and crisp view of the target is also guaranteed while using this scope. 

With the capped turrets, the shooter is able to maintain the zeroing after resetting them. These capped turrets on the Vortex Crossfire II are fully adjustable by hand, and the caps provide unmatched protection from external factors. Since the reticle is located on the focal plane positioned above the first, the reticle’s visual scale is not changed no matter what the magnification is. Vortex Optics provides a reliable and well-made scope for the 17 WSM through this product. 

What We Liked
  • Optics are fully covered with anti-reflective coating
  • Better precision and accuracy due to the Vortex special Dead-Hold BDC reticle
  • Has adjustable capped turrets 
  • Offers a maximum elevation adjustment of 60 MOA
  • Can take rough handling because of its tough exterior 
What We Didn't Like
  • Clarity in some scopes during low light conditions is not satisfactory

5. Vortex Optics Viper 6.5-20x50 PA SFP Riflescope Mil-Dot MOA

Quick Summary

  • Built on a 30mm main tube 
  • Uses a Mil-Dot reticle
  • Includes ED glass in the structure
Vortex Optics Viper 6.5-20x50 PA SFP Riflescope Mil-Dot MOA

A fantastic optic that provides diverse performance attributes and several hunter-worthy features, the Vortex Optics Viper 6.5-20×50 SFP riflescope is an excellent hunting reticle. Location of the reticle on the second focal plane and the wide magnification range makes the functioning of the scope possible in virtually any hunting or target shooting environment. The reticle used here is the Mil-Dot type which helps in estimating range, windage, and bullet holdover.

The lenses used in this scope are fully multi-coated and made of ED glass. This ensures excellent resolution, color fidelity, and better light transmission. They also feature XR coatings to provide enhanced light gathering capacity and Armortek coating to protect the lenses from being scratched or worn down. 

Magnification settings on the scope range from 6.5X to 20X, making the equipment suitable for close-ranged firing and old-school hunting situations, or even for long-range sniping. Moreover, changes in magnification settings can be done easily with a rotating MAG-Bar placed just beyond the ocular lens. 

It also features a precision-glide erector system that allows the zoom mechanism to use special components and ensures that changes in zoom levels are smooth all the time. The capped reset turrets of the scope can be repeatedly set to zero, thanks to the precision-force spring system. 

What We Liked
  • Utilizes Armortek coating to protect the lenses
  • Allows rapid and easy changes in magnification
  • Large range of magnification suits long-range shooting, predator hunting, and target applications
  • Turrets have a precision-force spring system
  • Can be mounted with ring or rail mounting systems
What We Didn't Like
  • Stability of the turrets is not ensured while moving around 

How To Choose The Best Scope For 17 WSM: Buying Guide

Innovations are being constantly made in the field of optics. All the accessories and ancillary pieces of equipment used with rifles are getting upgraded each day. Therefore, choosing the best scope for 17 WSM can become overwhelming on occasion. 

To avoid the confusion arising from the sheer amount of information and specifications, here are some features to look out for while purchasing the best scope for 17 WSM:

Magnification  

This specification helps figure out how powerful the scope will turn out to be. With this feature, the shooter can observe the target in larger sizes and simultaneously aim better for long-distance firing. Remember, identifying the precise magnification range provided by the chosen equipment allows better shot accuracy. 

The 17 WSM round performs best for everyday hunting scenarios that occur in distances of under 1000 yards. For this reason, it is recommended to look for equipment that houses magnification ranges within the 12X limit. 

While choosing the rifle scope, ensure to purchase one with a broad range of magnifications. This allows for easier target acquisition, rather than one with options only for magnification settings. Moreover, this feature allows greater amounts of light to enter, offering better image clarity while shooting.

Objective lens 

The size of the objective lens decides the quantity of light allowed in the scope system. Scopes with wide objective lenses have better light gathering capability and light transmission. This way, the image obtained is always crisp and bright. 

Additions on the objective lens, like anti-reflective and anti-glare coatings, make the scope more useful on the field. Some scopes incorporate an adjustable objective lens and they help in eliminating parallax while taking aim.   

Reticle 

Reticles are a vital feature to account for since they assist in predicting the range of distance to the target. Depending on the manufacturers and the scope design, there are four popular types of reticles. 

  1. Duplex reticles offer the most minimally obstructed picture of the target since the crosshairs are narrowed with a closer target. They are the simplest form of the reticle but this type of reticle is not the best for shooting while in motion. Since 17 WSM is primarily a hunting rifle, this reticle is not compatible with this rifle. 
  1. Illuminated reticles have the ability to light up. These reticles perform extremely well in case of diverse shooting strategies and allow the user to personalize the color correction, brightness, and image appearance, depending on the part of the day. Not many scopes built specifically for 17 WSM have illuminated reticles.    
  1. BDC reticles, unlike duplex reticles, are best for shooting on the fly. Compensating for the bullet-drop, they ensure that the impact of the bullet is not off by any distance. This eliminates the need to be in a pre-determined range to be capable of spotting the target. 
  1. Mil-dot reticles are complicated in nature but much more efficient, effective, and simple to use, as familiarity increases. Unlike the other reticles, they house a center circle to enhance the visibility of the focal point, rather than a crosshair intersection. These are the most common reticles when it comes to 17 WSM rifles. Also, they showcase specific spot-marks indicating ranges, similar to how the BDC reticles do. 

Eye relief 

Eye relief specifications entirely indicate the spacing between the eye and the ocular lens. The ideal eye relief of a scope can be focused on individual preferences and the usage requirements of the weapon being used. Typically, greater eye relief specifications are preferred to stay away from eye-straining situations and to also steer free from injuries related to heavy recoils. 

For 17 WSM scopes, the most comfortable eye relief is 2.7 inches or more. Keep in mind, equipment with fully-adjustable parameters of the same assist in a high level of user comfort. 

Focal plane 

There are two focal planes. And based on the reticle’s location, the functionality of the scope is altered. 

  • In a first focal plane scope, the reticle is situated on the front side of the magnification part of the lens. This means that the reticle itself will change in size, on increasing or decreasing the magnification of a power scope capable of variations. Never forget, such scopes are generally priced higher than second focal plane scopes. Mainly due to the hardships involved in the production pipeline. 
  • On the contrary, second focal plane scopes house the reticle on the backside of the magnification lens. Since the image seen through the scope shows as a magnified one, the chosen magnification power has no effect on the reticle. Be vary of one point; the reticle appears the same at any power setting.

For hunting, in particular, this type of scope is more suitable. But for greater range shooting sessions, a first focal plane scope is ideal. Thus, for a 17 WSM, second focal plane scopes are way better off. 

Parallax turrets 

Good scopes should have easily adjustable turrets for elevation and windage. 

Look for scopes that compensate for the parallax, whether via a side-mounted turret or in an adjustable objective lens, it does not matter. Either of these tools permit greater shooting capabilities for long-distance as well as short-distance firing. Just keep in mind that the turrets are not even slightly stiff for these adjustments. They must be simple to maneuver and at the same time, not alter parameters automatically when dropped.

Durability 

Never compromise on the durability of a scope. Scopes that malfunction after long-term or rugged usage are of no value to your money. Invest in scopes with sturdy construction, capped turrets, and lenses with protective coatings. 

Try to find scopes that are built with weather-proofing units, capable of resisting however harsh the weather may be. Remember, acquiring a high-quality durable scope is wiser since they can last for at least a decade, allowing you to hunt at peace, whenever desired. 

Trying looking for a relevant scope that easily fits under an affordable price range. Also never doubt the quality of a scope by looking at its pricing parameters. Often, the cheaper scopes have better features than high-end scopes. Provided you know how to exploit these features, you are good to go!

Tips On Getting Started 

The 17 WSM is one of the most unconventional rounds to come around recently. It has many uses and if one wishes to get the maximum out of them while using a scope, remember the following: 

  • ​While purchasing a scope, try and get rings for mounting from the same manufacturer. Though it has not been proven consistently, it is a great idea to get matching rings. This helps steer clear of issues related to design alterations or propriety hardware.
  • If you are new to the scene of rifles and mounting scopes, get the mounting of the scope done professionally. Lack of proper tools to do the mounting also warrants a trip to the gunsmith. 
  • The 17 WSM kicks smoothly, although undoubtedly harder as compared to a .22LR or .22WMR. A scope equipped with on-point eye relief helps figure precisely the distance to mount it at. Whereas, on the contrary, a scope equipped with non-critical eye relief must definitely be placed closer, to simplify the process of spotting and handling the reticle. This way the scope is not mounted too close or too far. 
  • Look for equally balanced rifle in terms of its weight and scoping capabilities, such that it suits the shooter’s body. This is critical to acquiring on-field accuracy. Keep in mind, the overall weight and balancing ability are critical to shooting.
  • Make sure that the axes of the scope and the rifle are always vertically aligned. Misalignment of the gear results in missed targets and often the shooter cannot see the mistake in the way they hold the equipment. 
  • Scopes are additional gear that can easily take on-field whooping. Promise yourself to purchase from a scope-maker that will stand by what they produce. Thus, while purchasing a scope, make sure it has a warranty.​

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can any scope be used on the 17 WSM?

Yes, most scopes introduced nowadays are compatible with the 17 WSM. Since it is amongst the most frequently used cartridge for hunting, especially varmints, most companies have scopes that cater to this rifle. 

Are the 17 WSM scopes resistant to recoil?

17 WSM is a low recoil round and hence, most scopes can withstand the recoil involving the 17 WSM. If the scope is constructed well and is made of good quality materials, recoil is surely not going to affect it. 

How accurate is the 17 WSM?

Without attaching a scope, the rifle achieves accurate targets up to 225 yards with only minimalistic errors. Along with a scope, the accuracy of the rifle is only off by 1.2 inches at 200 yards.    

Conclusion 

The 17 WSM is a top-notch cartridge that is more than capable of delivering skyscraping performances. For casual plinking, any basic scope would do but for target shooting, a better quality scope is essential. With extensive research, we have compiled this article to help you in choosing the best scope for 17 WSM. 

Our top pick from the list for the best scope for 17 WSM is the BSA Optics 17 Super Mag Riflescope. With its adjustable objective lens and illuminated RGB reticle, this scope has much to offer. An exceptional choice for targeting creatures within modernized hunting ranges, this is one of the very few gears that has been custom made for the 17 WSM rifle. It is durable, waterproof, and fog-proof as well. 

It is worth mentioning that our top choice does not have to be the scope suitable for your needs. Keep in mind, the best scope for your 17 WSM is the scope that meets all your hunting criteria.