Best Spotting Scope Under 200 – Top 10 in 2023 [Guide & Top Picks]

If you want to step up your hunting game or you just want to watch birds fly peacefully. A spotting scope is the best thing you can buy. But, a lot of us don’t want a crazy expensive spotting. Most of us won’t even use that expensive spotting scope to its full potential. A lot of us want something that isn’t a toy and will get the job done.

Spotting scopes most of the time are quite expensive and stay off the list of many hunters. Time changes and so does innovation. Right now, there are more viable options on the lower end that won’t cost you a ton of money and will help you get an edge on hunting. Sounds good, right?

It will sound even better when you find out about some of the best scopes 200 dollars can get you. What are we waiting for? Let’s get to know them.


What To Look When Buying A Spotting Scope For $200?

Build quality. You shouldn’t expect top-of-the-line quality in this budget range. But it still doesn’t hurt to look for a scope that won’t break from a single drop. Spotting scopes are often made with durable plastic or similar materials. With the extra coatings all over the materials, the scope becomes durable and can withstand drops.

Lens Coating. The coating on the lens makes a huge difference. Scratch resistance coating can protect your scope from unnecessary scratches from random places. Chemical coatings also increase the brightness of the glass and make it more vibrant. A fully multi-coated scope will always perform better than a non-coated one.

Magnification. You will find a lot of good scope in this budget range with a huge objective lens and high magnification. Take the one that has enough magnification for your tasks. Some might be able to do their task with 40x magnification while others may require 60x. Take the one that you need.

Warranty. At this budget range, always look for a warranty. You don’t know what to expect from a spotting scope so cheap. That’s why we are here. To help you decide better. The better decision is to have some sort of backup. The warranty is that backup.


Best Spotting Scope Under 200 – Our Top List!


1. Creative XP 20-60X60mm HD Spotting Scope

Creative-XP-20-60x60mm-HD-Spotting-Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 20 – 60x; Objective Lens: 80 mm; Eye Relief: 17 – 12 mm; Prism Type: Bak4; Waterproofing: O-Ring Sealed; Close Focus: 32 ft; Battery: CR2.

Creative XP has been making cheap spotting scopes for a long time now. We also featured their product in other reviews. Make sure to check those out.

As the name suggests, Creative XP uses HD glasses for its spotting scope. HD glasses gather lights for the Porro-prism. Together they make a killer combo. 

The objective lens is big. Coming at 60mm, it can gather lights for days. The field of view is wide and vivid. The magnification of this scope is 20-60x. That’s more than enough for hunting, birdwatching, and digiscoping.

One of the best things about this spotting scope is, it’s a complete package. The amount of gifts included in the package is unbelievable. Creative XP will give you a tripod, a soft carrying case, a cellphone adapter, a photo clicker, universal tripod mount. 

All these for less than $130! I honestly won’t try to convince you anymore. Just go and get it. You can’t get better value than this. 


2. Landove 20-60X80 Bak4 Prism Spotting Scope

Landove-20-60X80-BAK4-Prism-Spotting-Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 20 – 60x; Objective Lens: 80 mm; Eye Relief: 17.9 – 15 mm; Exit Pupil: 3.3 – 1.22 mm; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 82.9 – 48 ft; Prism Type: Bak4; Near Focus: 6 m.

This is a name that most of you might not have heard of. Landove is not famous like Vortex, Leupold, or any other scope manufacturers. But they do offer a good amount of budget scopes. Their 20-60×80 is priced under $140. 

An 80mm objective lens scope, for $140. Are you kidding me? Are there more surprises left? I am sure there are. With that huge 80mm objective lens, you can see the whole moon. Well, maybe you can’t but you know what I am trying to say. The field of view is so great, that you will think like you are sitting there. 

Like Creative XP, Landove also uses green lenses. Their lenses are fully multi-coated with various layers of coatings. One of them is also anti-glare. If there wasn’t any anti-glare coating, the 80mm objective lens would have been a nightmare to use. 

The inside of the scope is nitrogen purged and the outside is shock and waterproof.

If you are planning to get this for digiscoping or birdwatching, guess what? Landove provides a universal phone mount and a tripod for free. I love this approach from the manufacturer. They are providing a good value for the money. This will keep their customer happy and come back to them.

Spotting Scopes 20-60X85ED Spotting Scope BAK4 Prism - Waterproof Field Scope for Birdwatching Target Shooting Archery Hunting
  • HIGH VARIABLE MAGNIFICATION - Magnification 20X-60X continuous variable zoom and dynamic lens focusing system make it easy to zoom in on target. Perfect for target shooting, archery, hunting, bird watching, wildlife watching, hiking, camping, scenery,...

3. Gosky 20-60X80mm Bak4 Prism Spotting Scope

Gosky-20-60x80mm-Bak4-Prism-Spotting-Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 20 – 60x; Objective Lens: 80 mm; Eye Relief: 17.9 – 15 mm; Exit Pupil: 3.3 – 1.22 mm; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 82.9 – 48 ft; Prism Type: Bak4; Eyepiece Diameter: 20 mm.

You have heard of Gosky at least once. More than once if you follow our site for a while. Gosky makes some of the best budget scopes. 

2019’s 20-60×80 is one of them. Priced around $150, Gosky didn’t have more gifts than others to offer. But what they did have is superior performance than many other similar-priced spotting scopes. 

With this spotting scope, you can do light star gazing. Not perfect for astronomy, but you can get by. So far all of the mentioned scopes are offering a universal phone mount and a tripod. It warms my heart that, manufacturers aren’t trying to con us. Your local shopkeeper is still conning you by the way. 

This is the sweet spot for digiscopers in my opinion. It has a great pair of lenses. Porro-prism is also an excellent choice. 80mm objective lens. You can do sightseeing, and record every bit of detail without missing anything. You don’t have to crunch the scenario either. 

There is a saying, that good things are getting cheaper, and cheap things are becoming better. This best spotting scopes under $200 review is the living proof of that. 

Sale
Gosky Updated 20-60x80 Spotting Scopes with Tripod, Carrying Bag and Quick Phone Holder - BAK4 High Definition Waterproof Spotter Scope for Bird Watching Wildlife Scenery1,Green
  • Nitrogen filled waterproof and fog-proof design enables the scope to withstand the toughest environments. Durable Framework and Rubber Armor provide non-slip grip, shock-proof grip and durable external lasting protection. The eyepiece shield can be...

4. Svbony SV13 20-60X80mm Spotting Scope

Svbony-SV13-20-60X80mm-Spotting-Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 20 – 60x; Objective Lens: 80 mm; Eye Relief: 17.9 – 15 mm; Exit Pupil: 3.3 – 1.22 mm; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 82.9 – 48 ft; Prism Type: Bak4; Waterproofing: IPX7.

Another underrated brand. We have featured their products in other reviews before. SV13 is another $140 scope that has a lot to offer. The lenses are fully multi-coated. Fully multi-coating is kind of the standard for scopes. The build material didn’t seem cheap to me. 

Svbony claims you can do astronomy with it. I don’t know about astronomy, but you can star gaze that’s for sure. The objective lens is huge. It looks like 80mm is the sweet spot where everyone wants to fight. 

I mean, let them fight. At the end of the day, we consumers going to win.

Svbony won’t provide much free stuff with the scope. You are going to get a universal phone mount and a soft carrying case. As the scope is quite large, you need to buy a tripod ASAP. 

You can get any tripod you want. SV13 features the 360 mounting collars that almost all spotting scopes use nowadays. It’s a good scope that is not overpriced. If you want more gifts, this ain’t it chief. But as an individual spotting scope, this is an excellent choice. 


5. Celestron 52268 C90 Mak Spotting scope

Celestron-52268-C90-Mak-Spotting-scope

Specifications | Magnification: 39x (with included eyepiece); Objective Lens: 90 mm; Eye Relief: 20 mm; Close Focus: 15 ft; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 67 ft (with included eyepiece); Eyepiece: 32 mm Plossl; Lens Coatings: Multi-Coated.

Now, this is a name we have all heard of. I don’t even need to introduce them or this scope in particular. I have reviewed this model almost half a year ago. To think that this scope is a $200 spotting scope blows my mind. 

If you are looking for a telescope to do astronomy and digiscoping. This is the perfect $200 spotting scope that you can buy. 

There is so much to talk about in this scope, that I can’t possibly brief all those up in small sentences. I know it’s making me look like the bad guy here, but trust me you need to read the Celestron C90 review I made earlier to find out more about the scope. 

If you refuse to read that. Short version, this is the best astronomy scope that you can buy for under $200. If astronomy and long-range sighting/digiscoping are your main priority, get this one.

If hunting is your main priority, don’t get this one. It’s way too bulky and animals will easily notice it from a long way. 

Sale
Celestron – MAK 90mm Angled Spotting Scope – Maksutov Spotting Scope – Great for Long Range Viewing – 39x Magnification with 32mm Eyepiece – Multi-coated Optics – Rubber Armored
  • BRIGHT, SHARP VIEWS OF DISTANT TARGETS: Ideal for spotting small land-based targets at great distances or viewing astronomical objects at night.

6. Celestron Ultima 80 Angled Spotting Scope

Celestron-Ultima-80-Angled-Spotting-Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 20 – 60x; Objective Lens: 80 mm; Eye Relief: 18 mm; Close Focus: 26.2 ft; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 105 – 53 ft; Prism Type: Bak4; Lens Coating: Multi-Coated.

Another great spotting scope from Celestron. Celestron Ultima 80 is an angled spotting scope. We talked about angled vs straight spotting scopes before. It will come down to your preference when you choose them. 

The build quality is as I expected. Good quality with almost no price cutting. The only thing missing is a sturdy rubber armor all over the scope. That’s not a deal-breaker for me and won’t be one ever either. 

There are several versions of the scope available for you to purchase. Fair warning, some of them will cost you over $200. 

Unlike most other brands here, Celestron doesn’t offer a smartphone adapter or tripod for free. You do get a soft carrying case. But you will need to pay a decent amount to get the phone mount from Celestron. If you are tight on money, I recommend getting it from a third-party seller. You can get those for cheaper. 

Celestron has the other scopes beat in two terms. One of them is the quality of the optics. I mean come on, you doubt lenses from Celestron? They provided their lenses to friggin NASA. How cool is that?

The other thing is the warranty. Celestron provides some of the best after-sales services on the market. Their customer executives are quite free to talk with and they will help you with your problems. 

Sale
Celestron – Ultima 80 Angled Spotting Scope – 20-60x Zoom Eyepiece – Multi-Coated Optics for Bird Watching, Wildlife, Scenery and Hunting – Waterproof and Fogproof – Includes Soft Carrying Case
  • SHARP ZOOM EYEPIECE FUNCTION: The large focus dial allows you to bring your subject into razor-sharp focus before it moves away. The powerful 20-60x zoom eyepiece helps you zero in for detailed views of distant subjects in seconds.

7. Vanguard Vesta 560A Spotting Scope

Vanguard-Vesta-560A-Spotting-Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 15 – 45x; Objective Lens: 60 mm; Eye Relief: 21 – 16 mm; Close Focus: 26.3 – 29.5 ft; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 104.4 – 62.6 ft; Water/Fog Proof: Yes; Weight: 45.7 Oz.

Vesta is the sub-brand of Vanguard. Don’t mistake it for the Italian scooter brand called Vespa. Vesta spotting scope is another complete package competing today. Unlike the carrying case that doesn’t look promising. 

The entire housing has a rubber armor coating all over it. That coating will give extra drop protection. The housing is nitrogen-purged. It makes the scope fogproof. Like every other spotting scope, Vesta is also waterproof. 

One thing where Vesta may have an advantage over the other is the fast focus mode. The fast focus mode adjustment ring is right on the eyepiece. It makes the process of focus much easier and more enjoyable.

This feature is also one of the cons of Vesta. You will have a hard time focusing while you use the scope as a digiscoper. Besides that, Vesta also offers fully multi-coated optics for more clarity and improved vision game. 

The objective lens is rather on the smaller side. Coming at 60mm is not small. But almost all of the scopes so far were offering an 80mm objective lens. I am not going to complain about this, because the field of view was more than enough for my tasks. Which is usually birdwatching and taking it to a hunting session. 

The tabletop tripod is not the best they could do. It works, but not that versatile. If your main priority is birdwatching and digiscoping, it’s a great tripod. But for hunting, not so much.


8. Gosky 20-60X80 Porro Prism Spotting Scope

Gosky-20-60x80-Porro-Prism-Spotting-Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 20 – 60x; Objective Lens: 80 mm; Eye Relief: 17 – 13.5 mm; Exit Pupil: 3.2 – 1.10 mm; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 39.9 – 19 ft; Prism Type: Porro Prism; Eyepiece Diameter: 20 mm.

You might ask, didn’t you already share this one above? Did I? Check the links, the other one is the upgraded version of this one. Then why am I including this? Let’s find out. 

Gosky 20-60×80 first came out in early 2018. I don’t remember the exact date, but I have seen it for sale around March. Anyway, the key difference here is the lens and the coatings. The newer version provides a bit more coatings and upgraded accessories. 

This one was aimed to be the best all-rounder under $150. Have to hand it over to Gosky. They delivered a strong fight that’s for sure. As for being the best, I kind of doubt that. It’s one of the best. But it doesn’t provide any significant advantage over the other scopes. 

The only reason I am including this, it’s cheap, it’s built well, and the lens is quite bright and colorful. Perfect for digiscoping. I think Gosky was mainly targeting the digiscopers with this one. They even provide an excellent phone mount with this one. 

Optics are fully multi-coated. The eyepiece is also a good one. There was almost no distortion at max magnification. Brightness was good for digiscoping. 

Overall it’s a good purchase. Nothing groundbreaking. Let’s be real here, hoping to receive a groundbreaking product for $130 is not okay. 

Sale
GOSKY 20-60 X 80 Porro Prism Spotting Scope- Waterproof Scope for Bird Watching Target Shooting Archery Range Outdoor Activities -with Tripod
  • Fully multi-coated 80mm green film objective lens, eyepiece and quality prism inside - guarentee the key elements of a spotting scope, and make your view brighter, clearer and delivers crisp images.

9. Athlon Talos 20-60X80 Spotting Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 20 – 60x; Objective Lens: 80 mm; Eye Relief: .7 – .6 Inches; Close Focus: 19.7 ft; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 102 – 48 ft; Eyepiece Angle: 45 Degree; Weight: 38.5 Oz.

If you are familiar with riflescopes. You are familiar with Athlon. They are another excellent manufacturer. You might be wondering if I say this about all the manufacturers. Yeah, why shouldn’t I? I don’t feature any manufacturers that I think are not worthy of being called one of the best. If that includes more than 10 manufacturers, let it be.

Anyway, Athlon Talos 20-60×80 initially was priced over $200. But as time went on, it was reduced by a lot. Now the Talos cost less than $150. At this price, it’s an excellent choice. One thing that many people didn’t like about this is the color choice. 

It straight-up looks like a foundation from a makeup box. Before you accuse me of something that I am not, I don’t hate this color. It’s unique. I will leave the judging in your hands. 

As for the performance. Fully multi-coated lenses with Porro-prism provide excellent performance. The angled eyepiece is 20-60x. The objective lens is 80mm.

It’s super good for hunting and birdwatching. I think it’s one of the best spotting scopes for hunting under $200. It’s not easy to nail that big of magnification without distortion. Exactly what you need in hunting. Make sure to get a good tripod to accompany the scope. 

Sale
Athlon Optics Talos 20-60x80 Spotter Scope, Black
  • Nitrogen Purging uses the inertia gas to purge moisture out of the tube giving you better waterproofing and thermal stability

10. Barska Benchmark 25-125X88 Spotting Scope

BARSKA-Benchmark-Waterproof-Straight-Spotting-Scope

Specifications | Magnification: 25 – 125x; Objective Lens: 88 mm; Eye Relief: 13.3 – 7.6 mm; Exit Pupil: 3.2 – .64 mm; Linear FOV @1000 yds: 54 – 24 ft; Glass: Bk7; Close Focus: 18 ft.

The last scope on today’s list is from Barska. Barska Benchmark is one of the rare scopes on today’s list that has a straight eyepiece. 

First thing first, it’s huge. It has the 2nd largest objective lens on today’s list. Man, at first sight, I was intimidated by this. Just look at this absolute unit. The objective lens is huge 88mm. It looks glorious.

Even Barska knows this is not suitable to use without a tripod. They give an excellent tabletop tripod. I believe the tripod alone should cost over $60. 

The entire scope is waterproof. Yes, you can submerge it. But why should you? The inside is nitrogen-purged. No fog shall pass. Like always, the optics are fully multi-coated. 

The carrying base looks like one of those briefcases that an FBI agent uses to smuggle something from the bad guys. Not making any sense? See the picture. 

Overall, I liked this scope, I liked the tripod, and I loved the viewing experience. Recommended for digiscopers and birders.


Frequently ASKED Questions

Is 200$ Spotting Scope Worth It?

If you have only 200$ to spend on a spotting scope, chances are you don’t want the most high-end glasses or magnesium alloy chassis. If you want a functional scope that will do all the tasks you want to do and help you get ahead of others in scouting, then yes, scopes under $200 are completely worth it. Keep your expectations in check and you will have a blast with them.

Why Not Binoculars Instead Of Spotting Scope?

While binoculars are easier on the eye, they are not nearly as powerful as a spotting scope. A spotting has a bigger objective lens and almost always more magnification. Both of these are good for sightseeing or taking pictures through the lens. That’s why spotting scope provides a better value to hunters and other similar outdoor activities.

Will Spotting Scope Make Me A Better Hunter?

That’s debatable. If you consider having terrain advantage and knowing what you are getting into as getting better, spotting scope will make you a better hunter.

Can All Spotting Scope Do Astronomy?

Astronomy is quite popular. It’s gaining more attention every day. Unfortunately, not all spotting scopes are suitable for astronomy. Most won’t even work during the night. As sad as that sounds, that’s the reality.


Best Spotting Scope Under 200: Conclusion

That’s a wrap, folks. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. To increase your enjoyment more, most of them are in an offer by the time I am writing this. Make sure to grab them while they are hot. Like always, if you have any suggestions or complaints, the comment box isn’t going anywhere. 

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *