Choosing a scope for a rifle is a very important decision that snipers will have to make when putting together a system that best fits them and their primary mission. Missions within the military and law enforcement community differ greatly with regard to the types of equipment used and duties performed. These different types of missions are why choosing the right scope for the sniper is so important.
1. Choose the right rifle. If you do not have the right rifle for the work to be performed, then the sniper scope you choose might not be the right one for the task to which you are assigned. Range, terrain, and weather conditions will affect your decision. The .50 caliber and .40 heavy caliber rifles are preferred by the military, although the .40 caliber is used extensively within the law enforcement community too.
2. Understand exactly what it is that your chain of command expects of you. This will help you decide what type of optical device will be best for you to complete your mission successfully. The traditional role of a sniper within the military community is to demoralize and distract the enemy with precision weaponry and calculated action designed to break down the chain of command rendering combat units in the field ineffective. Intelligence gathering is another role of the sniper in the military that field commanders rely upon heavily. Within the law enforcement community intelligence gathering is the primary role with a sniper strike as the last option.
3. Know the area, expected population, weather, and the time of day you will most likely be performing your assignment in. Operating at night will require technology that will aid you in overcoming this obstacle, such as night vision or infrared capability. Bad weather will complicate your task, so you will need to make sure your scope is protected against bad weather.
4. Use the knowledge you have gained about the assignment and other information relative to your assignment. This will help you to make the best decision when choosing a sniper scope. Keep size, weight, and functionality in mind when you make your choice because you don’t need to carry something that you can’t use.