Best Scope for the Savage 220
Shotguns hold a somewhat cult status for modern shooters. Of course, they can be a great self-defense weapon, especially if you live in a house that isn’t cramped. However, their main claim to fame comes from hunters who enjoy the satisfaction of killing game with their preferred ‘shotty’.
If you are planning to hunt with the Savage 220, then you are going to need a scope. A scope will allow you to accurately shoot at distances up to 200-yards with the Savage 220. Hence, we have gone ahead and listed the 5 best scopes that you can get for your model 220.
Best Scopes for Savage 220 Compared Head-to-Head
Here are our 5 favorite scopes which are great according to the criteria above.
5 Best Scopes for Savage 220 Reviewed
Best Overall: Bushnell Trophy Shotgun Scope 1.75-4×32
Bushnell has long been known as one of the go-to companies for hunters. While the Trophy’s shotgun variant does not offer 1x magnification, 1.75x is adequate enough to aim properly at close range and the 4x is perfect for shooting beyond 150-yards.
The 32mm lens is decent enough and you also have turrets that feel very easy on your fingers. However, what I love is the fast-focus eyepiece that allows you to quickly acquire a target, which can be the difference between hunting the game or missing out.
The image is quite clear. Although there is no illumination, the Circle-X reticle (which is great for the Savage) gets lighter during low-light conditions to help you aim easily.
With a 91% light transmission, this scope will have you hunting from early in the morning to late at night. However, do remember that the Bushnell Trophy is fairly difficult to zero. The good news is that once you zero it, it tends to hold its zero incredibly well.
Best for Low-Light Conditions: Vortex Optics Diamondback 1.75-5×32
If you want a scope that is ridiculously easy to zero and holds its zero better than almost any other scope, then the Vortex Diamondback is for you. I still have the first Diamondback I ever bought (I don’t even remember when I bought it), and it’s still working fine as ever.
The best thing about the Diamondback is that it delivers an absolutely stunning image at dusk and dawn. My favorite scope in this price range is the Bushnell Banner mainly due to its image quality in low-light, and the Vortex Diamondback can easily compete with it.
The only thing that is not great about the Diamondback is its reticle. The Dead-Hold BDC reticle helps you gauge bullet drop very adequately. Couple that with its fast-focus eyepiece, and you can shoot at your target much quicker than with most other scopes. However, the reticle tends to get a bit dark during low-light conditions.
It’s still more than usable, and I have used it at both dusk as well as dawn. However, those who have trouble seeing at night may want to avoid the Diamondback.
Best for Novices: Monstrum Prism 3x
Those shooters who do not have a lot of experience will find the Monstrum Prism to be perfect for them. First of all, it is very compact and does not weigh much at all. On top of that, it does not have a lot of complex mechanisms that may get in the way of your shooting.
Not only is the scope very easy to zero, but it has reticle illumination along with a fantastic low-light performance to help you hunt at dusk and dawn. The eye-relief is also decent allowing you to aim properly at above 3.5”.
The only major drawback of the scope is the fact that it does not have adjustable magnification. As we stated earlier, the Savage 220 may require you to shoot at a magnification close to 1x. With its fixed 3x magnification, the Prism is not ideal for shooting below 100-yards.
That said, this is a great scope for novices who want to learn to shoot at slightly longer ranges. The Monstrum website states that the Prism is ideal for target acquisition up to 500-yards, which means that you may find the Prism to be of use even on one of your rifles.
Best for Short-Range: Weaver Kaspa 1-4×24
Sometimes, you want to shoot stuff at close range. The Weaver Kaspa was pretty-much built for such a thing. It has a perfect magnification range of 1-4x. This makes it perfect for firing the Savage 220 no matter what you want to shoot.
The good thing about the Kaspa is that it is very durable. It holds zero incredibly well and many shooters have reported the scope lasting for years after purchase.
The Kaspa also lets you choose from 3 different reticles. You can go with the Muzzleloader, Turkey, or the Dual-X. This level of customization is nice to have. The image quality, while not great, is more than enough.
Sadly, the Kaspa is not great for low-light. With an objective lens only 24mm wide, it is best if you only use it during the day. Still, using it is a lot of fun, and it is priced adequately considering its features.
Best for Long Range: Bushnell Banner Dusk and Dawn 3-9×40
The Banner is usually considered a great budget scope. However, that doesn’t do other scopes on this list justice since all of them are cheap. Still, the Banner is an amazing scope no matter which way you look at it.
As the name implies, the scope is built for low-light conditions. However, that is not all that the Banner can do. The image quality is pretty much unmatched in this price range, and you can quickly take aim at the target due to its fast-focus eyepiece.
However, the fast-focus eyepiece does have a tendency to get loose very quickly. This does not make the scope perform poorly, but it can be a hassle.
While the illumination is weak, it is almost unheard of for scopes to have illumination at this price range. The worst-case scenario is that you turn off the illumination and use the standard reticle. The Circle-X reticle that the Banner comes with is probably my favorite reticle for short-range hunting. Its clarity makes it perfect for firing below 200-yards, further cementing the Banner as an amazing scope.
What You Want in a Savage 220 Scope
The Savage 220 is renowned for its accuracy. Even though it shoots slugs, it has an effective range of 175-yards. Experienced shooters can further push this limit. However, this does not mean that you need a riflescope. In fact, a shotgun scope will easily suffice.
Before we delve into our list, here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing the right scope for your Savage 220.
As those who have experienced hunting with shotguns previously will know, you do not need a scope that has a lot of power.
Even though the Savage 220 is effective up to 175-yards, you may need to shoot at distances much smaller than that. In that case, having a scope that can deliver 1/1.5x magnification is fairly important. On top of this, you also need to be able to effectively shoot targets further away. For this reason, a 1-4x scope is perfect for the 220.
Of course, if you are someone who only wants to shoot at distances of 150-yards or more, you can opt for a 3-9x magnification as well. However, going beyond that is simply stupid since the accuracy of the gun is non-existent post-250-yards.
The reticle choice for the Savage 220 is arbitrary. Usually, shotgun slugs have quite a bit of bullet drop. However, zeroing the Savage 220 at 100-yards can negate its adverse effects to a large extent.
If your Savage 220 is zeroed at 100-yards, then a shot at 50-yards or so will only be around an inch higher than your reticle but you will be able to shoot quite easily at up to 125-yards without needing for a BDC reticle.
Personally, I prefer the cleaner look of a standard crosshair or a duplex reticle when using the Savage 220. However, I find that the majority of hunters prefer to have a reticle that can gauge bullet drop on the Savage 220. As such, reticle choice did not play a huge part in determining our list.
This is my favorite part of the Savage 220. When you fire a 20-gauge slug from a shotgun, you expect a lot of recoil. This recoil may require you to get a scope with high eye-relief so as to protect yourself from the kick.
The Savage 220 is quite different in this regard. With only 3” shells fired from its 22-inch barrel, the recoil is lower even than that of most 12-gauge shotguns. Because of this, eye-relief does not need to be a priority when selecting your scope. Anything above 3.5” (which almost every scope offers) is fine.
It goes without saying that any scope used for hunting on a shotgun should be durable. Even though the recoil on the 220 is significantly lower than its counterparts, it is still enough to damage a low-quality scope.
Your scope should be able to effectively hold zero even after numerous shots and absorb any kick from the weapon. There have been quite a few reports of people breaking their scope’s glass when firing a 220, and you need to avoid that.
Obviously, since the best time for hunting is usually at dawn or dusk, you need a scope that is both fog-proof and water-proof.
Turrets play an integral role when hunting with the Savage 220. The slug is quite prone to both windage as well as elevation. In fact, it is the difficulty of effectively shooting the 220 that makes it such a huge hit with hunting enthusiasts.
Regardless of whether you have capped or target turrets, your turrets should be adjustable by finger. Quick adjustments will not be required, and you will probably have ample time to set up your scope for optimum performance before you take a shot.
Ideally, you want a lens as wide as possible so that it can transmit enough light during low-light conditions. Sadly, this presents a conundrum as low-power scopes usually have a smaller objective lens.
Still, it is possible for you to find a scope that has a maximum magnification of 4x but is wider than 30mm. Scopes like these should be preferred, especially if you are an avid dusk/dawn hunter.
All of the scopes on this list command significant merit of their own. However, my personal favorite for the Savage 220 is probably the Bushnell Trophy. Not only is the scope perfect for shooting at all ranges, but it also has a superb image and build quality which makes it perfect for all-day hunting trips.
That said, if you are someone who uses the Savage 220 for a specific purpose (such as shooting at close range), then we have done our best to list specific instances where the other scopes on this list stand out. Pick your poison and get on the field!