The 4 Best Marlin 1895 Scopes – Reviews 2022

marlin 1895 scope, marlin 1895g scope

Photo by Vlad Butsky / CC BY

The Marlin 1895 is an intense rifle. It has a long history in the United States and is still a viable option for hunting and wilderness defense. The Marlin rifles are not long range guns and are designed for intermediate ranges. In other words, they won’t benefit from high-powered optics.

However, within those 300 yards, they rule, so the best scopes for the Marlin 1895 will accentuate its ability to hit within that range. The Marlin 1895 benefits most from moderately powered scopes and even red dot sights.

Here are our top 4 picks for the best Marlin 1895 scopes. Take a gander, why don’t you?

Nikon Prostaff

The Nikon Prostaff line of optics is well known for their rugged durability and their high quality, but affordable optics. The Nikon Prostaff line is varied, but the best model for the Marlin 1895 is the 2 to 7 power variant with a 32 mm objective lens. Since the Marlin isn’t a long-range rifle, the 7 power magnification is an excellent magnification range for the Marlin 1895. The 2 power magnification allows you to utilize the weapon to its advantage.

The Nikon Prostaff series are tested for rifles up to the .375 H&H magnum. It will easily shake off the recoil of the .45-70 Government round. The Nikon Prostaff is a compact rifle scope that’s lightweight and keeps the Marlin 1895 light and balanced. The Nikon Prostaff is nitrogen-filled and completely waterproof. The simple Nikoplex reticle is quick to the eye, and also makes it faster to get on target. The clear picture provides you as a shooter an uncomplicated view of the world and your prey.

The Nikon Prostaff utilizes fully multi-coated lenses that allow 98 percent light transmission. This means you get a clear and bright picture of the world in front of you. The Prostaff’s fast focus eyepiece shaves a few seconds off your ability to get on target and focused. This is an excellent option on any hunting or guide gun Marlin 1895.

Nikon shotgun slug scope 7x32 review

Primary Arms Advanced Micro Dot

The Primary Arms Advanced Micro Dot is an excellent companion to any Marlin 1895. It seems odd purely because the weapon is such an old design. After all, 1895 isn’t just a model number here. So a modern, miniature red dot seems like an odd companion, but overall it makes sense. We’ve established the Marlin 1895 isn’t a long range rifle, so a red dot is a viable option in certain scenarios.

If you are using the rifle for defense in the bush, this is a great alternative to a magnified optic. Defending yourself from an angry bear, a feral dog, a big cat, and, worse of all, a two-legged monster usually means the animal is close or on top of you. You need to react fast.

With the Primary Arms Advanced Micro dot (see full specs), you have the ability to rapidly put a round on target. The Primary Arms Advanced Micro dot, or AMD, is a simple and effective option. It boasts an impressive 50,000 hours of battery life. The push button controls are very simple and the design is robust. It’s waterproof, shockproof, and fog proof.

The AMD is also night vision compatible if that’s a concern. The optic has 12 brightness settings with two being for night vision. The optics sits low on the rails on your rifle and would give you a nice compact and lightweight option for fast and rapid shooting. Sometimes the best Marlin 1895 scope is actually a red dot sight.

Primary Arms Advanced Micro Dot 50k Hour Battery | Unboxing and Review

The Bushnell Banner Dusk and Dawn

The Marlin 1895 can make solid use of a long eye-relief scope. Due to the heavy recoil of the .45-70 round, a little extra eye relief maybe important for smaller shooters. A longer eye relief means there is little chance the rifle will give you a bad case of scope eye. The Bushnell Banner Dusk and Dawn provides six inches of eye relief for a shooter concerned with recoil. The Dusk and Dawn optic is designed to be a hunting optic and is an intuitive and simple scope.

The Dusk and Dawn is built around hunting with powerful, short-range weapons like slug shooting shotguns and the Marlin 1895. This particular model is in 1.5 x 4.5 power with a 32mm objective lens. The Dusk and Dawn is a reference to the fact the scope is designed for maximum light transmission and for it to be used during the dusk and dawn times of the day.

Most hunting is done as the sun rises and as the sun sets, so for a dedicated hunting Marlin 1895 this scope is a solid choice. The large circle reticle makes shots at 25 yards simple, and shots at 200 yards possible. The optic is only 10.8 inches long and quite light. It’s also waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof.

Bushnell Banner Dusk and Dawn rifle scope unboxing and quick look

Leupold VX-6

The Leupold brand is extremely well known for their hunting optics. They’ve also served the United States Marine Corps for decades and were only replaced recently. The Leupold VX-6 is a very well made optic that is designed for brush hunting. The Marlin 1895 just so happens to be a capable and powerful brush hunting gun. The Leupold VX-6 is a lightweight, low-powered optic. It’s still a variable optic that has a 1 to 6 power magnification rating.

The 24 mm objective lens (see full specs) is the right size for a close quarters rifle. The magnification level is perfect for engagements from 25 yards to 300 yards. The optic itself is designed to take the brute recoil of powerful rifles, including the .45-70 the round the Marlin 1895 is chambered in. The .45-70 round is a powerful beast and a lesser scope could be broken to bits by it. The VX-6 holds up.

The reticle is the most interesting aspect. The fire dot, as Leupold calls it, allows it to double as a traditional duplex and what amounts to a red dot. At 1x, with both eyes opened the shooter can utilize it as a red dot. When you crank the magnification level higher it becomes an effective part of the duplex reticle for longer range shooting. The Leupold VX-6 is an excellent and versatile optic—one of the best Marlin 1895 scopes around.

Test of Leupold VX-6 1-6 scope on AR-15 rifle


The Marlin 1895 is a cool, powerful, and effective rifle. It’s a throwback to when guns were powerhouses. The lever action design is awesome for rapid fire in a pinch. It can definitely become a better rifle when rocking a great Marlin 1895 scope, especially one that complements its strengths and negates its weaknesses. Good luck!

  • Owner of, Boyd Smith is a major handgun enthusiast, and although he owns Glocks, he prefers the revolving wheel type. His go-to guns are a Smith & Wesson 642 Performance Center for carry and a Ruger GP100 in the nightstand biometric safe (he has kids). He loads both revolvers with old-school 148-grain Federal Gold Medal .38 wadcutters. It’s OK if you think he’s a wimp. Email him.

One response

  1. i had a leupold AR mark 1 in 1.5×4 on an 1895 Marlin, i bought new in 1972, the scope performed excellent, i had the opportunity to buy a 1x6x24 VX6HD at a smoking price, i was amazed at the difference the VX6HD, over the mark 1, which i still believe is an outstanding scope for the rifle, i was so impressed with the optics, tracking and CLARITY of the VX6HD, i went out and bought 2 more, one 3.5x18x44mm fire dot, for my 30-06 and a 3.5x18x50mm for my 338 win mag. On 3.5x18x50, I had leupold change the reticle to the TMR,which i am very familiar with.

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