Topping off an already expensive rifle with a quality scope can be a tough pill to swallow. Often, I see new shooters make a sacrifice in this area, only to lay their entire investment to waste when that cheap-o optic fails to hold zero or offers the clarity of a neglected fishtank. So, the solution is sticking with a reputable name that’s been around long enough to earn some trust. This brings us to Leupold Optics, and its new-for-2024 line of riflescopes, the Mark 4HD.
To understand the Mark 4HD lineup, we first need to address the 5HD and understand that this is not a step backwards for Leupold. The “5” in the HD’s moniker refers to its 5x zoom ratio, which means the 2x will zoom to 10x, the 5x will zoom to 25x, and so on. To get this range of adjustment, it requires a lot from the lens stack and thus costs more to design and produce. This leaves room for improvement through simplicity, and a significant price reduction without a loss in quality.
The Mark 5HD series has earned a lot of positive press with its Professional-Grade Optical system, detailed reticle patterns and removable throw lever; however, it comes at a price measured in dollars and cents. At the 2024 NSSF SHOT Show, our friends in Oregon revealed the Mark 4HD line, which consists of a whopping 17 new riflescopes for every imaginable application.
Each scope features a simple 4x zoom ratio, while retaining the award-winning Professional-Grade Optical system, oversized resettable turrets and many of the same reticle patterns from the Mark 5HD. The 4HD also introduces the new PR3-MIL, which is a cleaner version of the PR2-MIL reticle—void of the Christmas-tree subtensions in the lower quadrant. Getting to put them side by side with similar 5HDs proved to me that zero concessions were made to quality and that these are an excellent option for anybody looking to top a rifle with something they can depend on. MSRP $1,199 - $1,599, depending upon model chosen. Leupold.com.