Nikon P-223 3-9x40mm BDC 600 Riflescope Review

Nikon P-223 3-9x40mm BDC 600 Riflescope

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- Excellent light transmission
- Open-circle reticle range markers are see-through
- Fantastic sight picture quality
- Designed for .223 Remington and 5.56 NATO rounds


- No scope rings included
- Short eye relief
- No parallax adjustment
- Slightly heavy
- Difficult to mount

This isn’t a light, compact scope by any stretch of the imagination, but neither is it the largest optic I’ve ever owned. The accessory is 12.4 inches long, and tips the scales at 17.1 ounces (just over a pound). It’s centered around a 40mm objective lens, and the total outside diameter is just 44mm.

The eye relief suffers a bit on this scope, since you only get 3.6 inches of it. If your rifle is quite light or has heavy recoil, you might want to be careful of that. The optic’s exit pupil dilates from 4.4mm to 13.3mm.

How Much Magnification Do I Get From The P–223 Riflescope?

This model provides total magnification of 3X to 9X, a moderate amount of power. It’s good for short- to medium-range shooting, but might not be as effective for long distance shots. Of course, the advertised use of this scope is for short- to mid-range centerfire shooting and application with the AR platform of modern sporting rifles. Throughout the entire zoom of the scope, the sight picture is almost HD quality, with plenty of contrast, crispness, and clarity.

How Is The Optics Quality On The Riflescope?

The optics are fully multicoated, so you’ll enjoy plenty of brightness and great color reproduction. Like I said, the image quality is superb, thanks to great glass and engineering, so you’ll definitely feel up close and personal to your target of choice, no whether it’s 10 yards away or 100 yards in the distance.

Nikon has engineered this scope with its BDC 600 reticle, offering open circle aiming points and hash marks from 100 to 600 yards. The advantage of the open circle range marker is that you can see through it, giving you a more precise shot placement on your target. I wish the reticle was illuminated, but c’est la vie.

What’s The Light Gathering Capability Like On The Scope?

The fully multicoated optics and 40mm objective lens provide for excellent transmittance, giving you quite a bit of brightness even in low-light conditions. I’ve used this scope in twilight a number of times, and it’s never let me down.

How Wide Is The Field Of View?

This scope has quite a generous field of view, ranging from 11.3 feet at minimum zoom to 33.8 feet at maximum magnification, assuming you’re 100 yards from your target.

How Easy Is The Scope To Mount?

In some cases, mounting your scope is easy and painless. That’s not quite the case with this baby, since it seems more finicky than other glass I’ve owned. You’ll probably find yourself needing a gunsmith torque wrench, a crosshair leveling device, and quite a bit of care in mounting it. If you don’t have those tools, I’d recommend finding a gunsmith to do the job for you. It’s also worth noting that scope rings are not included, so be sure to buy a pair. I used Nikon’s P-Series mount, and had excellent results.

Any Tricks Or Tips About Mounting The Scope?

As previously noted, mounting this scope might be beyond the capabilities of some shooters. A gunsmith can help with this.

How Easy Is The Nikon P–223 3–9x40mm BDC 600 Riflescope To Sight In?

Once it’s mounted, it’ll be time to get started on sighting in your scope. As is my usual practice, I started off by using a laser bore-sighting tool to get my shots on paper. This saves precious time and expensive ammunition; when I got to the range, I was hitting bull’s eyes within five shots.

The elevation and windage adjustment knobs are hand-turn dials, with positive clicks every 1/4 MOA that you can feel and hear. The total adjustment range for these controls is 80 MOA.

You would think that a scope advertised to shoot out to 600 yards would have an adjustable objective for setting the parallax, but this is not so. Parallax is fixed at 100 yards, and cannot be changed. That’s a pretty major problem, in my not-so-humble opinion.

How Durable Is The Scope?

This is a very rugged scope, since the optics chamber is nitrogen-purged and the lenses are sealed with O-rings. It’s both waterproof and fogproof, as well as shockproof. Covered by a limited lifetime warranty, this scope can take a modest bit of abuse without any problems.

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Nikon P-223 3-9x40mm BDC 600 Riflescope Review Summary

Thanks for reading my review of the Nikon P–223 3–9x40mm BDC 600 riflescope. While not perfect for all situations, this is a terrific choice for hunting or target shooting at short or mid range. Beyond 200 yards, it gets dicey, but it’s still quite useful and good for the price.

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Jeff Byrnes

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Hi there! I’m Jeff, an avid outdoorsman and hunter who really likes exploring new technology. I’m especially into hunting optics, which is why I’m writing these reviews! I hope you find my articles helpful in your own shooting and hunting.

One Response so far.

  1. Avatar bart says:

    I’m not sure why you say this is a difficult scope to mount. I had zero isuues mounting it in Nikon’s P-Seires mount. Now the P-223 3X Carbine scope can be a little more tricky being that is is compact in size. I did notthing differnt to mount this scope then I would mounting any other magnified optic.

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