Nikon ProStaff 4-12x40mm BDC Riflescope Review

Nikon ProStaff 4-12x40mm BDC Riflescope

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- Great light transmission and image quality
- Terrific magnification range for hunters and target-shooters alike
- Open-circle reticle design allows you to see your target through the range marker


- Short eye relief
- No scope rings included
- Parallax isn’t adjustable
- Very bulky and heavy

Well hey there! I’m glad you came by to read my review of the Nikon ProStaff 4–12x40mm BDC Riflescope. Anytime you’re out hunting or target shooting, you need every advantage you can dig up. A good scope on a rifle is like a good sewing machine to a seamstress, because without it you simply can’t be as effective as possible. Nikon makes some great scopes, so I couldn’t wait to put the ProStaff 4–12x40mm model through its paces. Let’s see how it stacks up.

What Are The Scope’s Dimensions?

The first thing I noticed is how huge this scope is. Its overall length is 14.1 inches, and it weighs around 19 ounces. Part of that is because of the 40mm objective lens, but plenty of similarly-sized scopes are much smaller and lighter. You’ll have to be really careful with this one, because the 50.29mm objective bell could easily get in the way of the moving parts of your rifle.

This optic’s eye relief is just 3.7 inches, a bit short for folks who wear eyeglasses. If your rifle has heavy recoil or is unusually lightweight, you might find yourself banging the eyepiece into your forehead or eyebrow.

The objective lens’s exit pupil opens from 3.3mm to 10mm.

How Much Magnification Do I Get From The ProStaff?

Some scopes offer limited magnification options, but this isn’t one of them. It zooms from 4X to 12X, and the image quality is fantastic throughout the entire range of powers. You’ll enjoy wonderful crispness, clarity, and contrast, no matter how far away your target is.

How Is The Optics Quality On The Riflescope?

Nikon has fully multicoated the glass surfaces on this model, maximizing light transmission, image clarity, and color reproduction. The sight picture is high resolution, almost HD quality.

For the reticle, Nikon has used its BDC reticle. The primary advantage of this feature, other than the range compensation markers themselves, is the shape of those marks. The patented BDC reticle features open circle range markers, meaning you can see your target through them for precision aiming points. The only thing that would make this reticle even better would be illuminating it.

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

When you’re hunting in low-light conditions, the scope’s transmittance is essential to success. A 40mm objective lens tends to gather a lot of light, but it can be lost if the correct antireflective coatings aren’t used. Thanks to the incorporation of fully multicoated optics, this scope transmits up to 98 percent of the available light straight to the eyepiece, giving you an image that is very bright and detailed even in dawn or dusk conditions.

How Wide Is The Field Of View?

When hunting, you want a field of view that will allow you to find your target and then lead it when it’s on the move. Nikon’s ProStaff has a slightly below-average field of view, measuring just 7.3 feet at 100 yards with maximum magnification, out to 23.6 feet at 4X magnification. This shouldn’t be a problem, but it is worth noting.

How Easy Is The Scope To Mount?

Mounting the ProStaff 4–12x40mm riflescope is pretty easy, but there is a catch – you don’t get scope rings in the box. Make sure you order them separately.

Any Tricks Or Tips About Mounting The Scope?

Speaking of scope rings, remember how bulky this bad boy is. With an objective bell that’s nearly two inches in diameter, you could easily run into problems with it obstructing your bolt action or some other part of your rifle, or even rubbing the barrel. You may find yourself needing medium- or high-profile rings to mount the scope.

How Easy Is The Nikon ProStaff 4–12x40mm BDC Riflescope To Sight In?

Once you’ve finished mounting it, you’ll be ready to start sighting in your scope. The hand-turn elevation and windage controls on the ProStaff make this easy to do, providing you with adjustments of 1/4 MOA with each click. You can only adjust the windage and elevation to within a 60 MOA range, though.

When you start sighting in, make sure you use a laser bore-sighting tool first. This will get your shots on paper and, more often than not, pretty close to the bull’s eye without even firing a shot. With as expensive as ammunition has gotten, every round saved is a good thing.

Since this scope is billed as being great for long-range shooting, I hoped it would have an adjustable parallax. Unfortunately, no. It’s set at 100 yards and can’t be modified.

How Durable Is The Scope?

The optics chamber is nitrogen-purged and the lenses are O-ring sealed. The scope is, therefore, both waterproof and fogproof. It’s also quite shockproof and rugged.

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Nikon ProStaff 4-12x40mm BDC Riflescope Review Summary

Thanks for reading my review of the Nikon ProStaff 4–12x40mm BDC riflescope. While not perfect, this scope is a pretty good choice for most shooting needs. I just wish it was a tad bit smaller and had an adjustable parallax.

Conclusion Rating
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Jeff Byrnes

This post was written by

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.

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