View Full Version : Nikon M-223 vs Leupold MK AR

08-07-2011, 7:07 PM
Looking for a scope for a Savage/Stevens 200 .223 bolt gun. The rifle is just a plinker, but I like having good glass. Looking at the Nikon M-223 and the Leupold MK AR configured 3-9 X 40 or thereabouts. I've never used a scope with a Bullet Drop Compensator before. If I like the scope, I could always move it over to an AR. Any input would be appreciated. I see the Bushnell Elite 3200 mentioned as well.

BTW: I have Trijicon Accupoint TR-21 and TR-22 scopes on other rifles, just don't feel like spending that much on this one.

HK Dave
08-07-2011, 7:19 PM
According to most reports, the Nikon M-223 is in a different league from the Leupold Mark AR. The glass on the Nikon is supposedly vastly superior.

I bought the Nikon and I have to say, at the price point, I'm REALLY impressed.

The BDC reticle thing is kinda... eh.

08-07-2011, 7:45 PM
Both are set up for the 55 grain bullet drop. I had a Mark AR in 4X12X40mm mildot retticle on a stag 24'' bull barrel upper with a 1/8 twist barrel. It worked suprisingly well. I used a burris PEPR mount. Took it out and shot paper at a 100 yards and didnt have to mess with adjustments. Set the scope to 400 yards and started shooting 8x8 plates no problem with 55 grain federal ammo. I dont know much about the Nikon scope other than a buddy checked it out at Paralax Tactical and said the finish on it was crappy. I sold the scope and the upper to a friend cause Im building a custom 20'' match barreled upper and I bought a Vortex Viper PST in 2.5X10. Lots of Leupold haters out there but Its a great setup on an AR. The Bushnell is a great scope and cheaper than the Nikon and the Mark AR. Ive got a 3200 Elite on a Tikka T3 and it works fine on a bolt gun. If all your gonna do with your Savage is plink id save some cash and go with 3200 Elite

pennys dad
08-07-2011, 8:01 PM
I have both. The Nikon is impressive! I think my Mark AR is awesome as well though, But! I am looking to buy another Nikon, so i guess it wins for me. I use Nikon on my 223 AR and waiting for them to release one for a 308

08-07-2011, 8:22 PM
I need to check out the Bushnell Elite 3200, but in the meantime, if I decide to go with the Nikon, is there much difference between the glass in the 2-8 X 32 as compared to the 3-12 X 42?

I always like more magnification, but again, I'm more concerned about the quality of the glass. I'm not going to be hunting or shooting in poor light, so the size of the objective isn't that much of a concern, although with my cheek-weld, I do like my scopes mounted on the low side.

08-09-2011, 12:36 PM
Penn., I doubt there will be a M-308 series even though a lot,and I mean a lot of guys have asked about it. Nikon does have a custom turret option. YOu can dial in your ammo,scope,MV, all to load specific turrets. You can find them on Nikonhunting.com
I'm plannig on getting some for my .243 AR. I will get 2 sets, one for 55 gr. screamers for coyote hunting and one set for 90 gr. deer hunting loads. I never thought about 2 sets of turrets until a buddy with a .243 said that is what he wanted to do....
Best of both worlds..
I really like the 3-12x42 BDC by the way. It is on my 2 favorite deer rifles.

08-10-2011, 9:49 AM
I had the Mark AR and the M-223 out last week to compare, and I really like the M-223. Nikon also has one heck of a useful tool in the Spot-On program:


It's a drag having to register, but the program is (pardon the pun) a blast.

Mark H.

Quickdraw Mcgraw
08-18-2011, 2:52 PM
Can you use these scopes with the 62grain penatrators??

08-19-2011, 2:09 PM
I don't have the mark ar but i have a vx-ll which is the same glass as mark ar i believe and i have the m223, my eye ball like the leupold better:Dmy2cent

08-20-2011, 8:12 AM
I found a good deal on a Nikon M-223, 2-8X33 with a Nikon AR mount, so that's the way I went. I don't need the Nikon AR mount, but it came in a package deal. I can always use it later if I decide to move the scope to an AR.

Should arrive in a couple of days. Can't wait to mount it on my Stevens 200 and take it out. The scope was more expensive than the rifle!

08-25-2011, 10:19 AM
I like both Nikon & Leupold..and ended with both! The glass on these scopes are impressive..
btw, Brassburnz..if you decide to sell the nikon ar mount..give me a holler!

Droppin Deuces
08-28-2011, 3:11 PM
Can you use these scopes with the 62grain penatrators??

You absolutely can. The turrets are marked for 55grain BDC, but they are also marked for normal use. I shoot all the way up to 77 grain with mine and RARELY 55 grain.
For me, the Leupold with the Mildot reticle is the no-brainer choice. That Nikon Reticle really limits its usability in my mind. The Mildot reticle option was my primary reason for going with the Leupold.

08-30-2011, 9:08 AM
just bought a nikon m223 2-8x32 bdc, should be in next week, excited to see what this scope is all about.

08-30-2011, 10:36 AM
Another scope I have been playing with is the Leupold Patrol they are very nice for the money. The daytime bright dot is very impressive.

Mike @ CST

08-30-2011, 10:29 PM
rj23-I think I'll hold onto the mount for the time being. It's always a good idea to have a good AR scope mount handy just in case I find another upper I can't live without.

Mike @ CST- The Leupold Patrol looks interesting, but I'm still partial to my Trijicon TR21. I'm still getting used to the triangle reticle, but I pick it up faster than crosshairs or a mil-dot. I'm used to shooting with red dots on pistols. It is tougher on smaller targets past 200 yards, but I'm getting better figuring out the holdover.

Hopefully shooting the Nikon with the BDC will help me learn more about holdover at different ranges and I can transfer that to my AR's with the different reticles.

08-30-2011, 10:44 PM
On the Trijicon triangle if you use the tip for 100yds you can use the center of the triangle for 200yds, and the base for 300yds. This should be good on 12" by 12" targets.

Mike @ CST