Angled or Straight Spotting Scope: Which is Better?

Angled or straight spotting scope, which is better?

This is a common question, without a common answer. The answer is purely personal preference, but we do have a couple scenarios where one provides a distinct advantage over the other.

Before we jump into this article, I want to make one thing crystal clear. When we write about things like “the best hunting spotting scope“, or answer a question like this, we answer from a place of knowledge and experience. So when you’re reading this article today, keep that in mind. We’re not just pulling things out of our rear end and publishing it on the internet for all to see.

We’re passionate about the outdoors, we’re passionate about optics, and we love what we do. We take it seriously and try to give you the best answer to your question as possible. But, with that being said, we answer only the things we’re experienced in. If we don’t know something, we won’t make it up.

Angled or Straight Spotting Scope

Ahh, the great debate. While there’s quite a bit that goes into this question, it does come down to personal preference. We see a lot of hunters and sportsmen choosing a straight spotting scope, and angled spotting scopes being more popular for wildlife viewing.

Of course, they’re interchangeable.

I do a ton of hunting in the Western United States, and my first spotting scope buy was a Vortex Viper with an angled eyepiece. To be completely honest, I returned it after my first trip and went with a straight spotting scope. My brother, on the other hand, likes an angled viewing piece.

When should I use straight spotting scopes?

Straight spotting scopes are the preferred option for sitting on the ground.

  • Use a straight spotting scope when hunting
  • Easiest to use sitting down
  • Make sure you’ve got a tripod

In a perfect world, everybody would own a spotting scope with multiple different angled or straight attachments, but of course that’s not going to be the case every day of the week. We can’t all be Cameron Hanes!

When should I use angled spotting scopes?

Angled spotting scopes are best used while standing up, or with a cell phone scope mount, like the Phone Skope.

  • Great for wildlife viewing
  • Work well with a Phone Skope
  • Easier to use while standing

The simple answer to straight vs angled spotting scopes is a question. Are you sitting or standing? Generally speaking, if you’re sitting down I’d recommend a straight lens. If you’re going to be standing quite a bit, or would prefer to use a phone attachment like the Phone Skope, I would recommend going with an angled eyepiece.

This is a very important decision when choosing a scope that will best fit your application, I hope we were able to help clear up some of the confusion!


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