Nightforce is one of the biggest companies when it comes to scopes. While the company joined the industry later than most brands we have today, it has certainly taken its place in the optics world.
But have you ever wondered where their scopes are made? Let’s delve into it.
After reading this, take a look at our article on who makes LPVO scopes.
Where Are Nightforce Scopes Made?
Nightforce scopes are assembled, tested, inspected, and packaged in Orofino, Idaho (company headquarters) or Lavonia, Georgia. However, it’s important for buyers to understand that being tested, packaged, etc., isn’t the same as being made in the US.
Like many other rifle scope brands in the United States, Nightforce doesn’t manufacture some of the components of their scopes in the country. Instead, they’ve partnered with a facility in Japan to produce lenses for their products, as well as manufacturing some of their scope series.
Nightforce Optics’ main manufacturing facility is located in Orofino, Idaho, USA. This is where the company was founded, although the facility has undergone expansion several times.
Products are designed, machined, and assembled in Orofino. Here, you’ll find state-of-the-art manufacturing equipment and skilled engineers and machinists behind Nightforce’s reliable optical equipment.
Aside from manufacturing, the facility also has a research and development department. This is where the company’s designers and engineers develop new designs and technologies and ways to improve what already exists in the market.
In addition, this facility has a testing range where the company tests the products thoroughly to ensure they meet the right quality standards.
Nightforce Scopes Made in the USA
Some of the Nightforce scopes made in the USA include the iconic Nightforce ATACR and the Nightforce BEAST line. If you’ve heard of these series before and have been considering these scopes for yourself, read on to find out why they stand out from the rest.
The Nightforce ATACR stands for Advanced Tactical Riflescope. This series consists of military-grade rifle scopes tailored for high-profile applications such as law enforcement units, military, and other tactical applications.
These scopes are, in fact, made from high-end raw materials, ensuring they deliver repeatable accuracy, a reliable experience, and top-notch performance. Thanks to those features, the scopes are trusted by various branches of the US armed forces and countless individuals.
Although scopes in these series are highly priced, getting one is a good investment that you’ll enjoy for years. Let’s dive into a few scopes in this line.
This high-grade riflescope has been designed to be the optimum low-power variable riflescope. Due to its lightweight and sharp accuracy, USSOCOM selected this scope and signed a contract with Nightforce to produce this scope for their use.
The scope includes immaculate ED glass, intelligent reticle, bright daylight illumination, bomb-proof reliability, and low-profile adjustments.
The 1-8x magnification helps the shooter spot and engage targets effectively, and the low-profile turrets prevent accidental adjustments.
Take a look at this in-depth video that reviews this certain Nightforce LPVO:
ATACR™ 4-16×42 F1
This scope has been specifically built for semi-automatic rifles. It’s ideal for rapid target engagement and is popular among the armed forces and civilian shooters.
Like other scopes in this series, the compact construction makes it lightweight, and the pristine ED lens produces images with striking clarity.
ATACR™ 5-25×56 F1
This scope features a huge 35 MRAD elevation, making it suitable for only long-range shooting. It has been designed to aim at targets as far as 1000 m without any struggles.
Despite the magnification level or lighting conditions, you get bright clear images with vivid colors thanks to the ED objective lens.
Other features include a 5-25x magnification range, 6.2-1.6 m/100 m field of view, 90 mm eye relief, and a 56 mm objective lens.
ATACR™ 7-35×56 F1/F2
This versatile scope is available in both First and Second Focal plane reticles. It’s designed for long distances beyond 1000 m and can be used on various rifles, including air rifles, rimfire, and any other long-range rifles.
Some notable features include the 56 mm objective lens, 7-35x magnification, 91 mm eye relief, and the 5.0-1.1 m/100 m field of view.
Nightforce B.E.A.S.T Line
BEAST stands for Best Example of Advanced Scope Technology and is also made in the USA. These scopes are the true definition of quality performance. With their tremendous capability, most brands are yet to achieve the level that Nightforce has with this scope.
The scopes in this line feature high magnification that allows them to perform well even in critical situations.
Usually, a higher magnification is enough for long-range distances. The challenges arise in real-world situations where shooters have to separate innocent bystanders from a threat. The BEAST line was invented through teamwork between German and US engineers to address this issue.
The goal was to achieve an unparalleled level of image clarity, which they did by using high-quality lenses and superior lens coating.
Some of the main features of the scopes on this line include fully multi-coated optics, compact construction, elevation and windage control with quick adjustments, and shock and waterproof capabilities.
Currently, the BEAST lineup only has one variation, which is the BEAST 5-25×56 F1. This is not your typical long-range scope. It’s a military-grade scope meant for combat situations when engaging hostile targets.
One of the key features is the 90%+ light transmission, allowing shooters to locate their target clearly no matter the light conditions. The 5-25x magnification contributes to sharp image clarity and exceptional color accuracy.
Other features include a 90 mm eye relief, 56 mm objective, tactical elevation turret, 35/23 MRAD elevation and windage adjustment.
Nightforce has made it clear that they source optical glass for the BEAST and ATACR rifle scopes from Japan. This isn’t unusual, considering there aren’t many places in the US where you can get superior optical-grade glass.
Nightforce Scopes Made in Japan
The Nightforce Scopes made in Japan include the SHV series, NX8 series, and NXS series. These series are produced in Japan and are marked as such.
Although the NXS rifle scopes are marked as manufactured in Japan, they are tested, assembled, and packaged in the US. The NightForce Benchrest and Competition Rifle Scopes are also manufactured in Japan.
Who Owns Nightforce Scopes?
Lightforce Performance Lighting, an Australian-based company, owns Nightforce Scopes. They specialize in lighting products and are located in Hindmarsh City.
Although not as old as other optic companies, Nightforce has proven to have high-quality products and great customer service.
Nightforce Scopes History
Ray Dennis established the Nightforce company in 1992 as a subsidiary of the Lightforce Performance Lighting company based in Australia. His aim was to promote his products, which were mainly flashlights and spotlights for nocturnal hunting. (Source: Nightforce Optics)
Unfortunately, the US market wasn’t very receptive to his lighting products, mostly because not a lot of people were practicing night hunting. However, his rifle scopes were well received despite the stiff competition he was facing from other sports optics companies.
Their first rifle scopes were made in Japan. So, are Nightforce scopes made in Japan? Yes and no.
As we’ve established, some are made in Japan, and some are made in the US. After manufacturing the first scopes, Lightforce moved production to the US because demand was growing.
The company was also renamed from Lightforce to Nightforce following a dispute with a California company called Lightforce which was producing lighting products. In 1998, they moved to Orofino, Idaho, which is now the company’s headquarters.
After producing the NXS series riflescopes, the company was motivated to produce scopes for high-profile groups such as the US armed forces. And after a few bidding wars, they eventually scored a contract worth $25.8 million with the US armed forces to produce sniper-grade scopes.
This contract contributed highly to the growth of the company. One of the reasons this company is doing well is because of its dedication to addressing any scope problems. They listen to customers and develop scopes based on the feedback they get.
Are Nightforce Scopes Good?
Nightforce scopes are excellent. The company is known for manufacturing high-quality build scopes with world-record accuracy, exceptional coating, and recoil-free turrets.
Regarding clarity, Nightforce has gone all out. They use ED glass which, when combined with lens coating, gives users amazing precision. You don’t have to worry about a blurry target, even in poor light conditions.
You also get great value for your money with these scopes as the tubes are constructed using solid bar stock to ensure they last a long time.
We also have to mention the intelligent reticle in certain models like the Nightforce® SHV™ 4-14×50. Such a reticle makes it easy to acquire a target despite the magnification setting.
It’s these features that make Nightforce scopes among the most sought-after for different shooting situations. It’s no wonder people often ask, “Where are Nightforce scopes made” given all these amazing features.
But regardless of country of origin, all Nightforce scopes are of good quality as they undergo rigorous testing before being released into the market.
Who Makes Nightforce Glass?
Like many other optic manufacturing companies, Nightforce doesn’t produce its own glass. They’ve partnered with Japanese glass manufacturers to produce their lenses. This is for all their riflescope models, even the ones made in the US.
Rest assured that the parts are checked individually, and those that don’t conform to their quality standards are eliminated from the batch.
However, for a series such as the SHV Scopes, it’s not just the glass that comes from Japan. The whole scope is manufactured there and is marked as such. The same applies to the NX8 scopes, which are an improvement of the SHV scopes.
When it comes to other parts, such as Nightforce rings, it depends on which scope we’re talking about. For instance, for series like the NX8 and the SHV, which are fully manufactured in Japan, the rings also originate from there.
For more reading see our article on: Vortex vs Leupold scopes and where are Barska scopes made.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Nightforce scopes made in China?
No authentic Nightforce scopes are made in China. Instead, some are made in the USA and others in Japan. However, in the market, you may find knock-off models from China.
Where is the Nightforce ATACR made?
The Nightforce ATACR series is made in the USA, although the glass used to make the lens is manufactured in Japan.
Where are Nightforce optics manufactured?
Some Nightforce optics, such as the ATACR and BEAST series, are manufactured in the USA, while others, like the SHV and NX8 series, are manufactured in Japan.
Are all Nightforce made in the USA?
All Nightforce products aren’t made in the USA, as some are made in Japan.
Are Nightforce scopes better than Leupold?
Nightforce scopes are neither better nor worse than Leupold. Both scope brands are almost similar when it comes to quality standards. However, Leopold has better scopes for long-range shooting, while Nightforce produces durable scopes. It all boils down to preference.
What makes Nightforce scopes so good?
Nightforce scopes are good because they’ve been designed to last long, and they carry a higher level of precision than most scopes.
Does the military use Nightforce scopes?
The military does use Nightforce scopes, specifically for their Mk 13 rifles. Military special forces units and other law enforcement agencies have been using Nightforce scopes for years.
- The Firearms Blog, Interview with Nightforce Optics Founder Ray Dennis. Retrieved from https://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2017/02/16/interview-nightforce-optics-founder-ray-dennis/
I have been writing firearms and outdoor material for over 50 years to date. I have hunted across the world, including Russia, and a great deal of time professional hunting in Australia. I currently live in the American West and hunt all across the Black Hills of South Dakota and the Big Horn Mountains. I have specialized much of my work as a load developer in shotguns and rifles. I have run a small company that builds suppressor barrels of my design and load tests for writing purposes and consulting. My commercial names include Ballistics Research & Development / Metro Gun Systems TM.
Or contact me at:
- Email me at LP@barrettrifles.com
- Follow me on Facebook
- See my website
- Buy my book: Gun Digest Guide to Modern Shotgunning
- Buy my book: The Gun Digest Book of Long-Range Shooting