5 Top Military Sniper Rifles

What are the best military sniper rifles in the world?

Last updated July 2nd 2024

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Sniper rifles are serious military tools that offer precision fire at long distances. These specialized weapons have evolved significantly, from simple scoped bolt-action rifles to advanced systems capable of incredible accuracy over thousands of meters.

Sniper rifles extend the reach of infantry units. Snipers can also take out high-value targets, as well as providing combat support.

If you’re not just looking for military rifles and you want a long range rifle for competitive shooting or hunting, have a look at these sniper rifles that will give you more of a cross-section of rifles on the market. But here are the hardcore few, the military sniper rifles in active service.

The Best Military Sniper Rifles

Remington M24, the US military sniper rifle based on America's favorite hunting rifle.

1. M24 Sniper Weapon System (United States)

Based on the Remington 700, the M24 has been the standard-issue sniper rifle for the U.S. Army since 1988. Chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO, it has seen action in multiple conflicts, renowned for its reliability and accuracy.

Now the Remington 700 action is the best selling bolt action rifle actions in history. So you can get a much cheaper civilian version from as little as $500. Of course you can spend up to $2,000 without too much trouble.

Accuracy International Arctic Warfare Magnum. The British military rely on this sniper rifle.

2. L115A3 AWM (United Kingdom)

The Accuracy International Arctic Warfare Magnum, particularly in .338 Lapua Magnum, has been adopted by British Armed Forces and other units worldwide. Its exceptional range and accuracy make it ideal for long-distance engagements in varied terrain.

You can’t buy this exact model, but you can get close. The Accuracy International AT is a folding rifle with most of the same qualities. You can spend a lot more on the AXSA, if you wish. Those rifles come in a range of calibers, specs and colors.

Barrett M82 for sale.

3. Barrett M82/M107

A semi-automatic rifle firing the powerful .50 BMG cartridge, the Barrett M82 is known officially as an anti-material gun. So it’s capable of engaging light vehicles, small buildings and equipment at long ranges, and yet it’s portable enough that a team of soldiers can take one wherever they go.

This rifle changed the face of battle in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. and you can have one, minus the incendiary rounds.

The Barrett MRAD is another sniper’s favorite. It can offer a range of calibers and can switch between 308 Winchester Magnum, 300 Norma Magnum and 338 Lapua Magnum in a minute.

4. Sako TRG-42 (Finland)

The TRG-42 is used by several countries for both military and law enforcement sniper applications. Chambered in .338 Lapua Magnum, it offers excellent ballistic performance at extreme distances.

Competitive shooters also love Sako rifles and you’ll only read glowing reviews when it comes to long range accuracy. If you want to save a little money then Tikka uses Sako barrels and also produce some stellar precision rifles like the Tikka T3X TAC-A1. That’s another favorite with long range shooters.

5. Dragunov SVD (Russia)

The SVD has been the mainstay of Soviet and Russian forces since the 1960s. While it may not match the range and precision of newer sniper systems, its reliability and semi-automatic fire make it effective for engaging multiple targets quickly.

Tactics & Training

Training and Tactics

The effectiveness of a sniper rifle is only as good as the sniper wielding it. Military snipers undergo rigorous training, learning not only marksmanship but also camouflage, fieldcraft, and target selection. Snipers work in pairs, with a spotter assisting in target detection, range estimation, and wind reading.


Sniper rifles have become an indispensable tool in modern military operations, providing forces with the capability to engage targets accurately at long distances, gather intelligence, and exert psychological pressure on the enemy. The evolution of sniper rifles continues, with advancements in technology promising even greater accuracy, range, and lethality. As warfare evolves, the role of the sniper and their rifles will undoubtedly expand, continuing to shape the battlefield of the future.


  • Nick Hall

    Nick is a lifelong gun enthusiast who has a simple mission. He wants to find the best deals for guns online and help you make the best choices with weapons your life may depend on one day.Nick won a minor league shooting competition at the age of 11 and it all went from there. Now he runs one of the biggest firearms websites on the net and his work has featured in Playboy US, Tatler Asia, Forbes and a whole host of national magazines and websites.

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