Core Stories

Honoring the Mark 4's Legendary Military Service

DON'T CALL IT A COMEBACK, WE'VE BEEN HERE FOR YEARS.

Today, most optics brands have a "tactical" scope line or at least features that are derived from tactical scopes. But where did it all start?

Before the early 80s, soldiers were still using hunting-style riflescopes in combat. While very functional, the military discovered these optics had shortcomings. They needed dedicated tools, designed specifically for combat situations - enter the Leupold Mark 4 project. 

Working in conjunction with the military, we developed the ultimate battlefield-capable scope - the ULTRA. This scope is the foundation of what would become Leupold's legendary Mark series.

The mission was clear; build a rifle scope that would outperform anything on the market or even in development at the time. It had to be what the military referred to as "jump proof". It needed to be able to withstand being thrown out of an aircraft, submerged to two atmospheres (66 feet) for extended periods of time, and everything in-between - basically, it had to be the most badass scope anyone had ever created.

The ULTRA outperformed even the military's expectations and proved that Leupold was the clear choice for battle-ready optics. This holds true today as Leupold continues to supply all of our military branches with the tools they need to ensure success on the battlefield.


To honor the Mark 4's legendary military service, we're offering an exclusive run of the Mark 4 2.5-8x36 MR/T TS-30A2 (quantities are limited). The TS-30A2 Mark 4 MR/T was featured on the MK12 MOD1 weapon system, which had a long history of service with SOCOM. It's also the the optic the United States Marine Corps recently selected for its Squad-Designated Marksman Rifle. This scope is perfect for any MK12 clone build or military historian looking to add to their collection.

Email customshop@leupold.com or call 1-888-629-4811 to order yours!

LEUPOLD MILITARY CONTRACTS

1988 - 2014 | M24

Scope Model - Mark 4 LR/T 10x40mm and Mark 4 LR/T 10x40mm M3- Built on a Remington 700 action and chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO, this was the principle sniper weapon of the US Army. The weapon system originally featured a Leupold ULTRA M3A 10x42mm with a Mil Dot reticle.

Deployments: Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, Iraq | Used by: US Army

1989 - Present | M107 - Mark 4 LR/T 4.5-14x50mm

This system was originally intended to be built on a bolt rifle but ended up being built around a Barrett M82 semi-automatic rifle chambered in .50. It was designated as a long-range sniper rifle system, which utilized a Mil Dot reticle.

Deployments: Kuwait, Iraq, Afghanistan | Used by: US Army, Marine Corps, and Air Force

2002 - Present | MK12 Special Purpose Rifle (SPR) - Mark 4 MR/T 2.5-8x36mm TS-30 A2

Designed for longer range engagements in a smaller package, it's built on a gas-operated, semi-automatic rifle with a 18” barrel chambered in 5.56x45mm NATO. Several iterations of the system include the MOD0 and MOD1. The scope utilizes an illuminated TMR reticle.

Deployment: Operation Enduring Freedom | Used by: Special Operation Forces United States Army and Navy

2004 - Present | MK14 Enhanced Battle Rifle - Mark 4 LR/T 3.5-10x40mm

This weapon system was designed as a designated marksman rifle based on a M14. It gained favor for its ergonomics, low recoil, and low cost. Chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO, it comes in 8 different iterations. The scope utilizes a Mil Dot reticle.

Deployments: Afghanistan, Iraq | Used by: Units within the Naval Special Warfare Command

2008 - Present | M110 Semi-Automatic Sniper System - Mark 4 LR/T 3.5-10x40mm

Designed to replace the M24, this system is built by Knights Armament Company and chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO. It's a favorite among troops for its semi-automatic capability and extreme versatility. The scope utilizes an illuminated TMR reticle.

Deployments: Afghanistan, Iraq | Used by: United States Army

2010 - Present | M151 Scout Sniper Observation Telescopes (SSOT) - Mark 4 12-40X60mm Spotting Scope

This scope replaces the M49 20X fixed scope. It's a lightweight, variable power spotting scope that's ideal for recognition and identification at long range distances. The kit includes a tripod, laser filter, and night vision adapter. The scope utilizes a Mil Dot reticle.

Deployment: Afghanistan | Used by: United States Marine Corps

2010 - Present | M2010 - Mark 4 ER/T 6.5-20x50mm M5A2

A replacement for existing M24 systems, it was developed by the Program Executive Office Soldier (PEO). It's chambered in .300 WIN MAG and built on a Remington 700 action, which is installed in a highly customizable aluminum chassis. The scope utilizes a H58 reticle.

Deployment: Afghanistan | Used by: United States Army

2011 - Present | Classified - Mark 8 1.1-8x24mm CQBSS

Weapon system information not available.

Used by: Various government entities

2011 - Present | Heavy Day Optic (HDO) - Mark 8 1.1-8x24mm CQBSS

This scope is used on a M2 heavy machine gun and MK19 grenade machine guns. The M2 is made by Browning and chambered in .50. It allows for better target identification and ensures quick and accurate engagements versus iron sights. The scope utilizes a Mil Dot reticle.

Deployment: Afghanistan | Used by: United States Marine Corps

2013 - Present | Enhanced Combat Optical Sight-Optimized (ECOS-O) - Mark 6 3-18x44mm

The system is designed for close quarter and long range scenarios. It features a Aimpoint T1 red dot sight on top. The optic fits a wide variety of weapon systems including the M4A1. It comes in illuminated and non-illuminated configurations; both utilizing the Tremor2 reticle.

Used by: United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps

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