The Leupold VX-2 I just bought was $300, shipped. I like it better than my old Leupold in some ways. The power ring works smoothly and has a good bump on it, so it's easier to use. The focus adjustment doesn't have a lock ring, but works quite well. It has a finer thread than most and there's no slop.
The lower-priced Leupolds, through the VX-1, are not made in the USA and don't have a lifetime warranty.
I don't like the Nikon Monarch, because the view doesn't seem to go to the edge, but optical quality is close to the VX-2.
I chose the wide-multiplex reticle that has a wider narrow section. It seems to work better for longer-distance shooting.
People are like rifles. Some are tried and true, having great eyes, personality, and fun to be with. Others never seem to hit the mark with you. Still others go off half-cocked. Still, it's nice to know most of them.