Vortex Optics Diamondback Review: Durable and Feature-Rich Budget Scope


What We Like

  • Top-notch image clarity
  • Durable and rugged construction
  • Good for hunting from varying ranges
  • Completely fog, shock and waterproof
  • Easy and precise adjustments
  • Finish is very effective at camouflaging shooters

What We Don’t Like

  • Picture edges get blurry at the high magnification setting
  • Relatively smaller eye relief
  • Can be a little hazy in low light

Bottom Line

With a more feature-rich and highly durable scope like this one by Vortex, you get a highly reliable hunting tool that will help increase the likelihood of going home with a kill.

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There are many good rifle scopes out there that you can get without having to spend a lot of money. However, few are as feature-rich as the Vortex Optics Diamondback, which should explain its high popularity.

Its impressive features will range from some high-quality optics and a top-notch reticle to more precise and repeatable adjustments. Better yet, hunters will also love the more rugged construction as it will ensure the scope serves them long enough.

Vortex Optics Diamondback Review

Photo: Vortex

Clarity: Bright and Clear Enough Optics

Vortex Optics Diamondback, just like with many other Vortex scopes, will never disappoint when it comes to the optical clarity as the brand is known for its superior quality optics designed to deliver the best sight picture.

For this scope, Vortex uses some fully-multicoated optics with anti-reflective coatings that help to maximize light transmission for a bright and clear image. Also, these coatings are very effective at minimizing glare for an even better sight picture.

With this lens, you can be confident of all getting a better color contrast. And with the fast focus eyepiece, you can be confident that besides being clear enough, picking up the target will be quick and easy.

Because the reticle is glass-etched and with a second focal plane, this scope will ensure that the image maintains the ideal size from the maximum possible range and also in the lowest light conditions that you can use this scope.

To go with the impressive optics, this scope also provides a 1.75-5x magnifications range. At this lower magnifications range, short to medium range shots will be easier to make, and the crosshair will also cover most of the target to ensure you get the target at the right spot.

Better yet, with the relatively low power magnification, this scope also allows you to get a relatively wider field of view than you would when using similar models with a higher power. This scope has an impressive 68.3 to 23.1 feet at 100 yards field of view that most hunters will love.

Primary Use: Great for Hunting and Shooting from Different Ranges

The Vortex Optics Diamondback is a non-illuminated scope that has been designed to be highly useful when shooting during the day.

Lack of illumination can make it a little fuzzy in low light conditions, but its superior light-gathering capability brought about by the high-quality coatings on the lenses makes up for this. Hence, this will still be a useful enough scope for dawn and dusk shooting when there is little light.

Also, this will be a highly beneficial scope for shooting at different ranges as it will make use of the Dead-Hold BDC reticle. This amazing reticle is very effective for situations where windage and holdover corrections are required.

With this reticle, aiming at targets from long range when you are hunting and other situations like competitive target shooting will be easier and more precise. Better yet, this reticle makes this scope ideal for use on a wide variety of rifles as it works perfectly well with rimfire rifles, slug shotguns, black powder rifles, and most high powered rifles.

Read More: The Best Rimfire Scopes

Construction & Build Quality: Solid Housing with a Nice Finish

Solid, rugged, and highly attractive are the three words that best describe the construction of the Vortex Optics Diamondback. And this means that besides being tough enough to withstand the harsh hunting environments, it will also look good on your rifle.

The scope, just like most other high-quality models out there that cost way much more, it is made from aircraft-grade aluminum alloy material. What hunters love most about thus scope material is that it is also tough enough to take the vibrations and recoil that the rifle produces no matter how powerful it might be.

This main tube is also one-piece, which comes with a myriad of benefits from making the scope even tougher to ensuring there will be no joints and connections that can allow water to get into the more sensitive internal components.

And with the main tube argon-purged and properly sealed with O-rings, this scope will never let any water in, and it will also be more resistant to shock. Better yet, hunters will never have to deal with fogging whether they will be using this scope in the cold winter months or not.

The finish is also both functional and aesthetically appealing. This hard anodized finish helps prevent glare to make shooting more comfortable even when hunting during the day, and hunters will also love that it is highly effective at camouflaging the hunter.

Adjustments & Set-up: Accurate and Repeatable Adjustments

Because the Vortex Optics Diamondback comes as a bare tool, you will not be able to mount it immediately. But, for the seasoned hunters or rifle enthusiasts that already have several scopes on their hunting gear set, the chances are that you already have matching rings, and so immediate setup will be possible.

And when it comes to the actual set up, there is not much to do besides installing the rings and then mounting the scope. Here, a couple of Allen wrenches and screwdrivers are all the tools that you will need. Better yet, there are some detailed instructions provided, and you can also find even more useful videos online.

For the adjustments, hunters can be certain that this scope will also give you an easy time. The metal-on-metal turrets will make it possible to zero reset the scope even after sighting it in, which is quite convenient.

Also, these turrets are capped and finger-adjustable to make the adjustments even more effortless. And they are conveniently and strategically positioned on the scope for easy adjustment when lining up a shot with the windage adjustment knob on the side and elevation adjustment knob at the top of the scope.

There is also a reticle focus that will make focusing the reticle easier for the hunter and the non-slip grip on the magnification adjustment ring makes choosing your preferred magnification easier. The magnification ring also has clear numbering to make the adjustment even easier.

It is also important to note that this scope will include a precision glide erector system that will help ensure you get more accurate tracking and also helps ensure repeatability for maximum consistency.

Price: Affordable Enough

While still not the cheapest rifle scope out there, this Vortex model is still affordable enough for most hunters no matter how you look at it or what you compare it with.

For an under $200 model, this scope is also solid enough and will give you some highly impressive features that you would only expect to get with more expensive models.


A durable aircraft-grade aluminum scope with a more feature-rich design meant to make life easier for a hunter.

There is hardly any aspect of a good scope that the Vortex Optics Diamondback does not take care of. For the optics, it uses fully-multicoated lenses to deliver a bright and clear image, while the Dead-Hold BDC makes it easy to shoot accurately from different ranges. Adjusting the scope is also easy, accurate, and repeatable, and durable housing ensures long service life.


  • Product Name: Vortex Optics Diamondback
  • Product Brand: Vortex
  • Material: Aircraft Grade Aluminum
  • Reticle: Dead-Hold BDC
  • Magnification: 1.75-5x
  • Field of View: 68.3 to 23.1 feet at 100 yards
  • Eye Relief: 3.5 inches
  • Adjustment Graduation: 1/4 MOA
  • Length: 10.2 inches
  • Weight: 12.8 ounces

Key Features

  • Dead-Hold BDC reticle makes it versatile for wide applications
  • Aircraft-grade aluminum construction is highly durable
  • Metal on metal turrets are easier to use and more accurate
  • Fully multicoated lenses deliver bright and crystal-clear images
  • Hard anodized finish prevents glares and helps camouflage shooter position
  • Fast focus eyepiece for easy and quick target acquisition
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