Is the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16x the best budget hunting scope on the market?

Is the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16x the best budget hunting scope on the market?

Keith CRACKSHOT.TV No Comments

Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16x Rifle Scope Review

Is the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16x the best budget hunting scope on the market?
An Excellent Mid Range Scope
The Vortex Diamondback HP is one of the best "bang for your buck" scopes on the market. It does many things well for a super basic scope.
Where its Made?
Glass Clarity
Build Quality
Reader Rating0 Votes
Filipino Glass, Clear at 4x and 16x
Adjustable Parallax works well
High Build Quality
Simple BDC Reticle
Holds zero well
Vortex Lifetime Warranty
No illuminated reticle
Second Focal Plane (May be a con for some people)
Eyebox isn't bad, but could be a little better

An Incredible Value Mid Range Scope on a Budget

The Vortex diamondback HP 4-16X is a really great scope for the money.  The Diamondback HP’s MSRP is $479.99 and truthfully at that price you can do better.

However, the scope does often go on sale for between $200 and $250, and at that price point I think it’s a steal.

I personally got mine from Midway USA for $200, and that was an excellent price. Price will likely vary vs the time I purchased.

Vortex Diamondback HP On AR-15
Vortex Diamondback HP On AR-15

Vortex Diamondback HP Optics


Vortex has a wide variety of Diamondback HP Offerings

  • Affordable
  • Quality Glass
  • Adjustable Parrallax
  • Sufficient for long range shooting
  • Basic as compared to more expensive offerings

A Solid Choice for Mid Range Builds like the AR-15

I currently have this optic mounted on a competition build Aero precision build 16″ AR-15. My model in particular is the 4 to 16x model, which I like a great deal.

I used a simple but effective $60 leopold cantilever mount to mount this optic to the rifle.

The scope is second focal plane, but being a lower end scope that is to be expected.

Being a 4-16x we’re starting to get into the realm of where a first focal plane scope might make sense, so I’ll leave that up to you, but you won’t find a quality first focal plane scope at this price point.

Experience on the Range

Shooting at Close Ranges ( < 100 yards)

I’m able to shoot comfortably on 4x at ranges of 15-25 yards with no issues. The eye box on this optic at 4x is okay, very good for the price, but not as good as on higher end models. 4x performance is nothing like an ACOG, but it is serviceable.

Shooting it with an plain A2 stock that doesn’t give me a cheek weld can be a little more difficult, but running this on a lower with a B5 systems where my cheek weld can be easily repeatable is a very pleasant shooting experience.

You can get a feel for the eye box here where I slowly move a phone camera behind the scope, which is actually much harder and less intuitive than using your head.

Vortex Diamondback HP for Competitive Shooting
Vortex Diamondback HP for Competitive Shooting

Glass Clarity, Filipino Made Glass

Something to note is the clarity is quite good as compared to other scopes in this range. That is because this is a scope manufactured in the Philippines, which tends to have better glass than scopes manufactured in China.

Vortex Diamondback HP 4X Zoom
Vortex Diamondback HP 4X Zoom

16x Clarity

At 16x the glass clarity is still clear, but the eye box is a lot less forgiving. Still very usable, but cranked all the way in its easy to get shadowing along the edges of the scope. The scope has a simple BDC reticle that is easy to use and not very noisy.

The reticle is not illuminated, but I wouldn’t expect it to be at this price given the other features.

Vortex Diamondback HP 16X Zoom
Vortex Diamondback HP 16X Zoom, Ignore the yellow sticker marks, its from spawl, its not indicative of the grouping the scope can do, I set the target up next to a steel target

Adjustable Parallax

One of the nice things on this scope is its adjustable parallax. Not many scopes have that feature in this price range, and it works very well for getting a clear and precise image.

Vortex Diamondback HP Adjustable Parallax
Vortex Diamondback HP Adjustable Parallax

Quality Controls

The 4-16 adjustment ring is smooth and easy to adjust by hand.

Underneath the caps, the 1/4 MOA turrets are snappy and click audibly, making sighting in and adjusting this scope a breeze.

Vortex Diamondback HP High Quality Turrets
Vortex Diamondback HP High Quality Turrets

Lifetime Warranty

As with all vortex products, the scope comes with Vortex’s incredible lifetime warranty.


In conclusion, The scope holds zero well mounted on this 5.56 rifle.

The scope is simple, but it does what it is designed to do very well.

While there are much nicer options for more money available out there for precision and longer range shooting, the Vortex Diamondback HP really does punch above its weight class, especially if you get it at the low sale price.

Now that I’ve tested it out, I’m probably going to move this off onto one of my hunting rifles, but I know that in that context this scope will be good to go.

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