In-depth Vortex Diamondback Spotting Scope Review as of 2018

Buying a spotting scope has become more difficult than it previously was, and the main culprit, in most of the cases, is the spotting scope market that is brimming with myriads of options. Each manufacturer is highly likely to offer different product lines with wildly-varying features, making your life even tougher as you decide to buy yourself a brand-new spotting scope. Needless to say, a spotting scope is an invaluable item for a hunter, target shooter, or observer, and it will often become a make-or-break issue in the heat of the battle. So, you can never make a mistake when you decide to invest in a new spotting scope. However, as it’s been stated previously, the hardest part is choosing the perfect one, and it’s often cumbersome to find a product line from a renowned brand which will deliver superior visual clarity all the time. Vortex Optics, unlike other popular brands, will offer you only three product lines to choose from: Razor HD, Viper HD, and Diamondback. Each of the product lines is capable to satiate your demand, even if you are looking for a best in class, high-performance spotting scope. The catch is that this reasonably priced spotting scope will always guarantee consistent performance and is a great all-in-all package.

Series Overview:

Diamondback is an entry-level series from Vortex Optics, which is quite affordable and comes with some amazing features that are a superb return for your money. The best part of these scopes is you will never have to break your bank for a decent quality spotting scope anymore. However, there are only a few options, if not limited, to choose from. Vortex Optics offers 60mm and 80mm objective lens, which comes with a magnification of 20-60X, and can be availed in both angled and straight viewing body. Some of the most common features that you will get with a Vortex Optics Diamondback are:

  • XR™ Fully Multi-Coated Optics: This feature is really an awesome addition to this valuable product. Vortex Optics uses proprietary coatings on all air-to-glass surfaces, which significantly increases the light transmission through multiple anti-reflective coatings. Actually, this is a feature which is common to all Vortex spotting scope—from the cheapest to the most expensive one. The end result, therefore, is unmatched visual clarity even at higher magnification. This technology can often become a boon for you when the sun goes down.
  • Dielectric Prism Coatings: If you are tired of some low-budget roof-prism based spotters, which simply cannot achieve total internal reflection and results in some images with poor brightness and subdued contrast, perhaps you are looking for a spotting scope from Vortex. Indeed, Vortex uses multiple layers of dielectric coatings to deliver bright, clear, and color-accurate images. Such decent level of color fidelity is only possible for this brilliant technology.
  • VIP Warranty: The unconditional VIP lifetime warranty is really a magnificent feature of this spotting scope. In fact, you get this VIP lifetime warranty with every Vortex Optics spotters, a symbol of their supreme craftsmanship. With these spotting scopes, you are promised to get the replacement or repair service no matter how the defect or damage occurred. No question will be asked, and you won’t have to spend a single penny to get them fixed. Another added feature of this warranty is that it is completely transferable, so you don’t need to worry if you buy or sell your scopes frequently.
  • Weather Resistance: The Vortex Optics Diamondback spotting scopes are ready to use in all weather condition, thanks to the rugged construction which stands up to the toughest use in the field. The scopes are O-ring sealed and nitrogen purged to prevent the dust, moisture, and debris from permeating the scope. Thus, you get an absolutely fog proof and waterproof spotting scope and will never have to worry about packing it for the most adverse weather.


Popular Products: Well, there are not many products in this series, so you will not get the luxury from choosing a lot of products. However, this is really useful most of the time because you can avoid a lot of confusion and your valuable time in the process. Although made with a budget-friendly price tag, Vortex Optics Diamondback 20-60×60 Straight/Angled Spotting Scope is a great choice for everyone. First of all, you can buy straight or angled according to your necessity. No particular one is actually better than the other, and it’s exclusively dependent on an individual’s requirement. Featuring XR fully-multi coated lenses and dielectric prism coatings, these spotters do a decent job to utilize the large 60mm objective lens and to produce some extraordinary pictures with stunning clarity and brightness. The magnification of 20-60X will allow you to zoom in and observe the greatest detail. You will get a decent linear and angular field of view as far as the industry averages go. The close focus for both Vortex Optics Diamondback 20-60×60 angled and the straight spotting scope is 20 feet, which is plenty in this price range. However, call it a downside or not, the eye relief is scanty in terms of comfort. If you are glass-wearer, it will definitely give you some hard time. The spotters are really compact, measuring 14 inches in length and weighing 33.8 ounces. Though the weight almost equals a kilogram, it is, in fact, compact and lightweight if you consider the large 60mm objective lens. This Porro prism designed spotting scope comes with several praiseworthy convenience features: adjustable eyecup, built-in sunshade, rotating tripod ring. The adjustable eyecup enables you to twist up and down to precise settings, maximizing custom fit for comfortable viewing. Built-in shade is another great feature to have, and it will reduce the glare and protect your spotters from rain and snow. And, the rotating tripod ring allows you to rotate the eyepiece for adjustable viewing angle.

However, do not let all these features befool you: it’s still an entry-level spotting scope from Vortex. Like all other budget-friendly spotting scopes, this one will also lose clarity as you magnify higher. And, there is nothing much you can do about it except choosing a high-end model. The image quality will suffer greatly with the maximum magnification and will produce a blurry image and is hard to get a sharp focus on the object. The scope is equally expert in daylight and at night stargazing, however, at maximum zoom, you will see a diminishing light gathering capacity of the scope. Since the scope doesn’t feature an extra-low-dispersion glass, you will see color fringing at higher magnification of the images. For target shooting beyond 150 yards, it will be difficult to get a clear focus at maximum magnification.


  • Excellent visual quality for the price
  • Decent FOV range
  • Unconditional VIP lifetime warranty
  • XR™ Fully Multi-Coated


  • Limited eye relief

Final Words:

Vortex doesn’t offer a lot of products, and Diamondback is a quite reasonable product line for everyone. In this price range, you are definitely not looking for some high-performance features like ED/HD glass. However, you will have a hard time finding such a product which returns so brilliantly for your money. The spotter with 80mm objective can do a great job for you if you are looking for some heavy-weight performance. If you want to get an extraordinary performance and unbeaten reliability at such a competitive price, you should definitely go with Vortex Optics Diamondback, and you will never be hard pushed to find a balance between optical quality and price.