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Thread: Spotting Scope Advice

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    1,380

    Spotting Scope Advice

    Looking for a decent spotting scope primarily for use at the rifle range to 200 yards but will get some field use. With most of my gear, especially optics, I typically go with "buy once cry once" credo. My binos are top end Zeiss and my scopes are Leupold. However, at my age, I am not sure how many high mountain type hunts I have left in me, and am a little reluctant to go crazy on a scope that may only see the range. My heart says Swaro or Kowa (I like the very light TSN 554), but my brain says Vortex Diamondback 16-48 x 65. Anyone have any experience with the Diamondback? Is it good enough for the range and some field time or am I deluding myself? Any help/suggestions appreciated.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Walnut Grove, Langley
    Posts
    14,184

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    I had a Diamondback and was happy but needed more range for the hills. I bought an Athlon. Rated as good at the Razor for much less money

    https://athlonoptics.com/product/are...x85-45-degree/
    Take a kid hunting its more rewarding than shooting an animal yourself!!

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Campbell River, BC
    Posts
    91

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    I don’t have any experience with the Diamondback or Kowa spotters. Lots of guys sh*t talk vortex but I personally don’t think you can beat them in some situations. The Diamondbacks are made in China, vipers are made in the Philippines, razors are made in Japan.

    I have 2 viper rifle scopes, razor binos and a razor spotter. I did upgrade to swaro el range binos (bought used) spend 90% of my time looking through them. If you said you wanted to get into sheep and goat hunting spending hours behind it, 100% I’d say swaro, Zeiss or Leica but for what you mentioned Vortex. Figure out what model you want angled, straight, 65 or 85mm and what they’re worth new. Watch the used section, I’d much rather have a used viper than a new diamondback for the same money. No questions asked warranty if you ever have an issue.

    I’ve bought all my vortex used except my razor binos I bought new. I had to send my razor spotter back it had specks/imperfections in the glass. Think it was gone 3 weeks, came back with a new eye piece. I had to pay shipping one way $20-30.

    For your intended use a diamondback would probably be fine, if you buy a used one and want to upgrade one day down the road you’d probably get most if not all your money back.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Haney,BC and anywhere you can hunt in BC out of the rain !
    Posts
    8,637

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    For the range a Vortex Viper HD would be fine, definitely go angled eyepiece so much more versatile to look through,
    my brother has both the Vioer HD and the Razor HD, optics are slightly better on the razor but functionality/ease of use was much better, if mostly for the range I would go 85mm as weight wouldn’t be a concern and the extra brightness will help seeing bullet holes, if you plan on backpacking it around go 65mm and again definitely angled eyepiece.
    can’t comment on the Diamond Back as have never looked through one
    7mm PRC soon to be the most popular cartridge in North America

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2022
    Posts
    153

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    My third spotter over some 40+ years is a Leica 62, armoured and it is the BEST available, IMHO. I also have my second Zeiss bin, bought in 1975 and my Leica Trinovids, 10x42. I just bought a new Leica 8x42 Noctivid and it is incredible. Great glass is worth it, IME and is among the most important hunting tools.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    1,380

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    Than ks for all of the input guys.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    14,702

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    Bushnell Forge 20-60x80 angled RJ
    Ignorance is not confined to uneducated people !

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    Indigenious JIM - Born and Raised in BC !


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  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Maple Ridge
    Posts
    1,392

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    Kowa 773 is better glass than the swaro ats

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2022
    Location
    South Surrey, BC
    Posts
    3

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    I owned the Diamondback and I noticed a huge difference when looking through premium glass especially if your glassing for hours. Also, I know the Mindful Hunter is currently doing a detailed review on like 7 top end spotters. He will probably have it finished within the next month. He usually goes into great detail and I would wait to see what he has to say before pulling the trigger. He is on youtube and has a podcast.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    962

    Re: Spotting Scope Advice

    Not sure what the vortex is worth but for the range kowa spotters are well worth the money.

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