Vortex Diamondback HP 4 16X42 Review – 2022 Report

The Vortex Diamond HP 4-16X42 is a high powered SFP scope that has quite a following, lets investigate whether its the scope you should choose!

  • Extra low dispersion glass with XR multi coated lenses
  • Precision glide erector system with 4:1 zoom ratio
  • Fast focus eyepiece & comes with 4 inch sunshade
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Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16x42mm


  • 4” eye relief keeps you safe
  • Dead-Hold BDC reticle makes sighting easier
  • Variable magnification for different size game
  • Adjustment click is ¼ of MOA making adjustments more precise


  • No illuminated reticle option

Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 Specs

Eye Relief: 4 inches

Adjustment Options: ¼ MOA per click

Parallax: 30 yards to infinity

Windage: 80 MOA

Elevation: 80 MOA

Type of Reticle: Dead-Hold BDC reticle with no illumination

Magnification: 4-16x

Focal Plane: Second Focal Plane

Objective Lens: 42mm

Field of View: 23.8 (4x) to 6.1 feet (16x) per 100 yards


The Vortex Diamondback HP is full of features that make it ideal for hunting big and small game. If you hunt birds during duck season and hunt deer during deer season, you have a scope that can do both.

Magnification is one of the reasons that this scope is so useful, but adjustability, eye relief, and the reticle design are some of the other pros of the Diamondback HP. 

Variable Magnification for Different Size Game

The magnification of the Diamondback HP goes up to 16x, giving you more magnification than the standard Diamondback scope. This is important if you plan on taking shots at 500 yards or more. Shots at 500 yards or more will need at least 10x magnification to be able to accurately sight the target, especially if the target is small. 

The Diamondback HP allows you to take shots between 4 - 16x magnification which allows you to use the scope for different types of hunting.

If you’re doing standard deer hunting using the Diamondback HP, you will likely only use magnification up to about 6x if your shot is 200 yards or less. Anything greater than 6x on a large target can cause the target to become distorted if magnified too much, but at least you have the option to magnify 16x with the Diamondback HP. 

Dead-Hold BDC Reticle Makes Sighting Easier

BDC stands for bullet drop compensation, and it is a calculation you need to make to determine how much elevation adjustment you should make to your scope.

Vortex’s Dead-Hold BDC reticle helps you make that adjustment more easily because they have included hash marks in the second focal plane for you to quickly reference the adjustment you need to make. This helps you sight in your scope more quickly and easily, especially if you need to make an impromptu adjustment while in the field.

Adjustment Click is ¼ of MOA Making Adjustments More Precise

Each adjustment click you make on your scope will account for ¼ of a minute of angle. This allows you to precisely dial into those shots that are not at an even 100-yard increment shot.

For example, if you need to make a 6” adjustment at 400 yards, you will need to come up with 1.5 MOA. With a ¼ MOA adjustability, you can do that.

4” Eye Relief Keeps You Safe

The high-performance Diamondback scope gives you a clearer view as you keep your eye further from the ocular lens. Your eye can be 4 inches away from the ocular lens to get a clear view, rather than the standard Diamondback scope that only allows for around 3 inches of eye relief.

Eye relief is important because it creates a safe space between the ocular lens of the scope and your eye. The recoil that is created when you fire the gun can cause the scope to hit your eye or forehead if you are too close to the lens. With a 4” eye relief, you can safely keep your eye 4 inches from the scope while still maintaining a clear view through the lens.


The Vortex Diamondback HP can be flawed, especially if you are a hunter who likes to do his or her hunting in darker conditions.

Poor Brightness in Low Light

The most common criticism about the Diamondback HP is that it is a poor scope to use in lowlight. This can limit the time of day you can use the scope. If you’re a hunter who enjoys those dawn or dusk hunts, you will have limited visibility in lowlight conditions using the Diamondback HP.

Best Uses for the Diamondback HP 4-16X42

The Diamondback HP is the best scope to use for hunting different types of game, especially big game that may be targeted at long distances. Magnification and yardage are the two aspects of the Diamondback HP that play the biggest role in determining the best use for the scope.

Let’s start with magnification first, and then we’ll finish with yardage. 

How Does Magnification Play a Role in Using the Diamondback HP 4 16x42?

Magnification is what makes the Diamondback HP so successful for hunters and marksmen who need to take a long shot more than 100 yards away.

The standard magnification when you look through the scope is set to 4x. The magnification can be increased to 16x. This gives you the option to take a long shot that you otherwise may not take if using a different scope.

Because of this, the best use for the Diamondback HP is both big and small game hunting. You can adjust the scope to 16x magnification to focus on small targets, or you can use it at the standard 4x to focus on bigger game like deer.

What About Yardage? How Does Yardage Effect the Diamondback HP?

The yardage of the Diamondback HP 4 16x42 is easy to adjust while looking through the BDC reticle because of the hash marks that are shown in the second focal plane. Four different hash marks will represent specific yardage distances according to the caliber ammunition you are using.

When making adjustments for windage and elevation, you can make a maximum adjustment of 80 MOA. With the BDC reticle in the second focal plane, you can set your scope to know how many yards each hash mark represents so that you can make these adjustments more easily.

Is the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 Hard to Use?

No, it is a very easy scope to use once you understand the hash marks and the yardage they represent. You will need to know the caliber of the ammunition you are using to know how much the bullet will drop at each yardage distance.

The one thing we recommend is that you familiarize yourself with SFP. The Diamondback HP has the reticle on the second focal plane (SFP) and not the first focal plane. This can take some getting used to if you have always used scopes that have an FFP.  

The reticle of an SFP will remain the same size no matter the magnification, whereas it will appear bigger on an FFP when magnified. Just make sure you understand that magnification on the Diamondback HP will not change the reticle because it is an SFP scope.

Is the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 Compatible With Any Rifle?

The Vortex Diamondback HP is best used on centerfire rifles, but they can be placed on any type of rifle. They are best compatible and get their best use with centerfire rifles because of the long-distance shot that the scope allows. It can be magnified up to 16x, making the centerfire rifle the best rifle to use when taking long shots.

What Do I Need to Know About Mounting the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42?

To mount the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 scope to your rifle, you will need to purchase a set of mounting rings to attach to your mount. The mounting rings will secure the Vortex Diamondback HP 4 16x42 scope in place.

If you have trouble sighting in your shot, make sure your mount is properly secured to the rifle and that your scope is properly secured to the mount.

Make sure you use the lowest ring height to ensure that you get the most accurate sighted shot.

What Makes the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 Stand Out From the Competition?

The precision and clarity of the target through the lens make this Diamondback HP scope stand out. Magnification on a rifle scope can lessen the clarity of the shot while looking at the reticle on the lens. Still, with the Vortex Diamondback HP, you get an exceptionally clear shot, especially when magnifying up to 16x.

This makes the Vortex Diamondback HP stand out from the competition when it comes to taking long shots on your centerfire rifle, especially during daytime conditions.

Comparison Review

Vortex Diamondback HP vs Viper

The Vortex Diamondback HP and Vortex Viper rifle scopes are two extremely similar scopes with very few differences.

The similarities include protective lens coatings, long-range use, and durable design (waterproof, shock-proof, and fog proof).

Where the two rifle scopes differ, however, is in the cost. The Viper is still considered the high-end rifle scope of the two. The Viper is considered to have slightly more durability in the field than the Diamondback HP.

Although Vortex offers its VIP lifetime warranty on all of their products, you won’t have to be out of a rifle scope while you send yours back to Vortex to repair or replace.

Vortex Crossfire II vs Diamondback HP

Like the Viper and the Diamondback HP, the Crossfire II and Diamondback HP also share similar qualities.

These similarities include aluminum design, protective lens coatings, and durable design. They also share nearly identical eye relief ranges, with the slight advantage going to the Diamondback HP. The Crossfire II allows 3.9” of eye relief, while the Diamondback HP gives you a full 4 inches.

There is a difference in the parallax between the Crossfire II and the Diamondback HP. The Crossfire II parallax can be adjusted at just 10 yards, versus the Diamondback HP parallax adjustment at 30 yards. This gives the Crossfire II an advantage over the Diamondback HP, but only if you put a lot of emphasis on short range parallax.

The other noticeable difference between the Crossfire II and the Diamondback HP is in the maximum adjustment for windage and elevation. The Diamondback HP allows you to adjust up to 80 MOA, while the Crossfire II only allows 50.

All in all, they are both similarly designed rifle scopes, with the slight advantage going to the Diamondback HP for magnification distance and MOA adjustability.


Your centerfire rifle will need a good quality rifle scope that will give you the maximum clarity, magnification, and accuracy for the shot you’re taking.

The Diamondback HP 4 16x42 offers everything you will need for the hunting or target practice you will be doing.

People Also Ask

Here are the answers to some of the more commonly asked questions when it comes to the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42.

What Kind of Warranty Does the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 Come With?

The Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 comes with the Vortex VIP lifetime warranty. This warranty covers damage or defectiveness that causes your scope from becoming inoperable. Vortex will either repair or replace your scope at no charge to you.

How Much Does the Vortex Diamondback HP 4 16X42 Weigh?

The Diamondback HP 4-16X42 weighs 18 ounces. It is lightweight enough not to be a heavy, bulky rifle scope.

Can You Use Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 in Low Light?

The Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 is not best in low light conditions. This is because there is no built-in illumination within the scope or a red dot reticle to light up your target. This makes the Diamondback HP best for daylight or bright conditions.

How Long Does the Battery Last on the Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42?

Because the Diamondback HP 4-16X42 does not have a red dot or illumination capability, it does not require a battery. The reticle is established by crosshairs that are found on the second focal plane.

What is Vortex Diamondback HP 4-16X42 BDC?

Vortex BDC stands for bullet drop compensation. It is a way to easily determine the bullet drop at each hash mark depending on the firearm class you are using. Because calibers are different, they weigh differently as they shoot through the air. This means a heavier bullet will slow faster and drop quicker than a lighter bullet, so the hash mark will be different for these different calibers.

The BDC hash marks on the Diamondback HP 4-16X42 reticle allows you to easily determine the bullet drop compensation at each hash mark distance according to the firearm you are using.


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