Vortex Diamondback 4 12×40 AO Review: Pros, Cons, and Best Uses

Anyone who’s fired a rifle can attest to the importance of a good scope. When scopes work well they help people fit into nearly any environment. People learn to depend on their scope. As such, it’s important to know exactly how well suited any given option might be. It’s also important to keep in mind that scopes aren’t easily classified.

Scopes usually aren’t objectively good or bad. Rather, they’re good or bad for particular tasks and environments. In this Vortex Diamondback 4 12×40 AO review we’ll look at how it holds up in a variety of situations. By the end, we’ll know exactly when and where the Vortex Diamondback 4 works best.

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Vortex Diamondback 4 Specs

  • Magnification: 4 to 12x.
  • Weight: 14.6 oz.
  • Objective Diameter: 40mm.
  • Tube Size: 1″.
  • Eye Relief: 3.1″.
  • Parallax Setting: 100 yd.

Vortex Diamondback 4 Pros and Cons


1. Durability

The Vortex Diamondback 4 provides some remarkable strength. This is largely due to a combination of materials and construction methods.

It’s constructed of a single piece of aircraft grade aluminum. The combination of both elements ensures that it’s extremely durable. The aluminum’s structural integrity keeps it from bending. And the single piece construction ensures that there’s no seems or joints which might break.

2. Moisture resistance

Here too, one sees a dual system which provides superior reliability. The Vortex Diamondback 4 combines O-ring seals with argon purging. The O-ring seal keeps moisture from entering. And argon purging helps remove moisture. This doesn’t simply keep it safe in rain. It even keeps the scope from fogging under normally difficult conditions.

3. Precision glide erector system

Jarring magnification can result in lost shots. One can’t expect someone to toss away glasses and make a shot. Likewise, sudden shifts in scope magnification can create the same effect.

But the Vortex Diamondback 4 utilizes a custom precision glide erector system. This system ensures that magnification feels smooth and natural.

4. Light regulation coating

This Vortex Diamondback 4 12×40 AO review touched on environmental variability within the previous items. But it builds on that environmental adaptability by incorporating a multi-coating system for the lens.

5. Dot designed reticle

Some people may feel this is as much a negative as positive. But if one prefers a simple reticle than the Vortex Diamondback 4 delivers.

It uses a fairly standard design. The main distinctive trait comes from using a dot variant system. But simple also means non-distracting. There’s no quirks or tricks to its reticle. One knows how to use it within seconds of setting an eye on it.

The dot design does assist in one’s focus. But only in a non-distracting and natural way. It simply uses an eye’s natural tendencies to guide a shot. It doesn’t insist that one learn anything about the theory behind that design.


1. Vision issues for close or distant shots

Just because a scope allows sight at certain distances doesn’t mean it’s crystal clear. For example, one can consider taking a shot which is just at the edge of sight. One can still see the target. But given the choice, a hunter would simply step closer.

A Vortex Diamondback 4 tends to do something similar. One can usually still make shots at the near and far end of its range. But many users feel that it’s rated for distances a bit in excess of what it actually supports. It’s the difference between use and comfortable use.

2. Perhaps a little too simple

One might consider this item as the flip side of its simple reticle design. Overall, the scope pushes for reliability over innovative features. To some this is a benefit.

To others, this lack of features might come off as detrimental. This Vortex Diamondback 4 12×40 AO review item largely depends on how someone relates to their scopes.

3. Shorter than average mounting space

The design is a bit different than standard scopes. This means that one can’t make too many assumptions about proper fits.

The sizing differences are extremely minor. But one might want to keep that in mind when considering it. Ideally one should try before deciding to buy.

4. Durability of pack-in accessories

The scope itself is remarkably durable. But one might want to rethink using its included accessories. The lens protector, for example, isn’t nearly as sturdy as the scope itself.

However, it’s also fairly easy to simply swap it out with properly sized items. It’s only an issue if one doesn’t have a spare lens protector sitting around.

Who Is This Product Best For?

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This Vortex Diamondback 4 12×40 AO review highlights some features. But versatility and adaptability continue to come up. The scope’s features make it ideal for people who hunt year round. If someone wants to keep on going even in rain or mist than this should match their intent.

It’s also well suited to firearms with heavy recoil. The Vortex Diamondback 4’s single piece construction ensures that it can stand up to some heavy shocks.


The Vortex Diamondback 4 typically sells for $299.00. This price is fairly competitive when compared to similar scopes.


This Vortex Diamondback 4 12×40 AO review has touched on some important points. But the biggest takeaway should relate to durable versatility. These traits aren’t especially notable on a firing range. But they’re a perfect match for hunters who love the outdoors. It holds up in rain, mist and even against stronger recoil. And finally, the price remains fairly competitive. This makes it a solid choice for either a default scope or one to fall back on.