Vortex Optics Viper HD 15-45X65mm Straight Spotting Scope

viper-hd-15-45x65-straightViewing Configuration: Straight
Magnification: 15-45X
Power Variability: Variable
Adjustable Eyepieces: No
Eyepiece included: Yes
Objective Diameter: 65 mm
Close Focus Distance: 16 feet
Length: 15.8 inches
Weight: 52 ounces
Field of View: 140-65 feet/1000 yards
Eye Relief/Exit Pupil: 20-15 mm/ 4.3-1.4 mm
Optics Coatings: Fully Multi-Coated
Glass: BAK4
Focus System: Focus Knob/Dual Focus
Waterproof/Fog-proof: Yes/Yes
Digiscope adaptable: Yes

Best Uses: Hunting, For the Range, Birdwatching, Wildlife Observation, Photography

Our Rating:

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Vortex Viper HD Spotting Scope Review

This Viper HD has it all from ED/HD glass, XR Fully Multi-Coated glass, and Dielectric Prism Coatings to being fully weatherproof, having ultra-hard ArmorTek, and a fine-tuning Dual Focus knob.

This particular straight model has a near perfect rating online, albeit from a fairly small base of reviewers. Needless to say, this spotting scope is a keeper. There is a reason we have included it among our top picks of spotting scopes under $1000.

As one of the higher end scopes for Vortex, this is definitely worth featuring in our Vortex Viper HD review. I chose the straight model because of its fantastic star rating, although, the angled version did have double the reviewer base.

But, if you’re curious as to why I sound so excited to feature the Viper HD, let’s not wait any longer and get straight into the Q&A.


  • Dual focus
  • Fully weatherproof
  • Digiscope adaptable
  • Built-in Picatinny accessory rail
  • High quality coatings
  • Price


Viper HD 15-45X65 Spotting Scope Q&A:

What kind of focus system does it have?

The Viper HD has a dual focus system that allows you to get on target fast and then be able to make fine adjustments for perfect image clarity.

The focus knob has two serrated pieces to it. The first one that’s closest to the body of the scope is the fast focus. This allows you to get in focus quickly.

The serrated piece that’s on the end of the knob is the fine focus. This allows you to sharpen the image to be able to see the sex of your target, measure the rack on your bull, and locate vital zones accurately.


What are the benefits of a straight spotting scope?

The straight design has been the traditional and conventional design for ages. It’s actually only been recently that angled models are rapidly rising in popularity.

But, before everyone gets ahead of themselves and dismisses the legitimate use of a straight spotting scope, here’s some benefits that might draw you towards buying a Vortex spotting scope with the straight design.

The straight design is generally easier to use. If you’re a first timer getting used to spotting scopes, this is the way to go. It’s also easier and faster for a lot of hunters to look straight though the scope and expect to see the target in the direction they’re looking at.

You might also want to consider the straight design if you use car window mounts frequently since they’re more compatible with car mounts.


Does it have ED glass?

It does! This Viper HD has what the Diamondback lacks, the HD Lens Elements.

This means that it has High Density, Extra Low Dispersion glass that chromatically corrects for aberrations caused by out of phase lightwaves.

The result is high definition images, rich color, and sharp images without color fringing on high contrast objects.


What is the distance range of this Viper HD?

If you’re wondering about being able to see bullet placement, this will depend on type of calibers and targets used, atmospheric factors, and of course, your own unique vision.

But, for the sake of being general for those looking for an answer, .22 holes can be seen up to 200 yards on almost any target. On splatter targets, you should be able to expect to see them at 300 to 400 yards with max magnification.

For general viewing, you’ll be able to clearly see targets out past 600 yards without image distortion at max power – the better glass quality makes sure of that. For more information about how glass quality effects image clarity at maximum maginfication, check out this article.


Is the Viper HD convenient to pack?

This particular model is 52 ounces – while that’s relatively mid-size for a spotting scope, it’s still three and a quarter pounds you’ll have to think about lugging around with you.

While the magnification is certainly more powerful than a set of binoculars, and the optical quality is a lot better than the Diamondback, you’d be compromising on weight.

But, if you do a little bit of stationary glassing before your hunt or your hike to get in closer for the shot, the Vortex Viper HD is an excellent option to consider. If you need a more lightweight spotter, check out some of our other recommendations here.


Noteworthy Features:

  • 15-45X magnification for that extra reach that a binocular can’t get you
  • 65 mm objective lens for that extra light gathering for low light strength
  • XR Fully Multi-Coated Coatings, Dielectric Prism Coatings, HD Lens Elements for exceptional image quality
  • Dual Focus knob for fast and speedy target acquisition and then fine tuning for intimate detail-rich glassing
  • ArmorTek external lens coatings for protection from scratches, outdoor elements, and other potential glass damage
  • Fully fog-proof and waterproof to endure endure even the harshest terrain and weather
  • Porro prism spotting scope for ultimate optical performance
  • Straight design for easy use and convenience for car mounting
  • Built-in sun-shade, durable rubber twist up eyecups, rotating tripod ring, and a built-in Picatinny accessory rail for convenient and intuitive use
  • Backed by Vortex’s VIP Unconditional Lifetime Warranty


Our Verdict

The scoop on the scope is, the Vortex Viper HD 15-45X65 spotter is a well-done piece of work. It’s outfitted with everything a hunter would need in the field. However, the price jump from the cost of Vortex Diamondback to the Viper is too high for the additional dual focus system and Picatinny rail mount. But, if those features are absolute necessities, you can justify the cost.

However, speaking of the Diamondback 20-60×60 spotting scope, it’s got a ton of value. It might be the most basic optic in our Vortex spotting scope lineup, but it’s definitely earned its place. For the money that you’d spend on the Viper, you could also justify checking out the Razor HD – we promise it will be worth it!

You could also see the best of what Celestron has to offer since you’re shopping in this price range. The Regal M2 100ED Spotting Scope has interchangeable eyepiece technology, is digiscope adaptable, and it also has the dual focus system. Celestron continues to surprise the hunting crowd!

There’s never a disappointment when it comes to buying from Vortex. They please in every way because they put the buyer first. If that’s the kind of product and customer service you want to buy, buy from Vortex!


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