What happened to Vortex?

Powder

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Nov 26, 2022
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A number of years ago it seemed liked Vortex was all the rage. That's all I heard about for 'mid range' glass. How come they aren't in the discussion anymore? Honestly, I'm not a glass nerd. Is there really that much difference between their Viper HD and some of the other mid to higher end glass?
 

ljalberta

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Dec 7, 2015
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Well, in terms of myself, I was a large Vortex fan a number of years back. But a number of discussions on optics made me reevaluate what I want in a scope.

I no longer think it’s normal or acceptable to have to re-zero scopes when the only thing that has happened is some light backpacking or riding in a vehicle.

I no longer think it’s normal that a turret only doesn’t consistently dial.

And I no longer put the same emphasis on scopes as I do binos or spotters, where I’m looking for that wonderful glass I can stare through for hours on end. I like glass, but for a scope, as long as I can see during legal light, the focus is going to on its performance as an aiming device first, and as a wonderful viewing experience second.

For these reasons I’ve moved away from Vortex as they don’t meet the needs of what I look for now. This isn’t to say I’ll never use a vortex, but they’re not what I’m putting on my rifles that I backpack hunt with.
 

canyonhunter47

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Jul 6, 2018
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I don’t love or hate Vortex but my experience has been pretty mixed. You can generally get better optical quality for the money from other brands but that varies a lot with sales, open box, used etc and they have plenty of options with perfectly good glass.

My issue is more build quality. Off the top of my head: riflescope lost zero easily (in truck), riflescope had turrets lock up, bino got loose hinge, tripod uni-adapter got super sloppy and let other binos fall and scratch lens, binos lost rubber piece for both eyepieces, and more…

Their CS is great and will get you fixed up but that won’t help in the middle of a trip and it’s more of a crutch than a solution. With all that, I will admit that I’ve had good luck with their RF’s and will probably buy another.
 

hunterjmj

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Bought a vortex hst years ago and the turret bound up during a hunt. Sent them in to get fixed then sold them. I won't ever own vortex again. That being said my young kids each have cheap model vortex binos because the are 5 and 7 and I'm not going to buy them nice glass yet.
 

packer58

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May 28, 2013
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I to jumped on the Vortex wagon several years ago, bought my Razor spotter when they were running $1,400 or so........picked mine up on sale for $1,100 and thought i got smoking deal..........fast forward i never really fell in love with it and sold at pretty good discount last year. Pretty sure a Meopta S2 is in my future.....
 

Corey Paulsen (teamkabob)

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I have had a few pieces of Vortex. Diamondback bino 10x42 (3rd set), viper 2x10x44 scope (sent back twice), razor spotter 65mm (sent back once).

The 65mm spotter is the only piece that goes into the field. But swaro will replace it down the road.

I can't trust a hunt or my time away from family on anything Vortex. I can't even sell them because I would feel bad when they malfunction on someone.

They pushed the warranty card so hard, but you will use it. Hope it's no on a hunt.

They won't replace the viper scope with a new one! It is still hard to turn the object. Gets cold and it's a fixed power!

Got a Zeiss v4 that was on a tikka and it was tossed into the sag river loading a airboat. Obvious scratches on it and still held zero.

I'll work harder to buy something else.
 

packer58

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Swaro! Buy once, cry once…
There's definitely a lot of truth to that. For my eyes iv'e looked through Swaro and my 15X56 Meopta's and can't justify the price diff. If the S2 glass is on par with the 15"s i'll be a happy man without the cost of Sworo's.
 

AZ_Hunter_2000

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Oct 8, 2019
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Assuming you are talking about binoculars.

At one point Vortex binoculars did provide a lot of value for the money. However, they allowed their product lines to age for too long, lost ground to alphas and a whole batch of "upstarts". With the release of the Razor UHDs, Vortex has re-gained some ground (at least with that line) but their price point is on the high end which negates the "value proposition" by a good margin.

Long story short: Vortex rested on their laurels for far too long and got surpassed by several upstarts for many tiers of of binoculars.
 

packer58

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Assuming you are talking about binoculars.

At one point Vortex binoculars did provide a lot of value for the money. However, they allowed their product lines to age for too long, lost ground to alphas and a whole batch of "upstarts". With the release of the Razor UHDs, Vortex has re-gained some ground (at least with that line) but their price point is on the high end which negates the "value proposition" by a good margin.

Long story short: Vortex rested on their laurels for far too long and got surpassed by several upstarts for many tiers of of binoculars.
Good observation......
 

Huntin Fool

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Feb 18, 2022
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I still think vortex is a heck of a company, I’d still put the vipers against most anything in the 4-500 range and the fury’s have one of the best rangefinders you’ll find.
 

Huntin Fool

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Feb 18, 2022
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Too many people have had to use their warranty. Hard to take a piece of gear on a hunt if you don't trust it will hold up.

Sent from my SM-S901U using Tapatalk
And how many of those warranty claims were from self infliction? Lots of story’s of them being run over and dropped off a cliff. I have 2 pairs of Binos, range finder and spotter and they’re all running good.
 

Corey Paulsen (teamkabob)

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I still think vortex is a heck of a company, I’d still put the vipers against most anything in the 4-500 range and the fury’s have one of the best rangefinders you’ll find.
I will disagree. The viper 2x10x44 is a fixed power when it gets cold. MSRP to MSRP wise a Zeiss v4 is a far better scope. My viper scope lives on a 22 now.

All of mine have been product failures.

Got a 65mm razor and a viper 2x10x44 I'll sell you!

I won't buy any more and won't trust the ones I have.
 

hunterjmj

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And how many of those warranty claims were from self infliction? Lots of story’s of them being run over and dropped off a cliff. I have 2 pairs of Binos, range finder and spotter and they’re all running good.
Sent a rifle scope in that the turret quit turning. This was during a hunt. Have several friends with vortex binos where the bridge got floppy. If they work for you that's great but I wouldn't trust their stuff especially a rifle scope. My wife won a viper spotting scope last year but it just sits on the shelf in the original box wrapped in the original plastic. If it were mine I'd sell it.
 

NMTGrad

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May 29, 2021
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Vortex makes an OK product, but for maybe $100 - $200 more, you can get a Zeiss V4 that has better glass, better illumination, turrets that always work, and is just a better scope. I, too, bought a Vortex, but never really fell in love with it. I sold it and replaced with a Zeiss V4 4-16x44 and never looked back.
 
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