Nikon p 223 vs. Vortex diamondback : Which is ideal for long-range hunting?

Nikon p 223 vs. Vortex diamondback

I well designed and quality scope is the hallmark of a successful hunting session. The scope can enhance your view to unimaginable levels. However, not all scopes are ideal for your rifle. If you are looking for something for long range shooting check out our review

Unless you have abnormal eyesight, you will need a scope when out hunting for game. The problem is that searching for the ideal scope is like running through a maze; you have all terminologies that define scopes that it can be a herculean task choosing the right one for your rifle.

However, if you have some kind of guide you can sieve through your many options. Nikon and Vortex have dominated the optic sphere for many years. Their scopes are designed with quality and durability in mind. In this review, we examine two great scopes – Nikon P 223 and Vortex diamondback and we tell you which is the best.

What are the key differences between the Nikon p 223 and Vortex diamondback?

Nikon P 223 3-9X40
Vortex diamondback 3-9X40
Eye relief
3.6” ( the Nikon offers a forgiving eye relief compared to the diamondback but it is also heavier)
11.3 to 33.8ft @ 100 yards
14.8 ft. to 44.6ft at 100 yards
13.7 oz.
14.4 oz.
Tube Size
Objective diameter
Parallax setting
100 yards (lacks adjustment knob)
100 yards (comes with knob)
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Nikon p 223 vs. Vortex diamondback – How do they compare?

Glass clarity

Most of the dynamics like the glass lens coating, magnification and light transmission are almost the same when you compare these two scopes, however, the vortex diamondback has more clearer glass than the Nikon. However, the eye box and eye relief in the Nikon P 223 is more forgiving. This means the Nikon may make for a perfect scope when you are mounting it on a light rifle with high recoil. In this category, the winner is the diamondback as it offers better glass clarity.


Firstly, the two scopes have 100 yards fixed parallax settings with second focal plane. The Nikon P223 benefits a lot from its quick action turrets and focus eye piece that make it an ideal scope for long range shooting. The BDC 600 reticle on the Nikon P223 opens up well so as to provide the best accuracy while still improving hash marks. You also get zero-reset turrets that enable accurate adjustment of elevation and Windage. The unit also comes with spot on technology that lets you figure out where each dot represents. The Diamondback turrets are easy to adjust and it comes with an additional parallax knob which gives you room to make precise shots. The lack of a parallax adjustment knob is a low point for the Nikon P223.


The diamondback is made from durable aluminum and this makes it sturdy and gives it the ability to absorb recoil shock. The vortex is also coated with matte black anodized finish while the Nikon P223 is totally fog resistant and waterproof. The Nikon is covered with O-rings to protect interior components and is nitrogen filled. In terms of size, the diamondback is the larger of the two scopes and this means it can add some weight to your rifle.

Nikon p 223 vs. Vortex diamondback – A Comparison Overview

Nikon p 223 – Overview

Nikon P-223 3-9x40 Mate BDC 600
  • Generous, Consistent Eye Relief-Keeps your brow safe—even with the heaviest recoiling cartridges,...
  • BDC 600 Reticle-Developed specifically for the trajectory of the .223 Rem /5.56 NATO round with 55-grain...
  • Precise, 1/4-MOA Hand-turn Tactical-Style, Zero-Reset Turrets-Positive click reticle adjustments get you...
  • 100-yard Parallax Setting-Eliminates parallax for precise shooting.

If you are looking for a scope for long range shooting then look no further than the Nikon P 223. You can zero in the scope at 100 yards and adjust to up to 800 yards. The magnification can be adjusted from 3X to 9X with the images remaining amazingly sharp.

The Nikon P223 comes equipped with a BDC 600 reticle. This equips the scope with open-circle aiming points. You also get drop hash marks that range from 100 to 600 yards. If you do not have it figured out what the each dot represents then do not worry as the scope comes with spot on technology. The bullet drop compensator is a feature specifically designed for the hunter as it allows them to adjust the scope when it hitting targets at varying ranges.

The turrets on the scope are easily customizable. You have elevation knobs, zero reset feature and tactical style Windage. The turrets also make an audible sound during clicks so you do not have to move your eyes from your target to adjust. The scope comes with a 40mm objective lens that is fully coated to create an amazing 98% light transmission rate. For precise shooting the Nikon P 223 comes with 100 yard parallax setting.


  • Varying magnification options ranging from static and adjustable
  • BDC 600 reticle for improved accuracy
  • Splendid eye relief
  • Maximum light transmission rates
  • 100 yard parallax
  • Zero reset turrets


  • Lack of parallax adjustment

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Vortex diamondback – Overview

The Vortex diamondbackcan as well be considered an entry-level scope. It carries the characteristic high quality glasses synonymous with most Vortex scopes. With a greatly enhanced BDC reticle you are capable of taking shots from 100, 200 or 500 yards. The scope is made from high grade aluminum that makes it quite sturdy and durable. This design also makes the scope capable of handling recoil from a multiplicity of rifles.

The main reason many hunters love the scope is due to its BDC reticle that is marked with spots that help you center you target. You also get a second focal plane that helps you keep up the picture appearance as you take cover behind the amplifying focal points. The diamondback also comes with parallax that gives you the ability to adjust for precision while the turrets are used for greater adaptability. The eye relief on the scope is 3.3”.

You do not need to take away your eyes from your shots with the diamondback as it comes equipped with a strong haptic feedback. This means you adjust your Windage and elevation it dials a click hence announcing the results. You also get a zero reset after sight-ins due to the precision turrets.


  • Advanced adjustable systems
  • Strong and durable aluminum construction
  • Powerful reticle support
  • Turrets have audible clicks
  • Good glass for a scope
  • Vortex transferable lifetime warranty


  • The eye box is unforgiving in high magnification

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Verdict: So, Which is better – Nikon p 223 or Vortex diamondback?

When it comes to glass clarity, the Vortex diamondback offers better glass for an awesome price. The rifle is versatile enough for most mid and long range shots. The eye box is a bit unforgiving when it comes to high magnification and this is where the Nikon P 223 gains points as its eye box and eye relief are more forgiving. If you have a high recoil gun then we would recommend you go with the Nikon P 223.


Where can I use the Nikon p 223?

The Nikon P 223 is ideal for use in any AR-15 platform plus it requires you to use .223 remington/5.56 NATO cartridges. You do not get other innovative features in the scope to help in your shooting like rapid action turrets with instant reset and spring load and BDC-600 reticle.

Can I get a large tube size for the diamondback?

The Vortex diamondback is only available in 1 inch size tubes. If you want the 30mm tube you will have to go for the vortex crossfire II


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